Dr Kaukab Siddique | Editor-in-Chief Sha'aban 15, 1425/ September 30, 2004 #96

The editorís mother, Mahmudah Qureshi, 87, has suffered a stroke and is at a hospital in Georgia. Readers are urged to pray that Allah be with her and give the family the ability to face the situation. She was a part of the Pakistan Movement and put her life on the line to support Mohommed Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. A top educationist in Pakistan for decades, she lived with her children in America after retirement. A few years back, she helped start an Islamic school in Georgia.


MORE THAN 1500 PEOPLE HAVE DIED OWING TO THE HURRICANE. Food lines and looting are on the scene.

Help the people of Haiti. In the backyard of the richest nation on the planet, a whole people are dying. [And instead of Haiti, Darfur is on the cover of Time magazine. That's how the American people are misled.]

Ramadan is approaching.
Don't forget our political prisoners:

Imam Jamil al-Amin
Shaikh Omar 'Abdel Rahman
Siddique Abdullah Hasan
Ahmed 'Abdel Sattar
Prof. Sami Al-Arian
Victor Alvarez
John Walker Lindh
Jose Padilla
The Muslims of Lackawanna, NY
The Muslims of Portland, Oregon
and many others

If you consider yourself Islamic, or even a Muslim in name, make du'a for the prisoners and support them.


[From New Trend's Middle East Monitor]

It is September 29. Israeli helicopters hover over Gaza. Every now and then they shoot missiles at young Palestinians marked out for them by paid collaborators as "militants" and/or potential leaders.

The death toll rises. The Palestinian people are subjected to ongoing genocide. The Jews want a declawed, defanged nation to create a "democratic" Palestinian homeland.

The Iranians have not helped Palestine.President Saddam. who did help Palestinian martyrs, is in a cell in his country occupied by 130,000 U.S. troops.

Is it a wonder, that against such shocking odds, the world cheered when a Palestinian woman martyred herself recently and took two Israeli Jews with her? Is it strange that Palestinians who manage to kill a Jew now and then are popular throughout the masses of oppressed humanity?

International Jewry is committing ongoing genocide against Palestine and the entire Muslim world by supporting Israel. When Hitler took back territories populated by Germans in Poland, he was condemned as a warmonger. The Zionist Jews took land which belonged to the Palestinians and brought the dregs of Jewry from all over the world to occupy it. Is it not ironic that Hitler is presented as the worst of all human beings while Sharon is a repeat visitor to the White House?
[See detailed article published earlier.]

Sen. Kennedy Behaving Like Biden: Says, Bush is Wrong but will Continue his War

Senator Edward Kennedy's speech at George Washington University [Sept. 27] was the most powerful yet to come out of the Kerry campaign. He pointed out that the "liberation" of Iraq has failed, that the resistance is growing stronger by the day. He said Bush is not admitting that the war is a failure.
But it soon became apparent that Kennedy is simply using the general unrest in America against the war to score a victory for Kerry. The Kerry campaign, he pointed out, is determined to win the war in Iraq ["now that we are there"].
After all that strong talk, he also showed support for the coming "elections" to be held in Iraq under U.S. military occupation! These democrats think they can fool the people and use the vast anti-war movement to get into power.
Don't be fooled.
[Elections in occupied Iraq are as cruel and cynical as elections held by India in Kashmir, the Russians in Chechnia and those planned in a few days in Afghanistan.]
-------------------------------------------------------- Local News

Maher Hathout on CNN: How did he become a "Muslim Leader?"
Claims he has Given an "Integrated Plan Against Terrorism" to Bush!

By our Media Monitor

CNNís "Larry King Live" show, on Sept. 29, had an assortment of men of religion [no women] talking about terrorism and God and "related issues."

Cunning Larry King chose Dr. Maher Hathout, from an Islamic Center in Los Angeles to represent Islam. Hatout behaved like a blithering idiot. It seemed as if he can neither think nor speak clearly. [We have nothing personal against Hathout.]

Hathout did not LOOK, SPEAK or BEHAVE like a Muslim. No Qur'an, no Hadith. Not even the word "Allah."It was a rare opportunity, to be invited to Americaís major cable TV show, and he blew it. Dressed in a western style suit, two sizes too big for him, and wearing a tie [the sign of the Cross forbidden to Muslims], Hathout looked rumpled, out of shape and half-asleep.

Asked about homosexuality, he skirted the issue and claimed that it is a personal matter.
When the Jewish participant started a tirade about Darfur [Sudan], Hathout seemed to wake up, made a sarcastic comment but was so defensive that he could not articulate an argument.

At the conclusion of the show, Maher Hathout tried to prove that he is a willing collaborator of George Bush, a true lick spittle. He claimed that the group he has formed [MPAC] has delivered an "integrated" program against terrorism to Bush which will be so effective that all the Muslims will join Bush in the war against "terrorism."

Hathout is known among Egyptians as a dirty old man who is a close supporter of the Egyptian dictator HOSNI MUBARAK. When Mubarak visits his master in the White House, Maher is the servant of the servant who meets Mubarak and his cronies. [Mubarak practices random arrests, torture and murder against the Islamic opponents of Israel.]

One wonders why Hathout thinks he is a leader when he is little more than obtuse. Americaís Muslims are plagued by fools like him. They control big Islamic Centers and because no one dares to challenge them in their own communities, they start thinking that they are intellectuals.

This writer has nothing personal against Dr. Hathout. We invite him to tell our readers: Why is he a supporter of Hosni Mubarak? He claims that Jihad is "terrorism." Does he realize that for Bush and Israel, every armed Islamic movement, be it Hamas in Palestine or Lashkare Taiba in Kashmir, is "terrorist?"]

What Makes Islam more Acceptable than other Religions?

Q & A

Q. Why is New Trend based on Islam? Whatís so special about Islam which Christianity and other religions donít have? Why donít you accept Jesus as your Savior? [Name withheld. Question extracted from long letter.]

Answer by Dr. Kaukab Siddique: For scholars, there cannot be a comparison between Islam and other religions. For a religion to be accepted by people who THINK, the first criterion is AUTHENTICITY.

The Qurían exists in the language in which it was revealed [Arabic] to Muhammad, peace be on him. It was arranged in the form it has today DURING the life of the Prophet (pbuh). It was also memorized by his Companions.

Similarly, the teachings and actions of Muhammad (pbuh) known as HADITH, were memorized, and in many cases, written down, during his life by hundreds of his Companions.
His life was witnessed and documented by large numbers of men and women: His teachings have been cross referenced and found to be genuine after the most rigorous scholarly scrutiny by people from a wide variety of backgrounds.

  1. Not written by Jesus [pbuh).
  2. Not written at his command.
  3. Not approved by him.
  4. Not written by any of his 11 Companions. [The 12th reneged.]
  5. The Gospels were written in GREEK. Jesus (pbuh) and his Companions did NOT speak or write Greek. Their language was ARAMAIC.
  6. For three DECADES after his alleged crucifixion, NOTHING was written about him. After that, the first Gospel appeared, probably collected from the oral traditions from various unknown persons.
  7. The Gospels are attributed to Mark, Matthew, Luke and John, but these attributions were given to them three decades after they had been published. No one really knows who wrote them.
[These are not my views but of Christian scholars themselves. I could go on. The authenticity of religions other than Christianity is even more suspect. There is absolutely no comparison possible with the AUTHENTICITY of Islamic texts.]

After Abu Ghraib
["This is our country. You are the killers."]

Huda Alazawi was one of the few women held in solitary in the notorious Iraqi prison. Following her release, she talks for the first time to Luke Harding about her ordeal

Monday September 20, 2004
The Guardian [Excerpted]

It began with a phone call. In November last year 39-year-old Huda Alazawi, a wealthy Baghdad businesswoman, received a demand from an Iraqi informant. He was working for the Americans in Adhamiya, a Sunni district of Baghdad well known for its hostility towards the US occupation. His demand was simple: Madame Huda, as her friends and family know her, had to give him $10,000. If she failed to pay up, he would write a report claiming that she and her family were working for the Iraqi resistance. He would pass it to the US military and they would arrest her. "It was clearly blackmail," Alazawi says, speaking in the Baghdad office of her trading company. "We knew that if we gave in, there would be other demands." The informant was as good as his word. In November 2003, he wrote a report that prompted US soldiers to interrogate Alazawi's brother, Ali, and her older sister, Nahla, now 45. Wearing a balaclava, he also led several raids with US soldiers on the families' antique-filled Baghdad properties.

On December 23, the Americans arrested another of Alazawi's brothers, Ayad, 44. It was at this point that she decided to confront the Americans directly. She marched into the US base in Adhamiya, one of Saddam Hussein's former palaces. "A US captain told me to come back with my two other brothers. He said we could talk after that." On Christmas Eve she returned with her brothers, Ali and Mu'taz. "I waited for four hours. An American captain finally interrogated me. After 10 minutes he announced that I was under arrest." Like thousands of other Iraqis detained by the Americans since last year's invasion, Alazawi was about to experience the reality of the Bush administration's "war on terror".

Alazawi says that US guards left her sitting on the chair overnight, and that the next day they took her to a room known by detainees as "the torturing place". "The US officer told us: 'If you don't confess we will torture you. So you have to confess.' My hands were handcuffed. They took off mye most Iraqi women, Alazawi is reluctant to talk about what she saw but says that her brother Mu'taz was brutally sexually assaulted. Then it was her turn to be interrogated. "The informant and an American officer were both in the room. The informant started talking. He said, 'You are the lady who funds your brothers to attack the Americans.' I speak some English so I replied: 'He is a liar.' The American officer then hit me on both cheeks. I fell to the ground.

Alazawi says that American guards then made her stand with her face against the wall for 12 hours, from noon until midnight. Afterwards they returned her to her cell. "The cell had no ceiling. It was raining. At midnight they threw something at my sister's feet. It was my brother Ayad. He was bleeding from his legs, knees and forehead. I told my sister: 'Find out if he's still breathing.' She said: 'No. Nothing.' I started crying. The next day they took away his body."

The US military later issued a death certificate, seen by the Guardian, citing the cause of death as "cardiac arrest of unknown etiology". The American doctor who signed the certificate did not print his name, and his signature is illegible. The body was returned to the family four months later, on April 3, after the Abu Ghraib torture scandal broke. The family took photographs of the body, also seen by the Guardian, which revealed extensive bruising to the chest and arms, and a severe head wound above the left eye.

After Ayad's body had been taken away, Alazawi says that she and 18 other Iraqi detainees were put in a minibus inside the military compound. "The Americans told us: 'Nobody is going to sleep tonight.' They played scary music continuously with loud voices. As soon as someone fell asleep they started beating on the door. It was Christmas. They kept us there for three days. Many of the US soldiers were drunk."

Finally, after a US guard broke her shoulder as she left the lavatory, Alazawi and her surviving siblings were transferred - first to a police academy in Baghdad's interior ministry and then, on January 4 2004, to Abu Ghraib prison.

Alazawi, who has a 20-year-old daughter, Farah, and a four-year-old granddaughter, Safat, spent the next 156 days in solitary confinement. Along with five other Iraqi women, she was held in Abu Ghraib's infamous "hard site" - the prison block inside the compound where photographs of American guards sexually humiliating Iraqi prisoners had been taken two months previously. The women were kept in the upstairs cellblock; male detainees regarded as "difficult" were held downstairs. The vast majority of inmates lived in a series of open tents surrounded by razor wire and US guard posts.

In her first weeks at Abu Ghraib, before the US military launched its internal investigation into prisoner abuse, torture was commonplace, she says. "The guards used wild dogs. I saw one of the guards allow his dog to bite a 14-year-old boy on the leg. The boy's name was Adil. Other guards frequently beat the men. I could see the blood running from their noses. They would also take them for compulsory cold showers even though it was January and February. From the very beginning, it was mental and psychological war."

Alazawi is reticent about the question of sexual abuse of Iraqi women but says that neither she nor any of the other women in Abu Ghraib at the time were sexually assaulted by US guards. In his subsequent report into the scandal, however, Major General Antonio Taquba found that at least one US military policemen had raped a female inmate inside Abu Ghraib; a letter smuggled out of the prison by a woman known only as "Noor", containing allegations of rape, was found to be entirely accurate. Other witnesses interviewed by the Guardian have said that US guards "repeatedly" raped a 14-year-old Iraqi girl who was held in the block last year. They also said that guards made several of the women inmates parade naked in front of male prisoners.

Alazawi says that she was held in a two-metre-square cell, initially with no bed and a bucket for a toilet. For the first three weeks she was entirely "mute" after being told that talking was forbidden. The US guards gave her only one book, a Koran. She managed to steal a pen, and recorded incidents of abuse, with dates, in its margins. During her first few months in custody, the US soldiers were brutal, petty and tyrannous, she says.

"Because I could speak a bit of English I was given the job of emptying the rubbish. There was never enough food and one day I came across an old woman who had collapsed from hunger. The Americans were always eating lots of hot food. I found some in a packet in a bin and gave it to her. They caught me and threw me in a one-metre-square punishment cell. They then poured cold water on me for four hours." She wrote the date down in her Koran: February 24 2004.

For the first four months, apart from frequent interrogations, she was not allowed out of the block. Alazawi says she was repeatedly asked whether she was in the Resistance and whether she had fired rockets at US soldiers (she is 5ft 3in tall). "It became a running joke. The other women began to nickname me the Queen of the RPG [rocket-propelled grenade]. The American interrogators were entirely ignorant and knew nothing about Iraqi people. The vast majority of people there were innocent."

After the Abu Ghraib scandal broke in April, Alazawi was allowed to exercise in the scrubby yard outside for 10 minutes a day. She got a bed. She was also assigned a new female guard, "Mrs Palmer", who helped the women with their English and in turn tried to learn Arabic. In May, Major General Geoffrey Miller, assigned to Abu Ghraib by Washington in the aftermath of the torture scandal, escorted a large group of journalists around the prison for the first time. The previous night, Alazawi says, US guards evacuated all the juveniles and male detainees from her cellblock, leaving only her and a handful of other women upstairs.

"Mrs Palmer told us that during the inspection we had to lie quietly on our beds. She said that if we behaved we would be allowed to spend more time out of our cells in the sun. The following day General Miller turned up with a huge number of journalists. I heard him telling them that some of the people kept in here were murderers. I shouted out: 'We are not the killers. You are the killers. This is our country. You have invaded it.' After that they didn't let me out of my cell for an entire month. A US officer came to me and said: 'Because of you we have all been punished'."

Alazawi says she was unimpressed by Miller. "It was obvious he liked having his photo taken," she says. Over the next few weeks, the US military began releasing hundreds of Abu Ghraib detainees as part of a damage limitation exercise. Alazawi and her sister were moved from their cells to a tent. Three generals also came to interview her and asked her to describe what had happened to Ayad, her brother. They did not, however, offer an apology. The other women were gradually released, including her sister. Finally, on July 19, a helicopter took Alazawi to Al Taji, a military base just north of Baghdad.

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2004-10-01 Fri 18:13ct