and the freedom of religion
Fadlullah: we do not have anything against any American or
European criticism about the lack of freedoms, especially religious
ones, that our region actually suffers from. We call on the Arabs and
Islamic regimes to respect these freedoms, and study the negative
impact on their existence that this persecution might lead to, in
addition to its repercussions on the society that might indulge in
civil strife that is planned for by the international arrogance who
created the problem and then presents itself as the solution.
Asked in his weekly
seminar the following question: How
should we deal with the Western reports that accuse the Arab and
Islamic world of intolerance?
Authority, Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah, said:
not be able to deny the big difference between the Islamic
perception of freedom of religion and the way it is practiced by
individuals, groups or states in the Arab and Islamic region:
There are many restrictions and violations of this freedom as a
result of both sectarian and political pressures and social or
historical complications as well. It has reached the point of
discrimination between sects of the same religion, which is
being legitimized in a way that might persecute sectarian,
ethnic and political minorities.
an attitude runs counter to the teachings and concepts of Islam
which recognizes the other and indoctrinates the practice of
members of all heavenly religions their rights. It has called
the people of the Book-Christians and Jews, to reach a common
factor to believe in the oneness of God and join hands in
building the society.
why we have always called those who present themselves as
Muslims to abide by this rule and conduct a dialogue with the
People of the Book in "the best way". We have also
called those who are in power to present an Islamic model in
dealing with other Islamic sects that is based on the unity of
the Islamic doctrine.
because we believe that persecuting a certain ideology does not
destroy it but rather invigorates it and present it to the world
as a martyr. We have, especially in the age of globalization and
the internet, to confront thought with thought. Moreover, we
should promote and encourage religious freedoms with the same
vigor we stand against accusations of unbelief and demagogical
also promote religious dialogue that ought to be objective and
academic whether within the Islamic sphere or with the
Christians and Jews.
We have no
problem with the Jewish religion, but we are against the unjust
practices they have done through out their history or their
current practices against Arabs and Palestinians, as well as
their efforts to intimidate the world to promote their own
interests and goals.
America, we do not believe that it is a state that represents a
model in respecting freedom, entitling it to watch over
religious freedoms. It even cannot present itself as an advanced
model of Western civilization, due to its history with the
native Indians and in its current practice of promoting freedom
in the world only where it serves its interests.
we do not deny that there are several points, which are true in
the Department of State report regarding religious freedoms. But
we would like to ask: why is not Israel included in the list?
Does it not murder religious clerics including crippled ones,
like Sheik Ahmad Yassin, violate the sanctity of sacred places
like Al-Aqsa Mosque and act in a racial manner against the Arabs
in occupied Palestine.
it is America that encouraged the violation of religious
freedoms in the region when it protected the dictatorships. And
it is America that is now persecuting the Muslim Americans, on
the basis that every Muslim is guilty until proven innocent. It
also prevents any criticism of Israeli crimes, while allowing
anyone who wants to attack Muslims or accuse Islam as being the
problem and the cause of terrorism to say whatever he feels like
political pressures America has made against the Muslim
Americans might turn into a popular climate that might persecute
the Muslims in their daily life, despite all the claims by the
American officials about America being the land of freedom.
all this, we do not have anything against any American or
European criticism about the lack of freedoms, especially
religious ones, that our region actually suffers from. We call
on the Arabs and Islamic regimes to respect these freedoms, and
study the negative impact on their existence that this
persecution might lead to, in addition to its repercussions on
the society that might indulge in civil strife that is planned
for by the international arrogance who created the problem and
then presents itself as the solution.