Do Dr Aafia Siddiqui and Major Nadal Hasan represent Islam?

By Abdul Nishapuri

Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance. Any one who aims to exploit Islam to resort to violence against innocent human beings is neither a friend of Islam nor humanity. Unfortunately, acts of terror and violence committed by ill-informed and ill-minded persons such as Dr Aafia Siddiqui and Major Nadal Hasan serve to defame Islam and Muslims, something which must be condemned unconditionally.

Major Nadal Hasan
Recently, I read the following letter by a Muslim, published in a newspaper. According to this letter:

Treachery is abhorrent in any culture or religion. One has to be blinded by hate to find anything decent about the heinous crime and treacherous act of Maj. Nidal Hasan’s mass shooting at Fort Hood. Hasan violated many constant Islamic principles.

He violated the principle that contracts are binding and should be respected and fulfilled by Muslims, for they are the foundation of civilization. “O you who believe, fulfill your contracts.” (Quran 5.1). His reward for those who honored him and were good to him with the ultimate evil of stabbing them in the back is against Islamic teachings. “Is there any reward for good other than good?” (Quran 55.60). He violated the principle of not committing acts that cause harm to Islam and Muslims.

“No direct or indirect act of harm is permissible.” His lunatic rampage actually harmed Islam, Muslims and his own family. If he meant to weaken Americans, it actually helped strengthen their resolve and united them against whatever Hasan is standing for. He betrayed his medical oath to protect and safeguard human life, a noble Islamic principle. “And whoever safeguards a life, it is as if he saved all humanity.” (Quran 5.32). Muslims are once again tormented by the shameful act of a fellow Muslim, who helped to injure the reputation of Muslims and distorted the image of Islam. Source

Dr Aafia Siddiqui

The case of Dr Aafia Siddiqui is not much different. According to a Times report:

An American-educated neuroscientist who is the only woman accused of working for al-Qaeda’s top leadership appeared in court in New York last night after her capture in Afghanistan.

The US Government alleges that Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani mother of three with a biology degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a doctorate in behavioural neuroscience from Brandeis University, near Boston, is married to the nephew of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the man who claims to have organised the September 11 terror attacks in 2001.

She is charged with attempted murder and assault for allegedly trying to kill an American interrogator in a gun battle after she was arrested outside an Afghan government compound with a handbag full of chemicals and information on chemical, biological and radiological weapons, as well as descriptions of “various landmarks” in the United States.

After completing her doctoral thesis she married a Pakistani anaesthesiologist and lived in a flat in Boston that also served as the headquarters of an Islamic charity called the Institute of Islamic Research and Teaching. In 2002 the couple were questioned by the FBI after Ms Siddiqui’s husband allegedly purchased night-vision goggles and body armour on the internet. Within months the couple moved back to Pakistan but soon separated.

The US alleged that Ms Siddiqui has links to at least two of the 14 high-level al-Qaeda suspects who were moved to Guantanamo in September 2006. American prosecutors said that Ms Siddiqui opened a post office box in Maryland for Majid Khan, a former Baltimore resident now being held at the US detention centre in Guantanamo Bay.

Ms Siddiqui later married Ali Abd al-Aziz Ali, known as Ammar alBaluchi, a nephew of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and a cousin of Ramzi Yousef, who was convicted of the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Centre in New York. Ms Siddiqui faces up to 20 years in prison on each count if convicted. The judge set a bail hearing for Monday. Source

What has emerged in the Pakistani media in recent past suggests that Aafia Siddiqui’s plight is in part a product of her own internal family politics, as it is of whatever her jihadist inclinations may or may not have been. Her ex-husband, Dr Muhammad Amjad Khan, has spoken on the record for the first time since her reappearance in Afghanistan last year, and what he has to say suggests a different scenario to that which is currently in circulation.

He suggests that far from spending years as the Grey Lady of Bagram, tortured and abused, weeping and crying in the darkness, she was lying low either in Afghanistan or Pakistan. He also alleges that Dr Aafia and her children were seen in the vicinity of their family house in Karachi on several occasions over the years of her disappearance; and that for at least five years she had lived under the assumed name – ‘Saliha’ – possibly in both countries.

Related articles:

Mata Hari of Al Qaeda: The mystery of Dr Aafia Siddiqui

Aafia Sididdui – the other side of the picture



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