As the investigation into yesterday’s unsuccessful attacks in London and the manhunt for suspects proceeds, it becomes increasingly likely the perpetrators were members of the same organization that carried out the 7/7 attacks. Police indicate the backpacks, explosives and design of the bombs were identical to those used in 7/7. The bombs contained nails to maximize their killing power. A suspect wearing a backpack and winter coat was killed by police in the London tubes.
The attacks on London have given the Jihadis the opportunity to voice their opinion on the legal justification of suicide bombing, the murdering of innocents and the role Islam plays in violent jihad. Jihadi scholars openly voice opinions contrary to Professor Robert A. Pape’s claim that suicide bombers are motivated by the “occupation” of Muslim lands and not Islamist fundamentalism.
Omar Bakri Mohammed, one of Britain’s resident jihadi clerics speaks out, and gives lie to Professor Pape’s statements. His contempt for westerners, Muslims who assimilate and the country which he resides is palpable. “Self-sacrifice operations” are an inherent duty of Muslims, according to Bakri.
He branded any Muslims who attended the Trafalgar Square vigil last week as “hypocrites and apostates”. In an interview, Bakri said: “God forbids us from praying with Jews and Christians side by side. These are part-time Muslims or chocolate Muslims. I cannot be British. I cannot be English. Even if I change my colour, like Michael Jackson, I could not be English This is a way of life in Iraq and in Palestine. The self-sacrifice operation, it is the Islamic way of life for those who resist. Self-sacrifice operations in Muslim countries, it is part of the Islamic culture.”
The Salafist Group for Prayer and Combat (GSPC), a violent Algerian terrorist group that has openly allied itself with al Qaeda, recently issued a statement of support for the London attacks, and reiterated the religious responsibility of Muslims to “terrorize our enemies” .
As long as Britain remains in a state of hatred and disbelief, then terrorizing it is a duty because it has appropriated the responsibility of fighting and wounding the Muslims and stealing their natural resources. Also, it supports America, the Jews, the Arab oppressors, and everyone else who is fighting against Islam in the new crusader war against so-called terrorism in Afghanistan, Iraq, and against the mujahideen everywhere… It is incorrect to claim that [British] civilians are innocents since most of the men and women are considered combatants by Islamic law because general public surveys have shown that the majority of the British people support Tony Blair in his war against the Muslims and mujahideen.
Regarding the children and women, while children are indeed innocent civilians and should not be deliberately killed if they are recognized by the attacker as children; however, if it is difficult to distinguish children from other people surrounding them (i.e. in a group of people) then killing them is permitted…Islam has ordered us to terrorize our enemies and whoever denies that is an infidel himself. Terrorizing our infidel enemies is a legal obligation. Whoever says that Islam is not related to terrorism has committed an infidel act–terror comes from Islam.
The GSPC’s interpretation of the obligations of Muslims for wage jihad is the prevailing view in the Salafi/jihadi intellectual circles. In an analysis of a fatwa (religious edict) issued to refute jihadi cleric Abu Basir al-Tartusi’s condemnation of the London 7/7 attack, Reuven Paz provides further examples of justification for terrorism and suicide operations. [Hat tip to The Counterterrorism Blog. Note: names of clerics have been edited out for readability.]
According to the author of the counter-Fatwa himself, the response to Abu Basir is composed in the style and form of the legal Islamist justifications for the September 11 attacks, written by a number of clerics using his almost identical title (The Base of Legitimacy for the Destruction in the U.S.); the famous fatwas of the Saudis and the article by the Egyptian Jihadist titled- “This is a public statement – Terrorism is part of Islam, and whoever denies it is an Infidel.” The position that Islamists should be proud to be called ‘terrorists’ since it is part of Islam is a well-known argument that has been made by several Jihadi-Salafi scholars and clerics, since September 11, 2001. In October 2004, that argument was made even by an Iraqi Shi`i cleric who published this unusual position, in a pamphlet titled “There is no Jihad without Terrorism.”
Professor Pape’s theory shrouds the nature of the enemy we fight and rejects the statements of the jihadi theorists and practitioners. Ignoring the motivations of our enemy will lead to disastrous policy. Stating the Western “occupation” of Muslim land is the root cause of terrorism naturally leads to a policy of withdrawal from the Middle East and any other nation the extremist believe to be Muslim lands (like Spain). Professor Pape’s definition of occupation is so nebulous as to be meaningless, as by his lights the elected Iraqi government is occupying Iraq, the House of Saud is occupying Saudi Arabia, etc. Occupation to the jihadis includes any foreign presence in their lands.
Withdrawal from the Middle East would provide a false sense of security for the West, cede the initiative to the jihadis, allow them to gain strength, and delay the inevitable confrontation, a confrontation that will be fought on their terms, not ours.
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