: Feb 04, 2015

Of late there has been a huge controversy in the American Muslim community over…

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Of late there has been a huge controversy in the American Muslim community over some activists and well-known (and not so well known) figures taking paid trips to Israel with the Shalom Hartman Institute (SHI), and the harsh criticisms generated against them.

I have stayed out of this controversy up until now, and have friends on both sides of the line, but this great article by Hena Zuberi summarizes all that you need to know (included my quoted position). She does as fair of a job as humanly possible in my opinion, and demonstrates the complexity of the situation.

While I personally would never go with such a blatantly Zionist Islamophobic propaganda group, and would never advise anyone to do so, and believe it is a mistake of the highest magnitude, in the end of the day I cannot fault someone for a personal ijtihad (opinion) where he/she believes that there might be greater good for him/her in such an initiative, as long as this person is still opposed to the racist ideology of Zionism and supporting the human rights of the Palestinians. Even if I strongly believe that their ijtihad is wrong, my belief in it being wrong does not translate into them believing it is wrong, or even into it necessarily being wrong in the eyes of Allah.


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