Wars have been fought for thousands of years with the same devastating result of loss of lives, destruction of property, waste of resources, and physical and mental trauma for the survivors. There can be no justification for the wanton killing of human beings to further any ideology.  All wars reveal the common behavioural patterns of dictators, politicians and corrupt governments sending combatants to their deaths.

Conflict situations also draw out those that exploit and capitalise on the situation, such as arms dealers peddling their weaponry and equipment, sanction busters who sell goods at inflated prices, unscrupulous merchants who hoard and profiteer from supply of much needed goods, propaganda practitioners who put a positive spin on the war, and hate groups that use the conflict to settle personal scores that feed their egos and vested interests.

What is happening in Gaza right now cannot even be described as a war. Though despicable, modern warfare is supposed to be waged in accordance with the international treaties of the Geneva conventions. This supposedly sets limits to the barbarity of war and protects civilians, non-combatants, wounded, prisoners of war and even civilian infrastructure. In Gaza, genocide and ethnic cleansing of epic proportions is taking place. Though the world said ‘never again’, the global community is once again helpless against the influence and pressure of the ‘powers that be’. In just 3 weeks, 12000 tons of explosives have been dropped with more than a million people rendered homeless, over 9000 civilians killed of which over 6000 were women and children and another 22000+ wounded. Thousands more are under rubble, alive and dead, and have yet to be extricated. Hospitals have been bombed, with electricity, water, food and medical supplies cut off from the entire Gaza strip.

Any person with an atom’s weight of faith and humanity cannot remain unmoved by this catastrophe. With this senseless slaughter happening right before our eyes, it is a betrayal and treason to our faith to falsely accuse fellow Muslims of financing the bigoted and murderous regime by certification of Israeli products. Abdullah ibn Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) narrated that he saw the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) making tawaf of the Ka’ba and saying, “How delightful you are, and how great is your scent! How magnificent you are, and how great is your sanctity! But by the one in whose hand is the soul of Muhammad, the sanctity of a believer, his wealth and his blood, is greater in the sight of Allah than your sanctity, and we do not think of him except good.” (Ibn Majah)

To set the record clear, we have in only one instance in our 27 years of existence certified a powdered coffee product imported by a local South African company from Israel, as an exception to the rule, which was subsequently revoked about a decade ago. SANHA has never certified any Israeli company and/or Israeli products, as is loudly proclaimed by a clique of detractors to the mission of Halaal.

Remember, the first casualty of war is truth!