September 19, 2005
Palestinian Authority: Katrina was Allah's punishment
By Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook
A Palestinian Authority religious leader preached on PA radio that the death and destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina was Allah's punishment to the United States for fighting Muslims in Afghanistan, Iraq and the PA, and for threatening Iran and Syria.
Yusuf Abu Sneina, Imam of Al-Aqsa Mosque, also repeated a common theme that America's time as a power will end, and America will fall like such earlier powers as "Persia and the Byzantine." The sermon was aired on Voice of Palestine, a PA-owned and -run radio station.
The following is the text of the Friday sermon:
"...And then Katrina happened, and the American president stood dazzled, beaten, defeated, stunned, lamenting his lot ... and the question we are presenting here is, was the USA able to stop Allah's power, and limit His will? Within a few hours the storm has destroyed enormous areas and the water flooded the houses...
"O Muslims, the greatness of the USA has fallen in the face of the storm... O Muslims, always remember that oppression never lasts forever, that the era of tyrants will not last forever, that the era of tyrants will not last forever. Where are the kings of [Ancient] Persia and the Byzantine emperors? Where are the nations of the past? Where are the former powerful states? Allah alone is the one who takes revenge, the Mighty One.
"Therefore, learn a lesson, O you who see through things, owners of wisdom, the oppression of the USA in the world - especially in Iraq, in Afghanistan, and here, in our own land Palestine - has crossed the line, and Allah was right when He said in Surat Hud [from the Quran],'These are some of the stories of communities that we relate unto thee: of them some are standing, and some have been mown down... Such is the chastisement of thy Lord when He chastises communities in the midst of their wrong; grievous, indeed, and severe is His chastisement. In that is a sign for those who fear the penalty of the hereafter: that is a Day for which mankind will be gathered together. That will be a Day of Judgment.'
"Servants of Allah, isn't it high time the USA pulled back its oppressing forces from Afghanistan and Iraq? Isn't it high time the USA stopped threatening others, such as Iran and Syria? Isn't it high time the USA stopped supporting Israel against the oppressed Palestinians...?"
[Yusuf Abu Sneina, PA Radio, September 9, 2005]
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