Dr Kaukab Siddique | Editor-in-Chief ---------------------------------------------------------
Rabi' al-Thani 22, 1426/May 31, 2005 #42

May 26. Congratulations to Sis. Yasmeen [now Dr. Yasmeen] for her Ph.D. obtained from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. It was a glorious day indeed to see her in full hijab walking forth in the commencement ceremonies. It is no less than a miracle that she developed as a Muslim in the heart of this university deeply entrenched in the Jewish power structure. Congratulations to her parents [one White, the other Pakistani], her husband [Arab] and her relatives from both sides, who were at the ceremonies.

Funeral prayers in absentia [salatul janaza ghaibana] for Mahmudah Begum Qureshi, mother of the editor of New Trend, were held at a mosque in Kampala, Uganda. The prayers were lead by Imam Mahmoud Sserunjogi, Convenor of Jamaat al-Muslimeen in Uganda.

This idea is from Nigeria: When we Muslims meet others, we usually say: asalamu alaikum, and then we ask: How are you? [kaifa haluk?] Let us REPLACE 'How are you' with :"How is your DEEN?"

So dear Muslims: "How is your DEEN?"
[You can send New Trend a brief response, if you wish.]

illegal War protested
CODEPINK Tackles Condoleezza Rice

May 27th, 2005
While Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was speaking in San Francisco at the Davis Symphony Hall today about freedom, democracy and American diplomacy, four people associated with the peace group CODEPINK and the human rights group Global Exchange stood up on chairs dressed in the black hoods and capes that have come to symbolize US torture of prisoners in Iraq. They were protesting the abuse of prisoners in Guantanamo, Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as on the on-going occupation of Iraq. "We hold Condoleeza Rice responsible for dragging our country into this illegal war that has led to the death of over 1600 US soldiers and many thousands of Iraqis, and has sparked anti-US sentiment around the world," said Medea Benjamin of CODEPINK.

"I am appalled by the recent reports of detainees being killed by US troops in Afghanistan. Torture and death have nothing to do with the Bush administration's so-called policy of 'freedom and democracy,'" said Andrea Buffa of Global Exchange

As they were being led away by security guards, the activists chanted
"Stop the Torture, Stop the Killing, US Out of Iraq." They were held for questioning.

A Glimpse of the Jewish Mind:

by New Trend's Media Monitor

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial [in Washington D.C] jointly with the Library of Congress held a program on May 26 which was broadcast by C-Span on May 30.

The Director of the Holocaust Memorial, Peter Black, claimed, in his speech, point blank that the "People of Dresden were victims of Hitler." He was endorsing a claim by a book author named Klaus Larres, who spoke earlier, that the "children of Dresden were victims of Hitler."

Dresden is the German city which was bombed on February 13-14, 1945 first by the British air force and then by the U.S. Air Force. The British planes, experts in night bombing, carefully dropped incendiary markers in the middle of the civilian residential areas. Wave after wave of British bombers then used the markers to turn the city into a real holocaust. Nearly 100,000 German civilians were killed in ONE NIGHT. Only about 30,000 of the German civilians who were killed were identified because the rest were either burned beyond recognition or were refugees who fled to the city in front of the murderous Red Army.

Dresden was a defenseless, open city. Its beautiful churches, museums, schools, parks were wiped out during the mass murder.

The famous historian David Irving has compiled an hour- by-hour record of the devastation of Dresden in his book APOCALYPSE 1945: The Destruction of Dresden.

Now for the Jewish Director of the so-called Holocaust Memorial to claim that the people of Dresden were the victims of Hitler belongs to the BIG LIE technique which was perfected by the Soviet propagandist Ilya Ehrenburg.
[It's like saying that Saddam is responsible for the deaths of 100,000 Iraqi civilians killed by the U.S. air force.]


This could be sensed during the program at the Jewish Holocaust Memorial. [Notice how cleverly it is called the "U.S." Holocaust Memorial.] The conflict in Darfur was brought up repeatedly by the speakers, as "genocide." Peter Black [who is neither "Peter" nor "Black"] pointed out that a link has been placed on the Memorial web site to Darfur. Several Jews from the audience indicated their outrage that the U.S. is not moving [into Sudan] to stop the "genocide."
[The Sudanese government has very cleverly buckled under to the U.S. pressure to help in the "war against terror." So the U.S. is now dropping the "genocide" story, at least temporarily, leaving the genocider propagandists high and dry [and frustrated].
The program also brought out the VENGEFUL NATURE of the JEWS. One speaker explained that SIXTY YEARS after the war ended, the Jews are still hunting the Germans who worked for Hitler and later took advantage of the Cold War to seek refuge in America. The speaker pointed out that case number 100 in this crusade was carried out in 2005. Unfortunately, she said, these Germans are now TOO OLD and TOO SICK to be brought to trial.
[And these Jews think that Muslims should forget the murder of Shaikh Yassin, a QUADRIPALEGIC, who was assassinated by a Jewish missile strike as he was leaving the mosque in Gaza after Fajr prayers in his WHEEL CHAIR.]

After the desecration of the Qur'an, what is our duty?

by Kaukab Siddique

"...Open bigotry has already appeared from their mouths. What their hearts conceal is far worse..." [The Qur'an 3:118]

Many Muslims and non-Muslims knew that the Qur'an had been desecrated by U.S. forces in Iraq, Afghanistan and Gauntanamo Bay. We in New Trend were the first Muslim publication to speak out on it and headline it after the British captives gave their account. Thousands then knew from New Trend but still did nothing.

Finally the AFGHANS came out, in every Afghan city, even in the centers occupied by the treacherous "Northern Alliance." The Afghans once again took the lead to awaken the Muslim world. They gave their lives and now Muslims are marching to condemn the desecration, all the way from Nigeria to Bangladesh.

The world will never be the same again. The AMERICAN POWER STRUCTURE HAS CHALLENGED THE SANCTITY OF THE QUR'AN. The Muslim world will expel America from the countries it has occupied, though it might take years, and will dismantle the terrorist entity known as Israel, inshallah.

What is our duty as Muslims living in America in this hour of great distress and sorrow? Here are a few suggestions: -------------------------
A brother from CHICAGO writes that he wants to carry out CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE to protest the desecration. Before that can be done, we need to get more support for Jamaat al-Muslimeen. We don't expect the "Sheraton-Islam" people to join a civil disobedience action.
First Person Account

Initial Attractions: From White American Christian to the Doors of Islam. [Helped by Malcolm X's ideas.]
New Muslim Explains Baptist Church's Views on Life. He Realized he had to Cross Race Lines to be real Muslim.

by Umar ben-Ivan Lee
St. Louis, Missouri
[Exclusive to New Trend.]

"Why did you become a Muslim?"
That is the first question that an American revert is always asked. If that question is being asked by a Muslim it is asked with a smile and if it asked by someone who may be hostile to Islam, then it may be asked with a frown.

There are many stereotypes about why people become Muslim. Some people think that all American-Muslims accepted Islam in prison or did so out of a spirit of Black Nationalism and anti-Americanism. If a woman reverts, the first question that she will be asked is "did you convert because you married a Muslim?"

Truthfully people become Muslim for many different reasons and as the Prophet Muhammad said "people come to Islam through many different doors and all of them are acceptable."

In my case I had been raised in a white working-class home. My father and grandfather were both auto workers and I had been brought up in the Baptist Church. Having been raised primarily by my father (my mother was out of the picture) until my teenage years, religion was very important to him even if he didn't always espouse the values of Christ in his personal life.

The Baptist Church, and in my case the Southern Baptist Convention (although I didn't grow-up in the South) is the most hard-line of all of the major protestant denominations. Strict Baptists do not drink, smoke, gamble, dance, curse or fornicate. Just as in Islam you have the ideal and the reality and in the Baptist Church there are many who are pious and sincere and there are those who are less than ideal.

There is a trend in the Muslim community, particularly in the circle of American reverts, to cast all Christians in this country as hypocrites and all Muslims as pious, when neither is the case.

Baptists have been at the forefront of many issues in American history; Baptists were leading abolitionists and also passionate defenders of slavery (the Southern Baptist Convention was founded over its support of slavery), Baptists lead the charge towards prohibition, and were on both sides of the civil rights movement. Many white Baptist ministers joined black Baptist ministers in the fight against Jim Crow laws and segregation. On the other side of the coin you couldn't find a KKK chapter that wasn't based out of a Baptist Church and the Baptist church in the South stood as a bulwark against integration arguing that it was an attack on Christianity itself.

The Baptist Church that I grew up in was very traditional. A generation before it had been a bastion of anti-communism and racism. The church, like thousands of others, had been forced to change and it had now began to welcome African-Americans and others into the church while maintaining a strict theological line while omitting those Old Testament references that upheld slavery and Jim Crow.

The reformed racial teachings of the Baptist Church did not find their way into many of the homes of the adherents. My father's racism could be measured in his level of religiosity; the more Christian he became the more he was racist and vice-versa and amongst the church members (in several churches I attended) this seemed to be the prevailing attitude. A good Christian was one who loved Jesus, followed the Bible, loved America and hated African-Americans and all other so-called "inferior" races.

This has lead to Evangelicals (of which Baptists make-up a big percentage) being fiercely nationalistic and pro-war. They see America, their America, as a holy ranger guiding the world and defending Christian values (and Israel) and they see America as being under attack by secularists in this country and by nations abroad. They laugh at the idea of world peace and applaud war and because of this they see anything that even hints at international cooperation, such as the United Nations or the European Union, as being evil and in the spirit of the Anti-Christ.

In Baptist Churches the Pledge of Allegiance is held during Vacation Bible School and the American flag stands behind the pastor. To be a good Christian is to be a good American and to stand against America is to stand against God; that is the belief. This is, in fact, a primitive belief that Europeans and most of the rest of the world have discarded having witnessed centuries of bloody nationalistic and tribal feuds with each side claiming the endorsement of God. American Christians still, as a whole, hold firm to this belief and their support of the war in Iraq was almost an act of faith for Evangelicals.

When I was growing up in the 1980's the boogie man was the Godless Soviet Union and communism. Many of the same verses that are being used to condemn Muslims today through Biblical prophecy were used then to condemn the Soviets. Then and now Christian eschatologists and others make millions selling doom and gloom scenarios of an evil outsider attacking a holy America.

As a child I did believe in Jesus. A child, almost every child, will initially blindly accept the faith of their parents and I was no different. I was taught the Bible and I believed in the Bible and as a child I received inspiration from those stories and had my favorites such as King David and Gideon.

Like the other children I attended Sunday School and I accepted it to be a fact that Jesus was the son of G_d. Being a child I did not know of the roots in European Paganism to this myth and distortion and I had no knowledge of the Jewish understanding of what the Messiah would be or of the errors in the creation of the Gospels and what not. I heard and I accepted and was taught by teachers who were very good people; but had extremely low-levels of religious education.

Beginning at around eight I did begin to question some of the teachings of Christianity. On a walk from my church to a nearby park one day, I asked one of my Sunday School teachers about the Trinity and I remember getting an answer that made absolutely no sense at all to me.

Children are in a way smarter than adults, and this was one case of that natural curiosity of a child being combined with child's more natural thought process. The adult mind has been polluted by the man-made ideologies and philosophy they learn in school and from their friends and family. In Islam we say that the one who becomes a Muslim has not converted but has rather reverted to the natural way that every human was born upon Islam before their family, friends or society took them astray, and the natural way for humanity, the fitra, is Islam.

In the sixth grade I remember gazing at a photo of the hajj (Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca) during the salat and everyone was bowed in prostration. At this early age, before ever being exposed to a Muslim, I remember thinking to myself "wow this is a beautiful picture." Having been raised a Christian my immediate response to that initial thought was "hold on: this is not beautiful but this is a picture of some hell-bound pagans". But that picture would not easily leave my mind.

I was not like most other children. At school I had behavior problems and got into a lot of fights and caused disruptions in the classroom and in retrospect I was a disruptive student. My home-life also left a lot to be desired because I lived in a violent and abusive home with my two sisters and step-mother. Like many young Americans, and indeed young boys in particular throughout the world, I found a refuge in my love of sports; playing sports, watching sports on TV and studying all sports (wrestling, boxing, football, and baseball mostly). That much was common but it was my other passions that separated me from my peers.

Beginning at about age six I began watching the news everyday and reading the newspaper which prompted my visiting cousin from California to say that I would be " no less than the Governor of Missouri." If only he could see me now in my cramped one-bedroom apartment! My political views as a young kid reflected those of my father; I came from a union household that was traditionally Democrat but my father during the eighties was seduced by the Religious Right and I was forced to watch Jerry Falwell on TV, listen to Dr. James Dobson on the radio and listen to sermons from my father on how Russia would soon take-over the US and somehow before that time the liberals would outlaw Christianity in America.

I once heard a film critic state that "the American story always begins in adolescence and the good stories always begin with rebellion." For me my rebellion began when I was about thirteen. I was tired of going to church and didn't feel that it offered any real meaning to my life. Jesus for me was real; it was the church that was fake. When I did go to church I would question my Sunday School teachers about various issues and I found that almost no one in the church had anything above the most minimal knowledge of Christian theology and they discouraged debate because of their lack of knowledge.

Another crucial factor at this time was the fact that I attended schools that were very racially mixed and most of my friends were black. I would spend time with them in their homes and with their families and I saw the good in the black community. When I say good, I mean hard-working, decent and honest black people who sacrificed for their children; but no matter what they would ever do, they would still be victims of racism. I also saw the other side of the coin; single- mothers addicted to crack and living in public housing who still opened their homes to me as their guest and even with the demons they were battling tried to be good mothers.

My experiences in the black community didn't mix well with what my father had taught me about African-Americans and I didn't mix well with the conversations of people at Church. If God was a loving God, an awesome God as they would say in church, then why were those who professed to be His people so divided along racial lines? Why were there black churches and white churches? Why was Christianity not able to solve any of the major injustices in American society?

As strange as it sounds, my teenage years began with me reading Soul on Ice by Eldridge Cleaver and then immersing myself in the thoughts and words of a lot of black writers and studying the 1960's. I received inspiration from the revolutionary figures of that era and wondered why I had been born into such a complacent era where no one seemed to care.

The earliest political thought that influenced me was Black Nationalism and the struggle for equality for African-Americans in this country. People like me are easily laughed-off and made fun of by people who do not understand what we went through and what led us to become what we are. Part of these attitudes is rooted in white-racism where most white thinkers, on the left or right, cannot fathom that a white American would find more solace in the writings and teachings and culture of blacks than they would find in their own.

The traditional avenues for the young white rebel in America are things such as anarchism, socialism, communism, environmental activism, Punk music or even Skinhead movements. I was not exposed to any of these things, and if I were. I honestly I do not know how I would have reacted (but I will say that I was always grounded in reality and some of these movements are totally out of touch with reality and therefore totally lend themselves to the disgruntled children of the elite who really have no understanding of what is real).

Honestly I was not exposed to any great black revolutionary movements either but I was exposed to a lot of blacks and, while they were not revolutionaries, most were rebels and somewhat intrinsically opposed to the system. They had no real understanding of how the system worked but all they knew was that the system was not working for them and their families. So I found a solace with these black rebels and in my underdeveloped juvenile mind I thought that anything that was black was in a way revolutionary and in order to fight the system I had to develop a lifestyle and way of thinking that was blacker. This led me to a journey in the black community that forever changed my life, gave me a valuable education, gave me great joy, caused me a great amount of suffering and ultimately led me to Islam.

The young black males who were my friends were not choir boys. In fact most of them sold drugs and at an early age began drinking and smoking weed. There bad habits became my bad habits and what they did I did. Their sisters became my girlfriends and I found a greater comfort in the streets of the black community than I did in the loving home of my Grandparents.

Unlike what people refer to as "white wanna-be's" (referring to whites who want to be black) in order to be cool or to seem tough, I had very little interest initially in being cool. Toughness was another matter; for me it was crucial that while whites dominated blacks in the greater society through the use of the police and the military, blacks physically dominated their fellow white students in school. To me this smacked of cowardice; take away the tanks and the guns and when everyone is on an equal footing, the White Man is in trouble.

The wanna-be is usually someone who just loves Hip-Hop and listens to the music, dresses in the fashions and picks up the slang. This trend usually ends in the late-teens or early twenties and at no time do these young white people ever think about issues of racial justice or equity in America. Hip-Hop does not cause them to reexamine the system and those positive artists who would lead them to question the beliefs their parents passed on to them are not listened to. The wanna-be prefers the most negative of Hip-Hop and this is not a new tradition; it is in the tradition of whites enjoying being entertained by blacks but while getting a kick out of them at no time considering blacks to be their equal.

Later on I would pick-up the Hip-Hop fashions and the slang and all of that; it was a natural by-product of spending all day everyday with blacks in the ghetto; but my motivation for being in the black community was always revolution and seeking justice; but there were many pitfalls.

You did not make money by hanging-out with friends, which is what I enjoyed most; getting up late and spending the day walking the ghetto streets and drinking forty-ounce bottles of beer, cheap wine and smoking weed and Kool cigarettes. Therefore I needed to get a job and after failing in a series of minimum-wage jobs I began selling drugs like my friends.

I was never a great success in selling drugs. I wasn't a baller as they would say nowadays, but I did manage to make enough money to keep a few dollars in my pocket. The important thing that selling drugs ( in my case crack and weed) does for the young man is that it means he doesn't have to go to work and take any stuff from a boss and that it doesn't interfere with his lifestyle.

While I enjoyed the money from selling drugs on the one hand, I did from time to time think of the consequences of what I was doing to the people. How could this be justified as revolutionary action? Was this my revolution? The answer then and now is clearly: no, but I guess I was just too weak at the time to refrain from doing what I knew to be wrong.

Like most people who do what I did, I got caught and ended up going to a Juvenile Detention Center and then doing a short stint in jail. In jail I read a collection of essays on civil disobedience and was touched by the writings of Martin Luther King and Mohandas Gandhi.

When I got out, I tried to turn a new leaf but it was difficult. I got caught up with the same group of friends and began getting into trouble once again and ended up transferring to a different high school. This move turned out to be quite fateful because I ended up in a math class with a student from the Nation of Islam.

This young man would wear a t-shirt to school that said "Sons of Elijah" and under the picture of Elijah Muhammad there would be pictures of Malcolm X and Louis Farrakhan. Two other kids that I knew had also become members of the Nation and this piqued my curiosity into Islam. I knew that as a white kid I could not join the Nation but I still wanted to learn more about this religion and my first exposure was one of the kids giving me a series of tapes from Minister Louis Farrakhan.
The tapes were not that religious in nature but were informative and were my first actual encounter with Black Nationalism other than from books I had read. Still I had been raised Christian and being pro-black was one thing and denying the divinity of Jesus was another.

I checked out a copy of the Quran from the school library, the Muhammad Pickthall, translation and once I picked it up I could not put it down. Every word spoke to me in profound manner and it all made perfect sense. This was the word of God and I knew it immediately!

The next book that I would read was the Autobiography of Malcolm X as told to Alex Haley. Find me an American-Muslim and at least half of them read this book before entering Islam: that is how powerful it is. The story of Malcolm is so powerful; how he constantly struggles to become a better person and goes though various stages in his life before finally seeing the ultimate truth during his hajj in Mecca and then coming back to New York to be assassinated. In particular for me, his story of hajj and how he ate and prayed with those with "the bluest of blue eyes" hit home.

I began going to the library to read more about Islam but found very little and what was there wasn't written by Muslims. So I began calling mosques on the telephone as I got their numbers from the phone book and eventually decided to visit one. Unfortunately most of the people answering the phones at the Masjids were less than helpful but alhamduduilah I was persistent.
All I can say now is subhan'Allah (Glory to Allah) for choosing to give me guidance. In America we live in a sea of disbelief and He chose me out of all of the millions of white-Americans whose hearts are hardened to guide to Islam.

For a white person even to be interested in Islam, and this is someone whom Da'wah has not been given to or they are not getting ready to marry a Muslim, that white person has to first recognize the fallacy of white supremacy and give-up their racism before entering Islam. There is no other way; because as long as a white American keeps the American mentality and it doesn't matter of this person come from the left or the right politically, they will not be able to enter a religion that requires them to be on equal footing to people of color and where the leadership is almost exclusively non-white. It should also be noted that Hip-Hop culture which at the time was beginning its dominance of not only urban life in America but of American youth culture (and subsequently global youth culture) was one of the few places in American public life where Islam and Muslims were placed in a positive light (mainly from New York-based rappers from places like Brooklyn that have large Muslim communities) and that many hip-hoppers at the time had their interests in Islam tweaked by these artists.

On an international level, and this was clearly not in my mind, Islam brings the American from the sheltered and isolated existence from which we come from in America (especially in the middle-class and underclass) which teaches us that all of the world is inferior to America and the American way of life and regards Arabs, South Asians and others to be on the level of black Americans.

Therefore looking back in order to guide me to Islam, Allah first had to guide me out of Christianity and out of the culture of my family and the path for me ran through the black community.

To be continued

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2005-06-01 Wed 20:22ct