03/25/2020, 17.03
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Islamists angry over mosque closures, use COVID-19 as a propaganda tool

by Kamel Abderrahmani

At first radical Muslims claimed that the epidemic was a sign of Allah's anger and punishment. Now they claim the virus is a test of faith. If “such characters, such obscurantists with dark ideas, intervene and interfere in such sensitive issues with impunity it is because the state does not do its duty, that of protecting people.”

Paris (AsiaNews) - Natural disasters, such as the ongoing coronavirus emergency, provide Islamists with an opportunity to "proliferate" and promote their "obscurantist ideas,” this according to Kamel Abderrahmani, a young Muslim intellectual. The pandemic has prompted many Muslim countries to take measures such as closing mosques and other places of worship. Even the holy city of Makkah is in lockdown. However, some people oppose these measures, extremists, imams and preachers who until recently, when their countries were not yet affected by the outbreak, saw the virus as “Allah’s punishment”. Now, they see the COVID-19 virus as a “test of faith”. This shows “why Islamism is a deadly ideology that profits from the misfortune of others, from their tears and tragedies.” Abderrahmani’s thoughts follow. (Translation edited by AsiaNews)

While the COVID-19 pandemic is raging with devastating consequences in several Western nations, other countries elsewhere have begun to prepare themselves before it is too late. Muslim countries in particular do not want to end like Iran, which is the most affected Muslim country with almost 1,300 deaths and a little more than 18,000 cases. So far, Tehran has failed to contain the epidemic. To curb any risk of spread, the authorities in all Muslim countries have closed public places, cafeterias, cinemas, stadiums, mosques, etc. in Saudi Arabia, the authorities have locked down Islam’s holiest place, Makkah, and suspended all forms of pilgrimage to the holy city for some twenty days.

Muslims extremists, radical imams and virulent predictors have been quick to talk about this epidemic. Until recently, before the virus reached their countries, they saw it as a punishment from God against disbelievers. Such is the case of the delusional remarks and fantasies by, for example, the director of the Islamic Centre in Geneva, Guru Hani Ramadan who accused China of persecuting Chinese Muslims and for whom the COVID-19 is just divine punishment. He goes further claiming that "the epidemic is due to the wrath of Allah,” and that “Allah sent the epidemic to punish the peoples who anger him by their accursed deeds like music, nudity, debauchery, fornication, turpitude, freedom… ” Mockingly, I’d say that he is talking about his brother Tariq Ramadan who is on trial for rape. Other preachers say that “the disbelievers think that they can defy the One with their scientific progress; lo and behold, he is making fun of them with a virus smaller than an atom. O Allah thank you for the blessing of Islam, the one and true religion.” See here.

However, as soon as the epidemic arrived in their countries, it became a test by Allah of their faith; a funny reasoning that comes only from bad faith; these gurus know how to manipulate the masses by promoting obscurantist religious arguments. For them, the COVIC-19 is not hard to explain. Their speeches in mosques, their preaching on TV, their followers on social media or in the streets are just mind-blowing. Pretentious and stupid, they reiterate what Hani Ramadan said above, namely that “The world has only to learn from the lessons of the ancient peoples mentioned in the Qurʼān, peoples who experienced the wrath of Allah like the peoples of Noah.”

In accordance with the provisions of the Qurʼān, Sharia rules and the objectives of Islamic law, the" preservation "of human life is a duty. Hence, closing places of worship is a way of protecting people from contagion, which is why the authorities in almost all Muslim countries temporarily closed mosques and suspended group prayers and Friday gatherings.

This however did not go unnoticed by Islamists and fanatical Muslims who consider it an offence against “Allah” and believe that "Islamic prayers protect from COVID-19", as a famous imam in Brest claims in a video on YouTube. Apparently, science is useless for them! All you need to do is call on Allah who answers! In Algeria, many believers did not hesitate from praying in groups in front of mosques, despite the call by state imams to pray at home to prevent the spread of the virus. Have my co-religionists become suicidal as well? Naively I ask myself the question.

Such a dangerous mindset, such holy and obscurantist ignorance, such morbid and obsolete ideas will finish them off! This should not be surprising since Islamism is a deadly ideology that profits from the misfortune of others, from their tears and tragedies. This movement has brainwashed Muslims and shown once again that it is always acting in an infantile and insidious way even when disaster and serious crises threaten Muslim countries and the rest of the world! For example, in Algeria, the statements about mosques closures by the head of the Islamic Salvation Front, the sinister Ali Belhadj and the Islamist Abdallah Djaballah, president of the Islamist party, the Front for Justice and Development, are just laughable: “Mosques should not be closed, they are houses of Allah, and he protects them.”

If that is the case, why was Makkah closed? So much the better, for the extremists will not be able for now to speak against the “disbelievers,” waiting for the “enemies of Allah" to discover a vaccine against COVID-19. Are these obscurantist imams, researchers, scientists, virologists, politicians, etc., all in one? Under what capacity do they talk? As representatives of political parties or as muftis? Do they know that places of worship can cause coronavirus contagion quickly and devastatingly? If not, what gives first? Human life or mosque prayer? Is there anything more sacred in this life than human life itself?

In any case, if such characters, such obscurantists with dark ideas, intervene and interfere in such sensitive issues with impunity it is because the state does not do its duty, that of protecting people. Muslims must not give in to fear and superstition. They must take serious action and learn from the lessons of the countries that are still suffering from this virus. Above all, we must not listen to Islamists who can only proliferate in situations of political crises and natural disasters, in which they exploit the misery of peoples for their political ends in an attempt to influence and control minds.

(Video: radical Muslims protest against the closure of mosques in Alexandria, Egypt)

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