Why are most extremist in the ranks of ISIS from Tunisia?
Why are most extremist in the ranks of ISIS from Tunisia?
The extremism spread in the Jihadist movement after the revolutions in the Arab countries is not hidden for anyone, especially from Tunisia, which spread to Shaam, Iraq and Libya. Despite the fact that this ideology was not dominant and the fact that they did not have any major presence in the Jihadi battlefield. Many of course made Hijrah from Tunisia and sacrificed their pure blood and lives in support of the religion, but the fact is that most of the Muhajireen from Tunisia were extremists.
We will try to explain the reasons for this. Many explain this by simple ascribing this to the Jahl spread in Tunisia due to lack- and tyrannical suppression of knowledge. This is true. But there are hidden reasons many do not know. These reasons must be shared so that we are aware of the plots of the tyrants, and we do not fall in their traps.
After the revolution the secret apparatus in Tunisia was severely weakened and lost control, they were unable to prevent what they saw as contrary to their laws and politics. They tried desperately to return to power in a gradual and despicable way. They went underground and studied the Jihadi movement carefully, their weak and strong points, they studied their successful tools and the methods to beat them and eliminate them with. One of the methods was preventing certain scholars from entering the country, while they let others in with ease.
In the beginning they let sell-outs like Abu Hafs Al-Maghribi and Abu Muhammad Al-Fizazi enter the country, despite the fact that the second was forbidden from entering the country, when they let him enter confusion started to appear in the ranks of the Jihadi movement. Because he lied to them and said that he did not sell-out but that he was misleading them (the Moroccan authorities who jailed him). But he was confronted by Shaykh Abu Iyad Al-Tunsi (head of Ansar Sharia in Tunisia) and he exposed his lies and warned against him.
Likewise they let Shaykh Abu Basir Tartoosi enter, this came as a surprise to the Jihadi movement, and this caused a big confusion in the ranks of the movement, he warned against the project of Ansar Sharia and against its leader Abu Iyad. But when this move failed completely, and An-Nahda (Muslim Brotherhood party in Tunisia) won the elections, they invited some scholars who were known for favoring the Muslim Brotherhood and the Suroori movement, who also had an influence on the youth of the Jihadi movement. They invited Muhammad Hassan, Walid Dido, Muhammad Musa Al-Shareef, Sa’d Al-Bayrak, Iyad Al-Qarni, etc. They wanted to influence the youth so that they would participate in the elections, but this attempt failed.
After that, when a fierce confrontation between the Islamists and the secularist occurred, An-Nahda wanted to invite some scholars who could refute the extreme secularists, like Wajdi Ghunaym, Nabil Al-Awadi, Muhammad Al-Arifi, Muhammad Hassan, etc. But this helped them refute the secularist only.
After these failed attempts the secret services allowed the extremist Takfiri Ahmad Al-Hazimi to enter Tunisia multiple times, around five times, and every time he would stay for weeks. They let him in from the beginning, but later on this intensified suspiciously. He would teach intensive courses in the capital and in the south, and he would talk much about the subject of Kufr and Al-Imaan, and this helped spread extremism in the ranks of the Jihadi movement and disputes between the youth. All the other attempts failed, except the attempt of Ahmad Al-Hazmi who was successful in spreading extremism in the ranks of the movement.
While they let these deviating scholars enter Tunisia, other scholars were prevented from entering by the secret services, scholars who were known for warning about extremism and supported the Mujahideen, and showed their rejection towards democracy and the tyrants, like Shaykh Abu Abdullah Al-Saadiq Sudani, Umar Al-Hadoushi, Hassan Al-Kattani, Ahmad Naqeeb, and others.
Many and especially the Jihadi youth thought that the secret services in Tunisia collapsed without a return. But the reality was that this collapse was partial, they took a passive observing position, they observed the movements and talks of the scholars of the Jihadi movement, and were studying the movement deeply. They were searching closely for the points of weakness, which could lead to the collapse of the movement and split the ranks. For example. They discovered the major lack of knowledge and disrespect toward the scholars in general from many youths who ascribed themselves to this movement, they were only moved by fiery enthusiasm, which one could steer at the direction he wanted. They noticed certain points of focus, most important; extremism in Takfir and an obsession with controversial subjects.
Extremism in Takfir spread in a bizarre way between the ranks of the youths, this led to Takfir on scholars, leaders of Jihad and some Islamic movements, it even led to permitting the spilling of blood and taking of money. The statements of ignorant people were spread about serious subjects, verdict were spread without any fear for Allah, despite the advises of the scholars to stop speaking about these issues. Especially Shaykh Umar Al-Hadhoushi was confronted by this Fitnah, he warned against extremism, and some youths from the movement were calling him the Imam of the polytheists in this day and age. The Shaykh recalled an event in one of his lessons when he was prevented from entering Tunisia, on the airport one of the security personal chiefs bragged to him about a project to spread the culture of Takfir between the ranks of Jihadi youth, in order to uproot them. And this project succeeded partially due to the lack of knowledge amongst the youth.
They also raised the issue of controversial subjects and connected these to the subject of Imaan and Kufr. Documents were leaked on the Internet from the interior ministry which talked about methods, schemes, goals and tools to counter the Jihadi movement and notably was raising the issue of controversial subject between the youths of this movement. In this period many subjects were raised like the subject “excuse due to ignorance” and Takfir on those who are excused and the rule about individuals and groups and the rule about seeking judgment in secular courts and other controversial subjects. While not respecting any difference of opinion or Ijtihaad. These subjects were spread as if they were clearcut matters without any room for differences of opinion concerning them, and as if these statements belonged to the fundamentals of the religion, and those who differed were disbelievers apostates. And these subjects were discussed everyday on the streets and in cafés and mosques amongst the youths of this movement, you would find a youth who did not know the rules of Wudhu (washing) talk about the subject of excuse due to ignorance!