Now that I have had a chance to catch my breath: First of all, all praise to Allah who has ordained that falsehood shall never stand a chance when the light of truth shines on it. It may take years or decades, but it is inevitable.
Many people have asked: what was it like?
First was the interview with the producer. Some people think that one just shows up. No. The producer vets you to make sure that the participants are not an embarrassment to the programme.
Second, we made sure we had backup computers and a wireless Internet connection, proper background and lighting. Then the preparation – I had my daughter and assistant, Sarah, sitting on my left tweeting — she was to signal to me if my facial expressions got too agitated (can’t stand liars) as this was a ‘social media’ young crowd who like ‘cool’. Although I am getting old, she can relate to the younger crowd. Then, AK Shaikh was sitting far away and had to do a ‘timeout’ signal whenever he thought I was going off-track. He did not have the benefit of watching the stream as we did not want to bog down the Internet connection, and there was a time delay as well.
Shahid, Xia and others sent notes on specific topics. These were accumulated into notes I had in front of me on half the computer screen. I also had about 12 slides printed out and spread across the table. If more, I would have taken time to find them when needed, and if less, we may not have covered everything. Then, I had to be prepared for personal attacks: ignore or parry or throw back to gain points. Thankfully, the good-mannered Amjad Khan, although he lied through his teeth for his master, never went as low as other Qadianis.
The Ahmadiyya is a vast subject, and with persecution and aqeeda and social media etc., no debate can be covered in 20 minutes, especially if the questions are being picked up randomly from a Twitter stream. My goal was: get the truth out about the PR tricks that the Qadiani Ahmadiyya are playing on the West and the younger generation. And alhamdu lillah, from your generous feedback, I think I absolved myself – my shoulders hurt for a day, perhaps from the expectations of 1.5+ billion Muslims. I would commend the hosts, please do not criticise them: they raised serious issues on both sides, and one cannot expect hosts to be experts on every topic. Do not judge them as Muslims – for very few Muslims know about the Qadiani PR lies. They were hosts, and much better than any other international channel. Why would they give this issue time in the future if all Muslims can do is get on their backs for giving us time on this critical issue?
The questions we raised are out there, and they will be discussed for days and weeks. Alhamdu Lillah. Now, my raw notes below and then some answers to your questions:
- The position of Islam vis a vis Ahmadiyya is not contrversial or extreme, it is a mainstream position backed by unanimous consensus.
- They have a new prophet and they don't consider those who don't believe in the new prophet as not Muslims
- Individual takfeer is beyond the pale
- Lahoris are Muslims?
- Sikh, Bahai, Mormons
- countries that are founded on religious identity have such laws
-- Israel determines who is a jew or not
-- Saudi Arabia determines who can enter the Holy places
-- UK determines the religion for inheritance
- I am an ex-cult member and I left it because it was a personality cult and I really loved Islam
- banned Facebook for crying out loud
- don't translate their books
- say they are progressive while women do not have a vote in their general elections nor can stand for office
- believe their head is the Khalifa of all Islam
- if this is not cognitive dissonance, what is?
- leaks - documents
- snooping and spying
- MTA3 leaks
- censorship and control of student organisations
- humiliating mass boycotts
- increased drone strikes
- rejected the Arab spring
1. Every murder
2. 'Facing' - not convicted
3. Far far below the national average of 6.8 murders per 100,000 population per year
4. Head of FIA - like FBI - just retired - Waseem Ahmad
5. IG Traffic of Lahore - Waseem Kausar
6. Fake cases in London and Faisalabad
7. Choose to be ostracised - marriage and funeral
8. Declared all Muslims as Kafir
9. Dr. Salam institute - safar chaudhry
10. Their head offices, publications, printing presses, all there. Just restriction on public usage of certain epithets - like Arch Canterbury or Vatican
11. they persecute their own and dissidents, those who show the true face of Ahmadiyya are silenced
Thank you all of you for the incessant calls and emails of praise and support. Thanks for the support but I don’t need the praise: it is Allah’s deen that does. There have been a few concerns as well, and I have not been able to reply to all of you personally, so I chose to group them and talk about them here.
Collective Answers to Some Questions
Q1. Should we combat anti-Muslim PR in the media? Definite YES – this is the battlefield of the day. If not, what are you doing on this forum? Stay locked in your monastery.
Q2. Why always Akber Choudhry? I may be the least-qualified and least-prepared person in the world. Whenever I come in front of the media, it is on the insistence of others, and I will never say NO to defend my faith and the Quran, especially against the Qadiani PR machine. The lament is that when our younger people learn law and learn good English and educate themselves on politics, they: do not want to spend the time to follow and learn Qadiani history and PR tactics, do not want to risk their careers, do not want to be seen as ‘persecuting Ahmadis’. Even Pakistani Ambasssadors (except one – you know who you are) never defend some good Pakistani laws as their posting in UK or US would be in jeopardy. Such is the PR choke of the Ahmadiyya. It will take time for the PR lies to be overturned.
As of today, my biggest fear is that who do I train for tomorrow, and I express this fear in every gathering, next one on Aug 1 in Canada. So, train the younger people around you and your children, for this crucial task. This is fard-e-kifaya — not everyone has to do it, but someone has to do it.
And such media debates have nothing to do with theology – they are all about politics and PR – and theology is one part of that, not the other way around. I have done theological debates as well, trust me 🙂
Q3. Ahmadis lie, what can be done? Nothing 🙂 Follow up. Make follow-up videos. PR people lie all the time on the hope that they will not be caught or those who catch them will not have the perseverance to follow up. George W. Bush lied – took years to expose him. Colin Powell lied – was exposed – it ruined his career. Learn how to deal with lies and persevere — it is not without cause that ‘sabr’ is mentioned so many times in the Quran.
Q4. We hit the Ahmadiyya too hard. Alhamdu Lillah we did. The initial reaction from incredulous poor Ahmadis is ‘liar’ but it gets them thinking and following up.
Stay together and defeat the ‘big bad beast’ of the Ahmadiyya leadership. Let us free poor simple Ahmadis from the clutches of this cult and its PR machine.