Monthly newsround from muslim-news.net

  • From: "Muslim-News" <editor@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
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  • Date: Fri, 12 Apr 2002 16:17:38 +0100

Read in this issue:
 

*       The EU Summit – wallpapering over the cracks
*       It’s not hear say, it’s true … 
*       US troops in Philippines 
*       America increases its military budget
*       US – Violators of human rights
*       Steel Wars
*       ISAF (International Security Assistant Force): Afghanistan
*       “Education”, Bush Style


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The EU Summit – wallpapering over the cracks 

Leaders of the European Union congregated in Barcelona for a two-day
summit to focus upon economic reform and prosperity for Europe.
Meanwhile anti-globalisation activists took to the streets and engaged
in running battles with the Spanish authorities. 

The European leaders did not fare much better and signs of political
infighting and squabbling were quick to surface. In particular France
was keen to avoid discussion upon the opening of energy markets to
protect its giant state owned company EDF (Electricitie de France) which
itself exploits the liberal free energy markets within Europe. France
was also hoping that their candidate, Jean Claude Trichet, governor of
the Banque de France would gain succession to the head of the European
central bank from Wim Duisenberg, who is stepping down. 

The German government faces elections this autumn and in the face of
internal pressure has failed to endorse new company take over rules,
thus blocking a reform measure within the European parliament. 

Another contest was the tag team clash between Blair, summit host Jose
Maria Aznar of Spain and Silvio Berlusconi of Italy, who wish to free up
labour markets against France and Belgium who propagate the ‘European
Social model’ with emphasis on workers rights. 

Romano Prodi, the President of the European Commission expressed his
frustration: “There is still a gap between making policy declarations
and turning them into practice.” 

Such friction and stubbornness is unsurprising if one considers the
reality of the European states as capitalist nations each pursuing their
own interests. Indeed, the fifty-odd Muslim states would do well to
realise that unity between them cannot be achieved by the formation of
unions and confederations such as the OIC and the Arab league. Such
organisations recognise the independence of their member states with
inevitable conflicting interests. 

Such alliances will never lead to the progress of the people, for unity
implies the coordinated and complementary efforts of these nations. Such
events only provide opportunity to battle for the position of
self-interest. 

Faisel Chaudhury 




It’s not hear say, it’s true … 

The recent voting extravaganza surrounding “Pop Idol” only goes to show,
if Gareth Gates or Will Young can get 8.7 million votes in the final,
and the Conservative Party in the 2001 UK General Elections only
attracted approximately 8.2 million votes, that more of the public are
pressed about who to vote as a pop idol than to vote for who will run
the country. 

This is indicative of the publicity and stardom that celebrities
attract. Thousands of screaming boys and girls look up to and emulate
their favourite stars, to be thin like Naomi Campbell, sing like George
Michael, or act like Winona Ryder. Maybe they would like to emulate
their favourite stars in all their behaviour. 

*Winona Ryder was arrested and has been accused of stealing clothing and
jewellery worth more than three thousand pounds at Saks boutique in
Beverly Hills. She was released on $20,000 bail (£14,000) and denies all
the charges. 

*Naomi Campbell 31, claims breach of confidence and invasion of privacy
over a story about her visit to a Narcotics Anonymous meeting and
possible drug abuse. 

*George Michael was arrested in New York for indecency in a men’s public
lavatory. 

*Will Young recently announced his sexual orientation, declaring himself
to be homosexual. The media subsequently claimed that if his career
fails it would because of public prejudice. 

These are the ideals that the Kuffar aspire to and attempt to emulate.
Surely for a Muslim living in the West our ideals are not based on
desire and fame, rather the Shari’ah. 

“Verily in the Messenger of Allah you have the finest example” [TMQ
al-Ahzab: 21]. 

Nur Al-Ameen 



US troops in Philippines 

With the arrival of the first batch of 160 US Marines in the Philippine
island of Basilan, the long arm of global law stretches out to scourge
‘terrorism’ from the face of the American globe. The arrival of the
troops comes a day after two bomb blasts, blamed on opponents of the
government, killed at least 5 and injured at least 43 people. 

Like Afghanistan, the island does not carry a technological threat to
America, but justification for its presence comes from the existence of
‘Abu Sayyaf’, the most notorious group who claim to espouse the goal of
an Islamic state and whom the Pentagon insists, without much evidence,
has links to Osama Bin Laden. The US would like very much to help crack
down on Islamism, even those who kidnap for their money and their cause.
Perhaps it is not so much the threat of the Abu Sayyaf, but a shopping
list of where the US wants to go, with a slice of the Philippines going
down nicely. 

And who are the ones to suffer? Already the Muslims in the Philippines
have no rights, are mistreated, humiliated, and many live in slums and
ghettos; and this includes Muslims living in Manila, the capital. With
the presence of American troops, the situation of the Muslims can only
worsen. If American troops arrive in any region, it is surely an ominous
sign of colonisation. 

“And when it was said to them: ‘Make not mischief on the earth,’ they
say: ‘we are only peace-makers’. Verily they are the ones who make
mischief, but they perceive not” [TMQ al-Baqarah: 11-12]. 

Dawud Abdur Rahman 




America increases its military budget 

President Bush during a visit to Fort Bragg, home to the US Special
Operation Forces, on March 15th announced his plan for a $48 billion
increase to $379 billion in military spending. This is the largest
increase in over two decades. 

“Nothing is more important than the national security of our country. So
nothing is more important than our defence budget,” said Bush. “The best
way to secure the homeland is to unleash the mighty US Military.” 

The very next day the US performed a successful test of its Missile
Defence System, intercepting an Inter-continental Ballistic Missile in
space 30 minutes after it was launched. 

These statements and actions by the US are appropriate to any
ideological nation, which by its nature seeks to secure its interests at
home and abroad. America’s interests are the capitalist interests and we
can see vivid examples of these goals being pursued in Afghanistan at
the expense of the blood, honour and property of the Muslims living
there. 

Whilst America is increasing its military spending, we see a different
reaction from the rulers in our lands. Our rulers like the Saudi royal
family, have squandered billions of dollars on American military
hardware. But is it being used to further the interests of Islam?
Clearly not. Our rulers only move our armies in response to the
interests of America and Kufr, and not to the interests of Islam. 

The steps taken by Bush are undoubtedly aimed at strengthening the
stranglehold his nation has on the world. However, what the Muslims find
lacking is a leader who unites them and undertakes the actions necessary
to protect them. Where is the unifying entity and the Amir of Jihad, who
is in charge of the departments of Foreign Affairs, War and Internal
Security? Without this the blood, honour and property of Muslims remains
unprotected and free for the taking. 

“Make ready for them all you can of armed forces and of horses tethered,
that thereby you may dismay the enemy of Allah and your enemy, and
others beside them whom you know not. Allah knows them” [TMQ Al-Anfal:
60]. 

Abdul-Kareem Newell 




Steel Wars 

Recently George W. Bush incensed the EU by stating that the US would be
imposing tariffs on steel imports. Pascal Lamy, EU commissioner, claimed
that such tariffs would hurt the EU in an “unjustified and unfounded
way… We will do everything we possibly can to protect our own industry
and our own interests.” 

The EU fears that her access to the lucrative US market, in which she
holds a 25 percent stake, will be severely hit as well as the fear that
the European market will now be the destination for foreign steel, which
in turn will affect her own industry and jobs. 

Bush’s decision comes after the consistent decline of the US steel
industry, which has seen 30 bankruptcies in the last five years or so. 

This is not the first time that trade conflicts have arisen between the
US and EU. Disputes over beef and the famous “banana wars” are the
legacies of interventionist policies adopted by the two to protect their
own industries. 

These incidents have all escalated the accusations of hypocrisy, which
have been directed towards the US as she has been the primary advocator
for free trade. Globalisation, the pinnacle of capitalist economic
theory, proposes the lifting of trade barriers between nations, which
allows companies to have unrestricted access to foreign markets in which
they can compete on an equal footing. 

However, this dream has never fully materialised, which led to the
creation of the WTO, which acts as a regulatory body over world trade.
The WTO’s very existence exposes the fallacy of the capitalist ideology,
which gives its adherents the mentality of self-interest. On a state
level this viewpoint will lead governments to pass policies that serve
the interests of their own domestic industries and will undoubtedly go
against free trade. 

When the US advocates free trade, she does so to countries whose
domestic industries can’t compete with the larger US industries. Thus in
reality the US will sign such agreements purely with the intention of
taking over a given market and avoid free trade when required to protect
herself. The Islamic Ummah must protect their own markets against this
shape of neo-colonialism in her lands. 

Mohammed Ashifuddin 


US – Violators of human rights 

On December 10, 1948 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted
and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article 5
States, “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or
degrading treatment or punishment.” These declarations are supposed to
represent a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all
nations. All except America it appears. 

The report of Amnesty International states that a “disturbing level of
secrecy” continues to surround the detentions of Muslims by the US and
suggests, “that a significant number of detainees continue to be
deprived of certain basic rights guaranteed under international law.” In
some cases detainees charged with minor immigration violations have been
held in solitary confinement for up to 23 hours a day under conditions
that “appear to be unnecessarily harsh and to constitute cruel, inhuman
and degrading treatment.” A detainee at the Metropolitan Detention
Centre in New York writes in a letter: 

“I have now been in solitary confinement for three and a half months and
by the time of the next hearing I will have been here for four months.
If it hadn't been for the Koran and prayer, I would have lost my mind or
had a nervous breakdown … Why am I imprisoned? … Why in solitary
confinement? And why under maximum security measures? I have many
questions and no answers. What are they accusing me of?” 

Shebarghan jail in northern Afghanistan was home to 3,300 prisoners
squeezed together in grossly overcrowded, unsanitary cells where many
died from disease. An inspection team from the Boston-based Physicians
for Human Rights (PHR) visited the prison recently and declared it “a
quiet atrocity”. 

These disturbing reports have touched the hearts of many across the
globe. Is there any wonder why the world dislikes this pirate nation,
America? All except our subservient Muslim rulers who join them in their
practices. 

Ruksana Rahman 




ISAF (International Security Assistant Force): Afghanistan. 

The US State Department has a talent. It is a talent that exhibits
itself often, with far reaching consequences. This talent is the ability
to make countries from all around the world spend their money, their
time and the lives of their citizens to secure US interests. It is in
this way that the US keeps the funding of its crusade of global
dominance to a minimum. 

A fitting example was the Gulf War, funded mainly by Saudi Arabia which
is now massively in debt. Another from the same conflict was the use of
mainly Syrian and Egyptian troops to fight the Iraqis, keeping US
casualties to a minimum. In Afghanistan, Afghanis were used to fight the
Taliban, directed by the CIA. The most recent example of this phenomenon
is the pressure being applied to Turkey to head the International
Security Assistant Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. 

In October of last year, this was a prestigious role, allowing its owner
to gain some influence in Central Asia, and status in the international
community. Britain secured the post at that time. Now that the large
part of the war in Afghanistan is over, it will be a burden for whoever
has the misfortune of succeeding to it. It is now a question of who will
shoulder the responsibility of stabilising US interests in the region
while the US concentrates on new concerns, with Turkey as a prime
candidate. Turkey will be further disadvantaged by the $60 million
required to increase the number of its troops in Afghanistan in order to
perform the role, as its economy is already in shambles. 

Muslim countries should not be subservient to the capitalist west,
neither should Muslim soldiers be required to put their lives on the
line to secure the interests of those who oppose Islam. This is the
Turkey that Mustafa Kemal established, and the status quo that the
Muslims must not accept any longer. There is no power, dignity, honour,
independence or strength except with Allah (swt). 

Hani Jamal Uddin 




“Education”, Bush Style 

Bush announced that 10 million schoolbooks and many teacher trainers
will be sent to Afghanistan. The objective set by the American regime is
to meet its goal of “educating” the next generation of Muslims,
including women, and children. He alleged that the textbooks would teach
tolerance and respect for human rights, instead of indoctrinating
students with what he called fanaticism and bigotry. 

The same education system in the US, which Bush wishes to export, needs
close scrutiny. Schools in the West, and particularly in the US, are a
mere social circus, as opposed to the learning environment they are
supposed to be. Capitalism has spread its seed into the youth and led
them to believe that the products they buy, the clothing they wear, and
the kids they associate with are what will define them as people. 

The education system in the US is a system that propagates respect for
the spurious concepts of freedom and tolerance that have made atrocious
massacres, like at the Columbine School, an all too common occurrence.
And the slogan of human rights that the US speaks of is just a mirage,
which she ignores and applies when it suits herself, as can be seen with
the hundreds of captives kept in Camp X-Ray, Cuba. 

The education system of Islam, as applied by the Khilafah, produced
people like Imam Abu Hanifah, Muhammad ibn Qasim and Imam Shafi’i who
memorised the Qur’an and the Muwatta of Imam Malik by ten. As Hizb
ut-Tahrir mentions in the draft constitution of the Khilafah State, the
education system is highlighted in the following points amongst others: 

Article 173 It is an obligation upon the State to teach every
individual, male or female, those things which are necessary for the
mainstream of life. This should be provided freely to all… 

Article 174 The State ought to provide the means of developing
knowledge, such as libraries and laboratories, in addition to schools
and universities, to enable the continuation of research in the various
fields of knowledge, like Fiqh, Hadith and Tafseer of Qur'an, thought,
medicine, engineering and chemistry, research and development etc. This
is done to create an abundance of mujtahideen, outstanding scientists
and innovators in research. 

Asif Khan

All above taken from April issue of Khilafah magazine,
<http://www.khilafah.com> www.khilafah.com


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