It is interesting that Badawi too departs from the tiny-minority-of-extremists propaganda and acknowledges that jihad as warfare is the “only meaning commonly understood by the general public.” However, in light of the fact that theorists as eminent among jihadists as Al-Banna (founder of the Muslim Brotherhood) and Azzam (founder of Al-Qaeda) argue that the idea that jihad is anything but fighting is founded on a weak hadith, it will be interesting to see exactly how he expects his views to gain currency among Muslims. From WebIndia123.com, with thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist:
Asking the Muslim world to seriously address the issue of jihad, Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi today told a gathering of scholars and academics from 16 Islamic countries to combat extremism and catch up with the advanced world.
“It is most unfortunate that some have narrowed down the concept of jihad to qatal, which concerns physical fighting,” he said inaugurating a meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) Commission of Eminent Persons here.
The Chairman of the 57-member OIC said it was even more unfortunate that this was the only meaning commonly understood by the general public.
“If Muslims themselves can make this mistake, what more can we expect from others,” he asked and added that Muslims therefore were as much to blame for this distortion of the meaning of jihad.