Ever since the day Nabeel have been diagnosed with stomach cancer, there have been comments from some Muslims that this is a divine punishment on him for his mockery on the late Ahmed Deedat, this line of thought was adapted by most Muslims I know, especially on facebook, both the ones who knew who Nabeel was and the one who never cared to get details on his personality except that he was an apostate.
This line of attack became so popularly used as such that most Muslims when asked for the evidence for this started sharing links (I am actually fascinated that most who shared these links have never read the content), while some on the other hand merely heard it from their friends and without verifying started repeating the same. But, what is the root of this misinformation? where do people get the idea that Nabeel Qureshi actually mocked Ahmed Deedat?
They got it from Yahya Snow, yes, the same Snow (who is faceless to me and many other Muslims) except some few of his colleagues.
Snow wrote an article early this year, precisely January, with the title: On Shk. Ahmed Deedat: Controversy in Nabeel Qureshi’s Latest Book. In this article, Yahya Snow quoted a line on Nabeel’s book and build a case out of it, something foreign and unknown to Nabeel’s thought when writing this book, I couldn’t understand why a reader could force an author to say what he did not say.
In chapter 15 of No God but One: Allah or Jesus? Dr Nabeel Qureshi writes distastefully about Shk. Ahmed Deedat:
Along with Deedat’s fame grew his inflammatory rhetoric. As a response to the pope’s positive stance to interfaith dialogue, Deedat challenged John Paul II to a debate. When the pope refused, Deedat published a pamphlet titled “His Holiness Plays Hide and Seek with Muslims.” He also famously began to argue that the Bible was pornographic. Further inflammatory speech during a Good Friday lecture earned him the castigation of the Australian government, and he was even banned from entry into Singapore.
In 1996, at the height of his career, Deedat suffered a severe stroke. Among other neurological deficiencies, Deedat was no longer able to speak, and he remained bedridden until his passing in 2005. Some suggested that God had punished him for his words, and other rumours spread that Deedat repudiated Islam just before his passing. Within the Islamic world both these suggestions are resolutely dismissed. Deedat’s fame continues to grow, even after his death, into legendary status.
Now, merely reading this excerpt, it is clear that Nabeel Qureshi never emphatically stated that Ahmed Deedat’s stroke was from God as a punish for his activities, he only made a reference to the things people have been saying about this incident and what the Islamic world think about this statements as well, how is this suppose to be a prove against Nabeel that he mocked Ahmed Deedat which is what Snow’s post is trying to make out.
Since Yahya discovered that merely posting this excerpt is not enough to make a case, he started his mind reading game and asserts:
The problem here is Nabeel lists 3 inflammatory incidents in the career of Shk. Deedat and then he veers off to talk about how he died. OK, not such a big problem…yet. The problem is, straight after this he inexplicably throws in a statement informing the reader what “some” people suggested after his death. He leaves it open ended – he doesn’t opine on what these “some” people suggested so we don’t know whether he thinks there could be truth in what these “some” or “other” people suggested. He doesn’t say who these “some” people are so we don’t know whether he’s talking about internet trolls or serious theologians and scholars.
This is basically clear, Nabeel Qureshi purpose for stating this was not to attack Deedat as Snow’s actually wanted it to be, this is not the main highlight of what Nabeel was trying to get to, the is giving hints about the life of Ahmed Deedat and this was mentioned only in passing, how is this not clear enough to Yahya, and why does he twist what plainly the author has said just to make a case that was not even intended by the author in the first place? This is the very article that misled lots of Muslims in thinking that Nabeel Qureshi indeed mocked the late Ahmed Deedat.
What is even more disturbing is the fact that, Yahya had succeeded in deceiving most of his followers by controlling their thoughts on this issue, basically, none of them would have come up with this weird theory, but Yahya had to do an extra job of conditioning their minds to make them think what he want them to think and the end result is the hatred some of the Muslims have developed for Nabeel just because of this line of reasoning.
The Christian-Muslim community do not need people that will widen the gap of inter-religious dialogue, instead, we need folks that will bridge the gap, and unfortunately Yahya Snow is not one those bridge the gap, his activities is plainly an example of this and this article also clearly shows that as well.
With that said, I am open to any evidence from any Muslim that Nabeel indeed make mockery of the late Ahmed Deedat as this piece from Snow is a complete manipulation of the author’s word and cant be taken seriously as an evidence for this.