Maulana Khalid Dhorat
January 14, 2015 will go down in history as the day the West, especially the French, signed their own death sentence. And they did it in style too. They did it by first organizing a 4 million people march the weekend before – probably the biggest in French history, – attended by such tyrants like Benjamin Netanyahu who had just brutally massacred over 2300 people in cold blood in Palestine, and Angela Merkel in whose country denying the Jewish Holocaust is punishable by up to five years in prison. Why was this march so important to them, when previously Western catastrophes of a much larger scale, like that of Anders Behring Breivik, a Norwegian who killed eight people by setting off a van bomb amid government buildings in Oslo, then shot dead 69 participants of a Workers’ Youth League (AUF) summer camp on the island of Utøya, didn’t elicit the same response? Maybe Breivik wasn’t a Muslim, that is why.
In any case, it turns out that these four million people were marching in order to protect a sham Western value called “Freedom of Speech.” Even a child knows that there is no such a thing as absolute freedom of speech, and the occasional vulgar words in his speech may earn him a smack on the hand or some chillies in the mouth. So, if children understand this, why can’t adults? The reality is that “Freedom of Speech” is not a higher value, but a repulsive piece of legislation belonging to an equally ugly “liberation theology.” In simple words, it’s meant to tighten the grip upon their power and further their Western imperialist agenda. It’s freedom in name only, but in reality, infers freedom to disparage and insult prophets of other religions, freedom to malign an entire religion for the deeds of a few, freedom to respond disproportionately or unjustly upon the actions of a few, freedom to manipulate the facts, ignore the reality and pursue sinister world agendas, freedom to wrongly imprison or kill anyone who has sympathy with oppressed Muslims, freedom to sideline any non-Muslim who believes in justice and peace, freedom to display hypocrisy and bigotry to the world and expect everyone to toe the line, as well as freedom to manipulate politics and spin the media so as to profile Muslims as terrorists and barbarians. Freedom to be the devil incarnate!
Although targeted at Muslims, I sincerely hope that the western world is seeing the bigger picture here. The 4-million march was nothing but a flagrant abuse of democracy to legitimize the invasion of privacy, criminalizing legitimate dissent, creating a false sense of hysteria and panic to further the war on terror, an excuse to police the internet, and imposing an alien world view upon humanity. All of civil society, Muslims and non-Muslims alike, will suffer the consequences of supporting and endorsing such legislation that will harm only themselves.
For Muslims, however, apart from the political narrative, there is a spiritual dimension too. We are told in authentic traditions that whoever harbours enmity with any of the friends of the Almighty, has in fact, declared war with the Almighty itself – a war one can never dream of winning. It is an undeniable fact, to all Muslims, that there is none closer to the Almighty than Prophet Muhammad (May peace be upon him), and even critical western scholars such as Thomas Carlyle, Leo Tolstoy, Michael Hart, D.G. Hogarth, Sir George Bernard Shaw, and Dr William Draper have paid glowing tribute to him. And so just as the Almighty used a crippled mosquito to destroy the Nimrod who opposed Prophet Ebrahim (May peace be upon him), and water to drown the Pharaoh Ramesis who persecuted Prophet Musa (May peace be upon him), and little sparrows to destroy Abraha and his army who intended tearing the Ka’bah down in Makkah, and two inexperienced youngsters who maimed Abu Jahal, the arch-enemy of Prophet Muhammad (May peace be upon him) during his lifetime, the Almighty WILL DEFINITELY avenge this huge insult this time around. We will wait for that day, just as you will wait.
If marching was not enough, these enemies of the Almighty and of civilization itself then started rolling out five million special-edition copies, in 16 languages (including Arabic), to be distributed in 25 countries, of the notorious “Charlie Hebdo” magazine. The front cover boldly caricatured a grumpy, teary, frail old man, holding a sign which read: “All is forgiven.” Renald Luzier, the cartoonist who drew the cover image under the pen name “Luz”, said it represented “just a little guy who is crying,” adding: “Yes, it is Muhammad.” The magazine which has a measly run of only 30 000 copies, also featured a Muslim woman clad in modest clothing, lifting up her cloak revealing that she wore nothing but knickers beneath. On the brink of bankruptcy just a month before, Charlie Hebdo has further tarnished her own image by turning the massacre of its morally-bankrupt, perverted and deranged slain cartoonists into an opportunity of raking in huge profits.
Five million hard copies, with an average of four people reading one copy, equals to a potential 20 million readers. This is besides the other newspapers and magazines which reproduced them, including a South African newspaper who later apologized for their oversight, as well as the internet with its millions of viewers. There has never been a greater mass effort to disparage our Noble Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) in history in the name of “Freedom of Speech,” especially at a time when Muslims worldwide are also traditionally celebrating his illustrious birth and life in this most historically significant month of Rabi al-Awwal. Indeed, the Rabi al-Awwal of 1436 will be remembered for the chill in the air; but worse chills have befallen his noble personality, and every time the legacy of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) shone even brighter.
Muslims are not provoked and saddened by this massive hate campaign, but instead feel saddened at the level of moral bankruptcy of the West. Even if a billion copies were printed, it will never create a dent in the impeccable character of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him). No impression of our Noble Messenger (Peace be upon him) exists, so the caricature is nothing but a reflection of an angry and seething West who fear the Islamisation of Europe in the next 20-30 years. The Qur’an, in verse 94:4, has elevated the name of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) from the sky, and no caricature, video, article or legislation on earth can ever debase him. In fact, the Qur’an, in 3:186, prepares us for the fact that the disbelievers will always spew their hatred at us, but we have to be patient over it. Patient, not because they are allowed to defame our Prophet, but patient as this is a sign of their frustration and inability to stop their own downfall, even after their open war against Islam. Patient, not because we need to accept humility and disgrace, but patient on the fact that although we are politically disunited and spiritually weak now, we should be steadfast on protecting and advancing Islam until victory will be ours.
I appeal to all of those in the West who were part of this disgraceful act: either repent from this heinous deed whilst there is still life in your body, embrace Islam and make amends, or start packing your suitcase to the volcanic islands.
Impotency of this Ummah
Aside from the mass defamation effort which will never succeed, but will only bring more people in contact with the personality of the true Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him), there is another critical issue here: the rights of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) upon us.
There is unanimity on the fact that to love our Prophet Muhammad is FARDH (compulsory). Not only this, but a measurement of this love has also been given to us. According to verses 9:129, 33:06 and 9:24 of the Qur’an, our Prophetic love should override our love for our own parents, children, family, wealth, businesses, and even ourselves. Will anyone tolerate depicting his mother naked with a tattoo on her rear, or his father as a wicked bomb-wielding terrorist? Never. Giving one’s life for defending the dignity of one’s parents will be regarded as a sacred duty. So, if we cannot tolerate this for our parents, we will never tolerate it for our Noble Messenger (Peace be upon him) who is dearer ti us than our parents too. By constantly provoking the Muslim ummah with these cartoons, the West is trying to de-sensitize us to the lofty position the Messenger (Peace be upon him) holds in our hearts. They wrongly assume that Muslims will become demoralized, give up their religion out of fear, and adopt their notion of democracy that shuts out the Almighty and His Messengers from it. They think that after a few demonstrations and petitions here and there, butchering a few Muslims in Europe in front of their families and dropping a few bombs in some French Masjids, the ummah will drop the matter and just call it another day.
This will never happen. After every assault on Islam and after every attack on the noble personality of our Messenger (Peace be upon him), the direct opposite happens: our love increases for him, and we become more determined to introduce the world to the AUTHENTIC Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him). Events like this unite us for it is at times like this when our guns, tongues and pens are turned away from attacking ourselves, and are jointly pointed towards the enemy of the Almighty and of humanity.