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Books and Documents

Islam,Terrorism and Jihad

“The message that there is only one form, a form alien to this land, of belief and practice, that of the Wahhabi/Salafis who are not part of the four Mazhabs of the Islamic Sunni belief is now being pushed with full force as the current agenda. Many killed in brutal manner have been believers, Pirs, Shias, Ahmedias, followers of the Sufi tradition, priests from other religions, writers who were not necessarily atheists”....

 

Terrorism cannot be stopped by force. This is a fundamental truth that needs to be acknowledged. It is a brilliant concept—it can only be countered conceptually. We need radical ideas born out of a new imagination; force is on the verge of exhausting itself...

 

And yet, it is sadly possible that those not paying attention to circumstances inside the Islamic Republic might be lulled by the Orlando statement into more wishful thinking that domestic reform is still just around the corner. ...

 

The assailants in last week's assassination escaped but the murders seem of a piece with a wave of extremist – and some claim Wahhabi – inspired aggression against Sufi shrines in south Asia...

 

The militant outfit is not alone in considering the Qawwali, which has long been part of the Sufi tradition in the subcontinent, as heretical. Many Sufi practices are frowned upon as deviant within the more puritan religious movements that have become increasingly popular in Pakistan during the last few decades....

 
Reckoning With the Lone Wolf
R.K. Raghavan
Reckoning With the Lone Wolf
R.K. Raghavan

My response is that an ounce of optimism is preferable to a pound of cynicism. Simultaneous to efforts aimed at deradicalisation will have to be the strengthening of law enforcement and the rest of the criminal justice system.  Preventive detention at the merest suspicion — as long as such action is provided for in law and is subject to eventual oversight by the judiciary — of persons who share and disseminate...

 

"What we call the cheerleaders and fanboys and wannabes — people who aren't actually members of ISIL, who aren't actually in Syria, but are, essentially, freelance supporters, often based in the West — they are the ones who are giving the group its online oomph,"...

 
Fear and Loathing in Dhaka
Syed Badrul Ahsan
Fear and Loathing in Dhaka
Syed Badrul Ahsan

An air of despondency hangs low over Bangladesh. And that is only natural, given that as many as 49 citizens — Hindus, Christians, academics, bloggers, publishers and foreigners — have lost their lives at the hands of Islamist militants in the past two years....

 

...if we are serious about preventing the next Orlando, then we may have to give equal and separate attention to risk factors that have nothing to do with 'Islamic terrorism.'...

His lectures had little to do with our syllabus, and included colourful, emotional sermons on the devilry of Hindus, Christians and Jews, as well as Sufis, Shias, Ahmadis, and whoever he considered to be heretics, polytheists and Kafirs....extreme reduction of Islam to a list of do’s and don’ts is a great corruption of our religion. Perhaps it is the real cause behind how Muslims are now split into so many hostile divisions with mutual hatred and enmity....

 

Life is speeded up. It used to be that when a hideous atrocity occurred people waited a day or two, even a week, before co-opting it into their political armoury. Now it happens while the smell of cordite is still in the air and before the blood has dried. There is a breathtaking shamelessness....

 

Four of the five convicted and executed in the latest round of trials were leaders in the country’s largest Islamist political party, Jamaat-e-Islami, outraging Muslim fundamentalists and others....

 

Controversial moves to prosecute and execute war criminals from the country's bloody struggle for independence in 1971 pushed Islamist factions deeper underground and have perhaps provoked a violent counter-response.....

 

The new chief of Afghan Taliban Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada is a product of Pakistani madrasas (religious seminaries) and still leads a string of madrasas across Pakistan's south-western Balochistan.....

 

Without conscience, they murder divinity itself when they kill human beings who are, regardless of faith or creed, nothing but bearers of the divinity of their Maker. These are the true radical extremists. They and only they are the true enemies of Islam.... The truth is that they, just like al-Qaeda, ISIL (also known as ISIS), Boko Haram, and of course their theological "teachers", methodically and systematically destroy everything beautiful in Islam. They target and destroy the artefacts and historical sites that defy their pedantic and false sense of history.

The Islamic State (ISIS) has successfully managed to radicalise and attract to its ranks several Indian-origin youth from the huge diaspora in West Asian countries, Indian security agencies have found. Refusing to speculate on the exact number of Indians who have joined the ISIS, a top intelligence official told this newspaper: “How many of Indian-origin youth have left from West Asia to join the ISIS we don’t know. We have some leads, but it is difficult to say anything conclusively now.” Already the number of Indians who have joined the ISIS has been revised from around 25 to about 40 now.

 
The Fuss about ISIS and What Bangladesh Needs To Do
Muhammad Nurul Huda
The Fuss about ISIS and What Bangladesh Needs To Do
Muhammad Nurul Huda

The inescapable fact is that the ultimate responsibility of breeding a violent culture and its multiple social ramifications shall fall on state agencies that fail to see the ominous signals of religious extremism and perhaps willy-nilly nurture and protect the so-called Jihadi groups....

 
Teaching Anti-Extremism in Kenya
Alexis Okeowo
Teaching Anti-Extremism in Kenya
Alexis Okeowo

“We want to give them that confidence, so that, in the event they are approached, they know what to do,” he continued. Somalis, Somali-Kenyans, Muslim Kenyans, and even Christian Kenyans were caught in a state of crisis, he observed. “If we keep quiet and don’t talk about these issues, there is a chance we will lose these young people.”....

 

The IS/AQIS is capable of providing additional resources and a global stage for these menacing groups. It is a matter of time and opportunity before such a tie can flourish. Therefore, it is imperative to acknowledge that denial cannot be a strategy, and that it is necessary to act in earnest....

 
Behind the Barricades of Turkey’s Hidden War
Robert F. Worth
Behind the Barricades of Turkey’s Hidden War
Robert F. Worth

The battle against the Islamic State had made the downtrodden Kurds into heroes. In the weeks and months that followed, the Kurds watched in amazement as fighters aligned with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party or P.K.K. — long branded a terrorist group by Turkey and the United States — became the central protagonists in the defence of Kobani.....

 

“Do not listen to those who tell you that Islam is a religion of peace”, one jihadist says, his face digitally masked over. “Islam was never a religion of peace for even one day. Islam is a religion of war. The Prophet commanded us to remain at war until the day the rule of Allah is established”. The video mocks Muslims protesting against the Islamic State....

If extremist movements are not curbed, Bangladesh could well become an epicentre for Islamic radicalism. Given its proximity to other substantial Muslim populations in both south and Southeast Asia, the emergence of such religious extremism could have profound destabilising consequences well beyond the reaches of the country....

 
The Real Source of Terror in Bangladesh
William B. Milam
The Real Source of Terror in Bangladesh
William B. Milam

Some of those are a legacy of the war in Afghanistan, in which some Bangladeshis fought; others are by-products of the Wahhabi influence that Bangladeshi workers in the Persian Gulf brought back when they returned home....

 

That doesn’t mean saying there is a problem with the Muslim community as a whole. Let’s not forget, they are the prime targets and first victims of Isis and their fellow Jihadis. The answer lies in combating the politicisation of Islam. Only then can we distinguish religion from politics and faith from fanaticism....

I often thought of my father, who had suffered political persecution in the 1980s under the dictatorship of Gen. Mohammad Zia ul-Haq. He would say physical pain touches only the surface; you must never let it break your spirit....

 
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