Extremism in Bloodshed (1)
Author: ‘Alī Ibn Yaḥyá al-Ḥaddādī
From the most horrible forms of extremism in the matter of Jihad is going to extremes in bloodshed, such that committing suicide is made permissible and labeled “martyrdom”, the murdering of believers in Tawḥīd (Islamic monotheism) like security officers and detectives is considered allowable by excusing it as “self-defense”. Killing women and children is deemed lawful by claiming they “harbor disbelievers”, and murdering those (Non-Muslims) at peace with Muslims and those promised safety is made permissible by claiming them to be “enemy combatants” or by claiming to implement the prophetic statement:
“Expel the polytheists from the Arabian Peninsula.”
This is nothing but insolence and contempt for the religion of Allah, audacity and arrogance in belittling the spilling of sacred, innocent blood for the following reasons.
1. Islamic legislative texts have explicitly forbidden any person from committing suicide, as in the statement of Allah تعالى :
وَلَا تَقْتُلُوا أَنفُسَكُمْ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ بِكُمْ رَحِيمًا
And do not kill yourselves, certainly Allah is to you all ever merciful.
[Sūrah al-Nisā’, 4:29]
These suicide missions (prevalent among the terrorists today) are indeed just like committing suicide by one’s own hand. And what they always mention of their justifications for it, they are mere individual interpretations that oppose Islamic texts so pay no attention to them. All the stories they may bring up, not one of them contains a single example of anyone from the Salaf (righteous predecessors) committing suicide at their own hands. Rather, within all such narrations, those they mention were killed at the hands of their enemies, and this is absolutely indisputable.
2. The Islamic texts and evidences are so numerous with regards to the forbiddance of killing a believer without right.2 Yet some people still consider it permissible to murder praying believers in Tawḥīd like police officers and investigators with their baseless clai that such officers are either apostates or their claim that killing them is self-defense. As for their alleged accusation that such people have committed apostasy, this requires clear, explicit evidence and they have none. As for their claim that murdering these officers is a form of self-defense, then if that were in fact the case, the scholars would not be in unanimous agreement (as they are now) that fighting back against offending authorities is not permissible.
Ibn Ḥajar, in his book “Fatḥ al-Bārī,” quoted Ibn al-Mundhir as saying:
The people of knowledge are in agreement that a man may defend himself against what has been mentioned if it is an all-encompassing form of oppression with the exception, as the scholars of Ḥadīth have unanimously agreed, of (fighting against) the ruler or leader. This is due to the narrations that have been related about remaining patient with his injustice and not opposing him.3
3. The texts have come explicitly forbidding the killing of women and children as well as those individuals who are not directly engaged in combat like the elderly, the weak, the sick or crippled, and others like them, except those among them who may actively assist (others in fighting) against the Muslims, physically or ideologically.
So how could anyone consider it permissible to kill such people when none of them are even in legitimate, actual combat in the first place?! Such thinking is only from personal interpretations to legitimize corruptive and destructive actions thereby murdering Muslims and innocent people among disbelievers, women, and children. We seek refuge with Allah from such deteriorating human nature.
4. It has also been proven that it is completely forbidden to kill anyone at peace with the Muslims (Mu’āhid) or people promised safety, and severe threats have come to those who do so. ‘Abd Allah Ibn ‘Āmr narrated that the prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم said:
“Whoever kills a Mu’āhid will not even smell the fragrance of paradise while its fragrance can be smelled from the distance of forty years away.”4
Rifā’ah Ibn Shaddād al-Qutbānī said: If it were not for a statement ‘Amr Ibn al-Ḥamq alKhuzā’ī told me, I would have walked between the head of al-Mukhtār and his body (I would have killed him); he (‘Amr) said that Allah’s messenger صلي الله عليه وسلم said:
“Whoever gurantees a man’s blood (that he will not harm him) yet kills him, he will carry a banner of betrayal on the Day of Resurrection.”5
The word Mu’āhid includes anyone under a guarantee or safety, a peace treaty or trust, or similar agreement. By that, his self, wealth, and honor are to be protected. Betraying this trust of safety and treachery against him is a great crime condemned by the Islamic legislation, the intellect, by manhood and honor, and by a basic sense of humanity as long as a person’s human nature has not been corrupted.
Still, those at peace with Muslims are murdered today – those who have entered Muslim countries for some work or business, or perhaps for medical treatment, tourism, or similar reasons. They are murdered by (their killers) falsely claiming them to be “spies” or considering them to be at war with Muslims. Or the excuse to kill is based on the allegation that “they are in the Arabian Peninsula and it is incumbent to expel them from it!” All of this is deception and twisting of realities by false analogies. It is a form of degrading the Islamic texts by using them with other than their correct, intended meanings.
For this reason, those scholars well-grounded in knowledge have issued verdicts that whoever carries out such attacks, whoever murders those individuals at peace with Muslims, they bear the burden of a heinous crime. They are corrupters on earth and these actions of theirs in Muslim lands are the actions of the Khawārij (Kharijites). The scholars have clarified the meaning of the Ḥadīth:
“Expel the polytheists from the Arabian Peninsula.”
It refers to those people who forcefully enter the land as settlers or colonialists. It does not include those people who come to the country for some legitimate purpose intending to leave thereafter. In addition, even when people are to be expelled, it is not to be done with betrayal and treachery, murder and hostility by individual citizens. Rather, this is a matter dependent upon the leader of affairs just as the prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم did and ‘Umar رضي الله عنه after him.