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DOOMED TO FAILURE: An advice to those who may wish to plot against Islam

By YAHYA SSEREMBA

Article Summary: There was only one chance to destroy Islam, and that was at the Battle of Badr. There has never been – and will never be – another chance.

Author Biography: Yahya Sseremba is the publisher of The Campus Journal news website.

Throughout its 1446 years of existence the Muslim civilisation has flourished and diminished, prospered and withered, risen and receded. In our own time the followers of Islam are going through a trying episode reminiscent of the downturn that afflicted their forefathers at certain points in history.

The state of most Muslim countries today is an embarrassment, with impoverished populations, illiterate children and inept governments. These internal weaknesses have paved the way for foreign assaults of all sorts, from military invasions to ideological intrusions, and worsened the condition of the Muslim.

If these foreign attacks have inflicted untold pain on the Muslim, how much have they wreaked havoc on Islam? And how far can this havoc, if any, extend? To answer these questions we shall first explore the nature and object of such attacks.

The forces that have waged war on Islam throughout history fit into three general categories. Paganism and idolatry is the first. This involves the Seventh Century Arabs of Mecca who rejected the call of the Prophet right from the start and mounted a zealous campaign to kill him and to end his mission.

Paganism equally encompasses communism, which regards all religions, including Islam, as a poisonous influence that must be eradicated. Islam faced a campaign of extermination in former Soviet territories and continues to be banned in communist North Korea.

Other forms of paganism determined to curtail the spread and progress of the monotheistic faith include Hinduism, whose hostility toward Muslims in India is well-documented, and Buddhism, whose ongoing atrocities on Rohingya Muslims in Burma are open for all to see.

The second category comprises Christianity and Judaism. Islam acknowledges the divine origin of these two religions but strongly denounces the distortion they underwent and the half-truths they became. These religions have unleashed hostility on Islam separately and jointly.

The Jews allied with the pagan Arabs to fight the Prophet in the early years of the Great Migration. The Christians, on the other hand, mounted campaigns that climaxed in the genocidal Crusades of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries. Today, the Christians work hand in hand with their former foes, the Jews, to invade and occupy Muslim lands, especially Palestine.

The third category features secularism and all its modern formations of democracy, freedom, human rights, among others. This force constitutes the most subtle and most deadly attack on Islam.

It is subtle in the sense that some of its ideals, notably democracy, freedom and human rights, don’t appear to contravene Islamic teachings and indeed share a few similarities with them. Many naïve Muslim activists have fallen for such alien values, inadvertently aiding the enemy to pollute the House of Islam.

Where such foreign influences have been rejected or at least threatened, the enemy has used force to impose them. This was the case when the West supported a coup in Algeria in 1991 following the electoral victory of an Islamic political party.

It was also the case in 2008 when foreign forces loyal to the United States toppled the government of the Islamic Courts Union in Somalia. In Khartoum, forces opposed to the Islamic government continue to get support from the enemy.

These persecuted Islamic establishments have committed no crime but to implement the Islamic legal code commonly known as Shariah. The suspension of God’s law, which is the primary object of secularism, allows for the tolerance and even acceptance of corrupt practices like the charging of interest, adultery and the desecration of the family. This loose lifestyle wrongly called freedom corrupts society and undermines the foundation of religion.

The same wild freedom was deployed to sweep away Christianity from its millennial stronghold of Europe. Today neo-Christian secularist Europe has joined hands with surviving Christian and Jewish fundamentalists in America and elsewhere to carry on their old fight against Islam. In numerous other cases, these two forces – secularism and Judeo-Christian forces – have collaborated with the third force – paganism and idolatry – to confront Islam.

They must fight Islam because their own ideologies, privileged positions and corrupt behaviors are seriously endangered by Islam. Surely this religion has never concealed its intensions: it came to establish the best conduct and subdue everything else. The Qur’an says in 61:9, “It is He (Allah) Who has sent His Messenger (Muhammad) with guidance and the religion of truth to make it victorious over all (other) religions even though the polytheists hate (it).”

In another verse the Qur’an indicates that wherever Islam flourishes, other religions and systems naturally diminish or even vanish. “And say (O Muhammad): Truth (i.e. Islam) has come and Falsehood has vanished. Surely, Falsehood is ever bound to vanish." (17:81).

The inevitable vanishing of other religions in the face of Islam is evident in the almost-total Islamisation of hitherto pagan or Christian territories where Islam faced no obstacles, such as Indonesia, or where it removed such obstacles, especially in the Middle East, North Africa and vast parts of Asia and Europe.

The pagan Arabs of the Seventh Century were not mistaken when they saw in Islam an approaching eradication of their idolatry and undue privileges. They tried to defend their ancien order by raising barricades in the path of the new faith.

Likewise, the capitalists of today know very well that Islam abolishes the charging of interest that is the bedrock of their economic exploitation. The Christians know how their distorted order is exposed and laid on the line by the coherent verses of the Qur’an.

While the neo-Christian secularists and liberals see in the same even a mightier danger to their lustful practices. All non-Islamic systems, which Islam sums up as Jahiliyyah or Ignorance, have no doubt that the way of life brought by the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is designed to overrun them and relegate them to second-rate. It is this fear that prompts them to apply all, often desperate, means to reverse or at least delay the rising tide of Islam.

Part of their strategy is to restrict the teaching of the Qur’an, alleging that Islamic schools commonly known as madrasas promote terrorism. Terrorism has become an empty and pointless term of abuse invoked to spread Islamophobia, fight the Shariah and close down Qur’an schools.

Some sections of the enemy have banned the head scarf in schools, claiming that the hijab symbolises radicalism.

But how much can this propaganda, and the military and other forms of attacks that accompany it, undermine Islam? First and foremost, it is no longer possible to inflict a life-threatening blow on Islam. The only people who came close to stopping this faith were the pagan Arabs of Mecca in 624 CE.

Two years after driving the Prophet out of his homeland in Mecca, the idolaters learnt that he was gaining momentum in Medina, a city 400 kilometers away where he had arrived as an asylum seeker and instantly triumphed as a leader. They decided to pursue him in his new home with a clear objective of killing him and ending his mission once and for all, for they knew how his growing strength posed a growing threat to their old order.

The pagan Meccans, infuriated further by reports that the Muslims planned to intercept their trade caravan, raised a force of 1000 fighters equipped with the best military facilities of the time – elephants, camels, horses, swords, arrows, etc – and matched towards Medina. They met the Prophet at Badr, a town outside the city of Medina.

The Prophet analysed their numerical and weaponry advantage and saw no way how he and his 317 poorly-armed men – and by extension his Islamic message – would survive without the intervention of God. Imam Malik relates on the authority of Umar ibn Al-Khattab:

On the Day of [the Battle of] Badr, the Prophet looked at his Companions who numbered a little over three hundred, and he looked at the unbelievers who were over one thousand. The Prophet turned his face towards the qiblah (i.e. the direction faced by Muslims in prayer), wearing both his garments and prayed earnestly, saying: “My Lord, fulfil Your promise to me. My Lord, if this group of believers are left to perish, You will not be worshipped on earth.”

So endangered a species was Islam that the Prophet saw in a possible defeat a total demise of his message. But the pagans missed this golden opportunity to crush Islam when they suffered a severe beating and took to their heels, leaving many of their men killed or taken captive by the Muslims. This day – Friday 17, Ramadhan 2 AH, or 13, March 624 CE – is described in the Qur’an (8:41) as “the Day of Distinction”, that is to say, the day when right was distinguished from wrong.

It boosted the morale of the believers who became convinced that their fight was a fight in the Way of God and who became assured of the help of the Almighty. Assured that wrong would never triumph over right, they lost whatever fear they had and mounted one victorious campaign after another.

Badr marked the beginning and indeed the foundation of the victories that Islam registered thereafter. Within just seven years it became clear to the Muslims, whose power had grown by leaps and bounds, that their religion faced no more life-jeopardizing challenge. This fact was formally declared during the Farewell Pilgrimage when the Prophet recited a new verse (Q5:3) in which God assured the Muslims, “This day those who disbelieve have given up all hope of (ever harming) your religion, so fear them not, but fear Me.”

The loss of hope is not restricted to the pagan Arabs who had been overcome by the time this verse was revealed. For quite long the Jews attempted to distort the text of the Qur’an as they did to their own Torah and to the Bible. But their attempts consistently fell flat because Allah vowed to preserve His book, saying in Q15:9, “Verily We: It is We Who have sent down the Qur'an, and surely, We will guard it (from corruption).”

The fact that no single word has been changed in the Qur’an in its 14-century history, scholars observe, points to its miraculous nature.

Besides failing to distort the text of the Qur’an the enemy has given up hope of converting Muslims to his religions. Even at their weakest point, for instance when they came under (Christian) European colonial rule in the 19th and 20th centuries, the Muslims did not revert from their monotheistic faith. During colonial rule Christianity spread everywhere like an epidemic except in Muslim lands.

This is because the idea that God begets children, or needs two other partners – the Son and the Holy Spirit – to fulfil His Godhead, is repugnant to the Muslims and to all those who make use of their intelligence and discerning faculties. The Muslims cannot imagine sinking to that level of blatant polytheism.

So confident is the Muslim in his faith that efforts to convert him can achieve too little. This is what the Christians have come to learn over the centuries of their Crusades and missionary work. And they have given up in this regard.

Having despaired utterly of distorting the Qur’an and of converting Muslims to other beliefs, the enemy has resorted to desperate methods, such as the tarnishing of the image of Islam thinking that the people would turn away from it. This is what he thinks he will achieve by linking Qur’an schools to terrorism.

But the effectiveness of such propaganda is highly questionable, for the Muslims have not stopped taking great pride in their faith, which faith continues to register fresh converts.

The more the propaganda war fails the more the adversary becomes angry and desperate, venting his anger on sections of helpless Muslims. This is the most logical explanation for the continued U.S. bombing of mostly children, women and civilians in Afghanistan and Pakistan and for similar Jewish atrocities in occupied Palestine.

But the killing of Muslims, however intensive it may be, can achieve little. “1.3 billion people (i.e. Muslims) cannot be simply wiped out,” observed Mahathir Mohamed when he was Prime Minister of Malaysia.

Besides, such killings can only last as long as the Muslims remain in their current state of disorganisation. As Muslim countries start acting like brothers in the short run and as they strengthen their economies, stabilise their governments and modernise their militaries in the long run, the enemy will think twice before he unleashes such carnage.

If such powerful enemies of all stripes cannot tear down Islam when the Muslim is such disorganised and weak, then they stand no chance. “They,” as Sayyid Qutb observes, “are profoundly alarmed by Islam’s inherent strength and resilience.”

The adversaries, of course, will carry on their envious schemes, laying emphasis on the subtle approach given the futility of the open approach. To equally frustrate the subtle approach – which includes the dissemination of their values of wild freedom, purported human rights and the so-called democracy – the Muslim shall need to empower his children with the knowledge of the Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet known as the Sunnah.

In his famous Farewell Sermon the Prophet said, “I have left amongst you two things which, if you hold fast to them, you will never stray: the Book of Allah, and my Sunnah.”

These are the two impenetrable shields of a Muslim. No plot, however sharp it may be, can pierce them, as the Qur’an says, “They devised their plots, but their plots are all within God’s grasp, even though their plots are so powerful as to move mountains.”

 

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