Rambling ...

I'm an Irish Girl, A Dubliner, with the 'Gift of the Gab' ... I like to talk & to tell you things. In Celtic times news, views and comment were carried from place to place by wandering Seanachaí ~ Storytellers ~ who relied on their host's hospitality and appreciation. I will need that from you too, as I venture to share Politics, Poetry, Laughter, Love, Life & everything in-between ... from Bog to Blog!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Jihad .... 'Radical' or 'Real' Islam???

I constantly get told that I'm biased against 'Islam' & that I tarnish All Islam with the brush of 'Radical' Islam. That Islam is a 'religion' of 'peace' & that the radicals are the few.  Is this true??   I see no such contradiction, however,  I do believe that the free exchange of ideas is how we learn & I'm always willing to scrutinize what I believe to be true.  I looked earlier this week at the position of Women in Islam & the whole question of Equality within Islam itself.   Today I want to explore an idea intrinsic to Islam, that of JihadJihad translates 'Struggle'.  And especially of 'Struggle by the Sword' & the notion of how many Muslims support killing civilians as a tactic.   Numbers I've seen quoted range from a tiny fraction up to 50% of the world's 1.5 billion Muslims.

Those who consider themselves liberal tend to lean towarda the tiny fraction estimate, whilst conservatives like me lean toward the larger numbers.  Part of what drives the thinking of liberals is their tendency to see things from a more idyllic viewpoint, plus their belief that few people, if any,  are evil,  and that at the core of everyone there is goodness to be found.   This view tends to discount the impact of living in a society where virtually every aspect of daily life is under strict adherence to fundamentalism,  and where jihad for Allah is considered the single holiest act of a true follower of the faith.  The martyr-killer is considered a hero,  and the martyr's family is showered with gifts and held in a place of honour amongst  fellow believers.  Could anyone actually forget the televised scenes of joy & celebration, and dancing in the streets of Pakistan & Gaza as pictures streamed in of the demise of the Twin Towers and the consequent loss of life on September 11th 2001???

How many adherents of Islam would support 9/11 or the 'principle' of Martyrdom??  If you don't are you a bad Muslim??  Is Struggle by the Sword & the commission of Slaughter for Allah acceptable to most Muslims??

The foregoing assessment is corroborated by a former Muslim terrorist, Walid Shoebat, who was born and raised in the Middle East, and who spent time in jail for his involvement with jihad. However, in the mid-1990s, he renounced Islam. By doing so he became an "enemy of Islam" and has been living under threat of death ever since. These days, in spite of being under a Fatwa, Walid writes books, and speaks at synagogues and university campuses numerous other events about Islam and Jihad.  I have browsed his books & I also frequent  this site  for accuracy when researching for my blogs!

One of the reasons there has been considerable debate on this flashpoint topic is that statistics are not readily available. However, recently a report was published providing information which allows some deductive conclusions to be drawn.  On February 27th, the Middle East Times, an America-based pro-Arab publication, ran an article with the following headline: ~ "Majority of Muslims Oppose Attacking Civilians".

The portion which the headline referred to provided some interesting statistics.  To support the notion that the majority of Muslims oppose attacking civilians, five countries ~ Egypt, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Indonesia and Pakistan, along with the West Bank and Gaza, were listed alongside the percentages of their respective populations that opposed killing civilians. 

According to the report, the percentages of the respective populations that opposed killing civilians were as follows:

Egypt: 80% of 78 million
Azerbaijan: 70% of 8 million
Turkey: 70% of 71 million
Indonesia: 70% of 246 million
Pakistan: 60% of 166 million
West Bank/Gaza: 60% of 4 million ~ I don't agree with this designation as a geographical entity, but it is what the study used!

Conversely, while the article did not include specific statements about those who are not opposed to killing civilians, the implied deduction is that the remaining percentages favour it, since they chose not to oppose it.  They range from 20% [Egypt] to 40% [Pakistan, West Bank/Gaza] respectively.

By taking the current population of each referenced location, and turning the percentages into actual population figures, here's what the numbers look like for those who may be said to support killing civilians:

Egypt: 20% or 15.6 million
Azerbaijan: 30% or 2.4 million
Turkey: 30% or 21.3 million
Indonesia: 30% or 73,8 million
Pakistan: 40% or 66.4 million
West Bank/Gaza: 40% or 1.6 million

Cumulative total: 181 million

 181.000,000 want us all Dead!!   How many suicide bombers will try to achieve this for Allah?

Keep in mind that this figure refers to only the six places referenced in the report. If you take an average from this group, then the percent which supports killing civilians is 31.6 percent. By extending this to the worlds 1.5 billion Muslims, the figure comes close to 500 million!!  Also worth noting is that the report was published in a pro-Arab publication which, in its zeal to provide a positive view of Muslims, apparently didn't realize it was also providing information to the contrary. While the topic will likely remain controversial, at least we now have some documentation which can narrow the gap between hyperbole and credibility.

There was a similar poll taken in the UK,  & reproduced in 'the Guardian' that was similarly enlightening.   Most Muslims polled said they didn't agree with Al Qaeda, but almost all of them said they believed in the necessity of Jihad under the right circumstances.   But, the poll didn't try to ascertain what the right conditions were. Of course one would imagine "if attacked in accordance with the Qur’an",  which just screams to be looked at.   So what constitutes an attack ..... Cartoons of Muhammad, perhaps?   

Remember,  war is fought in the name of Allah and Jihad, NOT freedom of thought, or religon, or democracy, or equality or any other western 'notion!

There is another point, & one which I have often stressed,  and that is that according to Qur'an, everyone who is not a Muslim is guilty of treason against Allah.   Hence NO 'kaffir' (i.e. non-Muslim) is an innocent civillian.   Muslims tell the truth when they say that they "regret the deaths of innocent civillians in terrorist attacks".   But,  the only "innocent civillians" in such attacks are Muslims ~ both Muslim bystanders who die accidentally, and the suicide terrorists themselves.   ALL others are neither innocent nor civillians.  And any earnest muslim believer who thinks different is just a Bad Muslim!

So Some Quotes ....

"The Hour [Resurrection] will not take place until the Muslims fight the Jews and the Muslims kill them, and the rock and the tree will say: "Oh, Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, kill him!"

"Do we really believe in a culture of death? Absolutely not. We believe in the culture of martyrdom. Martyrdom is valuable, sacred, respectable, and great, not something that can be used as an accusation. It is an honor for us to be accused of believing in the culture of martyrdom.

"What is martyrdom? It is death for the sake of Allah, and in defence of what is just ~
Hizbullah Deputy Secretary-General Sheikh Naim Qassem

“He who allows himself to shed the blood of a Muslim, is like he who allows shedding the blood of all people. He who forbids shedding the blood of one Muslim, is like he who forbids shedding the blood of all people, unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land,”  and it is followed by v. 33, which specifies the punishment for that mischief: “The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter.”  ~ Sura 5.32.

Is that clear enough???

Behave or else is it's tone ..... &  the religion of 'peace'  has a daily tally of the Islamic murders all done to emulate Mohamet's words, actions and orders to kill infidels!!

And again ..... "Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued".  ~ Sura At-Tawba 9:29.

 The majority of the Qur’an’s texts themselves clearly identify Jihad as physical warfare in Islam and,  Islamically,  Allah’s way of establishing the 'Kingdom of God' on earth.  They hardly require to be interpreted metaphorically. Likewise, from the Hadith and the earliest biographies of Muhammad it is just as evident that the early Muslim community understood these Qu'ranic texts to be taken literally.  Historically, therefore,  from the time of Muhammad onwards,  Jihad as physical warfare in support of the message of Islam has been a reality for the Muslim community.  Hence it comes as no surprise when even terrorists easily appeal to these source materials to justify their actions,  not to speak of their teachers who teach the theory and the art of terrorism.

Then, what about the Muslim claims that Islam means "peace", that it is in harmony with other religions, that it rejects violence?   No doubt, for Muslims Islam may mean peace in its traditional Muslim sense,  .... that is in so far as they have submitted to the conditions Islam imposes upon them.  However,  Islamically speaking,  Islam has never meant peace for idolaters unless the idolaters abandon idolatry and embrace Islam.  Nor, Islamically, has Islam meant peace for the 'People of the Book'  (Jews ~ See Verse 9.29),  unless the People of the Book submit to Islamic political rule and the Dhimmi (Slave) conditions which the Shari‘ah imposes upon them as the People of the Book.

If by Islamic definition the primary purpose of Jihad is the extension and defence of Islamic dominion,  it also includes,  under the shadow of war,  the invitation to the enemy to submit to Islamic rule, perhaps even to embrace Islam itself, or to fight.   Islamically, this invitation is compulsory and naturally precedes any battle.  Truly, both word and sword are integral to Jihad, yoked equally and working in harmony.  Struggle by the Sword ..... Islamic teaching prohibits the deliberate targeting of women and children but allows their deaths as collateral damage.  What the Muslims did in Beslan or the theatre in Moscow would not be accepted by Muhammad, but he would bless and sanction the 9/11 attacks as collateral damage!  Muhammad destroyed his enemies financial strength during his conquests. He killed or massacred males from puberty on up, but he enslaved women and children.

The Islamic teachings that allow these murders are theological, but are to be applied in a social, and political, context too.   Islam is,  after all,  both a spiritual and political religion; there is no separation of church and state in Islam.   In order for a Western mind to understand Islam, they have to realize that Islam is more than a spiritual belief system.  It is an all-encompassing ideology that seeks to regulate the world's political affairs according to Shari'a law.  Islam challenges Western civilization itself, because it is a complete Way of Life and its Shari'a Law is not compatible with Western ideals and civilization.   At all.  Now or Ever!!

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