Monday, October 1, 2007

Maldives were 'warned of Islamic danger'

from The Telegraph

Dr Hassan Saeed, who resigned his position as the country's attorney-general last month in protest at Government policies on the issue, said the Maldives government had received a detailed action plan to combat Islamist extremism but had "sat on its hands" ... "The change in the Maldives has really been quite scary over the last three or four years," said Jennifer Latheef, a local human rights activist. "The number of women wearing the veil has risen dramatically." Dr Saeed said the growing sway of fundamentalist clerics in the Maldives had coincided with moves to introduce democracy into the islands following demonstrations against President Gayoom in 2003. "A growing number of Maldivian students are going to study in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan where they are learning a radical Wahhabi interpretation of Islam."

'My son has joined al-Qa'ida'

by Richard Kerbaj from The Australian

Khadra Nimale's son Ahmed Ali went missing in December in east Africa while fighting against the Ethiopian-backed Somalian military. Ms Nimale said relatives in Somalia believed her 25-year-old son had changed his name and was working as an interpreter with al-Qa'ida. She accused Mohammed Omran - the head of the fundamentalist Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jammah association, who believes Osama bin Laden is a "good man" - of turning Mr Ali into a hardliner ... Ms Nimale said her son embraced Wahabism - a fundamentalist interpretation of Islam espoused by bin Laden - shortly after the September 11 attacks in the US in 2001. She said at that time members of Melbourne's Somalian community whom she'd never met were urging parents to send their children to Islamic literature classes.

Wahhabism tightening grip over Kosovo

by Tejinder Singh from New Europe

Another practice that is prevalent in Kosovo today is Wahhabis allegedly paying poor people to wear visible signs of Islam. According to local sources the alleged rate today varies from 100 Euro to 300 Euro per month depending on how much of face or body is covered in Islamic clothing. Money talks and it sure does as is evident with its contribution to the replacement of moderate Islam in Kosovo with the financing of “Islamic studies” trips for youngsters. After a stint of such religious learning abroad in Saudi Arabia or Egypt, lasting around six to 12 months, the youngsters upon returning back in Kosovo sport Islamic beards and robes instead of their jeans. Watching those alarming signs in Kosovo, socio-religious pundits and political observers warn that slow but steady moderate Islam with its Turkish roots is on its way out and with the talk of independence in Kosovo picking up, soon the days when girls sport western clothes will be history. The mix of Saudi Wahhabism with their oil money is proving dangerous to the world.

Minority Alliances in the Middle East

by Carlos Edde from Dar Al-Hayat

(NOTE: This is from a pro-Syrian/Iranian source)

Today in Lebanon, it is essential for Alawites, Shiites, Druze and Christians to collaborate, countering the imbalance of numbers, and controlling a politically viable territory along the Mediterranean cost ... General Aoun's followers, who believed in a united and indissoluble Lebanon, promote the following arguments to justify their new policy:

  • The Hariri clan wants to naturalize Palestinians, in order to eliminate Shiites first and Christians later, to transform Lebanon into a Sunni Wahhabi nation.
  • The same clan is behind Lebanon's economic crisis and public debt.
  • Hizbullah is Lebanon's strongest party. It has the financing and the arms, and constitutes the first line of defense for Christians. Without it, the danger of Saudi-backed Sunni cannot be thwarted.
  • Christians have no interest in opposing the Syrian regime that represents their best protection, of which President Bashar Al Assad is the guarantor.
  • Fatah Al-Islam, Jund Al Sham and other Sunni militias are behind all assassinations and terrorist acts. They are financed by Saudis and the Hariri family, while their arms come through the airport.

Financing Saudi Arabia's Growth Through Sukuk

by Farhan Mahmood from Arab News

So far this year, 58 sukuk issues have raised over $20 billion. In the GCC alone, the sukuk market has accounted for $16.50 billion or 33% of the total global sukuk issuance. Increasingly, the takeovers of foreign firms by Gulf-based corporations are being financed with sukuk. For instance, last year’s takeover of P&O by Dubai Ports was financed with the issuance of a $3.5 billion convertible sukuk. What is driving this massive issuance of sukuk? Plainly, it is a combination of the economic boom being witnessed in the GCC coupled with an increasing acceptance of sukuk as a mode of financing this growth ... The issuance of sukuk on domestic and international capital markets is now often part of the funding package of major investment projects. In 2006, SABIC issued its first sukuk; a few weeks back, the petrochemicals giant issued another sukuk to finance its $11.60 billion acquisition of GE’s plastics business.

Islamic Law and the United States Constitution

by Aaron Kopitz from The Compass

Dawud Walid who is the Executive Director of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MI) spoke in the Cisler Center at Lake Superior State University. He gave a presentation on the similarities and differences between Islamic Law also known as Sharia and that of the U.S. Constitution ... He first states that Muslims believe that one significant difference between the Constitution and that of Sharia is that the Constitution was written by men where as the Qu’ran was written divinely through revelations and inspirations from Allah. He continues to explain that unlike the Constitution to be a jury member in an Islamic case one must be fluent in Arabic to interpret and decipher texts and verses of the Qu’ran to help develop their meaning and application in a case. The presentation of Islamic Law was well received. Some evening classes attended the event to help further their understanding of Islamic culture and society.