Tuesday, May 03, 2011

The Assassination of OBL

The other night I fell asleep with the TV on and woke up a few hours later.  My bleary eyes caught CNN's "Breaking News" banner and I was stunned to see "Osama bin Laden Dead."

It was like one or two in the morning, can't remember, but then I was even more stunned to see students from George Washington University running to the gates of the White House, screaming, yelling, celebrating, chanting "USA!" ...

Then an impromptu crowd grew in New York City ...

I'm telling you - nothing short of a fire or some other emergency could get me into the streets at that hour at my age, lol.

Anyhow, in the few days since the assassination of OBL, there has been much celebration in America and some other places.  And once again, everyone dredges up a very detailed list of OBL's character defects.

Inititally, I thought I was alone in feeling a bit sad about OBL's death.  Don't get me wrong, I'm certainly no fan of OBL and don't agree with his interpretation of Islaam. 

But I'm not going to make takfir on him, or be glad that he is dead.

It was the same with me when Saadam Hussein was executed.  I felt shame at the way the executioners taunted and humiliated him before they hung him.  I even felt shame at watching the video.

Some call it justice.

I call it vengeance and revenge. 

Most major religions make general caution against these emotional states. 

"Vengeance is Mine," Christians are told in the book of Romans.

"Do not speak ill of the dead, for they have seen the result of their past deeds," Muslims are reminded in Fiqh-us-Sunnah, Volume 4, Number 76.

Jewish law also warns about lashon hara (evil speech) against the dead. 

I emphasize "general" caution because, like everything else, one can never generalize when it comes to religion. 

But I think Martin Luther King, Jr., put it into words best:

"I will mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that."

Do we really think the world will be cured of its hate and darkness now that OBL is gone?

I don't think so.


Emiratesque said...

Exactly my sentiment.

Personally I don't know why the international community, and especially the US, are celebrating his death. Men die, but ideologies unfortunately don't. On the contrary, they flourish and evolve to get uglier.
OBL is dead. But there are thousands of OBLs around the world. The war on terror is not over yet.

But I am glad to see families of 9/11 victims finding closure finally.

AlabasterMuslim said...

I was surprised when I saw that people were acting as if it was a holiday. I don't really believe OBL was killed by those marines (he's either been dead or is still alive and allahu alim).
And I also would not pronounce takfir on him. I'd leave that up to the scholars who know better and who, from my knowledge, have left it up to the one who really knows, Allah Subhana Wa Ta'ala.

Unknown said...

That MLK quote was probably not MLK. According to the Atlantic, the quote is a combination of MLK and a teacher in Japan.

Tauqeer said...

I really liked that quote.

Rain_Drops said...

Maybe they have a right to celebrate that, personally I think the world will be better without OBL, but just like u I consider him a misled Muslim and I can't feel much joy for him being killed :)

Safiyyah said...

@ el Shahlab, Rain Drops, and AlabasterMuslim - The US celebrating reminds me of images after 9/11 of Muslims dancing in the streets and handing out candy. I wonder if the world sees the American celebration of OBL's assassination the same way ...

@ Faheem AM and Tauqeer - lol, I found out that the first sentence of the quote is actually from a FB user, ha ha. When I get a moment, I change it Insha Allaah. Sounds like something MLKjr would say though, eh?

Anonymous said...

I dont think that OBL is dead or killed by the military, it is just another lie.
xl pharmacy