Palestine - It is not too late

In his book Engines of the Broken World, Shaykh Abdalqadir as-Sufi, rahimahullah, succinctly summarised the Palestinian problem: 

“Part of the new horror of our time is that today men, that is rulers and soldiers do not even know how to win a war, as if when gained, they were constricted and ashamed. The Israeli conquest of Palestine dribbled into self-justifying rhetoric, producing a history of ruthless cruelty called peace-keeping and a disastrous rebellion by the conquered based on the old Wilsonian fantasy about ‘the right of self-determination’, a policy in turn leading to more killing of innocents.” 

Firstly, the Shaykh accepts that Palestine was already conquered and at the same time equally lays down that the conquerors know not how to rule. The Arabs and the world Muslim community that cannot lift a finger against the Israeli government and its defence force (rulers and soldiers) for the ruthless killing of more than 10,000 innocent, unarmed civilians, must accept that fact too, that Palestine had been conquered. The Arab leaders not only cannot lift a finger against Israel and the US, but they have also shamelessly sat down and discussed the possibility of a ceasefire with the US only to be denied. Dependent on the hegemon, the Arabs have betrayed the Palestinians. Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen Points delivered towards the end of World War I created a fantasy that nations had gained the new right to self-determination. Of course, no people can form as a nation and determine their sovereignty in the form of a state. It was only pulling the wool over the eyes of a world devasted and divided up by the victors of the war.  

The reason for the lie of self-determination was to decolonise the world and allow the European colonial powers led by Britain to withdraw into the shadows and create a power vacuum for America to step inside and establish a new way of ruling the world. In the process, colonialism was replaced by a liberal democratic world order with free trade. AJP Taylor, the British historian, commented that the free trade they were proclaiming was nothing but freedom for American investments to flow through the economies of countries and regions. The proof that the lie was proclaimed so that they could substitute colonialism with an international liberal world order, can be identified in what occurred in stages between the Monroe Doctrine (1823) and the establishment of the Trusteeship Council at the UN (1945) by the end of World War II. Their doctrine was consistent for a hundred years. That right to self-determination then further evolved in stages, and by the turn of the millennium had transformed into regime-change and democratization, all the while throughout a century and a half, ending often in the death of innocent peoples.  

In reality, nothing changed. Wealth only circulated amongst the financial elite as Allah, Most High, warned in the Qur’ān in Surah al-Hashr. In the first phase, it was called colonialism, in the second phase, it was called a liberal world order. ‘Liberal’ was more financial than democratic. In recent years, it is important to note that they have already stopped using the term International Law, which was crucial to the liberal world order, and replaced it with what they now call ‘rules-based order’. With the irreversible decline of Pax Americana, we can see a new order emerging, resting on what they now call a ‘rules-based order’. It may sound different, as much as a multi-polar world sounds different, but wealth continues to circulate only among the financial elite. The rich will get richer and lesser and the poor will get poorer and more. This is not only Capitalism, but more importantly a riba-based world order, where wealth does not circulate amongst people, but only amongst the rich – those who reap without sowing.   

 Secondly, in the above paragraph, the Shaykh identifies the rebellion to have only caused disaster to its own population. He wrote elsewhere, with great concern and distress, “Not one Palestinian should be killed(!)” Now more than 10,000 have been killed as a result of a disastrous rebellion, regardless of whether the Israelis were themselves, directly or indirectly, involved in the event of 7th October. No investigation was conducted and the immediate and intentional release of the dogs of war, like a reflex action resulting from years of experience, drills and training, creates a clear cause for suspicion (cui bono?) on why the footprints led to Israel’s casus belli for further aggression against the Palestinians and annexation of their lands. They have now covered the tracks. The truth will one day come out the way it came out concerning the attack on the twin towers in New York. 

The current bombings, as they are daily being broadcast live, clearly demonstrate that they have unleashed the dogs of war to destroy the infrastructure of Gazzah more than to kill the people. Death of the people, according to them, is only a collateral and the inevitable consequences of war. Whatever the reason could be, perhaps a Ben Gurion Canal (which is highly doubtful given the fact that their claim to a Greater Israel encompasses the Sinai until the Nile), or to exploit gas resources, or to even build a new city like Singapore as one Israeli official declared, or shamelessly proclaimed by the Misgav Institute to be a rare opportunity for a new phase in the history of Israel, it is clear that the destruction of the strip as Milton Friedman called disaster capitalism and a God-given opportunity, is more the concern than to wipe out the population. Poor people’s lives, which are like lives of grasshoppers to them, are lost. They do not believe these Arabs have a Ruh anyway. They claim, as the stiff-necked people they are, that it is only to the Children of Israel that Allah blew His Ruh into. Besides, the reason for such a brutal response must also be to drive into the population the lesson that no one should take up arms against Israel in the future if they want to live in peace. 

The Shaykh continues in the next paragraph:

“Equally, the Palestinians did not have that sense of honour which permits you to admit defeat. Rotundly conquered, they clung to an ideology of ‘rights’ and condemned a generation of their own people to victim status in the new peace called terrorism. One of the ugly side-effects of this was that, influenced by the Lebanese, they adopted the Shi’a-Isma’ili practice of suicide attack. Suicide bombing is itself civil war, for the shamed father drives his own son to blow himself up because he failed as a fighter to win or get blown up. This is the pure Lucanian result of pointless military activity. Degraded by an unadmitted defeat, in the shortest time these miserable people turned on each other in civil war dividing their tiny country into two. Their leaders met together at the sacred Ka’ba in Makkah and swore peace, yet days later they broke their worthless promises and fought again.” 

Curzio Malaparte, in his gripping political novel, The Skin, written with a full dose of paradoxes and sarcasm, stated, “While everyone is good at winning a war, not all are capable of losing one.” Later on, he murmurs in quite a different tone, “It is a shameful thing to win a war.” Malaparte could not bear the stench of the victor’s shame engulfing Naples when the Allied forces occupied Italy in 1943. Neither is Israel good at winning a war, nor are the Palestinians capable of losing a war, but the shame here is on Israel for winning the war and enveloping the conquered with the stench of their shameful victory. Therefore it is more honourable to accept defeat than to take up an armed struggle. It is better to bear the stench than to be burnt in the flames of war. 

Solzhenitsyn, himself half-Ukrainian, argued in his Rebuilding Russia (1990), that the Ukrainians and Russians are one people. All the modern rhetoric that the Ukrainians are a different people who possess the right to claim separation from Russia, did not originate from the Ukrainians. According to him, such political rhetoric infiltrated into Ukrainian society from outside of Ukraine. There is now ample evidence that the Americans went to work on that infiltration as soon as the war came to an end in 1945. 

Similarly, the Palestinians’ claim to the right of self-determination did not come from themselves. It was taught to them from outside. For 1300 years, they lived together with the Jews. The Arabs and Jews are cousins by race, and they belong to the same millah of Nabi Ibrahim alayhissalam. The Arabs have married their women and have identified that amongst them are believers because it is mentioned in the Qur’ān. The Palestinians’ refusal to admit defeat came from outside, instigated by a language created by modern Western civilisation. They were compelled by a modern political doctrine that was essentially born out of the Enlightenment that attempted to keep the unsuspecting masses of the world thenceforth one-eyed. 

In his article, Israel’s Problem (2014), the Shaykh emphasises that the mere removal of Hamas will not solve the problem and explains why, but then carries on to provide the solution for both Israel and Palestine: 

“Eventually the Israelis must meet all their Arab neighbours and socialise! Israel is not a ghetto – it is a disused concentration camp.

“As for Hamas – whereas Israel has a future, Palestine has none. Conquest is a reality. Defeat is not disgrace. Look how the great nations of Japan and Germany rose from absolute defeat to dominate the modern world…

“Israel must fulfill its force in the region, occupy, and govern with civic responsibility. It must learn to be a state and that means allies next door, not being owned by the now collapsing American hegemony.”

Israel must know how to win a war and behave with the honour that suits the victor; it must recognise enemies to be humans and if they cannot be friends and allies, at least be respected as justus hostis

Already the Palestinians have been instigated to rebellion for self-determination, which made accepting defeat impossible, now adding fuel to fire, the internal strife between Hamas and Fatah breaking the promise made in front of the Ka’ba (2007), completely ruined their ostensible claim to the right for rebellion. What kind of a rebellion is a disunited rebellion with internal strife? The whole cause was lost, so lost that innocent children had to throw stones at military tanks.  

That is a clear solution the Shaykh has provided for a conflict that has lasted for three quarters of a century. 

In his article, Fatwa on Son Killing in Palestine (2005), the Shaykh advised that the weapon of the Palestinians is not an armed struggle for a national cause but surrender and demographics:

“They must abandon the Palestinian national cause and they must look to survival. Not one Palestinian should be killed. The men should marry the widows among them and accept Allah’s generous permission to have up to four wives. Their families must increase and right-guided ‘ulema must teach their children the Deen, not as presently taught inside these territories. When we look deeply, knowing the psychology of the jews, we can see that they do not want peace. As in the wider situation, terror is some kind of solution to the unworkable kafir equation. Military victory is impossible but a demographic victory is easy. Let no-one say that they cannot afford these families, for it is in their recognition that Allah is the Provider, and that He will feed them, that Islam will return to Palestine.” 

Four years later in his article End of Democracy (2009), he consistently reiterated the same:

“The war against Palestine by Israel is not Judaism versus Islam. Israel’s holy city is New York and Hamas’ holy city is Kerbala, but Israel is killing Palestinians to prevent the destruction of Israeli jewry by Arab blood. It is not their rockets or their tunnels that they fear, it is their penis and their womb. They fear that the quadroon will give way to the octoroon, and racist jewry will disappear forever as it is already disappearing, despite Hollywood, in the USA.”

It is not too late. Demonstrations around the world are unable to respond to Israel’s military aggression against an unarmed people. Democratic governments do not listen to demonstrations; they only allow demonstrations to the extent that it does not pose a threat to the state. Once it crosses the limit, democracies become dictatorships. On the other hand, demonstrations may at times be instigated to sway public opinion to force states to absorb the costs of war and debt, which is itself a deterrent to war, so that certain political objectives are achieved. In both circumstances, it is not the people’s will to avoid war or go to war. When they want it, they cannot achieve their government to send their armies to fight Israel, and when they do not will it, the people are instigated by external forces who lust for war in order to achieve other political objectives. 

Apart from whether these demonstrations are truly the people’s will or not considering the fact that the war is being deliberately broadcast live every day to enflame the masses, the Arab states, in themselves, have betrayed the Palestinians and their armies have become worthless because they are directed by incapable leaders. It is not part of their military doctrine to respond to oppression or to protect the oppressed. Their governments and their militaries have abandoned the Qur’ān and the sunnah. In fact Russia is one of the very few countries in the world today that possesses a military doctrine which says that it will defend the oppressed. The Arab states do not have such a military doctrine. 

It is not too late. Hamas and all other rebellions in Gazzah and the West Bank can still put down their weapons and surrender. “Not one Palestinian should be killed.” Hamas can still  release the hostages, give up their two-state solution and nationalism, and stop the war. They must return to Allah and be patient because their ill-conceived armed struggle has now cost more than 12,000 lives and their lands, let alone possessing the right to that armed struggle. Yes, they have been driven out of their homes, but a people being driven out of their homes is not enough to be granted the legal right (in the sharī’ah) to battle. The above conclusions of the Shaykh are not his own logical deductions. They are strongly founded in the Qur’ān.  

Amongst the numerous verses of the Qur’ān, three would suffice here. 

 إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُدَافِعُ عَنِ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ كُلَّ خَوَّانٍ كَفُورٍ

Certainly Allah defends those who have īmān; certainly Allah does not love any ungrateful traitor.  Surah al-Hajj, verse 38

This verse was revealed in Makkah even while the Muslims had already been driven out of their homes to Abyssinia. The companions of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam came to him to ask his permission to take up arms secretly and fight those who were oppressing them. The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam forbade them, but rather made preparations for hijrah and once in Madinah made the necessary alliances and prepared for war consolidating his military capacity to its utmost. He then waited for the Divine permission to be revealed. Only some years later was the next verse in the same Surah (al-Hajj) granting permission to fight was revealed. The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam then placed the verse granting permission to fight right after the verse prohibiting fighting. The Palestinians, neither in the current situation of theirs nor in the previous seventy-five years may claim the grant of a Divine permission to fight. In the Palestinian case, verse 38 of Surah al-Hajj precedes verse 39 in its application.

وَمَا لَكُمْ لَا تُقَاتِلُونَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَالْمُسْتَضْعَفِينَ مِنَ الرِّجَالِ وَالنِّسَاءِ وَالْوِلْدَانِ الَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا أَخْرِجْنَا مِنْ هَٰذِهِ الْقَرْيَةِ الظَّالِمِ أَهْلُهَا وَاجْعَلْ لَنَا مِنْ لَدُنْكَ وَلِيًّا وَاجْعَلْ لَنَا مِنْ لَدُنْكَ نَصِيرًا

 What reason could you have for not fighting in the way of Allah – for those men, women and children who are oppressed and say, “Our Lord deliver us out of this city whose people (those who rule and control the city) are oppressors and appoint for us from Your Presence a protector and a helper (who will deliver us to safety and victory). 

[Surah an-Nisā, verse 75]

If there is anyone who should fight to deliver the innocent people of Gazzah from their misery, it would be the Muslim armies of sovereign states surrounding Israel and elsewhere in the Muslim world. They not only ought to fight Israel to force a ceasefire and respond to the oppressor, but must also deliver the people of Palestine out of the land to another place of safety and security. Hijrah is not just the duty of the Palestinians, it is the responsibility of the Ummah to facilitate the Palestinians to move out of their place of insecurity to a place of security. If only there are Ansar can there by Muhajireen. After all the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam left Makkah which was beloved for him. No Palestinian can claim that Palestine is dearer to him than Makkah was to the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. 

The objective of such a war must not be the elimination of the enemy or to conquer the territory of the enemy. In the words of Carl Schmitt, the political enemy is hostis not inimicus; the enemy state need not be hated with vengeance and dehumanised. It must only be to stop the aggression and deliver a lesson that will deter the oppressor from such acts of bullying and brutal killing in the future. Once the war over, these countries, will have to deal with counter-terrorism issues and make sure that such partisans do not arise in rebellion and acts of terrorism in the name of armed struggle again in the future.  

It is clear from the above verse of the Qur’ān that it is not for the Palestinians (the oppressed and weak) to fight; it is for those who are outside of Palestine (who possess the military capacity) to fight. It is not for those who are outside of Palestine to make du’ā for the Palestinians, it is for the oppressed Palestinians to make du’ā for their own people to be delivered out of that place of insecurity and danger. Alas, the Muslim world has reversed the roles assigned to the world Muslim community in this verse. The Palestinians are fighting, and the Muslims outside of Palestine are making du’ā. How will Allah’s help come with action that is contrary to Divine injunction? 

The third verse of the Qur’ān is in Surah al-Anfāl. That verse, 66, establishes that if the enemy is more than twice the number, it is not obligatory to fight. However, this is a verse addressing the army like that of Madinah, a sovereign power, not telluric or global partisans. Even if the state of Palestine had been established and had mustered its own military capacity to fight, if the enemy is greater than twice their number, they need not go to fight. They must find other means of dealing with the enemy. These other means are mentioned later in the same Surah, and in other parts of the Qur’ān, which is a subject for another occasion. For now, enough has happened in the last seventy-five years for the world Muslim community to understand that the Palestinians have neither the capacity nor the right to take up arms and fight. Protecting the sanctity of every life is enough as a reason to surrender. Seventy-five years of losses in state warfare as well as guerilla warfare is proof that they had taken the wrong path. 

The next question that arises is why should they give up their lands and leave their homes? The simple response to that is, even in the Holy Land, life is more sacred than land. Masjid al-Aqsa does not belong to them; it belongs to the Ummah. Shaykh Abdalqadir wrote in his Fatwa on Son Killing in Palestine:

“Once we have designated the kuffar as being enemies of Allah then we in our turn are obliged to the strictest obedience to what He has ordered and to what our beloved Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, has commanded. At that point there is no Palestinian struggle. At that point Al‑Aqsa is the property of all the Muslims and is no more a Palestinian issue but rather it is that of all the World Community of Muslims." 

The Divine order and the Prophetic command that the Shaykh is referring to above is to obey the Qur’ān and the sunnah to stop sacrificing the lives of their own people in suicide, armed struggle as well as in warfare. In the context of the article, he is addressing the act of suicide bombing, because there is no human sacrifice in Islam. However, it similarly applies to an impossible guerrilla warfare with weapons and tactics that are no match against a state armed to its teeth with nuclear and state-of-the-art weapons.

Life is more sacred than land and Masjid al-Aqsa. Ibn Mājah has recorded a hadīth narrated by ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar, radiyallahu ‘anhu, that he once saw the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam performing tawāf around the Ka’bah, and then uttering the following words addressing the Ka’ba, “How good you are and how good your fragrance; how great you are and how great your sanctity. By the One in Whose Hand is the soul of Muhammad, the sanctity of the believer is greater before Allah than your sanctity, his blood and his wealth, and to think anything but good of him.” 

Al-Baihaqiy in his Shu’ab al-Īmān has recorded a narration reported by al-Barā ibn ‘Āzib al-Ansāriy that the Messenger of Allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said, “The end of the Dunyā is lesser in magnitude than the legally unjustified shedding of the blood of a Muslim.” Another similar narration is recorded with a different wording, “The destruction of the Ka’ba brick by brick is lesser in magnitude than the killing of a Muslim.” This applies to killing a Muslim directly or being a cause for his death, in other words, sanctifying land and Masjid al-Aqsa more than the life of a Muslim by allowing the Muslim to be killed. If a Muslim is unjustly killed, they attain the reward of a shaheed but the responsibility of protecting the Muslim’s life precedes anything else. The attainment of the reward of martyrdom in no way justifies the allowing of a Muslim to be killed. 

As for Masjid al-Aqsa, after all it was Allah’s Abābeel that came down upon Abraha’s army when he came to desecrate and destroy the Ka’ba. Even if Israel wants to destroy Masjid al-Aqsa and build their temple on its ruins, it is Allah’s house to defend, not a scattered Ummah’s duty. Either Allah, Most High, will intervene by the hands of a united Muslim army, or by other means. There is however no such event mentioned in the science of Islamic Eschatology. In any case, the protection of Masjid al-Aqsa is not the duty of the Palestinians, nor is it the duty of a scattered Ummah, it cannot be used as a reasoning to continue sacrificing Palestinian lives.   

Lastly, it will not be complete without quoting the Shaykh’s revealing passage on terrorism in his celebrated text, Time of the Bedouin (2006):

“Terror is born out of the belly of the beast it has emerged to destroy. It has a set of discrete entities, all of which are specific elements already in the society, which only demand that they are aligned together like a series on a Rubik’s Cube, at that point, there is the act itself. Terrorism’s necessary elements are – a tyrannical and unjust regime, a dissatisfied under-class, a secret security police, police infiltration, media mis-information, a prior corruptible intellectual class of liberals, and gullible discontented and dispossessed men. In its first stage, host society and its terrorists are one. In its second stage, it turns on the society, that is, on itself. In the third stage, the terrorists are crushed and the people oppressed by security laws. In the fourth stage, the State is obliged actively to set up terrorist events, thus returning to the first stage.”    

US/Israel and Hamas are one. PLO/Fatah and the beast out of whose belly it was born, are one. Though Hamas and Fatah have fought a civil war, their armed struggles against each other and against Israel has only benefitted Israel. It is not for no reason that the US has channelled funding to Palestine for so many years. It is not without the knowledge of the US and Israel, and their secret services, that weapons were allowed to enter the Palestinian territories and reach the Partisans. We are now in stage three. It will return to stage one soon. If this is to end now, and if not one Palestinian should be killed anymore, rebellion should end and defeat should be accepted. No parent should allow any child to even throw stones at monstrous military tanks. No arms should be taken anymore. It is not too late. The war can end today.  

Israel has a divine destiny it is moving towards. It is Allah Himself who has brought the Jews back to the Holy Land two thousand years after Jerusalem was sacked and its inhabitants expelled. The Divine prophecy that this ominous event will occur was mentioned twice in the Qur’ān. It is Allah, Most High, who gave the Holy Land to the Israelite people. He gave it to them on a condition. He has warned them, and He it is to Whom we should leave these oppressors who commit bloody aggression in the Holy Land. At present, the oppressor and his pool of allies will be victorious. When the time comes they will all suffer Allah’s wrath, but it will only come at the appointed time. But for every individual who is involved with the oppressor, when the time of death approaches, because he lived like Fir’aun, he will die a death no different from that of Fir’aun. He will believe when the veils are removed at death but it will be too late.  

Now that the two state solution is out of the way, it is imperative that the Palestinians and those protesting around the world consider the above as some of the remaining solutions to the entire Israeli-Palestinian problem.  

Most probably neither Israel nor the Palestinians will agree to such a solution. Most probably the situation will intensify, and other greater events will certainly unfold, but it must at least be recorded that such a solution was once offered by a learned Muslim. 

As for the Muslims around the world, the hope for the validation of Truth in the Qur’ān as events unfold in the world, is contained in the āyah: 

كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَأَغْلِبَنَّ أَنَا وَرُسُلِي  إِنَّ اللَّهَ قَوِيٌّ عَزِيزٌ 

Allah has laid down the following statement in the Divine record, “I will be victorious, I and My Messengers.” Certainly, Allah is Strong and Almighty.  [Al-Mujādilah, verse 21]