Among the believers
[ by Charles Cameron — a blistering documentary account of Pakistan’s Lal Masjid, jihadist focal point ]
I’ve just been watching the 2015 documentary Among the Believers, now showing on Netflix. It concerns the Red Mosque, Lal Masjid — its teachings, its encouragement of jihad, and the government siege which shut it down in 2007. The speaker denouncing the masjid is Pakistani nuclear physicist Pervez Hoodbhoy.
Here are some screengrabs that caught my eye..
Maulana Abdul Aziz, who runs the place, speaks of his son, who was inside the Masjid during the bloody siege, and lost his life:
He was my only son. When I was in prison, during the final part of the siege, police guards loyal to us told me that since I had only one son, they would smuggle him out of there. But I said no. I told them I was willing to sacrifice him for Allah. You know, I regret the fact that I didn’t died for Allah. They said, “What’s more important than one’s child’s life?”
What is of interest here is the amplified echo of the story of Abraham‘s willingness to sacrifice his son (variously Isaac, Ishmael)
The book the student is reading is one I mentioned a while back, in 2011’s The Black Banners of Blackwater by Maulana Umar Asim.
A new category of martyr — the madrassah. Will it cross the bridge As-Sirat? What will be its reward?
What those who protest Lal Masjid’s encouragement of jihad wish to reclaim for a happier and more toalerant Pakistan..
The film is banned in Pakistan.
Here, to bring you some joy out of all this, is a song that I encountered on the soundtrack of this remarkable documentary, performed here as part of the splendid Coke Studios series: