Books and Documents
Islam,Terrorism and Jihad

Fighting Extremism: Beyond Free Speech and ‘Freedom to Insult’
Desra Percaya

It has also brought again to the surface the controversy over the limits of free speech, tensions between civil liberty and public security, perceived double standards and even the disintegration of values or incoherence in their observance in those societies that pride themselves as champions of equality and human rights advocacy.  Without seriousness shown in addressing these value-related issues, this situation could worsen the trust deficit existing in some societies and prevent the international community from developing a united front to combat violent extremism in all its aspects....


Last weekend, Muslims gathered at the Japan Islamic Trust in Tokyo to pray for the safety of Goto but the prayer session turned into a memorial service as news of his death spread. Pakistani Muslim Haroon Qureshi, the general secretary of the Japan Islamic Trust, expressed his grief. "It's extremely regrettable," he said, quoted in the Mainichi Shimbun. "We have worked for the release of Goto and another hostage Haruna Yukawa." Japan had not been caught up directly in the fight against the ISIS until the hostage crisis unfolded last month, with support for the U.S.-led coalition limited to financial and humanitarian aid. But following the latest killing, graphically depicted in a video that also carried a threat to Japanese nationals around the world, the country is re-evaluating its response to terrorism and has already introduced new security measures at potential targets such as airports and embassies, and schools abroad….


Muslims, Non-Muslims Need To Battle Terrorism Jointly
S. Amjad Hussain

People ask me how they can help. Here is how: Stop parroting the mantra of right-wing media, some Protestant pulpits, and politicians on the right that when Muslims don’t condemn terrorism, they must condone it. Terrorism is a deeply rooted disease that will take time to eradicate. Muslims and non-Muslims have to band together to oppose this menace….


Why ISIS Is So Brutal
Frida Ghitis

The common denominator throughout history until today is an ideology that justifies everything for the search of a "higher" goal, one usually suffused with some utopian vision of a perfect world. It is a world that has no room for anyone who disagrees with those seeking to make it a reality and finds in cruelty a recruiting tool for the cause and a fully justified method in pursuit of ultimate success. Along the way, it turns men who were once presumably normal, even lovable, children into black-hooded executioners capable of taking a knife to the neck of a man kneeling at their feet, or of setting on fire another human being, a Muslim man, no less……

Responsible Use of Freedom and Tolerance
Muhammad Zamir

The attack has led to serious controversy about the limits of freedom of expression and whether the media needs to follow certain ethical guidelines to ensure that the process of expression does not end up being a vehicle through which the cultural and religious sensitivities of others might be affected. It has raised questions as to whether heinous acts need to be treated with reason and resolved through dialogue instead of fanatic acts. Some have also raised the question of collective responsibility and whether extraneous factors related to political paradigms or inter-faith hostility need to be treated with greater seriousness….

The Invisible Face of Terror
Nissim Mannathukkaren

The Invisible Face of Terror
Nissim Mannathukkaren

Until invisible violence and its material basis are acknowledged, we will continue to skate through inane responses which produce more crises. In the same week as the Charlie Hebdo attacks, Boko Haram killed 2,000 people. But this was hardly news in the western media. Peshawar did not occasion solidarity marches either. Will there be a time when a single drone attack such as the one in Pakistan that killed 69 children will cause as much revulsion as Charlie Hebdo? Will there be a time when silences end and solidarities become real?...

More Muslim Non-Literalists and Moderates Need To Increase in Number and Reclaim Islam from the Fundamentalists
Kunwar Khuldune Shahid

Every time someone in the West ‘misuses’ their freedom of speech to promote ‘blasphemous’ writings, caricatures or amateur videos, the West’s ostensible double standards are highlighted by the incandescent Muslim world. That the ‘West’ criminalises Holocaust denial and does not consider an individual’s right to be anti-Semitic a part of freedom of speech, seemingly showcases that the torchbearers of free speech are endeavouring to promote ‘Islamophobia’ in the garb of freedom of expression……

The selection and presentation of news is all when it comes to determining the visibility or invisibility of the victims. An almost-never mentioned chapter in the history of France is the Paris Massacre of 1961. Up to two hundred Algerians were murdered by the Paris police on 17th October 1961, many of them thrown into the Seine and drowned after being tortured. Decades of official denial followed this atrocity; the French government finally owned up to it in 1998, but admitted to the murder of only 40 Algerians on that terrible day. The 37 year hushing-up and denial of this massacre had no legal consequences and the 1915 Armenian massacre by the Turks may be denied with impunity anywhere you like in modern France. That’s freedom of expression; (just don’t mention the holocaust.)….

The typical trajectory of most French Islamist terrorists follows four steps: alienation from the dominant culture, thanks partly to joblessness and discrimination in blighted neighbourhoods; a turn to petty crime, which leads to prison, and then more crime and more prison; religious awakening and radicalization; and an initiatory journey to a Muslim country like Syria, Afghanistan or Yemen to train for jihad. Stints in prison were seminal for Chérif Kouachi, Amedy Coulibaly and other major figures of French Jihadism in recent years — Mohammed Merah, Mehdi Nemmouche, Khaled Kelkal — as both a rite of passage and a gateway to radicalism…..


Isis Hostage Crisis: The Prisoner Swap Has Only One Purpose for the Militants - Recognition Its Islamic State Exists and That Foreign Nations Acknowledge Its Power
Robert Fisk

You only had to listen to the reporters talking in the last few hours about “the Islamic State” – without the usual “so-called” in front of it – to realise that we are already, with scarcely a thought for the consequences, accepting the caliphate as a viable, if illegitimate, nation. Forget the original demand for cash, because a Jordanian king and a Japanese deputy foreign minister are more valuable than $1bn. By agreeing to negotiate over hostages, they have given the Islamic State its own imprimatur…..


Radicalism Is More Dangerous Than Even Terrorism
Ayesha Siddiqa

We have to be very clear on one thing: radicalism is more dangerous than even terrorism because it can survive longer and remain undetected due to the fact that it does not necessarily result in any immediate act of violence. Similarly, it is also a fallacy that these groups can ever get mainstreamed. Allowing groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba and others to expand their welfare infrastructure does not help. Such activities assist the groups to hide their real intent and not change….

ISIS the other day killed 125 women who said they would not marry radicalized Islamists. The list goes on, one atrocity piled on another by Moslems, in the name of Islam, against other people indiscriminately. I would expect all decent people to condemn unreservedly these atrocities. It has nothing to do with what I understand in Islam. It has everything to do with denying common humanity and human rights. Wherever these are trammeled, everyone should be outraged. Islam or Christianity can never provide a cover for such bestiality…..

A Saudi Beheading, an IS Beheading
Rafia Zakaria

Normally, a beheading such as this one, despite its barbarity, would be shrugged and ignored. Saudi Arabia is after all littered with the blood of executed immigrants, men and women who came for jobs, to escape the hardscrabble and thankless penury of their own lives. Their heads and bodies are likely gathered up and, before the sun has set, committed via the labour of others just like them to nameless unmarked graves, becoming one with the sand of the Holy Kingdom….


How to Combat Global Islamism
Tufail Ahmad

The continuing series of jihadist attacks by “lone wolves” – some call them stray dogs but both the terms are insults to animals – in London, Boston, Sydney and Paris illustrates the fact that modern democracies cannot take their freedom for granted. After the Second World War, democracies faced threats from armed communism……

Charlie Hebdo, Syria’s War and Jihadist Exhibitionism
Dr. Halla Diyab

The Arab Spring exposed the world to several scenes of extreme exhibitionist violence varying from witnessing the violent killing of Muammar Qaddafi to the obscene scenes of Syrian rebels allegedly eating the heart and liver of a Syrian soldier.....


The Holy Book of Quran has plenty to attract people of all faiths. What has gone wrong is that people, radicalized, by commentaries on the Quran, in the name of Islam, are killing themselves and children.  Islamic states are refusing to allow Moslem women marry non-Muslims; sometimes the parents of such women have killed the women rather than allow such marriage. If my detractor’s argument is that you cannot judge Islam by the action of the “extremists”– I have no argument against that…..

One way of safeguarding our youth from extremism is by teaching them about the fine line between moderation and extremism. Extremism is going to either extreme: one side makes the lawful unlawful and the other end makes the unlawful lawful. We need to note here that Islam is not about black and white. Indeed, there are very clear matters that don’t require questioning, while other issues are more ambiguous. These uncertainties are causing division among some Muslims while creating confusion for others….


Only Muslims Can Defeat the Terrorists
Fareed Zakaria

Over the last few decades, this radical Islamist ideology has been globalized. Initially fueled by Gulf money and Arab dissenters, imams and intellectuals, it has taken on a life of its own. Today it is the default ideology of anger, discontent and violent opposition for a small number of alienated young Muslim men around the world. Only Muslims, and particularly Arabs, can cure this cancer…..

War-On-Terror Policies Partly Fuel Islamic Radicalism
Saritha Prabhu

Is some of their anger justified? You could say so. But no amount of anger, of course, justifies terrorism, and most Muslims in the West understand that. Again, to be clear: My argument (as a non-Muslim) is not to justify Islamic Jihadism in the West, but to try and understand some roots of it. The world’s media also often mourns in selective, often racially biased ways. It mourns, as it absolutely should, the victims of terrorist attacks in the West, but shrugs off as collateral damage the thousands of innocent drone victims…..

Ignoring the ‘Other Osama’
Suhasini Haidar

While the Indo-U.S. joint statement listed several groups that they would work to “disrupt,” including the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Jaish-e-Mohammad, and the Haqqani network, and called for Pakistan to bring the “perpetrators of the Mumbai attack to justice,” it didn’t contain any new language from the statement issued in 2014. It also made no mention of the group that most openly threatens both India and the U.S., despite a number of events that have occurred since then…..


The Curious Case of Banned Outfits
Dr Mohammad Taqi

It is not just that wild conspiracy theories are being spun about the elusive ‘foreign’ hand but an active image-building campaign is underway to cushion the JuD and its leadership against the action that the US, India and the UN have been demanding…..


Pakistan Punjab: Nucleus of Terror
Ambreen Agha

You remember when thousands of Pakistani youth fought your proxy war in Afghanistan and in Indian Kashmir.... And then you went into the dollar game and you earned millions from the proxy war in Afghanistan and you deceived the nation in the name of jihad. The Muslims have not forgotten the blood game you played in Indian Kashmir exploiting youth in the name of so called freedom......


Once Every Single Muslim in the World Apologises For Charlie Hebdo, Then We Can Move On To Making Every Single Christian in the World Apologise For Hitler
Shehzad Ghias

I am sure the world would reciprocate in kind. We can start an apology trend. Once every single Muslim in the world apologises for Charlie Hebdo, then we can move on to making every single Christian in the world apologise for Hitler. Hitler’s moustache is for the Christians what an unkempt beard is for the Muslims. I have no idea why mass murderers are so keen on making fashion statements too. The British can fly all Brits to all their previous colonies and make them all apologise to every single member of those countries. It might be much harder for the Americans to do the same considering the amount of things they have to apologise for. They can make a world tour out of it; Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Vietnam, Palestine, Cuba, Mexico, Spain, England. At this stage, it is easier to just name the countries America does not need to apologise for…..

And before partition, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan called for a new interpretation of Islam on rational basis, maintaining that superstition and blind adherence to tradition had kept Muslims backward. Little attention is paid to this aspect of Sir Syed’s thought in Pakistan. Our age of reason could begin in our schools— by encouraging rational thought, purging curriculum of hate teaching material, and instilling in young minds the importance of questioning received wisdom. Education reforms must become the central pillar of a policy that would eliminate religious extremism and promote the use of reason…..


Freedom of Speech: The Sound Of Silence

The reason lies in French history. Blasphemy laws carried the death penalty before the 1789 revolution, but were scrapped in 1881 as part of a bloody struggle against the Catholic Church. Such latitude is not granted to incitement to racial or religious hatred, which was made a crime in 1972, partly as a response to a rise in attacks on Algerians. Holocaust denial was outlawed in 1990, and “apology for terrorism” last year. ….

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    ( By Ghulam Ghaus غلام غوث )
  • Zia Sb,   Do not get me wrong. You made a statement "He did not quote the relevant verse or verses which say that no messengers were sent ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • The fight of 'oddity' is going on between US and UK English. Please correct it first and then come to my 'wrong'. 
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    ( By Javed )
  • The author certainly means well, but there is an oddity in her English, and not hers alone, that is a source of endless confusion ...
    ( By S A R Zaidi )
  • Thanks Ms Rabeya Noorunnisa for motivating me, with your inspiring pep talks, to do more work on the relative subjects; Safeguarding Human rights, promoting peace, non-violence and Tolerance.
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus غلام غوث )
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  • Mr Rafique Lodhia Sb, With due respect and humble submission, first let me repeat that I am not an Islamic scholar from a madrasa wearing a skullcap ...
    ( By Ziaur Rehman )
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    ( By Kunjusankaran Bhavani Mukundan )
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    ( By Rabeya Noorunnisa )
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    ( By Asef Ahemad Kazi )
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    ( By Rabeya Noorunnisa )
  • "In a nutshell, whether in Muslim countries or not, promoting peaceful coexistence and cooperation with non-Muslims including Christians, Jews and Hindus etc was never ...
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    ( By Ziaur Rehman )
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    ( By Ziaur Rehman )
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    ( By Iftekhar A. Hai )
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