Muslim Jihad Defined: a holy war waged on behalf of Islam as a religious duty.

Christian Love Defined: unselfish loyal concern for the good of another.


Satan: Mo-ham-mad taught Muslims that killing was important.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 1, Book 2, Number 25: Narrated Abu Huraira:

God: Jesus Christ taught that love was important.

Matthew 22:37-40 Jesus said to him, "'You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets."



Satan: Mo-ham-mad taught that Muslims would be rewarded for killing.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 1, Book 2, Number 35: Narrated Abu Huraira:

God: Jesus Christ taught that Christians would be rewarded for pure love.

Luke 6:35 "But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil."


Satan: Mo-ham-mad taught that Allah loved for Muslims to kill.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 1, Book 10, Number 505: Narrated Abdullah:

God: Christians are taught to imitate God who is love.

Ephesians 5:1 Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.



Satan: Mo-ham-mad taught that killing is supreme in Islam.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 44: Narrated Abu Huraira:

God: Christians are taught that love is supreme to knowing God.

1 John 4:7-8 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.


Satan: Mo-ham-mad encourages Jihad through false promises of wealth or Paradise.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 53, Number 352: Narrated Abu Huraira:

God: Christians are taught that eternal life is waiting for those who love God.

James 1:12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.


Satan: Mo-ham-mad taught Muslims not to travel unless it is to perform killing.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 5, Book 59, Number 600: Narrated Mujahid:

God: Jesus Christ taught to show concern for others when traveling.

Luke 10:33-34 "But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion. So he went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him."


Satan: Mo-ham-mad taught to perform killing for your parents benefit.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 8, Book 73, Number 3: Narrated Abdullah bin Amr:

God: Jesus Christ taught to honor your parents and not commit murder.

Matthew 19:18-19 He said to Him, "Which ones?" Jesus said, "'You shall not murder,' 'You shall not commit adultery,' 'You shall not steal,' 'You shall not bear false witness,' 'Honor your father and your mother,' and, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'"


Note: Will you be taught by God in Christ or by Satan in Mo-ham-mad?

Islamic State video calls for jihad after Brussels blasts

March 24, 2016

CAIRO (Reuters) - Islamic State released a video on social media on Thursday calling on its followers to claim victory and wage jihad after deadly blasts in Brussels this week that the group said it had carried out.

In the footage, Islamic State noted that Belgium was part of a coalition fighting militants in the Middle East.

It featured the training of Belgian militants suspected in the Nov. 13 shooting and suicide bombing rampage by Islamic State that killed 130 people in Paris.

"The crusaders aircrafts, including Belgium’s, continue to bomb Muslims in Iraq and the Levant in the night and day," said the video.

"Every Muslim who is well aware of the history of Islam, knows that the holy war against infidels is an integral part of Islam, and those who read history would know."

Islamic State controls large parts of Iraq and Syria and has a presence in Libya and Egypt's Sinai Peninsula.

In Egypt, Muslim attacks on Christians are based on jihad

Wednesday, June 12, 2013 |  Dr. Ashraf Ramelah 

Coptic Christians in Egypt continue to live with discrimination, oppression and persecution from the Islamic majority. Muslim attacks on Christians, random and unprovoked, are based on jihad and often sanctioned by the state. Coptic victims are often hauled off to jail for the crimes committed against them.

In 1,400 years, not one Egyptian Muslim authority – civic, social, or religious – has apologized, denounced, or condemned these actions.

Recently, the grand imam of Al-Azhar University, Ahmed al-Tayyeb, and his diplomatic envoy, Mahmoud Abdel Gawad, requested that the newly installed Catholic head, Pope Francis, issue a public statement declaring that “Islam is a peaceful religion.” We wonder why the Pope would choose to use prescribed words or succumb to urgings for commentary. Will Pope Francis be influenced by the fact that Al-Azhar made their request a necessary condition to resume relations with the Vatican?

Voice of the Copts believes that the Al-Azhar grand imam instead should issue a formal, public statement directed to his followers in the Arabic language conveying an unequivocal message that Muslims attacking Christians in Egypt do not conform to true Islam and will no longer be tolerated. A clear denunciation of Muslim sectarian violence against Christians in Egypt by Sunni religious leaders would be welcomed as Al-Azhar seeks the Pope’s endorsement of Muslim non-violence.

Real peace comes from within

Favorable appraisals of Islam from leaders around the world, whether formulated out of pressure, denial or appeasement, will never repair Islam’s disreputable image -- one earned through a long history of aggression based upon a supremacy doctrine.

Islamic authorities at Al-Azhar must first be willing to acknowledge that progress for Islam begins with their own steps toward equality and peaceful co-existence.

A forced statement elicited from Pope Francis could never change the reality of Islam, but only, at best, cause recognition of Islam as something that in practice it is not.

Dr. Ashraf Ramelah is founder and president of Voice of the Copts, an organization that aims to bring the plight of Egypt's Christians to the wider Christian world.

Trapped in hatred

March 19, 2011
Balbir Punj

Pakistan is caught in a vortex of jihadi violence for which it has only itself to blame. A country founded on the ideology of hate couldn’t have fared any better.

The recent spate of violent incidents in Pakistan has left the uninitiated, particularly the peaceniks, shocked, startled and dazed. The internecine war between various jihadi groups in the name of Islam continues unabated. Fundamentalists are also targetting what remains of religious minority communities, particularly Hindus, in Pakistan. In the process, the country is falling apart and is being increasingly seen as a failed state by the rest of the world.

The seeds of the spiralling violence were sown in the very ideology which led to Pakistan’s creation. The demand for an independent Islamic state in the Indian sub-continent was fuelled by two factors — pride in their past among Muslims and their fear of the future in a Hindu-dominated India.

The Muslim elite of pre-partition India that provided leadership to the Muslim masses was caught in a time warp and dreamed of reliving the Mughal glory. After the departure of the British, the prospects of competing with the Hindus (whom they had ruled) in a democratic set-up as equals frightened them. British imperialists and Indian Communists helped the Muslims to divide India.

Hate drove the Muslim League in the 1940s and led to the birth of Pakistan. In those days, it was hatred towards Hindus and Sikhs. After the creation of Pakistan, successive regimes in Pakistan have survived on hate — the objects of their hatred have changed over the decades. In a sense, hate unites the idea and the ideologues of Pakistan.

Mohammed Ali Jinnah, a non-practising, Westernised Muslim, did not get the support of his community so long as he was secular. After his historic split with the Congress and the Muslim League’s adoption of the two-nation theory, he emerged as the ‘sole spokesman’ of the sub-continent’s Muslims. Jinnah articulated what his new-found constituency wanted him to say; hence his denunciation and repudiation of India’s age-old values of universal brotherhood and religious pluralism.

Jinnah’s concept of a Muslim majority ‘secular’ Pakistan was consistent with the aspirations of the Muslim masses who had forced partition on India to realise their dream of acquiring for themselves a ‘land of the pure’. It stood to logic that in such a land there could not be any space for the ‘non-pure’. The cleansing of the religious minority communities is rooted in this perception of Pakistan among Pakistanis. With each step in militarising Pakistan came the strengthening of its jihadi ideology and the institutions that have fuelled hatred at home and abroad.

This is best exemplified by civilian rulers and military dictators competing to prove who is a stronger defender of Islam. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto stumped the Generals after the break-up of Pakistan and the birth of Bangladesh, and promised an ‘Islamic Bomb’. Later, he was sacked and hanged by General Zia-ul-Haq who became Pakistan’s most rabid military ruler. Gen Zia then set about the task of Islamising Pakistan and creating a social, economic and political order in which only fanatics could survive.

Today, the Pakistani military sets the terms and the mullahs define the socio-political agenda for the Government to follow. The military and the mullahs compete as well as co-operate to be the effective rulers of the country. As a result, Pakistan’s so-called ‘civil society’, which was in the forefront of the movement against General Pervez Musharraf, has now gone silent.

The nature of the killings and the Pakistani Government’s helplessness in the face of this upsurge of Talibani terror explain the predicament of that country. The military that funds part of the mullah-inspired militancy uses it to scare away the Americans who have to depend increasingly on the military leadership as a counter-balance the mullahs. All the stakeholders in Pakistan seem to be investing in violence and disorder as the Americans, who need Pakistan to support their operations in Afghanistan, wring their hands in despair. Meanwhile, Pakistan descends into deepening chaos.

What is not only surprising but also alarming is that in our own country neither Muslim leaders nor pseudo-secularists who pander to the orthodoxy and shut their eyes to the jihadi mindset do not seem to be interested in drawing any lessons from the developments in Pakistan.

Islam is a minority religion in Europe but decades of pseudo-secularists ignoring the jihadi mindset has resulted in a serious threat of terrorism overwhelming the elected Governments and undermining the liberal societies of Britain, Germany, France and other European nations. Mr David Cameron in Britain, Mr Nicholas Sarkozy in France and Ms Angela Merkel in Germany are now loath to praise multiculturalism that has become a convenient cloak for Islamic fanaticism and Muslim separatism. There is greater appreciation now in Europe of the problems posed by exclusivism and bigotry in the name of faith.

But in India nothing has changed. We still continue to treat Muslims as an exclusive community and their institutions as beyond Government’s control although they are funded by the public exchequer and with taxpayers’ money. A case in point is the absurd designation of Jamia Millia Islamia, a Central university funded by the Government of India, as a minority institution. That this negates the urgent need for liberal, cosmopolitan centres of learning is of no consequence to those who promote Muslim exclusivism. This in turn has led to the growth of fanaticism among a section of India’s Muslims spread across the country. For instance, the 80 absconding SIMI activists come from different States.

It is for the Muslim leadership and secularists to answer the question why the jihadi mindset finds empathy in their community in several districts of the country. Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh, the Malabar region of Kerala, the Kashmir Valley are some of the places where it is most evident.

Meanwhile, life has come full circle for Pakistan. Hate is a poor glue to keep people together.

Jihad in Frankfurt

by Robert Spencer on Mar 3rd, 2011 and filed under Daily Mailer, FrontPage.

Robert Spencer is a scholar of Islamic history, theology, and law and the director of Jihad Watch. He is the author of ten books, eleven monographs, and hundreds of articles about jihad and Islamic terrorism, including the New York Times Bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is The Complete Infidel’s Guide to the Koran (Regnery), and he is coauthor (with Pamela Geller) of The Post-American Presidency: The Obama Administration’s War on America (Simon and Schuster).

Like so many jihad plots and actual jihad attacks and attempted attacks these days, the jihad murder of two U.S. airmen and the wounding of two others outside the Frankfurt Airport in Germany Wednesday was initially dismissed as having nothing to do with terrorism. According to the German news agency DAPD, Boris Rhein, the interior minister for the German state of Hesse hurried to the airport and almost immediately declared that there were no indications that the shootings had been a terror attack.

One wonders what actually would constitute a terrorist attack for such analysts. Would the murderer have to announce that he was about to carry out a terrorist attack before he started shooting? Would he have to be carrying an al-Qaeda membership card? In the case of the Frankfurt Airport shooting, there were, in fact, numerous indications that this was a jihad attack. The murderer was Arif Uka, a Kosovar Muslim. Despite widespread assumptions among American analysts that Kosovar Muslims are mostly moderate, secular, peaceful, Westernized, and grateful for U.S. intervention on their behalf, in reality al-Qaeda and other jihad terror groups have been active in that region for over a decade.

And even aside from the possibility of an actual link to al-Qaeda, Muslim hardliners have been streaming into Kosovo and the neighboring regions for just as long, and have been challenging on Islamic grounds the relatively secularized and non-combative Islam of the native Muslims. What’s more, Arif Uka is twenty-one years old and lives in Frankfurt, which has long been a hotbed of jihad activity in Germany.

As Uka opened fire, he shouted “Allahu akbar,” the universal cry of jihadis worldwide which Muhammad Atta reminded his fellow 9/11 hijackers to shout as they began operations, since, he said, the sound of it struck terror into the hearts of unbelievers. Another report suggests that he shouted “jihad, jihad.”

Nor would this be the first jihad attack against Americans by a Kosovar Muslim. Stratfor Global Intelligence reports: “A number of Albanian individuals were part of the Fort Dix plot in the United States in 2007. U.S. authorities broke up a militant cell in North Carolina that involved an individual of ethnic Albanian origin. In 2009, a U.S. citizen of Albanian descent from Brooklyn, New York, tried to go to Pakistan for militant training.”

Barack Obama quickly issued a statement saying, “I want everybody to understand that we will spare no effort in learning how this outrageous act took place, and in working with German authorities to ensure that all of the perpetrators are brought to justice.” Yet it is absolutely certain that if Arif Uka turns out to have been a pious, devout Muslim who read the Qur’an and cited it as a justification for the idea that Muslims have a responsibility to fight against infidels, that is one lead that Barack Obama will not follow up. No matter how many Muslim gunmen shout “Allahu akbar” as they open fire on non-Muslims, at this point the dogmatic lines have been drawn: analysts in the top military and intelligence posts in the U.S. and Europe understand that Islam is a religion of peace that has been hijacked by a tiny minority of extremists, and they have been taught to understand that that fact somehow frees them from the obligation of understanding the enemy’s belief-system and formulating effective ways to combat it.

The script has long been written. The characters are cast. With every new jihad plot, all the media, government and law enforcement officials, and Islamic leaders need to do is fill in the blanks. In fact, I even pasted sections of this article in from older articles on earlier jihad attacks, including those previous three sentences and much of the lead paragraph – because the story never changes. All one need do is fill in the blanks in the template. In fact, Islamic groups in the U.S. have been shown to do this in the other direction, when a few years ago a template was found for condemnations of jihad terror attacks and protestations that they had nothing to do with the Islamic doctrines that their perpetrators avowed as their primary inspiration.

And so everyone follows his own template: Islamic groups issue their pro-forma condemnations of the latest jihad terror attack, which never seem to lead to any honest or forthright examination of the texts and teachings of Islam that inspire Muslims to shout “Allah akbar” and murder infidels. Government and law enforcement officials publish their expressions of outrage and vows to track down the perpetrators and punish them to the full extent of the law – vows that are rendered somewhat hollow by their consistent and essentially unanimous unwillingness to look honestly at the ways in which such attacks are inspired by Islamic teachings. This in turn prevents them from adopting any realistic measures to prevent such attacks in the future.

And I myself, as the writer of this article, have so many articles that I have written in the past about jihad terror plots or successful attacks, and the obfuscation and denial that followed in the wake of them, that I can use – and have used in this piece – to skewer yet again that obfuscation and denial, and to ask how many more innocent non-Muslims are going to have to be murdered before the elites in politics and the media begin to examine the problem of Islamic jihad seriously and honestly.

Endless Jihad

The Truth about Islam and Violence


It was once a word unfamiliar to American ears. But in recent years it has become all too familiar. The actions of Muslim militants and terrorists have seared the word into American consciousness.

Yet even with thousands of innocent civilians killed on American soil by Islamic terrorists, the full significance of the Muslim concept of jihad has not been grasped by the American public.

In the days after September 11, 2001, American leaders rushed to portray Islam as a peaceful religion that had been "hijacked" by a fanatical band of terrorists. One hopes that these assurances were merely tactical—that nobody was meant to believe them and that they were meant to assure the Muslim world that the inevitable American reprisals were not directed at their religion as a whole.

If the world Muslim community perceived America as attacking Islam in general then the duty of every Muslim to fight for his religion—the duty of jihad—would have been invoked on a broad scale. The war against terrorism, instead of simmering with occasional flare-ups, like the Cold War, would have boiled over into a global conflagration, with the Muslim countries of the world—1.2 billion strong—mobilizing against America and the West.

Muslim apologists also rushed forward to assure the public that Islam was a peaceful religion. They disingenuously declared that the word Islam

These were lies.

The usual meaning of Islam in Arabic is not "peace" but "submission." And if the terrorists were so far outside the mainstream, why did Muslims all over the world burst into joyful, spontaneous celebrations when the hijacked jetliners slammed into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon? Why are Islamic governments afraid to show "too much" public support for the war against terrorism? Further, why are all the governments that covertly support terrorism centered in the Muslim world?

The truth is that Islam is not a religion of peace. This is not to say that every Muslim is violent at heart. Many are not. Muslims have the same aspirations for living peaceful lives that people have the world over. But they also have the same potential for violence as others, and Islam as a religion and an ideology seeks to exploit that potential.

Though there are millions of Muslims who want peaceful relations with the West, millions who aspire to live in free societies like America, there nevertheless remains a deep and powerful strain of violence within Islam, and it is important that Americans understand it.

They will have to face it in the future. means "peace." And they tried to portray the terrorists as a fringe group outside the mainstream of Islam.

The Muslim Worldview

To understand the connection between Islam and violence, one must understand certain facets of the Muslim worldview. One of the most important is the fact that, according to the historic Muslim understanding, there is no separation between religion and government—what in Christianity would be called the separation of church and state.

We are not speaking here of the secularist idea that the state should marginalize religion and discourage people from voting their consciences as Christians. We are talking about the idea that church and state are not the same thing and that they have different spheres of activity.

This idea of a separation between religion and government is not characteristic of most peoples in world history. It is a contribution to the world of ideas that was made by Christians—indeed, by Christ himself. In his book Islam and the West, historian Bernard Lewis explains:

"The notion that religion and political authority, church and state, are different and that they can or should be separated is, in a profound sense, Christian. Its origins may be traced to the teachings of Christ, notably in the famous passage in Matthew 22:21, in which Christ is quoted as saying: ‘Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s.’ This notion was confirmed by the experience of the first Christians; its later development was shaped and in a sense even imposed by the subsequent history of Christendom. The persecutions endured by the early Church made it clear that a separation between the two was possible."

During much of Christian history church and state were united in that each Christian state had an official church, whether it was the Catholic Church or one of the Orthodox or Protestant churches. In many countries that is still the case. Nevertheless, the awareness remained that the two institutions were distinct and had different functions and different spheres of legitimate authority. They could in principle disagree and go their separate ways when necessary.

Most peoples in world history have not shared this understanding. In most societies, religion and government have been inseparably linked. This is true in Muslim society as well. Lewis explains:

"In pagan Rome, Caesar was God. Christians were taught to differentiate between what is due to Caesar and what is due to God. For Muslims of the classical age, God was Caesar, and the sovereign—caliph or sultan—was merely his viceregent on earth. This was more than a simple legal fiction. For Muslims the state was God’s state, the army God’s army, and, of course, the enemy was God’s enemy. Of more practical importance, the law was God’s law, and in principle there could be no other. The question of separating church and state did not arise, since there was no church, as an autonomous institution, to be separated. Church and state were one and the same."

This means that, in the historic Muslim understanding, Islamic society is or should be a theocracy—a society in which God himself is the monarch, reigning on earth through subordinates.

In the earliest days of Islam, the subordinate was the prophet Mohammed, who founded Islam and conquered the Arabian Peninsula. Thereafter the subordinate was the caliphs and in the centuries after Mohammed’s death they expanded Muslim society by conquering peoples as far west as Spain and as far east as India. In the process, they absorbed half of Christian civilization. Eventually, the power of the caliphs waned, and new leaders—such as the Ottoman sultans—were the subordinates. Throughout it all, God himself was regarded as the ruler of Islamic civilization.

Islam as Ideology

That Islam sees itself as a theocracy has enormous ramifications for how it regards itself and for the behavior of Muslims.

First, it means that Islam is not only a religion. It is also a political ideology. If the government of the Muslim community simply is God’s government, then no other governments can be legitimate. They are all at war with God. As a result, Muslims have typically divided the world into two spheres, known as the Dar al-Islam—the "house of Islam" or "house of submission" to God—and the Dar al-Harb, or "house of war"—those who are at war with God.

Second, it means that Muslims have believed themselves to have a "manifest destiny." Since God must win in the end, the Dar al-Harb must be brought under the control of Muslim government and made part of the Dar al-Islam.

Third, since the Dar al-Harb by its nature is at war with God, it is unlikely that it will submit to God without a fight. Individual groups might be convinced to lay down their arms and join the Muslim community by various forms of pressure—economic or military—that fall short of war. In history some groups have become Muslim in this way, either fearing Muslim conquest, desiring Muslim military aid against their own enemies, or aspiring to good trade relations with the Muslim world. But many peoples would rather fight than switch. This has been particularly true of Christians, who have put up more resistance to the Muslim advance than have pagan and animistic tribes.

Because of the need to expand God’s dominion by wars of conquest, Islam’s ideology imposes on Muslims the duty to fight for God’s community. This duty is known as jihad (Arabic, "struggle, fight"). Although it is binding on all Muslims, it has been particularly incumbent on those on the edges of the Muslim world, where there was room for expansion. Only by continual jihad could the manifest destiny of Islam to bring the world into submission to God be fulfilled.

As eminent French sociologist Jacques Ellul notes, "Jihad is a religious obligation. It forms part of the duties that the believer must fulfill; it is Islam’s normal path to expansion."

A fourth and final consequence of Islam’s view of itself as a theocracy is that in theory all Muslims should not only form one religious community but should be subject to one government as well—God’s government, a kind of Muslim superstate. Yet this has not happened. Muslims have been ruled by different governments since the early days of Islam.

Ideology Meets History

The fact that Muslims are not united under a single government is due to a variety of historical factors. As Muslim territory expanded the problems with the idea of uniting all Muslim peoples under a single government became all too obvious. Islam grew from a tribal base, and tribal societies are not known for stability. The factions and rivalries that are inherent in such societies manifested as Islam grew and made it difficult to keep Muslims under a single head.

Another factor that kept a stable Muslim superstate from developing is the fact that—especially in a pre-technological world—local areas have to be governed locally. Large empires have had to cede large amounts of autonomy to local governments, and therein lay the seeds of their eventual dissolution. As local governments grew in power, they desired more and more autonomy, desiring eventually to throw off the yoke of their masters and to be truly independent.

As a result, even in the classical period of Islam the Muslim community was divided politically, with rivalries between various parties—for example, between the Ottomans and the Persians, who maintained a tense and sometimes violent rivalry for centuries. The conflicts within the Muslim community helped slow its expansion and helped lead to stagnation and decay.

A threat also was growing in the non-Muslim world.

Europe for centuries had been terrified by the Muslim advance, with continual warfare on its borders to the west and to the east as Christians struggled at first to check the Muslim advance and later to reclaim their homelands.

The fight was not easy for Europe and, for a long time, it did not go well. Lewis notes of medieval Christendom: "Split into squabbling, petty kingdoms, its churches divided by schism and heresy, with constant quarrels between the churches of Rome and the East, it was disputed between two emperors and for a while even two popes. After the loss of the Christian shores of the eastern and southern Mediterranean to the Muslim advance, Christendom seemed even more local, confided in effect to a small peninsula on the western edge of Asia which became—and was by this confinement defined as—Europe. For a time—indeed, for a very long time—it seemed that nothing could prevent the ultimate triumph of Islam and the extension of the Islamic faith and Muslim power to Europe."

As chronicler of Muslim expansion Paul Fregosi notes, "‘From the fury of the Mohammedan, spare us, O Lord’ was a prayer heard for centuries in all the churches of central and southern Europe. Fear of the jihad has not entirely vanished even now, particularly among peoples who have known Muslim domination." Muslims conducted raids to capture slaves as far west as England and Ireland. They attacked Iceland. And they plunged deep into Europe.

They captured Sicily and invaded the Italian mainland. "Naples, Genoa, Ravenna, Ostia, and even Rome itself were all for a time pillaged or occupied by the Saracens. Human beings became a cheap and abundant commodity. In Rome, in 846 . . . the Muslims even looted the churches of St. Peter and St. Paul, and the pope had to buy off the invaders with the promised tribute of 25,000 silver coins a year. Pope Leo IV then ordered the construction of the Leonine Wall around the city to protect St. Peter’s from further assault."

The threat continued for centuries, with Muslim forces laying siege in 1529 and 1683 to Vienna, the capital of the Holy Roman Empire, located in the heart of Europe.

But as Islam stagnated, new doors opened to Europe, particularly through the discovery of the New World and the vast material resources it offered. As Europe grew economically, technologically, and militarily through its colonies and the rise of global trade, the balance of power shifted, and the Islamic world became vulnerable.

Even before the discovery of the New World, Christians in both western and eastern Europe had begun to reclaim their conquered homelands from Muslim dominion, and the tremendous new resources that Europe had at its disposal as a result of the Age of Exploration only made things worse for Muslim aspirations to world political supremacy. Their own governmental structures—particularly the Ottoman empire—began to lose power and disintegrate, with Europeans stepping in to take control as colonialization progressed.

For three centuries the Muslim world lost ground, and by the first half of the twentieth century almost all of it had been reduced to being colonies or protectorates of European powers.

Lewis notes, "By 1920 it seemed that the triumph of Europe over Islam was total and final. The vast territories and countless millions of the Muslim peoples of Asia and Africa were firmly under the control of the European empires—some of them under a variety of native princes, most under direct colonial administration. Only a few remote mountain and desert areas, too poor and too difficult to be worth the trouble of acquiring, retained some measure of sovereign independence."

What was the Muslim reaction to this alarming sequence of developments?

Shock and Awe

In the seventeenth century it had begun to sink into Muslim consciousness that something was desperately wrong in the world. Though Muslim society had previously been more advanced economically and in some ways culturally than European society, it began to dawn on Muslim leaders that the barbarian infidels of Europe were catching up and in certain ways were ahead of Muslim society.

It is difficult for Westerners to realize just how crushing a realization this was, but it was devastating given Muslim self-perception.

The triumphal advance of Islam seemed to confirm to Muslim minds that they were the chosen of God and that civilization itself was identical with Islam, with only ignorant barbarians and infidels outside its borders.

In What Went Wrong?: Western Impact and Middle Eastern Response, Bernard Lewis notes that Christian Europe was seen "as an outer darkness of barbarism and unbelief from which there was nothing to learn and little even to be imported, except slaves and raw materials. For both the northern [European] and southern [African] barbarians, their best hope was to be incorporated into the empire of the caliphs, and thus attain the benefits of religion and civilization."

Shock and awe thus were the responses of Muslims as they saw their civilization collapsing and their former enemies—Christian Europeans—seizing control of their homelands. How could this happen? How could God’s people suffer such a reversal of fortune? How could their former might be so completely outclassed by the overwhelming economic and military might of Christendom, whose religion was their only serious rival for the role of a world faith?

Angry about the present and fearful of the future, Muslims began a process of introspection, explains Lewis.

"When things go wrong in a society, in a way and to a degree that can no longer be denied or concealed, there are various questions that one can ask. A common one, particularly in continental Europe yesterday and today in the Middle East, is: ‘Who did this to us?’ The answer to a question thus formulated is usually to place the blame on external or domestic scapegoats—foreigners abroad or minorities at home. The Ottomans, faced with the major crisis in their history, asked a different question: ‘What did we do wrong?’"

A debate followed, with various Muslims trying to analyze and propose remedies for the developing situation. "The basic fault, according to most of these memoranda, was falling away from the good old ways, Islamic and Ottoman; the basic remedy was a return to them. This diagnosis and prescription still command wide acceptance in the Middle East."

These twin explanations for the recent misfortune of Islam—that it was caused by a failure to observe Islam in its pure form and by the malicious meddling of foreigners (first Europeans and now Americans)—bode ill for tomorrow.

The Clash of Civilizations

European domination of the Muslim world was short-lived, ending in the 1960s with the close of the de-colonialization that followed World War II. Yet it had an enormous effect on the Muslim psyche.

This effect was somewhat muffled by the Cold War and the tense balance of power between the Western and Soviet spheres. The new Muslim states—the borders of which had been largely and not always skillfully drawn by the withdrawing colonial powers—were too weak to be assertive and fell into the orbits of either of the United States or the Soviet Union. Nationalistic assertiveness was subsumed during the tense, global standoff.

But with the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, matters changed. At first, some hailed the event as "the end of history," but other, wiser observers pointed to new dangers in the world, including Islamic militancy.

Samuel Huntington, director of Harvard University’s John M. Olin Institute for Strategic Studies, presciently warned that the end of the Cold War would lead to a period he referred to as "the clash of civilizations." A major flash point he envisioned in this conflict, unsurprisingly, was between Islam and the West.

"After World War II, the West, in turn, began to retreat; the colonial empires disappeared; first Arab nationalism and then Islamic fundamentalism manifested themselves. . . . [The] centuries-old military interaction between the West and Islam is unlikely to decline. It could become more virulent. The Gulf War left some Arabs feeling proud that Saddam Hussein had attacked Israel and stood up to the West. It also left many feeling humiliated and resentful of the West’s military presence in the Persian Gulf, the West’s overwhelming military dominance, and their apparent inability to shape their own destiny."

Huntington noted a common consensus that an inevitable clash between Islam and the West, a clash initiated by the former, was soon to come: "On both sides the interaction between Islam and the West is seen as a clash of civilizations. The West’s ‘next confrontation,’ observes M. J. Akbar, an Indian Muslim author, ‘is definitely going to come from the Muslim world. It is in the sweep of the Islamic nations from the Maghreb to Pakistan that the struggle for a new world order will begin.’"

That confrontation came with the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 and the inauguration of the war against terrorism.

What did the terrorists hope for?

They hoped for a conflict with the West that would end the long, dark winter that Islam has experienced. They hoped that the fortunes of their religion and civilization would be reversed. They hoped for a war that would smash the might of the West and allow a wave Islamic revolutions to sweep away the worldly tyrants ruling Muslim nations. They hoped for a return to purer, stricter Islam, free of Western corruption and values. They hoped that the blessings of God would descend upon their civilization, allowing it to return to its rightful place at the head of nations, with a resurgence of Muslim nationalism that would give birth to the Islamic superstate that long had eluded them.

And they hoped for a new wave of expansion that would allow Islam to establish its destiny of bringing the entire world under Muslim control. In the famous al-Qaeda "dinner conversation" found on videotape in Afghanistan, Osama bin Laden expressed the view that the war he initiated would lead to a wave of Muslim expansion not seen since the religion’s first century, when it consumed half of Christian civilization.

These dreams of a renewed, purified Islam, of the overthrow of existing Muslim governments, of a triumphant smashing of the West, and of expansion through a new jihad are far from confined to bin Laden and his terrorists. They are the dreams that inspire the seething rage of "the Arab street," which so often breaks forth into violent demonstrations at political events beyond its control.

Taming the Dragon?

Within the Muslim world, government officials have been trying to cling to power in the face of rising anger on their streets. Trying to buy time, they have funded radical Islamic schools, media establishments, and even the terrorists themselves, hoping to direct and diffuse ineffectual Muslim rage toward the West as a scapegoat.

The West has responded with the war against terrorism, which Muslim governments would like to see succeed in ridding their society of its most radical elements, which seek their overthrow. Yet they hesitate to support the war too much lest they hasten their own demise through coup d’ etats.

Some in the West have suggested trying to cure the economic roots of the dissatisfaction and despair in Muslim society that contribute to radicalism and terrorism. The problem is not lack of wealth. Many Muslim countries are oil-rich and have had money in abundance for decades, yet the elites have refused to pursue policies leading to greater economic prosperity for their populaces. Instead, they have enriched themselves and shut their own people out of economic development.

Many in the West have proposed trying to spread freedom and democracy in the Muslim world, thinking that greater political involvement and opportunity would help dry up the roots of terrorism.

While democracies generally have done better helping secure economic development for their populations, it is unclear how freedom and democracy could be brought to the Muslim world. It would mean effective regime change in the countries in question, and it is unlikely that many countries would change their own regimes voluntarily, though some might be pressured into making reforms in this direction. To introduce any form of truly representative government in many countries would require armed intervention, as it did in Afghanistan.

There is then the question of how democracy could be sustained in the Muslim world. Muslims have no historical experience of Western freedom and democracy. Middle Eastern society is still largely dominated by tribalism, which has a tendency to subvert the democratic process, with one tribe coming into power and then brutally suppressing its rivals.

The only halfway democratic Muslim country is Turkey, which actually is a country where the military holds power but does not govern. It allows political parties to vie for and exercise governance within Turkey, but only on condition that they do not transgress limits set by the military.

If genuine democracy were achievable, what would the results be? Given the current state of the Arab street, the results would not be pretty. In his analysis, Samuel Huntington argued:

"Many Arab countries, in addition to the oil exporters, are reaching levels of economic and social development where autocratic forms of government become inappropriate and efforts to introduce democracy become stronger. Some openings in Arab political systems have already occurred. The principal beneficiaries of these openings have been Islamist movements. In the Arab world, in short, Western democracy strengthens anti-Western political forces."

The introduction of freedom and democracy to the Muslim world is thus fraught with problems and, in any event, is not a solution to problems in the short term.

One thing that can be done in the short term—as illustrated by the interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq—is the use of military force. Could this help? It certainly has dealt a tremendous blow to the al-Qaeda terrorist network, even though that organization is not yet out of business.

Some have argued that the use of military force will inflame Muslim hatreds and produce a new crop of terrorists. Undoubtedly some Muslims will become terrorists on the pretext that the West has used force. But then some Muslims would become terrorists if the West didn’t use force. Indeed, to a significant degree the al-Qaeda terrorists of September 11 were the product of the view that the United States was a faltering, weak superpower that could be defeated just as the Soviet Union had been humiliated in Afghanistan.

Muslims respect strength. They cheer whoever displays it. Regardless of how many times their towns change hands during an armed conflict, the populace will turn out to cheer their newest liberators, whether they are genuinely on a mission of liberation or not.

Due to its effectiveness in dealing at least temporarily with problems in the Muslim world, the use of military force in finding a long-term solution is likely to be essential. It certainly must be wielded with discretion and in keeping with the Church’s just war doctrine, but its use is likely unavoidable. It also is certainly not sufficient. Military force will have to be used in conjunction with other initiatives, including diplomatic and economic ones.

But is a solution achievable?

Paradise and Power

Can the historic connection between Islam and violence be broken?

Some would argue that it can. After all, our own forebears in Christendom were more violent than we are. Europe was riven by conflict between petty kingdoms for centuries, but eventually a society developed from it that is stable and not at constant war with either itself or its neighbors. Perhaps Muslim society could be led or forced down the same path.

Perhaps. But the proposition is not quick, easy, or certain.

The development of a stable Europe took centuries of bloody conflict that finally wore out the resolve of Europeans to keep killing each other and prompted them to try a different path. This was not achieved until, in the first half of the twentieth century, Europe underwent two massive convulsions of violence, the First and Second World Wars. Key to both of these was the intervention of the United States, which at the end of the Second World War pacified Europe and refused to let its states continue to pursue their bitter, historic rivalries in ways that could destabilize Europe and lead to another war.

Post-war Europe also was united by an outside threat: Soviet Communism, which dominated Eastern Europe. It was the continued presence of U.S. forces in Western Europe during the Cold War that helped protect it from Soviet invasion while new, more healthy political and economic ties were developing between its states as they sought to form a united front against the Soviet threat.

The sequence of events that led to the current state of affairs in Europe is unique and may not be repeatable. Trying to force the Muslim world down the same path is an uncertain proposition, and, even if it could succeed, it might well require the same dramatic military interventions and conflicts as the pacification of Europe. It might require world wars and cold wars.

And then there is a factor that makes the pacification of Islam less likely than the pacification of Europe.

The Roots of Muslim Violence

It is simplistic to characterize any of the major religions as being strictly "of violence" or "of peace." As Solomon pointed out, "For everything there is a season; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time for war, and a time for peace" (Eccles. 3:1, 3, 8). That’s the way life works in a fallen world, and every religion capable of serving as the basis of a culture has recognized both the need for peace and the need for the use of force in certain circumstances.

Sects that are totally pacifistic have to rely on the good graces of others who are willing to use force to protect them, while sects that are totally given over to violence do not survive long since they kill themselves off or are broken up by their neighbors as a matter of self-protection. For a religion to serve as the basis of a culture, it must seek to preserve peace but also be willing to use force. All major religions tend toward this mean.

Yet some religions are far more prone to violence than others. Among the major religions, Islam is by far the most violent. This may be seen by comparing it to the religions most closely related to it, Judaism and Christianity.

Though belief in the true God goes back to the dawn of mankind, Judaism in its traditional form was founded by Moses, who, if evaluated politically, could be considered a warlord, leading the tribes of Israel toward the Promised Land and the conquest that would follow. The Old Testament contains numerous commands to use violence to protect and promote the nation of Israel. This potential for violence is reigned in, though, by the fact that Judaism is a religion for just one ethnic group confined to one territory.

Christianity, by contrast, is a universal religion, meant for all peoples in all countries. It has much greater breadth, and much lower intrinsic potential for violence. Its founder—Christ—was a martyr, who refused to fight to save his life. Though the New Testament acknowledges that the Old Testament revelation is from God, it does not contain new commands to use violence, as Christianity was not to be allied from its birth to a state in the way Judaism was.

The fact that in Christianity church and state are distinct means that as a religion Christianity has less potential for violence since it is not called upon to use force in the way a state is. This, coupled with Jesus’ own example and his "love thy enemy" teachings (e.g., Matt. 5:44), gives Christianity less innate potential for violence.

In contrast, Islam’s founder was a warlord who rose from nowhere and who by his death was the undisputed master of Arabia Peninsula. The holy book he produced is filled with commands to use violence in the service of its religion and nation. This potential for violence is similar to that possessed by Judaism except it is immensely augmented by the fact that Islam views itself, like Christianity, as a universal religion meant for all peoples in all countries. It also makes no distinction between church and state and is thus a political as well as religious ideology.

As a result, Islam has been willing to employ violence on a massive scale, as illustrated by the first century of its existence, when the Islamic Empire exploded outward and conquered much of the known world.

The attitude of Islam toward using violence against non-Muslims is clear. Regarding pagans, the Quran says, "Slay the idolaters wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them. If they repent and take to prayer and render the alms levy, allow them to go their way. God is forgiving and merciful" (Surah 9:5). This amounts to giving pagans a convert-or-die choice.

Regarding violence against Jews and Christians, the Quran says, "Fight against those to whom the Scriptures were given as believe in neither God nor the last day, who do not forbid what God and his messenger have forbidden, and who do not embrace the true faith, until they pay tribute out of hand and are utterly subdued" (Surah 9:29). In other words, violence is to be used against Jews and Christians unless they are willing to pay a special tax and live in subjection to Muslims as second-class citizens. For them the choice is convert, die, or live in subjection.

The Quran also has stern words for Muslims who would be slow and reluctant to attack unbelievers: "Believers, why is it that when you are told: ‘March in the cause of God,’ you linger slothfully in the land? Are you content with this life in preference to the life to come? . . . If you do not go to war, he [God] will punish you sternly, and will replace you by other men" (Surah 9:38-39).

And, of course, there is the promise of reward in the afterlife for waging jihad in this one: "Believers! Shall I point out to you a profitable course that will save you from a woeful scourge? Have faith in God and his messenger, and fight for God’s cause with your wealth and with your persons. . . . He will forgive you your sins and admit you to gardens watered by running streams; he will lodge you in pleasant mansions in the gardens of Eden. This is the supreme triumph" (Surah 61:10-12).

It must be pointed out that there are people of peace and people of violence in all religions. There are violent Christians. There are peace-loving Muslims. Changing historical circumstances do much to bring out tendencies toward violence and peace among the followers of different religions. Yet, even when these qualifications are made, it is clear that Islam as a religion and an ideology has by far the greatest tendency to violence.

There are, indeed, many Muslims who desire peace, but, their views often do not count for much in Muslim society. Author Serge Trifkovic notes: "Some critics may object that this account of Islam in the modern world does not pay much attention to Islamic moderation, to the everyday wish of everyday Muslims for a quiet life. This is not because such moderates are rare, but because they are rarely important. Religions, like political ideologies, are pushed along by money, power, and tiny vocal minorities. Within Islam, the money and the power are all pushing the wrong way. So are the most active minorities. The urgent need is to recognize this. Our problem is not prejudice about Islam, but folly in the face of its violence and cruelty. And in any case, the willingness of moderates to be what are objectively bad Muslims, because they reject key teachings of historical Islam, may be laudable in human terms but does nothing to modify Islam as a doctrine."

The prospect of modifying Islam’s doctrine regarding violence is problematic. Although some Muslims in history have tried to "spiritualize" the Quran’s declarations regarding violence, there is always a countervailing fundamentalist push to return to the sources of Islam and take them literally.

Indeed, this reaction is what characterizes the Wahhabite movement that dominates Saudia Arabia and inspired Osama bin Laden’s ideology. Philosopher Roger Scruton notes that in the Wahhabite view, "whoever can read the Quran can judge for himself in matters of doctrine."

This attitude, which is tantamount to an Islamic version of sola scriptura, is likely to prove as durable in Muslim circles as it has been in Protestant Fundamentalist circles. As long as that is the case, there will be fresh waves of Muslim "martyrs" willing to take the Quran’s statements on killing literally, apply them to today, and then hurl themselves into combat with whomever they perceive as "the Great Satan."


We have seen the roots of Islamic violence in the life and teachings of Mohammed. We have seen that world events have conspired to place Islam and Christianity in a conflict of civilizations that has stretched from the sixth to the twenty-first century.

What the future holds is unknown. What is known is that Islamic civilization has a strong tendency to violence that stretches back to the days of Mohammed and that has begun to flare up in resurgent terrorist and revolutionary movements.

The conflict with militant Islam may last a long time—centuries, potentially—since even if curing Muslim society of its violent tendencies is possible, it would involve ripping out or otherwise neutralizing a tendency that has dominated Muslim culture since the days of its founder.

This is not an easy task, for Muslims willing to make the change would be portrayed as traitors to their religion, amid renewed calls to practice Islam in its original, pure, and more violent form in order to regain the favor of God. The signs of the times suggest that we are, indeed, in for a "clash of civilizations" that will be neither brief nor bloodless.

But what also is known is that God has a plan for history and that his grace can work miracles. It is yet possible that—through one means or another—God will bring about a more peaceful world in which militant Islam either is not a threat or nowhere near the threat that it is today.

If this is to happen, our cooperation with God’s grace will require prayer, courage, resourcefulness, and a realistic understanding of the threat we are facing. Until then there can be no illusions about Islam and its endless jihad.


Thousands hold Islamic Jihad rally in Gaza

Published: Oct. 29, 2010

GAZA, Oct. 29 (UPI) -- Supporters of the Islamic Jihad group rallied Friday in Gaza to commemorate the assassination of the group's founder.

Speakers called for an end to talks with Israel, the Ma'an News Agency reported. The agency said the crowd in Kuteiba Square numbered in the tens of thousands, although its description of the rally suggested the actual number was 10,000 or less, since it described several thousand people sitting in chairs with hundreds standing to the rear.

Fathi Shaqaqi and other founders of the organization called for the liberation of Palestine and destruction of the Israeli state. Shaqaqi was shot dead in Malta Oct. 26, 1995.

Mohammad al-Hindi, one of the current leaders of the group, also called for an end to the Palestinian Authority.

"Jihad is the fate of this nation. There is no other option but this one," he said, quoting Shaqaqi.

The Other Side of Jihad -- Honor Killings

By Phyllis Chesler
Published June 11, 2010

We usually associate jihadic warriors with fiery, anti-American and anti-Israeli sermons and with homicide bombings and airplane hijackings. We don’t think of jihadists as homebodies or in terms of their family relationships.

But we should.

Islamic fundamentalism (Islamism) is associated both with terrorism—and with Islamic gender apartheid. Thus, Islamists demand that their women shroud themselves, marry their first cousins, serve their brothers and father as domestic servants, keep quiet about routine daughter--and wife--battering, and keep away from infidel influences.

If they don't, they risk being honor murdered.

Not all Muslims are Islamists. Many are anti-Islamists, dissidents, moderates, secular, or apostates. I know, because I work with such people.

But, show me a jihadist and I’ll show you someone who believes in polygamy, demands that his women wear the Islamic veil, keep away from “foreigners,” and remain totally obedient and subordinate to him. If not, their lives are in danger. And they are warned about this repeatedly.

Not all honor killers actually hijack airplanes—but they probably support those who do.

Incredibly, young immigrant girls or first generation citizens are being murdered by their own families in honor killings in the West. In order to prevent such murders, it is important to understand that honor killings differ significantly from western-style domestic violence. However, when an honor killing occurs here, the police, as well as Islamist and feminist groups, still insist that the murder is just like domestic violence everywhere. But that is not true.

- In 1989 in St. Louis, 16-year-old Palestina Isa was murdered by her father and mother because they saw her as “too American” and because she was friendly with an African-American boy.

- In 2000, 25-year-old Jaswinder Kaur was murdered by her mother and uncle because she had married someone deemed inappropriate by her wealthy Sikh family.

- In 2007 in Ottawa, Canada, 16-year-old Aqsa Parvez was murdered by her father and brother because she refused to wear the Islamic veil.

- In 2008, in Dallas, teenage sisters Sarah and Amina Said were lured by their mother and murdered by their father who was outraged by their “Western” ways.

- In 2009, in Peoria, Arizona, 20- year-old Noor Al-Maleki was murdered by her father (with support from her mother and brother). Faleh ran over his daughter with a two-ton jeep. Noor’s family felt dishonored by her flight from an arranged marriage and by her sexually liberated American lifestyle, which included wearing tight jeans and makeup.

Western fathers and mothers do not routinely murder their young daughters or for such reasons.

According to my new study in Middle East Quarterly, such classic killings have accelerated significantly over the last twenty years. The study examined the fate of 230 victims on five continents. I found that Muslims committed 96% of these murders in Europe, 84% in North America, and 91% worldwide. Sikhs and Hindus committed the rest. There may be a more significant Hindu involvement in honor killings where caste has been violated but such killings take place mainly in India, and not in the West.

My study also documents that two types of honor killings and/or two distinct victim populations exist. One group’s average age is seventeen; the other group’s average age is thirty-six. Both groups are murdered because they are seen as “too Western,” “too independent,” or because they have engaged in a “sexual impropriety”—even if only an imagined one.

Thus, immigrant girls and women are at special risk in the West. Those who exercised their option to assimilate were killed in particularly gruesome ways.

In Europe, 68% of such killings were torturous, agonizing. Girls and women were stabbed 20-40 times, raped and set on fire, bludgeoned to death, beheaded, beaten, stoned. These women were tempted by Western freedoms. They did not want to wear religious clothing, they wanted to go to school, have careers, wear western clothing, have non-Muslim friends, and marry for love.

Such murders may be intended as an object lesson for other female immigrants who are expected to lead subordinated and segregated lives amid the temptations and privileges of freedom.

The level of primal, sadistic, or barbaric savagery shown in honor killings often approximates the murders in the West perpetrated by serial killers against prostitutes or randomly selected women.

This suggests that gender separatism, the devaluation of girls and women, normalized child abuse—as practiced in an era of Islamism and jihadism, may lead to femicidal levels of aggression towards girls and women.

This culture of honor killings may reflect or even create a climate in which barbaric jihad seems normal, even desirable.

Honor-related violence, including honor killings cannot be justified in the name of cultural relativism, religious tolerance, anti-racism, diversity, or political correctness. These acts are human rights violations and crimes.

As long as Islamist groups continue to deny, minimize, or obfuscate the problem, and government and police officials accept their inaccurate versions of reality, women will continue to be killed for honor in the West.

Phyllis Chesler, Ph.D. is emerita professor of Psychology and Women’s Studies, the co-founder of the Association for Women in Psychology (1969), the National Women’s Health Network (1975) and the author of thousands of articles and of thirteen books, including "Women and Madness" (1972), "Woman’s Inhumanity to Woman" (2002) and "The New Anti-Semitism" (2003). She may be reached at her website

Jihad is 'Muslim obligation'

Press Association Ltd - Tue 20 Dec 2005

A lawyer defending al Qaida-linked suspects standing trial for the 2003 suicide bombings in Istanbul told a court that jihad, or holy war, was an obligation for Muslims and his clients should not be prosecuted.

"If you punish them for this, tomorrow, will you punish them for fasting or for praying?" Osman Karahan -- a lawyer representing 14 of the 72 suspects -- asked during a nearly four-hour speech in which he read religious texts from an encyclopedia of Islam.

The November 2003 blasts targeted two synagogues, the British Consulate and the local headquarters of the London-based HSBC bank, killing 58 people.

The Arabic word jihad can mean holy war among extremists in addition to its definition as the Islamic concept of the struggle to do good.

Karahan spoke for three hours at the court in Istanbul.

"If non-Muslims go into Muslim lands, it is every Muslim's obligation to fight them," Karahan said.

A panel of three judges for the fiercely secular Turkish Republic listened to Karahan patiently, without speaking, as the defence lawyer read from four thick file folders.

Twenty-nine of the suspects were brought to the courthouse for the hearing, handcuffed and escorted by paramilitary police. They sat in the middle of the courtroom, surrounded by police.

More than a dozen other lawyers were also present but only Karahan spoke in the morning session.

Later in the day, several defendants acknowledged receiving training at foreign camps for Islamic militants or making plans to carry out acts of extremist violence, but all but one denied a link to the Istanbul bombings or to al Qaida.


The Legacy of Jihad in Historical Palestine (Part I)
November 19th, 2005

Violent jihad warfare on infidels is the norm, not the exception, in Islamic history. Once successful, jihad leads to the imposition of humiliating, degrading, violent, and expensive oppression under dhimmitude, the institutionalized imposition of lowly status upon those who refuse to abandon their faith and adopt Islam. Among the worst victims of jihad and dhimmitude have been the Jews and Christians who lived in historic Palestine.

Edward Said’s ridiculous polemic, The Question of Palestine, quotes the following observation by a Dr. A. Carlebach published in Ma’ariv (October 7, 1955).

The danger stems from the [Islamic] totalitarian conception of the world… Occupation by force of arms, in their own eyes, in the eyes of Islam, is not at all associated with injustice. To the contrary, it constitutes a certificate and demonstration of authentic ownership. [1]

Said cites Carlebach with ostensibly self-evident derision. Unwittingly, Said thus reveals his own belligerent obliviousness to Carlebach’s acute perceptions about the ugly realities of jihad war, the resultant imposition of dhimmitude, and their brutal legacy in historical Palestine and the greater Middle East.

As elucidated by Jacques Ellul, the jihad is an institution intrinsic to Islam, and not an isolated event, or series of events:

.. .it is a part of the normal functioning of the Muslim world… The conquered populations change status (they become dhimmis), and the shari’a tends to be put into effect integrally, overthrowing the former law of the country. The conquered territories do not simply change ‘owners’. [2]

The essential pattern of the jihad war is captured in the great Muslim historian al-Tabari’ s recording of the recommendation given by Umar b. al-Khattab to the commander of the troops he sent to al-Basrah (636 C.E.), during the conquest of Iraq. Umar reportedly said:

Summon the people to God; those who respond to your call, accept it from them, (This is to say, accept their conversion as genuine and refrain from fighting 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. Fear God with regard to what you have been entrusted. [3]

Jihad was pursued century after century, because jihad, which means “to strive in the path of Allah,” embodied an ideology and a jurisdiction. Both were formally conceived by Muslim jurisconsults and theologians from the 8th to 9th centuries onward, based on their interpretation of Qur’anic verses and long chapters in the Traditions (i.e., “hadith”, acts and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad, especially those recorded by al-Bukhari [d. 869] and Muslim [d. 874] ). [4]

Ibn Khaldun (d. 1406), jurist (Maliki), renowned philosopher, historian, and sociologist, summarized these consensus opinions from five centuries of prior Muslim jurisprudence with regard to the uniquely Islamic institution of jihad:

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… The other religious groups did not have a universal mission, and the holy war was not a religious duty for them, save only for purposes of defense… Islam is under obligation to gain power over other nations. [5]

Indeed, even al-Ghazali (d. 1111), the famous theologian, philosopher, and paragon of mystical Sufism, (who, as noted by W.Montgomery Watt, has been ”.. .acclaimed in both the East and West as the greatest Muslim after Muhammad.. .” [6]), wrote the following about jihad: 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… One must destroy their useless books. Jihadists may take as booty whatever they decide…they may steal as much food as they need… [7]

By the time of the classical Muslim historian al-Tabari’s death in 923, jihad wars had expanded the Muslim empire from Portugal to the Indian subcontinent. Subsequent Muslim conquests continued in Asia, as well as Eastern Europe. The Christian kingdoms of Armenia, Byzantium, Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Croatia, and Albania, in addition to parts of Poland and Hungary, were also conquered and Islamized.

Arab Muslim invaders engaged, additionally, in continuous jihad raids that ravaged and enslaved Sub-Saharan African animist populations, extending to the southern Sudan. When the Muslim armies were stopped at the gates of Vienna in 1683, over a millennium of jihad had transpired. These tremendous military successes spawned a triumphalist jihad literature. Muslim historians recorded in detail the number of infidels slaughtered, or enslaved and deported, the cities and villages which were pillaged, and the lands, treasure, and movable goods seized. Christian (Coptic, Armenian, Jacobite, Greek, Slav, etc.), as well as Hebrew sources, and even the scant Hindu and Buddhist writings which survived the ravages of the Muslim conquests, independently validate this narrative, and ,complement the Muslim perspective by providing testimonies of the suffering of the non-Muslim victims of jihad wars. [8]

In The Laws of Islamic Governance al-Mawardi (d. 1058), a renowned jurist of Baghdad, examined the regulations pertaining to the lands and infidel (i.e., non-Muslim) populations subjugated by jihad. This is the origin of the system of dhimmitude. The native infidel population had to recognize Islamic ownership of their land, submit to Islamic law, and accept payment of the poll tax (jizya).

He notes that “The enemy makes a payment in return for peace and reconciliation. ” Al- Mawardi then distinguishes two cases: (I) Payment is made immediately and is treated like booty, “it does, however, not prevent a jihad being carried out against them in the future. ”. (II). Payment is made yearly and will “constitute an ongoing tribute by which their security is established”.

Reconciliation and security last as long as the payment is made. If the payment ceases, then the jihad resumes. A treaty of reconciliation may be renewable, but must not exceed 10 years. [9]

A remarkable account from 1894 by an Italian Jew traveling in Morocco, demonstrates the humiliating conditions under which the jizya was still being collected within the modern era:

The kaid Uwida and the kadi Mawlay Mustafa had mounted their tent today near the Mellah [Jewish ghetto] gate and had summoned the Jews in order to collect from them the poll tax [jizya] which they are obliged to pay the sultan. They had me summoned also. I first inquired whether those who were European-protected subjects had to pay this tax. Having learned that a great many of them had already paid it, I wished to do likewise. After having remitted the amount of the tax to the two officials, I received from the kadi’s guard two blows in the back of the neck. Addressing the kadi and the kaid, I said” ‘Know that I am an Italian protected subject.’ Whereupon the kadi said to his guard: ‘Remove the kerchief covering his head and strike him strongly; he can then go and complain wherever he wants.’ The guards hastily obeyed and struck me once again more violently. This public mistreatment of a European-protected subject demonstrates to all the Arabs that they can, with impunity, mistreat the Jews. [10]

The “contract of the jizya”, or “dhimma” encompassed other obligatory and recommended obligations for the conquered non-Muslim “dhimmi” peoples. Collectively, these “obligations” formed the discriminatory system of dhimmitude imposed upon non-Muslims-Jews, Christians, Zoroastrians, Hindus, and Buddhists-subjugated by jihad. Some of the more salient features of dhimmitude include: the prohibition of arms for the vanquished non-Muslims (dhimmis), and of church bells; restrictions concerning the building and restoration of churches, synagogues, and temples; inequality between Muslims and non-Muslims with regard to taxes and penal law; the refusal of dhimmi testimony by Muslim courts; a requirement that Jews, Christians, and other non-Muslims, including Zoroastrians and Hindus, wear special clothes; and the overall humiliation and abasement of non-Muslims. [11] 

It is important to note that these regulations and attitudes were institutionalized as permanent features of the sacred Islamic law, or Shari’ a. Again, the writings of the much lionized Sufi theologian and jurist al-Ghazali highlight how the institution of dhimmitude was simply a normative, and prominent feature of the Shari’a:

...the dhimmi is obliged not to mention Allah or His Apostle.. .Jews, Christians, and Majians must pay thejizya [poll tax on non-Muslims]...on offering up thejizya, the dhimmi must hang his head while the official takes hold of his beard and hits [the dhimmi] on the protruberant bone beneath his ear [i.e., the mandible]... They are not permitted to ostentatiously display their wine or church bells…their houses may not be higher than the Muslim’s, no matter how low that is. The dhimmi may not ride an elegant horse or mule; he may ride a donkey only if the saddler-work] is of wood. He may not walk on the good part of the road. They [the dhimmis] have to wear [an identifying] patch [on their clothing], even women, and even in the [public] baths…[dhimmis] must hold their tongue. [12] 

The Great Jihad and the Muslim Conquest of Palestine

September 622 C.E. marks a defining event in Islam- the hijra. Muhammad and a coterie of followers (the Muhajirun), persecuted by fellow Banu Quraysh tribesmen who rejected Muhammad’s authenticity as a divine messenger, fled from Mecca to Yathrib, later known as Al-Medina (Medina). The Muslim sources described Yathrib as having been a Jewish city founded by a Palestinian diaspora population which had survived the revolt against the Romans. Distinct from the nomadic Arab tribes, the Jews of the north Arabian peninsula were highly productive oasis farmers. These Jews were eventually joined by itinerant Arab tribes from southern Arabia who settled adjacent to them and transitioned to a sedentary existence. [13]

Following Muhammad’s arrival, he re-ordered Medinan society, eventually imposing his authority on each tribe. The Jewish tribes were isolated, some were then expelled, and the remainder attacked and exterminated. Muhammad distributed among his followers as “booty” the vanquished Jews property-plantations, fields, and houses-and also used this “booty” to establish a well-equipped jihadist cavalry corps. [14] Muhammad’s subsequent interactions with the Christians of northern Arabia followed a similar pattern, noted by Richard Bell. The “relationship with the Christians ended as that with the Jews (ended) – in war”, because Islam as presented by Muhammad was a divine truth, and unless Christians accepted this formulation, which included Muhammad’s authority, “conflict was inevitable, and there could have been no real peace while he [Muhammad] lived.” [15]

Within two years of Muhammad’s death, Abu Bakr, the first Caliph, launched the Great Jihad. The ensuing three decades witnessed Islamdom’s most spectacular expansion, as Muslim armies subdued the entire Arabian peninsula, and conquered territories which had been in Greco-Roman possession since the reign of Alexander the Great. [16]

Gil, in his monumental analysis A History of Palestine, 634-1099, emphasizes the singular centrality that Palestine occupied in the mind of its pre-Islamic Jewish inhabitants, who referred to the land as “al-Sham”. Indeed, as Gil observes, the sizable Jewish population in Palestine (who formed a majority of its inhabitants, when grouped with the Samaritans) at the dawn of the Arab Muslim conquest were, “the direct descendants of the generations of Jews who had lived there since the days of Joshua bin Nun, in other words for some 2000 years…” [17] Jews and Christians speaking Aramaic inhabited the cities and the cultivated inner regions, devoid of any unique ties to the Bedouin of the desert hinterlands, who were regarded as bellicose and threatening, in the writings of both the Church Fathers, and in Talmudic sources. [18]

The following is a summary of the devastating consequences of the Arab Muslim conquest of Palestine during the fourth decade of the 7th century, directed by the first two Caliphs, Abu Bakr and Umar b. al-Khattab [notwithstanding Pervez Musharaff’s hagiography of the latter, in a recent New York City speech].

The entire Gaza region up to Cesarea was sacked and devastated in the campaign of 634, which included the slaughter of four thousand Jewish, Christian, and Samaritan peasants. Villages in the Negev were also pillaged, and towns such as Jerusalem, Gaza, Jaffa, Cesarea, Nablus, and Beth Shean were isolated. In his sermon on the Day of the Epiphany 636, Sophronius, Patriarch of Jerusalem, bewailed the destruction of the churches and monasteries, the sacked towns and villages, and the fields laid waste by the invaders. Thousands of people perished in 639, victims of the famine and plague wrought by this wanton destruction.

The Muslim historian Baladhuri (d. 892 C.E.), maintained that 30,000 Samaritans and 20,000 Jews lived in Caesarea alone just prior to the Arab Muslim conquest; afterward, all evidence of them disappears. Archaeological data confirms the lasting devastation wrought by these initial jihad conquests, particularly the widespread destruction of synagogues and churches from the Byzantine era, whose remnants are still being unearthed. The total number of towns was reduced from fifty-eight to seventeen in the red sand hills and swamps of the western coastal plain (i.e., the Sharon).

Massive soil erosion from the Judaean mountains western slopes also occurred due to agricultural uprooting during this period. Finally, the papyri of Nessana were completely discontinued after the year 700, reflecting how the Negev also experienced the destruction of its agriculture, and the desertion of its villages.[19]

Dhimmitude in Palestine During the Initial Period of  Muslim Rule

Dramatic persecution, directed specifically at Christians, included executions for refusing to apostasize to Islam during the first two decades of the 8th century, under the reigns of Abd al- Malik, his son Sulayman, and Umar b. Abd al-Aziz. Georgian, Greek, Syriac, and Armenian sources report both prominent individual and group executions (for eg., sixty-three out of seventy Christian pilgrims from Iconium in Asia Minor were executed by the Arab governor of Caesarea, barring seven who apostasized to Islam, and sixty Christian pilgrims from Amorion were crucified in Jerusalem).

Under early Abbasid rule (approximately 750-755 C.E., perhaps during the reign [Abul Abbas Abdullah] al-Saffah) Greek sources report orders demanding the removal of crosses over Churches, bans on Church services and teaching of the scriptures, the eviction of monks from their monasteries, and excessive taxation. [20] Gil notes that in 772 C.E., when Caliph al-Mansur visited Jerusalem,

..he ordered a special mark should be stamped on the hands of the Christians and the Jews. Many Christians fled to Byzantium. [21]

Bat Y e’ or elucidates the fiscal oppression inherent in eighth century Palestine which devastated the dhimmi Jewish and Christian peasantry:

Over-taxed and tortured by the tax collectors, the villagers fled into hiding or emigrated into towns. [22]

She quotes from a detailed chronicle of an eighth century monk, completed in 774:

The men scattered, they became wanderers everywhere; the fields were laid waste, the countryside pillaged; the people went from one land to another. [23]

The Greek chronicler Theophanes provides a contemporary description of the chaotic events which transpired after the death of the caliph Harun al-Rashid in 809 C.E. He describes Palestine as the scene of violence, rape, and murder, from which Christian monks fled to Cyprus and Constantinople. [24]

Perhaps the clearest outward manifestations of the inferiority and humiliation of the dhimmis were the prohibitions regarding their dress codes, and the demands that distinguishing signs be placed on the entrances of dhimmi houses. During the Abbasid caliphates of Harun al-Rashid (786-809) and al-Mutawwakil (847-861), Jews and Christians were required to wear yellow (as patches attached to their garments, or hats). Later, to differentiate further between Christians and Jews, the Christians were required to wear blue. In 850, consistent with Qur’anic verses associating them with Satan and Hell, al-Mutawwakil decreed that Jews and Christians attach wooden images of devils to the doors of their homes to distinguish them from the homes of Muslims. [25]

Muslim and non-Muslims sources establish that during the early 11th century period of al-Hakim’s reign, religious assaults and hostility intensified, for both Jews and Christians. The destruction of the churches at the Holy Sepulchre [1009 C.E.] was followed by a large scale campaign of Church destructions (including the Church of the Resurrection in Jerusalem, and additional churches throughout the Fatimid kingdom), and other brutal acts of oppression against the dhimmi populations, such as forcible conversion to Islam, or expulsion.

The discriminatory edicts al-Hakim imposed upon the dhimmis beginning in August 1011 C.E., included orders to wear black turbans; a five pound, 18-inch cross (for Christians), or five pound block of wood (for Jews), around their necks; and distinguishing marks in the bathhouses. Ultimately al-Hakim decided that there were to be separate bathhouses for the dhimmis use. [26] During the early through the mid 11th century, the Jews, in particular, continued to suffer frequently from both economic and physical oppression, according to Gil. [27]

Muslim Turcoman rule of Palestine for the nearly three decades just prior to the Crusades (1071- 1099 C.E.) was characterized by such unrelenting warfare and devastation, that an imminent “End of Days” atmosphere was engendered. [28] A contemporary poem by Solomon ha-Kohen b. Joseph, believed to be a descendant of the Geonim, an illustrious family of Palestinian Jews of priestly descent, speaks of destruction and ruin, the burning of harvests, the razing of plantations, the desecration of cemeteries, and acts of violence, slaughter, and plunder. [29]

The brutal nature of the Crusader’s conquest of Palestine, particularly of the major cities, beginning in 1098/99 C.E., has been copiously documented. [30] However, the devastation wrought by both Crusader conquest and rule (through the last decades of the 13th century) cannot reasonably be claimed to have approached, let alone somehow “exceeded”, what transpired during the first four and one-half centuries of Muslim jihad conquests, endless internecine struggles for Muslim dominance, and imposition of dhimmitude.

Moreover, we cannot ignore the testimony of Isaac b. Samuel of Acre (1270-1350 C.E.), one of the most outstanding Kabbalists of his time. Conversant with Islamic theology and often using Arabic in his exegesis, Isaac nevertheless believed that it was preferable to live under the yoke of Christendom, rather than that of Islamdom. Acre was taken from the Crusaders by the Mamelukes in 1291 by a very brutal jihad conquest. Accordingly, despite the precept to dwell in the Holy Land, Isaac b. Samuel fled to Italy and thence to Christian Spain, where he wrote:

...they [the Muslims] strike upon the head the children of Israel who dwell in their lands and they thus extort money from them by force. For they say in their tongue, ...’it is lawful to take money of the Jews.’ For, in the eyes of the Muslims, the children of Israel are as open to abuse as an unprotected field. Even in their law and statutes they rule that the testimony of a Muslim is always to be believed against that of a Jew. For this reason our rabbis of blessed memory have said, ‘Rather beneath the yoke of Edom [Christendom] than that of Ishmael. [31]


[1] Edward Said. The Question of Palestine. New York: Vintage Books, 1980, pp. 89-90. [2] Jacques Ellul. Foreward to Les Chretientes d’Orient entre Jihad et Dhimmitude. VIIe – XXe siecle, 1991. Pp. 18-19.  [3] Al-Tabari, The History of al-Tabari (Ta’rikh al rusul wa’l-muluk), vol. 12, The Battle of Qadissiyah and the Conquest of Syria and Palestine, translated by Yohanan Friedman, (Albany, NY.: State University of New York Press, 1992), p. 167. [4] The Noble Qur’an ; Translation of Sahih Bukhari;  Translation of Sahih Muslim [5] Ibn Khaldun, The Muqudimmah. An Introduction to History, Translated by Franz Rosenthal. (New York, NY.: Pantheon, 1958, vol. 1), p. 473. [6] Watt, W.M. [Translator]. The Faith and Practice of Al-Ghazali, Oxford, England, 1953, p. 13. [7] Al-Ghazali (d. 1111). Kitab al-Wagiz fi fiqh madhab al-imam al-Safi’i, Beirut, 1979, pp. 186, 190-91; 199-200; 202-203. English translation by Dr. Michael Schub in Andrew G. Bostom, editor, The Legacy of Jihad-Islamic Holy War and the Fate of Non-Muslims, Amherst, NY, Prometheus Books, 2005, p. 199.[8] Bostom, The Legacy of Jihad, especially pp. 24-124, 368-681.[9] Bostom, The Legacy of Jihad, pp. 190-95.[10] Cited in, Bostom, The Legacy of Jihad, p.31.[11] Bostom, The Legacy of Jihad, pp. 29-37.[12] Bostom, The Legacy of Jihad, p. 199.[13] Moshe Gil,  A History of Palestine, 634-1099, translated by Ethel Broido, Cambridge and New York, 1992, p. 11. [14] Gil,  A History of Palestine,p.11.[15] Richard Bell, The Origin of Islam in its Christian Environment, London, 1926, Pp. 134-135; 151; 159-161. [16] Demetrios Constantelos, “Greek Christian and Other Accounts of the Moslem Conquests of the Near East”, in Christian Hellenism : Essays and Studies in Continuity and Change, New Rochelle, N.Y., A.D. Caratzas, 1998, pp. 125-26.[17] Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, p. 2. [18] Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, pp. 15, 20; Constantelos, “Greek Christian and Other Accounts of the Moslem Conquests of the Near East”, pp. 126-130.[19] Bat Ye’or, The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam, p. 44.; Bat Ye’or, “Islam and the Dhimmis”,  The Jerusalem Quarterly, 1987, Vol. 42, p. 85. Moshe Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, pp. 61, 169-170; Naphtali Lewis, “New Light on the Negev in Ancient Times”, Palestine Exploration Quarterly, 1948, vol. 80, pp. 116-117; Constantelos, “Greek Christian and Other Accounts of the Moslem Conquests of the Near East”, pp. 127-28; Al-Baladhuri The Origins of the Islamic State (Kitah Futuh al-Buldan), translated by Philip K. Hitti, London, Longman, Greens, and Company, 1916, p. 217. [20] Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, pp. 471-474; Constantelos, “Greek Christian and Other Accounts of the Moslem Conquests of the Near East, p. 135.[21] Moshe Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, p. 474. [22] Bat Ye’or, The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam, p. 74.[23] Chronique de Denys de Tell-Mahre, translated from the Syriac by Jean-Baptiste Chabot (Paris, 1895), part 4, p. 112. English translation in: Bat Ye’or, The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam, p. 74.[24] Moshe Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, pp. 474-75. [25] Moshe Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, p.159; Q16:63- “By God, We (also) sent (Our apostles) to peoples before thee; but Satan made, (to the wicked) their own acts seem alluring: he is also their patron today, but they shall have a most grievous penalty”; Q5:72-“They do blaspheme who say: ‘Allah is Christ the son of Mary.’ But said Christ: ‘O Children of Israel! worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord.’  Whoever joins other gods with Allah,- Allah will forbid him the garden, and the Fire will be his abode. There will for the wrong-doers be no one to help.” Q58:19- “The devil hath engrossed them and so hath caused them to forget remembrance of Allah. They are the devil’s party. Lo! is it not the devil’s party who will be the losers?”; Bat Ye’or, The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam, p. 84. [26] Moshe Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, pp. 371-379. [27] Moshe Gil, “Dhimmi Donations and Foundations for Jerusalem (638-1099)”, Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient, Vol. 37, 1984, pp. 166-167. [28] Moshe Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, pp. 412-416. [29] Julius Greenstone, in his essay, “The Turcoman Defeat at Cairo” The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Vol. 22, 1906, pp. 144-175,  provides a translation of this poem [excerpted, pp. 164-165] by Solomon ha-Kohen b. Joseph [believed to be a descendant of the Geonim, an illustrious family of Palestinian Jews of priestly descent], which includes the poet’s recollection of the previous Turcoman conquest of Jerusalem during the eighth decade of the 11th century. Greenstone comments [p. 152], “As appears from the poem, the conquest of Jerusalem by Atsiz was very sorely felt by the Jews. The author dwell at great length on the cruelties perpetrated against the inhabitants of the city…” [30] For example, Steven Runciman, A History of the Crusades- Vol. 1- The First Crusade and the Foundation of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, Cambridge, 1951, Pp. 286-87; Moshe Gil, A History of Palestine, 634-1099, p. 827 notes, “The Christians violated their promise to the inhabitants that they would be left alive, and slaughtered some 20,000 to 30,000 people, a number which may be an exaggeration…”[31] Isaac b. Samuel of Acre. Osar Hayyim (Treasure Store of Life) (Hebrew). Ms. Gunzburg 775 fol. 27b. Lenin State Library, Moscow. [English translation in, Bat Ye’or, The Dhimmi: Jews and Christians Under Islam, Pp. 352-54.

Dr. Bostom is an Associate Professor of Medicine, and author of the recently released, The Legacy of Jihad, on Prometheus Books.


The Legacy of Jihad in Historial Palestine (Part II)
November 20th, 2005

Violent jihad warfare on infidels is the norm, not the exception, in Islamic history. Once successful, jihad leads to the imposition of humiliating, degrading, violent, and expensive oppression under dhimmitude, the institutionalized imposition of lowly status upon those who refuse to abandon their faith and adopt Islam. Among the worst victims of jihad and dhimmitude have been the Jews and Christians who lived in historic Palestine. Part II of this article examines jihad and dhimmitude in historical Palestine in the pre-modern and modern eras

Although episodes of violent anarchy diminished during the period of Ottoman suzerainty (beginning in 1516-1517 C.E.), the degrading conditions of the indigenous Jews and Christians living under the Sharia’s jurisdiction remained unchanged for centuries. For example, Samuel b. Ishaq Uceda, a major Kabbalist from Safed at the end of the 16th century, refers in his commentary on The Lamentations of Jeremiah, to the situation of the Jews in the Land of Israel (Palestine):

...there is no town in the [Ottoman] empire in which the Jews are subjected to such heavy taxes and dues as in the Land of Israel, and particularly in Jerusalem. Were it not for the funds sent by the communities in Exile, no Jew could survive here on account of the numerous taxes… The [Muslims] humiliate us to such an extent that we are not allowed to walk in the streets. The Jew is obliged to step aside in order to let the Gentile [Muslim] pass first. And if the Jew does not turn aside of his own will, he is forced to do so. This law is particularly enforced in Jerusalem, more so than in other localities. [32]

A century later Canon Antoine Morison, from Bar-le-Duc in France, while traveling in the Levant in 1698, observed that the Jews in Jerusalem are “there in misery and under the most cruel and shameful slavery”, and although a large community, they suffered from extortion. [33]

Similar contemporary observations regarding the plight of both Palestinian Jews and Christians-subjected to the jizya [infidel tax], and other attendant forms of social, economic, and religious .. discrimination, often brutally imposed, were made by the Polish Jew, Gedaliah of Siemiatyce (d. 1716), who, braving numerous perils, came to Jerusalem in 1700. These appalling conditions, recorded in his book, Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem, forced him to return to Europe in order to raise funds for the Jews of Jerusalem.

No Jew or Christian is allowed to ride a horse, but a donkey is permitted, for [in the eyes of Muslims] Christians and Jews are inferior beings… The Muslims do not  allow any member of another faith-unless he converts to their religion-entry to the Temple [Mount] area, for they claim that no other religion is sufficiently pure to enter this holy spot.

In the Land of Israel, no member of any other religion besides Islam may wear the color green, even if it is a thread [of cotton] like that with which we decorate our prayer shawls. If a Muslim perceives it, that could bring trouble.

Moreover, the Muslim law requires that each religious denomination wear its specific garment so that each people may be distinguished from another. This distinction also applies to footwear. Indeed, the Jews wear shoes of a dark blue color, whereas Christians wear red shoes. No one can use green, for this color is worn solely by Muslims. The latter are very hostile toward Jews and inflict upon them vexations in the streets of the city…the common folk persecute the Jews, for we are forbidden to defend ourselves against the Turks or the Arabs. If an Arab strikes a Jew, he [the Jew] must appease him but dare not rebuke him, for fear that he may be struck even harder, which they [the Arabs] do without the slightest scruple. This is the way the Oriental Jews react, for they are accustomed to this treatment, whereas the European Jews, who are not yet accustomed to suffer being assaulted by the Arabs, insult them in return.

Even the Christians are subjected to these vexations. If a Jew offends a Muslim, the latter strikes him a brutal blow with his shoe in order to demean him, without anyone’s being able to prevent him from doing it. The Christians fall victim to the same treatment and they suffer as much as the Jews, except that the former are very rich by reason of the subsidies that they receive from abroad, and they use this money to bribe the Arabs. As for the Jews, they do not possess much money with which to oil the palms of the Muslims, and consequently they are subject to much greater suffering.[34]

These prevailing conditions for Jews did not improve in a consistent or substantive manner even after the mid 19th century treaties imposed by the European powers on the weakened Ottoman Empire included provisions for the Tanzimat reforms. First introduced in 1839, these reforms were designed to end the discriminatory laws of dhimmitude for both Jews and Christians, living under the Ottoman Shari’a. European consuls endeavored to maintain compliance with at least two cardinal principles central to any meaningful implementation of the reforms: respect for the life and property of non-Muslims; and the right for Christians and Jews to provide evidence in Islamic courts when a Muslim was a party. Unfortunately, these efforts to replace the concept of Muslim superiority over “infidels”, with the principle of equal rights, failed. [35]

Almost two decades later, two eyewitness accounts from Jerusalem, one written by the missionary Gregory Wortabet, (published in 1856), and the second by British Jerusalem Consul James Finn, (reported November 8-11, 1858) make clear that the deeply ingrained Islamic religious bigotry, discriminatory regulations, and treacherous conditions for non-Muslims in Palestine had not improved, despite a second iteration of Ottoman “reforms” in 1856. Wortabet’s narrative depicts the common, prevailing attitudes of Muslim Jew hatred derived from a purely Islamic perspective. Indeed, Wortabet refers, quite plausibly to the hadith about Muhammad’s poisoning by a Khaybar Jewess as a primary source of such animus. Finn’s report highlights the legal discrimination and  physical insecurity suffered by both Jews and Christians. 

[Wortabet’s account] The Jew is still an object of scorn, and nowhere is the name of “Yahoodi (Jew)” more looked down upon than here in the city of his fathers. One day, as I was passing the Damascus gate, I saw an Arab hurrying on his donkey amid imprecations such as the following:

‘Emshi ya Ibn-el-Yahoodi (Walk, thou son of a Jew)! Yulaan abuk ya Ibn-el-Yahoodi (Cursed be thy father, thou son of a Jew)!’

I need not give any more illustrations of the manner in which the man went on. The reader will observe, that the man did not curse the donkey, but the Jew, the father of the donkey. Walking up to him, I said: -

‘Why do you curse the Jew? What harm has he done you?’

‘El Yahoodi khanzeer (the Jew is a hog)!’  answered the man.

‘How do you make that out?’ I said. ‘Is not the Jew as good as you or I?’

‘Ogh!’ ejaculated the man, his eyes twinkling with fierce rage, and his brow knitting.

By this time he was getting out of my hearing. I was pursuing my walk, when he turned round, and said: -

‘El Yahoodi khanzeer! Khanzeer el Yahoodi! (The Jew is a hog! A hog is a Jew!)’

Now I must tell the reader, that, in the Mahomedan vocabulary, there is no word lower than a hog, that animal being in their estimation the most defiled of animals; and good Mahomedans are prohibited by the Koran from eating it.

The Jew, in their estimation, is the vilest of the human family, and is the object of their pious hatred, perhaps from the recollection that a Jewess of Khaibar first undermined the health of the prophet by infusing poison into his food. Hence a hog and a Jew are esteemed alike in the eye of a Moslem, both being the lowest of their kind; and now the reader will better understand the meaning of the man’s words, ‘El Yahoodi khanzeer!’ “

[Finn’s account] Hebrew Dragoman, having a case for judgment in the Makhkameh before the new Kadi…was commanded to stand up humbly and take off his shoes…during the Process, although the thief had previously confessed to the robbery in the presence of Jews, the Kadi would not proceed without the testimony of two Moslems – when the Jewish witnesses were offered, he refused to accept their testimony-and the offensive term adopted toward Jews…(more offensive than Giaour for Christians) was used by the Kadi’s servants… In continuing to report concerning the apprehensions of Christians from revival of fanaticism on the part of the Mahometans, I have… to state that daily accounts are given to me of insults in the streets offered to Christians and Jews, accompanied by acts of violence… the sufferers are afraid.[36]

Tudor Parfitt’s analysis concluded that these problems persisted through the close of the 19th century,

...the courts were biased against the Jews and even when a case was heard in a properly assembled court where dhimmi testimony was admissible the court would still almost invariably rule against the Jews. Inside the towns, Jews and other dhimmis were frequently attacked, wounded, and even killed by local Muslims and Turkish soldiers. Such attacks were frequently for trivial reasons. [37]

During World War I in Palestine, the embattled Young Turk government actually began deporting the Jews of Tel Aviv in the spring of 1917—an ominous parallel to the genocidal deportations of the Armenian dhimmi communities throughout Anatolia. A contemporary Reuters press release discussing the deportation stated that,

Eight thousand deportees from Tel Aviv were not allowed to take any provisions with them, and after the expulsion their houses were looted by Bedouin mobs; two Yemenite Jews who tried to oppose the looting were hung at the entrance to Tel Aviv so that all might see, and other Jews were found dead in the Dunes around Tel Aviv. [38]

Ultimately, enforced abrogation of the laws and social practices of dhimmitude required the dismantling of the Ottoman Empire, which only occurred during the European Mandate period following World War I. Remarkably soon afterwards, however,( i.e., within two years of the abrogation of the Shari’a!) by 1920, Musa Kazem el-Husseini, former governor of Jaffa during the final years of Ottoman rule, and president of the Arab (primarily Muslim) Palestinian Congress, demanded restoration of the Shari’a in a letter to the British High Commissioner, Herbert Samuels:

[Ottoman] Turkey has drafted such laws as suit our customs. This was done  relying upon the Shari’a (Religious Law), in force in Arabic territories, that is engraved in the very hearts of the Arabs and has been assimilated in their customs and that has been applied …in the modern [Arab] states… We therefore ask the British government…that it should respect these laws [i.e., the Shari’a]...that were in force under the Turkish regime…[39]

A strong Arab Muslim irredentist current, which achieved pre-eminence after the 1929 riots, promulgated the forcible restoration of dhimmitude via jihad, culminating in the widespread violence of 1936-39. Two prominent Muslim personalities Sheikh Izz al-Din al-Qassam, and Hajj Amin el-Husseini, the former Mufti of Jerusalem, embodied this trend. And both these leaders relied upon the ideology of jihad, with its virulent anti-infidel (i.e., anti-Jewish, anti- Christian, and anti-Western) incitement, to garner popular support.

Al-Qassam called for the preservation of the country’s Muslim-Arab character, exclusively, and urged an uncompromising and intensified struggle against the British Mandate and the Jewish National Home in Palestine. Palestine could be freed from the danger of Jewish domination, he believed, not by sporadic protests, demonstrations, or riots which were soon forgotten, but by an organized and methodical armed struggle. In his sermons he often quoted verses from the Qur’an referring to jihad, linking them with topical matters and his own political ideas. Al-Qassam and his devoted followers committed various acts of jihad terror targeting Jewish civilians in northern Palestine from 1931 through 1935. On November 20, 1935, al-Qassam was surrounded by British police in a cave near Jenin, and killed along with three of his henchmen.

In the immediate aftermath of his death,

Virtually overnight, Izz al-Din al-Qassam became the object of a full-fledged cult. The bearded Sheikh’s picture appeared in all the Arabic-language papers, accompanied by banner headlines and inflammatory articles; memorial prayers were held in mosques throughout the country. He was proclaimed a martyr who had sacrificed himself for the fatherland, his grave at Balad al-Shaykh became a place of pilgrimage, and his deeds were extolled as an illustrious example to be followed by all. In addition, a countrywide fund-raising campaign was launched in aid of families of the fallen, and leading Arab lawyers volunteered to defend the members of the [surviving] band who were put on trial. [40]

Hajj Amin el-Husseini was appointed Mufti of Jerusalem by the British High Commissioner, in May 1921, a title he retained, following the Ottoman practice, for the remainder of his life. Throughout his public career, the Mufti relied upon traditional Qur’anic anti-Jewish motifs to arouse the Arab street. For example, during the incitement which led to the 1929 Arab revolt in Palestine, he called for combating and slaughtering “the Jews”, not merely Zionists. In fact, most of the Jewish victims of the 1929 Arab revolt were Jews from the centuries old dhimmi communities (e.g., in Hebron), as opposed to recent settlers identified with the Zionist movement.

With the ascent of Nazi Germany in the 1930s and 1940s, the Mufti and his coterie intensified their anti-Semitic activities to secure support from Hitler’s Germany (and later Bosnian Muslims, as well as the overall Arab Muslim world), for a jihad to annihilate the Jews of Palestine. Following his expulsion from Palestine by the British, the Mufti fomented a brutal anti-Jewish pogrom in Baghdad (1941), concurrent with his failed effort to install a pro-Nazi Iraqi government.

Escaping to Europe after this unsuccessful coup attempt, the Mufti spent the remainder of World War II in Germany and Italy. From this sanctuary, he provided active support for the Germans by recruiting Bosnian Muslims, in addition to Muslim minorities from the Caucasus, for dedicated Nazi SS units. [41] The Mufti’s objectives for these recruits—and Muslims in general—were made explicit during his multiple wartime radio broadcasts from Berlin, heard throughout the Arab world: an international campaign of genocide against the Jews. For example, during his March 1, 1944 broadcast he stated:

Kill the Jews wherever you find them. This pleases God, history, and religion. [42]

Invoking the personal support of such prominent Nazis as Himmler and Eichmann, [43] the Mufti’s relentless hectoring of German, Rumanian, and Hungarian government officials caused the cancellation of an estimated 480,000 exit visas which had been granted to Jews (80,000 from Rumania, and 400,000 from Hungary). As a result, these hapless individuals were deported to Nazi concentration camps in Poland.

A United Nations Assembly document presented in 1947 which contained the Mufti’s June 28, 1943 letter to the Hungarian Foreign Minister requesting the deportation of Hungarian Jews to Poland, includes this stark, telling annotation: “As a Sequel to This Request 400,000 Jews Were Subsequently Killed”. The Mufti escaped to the Middle East after the war to avoid capture and possible prosecution for war crimes.

The Mufti’s legacy of virulent anti-Semitism continues to influence Arab policy toward Israel. Not surprisingly, Yasser Arafat, beginning at the age of 16, worked for the Mufti performing terrorist operations. Arafat always characterized the Mufti as his primary spiritual and political mentor.

Yasser Arafat orchestrated a relentless campaign of four decades of brutal jihad terrorism against the Jewish State, [44] beginning in the early 1960s, until his recent death, interspersed with a bloody jihad (during the mid 1970s and early 1980s) against the Christians of Lebanon. [45] Chameleon-like, Arafat adopted a thin veneer of so-called “secular radicalism”, particularly during the late 1960s and 1970s. Sober analysis reveals, however, that shorn of these superficial secular trappings, Arafat’s core ideology remained quintessentially Islamic, i.e., rooted in jihad, throughout his career as a terrorist leader. And even after the Oslo accords, within a week of signing the specific Gaza-Jericho agreements, Arafat issued a brazen pronouncement (at a meeting of South African Muslim leaders) reflecting his unchanged jihadist views:

The jihad will continue and Jerusalem is not for the Palestinian people alone…It is for the entire Muslim umma. You are responsible for Palestine and Jerusalem before me…No, it is not their capital, it is our capital. [46]

During the final decade of his life, Arafat reiterated these sentiments on numerous occasions.’He also acted upon them, orchestrating an escalating campaign of jihad terrorism which culminated in the heinous orgy of Islamikaze violence [47] that lead to Israel’s Operation Defensive Shield military operations in the West Bank two days after the Netanya Passover massacre on March 27,2002. Moreover, throughout Arafat’s tenure as the major Palestinian Arab leader, his efforts to destroy Israel and replace it with an Arab Muslim sharia-based entity were integrated into the larger Islamic umma’s jihad against the Jewish State, as declared repeatedly in official conference pronouncements from various clerical or political organizations of the Muslim (both Arab and non-Arab) nations, for over five decades. [48]

These excerpts from the recent 2003 Putrajaya Islamic Summit speech by former Malaysian Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohammad highlight the official, collective sentiments of Muslim leaders reiterated ad nauseum since the creation of Israel:

To begin with, the governments of all the Muslim countries can close ranks and have a common stand if not on all issues, at least on some major ones, such as on Palestine… We need guns and rockets, bombs and warplanes, tanks and warships… We may want to recreate the first century of the Hijrah, the way of life in those times, in order to practice what we think to be the true Islamic way of life l.3 billion Muslims cannot be defeated by a few million Jews. There must be a way. And we can only find a way if we stop to think, to assess our weaknesses and our strength, to plan, to strategize and then to counter-attack. As Muslims, we must seek guidance from the AI-Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet. Surely the 23 years’ struggle of the Prophet can provide us with some guidance as to what we can and should do… [49]

After more than thirteen centuries of almost uninterrupted jihad in historical Palestine, it is not surprising that the finalized constitution for the proposed Palestinian Arab state declares all aspects of Palestinian state law to be subservient to the Shari’a, while contemporary Palestinian Authority religious intelligentsia, openly support restoration of the oppressive system of dhimmitude within a Muslim dominated Israel, as well. [50]

An appropriate assessment of such anachronistic, discriminatory views was provided by the Catholic Archbishop of the Galilee, Butrus Al-Mu’alem, who, in a June 1999 statement dismissed the notion of modern dhimmis submitting to Muslims:

It is strange to me that there remains such backwardness in our society; while humans have already reached space, the stars, and the moon… there are still those who amuse themselves with fossilized notions. [51]

A strange notion for our modern times, certainly, but very real, ominous, and sobering.


Ibn Warraq’s trenchant critique of Edward Said pointed out the bizarre evolution of this Christian agnostic into,

...a de facto apologist and protector of Islam, the least Christian and certainly the religion least given to self-doubt. [52]

Moreover, as Warraq observed, despite Said’s admission,

...that he does not know anything about Islam, and…the fact that he has never written a single scholarly work devoted to Islam, Said has always accepted the role in the West of an Islamic expert, and has never flinched from telling us what the real Islam is. [53]

Warraq highlighted this tragic irony, just prior to Said’s death, which even had Said lived, is unlikely to have ever been resolved. It is almost certain, for example, that Said would have reacted with hypocritical silence to the early September 2005 Palestinian Muslim pogrom against the small West Bank Christian village of Taiba.

As a secularist defending Islam, one wonders how he will be able to argue for a nontheocratic state once Palestine becomes a reality. If Islam is such a wonderful religion, why not convert to it, and why not accept it as the basis for any new constitution? At some stage, Said will have to do what he has been avoiding all his adult life, criticize Islam, or at least indirectly the idea of a theocracy. [54]

Ibn Warraq has also noted how Said – the Literature Professor and literary critic, made a distressingly stupid error in Orientalism, (both in the 1979 and 1994 editions) confusing the words “eschatological” and “scatological”. [55] A revealing, even pathognomonic error to this medically-trained observer.

In closing, let me move, mercifully, from the ridiculousness of Edward Said to the penetrating insights of Bat Ye’or.  Noting the ceaseless calls for jihad in Palestine during modern times, from 1920 through the present era, Bat Ye’or observed, that jihad remained,

…the main cause of the Arab-Israeli conflict.  Since Israelis are to be regarded, perforce, only as a religious community, their national characteristics – a geographical territory related to a past history, a system of legislation, a specific language and culture – are consequently denied.  The “Arab” character of the Palestinian territory is inherent in the logic of jihad.  Having become fay territory by conquest (i.e. “taken from an infidel people”), it must remain within the dar al-Islam.  The State of Israel, established on this fay territory, is consequently illegal. [56]

And she concluded,

…Israel represents the successful national liberation of a dhimmi civilization.  On a territory formerly Arabized by the jihad and the dhimma, a pre-Islamic language, culture, topographical geography, and national institutions have been restored to life.  This reversed the process of centuries in which the cultural, social and political structures of the indigenous population of Palestine were destroyed.  In 1974, Abu Iyad, second-in-command to Arafat in the Fatah hierarchy, announced:  “We intend to struggle so that our Palestinian homeland does not become a new Andalusia.”  The comparison of Andalusia to Palestine was not fortuitous since both countries were Arabized, and then de-Arabized by a pre-Arabic culture. [57]

Andrew G. Bostom, MD, MS is the author of the recently published, The Legacy of Jihad,   This text was delivered as a lecture on Monday October 31, 2005 at a Conference on Post-Colonial Theory sponsored by Scholars for Peace in the Middle East  


[32] Samuel b. Ishaq Uceda, Lehem dim’ah (The Bread of Tears) (Hebrew). Venice, 1606. [English translation in, Bat Ye’or, The Dhimmi: Jews and Christians Under Islam, Pp. 354.

[33] Bat Ye’or, Islam and Dhimmitude- Where Civilizations Collide. Cranbury, NJ.: Associated University Presses, 2001; p. 318.

[34] Gedaliah of Siemiatyce, Sha’alu Shelom Yerushalayim (Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem), (Hebrew), Berlin, 1716. [English translation in, Bat Ye’or, The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam, Pp. 377-80.]

[35] Edouard Engelhardt, La Turquie et La Tanzimat, 2 Vols., 1882, Paris, Vol. p.111, Vol. 2 p. 171; English translation in, Bat Ye’or. Islam and Dhimmitude- Where Civilizations Collide, Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2001, pp. 431-432; Reports from Her Majesty’s Consuls Relating to the Condition of the Christians in Turkey, 1867 volume, pp. 5,29. See also related other reports by various consuls and vice-consuls, in the 1860 vol., p.58; the 1867 vol, pp. 4,5,6,14,15; and the 1867 vol., part 2, p.3 [All cited in, Vahakn Dadrian. Chapter 2, “The Clash Between Democratic Norms and Theocratic Dogmas”,  Warrant for Genocide, New Brunswick, New Jersey, Transaction Publishers, pp. 26-27, n. 4]; See also, extensive excerpts from these reports in, Bat Ye’or, The Decline of Eastern Christianity, pp. 409-433; and Roderick Davison. “Turkish Attitudes Concerning Christian-Muslim Equality in the Nineteenth Century” American Historical Review, Vol. 59, pp. 848, 855, 859, 864.

[36] Gregory Wortabet, Syria and the Syrians. Vol. II, London, 1856, pp. 263-264; Consul James Finn, published in, Albert M. Hyamson. The British Consulate in Jerusalem (in relation to the Jews of Palestine) , Edward Goldstein Ltd., London, 1939, p. 261.

[37] Tudor Parfitt, The Jews of Palestine, 1800-1882, Suffolk, England, The Boydell Press,  1987, p. 168, 172-173.

[38] Yair Auron,  The Banality of Indifference, New Brunswick, NJ, Transaction Publishers, 2000, p. 77.

[39] Musa Kazem el-Husseini, (President Palestinian Arab Congress), to High Commissioner for Palestine, December 10, 1920 (Translated January 2, 1921), Israel State Archives, R.G. 2, Box 10, File 244.

[40] Shai Lachman, “Arab Rebellion and Terrorism in Palestine 1929-39: The Case of Sheikh Izz al-Din al-Qassam and His Movement”, in Zionism and Arabism in Palestine and Israel, edited by Elie Kedourie and Sylvia G. Haim, Frank Cass, London, 1982, p. 72.

[41] Joseph B. Schechtman, The Mufti and The Fuehrer, New York, 1965; Zvi Elpeleg, The Grand Mufti Haj Amin Al-Hussaini, translated by David Harvey, Frank Cass, 1993; Yossef Bodansky, Islamic Antisemitism as a Political Instrument , Houston, 1999, p. 29.; Jennie Lebel, Hajj Amin ve Berlin (Hajj Amin and Berlin), Tel Aviv, 1996;  Jan Wanner, in, “Amin al-Husayni and Germany’s Arab Policy in the Period 1939-1945”, Archiv Orientalni Vol. 54, 1986, p. 244, observes,

“His appeals…addressed to the Bosnian Muslims were…close in many respects to the argumentation used by contemporary Islamic fundamentalists…the Mufti viewed only as a new interpretation of the traditional concept of the Islamic community (umma) sharing with Nazism common enemies”

[42] Joseph B. Schechtman, The Mufti and The Fuehrer, p. 151.

[43] Joseph B. Schechtman, The Mufti and The Fuehrer, pp. 152-63; Jan Wanner, in his 1986 analysis (“Amin al-Husayni and Germany’s Arab Policy”, p. 243.) of the Mufti’s collaboration with Nazi Germany during World War II, concluded,

“…the darkest aspect of the Mufti’s activities in the final stage of the war was undoubtedly his personal share in the extermination of Europe’s Jewish population. On May 17, 1943, he wrote a personal letter to Ribbentrop, asking him to prevent the transfer of 4500 Bulgarian Jews, 4000 of them children, to Palestine. In May and June of the same year, he sent a number of letters to the governments of Bulgaria, Italy, Rumania, and Hungary, with the request not to permit even individual Jewish emigration and to allow the transfer of Jews to Poland where, he claimed they would be ‘under active supervision’. The trials of Eichmann’s henchmen, including Dieter Wislicency who was executed in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia, confirmed that this was not an isolated act by the Mufti.”

[44] Efraim Karsh, Arafat’s War, New York, 2003.

[45] Walid Phares, Lebanese Christian Nationalism, Boulder, CO, 1995; Farid El-Khazen, The Breakdown of the State in Lebanon- 1967-1976, Cambridge, 2000.

[46] Efraim Karsh, Arafat’s War, p. 117. A decade and one half earlier, upon Khomeini’s ascension to power in Iran, Arafat immediately cabled the Ayatollah relaying these shared jihadist sentiments (February 13, 1979):

 “I pray Allah to guide your step along the path of faith and Holy War (Jihad) in Iran, continuing the combat until we arrive at the walls of Jerusalem, where we shall raise the flags of our two revolutions.”Quote from, Bat Ye’or, “Aspects of the Arab-Israeli Conflict”, Wiener Library Bulletin, Vol. 32, 1979, p. 68.

[47] Raphael Israeli, Islamikaze- Manifestations of Islamic Martyrology, Frank Cass, London, 2003.

[48] For example, From Cairo, 1968, The Fourth Conference of the Academy of Islamic Research, Sheikh Hassan Khalid, Mufti of the Republic of Lebanon, (excerpts from, Bat Ye’or, The Dhimmi: Jews and Christians Under Islam, Pp.391-94.)

“Your honorable conference has been an Arab, Islamic and patriotic necessity in view of the present circumstances in which the Arabs and Muslims face the most serious difficulties.  All Muslims expect you to expound Allah’s decree concerning the Palestine cause, to proclaim that decree, in all clarity, throughout the Arab and Muslim world.  We do not think this decree absolves any Muslim or Arab from Jihad (Holy War) which has now become a duty incumbent upon the Arabs and Muslims to liberate the land, preserve honor, retaliate for [lost] dignity, restore the Aqsa Mosque, the church of Resurrection, and to purge the birthplace of prophecy, the seat of revelation, the meeting-place of Prophets, the starting-point of Issa, and the scenes of the holy spirit, from the hands of Zionism – the enemy of man, of truth, of justice, and the enemy of Allah…The well-balanced judgement frankly expressed with firm conviction is the first stop on the road of victory.  The hoped-for judgment is that of Muslim Scholars who draw their conclusions from the Book of Allah, and the Sunna of His prophet.  May Allah guard your meeting, and guide your steps!  May your decisive word rise to the occasion and enlighten the Arab and Muslim world, so that it may be a battle-cry, urging millions of Muslims and Arabs on to the field of Jihad, which will lead us to the place that once was ours…Muslims who are distant from the battle-field of Palestine, such as the Algerians, the Moroccans, all the Africans, Saudi Arabia people, Yemeni people, the Indians, Iraqi people, the Russians, and the Europeans are indeed sinful if they do not hasten to offer all possible means to achieve success and gain victory in the Islamic battle against their enemies and the enemies of their religion.  Particularly, this battle is not a mete combat between two parties but it is a battle between two religions (namely, it is a religious battle).  Zionism in fact represents a very perilous cancer, aiming at domineering the Arab countries and the whole Islamic world.”

From the Mecca Islamic Summit Conference, 1981:

“The undertaking by all Islamic countries of psychological mobilization through their various official, semi-official, and popular mass media, of their people for Jihad to liberate Al-Quds…Ensuring military coordination among the front-line states and the Palestine Liberation Organization, on the one hand, and the Islamic States on the other, to ensure full utilization of the potentialities of the Islamic States in the service of the military effort; and setting up a military office in the Islamic Secretariat to be responsible for such coordination, in agreement with the Committee on Al-Quds… Resolution No.2/3.P (IS) on the Cause of Palestine and the Middle East: Considering that the Liberation of Al-Quds and its restoration to Arab sovereignty, as well as the liberation of the holy places from Zionist occupation, are a pre-requisite to the Jihad that all Islamic States must wage, each according to its means….Resolution No.5/3-P (IS)- Declaration of Holy Jihad: Taking these facts into consideration, the Kings, Emirs, and Presidents of Islamic States, meeting at this Conference and in this holy land, studied this situation and concluded that it could no longer be tolerated that the forthcoming stage should be devoted to effective action to vindicate right and deter wrong-doing; and have unanimously. Decided: To declare holy Jihad, as the duty of every Muslim, many or woman, ordained by the Shariah and glorious traditions of Islam; To call upon all Muslims, living inside or outside Islamic countries, to discharge this duty by contributing each according to his capacity in the case of Allah Almighty, Islamic brotherhood, and righteousness; To specify that Islamic states, in declaring Holy Jihad to save Al-Quds al-Sharif, in support of the Palestinian people, and to secure withdrawal from the occupied Arab territories, wish to explain to the world that Holy Jihad is an Islamic concept which may not be misinterpreted or misconstrued, and that the practical measures to put into effect would be in accordance with that concept and by incessant consultations among Islamic states.” (excerpts from, Bat Ye’or, Eurabia- The Euro-Arab Axis (Galleys), Cranbury, NJ.: Associated University Presses, 2005, Pp. 288-90; 295.)

[49] excerpts from, Bat Ye’or, Eurabia- The Euro-Arab Axis (Galleys), Cranbury, NJ.: Associated University Presses, 2005, Pp. 314-19.

[50] MEMRI, “Muslim-Christian Tensions in the Israeli-Arab Community”, August 2, 1999,  ; MEMRI, “A Friday Sermon on PA TV: … We Must Educate our Children on the Love of Jihad…’ ”, July 11, 2001.

[51] MEMRI “Muslim-Christian Tensions in the Israeli-Arab Community”

[52] Ibn Warraq. “Edward Said and the Saidists- Or, Third World Intellectual Terrorism”, in Robert Spencer, editor, The Myth of Islamic Tolerance, Amherst, NY, Prometheus Books, 2004, p. 511.

[53] Ibn Warraq. “Edward Said and the Saidists”, p. 511.

[54] Ibn Warraq. “Edward Said and the Saidists”, p. 511.

[55] Ibn Warraq. “Edward Said and the Saidists”, p. 476. The original 1979 edition as well as the 1994 reissue edition of Orientalism each contain this howler, supporting the notion that the use of the word “eschatological” instead of the appropriate “scatological” was not a mere typographical error. Here is the relevant paragraph from p. 68 of both editions:

Mohammed’s punishment, which is also his eternal fate, is a peculiarly disgusting one: he is endlessly being cleft in two from his chin to his anus like, Dante says, a cask whose staves are ripped apart. Dante’s verse at this point spares the reader none of the eschatological [sic…should be “scatalogical”] detail that so vivid a punishment entails: Mohammed’s entrails and his excrement are described with unflinching accuracy.

[56] Bat Ye’or. The Dhimmi-Jews and Christians Under Islam. Cranbury, New Jersey: Associated University Presses, 1985, p. 116.

[57] Bat Ye’or. The Dhimmi, pp. 122-123.


Rallying for jihad

By Ariel Cohen
August 18, 2006


Three pro-terror demonstrations held last Saturday -- at the White House in Washington, D.C., in San Francisco and Los Angeles -- provided a rare insight into the global networks that support jihadi Islamic fascists.

    Only a few thousand showed up, according to D.C. police. After all, it is hard to bring out the masses when your poster boy is Sheik Hassan Nasrallah of Hezbollah. Sheik Nasrallah and his puppetmaster, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, repeatedly call for "Death to Israel, Death to America." Hezbollah is responsible for the deaths, kidnapping and torture of hundreds of Americans.

    On the same day, pro-Hezbollah, anti-U.S. and anti-Israel demonstrations took place in the streets of Mombasa, Kenya; Madrid, Spain; Damascus, Syria; Islamist-controlled Mogadishu, Somalia; Dhaka, Bangladesh; Karachi, Pakistan; and Jakarta, Indonesia, to name just a few.

    The U.S. demonstrations were organized by ANSWER -- which stands for Act Now to Stop War and End Racism -- a coalition of leftists, "antiwar" and Hamas -- and Hezbollah-supporting Arab Muslim organizations, including the National Council of Arab Americans (NCA), the Muslim American Society and the Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.

    There are important lessons to be learned from the ANSWER demonstrations. With security services worldwide working to wrap up the aborted London attacks, policymakers need to recognize the public dimension of the terror war -- the battlefront of symbols, images and ideas and their influence on diplomacy and warfare. So far, jihadi supporters seem to have the upper hand.

    During the Cold War, Soviet-funded front organizations tried to disarm the West, whether by supporting the North Vietnamese or trying to prevent deployment of U.S. Pershing missiles in Europe. Today's jihadi supporters work to delegitimize any effort to protect against terrorist networks. Tracking the leadership and funding of such networks is a counterterrorist policy imperative.

    There is a lesson to be learned about moderate and radical Muslims. No doubt, the tip that led to the bust-up of the most recent terror attempt in London demonstrates the importance of high quality intelligence-gathering, for which it is vital to keep good relations in the Muslim community. It is crucial to boost moderate Muslims and learn to distinguish between terrorist organizers, their unwitting prey within the Muslim community, and alternative, moderate Muslim leaders that seek to practice and teach Islam as a religion rather than a tool for promoting hatred.

    At the same time, it is crucial to recognize that some in the Muslim community and among leftist organizations such as ANSWER operate a global network that not only provides public support to the likes of Hezbollah but may provide a recruitment pool for suspected terrorists such as those apprehended in Great Britain and Michigan.

    It is also important to understand precisely what causes ANSWER serves. The organizer of Saturday's outrage was Brian Beker, leader of the Liberation and Socialism Party, which recently split from the (Stalinist) World Workers' Party.

    ANSWER supports and promotes jihadi terrorism and seeks to help defeat the U.S. efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Its leaders also refuse to acknowledge Hamas and Hezbollah terrorism and advocacy of the destruction of the State of Israel.

    As police in Britain, Italy, and Ohio were busy arresting suspected airliner bombers, money launderers, and untraceable detonator/cell phone providers, the ANSWER demonstrations demanded the U.S. lay off terrorists, close Guantanamo, and keep the country's borders open.

    A recent ANSWER demonstration in San Francisco featured chants of "Palestine will be free from the river to the sea" and "Palestine is our country, the Jews are our dogs." An ANSWER spokesman refused to condemn such hate speech, according to a report by Mark Matthews of San Francisco's ABC7.

   A key player in organizing this past weekend's hate fest was Ramsey Clark, former attorney general under President Lyndon B. Johnson, who never met a dictator he didn't like. Mr. Clark justified the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's hostage taking in the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and hobnobbed with Libya's Moammar Gadhafi. He is also connected with Lyndon LaRouche. According to Wikipedia, Mr. LaRouche's critics have characterized him as a fascistic, homophobic, anti-Jewish cult leader.

    For more than 12 years, Mr. Clark has been connected to the Workers World Party (WWP), which splintered from the Trotskyite movement in the 1950s and became Orthodox Stalinist. The WWP supported China's repression of Tibet, the Tiananmen Square massacre and the communist coup against Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

    Mr. Clark represented Radovan Karadzic, an indicted Bosnian Serb war criminal and met with former Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic when he was a wanted man in Belgrade, calling him "brave, objective and moral." In 1990, Mr. Clark led a WWP effort to prevent former President George H.W. Bush from going after Saddam. He has since never ceased advocating for the mustachioed dictator.

    Other ANSWER members include extreme old and "new left" activists, from Stalinists to Maoists, and such "blasts from the past" as the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP) and the Trotskyite Socialist Workers Party. ANSWER's "big tent" also includes pro-Saddam mouthpieces; Palestinian propagandists; North Korean front organizations; and 1960s "flower children" who never grew up.

    ANSWER founders also include the National Lawyers league, founded by the Communist Party USA (CPUSA); the Nicaragua Network and the Nicaragua Solidarity Committee, a leading pro-Sandinista organization. ANSWER's connections to North Korea are also quite pronounced, as the coalition includes the Pyongyang-inspired Korea Truth Commission and the Congress for Korean Reunification, among others.

    In the past, such people were called a Fifth Column, after the pro-fascist forces in Republican Madrid during the Spanish Civil War of the 1930s. Today's Fifth Column glorifies the global jihad against the West. ANSWER and its co-sponsors hide behind slogans decrying civilian losses in Lebanon, while ignoring the murder of American soldiers and Israeli civilians (many of them Arab Israelis) committed by Hamas and Hezbollah.
    Ariel Cohen is senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation.


Today's jihadists: educated, wealthy and bent on killing?

By Craig Offman

National Post
Tuesday, July 03, 2007

The arrests of medical doctors in the plots to kill Brits and Scots en masse might seem a frightening twist in the war on terror, but the development is not surprising, experts say.

For years now, the intelligence community has insisted that al-Qaeda's leadership is well-educated and well-steeped in Western ways. They join the movement for what they see as intellectual, not emotional reasons. They view themselves as concerned humanitarians, not mass murderers.

"Of course they'd want to be involved," said Dr. Marc Sageman, who wrote the landmark study in 2003 on al-Qaeda, Understanding Terror Networks. "Who wouldn't want to do something out of concern for the people?"

In his findings, Dr. Sageman found that 62% of group members had a university education, a percentage that surpasses the United States. These conclusions helped dispel the idea that poverty and ignorance are the main motivators of violent acts of despair.

The vast majority of terrorists, his survey discovered, came from solid middle-class backgrounds; their leadership hailed from the upper middle class.

Some of the doctors under suspicion today, including the Jordanian surgeon Mohammed Jamil Abdelkader Asha, also had well-heeled histories.

"These doctors remind me of the second wave of al-Qaeda leadership," said Dr. Sageman, who delivered testimony to the 9/11 Commission. "They are the best and brightest who went West to study, and they were radicalized there."

British authorities have not officially said whether the suspects are thought to belong to an al-Qaeda-affiliated group or cell, and some security experts have noted the failed attacks in London and Glasgow were not as well planned as other strikes attributed to seasoned terrorists.

Dr. Sageman said the new suspects could simply be a bunch of similar-minded men who met through medical circles.

To many, however, the recent round-up of suspects indicate the continuing resonance of al-Qaeda's message in the affluent parts of the Islamic community and amid professions such as medicine and engineering. "It's the 'Yuppification' of al-Qaeda," said Tarek Fatah, the Toronto-based Muslim political activist and author. "The movement has gone upscale."

Mr. Fatah cited recently thwarted alleged terrorist cells In Toronto: Many of their members came from comfortable backgrounds. 

Historically, there is a well-trodden path of well-funded professionals who travelled West and later became violent radicals, beginning with 19th-century Russian anarchists bent on assassinating the Czarist leadership.

Recent examples of physician-turned-terrorists include George Habash, the radical Palestininan who studied pediatrics. Al-Qaeda's Egyptian second-in-command, Ayman Al-Zawahri, is also a doctor.

In May, Florida doctor Rafiq Abdus Sabir, 52, was found guilty of conspiracy to provide material support to al-Qaeda by a U.S. federal court.

To most, a doctor who is a terrorist commits a double transgression against humanity, but in the end these are radicals who are driven by a near-Messianic sense of vision.

"What we're seeing tells us that ideology can trump morality, humanity and in this case, the Hippocratic oath," said Brian Michael Jenkins, the counterintelligence expert and author of Unconquerable Nation: Knowing Our Enemy, Strengthening Ourselves.

Mr. Jenkins, who is senior advisor at the Washington, D.C., think-tank Rand Corporation, hypothesized that a terrorist doctor's interests transcend his own profession and nation-state, which is dominated by man-made law, not God-given edicts. The doctor would consider himself part of a universal brotherhood, and the plight of Muslims in the world is the concern of all Muslims, says Mr. Jenkins.

"As a physician, part of the appeal is humanitarian," Mr. Jenkins said. "For example, he'd say that the U.S. embargo led by the U.S. that denied Iraqi hospitals medical supplies and equipment led to the deaths of tens of thousands of women and children."

Mr. Fatah also says that there is a prestige factor at play as well. "By devoting yourself and your resources to jihad, you are giving your worldly estate to charity. In their mindset it's the equivalent of being Bill Gates."


Preventing the West from Understanding Jihad

By Walid Phares

July 17, 2007

In the years that followed 9/11, two phenomena characterized the Western public's understanding of the terrorists' ideology. The first characteristic stemmed from the statements made by the jihadists themselves. More than ever, Islamist militants and jihadi cadres didn't waste any opportunity to declare, clarify, explain, and detail the meaning of their aqida (doctrine) and their intentions to apply Jihadism by all means possible. Unfortunately for them, though, those extremely violent means changed the international public opinion: the public now was convinced that there was an ideology of Jihadism, and that its adherents meant business worldwide.

From Ayman al Zawahiri in Arabic to Azzam al Amriki in American English, via all of the videotapes made by "martyrs" in Britain, Iraq, and Afghanistan, the public obtained all the evidence necessary. Against all the faulty academic literature of the 1990's, the statements by the jihadists themselves were very convincing. 

The second phenomenon of help to the public was the surfacing of a new literature produced by alternative scholars, analysts, journalists, experts, and researchers who, from different backgrounds and countries, filled in some of the gaps is "jihadi studies." Producing books, articles, and blogs from Europe, India, the Middle East, and North America, a combination of Third World-born and Western-issued scholarship began to provide the "missing link" as to what Jihadism is all about. These factors came together to shift the debate from "Jihad is spiritual yoga" to "Why didn't we know it was something else as well?" And this triggered in response one of the last attempts to prevent jihad from being understood.

In the 1990's, apologist literature attempted to convince readers and audiences in the West that jihad was a "spiritual experience only, and not a menace." [1] That explanation has now been shattered by Bin Laden and Ahmedinijad. So in the post-9/11 age, a second strategy to delay public understanding of Jihadism and thereby gain time for its adherents to achieve their goals has evolved. It might be called the "good cop, bad cop" strategy. Over the past few years, a new story began to make inroads in Washington and the rest of the national defense apparatus. A group of academics and interest groups are circulating the idea that in reality jihad can develop in two forms: good jihad and bad jihad. 

The practice of not using "Jihad" and "Jihadism" was lately defended by two academics at the National Defense University [2] who based their arguments on a study published by a Washington lobbyist, Jim Guirard.[3] On June 22, 2006, Jim Garamone, writing for the American Forces Press Service, published the study of Douglas Streusand  and Harry Tunnel under the title "Loosly Interpreted Arabic terms can promote enemy ideology." Streusand told CNN that "Jihad is a term of great and positive import in Islam. It is commonly defined as striving or struggle, and can mean an internal or external struggle for faith." [4]

The article was posted under the title "Cultural Ignorance Leads to Misuse of Islamic Terms" by the US-based Islamist organization CAIR. [5] Since then the "concept" of deflecting attention away from the study of Jihadism has penetrated large segments of the defense newsletters and is omnipresent in Academia. More troubling though, is the fact that scholars who have seen the strategic threat of al Qaeda and Hezbollah have unfortunately fallen for the fallacy of the Hiraba. Professor Michael Waller of the Institute of World Politics in Washington wrote recently that "Jihad has been hijacked" as he bases his argument on Jim Guirard's lobbying pieces.[6] Satisfied with this trend taking root in the Defense intelligentsia of America, Islamist intellectuals and activists are hurrying to support this new tactic.

The good holy war is when the right religious and political authorities declare it against the correct enemy and at the right time. The bad jihad, called also Hiraba, is the wrong war, declared by bad (and irresponsible) people against the wrong enemy (for the moment), and without an appropriate authorization by the "real" Muslim leadership. According to this thesis, those Muslims who wage a Hiraba, a wrong war, are called Mufsidoon, from the Arabic word for "spoilers." The advocates of this ruse recommend that the United States and its allies stop calling the jihadists by that name and identifying the concept of Jihadism as the problem. In short, they argue that "jihad is good, but the Mufsidoon, the bad guys and the terrorists, spoiled the original legitimate sense."[7]

When researched, it turns out that this theory was produced by clerics of the Wahabi regime in Saudi Arabia and the Muslim Brotherhood as a plan to prevent jihad and Jihadism from being considered by the West and the international community as an illegal and therefore forbidden activity. It was then forwarded to American- and Western-based interest groups to be spread within the Untied States, particularly within the defense and security apparatus. Such a deception further confuses U.S. national security perception of the enemy and plunges democracies back into the "black hole" of the 1990's. This last attempt to blur the vision of democracies can be exposed with knowledge of the jihadi terror strategies and tactics, one of which is known as Taqiya, the doctrine on deception and deflection. [8]

First, the argument of "good jihad" raises the question of how there can be a legitimate concept of religious war in the twenty-first century to start with. Jihad historically was as "good" as any other religious war over the last 2,000 years. If a "good jihad" is the one authorized by a caliph and directed under his auspices, then other world leaders also can wage a "good crusade" at will, as long as it is licensed by the proper authority. But in fact, all religious wars are proscribed by international law, period.

Second, the authors of this lobbyist-concocted theory claim that a wrong jihad is called a Hiraba. But in Arab Muslim history, a Hiraba (unauthorized warring) was when a group of warriors launched itself against the enemy without orders from the real commander. Obviously, this implies that a "genuine" war against a real enemy does exist and that these hotheaded soldiers have simply acted without orders. Hence this cunning explanation puts "spin" on jihad but leaves the core idea of jihadism completely intact. The "spoilers" depart from the plan, attack prematurely, and cause damage to the caliphate's long-terms plans. These Mufsidoon "fail" their commanders by unleashing a war of their own, instead of waiting for orders.

This scenario fits the relations of the global jihadists, who are the regimes and international groups slowly planning to gain power against the infidels and the "hotheaded" Osama bin Laden. Thus the promoters of this theory of Hiraba and Mufsidoon are representing the views of classical Wahabis and the Muslim Brotherhood in their criticism of the "great leap forward" made by bin Laden. But by convincing Westerners that al Qaeda and its allies are not the real jihadists but some renegades, the advocates of this school would be causing the vision of Western defense to become blurred again so that more time could be gained by a larger, more powerful wave of Jihadism that is biding its time to strike when it chooses, under a coherent international leadership.


Dr Walid Phares is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a visiting scholar at the European Foundation for Democracy. This piece was adapted from his recently published book The War of Ideas: Jihadism against Democracy.

[1] See John Esposito, The Islamic Threat: Myth or Reality?  3rd edition. (New York: Oxford University Press) 1999. 

[2] May 23, 2006

[3] "Hiraba Versus Jihad," the American Muslim. August 2003.

[4] See Henry Shuster, "Words in War," CNN, October 19, 2006.

[5]  Quoting the American Forces Press Service on June 29, 2006.

[6]  Michael Waller. "Making Jihad Work for America." The Journal for International Security Affairs. Spring 2006

[7]  (7) See James Fallows, "Declaring Victory," Atlantic Monthly (September 2006).

[8]  (8) According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, Taqiya: "spelled Taqiyah, Arabic Taqiyah ("self-protection"), in Islam, [is] the practice of concealing one's belief and foregoing ordinary religious duties when under threat of death or injury to oneself or one's fellow Muslims. The Qu'ran allows Muslims to profess friendship with the unbelievers (3:28) and even outwardly to deny their faith (16:106), if doing so would save them from imminent danger," on the condition that their hearts remain attached to faith. Also see Larry Stirling, "On Taqiya' and ‘Fatwas,'" San Diego Source, September 25, 2006; also Walid Phares, "al-Taqiyah: The Muslim Method of Conquest," Freeman Center for Strategic Studies, December 1997.


Bearers of Global Jihad