By Walid Shoebat
The Muslim world is noticing Iran’s gradual abandonment of Mecca. Realization is finally sinking in as countless articles from Egypt to Saudi Arabia are publishing headlines saying that Iran is gradually diverting their pilgrims from visiting Mecca and encouraging them to visit Karbala in Iraq instead.
One headline sums it up: “The Alternative To Hajj: Muslims To Arafat And Iranians To Karbala. Does Iran Seek A Sectarian Divide To Replace Mecca?”
Iranians last week opted to visit Arafa in Karbala, Iraq, instead of Arafat in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Iran’s religious authority has even completely boycotted the Hajj this year.
Saudi Arabian paper Ukaz notices the shift:
“The Hajj is successfully completed when the pilgrims get to Mina to throw the stones [at the devil] … pilgrims flocked from all over the world except from Iran which preferred to do the Hajj this year in Karbala, Iraq”.
Shoebat.com has been speaking of the coming shift for years now and realization is at hand.
And Iran is scraping for excuses to damn Saudi Arabia. According to Iran, Al Saud is responsible for last year’s stampede incident: “seven thousand were roasted as result of Al-Saud’s crimes” said Ayatollah Khameni adding “their blood will chase Al-Saud, its inevitable”.
Iran is playing the blame game regarding the Hajj stampedes. Accusations are being leveled at Saudi Arabia regarding last years stampede during the ritual where Muslims stone lucifer at Mina.
In addition, Grand Ayatollah Naser Makarem Shirazi of Qom, one of the 64 Grand Ayatollahs in Shia Islam described Saudi Arabia as “Takfiri terrorists” and “a major problem gripping the Muslim world and the entire humanity”.
He pointed that the Saudi theology “consider anyone else, including Shias and Sunnis as infidels”.
The senior cleric noted that Saudi Arabia “have committed terrible crimes and tarnished the image of Islam”.
But it was “Stoning the devil gone bad” incident last year that Iran is ticked off about.
Stoning the devil, is part of the annual Islamic Hajj pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia. During the ritual, Muslim pilgrims carry out a rock throwing fest at three walls (formerly obelisks), called jamarāt, in the city of Mina just east of Mecca.
On Eid al-Adha (the Day of Sacrifice), pilgrims must strike only one of the three walls specifically the larger one with seven rocks. Then they must hit each of the three walls with seven rocks (49 rocks).
It is here where “Stoning the devil” is where the devil caused most of the chaos and this happened twice already. The crowds conditions are especially difficult during this final ritual which is the day pilgrims leave the valley of Mina and return to Mecca for the farewell Tawaf (the final circumambulation of the Kaaba).
Because many Muslims are taught that it should be done immediately after the noon prayer, this leads to people camping out until noon and rushing out to stone lucifer.
But as it appears, lucifer gets the last laugh since the convergence causes most of the stampedes. In 2006 346 were pancaked flat dead while 289 more were squished but survived. But this last stampede on September 24, 2015 the devil’s corner claimed at a whopping 2,411 pilgrims who were pancaked dead by a massive stampede, the deadliest in the history of the annual pilgrimage.
This happens regardless how many times the authorities inform the pilgrims to stagger their visits (to stone the damned devil) and to leave their luggage at their tents. But as usual, the author of confusion adds more to the confusion involved in the tragedies which is the lack of co-operation on the part of pilgrims who do not leave the devil’s area by the proper route, and therefore collide with the movements of others who are arriving to stone the damned devil.
So Iran finally found its claim to damn Al Saud as “devil” instead. Iran however, does not plan to throw rocks, it already launches scud missiles into Saudi Arabia while certain Shiite clerics in Iran have called on operatives to even set up bombs at Mecca.
The last tragic incident happened as two waves of pilgrims converged on a narrow road, suffocating or trampling to death those caught in the disaster.
It did not matter how many billions of dollars Saudi Arabia spent on crowd control and safety measures, the sheer number (2 million) of devil stoning participants makes ensuring their safety extremely difficult.
Egyptian writer Nawal El Saadawi questioned the need to stone the devil at all.
But without this weird practice, your Hajj is incomplete and you will die in your sins.
The Saudis wanted to ease up the situation. Even the rocks they throw at “the devil” the Saudis are packaging into nifty looking bags which the Saudi government sees to it; these rocks are carefully washed, sterilized, handled, packaged and delivered to the sinner. The sinner then gets his sins forgiven by tossing the stones to the devil who is probably having the last laugh:
— شؤون إيرانية (@iranianaffairs) September 8, 2016