Category Archives: crusades

Crusader ʿAkkā vs Zionist Ghazzah

المؤمنون كرجل واحد إن اشتكى رأسه تداعى له سائر الجسد بالحمى والسهر

ʾan-Nuʿmābin Bashīr (may Allāh be pleased with him) narrates that Allāh’s Messenger صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ said, “The believers are like a single body. When his head complains, the entire body mutually calls out to him with fever and lack of sleep.”  [Muslim]

There are many striking parallels between the Crusades, almost a millennium ago, and the current situation in Palestine. To mention but a few:

  • The geography
  • The suppression of ʾIslām
  • The role of scholars in reviving ʾIslām’s fortunes e.g. ʿAlī bin Ṭāhir as-Sulamī (may Allāh’s mercy be upon him)
  • Treason of the Rawāfiḍ
  • Treason of supposedly Sunnī rulers who aligned with the Crusaders against ʾIslām (Damascus princes then, Egypt and the Saʿūd royals today)

A comparison I wish to highlight today, is the contemporary Zionist siege of Ghazzah, vs. the Crusader siege of ʿAkkā (Acre).

ʿAkkā

Ever since its conquest by the Noble Companion of Allāh’s Messenger صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ  , Suraḥbīl bin Ḥasanah (may Allāh be pleased with him), ʿAkkā had played a distinguished role in the history of ʾIslām, not least because of its position as a strategic port in the north of Palestine.

Following his decisive victory at Ḥiṭṭīn (4th July 1187), the Crusaders surrendered ʿAkkā to Ṣalāḥuddīn. However, on 28th August 1189, King Guy surprise attacked ʿAkkā and laid siege to it. On the sea, the siege was supported by Sicily (Italians), Danes and Frisians (Dutch). On land, troops from France, Flanders (Belgium), Germany, Italy and Armenia added to the Crusader host.

Attempted Relief

Ṣalāḥuddīn arrived with the Muslim army on 4th October and unsuccessfully attempted to break the siege. The Muslims were repulsed by the combined armies of Europe and the Ṣulṭān had to settle for pressuring the Crusaders by laying siege to them in turn. His fleet did however manage to break through and supply the besieged Muslims with food on the 30th October.

Crusaders are further reinforced

Ṣalāḥuddīn desperately tried to save the Muslims for 8 months, but was unsuccessful. Worse was to come from July 1190, when the armies of England, France, Germany and Austria even further strengthened the Crusaders. The following year even more troops arrived with the kings of France (Philip) and England (Richard). On the 12th July 1191 ʿAkkā surrendered and the flags of England, France and Austria flew over the city.

Massacre

On the 11th August 1191 Ṣālāḥuddīn sent the first of three payments to ransom the Muslim prisoners held by the Crusaders. This was not fast enough for Richard. 9 days later he ordered 3000 Muslims to be sent to a hill called Ayyadieh. This was deliberately in full view of the Muslim camp, and in particular, Ṣalāḥuddīn’s headquarters. The Crusaders then proceeded to cold-bloodedly massacre the defenceless Muslims. Of course, Muslims are always terrorists, the ruthless barbarians who kill us are always the good guys.

The horrified Muslim warriors could see this bloodbath with their own eyes, this was no CNN broadcast. What emotion swept them, I cannot pretend to describe. They had fought close to two years to rescue their brethren. They had spent that time away from family and seen comrades fall to the enemy. The enemy had given its word and now causally killed 3,000 Muslim men, women and children. The broken Muslims attempted a final rescue but never made it up the hill. Allāh knows best how many joined the 3,000 martyrs in Paradise.

Tears vs Tweets

History records that ever since his repentance from his youthful lifestyle, Ṣalāhuddīn prayed every compulsory prayer 5 times daily with congregation, never alone. In addition, he never missed a single Tahajjud (optional night prayer). This was his constant lifestyle on the battlefield and on the rare occasion when he went home. History also records that his tender nature could not bear to see his Christian enemy suffer, let alone his fellow Muslims. Beyond the sweet pious Ṣultān, I would not venture to know how many Muslims spent the night after the massacre shedding tears. However many they may have been, they were certainly less than the tweets and retweets we emotionlessly broadcast in a few minutes. Yet, however few they may have been, I would dare venture that each tear was well received in the Divine Court, along with each drop of blood shed at Ayyadieh.

So how do contemporary Muslims react?

Ghazzah, the southern Palestinian port, receives a different reaction from contemporary Muslims as opposed to the reaction of our forebears to ʿAkkā, the northern Palestinian port. For one, no Muslim army has as yet been despatched to rescue Ghazzah, despite her siege being way longer than that of ʿAkkā. Of course, the sophisticated Muslim will be able to educate me on the realities of modern politics and enlighten me why that would be a naïve endeavour. Yes, I am not sophisticated, but what is quite simple for me to understand is that ʿAkkā was besieged by those who openly disbelieved in Allāh and His Allāh’s Messenger صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ  , while Ghazzah is besieged by those who claim to be Muslim!

It is utterly hypocritical of the Muslim ʾUmmah at large, and activists in particular, to condemn and campaign against the Jewish blockade to the north, and quietly ignore their allies, the Egyptians, who besiege Ghazzah from the south.

Very easy to condemn the Zionist enemy, but no Muslim state, organisation or institute mention Sisi’s blockade, which is financed by the other Satanic regime of the region, the House of Saʿūd. How disgusted would the scholars who accompanied Ṣalāḥuddīn on his campaigns be, if they had known that the scholars of today either actively whip up support for these two murderous regimes, or maintain a “pious” silence for fear of losing financial backing or not being allowed an annual visa to Arabia. Their finances and annual pilgrimages take priority over speaking the truth and liberating the holy cities from regimes hostile to Islām. Perhaps I am wrong and there is great virtue and priority in multiple pilgrimages, when so many Muslims are starving, being killed and are besieged. Our contemporary scholars will be able to boast of their elevated position on the Day of Resurrection, and look down on Ṣalāhuddīn. Ṣalāḥuddīn, never knew a time to rest to even perform the compulsory pilgrimage, let alone annual voluntary pilgrimages. These scholars should also strongly rebuke the scholars who fought alongside Ṣalāḥuddīn, such as Qāḍī Bahāʾuddīn, or those who advised him, such as the Muḥaddith, ʾIbn ʿAsākir, for allowing him to fight for the sake of Islām and Muslim lives, instead of going on annual pilgrimages. Silly fellows!

Instead of rescuing Ghazzah, Egypt and her Saʿūdī paymasters actively besiege Ghazzah, to the extent of destroying Palestinian crops. To the eternal shame of Islām! There may have been other stinking traitors in the history of Islām, but I know not of anything as shameless as the Egypt-Saʿūd surrender. So enthusiastic as they are they to besiege Ghazzah, that Egypt joyfully evicts thousands of her own citizens along the Ghazzah border and allocates 79 square km of the lands of Islām to further tighten the noose around the Muslims of Ghazzah! For shame! And shame on the Muslims who remain quiet on this! Ghazzah vs ʿAkkā? There is no comparison.

You smugly declare that you do not buy dates from occupied Palestine, but do not care that your own Muslim governments stop food from Ghazzah.

You righteously tweet that unlike some Muslims, you do not buy a Jewish owned iced coffee powder, but do not care that your own Muslim governments stop medicine from Ghazzah.

Food? Medicine? A welfare worker told me that so many people are maimed in Ghazzah, they begged him to try and bring them adult diapers as they no longer have control over their bodies. Of course, your time-shares in Makkah and your shopping sprees there for the latest “Islamic” fashion and perfumes should always have priority.

Your forebears  at ʿAkkā should not spit on you. You are not worthy of their of their spit.

سليمان الكندي
Twitter: @sulayman_Kindi

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Othello & the Mental Dichotomy of Muslim intelligentsia

The following is in no way a judgement on the personal piety of any Muslim, but is simply a call to attention to the dichotomy Muslims follow, whether pious or not.
Leaving the Masjid after the 29th Taraweeh, I passed the Imam’s son. He was telling a friend that they would be writing a test on Othello. “The Shakespeare story about the Muslim?” I asked.
I was met with blank stares as if I had asked, “Did they teach you that the moon is really made of cheese?”
Me: Did your teacher never tell you that Othello was a Muslim?
Student: No.
Me: Did you come across the word, “Moor” in the book?
Student: Yes.
Me: So did your teacher never explain how the Europeans used this word for Muslims?
Student: No.
Me: And you never asked what it means either?
Student: No.
Me: That’s amazing. The one book of Shakespeare mentioning a Muslim and that is not explained at the so-called Muslim school!
Student: But my teacher is quite geared up. She did English for 25 years at university.
Me: I don’t care if it’s a million years. They only tell you what they are programmed to do.
Student’s friend: They can only think in the box.
At last! A boy with intelligence! I hugged him and left.
The reader might fairly ask, “What’s the big deal?” The incident and Othello are not big deals, but the problem they reflect is a big deal. Here we have a situation where a “Muslim” school has an opportunity to discuss Muslims and Islam whilst still meeting the state’s syllabus requirements but the word “Muslim” is never even mentioned. What degrees are acquired in 25 years I do not know, but would one with much lesser qualifications not feel the need to explain a word which let alone appears in the book, but is actually part of the title, “Othello, the Moor of Venice.”?
The big deal is the dichotomy of Muslim intelligentsia, the separation of their religion and career into two distinct compartments. Muslims most certainly have to acquire mastery in every permissible field. The problem is that often this mastery is never used in service of Dien, but only for one’s personal career. Were Muslims to win the Nobel Prize in every field, in no way would the glory of Islam be elevated, simply because the winners would not see it as such.
There is no need for the Dichotomy the West has invented and which our Muslim youth slavishly ape. There is no reason why a university graduate cannot implement his knowledge with the outlook of a slave of Allah. Have you ever heard of a Muslim doctor, filled with awe, telling his fellow guests at a wedding how he sees the signs of his Creator in the human body? Have you ever heard of an architect advising a Muslim client on matters of Qiblah; separate entrances for females for when they’d host gatherings; or an Ibaadah room or area? Have you ever heard of a Muslim businessman channelling his investments (not charity) in such a way that the Ummah can benefit at the same time e.g. setting up a Halaal gelatine facility?
If you have, I would love to hear from you. Perhaps it just so happens that I have only heard of Muslim intelligentsia who are victims of this dichotomy, whilst the overwhelming majority whom I do not know are actually epitomes of the mantra of the past few decades, “Islam is a complete way of life,” or have coloured themselves with Islamic vision as Allah says in al-Baqarah: 138, “The colouring of Allah! Who is better in colouring than Allah! And we are His worshippers!”
One of the best examples I know of a professional coloured in Allah-vision is the chemist of Damascus. (Here chemist means an expert in chemistry, not the South African word for pharmacist). The Crusaders advanced with wooden siege towers against Akka. The Muslim defenders shot Greek Fire at the towers, but the Crusaders had devised a coating making the wood resistant to the Greek Fire. A chemist from Damascus who had settled in Akka informed Salaahudien rahimahullah that he had discovered a component which when added to the Greek Fire, would penetrate the Crusader coating. His invention proved effective. Salaahudien rahimahullah summoned him to reward him. He replied, “The only reward I desire is the pleasure of Allah.”
All I witness though, is a dichotomy so strong, that even when a reference is made to Islam in the title of a book, the teacher at a “Muslim” school is pre-programmed to be blind to it.

سليمان الكندي