"FAIZABAD, Afghanistan - A group of Afghan Muslim clerics threatened on Sunday to call for a holy war against the United States in three days unless it hands over military interrogators reported to have desecrated the Koran...

“If that does not happen within three days, we will launch a jihad against America,” said a statement issued by about 300 clerics..."

- Reuters, May 2005

MADRID - Jose Maria Aznar, former Spanish prime minister, defended Pope Benedict XVI's comments about Islam, saying on Friday the pontiff had no need to apologise...

Referring to the Moorish conquest of much of the Iberian Peninsula from the eighth to the 15th century, Aznar said:

"It is interesting to note that while a lot of people in the world are asking the Pope to apologise for his speech, I have never heard a Muslim say sorry for having conquered Spain and occupying it for eight centuries."

- Gulf News, 9/27/06

Blood must flow. There must be widows, there must be orphans.

...We conquer the land of the infidels, and we spread Islam by calling the infidels to Allah."

- Fayiz Azzam, 1990

"On a barren stretch of road in northern Iraq, a dog rigged with explosives approaches a group of Iraqi police officers. Detonated by remote control, the bomb tears the dog apart but doesn't harm the cops…

[Sunni Arab Abdel Salam Kubaisi] called the practice un-Islamic. "Our religion does not permit us to hurt animals"..."

- Newsday, 8/15/05

"Young girls in Indonesia were recently beheaded by Muslim murderers.

Last year, Muslims — in the name of Islam — murdered hundreds of schoolchildren in Russia.

While reciting Muslim prayers, Islamic terrorists take foreigners working to make Iraq free and slaughter them.

Muslim daughters [across the world] are murdered by their own families in the thousands in "honor killings."

And the Muslim government in Iran has publicly called for the extermination of Israel.

...Hundreds of millions of non-Muslims want honest answers to these questions, even if the only answer you offer is, "Yes, we have real problems in Islam."

Such an acknowledgment is infinitely better — for you and for the world — than dismissing us as anti-Muslim. We await your response."

- Dennis Prager

SUBURBAN Islamic cleric Abdul Nacer Benbrika wanted to kill 1000 Australians to "please Allah" and had the support of a blond recruit who had pledged violent jihad during a meeting with Osama bin Laden.

...Religious handbooks found allegedly included one entitled The Islamic Ruling with Regard to the Killing of Women, Children and the Elderly in a Situation of War, and another called The Virtues of Martyrdom in the Path of Allah.

- The Australian, 7/25/06


Islam and jihad
9) What is jihad - in their words?


"You infidels and despots, we will continue our jihad and never stop until God avails us to chop your necks and raise the fluttering banner of monotheism, when God's rule is established governing all people and nations."

- Mujahedeen Shura Council, 2006

"...[W]e will stand against the whole world and will not cease until the annihilation of all [infidels].

...Either we shake one another's hands in joy at the victory of Islam in the world, or all of us will turn to eternal life and martyrdom."

-- Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini


What is jihad?

Some insist jihad means "struggle", referring to a personal internal struggle to make one's self a better person; others say it means "holy war". The word basically transliterates to the phrase 'struggle in the path of Allah'. So given that there are different sects within Islam, it might legitimately be interpreted both ways.

However, when persons like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or Abu Musab al-Zarqawi threaten jihad with clenched fists over some unmet demand, they aren't vowing to unleash a self-improvement seminar. When newspapers report on "jihadists" arrested for bombings or beheadings, they're not talking about self-help gurus like Oprah, Rosie, or Dr. Phil.

Jihad, the jihad that shaped the Middle East over a thousand years ago, the jihad on the increase today, is war and armed intimidation in pursuit of religious, financial, and political conquest.

As to whether violent jihad originates more from Muhammad's writings, or Muhammad's traditions, or Muhammad's successors, someone else may judge; those seem to be the contested origins.

"Those who study jihad will understand why Islam wants to conquer the whole world. … Islam says: Whatever good there is exists thanks to the sword and in the shadow of the sword! People cannot be made obedient except with the sword! The sword is the key to paradise, which can be opened only for holy warriors!"

- Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini

In their own words

The Saudi government "called on everyone to realize that terrorism has no religion or nationality", said a cabinet statement carried by the official SPA news agency.

It "warned against hurling charges of terrorism and fascism at Muslims without regard to the spotless history of Islamic civilization", the statement said.

- Yahoo News, 8/15/06

As far as history is concerned, I will grant that Islamic civilization has at least been consistent. Whether we're talking about Muhammad himself, Umar bin al-Khattab, al-Zarqawi, bin Abd Al-Rahman Al-’Arifi, Sheik Mukhlas, Osama bin Laden, or the Mujahedeen Shura Council, self-proclaimed Islamic spokesmen continue to threaten the world with the same bellicose ultimatum they always have:

A). Believe, pay, and submit, or...

B). Pay and submit, or...

C). Die.

Is that an overreaction on my part to a religion I do not understand? Consider:

"Summon the people to [Allah]; those who respond to your call, accept [conversion] from them... but those who refuse must pay the poll tax out of humiliation and lowliness. (Qur'an 9:29) If they refuse this, it is the sword without leniency."

- Umar bin al-Khattab, AD 636

"We will control the land of the Vatican; we will control Rome and introduce Islam in it. Yes, the Christians ... will yet pay us the Jiziya, in humiliation, or they will convert to Islam..."

- Saudi Sheikh Muhammad bin Abd Al-Rahman Al-’Arifi,
Imam of the mosque of King Fahd Defense Academy, April 2005


The similarities between these statements reveal that certain forces today wish to continue the same extortion and imposition of Islam as was practiced over a millennia ago. Thus knowing jihad's place in history is as foundational to understanding the medieval Crusades as it is to understanding tomorrow's headlines.

So let's accept that Saudi challenge to consider Islamic history before drawing conclusions and let jihadists speak for themselves. In addition to the links above and quotes to the left, here are more references (in roughly chronological order) spanning from Muhammad circa AD 620 to November of 2006:

So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them;

- Qur'an sura 9:5

"Fight against those who disbelieve in Allah. Make a holy war... When you meet your enemies who are polytheists, invite them to three courses of action... Invite them to (accept) Islam; if they respond to you, accept it from them and desist from fighting against them.

...If they refuse to accept Islam, demand from them the Jizya. If they agree to pay, accept it from them and hold off your hands.

If they refuse to pay the tax, seek Allah's help and fight them."

- Sahih Muslim, Book 019, Number 4294

"I call you to God and to Islam. If you respond to the call, you are Muslims: You obtain the benefits they enjoy and take up the responsibilities they bear. If you refuse, then [you must pay] the jizyah. If you refuse the jizyah, I will bring against you tribes of people who are more eager for death than you are for life."

- Khalid al-Walid, mid 600s

"Jihad is a precept of Divine institution... We Malikis maintain that it is preferable not to begin hostilities with the enemy before having invited the latter to embrace the religion of Allah except where the enemy attacks first. They have the alternative of either converting to Islam or paying the poll tax (jizya), short of which war will be declared against them."

- Ibn Abi Zayd al-Qayrawani, late 900s

"Second, those whom the invitation to Islam has not reached…it is forbidden to…begin an attack before explaining the invitation to Islam to them, informing them of the miracles of the Prophet and making plain the proofs so as to encourage acceptance on their part; if they still refuse to accept after this, war is waged against them..."

- al-Mawardi, mid 1000s

"...one must go on jihad (i.e., warlike razzias or raids) at least once a year…one may use a catapult against them [non-Muslims] when they are in a fortress, even if among them are women and children. One may set fire to them and/or drown them…If a person of the Ahl al- Kitab [People of The Book -Jews and Christians, typically] is enslaved, his marriage is [automatically] revoked…One may cut down their trees [means of livelihood]… One must destroy their useless books. Jihadists may take as booty whatever they decide…"

- al-Ghazali, late 1000s

"It is not lawful to make war upon any people who have never before been called to the faith, without previously requiring them to embrace it, because the Prophet so instructed… If the infidels, upon receiving the call, neither consent to it nor agree to pay capitation tax, it is then incumbent on the Muslims to call upon God for assistance, and to make war upon them...; the Prophet, moreover, commands us so to do."

- Hidayah of Shaikh Burhanuddin Ali of Marghinan
late 1100s

"In the Muslim community, the holy war is a religious duty, because of the universalism of the Muslim mission and (the obligation to) convert everybody to Islam either by persuasion or by force."

- Ibn Khaldun, late 1300s

"We have ruled the world before, and by Allah, the day will come when we will rule the entire world again... except for the Jews... The day will come when everything will be relieved of the Jews... Listen to the Prophet Muhammad, who tells you about the evil end that awaits Jews. The stones and trees will want the Muslims to finish off every Jew."

- Sheik Ibrahim Mudeiris, 2005

"Islam is in fundamental, even mortal, conflict with the rest of the world."

- Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, 5/25/05

"As the Prophet Muhammad said, Jihad is the pinnacle of Islam."

- Sheik Abdallah Basfar, 9/22/05

HOST: "What can the West, especially the US, do to make the world more peaceful?"

ABB: "They have to stop fighting Islam. That's impossible because it is sunnatullah (destiny, a law of nature), as Allah has said in the Qur'an. If they want to have peace, they have to accept to be governed by Islam."

HOST: "So this fight will never end?"

ABB: "Never. This fight is compulsory. Muslims who don't hate America sin."

-- Interview with Indonesian Islamic leader
Abu Bakr Bashier, The First Post, 10/4/05

Osama bin Laden wants the United States to convert to Islam, ditch its constitution, abolish banks, jail homosexuals and sign the Kyoto climate change treaty. The first complete collection of the Saudi's statements published today portrays a world in which Islam's enemies will take the first steps towards salvation by embracing the "religion of all the Prophets".

- UK Telegraph, 11/18/05

President Ahmadinejad's letter to President Bush, widely interpreted as a peaceful overture, is in fact a declaration of war. The key sentence in the letter is the closing salutation..."Vasalam Ala Man Ataba'al hoda." What this means is "Peace only unto those who follow the true path."

It is a phrase with historical significance in Islam, for, according to Islamic tradition, in year six of the Hejira - the late 620s - the prophet Mohammad sent letters to the Byzantine emperor and the Sassanid emperor telling them to convert to the true faith of Islam or be conquered. The letters included the same phrase that President Ahmadinejad used to conclude his letter to Mr. Bush. For Mohammad, the letters were a prelude to a Muslim offensive, a war launched for the purpose of imposing Islamic rule over infidels.

- New York Sun, 5/11/06

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said here Thursday that his letter to President George W. Bush did not concern the nuclear dossier, but rather was an invitation to Islam and the prophets culture.

..."The letter was an invitation to monotheism and justice, which are common to all divine prophets. If the call is responded positively, there will be no more problems to be solved," added the president. The president said that the letter actually contained a clear message of invitation to human beliefs, adding that its response will determine the future.

- IRNA.com, 5/12/06

DUBAI - Al Qaeda called on non-Muslims especially in the United States to convert to Islam and abandon their 'misguided' ways or else suffer, according to a video tape posted on a Web site on Saturday.

- Reuters, 8/5/06

"I swear by God we shall not rest from jihad until we...blow up the filthiest house known as the White House."

- audio recording by the leader of Iraq's al Qaeda wing, 11/13/06

From all I have seen, it is impossible to accept the interpretation that jihad only means "peaceful inner struggle". Just exchange those three words for "jihad" in any of the above quotes and judge for yourself.

There are groups, like the Saudi-funded CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations), that still insist jihad has nothing to do with violence, but the only people it seems they're trying to convince of that are non-Muslims. Groups like CAIR (recently found to be an unindicted co-conspirator in terrorist activities) cannot be ignorant of the fact Muhammad's calls for violence during his Medina years abrogated his Mecca preachings of tolerance and peace.

Still, IF true jihad actually opposes everything quoted above, against forced conversions, kidnappings, lootings and beheadings, and against the literal quranic rendering in nearly every single passage in which it's discussed, then it isn't the West that needs to hear it.

CAIR and like-minded groups, IF they're sincere and not just practicing al-Taqiyya, must take their jihad-means-peace message to the jihadists.

CAIR preaches tolerance on CNN... do they preach tolerance on Al-Jazeera? They try hard to calm U.S. Senators... do they try as hard to calm al-Qaida fighters? Until they do, they are effectively no more than a fifth column planted in western civilization to encourage tolerance of Islam's disjointed but incremental subjugation of the world.

Very little seems peaceful about Islam, the so-called religion of peace, and we haven't even discussed the rules for beating your wives, honor killings, death sentences for rape victims, public amputations for petty thieves, maiming of child felons, suicide bombings, or the ever-popular "death to America" rant.

Forget Danish cartoons of Muhammed and the murderous riots that followed. Forget false claims of Qur'an mishandling and murderous riots that followed. Forget papal suggestions that Muslims are inclined towards hostility and the murderous riots that followed. Just listen to what jihadists themselves are saying, and judge the inner peacefulness of their jihad for yourself.

"I was hungry. I would have loved to eat an ice cream. When I saw it, my mouth fell open. I dropped the ice cream. I canceled my order. That was the defining moment of my life. The Burger King logo is there in Arabic. "Allah" is spelled exactly how it is there, and the Burger King logo is where the ominah should be. Why, there is no way it could be a coincidence.

...What angers me most is that most people, once they have finished with it, they look at it and say, "Nice cone. Nice design. Nice cone design." They chuck it away. That is disrespectful.

...Even though it means nothing to some people and may mean nothing to some Muslims in this country, this is my jihad. I'm not going to rest until I find the person who is responsible. I'm going to bring this country down."

- Rashad Akhtar, UK Telegraph 5/25/05


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NEXT: Jihad - the first 1,300 years


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The call to jihad by bin Laden, by Hamas, by Hezbollah, by Islamic Jihad, and by countless sheiks and imams have at least this in common: the goal of killing off non-Muslims (infidels).

They all, rightly or wrongly, interpret Islam and the Qur'an, Hadiths, and Sunnahs to divinely mandate this fatal solution.

This belief is not only in-line with the historical interpretation of jihad, it may be the dominant interpretation still.















"One of the radical groups operating on the Temple Mount is Hizab Altahrir... The party puts Islamic revolution and an uncompromising form of Jihad at the top of its political agenda.

The group advocates subjecting the entire world to Islamic law, and destroying non-believing nations and religions."

- Arutz Sheva News