Islam Silent As Its Heritage Is Obliterated
It’s a sad reality that we can expect most Muslims to continue focusing on cartoons and YouTube videos whilst Islam’s cultural heritage is systemically wiped out
To put it mildly, many Muslims can be highly sensitive when it comes to matter of faith. Perceived attempts to attack, mock, insult or denigrate symbols of Islam are not viewed in favourable terms and can even be met with lethal force.
It is, therefore, quite shocking to observe stunned silence in the face of the systematic obliteration of Islam’s cultural heritage in the holy cities of Mecca and Medina by the Saudi regime.
A report by Jerome Taylor, that appeared in the Independent last Friday, stated:
The Washington-based Gulf Institute estimates that 95 per cent of Mecca’s millennium-old buildings have been demolished in the past two decades alone. Dozens of key historical sites dating back to the birth of Islam have already been lost and there is a scramble among archaeologists and academics to try and encourage the authorities to preserve what little remains.
The holy cities of Mecca and Medina are increasingly beginning to resemble Chicago and Las Vegas rather than quaint Arab towns in which one can envisage what life was like in the times of the Prophet of Islam. Cultural heritage sites are being bulldozed in order to make way for glitzy shopping centres, 5 star hotels, trendy apartment blocks and bland sky scrapers. In fact, when I was last in Medina, the place was starting to resemble Milton Keynes
The Saudi regime benefits enormously from the millions of Muslim pilgrims that descend upon the holy cities each year. Visitor numbers are increasing year on year and expected to rise to 20 million a year in 2020. From a business point of view this is a dream come true. Increasingly wealthy visitors from neighbouring Gulf States have the potential to transform the holy cities into a gold mine, but that is only half the good news.