The word redemption is loaded with meaning. It encompasses the act of redeeming oneself, and/or the state of being redeemed. To redeem is to recover something of value by discharging an obligation. According to Webster, it also means “to ransom, free or rescue by paying a price.” It also signifies making good on a promise (to fulfill) and to atone – another interesting verb that signifies making amends, or to expiate.
March 30, 2013, will mark 10 years since Dr. Aafia Siddiqui and her three young children (ages 6, 4, and six months) were disappeared in Karachi, Pakistan by agents of the Pakistani and American governments. It was March 30, 2003. Five years later (2008) a barely alive Aafia Siddiqui would be brought to the United States to begin 2 ½ years of pre-trial confinement that would be even more oppressive than what was imposed upon the young American soldier accused of leaking classified documents to Wikileaks (Bradley Manning).
Aafia’s oldest children Ahmed and Maryam (American citizens by birth) would be returned to the family home in Karachi in 2008 and 2010, respectively. The youngest child, Suleman, remains unaccounted for to this very day!
As recorded in Sahihs Bukhari and Muslim, the Prophet (peace be upon him) reportedly said, “You will observe that the believers are like parts of the body in relation to each other in matters of kindness, love and affection. When one part of the body is afflicted, the entire body feels it; there is a loss of sleep and a fever develops.”
In another hadith recorded in Sahih Muslim, the Prophet (pbuh) reportedly said: “Whoever removes a worldly grief from a believer, ALLAH will remove from him one of the griefs of the Day of Judgment. Whoever alleviates the lot of a needy person, ALLAH will alleviate his lot in this world and the next. Whoever shields a Muslim, ALLAH will shield him in this world and the next. ALLAH will aid a servant [of His] so long as the servant aids his brother.”
The seal of the Prophets (Mohammed ibn Abdullah, pbuh) also reportedly said: “A Muslim is the brother of a Muslim; he neither oppresses him, nor does he fail him.”
And also, “None of you truly believes until he wishes for his brother [which also includes his sister] what he wishes for himself.” – source, Sahih Bukhari and Muslim
And finally, in one of the most well-known and often quoted ahadith in the Muslim tradition, the Prophet (pbuh) reportedly said: “When you see an evil action you must change it with your hand; if you cannot do so, with your tongue [the jihad of the tongue]; if you cannot do so, detest it with your heart, that is the weakest degree of faith.” – source, Sahih Muslim
To say Muslim leaders and well established Muslim organizations in America have failed to measure up to this high standard – especially as it pertains to the human rights challenges that are symbolized by this Muslim woman’s case – would be an understatement. But every day of new life also affords a new opportunity.
It is also recorded in both Bukhari and Muslim that the Last Messenger of ALLAH stated, “When a person repents, God’s pleasure at this is even greater than that of one who dismounts from his camel, loses it in the desert, and then finds it again all of a sudden.”
In these final hours of the first month of the New Year in the Muslim calendar (Muharram 1434 AH), we invite committed Muslims in America to join us in an intensive three month initiative that will officially begin on December 30, 2012, and run through March 30, 2013 – culminating in two major mobilizations, one in New York City and the other in Fort Worth, Texas.
We have named this initiative Operation Redemption because it will provide committed Muslims in America – especially Muslim MEN – with an opportunity for us to redeem ourselves on this extremely important, precedent-setting case, and the equally important peripheral issues that surround it!
May ALLAH bless this effort, and all those who positively respond to it. Ameen.
To be continued (insha’Allah)….
El-Hajj Mauri’ Saalakhan
29 Muharram 1434 A.H. (December 13, 2012)
special note: insha’Allah, I am scheduled to serve as guest khatib for jumuah at the Makkah Center in Gambrills (MD) tomorrow; at the Islamic Center in Long Island in Westbury (NY) on January 4th; and at the Muslim Center of Middlesex County in Piscataway (NJ) on January 18th. Insha’Allah, from now through the end of March my focus in every Friday jumuah address will be centered around the divinely-given mandate that we have, as Muslims, to enjoin the good and forbid the evil.
I am also planning to attend the MAS-ICNA Convention in Chicago (Dec 21-25) with a request that the organizers deliver (or allow me to deliver) a support statement for Dr. Aafia Siddiqui and “Operation Redemption.”
We are also helping to organize a special one day youth-oriented forum at the Prince Georges Muslim Association (PGMA) in late January titled “Terrorism and Our Youth.” FBI agents interested in attending are welcome to openly register their interest. We have nothing to hide, and what we say will be in the national interest!
- Today: DC Rally to End War on Terrorism
- POCO Podcast: Remembering Kwame Ture In His Own Words
- Today: Committee to Stop FBI Repression Call-in Day
- March 15 Police Brutality Action in NYC
- NYC Event – Building Internationalist Resistance and Movements: Black, Muslim, South Asian, Latino, & Third World Organizing Globally