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Old January 14th, 2008, 01:54 AM   #161
PurePaki
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come on people
instead of being rude we should appreciate what they have achieved
Haram's extension is a one prime example
as well as billions of dollars invested in Majid-E- Nabvi and Majid-E-Haram
The Hajj pilgrimage is very well organized and Zam Zam water is given to every pilgrim not the chosen ones
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Old January 14th, 2008, 02:51 AM   #162
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I love this project! All the towers increase the capacity of the Holy Mosque and adds to the importance of the whole city. These towers are way better than the run-down buildings were there already.

King Abdullah is truly a wise leader, and with all the expansion of the Holy Mosque to help the Muslims and the Hajj rituals we should give thanks to the Custodian of the two Holy Mosques.

Well done, your Majesty.

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Old January 14th, 2008, 05:10 AM   #163
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Halawala View Post
I love this project!
Completely off topic. This thread is about the destruction of heritage in Mecca, and not about lavish hotels and malls being built by binladin. Please read the first post.
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Old January 14th, 2008, 05:23 PM   #164
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PurePaki View Post
come on people
instead of being rude we should appreciate what they have achieved
Haram's extension is a one prime example
as well as billions of dollars invested in Majid-E- Nabvi and Majid-E-Haram
The Hajj pilgrimage is very well organized and Zam Zam water is given to every pilgrim not the chosen ones
Yeah sure.. it's very well organised thats why some ones die every year. They must send Zamzam water to home of pilgrims with cargo... with all those money they've got from oil reserves and pilgrim bills...
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Old January 14th, 2008, 09:22 PM   #165
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Originally Posted by walli View Post
Completely off topic. This thread is about the destruction of heritage in Mecca, and not about lavish hotels and malls being built by binladin. Please read the first post.
Are you from Jeddah? Have you ever been there? What do you know about the Islamic heritage in Mecca? What do you know about the alleged destroying? Where did you learn about Bin Laden being behind it?

I am sorry but this last post destroyed any chance of you passing as "competent" or "knowledgement" in the subject.

You're just someone speculating, as are a big chunk of the forumers posting here or even the writer of the article himself.
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Old January 15th, 2008, 12:37 AM   #166
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Originally Posted by AltinD View Post
Are you from Jeddah? Have you ever been there? What do you know about the Islamic heritage in Mecca? What do you know about the alleged destroying? Where did you learn about Bin Laden being behind it?
The first article of this thread will be a starting point for you.

With respect to Bin Laden, the reference was to the Abraj al Bait project that the forumer was referring to. It is well known that it is a Bin Laden project.

Want proof? Read these construction signs for all the key players:


Last edited by walli; January 15th, 2008 at 01:37 AM.
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Old January 15th, 2008, 10:42 AM   #167
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It is not a Bin Laden project, it is a Government project and Bin Laden Construction happens to be the BIGGEST construction company not only in Saudi Arabia but the entire Middle East.

And thank you for confirming my point that you are just a speculator and not a expert on the matter as you are pretending to be.

The article is written by a westerner who is seeing the matter under the western perspective and obviously without any deep knowledge of what Mecca is all about and the reaction of all the Arab and Muslim forumers that know the place, are all contradicting him.

Considering the place, what is so special about that old Ottoman fortress? The place is all about worshiping God and some ruin remains of a foreign occupation does not fit in there in any way.
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Last edited by AltinD; January 15th, 2008 at 10:48 AM.
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Old January 15th, 2008, 03:33 PM   #168
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AltinD View Post
It is not a Bin Laden project, it is a Government project and Bin Laden Construction happens to be the BIGGEST construction company not only in Saudi Arabia but the entire Middle East.

And thank you for confirming my point that you are just a speculator and not a expert on the matter as you are pretending to be.

The article is written by a westerner who is seeing the matter under the western perspective and obviously without any deep knowledge of what Mecca is all about and the reaction of all the Arab and Muslim forumers that know the place, are all contradicting him.

Considering the place, what is so special about that old Ottoman fortress? The place is all about worshiping God and some ruin remains of a foreign occupation does not fit in there in any way.
You know Altin that Islam is considered to be a western religion being based on post-Babylonian Judaism. The question really is just how westernised Mecca is becoming.

The problem is that whilst 'westerners' can be excluded from Mecca, it is far more difficult to exclude ideas. It is quite likely that many people in the Saudi ruling class, who have spent large amounts of time living lavish lifestyles in places such as London, New York, St Tropez etc are more 'westernised' in their way of thinking than most non-muslims living in the Western world. That would go a long way to explaining why skyscrapers together with retail outlets such as Starbucks and Top Shop are considered appropriate in such a religious setting.

I think that anyone who travels to Mecca by plane, spends their time in a luxury hotel and then, following the rituals at the Kaaba, spends the rest of his or her time shopping, is only playing lip service to Islam. Many people wear crucifixes and give each other presents at Christmas - that doesn't necessarily make them Christians.
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Old January 16th, 2008, 01:36 AM   #169
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin S View Post
You know Altin that Islam is considered to be a western religion being based on post-Babylonian Judaism. The question really is just how westernised Mecca is becoming.


I think that anyone who travels to Mecca by plane, spends their time in a luxury hotel and then, following the rituals at the Kaaba, spends the rest of his or her time shopping, is only playing lip service to Islam. Many people wear crucifixes and give each other presents at Christmas - that doesn't necessarily make them Christians.
Why not? I went to the Hajj on my free time I went shopping, enjoyed staying in starbucks and surf the net--during Hajj. Islam is a very easy relegion to practice and on the contrary, Islam doesnt forbid enjoying ur life and practicing relegion.

Omar Bin Khattab PBUH said (or maybe the prophet I dont remember): [Mulsims should have] An hour for God, and An hour for your own free time.



Walli, Im not off topic. These skyscrapers are not destroying hertiage, they are building it

King Abdullah and King Fahad rest his soul were expanding Muslim ritural practices and expanded the Two Holy Mosques and he is very much thanked and loved for that.

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Old January 16th, 2008, 05:55 AM   #170
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can we please get back to topic. if you don't have anything to contribute to the actual topic, it is much preferred that you do not post. i have not reported anyone, but if we keep seeing pictures of saudi dictators, we certainly will report.

----
"Had not your people (referring to the family and tribe of Abu Bakr) been still close to the pre-Islamic period of ignorance, I would have dismantled the Ka'ba"
Hadith of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)
Volume 1, Sahih Bukhari, Book 3, Number 128
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Old January 16th, 2008, 07:36 AM   #171
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Originally Posted by walli View Post
can we please get back to topic. if you don't have anything to contribute to the actual topic, it is much preferred that you do not post. i have not reported anyone, but if we keep seeing pictures of saudi dictators, we certainly will report.

----
"Had not your people (referring to the family and tribe of Abu Bakr) been still close to the pre-Islamic period of ignorance, I would have dismantled the Ka'ba"
Hadith of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)
Volume 1, Sahih Bukhari, Book 3, Number 128
First of all, King Abdullah is the Saudi Arabian King not dictator. Please be careful who to call dictator before I report you. I am not going to report you but well see what happens

Secondly, I am on topic, and I am answering the question originally asked: No, new new skyscrapers are NOT destroying Islamic heritage because the Saudi Monarchy, suporters of these skyscrapers are actually supporing Islamic hertiage by expaning the Holy Mosque and facilites. I am not Saudi but as a visitor to Makkah many times, I see in awe what has been done to the serice of Muslims there

Thirdly, if you would see what the present monarchy done to the serice of Islam this Hajj season with the expansion of the Holy Mosque, Arafat rituals, Jamarat Bridge, and infrastructure, you cannot help but thank the lord for such a great leader a true visionary.
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Old January 16th, 2008, 11:36 AM   #172
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So there's a thread about the holiest city in Islam, written by a non-Muslim who can't visit it and writes about debatable issues. Then you have others like him who are playing the expert on matters out of their perspectives and ways of seeing things ... and then are the Muslim forumers themselves who seams to disagree with the article and don't make such a big deal of all this and even support it.

Gee ... I wonder with whom I have to side with on this.

BTW, many people are "complaining" about the shadow this huge building will cast over the Kaaba ... As far as I see it, for Muslims is the Moon that counts not the sun so I don't see why it will be a problem, the shadow might even be welcomed as relief from the scorching sun.

Do you debate with an far-eastern the use of chop-sticks? Do you really think their delicacy dishes are easier to eat with a fork?
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Old January 16th, 2008, 03:16 PM   #173
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Originally Posted by Halawala View Post
Why not? I went to the Hajj on my free time I went shopping, enjoyed staying in starbucks and surf the net--during Hajj. Islam is a very easy relegion to practice and on the contrary, Islam doesnt forbid enjoying ur life and practicing relegion.

Omar Bin Khattab PBUH said (or maybe the prophet I dont remember): [Mulsims should have] An hour for God, and An hour for your own free time.
OK Halawala. I'm learning all the time and maybe you have to be a Muslim to really understand what is going on in your holy city.

All the same, it is not just non-Muslims who are finding these developments very odd in such a location and at least I am excluded from visiting Mecca so it isn't really my problem.

There are lots of interesting observations and parallels that can be made about what is going on there and maybe I'll return to this subject later.
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Old January 16th, 2008, 03:54 PM   #174
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It seems to me that all the old houses have been razed down already a long time ago. When I look at pictures of modern-day Makkah, I see a huge mosque which has been basically built/modernized in the 1980s surrounded by a concrete ocean, composing of apartments towers and hotels mainly built throughout the 1960-1990s. The question whether Makkah should follow the example of Rome or Seville appears completely obsolete because ‘old’ Makkah does already not exist anymore (at least in the architectural sense)!


Old Makkah
image hosted on flickr


Makkah nowadays
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Old January 16th, 2008, 05:59 PM   #175
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Originally Posted by Martin S View Post
OK Halawala. I'm learning all the time and maybe you have to be a Muslim to really understand what is going on in your holy city.

All the same, it is not just non-Muslims who are finding these developments very odd in such a location and at least I am excluded from visiting Mecca so it isn't really my problem.

There are lots of interesting observations and parallels that can be made about what is going on there and maybe I'll return to this subject later.
Well, I am very happy to explain how Islam is a relegion of ease and happiness and not the opposite. =) If you have further questions, I would be happy to address them.
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Old January 17th, 2008, 05:13 AM   #176
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for Muslims is the Moon that counts not the sun
LOL!!!

Have you just come out of a cave? While the calendar is lunar, the sun is just as important.

Irrespective, a debate about the sun versus the moon is off topic.
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Old January 17th, 2008, 05:19 AM   #177
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I am answering the question originally asked: No, new new skyscrapers are NOT destroying Islamic heritage
Can you please respond to the specific points the originating article "Shame on the House of Saud" mentions? Also, please refrain from bringing up the dictatorship, as this is not a political discussion.

Shame of the House of Saud: Shadows over Mecca
Previously unseen photographs (NOT PUBLISHED WITH THIS ARTICLE) reveal how religious zealots obsessed with idolatory have colluded with developers to destroy Islam's diverse heritage

By Daniel Howden
Published: 19 April 2006

There is a growing shadow being cast over Islam's holiest site. Only a few metres from the walls of the Grand Mosque in Mecca skyscrapers are reaching further into the sky, slowly blocking out the light. These enormous and garish newcomers now dwarf the elegant black granite of the Kaaba, the focal point of the four million Muslims' annual Haj pilgrimage.

The tower blocks are the latest and largest evidence of the destruction of Islamic heritage that has wiped almost all of the historic city from the physical landscape. As revealed in The Independent last August,the historic cities of Mecca and Medina are under an unprecedented assault from religious zealots and their commercial backers.

Writing in response to the article, Prince Turki al-Faisal said that Saudi Arabia was spending more than $19bn (£11bn) preserving and maintaining these two holy sites. "[We are aware] how important the preservation of this heritage is, not just to us but to the millions of Muslims from around the world who visit the two holy mosques every year. It is hardly something we are going to allow to be destroyed."

This rebuttal sits at odds with a series of previously unseen photographs, published today, that document the demolition of key archaeological sites and their replacement with skyscrapers.

Saudi religious authorities have overseen a decades-long demolition campaign that has cleared the way for developers to embark on a building spree of multi-storey hotels, restaurants, shopping centres and luxury apartment blocks on a scale unseen outside Dubai. The driving force behind this historical demolition is Wahhabism * the austere state faith that the House of Saud brought with it when Ibn Saud conquered the Arabian peninsula in the 1920s.

The Wahhabis live in fanatical fear that places of historical or religious interest could give rise to alternative forms of pilgrimage or worship. Their obsession with combating idolatry has seen them flatten all evidence of a past that does not agree with their interpretation of Islam.

Irfan Ahmed al-Alawi, the chairman of the Islamic Heritage Foundation, set up to help protect the holy sites, says the case of the grave of Amina bint Wahb, the mother of the Prophet, found in 1998, is typical of what has happened. "It was bulldozed in Abwa and gasoline was poured on it. Even though thousands of petitions throughout the Muslim world were sent, nothing could stop this action."

Today there are fewer than 20 structures remaining in Mecca that date back to the time of the Prophet 1,400 years ago. The litany of this lost history includes the house of Khadijah, the wife of the Prophet, demolished to make way for public lavatories; the house of Abu Bakr, the Prophet's companion, now the site of the local Hilton hotel; the house of Ali-Oraid, the grandson of the Prophet, and the Mosque of abu-Qubais, now the location of the King's palace in Mecca.

Yet the same oil-rich dynasty that pumped money into the Taliban regime as they blew up the Bamiyan Buddhas in Afghanistan six years ago has so far avoided international criticism for similar acts of vandalism at home. Mai Yamani, author of The Cradle of Islam, said it was time for other Muslim governments to ignore the al-Sauds' oil wealth and clout and speak out. " What is alarming about this is that the world doesn't question the al-Sauds' custodianship of Islam's two holy places. These are the sites that are of such importance to over one billion Muslims and yet their destruction is being ignored," she said. "When the Prophet was insulted by Danish cartoonists thousands of people went into the streets to protest. The sites related to the Prophet are part of their heritage and religion but we see no concern from Muslims."

Lay people, and in some cases even US senators could be forgiven for thinking that the House of Saud has been the guardian of the two holy places for time immemorial. In fact, it is only 80 years since the tribal chieftain Ibn Saud occupied Mecca and Medina. The House of Saud has been bound to Wahhabism since the 18th century religious reformer Mohamed Ibn Abdul-Wahab signed a pact with Mohammed bin Saud in 1744. Wahab's warrior zealots helped to conquer a kingdom for the tribal chieftains. The House of Saud got its wealth and power, and the clerics got the vehicle of state they needed to spread their fundamentalist ideology around the world. The ruler of this fledgling kingdom needed the legitimacy afforded by declaring himself " custodian of the two holy places".

But that legitimacy has come at an enormous price for the diversity of Muslims who look to Mecca for guidance. Once in charge, the Wahhabists wasted little time in censoring the Haj. As early as 1929, Egyptian pilgrims were refused permission to celebrate the colourful Mahmal rites and more than 30 were killed. At the time Egypt severed diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia. Few governments have stood up to them since.

Instead, the homogenisation of Islam's holiest sites was allowed to accelerate into a demolition campaign that now threatens the birthplace of the Prophet itself. The site survived the early reign of Ibn Saud 50 years ago when the architect for the planned library persuaded the absolute ruler to allow him to preserve the remains under the new structure. Saudi authorities now plan to "update" the site with a car park that would mean concreting over the remains.

"The al-Sauds need to rein in the Wahhabists now," warns Dr Yamani. "Mecca used to be a symbol of Muslim diversity and it needs to be again." But with oil prices and profits, at record highs, there is little sign the House of Saud is listening.


Sami Angawi, a Hijazi architect who has devoted his life to a largely doomed effort to preserve what remains of the history of the world's greatest pilgrimage sites, said that the final farewell to Mecca was imminent. " What we are witnessing are the last days of Mecca and Medina."

Mecca's skyline

Giant cranes and half-constructed skyscrapers tower over the Grand Mosque in Mecca. Six new property developments, including the Bin Laden group's Zam Zam Tower, are transforming the character of Islam's holiest city

ISLAMIC HERITAGE FOUNDATION

Mountain of light

The mountain of light, or al-Nour, is next in the Wahhabis' sights. Home to the Hira'a cave, it was here that the Prophet is said to have received the first verses of the Koran. Hardline clerics want it destroyed to stop pilgrims visiting. At the foot of the hill there is a Wahhabi fatwa: " The Prophet Mohamed (PBUH) did not permit us to climb on to this hill, not to pray here, not to touch stones, and tie knots on trees..."

ISLAMIC HERITAGE FOUNDATION

The Prophet's wife's grave

The ruins in the foreground are the remains of the grave of the Prophet's wife, Al Baqi, destroyed in the 1950s. The mutawi religious police are present night and day to prevent anyone placing flowers on the site, or even praying in the proximity of the graves

THE ISLAMIC HERITAGE FOUNDATION

Al Oraid Mosque

The 1,200-year-old mosque, site of the grave of the Prophet's grandson al-Oraid, is seen here being dynamited. Gathered around the site are Saudi religious police with their distinctive red scarves, who appear to be celebrating

THE ISLAMIC HERITAGE FOUNDATION
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Old January 17th, 2008, 10:29 AM   #178
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Bullshit Propoganda.
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Old January 17th, 2008, 06:39 PM   #179
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Walli you are being confrontative and a ... , attitudes which will put in in trouble in this forum.
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Old January 17th, 2008, 08:07 PM   #180
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Well, I am very happy to explain how Islam is a relegion of ease and happiness and not the opposite. =) If you have further questions, I would be happy to address them.
You obviously have either not read, ignored parts, or not understood the Holy Book. Oh and good post Walli, very informative and relevant to this thread.
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