Killing Children for Political Ends
The latest news out of Palestine is the drive-by shooting of three children, ages 3, 6 and 9. Their father was a supporter of Fatah, and speculation is that his children were killed because rivals in the Hamas group could not get to him. Hamas, however, has denied any involvement in the murders, and denounced the violence.
Whether Hamas was reponsible, or it was an inside job by Fatah made to look like Hamas did it so as to gain political ground in their rivalry with Hamas, or a strike carried out by Israeli black-ops agents in order to pit Palestinians against themselves (all theories curfently flying around the internet), it was a despicable act.
Children must never become pawns in political maneuvering. Murder in the name of politics is disgusting in and of itself; the murder of innocent children is twice as disgusting.
Many pundits are blaming Islam for this vicious crime. This is a huge mistake -- Islam condemns the murder of innocents, including children, at all times. Prophet Muhammad specifically forbade killing children during times of war. If it is forbidden to kill children during a battle, how much more so is it when no conflict is taking place?
Muslims need to be clear -- this hideous crime has no place in Islamic theology. We need to say this loudly and clearly -- not only to the pundits and the public, to make clear what Islamic positions are, but also to any co-religionist we might hear making excuses for such barbarism.