Islam and violence
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Islam's doctrines and texts have in some cases been associated with violence. This article deals with the juxtaposition in Islamic law and theology of violence and non-violence by groups and individuals. Attitudes and laws towards both violence and peace exist within the Islamic tradition.
- 1 Perception of Islam
- 2 Islamic sources
- 3 Modern violence
- 4 Terrorism
- 5 See also
- 6 References
Perception of Islam
Sutton and Vertigans describe Western views of Islam as based on a stereotype of it as an inherently violent religion, characterizing it as a 'religion of the sword'. They characterize the image of Islam in the Western world as "dominated by conflict, aggression, 'fundamentalism', and global-scale violent terrorism."
Juan Eduardo Campo writes that, "Europeans (have) viewed Islam in various ways: sometimes as a backward, violent religion; sometimes as an Arabian Nights fantasy; and sometimes as a complex and changing product of history and social life." Robert Gleave writes that, "at the centre of popular conceptions of Islam as a violent religion are the punishments carried out by regimes hoping to bolster both their domestic and international Islamic credentials."
The 9/11 attack on the US and other[when?] attacks since then associated with people who follow the Islamic faith, have led many non-Muslims to indict Islam as a violent religion. According to Corrigan and Hudson, "some conservative Christian leaders (have) complained that Islam (is) incompatible with what they believed to be a Christian America." Examples of Christian leaders who have expressed such sentiments include Franklin Graham and Pat Robertson. According to a survey conducted by a research group affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, two out of three Protestant pastors believe Islam is a "dangerous" religion.
Islamic views on violence
In response to these charges, Ram Puniyani assert that, "Islam does not condone violence but, like other religions, does believe in self-defence".
Mark Juergensmeyer describes the teachings of Islam as ambiguous about violence. He asserts that, like all religions, Islam occasionally allows for force while stressing that the main spiritual goal is one of nonviolence and peace. Hood, Hill and Spika write that "(a)lthough it would be a mistake to think that Islam is inherently a violent religion, it would be equally inappropriate to fail to understand the conditions under which believers might feel justified in acting violently against those whom their tradition feels should be opposed."
Similarly, Chandra Muzaffar asserts that, "(t)he Quranic exposition on resisting aggression, oppression and injustice lays down the parameters within which fighting or the use of violence is legitimate. What this means is that one can use the Quran as the criterion for when violence is legitimate and when it is not."
The Qur'an's teachings on matters of war and peace have become topics of heated discussion in recent years. On the one hand, some critics claim that certain verses of the Qur'an sanction military action against unbelievers as a whole both during the lifetime of Muhammad and after. The Qur'an says, "Fight in the name of your religion with those who fight against you." On the other hand, other scholars argue that such verses of the Qur'an are interpreted out of context, and argue that when the verses are read in context it clearly appears that the Qur'an prohibits aggression, and allows fighting only in self-defense.
Jihad, an Islamic term, is a religious duty of Muslims. In Arabic, the word jihād translates as "struggle". Jihad appears 41 times in the Quran and frequently in the idiomatic expression "striving in the way of Allah (al-jihad fi sabil Allah)".
Jihad is an important religious duty for Muslims. A minority among the Sunni scholars sometimes refer to this duty as the sixth pillar of Islam, though it occupies no such official status. In Twelver Shi'a Islam, however, Jihad is one of the 10 Practices of the Religion.
There is controversy regarding the extent of correlation between jihad and violence, and whether some have used confusion over the definition of the term to their advantage.
Middle East historian Bernard Lewis argues that "the overwhelming majority of classical theologians, jurists, and traditionalists (specialists in the hadith) understood the obligation of jihad in a military sense." Furthermore, Lewis maintains that for most of the recorded history of Islam, from the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad onward, the word jihad was used in a primarily military sense. Although some Islamic scholars have different perspectives on the implementation of Jihad, there is strong consensus amongst them that the concept of jihad will always include armed struggle against what they see as persecution and oppression.
Qur'anic verses in favor of violence
Qur'an that claims it is the "clear truth and the best explanation"[Quran 25:33], a revelation that was sent down "to make everything clear"[Quran 16:89] and the eternal word of Allah[Quran 56:80], commands its adherents in chapter no. 47,
Quran in chapter 9 says,
"Freedom from (all) obligations (is declared) from Allah and His Messenger to those of the Mushrikun (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah), with whom you made a treaty.
So travel freely (O Mushrikun) for four months (as you will) throughout the land, but know that you cannot escape (from the Punishment of) Allah, and Allah will disgrace the disbelievers.
And a declaration from Allah and His Messenger to mankind on the greatest day (the 10th of Dhul-Hijjah — the 12th month of Islamic calendar) that Allah is free from (all) obligations to the Mushrikun and so is His Messenger. So if you (Mushrikun) repent, it is better for you, but if you turn away, then know that you cannot escape (from the Punishment of) Allah. And give tidings (to Muhammad) of a painful torment to those who disbelieve.
Except those of the Mushrikun with whom you have a treaty, and who have not subsequently failed you in aught, nor have supported anyone against you. So fulfill their treaty to them to the end of their term. Surely Allah loves Al- Mattaqun (the pious — see V.2:2).
Then when the Sacred Months (the Ist, 7th, 11th, and 12th months of the Islamic calendar) have passed, then kill the Mushrikun wherever you find them, and capture them and besiege them, and prepare for them each and every ambush. But if they repent and perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat), and give Zakat, then leave their way free. Verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.And if anyone of the Mushrikun (polytheists, idolaters, pagans, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah) seeks your protection then grant him protection, so that he may hear the Word of Allah (the Quran), and then escort him to where he can be secure, that is because they are men who know not."
"O you who believe (in Allah's Oneness and in His Messenger (Muhammad)! Verily, the Mushrikun (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah, and in the Message of Muhammad) are Najasun (impure). So let them not come near Al-Masjid-al-Haram (at Makkah) after this year, and if you fear poverty, Allah will enrich you if He will, out of His Bounty. Surely, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Wise. 
Fight against those who
And the Jews say: 'Uzair (Ezra) is the son of Allah, and the Christians say: Messiah is the son of Allah. That is a saying from their mouths. They imitate the saying of the disbelievers of old. Allah's Curse be on them, how they are deluded away from the truth! "
- (1) believe not in Allah,
- (2) nor in the Last Day,
- (3) nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger
- (4) and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth (i.e. Islam) among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. 
Quran chapter 8 says,
"(Remember) when your Lord inspired the angels, "Verily, I am with you, so keep firm those who have believed. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who have disbelieved, so strike them over the necks, and smite over all their fingers and toes."
This is because they defied and disobeyed Allah and His Messenger. And whoever defies and disobeys Allah and His Messenger, then verily, Allah is Severe in punishment."
"Say to those who have disbelieved, if they cease (from disbelief) their past will be forgiven. But if they return (thereto), then the examples of those (punished) before them have already preceded (as a warning).
And fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief and polytheism: i.e. worshipping others besides Allah) and the religion (worship) will all be for Allah Alone [in the whole of the world]. But if they cease (worshipping others besides Allah), then certainly, Allah is All-Seer of what they do."
In his tafsir, Ibn Kathir, one of the most well-renown Islamic scholars, explains the verses further:
"Allah then commanded fighting the disbelievers when He said:
(...until there is no more Fitnah) meaning, Shirk. This is the opinion of Ibn `Abbas, Abu Al-`Aliyah, Mujahid, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ar-Rabi`, Muqatil bin Hayyan, As-Suddi and Zayd bin Aslam.
Allah's statement:(I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight the people until they proclaim, `None has the right to be worshipped but Allah'. Whoever said it, then he will save his life and property from me, except for cases of the law, and their account will be with Allah.)"
(...and the religion (all and every kind of worship) is for Allah (Alone).) means, `So that the religion of Allah becomes dominant above all other religions.' It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari said: "The Prophet was asked, `O Allah's Messenger! A man fights out of bravery, and another fights to show off, which of them fights in the cause of Allah' The Prophet said:
(He who fights so that Allah's Word is superior, then he fights in Allah's cause.) In addition, it is reported in the Two Sahihs:
Scholars' comment in favor of Jihad
Imam Al-Suyuti (c. 1445-1505 AD) was a famous Egyptian writer, religious scholar, juristic expert and teacher wrote:
"Fight those who don't believe in God nor in the Last Day [Unless they believe in the Prophet God bless him and grant him peace] nor hold what is forbidden that which God and His emissary have forbidden [e.g., wine] nor embrace the true faith [which is firm, and abrogates other faiths, i.e., the Islamic religion] from among [for distinguishing] those who were given the Book [i.e., the Jews and Christians] unless they give the head-tax [i.e., the annual taxes imposed on them] (/'an yadin/) humbly submissive, and obedient to Islam's rule."—Suyuti, Durr al-Manthur (Beirut Edition), vol. 3, p. 228
About Jihad, leader of the Afghan Jihad, Abdullah Yusuf Azzam wrote:
"Jihad Against the Kuffar is of two Types: Offensive Jihad (where the enemy is attacked in his own territory) ... [and] Defensive Jihad. This is expelling the Kuffar from our land, and it is Fard Ayn [personal religious obligation on Muslim individuals], a compulsory duty upon all ... ...Where the Kuffar [infidels] are not gathering to fight the Muslims, the fighting becomes Fard Kifaya [religious obligation on Muslim society] with the minimum requirement of appointing believers to guard borders, and the sending of an army at least once a year to terrorise the enemies of Allah. It is a duty of the Imam (Caliph) to assemble and send out an army unit into the land of war once or twice every year. Moreover, it is the responsibility of the Muslim population to assist him, and if he does not send an army he is in sin.- And the Ulama have mentioned that this type of jihad is for maintaining the payment of Jizya. The scholars of the principles of religion have also said: " Jihad is Daw'ah [Islamic preaching] with a force, and is obligatory to perform with all available capabilities, until there remains only Muslims or people who submit to Islam."—A. Y. Azzam, Offensive Jihad Vs. Defensive Jihad
Shaykh Aḥmad Sirhindī (d. 1624) was an Islamic scholar and a prominent Sufi. He is regarded as having rejuvenated Islam, due to which he is commonly called "Mujadid Alf Thani", meaning "revival of the second millennium". He wrote,
"Shariat can be fostered through the sword.
Kufr and Islam are opposed to each other. The progress of one is possible only at the expense of the other and co-existences between these two contradictory faiths in unthinkable.
The honor of Islam lies in insulting kufr and kafirs. One who respects kafirs, dishonors the Muslims. To respect them does not merely mean honouring them and assigning them a seat of honor in any assembly, but it also implies keeping company with them or showing considerations to them. They should be kept at an arm's length like dogs. ... If some worldly business cannot be performed without them, in that case only a minimum of contact should be established with them but without taking them into confidence. The highest Islamic sentiment asserts that it is better to forego that worldly business and that no relationship should be established with the kafirs.
The real purpose in levying jizya on them is to humiliate them to such an extent that, on account of fear of jizya, they may not be able to dress well and to live in grandeur. They should constantly remain terrified and trembling. It is intended to hold them under contempt and to uphold the honor and might of Islam. . . .Whenever a Jew is killed, it is for the benefit of Islam"—A. Sirhindi, Excerpted from Saiyid Athar Abbas Rizvi, Muslim Revivalist Movements in Northern India in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries (Agra, Lucknow: Agra University, Balkrishna Book Co., 1965), pp.247-50; and Yohanan Friedmann, Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindi: An Outline of His Thought and a Study of His Image in the Eyes of Posterity (Montreal, Quebec: McGill University, Institute of Islamic Studies, 1971), pp. 73-74.
Hadiths about Jihad
Narrated Anas bin Malik:
Allah's Apostle said, "I have been ordered to fight the people till they say: 'None has the right to be worshipped but Allah.' And if they say so, pray like our prayers, face our Qibla and slaughter as we slaughter, then their blood and property will be sacred to us and we will not interfere with them except legally and their reckoning will be with Allah." Narrated Maimun ibn Siyah that he asked Anas bin Malik, "O Abu Hamza! What makes the life and property of a person sacred?" He replied, "Whoever says, 'None has the right to be worshipped but Allah', faces our Qibla during the prayers, prays like us and eats our slaughtered animal, then he is a Muslim, and has got the same rights and obligations as other Muslims have."
On the day of Al-Ahzab (i.e. clans) the Prophet said, (After this battle) we will go to attack them (i.e. the infidels) and they will not come to attack us."
Narrated Abu Huraira: I heard Allah's Apostle saying, "The example of a Mujahid in Allah's Cause-- and Allah knows better who really strives in His Cause----is like a person who fasts and prays continuously. Allah guarantees that He will admit the Mujahid in His Cause into Paradise if he is killed, otherwise He will return him to his home safely with rewards and war booty."
Narrated Anas bin Malik: The Prophet said, "Nobody who dies and finds good from Allah (in the Hereafter) would wish to come back to this world even if he were given the whole world and whatever is in it, except the martyr who, on seeing the superiority of martyrdom, would like to come back to the world and get killed again (in Allah's Cause)."
Narrated Anas: The Prophet said, "A single endeavor (of fighting) in Allah's Cause in the afternoon or in the forenoon is better than all the world and whatever is in it. A place in Paradise as small as the bow or lash of one of you is better than all the world and whatever is in it. And if a houri from Paradise appeared to the people of the earth, she would fill the space between Heaven and the Earth with light and pleasant scent and her head cover is better than the world and whatever is in it."
It has been narrated on the authority of Abu Huraira that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: One who died but did not fight in the way of Allah nor did he express any desire (or determination) for Jihid died the death of a hypocrite. 'Abdullah b. Mubarak said: We think the hadith pertained to the time of the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him)
A man whose face was covered with an iron mask (i.e. clad in armor) came to the Prophet and said, "O Allah's Apostle! Shall I fight or embrace Islam first? "The Prophet said, "Embrace Islam first and then fight." So he embraced Islam, and was martyred. Allah's Apostle said, A Little work, but a great reward. "(He did very little (after embracing Islam), but he will be rewarded in abundance)."
Narrated 'Abdullah bin Abi Aufa: Allah's Apostle said, "Know that Paradise is under the shades of swords."
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri: Somebody asked, "O Allah's Apostle! Who is the best among the people?" Allah's Apostle replied "A believer who strives his utmost in Allah's Cause with his life and property." They asked, "Who is next?" He replied, "A believer who stays in one of the mountain paths worshipping Allah and leaving the people secure from his mischief."
Narrated Abu Musa: A man came to the Prophet and asked, "A man fights for war booty; another fights for fame and a third fights for showing off; which of them fights in Allah's Cause?" The Prophet said, "He who fights that Allah's Word (i.e. Islam) should be superior, fights in Allah's Cause."
Narrated Abu Huraira: A man came to Allah's Apostle and said, "Instruct me as to such a deed as equals Jihad (in reward)." He replied, "I do not find such a deed." Then he added, "Can you, while the Muslim fighter is in the battle-field, enter your mosque to perform prayers without cease and fast and never break your fast?" The man said, "But who can do that?" Abu- Huraira added, "The Mujahid (i.e. Muslim fighter) is rewarded even for the footsteps of his horse while it wanders bout (for grazing) tied in a long rope."
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri: "Allah's Apostle said, "A time will come upon the people, when a group of people will wage a holy war and it will be said, 'Is there amongst you anyone who has accompanied Allah's Apostle?' They will say, 'Yes.' And so victory will be bestowed on them. Then a time will come upon the people when a group of people will wage a holy war, and it will be said, "Is there amongst you a none who has accompanied the companions of Allah's Apostle?' They will say, 'Yes.' And so victory will be bestowed on them. Then a time will come upon the people when a group of people will wage a holy war, and it will be said, "Is there amongst you anyone who has been in the company of the companions of the companions of Allah's Apostle ?' They will say, 'Yes.' And victory will be bestowed on them."
It has been narrated on the authority of Zaid b. Kbalid al-Juhani that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: Anybody who equips a warrior (going to fight) in the way of Allah (is like one who actually) fights. And anybody who looks well after his family in his absence (is also like one who actually) fights.
It has been narrated on the authority of Abu Ishaq, that he heard Bara' talking about the Qur'anic verse:" Those who sit (at home) from among the believers and those who go out for Jihad in the way of Allah are not aqual" (iv. 95). (He said that) the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) ordered Zaid (to write the verse). He brought a shoulder-blade (of a slaughtered camel) and inscribed it (the verse) thereon. The son of Umm Maktum complained of his blindness to the Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him). (At this) descended the revelation:" Those of the believers who sit (at home) without any trouble (illness, incapacity, disability)" (iv. 95). The tradition has been handed down through two other chains of transmitters.
The relationship between Islam and domestic violence is disputed. These ideas are somewhat justified with reference to the Qur'an, in one Surah, An-Nisa, 34, which discusses forms of beating in certain circumstances. The passage reads, "Husbands should take full care of their wives, with [the bounties] God has given to some more than others and with what they spend out of their own money. Righteous wives are devout and guard what God would have them guard in the husbands’ absence. If you fear high-handedness from your wives, remind them [of the teaching of God], then ignore them when you go to bed, then hit them. If they obey you, you have no right to act against them. God is most high and great." Some of the scholars allowing "beating" stress that it is a last resort, discountenanced, and must be done lightly so much so not to cause pain or injury. Whether this fully justifies striking women remains controversial.
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According to Islamic scholar Khaleel Mohammed, throughout the world, Muslim intellectuals are punished for criticizing various aspects of traditional and contemporary Islam, citing the case of Muhammad Sa'id al-'Ashmawi, who is being held in Egypt under house arrest for his own protection; Abdel Karim Soroush who was beaten in Iran for raising the voice of inquiry, and Mahmoud Tahawho was killed in Sudan. Rifat Hassan, Fatima Mernissi, Abdallah an-Na'im, Mohammed Arkoun, and Amina Wadud were all vilified by the imams for asking Muslims to use their intellect.
- Hashem Aghajari, an Iranian university professor, was initially sentenced to death because of a speech that criticized some of the present Islamic practices in Iran being in contradiction with the original practices and ideology of Islam, and particularly for stating that Muslims were not "monkeys" and "should not blindly follow" the clerics. The sentence was later commuted to three years in jail, and he was released in 2004 after serving two years of that sentence.
- Christoph Luxenberg feels compelled to work under a pseudonym to protect himself because of fears that a new book on the origins of the Qur'an, may make him a target for violence. he goes/went by this assumed name in order to protect himself.
- In recent times fatwas calling for execution have been issued against novelist Salman Rushdie and activist Taslima Nasreen for pejorative comments on Islam.
- On 2 November 2004, Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh was assassinated by Dutch-born Mohammed Bouyeri for producing the 10-minute film Submission critical of the abusive treatment of women by Muslims. A letter threatening the author of the screenplay, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, was pinned to his body by a knife. Hirsi Ali entered into hiding immediately following the assassination, and now is protected by bodyguards.
- On 30 September 2005, the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published editorial cartoons, many of which caricatured the Islamic prophet Mohammed. The publication was intended to contribute to the debate regarding criticism of Islam and self-censorship; objectives which manifested themselves in the public outcry from Muslim communities within Denmark and the subsequent apology by the paper. However, the controversy deepened when further examples of the cartoons were reprinted in newspapers in more than fifty other countries. This led to protests across the Muslim world, some of which escalated into violence, including setting fire to the Norwegian and Danish Embassies in Syria, and the storming of European buildings and desecration of the Danish and German flags in Gaza City. Globally, at least 139 people were killed and 823 injured.
- On 19 September 2006 French writer and philosophy teacher Robert Redeker wrote an editorial for Le Figaro, a French conservative newspaper, in which he attacked Islam and Muhammad, writing: "Pitiless war leader, pillager, butcher of Jews and polygamous, this is how Mohammed is revealed by the Qur'an." He received death threats and went into hiding. The teacher was forced into hiding after describing the Qu'ran as a "book of extraordinary violence" and Islam as "a religion which ... exalts violence and hate."
- On 4 August 2007, Ehsan Jami was attacked in his hometown of Voorburg, Netherlands by three men. The attack is widely believed to be linked to his activities for the Central Committee for Ex-Muslims. The national anti-terrorism coordinator's office, the public prosecution department and the police decided during a meeting on 6 August that "additional measures" were necessary for the protection of Jami, who subsequently received extra security.
"Perhaps the most resounding call to jihad in modern times occurred on 21 January 1979," suggest authors, as the Ayatollah Khomeini announced a Jihad against the US. "The people have absolute confidence in their victory in this holy war (jihad-e moqaddas)," said the Islamic icon.
Iran, under the Ayatollah Khomeini, categorized the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war as a 'Holy war'. "Khomeini's call to jihad incited thousands of Iranian teenagers to volunteer for martyrdom missions." The Basiji movement 'created' child and adult sacrifice as "holy soldiers," Blessed by Iranian mullahs' regime.
The Basiji ideology enjoys a revival under Iran's president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is a member. The movement has a nominal strength of 12.6 million, and has been present in schools since it was first created in 1979 by the Ayatollah. Basijis were used in crackdowns in 1999, in 2003 and in the brutality of 2009 on protesters in Iran.
The group demands in training intense Quran studies, it calls for "Basij Ethics and Etiquette" and "Major Islamic Commandments." The Basijis have been known to act in defending a strict Islamic conduct. and enforcing Sharia law. often "merging" with Ansar-e Hezbollah men in enforcing Sharia law. In one example, Human rights activists charged that Basiji Islamic militiamen have raped and murdered 26 year old Elnaz Babazadeh for wearing an improper dress.
"Ayatollah Khomeini played on the messianic overtones of this belief during the Iranian revolution." The ideology of "Twelver" in Shiite Islam (return of the 12th Imam — belief) was invoked by many who believed that the Ayatollah will "return" as their Mahdi (Islamic Messiah). Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad refocuses this belief of the Mahdi's return by public statements and various symbolic actions, Iraq's Shiite al-Sadr's army is called the Mahdi army.
Saddam Hussein warned of a jihad against the United States in 1991. In 2003, after the March 20 US, British led invasion of Iraq, Saddam Hussein called for a holy war against "an aggression on the land of Islam." (invoking the Quranic theme: "Fight them everywhere...") The statement accused the coalition forces of waging a war against Islam. His information Minister conlcuding: "Therefore, jihad is a duty in confronting them... Those who are martyred will be rewarded in heaven. Seize the opportunity, my brothers."
The paramilitary organisation Laskar Jihad called "to wage a jihad or holy war" into Indonesia's Moluccan islands, and carried out anti-Christian attacks in Sulawesi, the same group was involved in the 1999 violence against Christians and Chinese in East Timor. It has been categorized as "Indonesia's Dirty Little Holy War Holy Terror."
Hezbollah's spiritual guidance, Sheik Muhammed Hussein Fadlallah, who witnessing journalist says was behind the hostage crisis in Lebanon in the 1980s, said: "We see ourselves as mujihadeen who fight a Holy War." Justifying bombings, kidnapping, murder.
The Americans put it about that he had blessed the suicide bomber who struck the US marine base in Beirut in 1983, killing 241 service personnel. Fadlallah always denied this to me and I believe him. Suicide bombers, however insane we regard them, don't need to be blessed; they think they are doing God's duty without any help from a marja like Fadlallah.
"In the present conflict in Darfur, jihad is usually interpreted as holy war by the government in Khartoum." The Sudanese National Islamic Front declared in 1992 a jihad, or holy war, against all in the Nuba Mountains who supported the SPLA.
The Whabbists have a long history of fundamentalism and jihad, declaring holy wars on others, to force them into accepting their purified version of Islam
In 2010, a 'Glut of fatwas spurred Saudi king to impose curbs,' Saudi political analyst explaining: "If you endorse jihad, it means you are searching for a war with the rest of the world."
Some militant Islamic movements cite Saudi Wahhabi clerics to justify violence.
From that which is known to everyone who has the slightest bit of common sense is that hijacking airplanes and kidnapping children and the like are extremely great crimes, the world over. Their evil effects are far and wide, as is the great harm and inconvenience caused to the innocent; the total effect of which none can comprehend except Allaah.
Islamic terrorism is terrorism committed by Islamists, and aimed at achieving varying political ends and the advancement of Islamist goals; for example, Osama bin Laden's stated goal of ending American military presence in the Middle East and the Arabian Peninsula, overthrowing Arab regimes he considers corrupt and insufficiently religious, and stopping American support for Israel. Bombing in London 7/7 are said to be in retaliation for UK's support in the war in Iraq that began in 2003, though it can't be linked as a motive for Islamic terror plots on London, December, 2001. The Islamic terrorism attack in Madrid were "explained" as "inspired by al-Qaeda's call to punish Spain's government for supporting the Iraq war," another motive was given that Spain holds a strong appeal to Islamic militants because the southern region of Andalucia was under Muslim control for almost 800 years, and "Al-Qaeda has called on jihadists to reconquer Spain as part of a broader Muslim caliphate, or kingdom under Islamic rule."
A Jihadi cleric:
"Another aim and objective of jihad is to drive terror in the hearts of the [infidels]. To terrorize them. Did you know that we were commanded in the Qur'an with terrorism? ...Allah said, and prepare for them to the best of your ability with power, and with horses of war. To drive terror in the hearts of my enemies, Allah's enemies, and your enemies. And other enemies which you don't know, only Allah knows them... So we were commanded to drive terror into the hearts of the [infidels], to prepare for them with the best of our abilities with power. Then the Prophet said, nay, the power is your ability to shoot. The power which you are commanded with here, is your ability to shoot. Another aim and objective of jihad is to kill the [infidels], to lessen the population of the [infidels]... it is not right for a Prophet to have captives until he makes the Earth warm with blood... so, you should always seek to lessen the population of the [infidels]."
Observers have also argued that the attacks are aimed at propagating Islamic culture, society and values in opposition to perceived political, imperialistic, and/or cultural influences of non-Muslims, and the Western world in particular.
There are also historical dimensions to the phenomenon, and the history of Western influence and control after the fall of the Ottoman Empire in 1918, is a common stated reason used within some terrorist groups to justify and explain its use of violence as resistive and retributive against western influences.
The strive to an 'Islamic Caliphate.' Caliph is translated from the Arabic Khalifa (خليفة ẖalīfä) meaning "successor", "substitute", or "lieutenant". It is used in the Qur'an to establish Adam's role as representative of Allah on earth. Kalifa is also used to describe the belief that man's role, in his real nature, is as khalifa or viceroy to Allah. The word is also most commonly used for the Islamic leader of the Ummah; starting with Muhammad and his line of successors.
Indeed, domination is the ultimate goal of jihadists. Al-Qaeda revealed its grand plan towards an Islamic caliphate, - global domination. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's Al-Qaeda in Iraq, has released a statement in which it explains the reasons for its terror campaign:
"We are not fighting to chase out the occupier or to save national unity and keep the borders outlined by the infidels intact," [...] "We are fighting because it is a religious duty to do it, just as it is a duty to take the Sharia [Islamic law] to the government and create an Islamic state."
"Al-Qaeda has called on jihadists to reconquer Spain as part of a broader Muslim caliphate, or kingdom under Islamic rule." Explaining why even Hamas has an eye on Spain. In the early 1990s, the GIA Algerian Armed Islamist Group, which is "well known for its radical positions and the barbaric violence of its operations, announced the restoration of the caliphate and the appointment of a caliph." With Palestinian Islamic party Hamas victory in the 2007 election, a mass gathering followed with Hamas' spokesman calling for a Caliphate. The official said Hamas seeks to create an "Islamic caliphate" in the land.
- Sutton, Philip W.; Vertigans, Stephen (2005). Resurgent Islam: a sociological approach. Polity. p. 7. "Stereotypical views which portray Islam as an inherently violent religion, a 'religion of the sword' and an increasing global threat have thus been reinforced and even extended over recent years."
- Campo, Juan Eduardo (2009). Encyclopedia of Islam. Infobase Publishing. p. 374.
- Hinnells, John R.; King, Richard (2007). Religion and violence in South Asia: theory and practice. Taylor & Francis. p. 79.
- Puniyani, Ram (2005). Religion, power & violence: expression of politics in contemporary times. SAGE. pp. 97–98.
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- "A NATION CHALLENGED: THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT; Islam Is Violent in Nature, Pat Robertson Says". New York Times. 23 February 2002. "The religious broadcaster Pat Robertson has described Islam as a"violent religion that wants to 'dominate and then, if need be, destroy'.""
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- Sam Harris Who Are the Moderate Muslims?
- Sohail H. Hashmi, David Miller, Boundaries and Justice: diverse ethical perspectives, Princeton University Press, p.197
- Khaleel Muhammad, professor of religious studies at San Diego State University, states, regarding his discussion with the critic Robert Spencer, that "when I am told ... that Jihad only means war, or that I have to accept interpretations of the Qur'an that non-Muslims (with no good intentions or knowledge of Islam) seek to force upon me, I see a certain agendum developing: one that is based on hate, and I refuse to be part of such an intellectual crime." 
- Ali, Maulana Muhammad; The Religion of Islam (6th Edition), Ch V "Jihad" Page 414 "When shall war cease". Published by The Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement 
- Sadr-u-Din, Maulvi. "Qur'an and War", page 8. Published by The Muslim Book Society, Lahore, Pakistan.
- Article on Jihad by Dr. G. W. Leitner (founder of The Oriental Institute, UK) published in Asiatic Quarterly Review, 1886. ("Jihad, even when explained as a righteous effort of waging war in self-defense against the grossest outrage on one's religion, is strictly limited..")
- The Qur'anic Commandments Regarding War/Jihad An English rendering of an Urdu article appearing in Basharat-e-Ahmadiyya Vol. I, p. 228-232, by Dr. Basharat Ahmad; published by the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement for the Propagation of Islam
- Ali, Maulana Muhammad; The Religion of Islam (6th Edition), Ch V "Jihad" Pages 411-413. Published by The Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement 
- Morgan, Diane (2010). Essential Islam: a comprehensive guide to belief and practice. ABC-CLIO. p. 87. ISBN 0-313-36025-1. Retrieved 5 January 2011.
- Wendy Doniger, ed. (1999). Merriam-Webster's Encyclopedia of World Religions. Merriam-Webster. ISBN 0-87779-044-2., Jihad, p.571
- Josef W. Meri, ed. (2005). Medieval Islamic Civilization: An Encyclopedia. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-96690-6., Jihad, p.419
- John Esposito(2005), Islam: The Straight Path, pp.93
- What Does Jihad Mean? "For example, Yasir Arafat's May 1994 call in Johannesburg for a "jihad to liberate Jerusalem" was a turning point in the peace process; Israelis heard him speak about using violence to gain political ends and questioned his peaceable intentions. Both Arafat himself and his aides then clarified that he was speaking about a "peaceful jihad" for Jerusalem."
- Bernard Lewis, The Political Language of Islam (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1988), p. 72.
- Lewis, Bernard, The Crisis of Islam, 2001 Chapter 2
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- Cook, David (2001). Understanding Jihad. Berkeley: University of California Press. p. 2. ISBN 0520931874. "'Warfare with spiritual significance' is the primary and root meaning of the term as it has been defined by classical' Muslim jurists and legal scholars and as it was practiced by Muslims during the premodern period.
This meaning is sustained in the standard definition given in the new edition of the Encyclopedia of Islam: “In law, according to general doctrine and in historical tradition, the jihad consists of military action with the object of the expansion of Islam and, if need be, of its defense.” This terse summary of Muslim law and history is the standard, scholarly one. Nonetheless, many Muslims, seeking to distance themselves and their religion from associations with violence and conquest, maintain that the word’s significance is exclusively spiritual. According to some of the most prominent Muslim leaders in the United States, jihad is entirely peaceable and represents the exertion of spiritual warfare waged by the faithful against the lower, or evil, soul."
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- CONFRONTATION IN THE GULF; More on the Gulf NYtimes, 12 January 1991, "Iraqi Leader Warns Of Plan for Holy War," 12 January 1991
Iraqi Leader Warns Of Plan for Holy War President Saddam Hussein told a conference of Islamic leaders that he was preparing for a holy war against the American-led military alliance in the Persian Gulf that could be averted only if greater priority was given to solving the Palestinian issue.
- Saddam Hussein calls for holy war | Mail Online
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- MY JAKARTA DIARY --II
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- Scheuer, Michael (2004). Imperial Hubris. Dulles, Virginia: Brassey's, Inc. p. 9. ISBN 0-9655139-4-7. "The focused and lethal threat posed to U.S. national security arises not from Muslims being offended by what America is, but rather from their plausible perception that the things they most love and value—God, Islam, their brethren, and Muslim lands—are being attacked by America."
- Online NewsHour: Al Qaeda's 1998 Fatwa
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- Dar al-Harb
- See ref:"purpose" and ref:"justification"
- From the article "Khalifah" in Oxford Islamic Studies Online
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