May 24, 2015

The oppressive treatment received by ‘Abdu’l-Baha from the Ottoman Sultan ‘Abdu’l-Hamid

When the deposed Sultán of the Ottoman Empire, 'Abdu'l-Hamíd, arose in tyranny and oppression, 'Abdu'l-Bahá was incarcerated in the prison of 'Akká and was surrounded with the utmost surveillance of police, detectives and men of the Secret Service. The door of communication was entirely closed and the means of correspondence was prevented. If any soul approached the house he was searched; nay, rather, threatened with dire persecution. The affairs reached to such a degree that, not being satisfied with these restrictions, the Sultán sent an oppressive investigating Commission, so that with all kinds of wiles, simulations, slander and fabrication of false stories they might fasten some guilt upon 'Abdu'l-Bahá in order that he might crucify Him, or cast Him into the sea, or banish Him into the heart of the distant and unknown Sahara of Feyzan [Africa]. That oppressive investigating Commission exercised its rights with tyranny and passed the sentence that 'Abdu'l-Bahá merited all kinds of persecution. Finally they decided to send Him to Feyzan, and when they cabled this decision to the palace of 'Abdu'l-Hamíd, an answer was received that the matter of Feyzan was approved by the Imperial Order. Then that unjust investigating Commission returned to Constantinople. They were in the midst of the sea when the cannon of God boomed forth before the palace of 'Abdu'l-Hamíd, a charge of dynamite was exploded, a number of people were killed, 'Abdu'l-Hamíd fled into the interior of his residence, difficulties and trials surrounded him, and incidents and events developed rapidly. Therefore he did not find the opportunity to oppress 'Abdu'l-Bahá; public revolution was started, which ended in his deposition, and the Hand of Divine Power released the neck of 'Abdu'l-Bahá from the chains of the prison of Joseph and the fetters and manacles were placed around the unblessed neck of 'Abdu'l-Hamíd. Be ye admonished, O ye people of insight! 
- ‘Abdu’l-Baha  (From a Tablet, Star of the West, vol. 2, no. 4, May 17, 1911)