Radical Islamism and Jihad
Kristin Christman, New Age Islam
If we honestly address legitimate concerns motivating ISIS violence, can we attract away from ISIS those followers who do not admire brutality and intolerance? Can we prove to ISIS followers they can achieve just goals without violence? Will our unilateral actions serve as a powerful role model and ease the tension that breeds violence and extremism?..
actually use modern Salafi Wahhabi Islamic texts to justify their actions.
Salafis reject centuries of Islamic philosophy and teachings, which approaches
the Quran as a spiritual treatise and not a political document. Dry, rigid Wahhabi
narratives do not leave room even for creative expressions of devotion,
destroying the rich and textured legacy of indigenous Muslim communities and
their local traditions.....
unchallenged by Muslim scholars, Western officials, media and intelligentsia
also coined phrases such as ‘countering violent extremism (CVE)’ — denoting
terrorism being perpetrated by Muslim attackers. To the misfortune of the
majority, the intelligentsia in Muslim societies kept parroting this
terminology. It failed even in drawing a distinction between
counter-radicalisation and deradicalisation.....
If and when the
Caliphate collapses, expect a wave of these people to spread all across the
region and beyond. But in the meantime, local self-starter cells are preparing
the way with attacks such as those in Indonesia, Paris, and the U.S. They seem
to be aware of the fact that this will be the most effective way to continue
their influence on the global state. So ISIS seems to be smelling its own
impending doom: we need to brace ourselves for what comes next.....
His sister and
parents, financially struggling refugees in a neighboring country, refuse to
talk about him. “What do you want to write, to give advice to others not to be
like him?” his sister said bitterly over the phone. “My brother was martyred,
and he was still normal,” she said. “May God accept him.”.....
There is no doubt that the fight against religious extremism in all its forms is a complex one with no single solution. While history has clearly shown that religions other than Islam, such as Christianity, can be weaponized in much the same way, radical Islam is a dangerous meme that is currently undergoing exponential growth. ...
...That country promotes a false understanding of Islam, persuading others to recognize them as the heart of Islam. With their wealth and oil power, they spread Wahhabi ideology, an ideology with roots in 18th-century, Arabian tribal traditions.
Last Sunday morning, even as the country’s attention was focused on the terror attack on the Indian Air Force base in Pathankot, another drama was unfolding in the Kaliachak area of Malda district in West Bengal. A mob, whose numbers are estimated at anything between 50,000 and over a lakh, first attacked the local police station, drove out the small police force, set fire to all the records in the thana and then proceeded to attack shops and set fire to as many vehicles it found in the vicinity....
These days, in-your-face extremism across the country is Bangladesh’s headlining global news alongside robust socio-economic growth, booming trade and worker remittances, and among the most successful rural credit networks in the world. ...
Hayder Al Khoei
In order to seriously tackle Islamist terrorism, Saudi Arabia would have to declare war against itself and fight the very same intolerant forces they support. This war would amount to suicide for the ruling Al-Saud family, who have been actively promoting an intolerant and violent form of Wahhabi Islam since the 18th century.
So does India really have the deadly threat posed by IS under control? If we are to believe the official assurances, we can feel justified in answering in the affirmative. But only the future will tell whether the country with the largest Muslim minority in the world will remain unaffected in the long term by an escalating confrontation that many have long since stylised as a global struggle between the West and Islam.
Asra Q. Nomani
If the alphabet soup of names is confusing, that’s because extremist Islamist ideologies, just like anything, are filled with competition, rivalries and power plays. One Facebook user takes a swath through the groups with this page: “We Sunnis Must Unite to Fight Wahabi/salafi/Deobandi Tablig jamat Terrorism.”
Tufail Ahmad, New Age Islam
Aarefa Johari wrote: "For Abdul Malik’s family, this is just one of the many perplexing questions…." Yes indeed, common Muslims get perplexed about this phenomenon of our times. Bibi Zohra is right too. Her son's story is indeed not a story about beef or cow slaughter ban. It is a story of radicalisation by Islamic scholars in India in favour of the global jihad being inspired by the ISIS, Al-Qaeda, the Taliban and their little-known cousins in our streets.
Jihadi terrorists, like the Islamic State (ISIS) and Al Qaeda, have discovered the Achilles heel of our Western societies: the fear of death. By stoking that fear through horrific attacks and macabre videos, the publicists of ISIS awaken and magnify it, leading otherwise sensible people in hitherto open societies to abandon their reason.
Osama bin Laden didn't claim to be descended from Muhammad. The Saudi religion didn't demand he be, any more than it had demanded Muhammad Ibn Saud to be. But, the 100% fundamentalists do demand it — and ISIS is 100%. (In fact, the Wahhabist “Hanbali” system of legislation demands everything fundamentalist but anointment-by-descent-from-the-prophet.) So: ISIS is a direct threat to the Sauds: it labels them “impostors” and “infidels.”.....
Threats of violence against freethinkers in Bangladesh were common, but at that point they had seldom been carried out. A rare exception was in February 2004, when Azad, then a professor at the University of Dhaka, was stabbed and critically wounded by radical Islamists near campus. ...
Tufail Ahmad, New Age Islam
The problem of Wahhabism is compounded by the fact that non-Muslim government officials, due to their lack of knowledge of Islam, are bound not to notice which mosques and madrasas belong to the Wahhabi sect. Across India, all mosques and madrasas are controlled by clerics who are ideologically affiliated to some or the other sect of Islam. Therefore, it is incumbent upon the Indian government to ensure that every mosque, madrasa or religious institution is registered with the government in the same way as non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are registered.
Tufail Ahmad, New Age Islam
are definitive signs that radicalisation of Indian Muslim youths in favour of
the Islamic State (ISIS) is increasing by the day. While concerns over
radicalisation of Muslims have been reported from many parts of India including
Assam, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Jammu & Kashmir, Maharashtra,
Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala, India needs to
focus its counter-radicalisation efforts on the two key regions surrounding Mumbai
and Hyderabad. During the course of 2014 and 2015, these are the two regions of
India that have emerged as a cause of concern due to pro-ISIS activities.....
“If you asked
these youths, they probably wouldn’t know who I am. This is not a matter of
provocation. When you present a new idea, or warn of certain disease and offer treatment
– of course it is painful. This is not a provocation. This is picking [at] the
wound. It is time to stop ignoring our wounds and pains just so we won’t
provoke anyone. You cannot go to a doctor, for example, and tell him not touch
your wound because it hurts. Of course it hurts. It is a wound, and it was
caused by many things. If you want to treat this wound, you must touch it and
deal with it directly. Unfortunately, we have not yet acknowledged the fact
that ISIS is an organization that only reaps what has previously been
Saudi Arabia has been bankrolling Islamist terrorism since the oil-price boom of the 1970s dramatically boosted the country's wealth. According to a 2013 European Parliament report, some of the US$10 billion (360 billion baht) invested by Saudi Arabia for "its Wahhabi agenda" in South and Southeast Asia was "diverted" to terrorist groups, including Lashkar-e-Taiba, which carried out the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.
It just so happens that Hashmi’s brand of Islam is identified by most Muslim laymen as belonging to the more conservative and literalist end of a particular sort of Islam called salafism. This term has become the catch-all phrase for explaining the ideological roots of pretty much all Muslim terrorist groups—from al-Qaida, to ISIS, to Boko Haram.
Kyle W. Orton
It’s true that disbanding the Iraqi Army after 2003 put professional soldiers at the service of the Sunni insurgency. It’s also true that Al Qaeda in Iraq — the small, foreign-led nucleus of what became the Islamic State — used poorly run American prisons like Camp Bucca to recruit former regime elements. But the significant fact is that those who assumed leadership roles in the Islamic State’s military council had been radicalized earlier, under Mr. Hussein’s regime.
...”The Islamist worldview is stagnant” because today’s followers “want women to live by 12th century standards.” She pointed out that women were honored and revered in Islam back to the days of the Prophet Mohammed. “Prophet Mohammed’s wife… was a businesswoman…his daughter Fatima was held up as an example of piety,” she said. Today, “Islamists insist on recreating the norms of the earlier eras,” Ispahani declared. “Groups such as ISIS have been able to recruit women who join extremist men in oppressing fellow women and even acting as facilitators of renewed slavery,”...
We don’t need to give Christians preference. But we should recognize that Middle Eastern Christians, along with Yazidis, Mandeans and others, are facing an ethnic cleansing, and that confronting this should be a global human rights priority. As we celebrate the holidays, let’s speak up for those for whom faith is a matter not of casual worship but of fear, rape and murder.
This is why the Islamic State’s religious ideology needs to be taken seriously. While it’s wrong to claim that the group’s thinking represents mainstream Islam, as Islamophobes so often do, it’s also wrong to pretend that the Islamic State has “nothing to do with Islam,” as many Islamophobia-wary Muslims like to say. Indeed, jihadist leaders are steeped in Islamic thought and teachings, even if they use their knowledge to perverse and brutal ends.