by Maniza Naqvi
This is addressed to Muslims who think that Islam is under attack: They are right. Just take a look at the images of the House that Abraham built, the Ka’aba and see how progresses that ancient attack. Just look at the transformation of the environs of the Ka’aba and the Haram Shareef into a garish resort rivaling Las Vegas or Atlantic City. Just look, at the transformation of the sacred environs of the Haram Shareef into a shopping mall and Disney world–to understand the war on Islam and who is responsible for waging it. Just look at this and see how Islam has been trafficked as though it were a bonded slave, dressed up in bells and baubles to be whipped and sold in the marketplace. Who is it, Muslims should ask themselves, who has undertaken to do this and has destroyed and defaced the symbols, the reminders, the graves, the homes of the Prophet and his family? And is this okay with them that this should happen to their most revered place of worship? This Ramzan Muslims should reflect on the image of the “renovations” in Mecca around the Ka’aba and the Haram Shareef and ask themselves about the war on Islam.
Yes there is a war on Islam. The responsibility for this destruction lies with the House of Saud. This war on Islam continues and has been waged from the birth of Islam 15 centuries ago. And it has been strengthened in the last century thanks to oil. The Saudi so called royal family of 5000 persons and its grantees of oil wealth and its courtiers, princes, princesses, sheikhs and sheikhas—all of them, barring none– have done their utmost to insult, humiliate and destroy the religious belief systems of 1.2 billion Muslims and their holiest of shrines.
The Saud are not from Hejaz. Yet they claim as a birth right their custodianship of Islam itself. The birthplace of the Prophet and Islam is Mecca. The cities of Mecca and Medina are in Hejaz.
The Saud are not from Al Ahsa (here). Yet, the Saud’s wealth comes from oil in the province of Al Ahsa. Ever since they have gained ownership of the entire Arabian peninsula and the oil, thanks to the British in the early 20th century, and to the Americans, they have succeeded, fourteen centuries after the Prophet's death in restoring their gods to Mecca. And they have also financed militaries and security apparatuses that keep their hold on the oil secured. The majority population of Muslims in Al Ahsa where the oil is located do not share the traditions of Saud they are Shi’a.
The Saud, are from Najd. The Saud are from the Banu Hanafi tribe which is one of eight or ten major tribes in the Najd. The word Najd means highlands. The Najd has a harsh climate and it was mostly barren and isolated at the time of the Prophet and till 1932 when the fortunes of the Saud changed. Riyadh was the largest settlement in Najd which after 1932 was declared the capital of Saudi Arabia by the Saud who became its rulers. Most tribes there were nomadic and even those that became sedentary originally were nomadic. Harsh terrain and a harsh climate made the nomadic way of life one that was focused on survival of all the animals in the flock including humans. The rules and laws of the tribes were therefore in harsh adherence to the purpose of survival and procreation. Men, women, goats, sheep, cows and camels were equally tattooed, covered, circumcised, birthed culled, cut and slaughtered as was seen fit to keep the tribe strong and safe from the harsh life. Following a leader was critical. Dissent could mean a wrong decision and endangering the entire tribe. To question the tribal leader’s judgment could mean leading the tribe into peril, away from water or straight into the path of disaster. Dissent had to therefore be harshly and swiftly and publically punished for the sake of survival. Insular behavior was rewarded and risk taking was not.
Because of their isolation, the tribes of Najd spoke dialects particular to their own tribes, an Arabic not influenced by elsewhere in Arabia and therefore with variations from the Arabic spoken for example in Hejaz. Each tribe spoke and understood its dialect of Arabic. The written word was a luxury of Hejaz and its cities. The tribes from Najd, once a year ventured into Mecca with their livestock for the annual event which was primarily a livestock market and for the pilgrimage to their gods at the Ka’aba.
The Saud can claim no other cultural or human achievement except surviving in the cruel rocky barren mountainous terrain and giving sanctuary to Al Wahab in the 18th century and his ideals called Wahabism. The Saud’s kingdom of Saudi Arabia created in 1932 at the time that oil was discovered in Bahrain and Al Ahsa is based on these Wahabi ideals. They also had an admirable knack for expediency, which foolishly, was referred to as hypocrisy, by revolutionaries or idealists to their own peril. These tribes of the Najd only made alliances when it became expedient for them to do so. They agreed to an alliance with Mohammad but not allegiance to him or to Islam.
The Saud have held the Haram Shareef hostage. Just look at how it has been transformed by them. The Saud’s alliances and allegiances to themselves and their belief systems is evidenced amongst other things by their treatment of the Ka’aba. The Ka’aba today seems as though it were a project of revenge of avenging their own family’s ancestors for the humiliation they felt when the Prophet more than 1400 years ago returned victorious from his exile in Medina, into Mecca and went straight into the Ka’aba and destroyed their stone idols, their Gods, which they adored. Today, it seems that they the Saud are embarked on the project of destroying what the Prophet did.
The Saud are from the place from where the Prophet at the birth of Islam faced continuous opposition. It was from Najd that Islam faced its greatest threat. Islam’s history is replete with references to this opposition to Islam from Najd. The Koran itself has references to this opposition and disbelief: the chapter “Repentance” refers to them: “The village Arabs are more obstinate in disbelief and hypocrisy and impervious to ordinances revealed to His Apostle by God; yet God is aware of everything and is wise.” and “Some of these rustics take whatever they spend in the way of God as a penalty, and wait for an adverse turn in your (addressed to the Prophet) fortune.”
There are four shahria interpreters in the Sunni sects Imam Hanafi, Imam Shafaee, Maliki and Humbali. In a hadith or saying of the Prophet quoted by Imam Maliki : Abdullah ibn Umar Radi Allahu anhu said, “ I saw the Messenger of Allah Salla Allahu ta’ala ‘alayhi wa Sallam pointing at the east ( Najd) and saying, ‘The cause of dissension is here. The cause of dissension is here, from where the helpers of shaytan arise.’ (Imam Malik’s: Muwatta, Hadith #54.11.29). The Hadith or the saying about the Najd (here) Also other hadith quoted here. Muslim scholars Sunni and Shi’a would be united on the veracity of this saying of the Prophet.
Muslims should question themselves as to how could an isolated tribe from a region historically opposed to Islam rise to power and take control of Ka'aba and Islam. Muslims should question themselves about the relationship between this rise and the discovery of oil in Hejaz in 1932. When was Saudi Arabia created? 1932. And when did Wahibism begin to rise from a belief in a nowhere land mountain range in Arabia to spread across the globe? 1932. Muslims should ask themselves who are these custodians of the Ka’aba and what right do they have to occupy it and to have absolute and total control and ownership over it in the way that they do? Who gives them legitimacy and who enforces that legitimacy? Who protects them and secures them? Who benefits? Who loses? Where is the oil located in the Saudi peninsula? Why is the Arabian peninsula called Saudi Arabia? How and why was the name of the clan of Saud given to an entire region in 1932? A region whose majority population and sub regions have nothing to do with the tribe or clan of Saud? Those who never accepted Islam are now the custodians of it. Those who never accepted Islam now claim to be the founders, the definers the protectors of it! Those who are now poised to destroy Islam and all symbols of its origins and humanity are the custodians, the kidnappers and hostage takers of the Ka’aba itself. It is they, the House of Saud that has taken Islam hostage, it is they who have buried Islam, up to its neck in mud and it is they who stone it to death with their actions, policies and ideology and it is they who are poised with the gleaming sword of their emblem to behead it.
Muslims should take a look at the symbols in the architecture that now looms over the Ka’aba. The architecture of the Haram Shareef evoked an invitation to the expansion of thought and a moderation of need. It beckoned a charity in spirit and freed an abundance of emotions. It was cooling to the eyes and calming for the soul. It planted the seed of hope in the heart of those that knelt or walked with in its precincts. It kindled a sense of a beginning, a contentment of resolve— which led to an elegance and simplicity of manner. That architecture has now been transformed into a monument to the Saud, an expression of their character.
Thanks to the Saud a reversal of Islam is underway: Now a hideous clock tower, garish shopping malls for the rich, and equally vulgar billboards and skyscraper hotels for the wealthy dwarf the Ka’aba and its sanctity. Muslims should ask themselves how it could be possible that public toilets have been built where the house used to be of Hazrat Kadija the wife of the Prophet Mohammad. How is it possible that the graves of the Prophet’s family have been razed to the ground? This has been done in the name of adhering to a pure Islam? It has nothing to do with Islam, the faith of the Prophet Mohammad.
Modern Mecca: The Transformation of a Holy City, described in this article by Basharat Peer in The New Yorker, the clock tower looms like a one eyed Jinn (here). Or like a stone idol in the shape of a clock tower—whose face is in the shape of a moon or the sun—and inscribed as though on the forehead of its face is the word Allah, the face is encircled by stars. Allah, the moon, the sun and stars. Allah, Laat, Manat and Uzza. There they all are in the shape of the clock tower–the return of the stone Gods revered by the ancestors of the current bunch, the current custodians of the Ka’aba. The stone gods, the ones that Mohammad shattered upon his triumphant return to Mecca from Medina—now they have been resurrected after 1400 years from crumbled sand restored bigger, better, more garishly thanks to oil and its power.
The Sauds' power of petrodollars has spread the insidious venom of hatred for the teachings of Mohammad from Riyadh to Washington DC to Mindanao from Jakarta to Aguelhok. It is they, the hereditary enemies of Mohammad’s Islam who are the current custodians of the Ka’aba. It is clear in all their actions—of violence, and immorality and greed and debauchery that it is they who have never accepted Islam. It is their brand of beliefs which espouses the subjugation, humiliation and torture of women, the destruction of monotheistic and Abrahamic spirituality, the adherence to monarchy, hatred of the vulnerable and poor, extreme inequality of humans and the worship of money. A reading of historical references including the Koran show that from Najd, from where the Saud originate, there has always been an animosity a fissure, mischief making and diversion with the Prophet and his faith and it is they who have from the time of the Prophet sought to destroy the faith that the Prophet Mohammad had sprung on them.
The Saud have financed much destruction of Islam and its shrines and now their target is closing in on the shrine in Damascus of the revered lady, Hazrat Zainab, the granddaughter of the Prophet Mohammad. Is it to become a “casualty” of their civil war? Is the shrine about to face the same fate as the destruction of the holy shrines across the globe funded by Saudi petro dollars? The shrine is threatened and in danger of being destroyed much like other shrines, by the same venom that holds the Ka’aba hostage and has defaced it.
This great animosity of the United States towards Iran, is it Israel inspired? Is it because of an affinity to Israel? Or is it because of the Saud and oil? Not the oil in Iran but the oil in the Ghawar Fields in Saudi Arabia. For the Americans it may be about oil. Keeping the ownership of the oil in the hands of the Saud and protecting them is greased by funding their belief system. The images of US Presidents one after another arm in arm or holding hands with, or kissing the cheeks of and bending over the hands of Saudi Kings, as if pledging allegiance, are instructive.
The Saud must be admired for strategic thinking and entrepreneurial expediency. They are not from Hejaz which is the birthplace of the Prophet Mohammad and Islam. The Saud are not from Al Ahsa where the richest oil fields on earth are located. The Saud are from Najd from where during the time of the Prophet and his four Caliphs there was a constant opposition to Islam. Now in the twenty first century the Saud, the architects of war on Islam seem to be poised for victory on the House of Abraham, the house of the Prophet Mohammad.
Other Writings by Maniza Naqvi (here)