Dear Boko Haram, you know nothing of Islam

The Nigerian extremists call themselves Muslim, but they are nothing more than a vile band of killers and kidnappers

 

Share

I don’t know who you are or what you represent. Whatever it is, it couldn’t be any further from me and other ordinary citizens of the world, be they Muslims or otherwise. You see, humanity unites most of us, but it seems like an alien concept to you.

However I write to you with the faintest hope that there may be some amongst you who are uncomfortable with the dreadful deeds you have committed recently. 

In the short time since you came into existence you have maimed scores of mothers, fathers and children through your indiscriminate bombings. 

Now you cause complete agony to the relatives of the hundreds young and innocent girls you have kidnapped. These poor girls haven’t even properly embarked on the journey of their lives.

As a father, I know the anguish of being unaware of my child’s whereabouts even for a moment; but of these mothers' distress, I can’t even begin to fathom.

I gather that Boko Haram means “western education is forbidden”. This gives some indication to your motives. Leaving aside the education aspect for a moment, is there any merit to what you have done?

The kidnapping of these poor girls, their forced marriage for the sake of base carnal passion, or their sale as commodities, reviving the abhorrent practice of slavery, is beyond all belief and humanity.

The Koran – the book you claim to follow - firmly asserts that detaining or enslaving women against their will is completely forbidden [4:20]. It also emphatically rejects the idea of holding captive prisoners of war unless there is ongoing and regular fighting [8:68]. 

Do you then claim that ''strong men'' such as yourselves are at war with 16 year-old girls? The Hadith-e-Qudsi, the second most revered texts in Islam after the Holy Koran, states that one who enslaves and trades a free person has declared war with his creator.

Going against these principles, not only have you rejected the very tenets which set civilisations apart from cavemen, but you have declared war against the same God who you claim to worship.

You appear to have a deep-rooted issue with western education. The Holy Koran, however, teaches a prayer: “Oh our Lord, increase for us our knowledge”.

It did not differentiate between the type knowledge in this prayer. It is full of similar injunctions. It invites us to ponder over the creation of earth, sun moon and the heavens.

Much of this is taught within the secular system. The Holy Prophet (pbuh) declared it to be the obligation of every man and woman to acquire knowledge.

You may not have realised this, but the pioneer Muslims of early and medieval Islam gave everything to increase their knowledge and impart it further. They learnt and they taught. They lived by the Hadith that “wisdom is the lost property of a Muslim” and were always eager to excel.

They learnt new languages, translated books between various languages, such as the great Greek texts of the ancient world. Their graft and toil introduced many branches of modern science to the world.

Western education has many reasons to be grateful to those people and their names are etched in the golden pages of history, both Islamic and secular.  I doubt history will be so kind in its record of your existence.  

Perhaps you don’t care about your position in history, but what about the God who you claim to believe in? What about the Prophet who you claim to follow and love?

The Koran starts with the introduction to God who is merciful, compassionate and gracious. Have you shown even an ounce of any of these attributes? As for the Prophet, he has been addressed as “mercy for mankind” and a “life-giving prophet”.

Therefore, adopt a course of mercy and do so by first returning the girls you hold captive to their anguished mothers.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SEN KS1 Teacher

£21804 - £31868 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Qualified and experi...

KS2 Teacher

£21588 - £31552 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Exceptional teacher ...

Year 5/6 Teacher

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Would you like to be part ...

Teacher

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: We are currently recruitin...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Children of a bygone era  

Kids these days aren't what they used to be — they're a lot better. So why the fuss?

Archie Bland
A suited man eyes up the moral calibre of a burlesque troupe  

Be they burlesque dancers or arms dealers, a bank has no business judging the morality of its clients

John Walsh
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star