Wars All Over the World
The 20th century was a century of wars, of genocide and of conflicts. Unprecedented in world history, that century was marked with bloodshed. It was the period when the images of millions of people losing their lives rolled before our very eyes. Again in that century, tens of millions were forced from their homes, lost their loved ones or became maimed, injured or disabled. New states were established and many others collapsed, and that had tremendous repercussions in world history. That century witnessed two world wars, of truly global dimensions, unlike those in preceding centuries. In the past, only a few countries were involved in wars and a limited number of front lines served as the scenes of these disasters. However, during the First World War alone, nine million people died and more than twenty million people were wounded, and in the Second World war at least fifty-five million people lost their lives.
The reality is that the worst-hit victims are not the combatants but the millions of civilians caught in cross-fires and the women, children and the elderly who were massacred. People became all too familiar with the term “genocide” in the 20th century. Vietnam, Palestine, Kashmir, Rwanda, Bosnia and Chechnya were plagued with conflicts, each taking their own deadly human toll. Tens of thousands of people were tortured, and forced to lead the rest of their shattered lives as displaced people.
In the Qur'an, the period of the Pharaoh is related as a period similar to this era. The cruel massacres, which occurred in Pharaoh's time, were always targeted at the poor, the destitute and the unprotected. That Pharaoh tormented his people is related as follows:
Pharaoh exalted himself arrogantly in the land and divided its people into camps, oppressing one group of them by slaughtering their sons and letting their women live. He was one of the corrupters. (Surat al-Qasas: 4)
Remember when Moses said to his people, 'Remember Allah's blessing to you when He rescued you from the people of Pharaoh. They were inflicting an evil punishment on you, slaughtering your sons and letting your women live. In that there was a terrible trial from your Lord. And when your Lord announced: "If you are grateful, I will certainly give you increase, but if you are ungrateful, My punishment is severe." (Surah Ibrahim: 6-7)
In our day, media coverage of these mass murders explicitly shows how removed the perpetrators are from humanity. Completely devoid of every sort of moral sensitivity and humane feeling, usually these people are unaware of what they are fighting for. The same also holds true of wars. Those who are responsible for planning wars, and planting the seeds of war in societies, do this in expectation of the fulfillment of some particular interests. However, often many of those who are actively involved in war do not have any idea of what they are fighting for.
The reason why people become cruel, to the extent of committing violent mass murders or massacres, is actually because of the mentality they imbibe from their leaders. In a system in which a human being is treated like an animal, and torture, torment and violence are rationalized, no values sound meaningful. Viewed from this standpoint, there are parallels between the leaders, the powerful of the Earth constituting the driving forces of violence in our time, and Pharaoh and his soldiers about whom the Qur'an gives an account:
We made them leaders, summoning to the Fire, and on the Day of Rising they will not be helped. We pursued them with a curse in this world and on the Day of Rising they will be hideous and spurned. (Surat al-Qasas: 41-42)
The Roots of Violence
When we scrutinize closely the underlying reasons behind men massacring one another, yet without being consumed with guilt, we encounter materialist thinking, which had a profound impact on the philosophical life of the 19th and 20th Centuries. Materialistic philosophy maintains that there is nothing but matter. Matter has existed for all eternity and will remain so for all eternity. Starting out from this premise, it denies the existence of Allah and all values pertaining to the spiritual life as well as good morals. Again, this distorted rationale argues that man exists to survive, and he is not responsible to anyone for anything. Therefore, materialists say, he should only pursue his own interests.
The theory of evolution advocated by materialist philosophers is the pillar on which this distorted understanding is founded. At the time the theory of evolution was first proposed, it supported the materialist standpoint, and thus it laid the basis for the cold-blooded thinking behind mass murders and massacres. In the concept of the "survival of the fittest", Darwin suggested that the weak would always be eliminated while the strongest would survive. The view called "Social Darwinism" became the basic tenet of the racist views prevalent in 19th Century capitalism. According to this view, the weak, the destitute and the disabled, and even whole races of people were defined as creatures whose evolutionary status is such that they must serve the interests of the 'fittest'.
This materialist approach attaches no importance to human life. In particular, there is no obstacle to the annihilation of the weak. This lack of appreciation of human life explains why people are killed for only an acre of land, for personal ambitions or to acquire some natural resources. Ascribing the quality of absoluteness to matter, people who deny the existence of the spirit become prone to commit every sort of wrong and foul action, and they also drive others to this cruelty.
The Qur'an, however, attaches utmost importance to human life. In the Qur'an, killing a single person is equated with killing all mankind:
... So We decreed for the tribe of Israel that if someone kills another person – unless it is in retaliation for someone else or for causing corruption in the earth – it is as if he had murdered all mankind. And if anyone gives life to another person, it is as if he had given life to all mankind. Our Messengers came to them with Clear Signs but even after that many of them committed outrages in the earth. (Surat al-Ma'ida: 32)
As stated in the verse above, in a society where people adhere to the Qur’an, circumstances do not arise which cost lives and involve the displacement of people. People are not tortured, jailed or mistreated. The Qur'an, as earlier mentioned, commands fair and kind treatment of people and summons man to refrain from violence, cruelty, greediness and going beyond the limits. Denouncing violence and injustice on Earth requires that we assume the responsibility for communicating the existence of Allah, the Day of Judgment and the values of the Qur'an and the Sunnah. Those who abstain from this duty and simply ignore it should fear the wrath of Allah, since Allah puts man to test in this world:
We destroyed generations before you when they did wrong. Their Messengers brought them the Clear Signs, but they were never going to have faith. That is how We repay evildoers. Then We appointed you after them to be heirs on the earth so We might observe how you would act. (Surah Yunus: 13-14)
Causes of War
Only an analysis conducted on the causes of war would reveal the irrational grounds on which wars are waged. No war has reasons that justify it being worth the cost of thousands of lives and of even more enormous numbers of wounded. The major reason that wars are the source of enduring pain for humanity, and utter ruin for national economies, are the people who are apt to do mischief and violate others' rights. This character is best described as being merciless and selfish. Totally bereft of all humane qualities such as compassion, mercy and the ability to co-operate, such people only pursue their personal greed and strive to satisfy their cravings for leadership. In the words of the Qur'an, this character is described as follows:
Whenever he holds the upper hand, he goes about the earth corrupting it, destroying (people's) crops and breeding stock. Allah does not love corruption. When he is told to have fear for Allah, he is seized by pride which drives him to wrongdoing. Hell will be enough for him! What an evil resting-place! (Surat al-Baqara: 205-206)
Often, violation of one country's rights by another becomes the reason why a country wages war on another. A war declared for an acre of land usually sets in motion the irreversible momentum towards ruin for every country. During the years of war, all the countries involved invest heavily in armament, to the point of consuming all their material wealth. Meanwhile, budgets originally designated for education and health always prove inadequate for society's welfare. Some vital lobbies, groups and powerful company interests lie at the root of these conflicts. Meanwhile, it is always the public who are afflicted with the painful consequences of war. The net result, however, is always sheer ruin for both parties. That is because those who become involved in insurgent uprisings always meet trouble in this world and never succeed to live in comfort. Allah promises torment to those who do injustice:
There are only grounds against those who wrong people and act as tyrants in the earth without any right to do so. Such people will have a painful punishment. (Surat ash-Shura: 42)
Underground and natural resources, mines and water sources are other factors driving countries to war. Conflicts often emerge when countries deprived of these resources start to threaten their neighbors in order to share these resources. These problems could be resolved by the employment of high technology and appropriate planning. This being the case, however, some countries devote all their power to exercise influence and control by means of wars and conflicts, and see nothing wrong in ravaging countries by bombing irrigation channels, for instance, or resorting to any sort of violence. Meanwhile, the death of innocent women and children – "collateral damage" - are of no real concern to them.
A good action and a bad action are not the same. Repel the bad with something better and, if there is enmity between you and someone else, he will be like a bosom friend. (Surah Fussilat: 34)
The Consequences of not Living by the the Qur'an
As mentioned in Surat an-Nisa', every believer is responsible for assisting the destitute:
What reason could you have for not fighting in the way of Allah for those men, women and children who are oppressed and say, 'Our Lord, take us out of this city whose inhabitants are wrongdoers! Give us a protector from You! Give us a helper from You!'? (Surat an-Nisa': 75)
What needs to be done at this point is to summon people to fear of Allah and remind them that everyone will give account on the Day of Judgment. All other attempts to address this matter are destined to fail since only a person having fear of Allah avoids injustice and use of violence against others. Otherwise, nothing can prevent man's misdeeds; he takes every opportunity to return to his undesirable attitudes. Only someone who comprehends the superiority of the Qur'an can "restore" his life to a state of honour by adhering to the Qur'an, and calling others to do the same. Thus, any serious Muslim has a duty to communicate the religion. Believers should tell all people of the bliss, joy and sense of security and trust the true religion grants man. Thus, no reason will remain for these wars to persist. Every conflict will be settled in peace. Yet, it should also be stressed that this peace remains unattainable if only some people obey the Qur'an. Uninterrupted peace around the world is possible only if the values of the Qur'an and the Sunnah are adopted in general. Otherwise, only particular regions will benefit from the joy the Qur'an grants, and other people would continue to live under dismal conditions and oppression, suffering greatly from poverty and violence.
The Call from Countries Which are in Need of Help
For people having faith in Allah, and adhering to the Qur'an and the Sunnah in every moment of their lives, every incident intrinsically possesses many signs and purposes. That is because Allah creates every incident with a purpose, thereby putting man to the test in his attitudes and behavior. Every person having faith bears responsibilities; to tell of the existence and oneness of Allah, to command the right and forbid the wrong, and to fight with intelligent argument against every movement rooted in denial of the existence of Allah are some of the most important of these. Provided the religion is precisely communicated, conscientious communities having deep fear of Allah will emerge. Then, the solution to all problems rooted in non-adherence to the true religion will spontaneously emerge. Allah reminds us of the responsibilities believers should take on in the following verse:
Fight them until there is no more persecution and religion belongs to Allah alone. If they cease, there should be no enmity towards any but wrongdoers. (Surat al-Baqara: 193)
As stated earlier, in our day priority should be given to the intellectual fight against that materialist philosophy which rejects the religion outright. No doubt, this fight will take place within the framework of the peaceful and compromising manner depicted in the Qur'an. Once the ideological bases and underlying philosophies are destroyed, all ideologies based on them will, one by one, collapse. Allah informs us in the Qur'an that once truth is revealed, falsehood is doomed to vanish:
Rather We hurl the truth against falsehood and it cuts right through it and it vanishes clean away! Woe without end for you for what you portray! (Surat al-Anbiya: 18)
That is the reason why we should communicate the true religion to everyone who is far from the Qur'an. For the same reason we should encourage all humanity to abandon the gloomy world that is one of the consequences of irreligion. In the following pages, considerable space will be devoted to some of the troubled countries plagued with conflict. The stress given to these countries, however, does not serve merely informative purposes. For such purposes, there are thousands of books, tens of thousands of reports available. The intention here is to encourage conscientious people to help oppressed people who are desperate for solutions. It is important to remind believers of this honorable duty, and make them ponder the conflicts ravaging countries and the adversities oppressed men, women and children face. Nobody must think that these conflicts, which lay waste to many a country, are far away and that thus, they are incapable of doing anything.
It is obvious that an array of humanitarian, human rights, and development organizations coming forward under the guise of providing protection and aid offer no concrete solutions at all. Some of these organizations, consuming enormous funds and employing numerous staff, have thus far demonstrated inadequate performance, and brought relief to a very limited number of people. People should be made aware that for those who are oppressed in Kosovo, Bosnia, Kashmir or Palestine today, who desperately await a "savior", there is only one solution: living by the Qur'an.
The ongoing Russian-Chechen war is one of the legacies of the 20th Century on the world agenda today. Russia's assaults on Chechnya, killing mostly women and children civilians, adds to the gravity of the situation in this corner of the world. The images of bombs dropped on marketplaces, giving no chance of survival to unprotected Chechen women, children and unarmed civilians, unfold before the eyes of the world. In one bombing alone, targeted at a maternity home, fifteen babies lost their lives. The attitude of the Russian leaders, ordering soldiers to shoot civilians leaving their villages to seek shelter in neighboring countries, shows the striking dimensions of the violence.
A similar massacre in history, the massacre Pharaoh carried out against his people, is recounted in the Qur'an:
Remember when we rescued you from the people of Pharaoh. They were inflicting an evil punishment on you - slaughtering your sons and letting your women live. In that there was a terrible trial from your Lord. (Surat al-Baqara: 49)
As stressed in the Qur'an, throughout history, defenseless people have been vulnerable to the cruelty exercised by people of Pharaonic character. A brief historical review of Chechnya, whose populace is under threat, would help us to a better understanding of the violence prevalent in the country.
In the year 1918, the Caucasus, including Chechnya, were under the rule of Soviet Russia. At this time, communist Moscow reigned over a large territory, separating lands populated by ethnic groups by drawing artificial borders. This ethnic separation was even further intensified by compulsory relocations. During World War II, the communist regime conducted midnight operations forcing Caucasian people into trains destined for Siberia and the Middle East. Thousands of people did not reach their destinations alive and, on the order of the communist regime, other ethnic populations settled in the lands they left behind. Caucasians who returned to their homelands after some years encountered other people living in their homes. The policy of "divide and rule" employed by Moscow at that time aggravated the ethnic tensions of today.
The collapse of the Soviet Union lifted the lid on nationalist aspirations and ethnic rivalries, leading a number of ethnic groups within the boundaries of the former Soviet sphere to declare their independence. Some other ethnic groups pursued independence only in their economic relations, and remained under the control of the Russian Federation. Chechnya's 1.2 million people, who had long suffered under severe Russian pressure, started to fight for independence in the leadership of Dzhokhar Dudayev.
The 18 month long Russian-Chechen war ended in 1996 and the Chechens declared independence as the Russian troops withdrew. A 1997 peace agreement signed by Moscow and Grozny formally ended the war and granted Chechnya de-facto independence. A prior agreement, however, allowed Russia to defer making Chechnya's territorial status final until 2001.
Other republics followed in the footsteps of the Chechen people who had struggled for independence. The Council of North Caucasian People gathered in Chechnya's capital, Grozny, in 1998. In the meeting, the people of the North Caucasus agreed not to fight with each other. The conflicts of 1999 had their roots in the decisions taken in this meeting. The Russian forces launched a bombing campaign against several villages in Dagestan. These villages, with 1,500 residents, sought help from the Chechen people. A Chechen veteran, Shamil Basayev answered this call, in the summer of 1999. Under heavy bombing, the Dagestani villages were laid in ruins and only two people survived. The consequences of this operation caused Chechnya to drift into a new war with Russia.
Dagestan is a neighbor of Chechnya, densely populated with Muslims (80%). The main reason why the Dagestanis asked for help from the Chechens against the Russian Federation was the great success the Chechens achieved against them in 1996.
Various interests lie behind Russian's onslaught in Chechnya. Nevertheless, no matter what explains the breakout of war, it is always women, children and the impoverished that suffer most. They are always the ones who have to fight for survival in the face of poverty, starvation and epidemics. The major Russian ambition in Chechnya has always been to force Chechens to emigrate from their homeland, to assimilate them, and open the Chechen lands to inhabitants of other ethnic origins. To this end, the wholesale massacre of thousands of innocent, unarmed and defenseless people is approved and, moreover, the whole world remains indifferent to this monstrous act taking place before their very eyes.
The Unprotected People of Kashmir
Kashmir is a troubled region where violence consistently rages due to the ongoing strife between India and Pakistan. Historically, Kashmir has been a region where innocent civilians suffer heavy losses. India remained under British rule for a long time. Following Britain's withdrawal from India, the Indian Muslims founded a separate Muslim state, Pakistan. A population exchange was made between Pakistan and India by which many Muslims living within the boundaries of India immigrated to Pakistan. However, Jammu and Kashmir, a region with dense Muslim population, remained under Indian rule, through the efforts of New Delhi, and the support the British provided India. Since those days to the present, the tension in Kashmir never eases. Kashmiris do not seek independence and merely wish to join Pakistan. However, the pressure Indians exert on Kashmiri Muslims goes so far as the use of chemical weapons against civilians.
The Muslims of Kashmir wanted to resist the Indian administration and gain independence, as a result of which three great massacres were perpetrated in 1947, 1965 and 1971. Tens of thousands of Kashmiri Muslims were killed, women raped and children slaughtered. The policy of both massacre and assimilation continues today. From what international organizations report, in Kashmir, hundreds of people have lost their lives under torture and thousands of others were disabled. Indians set houses on fire, and closed newspapers and schools with Islamic curricula. The pain has not ended yet; in cave-like shelters, many people currently live under very difficult conditions.
Many people probably think they have nothing to do with these people living in remote parts of the world, hundreds and thousands of miles away from them. However, this is rather an inhumane way of thinking, far removed from the moral values of the Qur'an. As mentioned earlier, the responsibility of a believer is to communicate the religion to everyone, whether immediate family members or someone in a different corner of the world. Below are the lines quoted from a report by a journalist who visited a refugee camp in Kashmir. Even these descriptions alone would be enough to move one's conscience. The report illustrates the grievous conditions in the camp:
The refugee camp in Ambor was set up in 1990 for Kashmiris fleeing from Jammu and Kashmir. The living conditions here are wretched. People are packed into small mud huts. In a single-story hut we entered, there was only one bed. We asked how many people lived in this single room. The answer was "9". The camp accommodated 214 families, with a total of 1110 members. Only seeing a mud hut provides an accurate picture of the gloomy life here. These huts generally have two rooms…A few obsolete crockery, one or two beds, if one ever can call them a bed. A mother knelt down in the corner with a baby in her arms. A pot boiling on a fire kindled with a few dry branches. I saw nothing around to eat! I did not have the courage to open the pot to see if there was anything inside. In several tents I saw, there was neither food nor anything to sleep on! In one of the tents, there was an old piece of sheet spread in the middle. Apparently, it was used as a bed. When I asked "How many people does this tent accommodate?" they answered: "11 people."…Still only an iron pot boiling outside!
Ethnic Cleansing in Kosovo
Kosovo, a region with a Muslim majority, remained under Ottoman rule until the Balkan War of 1912. To this day, the people of Kosovo remain Muslims, a legacy of the Ottoman Empire and governance. The termination of the Cold War opened a new era in the world marked by drastic changes of borders and regimes, particularly in Balkans.
The generation holding to the legacy of the Ottomans remained at the centre of this change. What is happening today in Bosnia and Kosovo is an outcome of this historical development. The vacuum that occurred after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, which served as a "balancing factor" in the lands it ruled, could not be filled by the new states that emerged after the World Wars. The conflicts taking place in the region today are consequences of this vacuum.
The Inhumane Three Year Long Massacre in Bosnia
The three years of violence perpetrated against Muslims in Bosnia best exemplifies the situation of people suffering persecution around the globe. In the war launched by Serbs on April 1992, the plan was to annihilate Muslims in a few weeks, or force them to emigrate. Yet, the troops of Bosnian Muslims put up unexpected resistance. The war continued until the spring of 1995.
The violence raging throughout this war was unprecedented in modern European history. Serbs killed more than two hundred thousand Bosnian Muslims, forced two million people out of their homes and raped more than fifty thousand Muslim women. In Serbian concentration camps, Muslims were subjected to unbearable torture, tens of thousands became disabled. What is most striking is that the Serbs who committed such cruelty and the Bosnians, the focus of Serbian rage, are of the same race and speak the same language. The only differentiating factor is their religion. To put it another way, what is happening in Bosnia and Kosovo is simply a religious war, thought by many to have been initiated by the undying hatred of the Orthodox Church for Islam.
The Anti-Religious Dictatorship in the Largest Islamic Country: Indonesia
Life is as precarious for Muslims in Indonesia, an archipelago in Far East, as it is for many other people facing war around the globe. This country covering a huge land, an area the size of the European landmass, is the fourth most populous nation in the world, with a population of 210 million (mid 2000). About 87% of the population is Muslim. There are some 300 ethnic groups and the Muslim community, although the largest, has always been the target of severe oppression.
Pharaoh said, 'Have you had belief in him before I authorized you to do so? This is just some plot you have concocted in the city to drive its people from it. I will cut off your alternate hands and feet and then I will crucify every one of you.'
In Indonesia, a former Dutch colony, the rule of the country has always been in the hands of people of Javanese origin, who make up 7% of the population. After seizing power, the Javanese ruling elite struggled to keep complete control of the country and, to this end, have worked hard at the project of building the concept of Indonesian nationality, or Javanese nationality, despite the multi-ethnic texture of the country. Reactionary movements from the Muslims of Ache Sumatra came in 1953 with their declaration of independence. Upon this, the ruling elite declared the Muslims traitors and subjected them to mass executions. Meanwhile in 1968, Suharto, backed by the US, became president and massacred one million people, according to reports by Amnesty International.
By 1998, the year when Suharto became president for the seventh time, corruption was already endemic in Indonesia, with Suharto employing nepotism to maximum advantage. This last betrayal of public trust sparked off riots since the atrocious regime and economic unrest already blighted the masses. The 100% price-rise imposed on consumer products, on the other hand, became the last straw for the public who engaged in heavy clashes on the streets of the capital Jakarta. The military administration endeavored to put down this revolt by gunfire and they massacred thousands of people. But the events refused to stop; the simple objective of the public was to attain better living conditions and to be relieved of cruelty and oppression.
Even the downfall of Suharto did not improve the situation or re-establish order in Indonesia. Despite many succeeding administrations, conflicts in the country never came to a halt.
The only way to ensure an environment free of such unfairness, violence and disorder is, as mentioned repeatedly throughout this book, living by the Qur'an and the Sunnah. That is because, living the Qur'anic way of life removes economic inequalities, dissent due to conflicting ideas, injustice and violence. The absence of such will secure an environment where nobody will receive brutal treatment.
A Muslim Community Whose Ties with the Entire World have been broken: Uigur Turks in Eastern Turkestan
Eastern Turkestan is for many probably a little-known country. It covers an area twice the size of Turkey. The rest of the world is unaware of the human rights atrocities committed by the communist Chinese regime against the Muslim people, who merely wish to fulfill their religious obligations. Right to exit or right of access to the territories of this Turkic Muslim Community are simply denied. The Muslim community are Uigurs, but according to China it is called Xinjiang province. Although unlikely to be the exact figures, the population of the province is 20 to 30 million according to what the relevant institutions and associations report. The Muslims assert that the Chinese deliberately downplay their population, and that there are many more Muslims than the Chinese statistics indicate.
Natural resources explain why China attributes so much importance to Eastern Turkestan. The existence of oil-rich strata within the boundaries of Eastern Turkestan is the main factor of interest, and recent research reveals more oil reserves. Official Chinese sources confirm the existence of 20 to 40 billion tons of oil reserves in the region. Some Western oil companies claim the reserves are rich enough to compare to Saudi Arabian reserves.
Eastern Turkestan has been under the sovereignty of China for about 250 years. China has never admitted the right of the people of Eastern Turkestan to independence, and has met each initiative for independence with widespread repression. China simply recognized Eastern Turkestan, a Muslim territory, as a province annexed to its territories. In 1949, the seizure of power by Mao Zedong in China led to more repression in Turkestan. Muslim people who resisted the assimilationist policies of China were brutally massacred and their rights denied. From 1949 until today, approximately thirty-five million people have been killed. Meanwhile, torture, all forms of violation and violent repression have been the daily life of the people who remained. People were buried alive and women raped. In 1953, Muslims represented 75% of the population, while the Chinese made up 6%. In 1990, however, this state of affairs reversed in favor of the Chinese. The Chinese population constituted 53% while the Muslim population fell to 40%. These figures alone explain the dimensions of the genocide committed against the Muslims in Eastern Turkestan.
What people went through in Eastern Turkestan is certainly no different from what happened to Muslims in Bosnia and Kosovo. The only difference about Eastern Turkestan is, being a region where communication to the rest of the world is entirely blocked, it is highly difficult to obtain any information. China successfully devoted its efforts to keeping atrocities committed in Eastern Turkestan unreported and, to this end, even keeps the Internet under strict control. Many countries in the world, on the other hand, turn a blind eye to the terrible ordeals the innocent and unprotected people undergo in this region, and approach it as a national problem of China. The genocide in Eastern Turkestan explains the "worth" of human life in countries such as China where disbelief prevails. Under the influence of this prevalent system, people do not see any reasons why they should not murder people whose cultures are different to their own, or conduct experiments on them and torture them relentlessly.
A Poor Country Covered with Oases: Chad
After Chad, a country with a Muslim majority, gained its independence in 1960 Christians seized power in the country. Ministries were shared equally between Christians and Muslims. However, there were two million Muslims and only eight hundred thousand Christians in the country.
The first clashes started when the Christian rulers, who already had strong liaisons with former colonists, established diplomatic relations with Israel. The Muslim Chadians were understandably sensitive about this issue, due to incidents taking place in Palestine, and perceived political alliance with Israel as a betrayal of Palestine. Meanwhile, the Muslim cadre in the government assumed a stance against Israel, but this policy cost the Muslim ministers their positions in government. One morning, all of them were ousted. Many were arrested, imprisoned and their properties confiscated. These incidents led to an era of repression of Muslims and a subsequently unsuccessful uprising that claimed the lives of one thousand people and left thousands wounded.
In the early 20th century, the Philippines came under US control and, in 1946, it was granted independence. Following the withdrawal of America from the island, Filipinos who were subservient to the interests of the US came into power and the Muslims came under their rule. Fundamental to the regime of the Filipinos was their policy of confiscating the lands of Muslims, based on their strategy of consolidating power on the island. To this end, a law was issued regulating the allocation of lands among Filipinos and Muslims. According to this law, a Muslim could receive only one third of the land to which a Filipino was entitled. This policy ensured the settlement of 3.5 million Filipino immigrants on Muslim lands, thereby sparking clashes between Muslims and Filipinos. Muslims, in pursuit of protecting their rights, wanted to compromise with President Ferdinand Marcos but did not succeed. The Marcos regime launched an operation to assimilate Muslims. With pay-rises and selective promotions, Marcos made the armed forces his personal political machine, suspended implementation of the constitutional law and replaced it with martial law.
The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fought on behalf of the Muslims and in bloody clashes more than fifty thousand Muslims, the majority of whom were civilians, lost their lives. Thousands of women, children and the elderly were murdered. Specially trained teams were set up to wipe out Muslims. These were ferocious guerrillas, who went to great lengths in violence, such as breaking the skulls of their victims or drinking their blood. They employed special torture techniques for every victim and, after murdering them, confiscated all their property.
Around the globe, bloody clashes and wars devastate Muslim countries. Palestinian resistance to the occupation initiated by radical Zionist leaders is known to be the longest lasting of all such bloodletting. This invasion carried out by Israel and backed by the leaders of other countries who shared its views was systematic, and left behind hundreds of thousands of dead, refugees and a bloody history. Clashes, wars and massacres reflect much of what civilians suffered throughout the Israeli invasion.
After the 1950s, the Israeli forces commanded by radical Zionist leaders made several interventions in the neighboring country, Lebanon. These leaders ignited conflicts between several groups within Lebanon and these groups, becoming involved in a civil war, maintained links with, and secured support from, Israel. These clashes made the balance of power in Lebanon highly fragile, turning it into a country open to invasion. These radical Zionist leaders provoked the communities inhabiting Lebanon, namely, the Maronites, Christians, Greek Orthodox Christians, Shi'a Muslims, Sunnis and the Druze, and gradually reaped the fruits of her "divide and rule" policy.
A strategy that Israel had planned for twenty-eight years was concluded with the actual invasion of Lebanon in 1982. The civil war divided Beirut into regions for each minority group. It is interesting that each minority received support and arms from radical Zionist leaders. In particular, the Phalangists, who seized power, had very strong ties with these circles.
The civil war in Lebanon seemingly broke out because the Palestinians who had been forced from Jordan by King Hussein were settled in Lebanon. Christians, indoctrinated by radical Zionist leaders about the need to expel Palestinians from Lebanon, waged an all-out war to expel the Palestinians. Christians and Muslims were seemingly parties to this war, yet each of them were also torn apart internally. During the war, Israel, ruled by radical Zionist leaders, started to violate the Lebanese border. Meanwhile, Lebanon's security deteriorated significantly with the US- and Israeli-backed attack of Syria, which appeared to be a Muslim country, against Lebanon.
The Phalange Party's establishment of its political power through the support of Israel was the beginning of a bloody war that was to devastate Beirut. Palestinians and Muslim Lebanese were subject to great pressure. The invasion of 1978 ultimately led to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. Lebanon became a war-torn and devastated country. Meanwhile, history witnessed the brutal Phalange massacre of hundreds of Palestinian civilians in the Sabra and Shatilla refugee camps at the instigation of, and under the supervision of the Israeli forces.
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