Features

Double standards…

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The post 2000 era is the most difficult time for the Muslims around the world. After 9/11 attacks at Twin towers and Pantagon headquarter, the western media, think tanks and government polices were pretty much turned against the Muslims. 

America invaded Afghanistan to complete its Operation Enduring Freedom by using Pakistan’s soil for its bases and did a heavy bombardment from Kabul to Tora Bora mountains. NATO and American troops destroyed most of the country’s infrastructure after eliminating Taliban; (though they are negotiating with Taliban now). 

  
The West was still not satisfied by the destruction of Afghanistan, and stormed to Iraq, having and propagating an excuse that Sadam had Weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and that the civilised West needed to eliminate him and his weapons within no time. 

Role of Western Media

The western media played a key role to make their people to accept this decision by George W Bush and former labour Prime Minister Tony Blair. There were demonstrations against the Iraq invasion in across the Europe.  People had realisation that the destruction of Afghanistan was an agenda and there were vested interests of the imperialists powers. I Can still remember some of the major newspapers headlines and broadcasts at that time. 

I am telling this brief history because today we are witnessing an islamophobic behaviour across the West. Muslims are being rediculed and racially abused across the world and the alarming point is that the anti-Muslim behaviour is spreading rapidly among the masses. 

Governments are meant to control such situations but they are themselves involved in such actions that ultimately give boost and energy to such conservative and unhealthy behaviour in society. 

  
So called extremist Islamic groups are destroying the over all picture of Islam. We all know that these radicals are not representing Islam at all and West knows this ; of course I am talking about IS ‘Islamic State’. Western media through a well planned strategy portraying and reporting in such an angle that doesn’t throw light over serious genuine reasons of current chaos especially in Middle East. The easy way to engage their readers and viewers is to blame Islam and Muslims for the over all mess in the whole world. 

Did we fight World War One and Two?

The West has forgot that Hitler was not a Muslim who caused millions of deaths. Atomic bombs attack on two dence populated city of Japan that took hundred of thousands of innocent lives was not thrown by Medieval Muslims. World War One and Two were not faught between Muslims and Christians.  

But media has made West to forget their history which is not too old. 

The people who are observing all this current situation they know why is this happening and who is making this to happen. 

Burma is burning

Currently Muslims in Burma are facing the worst brutality by the Budhits but the double standard of UNO and all other countries and organisations that are champion in human rights, are slept and have turned their eyes off on this persecution, Muslims massacre and ethinic cleansing. 

  
The world needs to react responsibly against the discrimination with Muslims across the globe. And before even pleading to the world, I resquest to all the scholars out there to teach and follow the true teachings of Quran and our Prophet (PBUH)..

Eid Conflict in the UK (why?)

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Umair Butt

21st century and Eid Conflict

There are two major religious festivals in Islam that are celebrated among the Muslim world, following the lunar calendar, with great enthusiasm, harmony and love. Yet in the past decade, a new conflict has been rising among the Muslims living in the UK about ‘moon sighting’ because the sight of moon determines the exact date of celebrations of Muslims’ biggest festivals EID-ul-Fiter and Eid-ul-Adha.

Eid-ul-fiter is being celebrated at 1stShawal’ (the ninth Islamic Lunar Calender) after the holy month of Ramadan. And Eid-ul-Adha is celebrated at the 10th of Dhu-l-Hijjah.

In the 6th century, the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) had managed to celebrate these festivals by following the method of moon sighting with bear eyes. He (PBUH) declared that Eids can be celebrated if two men claim of moon sighting from a country.If there is no possibility to see moon with bear eyes due to clouds or bad weather, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) directed that Muslims should complete 30 days of the previous month before starting the new month. Thus Prophet PBUH had solved the issue.

‘Modern Time’

But in 21st century, when there are huge technological, astronomical advancements and when people have realised the complex geographical structure of the earth, and also the concept of nation states is prevailed around the world, the moon sighting has created debate among Muslims.

‘Predetermined Calendar’

The moon sighting conflict is also found among the Muslims of the UK. One group follows Saudi Arabia and celebrates their Eid with Saudis. However the critics who are not agree to follow Saudi Arabia says, ‘ the whole fiasco is caused partly by the predetermined (fixed) calendar the Saudi Taqweem Um-al-Qurah, a calendar adopted to create a predictable structure of dates linked to the birth of moon.

This makes it not only controversial but also blatantly contradictory to the commands of the Hadiths, (sayings of Prophet Muhammad). As a result the months have in the past often been initiated before the birth of the moon, let alone by the sighting of the moon.  Also the geographical location of the UK demands its own moon sighting rather than to follow Saudi Arabia.’

Some scholars have tried to justify the birth of the moon method. Those who are following Saudi Arabia’s stance regarding moon sighting claim that scientists from NASA photographed the moon during its birth over a hundred miles above earth. The resulting photos failed to reflect any direct light from sun. A solid object that cannot be seen, cannot be regarded as visible.

‘Don’t Follow us’

Yet Saudis have never asked other countries to follow them and they recommend to the Muslims all over the world to seek their own horizons for moon issues and not follow the Saudi decisions.

In Scotland, this issue has also divided of Scottish Muslims as there is no unified system for moon sighting. Eids were being celebrated on one day in Glasgow from a long time. But now there are some mosques, Especially Central Mosque that is the largest mosque of Glasgow, are following Saudi Arabia and while other mosques are following the moon sighting criteria or observatory methods.

‘2006 Agreement’

In 2006, to solve this issue, there was an agreement between the two groups of Glasgow in which it was stated that Eid would be celebrated in Glasgow if the nearest Islamic country which is Morocco and the farthest country South Africa, one of them declare their Eid at a same day.

However this agreement could also not work as a new situation aroused when Morocco was one day behind from its Islamic Calendar. So the Imams of Glasgow held their meetings to create any consensus on another country but they failed.

‘Glasgow Central Mosque Clarification’

Glasgow central Mosque has clarified their position on their website and described the failure of an agreement with other group saying, “The imams of Glasgow agreed that if one of two countries; Morocco and South Africa, announce sighting of the moon which coincides with sighting of the moon in Saudi Arabia, then we in Glasgow will also follow it.

On 29th Dhul Qadah (the month before Dhul Hijjah) in Glasgow, it was apparent that Morocco is one day behind in its Islamic calendar, i.e. that their date is 28th Dhul Qadah, which left only South Africa as a moon sighting reference point. The original agreement contained no allowance for only one country to be a reference point and so another country which is on 29th Dhul Qadah should have been selected.

At a second meeting on Sunday, 6th October at Glasgow Central Mosque, the ameer of the 30th September meeting therefore declared the original agreement null and void. Subsequently, the imams could not agree upon a new ameer and a difference of opinion means the pro-Makkah al-Mukaramah moon sighting followers will celebrate Eid on 15th October and the pro-Morocco moon sighting followers on 16th October.

On a separate note, if far away countries like South Africa can be accepted as a moon sighting reference point then why not Makkah/Madinah?”

‘Dogmatic Approach’

Mirza Serfraz, former member of the ‘moon sighting committee’ of central mosque, says, “In our times, when I was the member of the moon sighting Committee, we always created consensus among the scholars and Imams (clergies) of all the mosques in Glasgow. Even we were the example for England and other countries that we solve this issue with mutual harmony and consensus.

I am no more the member of the committee so are my other friends however me and so many other people are disappointed by the current administration of all the mosques in Glasgow, as they are failed to solve this issue. It is a dogmatic approach from both sides. Islam is a flexible religion. It allows us to sit together and create a middle way when there is a deadlock.”

Not only the administration of the mosques are disappointed, the Muslims of Glasgow are also showing their anger and an aggression has been created among their hearts especially the young generation which is already getting away from their religion.

It is pathetic that if Muslims no matter from Glasgow however around the world cannot solve such issue which is solvable. The dogmatic approach from each side in Glasgow is being criticised by general Muslim population.

Is the UN credible?

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Umair Butt

The United Nations is no longer effective

The recent wars and interventions by the west in the Middle East bypassing the United Nations that has seriously raised the question of its credibility and its role.

Aristotle once said, “Man is a social animal”. It is in the nature of man to live in groups. Thus the families are made (the phenomenon of family system evolved), colonies are developed and man creates it identity. It identifies itself with different nations, tribes and ‘now in modern times’ countries. The book of man’s history is full with creations, inventions and love for the mankind simultaneously some of the pages are being smelled with the blood of man.

“Man is a social animal”

The fights between the nations and countries had forced to create such organisation where the mutual tussles and conflicts can be settled without pouring the blood of mankind. Broadly speaking, it was felt that there should be such an organisation that can guarantee the world peace and where the serious matters among the nations can be solved without waging the wars against each other.

United Nations is the pragmatic picture of that need. As a human being is filled with faults, same as an organisation that was being created by the will and minds of human beings could not escape by committing faults ‘intentionally or unintentionally’.

‘bloodiest history’

United Nations was formed in 1945. The time of creation of the organisation was amongst the bloodiest history of the human being. United Nations was not the sole attempt or struggle to deal and solve the conflicts among the nations however, in 1945, when the world witnessed the sunset of the World War 2, which took millions of human lives. That brutality and war atrocities in World War 2, forced the world to create such an organisation that could prevent human from blood shed, devastation and catastrophe in future.

Pakistan became the member of the United Nations in September 30, 1947, 46 days after its creations. This newly born nation was trying to sustain its existence from chaotic atmosphere around when it faced a war with its counterpart newly yet stable state India on the issue of Kashmir.

Kashmir Conflict’

After stopping the war, a resolution in United Nations was passed to conduct referendum in Kashmir that to whom with Kashmiri people would want to accede.  The resolution was accepted by both the stake holders, Pakistan and India.But after 66 years of the UN resolution, it is still needed to be implemented while Pakistan and India are still on the verge of war due to this Kashmir conflict.

Kashmir Issue is not just the one that has been remained unsolved by UN yet Palestine-Israel conflict, ethnic cleansing in Africa, Iraq War, killings of Muslims of Myanmar and now the Syrian civil war are exposing the dead failures of United Nations. It is obvious that these issues not only show the weakness of UN’s capability to implement its resolution however people around the world vehemently assume that UN is the puppet of some certain powers and it has nothing to do with the peace in the world.

Palestinians after the birth of Israel are facing deterioration in every sphere of their lives. Palestinians cannot even get their butter and bread, the basic needs of life without the will of the Israel. Their homes are being demolished, they are depriving of their territory, and worst misery is, there is no shelter for them.

Palestinians are looking towards the world ‘UN’ still with hope but after the sixty years, the bureaucracy of the United Nations and the so-called champions of the human rights; pay no attention towards the brutalities of Israel. Israel is violating the humanitarian laws and making the life of Palestinians more miserable day by day however, it is considered the most respectful  and crucial member of the United Nations.

On the one hand we see that how Iran is under economic and political sanctions by UN while there are 39 resolutions against Israel that have been vetoed by America. This is why this perception is prevailed in the world that United Nation is the puppet of the sole super power United States and it compromises with its obligations and duties for what it was created more than six decade ago.

The irony is this that when America and its ally United Kingdom invaded Iraq on the cause that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction; they did not get consent from United Nations and bypassed Security Council. The world is witnessed that there were no WMD were found even UNO’s own Inspectors did not verified the existence of WMDs however thousands of civilians had lost their lives under the aggression of champions of human rights’ in the world. And we see that how UN surrendered against the might of USA.

Iraq invasion by the ‘powers’ had destroyed the credibility of the United Nations badly and alarmed the world that the world is no more under the peace clouds and ‘peace’ can be shattered and destroyed by the major powers anytime. This is very alarming and pathetic that majority of the people think that the world has no more such a platform where issues are addressed affectively and solved.