Omar Hammami calls for establishment of global caliphate

Omar Hammami, the American terrorist who has served as a Shabaab military commander, propagandist, recruiter, and fundraiser, recently released a statement calling for jihadists to declare a global Islamic caliphate.

Hammani’s statement was posted on May 25 in four parts [Part 1, 2, 3, and 4] by a jihadist known as “somalimuhajirwarrior,” or “foreign Somali warrior,” on a YouTube website. The lecture is titled “In Defense of the Khilaafa: The Next Stage.”

The release of the lecture took place just one week after Hammami, who is known as Abu Mansour al Amriki, published part 1 of autobiography, in which he recounted his life in the US, his path to jihad, and his time with the Islamic Courts Union in Somalia. The autobiography refuted the rumors that he was executed early last month by Shabaab for releasing a video in which he claimed his life was in danger. Shortly after the release of the video, Shabaab quickly denied that the group presented any danger to Hammami.

In the lecture released on May 25, Hammami said that the establishment of the global caliphate is critical to prevent the West from dividing and conquering the disparate jihadist movements and defeating them individually. He cited a RAND study from 2006 that said al Qaeda’s ideology is its center of gravity and that suggested methods for causing the jihadists a strategic defeat.

The conclusions of the RAND report are “absolutely correct,” Hammami said, according to a transcript of his statement provided by the SITE Intelligence Group.

“So to bring the point home, it’s obvious to all that after the death of the Prophet … this monumental collective action of establishing [monotheism] on the earth can only truly be done properly through the vehicle known as the [Caliphate],” he said. “This means that the Muslims worldwide must unite under the leadership of one Muslim leader called the Khalifa [Caliph]. This then is the reality of the ideology of al Qaeda and al Qaeda, the ideology of the global jihadists, and the ideology of every truly sincere Muslim. This is also the ideology that truly scares the pants and socks off the [disbelievers].”

Hammami noted that a key conclusion of the RAND paper is that the West must break local Islamist insurgencies from the global jihad.

“[A] prong of the RAND strategy for defeating al-Qaeda is to break the links between the global and local jihads,” he said. “In other words, they want to cause disunity among the Ummah and keep us from establishing the Shariah of the Prophet … as a unified group under one single leader.”

Hammami cautioned that “internationalization brings costs as well as benefits,” and compared the problems with the current global jihadist movement to the “international communist movement during the previous century.”

“Contradictions inevitably arise between the global vision promulgated by movements’ theoreticians and the national agendas that many local cadres naturally pursue. Excluding this friction could be a part of an effective Western counter strategy,” Hammami said.

He warned that human nature may interfere with the overarching goals of the global jihadist movement, and local or regional jihadists may view the global jihadists as a “burden” to their cause.

“So what then of a situation in which a certain land of jihad reaches a level of supremacy in its region, where it finds itself no longer in need of the benefits of being part of the global jihad, but rather instead, it begins to see such ties as a burden,” Hammami stated. “Although it may keep some of the global rhetoric, it may actually begin to stand in the way of outside operations or the creation of new jihadi fronts? Worse still, what if multiple lands of jihad in different regions reach such a level simultaneously? Shall we simply rely upon human nature and wait for one side to simply yield power to a unified authority and instinctively guide the Muslims to unity?”

Hammami then said that the “mujahideen” must balance the goals of “freeing Islamic lands and administrating them in accordance with Shariah … while still keeping our eyes squarely on the goal of spreading the jihad globally.” He said that current jihadist groups “have begun specializing in only one of these two fields, either focusing entirely on spreading the jihad globally or focusing entirely on establishing Shariah in one particular land.”

He observed that the jihad “has become made up of a conglomerate of local jihadi fronts” and that the global jihadists, such as himself, “are left without any political capital in which to steer the jihad.”

Hammami stated that the solution to this problem is the creation of a global caliphate, under a new name. He suggested discarding the name “al Qaeda” and the various Islamic States, and appointing a Caliph with a “more global outlook.” He advocated that the Caliph should be from the Quraish tribe, the one into which the Prophet Mohammed was born in Mecca, Saudi Arabia:

Therefore, in conclusion, I propose to the mujahideen of the world that we unite no longer under our old names which can only encompass a certain region or a certain class of the Ummah. Instead, we should unite under an all-inclusive name that also has a firm basis in the Shariah. This will be a method of not only uniting the mujahideen, but it will also turn the jihad truly into a jihad of the entire Ummah. Of course, this name is not the global insurgency, or al-Qaeda, or the Islamic State of such and such country, or the such and such movement. No! This name is no other than the rightly-guided [Caliphate], it is inclusive of the entire Ummah, and it is the name which has the most evidence from the Quran and Sunnah.

With this new name we will not only find a method of unifying our efforts of expanding the jihad and establishing the Shariah in different lands, but we will also find a solution to the matter of who truly has authority over deciding the direction of the jihad. We will finally have an authority with greater powers than simply giving the order for deciding which particular front or operation has strategic priority. This, of course, requires that we have to have a [Caliph] who not only controls land but also has a global perspective of the jihad. Having land under his control will obviously give him the missing political capital discussed earlier, and his position as [Caliph] will also give him added weight and credibility from Shariah. Similarly, his position will also force him to have a more global outlook, because his authority stretches the globe.

Of course, human nature dictates that we are naturally more inclined to supporting our own tribe or people, and we are more interested in freeing and administrating our homeland. I understand that, and in response to that, I propose that we choose a [Caliphate] that is from the core of the Muslims lands and from the tribe of Quraish.

Hammami then proceeded to address various perceived criticisms of his arguments. He even denied ever being a member of the Hizb ut-Tahrir, a radical political party that calls for the establishment of a global caliphate. He also said that those who claim that his proposal would divide the Muslim world are wrong, because “the Ummah is already divided and a much eviler form of division could be on the horizon if we sit and do nothing.”

Finally, he argued that the mujahideen have played into the West’s trap because they have failed to promote the caliphate and that accordingly the Muslim world is unfamiliar with the “concept.” He attributed the lack of acceptance of the Taliban’s Islamic Emirate in Afghanistan, and al Qaeda’s Islamic State of Iraq, to the mujahideen’s failure to educate the Muslim world on the importance of a global caliphate.

“The Muslims will always remain unaccustomed to the idea of [Caliphate] for as long as we, and I mean the mujahideen especially, continue to hide the concept from them. The longer we stray away from it, the longer we implicitly agree with the [disbelievers], who assert baselessly that the [Caliphate] is a figment of our imagination,” Hammami said. “We have to remember that the state of the Taliban was met with severe criticisms from the Muslims, just like the Islamic State of Iraq was met with sneers.”

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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  • Villiger says:

    Hammami, the only caliphate we’re gonna have is California and you ain’t gonna see it no matter how many flowers you wear in your unwashed jihadi hair.

  • RYP says:

    …because the muslim world relies on the sage advice of 28 year college drop out from Alabama who just found a 2006 report on the internet.
    You really think he and his american media buddy are worth this much space and time?

  • Bill Roggio says:

    Just like Germany relied on the vision of a washed-out artist named Hitler, right RYP? You underestimate people like this at your own peril. Certainly you’ve traveled enough of the world to know that those with education and status, and age, aren’t the only ones who wield real power, or who have powerful ideas.
    Hammami’s statement is indeed worth the space and time. He’s discussing a fissure between local and global jihadists. He has the status of a Westerner who has fought on the front lines of the jihad, who is able to communicate somewhat effectively (he needs much more polish, IMO) and who has rubbed elbows with Shabaab and al Qaeda’s most influential leaders in East Africa. Feel free to ignore him. You’re wrong to do so, but that is your decision.

  • SUN says:

    OBL decentralized Jihadist/terrorist groups, because he believed it was more difficult for the “enemy” to hunt down hundreds of small groups with separate administration, operation, and financial cells. He was damn right! His death did slow down terrorism but did not stop it.
    Hammami, on the other hand, must be so dumb to dream about a giant Caliphate with central administration, one single treasury office, and a single command center and call it “My Sweat Safe Home of Terrorism”. I assume he might be thinking about sending ambassador of his Caliphate to the “Global War Against Terrorism World Organization”, too? Sweat silly dream!

  • Sheik Faarooq al Mohammedi says:

    In the Name of Allah the Most Gracious the Most Merciful,
    I greet you with the Islamic Greeting of As’salaamu Alaikum Wa’Rahmatullahi Wa’Barakatu (Translation: May Peace, God’s Mercy and Blessings be upon you)
    Indeed the Caliphate is desired by the entire Muslim World.
    On behalf of the Revived Global Caliphate of the United Muslim Nations International organization I would like to reaffirm our view that the Caliphate has never been abolished nor has it ever ceased to exist but has fallen under a period of suppression.
    We have released a document titled (Revived Global Caliphate A Message to the Muslim Ummah) which is an inspirational piece for the Muslim World to remind us of our Great Civilization and the future of Islam to dominate the entire world. The UMN Intl is against terrorism and any form thereof be it from a Muslim or Non-Muslim. Our organization has taken over the Middle East Revolutions and are now working towards that much needed Unity of the Muslim World.
    Our aim is to break the terrorist groups by outlining the truth and beauty of Islam as well as break the anti-islam groups who incite hatred and discrimination of Muslims and Islam in the West and by God we will achieve this goal of peace and mutual respect. The UMN Intl has engaged Govts around the world who have all pledged their support for our efforts in the region and abroad. We face two enemies of extremes which are Extremist Muslims and Extremist Anti-Muslims who both call for violence in the likes of Muhamed Meiria and Anders Breivik.
    We believe that religious racism should not be allowed nor given a podium to address the public with twisted ideologies of hatred and racism, both extremist groups of opposite ends use fear mongering to gain support for their evil causes. We believe that it is counter productive to allow the views of these two extremes to enter the public domain.
    The Caliphate is here.
    Sheik Faarooq al Mohammedi
    UMN Intl Rep.
    The United Muslim Nations International

  • Harley Quinn says:

    “Sheik Farooq”
    You’re against “religious racism” and terrorism, but then say Islam will “dominate the world”. I’m getting a mixed message here…
    Your little manifesto you posted here sounds just like some of the ‘soft core’ gateway jihadist propaganda out there.
    Good luck with that whole Caliphate thing.

  • mike merlo says:

    Reader Comments combined with the Article have made this an interesting forum. Why Hammmami is coming out into the open like this raises a lot of questions. Everyone of which merit close inspection. I couldn’t agree more with BR as to the significance of this ‘subject’ outing himself like this.
    If anyone has the least amount of interest & takes this GWOT as seriously as I do should take the time to read & consider what al Mohammedi has to say. If the non Muslim world is truly serious the issue of restoring the Caliphate then should be dealt with accordingly. It would behoove the ‘West’ to get out in front of this signature issue and assume a proper relationship with ‘it.’
    Since 9 11 their have been many who because their jobs, positions of authority etc., have managed to frame the issue of the Caliphate in not so palatable terms. This is most unfortunate.

  • Hamammi Aulaqi Wannabe says:

    Hamammi is no scholar but he understands the need to keep Aulaqi’s online efforts alive.
    The drones shouldn’t wait for him to start inspiring others like Aulaqi did. Take him down now.

  • Neonmeat says:

    @ Sheikh,
    There is no ‘respect’ when dominance of all other cultures and religions is your goal.
    You hold the same goal as Hammani except you want to do it politically, this is fair and should be encouraged. However the reason Hammani et al are conducting violent jihad is because they realise no one is willing to lie down and live under shariah and convert to Islam. We are not sheep to blindly come over to your religion and values as the ‘beauty’ of submission is revealed to us. That is why the militant groups are attempting to use death and terror to scare populations into submitting to Islam. The soft path does not work. Humanity willing neither will the violent path.

  • Charles says:

    imho if the moslems want to form a caliphate in the moslem world — that’s their business. Lord knows they have tried many times. The last time was during the 1950’s & 60’s during Nasser’s rule in Egypt. The thing didn’t go far.

    I’m sure the Pakistanis and the Yemenis would love to get out from under the thumb of the Saudis but that won’t happen as long as the Saudis pay the piper.

    imho the two big events of the next ten years will be that the price of oil and desalinized water will collapse.

    These events will radically reshape the world.

    The process will happen wholly outside the understanding of the Muhammedens. (Except for the Saudi royals –and some of the other gulf royals–who have shown they understand something about the way the science game is played and the stakes too–on a broad international scale.)

  • SUN says:

    @ Sheik Faarooq al Mohammedi,
    Let me use your own words to define your organization’s vision and mission:
    “(Revived Global Caliphate A Message to the Muslim Ummah) which is an inspirational piece for the Muslim World” – Your organization is inviting Muslims to force the World to go back to the 14th century, when the religion ruled the governments/schools, killed non-Muslims, forced them to Islam, or turned them to slaves.
    “Our organization has taken over the Middle East Revolutions” – your organization has hijacked every single revolution in the Middle East and has been managing/brainwashing them.
    “. . . and are now working towards that much needed Unity of the Muslim World.” – Your organization is trying to build a giant Islamic caliphate out of those hijacked and brainwashed revolutions. In other words, your organization is building Islamic hegemony (See definition of hegemony:
    “ . . . the Muslim World to remind us of our Great Civilization and the future of Islam to dominate the entire world. “ – Holocaust for non-Muslims is the mission and vision of your organization (Read more about holocaust: ).
    “We believe that religious racism should not be allowed nor given a podium . . . ” – Means your organization does not give a chance to other nations to practice other religions. You will, further, take away freedom of speech from public.
    “The Caliphate is here.” – Don’t be fools, when we say we are gentlemen. We do what we said above.
    What else remains to make your organization different from “Extremist Muslims and Extremist Anti-Muslims”?

  • Anonymous says:

    From a comment at the National Review:
    Sheikh Faarooq al Mohammedi 03/08/12 01:58
    In the Name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful,
    We ask you to please remove all forms of Islamophobic and Religiously Racist content from your site or we will take further measures.
    The Revived Global Caliphate of the United Muslim Nations will not hesitate to take crushing action against you.
    Sheikh Faarooq al Mohammedi
    UMN Intl Rep.
    Wolf in sheep’s clothing.
    Surprisingly little out there on the web about these guys despite claims of having ” taken over the Middle East Revolutions” and “engaged Govts around the world who have all pledged their support for our efforts in the region and abroad.”
    Looks like hollow propaganda from stealth extremists to me in their extreme plan to “dominate the entire world”.

  • RYP says:

    Bill, Hammami has about as much street cred, military training, religious study or analytical skills as MC Hammer. No wait, Hammer was in the Navy and studied the bible…and he can rap.
    Hammami’s no Hitler either. You need to study history not hysterics. You won’t find many Somali’s getting excited about a Alabama beardy boy rambling on in English.
    Omar is stuck at home with his wife in Barawe and has a buddy who makes these clumsy tapes and writings.
    He had his heyday when he used to function as Robow’s jihad poodle. Now he is a liability and there stuck trolling the internet. He really doesn’t have a lot of options these days so he is trying to be a scholar. We keep in touch with his neighbors who are more worried about being lit up than what he has to say.
    BTW He is trying to figure out how to get to Yemen. Poor kid doesn’t seen to understand he is supposed to die as a martyr not go on vacation.

  • Bill Roggio says:

    LOL RYP, perhaps you missed the meeting last year that Hammami attended with the top leaders of Shabaab. But yeah, he’s a relative nobody.
    I didn’t say Hammami was Hitler, nice try though. While you may think he’s a bad writer with stupid ideas, sometimes relative novices who write poorly and have seemingly crazy ideas have a way of being dangerous people. It is you that should hit the history books.
    Oh, and tell Zawahiri we all said hi. Too funny. Maybe you can tell us what Hammami had for breakfast while you’re at it?

  • Will Fenwick says:

    One of the most amazing example of what Bill is alluding to is the foundation of Chinese Ming Dynasty. A penniless wandering peasant managed to rise up and lead an uprising that conquered the Mongol Yuan Dynasty and install himself as the ruler all of China. Even the lowest in society can rise to become leaders of their peers so long as they find people willing to listen to their message.

  • Will Doohan says:

    Ahh, but who is going to be the Caliph? An Iranian? A Turk? An Egyptian? The Muslims talk a lot about wanting the Caliphate to return, but it will never happen because they argue amongst themselves to much. And what would happen if a Shia muslim was the Caliph? Would Sunnis follow his commands? What about vice versa? Or could a Sufi or an Ahmadi or Bahai ever become the Big Kale-leaf? 😛 Of course not.
    The murderous Muslims are their own worst enemy as well as ours.

  • sundoesntrise says:

    Will Doohan,
    Duly noted. However, I find that Muslims that prowl the Internet promoting this “Caliphate” tend to either ignore other people when they point out differences among Muslims, or they get defensive and start pointing the finger back.
    Of course a Caliphate is impossible, but Muslims will be forever in denial of that fact. Perhaps they should spend less time arguing about a mythical Caliphate and more time fixing their own nations and social customs.

  • Veteran says:

    Mr. Roggio, please publish more info on this target. I think Mrs. Clinton has dropped (lack of bomb) the ball on this individual. I now know that if the Obama administration had any stones they would take the opportunity to support Kenya and give Shabaab and Hammami the fast death which is due. Kismayo may not be the end all, but it will put a dent in their pocket.


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