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Subject: Let's call Terrorists What they Really Are- Islamic Jihadists
swhitebull    2/19/2004 9:14:09 PM
from Jihad: The Real Terrorist Enemy By Robert Spencer | February 19, 2004 A vote for Bush or Kerry will be a vote for or against the war on terror. Kerry, of course, has already famously said, "I think there has been an exaggeration" of the terror threat by the Bush White House. Others on the Left go even farther, complaining that the word terrorism itself is being kept deliberately imprecise: "Few American politicians or commentators," asserts John V. Whitbeck, an international lawyer based in Saudi Arabia, in Tuesday’s International Herald Tribune, "dare to question the conventional wisdom that ‘terrorism’ is the greatest threat facing America and the world. If so, the real threat lies not in the behavior to which this word is applied but in the word itself." The word, Whitbeck says, "is so subjective as to be devoid of any inherent meaning" —used by Bush and Co. to justify whatever geopolitical misadventures their masters at Halliburton order them to pursue next. Whitbeck suggests that "perhaps the only honest and globally workable definition of ‘terrorism’ is an explicitly subjective one — ‘violence that I don’t support.’" And, of course, the principal problem is that the U.S. is "relying on the word to assert, apparently, a right to attack any country it dislikes." Kerry, of course, will fix this right up. "Perhaps John Kerry," muses Whitbeck, "will have the courage and genuine patriotism to question the wisdom of continuing to wage a perpetual ‘war’ against a subjective epithet and, by doing so, to set us free, restoring some measure of sanity and more mature and constructive priorities both to American society and to America’s relations with the world." Bush has made himself vulnerable to this criticism by speaking in vague terms of America’s foes as "evildoers" and a "network of haters." Only in connection with foreign fighters in Iraq has he ever used the word "jihadists." If he began to use the word "jihad" the way those he identifies as terrorists and evildoers do, he could in one stroke remove charges of opportunism and lack of focus from the Democrats’ arsenal. For this is in fact the war we’re in: a war against people who identify themselves as jihadis, not as terrorists. The evildoers themselves, and their sympathizers, have on many occasions disdained the term "terrorism" for the same reasons Whitbeck does. But they aren’t left as bereft of understanding as he seems to be; as the Saudi Sheikh Wajdi Hamza Al-Ghazawi put it in a sermon: "The meaning of the term ‘terror’ used by the media . . . is Jihad for the sake of Allah." Osama bin Laden, Abu Bakar Bashir in Indonesia, Omar Bakri and Abu Hamza in England, Mullah Krekar in Norway, and other radical Muslims around the world have been unanimous in declaring that they are not indiscriminate purveyors of mayhem — terrorists — but mujahedin: jihad warriors. They have declared again and again that they are fighting to unify the Islamic people under a restored caliphate, and to establish the hegemony of Islamic law over the reunified umma, as well as over the non-Muslim world. In doing this, they say, they are acting in complete accord with the commandments of their religion, which mandates warfare against non-Muslims in order to establish Islamic rule. And they have declared that in this struggle, the United States is their principal foe. Why not take them at their word? Why not acknowledge that the war on terror is a defensive action against global jihadists? The obvious answer, of course, is that to do so would alienate moderate Muslim regimes, as well as the Muslim population in the United States. But there is no reason why this must necessarily be so. If Western Muslims are genuine moderates, who truly regard jihad solely as the prevailing rhetoric has it — as a spiritual struggle — then they should have no trouble with a conflict against these men who have "hijacked" their religion. For Bush to declare an anti-jihad, in other words, would not be to declare the much-touted "war against Islam." It would simply be to acknowledge fully the challenge that has been made to America and the Western world, and to take up that challenge. This clarification would also apply to the war in Iraq, where Saddam Hussein, contrary to media claims, was up to his teeth in the global jihad. According to Deroy Murdock’s revealing article "Saddam Hussein’s Philanthropy of Terror" in the Fall 2003 issue of American Outlook, Saddam operated training camps for jihadis from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf States at Salman Pak. This information comes from Khidir Hamza, former head of Iraq’s nuclear weapons program. Hamsiraji Sali of Abu Sayyaf, a radical Muslim group allied with al-Qaeda that has carried out bombings in the Philippines, says that he was offered Iraqi help by Hisham al Hussein, an Iraqi diplomat in Manila. Phone rec
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TriggaFingaz    Or more specifically   2/20/2004 3:48:44 PM
The term 'War on Terror' is too broad a definition, after all the main enemy is AQ and its Islamist friends, not the secular Marxist groups like FARC, the separatist Basques or the Chechens (who used to be secular are being influenced more and more by Wahabis). Better NOT to call it the 'war on the muj' since the Muslim anti-AQ forces in Afghanistan also call themselves Mujahidee, should be called the 'War on Al Qaeda'.
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American Kafir    RE:Or more specifically   2/20/2004 10:26:36 PM
Why not call it "the war on ignorant savages?"
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appleciderus    We had better call it...   2/21/2004 7:21:43 AM
...the war for our survival.
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celebrim    RE: One of those debates...   2/21/2004 11:19:36 AM
That is only of real importance to high minded intellectuals. Since the purpose of 'slogans' like 'War on Terror' is not to define the mission plan to a bunch of high minded intellectuals, but to the average citizens of America the 'slogan' or label of the war is just fine. It may not hold up to a metaphysical disection nor may it be a particularly good axiomatic basis for our political planning, but it does clearly communicate what this is about at the level of common sense. I don't think the average person has a hard time identifying our enemies, nor do they wrestle with whether or not war is the correct term for the conflict given that it isn't a fight between two nations. I think 'War or Terror' captures the spirit of the message just fine. War and terrorists are words of common meaning with the necessary heft of emotional impact. And the slogan is vague enough to minimize the negative political consequences of perhaps more accurate alternatives. I mean, what do you want to call it: 'Extermination of Wahabbist/Fascist Meme via the application of Physical and Intellectual Force'?
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appleciderus    RE:Let's call Terrorists What they Really Are- Islamic Jihadists   2/24/2004 6:08:09 AM
This article articulates the main reason I believe that a confrontation with Islam is unavoidable. The reference to a “Reformation” is another point I have made more than once. Comments? The courage of Muslim moderates By Jeff Jacoby, 2/22/2004 IT IS A SAD irony that the world's freest Muslims -- those who live in liberty in the West -- are so unwilling to publicly condemn the world's worst Muslims -- the militant Islamist fascists who believe in violent jihad, intolerant theocracy, subjugated women, and hatred of Jews and If anyone should be raising their voices against the totalitarians and terrorists who promote such evil in the name of Islam, it is the millions of moderate Muslims in America, Canada, and Europe. The image of Islam in the West would be greatly enhanced if more of them would speak out against the bigotry and brutality of the militants and forcefully advocate democracy and pluralism in the Middle East. But the vast majority are reluctant to do so. Some say nothing out of a misplaced sense of loyalty; others are afraid of being ostracized if they rock the communal boat. All the more reason, then, to applaud those outspoken moderate Muslims who do lift their voices against the hatred and violence of the extremists. I have devoted several columns to the importance of supporting and listening to these moderates. They are key allies in the war against terrorism, and anything that raises their profile or extends their influence helps to reduce the power of the Islamists. In a column that ran nearly two years ago, I quoted Irshad Manji, a Canadian TV personality who had recently published an essay titled "A Muslim plea for introspection." That essay has now grown into a best-selling book, "The Trouble With Islam: A Muslim's Call for Reform in Her Faith," and Manji, who calls herself a "Muslim refusenik," has received a good deal of well-deserved publicity. She has also received hate mail, vitriolic insults, and death threats serious enough to require her to have a bodyguard. Muslims who insist on talking bluntly about contemporary Islam and its failings don't have it easy. That is another reason there are so few of them. "We've got to end Islam's totalitarianism, particularly the gross human-rights violations against women and religious minorities," Manji writes. She is appalled by "the continuing scourge of slavery in countries ruled by Islamic regimes" and by "the Jew-bashing that so many Muslims persistently engage in." Islam desperately needs to undergo a reformation, much as Christianity did, she argues, and it is Muslims in the West who should be spearheading it. Why? "Because it is here that we already enjoy the precious freedom to think, express, challenge, and be challenged, all without fear of state reprisal." Another courageous Muslim moderate is Ahmed al-Rahim, who co-founded the American Islamic Congress following the atrocities of Sept. 11, 2001. It is an explicit purpose of AIC to stop being silent "in the face of Muslim extremism" and to "actively censure hate speech made in the name of Islam." Al-Rahim, an instructor of Arabic language and literature at Harvard, urges Muslims to undertake the self-criticism that is a hallmark of maturity, and he pulls no punches in decrying the radicalism of many American Muslim groups. In a recent address, he noted that anti-American "hate speech and incitement" has too often been "promoted by many American Muslim organizations -- in public speeches at conferences, at mosques, at rallies. . . . This hate speech against America, against Christians, against Hindus, against Jews . . . has somehow been accommodated, not denounced," Al-Rahim said. "I believe it is a priority for the American Muslim community to hold its leadership accountable for what they say and what they fail to condemn." It isn't always easy to distinguish between militant Islamism and genuine Islamic moderation. Some Muslim leaders and institutions claim to oppose intolerance, yet attack those who expose extremism as bigots and "Islamophobes." Daniel Pipes of the Middle East Forum says that often the only way to tell the real moderates from the fakes is by asking questions -- not vague queries ("Do you condemn terrorism?"), but specific ones. Such as: Do you condone or condemn the Palestinians, Chechens, and Kashmiris who give up their lives to kill enemy civilians? Will you condemn by name such terrorist groups as Abu Sayyaf, Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, and Al Qaeda? Should Muslim women have equal rights with men? Should non-Muslims enjoy the same civil rights as Muslims? Do you accept the legitimacy of a non-Muslim government, such as that of the United States, and will you pledge allegiance to that government? Who carried out the 9/11 attacks? Ultimately, only Muslims can decide whether Islam's future lies with the militants or with the moderates. But those of us who are not Muslim can help the cause of reform and moderation by promoting and
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American Kafir    RE:Let's call Terrorists What they Really Are- Islamic Jihadists   2/25/2004 3:27:06 PM
So-called "moderate" Muslims have no way to theologically challenge their more pious brethren. After all, there is no real way to sugar-coat the following verses from the Quran: "Allah is an enemy to unbelievers." "On unbelievers is the curse of Allah." "Slay them wherever ye find them and drive them out of the places whence they drove you out, for persecution is worse than slaughter." "Fight against them until idolatry is no more and Allah's religion reigns supreme." "Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it." "If you should die or be killed in the cause of Allah, His mercy and forgiveness would surely be better than all they riches they amass. If you should die or be killed, before Him you shall all be gathered." "You must not think that those who were slain in the cause of Allah are dead. They are alive, and well-provided for by their Lord." "Let those fight in the cause of God who sell the life of this world for the hereafter. To him who fights in the cause of God, whether he is slain or victorious, soon we shall give him a great reward." "Those who believe fight in the cause of God, and those who reject faith fight in the cause of evil." "But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever you find them." "Therefore, we stirred among them enmity and hatred, which shall endure till the Day of Resurrection, when Allah will declare to them all that they have done." "O believers, take not Jews and Christians as friends; they are friends of each other. Those of you who make them his friends is one of them. God does not guide an unjust people." "Make war on them until idolatry is no more and Allah's religion reigns supreme" "O Prophet! Exhort the believers to fight. If there are 20 steadfast men among you, they shall vanquish 200; and if there are a hundred, they shall rout a thousand unbelievers, for they are devoid of understanding." "It is not for any Prophet to have captives until he has made slaughter in the land." "Allah will humble the unbelievers. Allah and His apostle are free from obligations to idol-worshipers. Proclaim a woeful punishment to the unbelievers." "When the sacred months are over, slay the idolaters wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them." "Believers! Know that idolators are unclean." "Fight those who believe neither in God nor the Last Day, nor what has been forbidden by God and his messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, even if they are People of the Book, until they pay the tribute and have been humbled." "Whether unarmed or well-equipped, march on and fight for the cause of Allah, with your wealth and your persons." "O Prophet! Make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrites. Be harsh with them. Their ultimate abode is hell, a hapless journey's end." "Allah has purchased of their faithful lives and worldly goods, and in return has promised them the Garden. They will fight for His cause, kill and be killed." "Fight unbelievers who are near to you." "Believers! Make war on the infidels who dwell around you. Let them find harshness in you." "As for those who are slain in the cause of Allah, He will not allow their works to perish. He will vouch safe them guidance and ennoble their state; He will admit them to the Paradise He has made known to them." "Allah has cursed the unbelievers and proposed for them a blazing hell." "Unbelievers are enemies of Allah and they will roast in hell." "When you meet the unbelievers, smite their necks, then when you have made wide slaughter among them, tie fast the bonds, then set them free, either by grace or ransom, until the war lays down its burdens." "When you meet the unbelievers in the battlefield, strike off their heads, and when you have laid them low, bind your captives firmly." "Those who are slain in the way of Allah - he will never let their deeds be lost. Soon will he guide them and improve their condition, and admit them to the Garden, which he has announced for them." "Muslims are harsh against the unbelievers, merciful to one another." "Muhammad is Allah's apostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another. Through them, Allah seeks to enrage the unbelievers." "Prophet! Make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrites and deal sternly with them. Hell shall be their home, evil their fate." "The unbelievers among the People of the Book and the pagans shall burn forever in the fire of hell. They are the vilest of all creatures." "Fight them so that Allah may punish them at your hands, and put them to shame." A "moderate" Muslim is one who does not follow the Quran.
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xementalist    RE:Let's call Terrorists What they Really Are- Islamic Jihadists   2/25/2004 11:53:37 PM
american k , whilst i admire your research of the koran , would you not agree that a likewise examination of the bible could produce equally blood curdling text ? the answer [as in any religious text ] lies not in the reading literally of the text but the interpretation of such that it can become dangerous . i always understood islamic fundementalism as a post colonial problem stemming from the use of a near medievel interpretation of a religious text being applied to a late 20 th century world [ie the selective interpretations of the near medievel 16th/17th century sharia law by late 20 th century despots ] islam ,as the majority of law abiding muslims practise , is not a threat to anyone . in modern times it's spread is powered by women !!! [ rights of divorce and inheritence ] in the third world as i understood it . could you possibly add some remarks about the rapidity and extent of its spread in recent years and to which factors you would atribute this trend too ? please note as well that the koran should be veiwed with the same question of modernity that every historian applies to a source , at the time of it's writing the books adherants were fighting a bloody campaign for recognition . note also that once they achieved cultural dominence the muslim caliphate became a secure place for jews who were persecuted in regular pograms throughout western europe . i welcome your further remarks .
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celebrim    RE: Blood curdling Bible texts.   2/26/2004 2:16:43 AM
"would you not agree that a likewise examination of the bible could produce equally blood curdling text?" No, I wouldn't. Yes, I could dig up quite abit of 'blood curdling' texts out of the Bible. Leaving aside the shear quantity of passages AK cites, the ones in the Bible would differ from the Koranic text in several fundamental points: 1) Most of them would be relation of historical events and NOT commandments. That is, the Bible might merely mention that something did happen, and not at all that something should happen. 2) Most of the more disturbing Biblical passages relate directly to things that God was said to have done, not things that men are encouraged to do. In other words, if God decides to have 2 she-bears slay 50 young men, well that's God's business and has no bearing on how you should treat young men. 3) Most of the more disturbing passages are only disturbing if a fairly liberal ammount of doctrinal expansion is created from them. For instance, a passage like, "May his blood be on our hands, and on our children", is only particularly disturbing if someone decides that that sentence justfies anti-semitism and then completely ignores the context of the entire rest of the Bible. By contrast, the passage AK cites are largely in context and you may read this for yourself. 4) In no case that I am aware of is any of the more disturbing interpretations of the Bible the orthodox interpretation by any major denomination. On the other hand, the vast majority of Islamic teachers agree on the literal interpretation of passages AK cites precisely (as in point #3) they are so literal and direct. Islamic teachers typically only disagree on the context under which those teachings apply. 5) In all cases, the more disturbing things the bible occassionally says must be taken in context of the other things that it says more commonly. The orthodox Christian view is that the Bible is in agreement with itself, so if you are interpreting a passage to mean 'go ahead and hate your neighbor' you are interpreting it wrong. Islam by contrast believes in the doctrine of superceding revelation. This is because the Koran is not in perfect agreement with itself. The latter passages are believed to be fuller and more perfect revelations by the prophet than the earlier ones (again this is the orthodox moslem view). Guess where in the chronology the above quote passages occur. By comparison, even if we invoked superceding revelation to explain differences in Old Testament and New Testament law, the New Testament laws would be the more 'modern' ones. 6) I actually think that AK didn't quote some of the more damaging passages in the Koran. Try getting your head around the passages that define when raping a woman is acceptable in God's eyes. Look I now your first instinct is to invoke the equality of all religions, but before you go off and do that I'd ask you to please read both texts and see for yourself what they say. The problem that Islam has always had is that the text promises them an essentially unending string of victories. If you believe God has essentially promised the believers unending military victory until the whole world is conquered, then the only possible explanation for a setback is that the community has drifted too far from God's law. Every setback Islam experiences starts a new round of reactionary purges, which in turn only set them further behind the rest of the world. When even the purges don't immediately bring back God's blessing and mercy, the leaders start casting around for someone outside the community to blame who is somehow twarting the will of the Almighty God (don't ask me how) and who must be zealously destroyed. You can guess who the usual suspect is.
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Elbandeedo    RE: Blood curdling Bible texts. - Celebrim   2/26/2004 9:21:54 AM
Well put. The accounts in the Bible of "mass-murder" or "ethnic cleansing" in todays terms are historic accounts of things that occurred - none of them are intended to be instructions to continue that sort of action. God at various times told the Israelites to destroy certain towns and peoples - to include every man, woman, child, even the animals. Those commands were "one-time" things. Unlike the koran which tells "true muslims" to "make buddy-buddy with the Jews, Christians, infidels until you outnumber them, then wipe them out!" - THAT is an outstanding order - not a time-specific or one-time thing. it's ongoing and an open-ended order. THAT is the difference. Where in some religions bloody conflict has been occurred in the name of God or even heathen gods, those commands are now defunct, as the event has occurred. In contrast Christ told Christians that the greatest commmandment was to 'love your neighbor as much as you love yourself.' That commandment is still in place. Further discussion on this thread probably should go to the "Eternal Wars" board. Here, I believe, we are discussing the current terrorist threat, which includes primarily jihadists. jihadists are islamic. accrding to the koran, it is the DUTY of all "TRUE" muslims to take part in jihad - either the "spiritual" or the physical. You really don't have to go any deeper than that. E.
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American Kafir    RE:Let's call Terrorists What they Really Are- Islamic Jihadists   2/26/2004 3:34:46 PM
>>american k , whilst i admire your research of the koran , would you not agree that a likewise examination of the bible could produce equally blood curdling text ?<< Just in one instance. One of Jesus' parables, actually. "As they heard these things, he proceeded to tell a parable, because he was near to Jerusalem, and because they supposed that the kingdom of God was to appear immediately. He said therefore, "A nobleman went into a far country to receive a kingdom and then return. Calling ten of his servants, he gave them ten pounds, and said to them, `Trade with these till I come.' But his citizens hated him and sent an embassy after him, saying, `We do not want this man to reign over us.' When he returned, having received the kingdom, he commanded these servants, to whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he might know what they had gained by trading. The first came before him, saying, `Lord, your pound has made ten pounds more.' 17 And he said to him, `Well done, good servant! Because you have been faithful in a very little, you shall have authority over ten cities.' 18 And the second came, saying, `Lord, your pound has made five pounds.' And he said to him, `And you are to be over five cities.' Then another came, saying, `Lord, here is your pound, which I kept laid away in a napkin; for I was afraid of you, because you are a severe man; you take up what you did not lay down, and reap what you did not sow.' He said to him, `I will condemn you out of your own mouth, you wicked servant! You knew that I was a severe man, taking up what I did not lay down and reaping what I did not sow? Why then did you not put my money into the bank, and at my coming I should have collected it with interest?' And he said to those who stood by, `Take the pound from him, and give it to him who has the ten pounds.' (And they said to him, `Lord, he has ten pounds!') `I tell you, that to every one who has will more be given; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away. But as for these enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, bring them here and slay them before me.'" [Luke 19:11-27] [Quite an endorsement of investment capitalism there!] Anyway, this parable, often called the parable of the "talents" simply means "use it or lose it." Kinda makes you wonder about those who want isolationist trade policies in the United States, huh? I'm sorry to ramble, but I've recently been undergoing some revivals of spiritual ideas I set aside for atheism. I'm not quite on the path of light yet, as it were, but I've begun to see things in new ways.
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