While many people stretch out watching TV with their tea and biscuits, millions of our Muslim brothers in different parts of the world are struggling for survival under harsh repression. Muslims in Iraq, Afghanistan, East Turkistan, Crimea, Palestine, Kirkuk, Moro, Pathani and Rakhine are patiently waiting for a helping hand from our Muslim brothers as they try to restore their hope every day. Let us put ourselves in their position for a moment in order to better understand our brothers suffering under violence and oppression.
Imagine that as you read this article or lie asleep in bed, your home suddenly collapses or burns down and that all the other homes around are in the same situation. Imagine that you have grabbed your children and parents and rushed outside to save your lives, but that armed men are waiting for you out there. Imagine that there is no refuge and that you have to flee. Our brothers in Rakhine experience that terror all the time.
Imagine the sound of a plane approaching and bombs raining down creating huge explosions as you walk along, and that you run around not knowing where to shelter to save your life. That is what innocent children and men and women experience all the time in the civil war that has been raging in Syria for the last two years, even if such reports have not been in the headlines for the last few days. Assad’s planes routinely bomb the homes of innocent civilians, bakeries, hospitals and even schools.
Imagine that as you are suffering the pangs of hunger, you set your own hunger aside and gather up a few weeds to provide something for your child to eat, that you boil this “food” up and try to keep that child alive with that greenish water. Our Muslim brothers in Yarmouk, where the number of people who have starved to death has risen to 144, are currently suffering the despair of being unable to feed their children.
Imagine that as you sit in your warm home, the door is suddenly kicked in. Your brother, father, sister, spouse, son or daughter are violently dragged out. The males are executed in full public gaze, while the females are raped. Our Uighur brothers in East Turkestan have been living under that repression since 1965. The number of those martyred is 35 million; that is equivalent to the population of Canada. In other words, as we sit in our warm homes, as many of our Muslim brothers as the population of an entire country have been martyred.
Just these few examples are enough to terrify one and stir the conscience. As you read this piece, our Muslim brothers in various parts of the world spend every day in terror of a bomb hitting their own roof, and with the sound of explosions and guns. Some live in terror of the knock on the door at any moment and those knocking on the door can take members of the household away at any moment and the family will never see or hear of those people again. Men, women, old, people, children and babies in the cradle who are tortured, raped or shot and martyred, who are never allowed to perform acts of worship, die without even knowing the reason why. Children cannot understand why they cannot go to school like everyone else, or why their homes are destroyed. In short, everything in those countries is the exact opposite of the life we are used to.
It is very important for all of us to understand these difficulties faced by innocent people in a climate of war, what they think and what they feel while in such destitute because many people carry on living quite happily without having to wonder for a moment whether they are safe in their own homes. Many people can go down to the market and buy food and drink when they wish and make their holiday plans. They carry on living quite unconcerned and without worrying about what is happening to women, children and old people in other countries, whom they have never met, as if they had no responsibility for them.
However, if everyone were to do that, albeit unknowingly and unwittingly, they would become accessories to these inhumane activities taking place over much of the world. The sad images of war trouble good people, and they express that; such people also speak about the evil of war when the time comes. However, believers of good conscience feel that pain in their hearts and put themselves in the position of the people there. They reflect on the verse, “What reason could you have for not striving in the Way of God – for those men, women and children who are oppressed and say, ‘Our Lord, take us out of this city whose inhabitants are wrongdoers! Give us a protector from You! Give us a helper from You!’?” (Surat an-Nisa’, 75) and feel a strong sense of responsibility for oppressed people. They strive with all their might to eliminate the wickedness that prevails across the world.
Let us not forget, all Muslims are responsible for every baby that freezes to death in Syria, for every young girl taken from her home and raped in East Turkestan, for everyone martyred by snipers in Egypt, for every one of our brothers tortured in Pathani, for every young girl killed by a bomb as she goes to the market, for every baby clutching a toy amid the ruins, for every mother who loses arms or legs while shopping for food in the markets and for all the suffering innocents in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Rakhine, Central African Republic…
Yet it is easy to say “Stop!” to this evil; we must apply the solution shown by God. God has commanded believers to be brothers, to help one another and to be united for the world to attain peace. What Muslims must do is to remember that we are all brothers, to set aside sectarian disagreements and conflicts, and to unite around common values to establish the Islamic Union as a matter of urgency. This is the one solution revealed by God in the Qur’an and described in detail by our Prophet (saas) in the hadiths. The Qur’an defines unity an obligation and division as a sin. In the light of God’s command; “Hold fast to the rope of God all together, and do not separate” (Surat al-‘Imran, 103) Muslims must at once unite and build the Islamic Union for the suffering to end and for the world to know peace and security. Muslims have an obligation to be united, bound together like blood brothers, or even more strongly than that. Only then will the dissensions and horror experienced by far too many in the Muslim world come to an end.
Adnan Oktar's piece on Harakah Daily & Burma Times & The Gulf Today: