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Archive for December, 2007

Weekly Report: On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory No. 50/2007 ( 13 – 26 Dec. 2007 )

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 28, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Weekly Report: On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory No. 50/2007 ( 13 – 26 Dec. 2007 )

PCHR – Palestinian Centre for Human Rights
w50.jpg

The Annexation Wall obstructs the movement of Palestinian civilians in the West Bank

December 27, 2007Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) Escalate Attacks against Palestinian Civilians and Property in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), Especially in the Gaza Strip

  • 23 Palestinians, including one civilian, were killed by IOF in the Gaza Strip.
  • 10 of the victims were extra-judicially executed by IOF.
  • 8 of the victims were killed by IOF during an offensive on al-Musaddar village in the central Gaza Strip.
  • 32 Palestinians were wounded by the IOF gunfire in the Gaza Strip, and 9 persons, including an American human rights defender, were wounded by IOF in the West Bank.
  • IOF invaded al-Musaddar village in the central Gaza Strip
  • IOF razed 133 donum] of agricultural land.
  • IOF partially destroyed 10 houses and arrested one Palestinian.
  • IOF transformed a number of houses into military sites.
  • IOF conducted 24 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank.
  • IOF arrested 87 Palestinian civilians, including a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, in the West Bank.
  • IOF have continued to impose a total siege on the OPT.
  • IOF have isolated the Gaza Strip from the outside world and a humanitarian crisis has emerged.
  • IOF prevented at least 150 Palestinian pilgrims to travel through Erez crossing.
  • IOF troops positioned at checkpoints in the West Bank arrested 3 Palestinian civilians.
  • IOF have continued settlement activities in the West Bank and Israeli settlers have continued to attacks Palestinian civilians and property.
  • IOF demolished a house in Jerusalem
  • Israeli settlers attacked a Palestinian farmer in Nablus.

Summary

Israeli violations of international law and humanitarian law continued in the OPT during the reporting period (13 – 26 December 2007):

Shooting: During the reporting period, IOF killed 23 Palestinians. Ten of the victims were extra-judicially executed in 3 IOF air strikes in less than 9 hours at the eve of the Eid al-Adha. The victims were all members of the al-Quds Brigades (the armed wing of Islamic Jihad). Additionally, 10 civilian bystanders were wounded.

On 20 December 2007, IOF killed 8 members of the Palestinian resistance during an incursion into al-Musaddar village in the central Gaza Strip. Additionally, 21 Palestinians, including a woman, 2 children and 2 journalists, were wounded.

On 18 December 2007, an IOF air strike killed 2 police officers in Rafah. On 21 December 2007, IOF killed a member of the Palestinian resistance in ‘Abasan village, east of Khan Yunis. On 24 December 2007, IOF killed 2 members of the Palestinian resistance in al-Boreij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip.

On 23 December 2007, a Palestinian civilian was wounded by a gunshot fired by IOF, when he was on his land in the east of Deir al-Balah town in the central Gaza Strip.

In the West Bank, 13 Palestinian civilians and an American human rights defender were wounded by IOF gunfire.

On 14 and 21 December 2007, 9 Palestinian civilians and an American human rights defender were wounded when IOF used force to disperse peaceful demonstrations in Bal’ein village, west of Ramallah, organized in protest to the construction of the Annexation Wall. On 14 December 2007, a Palestinian civilian was wounded by IOF gunfire near the Annexation Wall to the south of Hebron. On 23 December 2007, IOF troops positioned at a checkpoint near Beit Ummar village, north of Hebron, wounded and arrested a Palestinian civilian. On 24 December 2007, 2 Palestinian children were wounded by IOF gunfire in ‘Azzoun village, east of Qalqilya.

Incursions: During the reporting period, IOF conducted at least 24 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. During those incursions, IOF arrested 87 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children, a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, 2 members of the municipal council of Nablus and 3 university professors. Thus, the number of Palestinians arrested by IOF in the West Bank since the beginning of this year has mounted to 2,640.

In the Gaza Strip, on 20 December 2007, the second day of the Eid al-Adha, IOF moved into al-Musaddar village in the central Gaza Strip. During this incursion, IOF killed 8 Palestinians and wounded 21 others. They also razed 73 donums of agricultural land and partially destroyed 10 houses. Additionally, IOF arrested a Palestinian civilian. On 21 December 2007, an IOF infantry unit moved into ‘Abasan village, east of Khan Yunis. During this incursion, IOF troops killed a member of the Palestinian resistance.

Restrictions on Movement: IOF have continued to impose a tightened siege on the OPT and imposed severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.

Gaza Strip

IOF have continued to close all border crossings of the Gaza Strip for nearly 18 months. The total siege imposed by IOF on the Gaza Strip has left disastrous impacts on the humanitarian situation and has violated the economic and social rights of the Palestinian civilian population, particularly the rights to appropriate living conditions, health and education. It has also paralyzed most economic sectors. Furthermore, severe restrictions have been imposed on the movement of the Palestinian civilian population. Moreover, the siege imposed on the Gaza Strip has severely impacted the flow of food, medical supplies and other necessities such as fuel, construction materials and raw materials for various economic sectors. IOF have further tightened the siege imposed on the Gaza Strip since Hamas’ takeover of the Gaza Strip, and the living and economic conditions of Palestinian civilians have further deteriorated. On 19 September 2007, the Israeli government declared the Gaza Strip as “a hostile entity” and accordingly measures of collective punishment against Gaza escalated. Since that time, IOF have limited the goods exported to the Gaza Strip to only 9 basic materials. As a consequence, local markets ran out of many goods, which caused a sharp increase in prices, which mounted to 500% for some goods. IOF have banned the flow of some medicines, furniture, electrical appliances and cigarettes into the Gaza Strip, and have decreased the amounts of some goods allowed into the Gaza Strip, such as fruits, milk and some dairy products.

West Bank

IOF have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. Thousands of Palestinian civilians from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip have been denied access to Jerusalem. IOF have established many checkpoints around and inside the city. Restrictions of the movement of Palestinian civilians often escalate on Fridays to prevent them from praying at the al-Aqsa Mosque. IOF often violently beat Palestinian civilians who attempt to bypass checkpoints and enter the city. IOF have also tightened the siege imposed on Palestinian communities in the West Bank. IOF positioned at various checkpoints in the West Bank have continued to impose severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians. IOF also erected more checkpoints on the main roads and intersections in the West Bank. During the reporting period, IOF troops positioned at checkpoints and border crossings in the West Bank arrested at least 3 Palestinian civilians.

Settlement Activities: IOF have continued settlement activities and Israeli settlers living in the OPT in violation of international humanitarian law have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property. During the reporting period, IOF demolished a Palestinian house in Wad al-Jouz neighborhood in East Jerusalem. A number of Israeli settlers also attacked a Palestinian farmer in Til village, southwest of Nablus, injuring him.

The full story in
http://uruknet.info/?p=m39579&hd=&size=1&l=e

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Hindu mobs attack churches in India over Christmas, kill one Thursday, 27 December 2007

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 28, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Hindu mobs attack churches in India over Christmas, kill one

By MATTHEW ROSENBERG, Associated Press Writer

Wed Dec 26, 11:52 AM ET

NEW DELHI – Hindu extremists ransacked and burned eight rural churches in eastern India, marring Christmas celebrations in a corner of the country with a history of violence against Christians, officials said Wednesday. One person was killed in the violence.

Authorities deployed 450 police and imposed a curfew to quell the violence in the remote district of Orissa state where the churches ­ most nothing more than mud-and-thatch houses ­ were attacked, said Bahugrahi Mahapatra, a government official.

Six of the village churches were torched on Christmas day, and two more were attacked Wednesday along with 10 houses belonging to Christians, Mahapatra said.

India is overwhelmingly Hindu but officially secular, a fact India’s leaders often point out. They note that religious minorities, such as Christians, who account for 2.5 percent of the country’s 1.1. billion people, and Muslims, who make up 14 percent, often coexist peacefully. Some have risen to the highest levels of government and business.

But throughout India’s history, both communities have faced repeated attacks from hardline Hindus, with violence against Christians often directed at foreign missionaries and converts from Hinduism.

Orissa has one of the worst histories of anti-Christian violence. In one of the most brutal incidents, an Australian missionary and his two sons, 8 and 10, where burned to death in their car following a Bible study class in 1999.

Orissa is also the only Indian state that has a law requiring people to obtain police permission before they change their religion. The law was intended to counter missionary work.

There were conflicting reports of what sparked the Christmas violence, with each side blaming the other. Mahapatra called the violence a “sensitive matter” and refused to discuss how it began.

The Hindu hard-liners said Christians had attempted to attack one of their leaders, 80-year-old Laxmanananda Saraswati of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad group, who leads an anti-conversion movement.

“When they were prevented from attacking him by his followers the Christians hit someone with an ax and one Hindu died,” Giriraj Kishore told reporters in New Delhi.

But the New Delhi-based Catholic Bishops Conference of India said the fighting began Monday when Hindu extremists objected to a show marking Christmas Eve, believing it was designed to encourage Hindus at the bottom of the religion’s rigid caste hierarchy to convert to Christianity. Low-caste Hindus are often a target of missionaries.

An argument over the Christmas show got out of hand and some of the Hindus opened fire on the Christians, wounding three of them, said John Dayal, a spokesman for the Bishops Conference.

The Hindus then went on a rampage Tuesday, Christmas Day, chasing people out of six churches and setting the mud-and-thatch buildings ablaze, he said.

Later, dozens of people from each community clashed, Dayal said. One person was killed, he added, but could not say if the dead man was a Hindu or Christian. Another 25 people were wounded, the Press Trust of India news agency said.

Much of the ill-will in the area, about 840 miles southeast of the national capital, New Delhi, stems from anti-missionary sentiment. Some hardline Hindus are pushing for all missionaries to be expelled while Christians have challenged the conversion law in court, saying it violates India’s constitution.

The full story in
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071226/ap_on_re_as/india_churches_attacked

*********************************

Christians fear persecution, draw analogy with Gujrat massacres

BHUBANESWAR, India (Reuters) – Hundreds of central police were deployed in Orissa on Wednesday after Hindu hardliners burnt and damaged 14 churches, killing at least one person, police said.

Christians also damaged at least three Hindu temples during communal clashes, a local Hindu group said.

The reported injury of a local Hindu leader by a Christian group on Monday sparked two days of violence over Christmas in the Kandhamal district of southern Orissa. Hardliners also accuse Christian groups of converting low-caste Hindus.

Despite a curfew in some areas, fresh trouble broke out late on Wednesday. Two more churches were set alight, and a police station and a local government office were also attacked, said G.C. Nanda, the state police chief.

Local television channels showed one church with its windows smashed and broken furniture strewn across the floor. Many of the churches targeted were makeshift places of worship, often built with thatched roofs and mud walls, local media reported.

The hardliners, some linked to India’s main Hindu-nationalist grouping, the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), have accused Christian priests of bribing poor tribespeople and low-caste Hindus to change their faith.

A senior Christian leader said state authorities had turned a blind eye to the violence. He compared the situation to that in Gujarat, where a BJP-led government has been accused of inciting violence against Muslim and Christian minority communities.

“I feel the government has allowed them to continue this sort of thing somehow, because I am afraid they are repeating what happened in Gujarat in the last two to three years,” Raphael Cheenath, Archbishop of Bhubaneswar, told local television.

B. Barik, a local Hindu organisation leader, said at least three Hindu temples had been damaged in the clashes. Police said they could not confirm this.

Orissa, now governed by a BJP ally, has been the scene of some of the worst attacks on Christians, including the 1999 murders of Australian missionary Graham Staines and his two children who were burned to death inside their car by a mob.

Christian groups say lower-caste Hindus who convert do so willingly to escape the highly stratified and oppressive Hindu caste system.

Several BJP-ruled states have passed anti-conversion laws. Christians account for around 2 percent of mainly Hindu India’s 1.1 billion people.

The full story in
http://in.reuters.com/article/topNews/idINIndia-31119320071226?rpc=401&

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

APAKAH BERJILBAB TERMASUK MASALAH IJTIHADI DALAM SYARI’AH ISLAM SEHINGGA KEDUDUKAN HUKUMNYA MENJADI RELATIF?

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

From: On Behalf Of Nabiel Almusawa
Sent: Sunday, December 23, 2007 2:34 AM

APAKAH BERJILBAB TERMASUK MASALAH IJTIHADI DALAM SYARI’AH ISLAM SEHINGGA KEDUDUKAN HUKUMNYA MENJADI RELATIF?

Oleh : Abi AbduLLAAH

Di akhir zaman ini banyak orang yg berani berfatwa dengan menabrak kesepakatan para ulama, keluar dari kaidah belajar ilmu fiqh yang disepakati, mencari pendapat2 yg syadz (nyleneh), yg bagi orang yg benar2 mempelajari fiqh tidak tertutup lobang2 kelemahan mereka, semua ini mereka lakukan hanya demi memuaskan orang2 kafir bahwa Islam itu toleran, mengikuti zaman, padahal kelemahan pendapat mereka itu amat sangat mereka sadari.

Mirisnya lagi hal tsb dilakukan oleh orang2 yg katanya bergelar doktor atau bahkan profesor, lalu diajarkan dengan penuh semangat di universitas2 yg sebagian besar (tidak seluruhnya) para pengajarnya belajar dari negara2 sekular & kuffar, atau ada pula yg belajar dari negara Islam tapi pada orang2 yg sudah nyleneh pula dan dikenal menjadi kolaborator kuffar.

Salah satu dari fatwa yg demikian itu adalah bahwa Jilbab itu tidak wajib, atau merupakan masalah ijtihadiyah, atau masalah khilafiyyah, sehingga dalil hukumnya bersifat relatif & tidak mengikat, demikianlah salah satu igauan mereka di siang-bolong, yg jika kita teliti fatwa2 mereka itu nampaklah pemutar-balikan fakta dimana2, perancuan dalil yg shahih dengan yg dha’if, memaksakan diri menggunakan tafsir bir ra’yil qabih/tafsir dg logika yg sesat (karena ada juga tafsir yg bir ra’yi shahih/logika tapi terbimbing oleh wahyu), dan mereka ini secara sengaja menjauhi tafsir bil ma’tsur (tafsir menggunakan dalil, karena akan menghancurleburkan semua pijakan mereka itu), mereka juga menggunakan kaidah ushul-fiqh secara terbalik-balik sesuai hawa nafsu mereka sendiri, dll.

Yg kesemuanya itu hanya menunjukkan ashabiyyah (fanatisme) terhadap syahwat & taqdis (pengkultusan) kepada akal secara berlebihan, yg kesemuanya ini merupakan ciri sebagian aliran mu’tazilah-jadidah (neo-rasionalis) yg kemudian sayap radikalnya bermuara kepada aliran liberal yg menyempal jauh dari ajaran Islam, merupakan mazhab sempalan dalam ajaran Islam, sebagaimana mazhab Syi’ah maupun Khawarij.

Salah satu ciri kelompok ini adalah pernyataan mereka bhw dlm syariat Islam kebenaran sebuah pandangan adalah relatif karena semuanya adalah ijtihad, maka setiap orang berhak untuk memilih mana yg menurutnya benar.. Inna liLLLAAHi wa inna ilayhi raji’un! Dari mana munculnya igauan seperti ini?! Coba tunjukkan referensi yg mu’tabar (diakui sebagai referensi syari’ah) yg menyebutkannya?! Kecuali referensi para orientalis atau murid2nya, maka tidak ada jumhur-ulama yg mengakuinya kecuali kalangan orientalis dan para pengikut2-nya, semoga mereka diberi hidayah sehingga kembali ke jalan Islam yg lurus, aamiin..

1. MAKNA MENUTUP AURAT & JILBAB :

a. Aurat dlm bahasa Arab bermakna keburukan manusia[1], atau celah/kekurangan[2], adapun menurut syari’ah didefinisikan sbg apa2 yg diwajibkan untuk ditutupi dan diharamkan untuk dipandang[3].

b. Jilbab berbeda dg kerudung (khumur)[4], karena jilbab adalah baju kurung yg panjang/jubah[5] yg digunakan agar menutupi seluruh yg di bawahnya. Ia merupakan kain yg diselubungkan di atas kerudung[6], atau sejenis kain selubung/semacam mantel (milhafah)[7].

2. AURAT WANITA YG WAJIB DITUTUP DALAM AL-QUR’AN :

a. Yg Wajib Berjilbab Bukan Hanya Istri Nabi Saja :

ي٠ا أ٠يُّه٠ا النّ٠بِيُّ قُلْ لِأ٠زْو٠اجِك٠و٠ب٠ن٠اتِك٠و٠نِس٠اءِ الْمُؤْمِنِين٠يُدْنِين٠ع٠ل٠يْهِنّ٠مِنْ ج٠ل٠ابِيبِهِنّ٠ذ٠لِك٠أ٠دْن٠ى أ٠نْ يُعْر٠فْن٠ف٠ل٠ا يُؤْذ٠يْن٠و٠ك٠ان٠اللّ٠هُ غ٠فُورًا ر٠حِيمًا

“Hai Nabi, katakanlah kepada isteri-isterimu, anak-anak perempuanmu dan isteri-isteri orang mukmin: Hendaklah mereka mengulurkan jilbabnya ke seluruh tubuh mereka. Yang demikian itu supaya mereka lebih mudah untuk dikenal, karena itu mereka tidak diganggu dan ALLAAH adalah Maha Pengampun lagi Maha Penyayang.”[8]

Berkata Imam At-Thabari bhw maknanya, ALLAAH SWT berfirman pd nabi SAW : Hai Nabi, katakan pd istrimu, anak2 mu dan wanita muslimah : Janganlah kalian menyerupai wanita2 lain dlm cara berpakaiannya (yatasyabbahna bil ima’i fi libasihinna) yaitu dg membiarkan rambut dan wajah terbuka, melainkan tutup semua itu dg jilbab[9]; berkata Imam Ibnu Katsir bhw maknanya : ALLAAH SWT menyampaikan kepada Nabi-NYA agar memerintahkan kepada semua wanita muslimah agar menjaga kehormatan mereka dan agar mereka berbeda dengan cara berpakaiannya wanita jahiliyyah yaitu hendaklah gunakan jilbab[10]; berkata Imam Asy-Syaukaniy bhw ayat ini sabab-nuzulnya adalah berkenaan dg peristiwa keluarnya Saudah RA yg dicela oleh Umar RA, lalu turun ayat ini yg membolehkan wanita keluar rumah untuk suatu kepentingan asal mereka menutup jilbabnya[11].

b. Ayat Ini Tidak Ada Kaitannya Dg Haditsul ‘Ifki

Diantara salah satu kedunguan mereka dan tidak berilmunya mereka dan guru2 mereka, adalah kata2 mereka bhw asbab-nuzul ayat ini berkaitan dg peristiwa haditsul-ifki pada Ummul Mu’minin Aisyah RA.. Laa hawla walaa quwwata illa biLLAAH.. Persis sebagaimana dlm pepatah Arab dikatakan : Saarat Musyarriqah wa sirta Mugharriban, Syattaana baynal Musyarriq wa Mugharrib (Ia berjalan ke Timur tapi engkau malah berjalan ke Barat, Ketahuilah sungguh amat jauh jaraknya antara Timur dan Barat itu). Sebagaimana kita ketahui bhw peristiwa Al-Ifki itu turun berkenaan dg QS An-Nuur[12], tidak ada hubungannya dengan QS Al-Ahzab, karena surah Al-Ahzab turun berkenaan dg itu, melainkan berkenaan dg bantahan kepada orang2 Munafiq Madinah seperti Ibnu Ubay, dll yg didatangi tokoh2 Quraisy Makkah ba’da perang Uhud, lalu mereka takut Nabi SAW akan mengetahui mereka, lalu turun surah ini untuk meneguhkan Nabi SAW dan membantah mereka[13].

c. Ayat ini Tidak Bisa Menggunakan Kaidah Fiqh : Al-Ibratu Bikhushushi Sabab La Bi Umumi Lafzh (Hukum itu Berdasarkan Khususnya Sebab Bukan Umumnya Lafzh)

Salah satu bentuk kerancuan berfikir mereka menyimpangkan kaidah secara tidak benar untuk mengelabui orang2 bodoh (karena memang hanya orang bodoh saja yg tertarik pd pendapat mereka), bahwa sudah jelas2 ayat tsb menyatakan : Qul Li Azwajika wa Banatika wa Nisa’il Mu’mina (Katakan pd istrimu, anakmu & PARA WANITA MUSLIMAH..), lalu tiba2 mereka bicara tentang kaidah berdasarkan khususnya sabab saja, lha kepriben tho mas?! Sudah menjelaskan sabab-nuzulnya aja sudah ngawur di atas, lalu bertambah ngawur lagi dlm menggunakan kaidah ini sementara khithab ayat ini bersifat umum dan tidak bisa di-takhshish.. Mengapa mereka sampai berfikir dg kaidah terbalik2 demikian?! Karena kebohongan dan tidak menjaga amanah ilmiah, sudah mendarah-daging dlm diri mereka dan diajarkan juga oleh guru2 mereka, sehingga memutar-balik hukum, dalil & ayat tidak menjadi masalah buat mereka, yg penting hawa-nafsu mereka terpuaskan, kalau perlu mengambil dalil fiqh & hadits dari kitab sastra juga tak apa, yg penting berargumen dg Kitab Kuning supaya nampak “pinter”, kalau ada yg ngerti lalu mengecek dan menunjukkan letak salahnya, cukup mereka katakan saja : maaf salah tulis, kan beres, lalu cari lagi kitab lainnya, siapa tahu tidak ketahuan belangnya, na’udzu biLLAAHi min dzalik…

d. Saat Turun Ayat Jilbab ini Para Shahabat Wanita Langsung Melaksanakannya Tanpa Banyak Alasan & Keberatan

Berkata Ibnu Abi Hatim, telah menceritakan kepada kami Abu AbdiLLAAH Azh-Zhahraniy, dari apa yg ditulisnya untukku, telah menceritakan kepadaku AbduRRAZZAQ, telah menceritakan kepadaku Ma’mar, dari Ibnu Khutsaim, dari Shafiyyah binti Syaibah, dari Ummu Salamah berkata : “Semoga ALLAAH SWT merahmati para wanita Anshar, pada saat turun ayat ini[14] maka keluarlah semua wanita Anshar seolah2 di kepala2 mereka ada burung Gagak (Al-Ghirban), karena jilbab yg mereka kenakan dg bahan yg seadanya yg mereka temui saat itu juga.”[15]

3. AURAT WANITA DALAM AS-SUNNAH :

a. Hadits Pertama :

لا يقبل الله صلاة حائض إلا بخمار

“Tidak diterima shalat wanita yg sudah haidh (baligh –pen) kecuali menggunakan khimar (kerudung).”[16]

b. Hadits Kedua :

أن أسماء بنت أبي بكر دخلت على النبي ( صلى الله عليه وسلم ) في ثياب رقاق فأعرض عنها وقال : يا أسماء إن المرأة إذا بلغت المحيض لم يصلح أن يرى منها إلا هذا وهذا . وأشار إلى وجهه وكفيه

“Sesungguhnya Asma’ binti Abibakr (saat itu ia masih remaja –pen) masuk ke tempat Nabi SAW menggunakan pakaian yg menampak sammar2 bayang2 kulit di bawahnya, maka Nabi SAW berpaling darinya sambil bersabda : Wahai Asma’ sesungguhnya wanita itu jika sudah haidh tidak boleh nampak bagian tubuhnya kecuali ini dan ini, beliau SAW memberi isyarat pd wajah & tapak tangannya.”[17]

c. Hadits Ketiga :

صِنْف٠انِ مِنْ أ٠هْلِ النّ٠ارِ ل٠مْ أ٠ر٠هُم٠ا ق٠وْمٌ م٠ع٠هُمْ سِي٠اطٌ ك٠أ٠ذْن٠ابِ الْب٠ق٠رِ ي٠ضْرِبُون٠بِه٠ا النّ٠اس٠و٠نِس٠اءٌ ك٠اسِي٠اتٌ ع٠ارِي٠اتٌ مُمِيلا٠تٌ م٠ائِلا٠تٌ رُءُوسُهُنّ٠ك٠أ٠سْنِم٠ةِ الْبُخْتِ الْم٠ائِل٠ةِ لا٠ي٠دْخُلْن٠الْج٠نّ٠ة٠و٠لا٠ي٠جِدْن٠رِيح٠ه٠ا و٠إِنّ٠رِيح٠ه٠ا ل٠يُوج٠دُ مِنْ م٠سِير٠ةِ ك٠ذ٠ا و٠ك٠ذ٠ا

“Ada 2 kelompok manusia penghuni neraka yg belum pernah kulihat (saat beliau SAW hidup –pen), yg pertama laki2 yg memegang cambuk sepeerti ekor sapi yg kerjanya memukuli manusia dgnya; yg kedua wanita yg berpakaian tetapi telanjang kalau jalan berlenggang-lenggok menggoda rambutnya seperti punuk unta, 2 kelompok ini tidak masuk Syurga dan tidak bisa mencium bau Syurga, padahal baunya tercium dari jarak sekian dan sekian (jarak yg amat jauh –pen).”[18]

4. AURAT YG WAJIB DITUTUP MENURUT MADZHAB YG EMPAT :

a. Menurut Madzhab Hanafi : Aurat Wanita adalah seluruh tubuhnya kecuali wajah & 2 telapak tangannya[19], oleh karenanya kepala wanita adalah aurat yg harus ditutup[20]. Bahkan berkata Imam Hanafi : Kewajiban menutup aurat di depan manusia sudah menjadi ijma’ (konsensus semua ulama), demikian pula saat ia shalat walaupun shalatnya sendirian, maka seandainya saja ada orang yg melakukan shalat dalam keadaan sendirian tidak menutup aurat sekalipun di tempat yg amat gelap-gulita padahal ia memiliki pakaian yg dapat menutupinya maka shalatnya batal[21].

b. Menurut Madzhab Maliki : Aurat wanita di depan sesama wanita muslimah adalah sama dg aurat laki2 dg sesama laki2 (yg tidak boleh terlihat hanya antara pusar sampai lutut -pen)[22], aurat wanita di depan laki2 muslim adalah seluruh tubuhnya kecuali wajah & 2 tapak tangannya, aurat wanita di depan laki2 kafir adalah seluruh tubuhnya termasuk wajah & 2 tapak tangannya[23]. Berkata Imam Malik : Jika seorang wanita merasa wajahnya atau tapak tangannya demikian indahnya sehingga ia amat kuatir orang yg melihatnya terkena fitnah maka baik ia tutup bagian tsb (dg cadar misalnya -pen)[24].

c. Menurut Madzhab Syafi’i[25] : Aurat wanita adalah seluruh tubuhnya kecuali wajah & 2 tapak tangannya[26], yaitu tapak tangannya yg bagian atas maupun yg bagian bawahnya bukan termasuk aurat, tapi dlm masalah ini madzhab kami ada 2 qaul, namun berkata Al-Muzni bhw yg kuat ia bukan termasuk aurat[27]. Telapak kaki wanita termasuk aurat[28], bagi banci yg menurut kedokteran dominan sifat wanitanya maka auratnya sama dg aurat wanita[29]. Berkata Imam Syafi’i : Bukan hanya batas aurat-nya[30] saja yg harus ditutup, melainkan tidak cukup aurat tsb ditutupi oleh pakaian yg menutupi seluruhnya jika ia masih ketat/membentuk tubuh[31].

d. Menurut Madzhab Hanbali : Ada 2 qaul[32], yg pertama menyatakan bhw aurat wanita adalah seluruh tubuhnya sampai ke kuku2nya[33] berdasarkan hadits riwayat Tirmidzi : Al-Mar’atu ‘aurah (wanita itu aurat), dan qaul kedua dikecualikannya wajah & 2 tapak tangan berdasar hadits larangan bagi wanita menutup keduanya saat Ihram[34], juga sesuai dg makna ayat “maa zhahara minha (kecuali yg biasa nampak)”[35] maka wajah & 2 tapak tanganlah makna ayat tsb krn keduanya tdk mungkin ditutup untuk mengenali orang saat berbisnis, dsb[36] ada juga yg menambahkan kedua tapak kaki[37].

e. Tarjih wal Mulahazhat : Sebab dari adanya perbedaan pendapat ini adalah dlm menafsirkan ayat QS An-Nur di atas. Apakah maknanya ada yg boleh nampak atau maknanya tidak ada yg boleh nampak bagi wanita. Jumhur fuqaha berpendapat wajah & 2 tapak tangan bukan aurat bagi wanita (Imam Hanafi menambahkan tapak kaki wanita bukan aurat), sementara Abubakar bin AbduRRAHMAN & satu qaul dari Imam Ahmad berpendapat bhw seluruh tubuh wanita adalah aurat.

Mereka yg berpendapat bhw tidak ada yg biasa nampak untuk wanita dan menyatakan seluruh tubuhnya adalah aurat, berdalil dg menafsirkan ayat ini dg ayat di surah Al-Ahzab di atas (tafsirul Qur’an bil Qur’an). Adapun kelompok yg menyatakan adanya pengecualian wajah & 2 tapak tangan berdalil dg wajibnya membuka kedua hal ini saat hajji berdasar hadits2 shahih, dan pendapat yg kedua ini lebih kuat waLLAAHu a’lam bish Shawaab.

Demikian wahai para wanita muslimah –rahimakumuLLAAH-, jadi buukan menggunakan menggunakan pendekatan logika atau pendekatan kultural Arab, antropologi, sosiologi dan yg semacamnya yg tentu saja bisa berbeda2, rambut sama hitam pendapat bisa berbeda. Melainkan semuanya itu –jika kita bicara syari’ah– harus berdasarkan dalil dan di-istinbath menggunakan metode ilmu syari’ah yg benar dan bukan metode kirata (dikira2 tapi nyata).

Dan yg demikian ini jika kita masih menganggap Al-Qur’an itu adalah firman ALLAAH SWT yg terjaga dari kesalahan, dan Hadits Shahih adalah sabda Nabi SAW yg ma’shum lepas dari hawa-nafsu. Kecuali jika kita anggap Al-Qur’an seperti koran-harian yg bisa di-reaktualisasi atau hadits Nabi SAW setara dg ucapan Nietsche atau Juergen Habermas, maka sungguh aku berlindung pada ALLAAH SWT dari hal yg demikian bagi diriku sendiri dan seluruh keturunanku, fa ayna tadzhabina ayyuhal muslimah..???

———————————————————-

[1] Lih. Ash-Shihaah Fil Lughah, II/5; Tahdzib Al-Lughah, I/367

[2] Lih. Lisanul Arab, IV/612; Tajul Arus, I/3257

[3] Lih. Al-Fiqh Al-Islamiy, I/738

[4] Tafsir Ibnu Katsir, VI/481

[5] Kamus Al-Munawwir, bab Ja-la-ba, hal 199

[6] Demikianlah pendapat para mufassir seperti Ibnu Mas’ud, Ubaidah, Qatadah, Hasan Al-Bashri, Said bin Jubair, Ibrahim An-Nakha’i, Atha’ Al-Khurasaniy.

[7] Lih. Ash-Shihaah, I/101; demikian pendapat Al-Jauhary berdasarkan sya’ir seorang tokoh wanita dari suku Hudzail : “Berjalanlah ia seorang diri dg lalai.. Yaitu dengan telanjang (hanya berkerudung saja –pen) tanpa berjilbab.”

[8] QS Al-Ahzab, 33:59

[9] Tafsir At-Thabari, XX/324

[10] Tafsir Ibnu Katsir, VI/481

[11] Tafsir Durrul Mantsur, VIII/208, hadits ini juga diriwayatkan oleh Bukhari, Muslim, Ibnu Jarir, Ibnu Abi Hatim, Al-Baihaqi & Ibnu Sa’d

[12] Shahih Bukhari, no. 2314, 6633 dan Muslim, no. 1697

[13] Lih. Asbab Nuzulil Qur’an, Al-Wahidi, I/126; Lih. Juga Tafsir Munir, Az-Zuhayli, XI/247

[14] QS Al-Ahzab, 33:59

[15] Lih. Tafsir AbduRRAZZAQ, II/101; ada riwayat lain yg menjadi syawahid atas hadits ini yg diriwayatkan Al-Hasan bin Muslim, dari Shafiyyah binti Syaibah, dari A’isyah RA (Lih. Shahih Bukhari, no. 4759)

[16] HR Abu Daud no. 164; Tirmidzi, II/215-216; Ibnu Majah no. 655; Ibnu Abi Syaibah, II/28; Al-Hakim, I/251; Al-Baihaqi, II/233; Ahmad, VI/150; Di-shahih-kan oleh Albani dlm Al-Irwa’, I/214

[17] HR Abu Daud, II/138, hadits ini dha’if tapi ada syahid dari hadits Asma’ binti Umays RA dari Al-Baihaqi, VII/76, sehingga menjadi hasan, lih. Al-Irwa’, VI/203

[18] HR Muslim, XIV/229 hadits no. 5704 (Imam Muslim sampai menamai babnya ini dg nama : “Wanita2 yg Berpakaian Tapi Telanjang”); Al-Baihaqi, II/234; Ahmad, II/355

[19] Al-Ikhtiyar Li Ta’lil Al-Mukhtar, I/4

[20] Al-Mabsuth, II/64

[21] Raddul Mukhtar, I/375

[22] Mawahib Al-Jalil fi Syarh Mukhtashar Syaikh Khalil, IV/16

[23] Asy-Syarhul Kabir Li Syaikh Ad-Dardir, I/214

[24] Mawahib Al-Jalil fi Syarh Mukhtashar Syaikh Khalil, IV/24

[25] Imam Az-Zayadi Asy-Syafi’i dlm Syarhul Muharrar menyebutkan 4 jenis aurat bagi wanita : Pertama, aurat saat shalat yaitu kecuali wajah & 2 tapak tangan; Kedua, aurat pandangan dari orang laki2 yaitu semuanya termasuk lelaki dilarang memandangi secara terus-menerus wajah & tangan wanita; Ketiga, aurat di depan suami atau saat sendirian yaitu sama dg aurat laki2 (kecuali pusar & lutut); Keempat, aurat di depan orang kafir yaitu seluruh tubuhnya (Lih. Hawasyi Asy-Syairaziy, II/112).h

[26] Al-Majmu’, III/167

[27] Raudhatut Thalibin wa ‘Umdatul Muftin, I/104

[28] Al-Umm, I/109

[29] Fathul Wahhab, I/88

[30] Aurat ada yg mughalazhah (aurat besar) yaitu 2 kemaluan & ada yg ghairu-mughalazhah (aurat kecil), keduanya harus ditutup

[31] Al-Qawanin Al-Fiqhiyyah, hal. 54

[32] Menurut Abul Ma’aliy Al-Hanbali, aurat anak sbb : 1) Sblm 6 tahun semuanya bisa dilihat, 2) Setelah 6 th yg boleh dilihat rambut, betis dan lengan (ada juga yg menyatakan seluruh tubuhnya kecuali 2 kemaluan), 3) Setelah 10 tahun sama dg setelah baligh (lih. Al-Furu’ Libni Muflih, I/476).

[33] Ibid.

[34] Asy-Syarhul Kabir, I/458

[35] QS An-Nur, 24/31

[36] Al-Iqna’, I/113

[37] Al-Furu’ Libni Muflih, I/476

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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Judicial Watch Announces List of Washington’s “Ten Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians” for 2007

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

US Corrupt System

Judicial Watch Announces List of Washington’s “Ten Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians” for 2007

Washington, DC –Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, today released its 2007 list of Washington’s “Ten Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians.” The list, in alphabetical order, includes:

1. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY): In addition to her long and sordid ethics record, Senator Hillary Clinton took a lot of heat in 2007 – and rightly so – for blocking the release her official White House records. Many suspect these records contain a treasure trove of information related to her role in a number of serious Clinton-era scandals. Moreover, in March 2007, Judicial Watch filed an ethics complaint against Senator Clinton for filing false financial disclosure forms with the U.S. Senate (again). And Hillary’s top campaign contributor, Norman Hsu, was exposed as a felon and a fugitive from justice in 2007. Hsu pleaded guilt to one count of grand theft for defrauding investors as part of a multi-million dollar Ponzi scheme.

2. Rep. John Conyers (D-MI): Conyers reportedly repeatedly violated the law and House ethics rules, forcing his staff to serve as his personal servants, babysitters, valets and campaign workers while on the government payroll. While the House Ethics Committee investigated these allegations in 2006, and substantiated a number of the accusations against Conyers, the committee blamed the staff and required additional administrative record-keeping and employee training. Judicial Watch obtained documentation in 2007 from a former Conyers staffer that sheds new light on the activities and conduct on the part of the Michigan congressman, which appear to be at a minimum inappropriate and likely unlawful. Judicial Watch called on the Attorney General in 2007 to investigate the matter.

3. Senator Larry Craig (R-ID): In one of the most shocking scandals of 2007, Senator Craig was caught by police attempting to solicit sex in a Minneapolis International Airport men’s bathroom during the summer. Senator Craig reportedly “sent signals” to a police officer in an adjacent stall that he wanted to engage in sexual activity. When the police officer showed Craig his police identification under the bathroom stall divider and pointed toward the exit, the senator reportedly exclaimed ‘No!’” When asked to produce identification, Craig presented police his U.S. Senate business card and said, “What do you think of that?” The power play didn’t work. Craig was arrested, charged and entered a guilty plea. Despite enormous pressure from his Republican colleagues to resign from the Senate, Craig refused.

4. Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA): As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee’s subcommittee on military construction, Feinstein reviewed military construction government contracts, some of which were ultimately awarded to URS Corporation and Perini, companies then owned by Feinstein’s husband, Richard Blum. While the Pentagon ultimately awards military contracts, there is a reason for the review process. The Senate’s subcommittee on Military Construction’s approval carries weight. Sen. Feinstein, therefore, likely had influence over the decision making process. Senator Feinstein also attempted to undermine ethics reform in 2007, arguing in favor of a perk that allows members of Congress to book multiple airline flights and then cancel them without financial penalty. Judicial Watch’s investigation into this matter is ongoing.

5. Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R-NY): Giuliani came under fire in late 2007 after it was discovered the former New York mayor’s office “billed obscure city agencies for tens of thousands of dollars in security expenses amassed during the time when he was beginning an extramarital relationship with future wife Judith Nathan in the Hamptons…” ABC News also reported that Giuliani provided Nathan with a police vehicle and a city driver at taxpayer expense. All of this news came on the heels of the federal indictment on corruption charges of Giuliani’s former Police Chief and business partner Bernard Kerik, who pleaded guilty in 2006 to accepting a $165,000 bribe in the form of renovations to his Bronx apartment from a construction company attempting to land city contracts.

6. Governor Mike Huckabee (R-AR): Governor Huckabee enjoyed a meteoric rise in the polls in December 2007, which prompted a more thorough review of his ethics record. According to The Associated Press: “[Huckabee’s] career has also been colored by 14 ethics complaints and a volley of questions about his integrity, ranging from his management of campaign cash to his use of a nonprofit organization to subsidize his income to his destruction of state computer files on his way out of the governor’s office.” And what was Governor Huckabee’s response to these ethics allegations? Rather than cooperating with investigators, Huckabee sued the state ethics commission twice and attempted to shut the ethics process down.

7. I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby: Libby, former Chief of Staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, was sentenced to 30 months in prison and fined $250,000 for lying and obstructing the Valerie Plame CIA leak investigation. Libby was found guilty of four felonies — two counts of perjury, one count of making false statements to the FBI and one count of obstructing justice – all serious crimes. Unfortunately, Libby was largely let off the hook. In an appalling lack of judgment, President Bush issued “Executive Clemency” to Libby and commuted the sentence.

8. Senator Barack Obama (D-IL): A “Dishonorable Mention” last year, Senator Obama moves onto the “ten most wanted” list in 2007. In 2006, it was discovered that Obama was involved in a suspicious real estate deal with an indicted political fundraiser, Antoin “Tony” Rezko. In 2007, more reports surfaced of deeper and suspicious business and political connections It was reported that just two months after he joined the Senate, Obama purchased $50,000 worth of stock in speculative companies whose major investors were his biggest campaign contributors. One of the companies was a biotech concern that benefited from legislation Obama pushed just two weeks after the senator purchased $5,000 of the company’s shares. Obama was also nabbed conducting campaign business in his Senate office, a violation of federal law.

9. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA): House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who promised a new era of ethics enforcement in the House of Representatives, snuck a $25 million gift to her husband, Paul Pelosi, in a $15 billion Water Resources Development Act recently passed by Congress. The pet project involved renovating ports in Speaker Pelosi’s home base of San Francisco. Pelosi just happens to own apartment buildings near the areas targeted for improvement, and will almost certainly experience a significant boost in property value as a result of Pelosi’s earmark. Earlier in the year, Pelosi found herself in hot water for demanding access to a luxury Air Force jet to ferry the Speaker and her entourage back and forth from San Francisco non-stop, in unprecedented request which was wisely rejected by the Pentagon. And under Pelosi’s leadership, the House ethics process remains essentially shut down – which protects members in both parties from accountability.

10. Senator Harry Reid (D-NV): Over the last few years, Reid has been embroiled in a series of scandals that cast serious doubt on his credibility as a self-professed champion of government ethics, and 2007 was no different. According to The Los Angeles Times, over the last four years, Reid has used his influence in Washington to help a developer, Havey Whittemore, clear obstacles for a profitable real estate deal. As the project advanced, the Times reported, “Reid received tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from Whittemore.” Whittemore also hired one of Reid’s sons (Leif) as his personal lawyer and then promptly handed the junior Reid the responsibility of negotiating the real estate deal with federal officials. Leif Reid even called his father’s office to talk about how to obtain the proper EPA permits, a clear conflict of interest.

Judicial Watch is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Judicial Watch neither supports nor opposes candidates for public office. For more information, visit www.judicialwatch.org

The full story in
http://www.judicialwatch.org/judicial-watch-announces-list-washington-s-ten-most-wanted-corrupt-politicians-2007

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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9/11 : Why won’t the American media try to stop Bilal’s kangaroo court

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

9/11 : Why won’t the American media try to stop Bilal’s kangaroo court

As regular readers know, Attytood has been on the warpath urging the authorities in Iraq, under the thumb of the American military, to give Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist Bilal Hussein a real day in court…or set him free. Our fear is that — before broader awareness of the Hussein case mounts — he will be found guilty in a kangaroo court, without the kind of due process that Americans would expect and that you’d think would be part of that “freedom” package that we delivered to Iraq:Those worst fears are coming true, of course. Harper’s magazine has the inside scoop. For example:

— The Iraqi judge is also allowing the U.S. military to present evidence by witnesses through remote television hook-ups from undisclosed locations. This is done particularly to be sure that Bilal Hussein would not be able to cross-examine any witnesses. — The Pentagon was particularly concerned about the prospect of Bilal Hussein getting effective defense from his lawyer, former federal prosecutor Paul Gardephe. The judge was told to refuse to allow Bilal Hussein’s U.S. lawyer to participate in the case. The judge accepted this advice. Consequently, the U.S. military has a five-man team to press its case, but Bilal Hussein’s lawyer is silenced and not permitted to participate–and all of this has occurred as a result of U.S. Government intervention with the court. The irony of course is that under Iraqi law, the U.S. military has no authority or right to appear and prosecute, but Bilal Hussein’s chosen counsel has an absolute right.

There’s a lot of good (as in “interesting,” not as in “positive”) stuff here, including confirmation that the military is using friendly right-wing bloggers to bypass the tradtional media. Reading this, there is little doubt that this award-winning journalist — who risked his life to bring images from Iraq’s front line to the world and is greatly admired by those who’ve worked with him, like my Daily News colleague Jim MacMillan — will be found guilty by this kangaroo court and sent away for a long time. It’s frustrating. If the American and Iraqi authorities have real evidence that Bilal Hussein is a terrorist, it should be presented in a fair and open courtroom.

Here’s something else that’s even more maddening — America’s journalistic community is not stepping forward to try to stop this disgrace from happening. Tonight, I did a check via Nexis to see if any of America’s A-list newspapers were using their sharpest weapon — the editorial page — as a tool to advocate for justice for an Associated Press photojournalist. The results are sad, but not surprising, either.

The New York Times editorial page — in a piece addressing broader issues — mentioned the case some 15 months ago and called for Hussein to be released if he is not charged. but has not raised the issue in all the time since then. The Chicago Tribune also did an excellent editorial on Hussein using that he be given a fair trial or set free — but here, too, it was back in September of 2006.

The editorial page of the Los Angeles Times? Nada. Ditto for USA Today, which has also provided the least straight news coverage of Hussein’s 19-month detention. Washington Post gets some credit for running two separate op-eds from the head of the AP, Tom Curley, but its editorial page hasn’t said a word on his behalf.

Why not? American newspapers calling for a fair trial and an open process for an award-winning journalist of a U.S.-based news service — this one ought to be the proverbial “slam dunk.” Are they afraid that when this stacked deck falls on Hussein that a bunch of conservative bloggers will go, “Liberal media, nah hah hah nah hah”?

So what? The truth is, this kangaroo court for Bilal Hussein might not be happening at all if the American media called them out in big type. By instead remaining silent and allowing Hussein to be judged in the shadows, this travesty of justice becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The full story in
http://www.attytood.com/2007/12/why_wont_the_american_media_tr.html

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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CIA Torture and other War Crimes

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

CIA Torture and other War Crimes

By Philip Giraldi

12/26/07 “Yahoo” — — Personal accountability has all but disappeared from the American political system. Bill Clinton lied to his entire cabinet about Monica Lewinsky and not a single cabinet member resigned in protest after he was forced to recant. When Alberto Gonzales lied repeatedly during testimony before Congress everyone knew exactly what he was doing but no leading Democrat was willing to impeach him. The hopelessly incompetent Michael Brown was able to resign from FEMA without sanction to “avoid further distraction from the ongoing mission” and later even blamed everyone else for his shortcomings. Condoleezza Rice, Paul Wolfowitz, Tommy Franks, George Tenet, and Paul Bremer were all rewarded for their incompetence, some with medals and some with promotions. Recent resignations from the Bush administration stemming from the massive policy failures of the past seven years have frequently been couched in terms of “wanting to spend more time with my family” though sometimes a bit of candor creeps in a la Trent Lott, who believes it is time to step down and follow the money as a lobbyist. Public Diplomacy Tsarina Karen Hughes arguably plans to do both, returning to Texas to rejoin her family while also cashing in through lucrative speaking engagements. During her two and a half years of Texas-style soccer mom diplomacy at State Department and in spite of a large budget, Hughes only succeeded in increasing the number of foreigners who actively dislike the United States. Never is a resignation from government service framed in terms of “Hey, I screwed up.”

The embrace of illegal detentions and torture are among the truly horrific decisions that can be attributed to the Bush White House. It is ironic to read the media accounts surrounding the recent discovery by shocked U.S. Marines of an alleged al-Qaeda torture center in Iraq’s Diyala province because the Marines work for a government that itself publicly embraces torture as an interrogation technique. And it is not just the White House. Torture is bipartisan. The recent House of Representatives intelligence appropriations bill included a clause that requires CIA to abide by the Geneva Conventions in its interrogation and detention policies. One hundred and ninety-nine Congressmen from both parties voted “no.” Even if some of the Congressmen voted against the bill for other reasons, there is a strong sense that many politicians consider torture to be perfectly okay. Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney, and Fred Thompson have all jumped on that bandwagon, endorsing “enhanced interrogation” as a counter-terrorism tool. Mitt Romney, who might bolster his claims to be a Christian by occasionally perusing the compassionate message of the Sermon on the Mount instead of the Book of Mormon, even wants to make Guantanamo prison bigger. Giuliani appears to want to jail and torture lots of people all the time, but he is, admittedly, a pagan.

If senior managers at the Central Intelligence Agency actually worried about committing war crimes more than they cared about getting revenge on ragheads and advancing their careers, they wouldn’t have tortured anyone in the first place back in 2002. Shortly after 9/11, the redoubtable armchair warrior Vice President Dick Cheney, who famously had other priorities and avoided military service by virtue of five deferments during Vietnam, announced that the “gloves are off” in reference to America’s enemies. Those comments set the tone and ushered in the exciting days of “anything goes” when Cofer Black, chief of the Agency’s Counter Terrorism Center, sent out his myrmidons with orders to come back with Usama bin Laden’s head in a box. Somehow, that head turned out to be Saddam Hussein’s.

Ethically, torture degrades the country that permits it, the organization that carries it out and the individuals who perform it. Doctors are not present during torture as it would violate the Hippocratic Oath, so it is up to the torturer to decide how far to go. If a victim dies while being interrogated by torture, as has happened a number of times in both Afghanistan and Iraq, it is both a war crime and murder.

Most intelligence and law enforcement officers reject torture as an interrogation tool, knowing that it more often than not produces false information. The FBI claims that the CIA waterboarding of terrorist suspect Abu Zubaydah was unnecessary, that he was already cooperating. Waterboarding, which was used extensively both by the Gestapo and by the Spanish Inquisition, is a particularly heinous form of torture as it simulates death. With U.S. troops deployed all over the world at the present time, sanctioning torture lowers the bar for terrorists who might happen to capture an American soldier or diplomat to do likewise. Even in 2002 someone with a bit of foresight might have anticipated the possible consequences arising from the CIA’s use of torture and its more general bull in the china shop approach. Someone with a bit of backbone and an intact moral compass might even have even resigned in protest, but, alas, there were few of those types around.

What has made CIA’s so-called leaders really nervous in the current political environment is not the ethical or moral issue of torture per se. It is the thought of getting sued by the victims and victim advocacy groups, which means hiring expensive lawyers. Donald Rumsfeld’s flight from Paris in late November to avoid war crimes charges also raises the possibility that an otherwise pleasant trip to Provence or Tuscany might have to be curtailed if some Euro-version of a pasty-face peace creep tries to file a lawsuit. Fortunately for all the torturers at CIA, there is now a government reimbursed private insurance program designed to cover contingencies. When former Chief of Clandestine Operations Jose Rodriguez was subpoenaed to appear before a Congressional committee last week, he was able to afford representation by the redoubtable Robert Bennett.

The latest CIA scandal began in 2002 when at least two terrorist suspects were videotaped while they were being subjected to the waterboarding version of “enhanced interrogation.” The questioning took place somewhere in Asia, possibly in a Pakistani or Thai prison but more likely at either Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan or at Diego Garcia Island, in the Indian Ocean, where the CIA maintains “off-sites.” In May 2003, CIA told Federal Judge Leonie Brinkema that there were no recordings or other records of the interrogations. That was a lie. In 2003 and 2004, the Congressional 9/11 Commission made “repeated and detailed inquiries relating to interrogations.” The CIA said there was no additional material, another lie. In June 2005, Director of Operations Jose Rodriguez ordered the tapes destroyed. The order came, perhaps not coincidentally, just as the Italian authorities were entering into the investigative phase of a major inquiry into CIA renditions in Italy.

CIA now claims that the tapes were destroyed to protect the identity of the agency interrogators involved. That argument is complete nonsense. Unless the cameraman was suffering from delirium tremens and shaking uncontrollably, the camera would have been focused on the victim of the torture, not on those administering it. In any event, terrorists would hardly be able to identify and gain access to an otherwise unremarkable and nameless CIA employee from what they might see on a tape, even if they could get hold of a copy.

The real reason for the cover-up on the tapes is because torture is universally acknowledged to be a war crime and everyone in the CIA and White House hierarchy knows that to be true. The denial that the tapes existed in 2003 and 2004 could not have taken place without the concurrence of Director George Tenet, Deputy Director John McLaughlin, and General Counsel Scott Muller. Probably then-Director of Operations James Pavitt would have also been involved. When Rodriguez destroyed the tapes in 2005, he was not acting alone. Director Porter Goss almost certainly would have been part of the decision making process as well as acting General Counsel John Rizzo and it is tempting to speculate that White House aides like Dick Cheney’s David Addington and President Bush’s Harriet Miers might also have been in the loop.

Looking for war crimes committed by members of the Bush administration is a complicated exercise because there are so many to go around. Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo come immediately to mind. The Nuremburg Tribunals at the end of the Second World War defined an aggressive war against another country if that country has not attacked you first or threatened to do so as “essentially an evil thing…to initiate a war of aggression…is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.” A number of leading Nazis were executed for their unprovoked attack on Poland. The Bush administration has its own Poland in Iraq, and if there is an American attack on Iran it would also fit the Nuremberg definition. Unlike at Nuremberg, however, no one will be held accountable.

The full story in
http://news.yahoo.com/s/huffpost/20071226/cm_huffpost/078276

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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Our (US) Presidents New Best Friend Boils People Alive

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Our (US) Presidents New Best Friend Boils People Alive

See Also: Just Who Is Our New Best Friend This 29 minute video explores the reality of life in Uzbekistan

06/26/03: Let me introduce you to our presidents new best friend, President Karimov of Uzbekistan.

President Karimov government was awarded $500m in aid from the Bush administration in 2002. The SNB (Uzbekistan’s security service) received $79m of this sum.

The U.S. State Department web site states “Uzbekistan is not a democracy and does not have a free press. Many opponents of the government have fled, and others have been arrested.” and “The police force and the intelligence service use torture as a routine investigation technique.”

Now I would like to introduce you to Muzafar Avazov, a 35-year old father of four. Mr Avazov had a visit from our presidents friends security force (SNB), the photographs below detail the brutality and inhuman treatment our tax dollars subsidize, with the full knowledge of our president and his administration.

 

Muzafar Avazov, body showed signs of burns on the legs, buttocks, lower back and arms. Sixty to seventy percent of the body was burnt, according to official sources. Doctors who saw the body reported that such burns could only have been caused by immersing Avazov in boiling water. Those who saw the body also reported that there was a large, bloody wound on the back of the head, heavy bruising on the forehead and side of the neck, and that his hands had no fingernails.

WARNING

The pictures of Mr. Avazov’s body are horrific and should only be viewed by a mature audience

 

 

 

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH:

Deaths Reveal “Horror” of Uzbek Prisons

(New York, August 10, 2002) Two suspicious deaths with apparent signs of torture highlight Uzbekistan’s brutal ongoing crackdown against independent Muslims, Human Rights Watch said today. The bodies of Muzafar Avazov and Husnidin Alimov, both religious prisoners at Jaslyk Prison, were returned to family members for burial in Tashkent Thursday.

Individuals who had seen one of the bodies told Human Rights Watch that it showed clear signs of torture. The authorities reportedly restricted viewing of the second body. Both men had been imprisoned at Jaslyk Prison, well-known for its harsh conditions and ill-treatment and torture of religious prisoners.

Human Rights Watch has learned that the body of Muzafar Avazov, a 35-year old father of four, showed signs of burns on the legs, buttocks, lower back and arms. Sixty to seventy percent of the body was burnt, according to official sources. Doctors who saw the body reported that such burns could only have been caused by immersing Avazov in boiling water. Those who saw the body also reported that there was a large, bloody wound on the back of the head, heavy bruising on the forehead and side of the neck, and that his hands had no fingernails.

“These deaths reveal the horror of Uzbek prisons,” said Elizabeth Andersen, executive director of Human Rights Watch’s Europe and Central Asia Division. “It seems the small signs of progress on torture we had seen were mere window-dressing, intended to hide Uzbekistan’s persistent problem and placate international critics.”

These latest incidents of serious human rights violations could complicate Uzbekistan’s relations with the United States. The United States has allied itself closely with Uzbekistan in the war against terrorism, but U.S. government officials have expressed concern that Uzbekistan’s harsh treatment of independent Muslims could be counterproductive to the anti-terror effort. The U.S. government recently adopted a law requiring that before delivering aid to the Uzbek government, the Bush administration must determine that Uzbekistan is making “substantial and continuing progress” in meeting the human rights commitments contained in a U.S.-Uzbekistan March 2002 joint declaration.

Uzbek authorities, including numerous police officers, brought the body of Muzafar Avazov, to the family home at about 3:30 p.m. on August 8. Police cars surrounded the area and checked visitors who approached the house, preventing some from entering. When the burial occurred at 6:00 p.m. that evening, police closed the road to traffic. Authorities from the office of General Prosecutor Rashidjon Kodirov reportedly threatened the family not to talk to the media or give interviews to others about the circumstances surrounding Avazov’s death. In May 2002, Human Rights Watch received reports that prison authorities had beaten Muzafar Avazov and put him in a punishment cell for stating that nothing could stop him from performing his prayers.

The authorities also returned the body of 34-year old Husnidin Alimov to his family in Tashkent on August 8, but they reportedly restricted viewing of the body. Prior to the death, relatives of people imprisoned in Jaslyk told Human Rights Watch that prison officials had placed Alimov in a punishment cell. He was reportedly placed there before the end of June and spent many weeks there before his death. Prisoners are often placed in such cells for praying or refusing to ask for forgiveness from Uzbek President Islam Karimov. Conditions are reportedly severe and beatings common. “Deaths under such circumstances are highly suspicious,” said Andersen. “The Uzbek government must ensure that full and open investigations are conducted into these deaths and into the conditions and treatment of prisoners in Jaslyk. There is an urgent need for regular, independent, international monitoring of conditions there.” A large number of police accompanied Alimov’s body and were present during the funeral.

The father of another man who died in May, apparently after terrible beatings in Jaslyk, was reportedly detained by police directly after the funeral and sentenced Friday to 15 days in custody on an administrative charge, related to his attendance at the funeral. Police reportedly questioned him about how he heard about the funeral and why he attended. Both men were serving prison sentences on charges related to their religious activity. Since 1997, the government of Uzbekistan has waged a campaign against religious Muslims who practice their faith outside of state controls. The peaceful expression of independent religious views has landed thousands in prison on charges of extremism. The government has particularly targeted members of Hizb ut-Tahrir, a banned Islamic group that calls for the peaceful reestablishment of the Caliphate in Central Asia. Uzbek authorities routinely prosecute those accused of affiliation with the group on charges of anti-state activities or possession or distribution of “illegal religious materials.” “Torture is an unmistakable feature of this campaign,” said Andersen. In the past fifteen months alone, Human Rights Watch has documented 11 deaths arising from suspicious circumstances in custody. According to information from the human rights group Memorial, Alimov was sentenced in 1999 to 16 years in prison, on a range of charges, including spreading religious “extremist” materials. Avazov was sentenced in mid-2000 to 20 years in prison. He had been accused of membership of Hizb ut-Tahrir. His sentence was reduced on appeal in February 2001 to 19 years.

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH

The full story in
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article3943.htm

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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Lies, Injustice and the Capitalist Way: We’re on the Highway to Hell – Don’t Stop Us!

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Lies, Injustice and the Capitalist Way: We’re on the Highway to Hell – Don’t Stop Us!

Jason Miller

“We are riding alongside Angus and Malcolm Young on the ‘Highway to Hell.”

We “Free World” capitalistic Westerners are a loathsome lot—or to put it more crudely, we suck. When one considers how degenerate we are from a collective standpoint, it is difficult to suppress intense feelings of disgust and contempt. There are many layers to our repugnant, depraved, and “beloved” capitalism, a socioeconomic system which ultimately furnishes the members of its upper echelon with de facto licenses to exploit, plunder, and murder with impunity. Problem is that as one peels back each successive layer hoping to find some purity, one finds a more profound rot.

We have fouled our own environment to the point that recovery and renewal may be impossible; we eradicate non-human animals at an estimated rate of 100 species per day; we slaughter millions upon millions of human beings in wars of imperial aggression driven by capitalism’s insatiable demand for resources and market expansion; we torture and slaughter billions of non-human animals to please our palates; and we insist upon imposing a system of infinite demand upon an all too finite planet.

Yet despite our multi-century “bender” and its obvious consequences, and despite the rational, egalitarian, just, and sustainable alternative which sprung from the minds of Marx and Engels (along with countless others who have contributed to the evolution of their brainchild), we cling to an abomination whose chief benefactors (the ruling class and their sycophantic propagandists in the mainstream media) deserve to be publicly flogged and then imprisoned in the gulag they devised to control the lower classes and black population.

Our collective selfishness, self-absorption, narcissism, greed, and mean-spiritedness are psychic malformations wrought by the wretched systemic exploitation we hold so dear to our withered, Grinch-like hearts. Smug and self-satisfied in our deeply rooted belief in the idiocy that despicable character traits like greed and selfishness can be harnessed in such a way that they provide virtuous means to benevolent ends, we revel in the delusion that the tremendous effort necessary to nurture the human spirit is a waste of time. The uglier and coarser we become on the inside, the greater our likelihood of achieving “success” by the standards of our soul-murdering society. Our worship of a man like Donald Trump as a cultural icon demonstrates how spiritually perverse we have become.

Apologists argue that “true capitalism” doesn’t exist because we have a “mixed economy.” It isn’t enough that one of the most affluent societies in history has 3.5 million homeless human beings, 46 million people without a viable means to attain proper healthcare, deteriorating public infrastructures, a wealth gap that would prick the consciences of the Robber Barons, larcenous CEO compensation, economic apartheid, and trillions of dollars of public money devoted to funding a murderous military machine that serves to ensure that our bourgeois parasites have uninterrupted access to the resources and markets they crave. According to wild-eyed libertarians and our blood-sucking plutocracy, we still need to root out the “socialist” elements that are contaminating our “sacred” free market. You know, that “free market” that inflicted abject misery upon the masses in the United States during the Gilded Age, throughout South America under the tutelage of the human pile of feces known as Milton Friedman (may Satan torment his soul), and in present day China. The excesses, irrationalities, and corrupt nature of capitalism are destroying the world. So let’s implement a more extreme form. What a brilliant notion!

As transparently ridiculous as it is, many amongst the poor and working class in the United States (a group which comprises about 80% of the population) continue to pledge their undying allegiance to a system in which they are merely cogs and cannon fodder serving at the pleasure of their opulent masters.

How have the cynical and ruthless ruling elite of the United States and the “Axis of Good” accomplished this seemingly impossible feat?

In breathtakingly simple fashion. Battering their “inferiors” with a dizzying array of cleverly crafted psychological assaults from cradle to grave, the plutocracy maintains the mass delusion that a system that exploits and impoverishes a majority of the population, rapes the Earth, and necessitates endless resource wars represents the pinnacle of our socioeconomic development.

Many of us suffer from such a deeply fractured (or perhaps butchered) consciousness that even when presented with a humane and sane alternative to the malevolent insanity of capitalism, we still rally to the cause of our bourgeois oppressors. What “patriotic American” isn’t on board with vilifying, blockading, crippling, “regime-changing,” and even invading nearly any nation that dares to implement a system that even remotely resembles socialism, Marxism, or worst of all, Communism? Uh-oh! Hugo Chavez’s social uplift programs are threatening the interests of the millionaires and billionaires of Venezuela (wretched people who have been fucking the poor of their nation for many years). Hurry! Everybody in the United States who is poor or working class! Let’s rush to side with the wealthy elite and support US-sponsored efforts to undermine and depose Chavez!

Deftly applying the superb agitprop techniques developed by Bernays, armies of advertisers, public relations “experts,” government-funded researchers, pundits, talk show hosts, “journalists,” and academics whore for the system to ensure that the masses remain in a perpetual state of moral delusion. How else could they hope to sustain a system that contradicts nearly every decent and humane instinct a human being possesses?

Consider that in the upside-down world the “keepers of the capitalist faith” have contrived, many vices and despicable human traits have been elevated to the status of virtue. Selfishness, avarice, ego, self-absorption, narcissism, careerism, winning at all costs, crushing the competition, the ruthless pursuit of profit, and gluttonous consumption are “all in a day’s work” for the good little capitalists of America. Even those who have broken free of their indoctrination and recognize the depravity of enshrining infantile, mean-spirited, and cruel behavior have little choice but to practice it in some instances simply to survive in our reprehensible “dog eat dog” environment.

Given that the Ministry of Truth can convert vice into virtue, it doesn’t take a tremendous mental leap to conclude they can also do the opposite. In adhering to the insidious indoctrination they provide, we are robbed of experiencing the full spectrum of our humanity because we have been trained to trivialize the aspects of ourselves that would pose a significant threat to the filthy status quo. Imagine the problems a large contingent of people of conscience would present to the sociopaths who routinely wield their immense economic power to engage in wholesale terrorism (i.e. the Iraqi genocide that began with the Gulf War, perpetuated with Clinton’s merciless economic sanctions, and continues to this very moment via the Bush Regime’s Nuremberg class war crimes). Thankfully for these soulless shells posing as human beings, most of the us in the United States have been bribed and brain-washed into complacency and complicity to the extent that with respect to the illegal occupation, we are flag wavers, indifferent by-standers, or protesters essentially rendered impotent by the overwhelming resources and might of the ruling class. Tragically, Bush and his ilk will probably never receive the trials and hangings they so richly deserve.

As we busy ourselves compulsively pursuing the acquisition of material possessions, looking out for number one, vying for promotions, building and preserving our egos, and gorging on the latest brain candy the mainstream media is peddling, who wants to “endure the agony” of engaging in introspection, thinking critically, educating oneself, acting on one’s conscience, empathizing, or pursuing a principled existence? Giving a damn isn’t worth the trouble when we can simply swallow the lies, take the bribes, and let the rest of the human and non-human animals of the world pay our outrageous bills (using their pain and blood as currency).

But we do need to realize that our path to hell isn’t paved with good intentions; we are racing along a road to perdition comprised of suffering, subjugation, oppression, theft, destruction, and wholesale murder.

We are riding alongside Angus and Malcolm Young on the “Highway to Hell.”

-###-

December 26, 2007 Jason Miller is a recovering US American middle class suburbanite who strives to remain intellectually free. He is Cyrano’s Journal Online’s associate editor http://www.bestcyrano.org and publishes Thomas Paine’s Corner within Cyrano’s at http://www.bestcyrano.org/THOMASPAINE. You can reach him at JMiller@bestcyrano.com Lies, Injustice and the Capitalist Way: We’re on the Highway to Hell—Don’t Stop Us!

The full story in
http://www.thepeoplesvoice.org/cgi-bin/blogs/voices.php/2007/12/26/lies_injustice_and_the_capitalist_way_we

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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Christians, too, suffer the evilness of the occupation : A MUST READ, FOR ZIONIST LOVER

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Christians, too, suffer the evilness of the occupation

A MUST READ, FOR ZIONIST LOVER

Khalid Amayreh

The Palestinian Information Center


The Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Michel Sabbah arrives at the
IOF checkpoint outside Bethlehem

From Khalid Amayreh in Bethlehem

Christmas is a season of good will. However, for Israel and its notoriously mendacious propaganda machine, Christmas is also a hasbara opportunity for spreading lies and disseminating disinformation and half truths about Christians in the Holy Land.

The usual seasonal dosage of lies includes such claims that Christians in the Holy Land suffer more from Muslim persecution than from the Israeli and apartheid, and that Christian emigration is not really attributed to Israel’s Nazi-like repression of the Palestinian people but rather to Palestinian “Muslim” intolerance and violence.

Well, such lies are not new. Israel itself is a state based on lies and lying has always been and continues to be Israel’s policy and modus operandi. In fact, it is very hard for one to be Zionist and not to be a liar. In truth, Zionism and mendacity are two sides of the same coin.

Didn’t Zionism claim that Palestine was a land without a people for a people without a land?

Didn’t Zionism claim that Palestinian refugees fled their homes and towns willingly and that Israel was in no way responsible for their flight?

Didn’t Israel tell the world that the Israeli occupation army was the most moral army in the world, and that Israeli soldiers didn’t knowingly and deliberately kill Palestinian children and civilians, and that the numerous acts of murder and maiming by the Israeli army were merely regrettable accidents?

And even now, and despite Israel’s nakedness before the peoples of the world, this shameless state and its professional liars and spin doctors continue to claim ad nauseam that Israel is a democratic state where the rule of law is supreme.

Well, do democratic states act and behave the way Israel is acting and behaving? Do democratic states classify citizens and subjects into Ubermensch and untermensch?

I know for sure that our Christian-Palestinian brothers and sisters shall never allow Israel to use them as hasbara pawns in the service of oppression, racism and ethnic cleansing.

The Christians of Palestine, who have received their share of suffering and oppression at the hands of Zionism know more than anybody else that the wickedness of the occupation doesn’t distinguish between them and their Muslim compatriots.

In November, 1948, the Hagana terrorists overran the two Christian villages of Ikrit and Birim in the upper Galilee, expelling inhabitants at gunpoint. The pogrom-like expulsion was carried out without the Israeli government approval. However, the democratic Israeli state never allowed the Christian inhabitants to return, despite several rulings to the contrary by the Israeli High Court.

Since 1967, Israel, has been trying to play all kinds of dirty tactics to tamper with Palestinian national unity, especially by playing Muslim against Christian and vice versa.

A few years ago, the Israeli Intelligence instructed its agents to throw stones and Molotov cocktails on several churches in the northern and central parts of the West Bank, apparently in order to use the incidents as hasbara ammunition in North America where public opinion was already overcharged against anything Arab or Islamic.

Meanwhile, the Israeli media, especially right-wing newspapers such as the Jerusalem Post, was concocting and inventing stories about Christian girls being raped and murdered by Palestinians in Bethlehem.

Such fabrications would be readily inflated, spun out of proportions and then widely disseminated especially among evangelical fundamentalists. Eventually, this would be translated into political support for Israeli colonialism and ethnic cleansing against both Muslims and Christians in the Holy Land.

Of course, many innocent and often naïve Americans and Canadians have no idea what kind of treatment is being meted out to Christians in the West Bank at the hands of Israeli occupiers.

They don’t know that Israel is systematically stealing, at gunpoint, Church property and real estate in Bethlehem, Beit Jala, Beit Sahur and Jerusalem.

They don’t know that Israel routinely bars Christians, laymen and clergy, from accessing their holy places in Jerusalem, e.g. the Church of the Sepulcher.

They don’t know that Israeli Jewish youths routinely harass, even spit on clergymen in the streets of Jerusalem, often in full view of policemen who in most cases remain passive.

They don’t know that Christian commuters are routinely humiliated at roadblocks manned by trigger-happy soldiers, which make their daily lives an unending nightmare?

They don’t know that Israel has already morphed Bethlehem into a ghetto thanks to this Wall of Shame which Israel calls “separation wall” when in reality it is designed to grab and steal as much Palestinian land as possible.

Well, just come to Bethlehem and see for yourself. It is a nightmare, it is hell on earth, and it is done by a people who claim to be a light upon the nations.

If Christians in North America knew how Israel is acting and behaving toward their fellow Christian coreligionists and, of course, toward other Palestinians, they probably would start to change their views.

That is why it is imperative that Christians, especially in North America, make some serious efforts to know the truth about Israel and its crimes.

This can be done through third-party sources such as human rights organizations and western groups operating in the West Bank such as the Christian Peace Making Team and the International Solidarity Movement.

In short, Israeli and pro-Israeli media wouldn’t tell the truth about Israeli crimes against Palestinians, Muslim and Christian alike. So try to find alternative sources of news to know the truth about what is really happening in the Holy Land.

Don’t allow yourself to be duped and enslaved by Zionist lies.

¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤

© 2007 Khalid Amayreh

SOURCE:
http://www.thepeoplesvoice.org/cgi-bin/blogs/voices.php/2007/12/26/christians_too_suffer_the_evilness_of_th
http://www.palestine-info.co.uk/en/default.aspx?xyz=U6Qq7k%2bcOd87MDI46m9rUxJEpMO%2bi1s7aIw95B7Qx%2bSr14
GuimmzdEJGZ0TXEBm7FnncNN4OBPivZ4rwReLB%2f7xp0PqqrRf7laHGbxTf5CA0TVsLwv
N8XAk6hIfaUgXBZH%2b16OEHsIY%3d

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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War Criminal : Israel has megaton nuclear bombs’

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

War Criminal : Israel has megaton nuclear bombs’

By Press TV News on December 25,2007

imageA Washington-based military think tank has revealed that the Zionist regime has produced nuclear weapons with ‘a yield of one megaton’.A new report complied by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) claims Israeli nuclear warheads have both air and sea capabilities.

The study, authored by former US Defense Department strategist Anthony Cordesman, disclosed that Israel is currently ‘in possession of 200 nuclear warheads’.

Megaton nuclear bombs are about twice the size of MK 18, the most powerful US-made fission bomb, which used 60kg of enriched uranium.

Israel is widely believed to possess the only nuclear arsenal in the Middle East; however, it neither denies nor confirms having a nuclear arsenal.

The CSIS report comes at a time when the Zionists officials have launched psywar against the Islamic Republic over its nuclear energy program.

Bruce Riedel, a former CIA official and senior adviser to three US presidents, including George W. Bush, has recently claimed Israel will ultimately attack Iran in a bid to defend its ‘nuclear monopoly’ in the region.

The full story in
http://daily1world.com/english/news/Middle-East/Israel-has-megaton-nuclear-bombs.html

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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Iraqi Resistance Report for events of Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Iraqi Resistance Report for events of Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Translated and/or compiled by Muhammad Abu Nasr, member, editorial board, the Free Arab Voice. http://www.freearabvoice.org

resistenza345666.jpg

  • Bomb wounds three US troops near al-Fallujah Tuesday.
  • Triple bombing in Bayji kills 23, Shi’i sectarian puppet regime uses opportunity to turn on US-recruited Sunni collaborators.
  • US troops raid home in al-Mawsil early Sunday, kill father, son without explanation.


Al-Anbar Province.

Al-Fallujah.

Bomb wounds three US troops near al-Fallujah Tuesday.

In a dispatch posted at 2:10pm Baghdad time Tuesday afternoon, the Yaqen News Agency reported that a bomb exploded by a patrol of seven Humvees in the as-Saqlawiyah area, 17km north of al-Fallujah (which is 60km west of Baghdad) on Tuesday.

Yaqen reported an officer in the al-Fallujah puppet police who asked not to be identified as saying that three US troops were wounded when the bomb went off by their Humvee. The blast severely damaged the Humvee. After the attack, the three wounded Americans were evacuated to a US position in as-Saqlawiyah for medical treatment.

The source said that following the attack, US forces launched a campaign of raids and arrests in the area, rounding up three youths. As of the time of reporting, the Americans had made no statement regarding the bombing.

Salah ad-Din Province.
Bayji.

Triple bombing in Bayji kills 23, Shi’i sectarian puppet regime uses opportunity to turn on US-recruited Sunni collaborators.

A truck bomb and two individuals wearing explosive belts reported blew themselves up near a check point in the city of Bayji Tuesday, killing 23 and wounding more than 70 others.

In an intitial dispatch posted at 11am Baghdad time Tuesday morning, the Yaqen News Agency reported that a truck bomber drove his explosives-laden vehicle into the an-Naft neighborhood of the refinery town of Bayji, 200km north of Baghdad, and blew it up.

Yaqen reported a source in the puppet police as initially saying that the attack occurred near the Bayji refinery and that in addition to the casualties, it damaged a number of buildings and cars that happened to be in the area at the time.

Then, in a dispatch posted at 4:12pm Tuesday afternoon, Yaqen reported that the number of casualties in the Tuesday bombing in Bayji had risen to 23 dead following the death of three of those who had been among the injured.

Yaqen reported that latest accounts were saying that the attack had been carried out by three persons simultaneously. One person drove an explosives-packed truck into a check point manned by puppet police, troops, and collaborationist “Awakening” police and blew up. Meanwhile, two other individuals blew themselves up at the same time that the truck bomber detonated his payload.

Meanwhile at 2pm Baghdad time Tuesday afternoon, the Yaqen News Agency reported that in the aftermath of the truck bombing, the puppet “Iraqi Minister of the Interior” Jawad al-Bulani, had issued an order at noon Tuesday, dismissing Colonel Sa’d an-Nufus, the chief of the Bayji puppet police. ‘Abd al-Karim Khalaf, the director of the puppet “Interior Ministry” National Command Center said that an investigation into the activities of an-Nufus was also part of the “Minister’s” order.

Additionally, the puppet “Minister of the Interior” ordered the arrest of all the collaborationist “Bayji Awakening” tribal police guards at their headquarters.

In recent weeks the US has been working to entice Sunni tribal elements to collaborate with the American occupation authorities, a move violently opposed by the US-installed puppet regime in Baghdad, particularly by officials in the puppet “Ministry of the Interior” and “Ministry of Defence,” which are bastions of the Shi’i sectarian clerical party supporters – elements that have ruled unopposed and with US support since the American invasion in 2003.

Yaqen reported Khalaf as saying that the puppet “Iraqi Ministry of the Interior” had appointed an investigatory panel headed by the Chief of Operations in Samarra’, Major General Rashid Falih, to find out who was behind the truck bomb attack.

Diyala Province.
Ba’qubah.

Bomber targets funeral procession Tuesday morning.

In a dispatch posted at 10:55am Baghdad time Tuesday morning, the Yaqen News Agency reported that a man wearing an explosive belt blew himself up by a funeral procession in Ba’qubah, 65km northeast of Baghdad, on Tuesday morning.

Later, in a dispatch posted at 12:55pm, Yaqen reported a source in the puppet police who refused to identify himself as saying that the attack in the al-Mu’allimin neighborhood of the city killed four people and wounded 20 more. The source provided no further details.

Babil Province.
Al-Haswah.

Mysterious mortar barrage wounds civilian in al-Haswah Monday night.

In a dispatch posted at 10:25am Baghdad time Tuesday morning, the Yaqen News Agency reported that four mortar shells landed in the area of al-Haswah, 33km south of Baghdad on Monday night.

Yaqen reported a source in the puppet police as saying that the barrage, which was of unknown origins, targeted the ‘Aday area of al-Haswah and injured one civilian and damaged several houses.

Ninwa Province.
Al-Mawsil.

Puppet “Governor” of Ninwa Province survives bomb attack on motorcade in al-Mawsil Tuesday afternoon.

In a dispatch posted at 4:03pm Baghdad time Tuesday afternoon, the Yaqen News Agency reported that a bomb exploded by the motorcade of the puppet “Governor” of Ninwa Province, Durayd Muhammad Kashmulah, on Tuesday afternoon.

Yaqen reported a source in the press office of the puppet “Governor” as saying that a bomb went off by the armored vehicle in which Kashmulah was riding to the ash-Shurtah neighborhood in the al-Ghabat area to the north of al-Mawsil where he was to deliver Christmas greetings to the local Christian community. The blast wounded one of the “Governor’s” companions and the driver of his armored car. Kashmulah himself was apparently uninjured in the attack.

US troops raid home in al-Mawsil early Sunday, kill father, son without explanation.

In a dispatch posted at 11:55am Baghdad time Tuesday morning, the Yaqen News Agency reported that US forces killed an officer in the former Iraqi Air Force along with his son and arrested another in a house raid they carried out in southeastern al-Mawsil, 420km northwest of Baghdad, at dawn Tuesday.

Yaqen reported Brigadier General ‘Abd al-Karim al-Jabburi as saying that US occupation troops raided a home in the al-Mithaq neighborhood of southeastern al-Mawsil. There the US troops killed a father and one of his sons and then arrested another son, aged 15. The precise reasons for the Americans’ latest killing were unknown, the puppet army general claimed.

General al-Jabburi did say, however, that the head of the household, whom the Americans gunned down in their raid, had been an officer in the Iraqi Air Force prior to the American invasion of Iraq in the spring of 2003. Most recently he had been working at a medical storehouse in al-Mawsil. As of the time of reporting, the Americans had provided no explanation for their latest killing of Iraqi civilians in their homes.

Unexplained gunbattle in al-Mawsil leaves three civilians reported dead.

In a dispatch posted at 11:25am Baghdad time Tuesday morning, the Yaqen News Agency reported that fighting took place in the as-Siddiq area of northeastern al-Mawsil on Tuesday morning.

Yaqen reported a source in the puppet police as saying that the gun battle killed three civilians and wounded a fourth.

http://uruknet.info/?p=m39549&hd=&size=1&l=e

Sources:
http://www.iraq-amsi.org/news.php?action=view&id=21590&64edde9839e006402e26010be1589ff5
http://www.iraq-amsi.org/news.php?action=view&id=21589&650a4daf79fd90470ccd49bf1e69e3bb
http://www.iraq-amsi.org/news.php?action=view&id=21588&7b07f762b042687ace3f6f8d4a7b06e9
http://www.iraq-amsi.org/news.php?action=view&id=21586&5765379c3fb5b29745f209905f0dfa29
http://www.iraq-amsi.org/news.php?action=view&id=21576&ac2b39cd412d4a98cbb873a51f8c7c36
http://www.iraq-amsi.org/news.php?action=view&id=21575&d86cf512ad52d6052bb5fb5fe857e21a
http://www.iraq-amsi.org/news.php?action=view&id=21574&51fddcd4a6ef3fe49a52882adb0a753c
http://www.islammemo.cc/article1.aspx?id=57179
http://www.islammemo.cc/article1.aspx?id=57165
http://www.islammemo.cc/article1.aspx?id=57161
http://www.islammemo.cc/article1.aspx?id=57157
http://www.islammemo.cc/article1.aspx?id=57146
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3791
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3790
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3788
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3787
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3783
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3782
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3781
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3780
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3779
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3777
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3776
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3775
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3774
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3773
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3772
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3769
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3768
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3767
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3766
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3765
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3764
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3762
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3761
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3760
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3759
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3756
http://www.yaqen.net/?p=3755

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Al-Dhari Sends A Letter To Iraqi Tribes

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 27, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Al-Dhari Sends A Letter To Iraqi Tribes

Dr. Harith Al-Dhari , AMSI
logo_sheihk_dari_f.jpg

Sunday, 23 December 2007

The esteemed Secretary General of AMSI Sheikh Harith Al-Dhari has sent an open letter to the Iraqis tribes; the letter was broadcasted directly from Aljazeera TV on the Friday, 30 Nov. Here, the details:

Praise be to Allah, peace and prayer to the prophet of Allah, His family and His companions,

We direct this letter to good Iraqi tribes, the supporters of its texture, the guarantee of its unity and peace. They are the ladder of rescue from the occupation wells, to glamour Iraqi tribes in North, in South and in the mid of our beloved country in their various sects and ethnics.

Generous Iraqi Brothers… The good willing Iraqi sons

You were at the vision of the enemy since a long time in the history. You were the shelter for good deed in the motherland because you are representing the real power in the country. So the enemy wants to reach the aim they have planned through yourselves. The friends of the occupiers also want to reach the same aim via your assistances. On the contrary of that the pure, good deed and country lovers want the assistances from you in any occasion that harm the land such as occupation and liberation struggle of the said occupation.

However, thanks Allah, you were always a thorn in the eyes of the enemy that kept them away of their evil projects. You were a naked sword in the hands of good deed powers would not replace in its sheath until the land is liberated.

So we promised to continue on as the far and the near past.

The best nearest condemnation was the blessed twentieth revolution (1921 Brigades); you were its heroes of the combat as Sunnis, Shiites, Arabs, Kurds, Turkmens and others.

Esteemed Brothers

Today Iraq is passing through a great combat which has not been seen in the history before. The event of occupying a country by a super power that wants to control the whole world was not happened before.

Your sons have let the enemy to taste the bitter life. It is under a great crises and it is almost suffocated. The American Congress has conditioned the subject of confirming of assisting the army with financial aids to withdraw. Because dozens of soldiers were killed and death on them has not been stopped even one moment. The war on Iraq is rather unacceptable matter so we are just about gaining the victory and getting rid of the occupation if Allah is willing to.

Dearest

But the enemy is still not hopeless yet. It is searching for a trick in order to rescue itself and to protect a little bit of shame. The enemy considered you as a nation without any mass and heaviness so it has aimed you by invasion of your country attempting to wipe up all values of Iraqi nation. That is why the houses, homes and shelters were attacked. That is why your honest people were pulled to prisons and to wipe your tradition and the customary way of living.

This time the enemy seems to you as a good friend; it seems that his only aim is to assist you. However all are false. The enemy wants to pull you into projects and gatherings against each other of the nation’s sons. But you are the tribes’ sons who are experienced and many people are learning the life lessons from you. You never move with such disgusting and false things.

Dear Brothers

Our enemy has spent too many efforts since the occupation to divide the country as to sects and ethnicities. Because such attempts will led the country to be weak, smashed and to remain in chaos which will be in an inability condition to develop itself.

They want to keep Iraq a second Lebanon. You can see the friend country that some times explained as the gem of the region. Today’s condition is not pleasing the friend; since the sectarian and ethnical events were subjected the country that could not take decisions or has any settlements. Lebanon became uncovered field that everybody (the near and the far) interfere in its affairs on the account of the people’s security and goodness.

When prime minister is assassinated the dissension between them will be ignited and various accusations are started. When the elections were close up the crisis started as if they are just about to get into a combat. Today in order to elect a president, you will see their country is shaken from one side to another. The countries in east and west interfere in order to impose their agents, politics and benefits. If Lebanon was a strong country these would have never happened.

The Lebanese people are good people, their bad system harmed them so they tried too hard in several stages to cure the wounds and exceed the pains in case to live in peace. But its enemies were attempting to scatter the security when it has somehow a quite life, the symbols of the country as the leaders and commanders were one of the followed methods to realize their aim.

A civil war was ignited lasted for more than fifteen years that wiped the green and the dry and sanked the country into debits. Today they want the same fire be ignited again.

We, in the meantime, pray Allah to save this Arab country from all crises and keep them with peace, security, strength and settlement. We also call all Iraqis to consider the Lebanese events as a lesson. Because the enemy is trying to move the peace of our nation into the same manner; they want to pass the same as Lebanon.

You have to remember that Command Council that has divided the country on the bases of sects and ethnics. Then they came to the preparation of the constitution which was the support of the program. It has prepared the base in order to turn the theory into a practice. The politics of sectarian murdering is on the shoulders of the occupation and the internal and external evil powers that have assisted them in order to realize the division. We are still paying its value too expensive as we had paid before. The mischief-making of occupation and similar politics are the reasons for that. All these politics are aiming to keep Iraq and its people weak.

Baydin Project was too bad which divided Iraq into divisions in order to feel the pulse and then to see that the idea is sat down. I witness that you have increased our pride and disappointed your enemy when you announced your ejection to the project. Thanks Allah for the attitude you chose.

Yes, some politicians are innocent of the confirmation of the political operation. The politicians that confirmed the operation are now turned, as it is known to all, over to their own benefit. The most important thing for them in the federalism is to keep them on top and continue to have the wealth of the country not only for themselves but for their progenies after them. They have turned the lives of the innocent people into hell. They never served them a single beneficial thing, do you think what will happen if the command of the country turned to them.

Today the occupation is attempting to another way of realizing the project. The new attempt is to scatter the unity of the sects, the unity of the tribes and the unity of the region. Then they will constitute new cantons and armed regions killing each other and making war commanders in order to rivalry among themselves. Then they will ignite the dissension fire in our beloved country keeping it weak and sick at last to reach the country into internal war.

No doubt for the tribes’ sons that the most important thing is a successful land. The enemy will spend energy and property to build centers of polarity inside a tribe and they will feed the polarity with properties and weapons and of course from the Iraqi wealth too, then the internal conflict will start. The enemy has really started to take such action in the med and South of Iraq, so, o sons of tribes be careful.

Dearest sons of Iraq

Before a couple of days the occupation country USA President has permitted himself to study an agreement about the sovereignty of Iraq and the high benefit behind a closed door with the today’s Prime Minister who has assign him before and gained to him a big support in spite of being the worst person assigned as the head of the government. Now they want from him to the price as selling Iraq to a master, as this person never cares about Iraq just only for his position. So he prepared to sell Iraq.

This document is contained the support of the occupation country to the current government and his developed security system for a long time scheme. The so-called security system has killed the people of Iraq in South, in North and the midst of the country. It has also imposed many kinds of tortures. This was documented by International Human Rights Organization. The way of practicing of the said system is as if the Iraqi people are the enemies. Yes, it performs so and applies such course.

In the same time an assistance to wipe its enemies was given to this government in the agreement. The enemies as they consider are anybody who stands against their path, the tribes’ symbols and the legal Iraqi resistance as well as any voice rejects this injustice procedure of the government will be at the lion’s mouth.

It has consisted also, the reputation of the current constitution and protects it and refuses any attempts that could delay or postponed it. You know that this constitution is the reasons of all these problems after the occupation. It has the articles of partition; the self control of the nation was illegally gone. It was written by these parties whom are friendly with occupation and its projects. This document that is intending to be signed next year has also contained signing long terms military, security and economical agreements and other many evil things. -The Prime Minister has agreed on in order to realize his masters’ wishes.

The document is as a mortgage Iraq together with its wealth and future. This is the real scandal, scandal to US Administration that did not stop by occupying and destroying Iraq but want to occupy it forever. It is scandal for the politicians whom were assigned and accept to serve them.

For the US President and his cabinet they have to stop ignoring the self controlling of the Iraqi nation, the International treaties and the violation of the Iraqi person. They should thing about their mistakes which were done against the nation and have to submit their excuses and compensate them for what they have lost with justice. Their dream of conquering Iraq and sucking its wealth will never be realized with assistance of Almighty Allah.

Dear Brothers

We have no other chance unless tied ourselves to Allah’s strength, then looking to our unity and consider the aggression of it as red lined error, continuing on with big efforts to get rid of the enemy and its remainders and expel them out of the country’s territory whatever could be the difficulties. We have also wounds of our injuries and to be gathered in order to plot for our bright future away from the enemy’s aim and goals. We are with all Iraqi sons; we are with you to prepare for our country’s future. We will not permit and agree for anybody to interfere in our affairs and to divide us. We have the right to live in security and freedom and sovereignty in the framework of unified Iraq.

The occupation has to leave the country first, in order to manage ourselves. The occupation puts the hindrances, the occupation from time to time is igniting different dissensions among us and constitutes the sects, ethnics, social, economical and security and other problems. Unfortunately the enemy has somebody of us who is assisting and helping to apply the plans came in sake it. All these aims are for remaining the chaos over Iraq and in case to feel that as if we are in need to the occupation and the conditions will go more badly. As we will thing if the occupation with its forces of hundreds of thousands of armed forces could not control the Iraqi condition how come we could after the occupation leave? This is the occupation and who is dependent claims and wants us to think so. Some has fallen in the fishing net and started to accept the occupation whereas they were against it yesterday. They think that if the occupation remains in Iraq an internal war will never happen. On the contrary the occupation is the base of the problems, the crises and the crimes were increased in their existence which the Iraqis never have seen before even the Iraq’s history. Do you think why? Because the occupation itself is behind it. Can you see when we could reach to solve problem and pull out its roots another problem is appeared in front of us in case to hinder of solving the first and so on. The problems and the dissension will never be solved in this case. But when the occupation is left then we will be able to get all problems be solved. We the Iraqis don’t have great problems; our land is vast and can contain much more population then todays. Thanks Allah our land is a fertile from the North down to the South. It has a big quantity of water and our resources are enough for us. Even though it is enough for the coming generations. These are the reasons which let our enemies to perform their evil aim. Let’s agree on to be one hand in order to expel them out of the country.

Dear the Country’s Beloved Sons

Countries all over the world have got troops and armies that defend and protects in abnormal conditions. When the enemy has invaded our country and attempting to humiliate us, the first step was dissolving the Iraqi army. This action was intentional in order to keep us without protection.

The Iraqi Army was one of the strongest army in the world and had a high experience; billions of our wealth was spend to organize it. How can we leave it!? Why shall we keep silent without doing something? This is the enemy’s wish.

This army only consists of our sons. They were an honorable vision of Iraq. Because they were from every sects and ethnicities at last they are were Iraqis. They have learned the faith to the motherland away of any sectarian and ethnical ideas.

So we are calling to re-collect them again in spite of false rumors because the rancors could see how they were serving the country.

If there were any personalities in the previous army whom had harmed the country and the nation, this is something could be resolved and be punished anyway but not resolving the whole army for some bad persons. We are really in need for such efficient army especially these days.

Think about today’s army and the security system. They were fundamentally established to serve the occupants and perform its projects. What did we benefit of their existence? The murdering in side one sect, killings in the different ethnics, stealing the peoples and the state properties as the petroleum, killing the innocents, invading the cities together with the occupants, torturing the prisoners, destroying the Mosques and religious places, all these and other were performed by those groups… How we could expect that they will rescue us from the torture?

No doubt brothers, there are some people between them who don’t like performing injustice doings, but unfortunately they cannot do anything, the good personalities may be chosen among them.

If this military establishment relieves again after the occupation leaves, the security and the natural condition of Iraq will be retained again. Afterwards, all armed elements will be diminished. There will be a certain precaution that prohibits holding any kind of weapons whatsoever be the reason.

Let’s do our best to re-collect the national army again, and let us to close our ears to those who wish to announce false ideas.

Dear Brothers

The future of Iraq will not be affected by anybody. We are able to plot our future – with assistance of God – , the duty will be done with the efficient personalities. They can exceed the difficulties and put all their abilities to re-construct the country again without looking at their sect or ethnics. The legal dialogue will be its formation; the political performance with a particular sect or ethnic will be restricted. We could also agree on editing a new constitution that could protect the rights of all away of occupation destruction, a constitution that everybody can participate, not as the occupation’s constitution which the self control of the Iraqi nation were dismissed and it was build upon the wish of the occupation and some assistant of it.

If we agreed on these important aspects, then we could find the relevant mechanism to get start. We could then force the enemy and others to accept our will, if the self controlling of the nations are gathered then it couldn’t be defeated.

At last, we call all good willing, honored tribes and ourselves also to resist and struggle for the bright aim.

The patience and resistance are the best ways of solving all difficulties because the nations could not do anything without patience.

Blessed Iraqi tribe sons

You have to affect the project of the occupation to be failed. The day is so near to success, be prepared to the step of liberation. Your preparation is necessary to re-construct the country on the hands of your sons.

Do not expect that the enemy will build you a country; the enemies are came only to destroy.

These wealth are spending for a big nothing under the name of reconstruction, reconstruction this city or that city… ok where is it?

There is no construction, because it doesn’t go to the real construction, but the money of so-called construction is gone into the pockets of the occupation puppets. It goes to the accounts of the persons that the occupation has chosen who are serving the occupation; they will never construct or build anything.

The reconstruction and building of the country is depending on you… Let’s be ready for this day which we will start building our country by the hands of our innocent and faithful sons in a way that returns Iraq to its own people, and return its recognized place among the countries either Arabic or Islamic.

The Almighty Allah’s Peace be with you

Best Regards

Secretary General of AMSI
Dr. Harith Al-Dhari

The full story in
http://uruknet.info/?p=m39539&hd=&size=1&l=e

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

“Selamat Datang, Pendekar-Pendekar Al-Azhar!”

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 26, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

From: “Mahir Moh.Soleh” <maher_thea@yahoo.com>
Subject: [INSISTS] CAP Adian Husaini: “Selamat Datang, Pendekar-Pendekar Al-Azhar!”

“Selamat Datang, Pendekar-Pendekar Al-Azhar!”


Di tengah maraknya lulusan Barat gandrung ‘hermeunetika” lahir pula sarjana Islam yang masih lurus. Catatan Akhir Pekan [CAP] Adian Husaini ke-218

Oleh: Adian Husaini

Senin, 24 Desember 2007

Pada hari Sabtu (15 Desember 2007), INSISTS mengadakan acara tasyakkur atas kelulusan peneliti INSISTS, Fahmi Salim Zubair MA, sebagai master dalam bidang tafsir di Universitas al-Azhar Kairo. Pada 4 Desember 2007 lalu, Fahmi Salim dinyatakan lulus dengan predikat Summa Cum Laude (Penghargaan Tingkat Pertama), setelah berhasil mempertahankan Tesis-nya yang berjudul “KHITHABAT DA’WA FALSAFAT AL-TA’WIL AL-HERMENUTHIQI LI AL-QURAN; ‘ARDL WA NAQD” (Studi analitis-kritis diskursus filsafat Hermeneutika Al-Quran).

Fahmi menyelesaikan tesisnya di bawah bimbingan dua guru besar Tafsir dan Ilmu-ilmu Al-Quran, yaitu Prof. Dr. Abdul Hayyi Husein Al-Farmawi dan Prof. Dr. Abdul Badi’ Abu Hasyim. Adapun para penguji tesis Fahmi Salim adalah: Prof. Dr. Salim Abdul Kholik Abdul Hamid (Guru besar Tafsir dan ilmu-ilmu Al-Quran) dan Prof. Dr. Ali Hasan Sulaiman (Guru besar dan Ketua Jurusan Tafsir dan Ilmu-ilmu Al-Quran, Fakultas Dirasat Islamiyah, Univ. Al-Azhar).

Tentu saja, prestasi akademik Fahmi Salim ini bukan hal yang biasa. Ini termasuk luar biasa. Selain meraih penghargaan tertinggi, diakui oleh para penguji, bahwa tesis Fahmi Salim adalah tesis pertama di Universitas Al-Azhar yang mengupas tuntas tentang Hermeneutika Al-Quran. Karena itulah, tesis ini direkomendasikan agar dicetak atas biaya universitas dan didistribusikan ke universitas-universitas lain.

Di tengah ’kegandrungan’ kalangan akademisi di Perguruan Tinggi Islam di Indonesia untuk menggusur Ilmu Tafsir dan menggantikannya dengan hemeneutika, tesis Fahmi Salim ini menjadi sangat bermakna. Melalui tesisnya, Fahmi Salim berhasil mengupas hakekat hermeneutika sebagai ilmu atau seni memahami teks yang sudah lama berkembang dan mengakar dalam teologi, filsafat dan sastra barat. Perspektif hermeneutika filosofis atas pemahaman eksistensial secara umum dan pemahaman teks secara khusus merupakan terobosan mutakhir dan tidak pernah dikenal sebelumnya. Diskusi dan perdebatan seputar sah tidaknya aplikasi hermeneutika untuk Al-Quran juga betul-betul tidak ada presedennya dalam benak para ulama muslim yang masih meyakini keampuhan metode tafsir dan takwil klasik dalam memecahkan isu-isu kontemporer.

Upaya aplikasi hermenuetika untuk menafsirkan Al-Quran memang telah menggugat teori penafsiran klasik sebagaimana dalam pembahasan Ushul Fiqh dan Ulumul Quran. Tesis ini memaparkan beberapa hal penting, yakni: perbandingan konsep takwil dalam tradisi keilmuan Islam dan hermeneutika di Barat dan akar-akar historis bagi upaya penerapan hermeneutika dalam kajian Al-Quran. Bab ketiga mendiskusikan secara kritis-analitis berbagai isu utama dan mendasar dari teori tafsir model hermeneutika semisal (1) klaim historisitas wahyu/teks Al-Quran dan pengaruhnya terhadap konsep I’jaz Al-Quran, sejarah kodifikasi Al-Quran dan pentakwilan Al-Quran, (2) klaim kritik literatur/sastra dan kritik sejarah atas wahyu Al-Quran dan biasnya terhadap konsep kisah-kisah Al-Quran dan prinsip-prinsip semiotika Al-Quran, (3) klaim hubungan dialektis-materialis antara wahyu Allah yang absolut dan realitas manusia yang nisbi dan biasnya terhadap konsep ‘Sababun Nuzul’ dan serta mengubah hukum yang pasti (Qath’iyyat) di dalam Al-Quran.

Dengan tesisnya tersebut, kita patut bersyukur, karena baru pertama kalinya, ada seorang sarjana tafsir dari al-Azhar yang sekaligus mendalami masalah hermeneutika. Lebih penting lagi, selama ini Fami Salim juga dikenal cukup aktif dalam menulis dan mengajar. Harapan kita semua, ilmunya bermanfaat untuk menjernihkan masalah hermeneutika dan selama ini dianggap sebagai alternatif tafsir untuk menggusur metode tafsir klasik yang telah digunakan umat Islam selama lebih dari 1400 tahun.

Sebagaimana telah kita uraikan pada banyak tulisan, masalah hermeneutika ini sangat penting untuk dikaji dan ditelaah, karena inilah salah satu pintu masuk yang sangat stretegis untuk meliberalkan ajaran Islam, sebagaimana telah dilakukan oleh kaum Kristen liberal. Berulangkali kita mengimbau dan menjelaskan, tidak seyogyanya para cendekiawan Muslim mudah terlena dan terpukau dengan hal-hal baru yang kelihatan gemerlap, yang datang dari Barat, padahal tidak berkhasiat, bahkan membawa mafsadat bagi umat.

Namun, pada sisi yang lain, kita juga mengakui, bahwa para Sarjana Tafsir dan Ilmu-ilmu Al-Quran di Indonesia perlu bekerja keras untuk mewujudkan literatur-literatur dalam Studi Al-Quran yang tidak keluar dari konsep keilmuan Islam, tetapi sekaligus juga mampu menjawab tantangan zaman. Kita patut bersedih, bahwa selama ini, banyak sarjana Tafsir dan Ulumul Quran yang mumpuni keilmuannya, tetapi tidak sanggup menulis atau tidak ada waktu untuk menulis buku-buku yang berkualitas ilmiah yang tinggi karena ada kesibukan lain. Karena itu, sekali lagi, kita patut bersyukur atas prestasi luar biasa yang diraih oleh Fahmi Salim dan berharap dia mampu merintis jalan baru dalam menggairahkan studi Al-Quran di Indonesia.

Sebenarnya, disamping Fahmi Salim, kita juga sedang menunggu kepulangan seorang doktor dalam bidang syariah yang berhasil meraih gelar doktornya pada 21 Oktober 2007 dari Universitas al-Azhar. Namanya Dr. Ahmad Zain An-Najah. Pria asal Klaten ini berhasil mempertahankan disertasi doktornya dengan judul “Al-Qadhi Husain wa Atsaruhu Al-Fiqhiyah”. Ketua Dewan Da’wah Islamiyah Indonesia perwakilan Mesir ini juga lulus dengan predikat Summa Cum Laude, setelah berhasil mempertahankan disertasinya di bawah bimbingan pakar fikih perbandingan (fiqh muqarin) Prof. Abdullah Said serta Prof. Ahmad Karima dan diuji di hadapan sidang penguji yang terdiri atas Prof. Sa’duddin Hilaly dan Prof. Ibrahim Badawi.

Zain an-Najah meraih gelar S-1 nya di Universitas Islam Madinah. Selama ini, Zain an-Najah juga menjadi ketua Majlis Tarjih dan Tajdid Pengurus Cabang Istimewa Muhammadiyah Kairo. Dengan prestasi yang sangat tinggi itu, tentu kita berharap, Dr. Zain an-Najah akan segera kembali ke Indonesia dan mengaktifkan diri dalam perjuangan penegakan aqidah dan syariah Islam di Indonesia, yang tak henti-hentinya menghadapi tantangan hebat dari berbagai kalangan, baik dalam maupun luar negeri.

Sebab, kadang kita banyak menerima pertanyaan, mengapa yang aktif dalam perjuangan penegakan syariah justru bukan sarjana syariah? Sebaliknya, mengapa semakin banyak bermunculan sarjana-sarjana syariah yang justru aktif menolak syariah. Bukan rahasia lagi, sekarang ini banyak dosen syariah yang aktif berjuang merombak hukum Islam yang dianggap tidak sesuai dengan konsep HAM dan kesetaraan gender. Seorang mahasiswa S-2 bidang syariah di Bandung bercerita bahwa pada sesi-sesi kuliah yang dia ikuti, jarang sekali ada dosen yang menekankan perlunya syariah Islam ditegakkan. Bahkan, banyak yang mengajarkan perlunya Dekonstruksi Syariah. Karena itu, dalam situasi yang seperti ini, kita memang berharap banyak pada para pakar syariah seperti Dr. Zain an-Najah ini.

Tetapi, kita sadar bahwa iklim Indonesia saat ini tidaklah kondusif bagi para sarjana agama yang berkualitas. Begitu mereka balik ke negerinya sendiri, maka mereka akan dihadapkan pada situasi yang serba sulit. Tidak banyak kalangan umat yang antusias menyambut kedatangan mereka. Banyak yang tidak peduli. Jangan ditanya lagi sikap pemerintah, termasuk yang bergerak di bidang pendidikan. Nyaris mustahil untuk berharap, orang-orang seperti Fahmi Salim atau Zain an-Najah akan disambut dan dijamu oleh Presiden di kediamannya, sebagaimana peserta Asian Idols. Jangan berharap juga, para menteri akan berlomba-lomba memberi penghargaan ratusan juta rupiah, seperti penghargaan yang diterima oleh peraih medali emas di Sea Games.

Juga, kita tidak mudah berharap, orang-orang kaya di negeri kita berbondong-bondong menginfakkan hartanya untuk mendukung perjuangan para intelektual berbakat seperti Fahmi Salim dan Zain an-Najah. Jangan pula berharap, para pejabat atau pimpinan partai Islam berebut mengucapkan selamat dan menyambut kedatangan para sarjana Muslim ini bandara. Kita maklum, dalam era kejayaan para selebritis ini, hanya para penghibur yang akan mendapat penghargaan tinggi. Media massa kita rata-rata belum tertarik mengangkat berita-berita seperti ini, sebab dinilai bukan berita yang “bisa dijual”. Hingga kini, hanya mereka yang berjaya dalam dunia olah raga dan hiburan yang akan mendapat tempat tehormat di media massa.

Inilah kondisi negara dan masyarakat yang sakit, masyarakat yang jauh dari tradisi ilmu. Masyarakat yang tidak menghargai ilmu dan para ilmuwan. Pada saat bersamaan dengan Sea Games di Thailand, di negara yang sama, sejumlah pelajar Indonesia juga berhasil meraih prestasi yang menggembIraqan dalam Olimpiade Astronomi dan Astro-Fisika. Tapi, berita itu pun tidak seheboh berita kemenangan beberapa atlit Indonesia di Sea Games.

Kita maklum akan kondisi negara dan masyarakat seperti itu. Kondisi ini bukan untuk diratapi. Justru, inilah tantangan besar dan menarik yang harus diatasi oleh para intelektual seperti Fahmi Salim atau Zain an-Najah. Tidak sepatutnya para intelektual itu menyerah pada keadaan. Mereka sudah dikaruniai ilmu yang tinggi oleh Allah SWT. Amat sedikit orang Muslim yang berhasil meraih prestasi akademik yang tinggi di Universitas al-Azhar. Ilmu dan prestasi yang mereka raih adalah amanah dari Allah, yang harus digunakan untuk perjuangan Islam.

Pada CAP-213 yang lalu, kita menelaah riwayat hidup Mohamamd Natsir, tokoh yang berani mengambil pilihan terjun ke kancah perjuangan umat, meskipun mendapat kesempatan kuliah di Batavia untuk menjadi Meester in de Rechten. Ketika itu, terbuka juga peluang Natsir untuk menjadi pegawai negeri dengan gaji tinggi. Tapi, Natsir memilih jalan yang jarang dipikirkan oleh orang banyak ketika itu. Dia memilih terjun langsung dalam kancah perjuangan umat; mengamalkan ilmunya untuk aktif sebagai guru di sekolah Islam dan berdakwah di tengah masyarakat. Ia lebih memilih hidup di tengah umat dan merasakan langsung detak nadi jantung kehidupan umat Islam.

Natsir adalah orang yang haus ilmu. Disamping terus menimba ilmu kepada para ulama, terutama A. Hassan, di Kota Bandung, Natsir mulai aktif dalam organisasi Jong Islamiten Bond (JIB). Di sini dia sempat berinteraksi dengan para cendekiawan dan aktivis Islam terkemuka seperti Prawoto Mangkusasmito, Haji Agus Salim, dan lain-lain. Sejak duduk di bangku sekolah AMS (setingkat SMA), Natsir sudah mulai terlibat dalam polemik tentang pemikiran Islam. Pengalaman pertama terjadi ketika seluruh kelasnya diundang oleh guru gambar untuk menghadiri pidato seorang pendeta Kristen bernama Ds. Christoffels, tahun 1929. Pidatonya berjudul ”Quran en Evangelie” dan ”Muhammad als Profeet”. Meskipun disampaikan dengan gaya yang lembut, Natsir melihat pidato si pendeta itu sesungguhnya menyerang Islam secara halus. Esoknya, pidato itu dimuat di surat kabar ”A.I.D.” (Algemeen Indish Dagblad). Natsir kemudian menulis artikel yang menjawab opini sang pendeta, melalui koran yang sama.

Natsir bukan orang yang menumpuk-numpuk ilmu di kepalanya untuk sekedar dihafal atau disimpan dalam benaknya sendiri. Pengalamannya dalam perjuangan Islam telah membawanya kepada cakrawala baru. Natsir memimpin Jong Islameten Bond cabang Bandung tahun 1928-1932. Ia sudah biasa menulis dan berceramah dalam bahasa Belanda – bahasa kaum terpelajar saat itu. Ketika duduk di kelas akhir AMS, Natsir sudah menulis kitab Pengajaran Shalat dalam bahasa Belanda dengan judul ”Komt tot het gebed”.

Berkaca pada pengalaman Nastir itu, kita berharap, para sarjana dan cendekiawan Muslim bersedia menimba pelajaran dan pengalaman langsung dalam kancah perjuangan umat. Dalam arena perjuangan inilah, akan dirasakan nikmatnya ilmu dan perjuangan.

Sekali lagi, kita ucapkan selamat kepada Fahmi Salim MA dan Dr. Zain an-Najah. Kita tunggu kiprah mereka dalam kancah perjuangan umat Islam di Indonesia yang tak henti-hentinya dirongrong paham-paham yang merusak aqidah dan pemikiran Islam. Semoga, kehadiran mereka di Indonesia, menambah daftar para ’Pendekar al-Azhar’ yang mengajarkan ”ilmu putih” yang ampuh dalam pembinaan aqidah umat dan sekaligus ’membereskan’ beberapa rekan seperguruan mereka yang kini aktif menyebarkan ’ilmu hitam’ ke tengah masyarakat. [Depok, 21 Desember 2007/www.hidayatullah.com]

Catatan Akhir Pekan [CAP] Adian Husaini adalah hasil kerjasama antara Radio Dakta 107 FM dan www.hidayatullah.com

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

MITOS-MITOS TENTANG PERAYAAN NATAL BERSAMA

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 26, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

From: Wisnu Pramudya
Subject: Mitos-mitos Tentang Natal Bersama

MITOS-MITOS TENTANG

PERAYAAN NATAL BERSAMA

(Kritik terhadap Pendapat Prof. Dr. Din Syamsuddin)

Oleh: Adian Husaini
(Wakil Ketua Komisi Kerukunan Umat Beragama MUI Pusat)

Pada tanggal 25 Desember 2007, saat sedang berada di Palembang, saya menerima banyak SMS yang bernada prihatin, bahwa Prof. Dr. Din Syamsuddin, selaku Ketua Umum PP Muhammadiyah, akan menghadiri acara Perayaan Natal Bersama (PNB) pada 27 Desember 2007. Selama di Palembang, saya tidak sempat mengecek kebenaran berita itu. Barulah pada Rabu (26 Desember 2007) pagi ini, saya sempat mengecek berita tersebut. Setelah menerima sebuah SMS tentang duduk cerita rencana kehadiran Din Syamsuddin dalam acara PNB tersebut, saya kemudian merasa perlu menulis artikel seputar PNB ini, untuk mengoreksi beberapa logika Din Syamsuddin. Sekitar tiga tahun lalu, pada 24 Desember 2004, saat tinggal di Kuala Lumpur, saya sudah menulis Catatan Akhir Pekan ke-83, dengan judul yang sama dengan artikel ini.

Bagi saya pribadi, pernyataan dan pemikiran Din Syamsuddin tentang PNB memang agak mengejutkan. Artikel ini sama sekali tidak bermaksud meragukan keimanan Din Syamsuddin sebagai seorang Muslim. Saya kenal beliau sangat lama, dan sampai detik saya menulis artikel ini, saya masih percaya akan komitmen yang tinggi Din Syamsuddin sebagai seorang Muslim. Sekarang, saya juga duduk sebagai pengurus Majelis Tabligh PP Muhammadiyah dan di pengurus MUI Pusat. Tentu saya sebenarnya tidak ingin tulisan ini dibaca secara terbuka. Akan tetapi, karena Din Syamsuddin sudah mempublikasikan pemikirannya secara luas dan terbuka, maka menjadi kewajiban saya untuk menjawab logika-logika Din Syamsuddin secara terbuka pula. Sebab, ini sudah menyangkut urusan Islam, bukan hanya urusan Muhammadiyah atau MUI. Juga, logika seperti ini, sudah sering dikemukakan oleh berbagai pihak. Jadi, ini adalah bagian dari kewajiban untuk melakukan taushiyah antar sesama Muslim. Dan ini sangat penting, karena kekeliruan pemikiran seorang pemimpin agama ­ apalagi yang bergelar Prof. Dr. — dapat berakibat fatal, karena dianggap sebagai rujukan kebenaran. Rasulullah saw bersabda bahwa “Mimmaa akhaafu ‘alaa ummatiy zallatu ‘aalimin wa jidaalu munaafiqin fil Quraani.” (Termasuk diantara perkara yang aku khawatirkan menimpa umatku adalah tergelincirnya orang alim (dalam kesalahan) dan silat lidahnya orang munafik tentang al-Quran.” (HR Thabrani dan Ibn Hibban)). Saya berpendapat, bahwa dalam soal PNB ini, Pak Din Syamsuddin sedang tergelincir pemikirannya, dan mudah-mudahan bersedia meluruskannya kembali. Situs www.detik.com, (24/12/2007 15:32 WIB), menulis berita berjudul “Din Tidak Larang Hadiri Perayaan &Ucapkan Selamat Natal”. Ditulis dalam berita ini:

“Bagi Ketua Umum PP Muhammadiyah, Din Syamsuddin, menghadiri seremonial Natal tidak seharusnya dihindari. Demikian pula dengan memberikan ucapan selamat Natal kepada kaum Kristiani. “Saya pribadi berpendapat fatwa MUI sejak zaman Buya adalah larangan menghadiri upacara Natal yang berdimensi ibadah dan keyakinan karena itu wilayah keyakinan masing-masing. Tetapi yang berbentuk seremoni tidak seharusnya terhindari,” kata Din.

Hal ini disampaikan Din usai menerima kunjungan panitia Perayaan Natal Nasional 2007 di kantor PP Muhammadiyah, Jalan Menteng Raya, Jakarta Pusat, Senin (24/12/2007). Din pun mengaku bersedia menghadiri perayaan Natal Nasional yang akan digelar pada 27 Desember 2007 mendatang.

Juga diberitakan detik.com, bahwa dalam kesempatan itu, Ketua Umum Panitia Perayaan Natal Nasional, Mari Elka Pangestu mengharapkan Din hadir dalam acara tersebut. “Kita berharap perayaan Natal bisa mengatasi permasalahan yang dihadapi bangsa ini. Kita juga sudah menyampaikan berbagai bantuan ke berbagai daerah seperti sembako di NTT dan penanaman 50 ribu pohon di Cipularang,” ujarnya, seperti dikutip detik.com .

Sebenarnya, di dalam Muhammadiyah sendiri, masalah “Perayaan Natal Bersama” dan soal “Mengucapkan Selamat Natal” sudah selesai dibahas. Di dalam buku Tanya Jawab Agama Jilid II, oleh Tim PP Muhammadiyah Majlis Tarjih, yang diterbitkan oleh Suara Muhammadiyah (1991), hal. 238-240, sudah diterangkan, bahwa hukum menghadiri PNB adalah Haram. Muhammadiyah dalam hal ini juga mengacu kepada fatwa MUI. Adapun soal “Mengucapkan Selamat Hari Natal” dapat digolongkan sebagai perbuatan yang syubhat dan bisa terjerumus kepada haram, sehingga Muhammadiyah menganjurkan agar perbuatan ini tidak dilakukan.

Fatwa yang Digugat

Secara umum, kita akan mengupas logika yang menganjurkan perlunya PNB dalam paparan berikut ini. Seperti dikutip dalam berita itu, Mari Elka Pangestu berharap, Din Syamsuddin akan hadir dalam acara PNB, dan dia pun berharap, perayaan Natal bisa mengatasi permasalahan yang dihadapi bangsa ini. Kita maklum, selama ini tidak mudah mengajak tokoh Islam untuk hadir dalam PNB, karena terganjal oleh Fatwa MUI tentang PNB. Karena itulah, sejak diterbitakannya fatwa MUI tentang PNB, tahun 1981, fatwa itu sudah menuai kritik yang tiada habis-habisnya. Ada yang mengkritik secara terbuka dan ada juga yang tidak setuju secara diam-diam.

Karena itu, kita perlu menelaah masalah PNB ini secara mendasar. Ketika fatwa itu dikeluarkan, saya sedang duduk di bangku kelas 1 SMA di Bojonegoro. Saya mengikuti perdebatan tentang fatwa itu dari kampung saya, Desa Kuncen-Padangan-Bojonegoro, melalui majalah Panji Masyarakat, yang dilanggan ayah saya (almarhum, seorang guru SD yang juga Pengurus Muhammadiyah Padangan). Dari majalah ini, hampir tidak pernah saya lewatkan membaca rubrik Dari Hati ke Hati asuhan Buya Hamka. Seperti kita ketahui, Hamka kemudian memilih untuk mengundurkan diri sebagai ketua MUI, ketimbang menarik kembali peredaran fatwa itu, sebagaimana diminta oleh Menteri Agama ketika itu Alamsyah R. Perwiranegara. Saya masih ingat, saya menitikkan air mata, ketika membaca tulisan Hamka tentang pengunduran dirinya sebagai Ketua Umum MUI. Ketika itu, saya berpikiran, “Beginilah seharusnya seorang ulama: luas ilmunya dan kokoh pendiriannya!” Di kalangan Muhamamdiyah sediri, Hamka sangat dihormati, sehingga namanya diabadikan menjadi sebuah Universitas Muhammadiyah Prof. Dr. Hamka, di Jakarta. Sayang sekali, akhir-akhir ini ada sejumlah buku dan artikel yang mencoba ‘memelintir’ pendapat-pendapat Hamka, sehingga seolah-olah Hamka adalah seorang penganut paham Pluralisme Agama.

Maka, saya senantiasa merasa amat sangat sedih dan pilu, ketika ada diantara orang-orang Muhammadiyah atau MUI sendiri yang kemudian menggugat atau menyalahpahami fatwa ini. Jika gugatan atau kesalahpahaman terhadap fatwa PNB itu datang dari kaum liberal atau non-Muslim, masih bisa dipahami. Terakhir, misalnya, Luthfi Asyaukanie, yang menyebut dirinya sebagai ‘Koordinator Jaringan Islam Liberal’, dalam artikelnya yang berjudul “Sikap Negara terhadap Aliran Sesat” (Koran Tempo, 22 Desember 2007), menulis:

“Majelis Ulama Indonesia berkali-kali meresahkan masyarakat dengan fatwa-fatwa mereka (fatwa menghadiri perayaan Natal, misalnya).”

Jadi, fatwa PNB ini oleh kaum liberal senantiasa diposisikan sebagai fatwa yang meresahkan masyarakat. Dan seperti biasa, menjelang perayaan Hari Natal, 25 Desember, ada saja sebagian kalangan yang kembali menggugat fatwa MUI tentang “haramnya seorang Muslim hadir dalam Perayaan Natal Bersama.” Ada yang menyatakan, bahwa yang melarang PNB atau yang tidak mau menghadiri PNB adalah orang yang tidak toleran, eksklusif, tidak menyadari pluralisme, tidak menghargai multikulturalisme, tidak mau berta’aruf, dan sebagainya. Padahal orang Islam disuruh melakukan ta’aruf (QS 49:13). Banyak yang kemudian berdebat tentang “boleh dan tidaknya” menghadiri PNB, tanpa menyadari, bahwa sebenarnya telah banyak diciptakan mitos-mitos seputar apa yang disebut PNB itu sendiri.

Marilah kita telaah mitos-mitos tersebut:

PERTAMA, mitos bahwa PNB adalah keharusan. Mitos ini seperti sudah begitu berurat berakar, bahwa PNB adalah enak dan perlu. Padahal, bisa dipertanyakan, dalam tataran kenegaraan, apa memang perlu diadakan PNB? Untuk apa? Jika PNB perlu, bahkan dilakukan pada skala nasional dan dijadikan acara resmi kenegaraan ­ yang mengharuskan Presiden menghadirinya — maka perlukah juga diadakan WB (Waisak Bersama), NB (Nyepi Bersama), IFB (Idul Fithri Bersama), IAB (Idul Adha Bersama), MNB (Maulid Nabi Bersama), IMB (Isra’ Mi’raj Bersama), IB (Imlek Bersama). Jika semua itu dilakukan, mungkin demi alasan efisiensi dan pluralisme beragama, akan ada yang usul, sebaiknya semua umat beragama merayakan HRB (Hari Raya Bersama), yang menggabungkan hari raya semua agama menjadi satu. Di situ diperingati bersama kelahiran Tuhan Yesus, peringatan kelahiran Nabi Muhammad saw, dan kelahiran dewa-dewa tertentu, dan sebagainya.

Keharusan PNB sebenarnya adalah sebuah mitos, khususnya kata “Bersama”. Jika kaum Kristen merayakan Natal, mengapa mesti harus melibatkan kaum agama lain? Ketika itu mereka memperingati kelahiran Tuhan Yesus, maka mengapa mesti mendorong-dorong umat agama lain untuk mendengarkan cerita tentang Yesus dalam versi Kristen? Mengapa doktrin tentang Yesus sebagai juru selamat umat manusia itu tidak diyakini diantara pemeluk Kristen sendiri?

Di sebuah negeri Muslim terbesar di dunia, seperti Indonesia, wacana tentang perlunya PNB adalah sebuah ‘keanehan’. Kita tidak pernah mendengar bahwa kaum Kristen di AS, Inggris, Kanada, Australia, misalnya, mendiskusikan tentang perlunya dilaksanakan IFB (Idul Fithri Bersama), agar mereka disebut toleran. Bahkan, mereka tidak merasa perlu menetapkan Idul Fithri atau Idul Adha sebagai hari libur nasional. Padahal, di Inggris, Kanada, dan Australia, mereka menjadikan 26 Desember sebagai “Boxing Day” dan hari libur nasional. Selain Natal, hari Paskah diberikan libur sampai dua hari (Easter Sunday dan Esater Monday). Di Kanada dan Perancis, Hari Natal juga libur dua hari. Hari libur nasional di AS meliputi, New Year’s Day (1 Januari), Martin Luther King Jr Birthday (17 Januari), Washingotn’s Birthday (21 Februari), Memorial Day (30 Mei), Flag Day (14 Juni), Independence Day (4 Juli), Labour Day (5 September), Columbus Day (10 Oktober), Veterans Day (11 November), Thanksgiving’s Day (24 November), Christmas Day (25 Desember).

KEDUA, mitos bahwa PNB bertujuan membina kerukunan umat beragama. Mitos ini begitu kuat dikampanyekan, bahwa salah satu cara membina kerukunan antar umat beragama adalah dengan menghadiri PNB, sehingga orang yang menolak untuk menghadiri PNB dipersepsikan sebagai orang yang tidak toleran dan tidak mau rukun. Padahal, dalam PNB biasanya dilakukan berbagai acara yang menegaskan keyakinan umat Kristen terhadap Yesus, bahwa Yesus adalah anak Allah yang tunggal, juru selamat umat manusia, yang wafat di kayu salib untuk menebus dosa umat manusia. Kalau mau selamat, manusia diharuskan percaya kepada doktrin itu. (Yohanes, 14:16). Dalam dokumen Konstitusi Dogmatik tentang Gereja (Lumen Gentium, 14) yang disahkan pada 21 November 1964, dalam Konsili Vatikan II, disebutkan: “Karena satu-satunya Perantara dan jalan keselamatan adalah Kristus, yang hadir di antara kita di dalam Tubuhnya yaitu Gereja… Oleh karenanya tidak dapat diselamatkan orang-orang itu, yang walaupun tahu bahwa Gereja Katolik didirikan oleh Allah dengan perantaraan Yesus Kristus, sebagai sesuatu yang diperlukan, toh tidak mau masuk ke dalamnya atau tidak mau bertahan di dalamnya.” (Terjemah oleh Dr. J. Riberu, Dokpen MAWI, 1983). Sementara itu, dalam Islam, kepercayaan bahwa Yesus adalah Tuhan atau anak Tuhan dipandang sebagai satu kekeliruan yang amat sangat serius — satu kepercayaan yang dikritik keras oleh al-Quran. (QS 5:72-73, 157; 19:89-91, dsb). Dalam surat Maryam disebutkan, memberikan sifat bahwa Allah punya anak, adalah satu “Kejahatan besar” (syaian iddan). Dan Allah berfirman dalam al-Quran: “Hampir-hampir langit runtuh dan bumi terbelah serta gunung-gunung hancur. Bahwasanya mereka mengklaim bahwa al-Rahman itu mempunyai anak.” (QS 19:90-91).

Prof. Hamka menyebut tradisi Perayaan Hari Besar Agama Bersama semacam itu bukan menyuburkan kerukunan umat beragama atau membangun toleransi, tetapi menyuburkan kemunafikan. Di akhir tahun 1960-an, Hamka menulis tentang usulan perlunya diadakan perayaan Natal dan Idul Fithri bersama, karena waktunya berdekatan:

“Si orang Islam diharuskan dengan penuh khusyu’ bahwa Tuhan Allah beranak, dan Yesus Kristus ialah Allah. Sebagaimana tadi orang-orang Kristen disuruh mendengar tentang Nabi Muhammad saw dengan tenang, padahal mereka diajarkan oleh pendetanya bahwa Nabi Muhammad bukanlah nabi, melainkan penjahat. Dan al-Quran bukanlah kitab suci melainkan buku karangan Muhammad saja. Kedua belah pihak, baik orang Kristen yang disuruh tafakur mendengarkan al-Quran, atau orang Islam yang disuruh mendengarkan bahwa Tuhan Allah itu ialah satu ditambah dua sama dengan satu, semuanya disuruh mendengarkan hal-hal yang tidak mereka percayai dan tidak dapat mereka terima… Pada hakekatnya mereka itu tidak ada yang toleransi. Mereka kedua belah pihak hanya menekan perasaan, mendengarkan ucapan-ucapan yang dimuntahkan oleh telinga mereka. Jiwa, raga, hati, sanubari, dan otak, tidak bisa menerima. Kalau keterangan orang Islam bahwa Nabi Muhammad saw adalah Nabi akhir zaman, penutup sekalian Rasul. Jiwa raga orang Kristen akan mengatakan bahwa keterangan orang Islam ini harus ditolak, sebab kalau diterima kita tidak Kristen lagi. Dalam hal kepercayaan tidak ada toleransi. Sementara sang pastor dan pendeta menerangkan bahwa dosa waris Nabi Adam, ditebus oleh Yesus Kristus di atas kayu palang, dan manusia ini dilahirkan dalam dosa, dan jalan selamat hanya percaya dan cinta dalam Yesus.”

Demikian kutipan tulisan Prof. Hamka yang ia beri judul: “Toleransi, Sekulerisme, atau Sinkretisme.” (Lihat, buku Hamka, Dari Hati ke Hati, (Jakarta: Pustaka Panjimas, 2002).

KETIGA, mitos bahwa dalam PNB orang Muslim hanya menghadiri acara non-ritual dan bukan acara ritual. Dalam ungkapan Din Syamsuddin: “Saya pribadi berpendapat fatwa MUI sejak zaman Buya adalah larangan menghadiri upacara Natal yang berdimensi ibadah dan keyakinan karena itu wilayah keyakinan masing-masing. Tetapi yang berbentuk seremoni tidak seharusnya terhindari.” Kita patut bertanya, apa kriteria untuk menentukan bahwa suatu kegiatan dalam perayaan Natal adalah “ibadah” dan yang lain adalah “seremoni”. Sebab, sebagaimana disebutkan oleh Prof. Huston Smith, “Christianity, is basically a historical religion. It is founded not in abstract principles, but in concrete events, actual historical happenings. (Lihat, Huston Smith, The World’s Religions, (New York: Harper CollinsPubliser, 1991).

Agama Kristen tidak memiliki sistem ibadah yang bersifat “revealed” yang sama untuk semua Kristen sebagaimana dalam Islam. Karena itulah, setiap sekte atau Gereja memiliki tata cara ibadah yang ‘khas’, yang berbeda satu dengan lainnya. Setiap Gereja, pada setiap zaman, dan setiap tempat, dalam membuat kreasi sendiri dalam “ibadah”. Karena itu, dalam konsep Kristen, tidak mudah untuk menentukan, mana yang ibadah atau ritual, dan mana yang non-ritual atau yang seremoni. Misalnya, acara-acara KKR di berbagai hotel atau lapangan, apakah dikategorikan sebagai ibadah aau seremoni? Konsep kenabian (prophecy) dalam agama Kristen berbeda dengan konsep kenabian dan konsep uswah sebagaimana konsep kenabian Islam. Umat Islam memiliki tata cara ibadah yang satu, karena ada contohnya yang jelas, yaitu sunnah Nabi Muhammad saw. Ke mana pun umat Islam pergi dan dimana pun, kapanpun, orang Islam shalat dengan cara yang sama. Umat Islam takbir, ruku’, sujud, dengan cara yang sama. Bahkan, sejumlah aliran yang disebut “sesat” dalam Islam masih memiliki ibadah yang sama. Dalam Islam sistem ibadah tidak berubah, sudah sempurna sejak awal, di zaman Nabi Muhammad saw. (QS 5:3). Karena itu, bagi umat Islam, mudah menentukan, mana yang ritual dan mana yang non-ritual. Shalat Idul Fithri adalah ritual, tetapi kunjungan ke rumah-rumah setelah shalat Id adalah tradisi, non-ritual. Karena itulah, dalam fatwa MUI tentang PNB yang dikeluarkan tanggal 7 Maret 1981 disebutkan bahwa “Perayaan Natal bagi orang-orang Kristen adalah merupakan ibadah.” Untuk menjernihkan masalah “ibadah” dan “seremoni” dalam Natal, bagus juga kita tengok sejarah peringatan Natal itu sendiri, dan sulitnya memisahkan antara yang ibadah dan yang seremoni. Sebab, tradisi ini tidak muncul di zaman Yesus dan tidak pernah diperintahkan oleh Yesus. Maka, bagaimana bisa ditentukan, mana yang ibadah dan mana yang seremoni? Remi Silado, seorang budayawan Kristen, menulis kolom di majalah Gatra, edisi 27 Desember 2003. Judulnya “Gatal di Natal”. Beberapa kutipan kolomnya kita petik di sini:

(1) “Sebab, memang tradisi pesta ceria Natal, yang sekarang gandrung dinyanyikan bahasa kereseh-reseh Inggris, belum lagi terlembaga. Sapaan Natal, “Merry Christmas” –dari bahasa Inggris Lama, Christes Maesse, artinya “misa Kristus”– baru terlembaga pada abad ke-16, dan perayaannya bukan pada 25 Desember, melainkan 6 Januari.”
(2) “Dengan gambaran ini, keramaian Natal sebagai perhitungan tahun Masehi memang berkaitan dengan leluri Barat, istiadat kafir, atau tradisi pagan, yang tidak berhubungan dengan Yesus sendiri sebagai sosok historis-antropologis bangsa Semit, lahir dari garis Ibrahim dan Daud, yang merupakan bangsa tangan pertama yang mengenal monoteisme absolut lewat Yehwah.”
(3) Saking gempitanya pesta Natal itu, sebagaimana yang tampak saat ini, karuan nilai-nilai rohaninya tergeser dan kemudian yang menonjol adalah kecenderungan-kecenderungan duniawinya semata: antara lain di Manado orang
mengatakan “makang riki puru polote en minung riki mabo” (makan sampai pecah perut dan minum sampai mabuk).
(4) “Demikianlah, soal Natal sekali lagi merupakan gambaran pengaruh Barat, dan persisnya Barat yang kafir, yang dirayakan dengan keliru.” Yang jelas-jelas tidak ritual adalah menghadirkan tokoh Santa Claus, karena ini adalah tokoh fiktif yang kehadirannya dalam peringatan Natal banyak dikritik oleh kalangan Kristen. Sebuah situs Kristen (www.sabda.org), menulis satu artikel berjudul: “Merayakan Natal dengan Sinterklas: Boleh atau Tidak?” Dikatakan, “Dalam artikelnya yang berjudul The Origin of Santa Claus and the Christian Response to Him (Asal-usul Sinterklas dan Tanggapan Orang Kristen Terhadapnya), Pastor Richard P. Bucher menjelaskan bahwa tokoh Sinterklas lebih merupakan hasil polesan cerita legenda dan mitos yang kemudian diperkuat serta dimanfaatkan pula oleh para pelaku bisnis.

Sinterklas yang kita kenal saat ini diduga berasal dari cerita kehidupan seorang pastor dari Myra yang bernama Nicholas (350M). Cerita yang beredar (tidak ditunjang oleh catatan sejarah yang bisa dipercaya) mengatakan bahwa Nicholas dikenal sebagai pastor yang melakukan banyak perbuatan baik dengan menolong orang-orang yang membutuhkan. Setelah kematiannya, dia dinobatkan sebagai “orang suci” oleh gereja Katolik, dengan nama Santo Nicholas. Nilai-nilai yang ditanamkan oleh Sinterklas sebenarnya tidak sesuai dengan ajaran iman Kristen… Akhirnya, sebagai guru Sekolah Minggu kita harus menyadari bahwa hal terpenting yang harus kita perhatikan adalah menjadikan Kristus sebagai berita utama dalam merayakan Natal — Natal adalah Yesus.”

Karena itu, kita bertanya, bagaimana seandainya seorang Prof. Dr. Din Syamsuddin mengenakan busana ala Santa Claus, dengan alasan itu bukan termasuk ibadah? Tentulah, sulit diterima. Dan kita yakin, Pak Din Syamsuddin sendiri, tentu tidak akan bersedia melakukan tindakan tersebut.

KEEMPAT, mitos bahwa tidak ada unsur misi Kristen dalam PNB. Melihat PNB hanya dari sisi kerukunan dan toleransi tidaklah tepat. Sebab, dalam PNB unsur misi Kristen juga perlu dijelaskan secara jujur. PNB adalah salah satu media yang baik untuk menyebarkan misi Kristen, agar umat manusia mengenal doktrin kepercayaan Kristen, bahwa dengan mempercayai Tuhan Yesus sebagai juru selamat, manusia akan selamat. Sebab, misi Kristen adalah tugas penting dari setiap individu dan Gereja Kristen. Dalam dokumen Konstitusi Dogmatik tentang Gereja (Lumen Gentium, 1) juga disebutkan: “Christ is the Light of nations. Because this is so, this Sacred Synod gathered together in the Holy Spirit eagerly desires, by proclaiming the Gospel to every creature, to bring the light of Christ to all men, a light brightly visible on the countenance of the Church.” (Terjemahan oleh Dr. J. Riberu adalah: “Terang bangsa-bangsa adalah Kristus. Karena itu Konsili Suci ini, yang berhimpun dalam Roh Kudus, ingin sekali mewartakan Injil kepada segala makhluk (bdk Mk 16:15) dan menerangi semua manusia dengan cahaya Kristus, yang terpantul pada wajah Gereja).

Dokumen Konsili Vatikan II, Ad Gentes, juga menugaskan, agar semua manusia harus dijadikan sasaran misi. Ad gentes juga menugaskan agar misi Kristen tetap dijalankan dan semua manusia harus dibaptis. Disebutkan, bahwa Gereja telah mendapatkan tugas suci untuk menjadi “sakramen universal penyelamatan umat manusia (the universal sacrament of salvation), dan untuk memaklumkan Injil kepada seluruh manusia (to proclaim the gospel to all men). Juga ditegaskan, semua manusia harus dikonversi kepada Tuhan Yesus, mengenal Tuhan Yesus melalui misi Kristen, dan semua manusia harus disatukan dalam Yesus dengan pembaptisan. (Therefore, all must be converted to Him, made known by the Church’s preaching, and all must be incorporated into Him by baptism and into the Church which is His body).

Tentu adalah hal yang normal, bahwa kaum Kristen ingin menyebarkan agamanya, dan memandang penyebaran misi Kristen sebagai tugas suci mereka. Namun, alangkah baiknya, jika hal itu dikatakan secara terus-terang, bahwa acara-acara seperti PNB memang merupakan bagian dari penyebaran misi Kristen. Paus Yohanes Paulus II, dalam Ensiklik-nya, Redemptor Hominis, (dikeluarkan 4 Maret 1979) menyatakan, bahwa Gereja berkeinginan agar setiap orang dapat menemukan Kristus (The church wishes to serve this single end: that each person may be able to find Christ, so that Christ may walk with each one the path of life).

Lebih jauh lagi ditegaskan dalam Dekrit Dominus Jesus: “The Lord Jesus, before ascending into heaven, commanded his disciples to proclaim the Gospel to the whole world and to baptize all nations: “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; he who does not believe will be condemned. (Mk 16:15-16); “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the world?(Mt 28:18-20; cf. Lk 24:46-48; Jn 17:18,20,21; Acts 1:8).

Sebagai Muslim, kita menghormati keyakinan dan tugas misi kaum Kristen tersebut. Karena itu adalah keyakinan mereka. Paus Yohanes Paulus II pun maklum akan perbedaan mendasar antara Kristen dengan Islam. Dalam sebuah wawancara, Paus mengatakan, bahwa Islam bukan agama penyelamatan. (Islam is not a religion of redemption). Dalam Islam, kata Paus, tidak ada ruang untuk Salib dan Kebangkitan Yesus (… in Islam, there is no room for the Cross and the Resurrection). Lebih jauh Paus menyatakan: “Jesus is mentioned, but only as a prophet who prepares for the last prophet, Muhammad. There is also mention of Mary, His Virgin Mother, but the tragedy of redemption is completely absent.” “For this reason,” Paus menyimpulkan, “not only the theology but also the anthropology of Islam is very distant
from Christianity.” (Lebih jauh tentang pernyataan Paus Yohanes Paulus II, lihat Vittorio Messori (ed.), Crossing The Threshold of Hope by His Holiness John Paul II, (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1994).

Imbauan

Dengan memahami hakekat Natal dan PNB, seyogyanya kaum non-Muslim bersedia menghormati fatwa Majelis Ulama Indonesia yang melarang umat Islam untuk menghadiri PNB. MUI sama sekali tidak melarang kaum Kristen merayakan Natal. Fatwa itu adalah untuk internal umat Islam, dan sama sekali tidak merugikan pemeluk Kristen. Fatwa itu dimaksudkan untuk menjaga kemurnian aqidah Islam dan menghormati pemeluk Kristen dalam merayakan Hari Natal. Mestinya, kaum non-Muslim menghormati keyakinan umat Islam ini, sebagaimana difatwakan oleh MUI. Fatwa itu dikeluarkan Komisi Fatwa MUI pada 7 Maret 1981, yang isinya antara lain menyatakan: (1) Mengikuti upacara Natal bersama bagi umat Islam hukumnya haram (2) agar umat Islam tidak terjerumus kepada syubhat dan larangan Allah SWT, dianjurkan untuk tidak mengikuti kegiatan-kegiatan Natal.

Karena itu, kita menyesalkan jika kalangan Kristen banyak mengkritik fatwa tersebut. Menganggap fatwa MUI tentang PNB itu tidak sejalan dengan semangat kerukunan umat beragama, adalah penilaian yang berlebihan dan tidak mengormati keyakinan masing-masing agama. Lebih ajaib lagi, jika ada yang mengaku Muslim ikut-ikutan meributkan fatwa ini, seolah-olah merupakan musibah besar bagi bangsa Indonesia, jika PNB hanya dihadiri internal kaum Kristen saja. Kaum yang mengaku liberal ini seringkali aneh jalan pikirannya. Mereka mengaku liberal dan katanya punya misi untuk menanamkan pluralisme dan menghormati perbedaan. Tapi, mereka sendiri bersikap otoriter dan tidak mengormati pendapat dan fatwa MUI soal Natal Bersama. Harusnya mereka menghormati fatwa tersebut dan tidak mencaci maki serta menuduh fatwa itu meresahkan masyarakat, dan sebagainya. Jika mereka sudah “kebelet” mau menghadiri PNB, ya silakan saja. Itu urusan mereka. Tidak perlu berteriak-teriak memaki-maki MUI. Dalam soal PNB ini, MUI hanya menyatakan, bahwa itu hukumnya haram. MUI tidak meminta polisi membubarkan PNB atau tidak meminta orang-orang yang hadir dalam PNB itu ditangkapi. MUI hanya berpendapat, tapi sudah dicaci maki. Karena itu, MUI juga tidak akan memaksa kaum liberal untuk mengikuti fatwa MUI. Jika mereka berpendapat bahwa menghadiri PNB adalah jalan untuk menggapai Ridho Ilahi dan halalan thayyiban, ya itu urusan mereka. Toh, nanti di akhirat tanggung jawabnya juga masing-masing. Wa laa taziru waaziratun wizra ukhraa.

Dalam pandangan Islam, masalah peringatan Hari Besar Agama, sebenarnya sudah diberi contoh dan penjelasan yang jelas oleh Rasulullah saw, dan dicontohkan oleh para sahabat Rasul yang mulia. Sebaiknya hal ini dikaji secara ilmiah dari sudut ketentuan-ketentuan Islam. Untuk berijtihad, memutuskan mana yang halal dan mana yang haram, memerlukan kehati-hatian, dan menghindari kesembronoan. Sebab, tanggung jawab di hadapan Allah, sangatlah berat. Untuk masalah hukum-hukum seputar Hari Raya, misalnya, bisa dibaca Kitab “Iqtidha’ as-Shirat al-Mustaqim Mukhalifata Ashhabil Jahim”, karya Syaikhul Islam Ibnu Taimiyah).

Sejak awal mula, Islam sadar akan makna pluralitas dan kerukunan umat beragama. Islam hadir dengan mengakui hak hidup dan beragama bagi umat beragama lain, disaat kaum Kristen Eropa menyerukan membunuh kaum “heresy” karena berbeda agama. Karen Armstrong memuji tindakan Umar bin Khatab dalam memberikan perlindungan dan kebebasan beragama kepada kaum Kristen di Jerusalem. Umar r.a. adalah penguasa pertama yang menaklukkan Jerusalem tanpa pengrusakan dan pembantaian manusia, bahkan menandatangani perjanjian ‘Iliya’ dengan pemimpin Kristen Jerusalem. Secara tegas Armstrong memuji sikap Umar bin Khatab dan ketinggian sikap Islam dalam menaklukkan Jerusalem, yang belum pernah dilakukan para penguasa sebelumnya. Ia mencatat:

“Umar juga mengekspresikan sikap ideal kasih sayang dari penganut (agama) monoteistik, dibandingkan dengan semua penakluk Jerusalem lainnya, dengan kemungkinan perkecualian pada Raja Daud. Ia memimpin satu penaklukan yang sangat damai dan tanpa tetesan darah, yang Kota itu belum pernah menyaksikannya sepanjang sejarahnya yang panjang dan sering tragis. Saat ketika kaum Kristen menyerah, tidak ada pembunuhan di sana, tidak ada penghancuran properti, tidak ada pembakaran simbol-simbol agama lain, tidak ada pengusiran atyau pengambialihan, dan tidak ada usaha untuk memaksa penduduk Jerusalem memeluk Islam. Jika sikap respek terhadap penduduk yang ditaklukkan dari Kota Jarusalem itu dijadikan sebagai tanda integritas kekuatan monoteistik, maka Islam telah memulainya untuk masa yang panjang di Jerusalem, dengan sangat baik tentunya. (Lihat, Karen Arsmtrong, A History of Jerusalem: One City, Three Faiths, (London: Harper Collins Publishers, 1997).

Namun, kita bisa menyimak, dalam kitab Iqtidha’ as-Shirat al-Mustaqim digambarkan, bagaimana ketegasan Umar bin Khatab dalam soal perayaan Hari Besar kaum Yahudi dan Kristen. Beliau meminta kaum Muslim untuk menjauhi Hari Besar agama mereka. Umar r.a. sama sekali tidak menganjurkan kaum Muslim untuk berboncong-bondong merayakan Natal Bersama. Peringatan Hari Raya Keagamaan, sebaiknya tetap dipertahankan sebagai hal yang eksklusif milik masing-masing umat beragama. Biarkanlah masing-masing pemeluk agama meyakini keyakinan agamanya, tanpa dipaksa untuk menjadi munafik, dengan mencampuradukkan urusan perayaan Hari Raya. Masih banyak cara dan jalan untuk membangun sikap untuk saling mengenal dan bekerjasama antar umat beragama, seperti bersama-sama melawan kezaliman global yang menindas umat manusia saat ini. Dan untuk itu tidak perlu menciptakan mitos-mitos yang menyesatkan, bahwa jika orang Islam mau menghadiri Perayaan Natal Bersama, atau orang Kristen mau menghadiri perayaan Idul Fithri Bersama, maka Indonesia akan menjadi negara yang rukun dan maju.

Kita berharap, masing-masing agama bersedia menghormati keyakinan masing-masing dan tidak memaksa ­ secara halus atau terang-terangan ­ untuk melakukan suatu tindakan yang melanggar ajaran agamanya masing-masing. Tentu amat sangat tidak bijaksana, jika umat Islam juga mendesak pemeluk Kristen atau non-Muslim lainnya untuk menghadiri perayaan Idul Fithri. Karena itu, kita juga berharap, terutama kepada para tokoh dan cendekiawan dari kalangan Muslim, agar lebih berhati-hati dalam bersikap dan mengeluarkan pendapat. Wallahu a’lam. (Depok, 26 Desember 2007).

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-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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THE PLAIN TRUTH ABOUT CHRISTMAS

Posted by musliminsuffer on December 26, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

THE PLAIN TRUTH

ABOUT CHRISTMAS

by

Herbert W. Armstrong

1892 – 1986

Where did the world get Christmas? From the Bible, or paganism. Here are astonishing facts which may shock you. Test yourself. How much do you know of the origin of the Christmas tree – of “Santa Claus” – of the mistletoe – of the holly wreath – of the custom of exchanging gifts?

When I was a little boy, I was taught to hang up my stockings on Christmas eve. When I awakened the next morning, they were filled with small toys and sacks or little boxes of candy and nuts. And beside the mantle, from which my stockings hung, a Christmas tree had suddenly appeared, decorated with shiny tinsel. And on it hung presents. Other presents for us children were piled on the floor underneath. I was told Santa Claus had come down the chimney during the night and left all these things.

But did I question what my parents had told me? Of course not. I accepted it – took it all for granted. Didn’t you?

Stop and think a moment. Very few have ever reflected on WHY they believe what they do – WHY they follow the customs they do, or from WHERE those customs came. We were born into a world filled with customs. We grew up accepting them without question. Why? Sheep instinct? Well, not exactly. But by nature we do tend to follow the crowd, whether right or wrong. Sheep follow others to the slaughter. Humans ought to check up where they are going. How – WHEN did Christmas originate? Does Christmas REALLY celebrate the birthday of Christ? Was Jesus born on December 25th? Did the original apostles, who knew Jesus personally and were taught by Him, celebrate His birthday on December 25th? Did they celebrate it AT ALL?

If Christmas is the chief of the Christian holidays, WHY do so many non-Christians observe it? Do you know? Why do people exchange presents with family members, friends, relatives, at Christmas time? Was it because the wise men presented gifts to the Christ-child? The answer may surprise you.

Most people have “supposed” a lot of things about Christmas that are not true. But let’s quit “supposing” and get the facts!

WHAT ENCYCLOPEDIAS SAY

The word “Christmas” means “Mass of Christ,” or, as it came to be shortened, “Christ-Mass.” It came to non-Christians and Protestants from the Roman Catholic Church. And where did they get it? NOT from the New Testament – NOT from the Bible – NOT from the original apostles who were personally instructed by Christ – but it gravitated in the fourth century into the Roman Church from paganism.

Since the celebration of Christmas has come to the world from the Roman Catholic Church, and has no authority but that of the Roman Catholic Church, let us examine the Catholic Encyclopedia, 1911 edition, published by that church. Under the heading “Christmas,” you will find:

“Christmas was NOT among the earliest festivals on the Church…the first evidence of the feast is FROM EGYPT.” “PAGAN CUSTOMS centering around the January calends gravitated to Christmas.”

And in the same encyclopedia, under the heading “Natal Day,” we find that the early Catholic father, Origen, acknowledged this truth: “…In the Scriptures, no one is recorded to have kept a feast or held a great banquet on his birthday. It is ONLY SINNERS (like Pharaoh and Herod) who make great rejoicings over the day in which they were born into THIS world”.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 1946 edition, has this: “Christmas (i.e., the Mass of Christ)…Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the church…” It was not instituted by Christ or the apostles, or by Bible authority. It was picked up afterward from paganism. The Encyclopedia Americana, 1944 edition, says: “Christmas…It was, according to many authorities, not celebrated in the first centuries of the Christian church, as the Christian usage in general was to celebrate the death of remarkable persons rather than their birth…” (The “Communion,” which is instituted by New Testament Bible authority, is a memorial of the death of Christ.) “…A feast was established in memory of this event [Christ’s birth] in the FOURTH CENTURY. In the fifth century the Western Church ordered it to be celebrated forever ON THE DAY OF THE OLD ROMAN FEAST OF THE BIRTH OF SOL, as no certain knowledge of the day of Christ’s birth existed.”

Now notice! These recognized historical authorities show Christmas was not observed by Christians for the first two or three hundred years – a period longer than the entire history of the United States as a nation! It got into the Western, or Roman, Church, by the fourth century A.D. It was not until the fifth century that the Roman Church ordered it to be celebrated as an official Christian festival!

JESUS NOT BORN DECEMBER 25th

Jesus was not even born in the winter season! When the Christ-child was born “there were in the same country shepherds ABIDING in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night” (Luke 2:8). This never could have occurred in Judaea in the month of December. The shepherds always brought their flocks from the mountainsides and fields and corralled them not later than October 15, to protect them from the cold, rainy season that followed that date. Notice that the Bible itself proves, in Song of Solomon 2:11 and Ezra 10:9, 13, that winter was a rainy season not permitting shepherds to abide in open fields at night.

“It was an ancient custom among Jews of those days to send out their sheep to the fields and deserts about the Passover (early spring), and bring them home at commencement of the FIRST RAIN,” says the Adam Clarke Commentary (Vol. 5, page 370, New York ed.)

Continuing, this authority states: “During the time they were out, the shepherds watched them night and day. As…the first rain began early in the month of Marchesvan, which answers to part of our October and November (begins sometime in OCTOBER), we find that the sheep were kept out in the open country during the whole SUMMER. And, as these shepherds had not YET brought home their flocks, it is a presumptive argument that October had not yet commenced, and that, consequently, our Lord was not born on the 25th of December, when no flocks were out in the fields; nor could He have been born later than September, as the flocks were still in the fields BY NIGHT. On this very ground, the nativity in December should be given up. The feeding of the flocks by night in the fields is a CHRONOLOGICAL FACT…See the quotations from the Talmudists in Lightfoot.”

Any encyclopedia, or any other authority, will tell you that Christ was not born on December 25. The Catholic Encyclopedia frankly states this fact.

The exact date of Jesus’ birth is entirely unknown, as all authorities acknowledge – though if I had space in this booklet I could show you scriptures which at least strongly indicate it was in the early fall – probably September – approximately six months after Passover.

If God had wished us to observe and celebrate Christ’s birthday, He would not have so completely hidden the exact date.

HOW THIS PAGAN CUSTOM GOT INTO THE CHURCH

Then how did this pagan custom creep into the Western Christian world?

The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religous Knowledge explains it clearly, in its article on “Christmas”: “How much the date of the festival depended upon the pagan Brumalia (Dec. 25) following the Saturnalia (Dec. 17-24), and celebrating the shortest day of the year and the ‘new sun’…cannot be accurately determined. The pagan Saturnalia and Brumalia WERE TOO DEEPLY ENTRENCHED IN POPULAR CUSTOM TO BE SET ASIDE BY CHRISTIAN INFLUENCE…The pagan festival with its riot and merrymaking was so popular that Christians were glad of an excuse to continue its celebration with little change in spirit and manner. Christian preachers of the West and the Near East protested against the unseemly frivolity with which Christ’s birthday was celebrated, while Christians of Mesopotamia ACCUSED THEIR WESTERN BRETHREN OF IDOLATRY AND SUN WORSHIP FOR ADOPTING AS CHRISTIAN THIS PAGAN FESTIVAL.”

Remember, the Roman world had been pagan. Prior to the fourth century, Christians were few in number, though increasing, and were persecuted by the government and by pagans. But, with the advent of Constantine as emperor, who made his profession of Christianity in the fourth century, placing Christianity on an equal footing with paganism, people of the Roman world began to accept this now-popular Christianity by the hundreds of thousands.

But remember, these people had grown up in pagan customs, chief of which was this idolatrous festival of December 25th. It was a festival of merrymaking, with its special spirit. They enjoyed it! They didn’t want to give it up. Now this same article in the New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge explains how the recognition by Constantine of Sunday, which had been the day of pagan sun worship, and how the influence of the pagan Manichaeism, which identified the SON OF GOD with the physical SUN, gave these pagans of the fourth century, now turning over wholesale to “Christianity,” their excuse for calling their pagan-festival date of December 25th (birthday of the SUN-god), the birthday of the SON OF GOD.

And THAT is how “Christmas” became fastened on our Western world. We may call it by another name, but it’s the same old pagan sun-worshipping festival still. The only change is in what we call it. You can CALL a rabbit a “lion,” but it’s still a rabbit, just the same.

Again from the Encyclopaedia Britannica: “Certain Latins, as early as 354, may have transferred the birthday from January 6th to December 25, WHICH WAS THEN A MITHRAIC FEAST…OR BIRTHDAY OF THE UNCONQUERED SUN…The Syrians and Armenians, who clung to January 6th, accused the Romans of sun worship and idolatry, contending…that the feast of December 25, had been invented by disciples of Cerinthus…”

THE REAL ORIGIN OF CHRISTMAS

But if we got Christmas from the Roman Catholics, and they got it from paganism, where did the pagans get it? Where, when, and what was its real origin?

It is a chief custom of the corrupt system denounced all through Bible prophecies and teachings under the name of Babylon. And it started and originated in the original Babylon of ancient Nimrod! Yes, it stems from roots whose beginning was shortly this side of the Flood!

Nimrod, grandson of Ham, son of Noah, was the real founder of the Babylonish system that has gripped the world ever since – this system of organized competition – of man-ruled governments and empires, based upon the competitive and profit-making economic system. Nimrod built the tower of Babel, the original Babylon, ancient Nineveh, and many other cities. He organized the world’s first kingdom. The name “Nimrod,” in Hebrew is derived from “Marad,” meaning “he rebelled.”

From many ancient writings, considerable is learned of this man, who started the great organized worldly apostasy from God that has dominated this world until now. Nimrod was so evil, it is said he married his own mother, whose name was Semiramis. After Nimrod’s untimely death, his so-called mother-wife, Semiramis, propagated the evil doctrine of the survival of Nimrod as a spirit being. She claimed a full-grown evergreen tree sprang overnight from a dead tree stump, which symbolized the springing forth unto new life of the dead Nimrod. On each anniversary of his birth, she claimed Nimrod would visit the evergreen tree and leave gifts upon it. December 25th was the birthday of Nimrod. This is the real origin of the Christmas tree.

Through her scheming and designing, Semiramis became the Babylonian “Queen of Heaven,” and Nimrod, under various names, became the “divine son of heaven.” Through the generations, in this idolatrous worship, Nimrod also became the false Messiah, son of Baal the Sun-god. In this false Babylonish system, the “Mother and Child” (Semiramis and Nimrod reborn) became chief objects of worship. This worship of “Mother and Child” spread over the world. The names varied in different countries and languages. In Egypt it was Isis and Osiris. In Asia, Cybele and Deoius. In pagan Rome, Fortuna and Jupiterpuer. Even in Greece, China, Japan, Tibet is to be found the counterpart of the Madonna, LONG BEFORE THE BIRTH OF CHRIST!

Thus, during the fourth and fifth centuries, when the pagans of the Roman world were “accepting” the new popular “Christianity” by the hundreds of thousands, carrying their old pagan customs and beliefs along with them, merely cloaking them with Christian-sounding names, the Madonna and “Mother and Child” idea also became popularized, especially at Christmas time. Every Christmas season you’ll hear sung and chanted dozens of times the hymn “Silent Night, Holy Night,” with its familiar “Mother and Child” theme. We, who have been born in such a babylonish world, reared and steeped in these things all our lives, have been taught to revere these things as holy and sacred. We never questioned to see where they came from – whether they came from the Bible, or from pagan idolatry!

We are shocked to learn the truth – some, unfortunately, take offense at the plain truth! But God commands His faithful ministers, “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression!” Shocking as these facts are, they are the plain facts of history and the Bible. The real origin of Christmas goes back to ancient Babylon. It is bound up in the organized apostasy which has gripped a deceived world these many centuries. In Egypt, it was always believed that the son of Isis (Egyptian name for “Queen of Heaven”) was born December 25th. Paganism celebrated this famous birthday over most of the known world for centuries before the birth of Christ.

December 25th is NOT the birthday of Jesus, the true Christ! The apostles and early true Church never celebrated Christ’s birthday at ANY time. There is no command or instruction to celebrate it in the Bible – rather, the celebrating of birthdays is a pagan, not a Christian custom, believe it or not.

Thus the ancient idolatrous “Chaldean Mysteries,” founded by this wife of Nimrod, have been handed down through the pagan religions under new Christian-sounding names.

ORIGIN OF HOLLY WREATH, MISTLETOE, YULE LOG

Now where did we get this mistletoe custom? Among the ancient pagans the mistletoe was used at this festival of the winter solstice because it was considered sacred to the sun, because of its supposed miraculous healing power. The pagan custom of kissing under the mistletoe was an early step in the night of revelry and drunken debauchery – celebrating the death of the “old sun” and the birth of the new at the winter solstice. Mistletoe, sacred in pagan festivals, is a parasite!

Holly berries were also considered sacred to the sun-god. The yule log is in reality the “sun log.” “Yule” means “Wheel,” a pagan symbol of the sun. Yet today professing Christians speak of the “sacred yule-tide season”!

Even the lighting of fires and candles as a Christian ceremony is merely a continuation of the pagan custom, encouraging the waning sun-god as he reached the lowest place in the southern skies.

The Encyclopedia Americana says: “The holly, the mistletoe, the Yule log…are relics of pre-Christian times.” Of paganism!

The book Answers to Questions, compiled by Frederick J. Haskins, found in public libraries, says: The use of Christmas wreaths is believed by authorities to be TRACEABLE TO THE PAGAN CUSTOMS of decorating building and places of worship at the feast which took place at the same time as Christmas. The CHRISTMAS TREE IS FROM EGYPT, and its origin dates from a period long anterior to the Christian Era.”

YES, AND EVEN SANTA CLAUSE

But surely dear old Santa Claus is not a creature of pagan birth? But he is, and his real character is not so benevolent and holy as many suppose.

The name “Santa Claus” is a corruption of the name “St. Nicholas,” a Roman Catholic bishop who lived in the 5th century. Look in the Encyclopedia Britannica, volume 19, pages 648-649, 11th edition, where you’ll read: “St. Nicholas, bishop of Myra, a saint honored by the Greeks and Latins on the 6th of December… A legend of his surreptitious bestowal of dowries on the three daughters of an impoverished citizen…is said to have originated the old custom of giving presents in secret on the Eve of St. Nicholas [Dec. 6], subsequently transferred to Christmas day. Hence the association of Christmas with Santa Claus…”

Through the years, parents punish their children for telling falsehoods. Then, at Christmas time, they themselves tell their little children this “Santa Claus” lie! Is it any wonder many of them, when they grow up and learn the truth, begin to believe God is a myth, too?

One little fellow, sadly disillusioned about “Santa Claus,” said to a playmate, “Yes, and I’m going to look into this ‘Jesus Christ’ business, too!” Is it Christian to teach children myths and falsehoods? God says, “Thou shalt not bear false witness.” It may seem right, and be justified by human reason, but God says, “There is a way that SEEMETH right to a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” “Old Nick” also is a term for the devil! Is there a connection? Satan appears as an “angel of light,” to deceive (II Cor 11:14; Rev 12:9).

And so when we examine the facts, we are astonished to learn that the practices of observing Christmas is not, after all, a true Christian practice, but a pagan custom – one of the ways of Babylon our people have fallen into.

WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT THE CHRISTMAS TREE

But if the Bible is silent about telling us to observe Christmas, or recording any such observance by the apostles or early true Church, it DOES have something to say about the Christmas tree.

This will come as a real surprise to many. But here it is: Jeremiah 10:2-6: “Thus saith the Lord, LEARN NOT THE WAY OF THE HEATHEN…FOR THE CUSTOMS OF THE PEOPLE ARE VAIN: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.”

There is a perfect description of the Christmas tree, termed by the Eternal as “the way of the heathen – the customs of the people.” We are commanded not to learn that way or follow it. It is also viewed in this passage as idolatry. The fifth verse shows that these trees cannot speak – cannot walk – must be carried. “Be not afraid of them; for THEY (the trees) cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good.” They are not gods to be feared. Some people MISread this to make it say there is no harm in having a Christmas tree, but that is not what it says.

ISN’T EXCHANGING GIFTS SCRIPTURAL?

But when it comes to the most important part of all in this Christmas observance – the Christmas shopping season – the buying and exchanging of gifts – many will exclaim triumphantly, “Well, at least the Bible tells us to do that. Didn’t the wise men give gifts when Christ was born?”

Again, we are due for some surprises, when we learn the plain truth. First, let’s look at the historic origin of trading gifts back and forth, then see exactly what the Bible DOES say about it.

From the Bibliotheca Sacra, volume 12, pages 153-155, we quote: “The interchange of presents between friends is alike characteristic of Christmas and the Saturnalia, and MUST HAVE BEEN ADOPTED BY THE CHRISTIANS FROM THE PAGANS, as the admonition of Tertullian plainly shows.”

The fact is, this custom fastened upon people of exchanging gifts with friends and relatives at the Christmas season HAS NOT A SINGLE TRACE OF CHRISTIANITY ABOUT IT, strange though that may seem. This does not celebrate Christ’s birthday nor honor it or Him! Suppose someone you love has a birthday. You want to honor that person on his or her birthday. Would you lavishly buy gifts for EVERYONE ELSE, trading gifts back and forth with all your OTHER friends and loved ones, but ignore completely any gift for the one whose birthday you are honoring? Rather absurd, when viewed in that light, isn’t it?

Yet this is exactly what people the world over are doing. They honor a day that is not Christ’s birthday by spending every dime they can scrape together in buying presents to trade back and forth among friends and relatives. But I can say by years of experience, as I believe most pastors and ministers can say, that when the month of December rolls around, nearly all professing Christians forget to give gifts to Christ and His cause almost altogether. December often is the most difficult month to keep Christ’s work from dying. People are too busy trading gifts back and forth among themselves to think of Him and His Work, it seems. Then, in January and even into February it seems they have to catch up from what they spent for Christmas, so they seldom get back to normal in supporting Christ and His Work before March.

Now consider what the Bible says about the wise men giving gifts when Christ was born. It is in Matthew 2:1-11. “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he that is born KING OF THE JEWS? …And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down and worshipped him: AND WHEN THEY HAD OPENED THEIR TREASURES, they presented unto HIM gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.”

WHY GIFTS PRESENTED TO CHRIST

Notice, they inquired for the child Jesus, who was born KING of the Jews. Now why did they present gifts to Him? Because it was His birthday? Not at all, because they came several days or weeks after the date of His birth. Was it to set an example for us, today, to trade gifts back and forth among ourselves? No, notice carefully. They did not exchange gifts among themselves, but “they presented unto HIM gifts.” They gave their gifts to Christ, not to their friends, relatives, or one another.

Why? Let me quote from the Adam Clarke Commentary, volume 5, page 46: “Verse 11. (They presented unto him gifts.) The people of the east never approach the presence of kings and great personages, without a present in their hands. The custom is often noticed in the Old Testament, and still prevails in the east, and in some of the newly discovered South Sea Islands.”

There it is. They were not instituting a new Christian custom of exchanging gifts with friends to honor Christ’s birthday. They were following an old and ancient eastern custom of presenting gifts to a king when they came into his presence. They were approaching Him, born King of the Jews, in person. Therefore custom required they present gifts – even as the Queen of Sheba brought gifts to Solomon – even as many people today take a gift along when they visit the White House for an appointment with the President.

No, the custom of trading gifts back and forth does not stem from this scriptural incident at all, but rather, as quoted from history above, it is the continuance of an ancient pagan custom. Instead of honoring Christ, it invariably retards His Work, often sets it back, at the Christmas season every year.

DOES IT REALLY HONOR CHRIST?

Now come two arguments often used to justify Christmas observance.

1) Many will reason this way: “But, even though the exact date of Jesus’ birth is unknown, should we not select SOME date to celebrate as His birthday?” The answer is positively no. Did you not notice the statement quoted from the Catholic Encyclopedia: “Sinners alone, not saints, celebrate their birthdays.” The custom of birthdays is not a Christian, but a pagan custom, observed by sinners!

2) But, many still reason, “Even so – even though Christmas was a pagan custom, honoring the false sun-god, we don’t observe it to honor the false god, we observe it to honor Christ.”

But how does God answer in His Word? “Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them [the pagans in their customs]… that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto the Lord they God: for every abomination to the Eternal, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods” (Deut 12:30-31).

God says plainly in His Instruction Book to us, that He will not accept that kind of worship, even though intended in His honor. To Him, He says, it is offering what is ABOMINABLE to Him, and therefore it honors, not Him, but false pagan gods. God says we must not worship Him according to the “dictates of our own conscience” – a term we often hear. But Jesus says plainly, “God is a spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24). And what is truth? God’s Word – the Holy Bible – said Jesus, is truth (John 17:17); and the Bible says God will not accept worship when people take a pagan custom or manner of worship and try to honor Christ with it.

Again, Jesus said: “In VAIN they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Matt 15:9). Christmas observance is a TRADITION OF MEN, and the commandments of God, as quoted, forbid it. Jesus said, further, “full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.”

That is precisely what the millions are doing today. They ignore the commandment of God. He commands, regarding taking the customs of the pagans and using them to honor or worship God: “Thou shalt not do so unto the Lord thy God.” Still, most people today take that command of God lightly, or as having no validity whatsoever, and follow the tradition of men in observing Christmas.

Make no mistake. God will ALLOW you to defy and disobey Him. He will ALLOW you to follow the crowd and the traditions of men. He will ALLOW you to sin. But He also says there is a day of reckoning coming. As you sow, so shall you reap. Jesus was the LIVING Word of God in Person, and the Bible is the WRITTEN Word of God. And we shall be judged, for eternity, by these words. They should not be taken lightly or ignored.

WE’RE IN BABYLON, AND HAVEN’T KNOWN IT

Christmas has become a commercial season. It’s sponsored, kept alive, by the heaviest retail advertising campaigns of the year. You see a masqueraded “Santa Claus” in many stores. Ads keep us deluded and deceived about the “beautify Christmas spirit.” The newspaper, who sell the ads, print flowery editorials exalting and eulogizing the pagan season, and its “spirit.” A gullible people has become so inoculated, many take offense when told the truth. But the “Christmas spirit” is created each year, not to honor Christ, but to sell merchandise. Like all Satan’s delusions, it appears as an “angel of light,” is made to appear good. Billions of dollars are spent in this merchandising spree every year, while the cause of Christ must suffer. It’s part of the economic system of Babylon.

We have professed to be Christian nations, but we’re in Babylon, as Bible prophecy foretold, and we don’t know it. “Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues” – now soon to fall – is the warning of Revelation 18:4.

This year, instead of gift trading, why not put that money into God’s Work?

End

Source: http://home.sprynet.com/~pabco/ptofxmas.htm

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-muslim voice-
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BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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