The essence of the Sharia – Objectives, concepts and priorities

The essence of the Sharia

–Objectives, concepts and priorities

Many times we see ISIS quote refutations by scholars on implementing the Sharia gradually, like some Islamic democratic parties want to do. But there is a big difference between implementing Sharia as much as you can (to the best of one’s capability) in a defensive war, in the conditions you’re faced with and with the power you have, and implementing Sharia gradually through democracy for example. Even ISIS itself implements the Sharia partially, whether they acknowledge this or not, whether they realize it or not. Because they do not have complete empowerment in all their provinces to give all the people all their rights for example, so they must give them as much as they can. True or not?

If they are not able to give all the people all their Sharia rights, do they then say, we are not implementing Sharia, or, we are implementing Sharia gradually, or do they say, we are doing as much as we can? Or do they simply not consider giving the rights to the people as a part of implementing Sharia? But if they do consider this as being part of implementing Sharia, can they then honestly say that they do not fall short and give all the people, in all their provinces, all their Sharia rights? If they are realistic and honest they would admit that they are not- and can not do this, so are they then not doing exactly the same as what other Mujahid groups are doing; implementing Sharia as much as they can, in stead of implementing it gradually? –Depending on the amount of power and control they have over the region, the priorities and other factors which we will discuss inshaAllah.

If ISIS does not give all the people all their rights, and they acknowledge this, then they must also know that rights are directly connected to obligations. If the people do not receive their full rights, they cannot and will not uphold their full obligations. Punishing them for falling short in their obligations, while you are falling short in their rights, is considered injustice, not Sharia. For example, if people live in poverty, and there is lack of sustenance, lack of work, etc. People in that case will automatically trespass by selling narcotics, stealing, prostitution and other crimes to make a livelihood. Like we see unfortunately in many of our poverty stricken countries ruled by the oppressive tyrants.

So their rights are directly connected to their obligations. Umar ibn Khattab therefore said “Do not take away peoples rights otherwise you will drive them towards disbelieve.” And that’s also why Umar ibn al-Khattab did not punish theft during drought and economic crisis; circumstances which could force people to steal for survival. People in Syria do not have the money to buy baby milk, cooking oil, gas, etc. It should be our priority to ease their situation for them first, instead of merely punishing them, on top of their harsh situation and poverty. The Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) even said that poverty could almost lead to disbelieve, and that we should fear a poverty which makes us forget Allah and our religion (Faqran Munsiyan), he even used to seek refuge against poverty in his supplications.

The enemies of this Ummah therefore use poverty as a strategic tool to keep the Ummah dependent, they use poverty to keep the Ummah subjugated. They use poverty in our countries as an obstacle and shackle to prevent Islamic progress, revival and reform. That’s why they have installed tyrannical rulers, who rob the people of their rights and livelihood. If we look at the history of worldly sciences in the West we would see that they flourished during economic stability. Poverty on the other hand stands in the way of such scientific, intellectual and even religious progress, because people would only be busy thinking about their survival, they do not have time nor money for education, intellectual development, etc. This is one of the biggest calamities in the last couple of decades, since the colonial area, which stands as an obstacle in the way of our Islamic development and progress. So we must rescue the Ummah from this, and remove this obstacle; if we truly want to reach the Islamic revival of this Ummah.

The Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) would even give financial preference to people who just entered Islam, he would give them a bigger share from the war spoils and treasuries, than the early Muslims; he did so to win them over and soften their hearts. It is ironic that the father of the Khawarij, Dhul Khuwaysirah, condemned the Prophet for doing so during the Battle of Hunain. But we must ask ourselves, if the Prophet gave people even more than they deserved to win their hearts, then should we not try to give people their basic rights at least to win their hearts?

The balance and relationship between rights and obligations must be clear to us, we cannot focus on one part of the Sharia (peoples obligations) while we fall short in the other part of the Sharia (their rights); which could be a direct cause for falling short in their obligations. There must be a harmony between the two. And with every illness, you always start with treating the cause(s) before the symptoms. Treating the cause(s) deserves priority over treating the symptoms. So giving people their rights is more important than punishing them; if they fall short in their obligations; because they lack their rights. We have to break this vicious circle of cause and effect. When we study the biography of the rightly guided Khulafaah, we see that they were more concerned with giving people their Sharia rights, then being concerning with punishing them. The responsibility of giving people, and even animals, their Sharia rights would weight very heavy on the shoulders of the rightly guided Khulafaah. They truly ruled with a Khilafah on the Prophetic methodology. That’s what differentiates them from other rulers; who only desired the position of leadership, and chased after kingdoms for worldly benefits and prestige, even if it meant ruling with an iron fist.

It is very simple, if a father does not provide for his children, he does not educate them, he does not give them a proper upbringing; is it then strange if they grow up to be immoral sinners and criminals? So their rights are directly connected to their obligations! There is a great lesson in the story of the father who complained to Umar ibn Khattab about his son, and when Umar discovered that in reality it was the father who did not give his son the rights he deserved, he said to him “You have failed in your duty towards him before he failed in his duty towards you. You wronged him before he wronged you.” That’s why the scholars have said that the parents will be asked first on the Day of Judgment about their duties towards their children, before the children will be asked about their duties towards their parents. And the responsibility of a father is similar to that of a ruler, the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) placed the responsibility of a leader next to the responsibility of a father, saying: “Every one of you is a shepherd and responsible for his flock. The leader is a guardian and responsible for his subjects. A man is the guardian of his family and responsible for them.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

So before punishing people for trespassing and falling short in their obligations, we must give them their rights. We must educate the people; so they don’t fall short in their obligations out of ignorance. We must protect the people, we must provide safety, livelihood and stability; so that they don’t fall short in their obligations out of desperation. And when they receive their rights, they do not have any excuse to fall short in their obligations.

That’s why the Sharia punishments are stern, because an Islamic society removes every excuse before punishing the people. Unlike a disbelieving society which makes the Halal difficult and the Haram easy, an Islamic society makes the Haram difficult and the Halal easy. Adultery, consumption of drugs and alcohol, gambling, interest based business, etc. All these forbidden sins are very hard to perform in an Islamic society. Because the pathways to the Haram are blocked, before punishing people for it. The obstacles blocking the Halal are removed, while placing obstacles blocking the pathway to the Haram. Unlike disbelieving governments, who judge by the laws of the Taghut. In these governments it is the other way around.

So this means that natural and permissible desires and needs of people can be satisfied with ease in an Islamic society. In an Islamic society it is easy to marry, you can even marry as much as four women. But under a disbelieving government marriage is difficult, you are restricted by age limits and the mazes of man-made bureaucracy and politics. While committing adultery, and every other sin, is very easy under a disbelieving government; in that case there are no restrictions at all. You can not marry four women in the West, but you can have countless girlfriends and mistresses.

Add to this that the punishment for adultery in the Sharia, stoning to death, requires four reliable Muslim witnesses who, all at the same time, saw the actual penetration. This is nearly impossible. This would practically mean that someone performed adultery in public, something which you do not even see in a disbelieving society. That’s why it has not not been recorded in the Islamic history that someone was punished for adultery due to four witnesses testifying against him or her, the only punishments for adultery which were executed and recorded in the Islamic history are instances in which the sinner himself or herself confesses to the sin. An Islamic government does not have anything to say about sins you commit between four walls at home, that is between the sinner and Allah. So the Sharia punishments are merely a means to keep society safe and clean, they are merely a tool to reach the Maqaasid (objectives) of the Sharia. We are not asked to control the lives of every individual, by implanting spies everywhere who track every movement, like tyrannical governments do. This is not our job, we only try to guide society like a shepherd tries to guide his flock.

If we truly want to talk about the Sharia on a meaningful level, it is important to understand the concepts which fall under the study of Maqaasid Sharia, meaning the objectives and goals of the Sharia. These goals must be in harmony with each other, and not in conflict with each other. It is important to study this subject, and the subject of weighing between Masalih and Mafasid (benefits and harms), before talking about the Sharia, let alone judge by it, if we want to prevent catastrophic mistakes. We must refer to the scholars for such complex subjects.

It sounds strange for someone who has no deeper knowledge, but sometimes the rightly guided Khulafaah would temporarily stop a rule from the Sharia in order to protect to goals of the Sharia, which is even more important than that rule itself. Umar ibn al-Khattab for example would temporarily forbid the marriage with women of the Book (Christians and Jews), which in essence is Halal. He did so in order to protect Muslim women. He forbade the companions from marrying the women of the Book, above all people! He said to them: “If everyone were to make use of this permission, who would marry Muslim women?” He did not want to leave the Muslim women single. So do we say that Umar ibn al-Khattab judged with something other than the Sharia?! No, he protected the goals of the Sharia which are more important than the rules of the Sharia, and he outweighed the benefits v.s. the harms.

This happened many times in the history of Islam. For example, in Mauritania they temporarily stopped Islamic slavery because the rights of the slaves were being neglected, free people were being kidnapped and taken as slaves, which is forbidden in the Sharia, and only black Mauritanians were taken as slaves, while the Arabs were left alone, etc. So why did they temporarily stop Islamic slavery? Because the rule of the Sharia was in conflict with the goal of the Sharia, at that moment, and at that place in time. That’s why many scholars like Shaykh Abdullah Azzam and Atiyatullah Al-Libi for example said that it is forbidden to take female slaves at this moment in time, considering the weak circumstances of the Ummah. Because we cannot protect Muslim women from retaliations, kidnap and rape. So we must consider the goals of the Sharia, before the rules of the Sharia. Protecting Muslim lives, one of the major goals of Sharia, weighs heavier than a rule from the Sharia. We must outweigh the benefits v.s. the harms.

Shaykh Abdullah Azzam said: “If you would ask for a Fatwa from the zealous Arab youth who arrived at Peshawar and studied some Fiqh and Hadith; “Is it allowed to take Russian women, those on the battlefield fighting against the Muslims, who we captured. Is it allowed to take them as concubines?” The answer would of course be: “Yes, according to this Shaykh.” But I say to them: “It is not allowed for you, and it is Haram for you!” Why?! Because if we took a Russian woman they would take a hundred Muslim women, and violate their chastity. So should we give a Fatwa permitting this or forbidding it?? If taking a single woman as a concubine would lead to violating the honor of a hundred Muslim women, should we then permit or forbid it? So the one who gives a verdict should know the details of a matter, and the place you are in, and about what you’re really giving a verdict. It’s necessary that you understand the subject completely based on the ground and its reality, not just theoretically.” (Faridatul Jihad, p. 20)

Shaykh Atiyatullah Al-Libi likewise Said: “Taking the females of the disbelievers as concubines like the Jews in Palestine and the Christians in Lebanon: We do not see it permissible to take them captive as concubines at this moment, we should prevent from this at the moment to safeguard the chastity. We do not have the means for this matter in our current situation and circumstances. The Mujahideen are fighting a guerrilla war, they attack and retreat, they do not have steady living conditions to shelter their concubines properly. This will lead to real evils if we opened this door in these kind of circumstances which I referred to. While the basis is that it’s permissible to take female disbelievers as captives, and their offspring, meaning the original disbelievers like the Jews and Christians, from those who are waging war against the Muslims. ” (Taken from the Q&A with Al-Hisbah Forums)

Many contemporary Mujahid scholars likewise did and do not allow the Mujahideen to take Jizyah from Christians if they conquered a certain village or town, because this protection money is a contract between the inhabitants and the Muslims in authority. When the Mujahideen conquer a certain village or town they cannot guarantee them safety from the bombardments for example, and they do not know if they will hold on to these territories because they are waging a highly mobile hit-and-run guerrilla war to exhaust conventional military (super-) powers. Receiving Jizyah without promising protection would therefore defeat the purpose and goal of this Sharia rule. So forbidding the Mujahideen to take Jizyah from the Christians in this context is not in any way a refusal of the Sharia, or judging by something other than the Sharia. On the contrary, forcing the Christians to pay Jizyah in these circumstances is deviating from the Sharia. Likewise is the taking of female slaves in these circumstances. Not implementing a Sharia rule in a certain context, because the Sharia teaches us this; is implementing Sharia! And implementing a Sharia rule in a certain context, despite the fact that the Sharia tells us not do so; is not implementing Sharia!

Shaykh Abu Qatadah Al-Filistini said: “Obligating Jizyah (protection money) on the Christian inhabitants in Syria is not allowed in the Sharia, because it is a contract between two parties, and one party can not uphold its end. Because the Mujahideen in Syria do not have control (Tamqeen) and they are not able to protect the lives and property of the Christians in these circumstances. It is not allowed in the Sharia to take their money without returning the service.” (From his Twitter account)

The Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) said that the Khawarij read the Quran but it does not pass their throats, meaning in to their hearts and their understanding. Scholars like As-Shatibi, one of the founding scholars of the science Maqaasid As-Sharia, explained this Hadith by saying that the Khawarij only look at the outwardly meaning of the Quran, without a deeper knowledge and understanding. The one who says that Abdullah Azzam and Atiyatullah Al-Libi for example judged with something other than the Sharia because they forbade taking female slaves, or Shaykh Abu Qatadah Al-Filistine because he forbade taking Jizyah in Syria, does not understand certain important Islamic concepts, which require a deeper knowledge of the Islamic religion.

Is it really sad to see many judge about who is implementing Sharia and who isn’t, while they lack essential knowledge to do so, and actually do not know what Sharia really entails before even talking about it. For example: there are certain principles of Islamic law (Qawa’id Al-Fiqhiyyah), like hardship leads to facilitation (Al-Mashaqqah Tajlub At-Taysir), which are considered, outweighed and implemented by scholars, especially in times like these. But when the layman does not understand these concepts he could quickly say that such and such scholar is rejecting or changing the law of Allah. We see this a lot unfortunately. While in reality this scholar is rewarded for his Itjihaad (effort) even if he was wrong, like the Prophet said. And you, the one who is not qualified to judge, could be paving a path to Hellfire because you judged without knowledge. May Allah protect us.

The Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) said: “When a judge rules, he uses his legal judgment, and if he reaches a correct decision, he will be given a double reward. And if he uses his judgment and makes a mistake, he will be given a single reward.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

He (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) also said: “Judges are of three types, two of them will go to the Hellfire and one will go to Paradise. The one who knows the truth and judges with it – he is in Paradise. One who knows the truth but doesn’t judge by it, will go to Hellfire. The one who doesn’t know the truth and judges between people with ignorance, will also go to the Hellfire.” (Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi)

If we are realistic we would realize and acknowledge that we cannot give the people their full rights when we are still fighting a defensive guerrilla war, and we do not have complete empowerment. Something which would also demand much of our time and energy; while this time and energy must first be invested in repelling the transgressing enemy before anything else, like Shaykh Ibn Taymiyah said in his famous statement about repelling the transgressing enemy, and that this is the greatest obligation after Imaan. So it is even more important than prayers! Let alone implementing the Hudood.

The majority of the scholars agreed that Sharia punishments must not be implemented during battles. It is narrated in Tirmidhi that the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) said: “Hands are not to be cut off during a battle expedition.” Al-Awzaa’i commented on this Hadith saying: “The punishment is not implemented during battle when the enemy is present, out of fear that people would escape and join the enemy.” Umar ibn Khattab therefore wrote to his armies: “Do not let an army leader lash a Muslim during a battle expedition.” Why? Because there is a greater benefit a that moment which deserves the first priority; fighting and repelling the transgressing enemy. Ibn Al-Qayyim therefore said: “A punishment from Allah is to be prevented during battle because it could lead to something much more hated by Allah, like joining the polytheists out of pride and anger.” So the least someone could say when they see a Mujahid group prioritize repelling the enemy, and delaying the Sharia punishments during battle, is that they have a difference of opinion. Instead of labeling them as apostates and permitting their blood for much smaller issues.

So there are important factors we must consider. If we would invest too much time in implementing the Sharia for example, we would fall short in repelling the transgressing enemy, with our limited (man-) power and capabilities. That’s why for example we are seeing that ISIS does not put as much energy and time in fighting the Nusayriyah in Shaam like other Mujahid groups are doing. While repelling this transgressing enemy deserves priority before anything else after Imaan, even the prayers could be delayed when confronting the transgressing enemy, like we saw in the Seerah of the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) when they confronted Quraysh and the Arab tribes in the Battle of the Trench. They delayed the Asr prayer, which is one of the most fixed prayer times. And this happened during the Medinah period, not the Meccan period. So what do you think about delaying certain Sharia punishments for example because our first concern is repelling the transgressing enemy before anything else?

If we would take the accusations of ISIS which they direct at certain Mujahid groups and apply them on the biography of the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam), we would see that they are accusing the best generation of this Ummah with exactly the same accusations! SubhanAllah. The Khawarij labeled even Ali and Mu’awiyah as apostates, because they accused them of not ruling by the Sharia, and they made Takfeer on them because of this. We see a reflection of this mindset on the ground in Shaam, as ISIS also accuses other groups with not applying the Sharia, and make this a ground for their Takfeer. This is simply ignorance in regards to the Maqaasid (objectives) of the Sharia, and understanding of the realities and circumstances on the ground.

Many times this is due to a lack of proper Islamic priorities –something many enthusiastic Muslim youths lack Consider this contrast for example: the first thing the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) did when he entered Al-Madinah was built a Mosque, while the first thing ISIS does when they enter a region is open a punishment yard, in which they publicly punish people, and leave their chopped off heads and crucified corpses hanging for days. So are their priorities better than the priorities of the Prophet? Why are so many Muslims youths narrow minded; when they see Mujahid groups like Jabhat Nusra and Ahraar Shaam prioritize building social infrastructures and provide public services, they do not consider this as being part of implementing the Sharia, or they do not consider this as vitally important. But when they see ISIS chop off heads and hands, and throw people from buildings, they think that this is what Sharia is all about.

The Quran consists of more than 6000 Ayaat, but only 6 Ayaat speak about the Hudood punishments. There are tens of thousands of Ahadeeth, but less than 10 Ahadeeth talk about the Hudood punishments. The study of Ulum Al-Quran, Ulum Al-Hadith, Ulum Al-Fiqh etc. they are all divided in tens of sciences, and if we were to compile all these sciences we would see that only a couple of pages in the books of Fiqh talk about the Hudood punishment. The ironic and sad thing is that Western media propaganda sold us the perception that the Sharia is nothing more than stoning, lashing, and amputating. But when we study Islamic knowledge we get a totally different perception. Not implementing the Sharia punishments, due to certain circumstances, like war or famine, does not mean that you did not implement the Sharia. Contrary to the perception that Hudood punishments is what the Sharia is all about.

Shaykh Abu Qatadah Al-Filistini said: “Concerning Sharia courts establishing Hudood (punishments) in Dar Al-Harb (in countries of war). It could be said that the Sharia orders not to implement it (the punishments) in the situation of war. The Sharia is implementing the rule of Allah, we could leave an absolute rule ordered by Allah at that moment, because the Sharia orders not to implement it, since there are objections to this rule. So another rule is applicable; the rule is either totally removed or partly.

For example, the Sharia says that the male receives the inheritance portion of two females, this is the Sharia concerning a son inheriting from his father. But if this son killed his father, then there is an objection to this inheritance. Did we implement the Sharia when we prevented this son from his inheritance? Yes!

When Umar prevented the punishment on thieves during the year of drought, he implemented the Sharia, and it is not said out of ignorance that Umar suspended the Sharia. He implemented the Sharia. But the Sharia to some consist only of implementing the punishment on theft, but the rule of Allah could order not to implement the punishment on the thief.

If a person stole money from someone, and was presented in front of a judge, and it was asked to him why he stole? And he said, I am hungry. So it was asked, why didn’t you work? And he said, I didn’t find any work. So it was asked, why didn’t you take Zakaah? And he said, people do not want to give their Zakaat. Must this person be punished? No! And if the punishment was not implemented on him, do we say that the Sharia was not implemented?

The Sharia is not just one single image without any other choice, meaning that the punishment should always be implemented on everyone who took money.. So, do we implement the Sharia in Dar Al-Harb? Yes we do. But we do not implement the Hudood punishments in Dar Al-Harb.” (The 3rd open meeting on Al-Fadjr Al-Islami)

When we talk about the Sharia we also have to talk about Jihad, because one of objectives of Al-Jihad is establishing the Sharia. If the Sharia has Maqaasid, the Jihad likewise has Maqaasid. The first thing we must understand is that it is not our goal to destroy all our enemies, we do not want to annihilate all our enemies. On the contrary, we do not want to destroy mankind, but we want to rescue mankind from darkness and misguidance. Genocide and holocausts are the methods of war used by the disbelievers, not the Muslims. Our goal is to break the power of disbelief, their governance, and their upper-hand over the Muslim Ummah. Allah did not order us to fight until all our enemies are annihilated, He ordered us to fight them until the upper-hand belongs to the Muslims, and the Islamic religion (Sharia) is established.

We must understand that the goals of Jihad are more important than fighting itself, waging Jihad is only a means to an end, and not the end in itself. Fighting is a means to an end like the Hudood punishments are means to an end. If we can reach the goal without fighting, then it is not necessary to fight or keep fighting, because sometimes Dawah could be enough, and enemies could surrender for example, they could want a truce or cease fire. So waging Jihad is a not only fighting, it is a combination of fighting, Dawah, diplomacy, negotiations, and all other Sharia politics. When we study the biography of the Prophet we understand this very well.

Shaykh Abu Firas As-Suri Said: “We are a missionary nation and the goals of our Ummah is to rescue the whole world from darkness in to light. Our goals are not restricted to Syria, however our current battle is in Syria. It is upon us to take the people out of the darkness in to the light. And this is not only done by fighting, like some people understand; that fighting and killing is the basis. The basis is guiding the people to the right Path.

Fighting is an exception in Islam, we are a missionary nation, the mission of Islam is not only fighting, it is bringing people out of the darkness in to the light. If I called people to believe in Allah and they believed in that call, why would I fight them? Fighting in Islam is the last diplomatic method, war is also defined as rough diplomacy. We are trying to call people using all means; education, Dawah, Mosques, media, any available means to call to Allah. But if some people stopped us from making Dawah or prevented people from believing, we will have to fight them to deliver the Message of Allah to the people. So whoever prevents us from doing that will have to be fought by us until Allah alone is worshiped on earth.

We are not keen to fight anyone who doesn’t stand as an obstacle facing Islam. We are only fighting against the Syrian regime because they are an obstacle facing Islam. We are not fighting for power, we are fighting to prevent the people from oppression and because they prevent the Sharia of Allah. We are fighting to make the Word of Allah the highest, so if the Word of Allah is the highest without fighting, we will not fight. ” (Taken from the interview with Bilal Abdul Kareem)

That’s why Shaykh Atiyatullah Al-Libi said in his letter to Shaykh Abu Musab Zarqawi: “My dear brother, you are achieving successes in striking the enemies of Allah and hitting and doing much, which is a good and great thing that we are not lowering at all, and we ask Allah to bless and increase, but this isn’t everything. The path is long and difficult, and the enemy isn’t easy, for he is great and numerous and he can take quite a bit of punishment as well. However, true victory is the triumph of principles and values, the triumph of the call to Islam. True conquest is the conquest of the hearts of people, and the regard for seeing the Treaty of Hudaybiyah as a victory. Policy must be dominant over militarism (!). This is one of the pillars of war that is agreed upon by all nations, whether they are Muslims or unbelievers. That is to say, that military action is a servant to policy. We as people of Islam are people of policy, wisdom, reason, and are good at applying its fundamentals of justice, mercy, good deeds, et cetera. Unless our military actions are servant to our judicious Sharia policy, and unless our short-term goals and successes are servant to our ultimate goal and highest aims, then they will be akin to exhaustion, strain, and illusion.” (Written on 11 December 2005)

The problem is not only the fact ISIS makes major mistakes concerning the implementation of the Sharia, priorities, and war strategy. The bigger problem is that they elevate themselves above everyone else, as the Khilafah, and they do not accept any other opinion concerning these issues except their own. So they force people to take their wrong stances and force them to share their mistakes! Shaykh Ayman al-Dhawahiri for example said that it is the strategy of Al-Qaedah to focus on the main enemy (the US), and lessen the secondary- and the far away enemies instead of multiplying them, in the defensive Jihad of Iraq or Shaam for example; by refraining from targeting the minority sects in Iraq and Shaam who stay neutral. Shaykh Abu Musab Zarqawi also adhered to this strategy, by not attacking the Yazidis, the Christians, and the Rawafid of Jaysh Al-Mahdi for example who stayed neutral at that time. The strategy of Al-Qaedah consist of not attacking them and provoking them if they stay neutral.

ISIS blames them for this. If this is their crime, then imagine, what if Al-Qaedah even tried to buy certain enemies off with money in order to lessen the amount of enemies against them? Because this is exactly what the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) wanted to do in the Battle of the Trench when we suggested to buy off the tribe of Ghatafaan! He proposed this in order to lessen the Arab coalition (Ahzaab) against them in Madinah. The Prophet wanted to do this out of care for the Muslims, this would neutralize the coalition, and lessen their number by 4000 men. So lessening the enemies and focusing on the main enemy is the exact same strategy of the Prophet, and not the strategy of Al-Qaedah. Accusing Al-Qaedah of being cowards or traitors, because of this strategy, is an indirect accusation towards the strategy of the Prophet! Multiplying your enemies and provoking them is not in any way Islamic nor heroic, you only burden and place the Muslim Ummah in unnecessary danger.

Another example is the accusation against some Mujahid groups in Syria, that they receive supplies and weapons from foreign interests in their war against the Assad regime, from neighboring countries like Turkey, and the Arab rulers in the region for example. Not only do they blame them for this, they also blame Mujahid groups like Jabhat Nusra for allying with these Mujahid groups because of this, even if they did not receive any supplies and support themselves. But do they not know that the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) himself asked and borrowed weapons from Safwan ibn Umayyah in the Battle of Tabuk against the Romans, even though Safwan was still a polytheist at that time? If this is allowed, than what about someone who merely allies with someone who receives weapons from disbelievers, to fight against the disbelievers, while he himself does not receive any weapons or support? Blaming them for this, or even accusing them of Kufr (without knowledge of Sharia principles) for such actions, which are allowed in the Sharia, is simple absurd.

Many of these accusers do not even know that there is a big difference between seeking assistance from the disbelievers, and supporting the disbelievers. When you seek assistance from the disbelievers you do so to rescue the Ummah, but when you support them you do so to empower them over the Ummah. Supporting them over the Muslims is Kufr, while seeking assistance from them is not. But they throw everything on one chaotic pile and label it with a general judgment without any details nor decent knowledge. If a Muslim is drowning in a river, and a Kaafir came by and stretched his hands to pull him out, is it not permissible to grab his hand and safe your live? The Muslims who stood by watching as this Kaafir helped him from drowning are to blame, not the drowning Muslim who fought for his live.

Like Shaykh Atiyatullah Al-Libi said: “If the Mujahideen of Al-Qaedah or Taliban for example worked together at the moment with China for example (against the Crusaders) and received supplies from them like missiles, maps, intelligence, and the like, then this is permitted by Allah during war inshaAllah, it does not contradict the Sharia of The Most Mercifull. Because it benefits the Mujahideen. And if the Mujahideen do this then they know that this is a (temporary) phase, and that China is also an enemy -this is the expected basis- but at the moment they are a far away enemy and not a direct enemy.” (Naratted by Shaykh Abu Hassan Al-Kuwaiti)

It is from the principles of Ahl Sunnah for example that it is permissible to fight together with-, or even under the leadership of a wicked person (Faajir) in a defensive war; if this could preserve Muslim blood and protect the Ummah. The war-strategy and the Sharia-methodology of the Prophet, and the companions, and the scholars and Mujahideen who stick to this; is based on the principle of protecting and preserving Muslim blood. Not because they are afraid, cowards or traitors. This is a major slander! They outweigh benefits v.s. harms, and try to preserve as much Muslim blood as possible, because they know its worth. So they do not shy away from means and methods which are permitted by Allah to preserve and rescue the Ummah.

Salahudeen Al-Ayubi was an Ash’ari, and he helped spread this theology, but nevertheless everyone agrees that Salahudeen Al-Ayubi is a great Muslim hero, and they are happy with his conquests. The same can be said about the Afghan Mujahideen who mostly adhere to the Maturidi theology, the Arabs fought together with the Afghans against the Soviets despite their theological differences. So this is not the time for stubbornness, we must unite in a defensive war against our enemies and put our differences aside, because there is a greater cause in front of us.

Shaykh Al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said: “It is from the principles of Ahl Sunnah wal Jama’ah that waging war is both permitted with a righteous and a wicked person (Faajir), because Allah could support this religion by a wicked person and by people with no manners, like the Prophet (SalAllahu Alayhi wa Selam) has narrated. If people only agree to wage war under the leadership of a wicked person, or with an army which consist of many wicked people, then there are two options: either you leave the battle with them, which causes others to gain power (over the Ummah) who are even more harmful for the religion and world. Or you wage war with a wicked person by which you repel the transgressing enemy, and establish most parts of the Sharia of Islam, even if you do not reach complete empowerment and implementation. This is what is necessary in this situation and every other similar situation. Furthermore, most of the wars which were waged after the rightly guided Khulafaah only occurred in this manner.” (Majmu Al-Fatawa 28/506)

These concepts must be considered if we value the blood of this Ummah and we truly want to protect it, with the modest means we have and the necessary methods permitted by Allah. But ISIS doesn’t understand such concepts, or misuses them, because they do not seem to care much about Muslim blood, like we see for example in their reckless and sporadic suicide operations in many countries; like Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Libya, Afghanistan. This lack of concern for Muslim blood is their main driving force in the many wrong verdicts, decisions and mistakes they make concerning the implementation of Sharia and their strategy of waging a defensive war.

The strategical mistakes stemming from their lack of concern for Muslim blood are many, too much to mention, but we have seen for example how reckless they are with war-prisoners; instead of exchanging them for Muslim prisoners held captive in the torture dungeons of the tyrants, they execute them in spectacular Hollywood-like propaganda videos to feed their reputation. Which leaves one to wonder, is propaganda and reputation more important than freeing Muslim prisoners? We also saw their disregard for their own Mujahid lives, and their misplaces priorities, in the senseless battle for the meaningless Kobani.

Their disregard for Muslim blood is, next to partisanship and ignorance, not only the main driving force in the many mistakes they make, but it is also their main driving force in their baseless accusations directed towards many Mujahid groups. And unfortunately many youths buy in to this nonsense, but someone with a decent amount of Islamic knowledge would not buy in to this, let alone make these accusations. Likewise someone with concern for Muslim blood, and someone who considers the whole Ummah instead of his exclusive group.

Like Shaykh Ayman Az-Zawahiri said in his recently leaked letter, to the ISIS governor of Syria, Abu Ali Al-Anbari: “Your statement that you are committed to your state as long as there is blood pumping in your veins, is not right. We should not fight for these states or organizations, they are only means to an end, and your state in Shaam and Iraq my dear brother is just a guerrilla front waging a hit-and-run war. Fighting and dying is done to raise the Word of Allah; with every state or organization which support this. And we give up some matters for each other to reach a united community.” (Written in August 2013)

Their accusations do not hurt, the Mujahideen are used to such accusations over the past couple of decades, but the big danger is that their blood is being spilled and made Halal due to these ignorant accusations and instigations. Not at the hands of the tyrant rulers and their government scholars, nor the disbelievers, but their own Mujahid brothers! This is by far the biggest calamity of this decade. The amount of Mujahideen they have killed in Shaam, and other countries after that, is unprecedented. We ask Allah that they repent and return to the Right Path, may Allah guide and unite this Ummah against their enemies.

Your brothers from: DMIS.

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