SHAFAQNA – In an interview with Khamenei.ir, Anastasia (Fatima) Ezhova* talked about Islamic identity, the resistance, Palestine, takfiri groups and more. The following is the full text of the speech:
Do you approve of the idea that today, Islamic countries lack an “Islamic Identity”? If so, how can this empower the enemies to interfere in Islamic countries?
The fact that Islamic countries lack Islamic identity can hardly be denied. We can divide the issue into two main aspects: the first one is the influence of nowadays Western liberal pop-culture and lifestyle; the second one is the problem that many Muslims all around the Islamic world often tend to follow their ancient customs more than the Islamic Shari‘ah.
As for the first phenomenon, people who are charmed with the Western lifestyle that seems to them to be attractive often imitate it in a very comic and awkward way. For example, some girls in Islamic countries apply a very excessive makeup, and they think that by these means they approach the Western lifestyle that seems to them “progressive” and oppose the Islamic lifestyle that they consider to be “backward”. But if you come to Europe you will see that the great majority of women don’t use any makeup in their ordinary life and their clothes are often simple and modest, though surely their style doesn’t fit the hijab requirements at all. And if these “westernized” Muslim-origin girls come to Europe wearing their make-up and hair-dresses, unfortunately they risk to be taken for ladies of easy morals.
This is because it’s not exactly a Western way of life but some special “culture” made for export into those countries that neo-liberal superpowers owning capital want to conquer. The aim of exporting this pop-culture, including fashion, stupid music, messengers, etc., is dumbing down the population of those states they wish to dominate, and making them deviated from any spiritual or ideological path or any aims that come above animalistic consumerism.
It doesn’t mean that the West is free from problems and that shoddy culture is just imposed on those who are outside. Different deviations, such as homosexual “marriages”, the abovementioned consumerism and many similar social diseases do exist in the Western world now, and it’s not a secret that the Western society is totally ill nowadays. That’s why open-minded and deeply-thinking Europeans, Russians, etc. often come to Islam as this religion is revealed for the whole humanity for curing its ailments and eliminating all forms of oppression and injustice.
As for the second phenomenon, namely it’s following local customs rather than Shari‘ah, it’s the ancient disease of the Ummah which has very deep historical roots. From the very beginning some Muslims deviated from the path of the Holy Prophet (as), and that’s why they rejected Ahl al-Beyt (as) who were preserving his Eminence’s political, spiritual and judicial heritage. Now unfortunately no Muslim community, whether Sunni or Shia, can be called totally free from this.
For example, some tribes consider it to be shameful for a girl to be able to read and write, and no one will marry her as she is viewed as “corrupt”, and in other societies fathers take their daughters’ dowry (mahr) as it is considered to be a “custom”. And in any Muslim society there are numerous examples of such violating the Qur’anic prescriptions in favor of “ancestors’ customs”.
This is actually described in the Holy Qur’an: “When it is said to them: “Follow what Allah has sent down.” They say: “Nay! We shall follow what we found our fathers following.” (Would they do that!) Even though their fathers did not understand anything nor were they guided?” (2:170). And the believers face the same problem which our Prophets (as) and Imams (as) used to confront. This means that to preserve the Islamic identity, not only a political and judicial, but also a cultural Islamic revolution should be launched. The Islamic prescriptions should become a basis for human life and mentality, not just the written law, but a living reality. If not so, enemies can easily interfere in Muslim countries’ politics because they lose the wholesome concept of Resistance which is highly held by Islam. Having said that, Why do you think Islam comes under attacks and pressures from the oppressive powers?
Surely eliminating the Islamic identity is the part of the enemies’ plan as Islam teaches people to resist, to struggle against injustice and oppression by their arms, tongues and hearts. Also, Islam denies the system built upon usury and it condemns inequality in distributing material means, urging to feed the poor and to provide them the means of an acceptable living. Add to this that Islam rejects homosexuality and other kinds of corruption, providing people with a harmonic, supple and viable system of family law. Islam prohibits all means of dumbing people down (like alcohol, gambling, lahwi music) allowing numerous natural and pure pleasures, as well as arts that makes people think and empathize, and not just entertain themselves.
Islam gives people a spiritual and political program of doing away with injustice and rebuilding the social life on the basis of Divine principles. Islam gives people such examples of heroism and self-sacrifice like Kerbela. People brought up on the images of Ashura are not afraid of death and martyrdom, so they turn to be fearless warriors and revolutionaries who cannot be suppressed by frightening them with murder or imprisonment.
That’s why the enemies, the capitalists, imperialists and oppressors see a genuine Islam as a great problem for themselves, as it’s a fatal hindrance on the way of their plans’ implementation. Islam doesn’t allow to suppress and besot people. Islam is the school of Resistance. That’s why those who want to dominate the world oppressively and to take other countries’ sources aim to undermine the Islamic identity.
What’s the reason for the failure of Islamic countries to reclaim the right of the Palestinians?
The reason is the lack of unity and the lack of Islamic identity. Many of so-called Muslim rulers don’t follow Islam in any aspect. In fact being Muslim is not an issue of ethnicity and origin, it’s the issue of faith. And they lack this faith and they lack an Islamic identity, because they have sold it for the material and other values that are totally contradictory to the spirit of Islam, though they may have preserved its outward cover in a very distorted and backward form like it happens to Saudi Arabia. In fact the ideology, laws and punishments in Saudi Arabia don’t differ from those of ISIS’ too much, but the world keeps silence, making noise just of executing murderers, rapists and drug dealers in the Islamic Republic of Iran, though many kinds of mortal punishment are also present in USA. So we deal with evident double standards here.
And now we see how Saudis have sold Palestine for a vain price of this world. In fact this is a very bad example that already affects the Ummah negatively. For example, if 10 years ago it was unanimously shameful to deal with “Israel” in Muslim circles, both Sunni and Shia, now many of Muslims and even those who call themselves their “spiritual leaders” establish commercial and other types of relations with the Zionists, and it becomes acceptable in some parts of the Muslim community. And when you openly condemn such people, they answer that refusing to compromise with “Israel” is “a Shia position” that has no relation to their “moderate Sunni stance”. But this is a total absurd, as the oppressed Palestinians are mostly Sunni Muslims, and to tell the truth these people just sell their and our Muslim brothers for a disdain profit, but they simply don’t have the courage to call a spade a spade.
For sure, this is also the sign of a deep crisis of Islamic identity, mentality and solidarity in parts of the Muslim Ummah.
How does the West use terrorist groups to defame Islam?
There are lots of evidences and documents proving that the West arms and treats Takfiri militants; there is such an abundance of facts on this account that the format of an interview is too narrow to mention all of this. Add to that the fact that “Israel” bombs the positions of the Syrian Arab Army and Hezbollah Resistance regularly, thus providing Takfiris the military assistance in a direct form. This fact is seen by naked eyes, and it’s surprising, why some of Zionist diplomates, politicians and propaganda employees still try to deny it.
The more interesting and important thing is why the West assists these militants.
First of all, the West wants the Islamic world to be backward. It doesn’t want it to be scientifically, intellectually and culturally developed. That’s why it invests into such obscure trends in Islamic fiqh and ideology that aim to “prove” that “the Earth is flat, and it is derived from the Holy Qur’an; those who deny it are nonbelievers, and their lives, property and women are permitted”; that “all kinds of art are forbidden”, that the modern textbooks on physics, chemistry, philosophy should be prohibited and eliminated, etc.
Due to the same reason the West wishes to weaken the Islamic world by dropping it into bloody sectarian discord. The theological, intellectual, judicial difference between Shia and Sunni, between Muslims and Christians is a normal thing, it’s a subject of a polite scientific discussion and this diversity is a potential basis of development, and not a war or a bloodshed, and it doesn’t pose a problem for a peaceful coexistence of different madhabs and confessions. But the West wants to use these differences for waging a sectarian war, that’s why it helps Takfiris who believe that “killing a Shia is even more preferable than killing a Christian”. This is the direct way to weakening the Islamic world and taking it under control.
Finally – and this aim is the most evident – it tries to divert the Resistance from fighting Zionism to struggling against the Takfiri threat. “Israel” is very much afraid of the Lebanese Hezbollah Resistance, that’s why it prefers to wage an indirect war against it with the help of the Takfiri puppets. As for Palestinian Resistance, for the Zionists it is profitable to create a Takfiri trend inside of it in order to weaken it due to the innate discord. For example, when some ISIS admirers appeared in Gaza, they began to blame HAMAS of “apostasy” because HAMAS is a part of Muslim Brotherhood and it recognizes some democratic procedures like elections. This trend is very dangerous and Palestinian brothers should confront Takfiri influence in order to preserve their Resistance.
Which Islamic country has been assailed more than others and why?
On the one hand, surely it’s Palestine as it has been suffering from genocide and apartheid for many decades since the creation of the so called “Israel” fake regime. But at the same time we see that at the moment Syria, Iraq and Yemen are also being assailed. And it’s a very painful thing and it’s also a part of the global war that the Western neo-liberal system and Zionists are waging against Muslims and the world of Islam.
I remember Syria in 2010 right before the war as I used to study Arabic there. The country enjoyed security and a very low rate of crimes. The country was clean and flourishing. As a Shia I could pray at any mosque and nobody among Sunni brothers and sisters showed any kind of animosity as confessional tolerance did exist in Syria. You didn’t have any fear to be murdered, raped, or tortured.
But unfortunately Saudis have already spread their influence by the means of TV channels and propaganda, and some part of the population was affected by it. This is because the global system was very much dissatisfied with Syria due to its role in the Axis of Resistance. Zionism has lost in July War of 2006 when it was defeated by Hezbollah Resistance. I’d like to mention that even them all Takfiri sheikhs used to issue sectarian fatwas “prohibiting to support Shia Hezbollah against Zionists”. And the war unleashed against Syria is the attempt of revenge made by Zionists and the world liberal system. But as a Muslim I have no doubt that inshaAllah they will definitely be defeated. The Axis of Resistance will make a triumph over them, though it may take years of fight and sacrifices like it used to be while liberating South Lebanon from the occupants. As it is said in the Holy Qur’an, “So fight you against the friends of Shaitan (Satan); Ever feeble indeed is the plot of Shaitan (Satan)” (4:76).
Anastasia (Fatima) Ezhova is a Russian plotical analyst, writer and journalist. She was born in 1983. After a long journey, Ms. Ezhova converted to Islam in 1999. She graduated from Moscow State University (faculty of philosophy) in 2005. Ezhova is also the editor-in-chief of “The Axis of Resistance” web-site (www.mihwar.ru) and a member of an editorial board of “Musulmanka” Islamic female magazine.