Statement Concerning the Israeli-Palestinian Crisis

Darul Qasim College subscribes to the universal message of Islam which embraces coexistence with others as part of God’s Will on earth. The Islamic civilizational values of justice and preserving human life form the foundations for peaceful coexistence. We categorically condemn the ongoing violence and killing of innocent civilians on both sides in Gaza, the West Bank, and Israel.

When coexistence is threatened by injustice, staying silent is not an option. This statement addressing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict represents a growing global voice who share these universal principles, including over one billion Muslims. Our perspective is clearly distinct from the predominant American mainstream discourse that simply ignores these voices and disregards the ongoing 75 years old dispute in favor of supporting one-sided American policies favoring Israel. The current American discourse fails to take resolving this conflict seriously and fosters a lie that Americans must merely take a side rather than seek what is best for all sides. Indeed, for centuries, Muslims, Christians, and Jews peacefully coexisted in this very region.

Darul Qasim College’s institutional mandate is to distribute all beneficial knowledge and is founded on an understanding that beneficial knowledge, whether sourced from revelation or empirical sciences, is holistic in its nature because of its singular source – Allah ﷻ (God).  Similarly, God is the singular Creator and Sustainer of all human beings who are descendants of the same father and mother; Adam and Eve.

Muslims always seek guidance in revelation from Allah ﷻ and His beloved messenger, Muhammad ﷺ:

Anas ؓ narrated that Allah’s Apostle said, “Help your brother, whether he is an oppressor or oppressed. People asked, “O Allah’s Apostle ﷺ! It is all right to help him if he is oppressed, but how should we help him if he is an oppressor?” The Prophet said, “By preventing him from oppressing others.” [Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 43, Number 624]

Therefore, in the context of the current Israeli/Palestinian conflict, we direct those who are oppressing others to this admonition given to Prophet Dawud (David) ﷺ:

O David, certainly We have appointed you as a ruler on earth.  Therefore, rule among people with justice and do not follow desire as it leads you astray from God’s path.  Certainly, those who stray away from God’s path, for them is a severe punishment for they had forgotten the Day of Reckoning. [Surah Sad, verse 26].

Seeking justice demands that we understand the historical context of the current conflict. Since at least 2007, Israel has imposed a never-ending blockade and stranglehold on the 2.2 million Palestinian civilians living in Gaza, half of whom are children. Two-thirds of Palestinians in Gaza lived below the poverty line and struggled to survive even before the current escalation in violence began.

Unjustifiable violence and killing is categorically condemned in the Holy Quran:

For that cause (referring to the first murder) We decreed for the Children of Israel that whoever kills a human being for other than manslaughter or corruption in the earth, it shall be as if he had killed all mankind, and whoever saves one life, it shall be as if he had saved the life of all mankind. [Surah Al-Maidah, verse 32]

The value that the Quran gives to human life is without comparison in civilizational dialogue. Acting on the universal declaration that he who saves one life, saves all of humanity is the best foundation for creating policies that will reduce human suffering and protect innocent people. Regrettably, international and non-governmental organizations have delineated several actions by the Israeli government that clearly violate international humanitarian law and fail to protect innocent Muslim and Christian Palestinian lives. The blockade of food, water, fuel, medical supplies, and other necessities into Gaza is exacerbating a dire humanitarian situation from over 16 years of Israeli closure and is tantamount to collective punishment by creating an open-air prison. Use of artillery-fired white phosphorus, targeting houses of worship and hospitals, and ordering civilian evacuation from northern Gaza without safe passage, are clear violations of international humanitarian law. There is no doubt that these recent indiscriminate acts of violence against Palestinian civilians are indefensible.

We encourage our fellow Muslims and like-minded people, who believe in the universal value of justice and who treasure every human life, to utilize legal means to work towards an equitable and lasting resolution to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Based on the universal declaration that saving one life is equivalent to saving all of humanity, we request our political leaders to support an immediate cease-fire and to oppose additional military aid to Israel that will lead to the killing of more innocent civilians on both sides. We support immediately lifting the blockade of humanitarian aid into Gaza; discontinuing the targeting of safe havens and the illegal use of white phosphorus artillery; rescinding the forced evacuation order for civilians in northern Gaza; and the immediate safe return of civilian hostages.

In conclusion, we remind our fellow Muslims, that the Prophet ﷺ said: “The dua (supplication) is the weapon of the believer, a pillar of the religion and a light for the heavens and the earth.” We have long made dua for the safety and security of our brothers and sisters in Gaza. Considering the recent escalations in violence and tragic loss of Palestinian and Israeli lives, we request our fellow Muslims to supplicate to Allah ﷻ at tahajjud as we believe Allah ﷻ certainly hears our duas. Furthermore, our leadership at Darul Qasim College requests leaders of the Muslim world to ensure that a second massacre, like that of Karbala, does not occur on their watch.

– Shaykh Amin Kholwadia
(on behalf of the Darul Qasim College Board of Directors)