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[Nettime-nl] Islamic Jihad, what is next ?
felipe rodriquez on Thu, 13 Sep 2001 10:17:30 +0200 (CEST)


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[Nettime-nl] Islamic Jihad, what is next ?




ISLAMIC JIHAD, what is next ?
(c) Felipe Rodriquez


INTRODUCTION

The attack on the World Trade Center in New York is a new phase in an
ongoing global religious and ideological conflict. This conflict started in
1990, with the gulf war. The mother of all wars, as Saddam Hussein called
it, and is unlikely to end for some time. To understand this conflict, we
must look at the Western world's exploitation and colonization of Saudi
Arabia and other Muslim nations . Economic and geopolitical moves that
benefit only the western democratic capitalist structures are the primary
cause of this terrible conflict.


USAMA BIN MUHAMMAD BIN IN LADEN

The Taliban consider Osama Bin Ladin to be a holy man, because of his
incredible service in the Afghani war against the Russians, and the
reconstruction of Afghanistan. Osama Bin Ladin has fought hundreds of
battles in Afghanistan, and has been wounded numerous times. He went to
Afghanistan around 1982, and took with him a large amount of construction
equipment, and a team of engineers, to rebuild the war torn country.
He is a devout Muslim, and answers to Allah and certain important Islamic
teachers, such as Sheik Safar Ibn `Abd Al-Rahman Al-Hawali.

He founded the "Al Qaeda" movement, with Muhammad Atef. The movement was
initially setup to record the movements of Mujahedin in Afghanistan. Later
the goal changed to driving the United States forces out of Saudi Arabia,
where the US setup a military base since the beginning of the Gulf War. Many
devout Muslims see this as a hostile invasion of the Islamic holy land,
comparable to the invasions of the crusaders in the past. Some years later
the goal changed once again, into what it is now; to attack Israel, the US
and its allies wherever it can. The justification of these acts, in the mind
of the Muslim activist, comes from the foreign occupation of the holy
cities; Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem.

It is simplistic and short sighted to assume that Osama Bin Laden is the
great leader behind the attacks on the WTC, the Nairobi and Dar Es Salaam US
embassies, the hit on USS Cole in Yemen and various other terrorist attacks.
Islamic religious activism is the glue that binds this global terror
movement together. Removing Osama Bin Ladin from the scene will not remove
this global movement, and will not end terror. Killing him will only
motivate thousands of Muslims to volunteer for the ultimate sacrifice.
The Islamic radical movement resembles a hydra, A serpent represented as
having many heads, one of which, when cut off, is immediately succeeded by
two others. The movement cannot be eradicated by violence and retaliation,
such deeds will only make it stronger and increase popular support in the
Islamic world.

To understand how this works, lets look at Hizbollah and Hamas. These
Islamic organizations have been setup in such a way that they are almost
impossible to eradicate. There is always double redundancy in the
leadership, because any leader can expect to be assassinated by their
enemies at any time. The effectiveness of this redundancy is demonstrated by
the fact that Hizbollah and Hamas still exist today, despite the fact that
many of its leaders have been assassinated by Israel and others.
We must assume that the leadership of the organization that hit the WTC, and
other targets in the past, is organized in a similar way, building on the
experience of Islamic organizations in Lebanon, Palestine and elsewhere.

Hamas and Hizbollah have integrated Islamic thought in their society by
providing numerous services to their communities. Schools and hospitals are
provided for free or at cost. And they materially support families, widows
and orphans that have been victims of aggression by their enemies. Hizbollah
operates numerous businesses, that together with donations fund the
activities of the organization. These social activities provide the
organizations with enormous popular support, it is an effective way of
disseminating the virtues of Islam, and strengthening its base. It has also
created a strong platform to recruit martyrs for the violent Jihad (Holy
War) against Israel and its allies.

>From documentation that was seized in Africa, after the Nairobi bombing,
there is a strong indication that a cell structure was used to limit the
risks to the terrorist organization that hit the African embassies,
allegedly the same organization that hit the WTC in 2001. A cell structure
is often used by violent groups. It is implemented in such a way that cell
members only know a limited amount of members of the organization, and only
have limited access to information about the planned activities of the
group. Typically cell members only know the coordinator of the cell, and the
coordinator only knows one higher placed member of the organization. The aim
of the cell structure is to protect the organization, in case of arrests and
torturous interrogations.

The violent faction of the Islamic activist movement, such as the Islamic
front for Jihad, is mostly invisible. It has been hardened through years of
struggle in Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan. It is acutely aware of
its security requirements, because numerous Islamic activists have been
assassinated in the past.
The WTC attack, and the other attacks in the past demonstrate that they have
relatively good communication security; they most likely assume that all
electronic communication is monitored by the US and its allies through their
global Echelon surveillance system and the FBI's Carnivore software. Human
infiltration of these groups is not likely either, most of these Islamic
activists have been working together for many years. An infiltrator would
have to speak fluent Arabic, would have to have intimate knowledge of the
Quran and Islamic religious rituals, and would have to be willing to make
the ultimate sacrifice, Martyrdom, to earn the trust of the organization. In
1853 adventurer Richard Burton managed to disguise himselfe as a Muslim
Derwish, participate in the Pilgrimage to Mecca and Al- Madinah, and came
back alive. But he was the exception to the rule, and he did not try to
infiltrate a terrorist organization that expects infiltration attempts.


INTENTIONS AND MOTIVATIONS

"The people of Islam awakened and realized that they are the main
target for the aggression of the Zionist-Crusaders alliance. All false
claims and propaganda about "Human Rights" were hammered down and exposed
by the massacres that took place against the Muslims in every part of the
world. The latest and the greatest of these aggressions, incurred by the
Muslims since the death of the Prophet (ALLAH'S BLESSING AND SALUTATIONS
ON HIM) is the occupation of the land of the two Holy Places"
(Source: A DECLARATION OF WAR, by Osama Bin Laden.
http://msanews.mynet.net//MSANEWS/199610/19961012.3.html)

A growing group of Islamic scholars and activists feel that the military
installations of the United States in Saudi Arabia represent a hostile
foreign invasion into their holy land. They believe that the three most holy
places in the Islamic world, Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem, are occupied by
Zionists and  Christian crusaders. They also believe that most Muslim
nations are victims of neo-colonialist exploitation by the capitalist
western world. A holy war, Jihad, was declared in 1996 to struggle against
exploitation and occupation.

In 1998 a Fatwah was declared by Sheikh Usamah Bin-Muhammad Bin-Ladin, Ayman
al-Zawahiri, amir of the Jihad Group in Egypt, Abu-Yasir Rifa'i Ahmad Taha,
Egyptian Islamic Group, Sheikh Mir Hamzah, secretary of the
Jamiat-ul-Ulema-e-Pakistan and Fazlul Rahman, amir of the Jihad Movement in
Bangladesh. This Fatwah reconfirms the holy war against Israel, the US and
its allies. A quote from this Fatwah:

"The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies -- civilians and
military -- is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any
country in which it is possible to do it, in order to liberate the al-Aqsa
Mosque and the holy mosque [Mecca] from their grip, and in order for their
armies to move out of all the lands of Islam, defeated and unable to
threaten any Muslim. This is in accordance with the words of Almighty God,
"and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all together," and
"fight them until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail
justice and faith in God." (Source: World Islamic Front Statement 23
February 1998, http://www.fas.org/irp/world/para/docs/980223-fatwa.htm)

Safar Ibn `Abd Al-Rahman Al-Hawali, an important Islamic scholar and
ideologue and highly regarded by Osama Bin Ladin, recently wrote a book, The
Day of Wrath, describing various biblical prophecies.

He describes, among other things: "The attributes of the victorious army,
the collapse of the Zionist forces and the fate of the strategic ally of the
Zionist state (United States)." He states that the beginning of the new era
will be with the announcement of Jihad. And goes on to say that: "It is
futile for the enemies of Allah to compete with Him in weapons!" and "On the
other hand, as if at the signal of a trumpet, the Palestinian refugees
return to their homes, and after the great battle is over the Muslims,
especially those from Egypt and Iraq, are called to the Holy Land to visit
its sanctuary and spend time in worship within its environs." He goes on to
speculate that the reconquest of Jerusalem will take place in 2012.

True or not, we cannot deny the fact that the organizers of this Jihad
believe they are part of this prophecy, and believe that their struggle will
ultimately be successful. This has given them great moral strength,
perseverance, and willingness to sacrifice.


NEXT TARGETS

We should be prepared for the possibility that the WTC bombing is only the
beginning of a new era of warfare. This group has shown repeatedly what
their capabilities are. They have been given no reasons to stop their Jihad;
the US still has military bases in Saudi Arabia, Jerusalem is still occupied
by the Israeli's, and the western world is still perceived to be
implementing its systems of neo-colonialist exploitation on most, if not
all, Muslim nations.

Much will depend on the actions of the US and NATO. Pinpoint retaliation by
them is not possible, because they are fighting an invisible enemy.
President Bush has already stated that no difference will be made between
those countries that harbor terrorists, and the terrorists themselves.
Therefore it is likely that the US and NATO will shed the blood of innocent
Muslims, causing increasing popular support for the Jihad. Retaliation by
the US and NATO would be a precedent for the organisers of the Jihad to
engage in further attacks and further retaliation.

Any future targets of violence by this group are likely to be of greater
symbolic and material value than the WTC tragedy. Destruction of the Vatican
in Rome comes to mind immediately. The radical Islamists consider the
Catholic church to be corrupt, and its destruction would cause a complete
loss of morale for many people in the Western world. The White House is an
obvious target, as is Tel Aviv, the European Parliament in Brussels and
other centres of power. Additionally they may target military targets, such
as NATO headquarters, the Menwith Hill spy base in the UK, and similar sites
around the world.

In an interview Osama Bin Ladin expressed that it is his religious duty to
obtain weapons of mass destruction. We cannot discard the possibility of a
terrorist attack on a city with biological or even nuclear weapons.


THE SOLUTION ?

A solution is unlikely to come up anytime soon. The allies of the US and
Israel will most likely respond with violence, instead of analyzing the
causes of this movement. The Western focus seems to be to eradicate these
terrorist movements through violence and prosecution, by implementing
stronger intelligence systems and implementing additional internal security
systems. President Bush has already stated that he will attack any nation
that harbors and protects terrorists. Thereby laying the groundwork for acts
of war that are likely to be highly inaccurate, causing many civilian
casualties. If the history of the Middle East gives any indication, we can
speculate that violence will be answered by more violence and aggression.
Retaliation is at best the wrong answer, at worst it could be a catastrophic
mistake.

The start of a solution would be to look at the causes that have created
this violent movement. Why are so many Muslims upset with the Western world
and Israel ? Why have they been driven into a position where the only answer
they perceive possible in their struggle is unprecedented violence and
aggression ? Why do they feel cheated, raped and abused by the western
worlds military and capitalist system ? Why do they not trust the US and
Europe at the negotiating table, and instead see them as targets for
terrorist strikes ? We must go back into history, and realize which mistakes
have been made by our nations. We must recognize our total lack of respect
and appreciation for anything different than the modern western system of
democracy and capitalism. Only then will we arrive at some answers that
could lead us to an end of this Jihad.

This is highly unlikely to happen though and therefore the situation will
likely get worse before it gets better.


	(c) Felipe Rodriquez



Sources:

Frontline - http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/binladen/
A declaration of war from Usama Bin Laden -
http://msanews.mynet.net//MSANEWS/199610/19961012.3.html
World Islamic Front Statement -
http://www.library.cornell.edu/colldev/mideast/wif.htm
The DAY of WRATH - http://home.swbell.net/jhaidar/0_preface.htm
Foreign Terrorist Organizations -
http://www.state.gov/www/global/terrorism/fto_1999.html
The next presidents terrorism policy -
http://www.terrorism.com/analysis/TerrorismPolicy.pdf
The Use of Force in Response to Terrorism -
http://www.terrorism.com/terrorism/Force.shtml
WMD TERRORISM AND USAMA BIN LADEN -
http://cns.miis.edu/pubs/reports/binladen.htm
Suitcase Nuclear Devices - http://www.prop1.org/2000/suitcase.htm
CNN - http://www.cnn.com
Hezbollah by Hala Jaber - Columbia Univ Pr; ISBN: 0231108346
A pilgrimage to Al-Madinah and Meccah by R. Burton - AES; ISBN 81-206-0903-4
Gideons Spies by Gordon Thomas - Pan Books; ISBN: 033037537
The Fateful Triangle by Noam Chomski - Pluto press; ISBN: 0745315305
Pity the Nation by Robert Fisk - Oxford University Press; ISBN: 019285284-1
The terrorism reader by David J. Whittaker - Routledge; ISBN: 0-415-22134-X

















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