On May the 27th the Grand Mufti of Egypt Sheikh Tantawi declared his unequivocal support for Karimov’s brutal suppression of Muslims in Andijan. Moreover, he blamed Hizb-ut-Tahrir and its call the re-establishment of the Caliphate for being responsible for the massacre. He said, “Various terrorist and extremist groups, which cover up their real objectives by provocative slogans like the revival of the Islamic Caliphate and jihad, are really furthering anti-human aims… If plans of the extremists are put into effect, this will drive the Islamic world many centuries back.”
Clearly Tantawi’s statement demonstrates his complete ignorance of the situation in Uzbekistan and is at odds with testimonies gathered from journalists, human rights organization, international observers and survivors of the massacre in Andijan. All of whom hold Karimov’s tyrannical regime responsible for the slaughter and not Hizb-ut-Tahrir. Furthermore, Karimov used the events in Andijan to execute thousands of prisoners belonging to various Islamic groups. A fact confirmed by relatives of the deceased.
Too many, the stench of Karimov’s savagery is enough for them to keep their distance from him. Even Karimov’s staunchest supporters in the west could not condone what he did. Yet despite this, Tantawi has chosen to throw his weight behind Karimov and has labelled the Uzbek Islamists and their call to re-establish the Caliphate for being anti-human and backward.
Again, Tantawi criticisms are peppered with flaws. Those who yearn for the Caliphate are not interested in returning to the later days of the Ottoman Caliphate which was besotted with problems. They only want a return to the period of the rightly guided Caliphs which formed the basis of the golden age of Islam –” the first 500 years of Islamic rule.
Non-Muslims often look upon this period and the early days of the Ottoman Caliphate with a mixture of awe and envy. Carly Fiorina the former CEO of HP described this period of Islamic rule in the following words. "There was once a civilization that was the greatest in the world. Within its dominion lived hundreds of millions of people, of different creeds and ethnic origins…When other nations were afraid of ideas, this civilization thrived on them and kept them alive. When censors threatened to wipe out knowledge from past civilizations, this civilization kept the knowledge alive and passed it on to others. While modern Western civilization shares many of these traits, the civilization I’m talking about was the Islamic world from the year 800 to 1600, which included the Ottoman Empire and the courts of Baghdad, Damascus and Cairo, and enlightened rulers like Suleiman the Magnificent.”
Either Tantawi is suffering from amnesia or he has purposefully forgotten Islam’s illustrious past. As Tantawi is a devoted proponent of interfaith dialogue, one can only imagine the type of discussion he has had with representatives of other faiths.
Tantawi has a notorious history of standing firmly against Islam and Muslims in preference for preserving western interests. He supported France’s right to ban the hijjab, made interest on money permissible, condemned Palestinian resistance groups and retracted a fatwa issued by his colleague Sheikh Nabawi Mohamed El-Esh which urged Muslim and Arab states to boycott the pro-American Iraqi Governing Council.
Reformists like Tantawi can be found throughout the Muslim world bestowing legitimacy to rulers and implementing the plans of the imperialist powers. They are spineless cowards who dare not to criticize the rulers, but are the first to spew venom against those who call for a return to the Islamic way of life. Therefore it is not surprising to find Tantawi avidly endorsing Karimov’s barbaric treatment of his people which includes the gunning down of unarmed civilians and boiling alive political opponents.
Government scholars collaborating with the rulers are the main culprits in prolonging the backwardness of the Muslim ummah (people) and her subjugation to the imperialist powers. The quickest way for the Muslim ummah to eliminate this partnership of corruption and infidelity is to work for the re-establishment of the Caliphate.