The grotesque murder of renowned journalist Jamal Khashoggi is yet another reminder of a despotic rule that has plagued the Middle East for more than a century. The rulers have become so desensitized to bloodshed, it is extremely easy to disappear anyone who doesn’t agree with their policies.
While it offers no consolation to the family of the deceased, sadly, these leaders claim to follow the same religion as mine; namely Islam. Being Muslims, we are taught to exercise patience and kindness toward other fellow beings, so much so, that Prophet Muhammad taught never to show cruelty even toward animals, like overburdening camels with luggage or killing animals for sport.
These so-called Islamic leaders are only driven by self-interests while everything else remains expendable. The Quran, while protecting the sanctity of life, states that killing of one life is akin to killing of all mankind. With such teachings at the core of this religion, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand what these leaders have in mind.
As Arleen Myers Fields rewrites the legendary poem of German pastor Martin Niemoller: “First they came for the journalists, and I did not speak out, because I was not a journalist — we have no idea what they did after that!”
The writer is a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Pittsburgh and a member of the Muslim Writers Guild of America.