20 February 2006
Allah the Exalted has said in Surat ar-Rum (30:4-9):
The affair is Allah’s from beginning to end.
On that day, the muminun will rejoice
in Allah’s help.
He grants victory to whoever He wills.
He is the Almighty, the Most Merciful.
That is Allah’s promise.
Allah does not break His promise.
But most people do not know it.
They know an outward aspect of the life of the dunya
but are heedless of the akhira.
Have they not reflected within themselves?
Allah did not create the heavens and the earth
and everything between them
except with truth and for a fixed term.
Yet many people reject the meeting with their Lord.
Have they not travelled in the earth
and seen the final fate of those before them?
They had greater strength than them and cultivated the land
and inhabited it in far greater numbers than they do.
Their Messengers also came to them with the Clear Signs.
Allah would never have wronged them;
but they wronged themselves.
A recent shameless event has shown to us both the weakness and the power of the Muslim World Community. Our sudden unity in the face of an attack on the honour of our beloved Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, came as a terrible shock to the kafirun. They, being materialists, are structuralists in thinking and practice, in the manner of Pharaoh. Once our love was tested, they were faced with the spontaneous uprising of two billion people. At the same time, however, that this quite unquenchable power manifested, it also regrettably revealed our present weakness.
Firstly, we must establish that the shameful event was not the low and despicable insult by an ill-educated Danish journalist, but rather, the stunning arrogance and intellectual vacuity of the response by European media. The idea that the dubious doctrine of Freedom of Speech should be defended over the scribbling of an insult revealed the quite nihilistic bankruptcy of the current world-view of corporation capitalism. Significantly, an Israeli journalist on CNN declared that the jews receive vicious cartoons from the Arab press all the time, and they accept it under the principle of Freedom of Speech. Of course, they did not say that the publication of any text or drawing which could be construed as anti-jewish in Europe would result in devastating legal punishment, both in fines and imprisonment. As if the irrationality of their position was not extreme enough, the British Parliament proceeded to make any text or speech glorifying terrorism a criminal offence. Since the struggle of the IRA has been defined as terrorism, it presumably means that to quote from the great Irish nationalist poet W.B. Yeats has become an indictable offence.
On our side of the affair, our great weakness was revealed, and that is our lack of leadership. It is important that we set on record that that leadership is civic. Despite the persistent attempts of the media, using christian terms, to insist that we have a priestly class, this has never been and cannot be the case for Muslims. In that other religion, which despite its many new doctrines still clings to some elements of the Deen of Islam, that is the Shi‘a, governance by their Mullah class is necessary. To clarify this important matter, it should also be noted that the Imams of mosques are of relative insignificance. The correct situation is, of course, that any member of the Jama‘at may lead the Salat, in preference the one with the most command of the Qur’an. The Imam should be from within the local community by preference, and not from another place.
Islam recognises hierarchic internal structure. Historically, this has always been, in both the Eastern and Western Khalifates and Kingdoms, as follows: a governing Amir, his Council of respected citizens, his Military leaders, then from among the body of his Fuqaha, that is to say his legal class, he would appoint Qadis – that is to say, men who would pronounce legal judgments and sentence under the power of the Amir to execute them – then from among them would be chosen the Mufti, that is the Supreme Judge over the country. In great States, the Sultan would appoint a Shaykh al-Islam whose main task is to assure that the Amir and his policies do not stray too far from Deen.
We are far from the situation of a true Islam, functioning and governing. Ironically, our Deen is less compromised in atheist countries like France and christian countries like Germany than it is in countries where both Government and Head of State insist they are Muslim to numb and paralyse a servile population – the dictatorships of Tunisia and Pakistan.
One of the results of this loss of leadership manifested in England where the justifiable rage of our people on the one hand erupted inevitably into violence, and on the other hand produced that dreadful fringe that the BBC and Sky have a genius for finding – I mean those who inform the viewers that Islam means peace, tolerance and democracy, which is surely nonsense. Islam means submission to the Commands of Allah, glory be to Him. Allah commands, ‘Love with the love of Allah and hate with the hatred of Allah.’ Democracy in our time has turned into the opposite of its own definition, as we all know perfectly well. Islamic rule means personal rule, but under a ruler who is the Defender of the Deen.
What then is the situation of Muslims in Britain? This has two aspects. One, the aspect of our interior unity and structures. The other, our role as British citizens in an atheist society with a remnant of surviving christian practices alongside pagan ones under the cloak of christianity – like the long wasted hours of endless 2-minute silences.
As far as the internal coherence and cohesion of our people are concerned, we can lay down some markers which will lead us to clarity of position. The key instrument for the liberation and development of a strong and expanding Deen in Britain is that it falls into the hands of that new, young, and dynamic generation from the Sub-continent, but born in Britain.
The first and delightful command to the young Muslim men of Britain is this: finish with the lucrative trade of the Imams, I mean, the imported bride-market, and recognise that your strength lies in becoming the dominant presence inside a society that is in terminal decline. Marry out. Not only that, but take on the responsibility and generous gift of Allah, glory be to Him, to both men and women permitting families with from one to four wives. In a country that opposes this we must remember that as you read this the Labour Government is trying to legalise prostitution and win their votes by granting them trade-union status. Remember Bernard Shaw’s famous observation: ‘A sensible woman would rather have half of an intelligent man than the whole of a fool!’
The next responsibility must be accomplished, but without internal conflict and fighting. The internal running of mosques must see the abolition of the imposed masonic structure of Secretaries, Committees and Treasurers. These structures were imposed over the last half-century, and their intended purpose as a control mechanism of the State succeeded. Socialists openly called it ‘the churching of the mosques’. The idea being that as the protestant system was slowly moved away from the zone of political power to be reduced to parish politics, so too the Muslims would be isolated in an even more extreme ghetto doctrine. Allah the Exalted has said in Surat al-Jinn (72:18):
All mosques belong to Allah
so do not call on anyone else besides Allah.
This next responsibility is of very profound importance and it must not be considered as a form of separatism from the greater community, as has been cunningly suggested by the Stalinist theorists of the Labour Government. I choose the word Stalinist not to insult them, but to identify their policy. It was Stalin’s policy, set out in large didactic volumes, that all languages should be eliminated except for Russian so that the centralist control of the Police State should find its commands immediately obeyed. To this end, as we know, he forcibly moved tens of thousands of Chechens out of the Caucasus, and he ferociously crushed all the Turkic languages of the Eastern Provinces.
It is the deep intellectual responsibility of the new Muslim generation in Britain not to lose the Urdu language. Many English textbooks will tell you that Urdu was just a syncretic language of the barracks, used by soldiers. If we deconstruct this Imperialist view, we find that Urdu was the language of the great Horde, and it is the sublime, complex and poetic language which gave birth to the splendour of the Mughal dynasty which brought to the Sub-continent the only civilisation it has ever known. You must know English, and you must know the English of Shakespeare and reject the creole English imposed on the masses by the bankers’ world system, I mean, that of Pop and Hip-Hop. It is Urdu, nevertheless, which will give you the great richness and sophistication of a language refined and developed by great Sufis and poets. At the same time, you will have access to the world outside, by it. English is the dominant world language today, followed by Chinese. The third language, by usage world-wide, is Urdu.
Remember that English was a late arrival in Britain. There was Pictish and Gaelic in the north and west, while the Anglo-Saxon creole of the peasants in Middle England soon had the Danish of the Vikings imposed on it. The Danelaw governed Britain from Hadrian’s Wall to south of London. When the settled Vikings of north-west France invaded Britain, they brought with them the language they had adopted from its people. With the coming of William the Conqueror, French became the language of the elite and of trade, and remained so until the Black Death. Young Muslims must learn Urdu and work towards establishing and strengthening the Urdu schools and night-classes throughout the country.
The final responsibility that falls on the young Muslims of Britain is that they should participate in the legal-political processes of the country, in which they must insist that they are not defined by either colour or by being named immigrants. In order that we both benefit our own community and also the wider citizenry of Britain, this participation must be understood in a serious and sophisticated manner. Before examining the specific possibilities open to us, let us remind ourselves of the Islamic viewpoint. It is very much the viewpoint of the great historian Toynbee, who unsurprisingly adopted his philosophy of history from its greatest thinker, Ibn Khaldun. Ibn Khaldun, one of the greatest Qadis, derived his view of history from the Qur’an itself.
The Ibn Khaldun view is that the great social structures of Empire or Fiefdom have an ineluctable cyclical pattern. That is to say that a structured society takes form, rises and expands until it reaches a territorial apogee, after that by over-extension or by weakness at the centre it then begins to diminish and fall apart. In other words, the metaphor of the societal entity is nothing other than the life of the plant, and its inward pattern of growth and decay will be influenced and even determined by its soil and its weather. By this model we see that Empires and similar social entities are determined both from within and from conditions without.
With this perspective we are well aware that the current, seemingly absolute state of the banking regime’s world hegemony has already reached its final phase in that fatally determining zone of the Himalayas. It is a source-zone from which an astonishing dynamic energy has cyclically released itself on great empires which had the temerity to nibble at its fringes. From there, from Samarkand itself, came the great purifying force of Tamerlane, a tyrant, perhaps the greatest of the terrorists (Goodness! Am I breaking the law?) From Delhi and Kabul he swept through Baghdad to Damascus and across the Anatolian Peninsula, as well as north, half way to Moscow. He respectfully received Ibn Khaldun and appointed him Qadi over the case of a man who claimed the Abbasid inheritance, accepting his judgment. From there came the force of Mahmud of Gazni, bringing with his entry into northern India the very beginning of the Urdu language. From these same mountains the mighty Afghan army swept down into Iran, bringing to an end the anti-Islamic rule of the Safavids.
The Futures Market with its multi-trillion-dollar commitments which it could never honour – it alone indicates a financial system which in a world of stasis, devoid of events, would still inevitably collapse. The truth is that even great economies like that of the EU are in the tightest strait-jacket, and dare not make any dynamic move, even perhaps a bid for survival. When it comes to the global crisis of the ghastly effects of corporation capitalism, whether it is in the matter of the imminent demise of the eco-system under the pressure of commodity exploitation, or whether it is in the matter of facing the genocidal doom of mass poverty, the banking hegemony is helpless to act and hides behind the rhetoric of concerned film stars and failed rock stars, to assure themselves and the public that something will be done.
It is in the light of our awareness that modern Parliaments and Assemblies do not have substantive power that we still are obliged to participate in their proceedings, because to us as Muslims the most abhorrent possibilities are anarchy and civil war. By substantive power we mean the power to make war and to command the wealth. In the reality we now live in, war and wealth remain in the hands of that hidden caucus which President Eisenhower defined as the Military-Industrial Complex.
From a political point of view, the most disturbing element in Blair’s unilateral declaration of war is not the tremendous holocaust it unleashed on the people of Iraq about which Tamerlane, if he were to speak from the grave, would say that yet again it was eminently deserved. For Britain, the disaster of the Blairite regime is that it fulfilled the most dire analysis made by Hilaire Belloc 80 years ago. It involved a Party, elected yet despised. They were to show themselves as what Belloc defined as ‘place-men’. That is to say, utterly obedient on condition that they were given or were in line for Ministerial position, hidden contracts and the perks of office. More dreadful than the psychiatrically insecure Prime Minister, with his own son the binge-drinker that he vowed to punish, was that queue of servile Ministers mouthing the Government’s line obediently, from written texts, more servile than a Cabinet itself which could only boast two dissidents. One of these went back into line, and the other died of frustration and exhaustion.
In other words the real issue of the last five years has been the deliberate deconstruction of the inheritance of social justice by the abolition of its institutions and its personnel. The great role of Lord Chancellor, which over hundreds of years can boast men of the highest moral integrity, is put in the hands of a man without experience and, more importantly, without social or professional background, to dismantle a legal system that has been precisely the one great achievement of Great Britain. Again, in the matter of the Attorney-General we find a man who puts political pragmatism over the honour demanded by his high office. What other Prime Minister in history has had two Ministers disgraced, put out of office, re-instated, and dismissed again? The present Home Secretary, a seriously uneducated man, recently gave a speech in Washington which was filled with the extremist slogans of the in-back grouping that determines pro-Israeli and anti-Islamic policies, slogans which only now are emerging – in short, he had taken his briefing from Washington, then obediently presented it as British policy.
A whole slew of legislation that would have been unthinkable a decade ago has been passed by this frivolous and selfish Parliament – double jeopardy, arrest without charge, detention in hidden location, indeterminate penitentiary seclusion, and worst of all, the macabre Orwellian concept of arrest prior to a crime you possibly might commit.
Hilaire Belloc in what is certainly the most important book written about the political process in Britain in the last century, ‘The House of Commons and Monarchy’, declared, and that was in 1920: ‘The House of Commons is going down into a sort of tomb, wherein survives like a skeleton the ritual alone of what was once a living movement and the names alone of what were actual things.’ By 1939, that is, only two decades later, Lord Boothby declared that that year saw the worst government that Britain had ever known in its history. The Ship of State was rudderless and captainless, yet it was that out of the scum of that Parliament there emerged the simply towering and titanic figure, Winston Churchill.
Parliament, as Belloc pointed out, had been an aristocratic institution, led and governed by the great families in their magnificent country houses which covered the land. Slowly, after World War I, with most of the sons of the great families dead in the mud of Flanders, a new rich class began to emerge and take power. So it was that when Churchill stepped forward he did so with a significant resistance not only from the Opposition, but also from that new class in his own Party. The demise correctly diagnosed and foretold by Belloc was stopped in its tracks by the presence of one man. His grandfather was the Duke of Marlborough, and he was born in Blenheim Palace. You could say, and it would sound romantic but that it is true, he was the last aristocrat left standing. Now it is beginning to look as if his greatest contribution was not World War II but his role in the after-War years. We refer you to the astonishing record in Klaus Larres’ ‘Churchill’s Cold War’ (Yale).
The present Prime Minister, in his usual frivolous manner, mocked the new leader of the Conservative Party for saying he was ‘an out-and-out Conservative’, and then in another speech that he was a ‘liberal Conservative’. In fact, both of these statements are true, and it is this that terrifies the Labour Party. They cannot take on the heritage of a great country, for they have systematically destroyed it. They cannot look after the masses, for they are sending its young men to die in the wars of another Imperium. These two strands are the genuine character of the Conservative Party, and the two terms could not apply more exactly to Winston Churchill.
Today what is vital for the Muslims of Britain is that they support that movement which will protect, by wise reformation and not abolition, both the institutions and value-structure which over centuries have been set out to protect the legal rights of the individual, precisely against State interference and enslavement. The other aspect of the matter is that there has entered onto the national stage, just when the country has reached its lowest point, a new and remarkable leader – as happens in a country with an ancient history, throwing up a man to lead people out of danger, just as the Osmanli regime unexpectedly produced its greatest Sultan, Abdulhamid II Khan, when all seemed lost.
It has been the failure of the last decade and its dismal Government to recognise the ‘who’ of leadership, so brainwashed have people become with the ‘what’ of political promises. Ideology is nothing other than the vocabulary of tyranny, and it is under that tyranny that we have watched Britain slowly brought to its knees. When even the ideology was false, what chance was there of real men emerging? It was socialist-capitalist. It was Old Labour / New Labour. Their leader was a fool – he was thrown out. The next leader was a drunkard – he conked out. Into that double void stepped the fraudulent, psychiatrically flawed upstart, ‘Look-I’m-a-democrat-you-can-call-me-Tony’ Blair. From this coward have come the hundred dead Scottish and English soldiers and a standing army in the interests of foreign wealth, guarding the Himalayas, where we have already disastrously lost two wars in Victorian times. It has been the Electorate’s failure to identify the lack of moral integrity, the hypocrisy, the financial ambition, and the sheer arrogance, that has led to an ineffective Government hypnotised into obedience by the wealth and power of Imperialist finance from across the seas. If there is one word that sums up the Labour Government, its Ministers and Leader – it is inadequate.
It is our hope that the leader of the conservative party raises up all the people, and rescues the Monarchy from going down the drain of celebrity by forcing the sons of the Heir to the Throne to become private, inaccessible and politically educated. In the long view, in the Bellocian view, Parliament’s days are still numbered and only Monarchy can replace it. The Hanovers have no track record of governance, but they could be rescued, if not, others will step forward – but all that is in the future.
We call for the conservative party’s Shadow Foreign Secretary to be replaced by one who has presence as well as nobility, as it is unthinkable that he should appear to be, like Straw, the manager of a provincial draper’s shop.
Engage with the Conservative Party not to talk the hypocritical masonic language of tolerance and all religions being equal. Join with good-will, to show your fellow British that we are different and we have a higher religion, itself the completion and cleansing of christianity, and that we bring good news to our country and our future.
This is the big biriyani!