Islam does not blame the innocent civilians, and Islam should not be blamed for the wayward actions of individual Muslims.
In the lead up to the general election, just as in the recent past, a lone attacker brings the debate about security to the fore, which will inevitably be jumped upon by the politicians whose domestic and foreign policies and securitisation of Muslims have made the world so dangerous today. The media and politicians are not learning the lessons of the past, continuing to allow individuals and elite groups to hijack policy for their own selfish gains.
Muslims must not accept collective blame for the attack on London Bridge, nor should we allow ourselves to be pressured into supporting one candidate over another based on robust promises to be tougher on security. Muslims must empathise with the senseless and tragic loss of life, while continuing to expose the rotten secular capitalist system that lies at the root of all criminality, exploitation and suffering in the world today.
The statement that we issued in 2017 remains true, with only the specific details changing. Our advice continues to be the same today as it was two years ago:
- We do not accept the lie, that being a Muslim and living according to Islamic teachings makes us responsible for the violent acts of individuals. Millions of Muslims have suffered the consequences of military interventions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Libya, through loss of life, beloved relatives and property. Despite the chaos and bloodshed that the British government policies have spread in their lands, the Muslims living in these regions are focused on trying to rebuild their lands, not targeting innocent people in Britain or other states. It is a testament to the patience and steadfastness of the Muslims that so few have sought to use material means to exact revenge for years of death and destruction.
- The victims of the attack are not to blame for the world’s ills, so should not be made to suffer for the crimes of others. Grievance and blame should be rightfully directed to the power-hungry elite establishment, who are responsible for colonial oppression overseas, and who use these incidents to sow distrust about Muslims to grab more power for themselves. They then use that power as a mandate for greater oppression of innocent people both in the UK and overseas; stifling dissent and stigmatising people who would challenge them at home.
- The best means for victims of oppression to challenge such criminals and their policies is to expose the flawed ideology which on one hand preaches human rights, liberty and democracy, but in practice supports dictators through arms deals, trains their security services and carries out atrocities against civilians. The example of the recent Genocide in Burma is clear proof. The blood of the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar is still fresh but Britain continues its support, training the Burmese military and turning a blind eye to Aung San Suu Kyi’s oppression.
- To avoid scrutiny on their own policies, it’s convenient for the government that the Muslim community accept blame for this attack and other crimes, in order that we appear as a danger to ordinary people in Britain. Yet it is not Islam and Muslims that are a danger to British people. The Messenger Muhammad (ﷺ) was sent as a mercy to mankind, to show people a way out of oppression and to stand up for justice. The only people who have ever rightfully feared Islam are the oppressors and exploiters of the world, who fear the loss of their power; were their crimes against humanity to be exposed.
- The warmongers of the world Cameron, Blair, May, Trump, Bush, Obama; Hague and Johnson, along with those who profit enormously from lighting fires throughout the world and turning a blind eye to atrocities overseas, such as in Syria, Yemen, Kashmir, Palestine and Myanmar today. These are the only ones who should rightfully fear the Muslims standing up for justice, as Allah told us in the Quran to do so:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُونُوا قَوَّامِينَ بِالْقِسْطِ شُهَدَاءَ لِلَّهِ وَلَوْ عَلَىٰ أَنْفُسِكُمْ أَوِ الْوَالِدَيْنِ وَالْأَقْرَبِينَ
“You who believe! Be upholders of justice, bearing witness for Allah alone, even against yourselves or your parents and relatives…” [An-Nisa: 135]
- We urge all people, Muslim or non-Muslim, to not accept collective blame for this attack against innocent civilians, just as we also do not accept that the British public bear collective blame for the oppressive colonial plans drawn up by the elite establishment, deceiving even their own people, purely for selfish interest and personal gain.
- It is time to reject this narrative peddled by the establishment and their media outlets on the back of atrocities like this. The Islamic values are not responsible for this incident, nor for the misery that the world’s majority endure as a result of secular capitalist exploitation. Therefore, Muslims should stand proud of their belief and way of life. They should see that it is only Islam that is a solution to a world riddled with chaos, oppression, death and destruction.
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُونُوا قَوَّامِينَ لِلَّهِ شُهَدَاءَ بِالْقِسْطِ ۖ وَلَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَآنُ قَوْمٍ عَلَىٰ أَلَّا تَعْدِلُوا ۚاعْدِلُوا
هُوَ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَىٰ ۖ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ
“You who believe! Show integrity for the sake of Allah, bearing witness with justice. Do not let hatred for a people incite you into not being just. Be just. That is closer to taqwa. Fear Allah. Allah is aware of what you do.” [Al-Maida: 8]
Media representative of Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain,
30th November 2019