Gaddafi’s war on Islam – and consequently on his own Islamic people – has been going for most of his last 42 years of ruling. Over the decades Muslims from a variety of different Islamic groups and schools of thought were targeted, arrested, tortured and martyred. Many were simply imprisoned for having beards or praying fajr in the mosque.
Over most of this time Gaddafi remained a faithful ally of the west, considered as a stabilising force in the region. His family would come and go from the UK and Europe. He enjoyed warm first-name relationships with prime ministers, even if the media characterised him as a pariah.
From the early 1970’s Gaddafi targeted and imprisoned members of HIzb ut-Tahrir – including the man who is the current Ameer, Shaykh Ata ibn Khaleel abu Rasha.
A delegation from Hizb ut-Tahrir met him in 1978 for 4 hours, after Gaddafi issued edicts denying the Sunnah, and presented a comprehensive communique refuting his position. The meeting and communiqué decisively addressed the falsehood of Gadaffi’s rejection of the Sunnah. The communiqué and details of the meeting were circulated widely.
Gaddafi was so incensed that he arrested hundreds. Many spent years in prison. Some were eventually released, but banned from ever studying in University. Eventually he arranged sham retrials and then murdered thirteen members; they were hanged in universities and schools in front of their teachers, pupils and families. One of them was brought down still alive, he was hung a second time, then they tied his body to the back of a car which was driven in full view of his family and sons. Their efforts were because a tyrant was trying to undermine, and extinguish the Sunnah of the Prophet SAW, and trying to destroy Islam as an ideology. For that immense aim, they some gave their education, some their youth, and some their lives.
Included amongst these was Muhammad Hfaf , who was known amongst the shab, for needing no lawyer in the courtroom because of his eloquence of speech. He was a young student in Tripoli, in the final year of his engineering degree, at the time of his arrest. Imagine his and his parent’s joy when he would achieved his entry to Uni. Imagine how his parents felt when he was imprisoned in April ’73. Those who knew him sensed no regrets on his part. After ten years in prison he was retried, and executed within 24 hours of being sentenced to death on 7 April ’83 by a public hanging in the engineering college. Many were hanged the same day, their names unknown to us.
Gaddafi made it an annual event to spontaneously lock University gates every year on this day, to publicly hang more. But still more shabab worked on, ignoring his intimidation.
Abdullah Abul Qasim al-Masalaati was another Student. He was detained on 16th April 1983 during the crack down in which hundreds of writers, intellectuals and political activists were rounded-up. He was tried several times and imprisoned for membership of the Party. Subsequently he was retried by a Revolutionary Court and sentenced to death and executed in April, 1984. The sentence was carried out in the Central Prison in Tripoli. He body was never handed to his relatives.
It was not only students sacrificed for this daawah, and Allah’s pleasure.
Hasan A. al-Kurdi, was a civil servant arrested among hundreds in Spring ’73. In June, 73 he was accused with nine others of membership of the Hizb and of writing articles opposing the regime. On 7 Dec. ’73, the Revolutionary Council issued resolution to stop the trials and release the accused. He was rearrested on the same day and held without trial until Feb. ’77, then sentenced to 15 years in prison, but days later, the sentence increased to life imprisonment. He was eventually executed in prison without trial in April 1984.
Saalih Ali al Zarooq an-Nawaal from Bengazi schoolteacher who, in October, 1983 was executed in prison for being a member of the Hizb.
Muhammad Umar an-Ni’aas was a Lawyer from Tripoli. A Graduate of the Faculty of Law, he was detained in April 1983 & was tortured to death in the Central Prison in Tripoli.
Abdullah Muhammad Hamoodah was a Businessman from Benghazi, who was to be the organizer of the Hizb’s daawah in this region. One brother who new him in January 1980 remembers how he was about to give up his job in the shoe production and supply business so that he would have more time for daawah. He eventually negotiated with his boss so that he only had to work one day per week. He was detained in April 1984 for being a member of the Party. One eyewitness saw him after he had been retried and sentenced. They were in different cars, so they could not talk to each other. He simply pointed his finger skywards, and then across his neck in a circular motion, like the sacrifice of a lamb, all the time with a huge smile on his face, as he realized his chance for martyrdom, and perhaps realizing the potential magnitude of his work, Inshallah, if Allah had chosen a death for him such as this. When he returned to the prison, and met one of the other prisoners looking sad on death row, he said to him – ‘why has your face lost its look of Iman’. It is recorded that he died as a result of torture on 29th.November 1984 and although some say that he became ill before the sentence was carried out.
The Gadaffi regime informed his relatives of his death, but they refused to hand over his body –
Five brothers were held in solitary confinement from 1973 until 2002, all because they refuse to write a simple letter of apology to Gadafi. They sacrificed almost 30 years of their lives for Allah’s pleasure. They were originally sentenced to 5, then 15 years and then to life imprisonment, after various staged retrials. One was also a final year engineering student when he went into prison. Almost 30 years later he exited into a strange and different world. Another was originally form Tunisia. His only living close family member when he was imprisoned was his mother. Sadly, she died whilst he was imprisoned. Most of the others were not there to see their parents before they died.
Now – almost forty years after this reign of tyranny, Gaddafi is on the brink of humiliation in the dunya. Ultimately he will face his humiliation on the Day of Judgment.
We pray that the many sacrifices people have made over these years – whether they were made shaheed, or lost jobs or their education – or if they lost their loved ones – or if they were imprisoned and tortured – will all contribute to the promised victory from Allah.
He SWT says: Allah has promised those among you who believe, and do righteous good deeds, that He will certainly grant them succession to (the present rulers) in the earth, as He granted it to those before them, and that He will grant them the authority to practise their religion, that which He has chosen for them (i.e. Islam). And He will surely give them in exchange a safe security after their fear (provided) they (believers) worship Me anddo not associate anything (in worship) with Me. But whoever disbelieved after this, they are the rebellious sinners. [TMQ 24:55]