Stands >2004 Stands >The Stand of Ramadan 5 1425H / October 19, 2004 A.D.

The European coldness towards Arabs' attempts for rapprochements

Sayyed Fadlullah:We want the dialogue with the West to start, but at the same time we ask the Europeans to breakout with their outdated ideas and obsessions towards Islam, and let us join hands and cooperate in opposing social religious and political injustice in the entire world.

Asked in his weekly seminar the following question: How do you view the European coldness towards Arabs' attempts for rapprochements?

The Religious Authority, Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah, said:

We have always felt that our dialogue with Europe leads to further rapprochement and interaction which will in turn initiate a disclosure process on the political economic, cultural and even religious levels, for Islam seeks to establish a broad friendship with all the nations of the world.

And we have always felt that Europe which has forgone the imperialist mentality could be closer to us than the United States that not only seeks to plunder the wealth of the Islamic nation, but is also implementing a plan to control the world that is set by an aggressive mentality of some of the most officials in the American Administration that have come to despise Europe and call it with such names as "the Old Europe".

This Europe that understands us more and whose stands are closer to our interests could become a good neighbor to us, if not a strategic ally, and could maintain friendly political relations and economic cooperation, now that the sensitivities of history have withered.

But we have to be cautious in our yearning, for showing so much affection for someone who is not interested could be hurtful…

Moreover, Europe had left the Muslims in Bosnia a lame duck, out of fear of becoming an effective state in post USSR Europe. It also somewhat refuses Turkey's membership by making new impossible conditions everyday, suggesting that its complex towards Islam is the real obstacle that hinders establishing better relations with Muslim people and states.

We are not going to discuss how much they complied with the Vatican's call to preserve the Christian personality of the EU, but we say to them: Why do you hide behind your fingers, and refrain from engaging in a comprehensive dialogue with the Muslim world and talk instead about cultural differences. If this is true what about the cultural difference between the members of the EU states themselves, including those who joined the Union with such an incredible speed. We believe that the issue is one that has to do with Islam.

We also know that there are those who fuel these obsessions and create false data and incidents to broaden the gap. The Zionist media, in particular, works on inflating Europe's concern towards the Muslim immigrates or citizens who live in the continent.

We also note that some of the backward practices of fanatic Muslims contribute in presenting a distorted image of Islam to the European citizen who, as a voter, plays a big part in improving or weakening relations with Muslim countries. But this does not mean that the European officials, parties and media are not responsible for creating sensitivities and even hatred towards Muslim people and states.

Europeans should understand that the Muslims have integrated in their communities as citizens, and those who immigrate whether to study or earn a living are not seeking to invade Europe, or cancel others. They are sharing the Europeans their lives and even their interests. If they present and keep their ideas and beliefs, it does not pose any threat or concern of any act of distortion or subversion.

Based on my religious Muslim capacity, I call for a broad Muslim-European dialogue that includes, on the one hand, all European officials, political parties, research centers and intellectuals, while, on the Muslim side, we call for the participation of the religious authorities, intellectuals, Islamic movements and Islamic research centers to explain and clarify Islamic views towards the west and the relations with the other whether the religious other or the political or the secular one.

We also call on the Islamic states and regimes to improve their record in human rights based on the Islamic values of respecting man and refusing any abuse to any man regardless of his religion or race.

We want the dialogue with the West to start, but at the same time we ask the Europeans to breakout with their outdated ideas and obsessions towards Islam, and let us join hands and cooperate in opposing social, religious and political injustice in the entire world.