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The Passing Of Hodari Abdul Ali....And Osama Bin Laden? - Anti-climatic

02 May 2011

By El-Hajj Mauri' Saalakhan

Assalaamu Alaikum (Greetings of Peace): 

Forwarded announcement....

A Statement On The Passing Of Hodari Abdul Ali 

The family of Brother Hodari Abdul-Ali wishes to share with you that Hodari returned to his Creator on Saturday, April 30, 2011, surrounded by his wife and children.

A janazza (funeral prayer service) is planned for Monday, May 2 at 1:30 pm, following salat thur (noon prayer) at Masjid Muhammad. The Mosque is located at 1519 Islamic Way (4th Street, NW near the intersection of New Jersey Avenue and P Street, NW) in Washington, D.C.... A public Memorial is being planned. Details of the Memorial will be announced as details are confirmed.

Hodari was celebrated by his friends and family less than a week before he left us. The outpouring of love was so valuable to him and appreciated beyond words. He delighted in the songs and the words of praise and honor. The Langston Room at Busboys and Poets we filled to the brim. And though nearly 100 people could not get into the room, they stayed in the restaurant just to show their support.

Please continue our support of Hodari by making a financial contribution to help his family to defray costs. You can make a secure donation via PayPal. Go to www.PayPal.com . Click on "send money." Enter in the amount of your contribution, and then the following email for the payee account: sadiq.akmal@gmail.com  

The funds will be sent safely and securely and will be used for his burial and to assist his widow and their family needs.

The family will draw from our energy for strength in the coming weeks. Please feel free to bring flowers or cards to the janazza (funeral prayer service on May 2), or the Memorial Service (date to be determined).

Hodari Abdul-Ali was an international peacemaker who has combined a career of business, journalism and community activism and who has helped create understanding about Muslims around the world.

A prominent, respected and well-known figure throughout the National Capital area, the United States and globally, Brother Hodari has campaigned tirelessly for the rights of the oppressed over the years. His tireless intervention has made a difference in the lives of many. He has been a frequent traveler to Africa, and he has led numerous fact-finding missions to The Continent.

Brother Hodari came to
Washington from his native San Diego, California to attend Howard University. At Howard he served as Editor-In-Chief of the campus newspaper, The Hilltop, then the only daily newspaper on an HBCU campus. He went on to established legendary political book stores, Pyramid Books and Dar Es Salaam Health Center.

Over the years he has worked with a number of publications and currently is host of "The Struggle Continues," a weekly public affairs program on Pacifica Radio station WPFW-FM in Washington, D.C. For several years he hosted "Freedom Sounds," a Jazz and community outreach program which was the top fund raiser in the morning drive-time slot, on non-commercial WPFW.

Hodari is survived by his wife Ayana, his four children, sons Haziq, Sadiq, Mujahid and daughter Qadira. He also leaves six siblings K. Rashid Nuri, Kikanza Nuri, Julianna Scales, Shirin Nuri, Michelle Streeter and James Woodard.

"From Allah we are created and to Allah we return. May Allah wipe away his sins and shower him with mercy and welcome him into jannah-tal firdous (highest rank of paradise)."


A Personal Note on the passing of Br. Hodari 

I will not be able to attend today's service for our brother Hodari, because I'm in Texas at present to prepare for this weekend's protest rally for our sister-in-Islam, Dr. Aafia Siddiqui. (And I feel certain that Hodari would want me to be precisely where I am right now.) 

ALLAH has stated in the Qur'an

"If two parties among the believers fall into a quarrel make peace between them... Make peace between them with justice, and be fair; for ALLAH loves those who are fair and just.  The believers are but a single brotherhood; so make peace and reconciliation between your two contending brothers; and fear ALLAH, so that you may receive mercy." (S. 49: 9-10) 

These ayat (verses) of the Qur'an have a special relevance for Hodari and I. For most of the years that we've known each other, we've had a warm relationship. But over the past few years our relationship had cooled considerably because of an unfortunate disagreement that erupted between us at the height of the Darfur crisis (a crisis which ironically we both shared similar positions on).  

As a result of that unfortunate rift, whenever Hodari and I would see each other publicly, we would exchange greetings, but the warmth and brotherly banter that we were once known for was no more. Not long after our disagreement I made an attempt to mend fences, but unfortunately the time wasn't right, and so I never attempted again. I simply decided, it will happen when, and if, it's supposed to happen. (That time came recently.) 

Not more than a month ago, I was either entering or departing a masjid for the evening salat (prayer) when I encountered a mutual friend who informed me that Hodari was gravely ill (with cancer), and that I should try to visit him if possible. I thanked the brother, and made a mental note to try to contact Hodari at the earliest convenience.  

A few days later, while on an out-of-town trip, I got an urgent call from another mutual friend (Jihad Abdul Mumit), who wanted to know if I was aware of the health related challenges of both Hodari Ali and Mahdi Bray. I told him I was, and he encouraged me to call them both - but with a special emphasis on Hodari, because of the seriousness of his condition, and his own awareness of the rift between us. (I don't recall ever speaking to anyone about our differences, but there were folk who had become aware of the rift nevertheless.)  

After ending my conversation with Jihad, while driving somewhere in the southwest, I called both Mahdi and Hodari. I spoke to Hodari for about 20 minutes. It was a good conversation. We both expressed our regrets about the way things had gone between us, and we spent the rest of the time talking about life itself; about it's challenges, it's cycles, and the opportunities that we are fortuitously provided with (by The Creator) whenever life's vicissitudes reminds us of our own mortality.  

I shared with Hodari a little of my own health-related challenge, and how it has helped to crystalize for me the things that are most important in life - i.e. healthy relationships, and a determination to live one's life with as much real purpose as possible. Hodari applauded me for being "consistent" (his words) with my human rights work over the years, and he expressed a special note of thanks for the work I was doing for "the sister" (Aafia Siddiqui). 

We ended the conversation with me assuring him that I would see him soon, insha'Allah. That day came about a week or so later, on Sunday, April 24, at a very beautiful (and fitting) tribute that was held for him at Busboys & Poets in Washington, DC.   

When I walked into the room I was momentarily taken aback by the sight of my brother, uncharacteristically frail and seated in a wheelchair. I walked up and put my hand on his shoulder and gave him the salaams. When he looked up and saw who it was he took my hand and kissed it. (Needless to say, I was deeply touched.) I gently patted his shoulder, and told him I would talk to him later insha'Allah.  

Today I am again reminded of why Muslims are encouraged to always invoke the conditional phrase insha'Allah (if God wills) whenever we speak about the future. We can never know, with certainty, what tomorrow may bring. It was my intention to pay Hodari a visit when I returned from this trip in Texas. Little did I know that April 24 would be the last time I would see my friend of many years alive. (We've known each other since the early 80s.) 

I am eternally grateful to ALLAH (SWT) for the reconciliation that we were blessed with before my brother's transition this past weekend. I am grateful for the fitting tribute - in song and speech - that he was given on April 24. I am especially grateful for the deeply personal, balanced and touching reflections that were made on that evening by his son (when Hodari's four offspring took the stage).  

Hodari was not a perfect man (none of us are); but he was a man who touched a whole lot of people in very positive ways. There are many people, both here and abroad, who have been enriched by that legacy. 

May his good works be accepted; may his sins be forgiven; may ALLAH make the grave easy for him, and award him with a place in Paradise. Ameen. 


(From ALLAH we come, and to Him is our return) 

El-Hajj Mauri' Saalakhan 

The Death of Osama bin Laden 

Osama bin Laden recently killed in a firefight and buried at sea? Please! 

Forgive me if I find this announcement a bit anti-climatic. I have been of the opinion that Osama bin Laden has been dead for some time now; and that opinion has not changed with these sensationally presented announcements.  

What I do find both interesting and regrettable is the following: 

1. How no one in the media (as of yet) seems to notice that bin Laden is once again being presented as the mastermind behind the 9/11 attacks. Some of us may recall that Osama became the face of 9/11 even before the buildings came down at "ground zero" (and the investigation had begun)! Later Osama was replaced as official "mastermind" by Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (after the government needed to justify waterboarding revelations and other related matters).  

Now we're back to Osama as mastermind again. It's almost laughable. 

Meanwhile, in the list of charges that has appeared on the FBI's "Most Wanted" website (for years now) the 9/11 attacks have never been among the charges leveled against bin Laden. Why? Because the FBI admittedly never had the evidence to make that particular case!  

(But who needs evidence when you have an ethically compromised media, a compliant leadership class, and millions of blind-following citizens prepared to chant USA, USA, USA, at the drop of a hat!)  

2. I also find regrettable the Muslim organizations in America who race to release statements of acceptance and congratulations for the official line on "the world's worst terrorist," while maintaining a deafening silence regarding the state-sponsored terrorism being committed on a daily basis - by their own government against their own people! (The scores of "collateral damage" that we hear about every day in the Muslim world!) 

And we wonder why our communities, our nation, and our world is in such bad shape (and getting worse) - from man made disasters, to record breaking back-to-back natural disasters, that man has absolutely no control over! As Thomas Jefferson said: "I tremble for my country when I reflect, God is just; His justice can't sleep forever." 

May ALLAH bless us all to wake up to this reality before it's too late!



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