(RNS) The 68th chapter of the Quran, aptly named “The Pen,” describes a person fitting President Donald Trump’s characteristics perfectly. In fact, one of the verses even seems to give his name.
The Quran speaks of a man who is a “mean swearer, a backbiter, slanderer, forbidder of good, transgressor and sinful.” Trump’s statements going back decades, highlighted especially during the election campaign, seem to fit the bill and are on record for all to read.
Having described his nasty character, the Quran further describes him as possessing “riches and many children.” What follows is a clear prophecy about him: “We will brand him on the trump.” This sentence in particular seems to identify The Donald, clearly, when we look at the word “trump” carefully.
In Arabic, words can have multiple meanings through their root letters. The Quranic word “Khartoum,” translated as “snout” or “trunk” — which is actually a derivative of “trump,” from “trumpet” — is from the quadrilateral root kh-r-t-m, and has other very significant meanings too. It also means “the leader of a people or a party” and “leader of the military.” Another meaning is “unfermented wine.”
These meanings to “Khartoum” describe The Donald with astonishing accuracy, given his positions as president of his people, leader of the Republican Party and commander in chief.
In fact, even his ancestry is detailed. How so? The surname “Trump” is an Anglicized version of the German surname “Drumpf.” The Drumpfs were winegrowers in Germany. Indeed, Trump’s own paternal grandfather, Friedrich, left the German village of Kallstadt for America, as he did not want to work in the family vineyard.
That the verse speaks of “branding” him, signifying his becoming a byword in history, is remarkable, since The Donald has made his millions through promotion of his name-brand, the Trump logo, which is plastered across buildings, golf courses, universities, food and clothing. It seems that God has a sense of irony, too.
These Quranic verses don’t just match The Donald’s character, his wealth, many children, ancestry and role as president and commander in chief, but also the policies he is now pursuing.
The Quran describes how God would try this man and his people with a beautiful garden, full of fruit. It speaks of this individual’s determination to gather the fruit early in the morning, and to prevent any poor person from benefiting from it:
“So they called to one another at the break of dawn, Saying, ‘Go forth early in the morning to your field, if you would gather the fruit.’ And they set out, talking to one another in low tones, Saying, ‘Let no poor man today enter it against you.’ And they went forth early in the morning, determined to achieve their purpose.” (The Pen 68:22-26)
These verses epitomize Trump’s attitude and policies to a T, especially his controversial border wall and immigration/refugee ban. At their heart, both are mean-spirited policies, appealing to the worst of human characteristics: selfishness and stinginess.
The border wall is designed to keep out the poor of Mexico from benefiting from the wealth of the United States.
Further, when we consider that individuals of Saudi, Chechen and Pakistani origin perpetrated the attacks of 9/11, the Boston bombing and San Bernardino respectively, yet citizens of these countries are free to enter the U.S., we see Trump’s claim that national security underpins his immigration/refugee ban for what it is: unvarnished bigotry. Indeed, no terrorist attack has been committed on U.S. soil in recent history by any individual from any of these seven countries.
Some writers and activists have suggested that Trump’s ban deliberately avoids any countries with which he has business ties in the region.
The ban against these Muslim-majority countries is made even more perverse when we consider that the United States has created or contributed to the immigration/refugee crisis in every country’s case.
Some, such as Iraq and Libya, were directly invaded and occupied, while the rest (Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan and Iran) have suffered from the U.S. arming terrorists in their country, prolonging civil war; suffered ongoing drone strikes that have a civilian casualty rate of 15 percent to 25 percent; or suffered crippling economic sanctions as a result of U.S. policies.
The individual described in the Quran did not meet a good end. The result of his cheap, mean-spirited ways was that God destroyed his garden overnight, and when he and his workers came to it in the morning they lamented: “nay we have been deprived of everything.”
The only silver lining the Quran offers is that they, after witnessing the result of their evils, realized the error of their ways, reproached one another, turned to God and repented of their past injustices.
Let us pray the nation wakes up before it is too late.
(Tahir Nasser is a physician and a regular contributor and commentator in British media. Taha Nasser, his brother, is also a physician and student in Islamic eschatology)