Imam Talib’s Second Response

Posted: January 21, 2008 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

Imam Talib Abdur-Rasheed of the Mosque of Islamic Brotherhood has a second response. (See my previous response here) I want to reiterate my love and respect for this brother and the work that he has done. No this is not a debate, but exchange of information and views. Imam Talib’s response is below the fold. I have a brief (and brotherly) response below that:

As-Salaamu ‘Alaikum wa Rahmatullah.

Again, thanks for your thoughts. Of course some of your points are well-made. I have only sought to supplement them or call for you to do so. It seems I did miss some of your earlier comments and that’s kool, as what you pointed out you did and where-ever we agree, that’s fine too. This isn’t a debate. And to answer your question, yes there is coordination and cooperation between the various groups I mentioned, in degrees. To say that there isn’t simply is wrong. We have and do find some things to work on commonly, which in and of itself is a tremendous progression from the past. They are not all or always advertised collaborations but they do exist. I will say that one thing we have and do all work on is freeing Imam Jamil, and the very organizations mentioned in your writing and my post are the ones who have labored hard over the years raising money for his legal defense and other things.

No, we don’t have a national coordinating headquarters for our work, but we do have an operational network and that’s something we have learned from years of work. No, MAS Freedom doesn’t stand for Black American Justice, but it is an example of how the Civil Rights Movement has impacted upon segments of the immigrant Muslim community, and I believe that is important to note.

Again regarding the Yasin incident, excuse me brother but your own inexperience or perhaps naivete is showing here. There is no statute of limitations on homicide, and it’s just plain foolish to call for detailed public discussion on such matters. I know brothers from both jamaats who were present for the tragedy, and yes there are things known and that have not and should not be discussed in public. In some areas Muslims don’t talk enough. In other areas we talk too damned much, ignoring the maxim, “The safety and security of mankind is in the GUARDING of the tongue”. Leaders who have responsibility for the lives of men, women and children know this. Others should respect it. Suffice it to say that the tragedy taught many of us many things, and we have all grown as the result of it. We are all brothers in Islam, and some of us from the two jamaats who go back that far are really quite tight now, and love each other now for the sake of Allah. For one thing we have realized that we were and are very much alike because we are the same people.

We have acted in concert based upon the tragic Yasin experience to intervene and stop repeats of this sort of thing amongst the younger generation of Muslims, and there have been some close calls, believe me. But the efforts have been successful. To err is human. What matters is when people can learn from their mistakes and mis-steps, and grow. And I say again, those who really know are not the ones who talk – not because they’re seeking to hide truths, but because they are keenly aware of ramifications on various levels, of loose, public talk.

This is something that those un-reared in the discipline of movements, and products of the internet and blogger age, are not aware of. We should never forget that we have third party enemies always lurking in the wings, who seek to eliminate us all. There is nothing flippant about discretion and disciplined speech, and those of us who have survived in the fire of the dragon’s breath since the active days of COINTELPRO know this. We are not ignorant elders. That is where the other naseehaa offered by brothers Abu Usama, Saifuddin and others, comes in. The Prophet (pbuh) said, “The deen is naseehaa”, and this in an of itself is sage advice. We all have opinions but because they are sincere and even passionate doesn’t make them the truth. If we remember this Allah will bless us to keep open minds, and to grow.

Again, may Allah reward you.

Ameen. I’m glad that you now see that we see eye to eye on most of the points. As for the Ya Sin incident, my principle concern was in maintaining the integrity of the historical record as it as come down to us and I think that I have done that. The rulings of History must also conform to the mandates of justice.

We are in agreement that History should be our guide and it is of absolute necessity to draw any and all important lessons that she may teach us, and alhamdulillah it seems that brothers like yourself have done that. This is the point. We want people to benefit from these lessons. However, her lessons will continually elude us when we allow “historical black holes” to exist.

I pray that Allah continues to unite the hearts of the Believers as we move forward in this work

  1. Yes, and by the way, perhaps I didn’t communcate it well, but I felt from the beginning that we saw eye-to-eye on most points, which is why I wrote to encourage you and I have reccomended your blog to several people as important reading. It is also why I respond because the points that you raised are important. that includes your point about “historical black holes” (love that phrase). I would add to that by saying that the years of wisdom and acquired experience have taught me that sometimes (not always) when those holes exist they are out of necessity and not preference. Also as I mentioned, all of the cited groups are members or connected in some fashion to MANA. They were all present at the Philly conference, showing genuine love and respect for each other, and rolling up sleeves to work. Alhamdulillah for this was one of the elements of the love and healing, and yes, growth , that we all felt or experienced on some level.
    Was Salaam,
    Imam Al-Hajj Talib ‘Abdur-Rashid

  2. Yosef Davis Peekskill, NY says:

    Freeing Imam Jamil and the other poltical prisoners is important work.Hopefully at the next conference there will be a panel that
    focus on poltical prisoners .Many of us unfortunely are not aware
    of trials and tribulations that these men face.Brother Jahil has been locked up for over 30yrs.Dr.MutuluShukur is facing problems with eye site.Sekou Odinga is still a muslim warrior may Allah bless him.
    By the way those of us who live in Newyork there will be the 11th
    annual fundraising dinnerat Restoration Plaza in Brooklyn,Ny on
    Sunday January 27 all proceeds will go the poltical prisoners hopefully some of us from our community can make it out.

  3. Kwame Madden says:

    Imam Talib,
    No sense in highlighting the particulars of the points made. Your naseehah spoke right to the issue.

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