Sunday, December 16, 2007

A fascinating read

The most interesting thing I've read lately. Via Jules Crittendon:

Over the last few weeks, Sayyed Imam Al-Sharif, one of the least public yet most important figures in the global jihad movement, has published a long-awaited new work, Wathiqat Tarshid Al-’Aml Al-Jihadi fi Misr w’Al-’Alam (”Document of Right Guidance for Jihad Activity in Egypt and the World”), in which he calls for a stop to jihad activities in the West and also to those against the ruling regimes in Muslim countries. The new book, which Imam wrote while serving a life sentence in Egypt, was published in serial form in two Arab dailies, the Kuwaiti Al-Jarida and the Egyptian Al-Masri Al-Yawm, and has been the subject of extensive discussion and polemic among Islamists and observers of Islamist movements.
The book has generated such interest due to its author’s standing and importance among radical Islamists.
His 1988 book on the laws of jihad, Al-’Umda fi I’dad Al-’Udda (”The Essentials of Making Ready [for Jihad]”),was used as a jihad manual in Al-Qaeda training camps in Afghanistan. [2] In addition, Sayyed Imam is one of Ayman Al-Zawahiri’s oldest associates.
Q: “What is your evaluation of the events of September [11], 2001?”

Sayyed Imam: “It was a catastrophe for the Muslims. [Al-Qaeda] ignited strife that found its way into every home, and they were the cause of the imprisonment of thousands of Muslims in the prisons of various countries. They caused the death of tens of thousands of Muslims - Arabs, Afghans, Pakistanis, and others. The Taliban’s Islamic Emirate was destroyed, and Al-Qaeda was destroyed. They were the direct cause of the American occupation of Afghanistan and other heavy losses which there is not enough time to mention here. They bear the responsibility for all of this.
People hate America, and the Islamist movements feel the hatred and the impotence, and they applaud anyone who locks horns with America, whether it’s bin Laden, Ahmadinejad, or Saddam. Ramming America has become the shortest road to fame and leadership among the Arabs and Muslims. But what good is it if you destroy one of your enemy’s buildings, and he destroys one of your countries? What good is it if you kill one of his people, and he kills a thousand of your people?… That, in short, is my evaluation of 9/11.
Click either link for much more very good stuff. What is most fascinating is the insight into the reasoning of a serious Jihadi leader. For example, Sayyed Imam judges that the 9/11 attackers went to hell b/c they used false visas, thus putting themselves under the protection of the U.S. government, then attacked the very country whose protection they had sought out under the visa system. Sayyed Imam does not judge the 9/11 attacks, in and of themselves, to have sent the attackers to hell. Nor does he judge them for breaking U.S. law via using false visas. However, when they sought U.S. protection under their false visas, then attacked the nation which was protecting them, they doomed their souls.

Less fascinating, yet important to note: Sayyed Imam is saying (between the lines) America's aggressive military response is a reason we haven't been hit with another big attack in North America. I've wondered: why no follow up big attacks? There are certain types of attacks which we really cannot stop (except occasionally). Sayyed Iman's answer reads like a Republican campaign commercial:
What good is it if you destroy one of your enemy’s buildings, and he destroys one of your countries? What good is it if you kill one of his people, and he kills a thousand of your people?
Those sentences could not validate George Bush' military strategy any more strongly. The President may as well take a victory lap.

Our defense against Jihad is a type of mutually assured destruction defense. If you attack us: we do not target a government with a nuke, as in the Cold War. Instead: we gradually destroy your jihadi network; we destroy your long sought grip on a host nation (Afghanistan); and - via implementing democracy - we tempt the people away from fundamentalist Islam (Sharia law). If you hit us with a big attack, be assured we will destroy the things you hold dear.

Note something else: Sayyed Imam does not say
Thank goodness our enemy killed a thousand of our people, because that enabled us to recruit ten thousand to replace them.

Sayyed Imam apparently does not believe in an unlimited, exponentially growing number of replacement jihadis. He apparently believes the world population of Jihadis has a finite limit - at least in the short term. He apparently believes the invincible Jihadi hydra: cut off one head and five more appear - is only a fantasy.

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