But what did they repent of? They repented of takfir — the practice of branding fellow Muslims non-Muslims, and thus lawfully to be killed. This practice is used promiscuously by modern jihad groups, and it is that that Saudi authorities made sure they “repented” of — because that targets them. They did go farther — read on — but nagging questions remain.
“Over 1,500 Extremists Freed After Repenting,” from Arab News (thanks to all who sent this in):
RIYADH, 26 November 2007 “” Saudi authorities have released more than 1,500 reformed extremists, who were detained on charges of embracing and spreading takfeer (the ideology that brands other Muslims who disagree with them as infidels).
The extremists, under the guidance of the Ministry of Interior, had undergone lengthy counseling, according to Muhammad Al-Nujaimi, a member of the Counseling Committee and professor of comparative jurisprudence at the King Fahd Security College….
The committee is tasked with the duty of reforming youths in an intellectual and rational manner on the basis of Shariah. “The committee has met around 5,000 times to offer counseling to 3,200 people, who were accused of embracing the takfeer ideology. The committee has successfully completed reforming 1,500 people,” Al-Nujaimi said.
The suspects were largely confused about the meaning of jihad, which led to their believing in committing blind violence. They also viewed that the present Muslim rulers, scholars and public were infidels, and therefore demanded the establishment of a single Islamic state, said Al-Nujaimi.
Blind violence is out? Good. What about calculated, open-eyed violence? And note again the emphasis on not viewing Muslim rulers as infidels.
“After several graded sessions with the committee, and having been convinced of their misguided vision, they renounced their erroneous ideologies, including the concept of driving out all infidels from the Arabian Peninsula,” he said.
I guess they would have subjected Muhammad himself to a few sessions.
The committee first evaluates the personality and the ideological crisis suffered by the suspect, and then decides on how to clean his mind of the mistaken impressions, said Al-Nujaimi.
Clean. Not wash. Got it?