Patrick Sookhdeo’s book Global Jihad: The Future in the Face of Militant Islam came out in 2007, and no book before or since has rivaled it as a single-volume resource for Islamic teachings on jihad. That makes this book truly essential reading for anyone who is tired of the politically correct fog of misinformation that envelops us everywhere about the threat we are facing, and who wants to know the truth.
The scope and range of this book is unique. Sookhdeo, who has won justified renown in Britain for his stands in defense of human rights against Islamic supremacism, opens the book with an evaluation of some of the fashionable explanations for Islamic jihad terrorism: the legacy of colonialism, poverty, demographic pressures, local political conflicts, Israel and the Palestinians, a loss of identity among alienated and marginalized youth, honor and shame, the Western invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq and the war on terror and other issues relating to Western foreign policy, the corrupt secular West and its polluting impact, and many others. Then he reproduces a question that a Muslim journalist in the U.K. asked after the July 7, 2005 jihad bombings in London: “Why was it four Muslims who blew themselves up? Why have other marginalised communities not produced suicide bombers?”
Then Sookhdeo answers the question: “The answer to this question lies in the legitimacy that the Muslim source texts, classical Islamic theology, and paradigmatic early Muslim history give to violence against non-Muslims and to the ways in which modern Islamists, drawing on these sources, have formed ideologies which justify violence in a modern context.”
Global Jihad then supplies key extracts from the Qur’an and Hadith, as well as from the teachings of early Islamic scholars and jurists from the various Sunni and Shi’ite madhahib — and they teach, with a remarkable unanimity, the necessity for Muslims to wage war against unbelievers and subjugate them under the rule of Islamic law. Sookhdeo also explains key Islamic doctrines related to that of jihad, including the dar al-Islam/dar al-harb division and the idea that the whole world belongs to Muslims and is only rightly ruled by an Islamic state. He traces the historical development of the theology of jihad, delineates the types of jihad and their objectives, and relates the jihad doctrine to both Sunni and Shi’ite eschatology. This book even contains expositions of Islamic theology regarding matters attendant to jihad, such as the treatment of prisoners and the acceptability of beheading. There are also illuminating sections on the doctrine of taqiyya, the sufferings of dhimmi populations subjugated within the Islamic state, and the Islamic justification for suicide bombing.
But this is much more than simply a book of illuminating Islamic theological and legal texts, however useful these are. Sookhdeo surveys the contemporary Muslim debate on the nature of jihad, profiles modern-day reformers (and some who claimed the title with less than convincing justification for doing so), and explores various responses to modern-day jihad activity.
So this book is a uniquely useful resource for anyone who wants to understand what we are up against, right? Right. So it was no surprise when Sookhdeo began to be attacked by those who want to make sure that non-Muslim Westerners do not come to a clear understanding of the threat we face. The venomous antisemite and historical revisionist Ben White attacked the book in an odd review that noted correctly that Sookhdeo contended that “the primary motivation of terrorists and suicide bombers is theological” and then purported to refute that contention not by showing that Sookhdeo had misrepresented Islamic theology, but that jihadists cited political issues in their communiques — thus demonstrating only that Ben White has no clue whatsoever about the inherently political character of Islamic theology.
This was enough, however, for the Islamic supremacist blogger Yusuf Smith (Indigo Jo), who showed up here a few years back in a most illuminating exchange (read the comments), to dub Sookhdeo “the Sookhdevil” — resulting in Sookhdeo being threatened with death by some of Indigo Jo’s coreligionists. Yusuf did not, of course, call them devils.
It was all par for the course — and showed in a particularly vivid manner that Global Jihad, as meticulously researched and exhaustively documented as it is, is right on the mark.