Although Islam is a religion of peace and brotherhood, the disputes among Muslims do not come to an end. The so- called Middle East, where the biggest Muslim population live, face new challenges due to artificial problems caused by internal and external factors. Middle East strectches from Indian subcontinent to Morocco, covering all the cradles of civilizations. When we look at the ethnicity of people living in this vast territory, we see that majority of Middle Eastern people are Arabs, Turks and Iranians. The major languages are Arabic, Turkish and Farsi, along with several dialects of each language.
Why does having the same religion, language and similar culture not bring peace to Middle East?
There may be several reasons for these but one of the main issues is the unfair and sudden dissolvement of Ottoman State about 100 years ago by the West. During the time of Ottoman State, resident people of this enormous state had one single leader, who used to be the Khalifa of all Muslims. After the collapse of Ottoman State, the Khalifate was abolished and more than 30 countries were founded by the West. Nobody cared to ask for the opinions of the people of those territories: thus, one night families were split apart to become citizens of other countries.
Because of the “divide and conquer” policy, we see many small countries when we look at the map of this region. Most of them are led by Amirs, Shaikhs or Kings who claim to be independent. The reality shows the opposite. Those Amirs, kings or whatever name they want to call themselves are merely puppets of some western countries. British rule on some of them while USA and France lead the others. Even Russia and China have now claims on some countries.
Look at what has happened recently in Qatar. Four of the most important states of the Middle East declared sanctions to one of their brothers in Qatar without any warnings. In the international affairs, this is a unique practice and cannot be expressed by any diplomatic, human or Islamic language. This is an example of how these countries are taken by their masters to river like a flock of sheep for watering and returned thirsty. Eventually those sanction states will understand that they are the losers while the West will be enjoying the benefits easily won.
Same goes for the internal politics including Islamic affairs. Their masters have nothing to do with Islam. But they stretch their hands to everywhere even including Halal certifying. Why? Because they know very well that you become of what you eat. If you eat only Halal, your body and spirit may grow with Halal and your mind will work in Halal way. If you consume Haram or questionable things, your spiritual being will be negatively affected.
Halal certifying is a pure Islamic task where non-Muslims cannot interfere. But some Islamic countries, especially in the Gulf region, have unfortunately started to cooperate with non-Muslims. UAE is the leader of this unacceptable move. They claim that non-Muslims have better expertise in all kinds of certifying and they are more entitled to Halal certify than Muslims. Now their import laws will dictate that all food imports shall carry Halal certificates taken from recognized certification bodies, which may also include non-Muslim bodies. How can a non-Muslim decide which product is Halal or not? But let’s not get surprised. The same UAE is obviously always against anything that is really Islamic.
The problem does not end here. To be able to get recognition from the authorities in Gulf region, any Halal certifying body must pay enormous amounts of money (close to or more than USD 50,000.00). And similar amounts must be paid each year depending on the import quantity of Halal certified products of that particular certifying body.
It is impossible for an average certifying body to pay for these charges. What may be the reason for such big amounts of money? Does UAE, one of the biggest exporters of petrol in the World, need that money? Halal certifying is done for the benefit of Muslims and the sole aim is to protect the Muslims against non-Halal. Who will eventually pay the recognition charges? Of course, the poor Muslim consumer! Is this Islamic?
As GIMDES, we warn the Muslim consumers not to sleep any more. Know your friends and learn your religion. Allah orders us to eat Halal and Tayyib. Consume Halal and Tayyib and consume only those that are certified by sincere Muslim organizations. Question the origin of the Halal certificate. Don’t look at the Halal logo and accept it as it is. It is also your responsibility to make sure that Halal certificate is true and issued by Muslim authorities. Don’t believe fatwahs flying around which say you can eat Ahl-i Kitab slaughtered meat, don’t accept anything that contains alcohol even if they say it is less than 0.001%. Don’t consume products that contain gelatin. More important try to be more careful especially you are in the Gulf Area. Most meat is questionable there, as almost all meat come from countries that lead those countries. Many will remember the so-called non-alcoholic beer or wine that are freely sold even in Makkah. Who gives the permission to drink such disgusting things? The ones that give the fatwah, are they merely trying to imitate their masters? If so, continue and you will end up being one of them.
Look at the hadith or our Beloved Prophet (PBUH):
يَٓا اَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ اٰمَنُوا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الْيَهُودَ وَالنَّصَارٰٓى اَوْلِيَٓاءَۢ بَعْضُهُمْ اَوْلِيَٓاءُ بَعْضٍۜ وَمَنْ يَتَوَلَّهُمْ مِنْكُمْ فَاِنَّهُ مِنْهُمْۜ اِنَّ اللّٰهَ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الظَّالِم۪ينَ
(Maide Suresi 51.)
مَنْ تَشَبَّهَ بِقَوْمٍ فَهُوَ مِنْهُمْ
Praise be to Allah.
It was narrated that Ibn ‘Umar said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: ‘Whoever imitates a people is one of them.’” (Narrated by Abu Dawood, al-Libas, 3512.)
Muslims are smart and should be smarter. We don’t want to give advises you already know. We are confident that you will protect yourselves, your families and your religion.