Editorial: The Lobbying That Sanctifies the Genocide

By Omer Bin Abdullah

May/Jun 2024

The Genocide continues. As this issue goes to press, nearly 1.8 million Palestinians are cooped up in Rafah. So far, 32,000 and counting have been slaughtered under the guise of eliminating Hamas — the acronym for Harakat al-Muqawama al-Islamiya (Islamic Resistance Movement). At the onset of The Genocide, it was stated that Hamas’s armed forces, under the name Al-Qassam Brigades, numbered 15,000 men.

Before The Genocide, Rafah, a 25 square-mile city in Gaza’s southernmost part, housed about 200,000 people and had a population density of 7,000 people per square mile. Today, nearly 1.5 million Palestinians are sheltering there.

Before the U.S. marked “abstain” on the UN Security Council ceasefire vote, Congress passed a bipartisan bill, which President Biden signed into law, giving Israel another $3.3 billion. Such cash handouts are in addition to the periodic weapons transfers. AIPAC triumphantly announced that the handout is “without added political conditions.” Israeli and American Jews, many of them dual citizens, blamed the UN vote on Democrats looking for votes in swing states like Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

The Genocide continues, irrespective of the semantic campaigns denying it as such. Before The Genocide, over 2 million Gazans lived in approximately 141 square miles. Its largest city, Gaza City, had a higher population density than any major U.S. city, including Los Angeles — 650,000+ people living within its 18 square miles.

Skeptics were asking what the rallies in the U.S. would accomplish. The reality is that this resolution – innocuous as it — comes after months of public pressure, activism and organizing by millions of Americans and the global community demanding an end to The Genocide.

The Palestinian Representative to the UN Security Council, Ambassador Riad Mansour, stated, “It has taken 6 months, over 100,000 Palestinians killed and maimed, 2 million displaced, and famine, for this council to finally demand an immediate ceasefire.”

The U.S. had vetoed three UNSC resolutions asking for a ceasefire. This heartlessness was not only intrinsic, but also shaped by lobbying. Luke Peterson notes that lobbying remains part and parcel of our government’s function, as well as an essential pillar of the American system, a legitimated form of barely regulated bribery enshrined within the right “to petition the Government for a redress of grievances” and sustained by generations of legal precedent self-sustaining policy decisions.

On Jan. 21, 2010, the Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, a controversial (5:4) decision that reversed century-old campaign finance restrictions, enabled corporations and other outside groups to spend unlimited funds on elections. The gates were opened, and politicians began — and still are — brazenly taking in millions to dance to their giver’s tune.

This has been more than evident in The Genocide.

It behooves all Americans to strive to end this abhorrent situation, because it makes all talk about “democracy” meaningless. As Exodus 23:8 states so clearly, “Take no bribes, for a bribe makes you ignore something that you clearly see. A bribe makes even a righteous person twist the truth.”

This struggle is also a duty upon Muslims, for as the Quran 2:188 proclaims, “And do not consume one another’s wealth unjustly or send it [in bribery] to the rulers in order that [they might aid] you [to] consume a portion of the wealth of the people in sin, while you know [it is unlawful].” Abdullah bin ‘Amr also narrated that the Prophet (salla Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) warned, “The curse of God is upon the one who offers a bribe and the one who takes it” (“Musnad Ahmad” [6984] and “Sunan Ibn Majah” [2313]).

We at Islamic Horizons pray that God hears and answers the prayers of the oppressed. 

Tell us what you thought by joining our Facebook community. You can also send comments and story pitches to horizons@isna.net. Islamic Horizons does not publish unsolicited material.