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Radical Islamism and Jihad

Interestingly, emergence of Taliban is not a result of class struggle or fits into the chemistry of religious war within the society. It is not a Catholic vs Protestant struggle of renaissance period ....

 

Those who call for Malaysia to be declared an Islamic state need to tell us the definition of Islam this state is to be built upon, and if this move will isolate our country even further from the modern Islam embraced by the rest of the world....

Iran declared its revolution an Islamic revolution, not just a Shiite one; it hoped to inspire Sunni Muslims as well. Although many Sunni militants saw Iran’s Shiite theology as anathema....

 

I felt oppressed. I knew for sure that, if I was to die right then, I was going to heaven." He added: "I feel, you know, you know what I'm saying, if I was to die in five or 10 minutes, I'm going to heaven. That's all that matters to me."...

In one sense, it will never really make sense to speak of ISIS as defeated. There will always exist some forgotten corner of the globe or a dark crevice of the Internet in which recruits and recruiters will gather....

 

Africa’s religious landscape is changing very rapidly, in various ways. These changes include the introduction of new religions and adjustments in the modes of worship as well as the personalities that are revered. ....

 

Like many Pakistani Muslims, the women refused to drink water from a utensil touched by a choorhi, a derogatory word for a Christian. Apparently incensed that a lowly Christian woman had argued with them, two of the women who later appeared as witnesses in the case said Asia had insulted Muhammad and the Quran....

 

With polls slated for December 30, the first two weeks of canvassing have already seen eight deaths and dozens injured.....

 

A permanent refugee population in Bangladesh, and possible alliances between various groups of militants, could also have grave implications for the domestic security situation in that country, similar to the volatility seen in Lebanon and...

 

For its part, Tunisia oscillates between traditionalism and the fragility of democracy, with the impulse for change measured by innovation and closures....

 

When you consider how, after the Arabs’ humiliating defeat in the June war of 1967, all the secular ideologies that had then animated the public debate — such as pan-Arabism, Nasserism, Baathism, socialism — proved to be hollow and worthless, you begin to see a vacuum there....

 

Since the start of the Boko Haram insurgency in 2009, more than 27,000 people, mostly in the remote northeast, have been killed. Nearly 2 million others have been displaced....

 

Respected Sufi divines, I would, therefore, earnestly appeal to you to use the opportunity provided by the Delhi conclave to go beyond the usual shibboleths. Sufi approach of focussing on the positive features of Islam worked well at one time. There was no internet then. In the internet age everyone is a scholar. In this age of instant scholarship, nothing can be hidden or bypassed.

It must be understood, that the radical Islamist theology and the current Islamic theology of consensus are by and large one and the same. Any differences are cosmetic. ISIS may vanish tomorrow. But the problem of radicalisation will remain. Islam supremacism, xenophobia, intolerance and exclusivism are inherent in the current Islamic, and not just Islamist theology.

Focusing on positive features of Islam is an essential part of De-radicalisation or, more realistically, Preventing Radicalisation. But it is not bearing fruit in full measure as the core theology agreed to by nearly all Muslims militates against these positives. As briefly outlined above, this core and consensual theology nullifies the impact of all arguments made against violent extremism. It is this core theology that needs to be refuted and changed.  Let us all try and bring the core Islamic theology in line with the actual teachings of Quran and Sunnah. Let us move away from the current theology of violence and xenophobia. Let us move towards a coherent, comprehensive theology of peace and pluralism, co-existence and gender justice.

All of which suggests that triumphalism over the end of ISIS, although tempting, is extremely premature. The original threat posed by the Islamic State’s physical “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria may indeed be gone, but the group’s activities and ideology remain a real challenge...

 

Official Iraqi statistics actually indicate that the number of its members killed in the war to restore areas they occupied since June 2014 exceeded 20,000. This is in addition to hundreds of prisoners held by Iraqi forces. Meanwhile, the international coalition sources estimate 80,000 members of ISIS were killed in Iraq and Syria....

 

What did the US planners get out of the war in Afghanistan? ....

 
Should Bangladesh Become Another Jihadist Launch Pad?
Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury
Should Bangladesh Become Another Jihadist Launch Pad?
Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury

Armed jihadists belonging to Jamaat e Islami Bangladesh (JIB) and Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) have started attacking the leaders and activists of Awami League and its other front organizations. Agenda of JIB-BNP nexus is to push Bangladesh towards a civil war. According to numerous reports, Pakistani spy agency Inter Service Intelligence (ISI) is actively helping the JIB-BNP nexus in returning to power thus re-establishing Pakistan’s influence on Bangladesh....

 

ISIS may be militarily defeated tomorrow and even go out of existence. But this will not solve the problem of Muslim radicalisation. If our madrasas and educational institutions continue to prepare the ground for self-segregation and militancy, expounding the current theology, mixed with narratives of victimhood and marginalisation, Islam will continue to be hobbled, Muslims will continue to struggle to fit in the way of life in contemporary world.

Moderate, progressive Muslims must urgently evolve and propagate an alternative theology of peace and pluralism, consistent in all respects with the teachings of Islam, and suitable for contemporary and future societies, while refuting the current theology of violence and supremacism.

Unfortunately, as we have seen above, the task is not so easy. Radicalisation has not just happened overnight. Jihadi theology has evolved over hundreds of years. Major theologians who have studied Islam independently have brought to us a political version of Islam, stripping the religion of all its spirituality.

While it is primarily the duty of Muslims to fight this ideological war within slam, this is no longer just a Muslim concern. The world too must confront Muslim scholars with the supremacism and extremism present in their theology and ask them to rethink Islam.  ProgressiveMuslims should join the rest of the world to defeat extremism in Islamic theology.

Beyond spurring Jihadism, the 9/11 attacks seem to have polarized the religious scene in Iraq. Anbari and like-minded jihadists began to see rival Islamists, including the Muslim Brotherhood, as enemies—a position that would become a notable aspect of the Islamic State’s ideology. Anbari viewed the Muslim Brotherhood’s embrace of political norms and its rejection of al-Qaeda as a betrayal....

 

There are other so-called clerics or extremist leaders who need to be tackled as well. But going beyond their role is the issue of the extent to which extremism has snaked its way into society and made inroads everywhere. Schoolchildren have been known to quote a simple Quranic verse on their exam papers and beseech examiners to give them passing grades on the basis of their piety. This obviously doesn’t help produce future doctors, physicists, teachers, lawyers or other professionals....

 

As long as the government overlooks Tehreek-e-Labbaik’s ideological motivations, it is difficult to construe nationwide arrests as a lasting solution. The current status of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws ensures that any religious outfit can allege blasphemy and stage violent sit-ins unpunished. In the event of such an occurrence, the state must decide between amending these laws to establish its writ, or continuing to surrender the rule of law to the demands of religious mobs....

 

With this event, Afghanistan was thrust into a new chapter of armed conflict. According to partial data compiled by the Institute for Conflict Management (ICM) from media reports, Afghanistan witnessed 421 incidents of suicide attacks between September 9, 2001, and December 31, 2008, resulting in 1,231 fatalities. Thereafter, between January 1, 2009, and September 30, 2018, UNAMA has recorded more than 654 suicide attacks resulting in 14,248 casualties 3,274 deaths and 10,974 injuries). ....

 

There was a strong smell of burning flesh in the air, reminding me inevitably of Manikarnika and Satkara, Hegel’s Haushaltung der Natur, reminding me that in death the killer and the killed were one, a thought that would come back later. The air was also thick, all the way, with flying bits of paper....

 

The history of Islam on the Horn of Africa dates back 1400 years. It came from the Arabian Peninsula through migration and trade, mainly from Yemen and Oman. In Somalia, during the 14th century many Somalis converted to Islam and gradually Islam became the dominant religion. Today, almost 100 percent of Somalis are Sunni Muslim and largely adhere to a Shafi'i version of the faith....

 

If you wanted to be safe in the province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa you had to be on good terms with Haq. Imran Khan’s party, Tehreek-e-Insaf, shelled out to him a generous grant of Rs300 million. Zahid Hussain, writing in Dawn in 2017, stated that Benazir Bhutto — who ignored Haq — had to pay the price with her life: The suicide bombers who killed her had stayed at Madrasa Haqqania and the “assassination plot was reportedly hatched at this institution”....

 
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