Following are excerpts from an address delivered by Egyptian cleric Hassan Abu Al-Ashbal, which aired on Al-Nas TV on November 27, 2008.
Hassan Abu Al-Ashbal: Let me take this opportunity to address the leader of Europe, and the leader of America, who is the leader of the world, the recently-elected Obama, who is the leader of the Byzantines – he is like the Byzantine leaders in the days of Prophet Muhammad.
My message to him is three-fold. First, I invite him to convert to Islam. This is the call of the Prophet and of Allah. Oh Obama – convert to Islam, and you will be saved. I hope that Allah will reward you twice: Once for converting to Islam, and another reward for all those who will convert in your footsteps. If you want glory – you will find it in Islam. If you want honor – you will find it in Islam. In religions other than Islam there is utter humiliation, even if you are the president of the entire world.
You, Obama, are among those who have pledged before Allah – Allah who created you, sustained you, and brought you to this position – to be a Muslim who believes that Allah is the one God, especially since you have some kind of roots in Islam. Convert to Islam, and you will be saved. All glory and honor lie in following Allah and His messenger Muhammad. Know that the true religion is the religion of Islam, and all other religions are fabricated religions, which are null and void – religions that were abrogated by the shari’a of Muhammad.
If you refuse to return to your [Islamic] origins, to the way Allah created you, withdraw your huge armies and military bases from the lands of the Muslims. Know that all your predecessors have ended up in the garbage bin of history, and that America’s black and bleak history in the land of the Muslims and the Arabs constitutes an evil omen for you, your predecessors, and your successors. Know, Obama, that America, with all its size and might, will know no peace, as long as a single Muslim child lacks food, drink, medicine, or housing. If you refuse, Obama, and insist on remaining in Muslim lands, know that Allah still plants in [Muslims] obedience to Him, and they are willing to wait for Paradise, which is closer than their own shoelaces.
Know, Obama, that in the lands of Islam, there are people who seek death, and are eager for it, even more than you and your people are eager for life – any kind of life, even a life of humiliation.