Tuesday, August 14, 2012


300,000 muslims pray in the Dongguan mosque, Eid of 2011.

Firon, Pharaoh, Dead Body of Firon translation by Allama Mukhtar shah Naeemi

East Africa debates what happens to southern Somalia if al-Shabab is routed

Posted on Tue, Aug. 14, 2012

East Africa debates what happens to southern Somalia if al-Shabab is routed (Kenya wants to establish an independent country called Jubbaland run by Ogaden)

McClatchy Newspapers
A long-awaited assault on the southern Somali port of Kismayo that Western governments hope will end the influence of al-Qaida's branch in Somalia has been delayed over last-minute negotiations on how to divide the spoils and avoid more civil war should the city fall.
In a struggle between neighboring Kenya and Ethiopia, representatives from East African countries have been meeting this week with representatives from different Somali factions to discuss carving out yet another semiautonomous region in Somalia if Kismayo is captured.
Last October, Kenya sent troops across its border with Somalia to root out fighters aligned with al-Shabab, the Somalia affiliate of al-Qaida. In June, Kenya's prime minister promised that his country's forces would take Kismayo by this month, ahead of Somalia's transition to a new federal government next week.
But a spokesman for Ras Kamboni, a Somali militia that is fighting alongside Kenyan troops, said those plans had been delayed for "political reasons" and promised only that the offensive would be begin before the end of the month.
"We are avoiding a situation where we capture a town and people fight over what clan should be in charge of a specific area. We are working closely with clan elders to avoid clan clashes," said Abdinasir Serar, the Ras Kamboni spokesman.
"You don't want a situation whereby al-Shabab is taking advantage of disorganization in an area," he said. "We have to move very carefully so that al-Shabab won't have any opportunities to exploit."
During the civil war that has raged in Somalia for 20 years, the country has become divided into autonomous regions, often based on which clan was dominant. Sometimes the claims have overlapped. The fall of Kismayo and the vanquishing of al-Shabab would add southern Somalia to the areas in which competing interests will vie for control.

Ethiopia has feared that Kenya plans to create a southern Somalia autonomous state, sometimes referred to as the Jubaland Initiative, that would be sympathetic to the rebellion in Ethiopia's Ogaden region, which is dominated by ethnic Somalis.
After invading Somalia last year, Kenya denied that the Jubaland Initiative was still being considered, although State Department cables leaked by the website WikiLeaks showed that the Kenyan government privately had been pushing hard for the new Jubaland region, led by a member of the Ogaden clan. Kenya's defense minister, who is ethnically Somali, is also from the Ogaden clan.
While East Africa's heavyweights huddle in Nairobi to seek a compromise, al-Shabab is preparing to defend Kismayo and avert its own demise, including ordering clan leaders to contribute 150 fighters each to defense efforts.

"Some of those clans have already brought the required youths. The Shabab threatened to take steps against clans who don't obey the orders," said Warsame, 32, a resident of Kismayo who was interviewed by phone. He asked to be identified only by his first name for fear of retribution.
When it invaded last year, Kenya predicted that it would capture Kismayo quickly, but the advance went much more slowly than expected and now it still isn't certain that Kismayo will fall fast. The area is heavily forested, giving seasoned al-Shabab fighters cover from air assault and impeding the advance of mechanized equipment.
Signs of impending battle, however, have become frequent. On Saturday, Kismayo was rocked with artillery from the sea. Three civilians died and four more were wounded, according to residents. Meanwhile, al-Shabab has levied new taxes, food prices are skyrocketing and thousands have fled the city in anticipation of the attack, swelling the population of camps for the displaced as far away as Mogadishu.
"The port is not functioning. The people are using whatever food they have saved, and there is no direct way to Kenya and the outside region except for very rough routes," said Abdirashid Bure Omar, a local elder in Kismayo, who blamed both al-Shabab and the Kenyan forces for restricting road routes. Omar was interviewed by phone - al-Shabab doesn't allow independent journalists in areas under its control - and it wasn't possible to verify his statements.

Col. Ali Adam Hamud, the spokesman for African Union troops - who are in Somalia to defend the country's internationally recognized government - said he was aware of the bombardment of Kismayo but that he didn't know whether African Union countries were involved. Kenya, Uganda and Burundi all contribute troops to the African Union presence.
The United States denied persistent speculation that its warships had fired on Kismayo. Ambassador James Swan, the Obama administration's special representative for Somalia, said U.S. forces weren't involved in the efforts to uproot al-Shabab. "What we are seeing in the region is an African response to an African crisis," he said.
But Swan also said the U.S. was encouraging those efforts, and the United States has contributed heavily to stabilization efforts in Somalia, including $355 million in direct support to countries who are part of the African Union military force. The U.S. views al-Shabab as its most dangerous adversary in East Africa.
Even if al-Shabab is dislodged from Kismayo, the group is unlikely to disappear. U.N. reports detail how the group has expanded its reach underground into fundraising and recruiting cells across East Africa.
(Boswell and Ibrahim are McClatchy Newspapers special correspondents. Ibrahim reported from Mogadishu, Somalia. Boswell's reporting is underwritten in part by a grant from Humanity United, a California-based foundation that focuses on human rights issues. McClatchy Newspapers special correspondent Mohammed Yusuf contributed to this article from Nairobi.)

Militarily, the report stated that Al Shabaab has generally declined to offer battle to foreign forces, avoiding sustained contacts and relying heavily on asymmetrical warfare techniques. Although the group continues to conduct raids and ambushes with some success in border areas, in Mogadishu its operations have been essentially confined to targeted killings, indirect fire and Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), including suicide bombings. Al- Shabaab’s use of IEDs has been growing increasingly sophisticated, and there is growing evidence to suggest that Al Shabaab obtains expertise and/or IED components from outside Somalia.

Islamic TV: Egyptian Channel, Maria TV, Caters To Fully Veiled Women (VIDEO)

CAIRO — The only visible female face in the Cairo-based studio of a new Islamic TV channel for women is that of a puppet. The human stars are all veiled from head to toe, with only their eyes showing.
Maria TV is run primarily by women. They operate cameras, present shows and interview female guests ranging from doctors to students of Islamic theology. But they cannot show their faces during the broadcasts, and no men are allowed on air during the female programming, not even for phone-ins.
Shrouded in long flowing black robes and scarves known as niqabs, with black gloves to match – the women are distinguishable only by their voices and the slits for their eyes.
The channel, which was launched on Saturday to coincide with the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, is the brainchild of Ahmed Abdallah as part of a broader effort to expand his religious pan-Arab satellite station Ummah TV.
The shows range from beauty programs where presenters simply discuss make-up tricks without actually showing any to shows about medicine and marriage. The puppet is used in a satirical show that pokes fun at major news stories.
"Even if you have the whole house lit with candles, do not be upset when your husband comes home from a long day at work and does not notice," said Abeer Shahin, the presenter of a show called "First Year of Marriage."
Abdallah, known by his nickname Abu Islam, said his goal is to show women that they do not have to reveal their beauty to the world in order to be seen.
"I am broadcasting a new era for women who wear niqab, for a new kind of woman," said Abdallah, who wore a traditional white Egyptian robe for men known as a galabeya.
That effort mirrors the cultural changes under way in Egypt since conservative Muslims rose to power after Hosni Mubarak's secular regime was ousted during last year's revolution.
Islamists had been heavily repressed for decades, with hundreds jailed as opposition figures.
Ummah TV was raided multiple times by Mubarak's security forces and financial troubles forced it to shut down in 2008. Abu Islam himself was detained at least four times, the longest being 22 days.
The station relaunched last year while the fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood and ultraconservative Salafis emerged as the most influential political force in post-Mubarak Egypt.
The Muslim Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi became Egypt's first freely elected president, although the military, which assumed power in the transition, has tried to curb his powers along with the Islamist influence.
Earlier this year, Ummah TV was raided by military police who took cameras and left the office in shambles, said Abu Islam.
Conservative Islam and its most visible hallmark, the niqab, appear to be on the rise on Egypt's cultural scene as well, and the launch of Maria TV is an attempt to cater to that growing segment of society.
A decade ago, the niqab was rarely seen in Egypt and it remains a minority fashion. Most women wear a scarf that covers the hair but not the face.
Still, it has become normal in Egypt to see women wearing billowing black robes that cloak the body's shape teaching at universities, working in offices, strolling along the Nile River or riding on motorcycles behind their husbands.
Maria TV airs six hours a day on Ummah TV, which Abu Islam first launched with the help of donations in 2006. The women film their shows at Ummah's studios in a second-floor apartment of an old building overlooking one of Cairo's biggest mosques in Abbasiya Square.
The white-haired, white-bearded Abdallah called Maria TV a victory for women who wear the niqab "after years of discrimination and injustice."
Many of these women are outspoken in defending their beliefs despite criticism that they are oppressed and cloistered by patriarchal traditions.
"As with everything, we got positive and negative reactions," said Islam Ahmed Abdallah, the station director's son. "But whatever. We're on our way."
Executive producer, Aalaa Ahmed, who is also Abu Islam's daughter, defended the channel, saying it was time for a female team to present something for women by women.
"I am reaching a sector of society has never been reached out to before," she said.
Maria TV is named after the Coptic Christian slave given to the Prophet Muhammad, whom he married and freed.
"I want to give children the ability to see these women and say `I want to be like that'... to create a generation that wants this and wants to be like this," Abu Islam said.

Quranic treasures hidden in Allah's Beautiful Names ('Asmaaa-'ul-Husnaa)

The following three verses of the Holy Qur'an1 list some of the Divine names of Allah and the concept of beautiful names of Allah. Each Divine name has its own luminosity, power, blessing and ta'id (spiritual help) for believers.
English Translation
A'uzu billahi minashaitanir rajim I seek refuge in Allah from the outcast Satan
Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
Huwallaa-hullazi Laaa-'illaaha 'illaa Huu: -'Aalimul-gaybi wash-shahaadah; Huwar-Rahmaanur-Rahiim. (59:22) He is Allah, than Whom there is no other Allah, the Knower of the Invisible and the Visible. He is the Beneficent, Merciful. (59:22)
Huwallaa hullazii Laaa 'illaaha 'illaa Huu: Al-Malikul Qudduusus Salaamul Mu'minul Muhay-minul 'Aziizul Jabbaarul Mutakabbir: Subhaanallaahi 'ammaa yushrikuun. (59:23) He is Allah, than Whom there is no other Allah, the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One, Peace, the Keeper of Faith, the Guardian, the Majestic, the Compeller, the Superb. Glorified be Allah from all that they ascribe as partner (unto Him). (59:23)
Huwal laahul Khaaliqul Baari 'ul Musawwiru lahul 'Asmaa-'ul-Husnaa: yusabbihu lahuu maa fis-samaawaati wal-'arz: wa Huwal-'Aziizul-Hakim. (59:24) He is Allah, the Creator, the Shaper out of naught, the Fashioner. His are the most beautiful names. All that is in the heavens and the earth glorifieth Him, and He is the Mighty, the Wise. (59:24)
[Sound Clip: real audio stream ]
In addition to this, the Holy Prophet has encouraged Muslims to recite beautiful names of Allah according to the following hadith2:
"Abu Huraira reported God's messenger as saying, "God, the Most High, has ninety-nine names. He who retains them in his memory will enter paradise. He is God than whom there is no God, the Compassionate (Ar-Rahmaan), the Merciful (Ar-Rahim), the King (Al-Malik), the Holy (Al-Quddus), the source of Peace (As-Salaam), the Preserver of security (Al-Mu'min), the Protector (Al-Muhaymin), the Mighty (Al-'Aziz), the Overpowering (Al-Jabbaar), the Great in Majesty (Al-Mutakabbir), the Creator (Al-Khaaliq), the Maker (Al-Baari'), the Fashioner (Al-Musawwir), the Forgiver (Al-Ghaffaar), the Dominant (Al-Qahhaar), the Bestower (Al-Wahhaab), the Provider (Ar-Razzaaq), the Decider (Al-Fattaah), the Knower (Al-'Alim), the Withholder (Al-Qaabid), the Plentiful Giver (Al-Baasit), the Abaser (Al-Khaafid), the Exalter (Ar-Raafi'), the Honourer (Al-Mu'izz), the Humiliator (Al-Muzill), the Hearer (As-Sami), the Seer (Al-Basir), the Judge (Al-Hakam), the Just (Al-'Adl), the Gracious (Al-Latif), the Informed (Al-Khabir), the Clement (Al-Halim), the Incomparably Great (Al-'Azim), the Forgiving (Al-Ghafuur), the Rewarder (Ash-Shakuur), the Most High (Al-'Ali), the most Great (Al-Kabir), the Preserver (Al-Hafiz), the Sustainer (Al-Muqit), the Reckoner (Al-Hasib), the Majestic (Aj-Jalil), the Generous (Al-Karim), the Watcher (Ar-Raqib), the Answerer (Al-Mujib), the Liberal (Al-Waasi'), the Wise (Al-Hakim), the Loving (Al-Waduud), the Glorious (Al-Majid), the Raiser (Al-Baa'ith), the Witness (Ash-Shahid), the Real (Al-Haqq), the Trustee (Al-Wakil), the Strong (Al-Qawi), the Firm (Al-Matin), the Patron (Al-Wali), the Praiseworthy (Al-Hamid), the All-knowing (Al-Muhsi), the Originator (Al-Mubdi'), the Restorer to life (Al-Mu'id), the Giver of life (Al-Muhyi), the Giver of death ( Al-Mumit), the Living (Al-Hayy), the Eternal (Al-Qayyuum), the Self-sufficent (Al-Waajid), the Grand (Al-Maajid), the One (Al-Waahid), the Single (Al-Ahad), He to whom men repair (As-Samad), the Powerful (Al-Qaadir), the Prevailing (Al-Muqtadir), the Advancer (Al-Muqaddim), The Delayer (Al-Mu'akhkhir), the First (Al-Awwal), the Last (Al-Akhir), the Outward (Az-Zaahir), the Inward (Al-Baatin), the Governor (Al-Waali), the Sublime (Al-Muta'ali), the Ample Beneficent (Al-Barr), the Acceptor of Repentance (At-Tawwaab), the Avenger (Al-Muntaqim), the Pardoner (Al-'Afuw), the Kindly (Ar-Ra'uf), the Ruler of Kingdom (Malik-ul-Mulk), the Lord of majesty and Splendor (Dhul-Jalaali-wal-Ikram), the Equitable (Al-Muqsit), the Gatherer (Aj-Jaami'), the Independent (Al-Ghani), the Enricher (Al-Mughni), The Depriver (Al-Maani'), the Harmer (Ad-Daarr), the Benefiter (An-Naafi'), the Light (An-Nur), the Guide (Al-Haadi), the First Cause (Al-Badi'), the Enduring (Al-Baaqi), the Inheritor (Al-Waarith), the Director (Ar-Rashid), the Patient (As-Sabuur)."
Let us now recite Allah's beautiful names with humility, courage and conviction by listening to a real audio stream. The lyrics are presented below:
Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim
In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
La ilaha illallah, Ar-Rahman, Ar-Rahim, Al-Malik, Al-Quddus, As-Salam, Al-Mu'min, Al-Muhaymin, Al-'Aziz, Al-Jabbar, Al-Mutakabbir, Al-Khaliq, Al-Bari', Al-Musawwir, Al-Ghaffar, Al-Qahhar, Al-Wahhab, Ar-Razzaq, Al-Fattah, Al-'Alim, Al-Qabid, Al-Basit, Al-Khafid, Ar-Rafi', Al-Mu'izz, Al-Muzill, As-Sami', Al-Basir, Al-Hakam, Al-'Adl, Al-Latif, Al-Khabir, Al-Halim, Al-'Azim, Al-Ghafur, Ash-Shakur, Al-'Ali, Al-Kabir, Al-Hafiz, Al-Muqit, Al-Hasib, Aj-Jalil, Al-Karim, Ar-Raqib, Al-Mujib, Al-Wasi', Al-Hakim, Al-Wadud, Al-Majid, Al-Ba'ith, Ash-Shahid, Al-Haqq, Al-Wakil, Al-Qawi, Al-Matin, Al-Wali, Al-Hamid, Al-Muhsi, Al-Mubdi', Al-Mu'id, Al-Muhyi, Al-Mumit, Al-Hayy, Al-Qayyum, Al-Wajid, Al-Majid, Al-Wahid, Al-Ahad, As-Samad, Al-Qadir, Al-Muqtadir, Al-Muqaddim, Al-Mu'akhkhir, Al-Awwal, Al-Akhir, Az-Zahir, Al-Batin, Al-Wali, Al-Muta'ali, Al-Barr, At-Tawwab, Al-Muntaqim, Al-'Afuw, Ar-Ra'uf, Malik-ul-Mulk, Dhul-Jalali-wal-Ikram, Al-Muqsit, Aj-Jami', Al-Ghani, Al-Mughni, Al-Mani', Ad-Daarr, An-Nafi', An-Nur, Al-Hadi, Al-Badi', Al-Baqi, Al-Warith, Ar-Rashid, As-Sabur.
Each beautiful name of Allah has its own blessing, bounty and luminosity. These beautiful names of Allah can also be invoked as tasbis. Please follow the hyperlinks below to recite a tasbi derived from each beautiful name of Allah.
Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim
In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
Ar-Rahmaan, Ar-Rahim, Al-Malik, Al-Quddus, As-Salaam, Al-Mu'min, Al-Muhaymin, Al-'Aziz, Al-Jabbaar, Al-Mutakabbir, Al-Khaaliq, Al-Baari', Al-Musawwir, Al-Ghaffaar, Al-Qahhaar, Al-Wahhaab, Ar-Razzaaq, Al-Fattaah, Al-'Alim, Al-Qaabid, Al-Baasit, Al-Khaafid, Ar-Raafi', Al-Mu'izz, Al-Muzill, As-Sami, Al-Basir, Al-Hakam, Al-'Adl, Al-Latif, Al-Khabir, Al-Halim, Al-'Azim, Al-Ghafuur, Ash-Shakuur, Al-'Ali, Al-Kabir, Al-Hafiz, Al-Muqit, Al-Hasib, Aj-Jalil, Al-Karim, Ar-Raqib, Al-Mujib, Al-Waasi', Al-Hakim, Al-Waduud, Al-Majid, Al-Baa'ith, Ash-Shahid, Al-Haqq, Al-Wakil, Al-Qawi, Al-Matin, Al-Wali, Al-Hamid, Al-Muhsi, Al-Mubdi', Al-Mu'id, Al-Muhyi, Al-Mumit, Al-Hayy, Al-Qayyuum, Al-Waajid, Al-Maajid, Al-Waahid, Al-Ahad, As-Samad, Al-Qaadir, Al-Muqtadir, Al-Muqaddim, Al-Mu'akhkhir, Al-Awwal, Al-Akhir, Az-Zaahir, Al-Baatin, Al-Waali, Al-Muta'ali, Al-Barr, At-Tawwaab, Al-Muntaqim, Al-'Afuw, Ar-Ra'uf, Malik-ul-Mulk, Dhul-Jalaali-wal-Ikram, Al-Muqsit, Aj-Jaami', Al-Ghani, Al-Mughni, Al-Maani', Ad-Daarr, An-Naafi', An-Nur, Al-Haadi, Al-Badi', Al-Baaqi, Al-Waarith, Ar-Rashid, As-Sabuur
The following resources have been developed for the recitation of the 99 Divine Names and derived tasbis::
  1. Quranic treasures hidden in Allah's Beautiful Names ('Asmaaa-'ul-Husnaa)(Holy Quran 59:22-24)

  2. Prayers Derived From Allah's Beautiful Names ('Asmaaa-'ul-Husnaa). This will take you to the first tasbi. Please follow hyperlinks for the remaining Divine Names.

  3. List of Divine Names and Derived Prayers with a brief explanation of each Divine Name

  4. List of Divine Names and Derived Prayers with a brief explanation of each Divine Name. Download PDF document (6 pages)

  5. List of Divine Names and Derived Prayers. This document does not have a brief explanation of each Divine Name. It is specifically designed to be carried in a purse or a jacket pocket. In this way, you have a list of these tasbis wherever you go. Download PDF document (2 pages)

  6. Audio resource: Chanted Recital of Allah's Beautiful Names ('Asmaaa-'ul-Husnaa) from our website. You will need real player software on your computer. Click on the sound clip hyperlinks and follow the lyrics by reading the text on the page.
The recitations of selected aya(t) of Holy Qur'an in Tarteel tune are by Shiekh Abdul Bassit Abdul Sumed and have been reproduced on this site with permission from MECAH Enterprises.
The chanted recital of the 99 names of Allah from a CD titled 'The Most Beautiful Names of God' by Jama'a Majhula has been reproduced on this site with permission from Al-Baz Publishing, Inc., Hollywood, FL, USA. E-mail: albaz@bellsouth.net. End Notes

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