In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
Allaah [The Exalted] said:
إِنَّ فِرۡعَوۡنَ عَلَا فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَجَعَلَ أَهۡلَهَا شِيَعً۬ا يَسۡتَضۡعِفُ طَآٮِٕفَةً۬ مِّنۡہُمۡ يُذَبِّحُ أَبۡنَآءَهُمۡ وَيَسۡتَحۡىِۦ نِسَآءَهُمۡۚ إِنَّهُ ۥ كَانَ مِنَ ٱلۡمُفۡسِدِينَ
Verily, Fir’aun (Pharaoh) exalted himself in the land and made its people sects, weakening (oppressing) a group (i.e. Children of Israel) among them, killing their sons, and letting their females live. Verily, he was of the Mufsidoon]. [Surah Al-Qasas. Aayah 4]
Imaam Al-Aloosee [may Allaah have mercy upon him] said, “He divided them into different sects and they went along with him in everything he desired of evil and corruption, or he used some as a means to get others to obey him, or he made them into different distinct groups under his service and used every group in some type of work, such as construction, tillage, earthwork (drilling etc) and other burdensome work, and whoever did not work was beaten, so they served him by doing so; or he made them into sects and incited hatred and enmity between them, so that they do not come to an agreement (or become united in their stance against him). (1)
[ إِنَّهُ ۥ كَانَ مِنَ ٱلۡمُفۡسِدِينَ – Verily, he was of the Mufsidoon]- Meaning: Those whose intention is neither to rectify the religious nor worldly affairs, and this was from his corrupt behaviour in the earth. (2)
Allaah [The Exalted] said:
وَقَالَ فِرۡعَوۡنُ ذَرُونِىٓ أَقۡتُلۡ مُوسَىٰ وَلۡيَدۡعُ رَبَّهُ ۥۤۖ إِنِّىٓ أَخَافُ أَن يُبَدِّلَ دِينَڪُمۡ أَوۡ أَن يُظۡهِرَ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ ٱلۡفَسَادَ
Fir’aun (Pharaoh) said: “Leave me to kill Musa (Moses), and let him call his Lord (to stop me from killing him)! I fear that he may change your religion, or that he may cause mischief to appear in the land!” [Surah Ghaafir. Verse 26]
Imaam As-Sadi [may Allaah have mercy upon him] said: Allaah (The Most High) said: [وَقَالَ فِرْعَوْنُ – Fir’aun (Pharaoh) said] – Meaning, with haughtiness and tyranny, whilst deluding his foolish people;
[ذَرُونِي أَقْتُلْ مُوسَىٰ وَلْيَدْعُ رَبَّهُ – Leave me to kill Musa (Moses), and let him call his Lord (to stop me from killing him)!] This was his (false) claim that had it not been for his consideration of the wishes of his people, he would have killed Musa and that (Musa’s) supplication to his Lord would not have prevented him from that. Fir’awn then mentioned what made him want to kill Musa and that he is a sincere adviser to his people, and that he wished to remove mischief from the land. Allaah (The Most High) stated that Fir’awn said:
[إِنِّي أَخَافُ أَنْ يُبَدِّلَ دِينَكُمْ أَوْ أَنْ يُظْهِرَ فِي الْأَرْضِ الْفَسَادَ – I fear that he (Musa) may change your religion, or that he may cause mischief to appear in the land!]
This is the most amazing the affair can be! The most evil one among the creation gives advice to the people against the best among the creation. This is (nothing but) disguised falsehood and propaganda, which cannot seize except the intellects of those (people) about whom Allaah stated: [فَاسْتَخَفَّ قَوْمَهُ فَأَطَاعُوهُ ۚ إِنَّهُمْ كَانُوا قَوْمًا فَاسِقِينَ – Thus he Fir’aun (Pharaoh)] befooled and misled his people, and they obeyed him. Verily, they were ever a people who were Fasiqun (rebellious, disobedient to Allah)]. [Surah Az-Zukhruf. Verse 54] (3)
Allaah [The Most High] said:
قَالَ أَجِئۡتَنَا لِتُخۡرِجَنَا مِنۡ أَرۡضِنَا بِسِحۡرِكَ يَـٰمُوسَىٰ
فَلَنَأۡتِيَنَّكَ بِسِحۡرٍ۬ مِّثۡلِهِۦ فَٱجۡعَلۡ بَيۡنَنَا وَبَيۡنَكَ مَوۡعِدً۬ا لَّا نُخۡلِفُهُ ۥ نَحۡنُ وَلَآ أَنتَ مَكَانً۬ا سُوً۬ى
قَالَ مَوۡعِدُكُمۡ يَوۡمُ ٱلزِّينَةِ وَأَن يُحۡشَرَ ٱلنَّاسُ ضُحً۬ى
فَتَوَلَّىٰ فِرۡعَوۡنُ فَجَمَعَ ڪَيۡدَهُ ۥ ثُمَّ أَتَىٰ
قَالَ لَهُم مُّوسَىٰ وَيۡلَكُمۡ لَا تَفۡتَرُواْ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ ڪَذِبً۬ا فَيُسۡحِتَكُم بِعَذَابٍ۬ۖ وَقَدۡ خَابَ مَنِ ٱفۡتَرَىٰ
He [Fir’awn] said, “Have you come to drive us out of our land with your magic, O Moosaa? Then verily, we can produce magic the like thereof, so appoint a meeting between us and you, which neither we, nor you shall fail to keep, in an open wide place where both shall have a just and equal chance (and beholders could witness the competition)”. [Moosaa] said, “Your appointed meeting is the day of the festival, and let the people assemble when the sun has risen (forenoon)”. So Fir’awn withdrew, devised his plot and then came back. Musa (Moses) said to them, “Woe unto you! Invent not a lie against Allah, lest He should destroy you completely by a torment. And surely, he who invents a lie (against Allah) will fail miserably”. [Surah Taa Haa. Verses 57-61]
Imaam As-Sadi [may Allaah have mercy upon him] said, “He (Fir’awn) claimed that the signs which Moosaa [peace be upon him] showed him were nothing more than sorcery and illusions, and that the aim behind them was to drive them from their land and take it over. Fir’awn’s statements were intended to influence his people, because people are naturally attached to their homelands and it is difficult for them to abandon them. He told them that this was Moosaa’s goal, so that they would hate and oppose him. (4)
This is what is witnessed from some French Demagogues and Ideologues when they desperately seek re-election, so in order to pander far-right voters, they use divisive rhetoric to arouse that exaggerated, passionate, or fanatical devotion to a national community. This is sometimes carried out by utilizing an ambiguous concept of radicalization and extremism – a kick in the teeth for those Muslims who fight extremism on a daily basis, maintain good neighborly relationships and do not take the law into their own hands. However, unfortunately, some demagogues will always utilize fearmongering as weapon against Muslims, especially when their citizens accuse them of failing to solve the economic problems of their nations. Every terrorist attack that is perpetrated by a misguided Muslim is claimed to be carried out in the name of Islam and thus strengthens anti-Muslim stance in the country. Sometimes, you hear them saying, “Islamists want our future, but they’ll never take it away”. This is one of the aims of populist politicians and demagogues- to spread hate toward the Muslims. However, there are many sensible non-Muslims who refuse to accept this false narrative.
Islamists Want Our Future, But They’ll Never Take It Away
The Term ‘Islamist’ in particular is used vaguely in order to mix truth with falsehood. According to many western ideologues, demagogues and writers, an Islamist is “A person who believes strongly in Islam, especially one who believes that Islam should influence political systems, an advocate or supporter of Islamic militancy or fundamentalism, radical Islamists etc” Indeed, this definition contains truth and falsehood, therefore let us examine the affair briefly.
(a) If the term ‘Islamist’ – according to Westerners – is a person who believes strongly in Islaam, especially one who believes that Islam should influence political systems, then indeed this is praiseworthy in the sight of Allaah. Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadee Al-Madkhalee [may Allaah preserve him] said, “Whoever Allaah wishes good for, He grants him understanding in the religion”. When this ‘Understanding in the religion’ is mentioned to the people, they understand it to mean the books of Islamic jurisprudence [i.e. the books that discuss the rulings related to prayer, zakat, fasting, marriage etc]. This is a deficient understanding. Fiqh [understanding] – first and foremost – is the understanding of the (sound) creed and Tawheed (i.e. sound Islamic monotheism). This is the highest level of Fiqh, because the nobility of knowledge is judged based on the nobility of its subject matter. The best and noblest subject matter is Tawheed, which teaches the people about the Attributes of their Lord and the perfection of His Attributes, about His Oneness, to worship Him (alone) and sincerely establish the religion for His Sake. Therefore, we seek understanding of Tawheed from Allaah’s Book, the (authentic) Sunnah of Allaah’s Messenger [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] and from the understanding of our pious predecessors. We seek understanding in all areas of (Sharee’ah) knowledge – understanding of halaal and haraam, acts of worship, mutual dealings, sound Islamic politics, economics and in every affair. [NB: This knowledge of politics is not based on the corrupt methodology of the so called ‘Muslim Brotherhood’, so read here: http://www.ikhwanis.com/authors/Abu.Iyaad.cfm ]
All these affairs – and all praise and thanks be to Allaah – are extensively (found) in the (message) brought by Muhammad [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him]. When Fiqh is mentioned, its intended (meaning includes) understanding of every affair that is connected to our religious and worldly affairs, and the foremost of them is the knowledge of Tawheed [Islamic Monotheism]. There is nothing that can do without the knowledge of Tawheed. Some people deeply preoccupy (themselves with other) sciences and subject matters, but do not know this knowledge brought by the Messenger, to such extent that you find many people who are well versed in language, Islamic jurisprudence, philosophy and the science of rhetoric, but – by Allaah – he does not know (the sound meaning) of ‘Laa ilaaha illal laah’ – the Islamic Monotheism, which Allaah sent all the Messengers with, the first and last of them. [Allaah said]: [وَلَقَدۡ بَعَثۡنَا فِى ڪُلِّ أُمَّةٍ۬ رَّسُولاً أَنِ ٱعۡبُدُواْ ٱللَّهَ وَٱجۡتَنِبُواْ ٱلطَّـٰغُوتَۖ – And verily, We have sent among every Ummah [community, nation] a Messenger [saying], “Worship Allah [Alone], and avoid [or keep away from] all false deities”.] [Surah An-Nahl. Verse 36]
Every Messenger came with this (Message), until the advent of the seal of the Messengers Muhammad [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him], who resided in Makkah for ten years and called to Tawheed. Tawheed was the foremost aspect and basis of his call. The prayer – the second pillar of Islaam after the testimony of faith ‘Laa ilaaha illal laah – was not legislated until in the 10th year (of his Messengership), and the full details (related to) Zakat was not legislated until (after his migration to) Madeenah and all the other laws. This shows the importance of Tawheed, so how is it that many people who ascribe to Islaam- those who claim knowledge – are ignorant of it, then how about the ignorant people. And due to this, misguidance, innovation in religious affairs and grave worship has become widespread, and this arose due to ignorance regarding the (perfect) Names and Attributes of Allaah and negation of Allaah’s (perfect) Attributes. And (also) a people from the other religions entered into Islaam and plotted against the people (through) corrupt sciences – rhetoric, philosophy, forged (or spurious) historical accounts and what is similar to that, and thus corrupted their (sound) creed and methodology”. (5)
Therefore, a Muslim who firmly believes in Islaam follows this path clarified by Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadee [may Allaah preserve him], however bear in mind that this does not include the politics of the power-hungry so called ‘Muslim Brotherhood’.
(b) If the term ‘Islamist’ – according to Westerners – is ‘an advocate or supporter of militancy, radicalism or terrorism’, then indeed this is not to be attributed to Islaam, because the only people known for such behaviour are the khawaarij and those influenced by their ideas. It is well-known in Islaam that a Muslim is not allowed to commit any act of aggression against a non-Muslim citizen just because he disapproves of their behaviour. The Prophet [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] him] said, “Whoever kills one who is under an agreement of protection will not smell the fragrance of Paradise”. This hadeeth shows clearly that a Muslim is threatened with punishment in the afterlife for murdering a non-Muslim citizen who is under an agreement of protection. Therefore, how can any sensible person attribute the deeds of such a Muslim to Islaam?!
(c) As for the term ‘Islamic Fundamentalism’, even though there is much dispute between the people regarding its meanings, however the meaning generally intended by those who use it is, ‘Strict observance of the teachings of the Qur’an and the Shari’ah (Islamic Law)’. Therefore, if this is what Westerners intend by the term ‘Fundamentalism’, then indeed Allaah [The Exalted] said:
فَلَا وَرَبِّكَ لَا يُؤۡمِنُونَ حَتَّىٰ يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيۡنَهُمۡ ثُمَّ لَا يَجِدُواْ فِىٓ أَنفُسِہِمۡ حَرَجً۬ا مِّمَّا قَضَيۡتَ وَيُسَلِّمُواْ تَسۡلِيمً۬ا
But no, by your Lord, they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) with full submission. [Surah An-Nisaa. Aayah 65]
Narrated Abu Musa [may Allaah be pleased with him] that the Prophet [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] said, “My example, and the example of what I have been sent with is that of a man who came to some people and said, O people! I have seen the enemy’s army with my own eyes and I am a plain warner; so protect yourselves!’ Then a group of his people obeyed him and fled at night proceeding stealthily till they were safe, while another group of them disbelieved him and stayed at their places till morning when the army came upon them and killed and ruined them completely. So this is the example of that person who obeys me and follows that truth which I have brought (the Qur’aan and the Sunnah), and the example of the one who disobeys me and disbelieves the Truth I have brought”. [Saheeh Al-Bukhaari. Vol 9. Number: 7283]
Therefore, if this is what the French Demagogues intend by the term ‘Fundamentalism’, then indeed it is a praiseworthy deed in the sight of Allaah [The Exalted], but if they mean those who advocate violence, then indeed this is the behaviour of the khaarijites [terrorists – innovators (ISIS, Al-Qa’idah, Jabhat An-Nusra and their ilk)]. Therefore, it is incumbent upon the French demagogues and ideologues to refrain from fearmongering. A desire for re-election should not lead to slander and ambiguity.
Finally, the upright Muslims adhere to the advice of Imaam Muhammad Bin Saaleh al-Uthaymeen [may Allaah have mercy upon him] when he stated: “Likewise I invite you to have respect for those people who have the right that they should be respected, from those between you and whom there is and agreement (of protection) [i.e. Non-Muslims]. For the land which you are living is such that there is an agreement between you and them. If this were not the case they would have killed you or expelled you. So preserve this agreement, and do not prove treacherous to it, since treachery is a sign of the hypocrites, and it is not from the way of the Believers. And know that it is authentically reported from the Prophet that he said, ‘Whoever kills one who is under and agreement of protection will not smell the fragrance of Paradise’. Do not be fooled by those sayings of the foolish people : those who say : ‘Those people are Non-Muslims, so their wealth is lawful for us [i.e. to misappropriate or take by way of murder and killing].’ For by Allaah – this is a lie. A lie about Allaah’s Religion, and a lie in Islamic societies. So we may not say that it is lawful to be treacherous towards people whom we have an agreement with. O my brothers. O youth. O Muslims. Be truthful in your buying and selling, and renting, and leasing, and in all mutual transactions. Because truthfulness is from the characteristics of the Believers, and Allaah – the Most High – has commanded truthfulness – in the saying of Allaah – the Most High – ‘O you who believe – fear and keep you duty to Allaah and be with the truthful’. And the Prophet encouraged truthfulness and said, ‘Adhere to truthfulness, because truthfulness leads to goodness, and goodness leads to Paradise; and a person will continue to be truthful, and strive to be truthful until he will be written down with Allaah as a truthful person’. And he warned against falsehood, and said, ‘Beware of falsehood, because falsehood leads to wickedness, and wickedness leads to the Fire. And a person will continue lying, and striving to lie until he is written down with Allaah as a great liar’. O my brother Muslims. O youth. Be true in your sayings with your brothers, and with those Non-Muslims whom you live along with – so that you will be inviters to the Religion of Islaam, by your actions and in reality. So how many people there are who first entered into Islaam because of the behaviour and manners of the Muslims, and their truthfulness, and their being true in their dealings”. [salafipublications.com]
Indeed, the likes of these above clarifications are well known to the demagogues and ideologues, but bias and nationalism does not allow them to distinguish between terrorists and law abiding Muslim citizens. Likewise our Mashaayikh in the West are well known for their staunch stance against the extremists and terrorists.
The Salafi Response To The Terrorist Attacks In Paris, France: “Were they forbidding an evil?”
By Shaikh Abdul Waahid Abu Khadeejah [may Allaah preserve him]
Living With Non-Muslims In The West
Informing The Authorities Of Terrorist Plots
Ignorance and its Effect upon Terrorism – By Shaikh Abu Hakeem Bilaal Davis [may Allaah preserve him]
The Ideological Origins of Al-Qaeda & ISIS – By Shaikh Abu Iyaad [may Allaah preserve him]