Bin Laden’s Glorification An Insult to Islam

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Osama Bin Laden is the face of the global terrorism which spread in the name of Islam and the killer of thousands of innocent people. He was ultimately killed by the American forces earlier this month in Abbottabad, near Pakistani capital Islamabad.

Post death, his name, “mission” and ideology has become political and religious hot potato. Many hypocrites in the Muslim societies, bereft of any mass base, and experts in politics of communalism and hatred, are now trying to mislead the people in the name of Osama Bin Laden just to serve their regional, national and transnational political interests.

Such forces whether in Pakistan, Jammu-Kashmir (India) or any other part of the world, have started glorifying Osama after his death by treating him as a ‘martyr.’ Even though Al-Qaeda is the most organized, dangerous and globalised terrorist organization. It didn’t have any ‘model terrorist’ to show as martyr, the position which Osama has occupied. This will not only help to keep Al-Qaeda alive and active, rather Al-Qaeda is likely become more belligerent and bigger in the aftermath of Laden’s death. Gauging this, the American forces buried Osama’s body in the sea. No doubt, this decision was farsighted. Otherwise, his burial spot would have been converted into a ‘monument’ for the terrorists. And this would have been another big blot on the Islam.

In PAKISTAN Glorification of Laden after his killing

People may differ on many aspects vis-a-vis Laden. And they should. They may have many doubts and queries which seem entirely justified. Like, who created Osama? The world accuses America of creating and nurturing Osama. The debate should certainly continue and the US should be asked why it keeps on providing patronage to such terrorists? But there is no denying the fact that before and after 9/11, Osama has targeted thousands of innocent people in terrorist attacks.

Osama and his followers don’t seem to have the basic knowledge of the Holy Quran which says, “Killing of an innocent person tantamount to the killing of entire humanity.” How come the Islam which even provides for loving plants, animals and nature, can allow such a corrupt, cruel and characterless person like Laden to kill innocents in the name of “Jihad” and “Islam”?

It is shocking that after the end of this dreaded terrorist, a considerable number of people in some countries came out to ‘mourn’ his death. At many places, funeral prayers in absentia were performed for him. This was done in Pakistan as well as in Indian territory of Kashmir. Laden’s asylum and protection in Pakistan, and post-killing support for him is not a matter of surprise since the world is well aware of what is going on in Pakistan. But when a terrorist like Osama is glorified in the Indian part of Kashmir, it is indeed a matter of concern for the people of India, particularly Indian Muslims. Notwithstanding being home to the world’s second largest Muslim population, not even a single Indian Muslim has ever been found complicit with Al Qaeda.

Why then Kashmir’s Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani, the person leading the secessionist movement in Kashmir and condoning terrorism in the guise of it, found it right to praise Osama after his killing? Geelani called on the common Kashmiris to perform funeral prayers for Laden. Though most of the people didn’t respond to Geelani’s call, a handful of strayed people did gather at some places.

Geelani’s logic for support to Laden was that he was a “martyr” who was killed fighting for the rights of the Muslims across the world. Not only this, addressing the people, he also prayed for the well being of Pakistan. In this context, Hurriyat leader should also express his view on the horrible 26/11 terrorist attack on Mumbai in which 9 dreaded terrorists were shot dead by the Indian security forces.

The nationalist Muslims of Mumbai denied these terrorists for any burial ground or graveyard at that time. Why Geelani didn’t called them “martyrs” then? He should have performed funeral prayers for them also. Also, he should have offered a piece of land for their burial. Similarly, how come during the attacks on Parliament, Raghunath Temple, Sankatmochan temple etc., people like Geelani forgot their “religious duty”?

Once again, it is necessary to understand that not the people of any other religion, rather Muslim clerics and “Mujahids” themselves are responsible for bringing a bad name and notoriety to the Islam. So far as the real Islamic teaching is concerned, Islam neither provides for killing of innocents, nor does it permit the glorification and praise for a terrorist like Bin Laden. This dangerous trend of eulogizing terrorists should stop; else it would bring more insult to the peaceful religion of Islam. By

Tanveer Jafri is an award-winning journalist and peace activist, based in India, covering communal harmony and social activities.