The murder of a pro-Palestinian activist & why “Tawhidi” groups often are anything but

Sickening news from Gaza. A volunteer for the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) appears to have been murdered by a rogue Palestinian faction. God rest his soul and reward him for his work for justice.

Vale Vittorio Arrigoni, 'hero of Palestine' | Pennie Quinton | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk

Hearing of the murder of Vittorio Arrigoni, a committed peace activist who for the last 10 years campaigned for recognition of Palestinian human rights under Israeli occupation, has left me shaking and crying with rage at the sheer cruelty and stupidity of those who would carry out such an act. According to news reports, Arrigoni was murdered by the Tawheed and Jihad group, which operates in the Gaza Strip in opposition to the Hamas government.

This is off-topic, but I have to say that it's a sad commentary on the state of "Islamist" movements that the presence of "Tawhid" (i.e., the Islamic term for true monotheism, in contrast to the idolatry or shirk that permeates the world; Tawhid is the most important and sacred principle of Islam) in an Islamic organization's name regularly seems to correlate with ignorance, intolerance and extremism. (For those that don't know, Wahhabis and Salafis often fancy themselves the sole proponents of Tawhid. Indeed, the willingness to excommunicate other, less obscurantist Muslims as "idolaters" based on narrow doctrinal differences and the extreme Manichean view of the world that that belief entails were probably Muhammad Abdal-Wahhab's most enduring contribution to Islamic tradition.)

I'm reminded of the way dictatorships invariably describe themselves as democracies. Sometimes, it seems to be an iron law of contemporary Islamic intellectual life that those preaching most loudly about Tawhid are, when you scratch the surface, purveyors of some form of Shirk. It's downright Orwellian.

Am I alone in perceiving this perverse pattern?

  • http://muslimmediareview.blogspot.com Ayman Fadel

    Excellent comment, Svend. This is a stupid crime.
    A hero for Palestine
    Laura Durkay pays tribute to the life of an International Solidarity Movement activist.
    http://socialistworker.org/2011/04/18/hero-for-palestine

  • http://www.neediff.com Prasad

    World should focus on Israel & Palestinian side there should be held discussions between them both sides aim should be one that is peace then only this entire region will be safe and world will be safe. Palestinians should be give up terrorism these kidnaps and murders are raises the tensions between them Palestinians should not believe in terrorism they should not gain anything with this terrorism only peace talks will be held and peace will be happened

  • http://akramsrazor.typepad.com svend

    Thanks, Ayman and Prasad. Such a sad end to an activist who’d given so much of his life to help this embattled, abandoned people. And, yes, there need to be negotiations as opposed to endless violence, though I’m not sure simple one-on-one negotiations will work given the huge disparity in power. What’s needed is for either the US to finally become an honest broker in the region, or for the EU to grow a spine. Hell might well freeze over before either thing happens, sadly.

  • http://www.livingasmuslims.com Ata

    What in your mind Akram do you think should be done about these “tawhidi” – I hate even having to call them such – nutcases?
    Should they be hunted down as they are a fitnah for humanity and put to death, as Hamas seems to be doing?


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