Mufti Hassoun on Syrian History & Diversity, the War on Syria, Sanctions on the Syrian People



On October 2, 2018, I met with the Grand Mufti of Syria, Dr. Ahmad Badr Al-Din Hassoun, a scholar and man of compassion whose words should be heard widely.

Mufti Hassoun spoke of Syria’s rich mosaic of cultures and faiths, and of Syria’s history of plurality and coexistence, in contrast to the sectarianism emanating from Gulf states, in particular Saudi Arabia.

As it happened, October 2 is the anniversary of the martyrdom of Mufti Hassoun’s son, who, as I wrote previously:

“…’had never carried a weapon in his life,’ gunned-down after leaving his university.

In a public address at the funeral the next day, Mufti Hassoun, while weeping, forgave the gunmen and called on them to lay down their weapons and re-join Syria. The following day, he received a text message saying the assassins would kill him as they had killed his son.

A year later, when two of the gunmen were caught, the Mufti went to speak with them. Again bestowing his forgiveness and asking only to know why they had murdered Saria, Mufti Hassoun learned that the assassins were simply following orders from Turkey and Saudi Arabia, and were paid for their dirty work, one thousand dollars per person. Embodying the forgiveness he preaches, the Mufti asks for their pardon and release.”
https://www.rt.com/op-ed/240797-syria-moderate-voices-peace-stability/

In this interview, I felt the need to ask Mufti Hassoun to address the lies and distortions about Mufti Hassoun’s words which the Zionist platform, MEMRI, was responsible for disseminating years ago—incidentally right after Saria’s murder, when Mufti Hassoun warned the West that the terrorism sent to Syria would one day come back to haunt the West.

MEMRI completely mistranslated the Mufti’s words; Western corporate media ran with that mistranslation; all are guilty of war propaganda, and of a gross injustice to this man of peace.

Below are articles I’ve written on Mufti Hassoun:

-The real Syrian moderates: voices of reason
*Excerpt:
“Mufti Hassoun calls his Greek Orthodox counterpart, Bishop Luca al-Khoury, his cousin and brother. “Our grandfathers, 1,400 years ago, were one family. My grandfather embraced Islam and his remained Christian.” He maintains that he, as Grand Mufti, serves the Syrian people, period. “In Syria, there are 23 million Christians, and 23 million Muslims. My title is Grand Mufti of the Syrian Arab Republic, not the Mufti of a particular denomination.”
https://www.rt.com/op-ed/240797-syria-moderate-voices-peace-stability/

-Excerpts from US delegation visit to Syria, February 2015
*Excerpt:
Grand Mufti, Sheikh Ahmad Badr al-Din Hassoun, is an approachable man, usually wearing a broad smile or mirthful half-smile. He calls himself the Mufti of all Syrians, not solely of Syria’s Muslims. Having met Sara Flounders previously, Sheikh Hassoun embraces her with a friendly squeeze of both shoulders and big smile. Recognizing me from a visit last year, he welcomes me the same way, beaming widely.
We take our seat and listen as he welcomes us with the standard Arab hospitality of well-wishes and gratitude for our concern and our visit at this time of crisis. Then, he breaks from formality, the mirthful smile present, to tease Ramsey:
“Anyone who reaches his seventies in such good health has a girlfriend in addition to his wife.” Mufti Hassoun laughs louder than all of us, clearly enjoying our collective shock.
He resumes seriousness, speaking of his country, ‘a beautiful garden’.
“Today we are paying a tax due to our having the richest culture in the region. We never expected that terrorists from outside Syria—from our Arab brothers and those west of them, particularly from USA, Turkey and England—would come here to make unrest. The Syrian people did not support the terrorists. They are working to destroy not only Syria but humanity. ”
https://ingaza.wordpress.com/2015/03/22/excerpts-from-us-delegation-visit-to-syria-feb-2015/

-A journalist’s journey to the heart of Syria
https://ahtribune.com/in-depth/1093-life-in-syria.html

-‘They want to start a religious war. We want to extinguish it.’
*Excerpt:
“…he’d been granted a prestigious Italian peace prize, by The Ducci Foundation, for his non-sectarian preaching of interfaith peace. But the Mufti never got to Rome. “I was granted a visa for only ten days. They were afraid I’d stay longer. But Europeans are among those killing our people. If all the Syrian people die, it’s okay, no problem, just to keep their oil. I reject this ‘democracy.’ We in Syria are not Sunni or Shia or Allawi nor Muslim nor Christian. We are human beings and must be respected. They want to start a religious war. We are going to extinguish this fire.””
http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/eva-bartlett-gaza/2014/06/they-want-to-start-religious-war-we-want-to-extinguish-it-t

[On MEMRI: https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Middle_East_Media_Research_Institute#cite_note-1]

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24 comments

  1. That was a wonderful and deserved homage to Eva Bartlett by the Grand Mufti, for her courageous and truthful reporting of the Syrian war! He is a very intelligent man and points out the real goal of Western intervention in the ME: to divide them in order to rule over them!

  2. I feel so inspired by Mufti Hassoun having watched this interview. Everything he said was so well articulated; it was full of truth and wisdom. May Allah bless him and his family. Also, Eva Bartlett, once again thank you so much for what you do. If you had not spent your time and dedication, not to mention money from your own pockets to fund your trips, I would still be blinded by what is happening in Syria. Peace! 👍🏾

  3. Is it any wonder that Russia and Iran support Syria? Wow, what a remarkable interview with two most remarkable people! Eva, like Vanessa Beeley, is one of the great journalists of our age and Mufti Hassoun is a man of great wisdom, knowledge and understanding! Beautiful words, so very beautiful!!!

  4. Only a blind ignorant fool is unable to see and hear the compassion, intelligence, love and humbleness Mufti Hassoun beholds for his people and country. I am not from Syria nor do I speak the language but I could tell by the vibration and tone of his voice that this is a man of truth. How he spoke moved me inside.

  5. Great Interview. What Mufti Hassoun said is nothing but the truth and how the world and its inhabitants should behave. Syria before the war was a shining example for how people lived together, free from religious conflicts. How could the western world be so blind not to learn from Syrian live? Instead they did spread death, chaos and huge destruction upon that lovely country. Also it's truly sad that the words from Mufti Hassoun became twisted by those ignorant idiots who are too silly to think. Yes, like he said that the message in this video should be brought to the people as lot as possible, simply because it contains the truth and the chance to experience that outside there is something to learn from. Thank you Eva for all your efforts to bring light into the darkness. Keep on the good fight!

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