The World Association for Al-Azhar Graduates based at Al-Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt, calls for a comprehensive and integrated strategy to counter the ideologies and the atrocities of the terrorist group ISIS (Daesh). Al-Azhar emphasises that the actual aim of triggering attacks through the group’s so-called strategy of ‘trampling horses’ to crush people in public spaces in Western countries is to cover up the group’s major defeats which it has suffered within areas in which it is and was present. Similarly, it seeks to ease the pressure it is under within the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt after suffering calamitous losses.
Al-Azhar makes it clear that because of its continuous setbacks and defeats at all levels, the corrupt group of ISIS, which has turned on its heels, has now called for a series of strategies that further expose the ills of their hearts, the perversion of their thoughts, and the corruption of their understanding not only regarding the laws of religion but also regarding moral and fundamental norms of humanity and human dignity. The one whose character is shattered, his religion cannot be trusted.
A further abhorrent strategy of brutal assassinations has been pursued by the group, aimed at killing Muslims and other people from security and public services, void of any intellectual reasoning and pursuant to a set of illusions resulting from their misguidance and corrupt morals and ethics. Furthermore, they did not hesitate from distorting the concept of jihad which is linked to the laws of religion; the laws which are firmly linked to humanitarian norms and international covenants. By relying on and pursuing assassinations and murders considering them to be a path to their alleged jihad, the group has transgressed against the religion of Islam; its terms of laws, beliefs, moral and ethical code. The sacred law of Islam has most certainly prohibited deceit, deception, corruption, and murder. It has been narrated in the tradition: “Faith prevents murder. Whosoever guarantees the safety of a person’s blood and then murders him, I am free from the murderer and have no connection with him, even if the person killed is a non-Muslim.”
A closer examination will make clear their distortion of the sound religion of Islam as well as their transgression against humanity. They now appear to adopt poisoned ideas of dispatching their mercenaries of lone wolves to murder civilians and spill blood in any way possible through their policy of ‘trampling horses’ to crush people in public spaces in different countries. After their ultimately unsuccessful policy of indiscriminate slaughter in their so-called controlled region and after losing in their policy of rule by death, they have apparently vowed to cause destruction, mayhem, terror, and panic in other parts of the world. Hence their prompt claim of any atrocity and attack that occurs in any country.
The truth of the matter is that when a person loses the principles which govern human ethical behaviour and dignity, his contemplation of textual evidence no longer is of any benefit after that. Therefore, how can such a policy of ‘trampling horses’ in other countries be a strategy in the name of religion when it is based on treachery, deception and the killing of civilians after having entered into an agreement (by visa or citizenship) upon entering other countries confirming regard for their rule of law, safeguarding of rights, and preserving person and property. How can this at all occur when Allah Almighty has stated: “O you who believe! Fulfil the obligations (promises).” [Qur’an 5:1] It is narrated from ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “Whosoever has four such characteristics within him is an absolute hypocrite, and whosoever has one trait from them within him has a trait of hypocrisy until he gets rid of it: when he is entrusted with something, he cheats (in another narration: when he makes a promise, he breaks it); when he speaks, he tells a lie; when he enters into a contract, he betrays it; and when he quarrels, he acts immorally.”
The corrupt way of these people has become further apparent and their distance from the laws of the religion and its morals as the group has initiated a strategy to extend their influence in new areas and to recruit new fighters within the ranks of their terror organisation. The strategy is based on the withdrawal of the group from places where it is subject to strikes and successive attacks, and to go into new places, with the aim of forming a new area of influence, in which more followers will join them and more material resources will be found which will aid the group in completing its goals. In this there is a manifest sign of disloyalty towards the prophetic guidance, disregarding it, they then kill in these areas with no right and kill under the flag of ignorance. The saying of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) is clear which Imam Muslim and others have narrated from Abu Hurayrah: “Whoever abandoned obedience, separated from the group and then died, then it is an ignorant death. Whoever fought under the flag of his tribe, defending it, helping it and then died, then the murderers die an ignorant death. Whosoever fights against my community, striking it’s righteous and it’s immoral, not keeping away from a believer due to his faith, and does not fulfil the agreement with the one he took it with, then he is not from me and I am not from him.”
Upon pondering over the guidance from the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him), the violation and transgressions of ISIS become apparent. The group functions in direct contradiction with the moral code of practice and ethics of Muslim warriors who do not flee from battle; who do not fight except for a lawful religious objective by announcing their intention and commitment first to preserve lives and properties. Those violations are not from the morals of believing warriors and not from the prophetic guidance. “Indeed, the worst of living creatures in the sight of Allah are those who have disbelieved, and they will not [ever] believe – The ones with whom you made a treaty but then they break their pledge every time, and they do not fear Allah. So if you, [O Muhammad], gain dominance over them in war, disperse by [means of] them those behind them that perhaps they will be reminded. If you [have reason to] fear from a people betrayal, throw [their treaty] back to them, [putting you] on equal terms. Indeed, Allah does not like traitors.” [Qur’an 8:55-58]
One of the astonishing aspects in the antics and blindness of ISIS is that after their terrible defeats in every battlefield and land that they enter; they claim unjustly and falsely that they are the victorious group. There is no audacity greater than being audacious before Allah Almighty, His Messenger (peace be upon him) and His signs. It is as though they are saying to the people that Allah Almighty and His Messenger (peace be upon him) have lied. Since how is it that they are the victorious group when Allah Almighty destroys them in every battlefield? This is a severe accusation made against Allah Almighty.
In conclusion, it is necessary for every Muslim that he be aware of the danger of these unjust oppressors – terrorists and extremists such as ISIS – who fabricate lies in the religion of Allah Almighty, and attribute to the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) that which he did not say, and they speak of Allah Almighty’s Book the Qur’an without any understanding, knowledge and right.