This post speaks for itself…I thank my friend, Ali Asadullah, for sharing his thoughts on the death of Muamar Qadhafi. Ali’s love for, knowledge of, and commitment to Islam speaks clearly through the following piece, which he has allowed me to share with you. Enjoy.
To my Muslim & non-Muslim friends alike, I want to say that what happened to Muamar Qadhafi yesterday does not represent Islam.
Very few loved him, to be sure. But his apparent beating and subsequent summary execution was wrong from both an Islamic perspective and from a general human rights perspective. And for rebel fighters to jump around chanting “Allahu Akbar!” during and after the beating …and execution cheapens and sullies the goodness of this beautiful phrase (God is greatest).
Muslims are not supposed to be vengeful, hate-filled barbarians. And for the most part, Muslims are not. But this act of revenge possibly gave the world the wrong impression about Islam and Muslims. And I am dismayed that I have even seen some respected and and notable Muslims essentially say about this situation: “Good riddance,” without giving a single word of caution regarding ethics, morals and the rule of law.
We are not vigilantes. Muslims are supposed to take the high ground. And although facts surrounding the capture and killing of Qadhafi continue to emerge, the raw video footage that does exist seems to show that, at the very least, there were breaches of all 3 of the aforementioned.
When the Prophet Mohammed (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) entered victorious into Mecca, he could have exacted pure and unadulterated revenge on the people who had tormented him and his followers for 2 decades. Atrocities had been committed by these people. But instead, he took the high ground and left us with an enduring example by granting a mass amnesty and by implementing the rule of law.
I hope that in the coming days, this example will not be lost amidst the wall-to-wall coverage of the demise of this vile dictator. And I hope that Muslim community leaders will do their part to educate people as to the values and principles upon which this religion was established, and which will, God-willing, endure for eternity.
I hope Muslim leaders DO speak out. Publicly and loudly! I am not Muslim but have heard several Muslims say what this young man is saying – but whenever I venture to put forth to friends and family the idea Muslims are not about violence and hatred I am told that first of all, I am not a Muslim so I don’t know, and then I’m asked why their leaders do not speak out against the killings and against the 9/11 attack, etc. I am lucky to belong to a church that has reached out to a local mosque – but most people in this community hear only what is hyped in the news and this execution feeds their negative perceptions.