The Green Lane Mosque recently invited two men, Sheikh Faisal Al-Jassim and Sheikh Abdul Aziz As-Sadhan, to lecture at their Winter Conference. The Quilliam Foundation and British Muslims For Secular Democracy both condemned the decision, describing the speakers as “extreme Wahhabi clerics” who “bolster al-Qaeda narratives“. The Mosque has hit back, claiming that they’re “well known for their open criticisms of Al-Qaeda“, and pointing out that “Faisal Al-Jassim…is an author of a famous book criticising Al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups“. This reply, however, is a selective one.

Let’s look at the quotes attributed to the men. First, Faisal al-Jassim on “the most potent of [his] enemies“…

Oh Muslims, oh ummah [people] of Muhammad, oh ummah of the religion of Islam that has combined the good of this life and the afterlife, your religion has enemies that stalk it waiting for an opportunity to attack it, and they attack it through every angle. They attack it from the direction of belief and thought, they attack it from the direction of morals and they attack it militarily to weaken its followers, displace them and tear them apart and the Jews are among the most potent of those enemies who do not spare any effort in fighting this religion and corrupting its people … they are among the arch enemies of this great religion.

Here’s As-Sadhan, apparently, chiming in on the same theme…

History testifies that the band of Jews were responsible for every disorder and fierce war whether directly or by preparing it by night or by encouraging it like the Qaramita movement [9th/10th century Islamic movement] and the revolt of the Zanj [9th century slave revolt] … the Jews were the flag bearers for them in secret and in public … and among them are the first and second world wars which the Jews were responsible for igniting their flames, as is mentioned by more than one Western historian and others, then they tirelessly worked until they abolished the Khilafah [Caliphate] after they had created someone to take over and prepared the scene.

Finally – al-Jassim, expounding on a theory of world governance…

…jihad for the sake of Allah is fighting to raise the word of Allah meaning to raise the religion of Allah and to raise tawhid [monotheism] and crush polytheism and its people as Allah has said and ordered to fight all kafirs [non-Muslims] and polytheists and he said “and fight them so there is no fitna” and he has made the end of fighting, the fighting does not stop until fitna is stopped and fitna as it is known denotes polytheism, meaning that jihad is fighting to crush polytheism and raise the word of Allah and make governance in the earth according to the sharia of Allah, that people are governed by their religions and religious decrees, so it is fighting to spread tawhid, fighting to raise the word of Allah and crush polytheism.

If these quotes are accurate – and they’ve yet to be challenged – both men seem to be anti-semitic, and at least one appears to be keen to “fight all kafirs” and “make governance in the earth according to the sharia of Allah“. That they criticise Al-Qaeda is good but not, perhaps, a clinching proof of their virtue. Opposition to the wilful, indiscriminate blowing up of civilians is, after all, generally seen to be a basic position of human decency, not an indication of one’s ultimate wisdom.

Islamophobia Watch, quoting the Green Lane Mosque’s rebuttal, has commented that…

Not only do Ed Husain and his friends squander money in hiring expensive libel lawyers in an attempt to silence their critics but, more importantly, their malicious sectarianism towards those tendencies within the Muslim community who do not share their own narrow interpretation of Islam actively undermines the fight against terrorism.

Interpretations of Islam that exclude tyranny and anti-semitism are “narrow“? Opposition to the two is “malicious“? Christ, either IW’s owners have terribly low expectations of Muslims or they need to think about who and what they might be defending.

[H/t]

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