This story notes that al-Shabaab certainly seems to like their beheadings and amputations, but does not make the connection regarding their symbolic significance. The point al-Shabaab intends to make is that they are playing “by the book” as they fight to impose Islamic law.
Qur’an 47:4: “Therefore, when ye meet the Unbelievers (in fight), smite at their necks…”
Are the enemies nominally Muslims? No problem. They declare their enemies apostates. The penalty for anyone who “changed his religion” is death, according to Muhammad’s own orders.
Qur’an 5:33: “The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter.”
Qur’an 5:38: “As for the thief, both male and female, cut off their hands. It is the reward of their own deeds, an exemplary punishment from Allah. Allah is Mighty, Wise”
“Somali Islamists behead 11 civilians in capital,” by Abdi Guled for the Associated Press, August 26 (thanks to all who sent this in):
MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) “” Somali Islamist rebels have beheaded at least 11 civilians in the capital in the past two weeks, a campaign of terror that residents said Friday is designed to show the insurgency can still act in Mogadishu after withdrawing from their bases there earlier this month.
“We wake up with beheaded bodies on the streets every day,” said Abdinur Marwan, who lives in a district of Mogadishu called Hewila. “They call themselves Muslims while doing what Allah banned! Everyone is trying to leave here because people are being killed like goats.”
Those in power could care less who disagrees with their pronouncement of takfir.
The Islamist al-Shabab militia withdrew from their bases in the Somali capital after being steadily pushed back by more heavily armed African Union forces supporting the U.N.-backed Somali government. The Islamists described the withdrawal as a “tactical retreat” and said they would still carry out operations in the capital.
Resident Afrah Abdikhayre said five decapitated bodies were found in his Suqa Holaha area last week. He says two beheaded men in Somali government uniforms and another three headless bodies were found this week.
Resident Nur Sugow said al-Shabab beheaded a donkey cart driver in the Yaqshid district. Al-Shabab frequently carries out beheadings and amputations.
The militia also executed two men and a 16-year-old boy by firing squad on Tuesday after accusing them of spying.
Residents “” some to terrified to give their names “” appealed to the Somali government and AU troops to secure their neighborhood. Although al-Shabab has pulled back, individual fighters are still active in the city and gunfire is still common.
Somalia has been without a functioning government since 1991 and at least five of its districts are suffering from famine.