By Kelly OConnell
Jihad is the doctrine in Islam which directs its followers to armed assault against non-believers. The recent Boston pressure cooker bombing was committed by two Muslim believers, proving Obama has done nothing to permanently halt the threat of Muslim terrorism.
The purpose of jihad is to convert, impoverish or kill all unbelievers. It is an essential element of the teachings of Mohammad, and cannot simply be removed from the Koran. Therefore, when are Americans going to take seriously Islam as a threat and figure out a way to defuse its dangerous demand to subjugate the world in the name of Allah?
Obviously, the doctrines of Political Correctness are keeping Americans from addressing the issue in depth. We seem more intent upon not being rude than fighting to keep bombers off our streets. So, what can be done to address this bedeviling problem?
I. Defining Jihad
In most Muslim history, jihad normally refers to the duty to fight the unbeliever. This is explained in my article, September 11th, Jihad & the Doctrine of Perpetual War:
It has been repeatedly stated the term “Jihad” in Islam is more properly defined as “holy struggle” than “holy war.” Reuven Firestone, in Jihad, The Origin of Holy War in Islam, points out that the word “Jihad” has no direct connection to war. Yet, as Firestone elucidates, Jihad is a holy struggle most often expressed in terms of violent attack against Islam’s enemies, stating, When the word is used without qualifiers, like “of the heart,” or “of the word,” it is universally understood as war on behalf of Islam (equivalent of Jihad “of the sword”—jihad al-sayf), and the merits of engaging in such Jihad are described plentifully in the most respected religious works.Robin Wright, in Sacred Rage, The Wrath of Militant Islam, defines jihad like this:
In the thirteen-century old lexicon of Islam, jihad is a struggle against an aggressive foreign force or an offensive in the name of the faith. The Koran incites Muslims to battles, for those who believe in God should fight for him. It is “an obligation on the true believer, because only in a free country can there be righteous self-respect.” In the seventh century, jihad was considered by early Muslims to be the most effective means of conquering lands for the new Muslim empire.According to Rudolph Peters in Jihad in Classical And Modern Islam, two groups deserve correction—first, those under the Imam (Muslim leader) refusing to follow Allah’s laws. Second, those unbelievers (kuffar) outside Islamic control who can only be conquered for god by conflict. These kuffar are outside the uma (Muslim polity) and therefore the enemies of Allah. And G.E. Von Grunebaum, in Classical Islam, A History 600-1258, explains how from the earliest period, despite instability, jihad was always practiced:
...it did not allow the jihad, the “battle on the path to God” to rest in its duty to incorporate the unconquered “war region” (dar al-harb) of the unbeliever into thedar al-islam. Guerilla warfare, apart from several larger expeditions, continued without interruption.II. Two Realms of Islam: House of God v. House of War (Dar al-Islam v. Dar al-Harb)
There can be no doubt that the doctrine of jihad emanates from several key facts about Islam. First, there are only two kinds of people in the Muslim world—believers and infidels. Second, there are only two abodes—the House of God and the House of War. Third, no doctrines resembling human rights ever existed within Islam. Instead, persons only have status based upon their relationship with Allah. In other words, the rain does not fall upon the just and unjust, as it were. Therefore, compunction in things religious is no shame. Bernard Lewis comments upon this:
The world is divided into the House of Islam and the House of War, the Dar al-Islam and the Dar al-harb. The Dar al-Islam is all those lands in which a Muslim government rules and the Holy Law of Islam prevails. Non-Muslims may live there on Muslim sufferance. The outside world, which has not yet been subjugated, is called the “House of War,” and strictly speaking a perpetual state of jihad, of holy war, is imposed by the law. The law thus divides unbelievers theologically into those who have a book and profess what Islam recognizes as a divine religion and those who do not; politically into dhimmis, those who have accepted the supremacy of the Muslim state and the primacy of the Muslims, and harbis, the denizens of the Dar al-harb, the House of War, who remain outside the Islamic frontier, and with whom therefore there is in principle, a canonically obligatory perpetual state of war until the whole world is either converted or subjugated.III. Legal & Religious Elements of Jihad
Abu’l-Walid Ibn Rushd, aka Averroes (1126-1198), is the preeminent Muslim philosopher. He wrote a legal treatise on jihad in Bidayat Mudjtahid. Rudolph Peters sums this up in the following manner.
A. Legal Jihad—Seven Aspects
Rudolph Peters lists seven aspects of the legal doctrine of Jihad:
- Legal Obligation: Muslim communities are everywhere held responsible when called to wage violent Jihad, even if all members cannot bear the sword. The compulsory nature of jihad is founded upon sura 2:216: “Prescribed for you is fighting, though it be hateful to you.” This is a group responsibility. Since everyone cannot bear the sword, the duty falls upon adult, healthy men who can afford to wage war. The man’s parents must also give permission.
- The Enemy: Targeted enemies to be fought in jihad are all pagans—ie polytheists (everyone not Muslim, or dhimmi, being Jew or Christian). Christians and Jews can also be targeted under many circumstances. This is based uponsura 8:39: “Fight them until there is no persecution and the religion is God’s entirely.”
- Damage Allowed: The damages allowed doled-out to heathens in jihad depend upon their status. Generally permitted are all confiscations or destruction of property—and the enslavement, jailing or death of enemies—except women and children. Particularly fascinating is the right of the Caliph, head of the Muslim state, to treat captives in any manner he likes. Captives may be slain, enslaved, pardoned, or held for ransom. In battle, all able-bodied adult men may be killed, reminiscent of Saddam Hussein’s plans to kill all Kuwaiti men after conquering Kuwait (see Iraqi Military Planned to Murder All Kuwaiti Men, LA Times). As to why Islam allows the killing of all infidels, it is simply because of their unbelief. Writes Peters,
- Prerequisites of Warfare: The enemy must hear first the call to Islam before being attacked. This is based upon sura 17:15: “We never chastise until We send for a Messenger.” The Prophet called for three things before launching an attack: Ask the non-believers to convert to Islam. If they consent, then do not attack. Then, inquire if they will travel to the abode of Emigrants, ie Medina, where any immigrant will have all the rights of any other believer. But if they refuse to relocate, then put a poll tax (jizyah) upon them. If they refuse the latter, then pray Allah’s help and attack them. This is based upon sura 9:29. Therefore, the goal of jihad is conversion, collecting taxes, or death of the enemy.
- Maximum Number of Foes One Must Not Retreat From: Double the size of the forces of the Muslims.
- Truce: A truce may be entered into by Muslims either for advantage or from fear of extinction. But the longest truce Allah allows is ten years. And at any time, if it is to the benefit of the Muslim truce-signers to breach the covenant, they must do so.
- Aims of Warfare: All scholars agree that the reason Islam may go to war with Christians or Jews (Dhimmis) is to convert them or force their payment of the war-truce tax, ie jizya. The last option is to kill them. This is based upon sura 9:29:
The only reasons an unbeliever should be put to death…is their unbelief. This motive then goes for all unbelievers…Enemies must not be tortured nor their bodies mutilated. The Muslims agree they may be slain by weapons. Controversy exists, however, concerning whether it is allowed to burn them by fire
Fight those who do not believe in Allah or in the Last Day and who do not consider unlawful what Allah and His Messenger have made unlawful and who do not adopt the religion of truth from those who were given the Scripture - [fight] until they give the jizyah willingly while they are humbled.
B. Religious & Moral Elements of Jihad
Jihad is not one of Islam’s Five Pillars, yet it is considered the greatest free will act a Muslim can perform. Writes Peters:
The command to participate in jihad and the mention of its merits occur innumerable times in the Koran and the Sunna. Therefore it is the best voluntary [religious] act that man can perform. All scholars agree that it is better than the hajj (greater pilgrimage) and the ‘Umrah (lesser pilgrimage), than voluntary Salaah and voluntary fasting, as the Qur’an and the Sunnah indicate. The Prophet, Peace be upon him, has said, The Prophet, has said: “The head of the affair is Islam, its central pillar is the Salaah and the summit is the Jihad.” And he has said: “In Paradise there are a hundred grades with intervals as wide as the distance between the sky and the earth. All these Allah has prepared for those who take part in Jihad.” There is unanimity about the authenticity of this Tradition.Peters goes on to develop this subject of the religious significance of jihad to Allah, at length:
This is a vast subject, unequaled by other subjects as far as the reward and merit of human deeds is concerned. This is evident upon closer examination. 1. The [first] reason is that the benefit of Jihad is general, extending not only to the person who participates in it but also to others, both in a religious and a temporal sense. 2., Jihad implies all kinds of worship, both in its inner and outer forms. More than any other act it implies love and devotion for Allah, Who is exalted, trust in Him, the surrender of one’s life and property to Him, patience, asceticism, remembrance of Allah and all kinds of other acts [of worship]. And individual or community that participates in it, finds itself between two blissful outcomes: either victory and triumph or martyrdom and Paradise. 3., all creatures must live and die. Since lawful warfare is essentially Jihad and since its aim is that the religion is entirely for Allah [2:189, 8:39] and the word of Allah is uppermost [9:40], therefore, according to all Muslims, those who stand in the way of this aim must be fought.IV. Modern Jihad
The classic texts and history both reveal how Islam has developed its doctrine of jihad. But what is the modern application? A recurrent theme of battling against colonialism occurs in much modern Islamic terrorist literature, according to M.A. Khan, in Islamic Jihad: A Legacy of Forced Conversion, Imperialism, and Slavery. Interestingly, some scholars believe Islam itself is trying to erect a global, imperial tyranny.
The modern application of jihad is rooted in classic Islamic texts, and reveals that there is a group of persons who deserve perpetual war. Those who are not simply unbelievers, but who have dedicated themselves to changing the one true religion, thereby disrupting the Muslim Mission, and therefore stymieing Allah’s plans for the salvation of mankind. Consider such verses as sura 2:190-193:
2.190. Fight against those who fight against you in the way of Allah, but do not transgress, for Allah does not love transgressors. 2.191. Kill them whenever you confront them and drive them out from where they drove you out. (For though killing is sinful) wrongful persecution is even worse than killing…but if they fight against you kill them, for that is the reward of such unbelievers. 2.193. Keep on fighting against them until mischief ends and the way prescribed by Allah prevails. But if they desist, then know that hostility is only against the wrong-doers.Virtually any Western country would fit into this category, but especially the United States, with our hegemony and control of entire Muslim nations.
V. American Jihad
After the most recent Muslim attack on US soil in Boston, it is time to take stock. Can we generalize over the various Muslim terrorist activities launched in America over the last ten or so years? What is their purpose? For example, do Muslim radicals really believe if they continuously attempt to bomb and intimidate Americans, we will be more likely to accept their beliefs? Or, conversely—do the radicals actually believe they can overcome our government and launch a coup? Or is there some other explanation?
M.A. Khan presents his thesis of Muslim Imperialism, that Islam wants to convert the entire world to Islam, and force those who will not capitulate to Muhammad into slaves:
The doctrine of Jihad as revealed by Allah in the Quran calls for forced conversion, particularly of idolaters, for establishing an imperial rule on a global scale with an integral purpose of economic exploitation of non-Muslim subjects and for engaging in slavery, including slave-trade and sex-slavery. All commands of the Quran, including for Jihad, must stand for all times. Therefore, the Islamic institutions of forced conversion, imperialism and slavery—if Allah’s commands are to be obeyed—must persist for eternity. As for forced conversion, it must continue until such times that there remain no more infidels to be converted. Regarding Islamic imperialism, the perpetuation of a global Islamic rule for eternity is the ultimate goal of Allah.If Islam seeks the armed subjugation of the entire world by taking on its leading defender of liberty, shouldn’t Americans finally get ready to fully defend ourselves?!!