Abdul Basit Naeem Answer to the Critics – December 19, 1969

Reprinted from the December 19, 1969 Edition of Muhammad Speaks Newspaper

By Abdul Basit Naeem

“You are an ‘orthodox Muslim and of ‘Eastern (overseas) origin (i.e. , from the Islamic Republic of Pakistan). You weren’t born in the United States and you are not an American so – called ‘Negro.’ then how come you are forever supporting the cause of (the Honorable) Elijah Muahmmad and in effect , identifying yourself as a ‘ Black Muslim’. . . ? ” THE ABOVE question has been put to me perhaps a thousand times. I believe I have also answered it adequately and fully on numerous occasions, especially through my writings printed in this newspaper (“Muhammad Speaks”)

Lately I was under the impression that all “hostility” towards me (i.e. . in
reference to my open and avowed admiration and appreciation of the
Honorable Elijah Muhammad) had died down For months no “Eastern”or
“orthodox” Muslim had vocally objected to or unfavorably commented on my
pro – U. S. NATION OF ISLAM literary product. Nor had anyone”otherwise”
expressed his disapproval of same. All of a sudden, however, the “lull ” has
been replaced by a “storm.”Once again I am the target of a barrage of strong
and severe attacks. ( I am, of course, well familiar with the source of this
newly -launched propaganda scheme , but shall not divulge it here because I
do not hold it important to do so at this point.) The aim of the new campaign evidently is to prove, among others things, that Iam “not really with the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and the ‘Black Muslims’ all the way. . . “and that my literary endeavors in behalf of the Muslim movement constitute a “regular, conventional job, “In other words. I write essays such as the one before my readers just now “only for consideration of money.

IN VIEW of this unexpected develpoment, and in order to set the record aright once and for all. I would like —- with the Honorable Messenger’s kind indulgence (as Publisher patron of Muhammad Speaks” ) — to state the following : First and foremost , I wish to make it very clear that, I do indeed regard myself to be fully, wholeheartedly and unreservedly —- body and soul — with the “Little Lamb without spots or blemishes”

( Honorable Elijah Muhammad ).

Second, contrary to my critics’ contention, I am not a “hireling,” “mercenary” or “paid mental slave of the distinguished U. S. Muslim leader. I have never written or rendered any other services in his behalf or that of the unique and wondrous Islamic Mission headed by him solelv or exclusively with the expectation of financial gain, and do not do so now. Conversely, whatever “little bit of anything ” I am ever able to do for same, it is in every instance prompted by the best and sincerest of motives. This is not to say, of course, that I have never accepted or that I am not now the recipient of any financial or other material assistance from the Messenger.

As a matter of fact — and I say it with heartfelt thanks and deep gratitude — the Honorable Elijah Muhammad has always been very kind to me and my family and during the past few years his personal generosity has comprised the principal source of our physical sustenance. THE VENERABLE Muslim leader’s gracious patronage cannot nevertheless be termed “renumeration ” or ‘compensation for services” because there was never a contract or written agreement of any kind between us and no condition was ever attached to any gifts of money sent by the Messenger to and received by me. Moreover, if his gifts were in fact “payment for specific (past or anticipated ) services,” then I must confess that I owe the noble U.S. NATION OF ISLAM Chief (Honorable Elijah Muhammad) a great deal of my time and or creative talent in exchange — for I certainly haven’t done much to justify or deserve the very generous support provided me and my family ! I shall now dwell at some length on the “best and sincerest of motives” mentioned earlier in the present article : There is absolutely no doubt, at least in my own mind, that I write and or render whatever humble services I can (with Allah’s grace ) in behalf of the U. S. NATIO OF ISLAM because, as a Muslim. I


deem it my NATURAL and BOUNDEN DUTY to aid and assist my brethren – in -faith in this part of the world ( where I presently reside ) in every way and manner possible. This is something I have always believed in and practiced and this is precisely what our God, ALLAH, enjoins upon all His believers (see The Holy Qur’an Chapters 3: 102 , 9: 119 and 61: 14 ).

As it happens — what Muslim group or organization in the wilderness of North America can be said to more urgently require or be regarded as more deserving of such aid and assistance than the U.S. NATION OF ISLAM anyway ? It is common knowledge that the NATION draws ots devotees, in the main, from among the latter -day Babylon’s “mental slaves” — that is to say, the “deaf, dumb and blind so- called ‘Negroes’ or Black men and woman of the U.S.A. who are (still) ignorant of the knowledge of self and kind , their righteous ( ‘Asiatic / Islamic ) heritage and history, languages and culture .. . . “A vast majority of them are unempoyed poor,given to drinking, gambling, dope addiction and a variety of other vices, and who, at the same time, simply do not know how to help themselves and improve their economic wherewithal. Lost in the lightless labyrinth of slavemaster – imposed alien (European ) ideology and religion (white man’s Christianity ) , not many Black Americans can comprehend the very concept of Fndamental Human Rights ( FREEDOM JUSTICE , EQUALITY, DIGNITY, etc. ). Long “accustomed” to suffering, humiliation and depravation, fewer still care to concern themselves with such “fantasy or exravagance of thought” as discerning their own innate, albeit latent ,capabiities or their future scoio – economic – cumpolitical potential as a people or ” antion within a nation.” Knowing that the NATION was founded ( by none other than the Supreme Being ALLAH, Himself, to Whom all praises are forever due) to eradicate just such a sad state of affairs and to raise the “mentally dead ” of this land and to remake them into a NEW, virile and highly advanced people, I have from the very beginning sympathized with and wanted to “do something” for this particular body of Muslims. It goes without saying that there are numerous additional reasons why I like to write of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad as I do. One of these is that I believe in the Messenger.That is to say, I believe in the verity of his word – and hence in his claim that he is not a “self – styled or self -sent Messenger” in fact a God – sent Warner and Truth bearer specifically charged with ( what is indubitably the most awesome and inestimably tedius task of ) reviving and rehabilitating all the twenty – five million “dry bones ” ( i.e .. “Asiatic” inhabitants or so – called “Negroes ” ) of the wilderness of North America.

To be continued

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