When we started Citizen Warrior back in 2001, I knew very little about jihad. I just wanted to do something about "terrorism." But I have come to see that terrorism is merely a tactic, and it doesn't make any sense to fight a tactic. That would be like trying to fight planes — deciding that planes were the enemy — after Pearl Harbor.
The actual problem we are facing is the principle of Islamic jihad, which is a fundamental principle of the Islamic faith. According to the Qur'an, it is the duty of every faithful Muslim to fight the unbelievers, and to try, through every means possible, to make all countries in the world follow Allah's law (Shari'a).
Jihad is the problem. Not terrorism. Jihadists use terrorism as one of their many tactics. Another tactic is subversion. And another is deceit. And these three tactics are being used from within democratic countries. The jihadists are using the tolerance and freedom within democracies to cultivate the circumstances that will allow them to ultimately overthrow the government, remove freedoms, and replace our laws with Shari'a.
The Mapping Sharia Project (MSP) has sent undercover agents into mosques in the United States to see what techniques they are using, and MSP then turns their evidence over to the FBI.
One of MSP's many discoveries is Imam Yusuf Estes. He's an American convert to Islam and works out of a mosque in the greater D.C. area. Estes also runs and contributes to many web sites. He is actively engaged in gaining Muslim converts and promoting violent jihad.
Estes gave the undercover agent a CD. One of the things on the CD was a 17-page manual in English called The Book of Jihad, which is essentially 17 pages of quotes of Muhammad and passages from the Qur'an, and then commentary on those passages, which makes it very clear that Muslims have a sacred duty to wage jihad, wherever they are (even within a non-Muslim country), and by whatever means they can, including arming themselves and training for war.
The MSP had this summary of their contact with Estes and their review of the literature Estes gave them:
Yusuf Estes is a Jihadist. He is actively engaged in dawa to convert as many Muslims and non-Muslims to the way of Jihad and the political ideology of Islamic hegemony, all of which is intended to lead to the destruction of the U.S. as a constitutional republic. Jihad incorporates necessarily the use of violence when circumstances permit. While Estes lectures in public like an enthusiastic, yet peaceful preacher, he quite effectively pursues his goal of global Jihad through the “quiet” teachings of the literature he promotes.
Below are some quotes from the Book of Jihad. While you read them, imagine a teenage American Muslim, say a young man, impressed with Estes, reading these passages:
1332. `Uqbah bin `Amir Al-Juhani (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying from the pulpit, "Prepare to meet them (the enemy) with as much strength as you can afford. Verily! Strength is in archery, strength is in archery, strength is in archery.'' [Muslim].
Commentary: In accordance with the conditions of his times, the Prophet (PBUH) ordained the Muslims to acquire every possible power and keep it ready for war. Elucidating his order on this point, he stated that by power he meant archery and then he repeated this word three times to stress its importance. He did it because the art of archery had fundamental importance in war at that time. In the present-day world, archery has lost its value as it has been replaced by other inventions like tanks, guns, missiles, atom bombs, etc.
Similar is the case of devices which are used in air and naval war, and all these military wares have superb importance in modern warfare. In the present-day context, the injunction of the Noble Qur'an to acquire power means manufacturing and possession of all these devices.
It is incumbent on the Muslims that they equip themselves with all this material and show no carelessness in this regard. In modern times, Muslims have badly neglected this field with the result that non-Muslims have more knowledge of modern warfare and by dint of that they are dominating the world and making a claim of their supremacy all over the world.
Unless Muslims pursue the Qur'anic injunctions on this score and acquire greater or equal or at least similar measure and style of power, as is possessed by the non-Muslims, they will not be able to check the onslaught of their enemies, and to defeat them.
It is incumbent upon the Muslims to overpower the might and power of the infidels for the glorification of Islam.
1334. `Uqbah bin `Amir Al-Juhani (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "He who learnt archery and then neglected it, is not from us.'' (Or said,) "He has been guilty of disobedience (to Messenger of Allah).'' [Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith also stresses the importance of the art of archery to the extent that if a Muslim forgets it after learning without a valid reason, he is excluded from the followers of the Prophet (PBUH). Now this exhortation applies with equal force to modern military weapons, and if the present-day Muslims lose their command in handling these weapons, they will be exposed to the consequences of which they have been warned in this Hadith, because their training in this field is essential for upholding the Word of Allah and defending the Muslims. If the Muslims lose proficiency in it after acquiring it, they will be guilty of neglecting a very important Islamic obligation.
1341. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "He who dies without having fought in the Cause of Allah or without having thought of doing so, will die with one characteristic of hypocrisy in him.'' [Muslim].
Commentary: It is a different matter that one may not get a chance to take part in Jihad, but it would be a hypocritical attitude if one does not ever think that if an opportunity ever comes in his way, he will certainly go for Jihad in the way of Allah against the infidels. The reason to that is that, to stay back at home at the time of Jihad was a habit of the hypocrites. In the light of this, Imam Al-Qurtubi has stated the principle that if one is not capable of doing some virtuous deeds, he should then make a resolve that whenever he will be capable of it, he will do that deed, so that his intention takes the place of his act. He who neither performs a good deed nor aspires for it, has a hypocritical disposition. This is specially true of a Muslim who does not even aspire to take part in Jihad. Such a Muslim develops a resemblance with hypocrites.
1352. Abu Hurairah and Jabir (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, "War is deception.'' [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: "Khad`ah'' means deception, i.e., employing a strategy which causes misunderstanding to the enemy, and one's real intent does not become evident to them. This is permissible in Islam in the state of war. The Ahadith mentioned in this chapter make the importance of Jihad and the reason for so much stress on it abundantly clear. These also show how great a crime it is to ignore it. It is very unfortunate indeed that present-day Muslims are guilty of renouncing Jihad in every part of the world. May Allah help us to overcome this negligence.
Egypt used to be a democracy. Its freedoms have been steadily eroded by jihadists.
Lebanon was once a Christian nation; it is now controlled by jihadists.
Turkey was once the only secularized Islamic state, but it is now controlled by jihadists.
All these changes have occurred in the last thirty years. Jihadists are serious, dedicated people. They have all the time in the world, and they can't think of anything more important to do. It is entirely possible they could gain a foothold in democratic countries, even the one you live in, and they could make it very difficult to stop them encroaching on the freedoms of all of us.
But you're a citizen. You're not in the CIA. You're not in the military. You're not a politician. What can you do?
Here is a list of ways you can help: WhatYouCanDoAboutIslam.com. Most of these involve educating your fellow westerners. We cannot get a democratic consensus about what to do until a majority of the voters know what you know.
Introduce people you know to these ideas. Be as gentle as possible. This informaton is hard to stomach at first, and you don't want to close their minds by displaying too much intensity, causing them to believe you're a screwball conspiracy theorist. They will write you off. They won't listen to you and their minds will be closed to the information in the future. We can't afford too many of those kinds of mistakes. Err on the side of being too low-key rather than too intense.
Introduce small, bite-sized, easily-digestible pieces of information. I have several articles I recommend as introductory materials to share.
Just as a Muslim feels it is his duty to wage jihad, you should feel it is your duty as a person living in a free society, to protect and defend your society against an enemy working to undermine it. You can play an important part by helping to educate your fellow citizens. For the sake of us all, I hope you do.