If the “sheikh of the slaughterers” is “guided by Allah,” is it really non-Muslims like me who are connecting Islam with terrorism? And as for those (and they are legion) who think the problem is “fundamentalism,” and that Christian and Muslim fundamentalisms are essentially equivalent, has any Christian group called Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell “apostle of the assassins” or “deacon of the destroyers” lately? From MEMRI:
The latest edition (#23) of the Al-Qa’ida-related journal Sawt Al-Jihad includes an article by Abd Al-Rahman Ibn Salem Al-Shamari praising the beheading of an Egyptian citizen in Iraq. The author emphasized that a Muslim is obligated to be loyal to his religion only, and not to his national identity or to his country, and therefore all non-believers are the same, regardless of whether they are Arabs. The following are excerpts from the article:(1)
‘Among Those Who Fell to that Happy Dagger were a Mighty Infidel Tyranny and an Idol Worshipped Instead of Allah’
“‘May your hand be strengthened!’ – so said all those who saw the video that showed the slaying of the Egyptian spy in service of the American army in Iraq – I mean all those of the true faith.
“You are wrong if you think that it was only the Egyptian spy who was slain. No, for among those who fell to that happy dagger were a mighty infidel tyranny and an idol who is worshipped instead of Allah; did you not see this as he was slain?!
“A spy has been slain, one spy among others, and the Jihad fighter [who slew him] has come closer to Allah by way of his [the spy’s] blood. Yet what is the novelty in this lowly spy whose slaying we have seen these very days? The novelty, and we ask of Allah that there be more [like him], is that a spy has been slain, and this spy looked like an Arab, had an Arab name, and spoke Arabic! The novelty lies in the triumph of the faith in the one God and in the raising of the banner of ‘There is no God but Allah’ over and above all other allegiances, be they of ethnicity, language, identity, or nationality.”
‘Whosoever is the Enemy of Allah, We are His Enemy … Arab or Non-Arab, Near or Far – They are All the Same’
“‘You shall find no believers in Allah and in the Last Day on friendly terms with those who oppose Allah and His messenger, even though they be their fathers, their sons, their brothers, or their nearest kindred. Allah has inscribed the Faith in their very hearts, and strengthened them with a spirit of His own. He will admit them to gardens watered by running streams, where they shall dwell forever. Allah is well pleased with them, and they are well pleased with Him. They are the party of Allah, and Allah’s party will surely triumph.'(2)
“There is only one criterion regarding the obligation of allegiance to Allah or the absence thereof, and this sole criterion is connected to Islam. Even if family relations, i.e. cousins, brothers, or sons [are involved] … allegiance is only to Islam and enmity is only for its enemies; this is the path of the true party of Allah [ Hizbullah], which Allah has taken care to distance from the Shi’ite Hizbullat,(3) which colludes [with the enemy].
“In Iraq itself, the apostate tyrant Saddam Hussein stood at the head of the government of the Ba’th Party, whose famous slogan was: ‘I believe in the Ba’th as the sole Lord who has no partner and in Arabism as the unrivaled faith.’ Allah is exalted above the Ba’thists’ vanities. This verse was written by a Ba’th poet and it is the most accurate description of the Ba’thists and their true faith and religion; for them Arabism is a religion and is the only criterion for allegiance or the absence of allegiance.
“In that same Iraq we learned a lesson in religion, a short lesson, [the amount of time] from the drawing of the dagger and the slitting of an apostate’s throat until the raising of the dagger [after the act].
“But [the dagger] swooped and felled all of the ignorance [jahiliyya], as it [in the form of the slain] lay strewn at the feet of that Jihad fighter. The [dagger] was raised, and raised Allah’s word, so that Allah’s word would come out on top.
“And these are the lessons we learned: The collapse of the national identities. When these are opposed to the Shari’a [Islamic religious law] or attempt to rival it, and when they cause division among people and [provide a basis for] allegiances, then these national identities should fall, and Arab nationalism first and foremost.
“Monotheism and its obligations are prior to all other obligations, relations, or languages. Monotheism is the allegiance [to Allah], and Allah is He ‘who made you into nations and tribes, so that you might get to know one another. The noblest of you in Allah’s sight is he who fears Him most.'(4) But the infidel is an infidel whether he is an Arab or a non-Arab. He must be seen as an enemy. Furthermore, this is one of the fundamental principles of monotheism and one of the foundations of Islam.
“No wonder that we are learning this lesson in Iraq. For the Jihad fighters in Iraq had already taught us to oppose patriotism, national identity, and regional particularism, and they have set their sights on the collaborating government brought by the occupation, and they have shown us that which has brought pleasure to the believers [i.e. terrorist attacks].”
So the fight in Iraq is a fight for Islamic monotheism (tauhid) — but of course, it has nothing to do with religion.