The Assad regime blames the bombing on their usual suspects, "armed terrorist gangs", but both the Free Syrian Army and the al Nusra Front are denying responsibility, so what we have here is a big who-dunnit.
Amidst all of this, I have stumbled upon, via Google translates, a very interesting narrative being discussed in the Arab forum yanabi.com (- reviving the spirit of Islam).
They are saying that al-Bouti had recently dropped his support for the Assad regime and wanted to leave Syria. In response, the regime had surrounded him with heavy security and limited his movements before he was assassinated.
We know that the Assad regime had both the means and the opportunity to commit this crime. These new revelations, if true, give them the motive. Dr. Mohammed al-Bouti, martyred, martyred by the FSA, is much better for the regime than Dr. Mohammed al-Bouti defected to Assad's opposition. The advantage of a suicide bombing in the mosque is that it also probably took out a whole group of people close to al-Bouti who could testify to any recent changes.
Much of the discussion in the forum is focused on the following statement from Shaykh Muhammad al-Yaqoubi to one of his facebook pages:
"We have sadly received the news that the great Allamah Dr. Sa` eed Ramadan al-Bouti was martyred today in a car bomb in Damascus. It is a big calamity for Muslims in losing such a great figure who was a Mujaddid for the deen and who defended Islam and the doctrine of Ahl us-Sunnah for several decades.That was the English version of his statement, apparently there was more, according to seeker:
We received news that he was planning to move out of Syria and that he began to understand the atrocities of the Assad regime there. On hearing this, the regime decided to get rid of him, hence he was surrounded by heavy security who limited his movement. However, we denounce his killing whether the regime did it or the takfiri groups. People should not be killed in a political struggle especially because of their opinions.
We offer our condolences to his family, his students, and to the people of Damascus and we pray for him and for all who were killed with him - 21 matryrs - that Allah Almighty grant him and them the highest ranks in al-Firdous. "
I don't know why he didn't put it in the English version but anyway:Here is the Arabic he has translated.
In the news received from Syrian television that he had died in a suicide bombing. We culprit is the system because we have sensitive and accurate information from those close to him stating that Dr. Buti was looking for a way out of Syria and the system has imposed severe security cordon. The boards insults Alnasirien and calls them doomed.
"In the news as reported by Syrian state television, [Shaykh Buti] was killed in a suicide bombing. We, however, point the finger of blame towards the regime, as we have it on good and accurate authority from those close to Doctor Buti that he looking for a means of escape from Syria, and that the regime security forces were imposing severe restrictions on him. (Not sure of this bit of translation but anyway will give it a stab ...) And in fact, in his lectures , Dr Buti was speaking out against the Nusayris and openly praying for their end. "
وفي الأخبار التي وردت من التلفزة السورية أنه توفي في تفجير انتحاري. ونحن نوجه أصابع الاتهام إلى النظام لأن لدينا معلومات حساسة ودقيقة من المقربين إليه تفيد بأن الدكتور البوطي كان يبحث عن طريق للخروج من سورية وكان النظام قد فرض عليه طوقا أمنيا شديدا. وكان في مجالسه الخاصة يسب النصيريين ويدعو عليهم بالهلاك.So there is a lot more to this suicide bombing than the story being pushed by Syrian State TV and its various allies. The truth will come out.
There were also these competing initial reports from Addounia TV:
|A rocket fell in the mosque||A suicide bomber|
Facts are stubborn things!
Shaykh Muĥammad Abu’l Hudā al-Yáqūbī, on Shaykh Boūţī's stand regarding the regime and differences among Muslims in the revolutionThe first: is an immense lack of knowledge of the situation, except one-sided information which he receives from the regime and he trusts them and believes everything they tell him; as if, he is the person described by Ibn Tathriyah:
The desire for her came to me; of desire I was unaware,Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawānī says in his Epistle – and it was originally said by Sayyidunā Álī (may Allāh táālā ennoble his blessed face) – “the heart that readily accepts virtue and goodness is that, upon which evil has not crossed before”.
It chanced upon a vacant heart and gained a foothold there.
It is therefore that Dr.Sayid [Buti] does not accept any report about the Revolution from other sources after he has ratified and accepted the propaganda of the regime. This is because of his closeness with a number of senior officials [of the regime] and this proximity has influenced his decisions and thus, he views everything from the prism of the regime and repeats their propaganda innocently. Sometimes, a truthful person thinks that everybody is as truthful as himself. And the reason for his stand is this [blind acceptance of regime propaganda,] which is the result of years of friendship and cordial relations with officers and administrators of the regime.
The second: is his animosity with the Salafis and Muslim Brotherhood to the point that he has chosen to side with the enemies of Allāh in his opposition to them! He believes in the propaganda of the regime that all these revolutionaries are Wahabis, who will burn and demolish mausoleums of Awliyā’a, as they did in Libya. Indeed, the Salafis and Brotherhood were the foremost in the uprising that seeks to bring down the regime, because of the revolutionary ideology which is widespread and common in their discourse, and what is prevalent among the [sect] in the name of jihād. Yet, this revolution is mainly a revolution of common people who are religious Sunni Muslims, who are protesting against a brutal dictatorship, and seeking to abolish tyrannical repression and torture.
Even though we oppose the Salafis for many of their opinions and ideas; and we differ with the Brotherhood in their political views, that which brings us together is Islām. And similarly, that which binds us [in this conflict] is the standard of jihad against repression and cruelty and to establish righteousness and truth. We cannot imagine ourselves standing in the ranks of the enemies of Allāh against them [the Salafis and Brotherhood fighting in Syria] and the revolution is not THEIR revolution, even if they were the foremost in the uprising. And from the beginning itself many joined the revolution, a great number of imams [of the mosques, ] preachers, teachers, [people from] universities and followers of Sufi traditions and an overwhelming majority of common folk.
Sufi Brigades have been formed [to fight in this revolution;] alongside a brigade that bears the name of Taqiyuddin Ibn Taymiyyah, there is a brigade in the name of Muhiyuddin Ibn Arabi. This is the diversity of the revolution which is a fact, whether we like it or not.
It is necessary for Dr.Sayid to desist from such speech denouncing the people’s revolution, whether a group or a brigade [fighting in the revolution] because there is not a city or a village in Syria, which has not sent brave men and heroic soldiers to fight this criminal, tyrannical and ruthless regime. No city or village has been spared the merciless killing and destruction of this regime or escaped the flames of oppression.
UPDATE 23 Mar 2013: Shaykh Muhammad al-Yaqoubi has published this further update:
Syrian Regime kills Dr. Bouti
We strongly condemn the bombing of mosques and the killing of people inside them. We have no doubt that the regime is responsible for the killing of Dr. Bouti, as we have reliable information on this. In fact, we were working towards to convince him defect from the regime and move outside Syria. The last article we wrote refuting his stance entitled "To Dr Bouti: Wake up from Your State of intoxication" had reached him, and he had begun thinking seriously about breaking away. One of his inner circle was assisting in this effort, Dr. Bouti was preparing to declare something against the regime on Friday as a suprise. We have no doubt that the regime was listening in on all his discussions, and therefore decided to get rid of him.
More, later ....