British Muslim’s Thoughts on London Bridge Attack

Parts of London came to a standstill Friday, November 29, as a convicted terrorist, Usman Khan, who had previously been jailed for trying to bomb people, fatally stabbed one man and one woman in an attack that began at a justice conference in Fishmongers’ Hall.  

28-Year-old Khan was one of a group of nine who had conspired to blow up the London Stock Exchange in 2012, and wanted to build a terrorist training camp in Pakistan.

Two members of the public, a man and a woman, were killed when Khan, who was released a year ago on licence and fitted with an electronic tag, was believed to be attending a seminar on rehabilitating offenders.

Speaking of the London attack, Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said, “Terrorism is cowardly and evil. We must and will stand united and resolute in the face of terror(ism). Those who seek to attack us and divide us will never succeed.”

British Muslim’s Thoughts on London Bridge Attack - About Islam

Neighbors

Mayor Khan was amongst others who praised the efforts of passerbys who wrestled Khan to the ground and held him there until the police arrived just moments later.

Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, once said, “By God, he is not a believer! By God, he is not a believer! By God, he is not a believer!” When asked who he was referring, the Prophet replied, “One whose neighbor does not feel safe from his evil.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Terrorist Khan, despite his name, his heritage, and his warped abuse of the Islamic faith, by actively seeking to harm innocent people, demonstrates that by doing so, he does not believe in God or in His Prophets.

In another narration, Prophet Muhammed, peace be upon him, was asked, “O Allah’s messenger, there is a person who prays, who gives charity, who fasts a great deal, but harms his neighbor.” That person, the Prophet said, would go to hell. He was then asked, “O Allah’s messenger, there is a person who is well known for how little he prays or fasts, but never harms his neighbor.” That person, the Prophet said, “Will go to paradise.”

A significant part of our social contract as human beings is that we live in society in peace with our neighbors. The outward manifestations of faith, such as prayers and fasting are meaningless if combined with a religious ideology that leads to harming others. Prophet Muhammed, peace be upon him, referred to such individuals as bankrupt:

“Verily, the bankrupt are those who come on the Day of Judgment with prayers, fasting and charity, but also with insults, slander, consuming wealth (unjustly), murder and beating others. Each and everyone oppressed (by him) will be given from his good deeds (in compensation)…” This is the end of those who thought they were doing good, but were in fact being unjust to other human beings.

Questions & Heroes

As questions begin to be asked about terrorist Khan, why was he released early, what has he been doing for the past year that he has been out of prison, how did he end up in London? All these questions need answers.

But one thing is clear. It’s highly remarkable to see some members of the public voluntarily rushing, without a moment hesitation, to wrestle the terrorist to the ground. These individuals are heroes. 

George Roberts who was on the scene and witnessed what happened said, “This man (one of the heroes) was walking behind us on the other side of London Bridge when the attack began. He ran through traffic and jumped the central partition to tackle the attacker with several others. We ran away but looks like he disarmed him. Amazing bravery.”

Amy Coop, who was inside Fishmonger’s Hall where the attack began, said, “A guy who was with us at Fishmongers Hall took a 5-foot narwhal tusk from the wall and went out to confront the attacker. You can see him standing over the man (with what looks like a white pole) in the video. We were trying to help victims inside but that man’s a hero.”

Stevie Hurst was one of the heroes who helped restrain the attacker. Speaking to BBC4 Live he said, “Everyone was just on top of him trying to bundle him to the ground. We saw the knife was still in his hand… I just put a foot in to try and kick him in the head. We were trying to do as much as we could to try to dislodge the knife from his hand so he wouldn’t harm anyone else. The guys that were there were absolutely amazing. Heroes beyond belief.”

Perhaps the most impressive response, and something that could only happen in London, a narwhal tusk and a fire extinguisher were used to initially tackle the terrorist. Truly astounding bravado!

Speaking of these heroes, Mayor Khan said, “What’s remarkable about the images we have seen is the breathtaking heroism of members of the public who literally ran towards danger, not knowing what would confront them… We do know that there appeared to have been a device on the suspect… Members of the public did not know this at the time that this was a hoax device. And they really are the best of us.

“Another example of the bravery and heroism of ordinary Londoners, running towards danger, risking their own personal safety, to try and save others. And I want to say thank you to them on behalf of all Londoners.”

About Farrukh Younus
Farrukh I Younus has a background in mobile phone strategy across Europe and Asia, and has visited China on more than 25 occasions. Dedicated to understanding and delivering solutions based on new technology, Younus has spoken on the subject to the EU in Brussels, and regularly attends industry-leading conferences. He currently runs a video platform, Implausibleblog, delivering lifestyle content via social media; where his focus is on understanding consumer behaviour with regards to digital content and digital advertising. His interests include travel, nouvelle cuisine, and chocolate.