Speaking in an interview with FNA, Jonkers said the Islamic Unity Conference challenged the US and Israel, and added, “A conference that shows the possibility of Islamic unity to not only unite people across sectarian, national and ethnic differences, but also presents a vision for a modern and prosperous future as an Islamic system, is a direct challenge to the United States and the Zionist entity… The Islamic Unity Conference plays a pivotal role in the so-called soft war, the battle for the hearts of the people of the world.”
Brecht Jonkers is a Muslim historian, analyst and journalist from Belgium. He is specialized in Arab history, Islamic studies, geopolitical analysis and the study of imperialism. He currently works as Chief Editor of Yemen Resistance Watch.
The following is the full text of the interview:
Q: The International Islamic Unity Conference sounds like an event related to Islamic fundamentals; Why do you think the conference addressed topics such as Abraham Accords and the Afghanistan?
A: These issues, although they may seem to be “merely” political topics related to present-day events, actually do address Islamic fundamentals.
The hegemonic powers of the West all too often play a detrimental role in the mental and spiritual life of the Muslim world, just as they play a more tangible military and economic role on the world stage. This spiritual and psychological influence by the arrogant powers often aims to reduce Islam to a set of beliefs and rules for everyday life, while trying to take away the broader societal commandments of the Islamic faith. This is a direct threat to the religion of Islam itself, and must be addressed and opposed.
Matters such as the continued sanctions against Afghanistan and the Zionist bribery of governments across the Islamic world, are very much issues that should be addressed from an Islamic perspective and seen as a religious duty. After all, Islam commands its followers to command the good and forbid the evil.
Q: How do you find the role of the Conference in the future of the West Asian region?
A: The Islamic Unity Conference plays a pivotal role in the so-called soft war, the battle for the hearts of the people of the world.
Western propaganda presents its society as the only possibility, to which there allegedly is no alternative. It is the duty of those who support the liberation of the people to shift the paradigm, and present alternatives to the hegemonic imperialist and liberal-capitalist world view.
A conference that shows the possibility of Islamic unity to not only unite people across sectarian, national and ethnic differences, but also presents a vision for a modern and prosperous future as an Islamic system, is a direct challenge to the United States and the Zionist entity.
The war that is being waged by the imperialist powers on the Islamic world is not just a war of weapons, but a war of ideas and ideologies as well. It is of the utmost importance that the oppressed nations of the world formulate their own answers to face the hegemony.
Q: Do you believe such events could help non-Muslim nations understand Islam better?
A: It is of paramount importance to show to the world just how much the takfiri terrorism of groups like Daesh has focused on targeting Muslims and Islamic countries. Many non-Muslim nations still have the erroneous idea that takfiri extremism primarily targets them, as part of some global Jihad.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Daesh, al-Qaeda and its consorts have always targeted Muslims first and foremost. They focus on persecuting both Shia and Sunni Muslims, and destabilize those states that are trying to liberate themselves from the imperialist stranglehold of the West.
Conferences like these, in which Muslims from various schools of thought convene to cooperate and to condemn the extremist thought of takfiri ideologies such as Wahhabism, can be a clear message to the world, showing that takfiri terrorism is vastly different from the concept of Jihad.
The vast majority of the fight against Daesh has been waged by Muslims, in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Lebanon, Iran and others. This key fact has to be emphasized time and again, in order to confront the islamophobic agenda that often dominates the imperial mainstream media.