Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Lapooran Doktor Tentang Saiful Bocor - DOCTOR'S SCRIBE LEAKED

The doctor’s report says it very clearly. Saiful was never sodomised, either by Anwar or anyone else. Why is the government still pursuing the case against Anwar? And why are they looking for the doctor who has now gone underground with his whole family?


Raja Petra Kamarudin

On 21 July 2008, I published an article in this same column called HOW, YET AGAIN, THEY ARE TRYING TO FABRICATE EVIDENCE AGAINST ANWAR. (Read the article here ).

In that article I mentioned as follows:

You see, they asked a certain doctor from a certain hospital to conduct an examination on Saiful. The doctor did so and he came out with a report that said there is no evidence Anwar had ever penetrated or sodomised the young man. The police then picked up the doctor and detained him for three days. As much as they tried to force him to change his report to implicate Anwar he refused to do so.

Until today, the doctor stands by his report that there is no evidence Anwar had sodomised Saiful. He knows he is going to be made to pay for this but he doesn’t care. He is not going to change his report and say that Anwar sodomised Saiful whatever they do to him. Exasperated, the police had to release Anwar on personal bond or police bail. The doctor refuses to doctor his report and neither does Anwar want to volunteer his new specimen.

Well, that doctor’s name is Dr Mohamed Osman Abdul Hamid from the Hospital Pusrawi and he has now taken his entire family and has gone into hiding because the police are looking for him and they want him to change his medical report.

At 2.00pm on 28 June 2008, Mohd Saiful Bukhari Bin Azlan went to see Dr Mohamed Osman to complain about a pain he is suffering in his anus. Saiful told the doctor that he had been assaulted by ‘a very important person’ -- meaning, of course, sodomised by Anwar Ibrahim.

Dr Mohamed Osman examined Saiful but found no evidence that he had been sodomised, either by Anwar Ibrahim or anyone else for that matter. The doctor’s report (which can be viewed below) says that there is zero (0) skin tearing, zero (0) active bleeding, zero (0) traces of pus, etc., which basically means he can’t be suffering from a pain in the anus as what he alleges.

The doctor’s diagnosis is that he rules out or TRO (to rule out) assault (sodomised). In short: Mohd Saiful Bukhari Bin Azlan is not suffering any pain in the anus and neither was he assaulted or sodomised in the anus.

Saiful then said he would like to make a police report so Dr Mohamed Osman suggested he go for a second medical examination at a government hospital. Saiful did so and the doctor at the government hospital also came out with the same diagnosis. Nevertheless, Saiful still made his police report at the pondok police in the hospital.

In spite of the doctors all confirming that Saiful was never sodomised, the police still pursued the case. Anwar Ibrahim was subsequently arrested by about 20 SWAT members in Balaclavas and armed to the teeth in a dramatic movie-style action-packed drama in front of his house after he had confirmed he would be reporting to the police station at 2.00pm as required.

The police detained Anwar in the lockup until the next morning and even brought him to the hospital for examination and to try to obtain his specimen for what the police say are for purposes of doing a DNA profile. The fact that the police already have Anwar’s DNA profile from 1998, plus the doctors from both hospitals confirm that Saiful was never sodomised, did not seem to matter.

Clearly the government is attempting to fabricate evidence against Anwar and is trying to indict him on trumped-up charges of sodomy. And who but the slime-ball AG and scumbag IGP, the same two players in the 1998 episode, can be behind this latest travesty of justice.

The doctor’s report says it very clearly. Saiful was never sodomised, either by Anwar or anyone else. Why is the government still pursuing the case against Anwar? And why are they looking for the doctor who has now gone underground with his whole family?

Civil society movements, NGOs and the Malaysian Bar Council must not remain silent. The police have already detained the doctor for three days but he still refuses to doctor his medical report. Anwar did not sodomise Saiful and the doctor’s report says it very clearly. And the police also have a copy of this same report that I have published below so they know what I know. And now Malaysians also already know what I and the police know -- that Saiful was never sodomised by anyone.


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Barrack Obama at Tiergarten Park, Berlin

Obama Speaks to Germany on European Ties

Senator Barack Obama spoke at the Tiergarten in Berlin on Thursday.

"Senator Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, waved to the crowd gathered at the Victory Column at Tiergarten Park in Berlin on Thursday. An estimated 200,000 Germans gathered to watch Mr. Obama's speech."


Published: July 25, 2008

BERLIN — Senator Barack Obama stood before a sea of people here Thursday evening and issued a call for cooperation, imploring America and Europe to bridge differences and rekindle old alliances in an effort to restore global stability and better confront existing and unforeseen threats.

“If we’re honest with each other, we know that sometimes, on both sides of the Atlantic, we have drifted apart and forgotten our shared destiny,” Mr. Obama said. “In Europe, the view that America is part of what has gone wrong in our world, rather than a force to help make it right, has become all too common. In America, there are voices that deride and deny the importance of Europe’s role in our security and our future.”

Pausing for a moment, the Illinois Democrat added: “Both views miss the truth.”

Mr. Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, who is on a weeklong international tour, delivered his address at the base of the Victory Column in the Tiergarten, a sprawling park in the center of the city.

He looked out toward the Brandenburg Gate, where President Ronald Reagan implored the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to “tear down that wall” and end the Cold War, and spoke to crowd that the German News Agency DPA estimated at 200,000 people.

“I come to Berlin as so many of my countrymen have come before,” Mr. Obama said, confronting the delicate issue of campaigning abroad. “Tonight, I speak to you not as a candidate for president, but as a citizen — a proud citizen of the United States, and a fellow citizen of the world.”

Mr. Obama, as he visits the Middle East and Western Europe, is eager to prove himself on a worldwide stage as a potential leader of the United States, whose image has become tarnished in Europe, largely because of its decision to go to war with Iraq.

He seemed intent on trying to achieve two goals — healing the wounds left by the Bush administration, which dismissed the “old Europe,” and present an image to voters at home as a president whom the world could embrace.

“No one nation, no matter how large or powerful, can defeat such challenges alone,” Mr. Obama said. “None of us can deny these threats, or escape responsibility in meeting them.”

Linking the battle against terrorism to the struggle of the cold war that defined this city for decades, Mr. Obama spoke directly on the need for more soldiers to fight in Afghanistan, a politically unpopular stance in Germany.

“The Afghan people need our troops and your troops, our support and your support to defeat the Taliban and al Qaeda,” Mr. Obama said.
Mr. Obama was warmly embraced by the German press, which frequently referred to his aura, or as the newspaper Bild put it in Thursday’s paper, the “political pop star.”

Manfred Krause, 65, a retired citizen of the former East Germany, said Mr. Obama’s address brought back memories of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s quieter visit to East Berlin in 1964, when he was a student. “I thought, here is someone coming from the same place,” he said.

Yet while Mr. Obama was addressing the sprawling crowd, the most important audience was watching in the United States. The television images, which showed Germans and others waving American flags, created a curious tableau that Republicans in the United States sought to seize on.

In his 30-minute address, Mr. Obama did not overtly criticize President Bush or his presumptive Republican opponent, Senator John McCain, but he did offer a gentle dose of criticism of his own nation.

“I know my country has not perfected itself,” he said. “We’ve made our share of mistakes, and there are times when our actions around the world have not lived up to our best intentions. But I also know how much I love America.”

On the other side of the Atlantic, where Mr. McCain campaigned in the nation’s midsection on Thursday, he criticized Mr. Obama for traveling to Germany to deliver the address.

“I’d love to give a speech in Germany — a political speech or a speech that maybe the German people would be interested in,” he told a crowd in Ohio, “but I’d much prefer to do it as president of the United States rather than as a candidate.”

The response to Mr. Obama has been so warm that the coordinator for German-American relations in the foreign ministry here, Karsten D. Voigt, has tried to scale back expectations. He reminded Germans in interview after interview that Mr. Obama would have to support positions unpopular with the German public, like a stronger presence engaged in more fighting for the Bundeswehr, the German army, in Afghanistan.

First and foremost, Mr. Obama is popular because he is not Mr. Bush, who is wildly unpopular in Germany. Asked why they support Mr. Obama, his opposition to the Iraq War usually comes up first.

The excitement in Germany over Mr. Obama has grown steadily through the Democratic primaries, reaching its peak with his address here Thursday in the Tiergarten, Berlin’s equivalent of Central Park. Mr. Obama’s photograph was splashed across the front pages of German newspapers. Leaflets advertising the speech with quotes from President John F. Kennedy — who came to this divided city at the height of the Cold War and urged those who did not believe in freedom: “Let them come to Berlin” — fluttered in the street.


Page 2 of 2)

“Yes, there have been differences between America and Europe,” Mr. Obama said. “No doubt, there will be differences in the future. But the burdens of global citizenship continue to bind us together. A change of leadership in Washington will not lift this burden. In this new century, Americans and Europeans alike will be required to do more — not less. Partnership and cooperation among nations is not a choice; it is the one way, the only way, to protect our common security and advance our common humanity.”

Before the speech, Mr. Obama met for about an hour with Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Federal Chancellery, followed by an afternoon session with Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

A German diplomat, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the two sides had agreed to keep the meeting private, said the discussions with Mrs. Merkel went very successfully, saying: “They quickly found themselves on the same page. It was not superficial at all.”

The official said they spoke in English, and sat on a small sofa, rather than at the table, the more usual but also more formal setting for her discussions. The official said that after the discussion they went out onto Mrs. Merkel’s small balcony, and she explained the sights of the government district around the chancellery building, most of which was built since the Berlin Wall fell in 1989.

In his speech, Mr. Obama addressed the threat of nuclear weapons, Iran and the conflict in the Middle East, offering no new policies, but laying out the challenges facing the United States and other leading nations.

“This is the moment we must help answer the call for a new dawn in the Middle East,” Mr. Obama said. “My country must stand with yours and with Europe in sending a direct message to Iran that it must abandon its nuclear ambitions.”

He added: “Will we stand for the human rights of the dissident in Burma, the blogger in Iran, or the voter in Zimbabwe? Will we give meaning to the words “never again” in Darfur?”

The crowd was filled with many American citizens, including those who stood in lines to register to vote. But the overwhelming share was made up of German residents, who cheered when Mr. Obama called upon the United States to correct its deeds.
Mr. Obama, who is nearing the final days of his international trip, has navigated a political high-wire for days as he traveled through Iraq, Afghanistan, Jordan and Jerusalem. From here he will travel to France and Britain before returning to the United States this weekend.


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Inflation comes at a bad time

July 23 20084:39am


Daniel Altman in Growing pains

Not easily pleased. (Bullit Marquez/AP)Okay, there’s never a good time for high inflation. But the big jumps in commodity prices, which are now turning into generalized inflation, have come at a particularly awkward moment for much of Asia, as Keith Bradsher writes. Now the region faces a difficult problem: how to choose an appropriate economic policy without too much political fallout.

Countries big and small, from China to Cambodia, were already growing extremely quickly when the latest wave of inflation struck. In some places, the fast growth was a deterrent to political instability; people don’t tend to complain when they’re getting rich. Yet over a year ago, economists (myself included) began to warn about overheating - when an economy grows so quickly that demand outstrips supply, prices spiral skywards, central banks are forced to clamp down, and the economy is cast into recession.

The added pressure of global inflation means central banks may have to act sooner rather than later. But in the meantime, governments must face a clamor of discontent from their citizens, who want help confronting high prices. Some governments have actually cut expensive subsidies on gasoline, but their remaining subsidies on energy and food just add fuel to the fire of inflation. If they ban exports to enhance domestic supply, their own producers may cut their output. There are no good options, only second-bests. And it’s not just happening in Asia - countries in South America and Africa are facing the same dilemma. How can people who want more make do with less?



Salam warga blog sekelian.,

Selepas PRU 12, keadaan politik negara menjadi tidak menentu dan nampak ada sedikit kegoyahan kepimpinan dan krisis kepercayaan rakyat terhadap Kerajaan BN khususnya keruntuhan kepercayaan kepada parti UMNO untuk meneruskan kepimpinan negara Malaysia. Bukti jelas apabila mantan Perdana Menteri Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamed berkali-kali menggesa Datuk Seri Utama Abdullah Haji Ahmad Badawi (AAB) untuk berundur, sehingga Tun akhirnya berundur dari UMNO sebagai tindakan protes terhadap Presiden UMNO. Pergerakan lain di dalam komponen tidak kurang juga menggambarkan ketidak percayaan komponen kepada UMNO, antaranya SAPP melalui presidennya menganjurkan undi tidak percaya kepada AAB tetapi tidak diterima usul itu oleh YB Yang Dipertua Dewan Parlimen. Jawatan timbalan dan presiden MCA tidak dipertahankan lagi oleh pemimpin yang lalu bagi menunjukkan tauladan bahawa negara memerlukan pimpinan "darah muda". Maka tindakan ketua pemuda MCA juga tidak bertanding jawatan tersebut bagi memberi laluan kepada kepimpinan baru. Hal ini secara paraktikal mengahantar ISYARAT KEPADA UMNO agar melakukan perubahan di dalam parti dan juga cara gaya pentadbiran di dalam BARISAN NASIONAL. Sama jugalah halnya apa bila ketua pemuda MIC bertindak keluar parti kerana membantah presiden MIC Datuk Samy Vellu agar berhenti dan meletakkan jawatan kesan daripada tindakan beliau MIC tidak popular di kalangan MIC di Malaysia. Akhir sekali barulah ahli-ahli Parlimen Pakatan Rakyat menganjur usul tidak percaya kepada AAB dan ditolak oleh YB Yang Dipertua Dewan Parlimen.BUKTI-BUKTI TERSEBUT ADALAH MENCUKUPI UNTUK MEMBERI GAMBARAN KEYAKINAN RAKYAT KEPADA YAB AAB dan Barisan Nasional sudah terhakis secara menyeluruh.

Dalam kegawatan itulah pertemuan sulit PAS-UMNO diadakan agar merintis jalan ke arah MUZAKARAH. (Hasrat UMNO penggabungan dengan PAS seperti di zaman Asri Muda. Atau HANYA PELAN PROVOKASI UMNO AGAR PAKATAN RAKYAT HILANG KEPERCAYAAN SESAMA SENDIRI KERANA PAS BERUNDING SECARA RAHSIA). Ini suatu kejayaan UMNO walaupun penggabungan tidak menjadi dan MUZAKARAH bukanlah menjadi hasrat utama UMNO kerana banyak kali PAS menghulur tangan untuk bermuzakarah, UMNO yang batalkan MUZAKARAH tersebut. Jadi, bagai terang lagikan bersuluh polemik MUZAKARAH PAS-UMNO hanyalah modal murahan tetapi licik dari UMNO untuk MEMPORAK PERANDAKAN PAKATAN RAKYAT DAN HASRAT AHLI-AHLI PARLIMEN BN YANG MAHU MENYERTAI PAKATAN RAKYAT (PR) MULA HILANG KEYAKINAN KEPADA KERJASAMA DALAM PARTI PR YANG LONGGAR ITU.

Elok sangatlah hal ini didebatkan oleh para perwakilan PAS dan didengar oleh Pakatan Rakyat kesah sebenarnya Polimek MUZAKARAH PAS-UMNO ini. Apa yang penting MUZAKARAH ini tidak akan menjejaskan Kerjasama dan perpaduan anggota Pakatan Rakyat. Pakatan Rakyat atau PAS khusunya boleh memberi tunjuk ajar kepada UMNO untuk berubah. NAMUN DENGAN KEKANGAN BUDAYA DAN TRADISI DI DALAM UMNO, TIDAK BANYAK PERUBAHAN YANG BOLEH DIBUAT. Barisan kabinet pun adalah terdiri dari TEAM WAWASAN LAMA dan "Rejected Leaders" yang dikitar semula. Anologi perubahan di dalam UMNO, jika Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (DSAI)telah beriringan dengan Mantan Perdana Menteri yang bistari menegakkan proses ISLAMISASI yang gemilang itu BOLEH DICANTAS OLEH para konspirator UMNO hanya kerana tindakan MELAWAN RASUAH dan CUBA BERTANDING JAWATAN PRESIDEN UMNO, maka apalah SANGAT dengan hasrat WIRA PAKAR DEDAH KONSPIRASI EZAM MOHD NOR untuk mengubah UMNO. Enta pun tumbang kalau tidak ikut budaya dan tradisi UMNO yang membawa rebah itu. Sama-samalah kita rakyat Malaysia yang faham dan tidak termakan serta tertipu dengan percaturan UMNO/BN untuk terus tegak berkuasa, sekali pun ianya telah luput tarikh dan membawa negara mundur ke belakang. Kepada saudara-saudara saya di dalam UMNO, jangan beremosi dengan kenyataan ini. Elok sangat jika anda sendiri memeriksa piminan anda dan apakah yang mereka telah rancangkan untuk berkuasa dan terus berkuasa dan untuk menjadi kaya dengan jawatan-jawatan Kerajaan Persekutuan dan terus menjadi kaya. Bukti-bukti kenyataan ini terlalu banyak sehingga tersadung rakyat oleh kekayaan pemimpin-pemimpin UMNO Barisan Nasional TIDAK TERSANGKAL LAGI...



Monday, July 21, 2008

Making Malaysia's Parliament towards Upper class

ANDREW KHOO CHIN HOCK: Making Malaysia's Parliament Top Class

2008/07/13 NST Online - Column

THERE has been much mention recently of the desire to make the Malaysian Parliament a "world-class Parliament". What would this entail?

Firstly, backbenchers should be given an increased role through the setting up of parliamentary committees to oversee the work of the government.

The Standing Orders of the Dewan Rakyat provide for five select committees -- Committee of Selection, Public Accounts Committee, Standing Orders Committee, House Committee and Committee of Privileges.

The Standing Orders do provide for special select committees to be appointed by order of the Dewan Rakyat.

In the previous Parliament, we had select committees on unity and national service, on integrity, on code of ethics for members of parliament and to review proposed amendments to the Penal Code and Criminal Procedure Code.
Such select committees have restricted terms of reference and a limited time frame.

They tend to focus on particular public issues to gather information and make recommendations on the particular subject for which they were formed.

They do not, by their nature, act as an ongoing check and balance for the workings of government.

All but one of the five permanent committees focus on internal matters of the Dewan Rakyat.

The Public Accounts Committee reviews the functions of the Executive branch of government, especially the use of public funds.

As parliamentary time is limited, the Public Accounts Committee is only able to review a handful of matters during any one session of Parliament.

Partly because it is the only permanent committee with a public function, its functions and the matters brought before it receive more attention than they deserve.

The issues tend to be sensationalised and, therefore, what has been brought before it has always been viewed as politically sensitive.

This over-sensitivity can be seen in the fact that the government is not inclined to allow the opposition leader to be its chairman, as is the practice in mature parliamentary democracies.

What is needed are permanent committees of the Dewan Rakyat to oversee each ministry, providing the needed check and balance by the Legislative over the function of the Executive.

This is done in the Parliaments of Australia, India, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. among others, as well as in the US Congress. We have all seen, for example, members of the US cabinet and even the chairman of the US Federal Reserve Bank testify before the Congress.

Ideally, there should be one permanent committee for each ministry (unless two or more areas can sensibly be incorporated within the purview of a single permanent committee).

Standing Order 83 empowers a select committee to call for hearings and investigate matters falling within the ambit of the ministry it is to oversee.

It would be the permanent committee's responsibility to vet proposed legislation and amendments, hold public sessions where interested parties can give testimony on matters of public policy and have ministers appear to answer questions and provide explanations.

It would receive oral and written submissions. Witnesses could be summoned to testify before such permanent committees on pain of being found in contempt of Parliament. Potential whistleblowers could be granted immunity from legal action.

In a Westminster-style parliamentary democracy, the Executive has wide-ranging powers but the Legislative should not act as a mere rubber stamp.

Parliament must have and exercise a supervisory function. However, this role has not developed in a significant way.

To his credit, soon after Parliament was convened following the 2004 general election, the prime minister said that one of his objectives was to strengthen the Dewan Rakyat.

The establishment of permanent committees would help achieve this objective.

Secondly, we need to have much better and more focused scrutiny of proposed legislation. This is where having permanent committees would be extremely beneficial, instead of having a committee of the whole house, which is the current practice.

However, for this to succeed, the government would have to stop classifying parliamentary bills as official secrets and withholding them from open distribution until first reading.

Members of the public and parliamentarians should have the opportunity to study proposed legislation properly.

Given that we are entering the era of bilateral free trade agreements which may eventually contain commitments giving our trading partners the opportunity to be informed of, review and comment on proposed changes to legislation that may affect them, we should commence this change of culture by being open to the Malaysian public first.

By strengthening the power of backbenchers (both from the government and the opposition) to scrutinise legislation and question ministers, senior civil servants, captains of industry and other decision-makers, we will make the Executive more transparent and accountable.

It would make for an active and participative Legislative working together with the rakyat for the betterment of our country.

The third recommendation is to share the leadership of Parliament. With Barisan Nasional (BN) holding only 140 seats in the Dewan Rakyat and Pakatan Rakyat (PR) holding 82 seats, there is a perception of a greater sense of balance.

Now, it is the turn of the Parliament as an institution to show its maturity in line with the aspirations of a more demanding electorate.

Regardless of which political party (or coalition of parties) helms the government of the day, Parliament should operate on a level playing field.

As it is not inconceivable that the BN of today may be the opposition of tomorrow, it behoves BN to work with PR to progress towards a stronger and more mature Parliament.

The Federal Constitution does not mention the office of the leader of the opposition, although it is recognised in Standing Order 4A.

This is an anomaly which should immediately be put right. Some state governments have amended or are in the course of amending their respective state constitutions to do this at the state assembly level.

Currently, Article 57 of the Federal Constitution provides for the Dewan Rakyat to have one speaker and two deputy speakers.

To better reflect the political plurality in the country, as seen from the share of the popular vote obtained by both the BN and the PR respectively, one deputy speaker of the Dewan Rakyat ought to come from the opposition.

Given the potential for a possible change in the majority party in the Dewan Rakyat, this practice of selecting one deputy speaker of the Dewan Rakyat from among the ranks of the federal opposition would serve to entrench the concept of a shared leadership of Parliament.

The speaker and deputy speakers are expected to be neutral and non-partisan.

Indeed, once appointed, they must forget their political affiliation and become impartial umpires in the Dewan Rakyat, presiding and making rulings without fear or favour.

A total shutout of one side of the country's political representation from leadership in Parliament should be avoided at all costs.

Such a practice, if continued, would be detrimental to the full and fair workings of Parliament and a denial of recognition of the will of the rakyat.

It would also be unfair to the minority party, whichever that party might be.

* Andrew Khoo Chin Hock is co-deputy chair of the Bar Council's Human Rights Committee


Saturday, July 19, 2008

Pengendalian Qadzaf, Zina dan Liwat dalam Islam

Khamis 17 Julai 2008 | 13 Rajab 1429 Hijrah

Liwat dan qazaf dari perspektif Islam

Thu | Jul 17, 08 | 2:59:40 pm MYT


"Tulisan ini dipetik daripada buku "Qazaf: Mangsa Fitnah" (Jabatan Penerangan dan Penyelidikan PAS Pusat, 2001) tulisan Presiden PAS, Tuan Guru Abdul Hadi Awang. Buku bersifat kontemporari ini diharap dapat merungkaikan persoalan berhubung tuduhan liwat dan qazaf yang dikategorikan sebagai jenayah hudud dalam sistem perundangan Islam."

Mensabitkan Kesalahan Zina Dan Liwat

Kesalahan zina dan liwat sabit dengan iqrar (pengakuan) atau melalui saksi-saksi yang memenuhi syarat syaratnya.

Iqrar (Pengakuan)

Hadis riwayat Abu Hurairah r.a. (al-Bukhari, kitab al-Hudud):
"Seorang lelaki datang mengadap Rasulullah s.a.w. di dalam masjid. Lelaki itu berkata: "Wahai Rasulullah! Saya telah melakukan zina." Rasulullah s.a.w. berpaling ke arah lain (yakni seperti tidak melayannya), lelaki itu mengulangi pengakuannya sebanyak empat kali. Setelah lelaki itu membuat pengakuan sebanyak empat kali, akhirnya Rasulullah s.a.w. bersabda: "Adakah engkau gila?" Dia menjawab: "Tidak." Rasulullah s.a.w. bertanya lagi: "Adakah engkau telah berkahwin?" Dia menjawab: "Ya." Lalu Rasulullah s.a.w. memerintahkan (para sahabatnya): "Bawalah lelaki ini pergi dan rejamlah dia."

Mengikut riwayat yang lain, Rasulullah s.a.w. bersabda: "Adakah engkau bercumbu-cumbu sahaja." Dia menjawab: "Tidak. Sebenarnya saya telah berzina."
Mengikut riwayat yang lain: "Setelah selesai sembahyang, dia (lelaki itu) datang lagi, lalu Rasulullah s.a.w. bersabda: "Tidakkah awak telah berwuduk dan telah bersembahyang? Dengannya Allah mengampunkan dosa." Tetapi lelaki itu terus mengaku berzina dan mahu supaya disucikan dirinya dengan hukuman.

Hadis riwayat Sulaiman bin Buraidah, daripada bapanya (riwayat Muslim, Kitab al-Hudud):

"Kemudian seorang perempuan dari qabilah al-Ghamidiyah datang mengadap Rasulullah s.a.w. Wanita itu berkata: "Wahai Rasulullah! Sucikanlah diri saya." Sabda Rasulullah s.a.w. : "Baliklah, beristighfarlah engkau dan bertaubatlah." Wanita itu berkata lagi: "Adakah engkau mahu melakukan kepada saya seperti yang engkau lakukan kepada Ma'iz bin Malik?" Rasulullah s.a.w. bertanya: "Apakah masalah engkau?" Wanita itu memberitahu bahawa dia sedang mengandung hasil perbuatan zina. Rasulullah s.a.w. bertanya: "Apakah benar?" Wanita itu menjawab: "Ya." Rasulullah s.a.w. bersabda: "Bersalinlah dahulu."

Wanita itu dijaga oleh seorang lelaki dari kalangan Ansar sehingga bersalin. Kemudian lelaki itu datang menemui Rasulullah s.a.w. memberitahu bahawa wanita itu telah bersalin. Baginda bersabda: "Kita tidak akan merejamnya dan membiarkan anaknya tidak dapat menyusu." Lalu bangun seorang lelaki dari kalangan Ansar dan berkata: "Biar saya uruskan urusan penyusuannya, wahai Nabi Allah." Lalu Rasulullah s.a.w. merejam wanita itu."

Kedua-dua hadis di atas diriwayatkan oelh para ulama hadis dengan riwayat yang sahih dan menjadi dalil dalam kes iqrar (mengaku) berzina. Para ulama telah menyimpulkan daripadanya hukum-hukum yang berkaitan dengan iqrar melakukan kesalahan zina dan liwat.

Syarat-syarat iqrar;<

1. Orang yang membuat pengakuan itu hendaklah seorang yang baligh dan berakal. Tidak sah pengakuan orang gila, mabuk dan sebagainya, kerana sabda Rasulullah s.a.w. (Abu Daud: Kitab al-Hudud):

"Diangkat qalam daripada menulis amalan kanak-kanak sehingga dia baligh, daripada orang tidur sehingga dia terjaga, dan daripada orang gila sehingga dia sedar."

2. Pengakuan hendaklah dilakukan dengan pilihan sendiri, tanpa dipaksa, sepeti dipukul, dibelasah, diberi bahan yang menghilangkan ingatan seperti dadah dan sebagainya. Maka tidak sah pengakuan orang yang dipaksa, kerana sabda Rasulullah s.a.w. (Ibn Majah: Kitab al-Talaq):

"Allah mengangkat (memaafkan) kesalahan umatku yang melakukan sesuatu kerana tersalah, terlupa dan dipaksa."

3. Iqrar (pengakuan) dilakukan secara lisan. Tidak diterima pengakuan dalam bentuk tulisan, pita rakaman dan sebagainya dalam perkara hudud.

4. Iqrar hendaklah dilakukan berulangkali dalam perkara zina dan liwat, iaitu sebanyak empat kali, dalam majlis yang berasingan, seperti yang dilakukan oleh Rasulullah s.a.w. terhadap Ma'iz bin Malik.

5. Iqrar itu dilakukan di hadapan hakim dan hakim pula menunjukkan sikap tidak senang dan berusahan supaya orang yang beriqrar itu tidak mengulangi iqrarnya, kerana bertaubat lebih baik daripada menyerah diri secara iqrar di hadapan pihak yang berkenaan, kerana inilah cara yang diajarkan oleh Rasulullah s.a.w.
Menarik Balik Pengakuan

Seseorang yang mengaku melakukan zina dan liwat hendaklah diterima penarikan balik pengakuannya, walaupun sudah memenuhi syarat-syarat yang tersebut di atas, kerana Rasulullah s.a.w. menegur para sahabat baginda dengan keras kerana meneruskan hukuman terhadap Ma'iz bin Malik setelah dia melarikan diri ketika hukuman dijalankan.

Apabila seseorang lelaki mengaku zina dengan seseorang perempuan dan perempuan itu tidak mengaku salah, maka si lelaki sahaja yang dihukum, kerana inilah keputusan yang dilakukan oleh Rasulullah s.a.w. seperti yang diriwayatkan oleh Imam Ahmad dan Abu Daud.


Firman Allah (al-Nisa': 15) yang bermaksud: "Dan sesiapa yang melakukan perbuatan keji (zina) di antara perempuan-perempuan kamu, maka carilah empat orang lelaki di antara kamu yang menjadi saksi terhadap perbuatan mereka."

Firman Allah lagi (al-Nur:4) yang bermaksud: "Dan orang-orang yang melemparkan tuduhan (zina) kepada perempuan yang terpelihara kehormatannya, kemudian mereka tidak membawakan empat orang saksi..."

Firman Allah lagi (al-Nur:13) yang bermaksud: "Sepatutnya mereka (yang menuduh) membawa empat orang saksi membuktikan tuduhan itu. Jika mereka tidak mendatangkan empat orang saksi, maka mereka itu pada sisi hukum Allah, adalah orang-orang yang dusta."

Orang yang menjadi saksi hendaklah memenuhi syarat-syarat berikut:

1. Baligh lagi berakal. Oleh itu tidak boleh diterima tuduhan yang dilakukan oleh orang gila, kerana cakapnya tidak boleh diterima.

2. Islam, sekiranya tuduhan dilakukan terhadap orang Islam, kerana kesedarannya terhadap perhitungan dosa pahala dan sebagainya. Di samping itu, perkara zina dan liwat ini termasuk dalam hukum hudud Islam yang dinaskan.

3. Mempunyai pancaindera yang sihat. Tidak diterima saksi yang tidak jelas penglihatan, tuli dan bisu.

4. Adil, yakni seseorang yang diketahui tidak melakukan mana-mana dosa besar, dosa kecil secara berterusan dan perkara-perkara yang menjatuhkan maruah, walau pun tidak berdosa.

5. Lelaki, yakni dalam perkara hudud dan qisas. Oleh kerana zina dan liwat termasuk dalam perkara hudud, maka saksi wanita tidak diterima dalam perkara ini.

6. Tiada tohmahan (kekeliruan yang menarik manfaat atau menolak mudarat), berkepentingan dan prejudis seperti menjadi saksi kepada bapa, anak atau majikannya, atau orang yang diketahui bermusuh dengan orang yang dituduh yang akan memburukkannya sahaja. Maka tidak boleh menerima penyaksian saksi yang ada kaitan dengan konspirasi politik dan sebagainya.

7. Bilangan yang cukup. Pada tuduhan zina dan liwat, memerlukan empat orang saksi.

8. Keempat-empat saksi melihat (perbuatan zina dan liwat itu) bersama-sama.

9. Memberi keterangan dalam majlis (persidangan) yang sama.

Saksi dalam tuduhan zina dan liwat bukan sahaja wajib memenuhi syarat-syarat tersebut tetapi juga hendaklah melihat kesalahan itu berlaku mengikut takrifnya secara jelas, yakni melihat anggota kemaluan yang melakukannya secara jelas. Para ulama bersepakat mengatakan bahawa keterangan melalui kesan air mani, pita video dan gambar tidak boleh mensabitkan kesalahan zina dan liwat. Keterangan saksi yang berlapis yang hanya menerima berita dari orang lain (hearsay) juga tidak boleh diterima.

Kesemua perkara tersebut menunjukkan bahawa tuduhan zina dan liwat, tidak boleh dilakukan secara sewenang-wenangnya.

Keterangan-Keterangan Yang Tidak Nyata

Penggunaan kepakaran untuk menganalisa darah dan air mani (atau ujian DNA) bagi mensabitkan kesalahan jenayah huduh seperti zina dan liwat tidak dibenarkan oleh Islam, kerana ada syubhat (kekeliruan). Sabda Rasulullah s.a.w. yang bermaksud:
"Hudud hendaklah ditolak (tidak dilaksanakan) dengan adanya syubhat (kekeliruan)."

Ketepatan analisa DNA boleh dipertikaikan kerana banyak kemungkinan-kemungkinan yang boleh menimbulkan keraguan. Sesetengah ulama membenarkan analisa ini untuk menafikan tuduhan sahaja, bukan untuk mengisbatkannya (mensabitkan kesalahan). Para ulama Islam telah menyebut perkara ini di dalam kitab-kitab fiqh, di antaranya Ibn al-Qayyim di dalam kitanya al-Turuq al-Hukmiyyah.

Begitu juga tuduhan tidak boleh disabitkan dengan gambar, pita video, kaset dan sebagainya yang bukan merupakan keterangan secara langsung.


Tidak diharuskan bersumpah bagi mensabitkan jenayah hudud yang berkaitan dengan hak Allah, seperti zina dan liwat. Bahkan jenayah hudud dan qisas dalam perkara hak manusia juga tidak dibenarkan bersumpah menurut jumhur (kebanyakan) ulama kerana perkara hudud dan qisas yang berhubung dengan hak manusia juga dianggap menyerupai hak Allah.

Yang dimaksudkan dengan bersumpah di sini adalah sumpah mengikut hukum Islam dengan lafaznya yang ditetapkan, bukan seperti yang difahami oleh orang jahil yang mencadangkan supaya sumpah dilakukan secara menjunjung al-Quran, yang menyerupai sumpah yang dilakukan oleh penganut agama Kristian.

Syarat orang yang melakukan zina dan liwat

Orang yang melakukan kesalahan zina dan liwat itu pula hendaklah memenuhi syarat-syarat berikut:

1. Baligh, yakni cukup umur mukallaf
2. Berakal
3. Secara pilihan dengan tidak dipaksa
4. Mengetahui pengharaman zina dan liwat
5. Tiada syubhah (seperti terkeliru atau tersilap kerana disangka isterinya)
6. Berzina atau berliwat dengan manusia
7. Melakukan perbuatan yang ditakrifkan sebagai zina atau liwat

Perkataan qazaf dalam bahasa Arab bermakna melemparkan sesuatu benda umpama batu dan sebagainya. Seterusnya perkataan itu dikhususkan kepada melemparkan sesuatu yang buruk termasuk menggunakan perkataan yang keji terhadap seseorang.

Menurut istilah hukum syarak, qazaf ialah menuduh zina terhadap seseorang tanpa saksi yang adil. Termasuk juga menuduh liwat, mengikut pendapat jumhur para ulama, di antaranya Mazhab Maliki, Syafie dan Hambali. Mazhab Hanafi pula hanya mengkhususkannya kepada tuduhan zina sahaja, manakala tuduhan liwat di sisi mereka termasuk dalam perkara takzir.

Qazaf termasuk dalam hukum hudud yang dinaskan di dalam al-Quran dan Hadis Nabi s.a.w. Perkara yang telah dinaskan, berada di luar bidang ijtihad para ulama, kerana haram meminda nas daripada Allah dan Rasul-Nya. Oleh itu, tidak boleh dinamakan hudud PAS atau hudud sesiapa. Sesiapa yang membuat kenyataan itu maka hukumnya berdosa kerana kenyataan yang dibuatnya itu berdasarkan kepada kejahilannya.
Perkara tersebut menjadi perkara yang wajib diketahui oleh orang-orang Islam, kerana fardhu ain itu, bukan sahaja terdapat pada perkara yang wajib ditunaikan, tetapi termasuk juga pada perkara yang diharamkan kita melakukannya agar kita menjauhinya, meninggalkannya dan mencegahnya, Manakala mendalaminya secara detail hukumnya adalah fardhu kifayah.

Di kalangan ulama ada yang membahagikan tuduhan itu kepada dua cara:

1. Secara sorih (berterus terang) dengan menujukan tuduhan zina atau liwat kepada orang yang tertentu. Sekiranya tuduhan itu diakui oleh orang yang dituduh secara sukarela dan memenuhi syarat-syarat pengakuannya, maka hukuman hudud boleh dijatuhkan oleh hakim ke atas orang berkenaan.

2. Secara sindiran. Seperti menafikan nasab daripada ayahnya mengatakan 'awak bukan anak kepada si anu' yang diketahui sebagai bapanya yang sebenar, atau 'awak anak daripada hasil zina' dan lain-lain tuduhan yang boleh difahamkan sebagai tuduhan zina atau liwat.

Hikmah Pengharaman Qazaf

Tujuan pengharaman qazaf adalah bagi memelihara maruah manusia, yang menjadi satu daripada perkara yang sangat penting bagi manusia sama ada bagi diri, keluarga atau masyarakatnya. Maruah sangat bernilai dalam hidup dan mati seseorang, membezakan manusia dengan binatang dan menjadi sebahagian daripada harga diri sehingga tidak boleh dinilai dengan harta benda yang paling mahal. Islam telah menegaskan kewajipan mempertahankan maruah dengan meletakkan maruah mengatasi harta yang juga wajib dipertahankan.

Demi menjaga maruah itulah, maka diwajibkan hukuman qazaf secara hudud yang ditetap oleh Allah dan Rasul-Nya s.a.w. supaya seseorang itu atau kumpulannya tidak boleh melemparkan tuduhan zina dan liwat ke atas seseorang yang lain secara sewenang-wenangnya.

Syarat-syarat Qazaf

Tidaklah mudah menentukan bahawa seseorang itu telah melakukan qazaf, kerana Islam mewajibkan syarat-syarat tertentu bagi orang yang melakukannya, orang menjadi mangsa dan tuduhan itu sendiri.

Syarat-syarat bagi orang yang melakukan tuduhan itu adalah:

1. Berakal. Tidak boleh diterima tuduhan yang dilakukan oleh orang gila, kerana cakapnya tidak boleh dipakai.

2. Baligh, yakni sampai umur mukallaf yang boleh dipertanggungjawabkan perintah-perintah agama ke atasnya. Kanak-kanak yang belum baligh, tidak boleh dikategorikan tuduhannya sebagai qazaf.

3. Tidak dipaksa. Tidak boleh menerima tuduhan yang dilakukan oleh orang yang dipaksa supaya melakukan tuduhan itu.

4. Tidak dapat mengadakan empat orang saksi yang memenuhi syarat-syarat saksi mengikut hukum Islam.

Orang yang dituduh juga hendaklah memenuhi syarat-syarat berikut:

1. Berakal. Maka tidak sah menuduh orang yang tidak berakal. Oleh itu orang yang menuduh tidak boleh diambil tindakan qazaf

2. Baligh. Maka orang yang menuduh terhadap orang yang tidak baligh, tidak boleh dikenakan hukuman had qazaf. Dia hanya dikenakan hukuman ta'zir.

3. Islam, mengikut jumhur para ulama.

4. 'Iffah atau ihsan, yakni orang yang dituduh itu seorang yang diketahui kebaikan akhlaknya dan tidak pernah disabitkan melakukan zina.

5. Orang yang ditentukan tidak berlaku qazaf dengan menuduh seseorang yang tidak ditentukan secara khusus.

Syarat tuduhan pula hendaklah tuduhan dalam perkara zina, menurut ijmak para ulama dan tuduhan dalam perkara liwat, mengikut pendapat jumhur para ulama. Sekiranya tuduhan itu dalam perkara yang lain seperti berjudi, minum arak, rasuah dan sebagainya, maka tidak dinamakan qazaf yang mewajibkan hukuman hudud, tetapi berpindah kepada hukum takzir yang terserah kepada budibicara pihak yang berkenaan untuk menentukan hukumannya.

Mensabitkan Jenayah Qazaf

Kesalahan qazaf yang dijatuhkan hukuman had ialah apabila terbukti melalui dua cara:

1. Iqrar daripada orang yang melakukan qazaf.

2. Dua orang saksi yang memenuhi syarat-syarat saksi.
Hukum Hudud yang berkait dengan Qazaf
Terdapat kekhilafan di kalangan para ulama, adakah hukum qazaf berkait dengan hak Allah atau hak manusia?

Mazhab Hanafi menegaskan bahawa qazaf termasuk di dalam kategori hak Allah terhadap hamba-Nya kerana ia berkait dengan maruah seseorang. Hukum hudud yang ditetapkan ke atas jenayah qazaf berkait dengan maslahah umum, iaitu untuk memelihara kepentingan hamba-hamba Allah (manusia) dan maruah mereka, serta menghindarkan perkara kefasadan di kalangan manusia.

Apabila ia menjadi aspek umum maka ia termasuk dalam hak Allah terhadap hamba-hamba-Nya.

Mazhab Syafie dan Hanbali berpendapat bahawa qazaf termasuk dalam kategori hak hamba (manusia), kerana maruah secara langsung diberikan kepada manusia. Apabila maruahnya dijatuhkan melalui qazaf, ia bermakna seperti melakukan sesuatu ke atas batang tubuh orang yang tertentu, maka ia menjadi hak bagi diri orang itu.

Manakala ulama dalam mazhab Maliki berselisih pendapat. Ada di kalangan mereka yang bersetuju dengan mendapat Mazhab Hanafi, ada yang bersetuju dengan pendapat Mazhab Syafie dan Hambali. Di antara mereka adalah Ibnu Rusyd, dan ada yang berpendapat bahawa di dalam perkara qazaf ada kedua-dua hak tersebut.

Mereka yang berpegang kepada pendapat bahawa qazaf itu adalah hak Allah, bermakna setelah perkara itu dibawa kepada pihak yang berkenaan (berwajib) maka ia tidak boleh dimaafkan lagi, yakni mangsa tuduhan tidak boleh memberikan pengampunan.
Pengampunan hanya boleh diberi sebelum kes tersebut dibawa kepada pihak yang berkenaan. Manakala mereka yang menyatakan bahawa qazaf itu adalah hak manusia, maka mangsa tuduhan diberi hak untuk memberikan pengampunan kepada orang yang dijatuhkan hukuman kerana kesalahan melakukan qazaf.

Hak Tuduhan Qazaf

Mereka yang berpendapat bahawa qazaf termasuk dalam kategori hak manusia, mengatakan bahawa orang yang menjadi mangsa mempunyai hak pengampunan ke atas orang yang melakukan jenayah qazaf.

Sekiranya orang yang menjadi mangsa qazaf masih hidup, maka hak membuat pendakwaan terserah kepadanya sendiri. Sekiranya ia telah meninggal dunia, maka hak tersebut berpindah kepada keluarganya yang terdekat, iaitu bermula daripada ayah hingga ke atas, kemudian berpindah kepada anak hingga ke bawah. Ia tidak berpindah kepada saudaranya yang lain, kerana perkara qazaf sangat berkait dengan maruah zuriat secara langsung.

Hukuman ke Atas Orang Yang Melakukan Qazaf (Menuduh Zina atau Liwat)
Nas dan ijtihad para ulama yang berlandaskan roh syariat Allah yang maha adil, menunjukkan bahawa tuduhan yang menjatuhkan maruah seseorang seperti tuduhan zina dan liwat tidak harus dipermudah-mudahkan.

Untuk membuat tuduhan itu, wajiblah mempunyai alasan dan hujah yang kukuh. Perkara-perkara yang diwajibkan ke atas pihak yang berkenaan supaya dilaksanakan ketika melakukan sesuatu tuduhan, membuktikan bahawa kewajipan memelihara maruah juga menjadi tanggungjawab kerajaan setelah ditegaskan bahawa ianya adalah kewajipan individu.

Kesalahan tuduhan zina dan liwat amat besar, sehingga ia dimasukkan ke dalam jenayah yang dikenakan hukuman keras dan ditetapkan sendiri hukumannya oleh Allah SWT secara nas di dalam Al-Quran. Di akhirat pula ia dikira sebagai dosa besar yang disediakan azab yang pedih kepada pelakunya, sekiranya dia tidak bertaubat dan meminta maaf daripada mangsa tuduhan atau tidak menerima tindakan undang-undang Islam oleh pihak yang berkenaan.

Hukuman di dunia

Hukuman di dunia yang wajib dijatuhkan ke atas penjenayah qazaf oleh kerajaan Islam ditetapkan oleh Allah di dalam al-Quran.

Firman Allah (al-Nur: 4) yang bermaksud: "Dan orang-orang yang melemparkan tuduhan (zina) kepada perempuan yang terpelihara kehormatannya, kemudian mereka tidak membawakan empat orang saksi, maka sebatlah mereka delapan puluh kali sebat; dan janganlah kamu menerima persaksian mereka itu selama-lamanya; kerana mereka adalah orang-orang yang fasik."

Hukuman terhadap penjenayah qazaf di dunia ialah:

1. Disebat sebanyak 80 kali sebatan mengikut cara Islam. Bukannya sebatan seperti yang diamalkan sekarang. Iaitu dengan alat yang sederhana dan cara pukulan yang sederhana. Tidak dibenarkan mengangkat alat sebatan lebih tinggi daripada kepala dan sebatan itu tidak boleh menyebabkan kulit dan daging terkoyak. Orang yang disebat pula hendaklah berada dalam keadaan kesihatan yang baik dan memakai pakaian yang bersopan serta disaksikan oleh orang ramai.

2. Dihukum menjadi fasik dengan tidak diterima penyaksiannya dalam segala urusan, sama ada di mahkamah, ketika berjual beli, perkahwinan, melihat anak bulan Ramadan, Syawal dan lain-lain.

Hukuman di Akhirat:

Firman Allah (al-Nur: 23-24) yang bermaksud: "Sesungguhnya orang-orang yang menuduh perempuan-perempuan (dan lelaki-lelaki) yang terpelihara kehormatannya, yang tidak terlintas memikirkan sebarang kejahatan, lagi yang beriman akan dilaknat (oleh Allah) di dunia dan di akhirat dan mereka pula akan beroleh azab seksa yang besar. Pada hari lidah mereka dan tangan mereka serta kaki mereka menjadi saksi terhadap diri mereka sendiri, tentang segala yang mereka lakukan."

Hukuman pada hari kiamat nanti lebih adil dan bijaksana. Allah Yang Maha Mengetahui tidak menghukum dengan sifat mengetahui-Nya sahaja, tetapi perbicaraan akan di ulang semula di mahkamah-Nya dengan bukti-bukti yang lebih terperinci. Ketika itu, anggota badan manusia, tangan dan kaki mereka akan menjadi saksi. Di samping itu terdapat catatan para malaikat, iaitu makhluk Allah yang paling baik dan suci, yang nalurikan dengan sifat sentiasa taatkan perintah Allah dan tidak sekali kali menderhakai-Nya.
Mereka akan dikerah untuk menjadi saksi sehingga mulut para pembohong dan pendakwa yang pandai mengubah kata dan meminda catatan tidak mampu lagi untuk memutarbelitkan kenyataan yang sebenar.- tajdid_


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Anwar was arrested at Noon - July 16th 2008

TIMOTHY DALTON (13:51:26)said... :


DS Anwar Ibrahim got arrested by the Sort-Geh-Yans at noon today. Hope they wont torture him like in 1998 days.

Anwar arrested outside his house
Jul 16, 08 1:01pm

BREAKING NEWS! Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim has been arrested by the police just outside his home in Segambut, Kuala Lumpur, at 12.55pm today.MORE
He is now taken to KL police HQ


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Pleasures of Seeking Knowledge

The pleasures of seeking knowledge 6/2/2008 - Education Social - Article Ref: IC0601-2883


Ibrahim B. Syed, Ph. D.---IslamiCity** -

The rise of Muslims to the zenith of civilization in a period of four decades was based on lslam's emphasis on learning. This is obvious when one takes a look at the Qur'an and the traditions of Prophet Muhammad which are filled with references to learning, education, observation, and the use of reason. The very first verse of the

Qur'an revealed to the Prophet of Islam on the night of 27th of Ramadan in 611 AD reads:

"Recite: In the name of thy Lord who created man from a clot. Recite: And thy Lord is the Most Generous Who taught by the pen, taught man that which he knew not." (Quran, 96:1-5)

"And they shall say had we but listened or used reason, we would not be among the inmates of the burning fire." (Quran, 67:10)

"Are those who have knowledge and those who have no knowledge alike? Only the men of understanding are mindful. " (Quran, 39:9)

The Qur'an encourages people towards scientific research:.
"And whoso brings the truth and believes therein such are the dutiful." (Quran, 39:33)

Every Muslim man's and every Muslim woman's prayer should be:
"My Lord! Enrich me with knowledge.." (Quran, 20:114)
The pursuit of knowledge and the use of reason, based on sense and observation is made obligatory on all believers.

The following traditions of the Prophet supplement the foregoing teachings of the Qur'an in the following way:

• Seek knowledge "even though it be in China."
• "The acquisition of knowledge is compulsory for every Muslim, whether male or female."
• "The ink of the scholar is more sacred than the blood of the martyr."
• "Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave."
• "God has revealed to me, 'Whoever walks in the pursuit of knowledge I facilitate for him the way to heaven.'
• "The best form of worship is the pursuit of knowledge."
• "Scholars should endeavor to spread knowledge and provide education to people who have been deprived of it. For, where knowledge is hidden it disappears."
• Some one asked the Prophet : "Who is the biggest scholar?" He replied: "He who is constantly trying to learn from others, for a scholar is ever hungry for more knowledge."
• "Seek knowledge and wisdom, or whatever the vessel from which it flows, you will never be the loser."
• "Contemplating deeply for one hour (with sincerity) is better than 70 years of (mechanical) worship."
• "To listen to the words of the learned and to instill unto others the lessons of science is better than religious exercises."
• "Acquire knowledge: it enables its possessor to distinguish right from the
wrong, it lights the way to heaven; it is our friend in the desert, our society in solitude, our companion when friendless - it guides us to happiness; it sustains us in misery; it is an ornament among friends and an armor against enemies."
The Islamic Empire for more than 1,000 years remained the most advanced civilization in the world. The main reasons for this was that Islam stressed the importance and respect of learning, forbade destruction, cultivated a respect for authority, discipline, and tolerance for other religions. The teachings of Qur'an and Sunnah inspired many Muslims to their accomplishments in science and medicine.

By the tenth century their zeal and enthusiasms for learning resulted in all essential Greek medical and scientific writings being translated into Arabic in Damascus, Cairo, and Baghdad. Arabic became the international language of learning and diplomacy. The center of scientific knowledge and activity shifted eastward, and Baghdad emerged as the capitol of the scientific world. The Muslims became scientific innovators with originality and productivity.

For example Islamic medicine is one of the most famous and best known facets of Islamic civilization in which the Muslims excelled. The Muslims were the great torchbearers of international scientific research. Some of the best and most eloquent praises of science came from the pens of Muslim scientists who considered their work to be acts of worship. The same motives led to the establishment of Al-Azhar (800 AD) the first university in the world. They hit the "source ball of knowledge" over the fence to Europe. In the words of Campbell, "The European medical system is Arabian not only in origin but also in its structure. The Arabs are the intellectual forbearers of the Europeans."

Learning is a natural pleasure. This pleasure is inborn and instinctive. The pleasure of learning is one of the essential pleasures of the human race. Without learning, survival itself is threatened.

The process of learning starts right after birth. It is true that babies who can barely talk investigate problems with all the zeal and excitement of explorers, make discoveries with the passion and absorption of dedicated scientists. At the end of each successful investigation, one can see on the tiny face an expression of innocent and pure heartfelt pleasure. The process of physical growth stops when a boy or girl reaches puberty, that is with the on set of menarche in the girls and with the change in the voice and growth of moustache and beard in boys. After puberty it is impossible to increase the height both in boys and girls.

On the other hand the mental faculties grow from birth until death. At some point in our lifetime, the physical body becomes sick or ill and gradually dies; even the emotions become duller. But the mind continues to live, and even grows more lively and active, enjoys itself more, works and plays with more expansion and delight. I have seen grandparents obtaining Bachelors, Masters and Ph. D. degrees at the ages of 70, 80 or 90.

There are many examples in the history of Art, Music and Science, of both men and women who significantly contributed and lead mentally productive lives at their ripe old ages. Learning extends our lives into new dimensions. It is cumulative. Instead of diminishing in time, like health and strength, its dividends go on increasing, provided one continues to learn throughout life and integrate the thoughts and make learning harmonious. One should make it a point to learn at least one piece of new information each day.

The pleasure of learning is not confined to learning from textbooks, which are too often tedious. But it does include learning from book magazines (periodicals), newspapers, movies, television, radio and traveling.

When you stand in a big library in front of thousands of books do not think they are lumps of lifeless paper, but minds alive on the shelves. Each has its own voice, which is as inaudible as the radiobroadcast waves falling directly on ears. Just as one switches on the radio to listen, similarly a person needs to open a book to hear the voice far distant in time and space. One can hear the voice speaking, mind to mind, and heart to heart. Reading of books gives you two different delights. One is the pleasure of understanding the unknown and the unexpected. The other pleasure is of deepening one's knowledge of a specified field.

Apart from books, learning means keeping the mind open and active to receive all kinds of experience. As pointed out earlier there is great emphasis on learning and seeking knowledge in Islam. The Prophet Mohammed ordered Muslims to be active in their search for learning, crossing oceans and continents if necessary. " Seek knowledge even in China" he said. Learning also means learning to practice one' s own professional skills - that of a physician, engineer, musician or craftsman.
Crafts and hobbies lead you into fresh fields of enjoyment and give you relaxation and activity without tension. One should know that tension is the prime cause of heart attacks, ulcers, hypertension, and most of the human diseases.

Traveling is an important activity in the pleasures of learning. There are many examples of exceptionally informed people who never read books and newspapers, but acquire knowledge through traveling. One should travel with an open mind, an alert eye and a wish to understand other people and other places.

A saying of Prophet Muhammad is ... With knowledge man rises to the heights of goodness and to a noble position, associated with sovereigns in this world, and attains the perfection of happiness in the next.

It is fitting here to mention the story of Diogenes, the great Greek philosopher who lived during the time of Alexander the Great. Diogenes was a very learned man who shunned both power and wealth. He was known to have wandered around searching for an honest man carrying a lantern during day and night. He gave up everything he possessed, except a coconut shell for drinking water. One day he saw a man drinking water forming a cup with his hand. After seeing this Diogenes threw away his last possession, the coconut shell.

The name of Diogenes spread throughout Greece. Alexander the Great heard about Diogenes and one day decided to see him. Mounted on horseback, Alexander the Great went to Diogenes who was sitting on the ground. Alexander said ' Oh Diogenes, I have heard a great deal about you and your life. I am very much impressed by your life and it is my earnest desire to help you in whatever way I can. Please let me know your desires so that I can fulfill them". To which Diogenes replied "Your Excellency my only request is that you get aside and allow the sun's rays to fall on my body." Alexander the Great was deeply moved by Diogenes's reply and said "If I were not Alexander the Great. I would be Diogenes." Now the point I want to make here is that Diogenes never went to Alexander the Great, but that Alexander the Great came to Diogenes for he was such a learned philosopher.

There are many people in this world who have played themselves to death, or eaten and drunk themselves to death. Nobody ever died because of thinking or learning. People who avoid learning, or abandon it, find no joy in life, find that life is dry. No learner has ever run short of subjects to explore. The pleasures of learning lead to happiness. One can live a long, healthy and rewarding life by attaining and preserving the happiness of learning. Learning is everyone's birthright. Everyone - young or old, rich or poor, male or female, has access to learning. Exercise your birthright. Remember what you have learned cannot be taken away by others.

**Ibrahim B. Syed, Ph. D. is President of Islamic Research Foundation International, Inc.


Monday, July 14, 2008

Al-Qard al-Hasan : A Practical Approach


Mohammad Delwar Hossain

Islam allows loan as a form of social service among the rich to help the poor and those who are in need of financial assistance. Loan in Islam may be obtained in two ways: (i) Loan with condition of repayment, and (ii) gratuitous loan without any compensation or gift. However, Islam does not recognize any loan with interest for the benefit of the debtor. It only recognizes gratuitous loan or better known as al-qard al-hasan. Such loans have not been uncommon in human history among peers, friends and relatives. Kindness is encouraged in Islam. The Prophet (s.a.s) is reported to have said: the inmates of Paradise are of three types: one who wields authority and is just and fair; one who is truthful and has been endowed with power to do good deeds and the person who is merciful and kindhearted towards his relatives and to every pious Muslim, and who does not stretch out of his hand in spite of having a large family to support. [Sahih Muslim]

Definition of Qard al-Hasan

The word "qard" is derived from Arabic "qirad" which means 'to cut'. It is called qard, as it cuts certain part of the lender's property by giving loan to the borrower. Hasan is also an Arabic word, which originates from 'ihsan'. Ihsan means kindness to others. So, hasan is an act which benefits persons other than those from whom the act proceeds without any obligation. The term al-qard al-hasan means beneficial loan or benevolent loan, gratuitous loan, interest free loan, beautiful loan etc. M. Umer Chapra has given the definition of qard al hasan as: "Qard al-hasan is a loan which is returned at the end of the agreed period without any interest or share in the profit or loss of the business." Therefore, qard al-hasan is a kind of gratuitous loan given to the needy people for a fixed period without requiring the payment of interest or profit. The receiver of qard al-hasan is only required to repay the original amount of the loan.

Objectives of Qard al-Hasan

Islam emphasizes to make brotherhood among the Muslims. The main principle of brotherhood is to care and share each other. Qard al-hasan being a gratuitous loan can help the fellow Muslim brothers who need money but they do not have. Thus, qard al-hasan enhances brotherhood among the Muslims. The main objectives of qard al-hasan are:

To help the needy fellow people.

To establish better relationship among poor and the rich.

The mobilization of wealth among all people in the society.

To perform a good deed that is encouraged and appreciated by the Almighty Allah and His messenger.

To strengthen the national economy.

To facilitate the poor to create new jobs market and business ventures by using their merits, skills and expertise.

To establish a caring society.

To eradicate unemployment problem from the society.

It can be also a missionary work for daw'ah activities by giving qard al-hasan to the non-Muslims, who might be attracted by knowing the beauty of Islam.

It can remove social and economical discrimination from the society, and

Finally, obviously there is a great reward in the Hereafter for giving qard al-hasan.

Qard al-Hasan in Qur'an and Sunnah

In many places of the Holy Qur'an, Allah has mentioned and encouraged His creature for qard al-hasan by assuring better reward in this world and in the Hereafter. In the Qur'an Allah says,

He who will give Allah qard al hasan, which Allah will double into his credit and multiply many times. [Al-Baqarah (2): 245]

If you give Allah qard al hasan. He will double it to your credit and he will grant you forgiveness. [ Al-Tagabun (64):17]

And give Allah qard al hasan. [ Al-Maidah (5): 12]

And give Allah qard al hasan, it will be increased manifold to their credit. [ Al-Hadid (57): 18]

Who is he that will give Allah qard al hasan? For Allah will increase it manifold to his credit. [Al-Hadid (57):11]

Establish regular prayer and give regular charity and give Allah qard al hasan---. [Al-Muzzammil (73): 20]

The sunnah of the Prophet (s.a.s) is also very clear on this issue. It is reported that the Prophet (saw) said, "in the night of the journey, I saw on the gate of heaven written, 'reward for sadakah is ten times and reward for qard al-hasan is eighteen times'. So, I asked the angel, how is it possible? The angel replied, "Because beggar who asked had already had something but a loanee did not ask for loan unless he was in need." [Ibn Hisham & Ibn Majah].

In another hadith reported by Abu Hurairah (R), the Prophet (s.a.s) said, "whoever relieves a believer from a difficulty in this world, Allah will relieve him from his difficulty and Allah will facilitate him in this world and world hereafter." [Muslim]

The above Qur'anic verses and ahadith directly and indirectly encourage the Muslims to give qard al-hasan and which will increase their credits in manifold and bring forgiveness for them.

Rules regarding al-Qard al-Hasan Transaction:

Al-qard al-hasan, being a contract ('aqd) between two parties requires same principles which are applicable for other Islamic transactions. These principles are as follows:

Both parties should be legally (shari'ah) capable to enter into the qard contract.

It is unanimously agreed by the four schools of law that to enter into a contract, parties will be baligh, 'aqil and rashid (major with sound judgment). The Mejelle has also incorporated the same principles. In the holy Qur'an, Allah says, "Make trial of orphans until they reach the age of marriage; if then you find sound judgment in them, release their property to them." [Al-Nisa (4): 6]. This verse states that the age of marriage and the sound judgment is the age of majority, and thereby a major person is capable to enter into any transaction validly.

In a hadith, the Prophet (s.a.s) said, "The pen is raised for three groups (of people) that is, they will not be responsible for their actions: the insane until they become sane, those who are sleeping until they are awaken, and the youth until they reach puberty." [Ahmad, Abu Daud and al-Tirmidhi]

The above hadith makes it clear that a person, who has not attained the age of puberty , may not be a responsible party for al-qard al-hasan transaction.

Ijab (offer) and qabul (acceptance) of the qard must be clearly made before entering into the loan contract:

All four schools of thoughts agree upon that ijab and qabul should be clearly indicated in the contract, otherwise, the loan contract may create dispute in future. In the loan agreement, there should have clear expression, collation and conjunction of the ijab and qabul between the parties.

The date of payment must be specified:

It is also agreed among the Muslim jurists that the date of payment should be mentioned in the loan agreement. If no date is specified, the transaction may lead to ambiguity and dispute in future among the lender and the borrower.

It was based on the loan agreement of the Prophet's (s.a.s) companions. When the Prophet (s.a.s) migrated to Madinah, he was informed that contracts of salam were made without stating specified time or amount, then the Prophet (s.a.s) said, "Whoever enters into a contract of salam should specify the date of delivery and the amount of subject matter."

The loan contract should be written down.

This ruling is based on a Qura'nic injunction. As Allah (s.w.t) says; "O you who believe! when you deal with each other in transactions involving future obligations for a fixed period of time reduce them in writing." [Al-Baqarah (2): 282]

Muslim jurists, however, differ on this condition. Majority of the Muslim jurists opine that it is not obligatory but strongly recommended. The reason given by them is that if both parties agree not to write, then it is no longer an obligation upon them to write down. The wisdom behind the writing down is to avoid future dispute. On the contrary, minority of the Muslim jurists like al-Tabari are of the opinion that it is obligatory upon the parties to write down the contract. It is submitted that the majority's stand seems more reasonable as they have given the option upon the parties whether to write down or not.

Getting two witnesses.

The Qura'nic injunction is that there must have two male witnesses, if two men are not available, then one man and two women will have the same effect. As the Qur'an says:

"And get two witnesses out of your own men and if there are not two men, then a man and two women." [Al-Baqarah (2): 282]

It is very essential for the loan contract to be complied with this Qura'nic requirement to avoid future disputes.

Administrative fee / Service charge:

A question may arise whether a charge of administration fee is allowed in Shari'ah and if yes, how much will be the charge. Now, it is a settled issue among the Muslim jurists that administrative fee or service charge for loan transaction is not against Islamic principles.

Dr. Irfan Ul Haq in his Ph.D. dissertation entitled, "Economic Doctrines of Islam" mentioned that " Banks are permitted to charge a minimum service fee to cover the cost of administrative fee". According to S.H. Amin, "Some charges are in fact legitimate fees and not interest by any standards but sometimes the line is hard to draw. For instance in Islamic law payment of expenses may be allowable if the fee is attributable to some identifiable out of pocket expense such as lawyer's fees but not general overheads of the bank." He further mentioned that to obtain some compensation for offering al-qard al-hasan facilities, the banks demand some charges and fees. These expenses incurred by banks on providing al-qard al-hasan are collected from the borrowers and the basis for the calculation of these expenses are laid down by the central bank.

In an article entitled "Islamic Banking for Social Justice" M. Azizul Huq, an executive vice president of Islamic Bank Bangladesh, said, "The Shari'ah does not permit and Islamic banks do not receive any income from interest-free loaning investment. The lending banks can, however, recover their administrative cost directly related to the investment as service charge. Islamic Development Bank Jeddah recovers service charge 2% to 3% on interest free loans. Alternatively, the cost can be reimbursed by third parties or the government. In Pakistan, the cost of interest for rural lending is reimbursed to the bankers by the government."

So, if al-qard al-hasan is given by any bank or other institutions, they may require service charge or administrative fee. However, there is no scope for an individual lender to demand this charge unless any amount incurred due to procedural requirements of the loan agreement, such as lawyer's fee, stamp duty etc.

Extra Payment:

It is very clear that in the loan agreement, there will be no condition for extra payment, otherwise, it will be riba . It is however, advisable for the debtor to give some sort of gift to the creditor as a sign of appreciation of his voluntary deed. In a hadith, Jabir bin Abdullah (R) reported that I had the right (of loan) on the Messenger of Allah, he had settled it and made additional payment to me. Again Abu Rafi' reported that the Prophet (saw) had borrowed a young female camel from someone and when he received zakat of camels, he ordered me to send a young female camel to the man as settlement of the loan. I said to him, "I could not find among the camels except a female camel which is ready for pregnancy". The Prophet (s.a.s) said, "give it to him, indeed, the good person among you is he who settles loan with something better." [al-Muwatta of Imam Malik].

The statement "every loan which draws benefit is riba" is in fact not a hadith of the Prophet (saw) according to the hadith scholars as there is a doubt of its chain of narrators. Moreover, Muslim jurists have various opinions relating to extra payment over loan. The Hanafi, the Shafi'e and the Hambali's stand is that every loan with profit is forbidden if the profit is stipulated in the loan agreement, otherwise, the profit is permitted. According to Malikis, the borrower may pay more than the capital quantitatively or qualitatively at the time of the settlement of the loan provided that the loan was used for commercial purpose. They restricted the extra benefit from the loan if it was used for consumption purpose.

Indeed, the majority's view is more reasonable, it is up to the loanee whether to pay extra or not, regardless the loan was for consumption or commercial purpose. The only restriction is that there should not be any stipulation for extra benefit in the loan agreement.

Early demand to pay back:

Loan is a voluntary act by the creditor. However, it is not encouraged for early demand to pay back the loan from the debtor. In the Holy Qur'an Allah says,

O you, who believe, fulfil your contract. [Al-Maidah (5):1]

And fulfil your covenant, for every covenant will be inquired into. [Al-Isra (17):34]

Then for having broken their covenant, We rejected them and caused their hearts to harden. [ Al-Maidah (5):13]

And so (We punish them) for the breaking of their covenant. [Al-Nisa (4):155]

In a hadith the Prophet (s.a.s) said, "Muslims are bound by their conditions except a condition that changes halal into haram or haram into halal." [Al-Muatta of Imam Malik]

The Qur'anic and the Hadith injunctions indirectly provide that the creditor should not demand the loan amount from the debtor before the agreement matures or lapses. Muslim jurists, however, have given different views on this matter. According to the Shafi'e and the Hambali jurists, the creditor can demand the settlement from the debtor before the expiry period as he wishes. They have given the reason that the loan is voluntary and it can not compel any party to abide it. The Hanafi and the Maliki jurists, on the contrary, are of the views that the creditor can not demand the loan amount back until the time for settlement mature. Their reason is the above stated hadith of the Prophet (s.a.s).

It is submitted that the latter view is more reasonable as being beneficial to the creditor and should be accepted.


In the case of the al-qard al-hasan, there can be guarantors. The guarantors of the borrower may be any person or the property of the loanee that is collateral security, such as, mortgage, charge etc. In case of the borrower's failure to pay back the loan after the expiration of the time specified, his guarantor has to pay or the collateral security is to be valued for the repayment of the loan. But, Muslims should remember that a true believer should not delay to pay back his obligations. As the Prophet (s.a.s) said, "Deliberate delay of a rich borrower to settle the loan is injustice." [Sahih Bukhari & Muslim]


Islam attempts to establish justice and eliminate exploitation in the society and prevents the accumulation of wealth in the hands of few people. Islam, therefore, absolutely prohibits riba as it is the root of all injustice in the human society. Al-qard al-hasan, on the contrary, being an interest free loan for humanitarian and welfare purpose may ensure the proper movement of wealth amongst all classes of people in the society. That is why, the Qur'an and the Sunnah have much appreciated and encouraged for the implementation of al-Qard al-Hasan in the Muslims society.

End Notes:

'Abdullah Yusuf 'Ali, in "The meaning of the Holy Qur'an" has translated al-qard al-hasan as beautiful loan.

M. Umer Chapra, "Towards a just monetary system" 1995, The Islamic Foundation, UK, p-68

See the Mejelle, articles-943, 947,966 etc.

According to Article-985 of the Mejelle, the time of puberty is proved by the emission of seed in dreams and the power to make pregnant and by the menstrual discharge, and power to become pregnant. Article-986 says the latest age for puberty for both male and female is fifteen years. All schools of law are also agreed with fifteen years as the latest age for attaining puberty.

The salam is a sale of unavailable goods. It is permitted in Islam as the Prophet (s.a.s) allowed the sale of future goods.

Ibn al-Athir, "Jami' al-Usul", vol. II, p-17, quoted by Razali bin Haji Nawawi, "Commercial transactions: Islamic Law Perspective", IIUM, unpublished Ph.D. thesis, p-201.

Irfan Ul Haq, "Economic Doctrines of Islam" International Institute of Islamic Thought, Herndon, Virginia, USA, 1996, P-130, 174.

S.H. Amin, "Islamic Law & Its Implications for Modern World", Royston Ltd, 1989, UK, P-139-146.


M. Azizul Huq, "Islamic Banking for Social Justice" Thoughts on Economics, Jan-March 1984, Vol.5 No.11, p-25, See also Dr. Ataul Hoque, Ed. "Readings in Islamic Banking" 1987, Islamic Foundation Bangladesh, p-167, Tajul Islam, Mechanics of Islamic Banking, p-174.

By the Qur'anic injunction and the Sunnah of the Prophet (s.a.s), riba (interest/usury) that is any surplus amount over and above the principal amount is absolutely prohibited.

Razali bin Haji Nawawi, "Commercial transactions: Islamic Law Perspective", IIUM, unpublished Ph.D. thesis.


Understanding Syariat and Environment

Towards an Islamic Jurisprudence of the Environment

Prof. Mustafa Abu-Sway

This section provides detailed accounts from the Qur'an and the Sunnah regarding the protection of the following areas: human beings, animals, plants, land, water, and air.

1. Human Beings:

Despite the differences regarding the inclusion of human beings as a part of the environment, this paper consider humans to be part of the ecological system. I have adopted this position though I know that the rest of the ecosystem is subservient to humans.

Islam called for the protection of the human being. The Shari'ah specifically called for the protection of five things pertaining to humans: life, religion, offspring, intellect, and property.

Islam emphasized the sanctity of human life in the strongest possible terms:

"On that account: We ordained for the Children of Israel that if any one slew a person-unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land- it would be as if he slew the whole people. And if any one saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people�" Qur'an, 5:35

The rulings of the Shari'ah aim at preserving the life of the human being including murderers. It is a well established fact that punishment for murder is death penalty. Nevertheless, the Qur'an encouraged the family of the murdered person to forfeit their right that the murderer be executed:

"Nor take life-which God has made sacred-except for just cause. And if anyone is slain wrongfully, we given his heir authority (to demand Qisas or to forgive): but let him not exceed bounds in the matter of taking life; for he is helped (by the Law)." Qur'an, 17:33

For the same reason, committing suicide is prohibited:

"Nor kill (or destroy) yourselves: for verily God hath been to you Most Merciful!" Qur'an, 4:29

Moreover, a fetus has a life which should be preserved. Abortion is prohibited unless for a permitted reason (ex. the life of the mother is endangered). In Islamic jurisprudence, there is blood money to be paid by a person who kills a fetus intentionally or accidentally.

Wars remain a major factor in killing human beings and in the destruction of the environment. The Islamic position, which is quite to the contrary of the picture depicted by the western media, states in clear terms that peace is the norm and war is the exception. The Prophet [S.A.A.S] prohibited that a Muslim wishes to confront the enemies in the battlefield.[7] I understand that the raison d'etre of this hadith is to give priority to peaceful solutions whenever conflicts surface between Muslims and other fellow humans. In fact, the first thirteen years of the history of Islam in Makkah reflect passive resistance. Nevertheless, self-defense is permitted to protect Islam and Muslims. If Muslims have to go to war, then they have to abide by Islamic codes of conduct during warfare:

"Fight in the cause of God those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for God loveth not transgressors." Qur'an, 2:190

The essential limits that should not be transgressed are best expressed by Abu Bakr, the first Caliph, in his address to Yazid Ibn Abu Sufian, the commander of the army that went north to Sham [i.e. Greater Syria]:

"�And I instruct you [to fulfill the following] ten [orders]: Do not kill a woman, nor a child, nor an old man; do not cut down fruitful trees; do not destroy [land or housing] in use; do not kill a goat or a camel unless for food; do not flood palm trees [with water] nor burn them down �"[8]

Such a quotation, which reflects the ethos of the Shari'ah, defines the norm that the life of those who do not engage themselves directly in war should be spared. Protection is also extended to animals and plants; they should not be used as part of collective punishment.

Accordingly, all weapons of mass destruction are unacceptable from an Islamic perspective. All chemical, biological and nuclear weapons should be prohibited world wide without any exceptions. It is not enough to have nuclear non-proliferation treaties that exempt certain countries because they did not sign. If the super powers only head to the fact that humanity needs a safer and cleaner earth! No country should be able to stock weapons of mass destruction or non-conventional weapons.

Here I find myself at odds with a statement of Dr. Yusuf Al-Qaradawi. He said, in one of his most recent books, that "regarding the kinds of weapons that are used in fighting, how to make them and how to train [soldiers] how to use them, etc., is not an issue to [be settled by] religion; it is the business of the ministry of defense and the headquarters of the armed forces."[9]

I do believe that Dr. Al-Qaradawi is troubled by what is happening to Muslims around the world, and that he aims at allowing room for decision makers in the Islamic world to consider measures that would deter aggressors from attacking them with weapons of mass destruction. I think that this is a legitimate concern, yet the statement is very broad and it might be misinterpreted by those in office. On the other hand, Muslim scholars should voice their concern about these issues and not to give a free hand to the military apparatus which could waste the resources of the Ummah in compiling weapons, rather than investing them in the re-establishment of a leading Islamic civilization.

We should remember that the American use of atomic bombs against Japan, during World War II, is a much protested and regretted act. The increase in ecological awareness is making it difficult for governments to continue its nuclear programs. There was a global protest against the French nuclear tests that took place in the French Polynesian Islands. Though it is not good enough, it appears that the French government pledged an end to nuclear tests.

Not only weapons on that scale should be prohibited, but also weapons such as anti-personnel mines should be banned. There is nothing that could justify the killing or the maiming of human beings by these mines. Millions of them are spread around the world; only concerted efforts on a global level might bring some relief and hope. While one prays for an end to armed conflicts, one should remember that killing the enemy during war is not an end in itself.

The fact the Muslims are subjected to different forms of attacks that range from ethnic cleansing to discrimination in the work place, should not be used by Muslims as a pretext to behave in the same way as their enemies:

"O ye who believe! Stand out firmly for God, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from Justice. Be just: that is next to piety: and fear God. For God is well-acquainted with all that ye do." Qur'an, 5:9

Many of the conflicts around the world were/are fueled by inhuman ideologies that stress the supremacy of one "race" over the other. This form of social Darwinism was translated into a systematic program by the Nazis to annihilate other races. The Serbs performed some of the most heinous crimes against humanity in Bosnia and Kosova, despite the fact that the "race" is the same! It is clear that Muslims in these cases were victimized because of their faith.

The Islamic world view does not permit any ideas of negative value judgment regarding the biological differences in terms of color and shape. They are to be perceived positively as Signs pointing to God:

"And among His Signs is the creation of heavens and the earth, and the variations in your languages and your colors: verily in that are Signs for those who know." Qur'an, 30:22

The differences in the colors of people function exactly like those between animals, plants and inanimate objects:

"Seest thou not that God sends down rain from the sky? With it We then bring out produce of various colors. And in the mountains are tracts white and red, of various shades of color, and black intense in hue. And so amongst men and crawling creatures and cattle, are they of various colors. Those truly fear God, among His Servants, who have knowledge: for God is Exalted in Might, Oft-Forgiving." Qur'an, 35:27-28

Those who know will appreciate the differences; those who are ignorant do not. There aren't many races; there is one human "race" reflecting many prisms. The beautiful different colors and shapes of flowers do not invite us to damage all but one. They are there as gifts and Signs from God to help us remember Him. As such, they should be appreciated and preserved.

The only legitimate differentiation in Islam is based upon moral, not physical character:

"O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (Not that ye may despise each other). Verily the most honored of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things)." Qur'an, 49:13

The compendiums of hadith are full with reports that reflect the spirit of brotherhood regardless of the physical appearances. The companions of the Prophet himself reflect a rainbow of colors: they comprised Muhammad the Arab, Suhayb the Roman, Suleiman the Persian and Bilal the Ethiopian.

In addition, Islam was pluralistic in its relationship with the "other" from the outset. It is already established that if the "otherness" is based upon differences in color, it does not generate a conflict. In addition, if the "otherness" is based upon a different belief, such as the Jews and the Christians, it is also tolerated in the Islamic world-view. Tolerance is emphasized in the Qur'an and in the Sunnah in many contexts:

"God forbids you not, with regard to those who fight you not for (your) Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for God loveth those who are just." Qur'an, 60:8

Where other systems of belief and communities failed to deal justly with the "other" who lives amongst them, Islam succeeded. One may compare the history of the "other" in the Islamic state and that of the "other" in Europe. The best case is that of the "other" as a Jew!

There are ways and means to protect the life of the human being in Islam. There is a broadly stated principle in the Qur'an which prohibits all harm: "�And make not your own hands contribute to (your) destruction; but do good; for God loveth those who do good." Qur'an, 2:195

This verse highlights the dangers that fall within the responsibility of the individual towards oneself. They include taking drugs, alcohol, or any activity which is contrary to natural disposition such as homosexuality. Islam is amongst the minority (the Catholic church condemns the act but not the homosexual) that condemns homosexuality; some reformed synagogues and some Protestant churches allow marriages between the members of the same sex. Taken to an extreme, homosexuality leads to the annihilation of mankind!

Add to this gloomy picture is adultery and common use of needles in drugs. As such, the number of people contracting AIDS is mushrooming. Against this background, the Islamic way of life provides a safety valve which, if accepted, can save humanity.

[Currently, he is in the Department of Philosophy at al-Quds University, Jerusalem. He was formerly a Senior Research Fellow at the International Institute of Islamic Thought and Civilisation (ISTAC) in Kuala Lumpur. He was also the head of the Department of Philosophy at the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM). He has written books such as Al-Ghazzaliyy: A Study in Islamic Epistemology (1996)]


Thursday, July 10, 2008

What's Obama has to say on Iraq?

Fareed Zakaria
"The Democratic candidate needs to implement a serious policy based on his long-held views, but informed by the conditions on the ground today."

June 30, 2008 Issue

Barack Obama needs to give a speech about Iraq. Otherwise he will find himself in the unusual position of having being prescient about the war in 2002 and yet being overtaken by events in 2008. The most important reason to do this is not political. Iraq is fading in importance for the public and, to the extent that it matters as an electoral issue, most people agree with Obama's judgment that the war was not worth fighting.

The reason to lay out his approach to Iraq is that, were he elected, the war would be his biggest and most immediate problem. He will need to implement a serious policy on Iraq, one that is consistent with his long-held views but is also informed by the conditions on the ground today. This is what he should say:

"In six months, on Jan. 20, 2009, we will have a new president. But it is not clear that we will chart a new course in the ongoing war in Iraq. Senator McCain has promised a continuation of the Bush strategy—to stay in Iraq with no horizon in sight, with no benchmarks or metrics that would tell us when American troops can come home. In 2006, when levels of violence were horrifyingly high, President Bush and Senator McCain said that things were going so badly that if we left, the consequences would be tragic. Today they say that things are going so well that if we leave, the consequences would be tragic. Whatever the conditions, the answer is the same—keep doing what we're doing. How does one say 'Catch-22' in Arabic?

"I start from a different premise. I believe that the Iraq War was a major strategic blunder. It diverted us from the battle against Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan—the people who launched the attacks of 9/11 and who remain powerful and active today. We face threats in Iraq, but the two greatest ones, as General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker have testified, are Al Qaeda (which is wounded but not dead) and Iran. Both are a direct consequence of the invasion. There was no Al Qaeda in Iraq before 2003, and Iran's influence has expanded massively since then.
"And then there are the more tangible costs. The war has resulted in over 4,000 U.S. combat deaths, four times as many grievously wounded, and tens of thousands of Iraqi deaths. Over 2 million Iraqis have fled the country and 2 million more have been displaced within the country. The price tag in dollars has also been staggering. In the last five years, the United States has spent close to $1 trillion on the invasion and occupation of Iraq. That is enough money to rebuild every school, bridge and road in America, create universal health care and fund several Manhattan Projects in alternative energy. Whatever benefits the invasion of Iraq might produce, it cannot justify these expenditures in lives and treasure.

"But these costs have already been paid. Nothing we can do today, in June 2008, can reduce those expenditures or bring back to life those brave people. We have to look at the situation we're in now and ask, what can we do to create the best possible outcome at an acceptable cost? Economists warn us not to dwell on 'sunk costs' and, while painful, we must move beyond the mistakes of the past and focus on the possibilities of the future.

"The surge has produced a considerable decline in violence in Iraq. General Petraeus has accomplished this by using more troops and fighting differently. Perhaps more crucially, he reached out and made a strategic accommodation with many Sunni groups that had once fought U.S. troops. To put it bluntly, he talked to our enemies. These reversals of strategy have had the effect of creating what General Petraeus calls 'breathing space' for political reconciliation. And he has always said that without political progress in Iraq, military efforts will not produce any lasting success.

"He is right. All today's gains could disappear when American troops leave—and they will have to leave one day. The disagreement I have with the Bush administration is that it seems to believe that time will magically make these gains endure. It won't. Without political progress, once the United States reduces its forces, the old mistrust and the old militias will rise up again. Only genuine political power-sharing will create a government and an Army that are seen as national and not sectarian. And that, in turn, is the only path to make Iraq viable without a large American military presence.

"In recent months there has been some movement on the reconciliation long promised by the Bush administration. It remains piecemeal and limited—nothing like the new national compact that the Maliki government promised two years ago—but I welcome the gains. It is encouraging to see the Iraqi government act against Shiite militias in Basra and Sadr City, which sends a signal that they will be equal-opportunity enforcers of the law.

"More needs to happen. Militias remain powerful in many parts of Iraq. The Sunni tribes that have switched sides must have their members enrolled in the armed forces and police (a process that has moved very slowly so far). Constitutional discussions that have been postponed again and again need to take place soon.

"I have often said that we cannot give a blank check to the Iraq government. And I believe that congressional pressure—the growing frustration of Democrats and Republicans—was an important factor in getting the Iraqi leadership to start moving on outstanding political issues. I believe that we must continue to keep that pressure on the government in Baghdad. The best pressure remains the threat of troop withdrawals. But the obvious corollary is that were the Iraqi government to take decisive action, we should support it by altering the pace of our drawdown. I have set as a target the reduction of U.S. forces at one to two brigades a month, starting in early 2009. Were the Iraqi government to make significant political progress and request a pause in this timetable, and were General Petraeus to support this request, I would give it serious consideration.

"My objective remains to end American combat involvement in Iraq and to do so expeditiously. At some point we are going to have to take off the training wheels in Iraq. I believe that we must have a serious plan that defines when that point is reached. If we define success as an Iraq that looks like France or Holland, we will have to stay indefinitely, continue spending $10 billion a month and keep 140,000 troops in combat. And that is neither acceptable nor sustainable. We will have to accept as success a muddy middle ground—an Iraq that is a functioning, federal democracy with a central government and an army able to tackle the bulk of challenges they face. General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker have themselves said that no matter what success we achieve, there will remain some Al Qaeda presence in Iraq and some Iranian influence, since Iran is a neighbor.

"I have been a longstanding opponent of the Iraq War. But I am a passionate supporter of the Iraqi people. They deserve a decent future after decades of tyranny and five years of chaos. The United States must continue its assistance and engagement with Iraq on a whole range of issues—economic, administrative and security-related. We owe the Iraqi people this, and we hope to maintain a friendship with them for decades. I have always said that I would not withdraw troops precipitously, nor do I insist that we will draw down to zero. If circumstances require, we will have a small presence in the country to fight Al Qaeda, train the Iraqi Army, protect American interests and provide humanitarian assistance. But it will be small and it will be temporary—which is also as the Iraqi people seem to wish.

Another significant difference between Senator McCain and me is that I would couple the reduction in our military forces in Iraq with a diplomatic surge, not just to push the Iraqis to make deals, but also to get its neighbors more productively involved in Iraq. It is a sign of our neglect of diplomacy that today, five years after the fall of Saddam Hussein, only two Arab governments have pledged to name an ambassador to Baghdad. Iraq is not an island. It is a founding member of the Arab League and a crucial country in the Persian Gulf. We need to engage with all Iraq's neighbors—including Syria and Iran—to create a lasting political stability that is supported in the region.

"But finally, I would return to my original concerns. General Petraeus has successfully executed the task he was given, to shore up a collapsing situation in Iraq. But his responsibility was Iraq. His new area of operation stretches from the Arab world into Pakistan and Afghanistan. There lie the most dangerous and immediate threats to American security. The Taliban is enjoying its greatest resurgence since 9/11. Former U.S. commander Gen. Dan McNeill has said we need at least two more combat brigades to fight it. But there are literally no brigades to spare because of our massive commitment in Iraq.

"The president of the United States is responsible not just for Iraq, not just for the Middle East and West Asia, but for America's interests across the globe. We must make our commitment in Iraq one that is limited, temporary and thus sustainable. And we must also be aware that there is a much larger world out there, with the Taliban in Afghanistan, with Iran's growing ambitions, a rising China, a resurgent Russia, an obstructionist Venezuela. All these require attention. The test of a commander in chief is not to focus obsessively on one battlefield but to keep all of them in view and to use resources and tactics in a way that creates an overall grand strategy, one that keeps the American people safe and the world at peace."

© the issue of Newsweek, June 30, 2008