It takes a paraplegic old man to rouse and stir the emotions ,the hope, the awakening and the welcoming of the Arab and Muslim world. But, he is no ordinary man, he is an enigma, the one debated in Zion's cabinet and the one causing concern in Western capitals and seen to be upstaging all other Arab leaders at the moment including the Palestinians. What has he got that the others don't have? The term could be used and for so long missing in the Arab and Muslim world is 'izzah - dignity.
Sheikh Ahmad Yassin has withstood and resisted the simple rationalisation of the Palestinian problem - he resisted and stood his ground against subjugation, selling out and collaboration. But he has not conspired and nor agitated the Palestinian masses into disunity. He has mass support and a working organisation. However and more importantly he has principles and ideals and what he represents is someone who has and is tasting and is a witness and is testifying to the struggle. They imprisoned him although he was physically unthreathening by that arrogant little guilt laden state built on someone else's land. Their much bigger cronies even imprison blind old sheikhs who they thought to be such a menace.
Sheikh Ahmad Yassin has been in prison and has a growing support because like the earlier sheikhs in history from Imam Ahmad, Imam Shafie, Imam Abu Hanifah, Ibn Taimiyyah till Sayyid Qutb. History remembers and dignifies the imprisoned mujahid not the people who put them there.
They may be able to prevent him reentering Palestine but not his
spirit, his inspiration and the qualities of dignity - 'izzah is surely with
people like him and not with those trying to shut him out.
Hamdan Muhammad Hassan
12 June 1998.
[Currently, he is a Senior Civil Engineer at the University Science of Malaysia. He is involved in youth activities with the Muslim Youth Movement in Malaysia. He is also the Secretary for the Muslim Staff Association in his university.]