As all the learned experts from Pope Francis to John Kerry tell us, Islamic jihadists have nothing whatsoever to do with Islam, the noble religion of peace. Yet they have an odd and recurring tendency to focus upon the Qur’an. Maybe Pope Francis can make his way to a Boko Haram stronghold and explain to the group’s leaders how true Islam and the proper understanding of the Qur’an reject every form of violence.
Even here a boy says: “Being taught about the Koran is right, but there is nothing in the Koran that says you should hurt people or take their possessions.”
That’s true, as long as one overlooks the Qur’an verses calling on Muslims to “kill them wherever you find them” (2:191, 4:89 and 9:5), to crucify or amputate a hand and foot of those who wage war against Allah and his messenger (5:33), to amputate the hands of thieves (5:38), to behead unbelievers (47:4), and more, as well as the hadith that depicts Muhammad saying: “I have been commanded to fight against people so long as they do not declare that there is no god but Allah, and he who professed it was guaranteed the protection of his property and life on my behalf except for the right affairs rest with Allah.” (Sahih Muslim 30) That means that if people don’t declare that there is no god but Allah, their lives and property are not guaranteed, and can be taken.
“Life in Bama, ex-Boko Haram base,” Vanguard, December 15, 2016:
In the Borno, northern Nigerian town of Bama the streets are eerily quiet. Houses lie empty, riddled with bullet holes, and symbols of the jihadist group Boko Haram are painted on the walls.
Bama, once the militants’ stronghold, was liberated from the Islamist fighters by the Nigerian army in March 2015, but is only reached safely by helicopter – the roads still too dangerous because of the risk of ambush by the insurgents.
Despite its ghostly atmosphere and violent history, the town is now a safe haven for around 10,000 people, among more than two million in Nigeria who have fled areas held by Boko Haram….
In the centre of the camp children play on slides and swings built especially for them. The camp school is a cluster of five tents. “How many oranges and bananas?” shout the pupils in unison, reciting dictations from their English teacher.
For some of the students learning English, Arabic and social studies, this is their first taste of schooling in the rural state, where conflict has crippled education.
Yet this is not the case for all. Aba Modi, 12, attended one of Boko Haram’s Islamic schools, or madrasas, when he lived in Banki, a town under the militants’ control for two years. “They only taught the Koran at our school. All day, we were just memorising the Koran,” Modi said.
Occasionally the pupils would be taken out of class to learn to shoot a weapon or how to crawl under fire.
Modi eventually fled Banki with his brother in the middle of the night. “Life is completely different now. I enjoy coming to school,” he said. “Some of the things they [Boko Haram] taught are correct. Being taught about the Koran is right, but there is nothing in the Koran that says you should hurt people or take their possessions.”…