• It is the duty of every Muslim to wage constitutional struggle

Al Qaeda and Dáesh have been projecting themselves as champions of the Muslims and deny their links with terrorism. Actions speak louder than words. Al Qaeda enraged the wrath of the west by attacking the twin towers in New York and targeting US embassies in various locations. Resultantly, the US mustered international support and, along with the NATO forces, invaded first Afghanistan, which had provided safe asylum to Osama bin Laden, the founder of al Qaeda and later Iraq. Both countries are in ruins.

Al Qaeda’s remnants morphed into an even more terrible demonic force known as Dáesh and wreaked havoc in Syria and Iraq, killing and maiming Muslims by the thousands. Dáesh has numerous names. It is known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the Islamic Caliphate, as well as the Islamic State (IS). It is a terrorist group insurgent, which is basically fundamentalist jihadist Wahabi (Takfiri) in nature. It was formed by radical extremist Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who in June 2014 proclaimed the caliphate from the Iraqi city of Mosul, demanding allegiance to all Muslims. At its full extent of might, it controlled a vast expanse of territory in Iraq and Syria along with major cities like Fallujah, Mosul and Al-Raqqa. It even found access to the oil and gas resources of Iraq and Syria as well as the historical artifacts, which it sold in the black market to finance its operations.

Most of the territory under the control of Dáesh has been retaken by coalition forces but not before a huge toll of lives in the region. At its peak, numerous educated youth from the Muslim world as well as from the USA, UK and even distant Australia joined the Dáesh. A large number of them, especially women, became disillusioned with the harsh and extremist ideology. What is ironic is that despite being in control of vast territories, weapons and resources in Syria and Iraq, neither al Qaeda nor Dáesh ventured to support the Muslims in neighbouring Palestine, who have been brutalised by Israel for decades.
It is a quirk of fate that Dáesh instead of supporting downtrodden Muslims like the Palestinians or Kashmiris in securing their rights, have either remained oblivious to their plight or as is the case in Palestine, they have opposed and even attacked the Hamas

It is a quirk of fate that Dáesh instead of supporting downtrodden Muslims like the Palestinians or Kashmiris in securing their rights, have either remained oblivious to their plight or as is the case in Palestine, they have opposed and even attacked the Hamas.

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Dáesh should be condemned on large scale for declaring war against Hamas so that the youth of Muslim countries can become more aware of wrong motives of terrorist outfits. Terror mongers have been promoting attacks against the state and the armed forces of Pakistan. As many as 182 religious scholars have issued an edict (Fatwa) to eradicate terrorism from the country. Through the narrative titledPaigham-e-Pakistan, the religious scholars have said that to declare the government and armed forces as non-Muslim is not only haram but also a sin. The implementation of the Islamic provisions of the Constitution is the responsibility of the government.

In order to fulfill this responsibility, it is the duty of every Muslim to wage constitutional struggle. But to raise militant groups or engage in an armed rising against the forces is not only forbidden but Fassad fil ard (mischief on earth) and the traditions of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) prohibit it. Those people who participate in armed revolt and support the terrorists they refute the teachings of the Holy Prophet (pbuh). With regard to suicide bombers the Fatwa quotes the traditions and declare that even the funeral prayer of the dead person committing suicide is forbidden to be offered.

The government and the armed forces can fight against the revolutionaries/insurgents. It is rather incumbent upon them to take action. The state operation with regard to this purpose is legal Jihad. Sectarian tendencies must be curbed. Ideological differences exist and must be tolerated. But it’s necessary to keep the differences within the limits. The Fatwa issued by them against terrorism is the need of the hour.

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The people should understand that killing of anyone on the basis of faith or sect is not the right thing. Killing of one human being is equated to the killing of the entire humanity. If you save one person’s life it is as if you have saved the entire humanity.The fatwa of ulema of Paigham-e-Pakistan has made it clear that declaring Jihad is the prerogative of the state itself. The council based its Fatwa on the interpretation of two verses of the holy Quran:

“Fight in the way of Allah those who fight you but do not transgress. Indeed. Allah does not like transgressors,” 2:190. And “whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption [done] in the land – it is as if he had slain mankind entirely,” 5:32.

The council explained the definition of jihad as: “The jihad against oneself through education, purification of the soul and assuming responsibility; Jihad by thinking through the shaping of the mind so as to serve the interests of humanity; Jihad through writing, through the publication of useful work, the writing of articles illuminating and refuting accusations against Islam and Muslims; And Jihad with money, through the generous spending for the wellbeing of the nation and contributing to its socio-economic developments.

It has been clarified by the council that Jihad with weapons, is justified for Muslims “only in cases of extreme necessity when attacked by their enemies and that all peaceful means have failed.” Even in this case, the council added that the proclamation of jihad falls within the exclusive purview of the great Imam to whom Islam has given the right to proclaim, to call and organize it. Therefore, “Islam does not allow any individual or group to declare jihad on its own,” added the fatwa.

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It is abundantly clear that whenever the groups or the individuals tried to misuse the concept of jihad, they were known to be Khawarij and were eliminated.

Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, warned his followers of a group of people who would arise after his death. The Prophet mentioned their arrival and characteristics: They would worship so much that “you shall consider your worship and your prayer and your recitation of the Qur’an to be nothing compared to theirs.” Meaning, their outward actions, like praying and reciting the Qur’an, would be on overdrive. And yet…“They shall recite the Qur’an but it will not leave their throats.” Meaning that their understanding of the Qur’an will not go any farther than their recitation, and they will not have religious knowledge or insight. “They are calling to the book of Allah, but they have nothing to do with the book of Allah.” Meaning their call is great, but their actions are terrible. “They are speaking the best speech that you will ever hear of any man. But they will leave Islam like an arrow leaves its prey.”

Surely enough, less than 20 years after the death of The Prophet, this group came into being.

It is believed that it was a Khawarij who assassinated the fourth Caliph of Islam Hazrat Ali. It is thus imperative to beware of the myopic approach of al Qaeda and Dáesh who are leading the Muslims astray.

Sultan M Hali
The writer is a former PAF Group Captain-turn-practicing journalist. He contributes to the print media, conducts a TV show and produces documentaries. He may be contacted at: [email protected]

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