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Saudis resort to crude sectarianism to create divisions in the Ummah

Abu Dharr

Sectarianism has been a time tested tool in the hands of illegitimate rulers since the Islamic institution of khilafah was subverted into mulukiyah nearly 1,400 years ago. Today, the illegitimate rulers of Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia are using this weapon to divert attention away from their oppressive policies and subservience to the West and to Zionist Israel.

Sectarianism has been a time tested tool in the hands of illegitimate rulers since the Islamic institution of khilafah was subverted into mulukiyah nearly 1,400 years ago. Today, the illegitimate rulers of Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia are using this weapon to divert attention away from their oppressive policies and subservience to the West and to Zionist Israel.

Until now, the main culprit was the regime in Saudi Arabia followed by Kuwait. Now tiny Bahrain has also joined these troublemakers because its illegitimate rule is being challenged by the people that have been subjected to brutal suppression for decades. Saudi Arabia has established a fatwa factory from where it habitually issues fatwas of takfir against the Shias. Such fatwas, however, are not hurled only at the Shi‘is. Any Muslim that disagrees with their narrow obscurantist views is immediately branded a kafir or accused of indulging in bid‘ah or other “un-Islamic” practices. The underlying message is that only the Saudis are “true” Muslims.

The Saudis are the leading manufacturers and exporters of takfiri fatwas. The uprising in Bahrain where the people are demanding their legitimate rights like people elsewhere in the Muslim East have been dismissed as “Shi‘i agitators.” The Saudis have gone so far as to accuse Islamic Iran of interfering in Bahrain’s affairs. It is interesting to note that while thousands of Saudi troops and tens of thousands of American sailors are prowling all over Bahrain, the Saudis are crying hoarse about Iran. There are no Iranian troops in Bahrain. Even Western officials — no friends of Iran — have said they have found no evidence of Iranian involvement in or instigation of the people’s uprising yet the Saudis have been using the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) as a platform to hurl invectives at Tehran.

On April 17, the frightened rulers of GCC member states — Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, UAE and Oman — met in Riyadh and called on the Islamic Republic to stop its “interference” in the GCC. The meeting was called to discuss the rapidly escalating crisis in Yemen but the foreign ministers found time to make allegations against Iran. Without providing proof and in a desperate Saudi and Emirati bid to camouflage their own occupation of Bahrain to crush the legitimate aspirations of the people there, the GCC called on “the international community and the [UN] Security Council to take the necessary measures to make flagrant Iranian interference and provocations aimed at sowing discord and destruction” among the GCC states.

It said the GCC “categorically rejects all foreign interference in its affairs and invites the Iranian regime to stop its provocations.” Unable to justify their brutal clampdown of peaceful protesters especially in Bahrain where the overwhelming majority of the population is Shi‘i (there is also a sizeable Shi‘i population in Saudi Arabia that is equally suppressed and deprived of basic rights), the Saudis are trying to turn this into a sectarian issue. If people ask for their fundamental rights, how does it become a sectarian problem? The Saudis were also opposed to the removal of Hosni Mubarak from power because they felt it would expose them to pressure from people demanding similar rights in the kingdom. This is true. Was sectarianism also involved in Mubarak’s removal? If not — and it clearly was not — how can they categorize the Bahrainis’ demand for rights and dignity as promoting sectarianism? The Saudis feel quite vulnerable; and they should. Their rule is illegitimate and their policies have caused great damage to the larger interests of the Ummah.

The Saudis and their frightened GCC partners, clinging to each other for support, are not content merely with issuing appeals to the “international community and the Security Council” to save their tottering regimes. They know these appeals will not yield much direct help. Western support, even for friendly regimes has limits. Chastened by their experience in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Americans and their allies are not about to rush into another minefield even if they will increase the volume of their rhetoric against Islamic Iran or whoever the Saudis think is causing them grief. The most that will happen is that the West will not support any uprising in these countries as they have shown in the case of Bahrain.

While that may bring some comfort to these regimes, the Saudis have gone further. They have resorted to their favourite ploy to divide the Ummah along sectarian lines. They have sent their court ‘ulama to visit various countries and mobilize Muslim communities to form councils and organizations in “defence of the Sahabah”. The Imam of Masjid

al-Haram, Shaikh Sudais, for instance, was recently in India to rope in the Muslims into the Saudis’ campaign of sowing sectarian discord. Muslims have great attachment to Makkah and Madinah and the imams there are looked upon with respect. Most Muslims also admire their reciting skills but to use these imams for such nefarious activities is not only sad but also dangerous. It is equally disturbing that such imams allow themselves to be used by the corrupt and anti-Islamic rulers of Saudi Arabia.

Let us be clear: there should be no insults of the Sahabah or the Umahat al-Mumineen (the Mothers of the committed Muslims, that is, the wives of the noble Messenger of Allah – r) by anyone. But if the Saudis and their court preachers are really serious about this, we are constrained to ask: why do they not start in the kingdom itself? The Saudis have a strange sense of respecting the Sahabah; they have vandalised most of the historic sites of Islam. In fact, in their inexorable drive to build concrete and glass monstrosities in and around the Haram in Makkah and Madinah, they have obliterated virtually all traces of Islamic history including many monuments associated with the noble Messenger (pbuh) and his Sahabah (companions).

For instance, the house where the noble Messenger (pbuh) spent 25 blissful years of his married life with Khadijah (g), has been turned into a toilet. What kind of respect do these Saudi-Wahhabis show for the Prophet (pbuh) and his beloved wife and family? Even the green dome over the Prophet’s (pbuh) grave in al-Masjid al-Nabawi is not safe from these primitive bedouin vandals from Najd. Plans are afoot to demolish the green dome and remove the Prophet’s (pbuh) body from there. What more proof do Muslims need of the Saudis’ disrespect of the noble Messenger (pbuh) and the vile nature of the Saudi regime?

Why does Shaikh Sudais not raise his voice and lend his prestige to protest real acts of vandalism and desecrations by the House of Saud rather than flying all the way to India to whip up hysteria over a hypothetical issue? Even if the Imam of Masjid al-Haram in Makkah has little sympathy for people struggling for their rights and dignity in the Muslim East — and there is no reason why he should not — what excuse does he have to remain silent about the Saudis’ destructive policies that are obliterating Islamic history and heritage? And why is the Saudi regime not helping the oppressed people of Palestine in the same way that it has joined the crusade against Qaddafi of Libya? Saudi hypocrisy and subservience to the kafirs know no bounds.

It is sad to see such ‘ulama lend their name and prestige — that comes with being imams of such noble sanctuaries — to become tools of the corrupt Saudi monarchy, which is only interested in protecting its own illegitimate rule regardless of the damage it causes to Islam or the honour of the Prophet (pbuh) and his Sahabah. It is also quite revealing that not one imam either in Masjid al-Haram or al-Masjid.

al-Nabawi has raised his voice about the destruction of masjids by Saudi troops or desecration of copies of the noble Qur’an in Bahrain. Should one conclude that these imams do not know about this or that they are complicit in these crimes?

Either way it is not a good reflection of their character or behaviour. Muslims deserve far better from such ‘ulama than becoming tools in a vicious propaganda campaign against the legitimate aspirations of the people in the Muslim East whether in Bahrain, Yemen or Saudi Arabia. The time for games is over; let the ‘ulama of Saudi Arabia make a clear choice: are they with the Muslim masses struggling for dignity and honour or with the corrupt rulers that are subservient to the forces of kufr, nifaq and zulm?

Article from

Crescent International Vol. 40, No. 3

Jumada' al-Ula' 27, 14322011-05-01

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