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Books and Documents

Islam,Terrorism and Jihad

A Review of Urdu Weeky Nai Dunya's Special Issue on Islam and Terrorism: Lies, Duplicity and Deceit in the Name of Allah
Tufail Ahmad

Haftroza Nai Duniya argues that Islam did not spread by sword, though it uses at least four accompanying images in which a sword is shown as a weapon of glory, including one on the cover page. Worryingly, it goes on to justify the massacre of nearly a thousand Jews of Banu Quraiza on Prophet Muhammad's orders despite the fact the entire tribe had surrendered and desperately sent emissaries requesting safe passage and offering to leave behind their wealth....

Has ISIL Won?
Imran Khan

Has ISIL Won?
Imran Khan

ISIL has won if the standard is being able to impose brutal rule and hold territory. ISIL certainly thinks it has won. It hasn't won in the most crucial of ways. It hasn't been widely recognised as a state by Muslim countries or other rebel groups with which it might otherwise share similar goals. It doesn't have the kind of legitimacy it so obviously craves. And therein lies an opportunity for ISIL to be defeated not just militarily but ideologically as well....

ISIL and the Tactics of Death
James Denselow

As a former al-Qaeda member told the Guardian, the ISIL offer says that "the shortest path to heaven is jihad and martyrdom. New recruits to ISIL went to nightclubs, took drugs, were members of gangs and had sexual relations out of wedlock. They want absolution, forgiveness. The thirst for redemption is there. And ISIL is catering to that need"....

 
Why the Caliphate Survives
Ibrahim Al-Marashi

Why the Caliphate Survives
Ibrahim Al-Marashi

The ability of ISIL to appeal to an Islamic imaginary across borders and its restoration of the caliphate represents this organisation's crystallisation of a jihadist ideology which has developed over the last 30 years. Despite the future viability of its proto-state in Iraq and Syria against the military might of the US and its coalition, the ability to deliver on a promise of restoring an idealised Islamic state within territory ruled by two Shia governments will continue to inspire followers....

 

Iraq's Sunnis are still disgruntled and feel the government hasn't addressed their demands. They have been asking for weapons to wage the battle on their own, but opposition from some Shia politicians in Baghdad have prevented that from happening. The planned National Guard has not been approved by parliament....

 

The number of people living under Islamic State rule has grown since the U.S. bombing began. Virtually the entire population of the mostly Sunni province of Anbar, Iraq’s largest, is under the group’s control, with the addition in May of Ramadi, the provincial capital, a city of nearly 900,000. In Syria, the city of Palmyra, a famed tourist destination, also fell to the Islamic State in May, and most of the province of Deir el Zour, an important oil producing area, has come under Islamic State control since the onset of the U.S. bombing campaign....

 

Biological and Nuclear War in South Asia
Musa Khan Jalalzai

The greatest threat to the national security of Pakistan and India stems from nuclear smuggling and terror groups operating in Punjab, Balochistan, Assam and Kashmir. Increasingly sophisticated chemical and biological weapons are accessible to organisations like IS, Mujahideen-e-Hind (MH), and the Taliban and their allies, which is a matter of great concern. These groups can use more sophisticated conventional weapons as well as chemical and biological agents in India and Pakistan in the near future, as they have already experimented in Iraq and Syria....

 

The Story behind Bin Laden’s Killing
S P Seth

According to Hersh’s source, Pasha told the US that “the ISI was using bin Laden as leverage against Taliban and al Qaeda activities inside Afghanistan and Pakistan”. In other words, Generals Kayani and Pasha viewed bin Laden as a ‘resource’ both against al Qaeda and the Taliban, as well as to get US military aid and personal benefits. And when the ISI became part of the US’s operations, an ISI liaison officer was flying with the Seals guiding them into the darkened house and up a staircase to bin Laden’s quarters....

 
Muslims and Terrorism—The Right Response
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan for New Age Islam

Muslims and Terrorism—The Right Response
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan for New Age Islam

In Islam, it is very clear that the use of arms is the prerogative solely of the state. Islam brought about major reform in this regard. In pre-Islamic Arabia, everyone kept arms, and inter-tribal rivalry was rife. Islam established a new rule—that the use of arms was to be the prerogative of the state. But today, in various parts of the world, Ulema have issued Fatwas that wrongly declare it permissible for Muslim non-state actors to engage in violence....

 

Islamic State has given money to prospective allies. The group has accrued substantial financial resources in Iraq and Syria from smuggling oil, selling stolen goods, kidnapping and extortion, seizing bank accounts and smuggling antiquities. In Nigeria, for example, Islamic State used its booty to aid cash-strapped Boko Haram, which had suffered military setbacks at the hands of the Nigerian and neighbouring government forces....

 

Children in Pakistan Face Countless Dangers from State or Non-State Actors
Zeeba T Hashmi

One of the gravest concerns that should be on the priority list of the government, besides educational reforms, is to prevent our children and youth from being recruited by jihadist organisations, Madrasa (seminaries) and the militant wings of political parties. Pakistan has not lived up to its frequent commitments of regularising the Madrasa despite a crying need to do so. Moreover, Pakistan has not been able to control the finances these seminaries have been getting....

 

ISIS Slaughter in the Sacred Syrian City of Palmyra: The Survivors' Stories
Robert Fisk

“The Daesh forced the people to leave the bodies in the streets for three days,” Ahmed continued. “They were not allowed to pick up the bodies or bury them without permission. The corpses were all over the city. My family said the Daesh came to our house, two foreign men – one appeared to be an Afghan, the other from Tunisia or Morocco because he had a very heavy accent – and then they left. They killed three female nurses. One was killed in her home, another in her uncle’s house, a third on the street....

 

While the Islamic State seeks recruits and volunteers from all corners of the globe, some of its most valuable and dangerous new members are coming from Central Asia and other ethnic Turkic regions. From the Republic of Georgia to Tajikistan, Uzbekistan to western China, hundreds of committed fighters, many with valuable military experience or training, are either traveling to Syria or Iraq to fight with the Islamic State or pledging allegiance to the group in their home countries....

Is It Called ‘Terrorism’ Or ‘Violent Extremism’?
Faisal J. Abbas

However, the next part in the Canadian definition is even more alarming as it suggests that “Radical thinking is by no means a problem in itself” and explains that it (radical thinking) only becomes a threat to national security “when Canadian citizens, residents or groups promote or engage in violence as a means of furthering their radical political, ideological or religious views....

 

Forget Will to Fight, Iraq is In Free Fall
Fareed Zakaria

The vast majority of Sunnis oppose Daesh and flee every place it seizes. But they cannot find towns where they can resettle. The ethnic cleansing of Iraq — with Shias moving to Shia areas, and Kurds and Sunnis doing the same — began with the civil war in 2006 but has accelerated dramatically. Even Baghdad, which was a diverse and mixed city, has been segregated into sectarian ethnic enclaves and become mostly Shia....

 

ISIS Attracts Because Arab Systems Repel
Rami G. Khouri

We know from polls over the past decade that nearly half of all young people in the poorer Arab states see their government institutions as lacking credibility or even legitimacy, but most of them do not join ISIS or undertake an equally desperate action. The bottom line is that so many of these people see ISIS as a viable, if desperate, last alternative to their current life....

 
Elimination of Terrorism
Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi

Elimination of Terrorism
Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi

Some Muslim organisations have initiated efforts to counter extremist thinking as per their available resources but this endeavour is on a very nominal level. The Pakistan Ulema Council has been carrying out a struggle to contain extremist thinking through a systematic campaign but at the government level, effort has never been made to support such campaigns against the militant mindset. The need of the hour is that those Muslim leaders and clerics, who are regarded with respect by the youth, should come forward and denounce the extremist mindset….

The north-eastern Nigerian city was accustomed to violence — Maiduguri, considered a stronghold of the militant group Boko Haram, has been under fire for years. But the suicide bombing on Jan. 10 was a whole new kind of horrifying: A young girl, no more than 10 years old, had been turned into a weapon of war. “It’s something quite new, and it’s disturbing, using these young, young girls wearing Hijabs,” a top federal police official told the Times....

 

The destitute and yet devoutly religious people of Afghanistan were content with their way of life, exercising greater jihad in the face of many hardships. They neither fought each other, despite their poverty in a multi-ethnic country with the countless difficulties of a rugged terrain, nor did they ever venture out to harm others outside of their borders....

 

The State of the Caliphate: The Fortunes of War

In Iraq the jihadists had been pushed out of 25% of the territory they had grabbed in their blitzkrieg advance a year ago and been expelled from Tikrit, Saddam Hussein’s hometown. There was even talk of an offensive later in the year to retake Mosul, Iraq’s second-biggest city....

 

Bangladesh: Bloggers in Peril
Shahedul Anam Khan

Four bloggers in Bangladesh have fallen victim to the wrath of extremists who choose violence to articulate their differences. It is only very recently that in Bangladesh the word ‘blog’, or for that matter ‘bloggers’, has come to be seen in pejorative terms by some quarters. Bloggers in general are being portrayed as sinister people involved in vilification, defamation and disparagement of religion, particularly Islam....

 

Filling the Political Vacuum: IS is Witnessing a Rebirth at a Time When It Should Be Diminishing
Osama Al Sharif

IS fighters were able to capture the strategic Syrian city of Tadmur with its world heritage ruins of Palmyra, as Syrian government forces pulled back suddenly even after repulsing the first wave of attack. Few days later IS militants took over Al-Walid border point; allowing them to link large swaths of territory between eastern Syria and western Iraq….

 

Choosing the Known Devil in Desperation
Gwynne Dyer

The Islamic State and the Al Nusra Front are both takfiri groups who believe that Muslims who do not follow their own extreme version of Sunni Islam are ‘apostates’, not real Muslims, and that they deserve to be killed. Around one-third of Syria’s population are ‘apostates’ by this definition — Alawites, other Shias, and Druze — and they are all at great risk....

 

ISIS is Not Misleading Us through Media Disinformation
Diana Moukalled

ISIS is exactly as it presents itself: a blind killing machine whose violence and love for control has no limits. Yes, ISIS is launching a psychological and propaganda war and it’s succeeding at that. However this organization, which the entire world is supposed to be fighting, is still capable of expanding and achieving gains on ground....

 

I wanted to understand how European children were falling for this propaganda, and to grasp the mindset of soldiers who spent their days torturing, stealing, raping, killing, and their nights staring into their computers and bragging. Perhaps this man would give me an insight. For now, however, it was getting late, and my boyfriend, Milan, was due to come round....

 


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