Messages of support amid irrational vilification

2018-04-06T12:02:29+00:00 March 1st, 2015|Articles|

Following the reports last week by the Washington Post declaring the identity of “Jihadi John” as Londoner Mohammed Emwazi, CAGE issued statements, evidence of emails and a press conference regarding his case.

In the interactions he had with CAGE it details the harassment he endured at the hands of security services. CAGE called for accountability for their actions, stating they cannot continue to operate without impunity. Due to this, CAGE came under attack as an organisation and individuals who are part of CAGE did too. Despite this vilification, CAGE received many messages of support, some of which are compiled below (names have been removed). This page is continously updated with new messages we receive.

***UPDATED***


I will also like to inform you of the strong level of support you have from the Muslim community who we engaged with whilst taking orders and delivering the cakes. This is something we should all be proud of and it should give us great hope moving forward. 
Finally, myself, my wife and our family, will like to thank you for giving the Muslims a voice, for sacrificing your time and lives, and putting up a valiant effort in the face of oppression. Our duas are with you.”
(Message received via email from the individuals making cupcakes to raise money for CAGE)

“Asalamu’alaikum wa rahmatuallahi wa barakatuhu
I just wanted drop a quick email to say Say Strong all the brave brothers and sisters at Cage for the amazing and courageous work you are doing. Please do not let the relentless pressure and media bias the organisation is currently facing deter you from doing what you have done so amazingly in the last 11 or so years. 
I pray with all my heart that Allah Almighty protects all those at Cage with the best resolve and from all evil, as well as bless the organisation with abundant barakah  insha’allah.
Brother Asim Quereshi, Jazakum’allahkhair for your bravery, dignity and eloquence in the face of hatred, ignorance and sometimes plain indifference. May Allah Almighty continue to grant you strength in the face of any adversity.”
(Message sent via email)

“Assalamu’Alaikum 

I would like to thank you for your support of the Muslim community and hope this excellent work continues. I am shocked but not surprised by the hostile press your director and organisation are currently receiving since your statement on Muhammad Emwazi. 

This kind of reaction clearly indicates to me as a Muslim who is British and calls Britain home that we are ‘second class citizen’ . We are unfortunately viewed by the government and press as the ‘enemy within’ and any narrative or genuine concern we try to put forward will be dismissed,  ridiculed as ‘terrorist sympathisers’,  and continuously attacked by all sides of the media irrespective of which side the media is leaning.

The propaganda and narrative by the media and government has made me wonder if we will ever defeat organisations such as ISIS or does the Western government have the will to defeat this modern day barbarism? Does ISIS serve another agenda for our leaders? Many commentators and writers such Noam Chomsky, Owen Jones,  Norman Finklestein and many others have eloquently highlighted our concerns however these individuals are regularly ignored or their analysis are continuously drowned out by the government and media. They would rather listen to think tanks such as Quilliam Foundation, Henry Jackson Society or other right wing think tank who provide a narrative which the government would rather agree with.”

(Message sent via email)

“Message of solidarity #withCAGE

Alhamdulillah – All Praise is due to Allah and may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam)

Dear Brothers, Sisters & friends,

Assalamu Alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu
I couldn’t be there with you today but I wanted to take the opportunity to express my support by saying this to you:
That CAGE is an organisation that allows me to sleep at night. It is no exaggeration to that that without the important work that CAGE does, the injustices, the gradual erosion of our rights and the fate of hundreds of forgotten souls languishing in extrajudicial prisons, would go completely unchecked.  It allows us all to sleep at night safe in the knowledge that ‘someone is working on it’, ‘someone is looking out for them’ at a time when we are all painfully aware of our own inadequate efforts to address these issues. By supporting CAGE, we are doing something.

Anyone who was present or who watched the recent CAGE press conference regarding the case of Mohammad Emwazi will have been touched by brother Asim Qureshi’s openness, sincerity & clarity of thought. We can choose to heed his words or to close our eyes and ignore them – because they make us feel uncomfortable. CAGE shines a light where people would rather not look, it addresses issues that powerful governments & media empires, who want free-reign to do as they wish abroad & at home, would rather we forgot about. CAGE’s work is essential not just for Muslims but for society as a whole, because rights are rarely taken away from us en masse. Rights are taken away by stealth – one individual, one community, one demographic at a time.

One of the key points that really spoke to me in Brother Asim’s address was his point that the credible scholars and teachers must teach and be allowed to teach our youth the reality & fiqh of the true understanding of Jihad, of politics and of living as minorities from an Islamic perspective. By shying away from, or being prevented from teaching these properly, a vacuum is created which is then filled by voices who pervert the noble teachings of Islam with regards to these subjects. I urge our scholars and teachers to speak clearly on these issues so that their voices reach and touch as many young people of our generation as possible and so that our youth find answers to the questions in their heads and direction for the emotions that they are feeling. 

Muslims & non-Muslims – we are brothers and sisters in humanity & it is to protect our common humanity, to prevent our country’s slow tumble into the abyss of hatred & prejudice, to prevent further alienation & polarisation that we must all stand with CAGE in holding a mirror up to our government and its agents in these troubled times.

We pray to Allah to restore tranquillity to our communities, to give us wisdom and foresight and to make us beacons of light in our society. I pray to Allah to be pleased with us & guide us. Ameen.”

(Message sent via email)

“Craziness surrounding CAGE at the minute. Hope you and your colleagues are ok, it’s a lot of pressure to withstand. People just hear what they want. The merit and courage of your convictions may be ignored by most today, but history has a habit of recognising the truth. It’s a shame that we as people are destined to repeat the same mistakes.”
(Message sent via text)

“Assalamu alaykum beloved bros and sisters at CAGE. For all the sleepless nights, the heartache, the pain and struggle you see, hear and experience- I bear witness by Allah swt, The Most Merciful, that you are a light in the current darkness. You bring us hope when hope seems far. And for that words, cannot really be enough. It is with Allah set. And so you will be in my duas always. I stand with you. Your sister…”
(Message sent via text)

As someone who supports and believes in the work of Cage, the charity [sic-organisation] you support, I would like to offer you my sincerest gratitude and thanks for the manner in which you’ve dealt with the spotlight placed on you and others over the past week.
The world is indeed facing great turmoil, yet organisations like yourselves who offer support to communities that are vulnerable in the face of oppression and injustice stand out. Your funding and support is important, necessary and welcome by the vast majority of the Muslim community, please do not be deterred even if you may not agree on everything Cage does
I pray, God willing , that your support continues and in fact strengthens the work of important groups such as Cage long into the future.”
(Sent from London via email)

“I have just seen the rant from Boris on Facebook..
Personally I get what Asim is trying to say and I think most academics do.
Can’t imagine how difficult it is at this time but I hope you guys pull through, it is important to give a voice to the voiceless and Cage does that.
What surprises me is how quickly some people forget how you guys especially mos worked tirelessly to help free Alan Henning.”
(Sent from Warwick via email)

“Please let us know if we can assist you at this difficult time. We are 100% supporters of your work – maybe you just need people online sharing stuff or people to make tea, collect food in the office? We are in London so happy to assist as you see best! Our Warmest…”
(Sent from London via facebook)

“May Allah keep the brothers and sisters at Cage steadfast! Aameen. Tell them to stay positive and that Allah tries those whom He loves… Verily after hardship comes relief!”
(From a primary school teacher via message)

“Hi Moazzam,
I have followed you and your work, and indeed covered that of CAGE’s, for a very long time now, with much respect. There have been times where I disagreed with your standpoint on several issues, as I am sure you strongly would mine. However, much much more great than any disagreements I have with you is the utmost admiration I have for your courage and strength, as well as the very important and unique support you give to Muslim people living in Britain and the most difficult time it has ever been to be Muslim in Britain. It really is phenomenal what you and CAGE do, I hope it is able to continue for as long as there unfortunately is a need for your advocacy work.
I just want send my best wishes to you and your colleagues, and may you remain steadfast in your current and no doubt future challenges.”
(Sent via email)

“May Allah reward you all, my brothers and sisters in Cage for your relentless work to defend the basic human rights of the indefensible. Standing in front of tyranny and speaking the truth has given many Muslim hope. May Allah strengthen you and the Muslims and give Cage the patience to carry on with the work in these difficult times. Please let us know what you need us to do to help.”
(Message sent via text)

“Assalamualaikum to the brothers and sisters who work tirelessly at Cage for their oppressed brothers and sisters. The last 24 hrs have I’m sure been a difficult time for you, especially the dear brothers who are being attacked in the media. I just wanted to let you know you have given our community confidence and hope. May Allah swt reward you so much in this life and the next for all the work you are doing.

Listening to five live this morning honestly made my blood boil. Muslims ringing up and being apologetic. For every one person who speaks against you, please be assured There are hundreds more that support you! May Allah swt aid you to speak the haq in these difficult times. Today the police are coming to my daughters school to speak about the 3 girls who went to Syria. You have given me the courage to contact the school so I can sit in and listen to what they have to say.

May Allah swt strengthen all of our imaan, protect our children and our community in these truly testing times. Ameen Jazakallah khair again Was Salam”

(Message from Manchester via facebook)

“Dear Asim,
I wish to say a great thank you and to your team on getting the truth out.
May Allah make you more articulate and it’s good that proof is there that security services are  behind as cause of problem rather than the solution.
I have written to my MP and other organisation as well as the police on this.
This cannot go on or we will have to leave this country if we are not wanted.”
(Message sent via email)

“Hello – I know you’re all sadly used to ridiculous media firestorms right now, but I just wanted to send you a message of support. I’m really appalled by the witch hunt that is taking place, and I just hope you’re all weathering the storm okay. Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help.”
(Sent via DM on twitter)

“Reflecting on this whole incident, it seems this is the biggest thing a Muslim organisation has done to attempt to change the narrative. MashAllah”
(Message sent via text)

 “May Allah bless you brothers for your hard work! You have all done and continually carry on doing an amazing job. I am a Law student in my first year of studies at Durham University, and in shaa Allah hope to make a positive impact on society and help protect those most in need in our ummah as you brothers are currently doing. May Allah grant you brother al-firdous al ‘ala.”

(Message from Durham sent via facebook)

“Assalam Alaikum Wa Rahmatullah I’m from across the pond and I just wanted to say that your organization does phenomenal work, mashaAllaah. I know that you are going through a difficult period, so I just wanted to extend this message of support. I made du’aa for you after I found out about the whole fiasco and you will continue to remain in my prayers. While du’aa is better off being made privately for others, I know it would comfort me that people were asking the Almighty (the One who says “Be!” and it is and the One who is with His believing slaves) for help for me. May Allaah keep you steadfast, patient, strong, sincere, and, most importantly, with high emaan. Ameen.”
(Message from Canada sent via facebook)

You guys have been a real eye opener. it’s easier to slander you as apologist and condoning acts of terror rather than to engage and investigate root causes. I think you’ve all been very brave and dignified in your interviews despite obvious baiting. You are an inspiration, keep up the good work!”
(Sent via facebook)

“You have our support. Continue to tell the media about the evidences you have seen first hand.”
(Sent via facebook)

“You are exposing the crimes of MI5 and that doesn’t sit well with the UK government….inshallah we all all behind you and many many non Muslims are too!”
(Sent via facebook)

“Assalaamu alaykum, I just wanted to pass on my greetings and wishes of ease and tranquility in this time of difficulty for the whole team at CAGE.

It strikes me as stupidity that the media – and indeed all others jumping on the bandwagon – would attempt to demonise a voice many consider the only legitimate bridge between unheard voices and the increasingly clueless establishment. After asking the questions, “why the acts of terror!?” “Why are you so angry?” “How can we come to understand these people and their actions?”, it appears the media and the government have thrown a tantrum upon hearing the answers. Odd, I think, that they should ignore the only organisation with direct (straight from the horses mouth, as it were) information and answers to their questions and instead choose to demonise you.

And thus was the fate of the ignorant before them: They ignored the lessons of history, disregarded the voices of sincere advisors and considered their knowledge absolute until what they were warned of came to pass. “Then he [Salih (Saleh)] turned from them, and said: “O my people! I have indeed conveyed to you the Message of my Lord, and have given you good advice but you like not good advisers.” (Quran 7:79)

I can only imagine that the witch-hunt will continue and each of you may face the intrusion and defamation levelled against Asim. Thus, I ask Allah to shield you, help you, clear your good names and ultimately prove their plots useless.”

(From London sent via email)

“Cage’s handling of the situation has been brilliant and principled, so expect more attacks. And also expect light to begun to dawn on a lot of people.”
(Message sent via facebook)

If you would like to show your support further, CAGE has not been able to open a bank account since they were shut down a year ago, please donate whatever you can here

(NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.)