Every Muslim prays in the direction of al-Masjid al-Haram in Makkah. The Qur’an instructs us to do so: “Turn your face toward the Sacred Mosque” (fawalli wajhaka shatr al-Masjid il-Haram). But now the imam of the Masjid al-Haram, Shaikh Abdul Rahman al-Sudais, under orders from Clown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman, seems to have changed his own personal qibla to war criminal Netanyahu’s official residence in Occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.
On September 4, three weeks after treasonous Emirati emir Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan showered his name in eternal ignominy, and paved his road to hellfire, by officially normalizing his pseudo-nation’s already warm relations with Israel, Shaikh Sudais implicitly endorsed such treason from the minbar in Masjid al-Haram. The Grand Shaikh of Makkah treated his congregation to a gushingly sycophantic tirade about how wonderful Jews (meaning the Zionists, there being no specific word for Zionists in Arabic) are and how Muslims should do everything possible to accommodate them.
The clear implication: Emirati treason was being wildly applauded from the minbar of the mosque toward which all Muslims pray. No better illustration could possibly exist of the sad fact that our Islamic holy places have fallen into the hands of the enemies of Islam, if not Dajjal himself.
Shaikh Sudais, like Muslims everywhere, had previously prayed for a Palestinian victory over the Zionist aggressors. After all, there has never been a clearer case of the supreme war crime of aggression than the Zionist invasion, occupation, and genocide of Palestine. And the Qur’an, like international law and common sense, condemns aggression: “You may fight in the cause of Allah against those who attack you, but do not aggress. Allah does not love the aggressors.” [2:190]. Indeed, armed resistance against aggression and oppression is mandatory, since “oppression is worse than killing” [2:191]. The same point is made in [60:8]: “Allah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion and did not drive you out of your homes.”
The clear implication is that those who do attack you on account of religion and drive you out of your homes must be resisted. And “driving you out of your homes on account of (your) religion” is precisely what the pseudo-Jewish Zionists have done to the Muslim and Christian Palestinians. Until Zionists recognize and begin implementing the Palestinian right of return, all Muslims will be obliged to wage war for the liberation of the Palestinian people—and the liberation of the Muslim and Christian holy places of Palestine.
Until September 4, 2020 (Muharram 16, 1442 AH) Shaikh Sudais never openly deviated from the Islamic position as summarized above. Then suddenly, in the aftermath of the August 13 announcement of the UAE-Zionist deal-with-the-devil, something changed. Instead of praying for the liberation of Palestine and condemning the UAE traitors, Sudais began cherry-picking ahadith, ripping them out of context to justify Muslim capitulation to Zionist genocide. The Shaikh recounted stories from ahadith and sirah about the Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) generosity to various Jews—forgetting to mention that the Jewish recipients of such generosity were not unrepentant criminals and aggressors and genocide perpetrators!
Sudais also cited the Prophet’s (pbuh) treaty with the Jews of Khaybar, implicitly holding it up as a model and inspiration for the UAE’s devil-deal with Israel. The comparison is absurd. The Khaybar Jews, including Banu Nadir who had been expelled from Madinah for treason, had been plotting with other Jewish tribes to attack the Madinan Muslims, who responded by besieging their fortresses and eventually letting them surrender in return for paying tribute. So, if Khaybar is the model, Muslims should besiege “Israel” until it surrenders—at which point reasonably generous terms should be offered (such as allowing Zionist invaders to remain in Palestine as long as they accept the Right of Return, hand over stolen Palestinian land, and pay reparations to their victims).
Anyone who wondered why Shaikh Sudais wasn’t condemning UAE treason must not have seen the photo-op the sycophantic Shaikh did with Emirati Not-So-Grand Shaykh Abdallah bin Bayyah a few days before the treasonous September 4 khutbah. The two traitors made it clear that they are the best of friends. This is the same Bin Bayyah whose response to UAE treason was: “The Emirates Fatwa Council blesses the wise leadership’s acts for the supreme good of the nation and its people.”
As the rank stench of undisguised treason and kufr rises over the Islamic holy places, the global Muslim community faces a choice: It can continue to pray in the direction of a qibla controlled by our enemies; or it can resolve to regain control over the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah by transferring their custodianship to an international Islamic body tasked with running them fairly and impartially in accordance with Islamic scripture.
Such a move would be long overdue. But is it feasible in today’s strategic context? Though it won’t happen overnight, Muslims can ensure that it does happen, sooner rather than later, by launching the project with as much fanfare as possible and then seeing it through to eventual completion. The strategic equation is changing rapidly, as US domination of the world in general and the Muslim East in particular erodes faster by the day. The non-negotiable demand that the Haramayn are the property of the entire Muslim Ummah, not the billionaire playboy Bedouins of Bani Saud, should be thundered from every minbar and made a top priority of every Muslim activist, journalist, and intellectual.
In his famous 1927 polemic The Treason of the Clerics Julien Benda wrote that the European intelligentsia, the spiritual descendants of the medieval clerks, had betrayed their vocation by abandoning the quest for truth in favor of worldly passions and power: “It is true indeed that these new ‘clerks’ (modern Western intellectuals) declare that they do not know what is meant by justice, truth, and other ‘metaphysical fogs,’ that for them the true is determined by the useful, the just by circumstances,” Benda wrote.
Benda’s “treason” was nothing compared to the treason of today’s Saudi and Emirati clerics—and the Muslim preachers and speakers and writers who fail to challenge them. The pusillanimous pulpiteers of the Occupied Haramayn are deaf, dumb and blind to the Qur’anic insistence on truth and justice and the Prophetic model of how a righteous person behaves. They simply sift through scripture in search of words that will please their paymasters, then twist and torture those words until they hear “ka-ching!”
These paid pulpit propagandists of the treasonous tyrants Bin Salman and Bin Zayed and Al Khalifa are munafiqs—hypocrites pure and simple. The Qur’an describes their likenesses: “Give tidings to the hypocrites that there is for them a painful punishment.” (4:138)
“Indeed, the hypocrites [think to] deceive Allah, but He is deceiving them.” (4:142) “Indeed, the hypocrites will be in the lowest depths of the Fire…” (4:145) “The Bedouins are stronger in [their] refusal to acknowledge the truth and in [their] hypocrisy…” (9:97). “And among those around you of the Bedouins are hypocrites, and [also] from the people of Madinah. They have become accustomed to hypocrisy.” (9:101)
High-placed hypocrites and liars will face terrible punishment in the next life. Meanwhile, in this life, we must pray for the opportunity to be instruments of the justice of Allah: “We cast the truth against falsehood, so that it breaks its head.” (21:18)