Calls for revenge after Manchester’s attack – Hatred cannot be the answer to Terrorism

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SHAFAQNA – If anger is often a refuge in time of crisis – especially when innocent blood has been spilled, especially when it has been spilled to promote an ideology that sole purpose is to disappear world communities on account of their differences, retaliation when in a state of anger can have devastating consequences.

Once again blame has been laid out at Muslims’ feet – actually it is more than that, blame has been in fact laid out at an entire world religion’s feet for a diseased few chose to dress themselves as men of God while promoting bloodshed.

Of the long list of crimes Muslims and Islam have been accused of over the years, Manchester’s tragedy further anchored the idea that a faith is a to blame, a people is to be punished, and a tradition ought to be disappeared.

The real tragedy i’m afraid is that, in our blind anger and propensity to be assuaged in our morality, we have played right in the hand of those who seek to destroy our very humanity.

What is Terror but the negation of Humanity? What is Wahhabism but the rejection of all that makes Islam?

While we continue to claim we are denouncing Terrorism, aren’t we not abiding by Terrorism’s paradigm – empowering those legions for which exclusion and rejection are the two pillars upon which their calls for genocide lay upon?

Maybe … just maybe we ought to see beyond every tragedy those lives that were lost and not geography or faiths. Whether a life is lost to Terror in Manchester (United Kingdom) or in Diraz (Bahrain), every life is equally worthy of our outrage, our condemnation and our anger.

The day we chose to see only the pain of our kin is truly the day Terror’s ideology would have won. The day we fail to see beyond the manipulation to recognise that Terror ambitions to pit communities against one another to better rise a Titan is the day we would have forfeited our humanity.

A mosque was targeted on the wake of Manchester …

One act of hatred was answered by another and now fear lives in the heart of communities across the country. Fear is a dangerous emotion since it disappears reason and rationality.

Fear when coupled by ignorance can become a weapon in the hands of those radicals who seek to sow division and enmity to justify their existence and calls for more violence … justified violence they say, righteous violence they posit.

But there can never be righteous violence when perpetrated against innocent communities.

So where should we as a whole, as a pluralist society, lay the blame? Who should we challenge to protect our future?

I’m afraid the answer has been staring us in the face for quite some time.

Fault is NOT to be found in our divisions or our differences. There is no real clash of civilisation in between East and West, there is no divide in between the Judeo-Christian world and the Islamic world, there is no competition in between Sunni and Shia Islam …

Let me put it to you this way: who has always highlighted divisions? Who has promoted sectarian hatred by calling for communities to be murdered where they stand? Who again has worked to disappear and outlaw religious communities to sit itself absolute in their dogma?

Who has actively and tirelessly exported wars – blaming the victims of their butchery for the butchery itself?

The answer is as clear as day: WAHHABISM

Understand here that my criticism is directed solely at Wahhabism and not Sunni Islam. Sunni Islam has for much too long suffered such an association with Wahhabism.

Wahhabism may claim itself of Sunni Islam but it does not make it so – especially when Sunni clerics made abundantly clear that they wanted nothing to do with the ideology.

Actually on the matter all schools of thoughts are in agreement.

Robert Fisk wrote in the Independent: “The Saudis step deeper into trouble almost by the week. Swamped in their ridiculous war in Yemen, they are now reeling from an extraordinary statement issued by around two hundred Sunni Muslim clerics who effectively referred to the Wahhabi belief – practiced in Saudi Arabia – as “a dangerous deformation” of Sunni Islam. The prelates included Egypt’s Grand Imam, Ahmed el-Tayeb of al-Azhar, the most important centre of theological study in the Islamic world, who only a year ago attacked “corrupt interpretations” of religious texts and who has now signed up to “a return to the schools of great knowledge” outside Saudi Arabia.”

The answer here would be to identify who the real enemy of our freedoms is before we go about lashing out at the wrong parties, and thus fan further hatred.

By Catherine Shakdam for Shafaqna

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