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Media Response

The Media Desk contributes local, national and international news articles for the website and also focuses on news content of the Muslim world. etters commenting on broad issues are also regularly sent to the editors of newspapers Below are a few letters which were sent by the Media Desk and published in newspapers. Bias and negative reporting against Islam has become a very real phenomenon in the media, especially in the international press.

The Darul Ihsan Media Desk primarily monitors the media for Islamaphobic (anti-Islamic) comments and anti-Islamic sentiments made in the mainstream media and interacts positively with media portals conveying the Islamic perspective.

Monday, 19 November 2007 11:40

Its War (Media Response)

The Times

The worst thing that could happen right now is for the fires of hatred and opposition to be fanned in the wake of the coming ANC election. The media have a great role to play in easing and calming the situation.

I am specifically referring to your Friday’s edition in which the first page states: “It’s war” and “Zuma clobbers president in poll”. Exactly, words of this kind could create opposition. While no one can deny the tension within the ANC, caused by the leadership race, but we should be careful not to fuel the fire, and instead assist in reducing tension and helping people to think about nation-building, and support the idea of unification.

The world, especially Africa has seen too many conflicts that have resulted in untold misery and decades of conflict has left African nations disadvantaged. Not only were countries ruined, but millions of innocent lives were lost and many were displaced. Let us encourage our leaders to unite under one platform for the sake of our beautiful country and wonderful people.




Wednesday, 21 November 2007 11:37

Stem cells (Media Response)

Sunday Tribune


With reference to the article, “Stem cells will be a leap for mankind”, the speed in which man is moving – all in the name of progress and advancement is beyond our imagination. The technological advancement in every field is never the same on any given day; progress is made by the minute.

The issue about disturbing nature, again in the name of progress, scientists are exploring areas of extreme sensitivity and largely outside the parameters of religion. For example, cloning is regarded by many as unnatural and irreligious, hence man is delving in the work of the Creator and that to many people is unacceptable.

The other issue that is over emphasised is the improvement of everything with regard to the human being except character and the ethical dimension of man. Very little is been done to improve on modesty, respect, conduct, mannerism, etc., which is central to man. In fact, evil and illicit behaviour such as murder, rape, abuse, fraud, etc. has become prevalent and the order of the day world over.

Some deep thought need to be given in this regard and we need to wake-up to our real interest in life rather than concentrate on progress and advancement while the behaviour of man is sliding into a pit of total darkness.



Friday, 23 November 2007 11:48

Violent crimes (Media Response)

The Daily News


Violent crimes have not been sufficiently addressed by the government. We, as ordinary citizens are still in the dark in terms of the government’s plans combating crime that has spiraled out of control.

The recent shooting, robberies and killings in the Hillcrest and PMBurg areas as reported in last week’s paper, gives me the impression that the worst is still to come. My sense of feeling is that very little is been done from the side of the police and the government. We are basically talking of loss of lives and not just loss of material things. Innocent lives are daily lost, only to be recorded as a statistic. Indeed a very sad day for South Africa.

Crime is robbing the country of investments and stability in the economy. In addition, the number of skilled and professional people leaving the country owing to the crime rate is of concern, and the government must take cognizance of this point and deal with it urgently. Finally, admittedly crime has gripped our lives to such an extent that we live in fear all the time.




The Times

I refer to Thomas Friedman’s article on the recent visit of the King of Saudi Arabia to the Vatican. To some the visit may be seen as a political move, others may condemn it and some may regard it as historic – where no Muslim Head of State officially visited the heart of Christianity.

Please allow me to comment on two issues. The first one, as Mr Thomas suggests that the Pope be granted a “visa” entry into the Holy city of Makkah (commonly incorrectly spelt as Mecca). One needs to understand that entry into the Holy cities of Makkah and Madinah is largely restricted to Muslims only – this is simply an order according to Islam. The non permissibility has nothing to do with the disrespect shown to other faiths or intolerance towards other people and their beliefs. Muslims too have to follow a special procedure before entering the city of Makkah by donning the Ihraam (unsewn cloth for men only) otherwise entry into the city is prohibited. Hence, it would be unfair and incorrect to pass comments without proper information about Islamic teachings. In fact, by understanding another religion’s value system is respect and tolerance as so often heard and spoken of in the media.

The second issue I wish to raise is the all “embracing" and “diversity” that we should be following. Sure, we all should embrace each other in things of commonality and not abuse the term in stating that we join hands in everything we do because that may be impractical.



Thursday, 29 November 2007 13:15

Pig Parade (Media Response)

The Mercury

I was rather disgusted having read about the pig being paraded by one of Italy’s former ministers around a planned mosque site in Rome. There was really no need to provoke and create a tense situation between Muslims and the local community.

It is expected of Muslims to generally remain calm and silent at the behest of being trampled upon and scoffed at. As one can witness from this incident that some people are hell-bent in creating religious divisions and animosity to the extent where Muslims and Islam would be labeled as violent and terrorist. It is indeed very sad to witness the kind of hatred vented on the Muslim community world over. In response to this, how Muslims’ should react; and usually the reaction is amicable and positive, but however amicable it may be, Muslims are still targeted and branded as violent and aggressive.

However, I hope such provocation is avoided in the future.

Hasan Ahmed

Tuesday, 04 December 2007 12:11

ANC succession battle (Media Response)

The Mercury


I particularly refer to your article, “ANC succession battle is not helping KZN”. In order to avoid any tension between the Mbeki camp and the Zuma camp, the media should extensively and widely as possible indoctrinate a firm message to the masses that whoever is chosen as the ANC leader, the people of South Africa would respect and accept the elected person.

While KZN may be more inclined towards Zuma, that preference should not in any way be a threat to the other side, and similarly, if for example, Gauteng prefers Mbeki, then so be it. The people should aim looking at the bigger picture, and that is the smooth governance of the country. By all means express your leadership choice but accept the leadership after the ANC election without kicking up a fuss and causing dissent among the people.

The media needs to be positive in its reporting leading to the upcoming conference and as far as possible avoid negative reporting.

M Mota


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