2. The fatwa states that “Islam strictly condemns religious extremism and the use of violence against innocent lives.” This is another important statement, but it is too general to use in making inroads in the war of ideas against the terrorists. For the question is: Who determines what is an innocent life? How can this statement lead to a specific condemnation of the killing of innocent people in Iraq’s Sunni Triangle, Moscow, and Sudan at the hands of jihadists who specifically state in their own fatwas that there are no innocent lives when a jihad is waged? The American fatwa could have been specifically geared to defeat the jihadist ideology.
3. It states that: “There is no justification in Islam for extremism or terrorism. Targeting civilians’ lives and property through suicide bombings or any other method of attack is haram — or forbidden — and those who commit these barbaric acts are criminals, not ‘martyrs.’ ” Again, it would have been more efficient to respond directly to the jihadists who quote from the Koran and other texts and sources. For example there was no such thing as explosives in the 7th century, yet al Qaeda, its allies and even Sheik Yussuf al-Qardawi on al Jazeera have justified the use of suicide bombing, and called it permissible in certain conditions. Sheik al-Qardawi went as far as linking today’s suicide bombing to what he called “inghimass” (to throw oneself against the enemy). According to him, this has been permitted by religious teaching since the early days of Islam. A fatwa issued in the West or in the United States must respond to Sheik al-Qardawi and the jihadists theologically, and not state globally what international law and 52 Muslim countries subscribe to already.
4) The text of the fatwa says: “The Qur’an, Islam’s revealed text, states: ‘Whoever kills a person [unjustly]… it is as though he has killed all mankind. And whoever saves a life, it is as though he had saved all mankind.’ ” (Koran, 5:32). This powerful quote has to supercede all other references al Qaeda uses with regard to the kuffar (infidels) from any source. For the jihadist terrorists would quote the same sentence and simply state that the persons they are killing are “justly” killed. Their ideologues have already responded to this reference by saying that whoever kills outside the injunction of the right jihad is acting as if killing all mankind. The same logic applies to all other quotations in the fatwa: a need for theological response to the jihadists in addition to general quotes…
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