Who says Muslims don’t speak out?

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I was in Birmingham last Wednesday when Adrian Elms (aka Khalid Masood) drove onto Westminster Bridge in London and intentionally ploughed into pedestrians before forcing his way through the gates of the Palace of Westminster fatally stabbing a policeman before being shot dead.

Adrian Elms – a 52 year-old graduate who was once in gainful employment – appeared to have a life-long chip on his shoulder about being black. He got into violent petty crime that eventually led to a more serious assault and prison sentences.

His life deteriorated from being a married father of a young family in an idyllic part of Sussex, to divorce and a rootless existence including a spell as an ex-pat teacher of English in Saudi Arabia and then several British cities that are home to many people on the intelligence service’s 3,000 long extremist “watch-list”.

Later on Elms married a Muslima: embraced Islam; renamed himself Khalid Masood in a toxic journey that ended last Wednesday with him being shot dead by police. Was he socially deprived in some way? No he wasn’t. Was he acting alone? That’s to be determined. Was he acting for a terrorist group? That too is to be determined. Is it true that extremist political Islam aims to eradicate unbelievers (kaffirs) from the face of the earth? Yes it is.

But whether the answer to such questions is “yes” or “no” the deeper issue in my mind is “WHY?” Why does a human being behave with such inhumanity to fellow human beings? And is there something about religion that can provoke people to act in the name of God? It would seem so.

‘Political Islam (i.e. Islamism) is usually about banning alcohol or imposing head covering but mowing down school kids on a visit to the UK and a mum on her way to pick up her child from school isn’t Islam nor ‘Islamism’ or any other “ism”.‘ (Muddassar Ahmed MP)

Is this wishful thinking? Is such behaviour the dark underbelly of Islamism? I believe it is – but – that it is driven by the powers of darkness which find expression within such ideologies. Muhammed Afzal (Chair of the Birmingham Central Mosque) seems to agree when he spoke out at a rally for unity in Birmingham, where he said: ‘This is pure evil!’

The Bible teaches that such depraved barbarity comes, either from insanity or is demonically inspired; what it cannot be seen as is natural or human. Thankfully normal human beings are rarely capable of such behaviour; but we are seeing across Europe a string of seemingly ordinary people who (for whatever reasons) are finding their way into this cancerous ideology, which runs like a subterranean moral sewer within the tradition of Islam – as well as some other religions, to be fair.

The solution to this sort of “spiritual infestation” is not just the vigilant scrutiny of the security services but is also the intentional, consistent and informed intercession by the followers of Jesus Christ, against the demonic incursion creeping into some British cities.

An Egyptian mother took her four daughters to the unity vigil at the Bull Ring in Birmingham. She went on record to say:

‘This is my kids’ country, they were born here and since I arrived everyone has welcomed me. We need to fight for the victims and my girls need to know they have to fight for what’s now their country; they must stand with all the community.’   

At another vigil outside Westminster Abbey spiritual leaders stood together – Mohammed al-Hilli (a Shia leader); Khalifa Ezzat (a Sunni leader from the London Central Mosque); Justin Welby (Archbishop of Canterbury); Ephraim Mirvis (Chief Rabbi) and Vincent Nichols (Catholic Cardinal of Westminster). MP Muddassar Ahmed called for Muslims to help relaunch the Prevent Strategy saying:

‘I’m angry at the perpetrator. I’m angry at myself for being so helpless. And I’m angry that all my fellow Muslims can do is condemn the attack. And most of all I’m angry that I don’t know what we can do next. I’ve joined other Muslim MPs to start a campaign to raise money for the victims.’ 

So whatever we may say, we cannot say Muslims don’t speak out.

 

Source:  iweekend, 25-26 March 2017

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