Last week the world witnessed horrific violence across various parts of the globe, including attacks in Beirut and Paris that left hundreds dead and the rest of us shocked, saddened and bewildered. As suspected, the extremist group Daesh (ISIS) has claimed responsibility. Although the group’s position reveals a twisted and radical ideology rather than the Islamic principles they claim to represent, many from the west accuse the rest of the Muslim world to be complicit in the organization’s actions. Among these allegations include the leading question: ‘Where the hell are the moderate Muslim voices condemning terrorism?’
In the seemingly impossible task of answering this popular-yet-strangely-intended-to-be-rhetorical question, we at Islamica News attempted to search for any Muslim voices available to condemn terrorism. After a lengthy and diligent process of scouring the internet, social media and interviewing Muslims from around the world, we did not find any. Zilch. Zero.
We searched below stacks and stacks of statements of condemnation from Imams around the world only to discover there weren’t any statements of condemnation from Imams buried under them.
Prayers for the folks in France and the victims of this horrible attack.
— Suhaib Webb (@ImamSuhaibWebb) November 13, 2015
We sifted through the web, and came across sites such as beliefnet.com, but it was like finding Waldo in a sea of nothing but annoying Waldos.
We tried to capture statements denouncing ISIS from the millions of refugees across Europe escaping Iraq and Syria, but they seemed to be too busy fleeing some sort of evil.
We tried to interview the 100,000 Muslim victims who died in terrorism attacks over the last decade, but embarrassingly we discovered that corpses don’t talk (silly us).
We tried interpreting the following passages from The Quran:
“Do not let your hatred of a people incite you to aggression.” The Quran 6:151
“If anyone slew an innocent person it would be as if he slew the whole mankind and if anyone saved a life it would be as if he saved the life of the whole mankind” The Quran 5:32
However, since these excerpts weren’t in the form of a simple meme, we were unable to decrypt them.
We spoke with various non-profit groups across North America, including the Inner City Muslim Action Network (IMAN), a Chicago-based community organization that fosters health, wellness and healing in the inner-city by organizing for social change and combatting inner-city violence – Which is super, but it’s certainly not condemning terrorism.
And finally we spanned the globe of every day Muslims – the ones pursuing their professional careers, raising their families, contributing to their communities, striving to put food on their respective tables, loving, playing, struggling, walking, talking, breathing… living. Nope. Not a single shred of condemnation (at least none that we were aware of, but admittedly it was at this point that we gave up).
After a long and arduous process in search of some sort of damnation from Musim communities far and wide, we disappointingly came up empty-handed. So allow us to position ourselves as the exception and go out on a limb:
We strongly condemn violence, terrorism, exploitation of the innocent and the historic injustices that have taken place in the world since the beginning of time. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those victimized by the brutal atrocities the world has been forced to witness in recent days.
We reserve the right to earn your forgiveness if we clumsily overlook the above statement in any future research.