Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

September 24, 2011

This is London: Jihad declared against extremism and terrorism

Filed under: Radicalization — by Philip J. Palin on September 24, 2011

Earlier today (Saturday) Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri founder of Minhaj-ul-Quran International (MQI), one of the largest Islamic movements, hosted a rally at Wembley Arena outside London.  According to the Press Association, Dr. Qadri “received a standing ovation from thousands of UK Muslims as he denounced terrorism and called for peace.”  The Pakistan-born scholar said,

In spite of statements and memorandum and condemnation of the terror, the voices of the 99% true, peace-loving Muslims have not been heard, they have been drowned out by the clamour and the noise of extremists. Islam has nothing to do with any act of terrorism. We reject every act of extremism and terrorism unconditionally.

Inviting Muslims and others around the world to join him in making a Declaration of Peace, Dr. Qadri also called for “jihad against extremism and terrorism”.

Late Saturday afternoon US Eastern Time news reports are still sparse, even in the British media.  Maybe more on Sunday morning.  Check back again for links.

–+–

SUNDAY UPDATE:

The BBC reports: The conference launched a campaign to get one million people to sign an online declaration of peace by 2012.

The Associated Press reports:  The event in Wembley arena was led by Mohammad Tahirul Qadri of Pakistan, who gained recognition outside the Muslim world after he published a detailed fatwa against terrorism and suicide bombings last year. “I want to address those who are lost, who have a total misconception of jihad. I want to send them a message — come back to normal life. Whatever you’re doing is totally against Islam,” he told the audience, which included families with young children and students.  (As reported in DAWN, which also ran the AP photograph at the top of the post.)

It is worth noting that neither The Telegraph nor The Guardian (nor any large US media) seem to have — yet — given attention to the rally.   After scanning the British newspapers online front pages I searched for “Qadri”, “MQI”, and even “Wembley” and nothing specific to Saturday’s event popped-up.   Similar sparse results came from a Google news search.  I found the BBC report only because I made a specific search. (The suicide bombing of a Christian church in Indonesia is, at the same time, getting “top of the fold” attention in many English-speaking media.)

Minhaj-ul-Quran International, founded by Dr. Qadri, operates in 90 nations.  The number of followers is difficult to accurately project, but MQI is especially strong in Pakistan where it operates more than 1000 educational institutions with over 120,000 students.  The Wembley event was broadcast to Pakistan and more than a dozen other nations.

The text of the so-called London Declaration for Global Peace and Resistance Against Terrorism is available on the MQI website.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • Reddit
  • Facebook
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print
  • LinkedIn

9 Comments »

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 24, 2011 @ 10:24 pm

Better late than never! And the Christians and Jews?

Comment by Philip J. Palin

September 25, 2011 @ 5:19 am

Bill, According to the BBC report on the event:

“There were prayers for peace from representatives from a number of different religions including the Bishop of Barking, the Rt Rev David Hawkins, Jewish rabbis and representatives from the Hindu, Buddhist and Sikh faiths.”

The London Declaration, while clearly aimed primarily at Muslims is framed as an inter-faith initiative.

Comment by John Comiskey

September 25, 2011 @ 7:34 am

Phil,

It is more than worth noting the sparse media coverage of peace initiatives of this magnitude.

It is an indictment on the media, politics, and us all.

Previously, I have highly criticized the Muslim community for not being more proactive in fermenting peace and universal tolerance.

Crisis intervention and management is best served by preparing for crisis before they evolve.

The greatest measure of power is the willingness to share power.

In the interim; I will pray.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 25, 2011 @ 8:02 am

Thanks Phil! Any of this in writing?

Comment by Philip J. Palin

September 25, 2011 @ 12:03 pm

Bill, I’m not sure what you asking. There are several written materials accessible through links in the post. The London Declaration is linked in the final paragraph, but here is the raw URL:http://www.minhaj.org/english/tid/14940/The-London-Declaration-for-Global-Peace–Resistance-against-Extremism-2011.htm

Comment by Philip J. Palin

September 25, 2011 @ 12:15 pm

John, From very early on after 9/11 several in the Islamic community were proactive. Whether it was sufficient or not is probably a case-by-case judgment. I will offer that from my perspective the intra-Islamic rejection of terrorism — and to a certain extent critique of “extremism” (an inherently relative term) — has been very much on the increase… especially over the last three to five years. But this trend has received little attention in the West and almost none in the mainstream media of the West. “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”

My best guess is when you combine a limited understanding of Islam by non-Muslims with the mostly non-religious background of the vast majority of Western journalists that you get a situation where even if the tree falls directly in front of them they can barely hear the sound.

Comment by John Comiskey

September 26, 2011 @ 4:06 am

Phil,

Agreed.

I will add that our K-12 education system gives little more than a modicum of attention to this issue. Typically, a 2 year survey class in Western Civilization will have a module/lesson on belief systems and an American History/Government class with a module on civics. Neither of those modules is a focal point of high-stakes testing. Both belief systems and civics afford an opportunity for critical thinking development, tolerance development, and hope for humanity.

Comment by The Media: Ignorant

September 26, 2011 @ 7:46 am

The ignorance of the media is so evident pertaining to the reality of these issues which affect so many. It is deplorable that sich a gathering of peaceful individuals compromised mostly of Muslims as well as others was afforded little if any appropriate coverage. This was a significant event and while surely we are aware and are quite vigilant of those seeking the demise of western values, whether Muslim, Christian, Hebrew or other, globally, folks are peace loving individuals seeking to care fr family and create a diverse, yet respected value towards similarities as well as differences….

Telephone calls should be flooding the operators at CNN, Fox and others and assuring that special reports be shown on the wonderful outpouring of peaceful people seeking nothing more than for everyone to respect one another and strive to bring resolution to the many issues at hand without the use of weapons and killing of innocents….

Thank you for discussing this gathering and I certainly will be forwarding this blog entry and comments to the executive staffers at the various networoks and I hope you, too will share with as many as possible.

chris.tingus@gmail.com

Pingback by No interest in alternate narratives about Islam | Travels with Shiloh

September 30, 2011 @ 6:17 am

[...] Homeland Security Watch has a post about a most interesting event in Wembley Stadium (estimated attendance 12,000). … Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri founder of Minhaj-ul-Quran International (MQI), one of the largest Islamic movements, hosted a rally at Wembley Arena outside London.  According to the Press Association, Dr. Qadri “received a standing ovation from thousands of UK Muslims as he denounced terrorism and called for peace.” [...]

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>