Dr. Yusuf Al-Qaradawi:
Every time I read Yvonne story, I recall those
magicians that the Pharaoh hired to defeat Moses. Many embedded journalists
instead of defeating and humiliating Islam in the media, like the magicians
of the pharaoh, they found the
undefeated power of Allah.....and they became more vocal in fighting for
Islam....Allah ho Akbar !!!!!
Yvonne Ridley's Speech
at EWAMY, Cairo (EGYPT), EWAMY - Cairo, Egypt, Friday, November 24, 2006
The Arabic language is one of the cornerstones of
Islam, as we have heard today from our brother, so I do apologize in advance
that this is one of the many areas of Islam Iíve yet to master.
Islamically, I am very young, having reverted in
2003. And while I have much to learn I can identify with the frustrations
shared by young Muslims today.
I know 9/11 had a huge impact on the world, but it wasnít really the start
of something. It was the continuation of a legacy of US imperialism and its
fear of Islam.
Just over ten years ago, fit young Muslims across the globe flooded into
Bosnia to help their brothers and sisters fight for their survival against
the Serbs who were carrying out a genocide sanctioned by the silence of a
The jihad brought together Muslims from all nationalities, status and
culture. All were united; even those who could not travel to fight helped in
other ways such as fund-raising, public awareness events and demonstrations.
The impact was to stop the genocide. Western intervention, when it happened,
came only after it was apparent that that the Bosnian Muslims were heading
for victory. The establishment of an Islamic state deep in the heart of
Europe was simply too much to bear and so the West intervened. This is not
my conclusion, but US President Bill Clinton
admitted it in his autobiography.
This fear of Islam has now evolved in the last 10 years to such an extent
that the blood of our brothers and sisters is now flowing like rivers across
Chechnya, Kashmir, Palestine, Afghanistan, Iraq and we saw recently what
happened to Lebanon.
I have walked through many of those killing fields and let me tell you the
twisted, blown up limbs of our Muslim brothers and sisters look exactly like
those pulled from the rubble of the Twin Towers.
Yet the message of today is quite clear. Muslim blood is a cheap commodity.
Meanwhile tens of thousands of innocent Muslims continue to be tortured in
far away dungeons and cages in Guantanamo Bay, Bagram airbase in
Afghanistan, Abu Ghraib, Diego Garcia and ghost prisons throughout the
Others are tortured inSyria, Jordan, Morocco, Tunisia, and Algeria and even
here in Egypt. Brothers are being tortured at the behest and request of the
So what sort of message does that send out to our young people?
They read about the heroic exploits of Salahudddin Ayyoubi, Khalid bin Walid,
Tariq bin Ziad and listen intently to stories of courage and bravery about
our beloved Prophet Mohamed.
Do you know, five years ago I had never even heard of The Prophet, but now I
would give my last drop of blood to protect his name, his honor and his
Even in death he continued to show how strong he was by uniting the Ummah in
protest at those vile cartoons from Denmark.
Our modern day heroes include those two sixties martyrs Malcolm X and Sayyid
Qutb, both whose writings have helped define me as a Muslim.
These are the sort of role models and influences our youth need to follow,
but instead they receive confused and mixed messages.
One minute they are told the fear no one but Allah while the next minute
they are told to dilute their Islam and keep their heads down.
Since the events of 9-11, there has been an unrelenting campaign launched to
change Islam into something more palatable to Western society.
The vision is a secular and cultural Islam at peace with the world through
her submission to her oppressors rather than to Allah; an Islam devoid of
jihad, Shariah and khilafah. The very things we are commanded by Allah to
implement in order to establish Allahís deen on this earth.
And it is in evidence everywhere I look. Hijab are being ripped off the
heads of my sisters in Tunisia, France and Turkey. Sisters in Holland and
Germany are also in the firing line.
And in Britain, we have Jack Straw, the former British Foreign Secretary who
questioned the veil. I am not having a white, middle-aged man telling me how
to dress. Keep out of my wardrobe and that of every sister on this planet.
I pick up the newspapers in Cairo today to discover the Minister of Culture
has called the wearing of the veil a regression.
How dare he say that? Why are the men in Egypt standing by and doing nothing
to silence him? He is insulting the honor and dignity of every Muslim woman
who chooses to cover.
Farooq Hosni is a disgrace to Islam. What sort of message does he send out
to our young people with his weasel words?
The niqab, like the veil, like the hijab has become a symbol of a rejection
of those negative Western lifestyles like drug-taking, binge-drinking and
promiscuity. It is a statement telling the West we
donít want to be like you.
These Arabs who choose to be more western than Westerners make me laugh. Do
they realize how pathetic they look in the eyes of the rest of the world?
This Minister should be sacked from his post for dishonoring every sister
who chooses to cover.
I suppose he hides behind such descriptions as moderate. Again what sort of
message does that send to our young people?
If we ask them to be moderate does that not suggest that there is something
wrong with Islam that it needs to be toned down, dilluted?
The last time I came to Cairo I was called an extremist by none other than
the Sheikh of Al Azhar Sheikh Tantawi. The reason for this? Because, I would
not shake his hand.
What is a moderate and what is an extremist? I really donít know. I am a
simple Muslim. I follow no scholars or sects. I merely follow The Prophet
and the Sunnah. Does that make me an extremist?
I once said being a Muslim is a bit like being pregnant. You are or you are
not. Whoever heard of anyone being moderately or extremely pregnant?
Islam has been under attack for 1400 years and we should have learned by now
to put our trust in no one but Allah. Yet there are those who continue to
kiss the hand which slaps them.
I am afraid that we can no longer put our trust in to someone just because
they might wear Islamic dress or have a long beard? I notice quite a few
long beards in here today, but I am not referring to you, brothers.
There are those Muslim leaders who claim to guide and protect us but not all
of them have our interests at heart.
Our young people are going to have to be very discerning since the events of
9/11, Bali, Madrid and the London Bombings, to name a few.
There are individuals who for years rallied the masses to stand up for
justice and support mujahideen groups around the world and now some have
become embarrassingly silent while others condemn armed jihad, portraying
mujahideen as terrorists and extremists who follow a distorted version of
In some ways we are all to blame. Our greatest shame has been our silence
while martyrdom operations in Palestine and other occupied lands have been
condemned as acts of terror as witnessed in 9/11 and the July 7 bombings.
Our young people have to be taught that what is happening in Palestine,
Kashmir, Chechnya, Iraq and Afghanistan is legitimate resistance against a
brutal military occupation, while crimes like 9/11 and the London bombings
are blatant terrorism.
Equating the two only betrays our brothers and sisters who have no other
option but to fight or face being wiped off the face of this planet.
The new slaves of the West criticize Islamist parties and governance by
Shariah. Even student and youth movements which consistently campaigned for
Palestine and Iraq have suddenly lost their tongues in a bid to be seen as
In Britain we have an invasion of what I call the Happy Clappies. They are
being flown in by the Government from the US, Canada, Yemen and Mauritania
to preach a diluted form of Islam.
They are poisoning the minds of our youth and we should be very wary before
the Happy Clappies spread across the world. They attack in the most cynical
manner. Some even misuse nasheeds, and I am deeply afraid that the Happy
Clappies are infecting our nasheeds with the excesses of western pop
The end result of all this has been a dilution of the deen of Allah, a weak
and pacified Islam willing to accept the status quo in which Muslims are
oppressed and subjugated; an Islam in which Muslims are content to sing and
dance the night away to nasheeds, to concentrate on bettering their life in
the West and to condemn the actions of their
brothers and sisters who courageously resist occupation and oppression with
whatever they have.
Even making dua for them now has become a crime. How long before we are told
not to even pray for the mujahideen?
One of the greatest military general the world has known, Salahuddin Ayyubi,
the liberator of al-Quds, was once asked why he didnít smile. He answered
back that how could he smile while he knowing that Masjid al-Aqsa, remained
under Crusader occupation.
I wonder what he would make of the state of the world today. I wonder what
advice he would give our youth?
This is a world where Arab leaders belly-danced shamelessly in front of
America while handing Iraq over on a plate.
The same Arab leaders look the other way as our beautiful Palestine is
continually raped and sodomized, and that other great daughter of the Arab
world, Lebanon. Where was the Arab world when she was so brutally assaulted?
And the war drums are beating again. Not only is the whole world watching,
but so are our children, our youth, and our future.
We must nurture them, and inspire them with tales of the Prophet and the
As long as the Ummah continues to throw up figures like Khalid bin Walid,
Salahuddin Ayyoubi, Sayyid Qutb and Malcolm X all is not lost.
The more we are oppressed by the tyrants the more we will fight back. That
is the nature of Islam.
And this is the Islam our youth need to follow, be guided by and inspired.
Farooq Hosni and his like are pale imitations of real men. They have
castrated themselves in a pathetic attempt to become more Western than the
He will be consigned to the history books with barely a sentence while the
courage and heroic resistance of our brothers and sisters will go down in
A rapidly increasing number of Muslim youth are now realizing that no matter
how hard they compromise their deen to blend in with the wider society, when
things go sour, they will be treated with suspicion.
The more we are told to forget Shariah, khilafah and jihad, the more Muslims
will pay the blood price to uphold these values.
The jihad we are witnessing in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir and
Chechnya is something noble, a just war against injustice and tyranny.
The actions of the jihadists pose absolutely no threat to the West or
Western lifestyles and their resistance is not only justified but embraced
and encouraged by international law.
The real religious extremists who pose the greatest threat to radicalizing
our youth are the Christian Fundamentalists in the White House and Downing
Street. Bush and Blair have become al-Qaedaís finest recruiting officers.
More and younger Muslims are waking up with the realization that it is not
terrorism or extremism that is being targeted but Islam itself.
It is up to the Ummah to lead and inspire our youth, just as The Prophet led
and inspired millions and continues to do so.
And the first lesson we must teach our youth is to fear none but Allah.(SWT)"