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Open Thread Sunday 11/9/2008


Did you know we were trying to raise some money on MM for Dr. Aafia’s legal expenses? See this post.  We started with a $1000 target, but then that was extended to $3000 (we are up to $2300). I hope we can get that to $10,000 soon. The following comment is from a brother who walks the talk… we hope others will join him insha’Allah:

walk-e-talk.jpgAssalaamu Alaikum

I’m a student from a third world country trying to make my way through what probably is an over-priced education. My mother is a school teacher who will most likely have a tough time helping me with my next semester’s dues because of the rising value of the dollar in my country. I have little money left in my account but place my trust in Allah who has always been kind to me and provided for me whenever I needed His help.

By Allah, sister Afia needs this money more than I do. I pledge $1,000 to my sister in Islam in her time of need.

Brothers and sisters, subhan Allah, we have been blessed with so much, especially those of us from this country. Just remember: Then, on that Day, you shall be asked about the delights (you indulged in, in this world)! (102:8) When the Prophet sallalahu alayhi wassalam was asked by the sahaabah what was the smallest blessing they should be worried about, he replied that they would be held accountable even for the air they inhale, or something to that effect. We have so much that we could be held accountable for, yet we give so little. Let’s give as much as we can when our sister needs it most. May Allah increase her blessings as well, and may He take away all her pain and suffering, ameen. I am sure we can do much much better insha Allah. Also giving voluntary charity publicly is advised as it encourages others to give as well, insha Allah.

What a week it has been! Everyone is politically-fatigued, except our brothers who can’t get over the fact that Muslims voted! Elections are over, but the chatter goes on…

  • Commentators reminded us quite a few times of Obama’s first pick, at first glance a disappointment to say the least. Crazier than Rahm is his father, who said“Obviously he will influence the president to be pro-Israel,” he was quoted as saying. “Why wouldn’t he be? What is he, an Arab? He’s not going to clean the floors of the White House.”

    Even progressive Jews are fretting about it (see this and this), so Muslims aren’t the only disappointed ones. One  commentator on the second linked post adds this:

    “Why are we employing such analysis to the JPost’s translation?  I read the text in Ma’ariv the day it published its own interview with Rahm’s father, and there is no doubt about it, there was direct linkage between Arab and floor-cleaner.  Any which way you wish to cut it, it was a racist comment.  Is it too difficult to contemplate this notion?  Is it so difficult for Rahm to quickly apologize for it, or for its “mistaken” interpretation by at least 1 billion Muslims that find it rather hurtful, as well as another few billion world citizens that reject racism outright?”

  • While we are talking about Jews, here is another hopeful link, “Jewish voices for peace“. While progressive Jews probably are the largest chunk of Jews in America, they seem to be less concerned about Israel, so the Israeli discourse is firmly in control of the hawkish, right-wing element that uses Islamophobia as part of its tool-box to keep Muslims away from spheres of power. Thus, I [Amad] believe that it is in working with progressive Jews that we have the best chance for better and fairer Middle East policies.
  • Wonder why we didn’t hear any Republican Muslim voices in our “voting experiences” post. Because, as suspected, they are quite a rare species. Only 2% apparently voted for McCain. There are some “suspicions” about the poll, but from what I can tell, the task force would be fools to engage in anything but scientific polling. And not sure there is anything surprising about this. [Newsweek]
    • “The American Muslim Task Force on Civil Rights and Elections released a poll today of over 600 Muslims from more than 10 states, including Florida and Pennsylvania, and it revealed that 89 percent of respondents voted for Obama, while only 2 percent voted for McCain. It also indicated that 95 percent of Muslims polled cast a ballot in this year’s presidential election—the highest turnout in a U.S. election ever—and 14 percent of those were first-time voters.”

Everyone is looking for a break from politics, so it is coming soon to MM. In the next week, there will be some ground-breaking posts inshallah, from Yasir Qadhi’s thoughts on GPU (where he discusses a strange twist of Islamophobia and anti-semitism) to a series on raising children in the West by Umm Reem.

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Stay tuned.

And tell us, we pray, what’s on your mind??

Keep supporting MuslimMatters for the sake of Allah

Alhamdulillah, we're at over 850 supporters. Help us get to 900 supporters this month. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.



  1. Farhan

    November 9, 2008 at 2:00 AM

    I don’t know if this is the proper place, but i feel since my words were public this should also be public. I would like to apologize to brother Amad for any ill words or feelings i may have said or had towards him. I was caught in the moment, and completely blocked out many of the good this brother does, and only bc i differ on some issues with him i was acting in a way which is not proper of a muslim. As brother Amad is another believing brother of this Ummah, he deserves to be treated like one. He gets beaten up not only on MM, but all over the internet it is quite sad. I hope the other brothers and sisters can treat our brother with a bit more respect, as MM would not be nearly the same without his many contributions and seemingly tireless effort put into the site. Brother Amad please accept my sincere apologies, and also forgive me of any wrong i may have done to you.


  2. Amad

    November 9, 2008 at 2:21 AM

    wasalam Farhan, jazakAllahkhair man. That was nice of you. Hope I can stay out of trouble for a few days now with this political season over!

    Some of the beating, I am sure, is deserved, while whatever isn’t deserved adds to my hasanat :)

    And while we are at it, I should take this opportunity to do the same, and say sorry to whoever I have been mean or rough or unknowingly unjust with. My loyalties after all are still with the Muslims, not Obama, trust me on that! Esp. since I actually voted for McKinney (yes, MOFW convinced me AND it didn’t matter in DE).

    So, I still love you all, even those who think I am responsible for all injustices against humanity :)

  3. OsmanK

    November 9, 2008 at 2:24 AM

    Was just browsing islamify, and I saw this video of a really brave sister (though some might say foolish) that I thought I might share, happened Nov. 2007 so a bit old:
    She also does an interview here:

    Also cant wait for Shaykh Yasir’s view on GPU…

  4. OsmanK

    November 9, 2008 at 2:28 AM

    I’m also an Amad-fan for all he’s done for this site.

  5. h. ahmed

    November 9, 2008 at 3:17 AM

    Someone should start an Amad Appreciation Group on Facebook!!! I’d join!!!

  6. Dawud Israel

    November 9, 2008 at 3:41 AM

    Yeah! Amad is so my shaykh hahaha!

    BTW, can you guys have some cooking recipes on here to lighten things up so people don’t take everything so personally? Would be a good way to get Muslims to learn about other Muslim cultures to encourage immigrants and Black muslims to mix more?

  7. Qas

    November 9, 2008 at 3:42 AM

    May Allah bless Amad, his family and MM.

  8. Manas Shaikh

    November 9, 2008 at 8:34 AM


    This is very important.

    An office holding member of the extremist Hindu group VHP has been inducted into Obama administration. If any of you have got any way of protesting it- writing letters to insiders/senators, articles, informing friends etc- please do so.


    Her name is Sonal Shah. You could read more about her here:

    For those who do not know about VHP- they have got their hand bloddied with blood of at least 2000 Muslims and made countless more homeless. They murdered and raped Muslims and destroyed their properties in 2002 in Gujarat. The state is still unsafe for Muslims because of VHP and it’s sister organizations.

    JazakAllah khair in advance.


  9. ibn alHyderabadee

    November 9, 2008 at 12:37 PM

    i made ‘naan’ at home from scratch the other day

  10. Amad

    November 9, 2008 at 3:09 PM

    JazakumAllah khair for the love-fest …

    Manas, jak for pointing out the Sonal pick. This is indeed another disappointment in the Obama picks. From a right-wing hindu fundamentalist family, following the pick from a right-wing Zionist family.

    This is what I suggest:
    1) I believe groups of Indian Muslims took the initiative against Modi the last time. We need those groups to be energized again
    2) If you or anyone can write a succinct short post on who this woman is (from the counterpunch article) and what VHP stands for (esp. based on “objective” sources such as State department Human rights report), then we can post it here, and cross-post on progressive sites such as huffington post, dailykos, etc.
    3) There is apparently a website for Obama’s admin, we could write letters there
    4) If someone can write a short letter to the editor as a template, that can be used as well.

    Someone needs to put together an organized campaign… but it can start with the post and letter. I think our goal should be not to necessarily have Sonal removed, but to put Obama on alert that we aren’t going to let VHP bosses slip through. That Muslims are watching this closely.

    On another note, while we know of the disappointing picks, are there any real bright spots in the other many picks??

  11. Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    November 9, 2008 at 3:32 PM

    Sonal Shah’s brother is denying some of the claims here.

    Family background can give clues about people, but we shouldn’t condemn people just because of their family. Her brother is apparently claiming that she was part of the VHPA group just to raise funds for victims of an earthquake in Gujarat.

    He is saying that his sister “can’t comment” due to her position but that doesn’t really make sense.

    In general, I think the Muslim community needs to pay more attention to the issue of Muslims in India, so I’m glad to see people concerned about this, but let’s make sure we have all our facts straight, inshAllaah.

    Allaah knows best.

  12. Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    November 9, 2008 at 3:39 PM

    The American Muslim Task Force currently has a post election poll on their website.

    If this is where they are getting their results from, then we know that they are worth nothing scientifically.

    I hope they conducted a separate scientific poll, or else they should make it clear that their results are not scientific or they are just perpetuating an image of the Muslims as unsophisticated hustlers in their political involvement.

    By the way, there is absolutely no way that 95 percent of Muslims voted in the election, so this makes me think that it is just based on the web poll, but I would love to no for sure. By the way, I just voted in the poll and even if you say you did not vote, you cannot turn in your vote until you indicate a candidate you voted for.

    I’m also suspicious of the poll because 2 percent for McCain seems high to me. :)

  13. Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    November 9, 2008 at 3:44 PM

    Just to be clear while I do think we should get more information about Sonal Shah to make sure we are right on our specific charges, it is very good as I stated to be clear that we are concerned about the right wing Hindu movement in India, and that we should raise our concerns and demand that they be addressed.

  14. Amad

    November 9, 2008 at 3:51 PM

    Ya akhi Abu Noor, I wouldn’t call a web poll scientific either :)

    Actually the polling was conducted by a professional poll company, Genesis Research Associates. Here are detailed results:
    Post-Election Survey

    The poll had a +-4% error. Of course there are always questions about telephone exit polls, but they were used quite extensively even by the main exit-poll organizations this election due to early voting.

  15. sincethestorm

    November 9, 2008 at 4:02 PM

    The sister is really brave…and a little stupid. lol that’s crazy.

  16. sincethestorm

    November 9, 2008 at 4:16 PM

    I recently came across a documentary titled the American Crescent by a BBC reporter, Rageh Omaar. The documentary shares stories of Muslim Americans who are fully engaged in American society. He tries to show the transformation that Islam is going through in America.
    There are 4 parts….enjoy ;)
    here’s the 1st part…

  17. Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    November 9, 2008 at 4:26 PM

    Jazzak Allaahu Khayr for the information Amad.

    95 percent voting, though? That doesn’t make sense. They start with a database of Muslim Voters, that doesn’t sound like a good methodology for me at least on the question of how many voted. Like I said, it may be alright for the question of which candidate Muslim voters preferred. But I’m not sure what interest is served by claiming that 95 percent of American Muslims voted in the election.

    The country as a whole is around 61 percent.

    Also, I would like to know the ethnic breakdown of those surveyed….this would help us to know how representative the sample was of the American Muslim population as a whole.

    I’m no polling expert, and I appreciate the attempt to give us some data, but one can’t help but be suspicious when the only polling is done by groups with a vested interest in getting certain results.

  18. Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    November 9, 2008 at 4:31 PM

    I meant to say I’m skeptical, not suspicious. I’m not accusing anyone of doing anything wrong or trying to mislead, I’m just not sure how much stock to put in these numbers.

  19. OsmanK

    November 9, 2008 at 5:39 PM

    I agree I’m not too confident in their “database of Muslims”, this would make the survey less random and more prone to error due to self-selection.

    However, if 95% of Muslims voted, that’s a good thing, as it makes the Government know that Muslims do have a voice in the political sphere.

  20. Manas Shaikh

    November 9, 2008 at 6:50 PM

    Bro Amad, JAK. I shall see about the article. There are some people who are already working on this. I shall pass the letters idea to them.

    Abu Noor, the Sangh Parivar is a loose group of right wing organizations. They do different things in different names. Because of that, it’s hard to pin them down and hold them accountable.

    Why o why did she choose to work with the abominable VHP to raise money? There was so many other organizations. And I have more detailed information that her brother (who is closely associated with Sonal Shah) refused to condemn the Gujarat pogroms on the wake of the events- even in private circles. And I don’t understand what’s holding her back from commenting on the 2002 events. Obviously USA didn’t have to anything with it (they blocked Modi out of USA for those events).

    A word or two about Hindutva gangs- they are multi-faced, opportunist and cowerdly. When they feel that their public associations are holding them back, they’ll repudiate those associations in public (but maintain them in private.)

    Her brother receives funds from IDRF- another umbrella of the Sangh Parivar.

  21. Manas Shaikh

    November 9, 2008 at 6:56 PM

    About the other appointments, I don’t really know the personalities. I didn’t know about Shah either. I was warned about her by the counterpunch article, and then I read about their background etc.

  22. Manas Shaikh

    November 9, 2008 at 7:14 PM

    Salaam bro Abu Noor

    Family background can give clues about people, but we shouldn’t condemn people just because of their family. Her brother is apparently claiming that she was part of the VHPA group just to raise funds for victims of an earthquake in Gujarat.

    Agreed. Some more facts to support my conclusion-

    IDRF only funds orgs it knows to be pro-Hindutva. If shah’s organisation was actually secular, they will never fund them. Just look at the list of organisations IDRF funds.

    Second shah never broke those contacts off. Instead, she goes to them for raising funds. Who do you go to for raising funds? Those whom you know and trust and they trust you enough to give you money.

    Hindutva gangs are very slippery. The guy who killed Mahatma Gandhi grew up in their folds. But they disowned him after using him. Said he left their org right before he assassinated Gandhi. That’s very fishy isn’t? By the way, many Sangh Parivar supporters just hates Gandhi for his somewhat inclusive ideology.

    A member of the Hindutva team will never make his/her association public (even deny) if it hurts their interest. They are like that- dishonest and opportunist.

  23. Ali

    November 9, 2008 at 8:07 PM


    just to add more info about VHP (Vishwa Hindu Parishad), they are hostile to any non-hindu population including christianity, for example they are not just inhumane and massacred the muslims in 2002, even recently, they burnt hundred of houses of christians and killed hundreds and raped the nuns in orissa and mangalore (check here for more info and photos, disclaimer: photos are graphic ), whomsoever writing a letter might add this fact (btw, even ruling congress govt in india proposed ban on this organization).

    Recently, supposedly one of its umbrella organization Abhinav Bhara’s is accused of bombing the masjid in 2007 in Malegaon (click here) and it seems VHP (men) funded this organization

    Malegaon blast, even as it revealed it was investigating the role of three VHP leaders from Gujarat.

    The ATS, which is investigating Abhinav Bharat’s funding, will seek details of financing from major banks, using the account details of Purohit, Rakesh Dhawde and Ajay Rahirkar. Police suspect that the accounts were used to receive and send the money allegedly used for anti-national activity.

    Here is the source

    It is very shocking to know that Obama appointed a person with such a shady background who is not willing to clear her side so far…

    Manas Shaikh Jazakallah for bringing this issue here, and Br. Abu Noor, it is not unusual and unheard that the SANGH PARIVAR’s disassociate with any proven/possibly proven criminals… even in the Malogaon Masjid Blast case, a sadhvi is arrested, initially Sangh Parivaar disassociated with her and now they are supporting her bigtime through the back door… (read here, here and more found in the news site or just google)

  24. Abu Noor Al-Irlandee

    November 9, 2008 at 11:14 PM

    As salaamu ‘alaykum,

    Jazzak Allaahu Khayr for all those who have brought additional information and commentary.

    As I made clear in my initial post, I think it is very important that we as Muslims bring more attention to the issues of Muslims in India and the right wing Hindu groups that attack them and others. I also think it is important that we raise concerns about Obama’s appointment of this woman and let it be known that we are disturbed by her associations.

    I think there is a larger concern to buying into this whole guilt by association game, but now is not the time to raise it. I truly truly hate politics. Alllaahul-Musta’an.

  25. Manas Shaikh

    November 10, 2008 at 12:34 AM

    Salaam dear Bro abu Noor

    I shall organize my arguments more carefully to convey the case against her. Please go through them.

    First- Family connections with a party like VHP is enough to make one weary, because as you might know- our fundamentals are built at a very early age. They can be changed- but are very hard to change.

    Second- Hindutva goons are very shrewd and mendicant fellows. If it is not to their advantage, they’ll deny association.

    Because of these two situations, what she says can be ruled out. We have to judge her by her actions.

    Third- actions. Suppose you were to work for a social cause in Afghanistan. Will you receive funding from Al Qaida? I guess not. Nobody takes funds from an org unless they feel comfortable with them. (Or they have no other options).

    She had plenty of other organizations to ask for help/fund. Then, you don’t become the National Coordinator of an org overnight to raise funds do you? Supposing you had nobody else to turn to, you will take the money from VHP-A and walk away, if you are not interested in them- right? (Islamically that’s not permissible, though. You can’t take help from bad people unless they come in good intention and do not make fun of your religion.)

    Even after that, she and her brother did not condemn the actions of Hindutva goons in 2002. Not even in private circles.

    Now they realize that they can’t maintain that stand- so they’re saying they condemn. What stopped them from doing that earlier? Even in private circles?

    I hope I have conveyed clearly to you why I think she and her brother are lying, and they are still associated with the VHP.

  26. abu abdAllah, the Houstonian

    November 10, 2008 at 1:24 AM

    bismillah. there was a comment mentioning that the brother of a political appointee (in the newly elected administration) said his sister is not at liberty to speak about concerns over her family background or other newsworthy topics.

    that may well be true. any person connected to the coming administration may need permission-from/vetting-by the Obama press team before speaking candidly.

    why? the best way to do damage control is not to permit people to say damaging things. and that makes sense: one joe biden is enough for any president-elect.

    not knowing anything else about the person or the appointment, and not wanting to look it up right now, thanks, i want, though, to suggest that the nascent lynch mob tone is still premature.

    remember the so-called mosque “gas attack?” remember the sister who was accused recently of pretending to be the victim of a violent hate crime? what was the legitimate lesson we at MM said we had learned from those events?

    i thought it was that we need hard facts and a whole lot of patience before we turn on the siren.

  27. abu abdAllah, the Houstonian

    November 10, 2008 at 1:44 AM

    bismillah. i just checked my e-mail and got an update on news at

    since it’s most relevant to the start of this thread, consider, please:

    The Plight of Aafia Siddiqui (1) – Yvonne Ridley, October 2008
    Yvonne Ridley, speaking about the case of Aafia Siddiqui at the Luton one-day conference, “The Plight of Aafia Siddiqui”, 19th October 2008. Shikari production, filmed by Amarzeb Afridi
    Part (2)
    Part (3)

    The Plight of Aafia Siddiqui (Part 1) – Moazzam Begg, October 2008
    Moazzam Begg speaking at the one day conference, the Plight of Aafia Siddiqui, in Luton, October 19th 2008. Shikari production, filmed by Amarzeb Afridi
    (Part 2)
    (Part 3)

    Amad, if cageprisoners prefers that links go only to the home page, please only remove the hyperlinks — than anyone who wants to view the videos will still know what titles to search for there. Jazak Allah khayr.

    my brothers and sisters, just a few moments earlier, i happened to play the video that we were so fortunate to have here at MM, “A Tribute to Andalus.” mashaAllah, and may Allah reward the brothers who were thoughtful enough to include the translation in the video.

    Although I vanish, the Most Gentle and Kind vanishes not. Thus, I have hope in Him — hope that fails not.

    i mention that because before you decide how much to contribute to the relief of Dr. Aafia, before you decide whether to pray for her release or humane treatment, before you decide how many other people you will try to influence, just apply for a moment those two lines to her and to every Muslim “disappeared” by the US government.

    pray. let the tears flow freely. contribute. and exhort others to do so, fee sabil Allah.

    may Allah subhanahu wata ala, Who is Always Near the slave who seeks Him, Who is ar Rahman and ar Raheem, may He comfort the hearts and minds of Dr. Aafia and of every prisoner tortured, unjustly prosecuted, inhumanely caged, and denied justice. Allahumma taqabbul minkum wa minna.

  28. Manas Shaikh

    November 10, 2008 at 2:11 AM

    Salaam abu abdAllah

    JazakAllah khair for the caution reminder brother.

    Nothing stopped her from condemning the Gujarat pogrom before she was in the administration. She just didn’t. Her brother too didn’t until now (as far as I know).

  29. Manas Shaikh

    November 10, 2008 at 2:14 AM

    the “gassing” and “assault” incident were very disturbing.

  30. Manas Shaikh

    November 10, 2008 at 6:50 AM

  31. abu abdAllah, the Houstonian

    November 10, 2008 at 10:52 AM

    wa alaykumus salam, wa Rahmat Allah, wa Barakatuhu, wa eeyakum, ya Manas.

    may Allah reward you for all the good you seek to do, and may He increase you and i in our good deeds. i do not want to defend this woman i do not know any more about this morning than i did last night — and i apologize for not following any of the links to other articles about her appointment.

    to restate the point, i do not want to defend her specifically, so much as caution all of us, myself included: i was one of the people who commented early and stridently in both the incidents i mentioned. i pray Allah will accept the good of what we intend, and forgive me and all of us for our sins and excesses. ameen.

    you raised a legitimate concern:

    Nothing stopped her from condemning the Gujarat pogrom before she was in the administration. She just didn’t. Her brother too didn’t until now (as far as I know).

    interestingly, though, the concern is one we have to direct at ourselves, too, and on several grounds:
    (1) Allah is the Best to hold us to Account, and i do not recall that i ever spoke out publicly in any forum about the atrocities in Gujrat. will I hold another person to blame for not doing what i myself may not have done?
    (2) beyond the atrocities in Gujrat, i have over the course of my life, alhamdolillah, spoken out against other crimes against Muslims and non-Muslims alike. i pity anyone among us who was mukallaf at the time — so capable of reason — yet did not decry the horrors committed against the Muslims in Bosnia. but there have been so many instances of injustice that i was blind to as well — and to some it may seem i was deaf then or mute or even complicit… yet Allah Knows, and no one else fathoms what is in my heart. and as Allah reminds us in surah at-Teen, أَلَيْسَ اللَّهُ بِأَحْكَمِ الْحَاكِمِينَ (Sahih International: Is not Allah the Most Just of judges?) will i encourage others to judge me if i seek to judge the silence of another?
    (3) it is a sad commentary on America, but also on much of the world, that for many reasons (some good and some bad) people who seek positions of authority (including politicians, academicians, and many others) have become less and less willing to take publicly any position that could ever derail their careers in the future. so merely hearing that a person was silent is not enough to judge what was in her heart — one might accuse her of many things: cowardice, self-interest, shrewdness — but in all these and more still have no idea what is in her heart:

    وَأَسِرُّوا قَوْلَكُمْ أَوِ اجْهَرُوا بِهِ إِنَّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِذَاتِ الصُّدُورِ
    Surah al-Mulk, ayat 13
    Sahih International: And conceal your speech or publicize it; indeed, He is Knowing of that within the breasts.

    SubhanAllah. not only do we too often act as though it is we who know what is in the breasts of men, but also if, as an ummah, we were more afraid of failing the “final job application” — the one for “person with whom Allah is Pleased” — perhaps we would speak as carefully as those who hope to be judges and power-brokers in this world.

    without doubt, even then Allah would Know whatever was in our hearts, but He is SO Merciful to us that He has Decreed that He will Reward us for the good in our thoughts and not Punish us for the evil in them. indeed, no one else that i know could do that if he were privy to the Knowledge of Allah…

  32. Manas Shaikh

    November 10, 2008 at 12:11 PM

    Salaam dear brother.

    I shall be glad to answer your questions.

    (1) Let me turn the question around. If you were ever given funds by Al-Qaida. Will you not be asked about links with them after 9-11?

    And then, will George Bush be asked to explain for the Holocaust?

    She worked as a National Coordiator of VHP-America. That’s big. Isn’t it obvious to you that she will be asked to repudiate her links on the wake of the riots. Isn’t it obvious to you that you will not be expected to do the same? VHP is like the Ku Klux Klan of India. And if you ever were associated with them, you bet one has to be sure before taking you back into mainstream.

    (2) She was the national coordinator of VHP-A at the time of the pogrom. You don’t think “maybe Hitler didn’t want the holocaust. Maybe he could not speak his heart out”- do you?

  33. Amatullah

    November 10, 2008 at 12:22 PM

    A very nice initiative is going on in Canada, check it out: Bringing Interest-Free Student Loans to Canada.

  34. Amad

    November 10, 2008 at 12:32 PM

    I would ask a similar question as to Manas,
    “If Obama had picked an adviser, whose dad was involved in the Afghanistan jihad of the 80’s, and still maintained ties to the taliban, and the adviser was part of a group loosely tied to taliban (if it was directly tied, the adviser would be at gitmo!), would we be asking these questions?”

    I think if anything, the question needs to be asked of Sonal. If she hasn’t condemned in the past, she needs to come out now, condemn the Gujarat massacre, and also condemn VHP for the radical terrorist organization that it is. If she “forgot” in the past, she can do it now.

    We need to put the pressure on… and show the Prez-elect that we are watching very closely. He got our votes, but he didn’t get a blanket check from us (for whatever that is worth). Let’s make our votes “count”.

  35. confused!

    November 10, 2008 at 2:37 PM

    If she really is associated with VHP then I am convinced that she lives and breath to cause harm to Muslims in any way, shape or form. It is my understanding that since Hinduism does not have clear ideology that VHP has to identify itself being against something. I was visiting India around 1992-93 and personally witnessed how blatant extreme Hinduism was sponsored by Gov and supported by the public. The real tragedy is how ignorant non Indian subcontinent Muslim population is about oppression of Muslims in India by VHP, I have heard non indo-pak muslim saying to me that they like how happily Muslims and Hindus lives together in India! Sure they lived together happily before VHP and likes took over Indian politics. I would say that not all Hindus supports the ideas of VHP. I think we can at least write to team Obama to express our concerns, as it has been stated here already.
    I will write something to Obama team if I know where or who to write to raise my concern.

  36. concerned

    November 10, 2008 at 4:04 PM

    For those of you who do not know much about the state of the discrimination and the events of the Gujarat riots (that went unreported and were silenced by the indian ‘secular’ media), I highly recommend you watch the 2-part documentary, “Final Solution” by Rakesh Sharma.
    yes, a ‘Hindu’ filmmaker, but an honest, genuine man – I have met him in person when he was screening his film on campuses a few years ago- who was appalled and disgusted about the state of affairs. He presents the events of 2002 as what it was, genocide and ethnic cleansing of muslims in Gujarat with the support of the Govt. It is chilling and disturbing, and will make you extremely mad, which will then maybe lead to some impetus for demanding accountability.

    You might be able to find it somewhere online, if not, I would encourage you all to get a hold of it.

  37. Amad

    November 10, 2008 at 4:29 PM

    Actually, you don’t have to look very far.

    See this post:

    Flashback: Gujarat Massacre of 2002

  38. confused!

    November 10, 2008 at 5:11 PM

    I voiced my concern here for what its worth. I will be happy to do more if I know how.

  39. Amad

    November 10, 2008 at 5:50 PM

    “confused”, don’t estimate the effort…. every bit counts.

    I talked with a friend of mine at work, who is Sikh. And Sikhs too decry VHP and its radical agenda. He is a big-shot in the Sikhs of the local area, so he said he’ll pass this info. (the counterpunch article) to the local Sikh community leaders, and possibly do something about it. Alliance-building… that’s where this stuff can really snow-ball.

    I am also hoping for a solid unpublished article on this issue, that can be cross-posted on the progressive blogs… if it catches on, in any of those blogs, you can bet that it will put some heat on the Obama admin.

  40. Ali

    November 10, 2008 at 10:17 PM

    MM’s post shows that the video is no longer available…
    here is the final solution google video

    Documentary: Final Solution

    and similar ones

  41. Manas Shaikh

    November 10, 2008 at 11:15 PM

    Indian Christian Forum (ICF) has expressed their concern too. I think the Sikhs will follow suit, iA.

  42. Manas Shaikh

    November 10, 2008 at 11:20 PM

    Gen. Coordinator: Tel: 516 869 1000 Fax: 516 869 0901
    Gen. Secretary: Tel: 631-796-0064 e-mail:


  43. abu abdAllah, the Houstonian

    November 11, 2008 at 12:39 AM

    bismillah. subhanAllah, Manas. you took questions (rhetorical ones, too) that i addressed to myself and “turned them around”… to point them again at me. :) i can only smile at that legerdemain. it may merely be a reflection of youth or education, but it is still not appropriate.

    you and i are different people, but i would also like to point out that you engage in very poor self-control when it comes to your choice of language and examples. if you want to bring “Al-Qaida” into this thread, kindly associate that only with yourself. maybe you should read shaykh Yasir’s latest article before you write anything else.

  44. Manas Shaikh

    November 11, 2008 at 2:42 AM

    Salaam dear brother abu abdAllah

    I don’t understand what is it that is inappropriate. If I have hurt you, I am sorry. It wasn’t intentional.

    Let us pray that both of us be guided, and helped to find the truth.


  45. ummafnaan

    November 11, 2008 at 4:23 AM

    Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

    I am sorry to barge in on the thread, but I know Abu Sabaya is a contributor on this website and I know a lot of the brothers here know him.
    I just read he was arrested on Saturday at Boston Airport on his way to a Muslim country(I don’t know where) to start a new job.
    The news was from Al

    Please include the brother in your du’as. This is truly sad. Abu Sabaya is such a sincere brother.

    Allahu Musta’an

  46. Amad

    November 11, 2008 at 9:40 AM

    subhanAllah… that is incredibly horrible news about Br. Abu Sabaya. He has been one of the foremost brothers in helping shed the latest and most updated news on Dr. Aafia. I hope that this was a mistake by the concerned authorities (esp. the airport authorities who have been the worst in their treatment of Muslims), and he would be released soon to his family. May Allah make things easy for him and his family during these difficult times.

    jak for letting us know. I also urge everyone to pray for the brother.


  47. Manas Shaikh

    November 11, 2008 at 11:05 AM

    Dear brother abu abdAllah

    I went through what I wrote, and it may be that you think I am accusing you of being associated with extremist organizations.

    That’s not what I wanted to mean. My questions, too, were rhetorical ones. Let me rewrite what I wrote again in clearer terms.

    (1) Let me turn the question around. If somebody were ever given funds by some extremist organization, will that person not be asked about his/her ties with that organization?

    It is obvious that anybody can not issue statements about everything that happens in all the world except the ones where he/she is relevant. You (abu abd Allah) had nothing to do with what happened in Gujarat in 2002 just like George Bush had nothing to do with the Holocaust or the Spanish Inquisition. So it is nothing surprizing that you did not condemn the Gujarat violences. Shah, on the other hand was very relevant to the Gujarat violences.

    But if anybody were to ask you about gruesome crimes like Gujarat in 2002, will you not unequivocally condemn it? She didn’t do that even when she was asked about it (then, she says she does now).

    She worked as a National Coordiator of VHP-America. That’s big. Isn’t it obvious to you that she will be asked to repudiate her links on the wake of the riots. Isn’t it obvious to you that you had nothing to do with it? And therefore you did not find yourself commenting on it. VHP is like the Ku Klux Klan of India. And if anybody ever were associated with them, you bet one has to be sure before taking that person back into mainstream.

    (2) She was the national coordinator of VHP-A at the time of the pogrom. Obviously she is very relevant in the whole business. She did not give up her post on the wake of the incident. Is it possible that Hitler was against the Holocaust? It’s not right? He as a leader had the ability to direct the vision of his party and the government.

    Do you still find my POV objectionable/inappropriate?

  48. Ahmad AlFarsi

    November 11, 2008 at 12:52 PM

    Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

    I am sorry to barge in on the thread, but I know Abu Sabaya is a contributor on this website and I know a lot of the brothers here know him.
    I just read he was arrested on Saturday at Boston Airport on his way to a Muslim country(I don’t know where) to start a new job.
    The news was from Al

    Please include the brother in your du’as. This is truly sad. Abu Sabaya is such a sincere brother.

    Allahu Musta’an

    I am certain that the brother was unjustly arrested. I truly love this brother for the sake of Allah. May Allah release him and grant him justice. Aameen.

  49. Amad

    November 11, 2008 at 10:04 PM

    I fixed the video for the Gujarat video post.

  50. mulsimah

    November 11, 2008 at 11:28 PM


    Im not happy about obamas picks:( Allahualim. plz go to and lets tell him our concerns

  51. Abu Umar

    November 13, 2008 at 10:11 AM

    An interesting tidbit I came across this morning, Keith Olbermann doesn’t vote.

  52. intellect1429

    November 14, 2008 at 9:37 AM

    Since this post has alot of back and forth about about the obama pick, here is an article I found in the New York Times yesterday that I think should make every muslim concerned.

    Emanuel Apologizes for Father’s ‘Arab’ Comments:

  53. abu abdAllah, the Houstonian

    November 14, 2008 at 12:32 PM

    bismillah. jazak Allah khayr intellect1429 for that link. good job, and keep it up! i’ll be curious to see the public comments of Emanuel and/or the transition team.

  54. abu abdAllah, the Houstonian

    November 14, 2008 at 12:45 PM

    bismillah. manas, i accept what you write when you say you intended no harm. and i pray to Allah that He give me and your beneficial knowledge and wisdom.

    to understand my reaction to your post, you should read the article by shaykh yasir that i referred to. you should always assume that what you write or record may someday be used by someone who wishes to twist the content to serve his or her own agenda. and a Muslim is safe from the tongue of another Muslim. thus, even if you fear no harm to yourself from your words, you should guard even more carefully than your own honor the honor of another Muslim. always and under all circumstances.

    if that does not make sense to you, then i am sorry. just pray that Allah will increase you in what is good. and make the same dua for me.

  55. musique

    November 16, 2008 at 6:05 AM

    I would recommend you guys to check out ( and listen to the podcast of Friday, 14th November Daryl as a guest on ‘Intellectual Challenge’ with Inayet Wadee. You will learn things Obama.


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