Why Islamists Will Lose
I've previously mentioned the Islamist Abu Yahya al-Liby in this blog, for he's the one who seems to have approved of human sacrifice in Islam. Here's what I wrote based on a statement from al-Liby translated by Memri:
In perusing words from the transcript of a statement by Al-Qaeda Member Al-Liby, I've come across another one of those jihadist remarks that seem to cast suicide jihadism in terms of human sacrifice, as indicated by this money quote:Now, thanks again to Memri, I've come upon another remarkably blunt statement by Al-Liby about jihad, a statement that he made in August 2007 in which he states rather too forthrightly for his own interests the real aim of Al-Qaeda:"this form of worship [i.e. jihad] can only exist through the blood of those who sacrifice their souls for [Islam]..."In effect, Al-Liby seems to be saying that the external, military jihad is a type of worship that takes the form of blood sacrifice through its martyrs.
We are not like those people who draw a distinction between types of jihad -- permitting and supporting it against the Jews in Palestine, and forbidding and preventing it in Iraq, Afghanistan, Chechnya, Algeria, and elsewhere. Jihad, which is the highest form of dissociation from non-Muslims, should be waged against the Jews, like it should be waged against the Christians, the Zoroastrians, the Hindus, and the apostates.In short, Al-Qaeda is after everybody who's either not Muslim or not Muslim enough. I guess that the attack on the World Trade Center wasn't specifically because of US foreign policy after all, for Al-Qaeda's jihad extends everywhere throughout the world.
We fight all the polytheists, just like they fight us all. We do not limit ourselves in this. We do not restrict ourselves to one type [of infidels] or to one region. This [jihad] will continue until they all submit to the religion of Allah, yield to its laws, and surrender to its rule.
Al-Liby is even thoughtful enough to explain the method:
Yes, we believe that the entire world must be ruled by Islam, and no grain of soil should be made an exception, because the Prophet Muhammad was sent to all people without exception. This does not mean, however, that we must fight all peoples of the world at once, in order to subject them to Islamic law. Islam did not command us to do so. Islam commanded us to fight the closest and then the next, from among the people who refuse to submit to the rule of Islam. We should move from the closest to the next, and widen the circle, until all people submit to the rule of Allah. We are now at the beginning of the road, when we try to regain the lands taken over by the infidels, from among the Jews, the Christians, their apostate supporters, and treacherous rulers.For al-Liby -- and I presume that he's speaking here for Al-Qaeda -- the jihad is religiously motivated, even religiously mandated, so any attack upon infidels follows primarily from the belief that infidels must submit to Islam.
Obviously, infidels aren't going to look very kindly upon Al-Qaeda after hearing statements of this sort. And since most Muslims aren't strict enough for Al-Qaeda's salafi brand of Islam, they'll probably react much as the Anbar tribes did in deciding to expell Al-Qaeda in Iraq from their midst. In Baghdad, too, some Muslims are strongly critical of what Al-Qaeda and other Islamist groups have been doing. According to an article in the New York Times, Muhammad Wehiab, a 30-year-old Shiite imam residing in the the Baghdad neighborhood of Bab al-Sheik, has expressed some radical views:
One of them is that Muslims have behaved terribly toward one another in the war here and have given Islam a bad name in using it to gain power. "I don't blame those guys who drew the cartoons," Wehiab said, referring to the Danish caricatures of the prophet Muhammad that provoked riots and protests across the Islamic world last year.In other words, the greatest jihad should be a struggle against one's own evil impulses. I don't assume that these two clerics reject the so-called 'lesser' jihad of military force, but give them credit for refusing to exculpate Muslims for the negative image of Islam that is currently developing in the world.
"Muslims are the ones to be blamed," he said, sitting in an armchair in his quiet living room. "They have given them this picture...."
Wehiab's friend, a Sunni cleric, holds a similar view. "The greatest jihad is the jihad of yourself." (Sabrina Tavernise and Karim Hilmi, "An oasis from politics amid the turmoil in Baghdad," The New York Times, November 13, 2007)
This negative image is widespread and will spread even more widely as people learn such statements as those by al-Liby about a religiously motivated jihad aimed at subjecting the entire world to salafi Islam.