New York Diary: World Must Weep for All Tragedies the Key Is Communication. We Have to Dispel the Misunderstanding That Terrorism Is Allied to Religion, in Particular, Islam. This Has Created Some Anxiety and Fear Amongst the Population

The Birmingham Post (England), September 10, 2002 | Go to article overview

New York Diary: World Must Weep for All Tragedies the Key Is Communication. We Have to Dispel the Misunderstanding That Terrorism Is Allied to Religion, in Particular, Islam. This Has Created Some Anxiety and Fear Amongst the Population


Byline: Emma Pinch

The chairman of Birmingham's biggest mosque yesterday questioned the 'selective' emotion which led to September 11 being given more prominence than other tragedies.

But Indian-born Dr Mohammed Naseem, the public face of Birmingham Central Mosque for more than 25 years, said despite world tensions, relations between the city's Muslim groups and other faiths continued to be strong.

Dr Naseem, aged 78, said he spoke for his community when he we not remembering them? 'We must create an awareness and disgust of tragedy of this kind and we must not be selective in this process.'

Underpinning the feeling of Western bias was a suspicion that the indicators of 'guilt' in the Twin Towers tragedy may not be trustworthy.

'In my mind, and those of the people who worship here, there is a doubt and many questions need to be answered. I won't say more than that over what happened on September 11,' he said.

'There wouldn't be any doubt if the US Government would put the evidence before a court, or try the people detained in Cuba.

'Stories put forward don't make any sense. The flying of the hijacked plane was a precise exercise and couldn't be done by a novice with a manual on how to fly a plane.

'I don't buy the Osama bin Laden story. He is an unknown quantity. All information on him came from CIA and it is my belief that he, bin Laden, is still a CIA agent placed there for their own use. 'In fact, the whole story about Al Qa'ida does not make any sense. No outside agency can be so powerful that outside governments can be helpless. You read that bin Laden had 10,000 employees - that needs a lot of cash and how could anybody move that much cash without being detected?'

Dr Naseem added his voice to opposition against the invasion of Iraq, adding that he was writing to other religious leaders, includingexpressed a deep-seated doubt over the 'facts' of September 11 put out for public consumption.

'As for the human tragedy, it should be condemned,' he said. 'Whoever was responsible for it should be brought to justice, there is no question about that. …

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