The speech that was delivered by Saudi Sheikh Mohamed al-Arifi in praise of Egypt, made several of our citizens jealous. True, the speech, published on several websites as “The virtues of Egypt in the Quran and the Sunnah,” turned out to have been almost literally copied, as the sheikh himself admitted. He claims to have lifted the speech from a series of articles written by Egyptian researcher Mohamed Moussa al-Sharif and published in al-Mujtamaa magazine under the title “The virtues of Egypt and the merits of its people.” However, it acquired a different meaning when delivered in a fiery manner at the Amr ibn al-Aas Mosque in Cairo and broadcast on al-Jazira Channel. Worshippers listened to it and it spurred the desperate to become hopeful.
The speech praised beloved Egypt in every possible way; the speaker made use of the Quran and the Sunnah, as well as statements by the prophet’s companions. Furthermore, the speaker referred to statements by scholars like Kaab al-Ahbar ibn Ishaq who said, “Had it not been for my love for Jerusalem, I would have chosen no place but Egypt” and poets like al-Mutanabi. Arifi also praised the Copts of Egypt and cited a saying by the prophet that calls for treating them well. He forgot to mention the famous saying by military leader Amr ibn al-Aas about Egypt’s men “supporting winners” and its women being like “toys” and preferred to cite him when he said, “Whoever wants to see heaven, look at Egypt.”
Sheikh Arifi selected from Egypt’s history all that has made Egyptians and others proud and forgetful of their nation’s present conditionsBadria al-Bishr
The speech traced the roots of Egyptian-Saudi relations when he said that both Arabs and Egyptians from Adnan to Qahtan are the offspring of Abraham’s wife Hajar. He praised Egypt’s women, men, and land as well as its knowledge which was sought by the grandson of Sheikh Mohamed ibn Abdul Wahab. He talked about Egyptian victories starting from the battle of Ain Jalut against the Mongols to the Crusades and the defeat of French King Luis IX. He stressed that Egypt with its natural and human resources is not in any way less than Turkey, Korea, and Malaysia. Sheikh Arifi selected from Egypt’s history all that has made Egyptians and others proud and forgetful of their nation’s present conditions. We hoped all what he said was true and we repeated after him, “Ameen!”