Staff News – Letter from Sheikh Ahmad Mouaz Al-Khatib Al-Hasani
Letter from Sheikh Ahmad Mouaz Al-Khatib Al-Hasani, the President of the National Coalition for Opposition Forces and the Syrian Revolution, that mentions CRDC’s Hind Aboud Kabawat.
“I wrote this article before leaving Damascus. I have kept it neatly folded between my papers, but I have been thinking of publishing it every day…
Wherever I go, government officials always ask me, “what is your stance on the Christians?”, I tell them: The Christians live with us, in harmony and love, not for their honor, but because of our religion and morals; so we have lived and so we will continue to live together.
Yesterday; I visited a Syrian Refugee Camp, together with Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan. There were about twenty seven thousand people; I really have not felt in my entire life as much warmth and love as I felt when I heard thousands chanting: “one, one, one … all the Syrian people are one”. This cheering has been going on since the Syrian revolution began in 2011. When I heard this I realized that no matter what they do to us, we will remain the great nation that defies death, iron and fire, which has mercy for others … and where some die to save the lives of others.
I decided to publish this article as a present for all of the Syrian people in the New Year; especially the Christians, and also to honor the memory of my two loyal friends, the deceased: president Fares Al Khoury, and Sheikh Muhammad Bahjah Al Bitar. This letter is also to the son of Damascus; who sacrificed his life for Homs, to the martyr Bassel Shehadeh, and for my dear loving sister; Hind Aboud Kabawat, and to everyone who plants love and security, and carries tranquility to the hearts of all people. Finally, this article is dedicated to the antique lane of Damascus, where people hugged each other, where the lemon cried, and the Jasmine danced.
This article was written originally in response to the bombing of the Church of Alexandria, and before it the Church of Baghdad. I felt that Christians had been living in apprehension, then returned to their previous positive consciousness, after it was discovered that the late minister of interior affairs of the Egyptian regime was the one who gave the orders to bomb the church. Only the immoral regime creates discord between the components of the same society, which destroys love and harmony, creates hate among the people, and then imposes itself as the sole reformer.
Let one’s religion do as he pleases, except when it is permissible to kill innocent, worshipers who to pray to their Lord. Christians in the Eastern countries are the embodiment of what is left of Christianity on the whole earth; some of them live in real concern, and there are those who do not understand their feelings, and there are those who invest in their concerns for other purposes!
It is no secret that cunning political regimes pit different sects against each other. Sure, it is always accompanied by the institutionalization of special regulations, and to disable organizations. In many countries there are only remnants of decomposed regimes, and people who call themselves rulers.
These are regimes governed by hypocritical secular laws, false religion, and artificial tolerance, with no spirit nor life. As is always the case with these regimes, they begin searching for weaknesses, and find ways to incite sectarian issues, and what helps to blow these issues out of proportion is that these systems provide ideas that make it easy to defy a people’s religion, culture and morals. And what makes it worse is the ignorant clerics from all sects, who instill these views in people as well. I wonder how long we can hold young victims of repression, oppression and humiliation accountable as criminals,while allowing senior criminals to escape unharmed?
Sometimes I feel more scared than Christians may feel, and I’m afraid of the upcoming earthquake unless we prepare wisely. Christianity was the first religion that opened its home to Islam, and prevented harm from coming to the prophet Muhammad’s followers. I feel like crying whenever I remember the cousin of the Prophet; Jafar ibn Abi Talib; in the hands of the Negus and how the Negus cried after what he heard from the Word of God against the Blessed Virgin Mother Mary???
My body quivers, when I imagine that Jesus Christ walked with his saintly legs on the earth that we live in, and I feel great pride that Syria is the only place in the whole world where people still use Aramaic, the language spoken by the Spirit of God and His Word, guiding people to the great God. It is regrettable that only a few people are aware of the Syriac language, and that illiteracy regarding the language of Jesus “peace be upon him” prevails among the majority of people. Dr. Adnan al-Khatib “God have mercy on his soul”; wrote extensively to prove the Arabism of the Syriac sect, and show that their roots came from a glorious history. And this can be proven by a senior church that declared that the Eastern churches remained warmer than Western churches because they lived among Muslims.
We have lived together in good and bad times, we respect each other’s religions, and we find each other as essential civilized and humane companions; we form a great painting that makes Syria the mosaic of the world and one of her most beautiful paintings. Syria is one of the finest arenas in the world, not only in its compassion, but also in its tolerance, security, tranquility and its love of sectarian coexistence. The people of Syria preserve and defend the dignity, blood, money, and lives of Christians to protect our dignity, blood, money and lives. It is a shame that there are those that hurt them among us.
Its more than pride for Syria, that people such as Fares Al Khoury, said, commenting on what General Gouraud has done, when he went to the tomb of Saladin: “here, we are back; as we promised”, Fares Khoury told his students: “Gouraud wanted us under the name of religion, to split the Arabs from each other, he also wanted to spread among Christians that the advent of France, was for them”…
While Gouraud announced himself as the protector of Christians in the land, the Muslims and Christians together amazingingly coordinated and submitted a declaration that valued the position of the Christians. The Jewish people also showed their deep awareness to the active role played by the Muslims towards them, then leaders of the two sects, submitted a petition to the Prime Minister, Aladdin Droubi which expressed their solidarity with them, and as they crossed the road they would wave to people from other sects.”.
This is part of our morality, which is the truth of God in us, who commanded us to be kind to them and good beside them. The basis of religion is justice among people, and justice still exists in us as a society. We have been loving each other and showing mercy to one another, we share the crumbs of our daily bread,in good times and bad times, we rejoice to our neighbor’s happiness, and we cry with them in grief, we open our homes to them and they open their homes to us.
Dear Syrians of the Muslim and Christian faith, we will continue to treat each other in this way, no matter what villains try to change this, or however envious and intolerant some clergy may be. These ignorant and foolish people, who seek to foster enmity and hatred among ordinary people must be held accountable for this; the Islamic and Christian religions are innocent of their crimes. The injustice, corruption and the individual control, makes many young people from different social backgrounds want to immigrate.
I say; to respected leaders, and to all Christians of Syria, as well as those of the entire East, and its Muslims, and other loved ones, in my name and in my capacity as a humanitarian and my legitimacy as a leader, and in the names of every lover of justice and goodness:
We all live in the mercy of God, if we have mercy for each other on the earth, God will have mercy on us from heaven. Our beautiful cultural diversity can’t be without your presence. For the sake of our innocent children, the martyrs of worship, and the houses of God, for those who did not know but purity, for the next feature generation and for the hope of our youth, be one, oh dear Christians…. I beg you. Don’t leave….stay with us.”