Jihad is spreading violence — and succeeding. “Of the last sixteen years,” notes Ayaan Hirsi Ali in her new book, The Challenge of Dawa, “the worst year for terrorism was 2014, with ninety-three countries experiencing attacks and 32,765 people killed.”
“The second worst was 2015, with 29,376 deaths. Last year, four radical Islamic groups were responsible for 74 percent of all deaths from terrorism: the Islamic State (also known as ISIS), Boko Haram, the Taliban, and al-Qaeda. Although the Muslim world itself bears the heaviest burden of jihadist violence, the West is increasingly under attack”.
Hirsi Ali’s research, supported by the Hoover Institution, is a summary of the war on terror since the extremist Muslim attacks on the United States in September 2001:
“Since 9/11, at least $1.7 trillion has been spent on combat and reconstruction costs in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. The total budgetary cost of the wars and homeland security from 2001 through 2016 is more than $3.6 trillion. Yet in spite of the sacrifices of more than 5,000 armed service personnel who have lost their lives since 9/11, today political Islam is on the rise around the world”.
According to Hirsi Ali, the West is “obsessed” with terror and this makes it blind to the broader threat, dawa, outreach: the ideology behind the terror attacks.
How large is the worldwide jihadist movement? More than we thought.
“In Pakistan alone, where the population is almost entirely Muslim, 13 percent of Muslims surveyed—more than 20 million people—said that bombings and other forms of violence against civilian targets are often or sometimes justified in order to defend Islam from its enemies… According to one estimate, 10−15 percent of the world’s Muslims are Islamists. Out of well over 1.6 billion, or 23 percent of the globe’s population, that implies more than 160 million individuals”.
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The Muslim Brotherhood classifies as one of their great intellectual leaders Imam Mohammed al-Ghazali (1917-1996). He famously decreed that the assassination of the Egyptian Muslim thinker, Farag Foda, was acceptable. In the views of al-Ghazali, Farag Foda was an apostate for defending secular values and human rights. Moreover, al-Ghazali went into an Egyptian court and defended the assassins: “Anyone who openly resisted the full imposition of Islamic law,” he said, “was an apostate who should be killed either by the government or by devout individuals.” He added: “There is no penalty in Islam to kill the apostate by yourself when the government fails to do so.”
In public libraries across Canada (and elsewhere), the books of Imam al-Ghazali are available, along with others that incite hatred, violence and terror, by authors such as Yusuf al-Qaradawi and Imam Nawawi. There is not a single Arabic language book in a library that I have visited in Ottawa that attacks or criticizes terrorism and violence and hatred.
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Democratic politicians eager to stand in solidarity with the Muslim community and speak against hate Democratic politicians eager to stand in solidarity with the Muslim community and speak against hate in the wake of the recent heated presidential election threw their support behind some of its most extreme elements.
Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring, together with local Democratic politicians from Northern Virginia, made this evident when they showed up at a Veterans Day event at the Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Center in Falls Church, Va.
Dar al-Hijrah stands in infamy as the mosque attended by two of the 9/11 hijackers and where the late Al-Qaida terrorist leader Anwar Awlaki served as an imam. A 2002 U.S. Customs and Border Protection database report obtained by the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) described Dar al-Hijrah as a “front for Hamas operatives in [the] U.S.” A 2007 report said the “mosque has been under numerous investigations for financing and [providing] aid and comfort to bad orgs and members.”
The Washington Post noted in 2011 that “almost no other mosque in the country has been linked to so many cases of alleged terrorism.”
Numerous convicted terrorists previously attended the mosque. These include:
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If there is one question that most concerns the public around the question of radical Islam it is “What is the connection between the extremists and the moderates?” Leading politicians across the Western world have not been much help in answering this question, insisting as they do, that radical Islam has nothing to do with Islam and that the extremists are as far away from the moderates as it is possible to be. Yet the public senses that this is not the case.
Despite the amazing lack of public debate about the actual contours of the discussion, the public knows that something is not right about the analysis provided by Liberal politicians and others. Indeed, the public notices not only that there is some connection between the two (something Democrats in the U.S., among others, deny) but that the connection may be closer than anyone would like. A fine example of this was thrown up in the UK this week in the space of just 24 hours.
On Friday the London Evening Standard carried a story about the police launching a possible “hate crime” investigation into literature that the paper had discovered being handed out at a London mosque. The potential “hate crime” was not even the best known variety — a mean Tweet or a nasty comment — but the sort of thing we used to call “incitement.” The literature being handed out at a mosque in Walthamstow consisted of a booklet which insisted that “any Muslim should kill” anyone who insults the Prophet of Islam. Those who insult the main man “must be killed,” it repeated.
The pamphlet backed up this point of view with reference to classical Islamic law and explained that in the case of those who “insult” Mohammed, such as apostates who “deserve to be assassinated,” it was not necessary to wait for any court or court judgement to rule. Better just to get on with it on your own, was the gist.
In a case that is becoming increasingly familiar to indigenous British people as much as it is to British Pakistanis, the booklet referred to the seminal case of Mumtaz Qadri, the Pakistani man who in 2011 murdered Salman Taseer, the governor of Pakistan’s Punjab province. Qadri murdered Taseer because of the latter’s support for the reform of Pakistan’s strict Islamic blasphemy laws. The booklet explains that “all Muslims should support” the assassin Qadri and that even being what the publication calls “a big shot” like Taseer should not protect someone from being killed by any Muslim who feels like it.
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No one should be surprised that this kind of thing is happening in Britain. It’s going to happen a great deal more, too, because the death penalty for apostasy is part of Islamic law. It’s based on the Qur’an: “They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause of Allah. But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them and take not from among them any ally or helper.” (Qur’an 4:89)
A hadith depicts Muhammad saying: “Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him” (Bukhari 9.84.57). The death penalty for apostasy is part of Islamic law according to all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence.
This is still the position of all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence, both Sunni and Shi’ite. Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the most renowned and prominent Muslim cleric in the world, has stated: “The Muslim jurists are unanimous that apostates must be punished, yet they differ as to determining the kind of punishment to be inflicted upon them. The majority of them, including the four main schools of jurisprudence (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, and Hanbali) as well as the other four schools of jurisprudence (the four Shiite schools of Az-Zaidiyyah, Al-Ithna-‘ashriyyah, Al-Ja’fariyyah, and Az-Zaheriyyah) agree that apostates must be executed.”
Qaradawi also once famously said: “If they had gotten rid of the apostasy punishment, Islam wouldn’t exist today.”
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