Tuesday, July 19, 2005

REFLECTION: If a bomb hits Sydney ...

If a bomb hits Sydney, I will be blamed. People will point the finger at me. And at that time, it will be too late for me to pass the buck. So I may as well start pointing fingers now.

If a bomb hits Sydney, Islam will be placed in trial. And those persons claiming to represent Islam, the imams and sheiks, will be powerless to defend it. They will be unable to articulate the views of their flock because most of them cannot speak English. They will be unable to speak properly because they will have been hamstrung from developing skills they need for an advocacy role.

These imams will be hamstrung by their executive committees who have insisted that imams must solely concentrate on ceremonial tasks or taking sides in some useless debate over moon-sighting. They will not know the issues of the day, and will not be able to handle media inquiries.

If a bomb hits Sydney, mosque committee members will not be able to speak for their congregations and members. Most of them are uneducated and unable to speak proper English. They have spent much of their time and money litigating over halal meat certification dollars. They will be too busy deciding which one of three Islamic councils they wish to be part of.

If a bomb hits Sydney, Islamic school administrations will not be able to cope. They will be too busy mismanaging their facilities, mistreating their staff and becoming embroiled in litigation. The few schools doing anything useful will be forced into litigation, with little support from peak Muslim bodies.

If a bomb hits Sydney, His Eminence the Mufti will be blaming Iraq and Palestine and Afghanistan but not his inability to learn English after living in Australia for so many years. His executive will continue to exclude non-Lebanese members from holding membership, even though they make up a large portion of the congregation.

If a bomb hits Sydney, fringe salafist lunatics will repeat their infantile performances. They will bask in the attention and will regard themselves as heroes whilst stabbing the rest of us in the front and back. They will enjoy a limelight they simply don’t deserve. And their young students will continue to talk terror and show utter contempt for the nation which gave them freedom.

If a bomb hits Sydney, Muslim bookshops will be caught out again selling nonsensical (and usually pirated) nonsense. Their shelves will contain the stuff which, if directed at them, would be condemned as islamophobic. They will justify their display of such items using language that is clearly anti-semitic.

If a bomb hits Sydney, ethnic Muslim leaders will blame the Jews, the PKK, the KGB, the CIA, the FBI, MOSSAD, SAVAK, the NAB and perhaps even the ANZ. Not to mention the NRL and the AFL. They will blame everyone except themselves.

If a bomb goes off in Sydney, the peak national body will allow its website to remain speechless on the matter for at least 2 weeks. They will issue no alert or press release or condemnation. They will have no political clout to handle the barrage of pressure on Muslims to agree to further erosion of their civil liberties. And they will probably declare the attack a tragedy by claiming that Sydney is the capital of Australia just as they declared Istanbul to be the capital of Turkey. Or they will be too busy setting up yet another Islamic council in New South Wales.

If a bomb goes off in Sydney, prominent Muslims will be targeted. Professionals, partners of commercial law firms, big business people, students, academics, senior public servants, anyone with any relation to Islam regardless of how tenuous will be watched and targeted. They will wonder why people are so ignorant about their faith, despite having missed hundreds of opportunities to inform people about their faith.

If a bomb hits Sydney and a few young Muslims are found to be responsible, it will be the fault of all the above. If a bomb hits Sydney, we will all be blamed. And we will all deserve the blame.

Sydney-siders have shared with us the things they value – a strong economy, a beautiful city, economic opportunities, education, fresh water, harbour views, heavenly beaches and much more. We have gladly taken of these precious things.

And what have we given of what we value? What have we given of our morals? Our ethical code? Our family structures? Our love for God and God’s creation? What contributions have we made to this community, to this beautiful city?

If a bomb hits Sydney, it will be too late for soul searching. Let’s start searching our souls and correcting our attitudes. Let’s get our house in order. Because if we don’t, and if a bomb hits Sydney, we are doomed.

Words © 2005 Irfan Yusuf

Bookmark this on Delicious


Get Flocked

Stumble Upon Toolbar


dawood said...

Scary thoughts indeed, and spot-on. We live in very troubling times.

mark said...

Harbour views? I should be so lucky. You can't see the harbour from Lakemba either.

Anonymous said...

i heard Alan Jones mention the Tablighi Jamaat today on his morning breakfast show. By the sounds of things, the only thing that'll make him happy is the deportation of all muslims from earth.

The day I see a smily tablighi wanting to blow up something is the day I know we are all doomed. The Australian government should realise that the only way to combat these lunatics is by assiting the moderates. Targetting a "Lakemba Prayer hall" that houses "tablighi jamaat loonies" is the first step in creating an us vs them attitude that will ultimately lead to more "loonies".

its hard enough trying to dodge public scrutiny without this sort of garbage being thrown of the air ways.

to you irfy, what do you suggest we do? write blogs? or perhaps write newspaper articles that make us all warm and fuzzy?

i would gladly go overseas, learn our religion and come back and speak on behalf of our community...soon enough this will be an impossibility

dawood said...

I have never met a Tablighi who could even concieve of such a thing, let alone mastermind something like that. Not to mention how considering the Tablighi/Deobandi/Bralewi fighting that has been going on a while.

Maybe making all these extremist nutjobs go on Tabligh is the answer? :)

I think having a like-minded group of people come together to write, perhaps help educate others about the differences within Islam itself, to try and plan things to resolve issues (especially if our own governing-bodies are letting us down) and so on is one of the few things we can do.

But that is already hard enough when the community is generally non-responsive.