Division in the rope

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are purely mine and are not representative of wider Shia or Alawi community. Some feel that this issue is not about sectarianism but the particular page I am referring to makes claims and statements which to me point directly at sectarianism. I understand that there are multiple complexities in the situation in Syria and people’s position on Assad. However, I feel the need to express my position on this situation as I feel Shia people have been unfairly targeted and portrayed as ALL supporters of Assad’s regime and this is just not the case.  My view is expressed in the most effective way I know…through writing.

Division In the rope

While the inhumane atrocities in Syria continue to escalate with no seeming end, it appears that the conflict is spilling over to other nations and I don’t mean the physical geographic boarders.

A friend of mine recently bought to my attention a particular facebook group whose aims I was stunned to find were to, “…allow Australian Muslims to support their Syrian brethren by boycotting Alawi and Shia businesses that support the Assad regime.”

Being Shia myself this naturally angered and repulsed me and not because they were supposedly boycotting businesses that were apparently supporting Assad’s regime, but rather because the page was littered with sweeping statements and generalisations which slander Australian Muslims belonging to the Shia and Alawi communities.

As I began to dig deeper into the page I came across a statement from the administrator, it read,

Until now not one of the business mentioned have emailed nor inboxed me that they don’t support the pig or his side-kick terrorist hasoon. It’s very simple I know 100% and all of the mini-shabeeha know as well that they love and support the pig Bashaar and also financially support Hizb-ul-shaytaan in Lebanon.

So I took it upon myself to do some research. Initial contact was made with the administrator of the page, asking whether they had actually contacted these businesses and what proof they had of these accusations, as claimed in one of their posts. After waiting two days there was no message response. Despite my persistence and their activity on the facebook page during that time period, it appeared the administrator didn’t feel the need to justify the claims being made.

From this I followed through and contacted some businesses listed on the facebook page.

Contrary to the administrator’s claims of contacting the businesses for clarification of their position on the Syrian situation, majority of the business owners I spoke to were not contacted by anyone from that page.

When asked what their view of the page was one business owner said, “Most of our families run away from these sorts of things in our own countries. Anyone who believes in God properly wouldn’t believe in this. My wealth is designated from God and it’s wrong of a human to do this.”

Another business owner condemned the page labeling it as, “pathetic and needs to be stopped.”

While another thought, “It’s just stupid!”

The page continues to make anti-Shia statements like; “The Jews and the Shia are one and the same. They have always loved one another. The Shia stand by the enemies in all their battles against the Sunnis. Why? Because they consider [the Sunnis] to be their one and only enemy, and the war in Iraq is the best proof of this. So now it has come to Syria!”

Adding to this, supporters of the page posted comments that name specific businesses and calling for a boycott simply because the owners are Shia or Alawi.

After reading these flagrant derogatory statements one has to ask themself how exactly this is benefiting our brothers and sisters in Syria?

It dawned on me that this page which is allegedly encouraging and advocating solidarity and support for our suffering fellow Muslim brothers and sisters in Syria, is a strategic political tool endeavouring to reignite the sectarian fire within our Australian Muslim Community. It is a page which is blatantly inciting animosity and impertinence towards the wider Shia and Alawi communities and is exercising guilt by association.

Can the administrator of the page not see that their evangelisation of unification for the Syrian people while concurrently engaging in hatred towards brothers and sisters here in Australia is a contradictory flaw in their cause? Not to mention their lack of evidence.

It is demoralising to see that the horrific bloodbath drowning Syria, be used and abused by a minority of individuals who wish to wedge division among us. What is even more unsettling is that this minority has a following. ‘Keyboard heroes’ as I like to call them, who actively click, like and share this message of hate.

It’s as if our community doesn’t already have enough to deal with from the outside, here we have our own brothers and sisters actively engaging in these facebook pages that publicly promote hatred and prejudice towards one another.

There is no denying that there are high degrees of political and religious complexities in regards to the situation in Syria and with contradictory media reports, it becomes even harder to know 100 per cent what is going on within the region. However, one thing we know for sure is that there are mass killings of innocent children, women and men and this is what should be uniting us.

So here is a little fact about me that may interest the administrators of the page and anyone else who deems it fit to label and slander the whole of the Shia community or any other Islamic section under the false guise that we are all supporters of Assad’s regime.

I am a Shia Muslimah who has never in her life supported Assad’s regime or any other dictator who actively kills, tortures and suppresses his/her own people. I make dua every day that my fellow brothers and sisters in Syria, be them Shia or Sunni, are given their right self-determination, existence and prosperity.

At a time when we as an Ummah are supposed to be uniting for the sake of our brothers and sisters in Syria, we have individuals among us who are working tirelessly to ensure that we do not. But let us all remember that sectarianism serves the purpose of the enemies and not our Ummah.

Surah 3, Verse 103 states, “And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided. And remember the favour of Allah upon you – when you were enemies and He brought your hearts together and you became, by His favour, brothers. And you were on the edge of a pit of the Fire, and He saved you from it. Thus does Allah make clear to you His verses that you may be guided.”

Although the administrators and their supporters may think that their hypocrisy may go unnoticed, I hope that they are mindful that Allah (SWT) is all knowing.

Widyan Al Ubudy

~ by widyanalubudy on June 8, 2012.

2 Responses to “Division in the rope”

  1. Salaams,

    perhaps you should replicate this in the form of a talk, since the issue clearly deserves greater publicity.

    i do not want to exaggerate the sectarian divide within sydney’s muslim community, because ultimately its only a very small minority of political naive individuals who have had all their priorities and political coordinates turn haywire.

    but an evil cause is an evil cause and a word of truth in such a context is all the more appreciated.

    keep up the struggle.

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