As the Royal British Legion website says: "We unite across faiths, cultures and backgrounds to remember the service and sacrifice of the Armed Forces community from Britain and the Commonwealth." In addition, "Remembrance unites people of all faiths, cultures, and backgrounds but it is also deeply personal."
We, at Northstowe Muslims, would like to take this opportunity to remember the sacrifices of Muslims during wars and military conflict since the onset of World War I. For them we read, Surah Al-Fatiha (Glorious Quran Chapter 1 Verse 1 - 7), "In the name of Allah, the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful . [All] praise is [due] to Allah, Lord of the worlds. The Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful, Sovereign of the Day of Recompense. It is You we worship and You we ask for help. Guide us to the straight path. The path of those upon whom You have bestowed favor, not of those who have evoked [Your] anger or of those who are astray".
At least 2.5 million Muslim soldiers and labourers from all over the world fought with the allied forces with dignity and honour. During WW1, the British Indian Army numbered over 1.3 million, and at least 400,000 were Muslims.
It is said that 5.5 million Muslims participated on the allied side of the war during WWII. Nearly 1.5 million Muslims were killed in action. By World War II, the British Indian Army had grown significantly to 2.5 million. Of this approximately 1 million were Muslims.
The list of names forgotten, or never known by most, is long, however here are a few notable heroes mentioned below:
It is stories such as these, which reminds us that why we should wear our poppies with pride this Remembrance Day; not just to commemorate the bravery and sacrifice of these individuals, but also to celebrate the huge contribution that Muslims have made in shaping the Britain we know today.
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