News story: Muslims in the armed forces

With more Muslims joining the British military, Islamic religious adviser to the Ministry of Defence Imam Asim Hafiz has said that there is no contradiction between being of the Muslim faith and choosing to defend Britain.

Mr Hafiz, who was the first Muslim chaplain for the armed forces, also strongly believes that British Muslims can be good soldiers. He said:


The increasing number of Muslims in the UK armed forces is a natural change because society is becoming more tolerant and young Muslim men and women feel more able to come forward and serve.

I’ve met many Muslims in the military who are very devout, because to Muslims a love of your country and serving your community is an important part of your faith.

Imam Asim Hafiz meets Afghan troops in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan (library image) [Picture: Sergeant Dan Bardsley, Crown copyright]

The importance of communities is reflected in his work, as it was just last month that Mr Hafiz received an OBE for his work with Muslims in the armed forces and for improving religious and cultural understanding between international forces and the Afghan people.

The religious adviser said that there is still work to be done in Muslim communities to encourage family members to be more accepting, but the chain of command inside the military is ‘getting better every year at accommodating Muslims’.

Muslims in the UK armed forces are able to pray 5 times a day and fast, as long as there is not an overwhelming operational requirement against either. They are provided with halal rations, can seek support from Muslim chaplains, and use prayer rooms on base; one of which was recently made available on a naval warship.


Captain Naveed Muhammad at the British Army's headquarters in Andover [Picture: Shane Wilkinson, Crown copyright]

Captain Naveed Muhammad, who has served in the Royal Corps of Signals for 27 years, is a practising Muslim soldier.

His role involves helping young soldiers forge a future and taking groups of young Muslim children on trips to Flanders. He has also served his country in Iraq, the Balkans and, most recently, Afghanistan.

Captain Naveed said:


Our faith teaches us resilience. Of course, taking life is something you think about when you first deploy operationally… but Britain is a special place to be and we all have to contribute to keep it like that.

Continue reading...
 
Brilliant. 'A group of deluded individuals who believe in one particular flavour of sky-fairy are in the army.' In other news, there are various other deluded individuals who believe in other mythical creatures also in the army.
 
Brilliant. 'A group of deluded individuals who believe in one particular flavour of sky-fairy are in the army.' In other news, there are various other deluded individuals who believe in other mythical creatures also in the army.
You must one of these 'enlightened' chaps who are so very much more intelligent than those aforementioned individuals.

Oh wait, you've used the 'cnut-standard' term of 'sky fairy'. That probably means your just whopping sh1tcnut who likes to copy and paste overused terms to appear intelligent.

You're not big and clever, just because you do not believe in religion. Less so when you mock others who do, with little or no understanding.

What will your next post be? All wars are caused by 'sky-fairy flavours clashing?
 
Since the 19th century I be surprised if their wasn't a time when we had Muslims serving in the armed forces either ethnic or converts.
WW2 their were millions of them from what is now India and Pakistan and as an example HMS Tally ho had a convert as it's first lieutenant in 1944 (oddly enough he went on to run a pub in I think Whitstable Where he flew the white ensign every day).
I believe a few who served in the middle east in the 60's and 70's also converted whilst still in the service.
 

jarrod248

LE
Gallery Guru
Since the 19th century I be surprised if their wasn't a time when we had Muslims serving in the armed forces either ethnic or converts.
WW2 their were millions of them from what is now India and Pakistan and as an example HMS Tally ho had a convert as it's first lieutenant in 1944.
I believe a few who served in the middle east in the 60's and 70's also converted whilst still in the service.
I can't imagine that chap is the first Muslim Chaplain either.
 

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
I can't imagine that chap is the first Muslim Chaplain either.
I think he's the first pukka (if you'll excuse the term) one, inaugurated in 2005:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/priests/armychaplains_1.shtml

This extract is interesting:

When the Army Chaplains' Department was formed it consisted solely of clergymen of the Church of England, but pressure developed for Chaplains of other denominations to be admitted. The first group to succeed in this were the Roman Catholics in 1836. They were followed by the Presbyterians in 1858, Wesleyans in 1881 and Jews in 1892.
History of the Royal Army Chaplains' Department
 

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
You must one of these 'enlightened' chaps who are so very much more intelligent than those aforementioned individuals.

Oh wait, you've used the 'cnut-standard' term of 'sky fairy'. That probably means your just whopping sh1tcnut who likes to copy and paste overused terms to appear intelligent.

You're not big and clever, just because you do not believe in religion. Less so when you mock others who do, with little or no understanding.

What will your next post be? All wars are caused by 'sky-fairy flavours clashing?
You're too harsh. He's a funny kinda guy. Ha, ha!

LOLZ! :cool:
 

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
I'm just really surprised especially with the number of Muslims who served in the world wars, maybe they fetched their own and they weren't included?
I suspect so, Imam isn't a hierarchical appointment, as I understand it, in the Western sense, and I believe the current chap is a civilian co-opted rather than a commissioned serving officer and that is perhaps the right approach.

I think padres in the Andrew are like imams in that they adopt the rank of the person they are talking to. Historically, Army padres could be a bit muscular Christianity.
 
You must one of these 'enlightened' chaps who are so very much more intelligent than those aforementioned individuals.

Oh wait, you've used the 'cnut-standard' term of 'sky fairy'. That probably means your just whopping sh1tcnut who likes to copy and paste overused terms to appear intelligent.

You're not big and clever, just because you do not believe in religion. Less so when you mock others who do, with little or no understanding.

What will your next post be? All wars are caused by 'sky-fairy flavours clashing?
So were you brainwashed by your parents? Or are you just naturally gullible?
 
I'm just really surprised especially with the number of Muslims who served in the world wars, maybe they fetched their own and they weren't included?
I had a wander around the Museum of the RAChD (whilst doing a course at Amport House), anyway, I believe up until the early 1800s all regiments 'fetched their own' and they were on the 'books' in the same way as the wives and other 'non military' enablers.

They started the military Chaplain Department with Anglicans, adding other denominations over te years.

The one thing that struck me was that Roman Catholics weren't added to the Department until the mid 1800s, well after so many Roman Catholics would have fought in the Penninsular War (amongst others).

I'd imagine (there not being too much money in it) lay preachers or tacitly approved RC Priests would have followed Wellingtons armies... or they used the local chaps.
 
S

syledis

Guest
He reminds me of those guys that man the Pakistani Indian Border crossing
 

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
I had a wander around the Museum of the RAChD (whilst doing a course at Amport House), anyway, I believe up until the early 1800s all regiments 'fetched their own' and they were on the 'books' in the same way as the wives and other 'non military' enablers.

They started the military Chaplain Department with Anglicans, adding other denominations over te years.

The one thing that struck me was that Roman Catholics weren't added to the Department until the mid 1800s, well after so many Roman Catholics would have fought in the Penninsular War (amongst others).

I'd imagine (there not being too much money in it) lay preachers or tacitly approved RC Priests would have followed Wellingtons armies... or they used the local chaps.
Ah! Amport House. Many years ago I met the Patriarch of the Georgian Church, as you do, in the Mess at Upavon, lunch with AG and the Chaplain General (an old mucker from Berlin days, he's a Methodist, but these things happen), and he introduced me to the Deputy Chief of the Georgian MOD. Anyway, said Deputy wanted a set of Brit combats, so I said I'd deliver a set to Amport House where he was staying.

I pitched up at about 2100 to learn he was in his room; you can blame the time difference. Turns out he was in his pit, in a DPM vest and leggings, so I ended up swigging vodka in the bedroom with him.

Nine years later, Putin invaded and seized parts of Georgia.

These events may not be connected.
 
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rampant

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I'm just really surprised especially with the number of Muslims who served in the world wars, maybe they fetched their own and they weren't included?
They would have been Indian Army though, rather than BA, separate organisation.
 

Strangely Gray

Old-Salt
I had a wander around the Museum of the RAChD (whilst doing a course at Amport House), anyway, I believe up until the early 1800s all regiments 'fetched their own' and they were on the 'books' in the same way as the wives and other 'non military' enablers.

They started the military Chaplain Department with Anglicans, adding other denominations over te years.

The one thing that struck me was that Roman Catholics weren't added to the Department until the mid 1800s, well after so many Roman Catholics would have fought in the Penninsular War (amongst others).

I'd imagine (there not being too much money in it) lay preachers or tacitly approved RC Priests would have followed Wellingtons armies... or they used the local chaps.
The Catholic emancipation act wasn't passed until 1829, an Irish lawyer and MP Daniel O Connell got it through parliament 24 years after African slaves were freed in the dominions, Wellington was prime minister, he took the act to the King for royal approval the king cried with temper and refused to sign, Wellington told him get on with it or find a new prime minister. Until then at least in Ireland Catholics couldn't own land, it was illegal to go to school, and to practise Catholic religious rights, Catholics are still barred from being sovereign.


Seeking Enlightenment by looking up my ARRSE
 

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