Friday Khutba Guidance on Situation in Gaza
Undoubtedly, the current crisis has spurred much discussion and misinformation. It is important that our Imams and Muslim leaders guide the community towards the truth and reinforce the Islamic principles of standing for justice and ending oppression. AMP has developed some points that we hope are useful for those tasked with leading the community during this difficult time.
For points to use during your khutba, please take a look at this excellent resource created by Sound Vision.
Key Points for Consideration
1. Israel is engaged in a genocidal rampage.
With more than 1,417 Palestinians killed in Gaza with at least 432 children and 300 women among them and 32 more Palestinians killed in the West Bank, it is clear that Israel is in fact attempting to kill as many Palestinians as possible. Israel has bombed schools, hospitals, mosques, entire neighborhoods and border crossings. These are not the actions of a nation acting in self-defence, but an entity actively engaged in genocide.
2. The US government’s role in perpetuating the mass murder of Palestinians.
Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, sadistically told the people of Gaza “to leave now” as if there was somewhere for them to go. Israeli Defence Minister Gallant referred to Gazans as “human animals” and ordered a complete siege of Gaza not allowing food, water, electricity or fuel. These actions constitute war crimes. The Biden administration has reinforced the Israeli narrative and has regurgitated Israeli talking points that further dehumanize Palestinians to justify Israel’s mass murder. We need to call out the US government for giving Israel more weapons to kill Palestinians. Instead of taking this opportunity to change course and end the violence, the US government has selected to add fuel to the fire and contribute to the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.
3. Gaza is no longer just an open-air prison, it's an extermination camp.
Gaza has been under a brutal land, air and sea blockade for more than 16 years. The suffocating siege has led to a humanitarian crisis beyond description. Even before the events of this week, Israel was already in violation of International Law by imposing this illegal blockade on Gaza. Since October 7th, Israel has now completely sealed Gaza, not allowing food, water, medical supplies, electricity, or fuel. This is a war crime. Along with the aerial bombardment, (more than 2,000 airstrikes, 6,000 bombs and 4,000 tons of explosives) of Gaza, this makes it an extermination camp where Palestinians are being killed en masse.
4. The year 2023 is the most violent.
The timeline for this tragedy did not begin on October 7th. For 75 years Palestinians have had to endure mass murder and ethnic cleansing and displacement. From January to October of this year, Israel had already killed more than 270 Palestinians in the West Bank, occupied and attacked the Al-Aqsa mosque, ethnically cleansed families from the villages of Silwan and Masafer Yatta, and allowed settlers to engage in pogroms in the Palestinian towns of Turmusayya and Huwarra. Let us not forget this context when discussing the tipping point that led to this moment.
5. The US government selectively advocates on behalf of Americans in the region.
Palestinian-American journalist, Shireen AbuAkleh was killed in 2022 and the US government covered up her murder. Omar Asad, an elderly Palestinian-American was also killed by Israeli soldiers and the US government did nothing to hold Israel accountable. Palestinian Americans were attacked by Israeli settlers in Turmusayya. The US government held no one accountable and did not offer any real assistance to families who had suffered from the attack. Furthermore, the Biden administration is chartering flights for Israeli-Americans to leave Israel while excluding Palestinian-Americans stuck in Gaza under aerial bombardment from any support. The US government is facilitating Israeli flights of Americans who are going to fight alongside the Israeli military in Gaza.
These are all clear examples that the Biden administration is not even pretending to care about Palestinian-Americans or Palestinians writ large.
6. Follow and interact with action alerts coming from AMP, AJP Action, Jewish Voice for Peace, and other organizations that work for Palestine in the United States.
- American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)
- Americans for Justice in Palestine Action (AJP Action) (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)
7. Organize or join rallies this Saturday.
8. Du’a al-Qunoot
It is important to ensure that the cause of Palestine is at the center of the community’s spiritual activities in these most difficult days. Du’a al-Qunoot is an excellent way to bring the hearts of the Ummah together during the daily prayers.