On Sectarianism

[edit] Sectarianism

Although Ansar views himself as being against sectarianism within Islam, his publicly voiced views appear to be in conflict with his self-proclaimed anti-sectarian stance.

Ansar: “For the record: if you know me, you know I stand utterly against sectarianism and the hatred or mistreatment of any group.”[351]

Following a close examination of Ansar’s tweet history, it seems that many of Ansar’s tweets about non-Sunni Muslims drip with sectarian contempt:

[edit] On Ahmadi

On 15 April 2012, following a request to retweet an anti-Ahmadi blog post from @abuspeedy[352], Ansar asked several prominent UK Muslim women: Ruwayda Mustafah[353]; Salma Yaqoob[354]; Miriam Francois-Cerrah[355], and; Yvonne Ridley[356]; to RT a link to a blog which presents Ahmadis a cult:

” Muslim woman denied her faith. In the UK. And suffering. Pls RT. http://cultgirlconfessions.blogspot.co.uk/2012/03/young- … #TackleExtremism”[357].

None of these prominent spokeswomen obliged to RT Ansar’s link.

On 30 October 2012, Ansar tweeted to Catrine Nye:

“@CatrinNye @bbcasiannetwork A Muslim group? Will be the question being asked by many… #justfyi”[358]
“@CatrinNye This is not a fringe view but an accepted, mainstream agreed upon position: http://spa.qibla.com/issue_view.asp?HD=12&ID=3213&CATE=203 …”[359]

Ansar has since deleted the first tweet. The second tweet leads to an opinion by Gibril Haddad.
On November 2012, Ansar tweeted his response to a question about “Ahmadiyyans”[360], and recommended that that the questioner:

“Google MCB and Ahmadiya”[361]

and that he’d:

“had a few run-ins on here with them. The highest scholars of Islam have been clear about their religion.”[362], adding:
“It’s important not to call anyone personally a non Muslims if they feel they are[363] however we can make categorisations about various religions according to Islamic values. That means comment about[364] the religions not the people personally. I hope that helps.”[365].

In 2009, MCB’s Inyat Bunglawala wrote an article in The Guardian newspaper outlining the protest by Muslims against Ahmadi mosque, recommending that:

“it is crucial that British Muslims work with other faith groups in wider society to uphold the freedom of religion and not unwittingly assist those who seek to undermine it.”[366].

However, in 2003, Bunglawala wrote:

” the Ahmadi community are regarded by the Muslim world as non-Muslims. We view them in much the same way as mainstream Christians would view the Mormons or the Seventh Day Adventists – as a cult group. In common with non-Muslims, Ahmadis are also not allowed to enter the sacred Islamic cities of Makka and Madina in Saudi Arabia. So while we fully accept the right of Ahmadis to their own religion – we cannot accept them being described as Muslims. They are not.”[367].

It is this latter statement from Bunglawala that one arrives at by googling “MCB and Ahmadiya”[368].

“Starting in 1953, Jamaat’s leader Maulana Maudoodi unleashed violent riots in Pakistan calling for the Muslim sect of Ahmadiyas to be declared non-Muslim.”[369].
“MCB has not strayed far from these roots. The organization has banned Ahmadiyas from joining the MCB and has campaigned to have them excluded from high-level meetings with the British government.”[370].

On 20th October 2013, Mo Ansar claimed he was not against Ahmadi Muslims, but made no statement about the Ahmadi religion, which he has previously stated, in his and in Sunni scholars’ opinion, is not part of Islam:

“No, I am not against Ahmadi Muslims – not at all, not in the least.”[371]

[edit] On Alawis

Ansar tweeted:
On 4 Feb 12, in response to a tweet by Anas Al Tikriti, UK representative of the Muslim Brotherhood:

@anasaltikriti: “For the record; I’m opposed to an attack on #Iran, but its stance on #Syria is utterly despicable and absolutely immoral.”[372]
@moansar: “Albeit scholars of Sunni Islam reject the Alawis as Muslim, in Iran they are regarded as merely excessive #bedfellows @anasaltikriti”[373]

On 4 March 2012, in response to a tweet by Anas Al Tikriti, UK representative of the Muslim Brotherhood:

@anasaltikriti: “Reports of Israeli drones providing support for the Asaad regime, have a serious bearing on Iran’s moral and ethical stand. #Syria”[374]
@moansar: “@anasaltikriti If Iran cut ties with Assad/Alawis, it may weaken Assad & strengthen support for Iran at a critical time #tipthebalance”[375]

Ansar tweeted that he views “The West” as having installed “the Alawis”:

26 May 12: “The West installed the Alawis and they armed them. They lit the match. Now they watch.”[376]

This view is also espoused and promulgated by Hizb ut-Tahrir:

3 Jun 12: “@MoAnsar Because the West have supported #Assad family for decades + put Alawis in power.They will not remove regime for an unknown quantity”[377]

Ansar describes the Sunni view that Alawis as not being Muslim.

26 May 12: “Every school of Sunni thought rejects the Alawis as not being Muslim. The shia have “claimed” them as theirs.”[378]
28 May 12: “They’re not really Shia. Alawis rejected by all schools of Sunni thought and so ‘claimed’ by Twelvers.”[379]

Mo Ansar gives his personal view that:

29 May 12: ” I would say the Alawis are not Muslim – they are rejected by every school of Sunni thought.”[380]
1 Jun 12:“Oh dear, an ill informed #Newsnight report states Alawis are “an offshoot” of Shia Islam. #Incorrectamundo.”[381]

On 3 Jun 12, Mehdi Hasan has criticised Ansar for his “tribal” comments “demonising all ‘Alawis’ on the basis … of Assad’s behaviour”[382]:

@moansar: “@ns_mehdihasan The Alawis will *never* go quietly; Assad snr massacred tens of ‘000s. How can we not back a Turkish lead ‘best’ option?”[383]
@mehdirhasan: “@MoAnsar slightly disturbed by the way you are demonising all ‘Alawis’ on the basis of loathsome assad’s behaviour. Don’t be tribal.”[384]

Despite the interjection from Mehdi Hasan in Jun 12, Mo Ansar continued his twitter demonisation of all Alawais:

24 Nov 12:“They dont fast, pray or have mosques. Every school of sunni thought rejects them as being Muslim…”[385]

[edit] On Shia

Ansar has said that:

14 April 2012: “Shiaism and unislamic practices are… well.. unislamic.”[386].

He later deleted his tweet.

Ansar said Shia have “muddied intention”:

3 June 2012: “Its hard for any shia or pro Iran / pro Israeli not to have a muddied intention.”[387]

Ansar has said that because Shia don’t follow the sunnah (way of the prophet) they are not true muslims:

14 November 2012: “Then they would be following the sunnah (example/teaching of the Prophet) not shiaism.”[388]

[edit] On Hazara

Ansar labelled a Hazara activist a ‘shia extremist’:

Ansar: “Shia extremists like @EliyaHazara should actually listen to me when I speak out clearly against sectarianism: https://twitter.com/MoAnsar/status/244013020139900929[389]

Ansar has said of the systematic massacres by Sunni militants Lashkar-e-Jhangvi that:
Ansar: “Its appalling but far from a genocide.”[390]

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