CHARLOTTE, N.C., July 14, 2014 — When the sun goes down in Israel these days, the all-night fireworks show begins.
Only in that part of the world the sparklers that light up the sky bring the prospect of death, mayhem and destruction instead of “oohs” and “aahs.”
Meanwhile, in what used to be Syria and Iraq, the Islamic State continues its brazen march toward a new caliphate.
For the moment, Egypt and Libya are quiet by comparison, but “quiet” is really only a matter of degree.
Given all the chaos that perpetually disrupts the region, the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) has published a lengthy article which closely examines how and why jihadi organizations are “using verses from the Koran to advance the cause of jihad and influence Muslim youth.” The information is not new nor does it offer any great revelations, but it does provide in graphic details in a single document what Islamist groups are attempting to accomplish.
Far too often the Prophet Muhammad gets a pass for the role he played in what is now entering 1,500 years of global terror. The MEMRI article “sheds light on how liberal arguments regarding Islam, jihad, and Prophet Muhammad’s historical role are being countered by the jihadi organizations, which cite verses from the Koran and early Islamic traditions in their support.”
The document is well worth reading and saving as a reference for future understanding of how Islamic jihad is progressing at a far greater pace than we realize and how the avalanche of extremism is growing by the out of control indoctrination of impressionable youths.
As the introduction explains, “Over the last decade, children, who are as innocent as angels, have increasingly been used for executing terror attacks in Afghanistan, mainly for suicide attacks. The trend, which was actually initiated by Al-Qaeda, has gained greater focus of the Taliban in the recent years. The Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan are bribing starving children as young as eight-years-old to plant deadly roadside booby traps, be decoys in ambushes, and even act as suicide bombers.”
One example of how children are brainwashed by the Taliban for suicide missions is “they are given amulets containing verses from the Koran by Taliban commanders, who tell them they will be protected from the explosion.”
Children who are playing real life video games with live ammunition and being told that they will be rewarded by Allah for their “goodness.”
As recently as April of this year, Haji Omar Khattab, the emir of the Mahaz, recited to his followers Chapter (Surah) 9: Verse 111 of the Koran which says, “God has purchased from the faithful their lives and worldly goods, and in return has promised them the Garden. They will fight for the cause of God.”
The verse is self-explanatory, but given the ignorance of many of his followers Khattab clarified its meaning, “The aforementioned verse shows that those waging jihad for the supremacy of Kalmat-ul-Allah (the word of Allah) will be given paradise. Entering paradise is a big success which can only be achieved through jihad. A Muslim who wages jihad is bestowed with two titles – hero or martyr. Both positions are esteemed.”
The word “jihad” has two important distinctions in Islam. “Jihad” means struggle. Thanks to the multitude of terrorist events over the past decade, “jihad” has come to generally mean “armed fighting.”
In Islam, however, “jihad” also means a “personal struggle in which a person strives to reform their individual character and soul.”
MEMRI clearly states that “jihad” as referenced in its article only focuses upon the first definition which relates to militant activities.
Defining the context of its research MEMRI goes on to say “Relying mainly on South Asian jihadi media sources, it (the article) examines how terrorist groups interpret some of the verses regarding jihad to influence Muslim youth. The meaning of verses cited in this paper, therefore, is the meaning attached to those verses by the Islamic terrorist groups.”
The introduction concludes with a statement that is important to understand before reading the paragraphs that follow. “As jihadi terror attacks continue in several Islamic countries, the message of peace offered by liberal interpretations of Koranic verses seems to be lost. Although liberal commentators argue that jihadists are inspired by radical Egyptian teacher Sayyed Qutb and Pakistani cleric Maulana Abul Aa’la Maududi among others, it doesn’t appear that the jihadists are quoting these writers; most of the jihadist literature essentially cites the Koran and the Hadiths.”
Sayyed Qutb was one of the most influential members of the Muslim Brotherhood in the mid-20th century.
Maulana Abul Aa’la Maududi was the founder of the Islamic revivalist party and a leading Islamist philosopher in India, and later Pakistan in the late 1970s.
Why is the MEMRI distinction so important? Because as influential as Qutb, Aa’la Maududi and others like them have been, the Koran and the Hadiths link directly back to the Prophet Muhammad, and it is his words and deeds that still control the minds of extremists who will stop at nothing less than global domination.
Fifteen centuries after his death, Muhammad speaks to Islamic extremists from the grave. It is important to understand that it is Muhammad’s message that defines the tents of Islam and the MEMRI paper is a great place to begin to gain that understanding.
Bob Taylor has been traveling the world for more than 30 years as a writer and award winning television producer focusing on international events, people and cultures around the globe. Taylor is founder of The Magellan Travel Club (www.MagellanTravelClub.com)
Read more of What in the World and Bob Taylor at Communities Digital News. Follow Bob on Twitter @MrPeabod