Ex-Gitmo detainee criticizes Saudis in latest edition of Inspire
Ibrahim Suleiman al Rubaish, al Qaeda in Arabian Peninsula's mufti.
The fifth and latest edition of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula's Inspire magazine contains an article written by Ibrahim Rubaish, a former Guantanamo detainee, who criticizes the Saudi government.
Rubaish was transferred from Guantanamo to his native Saudi Arabia in December 2006, and then enrolled in Saudi Arabia's jihadist rehabilitation program. He later fled to Yemen along with other former Guantanamo detainees and became AQAP's Mufti, providing the theological justifications for AQAP's terrorism. In that role, Rubaish has repeatedly argued that Muslims need not wait for approval from the Saudi government when waging jihad. [See LWJ report, Former Guantanamo detainee now al Qaeda in Arabian Peninsula's Mufti.]
In his article ("Al-Saud: Lodging A Criminal"), which was previously published by AQAP's Al Malahem Media, Rubaish criticizes the Saudis for taking in former Tunisian President Zine al Abidine Ben Ali after he fled his north African country earlier this year. Rubaish praises Ben Ali's demise, but warns that Tunisia will not become a truly Islamic country unless sharia law is implemented.
"I was truly pleased that Allah removed an evil which afflicted our brothers for many decades," Rubaish writes. "But I don't think that this will help the situation of the Muslims because oppression won't disappear and a tâghût [false leader] is often substituted by another."
Rubaish argues that "most people" today "practice some aspects of the religion such as praying and fasting, for the sake of Allah." But "for some, they practice the religion for the sake of the tyrannical rulers, following them as to what they permit and forbid."
Rubaish laments this supposed state of affairs with an indirect reference to Christian teachings. AQAP's Mufti writes:
Hence, if the rights of Allah and the rights of Caesar clash, then the rule would be Caesar's. Unfortunately this became widespread among people and even among their scholars to the extent that if you request a permissible matter or forbid an evil one, they will reply to you by saying that the system bans this and legitimizes that.
Ben Ali "waged war on the Muslim women's veil," Rubaish writes. He "made himself a ruler above Allah's rule when he legalized what Allah prohibited and made illegal what
Allah made lawful." Ben Ali "went as far as banning polygamy and legalizing ribâ [usury]."
Rubaish questions how the Saudis could take in such a supposedly unworthy ruler. Rubaish asks Saudi scholars:
So, where is the fatwa and rule regarding what he has done if you are truthful? Where are those judges who give rulings against the mujahidin? And where are the rehabilitation's members?
The last question is likely a reference to Saudi Arabia's jihadist rehabilitation program. More than two dozen former Guantanamo detainees have graduated from the program, only to return to terrorism. Interestingly, Inspire makes no mention of the fact that Rubaish was once held at Guantanamo.
Earlier this week, counterterrorism analyst Evan Kohlmann noted on his twitter page that there are reports that Rubaish gave "a public lecture in the city of Lawder," Yemen. If true, then this is an ominous sign of just how strong AQAP has become inside Yemen.