This article still tries to make Islam look like a good faith which has lost its way. Our contention here at VTB is that the Arab peoples where a civilizing influence overall and perhaps this articles claim that all Nobel Prizes would have gone to ‘Muslims’ in the year 1000 had they existed may be true. Islamic precepts where not enforced till after around 1100 AD generally speaking after which Muslims states or more properly, states who Mohamed’s armies had conquered and converted, universally fell to barbarism and primitivism.
Also the articles attempt to suggest jihad means anything other than use of force to make Islam the supreme law upon the world is laughable. Even so, its a good warning as to Islamic activities within Canada to encourage armed struggle for Islam over Canadian secular values.
On to the article:
Instead of condemning extremists, too many Muslim leaders are protecting them by hiding behind the supposed peaceful nature of ‘jihad’
Tarek Fatah and Salma Siddiqui, Citizen Special
Published: Thursday, July 24, 2008
‘Had there been Nobel Prizes in 1000, they would have gone almost exclusively to Muslims.” These are the words of Martin Kramer, a Jewish scholar of Islam and Arab history, published in the Jerusalem Post on Dec. 31, 1999.
The question that perplexes the world today is not just, “what happened to Muslim civilization and what caused its catastrophic decline in the millennium that followed?” but also, “why can’t Muslims recover?”
The recent exchange in the Citizen between two Muslim letter writers provides us with an answer.
The exchange was a window into the ongoing debate within the Muslim community for the very soul of Islam. Akbar Hussain had observed, “When the non-Muslim world says with clear conviction that Islam propagates extremism, Muslims all around the world, even the terrorists, cry foul, and declare that they are maligning Islam.”
Respondent Safaa Fouda protested: “Islam as a faith never made (its) followers extremists, extremism is an ideology that can emanate from any background be it religious, political, or cultural.” Ironically, she proved Akbar Hussain’s point by invoking Islam and quoting from the Koran to deflect criticism of Islamic extremists who openly march with an AK-47 in one hand and the Koran in the other.
Today, as Muslims struggle to find their bearings in a world that is leaving them behind in almost every aspect of life, a knee-jerk defensiveness will simply not work. The veil of deception that is being thrown over the actions and ideology of jihadis in our midst needs to be ripped off.
Instead of condemning the jihadis, too many Muslim leaders are defending them by hiding behind the supposed peaceful nature of “jihad.”
At every opportunity they get, Muslim leaders take to the pulpit and state with disarming smiles and polite language that jihad is a peaceful exertion of spiritual warfare waged against oneself — against one’s ego and against one’s evil intentions, a sort of a cleansing of the soul. This is all true, because the Prophet after returning from a battle told his colleagues: “You are returning from a lesser jihad to a greater jihad,” and when asked to clarify, he said the greater jihad “is the jihad against your passionate souls.”
However, make no mistake: the jihad that Osama bin Laden has launched against all of us is, unfortunately, the lesser jihad.
The jihad that Momin Khawaja talks about in his musings is the jihad of warfare as clearly enunciated by such 20th-century Islamists of the Muslim Brotherhood as Syed Qutb and Hassan al-Banna and Pakistan’s Syed Maudoodi.
This triad are ideological gurus of the world jihadi movements and their apologists in Canada. It is not what the Koran says that matters; it is how Mr. Qutb, Mr. Banna, and Mr. Maudoodi interpret the Koran for the jihadis that needs to be discussed.
In the fall of 2007, Islamists set up a stand at Toronto’s annual “Word on the Street” book festival where they distributed a free booklet titled Towards Understanding Islam, written by Mr. Maudoodi. In the booklet, Mr. Maudoodi exhorts ordinary Muslims to launch jihad, as in armed struggle, against non-Muslims.
“Jihad is part of this overall defense of Islam,” he writes. In case the reader is left with any doubt about the meaning of the word “jihad,” Mr. Maudoodi clarifies: “In the language of the Divine Law, this word [jihad] is used specifically for the war that is waged solely in the name of God against those who perpetrate oppression as enemies of Islam. This supreme sacrifice is the responsibility of all Muslims.”
Maudoodi goes on to label Muslims who refuse the call to armed jihad as apostates:
“Jihad is as much a primary duty as are daily prayers or fasting. One who avoids it is a sinner. His every claim to being a Muslim is doubtful. He is plainly a hypocrite who fails in the test of sincerity and all his acts of worship are a sham, a worthless, hollow show of deception.”
If Muslim countries do not go to war against the enemies of Islam, Mr. Maudoodi says a worldwide uprising by ordinary Muslims is the answer. He writes: “Muslims of the whole world must fight the common enemy.”
Does it surprise anyone that ordinary Muslims in Britain and Canada have rallied to his call and declared jihad against their own countries of birth?
If Mr. Maudoodi’s exhortations to jihad are not enough, we have the words of the late Hassan al-Banna being distributed in our schools and universities. Mr. Banna makes it quite clear that the word “jihad” means armed conflict. He mocks the concept of the lesser and greater jihad, suggesting that this theory is a conspiracy so that “Muslims should become negligent.”
In addition, here is what Mr. Qutb, another Egyptian stalwart of the Islamist movement and the Muslim Brotherhood, writes in his classic book Milestones:
“Any place where Islamic Shariah is not enforced and where Islam is not dominant becomes the Home of Hostility (Dar-ul-Harb). … A Muslim will remain prepared to fight against it, whether it be his birthplace or a place where his relatives reside or where his property or any other material interests are located.”
Syed Qutb reduces the message of Islam to the rejection of all laws made by parliaments. He says: “The basis of the message [Islam] is that one should accept the Shariah without any question and reject all other laws in any shape or form. This is Islam.”
Unless the leaders of Canadian mosques as well as the Islamic organizations denounce the doctrine of jihad as pronounced by the Muslim Brotherhood, and distance themselves from the ideology of Mr. Qutb, Mr. Banna and Mr. Maudoodi, the propaganda that “jihad means peace” will be meaningless.
It will merely reinforce the suspicions of many Canadians who feel some overseas groups are pulling the strings in this carefully staged puppet show.
Tarek Fatah is the author of Chasing a Mirage: The Tragic Illusion of an Islamic State.
E-mail: [email protected].
Salma Siddiqui is an Ottawa businesswoman and vice-president of the Muslim Canadian Congress.