Breakup of the Middle-East

2 02 2008

The breakup of the Middle-East and most of the Muslim world is the most talked about subject these days. I found this articles at the Atlantic.com which discusses Iraq and the future map of what is known as the Muslim world.

A report from the new Middle East—and a glimpse of its possible future

by Jeffrey Goldberg

After Iraq
Not long ago, in a decrepit prison in Iraqi Kurdistan, a senior interrogator with the Kurdish intelligence service decided, for my entertainment and edification, to introduce me to an al-Qaeda terrorist named Omar. “This one is crazy,” the interrogator said. “Don’t get close, or he’ll bite you.”

Omar was a Sunni Arab from a village outside Mosul; he was a short and weedy man, roughly 30 years old, who radiated a pure animal anger. He was also a relentless jabberer; he did not shut up from the moment we were introduced. I met him in an unventilated interrogation room that smelled of bleach and paint. He was handcuffed, and he cursed steadily, making appalling accusations about the sexual practices of the interrogator’s mother. He cursed the Kurds, in general, as pig-eaters, blasphemers, and American lackeys. As Omar ranted, the interrogator smiled. “I told you the Arabs don’t like the Kurds,” he said. I’ve known the interrogator for a while, and this is his perpetual theme: close proximity to Arabs has sabotaged Kurdish happiness.

Read the rest

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muslimsweety

2 02 2008

For those who are curious, muslimsweety is not the name of a new sweet or anything else for that matter.

I am participating in a learning competition set on the Ummah Forum  to get a better understanding of how search engines and website rankings work, which I actually don’t understand. So it may prove to be a worthwhile and educational participation, in someway or the other.  🙂





Stop and Search laws

1 02 2008

New Powers for police to stop and search

Plans to extend police powers to stop and search people with minimal bureaucracy are to be announced by Jacqui Smith, the home secretary, next week.

Smith will allow police forces to designate hotspot zones within their areas where officers would be able to carry out searches, backed up only by a brief voice-recording of explanation.

The plans were taken to cabinet yesterday after she received the final report from a review of policing by Sir Ronnie Flanagan, the chief inspector of constabulary. Source

Yesterday, I saw more than a dozen police officers at a very small overground station in what may qualify as central London. They were simply carrying out their job by randomly stopping people. While I swiped the oyster, crossing the barriers I saw several people of various backgrounds being searched and questioned including a smartly dressed elderly man. The first thing which came to my mind was Police state, a tiny station with over a dozen police officers, some with dogs stopping random people including senior members of community..what would you think?

Personally, I have no problem with stop and search. I don’t carry around things I shouldn’t have and something needs to be done about the growing knife crime in the UK. If a shooting or stabbing takes place I would hope everyone in the area would be liable to be stopped and searched to send out a strong message to the criminals. Although, I do sympathies with those who are against ID cards, stops and searches etc, but what are the alternatives? Besides, stop and search happens anyway, I have been stopped and searched for no reason whatsoever under section 44 of the terrorism act, so these really make no difference to me.

However, I would also like to see the Met Police reassure ethnic minorities that they have rid the police force of the racist ideology and officers willing to abuse their powers with impunity, then there shouldn’t be any concerns. I know the feeling, which I am afraid most people will not understand unless you have been stopped, abused and have had insults hurled at you while you were going about your daily routine. Perhaps, there needs to be a mechanism of stop and search within the Met Police to churn out ignorance or implement plans to educate the police staff on religious/cultural sensitivities, basic manners and some level of public relation skills, before they begin to stop and search criminals as well as the law abiding citizens.





Gaza – Fence that fell…

31 01 2008

You don’t feel safe anywhere in the Gaza Strip. It’s dangerous everywhere; Israeli helicopters and F-16s overhead all the time.

The hardest thing is going in the streets of Gaza to find body parts scattered everywhere. So many people have been killed here over the past few days.

We are living under occupation. I’ve been applying to Israel to go to the West Bank – which is part of my country – and I’m not allowed.

MOHAMMED OMER, 23, RAFAH, GAZA STRIP

The Kaa’ba (Qibla) has an over whelming spiritual aspect attached to it, for a Muslim, there is no place more sacred than the holy lands situated in Arabia. Every year millions of Muslims gather and circumambulate (tawaaf) around the holy Kaa’ba or Qibla during the month of Dhul Hijjah and all year around for the ‘Umrah. The Muslims turn towards the same marvelous Qiblah five times a day when performing their daily salah, decorating their living rooms and places of trade with pictures of it, on walls, in miniature design, on calenders, on prayer mats, and the whole of Muslim cola market has thrived upon its name.

But what does the marvelous Ka’ba, its spiritual or historical significance have anything to do with the giant concentration camp which Gaza has been turned into? Consider this:

The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, is quoted to have said, when beholding Ka`ba: “How sanctified you are to Allah, however, the blood of a Muslim is more sanctified to Allah than thee!”

The noble Ka’ba symbolises a deep rooted concept, a concept far beyond the psychological and emotional spiritual aspect we long to feel in its presence. Despite the unceasing dictum, most Muslims including myself have not been able to truly conceptualise what the bond of unity based upon a common view of life (Islam) means. I attempted at experiencing this unity and being over whelmed by it rather than the spiritual aspect which comes from being around the ka’ba. ‘It is only made of stones, you will circumumbulate this one and throw stones at the other ones in Jamaraat’, I said to myself during hajj. The spiritual aspect which comes from witnessing thousands of people of different colour, race, height, size… gave me the ‘buzz’, the same kind of buzz experienced by the dancing dervishes which they interpret to be spiritual elevation, though there is no similarity between the two. But the persistent question remains: Is Muslim unity a fanciful concept? an emotional weak bond? or something real and perceivable?

An-Nu`maan Ibn Basheer, may Allah be pleased with him, quotes the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him as saying: “You see the believers as regards their being merciful among themselves and showing love among themselves and being kind to themselves, resembling one body, so that, if any part of the body aches then the whole body shares the pain with sleeplessness (insomnia) and fever.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari)

This body as described by the Prophet of Islam (saw) exists today as we witness the Muslims stand in solidarity across the Muslim world with their brethren in Gaza. Despite the brutal clampdown by the despotic Egyption regime, the Muslims gathered at the Tahrir Sq chanting, “Gaza residents, we are with you night and day”. Muslims also gathered in Algeria, Lebanon, Jordan, Mauritania to call their rulers to aid the Muslims of Gaza and to end their links with the Zionist State.

GAZA (CNN) — There is something almost indescribably exhilarating about suddenly evaporating borders, an almost palpable electricity that pulses through the air.
It was breathtaking to watch as tens of thousands of people poured over what once was a towering Israeli-built iron wall, a seemingly insurmountable barrier between Gaza and the world, now a walkway through which Palestinians strolled into Egypt.

In the days of the Ottoman Empire, there were no borders and no walls across much of what is now the Middle East. You could travel from Baghdad to Jerusalem to Cairo to Tunis without a question asked. Then came the era of the nation state, when Arabs became Egyptian or Iraqi or Tunisian.

But the depth of desire for unity, for freedom of movement in the Arab world remains profound. And you only need cross a border in this region to understand why.  Source

Contemplating upon some of these realities makes me wonder that ‘artificial borders disuniting the Muslims’ theory may not be so far-fetched after all. The moment of unity shared by the two nations separated by an artificial border which once never existed, however brief, it looks incredible. The CNN video shows the barrier being physically removed liberating and uniting the people… imagine if this was to occur throughout the Muslim world.





Going Hajj…

7 12 2007

Assalam Alaikum wrtwbrkt Dear Readers.

Alhamdulilahi Rabil ‘Alameen, a short while ago we have received confirmation from our agent that everything is in order and we will be flying tomorrow to blessed place for the blessed journey. I am so overwhelmed right now as our agent could not confirm our flights in time and we almost accepted we weren’t going. All praise be to my Rabb, everything has fallen in place as we set off tomorrow.

It is my request to anyone reading this to please make Du’a that we are able to complete it and that our Rabb (swt) accepts our actions during Hajj.. insh’Allah. Also to forgive me for any wrongdoings, mistakes and shortcomings. And finally if anyone has any special du’a please let me know as I will write them all down later. Subhan’Allah the last time I went Hajj was 6 years ago, seeing the Ka’ba for the first time right in front of me was amazing experience, my legs were shaking and I had forgotten to make all the dua, insha’Allah I will do better this time 🙂

Please make Du’a for me.

Shukran

“And proclaim (openly announce) to the whole of humankind the Hajj (pilgrimage). They will come to you on foot and on every lean camel, they will come from every deep and distant (wide) mountain highway (in order to perform Hajj).” [Al Hajj; 22:27]





Adolf bin Faisal bin Turki al-Saud

4 12 2007

I came accross this rather strange website. lol

Adolf bin Faisal bin Turki al-Saud





Spooky Internet Cafe!

4 12 2007

I have couple of hours spare in the afternoon between a morning class and the Hajj course at the mosque. There is no point going home since it takes a while to get in and out of town, not to mention the parking headache….so I’ve been hanging around the town for that time. Killing time is not easy, there is only so much you can walk around and that in the freezing cold. I’ve tried sitting in the car with coffee listening to radio but time still drags. Few days ago, I walked into an Internet Cafe (I’d actually never been to one of those before), it was great, checked my emails, a few blogs and two hours long gone. So, I’ve been doing that for last few days but today I totally freaked out seeing the mouse pointer move on its own across the screen. *shock* At first I ignored it, it happened again and again after a few mins. I turned around, but there was no one at the reception desk. I was too freaked out to stay there, I grabbed my bag and left.

 This usually happens when someone gains remote access to your pc, sometimes a user can never know their computer is being remote accessed unless the remote user moves the mouse in the remote screen. It happened a few times at work, the I.T guys do it to change settings with an advance warning. That’s what freaked me out, someone had been monitoring my screen and come to think of it, its happened before I just didn’t pay any attention to it.

Who was it? Better not be Spooks. well, I guess I won’t know, and I am never going back there to find out. From tomorrow I am switching back to coffee in the car with radio and perhaps continue playing lemmings on the phone. No where is safe these days, too many professional beggars on the streets and people walking around with hoods on, and when you think you may just be safe in an Internet Cafe. You are wrong!

 Internet Cafes’ are centre of most Internet related frauds and scams. A simple search for Internet Cafe Frauds/scams will reveal some shocking links to crimes a simple user is vulnerable to. So please do take care and be cautious when accessing the Internet from anywhere other than home or work and try to use copy/paste rather than typing in details if using credit card is necessary- to avoid the key-logging software.. esp on holiday trips.