by Jonathan Azaziah
As I’ve grown accustomed to saying and will continue to say, Jummah Mubarak to all and especially to the Islamic Movement of Nigeria and its patient-beyond-patient, resilient-beyond-resilient leader Sheikh Ibrahim Yaqoub al-Zakzaky, who has now been locked in a dungeon by the Zionist-Saudi-US-backed collaborationist pig Muhammadu Buhari for 31 months. That’s right. 31 months… for zero reason whatsoever other than the fact that the Sheikh is a Mouqawamist thinker who encourages his partisans and allies to spiritually, intellectually and culturally challenge Global Zionism.
I want all of you to imagine something. Close your eyes… And just… Imagine. You arrive at your favorite Islamic Center for Ashoura, a most somber time. Your family is there. Your friends too and they’ve brought along their families and their friends. The place is packed. Thousands of people, easily. You’re looking forward to trading stories of how much Imam Hussein (A.S.), Abou Fadhl al-Abbas (A.S.) and Lady Zaynab (A.S.) inspire you. You’re longing to shed tears with your brothers and sisters for Ali Akbar (A.S.), Ali Asghar (A.S.) and Bibi Sukayna (A.S.) You can’t wait to hear the recitations of the Holy Qur’an and the most breathtaking supplications of Imam Zayn al-Abideen (A.S.) read to you by a most brilliant, most humble scholar. And then… As you’re all gathered and the modern-day Saint begins speaking… Heavily-armed, Saudi-financed, ‘Israeli’-trained military men ram through the gates of the Islamic Center and start shooting. They don’t stop shooting either. Men. Women. Children. Elderly. Disabled. Nobody is safe. Bodies are dropping everywhere. The Sheikh gets hit. So does his wife. So do three of his sons. His deputy is hit as well and he dies almost instantly. Massacre. Slaughter. Bloodbath. Clips loading, dropping then reloading some more. The killing doesn’t stop for 72 hours–yes, three full days of incessant barbarity. The government does not order it to stop, revealing that the wanton death and destruction is state-sanctioned. Dozens of young women are raped then kidnapped. The Sheikh, his wife and hundreds of innocents from his flock are dragged away to prison on bogus charges. And then… with the bodies of the innocents decaying out in the open… the Islamic Center, which is also the home of the scholar, is bulldozed to the ground. No janazah for anyone. Just rubble on top of bullet-ridden flesh.
Now, open your eyes. What you just imagined is what literally happened 31 months ago between December 12th and 14th, 2015 at the Husseiniyyah Baqiyatullah in Zaria, Nigeria. Still, to this very moment, we are unsure of just how many martyrs there are. Some estimates say over 300. Others say over 1,000. Sheikh Zakzaky, who has lost sight in his left eye, his wife Sayyeda Zeenat, and scores upon scores of IMN members are still imprisoned on totally fraudulent charges despite the glaring, blaring fact that the Federal High Court of Nigeria itself ordered his UNCONDITIONAL release in 2016. The 50 kidnapped girls, mostly students in the fields of law, medicine and political science–and brilliant students at that–keep being MIA with not even a flicker of what their whereabouts might be. Zakzaky’s three sons Hammad, Ali and Humaid, as well as his deputy Sheikh Muhammad Turi, may ALLAH (SWT) be pleased with them and grant them peace, remain in the blood-soaked ground beneath what used to be his home. And also, to this very moment, even with all of this carnage sticking out like a dislocated shoulder for all to see, “The Ummah” looks upon it with indifference; or even worse, with sectarian hatred and racist disdain. There aren’t enough adjectives available in English, Arabic and Hausa to describe how shameful they are.
While the hypocrites may be copious, there are some of us who have poured our hearts out with whatever means at our disposal to awaken the slumbering about the righteous struggle of Sheikh Zakzaky and the IMN. But it just isn’t enough. None of us in fact have done enough. More and more and MORE awareness must be raised for starters, most especially now as IMN social media activists warn of the treacherous Buhari regime plotting to kill the Lion of Zaria and use his poor health as a mask for the crime. Zakzaky has defended Afghanistan and Iraq, Libya and Syria, Bahrain and Yemen, the precious causes of Palestine and Kashmir, the Lebanese Islamic Resistance of Hizbullah and the revolutionary Islamic Republic of Iran. He has challenged the hegemonic order led by Organized Jewry not only in word and deed but blood–his own and that of his sons and closest friends. He’s been sitting in a cell for the last two and a half years because of these stances. It is only right that we reciprocate and defend him. His freedom is not negotiable and we shouldn’t rest until it is secured. 31 months of despair. 31 months of injustice. Let us not permit it to go on for one damn second longer. #FreeZakzaky #LongLiveZakzaky #BringBackThe50IMNGirls #BringBackOurZariaGirls #DeathToTheBuhariRegime