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Books and Documents

Islam,Terrorism and Jihad

The recent Islamist terrorist attacks on the Charlie Hebdo cartoon journalists in Paris and army children in Peshawar school perhaps prompted Sultan Shahin, Indian Editor of New Age Islam to write an advisory paper entitled “Muslim must confront Islamist terror ideologically –An Islamic reformation required”. While it is conceded that reforms within Islam will have to come from within, this paper examines whether at all it is possible when indications are to the contrary....

Our Religion Problem
Babar Sattar

We know that in 2004 Abdul Aziz of Lal Masjid had issued a fatwa declaring haram the namaz-i-janaza of Pakistani soldiers killed while fighting in Waziristan. We also know that his disciples have professed allegiance to IS. We now know that terrorists who attacked APS were provided board and lodging facilities by a Masjid imam. We know that mosques and their bully pulpits are abused to preach hate. We know that seminaries and mosques around Islamabad parade ground have had to be vacated to ensure safety for Pakistan Day....

 

Jordan, Egypt and ISIS: A Tale of Vengeance
Raed Omari

Only a few hours following ISIS’ release of a video showing its masked militants’ beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christian workers, Egypt, in retaliation, sent its F-16 warplanes to Libya to hit the group’s hideouts there typically echoing Jordan’s vengeance following the burning alive of its pilot Moaz al-Kasasbeh. Exactly as Jordan did, Egypt accompanied its military action on ISIS with diplomatic efforts seeking to build a world consensus on the importance of eradicating the radical organization which is undoubtedly now the embodiment of all terror. Like Jordan, Egypt seems to be determined to hurt ISIS and “healing the chests” of its citizens, yet complications persist….

 

Islamic State’s use of technology has become ubiquitous: there are tens of thousands of supportive Twitter accounts, while Facebook and video sharing sites are used to disseminate propaganda, recruit fighters and organise. A policing and military response to Islamic State is already well under way, but this won’t address the obvious reality that technology is being used to facilitate extremism and an enduring, networked threat across our region....

 

The Lebanonisation Of Libya: Is Partition Next?
Joyce Karam

The Lebanonisation of Libya is also evident in the outside meddling in the country. Today, many Arab countries are trading accusations of instilling chaos in Africa’s leading oil producer nation. The accusations include arming, funding militias and allowing foreign fighters into Libya. While this picture parallels with 1975 Lebanon, in the age of ISIS and proliferating terrorism, Libya cannot afford a repeat of Beirut’s long agony....

 

Non-Muslim commentators have said these historical events are ancient history and therefore not applicable to the conversation. Christianity isn’t considered a violent religion because those events occurred in a more barbaric time. One day the terrorist acts of ISIS will be ancient history. If history doesn’t matter when one is talking about Christianity, then it technically shouldn’t matter when one is talking about Islam....

 

Even before the rise of ISIS, analysts say, some Arab states in the region were beginning to -- quietly -- work with Israel on various challenges including Iran. Now with ISIS the singular force uniting a region notoriously riven by tribal, religious and territorial differences, Israel is on the sidelines....

What Makes These 17-Year-Old Kids Pick Up An AK-47 Instead Of Trying To Start A Business?
Eli Lake

One recent study found that family money and education could be social indicators of inclinations toward terrorism. Released last year by Queen Mary University in London, it found that "youth, wealth, and being in full-time education were risk factors associated with radicalization." Maher said in his four years inside Hizb ut-Tahrir, he found many of the most active members were students or college graduates....

 

Madrasas and Militancy: The Tragedy of Peshawar Has Once Again Brought the Issue of Madrasa Reforms into Sharp Focus
Mumtaz Ahmad

The core curriculum taught in Madrasas of the South Asian subcontinent, known as Dars-e-Nizami, consists of about 80 books in 20 subject areas, broadly divided into: 1) “received” or revealed knowledge (the Quranic exegesis, Hadith, and Fiqh); and 2) rational sciences (Arabic language and literature, grammar, prosody, rhetoric logic, philosophy, dialectical theology, mathematics and medicine). It is important to note that out of the 20 subject areas of the Dars-e-Nizami curriculum, only eight can be considered as solely ‘religious’. The remaining subjects are otherwise ‘secular’ subjects intended as aids to the understanding of religious texts….

 
Daughters of Jihad: The German Women of Islamic State
Jörg Diehl, Hubert Gude, Barbara Schmid and Fideli

Often enough, female jihadists have little idea what they are getting themselves into in Syria. In the northern city of Bremen, sociologist Berna Kurnaz provides counselling to the relatives of female Islamists who have returned to Germany. She's familiar with their family problems and their sometimes precarious circumstances. "The girls are often revolting against a home in which they are misunderstood or a society in which they don't feel appreciated." She says that Salafist preachers offer simple solutions to myriad problems, basically sending out the message that all that matters is being a "good Muslim woman." But once they arrive in the war zone, the girls are sealed off from what's going on around them. "They don't even understand just how dangerous the situation they have placed themselves in really is," Kurnaz says....

 

During the recent past and this week there has been a notable rise in the number of explosive devices planted across Egypt, most of which were home made and had limited impact, if real at all. Many of these bombs, reported on a daily basis, were apparently aimed at civilians, and not security personnel who have borne the brunt of bombings that have grown rife since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013....

 

ISIS’s Dark Theatre
Praveen Swami

The world has become familiar, these past three months, with this aesthetic, which has flowered in the Islamic State’s execution videos, culminating with the macabre immolation of the Jordanian pilot, Moaz al-Kasasbeh. But the slaughter recorded in the seven-minute video took place in Mexico, half a world away from the IS.....

From the 1970s, as France pedal-pushed capitalism, Wolinski's left-wing commentaries took flight to publications like Le Journal du Dimanche, L'umanite, Paris Match and Charlie Hebdo among others."I could draw anything I wanted. Before this thin-skinned age, you could joke about religion and paedophilia," he said. With freedom came threats, but mild ones….

Saudis Struggle To Reconcile IS Fight, Wahhabism
Madawi Al-Rasheed

Instrumentalising Islam, and especially sponsoring and propagating radical interpretations of its sacred texts, in an international conflict with wealthy powers, like the United States, proved to be disastrous. Both the United States and its Saudi partner have paid a high price for the unintended consequences of this misguided foreign policy. ...

 

How to Reverse Surge in Religious Hate Crime?
Dominic Casciani

Decades ago, the British extreme far right and fascism were the forces behind anti-Semitism. But on the face of it, the figures are now pointing to widespread anti-Jewish feelings among some Muslims in Britain. This analysis is shared by many leading progressive Muslim thinkers….

 

North Carolina Killings Not an Act of Terror?
Aijaz Zaka Syed

            

Comparisons are odious. But if all lives are equal in the eyes of the world, why do we not see the same global outrage and outpouring of grief and solidarity with the victims that one witnessed following the Charlie Hebdo carnage? Where are the righteous statements from London, Washington and Paris, condemning the act of terror in this case?....

 

Muslims and Extremism: A Difficult Dialogue
Jawad Iqbal

The bigger school of Islamic thought is believed to be that of the Deobandis, a conservative interpretation of Islamic law that governs teaching in almost half of Britain's mosques…..

 

Sources said the number of active supporters in this network could be higher. The group is working on the ground and not in cyber space as its members fear they could be easily tracked, the gathered inputs reveal….

 
Iraq's Kakais: 'We Want To Protect Our Culture'
Mohammed A Salih and Wladimir van Wilgenburg

Iraq's Kakais: 'We Want To Protect Our Culture'
Wladimir van Wilgenburg

The Kakai faith, also known as Yarsanism, is a syncretistic mystical faith that is believed to have originated in Kurdish dominated parts of western Iran in the 14th century. Its followers speak a dialect of Kurdish known as Gorani and are scattered across northern Iraq, Iran and many live in exile in Europe and North America....

 

How the Muslim Brotherhood Fits Into a Network of Extremism
Andrew Gilligan

It is expected to say that the Brotherhood, a multifaceted organisation, is not itself a terrorist group and should not be banned, a verdict most analysts agree with. However, the report will dismiss claims by the Brotherhood that there is “no evidence” of links between it and terrorism….

The War against Islamic State: It Will Be a Long Haul
The Economist

These setbacks may help explain the group’s turn to ever more ghoulish acts to bolster morale and keep up the flow of new recruits. That suggests an opportunity, says Mr Levitt. Stories are emerging of IS fighters who are killed or jailed by the group when they try to leave it, but they are not widely circulated. “We need [videos of] foreign fighters who have returned saying: ‘I went but was cleaning toilets;’......

 

We Must Take the Fight to ISIS’ Doorstep
Octavia Nasr

Reading between the shadows of busy bodies hopping on planes and serving diplomatic jargon to a media corps still in a deep coma, it seems that the west is desperately looking for a temporary solution. Maybe even a simple mending of its battered image. While ISIS distracts us with theatrics, tyrants run amok to keep their clout…

‘It Is Islam versus the Rest of the World’
Vikram Sood

Another definite yes as it follows from the right to free speech. The freedom to offend? The answer to this iffy and complex question is: perhaps. The fifth is freedom to practise one’s religion, adhere to one’s faith or practise no religion. The answer is yes. The right to get hurt by criticism? Yes. But the right to kill for that? A resounding no…..

Taliban and ISIS -- The Difference
Barrister Harun ur Rashid

Taliban and ISIS -- The Difference
Barrister Harun ur Rashid

ISIS is fighting more like a conventional army than al-Qaeda ever did. It has seized a large territory in northern Syria and Iraq and declared a caliphate there. ISIS is also employing more conventional military tactics, using assault rifles and grenades. Al-Qaeda has not sought to hold on to territory as much as it has been focused on carrying out spectacular attacks that would grab attention of international media...

 

Governments Mustn’t Be Lured Into an ISIS Trap
Fareed Zakaria

The many recent acts of terror committed in Europe don’t have behind them a coherent strategy. But they could make European governments and people treat all Muslims in Europe as suspicious and dangerous – and then the terrorists will have achieved an important goal....



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NEW COMMENTS

  • Ms Ayesha, Go back to my very first comment which says "Noor Zaheer is discussing real issues which require addressing but a solution is not ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • When I challenge you Mr Naseer, you blame me for 'presumptuous in the extreme'! Look at your responses from the very first answer and ...
    ( By Ayesha Hareem )
  • Further to my previous comment, a Muslim woman can own, inherit, sell, buy, bequeath property in her individual capacity. There are absolutely no barriers ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Sultan Shahin is back to his nonsensical rants and straw man arguments. He cannot tolerate any criticism of the US or of George Bush. He ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Apropos my earlier communication: Iftekhar Hai Saheb has sent an explanation to the why of his earlier question: Rafiq Saheb: All the questions I send ...
    ( By Sultan Shahin )
  • Lodhia Saheb, You have sent me a letter circulated by a concerned or, let me say, bewildered American Muslim activist, Mr. Iftekhar Hai, to ...
    ( By Sultan Shahin )
  • Yunus Sb, Also the point to be noted is that the Quran does not place any barriers constraining women’s active participation in commerce. A woman ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Sultan Shahin sahib is right. The only way for Indian Muslims to reform their personal laws is by bypassing the AIMPLB. The reformed Hindu ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Iftikhar Hai Saheb has clearly said "righteousness from Islamic perspective is to establish justice through the courts of laws." This clarification is important, as present ...
    ( By Sultan Shahin )
  • Has Hasnain joined the RSS?
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Wrongly placed emphasis on justice may lead to politicization of Islam and jehadism. Hence our concept of justice must emanate from our sense of ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The Agressors are the Saudis and their friends. Do read the excerpts from this documet: http://www.juancole.com/2015/05/strategic-against-assad.html Did the US DIA see ISIL as a strategic Ally against ...
    ( By Sajida )
  • Excellent article that gives a universal dimension to the core tenets of Islam by tabling comparative injunctions from other major religions. The Qur'an ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • Yunus Sb, I am quite aware of what George Bush said. I was in the US when this took place and am quite aware of ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Lothian Saheb has done well to remind us of the following quote from Dr. K. G. Saiyadain (May Almighty Allah rest his soul in ...
    ( By Sultan Shahin )
  • Responsibility of USA in creation of ISIS was accepted by no less a person than H.Clinton. All politicians are famous for double speak. Naseer ...
    ( By Listener )
  • Dear Sultan Shahin and Naseer Sahban! You should listen to George Bush's defense of Islam in the following link, made in the immediate aftermath of ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • Dear Naseer Sahab, I agree with your concluding remark: "Two witnesses is therefore the optimum number but if one of the witnesses is a female, ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • There is no end to the games one can play with identifying self serving key phrases in any verse ignoring the rest. The extremists do that.
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • key phrase in the verse is one man and two women.
    ( By zakaria virk )
  • m zindgi se bahut presan hu
    ( By baba talvar )
  • Ms Ayesha says: "Mr Naseer either you have not come across that particular verse of the Quran where it is mentioned or you are just ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Ms Ayesha, It is you who is running away. I have responded to one of your statements on what you think the Book decrees ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Mr Naseer either you have not come across that particular verse of the Quran where it is mentioned or you are just pretending to ...
    ( By Ayesha Hareem )
  • Well, Mr Naseer seems to be on war. Fine! Why are you glad by my statement where it says that I know my Islam ...
    ( By Ayesha Hareem )
  • kyon jhut bol rahe hain ahmad bhai. agar is guy ne kuch likha hai to saabit karke batao. dikhao wo newspapers jis me isne ...
    ( By Sami Ahmad )
  • This is exactly the problem with the feminists. They have a problem with those who show no sympathy and a problem with those who ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Yunus Sb, I have gone through whatever I could find on the www on the subject. It is a common mistake people make to say ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • "81% of Al Jazeera Arabic viewers support Islamic State victories in Syria and Iraq." This is not true. I read Aljazeera Arabic and what I ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus غلام غوث )
  • Isi ko kahte hain bhoot ke munh me Ran naam. This guy was vociferously writing in support of ISIS caliphate in Urdu newspapers. After ...
    ( By ahmad )
  • THE INTELLIGENCE OF ITS INTERPRETERS AND SCHOLARS Dear Yunus Saheb, Your most recent comment on the New Age Islam forum reads as follows: “The Qur’an ...
    ( By Mohammed Rafiq Lodhia )
  • Good article. Complements the following interpretation tabled in my jt. exegetic work under posting: "Commentators often quote the underlined Qur’anic injunction (2:282) to take two female ...
    ( By muhammad yunus )
  • Ayesha Hareem says "I understand your concern Mr Listener, but I don't need your sympathy!" So very true words. Sympathy, grace and mercy are sought ...
    ( By Listener )
  • Dear Ayesha, As-Salaam Alay-Kum First of all, I am impressed with your right to the point remark, “I know my Islam and my scriptures better than ...
    ( By Mohammed Rafiq Lodhia )
  • I understand your concern Mr Listener, but I don't need your sympathy! Mr Naseer, instead of blaming Noor or any woman who writes on ...
    ( By Ayesha Hareem )
  • "A poll conducted by Al-Jazeera’s Arabic News Desk revealed that a staggering 81% of Al Jazeera Arabic viewers support Islamic State victories in Syria ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Universl brotherhood based on a passion to do the right thing and to promote what is good and just is the true message of Islam.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Yes dear Listener you are very right. But unless the women realize that the Quran and Sunna is in their favour, they will ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Mohtrama, There is an article today in response to your statement: "The holy book also decrees that the testimony of a woman in a court of ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Gender issues are very real. It is really sad that Muslim males (not all for sure) generally don't think it is important. Ignoring the ...
    ( By Listener )