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“Jihad al-Talab wal Ibtida’ (Offensive Jihad / Jihad of Conquering)”

Posted by westerncivisheretostay on April 26, 2010

Philip Daniel

http://western-civ-here-to-stay.blogspot.com/

The text reproduced below is a Salafiyyah analysis of Sunnism’s permanent fardh kifaya of jihad al-talab wa’l-ibtida’, discussing and revealing its component legislation, explicating its usul al-fiqh in thorough detail, confirming yet again the harb-and-qital-and-futuhat-mandating-and-encouraging aspects of al-Dawla al-Islamiyya against the unacceptably-hostile-to-Taslim-and-therefore-fasaad-spreading-and-deserving-of-the-hudud-of-al-sayf “entity” of al-Dawla al-Mushrikiyya.

“Jihad al-Talab wal Ibtida’ (Offensive Jihad / Jihad of Conquering)
This is the request and call, from the Muslims to the Kuffar (disbelievers) in their lands and
dwelling places to enter Islam and to fight them if they do not accept the rule of the Islamic
authority over them. This type of Jihad is a collective obligation (Fard ul-Kifaya) upon the
Muslims. There are numerous evidences detailing this type of Jihad in both the Qur’an and the
Sunnah.

Quranic Evidences for Jihad al-Talab
Allah (swt) says,

“Then when the Sacred Months have passed, then kill the Mushrikoun wherever
you find them, and capture them and besiege them, and lie in wait for them in each

and every ambush. But if they repent and perform As-Salât, and give Zakât, then
leave their way free. Verily, Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Tauba 9:5]

Allah (swt) has also said,

“And fight against the Mushrikûn (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, disbelievers in
the Oneness of Allâh) collectively as they fight against you collectively.” [Tauba
9:36]

And Allah (swt) said,

“March forth, whether you are light (being healthy, young and wealthy) or heavy
(being ill, old and poor), and strive hard with your wealth and your lives in the
Cause of Allâh. This is better for you, if you but knew.” [Tauba 9:41]

Prophetic Traditions (Ahadith) Regarding Jihad Talab
The Prophet (saw) is reported to have said in Saheeh Bukhari,

“I have been ordered to fight the people until they bear witness that there is no one worthy to be worshipped except Allah (swt) and that Muhammad (saw) is the Messenger of Allah and they establish the Salat and give the Zakat. If they perform such actions then their wealth and their blood has protection from me except by the Right of Islam and their account is with Allah (swt).”

The Prophet (saw) has also said as reported in Saheeh Muslim,

“Fight in the name of Allah and in the way of Allah. Fight against those who disbelieve in Allah. Make a holy war…When you meet your enemies who are polytheists, invite
them to three courses of action. If they respond to any one of these, you also accept it and
withhold yourself from doing them any harm. Invite them to (accept) Islam; if they respond to
iyou, accept it from them and desist from fighting against them. Then invite them to migrate
from their lands to the land of Muhajirs and inform them that, if they do so, they shall have all the privileges and obligations of the Muhajirs. If they refuse to migrate, tell them that they will have the status of Bedouin Muslims and will be subjected to the Commands of Allah like other Muslims, but they will not get any share from the spoils of war or Fai’ except when they actually fight with the Muslims (against the disbelievers). If they refuse to accept Islam, demand from them the Jizya. If they agree to pay, accept it from them and hold off your hands. If they refuse to pay the tax, seek Allah’s help and fight them.”

In addition it is reported in Saheeh Muslim that the Prophet (saw) said,

“Whosoever dies and does not fight (Jihad) nor wished himself to fight, dies upon a branch of hypocrisy.”

All of the above explicit texts, and the numerous others found in the Qur’an and the Sunnah
indicate the obligation upon the Muslim to fight against the Kuffar on an offensive basis. The Ulema (Islamic scholars) are in consensus that to fight Jihad against the Kuffar in their lands, to invite them to Islam and if they don’t accept, to fight them or take the Jizya (tax) from them is a divinely ordained obligation (Fard) that has not been abrogated.

Some people falsely claim that the order of Jihad has been abrogated and bring forth a statement attributed to Sufyan at-Thawri to back their claim. We will investigate this matter here briefly. It has been reported from Ibn Umar (ra), Abdullah bin al-Hasan and At-Thawri that Jihad ul-Talab is a voluntary action upon the Muslims. What these great Ulema actually mean by their reported statement is that the type of Jihad they were addressing had not been legislated as an individual obligation upon each and every Muslim in the way Salat or Siyam had been i.e. it is not Fard ul-Ayn. Indeed, it is known from them that Jihad is Fard ul-Kifayah (obligation of sufficiency) upon the Muslims and it is recommended for them to volunteer their services if others are carrying out the duty. It is not allowed to understand such reported statements other than how we have mentioned.

The author of the explanation of Fath al-Qadeer after establishing the obligatory nature of Jihad with evidences from the Qur’an and sunnah then states,

“And with this we reject what has been allegedly related on the authority of al-Thawri amongst
others that Jihad is not Fard. In fact if such statements are correct, then they can only mean
that Jihad is not Fard ul-‘Ayn (an individual Obligation upon each and every Muslim).” [Sharh
Fath ul-Qadeer Vol. 5/437]

It is reported that Al-Jasas said,

“In fact the Madhab (opinion) of Ibn Umar regarding Jihad is that it is an obligation of
sufficiency and the reports that he negated the obligation of Jihad really indicate that Jihad is
not Muta’yan (individual duty) in every circumstance at every age.” [Tafseer al-Jasas Vol.
3/116]

The great scholars, Ibn Qudama al-Maqdese and Ibn Qayyim al-Jawzi only spoke about Jihad
which is obligatory and never recounted the opinions of Ibn Umar nor of ath-Thawri as shown
above; suggesting that either they did not accept the correctness of such reports, or they took
them to mean Jihad was a duty of sufficiency as we have mentioned prior. Refer to Al-Mughni
Vol. 8 pg. 346 and Zad al-Ma’ad Vol. 3 pg. 71 for further elucidation about this matter.

It has been mentioned by Ibn Atiya in his Tafseer, that the Ulema had arrived at a consensus
(Ijma’a) regarding the obligatory nature of Offensive Jihad. He stated,

“The Islamic scholars have consensus that the obligation of Jihad upon the nation of
Muhammad (saw) is one of a collective responsibility. Consequently, if some of the Muslims
establish it then the obligation no longer remains upon the others; this continues until the enemy fall upon the lands of Islam. When such a situation occurs then Jihad becomes an individual responsibility (Fardu ‘Ayn). Al-Mahdawi ,amongst others, have mentioned the reports that ath-Thawri claimed that Jihad is a voluntary service. I take this report as being an answer to a question asked regarding a specific type of Jihad; the answer to which was that type of Jihad is voluntary.” [Tafseer Ibn Atiya Vol. 2/43]

I say that this explanation from Ibn Atiya is very clear; and indicates that it is not suitable for
those who know Islam to have any doubt that Jihad is an obligation. Rather, what has been
reported to us from the respected scholars from the early centuries negates such statements for
the following reasons;

Either these statements are not correct in being attributed back to Ibn Umar and ath-

1. Thawri (ra). We find many statements recorded in books attributed to the scholars of the
Salaf without any basis; in fact people have no fear in attributing spurious statements to the
Prophet (saw) and known as Hadith Mowdou’ (fabricated reports); if such is the case, what
then for the statements of the Ulema?

2. Or such statements of these Ulema who issued Fatawa (religious edicts) to many people, were given as an edict to a specific person stating that for him and his unique
circumstances the obligation of Jihad was lifted; and the obligation still remaining upon
others. Those hearing such statements could have mistaken the fatwa for being the general
opinion of the scholars.

Or, those scholars were explaining that Jihad is not an individual obligation upon

3. each and every person (i.e. not Fard Ayn) rather the duty was one of sufficiency (Fard
Kifayah).

Statements of the Ulema regarding Jihad Talab

Hasan al-Banna (rh) compiled all the statements of the scholars regarding the obligation of Jihad in his book about Jihad and commented,

“You can see from all the statements of the Islamic scholars from those of the Mujtahideen
(those capable of deriving new rulings), to those of the followers of the early generations, to
those scholars of recent times that Jihad is a duty of sufficiency upon the Muslim nation whose
purpose is to spread the call of Islam.” [Al-Jihad pg. 84]

From what we have shown, Jihad by the way of conquering is a duty of sufficiency only if enough people go out in its way. If such a situation occurs, then the sin is lifted from those remaining Muslims who did not go out; this is the understanding of the majority of the scholars. However, some of the Ulema of the Salaf, and what has been reported by some of the Sahabah including Sa’eed bin Musayab (ra), were of the understanding that Jihad of conquering is actually an individual obligation upon each Muslim (Fard ‘Ayn) the same way defensive Jihad is Fard Ayn.

Ibn Hajar (rh) said,

“Some of the Sahabah understood from the Words of Allah (swt) when He (swt) said, ‘Go out
lightly or heavily’ the generality of the order. These Sahabah (ra) were always present in all
the battles and raids that took place during their lifetime’s right up until their death. Those who held such an opinion were Abu Ayuub al-Ansari (ra), Miqdad bin al-Aswad (ra) amongst
others.” [Fath al-Bari Vol. 6/28]

Ibn Katheer has related in his Tafseer ul-Qur’an regarding the Ayah ‘Go out lightly or
heavily’,

“Anas from Abi Talha reported that Ali bin Zayd said this means, ‘Go out (for Jihad) old and
young as Allah (swt) will not accept any excuse from anyone.’ Then Ali bin Zayd went out for an
expedition in Sham (Syria) where he was killed.”

In another narration mentioned by Ibn Katheer in his Tafseer of the Qur’an it is reported that,

“Abu Talha was reading from Surah al-Bara’a until he reached the ayah, ‘Go out (for Jihad)
lightly or heavily’ and he said, ‘I find our Lord telling our young and old… O my child…
prepare me…’ His son replied, ‘May Allah have mercy upon you! You fought alongside the
Prophet (saw) until he passed away, alongside Abu Bakr (ra) until he too died and with Umar
(ra) until he also passed away, it is now time for us to go fight instead of you’. Abu Talha
rejected this offer and instead, embarked upon a ship to fight Jihad, passing away upon it. Only
after nine days were the sailors able to find land to bury his body and despite this period, his
body did not decompose a single bit.” [Tafseer Ibn Katheer Vol. 4/97]

The above narration has a Saheeh (correct) chain as has been reported by Ibn Hajar,

‘“It has been confirmed by Anas that Abu Talha died fighting whilst he was upon the sea and
they were unable to find any land to bury him except after seven days and his body did not
decompose.’ This has been reported by a correct chain of narrators and recorded by al-Fasawi
in his Tareekh and Abu Ya’la.” [Al-Isabah Vol. 1/567]

Ibn Hajar mentions in Fath al-Bari,

“The type of Jihad that involves fighting the Kuffar (disbelievers) is Fard Muttayan (becomes an individual obligation) upon the Muslims; and they can carry this out, either by their hands,
tongues, spending their wealth or even with their hearts.” [Fath al-Bari Vol. 6/28]

And Ibn Qayyim has stated in Zad al-Ma’ad,

“…thereafter it became an obligation upon them to fight the Mushrikeen (idolators, disbelievers) completely…finally (they were) ordered to fight the Kuffar entirely. Such a duty is either Fard ‘Ayn (an individual obligation) or Fard Kifayah according to the more famous opinion of the scholars. When one investigates the types of Jihad that are obliged upon the individual they are either by one’s heart, by one’s tongue or by one’s wealth or hands. It is an obligation upon every Muslim to fight by one of these ways. Regarding Jihad by one’s self (i.e. physical Jihad) then this is Fard
Kifayah (duty of sufficiency). Regarding the Jihad of the wealth there are two statements about
it, the most correct of which is that it is an obligation since the command of Jihad by wealth and
by oneself has been equated in the Qur’an; as Allah (swt) says, ‘March forth, whether you
are light (being healthy, young and wealthy) or heavy (being ill, old and poor),
and strive hard with your wealth and your lives in the Cause of Allah. This is
better for you, if you but knew.’ He (swt) says that by spending wealth one will be saved
from the Hell fire and enter Jannah (paradise) and one’s sins will be forgiven. He (swt) also
says, ‘O you who believe! Shall I show you a trade that will save you from a
grievous Penalty? That you believe in Allah and His Messenger, and that you fight
in the Cause of Allah, with your property and your selves. That will be better for
you, if only you but knew! He (swt) will forgive you your sins, and admit you to
Gardens beneath which Rivers flow, and to beautiful mansions in Gardens of
Eternity: that is indeed the Supreme Success.’ [Surah Saff 61:10-12].” [Zad al-Ma’ad
Vol. 3/72]

Imam Qurtubi has mentioned a number of reports from some of the Sahabah and Tabi’een that
lend evidence that they did not see any permit for the Muslim to abandon the fields of Jihad if
they were capable of fighting. As he (rh) mentions in his Tafseer,

“Imam Tabaree reported that a person saw Miqdad bin Aswad in the city of Hums as he was
preparing to go out to fight and found Miqdad to be overweight. He said to Miqdad, ‘Allah (swt)
has given you permission not to fight’. Miqdad replied, ‘(Despite my condition) Surah al-Buooth was revealed for us all, ‘Go out (in Jihad) lightly or heavily…’ In another incident, Zuhree mentioned that Saee’d bin Musayab went out on an expedition despite being blinded in one of his eyes. Someone said to him that he was sick (and therefore had excuse not to fight). Saee’d bin Musayab replied, ‘Allah (swt) had ordered us to go forth lightly or heavily; if I am unable to fight then at least I can increase your numbers (to make the enemy afraid) and protect for you your provisions.’”

These texts present the opinions of some of the Sahabah and Tabi’een regarding Jihad and how
they viewed Offensive Jihad as an individual obligation upon those who have capability.

However, the opinion I feel that is closer to the truth and more correct is the opinion of the
majority of the Fuqaha who state that the Offensive Jihad and Jihad of conquering is a duty of
sufficiency (Fard Kifayah). If a group from among the Muslims goes out to fight and they have the sufficient ability and capability to spread Islam and call for it, then it is not an obligation for all the Muslims to go out with them. The following evidences are in support of this.

1. Allah (swt) says,

“Nor should the Believers all go forth together: if a contingent from every
expedition remained behind, they could devote themselves to studies in religion,
and admonish the people when they return to them,- that thus they (may learn) to
guard themselves (against evil).” [at-Tauba 9:122]

Imam Qurtubi commented in his explanation of this ayah that “Jihad is not an individual duty
(by itself) but rather is a duty of sufficiency as the verse mentions. If all the people went out to
fight Jihad what would become of the future generation who would be left behind. If a group went out to fight Jihad, one could remain to study the Deen and protect the Muslim’s honour
(women); such that they can also teach the group of fighters what they learnt from the laws of
Shari’ah and the teachings of the Prophet (saw).” [Tafseer Qurtubi Vol. 8/293]

2. Allah (swt) also says,

“Not equal are those believers who sit (at home) and receive no hurt, and those
who strive and fight in the cause of Allah with their goods and their persons. Allah
hath granted a grade higher to those who strive and fight with their goods and
persons than to those who sit (at home). Unto all (in Faith) Hath Allah promised
good: But those who strive and fight Hath He distinguished above those who sit (at
home) by a special reward.” [an-Nisa 4:95]

Ibn Qudama has said in support of the view of the majority that Jihad Talab is a duty of
sufficiency, “and evidence backing our stance is Allah’s (swt) statement that, ‘not equal are
those who sit.’ This is evidence that those who remain behind are not sinners in relation to
those who went out to fight. And we have also the ayah, ‘Nor should the Believers all go
forth together: if a contingent from every expedition remained behind, they could
devote themselves to studies in religion’ In addition the Prophet (saw) would send out a
group of people to fight Jihad and would remain behind with a group of his Sahabah. Imam
Kasane commented, ‘Allah (swt) has promised both those who remained behind and those who
go out to fight a reward (although he favoured one over the other); if Jihad was an individual
obligation (Fard ‘Ayn) in all circumstances, why did Allah (swt) promise those who remain
seated a reward if it were prohibited to do so?’”

3. It is reported upon the authority of Abu Sa’eed al-Khidri in Saheeh Muslim, that the Prophet
(saw) sent a detachment to the tribe of Lahyan and remarked,

“Let one of every two men get ready to advance; and added, ‘Whoever stays behind (and looks
well after the family and the property of those who have joined the expedition) will get half the
reward of the warrior.’”

And it is reported upon the authority of Zaid bin Khalid (ra) in Saheeh Bukhari that the Prophet
(saw) said,

“He who equips a Ghazi (fighter) in the way of Allah is as if he has taken part in the fighting
himself; and he who looks after the dependants of a Ghazi in his absence, is as if he has taken
part in the fighting himself.”

4. The Prophet’s (saw) life testifies to the fact that on some occasions he (saw) would go out on an expedition on other occasions would remain behind and would order others to be in charge of the party. Indeed, never did all the Sahabah (the Companions) go out to fight together only a portion of them. Such a matter is clear and known as can been seen from the battle of Mut’ah and others. Imam Surkhasi said, “This type of Jihad (that of conquering) is a duty of sufficiency for if a group of people went out and accomplished what they aimed for, the duty is removed from the others. The purpose of Offensive Jihad’s is to break the back of the Mushrikeen and give honour to the Deen. For if it was made an individual obligation at all times and for everyone then it would violate its very subject matter. The rationale of Jihad is to give safety and security for the Muslims such that they may establish their interests both religious and material. If all the people were busied with Jihad then there would be no time for them to establish their material interests.” [al-Mabsout Vol 3/10]

In view of all the above evidences from the Qur’an and Sunnah and the statements of the classical Ulema, we can conclude that fighting the Kufr in their homeland is a duty of sufficiency upon all the Muslims, if they do not enter into Islam and reject to pay the Jizyah (tax for Ahl-Kitab).

What is the minimum time limit requirement upon the Muslims to perform
Offensive Jihad

The Ulema have differed regarding this topic into two opinions.

The first opinion: This is also what the majority of scholars are upon and states that the Ummah must go forth in at least one expedition each year to discharge the duty of Jihad, anymore is being additional. The evidence they bring for this is that Jizya came to be taken from a disbelieving nation in exchange to fighting them. As it is not permitted in the Sunnah to take jiyza more than once a year, and Jihad can take the place of Jizya, so too does the requirement of Jihad become once a year.

Imam Qurtubi said, “Another division of Jihad is the one that is obliged upon the Imam
(Khaleefah). He must send a group of people against the enemy at least once a year. Either he
attends the expedition himself or sends someone whom he trusts to invite the enemy to Islam,
fight them and establish the Deen over them or take Jizya from them. There is also a type of
Jihad which is supergatory and that is the type whereby the Imam sends a group of people, one
after the other as different battalions to terrorise the enemy and instil fear and to show the
armies strength.” [Tafseer Vol 8/152]

The second opinion: That it is obligatory to fight Jihad against the enemy in their heartlands
whenever possible and there is no minimum requirement stipulated. Ibn Hajar commented in his Fath Vol. 6/28 that this opinion is the stronger of the two. Imam Qurtubi said in his Tafseer Vol. 8/141, “To view the duty of Jihad as being burdensome or disliking it is prohibited.”

This opinion, even though it is not cited by the majority of scholars is the opinion I feel is the
strongest – and Allah (swt) knows best – for the following reasons;

Firstly; the verses which order Jihad have never specified any minimum requirement with regard the number of battles one must engage in. Rather the mentioning of a limit (by people) is an addition to the text. Regarding the opinion that the Jizyah is taken from the enemy in return for their surrender, once a year and consequently Jihad should be once a year, I answer that the ruling of Jizyah is Hukm Shari’ah and has its own great wisdom behind it. Amongst some of the insights include displaying the Muslim as privileged over the humiliation of the disbelievers, affording the Kuffar the honour to live between the Muslims but under the Shari’ah of Allah (swt) such that if the good from amongst them sees justice and fairness in the Shari’ah they will enter Islam. Muslims are also allowed to have a period of treaty with the Kuffar and during this time is haram (prohibited) to fight them; no one has said that we can exchange the hukm of the treatywith the hukm of Jihad. Therefore, one also cannot say that the ruling of Jizyah can be exchanged
for the ruling of Jihad in all situations.

Secondly, indeed fighting the disbelievers and going on expeditions against them whenever
possible, perfectly suites the aims and objectives of fighting Jihad. Some of these objectives
include removing corruption from the face of earth and spreading the Islamic authority all over
the world. The obligation of Jihad will only ever cease being a duty when Jihad’s true purpose is
realised, that being the complete control of the whole earth such that not a single hand-span is left which is not under Islamic rule or by struggling ones utmost to accomplish this. Only when this has been done, does the obligation of Jihad cease since the Muslims have tried their best to realise its aims and objectives and Allah (swt) does not burden a soul more than it can bear as He (swt) says, “Fear Allah (swt) as much as you can bear.” And for this reason Ibn Hajar has said that the opinion which states to fight Jihad as much as one can is strong and well supported than the opinion that once a year is sufficient.

In addition to this, those who say that fighting Jihad once in a year is sufficient resulted in
situations during the Muslim history whereby Muslim leaders who had no real sincerity to spread Islam and were lax regarding towards it, readied an under-prepared half-hearted army to go out just to fulfil the yearly obligation; whilst they busied themselves will inane matters.

Thirdly, to order the Muslims to fight the Kuffar as much as one can is superior than specifying a number in a period of time. This is because the meaning of Jihad is to sacrifice oneself completely in the way of Allah (swt) against the disbelievers. It is not sufficient to solely fight against the Kuffar on a single frontier; rather it is obligatory for the Muslims to fight the Kuffar who is nearest to them. As Ibn Abedeen said, “Be careful from thinking for example that the obligation of Jihad is removed from fighting the people of India just because we are fighting against the Romans.” [Hashiya Rad al-Muktar Vol. 4/124]

Up until now we have mentioned how Jihad ul-Talab is an obligation upon the Muslims, and not an individual duty. However, the Ulema have mentioned some situations when fighting the
disbelievers in their own homelands becomes an individual obligation (Fard Ayn);

1. If the Khaleefah orders a specific person to fight Jihad

2. If the order from the Khaleef was general; e.g the Imam ordered all the people of a particular town to go to Jihad

3.If the disbelievers took a Muslim prisoner, Jihad is obliged until this prisoner is reached

4. If a Muslim reaches the Islamic army whilst it is engaged in fighting the enemy it becomes obliged upon him to fight

The Obligation of Offensive Jihad

The obligation of Offensive Jihad falls upon those who have the following attributes, extensive
detail and evidences regarding them can be found in the most books of Islamic Jurisprudence,
1. They are responsible both being mature and of sane mind

2. No severe illnesses preventing them from an expedition

3. Free person and not owned by anyone

4. Male

5. Capable”

The Ruling on Jihad and its Divisions (Series of researches and studies in Shari’ah no. 2) by Shaykh Yusuf al-Uyari

4 Responses to ““Jihad al-Talab wal Ibtida’ (Offensive Jihad / Jihad of Conquering)””

  1. ahmad said

    wow what an intelect you are, taking verses out of context to fool people, the claims you make have been refuted ages ago

    http://www.justquran.com/watch/8b1a652ea7fd72d942da/about.php

    • elyakatz said

      BS”D

      One with such poor punctuation and spelling would do well not to cast aspersions on the intellect of others. The folks here understand the history and goals of radical Islam. Ad hominem attacks don’t change the facts.

      I watched the video you linked. While I am aware of the fact that there are moderate Muslims in the world who ascribe to a more peaceful interpretation of the Quran, unfortunately, moderate Muslims are not the ones who are stepping up to the plate to get their peaceful message out. Right now, at this moment, the radicals have the microphone. It is not up to non-Muslims to change the balance of power between peaceful Muslims and Muslims who advocate the overthrow of non-Muslims societies. That…it your job.

      So, rather than attacking non-Muslims for feeling threatened, do your job. As for us, we are in self-defense mode, and rightly so.

  2. ahmad said

    the fact that there are radical muslims in this world is not due to the teaching of the quran or the way its interpreted but rather the produce of your own foreign policy

    having bad punctuation doesn’t make you any less knowledgeable about what’s going on in the world

    what exactly is a moderate muslim? what makes one a moderate muslim?

    if defending ones home land and protecting their countrymen make you fundamentalist then i wouldn’t have a problem with being one.

    self defence mode? what a joke, blowing up innocent civilians in their sleep on their own land is not self defence. you should know the deference between an offensive and defensive war

    • elyakatz said

      BS”D

      Ahmad wrote: “the fact that there are radical muslims in this world is not due to the teaching of the quran or the way its interpreted but rather the produce of your own foreign policy”

      Ellie Katz’s response: This excuse doesn’t wash with history. Jihadis have been on a worldwide attack, driven by Islamic supremacist sentiments not much different than those of Nazi Germany, and against non-Muslim nations and peoples, since the beginning of Islam. These attacks by Islamists have been troubling the world long before any alleged wrongdoing vis-a-vis US foreign policy.

      Ahmad wrote: “having bad punctuation doesn’t make you any less knowledgeable about what’s going on in the world”

      Ellie Katz’s response: My purpose in highlighting your poor punctuation and spelling was to point out that your indulgence in ad hominem attacks is not a discussion. You might make people snicker or laugh, but you haven’t gotten to the heart of the matter. We can argue about events in the world and their interpretation. However, making an unverifiable claim that your ideological opponent is unintelligent, simply by virtue of the fact that he is your ideological opponent, is an unproductive diversion.

      Now you are beginning to have a discussion. Civil discourse the way of the West. Since you’ve chosen to live in the West, best to learn it’s rules.

      Ahmad wrote: “what exactly is a moderate muslim? what makes one a moderate muslim?”

      Ellie Katz’s response: My definition of a moderate Muslim is one who appreciates the freedom they are offered in Western societies, and wishes to assist their countrymen in preserving that freedom, while remaining a practicing Muslim. The question arises: Can a Muslim be faithful to orthodox Muslim teachings while respecting the values taught in Western societies, whether or not they choose to live in those Western societies?

      You tell me.

      Ahmad wrote: “if defending ones home land and protecting their countrymen make you fundamentalist then i wouldn’t have a problem with being one.”

      Ellie Katz’s response: Would you then defend the UK against an attack from Iran or Pakistan??

      Ahmad wrote:”self defence mode? what a joke, blowing up innocent civilians in their sleep on their own land is not self defence. you should know the deference between an offensive and defensive war”

      Ellie Katz’s response: How is blowing up civilians in their offices at the World Trade Center self-defense? If you then respond that the WTC bombing was a US or Israeli government conspiracy, we’re done here. I don’t buy into either conspiracy theory.

      I don’t defend US foreign policy in toto. At the same time I do not defend jihadi tactics, which have been around long before the US government ever came into being. The standard, stated strategy of such jihadists is to attack, kidnap, sell into slavery, sexually abuse, murder and mutilate unarmed, innocent defenseless men, women and children — civilians — as a matter of policy.

      These sort of repeated attacks against civilians for the sole reason that they are not Muslims will bring about a furious response at some point. So, now the Muslim world is getting that furious response, and they cry that the non-Muslim world is brutalizing them. Don’t dish it out if you can’t take it.

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