Islamic sovereignty is the cause of Islamic 'terrorism'.
I view conflict as part of human nature. Most conflict is NOT violent. Arguing with your spouse is a good example. The issues that I have studied are particularly about organized violence in the form of warfare. War generally takes the form of either open warfare with professional armies or irregular(guerrilla) war. Many of the issues that I point out in the following chapters are from the point of view of human nature. I am a historian. I see the study of history as being the study of human nature. You have heard the phrase “History is repeating itself”. This simply cannot happen. The same exact situation never occurs again. The same people do not exist nor do they occupy the same positions again. This is why all wars are unique, like fingerprints. What does not change is human nature. Hence the patterns or 'parallels' that historians refer to when they say that history is repeating itself.
Some examples: Look at how the Roman empire evolved from what could be considered a republic for that age. Look at how Western Europe evolved. A more personal example: Two immigrants back in the early 20th century immigrate to America. They work hard, save their money, build a successful business. Their children take over the business and do well. They don't have to work so hard at it. They don't have to give up so much in order to obtain their needs. The 3rd generation was born into money and the values they hold will be even more 'soft' compared to their grandparents. Not that the values are all 'bad', they just undergo change. This change is magnified as each new generation appears. The U.S. has been a 'rich' country for more than 100 years now. We have changed significantly. In many ways, for the better. In a number of ways, not so. This is the type of pattern or 'parallel' that I am thinking of when I discuss the U.S., Europe and Islamic evolution. Indeed, human evolution in the eye of a historian. This is what I am referring to when I discuss human nature.
Ever since I was in the 4th grade, I have been interested in military history. I was ashamed of this for a long time, afraid of being thought of as a 'war monger'. I guess I had anger issues. As time went on, I realized that I had amassed a great deal of knowledge that many others simply did not have. My thinking changed. My knowledge of warfare helps with understanding it and by doing so, can potentially be avoided. Is this not a valuable objective? Of course, avoidance is not possible all the time. In that case, at the very least shortened by effectively employing it. Not to mention choosing the fight wisely as opposed to blundering into it. I began to become more interested in current events and could see problems with a great deal of analysis that I was seeing on the news. The first time I really noticed the sharpness in my knowledge of warfare was in 1981 when the U.S. was arguing about bringing back the battleship.
In 1981, the U.S. began to bring back the battleship as part of it's active fleet. An 'expert' claimed that the battleship was as obsolete as the horse was during World War II. This 'expert' can only have known very little about World War II. The German army was 70% horse driven. If you look at hardly any pictures of the German army or of battles involving the German army, you will see horses everywhere. The Germans kicked the hell out of everyone, (including us) for a long time. The U.S. and England were the only 100% mechanized armies in the world. Horses may have been obsolete, but they were still very useful. When cut off from supply sources, you can eat a horse. This happened many times throughout the world, particularly on the German – Russian front. You can't eat a truck or drink fuel. The battleship in the 1980's, 1990's and early 2000's would still be useful. An Iowa class battleship could be outfitted with transponders that would make it look much larger to an incoming missile. Place the battleship between the aircraft carrier and the incoming missiles. It is a far less valuable target and was designed to withstand direct hits from shells much larger than the warheads of the incoming missiles. It could take a dozen or more hits and just keep on going. This could be a very valuable asset. It could take the punishment that the carriers can't. Or any of the other, more modern vessels. Fortunately, we did not need them. This 'expert' that called the battleship so obsolete as to be useless needed a little more research.
I have read press releases from many wars throughout the 19th and 20th centuries and realized the low level of understanding that reporters and editors posses. Junior high level. Even today, most analysis of current wars is on about a 7th or 8th grade level. Even the generals who are interviewed are very limited in what they say. At least the good ones are. This is because they know if they give up certain information, more of “Our” men will be killed. The good generals know that the enemy could be listening and will use the information against them, as has happened many times in the past. So the analysis for you, the public, is VERY limited. It is up to you to do the research that will allow for the move advanced understanding that is needed in today's modern world. Most of my studies had been devoted to what we call “Western” history and in particular modern warfare. (The U.S. Civil War to the present.) Then came 9/11/01. *
I saw the airplanes crash into our buildings, just like the Kamikaze attacks back in the 1940's when the U.S. was at war against Japan. Japan was the first time in all of recorded history that repeated suicide attack had been used as a weapon of war. The most basic instinct of all living things is survival. Humans can and have overcome this instinct on the individual level long ago. To do this on the scale of Japan in the 1940's requires cultural influence: “Today the popular belief is that the Japanese who took part in BANZAI charges, flew kamikaze missions, piloted Kaitens and Shiyo 'bang boats' or served as human mines, were all fanatics. Because many of the Banzai charges were ordered on the spur of the moment, no doubt there was an element of fanaticism in the army's operations. But the kamikazes, Kaiten and Kairyu men were dedicated individuals whose calm acceptance of death illustrates the impact of ideological persuasion. Fanatical or not, their actions can only be understood when seen in relation with deep-rooted Japanese traditions and a tyrannical governmental structure.” (Page 157 Suicide Weapon, A J Barker C 1971)
Japan was able to produce literally millions of suicide attackers. This repeated suicide attack we are seeing throughout the Muslim world is the link that pointed me to Islam. This is the common denominator. Islam is what all the major world terrorist organizations have in common. Until then, I had thought of Islam as being just another religion. The news media certainly believes this to this day. Repeated suicide attack on this scale requires cultural influence. I did not see Islam as a culture. Yet Islam has been around for more than 1300 years. Long enough to establish as a culture of it's own. Obviously, I needed to take a much closer look at Islam.
Knowing only a little about U.S. engagements with Islam, (The Barbary pirates) my knowledge was basically limited to the Middle East only as far back as the formation of Israel and its conflicts with its neighbors. After 9/11/01, I began a more through research into Islam and its history.
I started by attempting to see both sides. I read a bunch of stuff by Pro-Islamic authors. Karen Armstrong, Tariq Ramadan and like minded authors. I read anti-Islamic stuff, like Bernard Lewis. I found it interesting that I was having a great deal of trouble finding very much that was not leaning heavily to one side or the other. I was able to find only one publication that had been written by a member of a group that attempts to resolve differences between religions. This publication was of little help. This is because it dealt with religion as we in the West know religion. This is NOT were the war begins.
I found that supporters of Islam like Karen Armstrong and Taric Ramadan focus on Mohammed's actions and the phrases of the Koran that talked about personal behavior, in a way similar to Jesus in The Bible. I noticed that those who opposed Islam focused upon Islamic law and its application. In my studies of warfare, I have noted many excuses that are used to take violent action. The real reasons many times are hidden, but as a rule, it does not take all that many. My favorite example is the U.S. Civil War. Slavery was the single, greatest reason for our most costly war. Another large reason
was loyalty to state over the Federal government. Robert E. Lee did not like slavery, yet he resigned from the U.S. military because he was more loyal to his state of Virginia than he was to the U.S. government. He was far from being alone on this issue. Most wars boil down to just a small handful of real reasons. Islam is different.
I have studied Islam for more than 10 years now. In my research, I have found so many reasons for people to kill each other that I was stunned. It explains why so much conflict exists in all areas of the world where Islam is in contact with the rest of the world. This analysis that I have put together contains only some of the issues. Many more exist, but these are plenty. I have identified 8 issues that I believe people will fight and kill to both eliminate and to defend. Indeed, many have already. These issues are so established that like slavery in the southern states, they are part of the culture of Islam. In other words, those who believe in them will die fighting for them as well as kill to protect them. (Or any one of them. All it really takes is one good issue.) My conclusion is that Islamic Sovereignty is the cause of world wide Islamic terrorism.
All wars ever fought by man were about Sovereignty. Jefferson Davis ordered Beauregard to open fire upon fort Sumter because it was a foreign entity within the territory of the Confederate States of America. Slavery was the legal difference between the Confederacy and the United States. By winning the war, the United States forced it's sovereign law upon the southern states. Slavery was no longer legal. Sovereignty of the area being fought over is always the issue in war. ALWAYS.
The U. S. Revolutionary War determined who would make and enforce the laws in the area encompassed by the English colonies. The Mexican-American war determined who would hold sovereignty over Texas and much of the western part of North America. The Spanish-American war determined who would run Cuba and the Philippines. Russia went to war over the sovereignty of Serbia in 1914 triggering World War I. Great Britain declared war against Germany to protect the sovereignty of Belgium. France and Britain declared war against Germany in 1939 to defend the sovereignty of Poland. Korea was fought to defend South Korean sovereignty. And even though it ultimately failed, America fought to defend the sovereignty of South Vietnam. Even though sovereignty is the primary cause, each war has it's own individual issues.
Each war is unique as each person is unique and each person's fingerprints are unique. The common denominator is sovereignty. You name the war and you can find the sovereignty issue. Regarding the wars that Islamic terrorism is waging today, our news media overlook this vital issue. Just where is the sovereignty issue? It MUST be somewhere.
I define Islamic sovereignty as being Islamic nationalism. This is loyalty to the legal and political system of Islam (or a particular part of Islamic law) over any other government or national entity. This does not have to be in entirety. While I favor the United States over any other, my Christian beliefs do NOT trump the U.S. government. While the Koran has many interpretations, the basic idea of Islam as a national entity that can wage war, defend ‘occupied’ land or ‘waters’ to enforce its sovereignty is the common denominator. What makes this so dangerous is the fact that this concept is so widely accepted. Islam was a major form of government for more than 1300 years. This is certainly long enough to entrench itself as a cultural norm. Cultural change is one of the most difficult of all change. The implication is that Islamic sovereignty will not go away easily, nor quickly. As we have seen for the past 100 years, since the breakup of the Ottoman Empire.
Islamic nationalism is one, if not the major cause of 9/11/01 and the war(s). Many argue that Islam is not monolithic, which is true. Many of the areas of the world where Islamic nationalism is strong are modern, both in technology and education. It was only 70 years ago when the world was engaged in a massive war triggered by governments that ruled over modern societies. While these governments were monolithic, the very fact that the Islamic war today is irregular in nature would be a natural expression of a divided force.
Islam was founded as a combined religion and government. It is based upon many medieval principals. This was 1,000 years before the rise of the professional army and the modern national government. The armies of the ancient world were irregular. The economies of the world could not maintain a standing army as we know of them today. The only one that comes even close is the Roman army. Even in the Roman army, the soldiers spent a majority of their time doing peaceful economic activity. They were called to arms as needed. They disbanded after the immediate need was filled. Many times even before.
A natural disaster, a drought many times forced the disbandment of armies and postponement of the war they were waging. Sometimes for decades. The officer corps in the Roman army was somewhat more professional, at least at the top. And even then, they spent a great deal of time on political and economic matters. The point is that the Islamic armies of today resemble that of the medieval period more than anything else. They even chop off heads and perform many other brutal acts that have long since been discarded by modern ideology.
Pope Urban II started the 1st crusade in 1098 by using the methods of the day in generating an army. He rode around Europe and persuaded the kings to unite and send what forces they could raise into the Middle East. This was how wars were waged prior to the rise of the professional army and the modern
national government. I find it interesting that so may Muslims are offended by the term 'crusade' when in fact, Islam is doing exactly this today. Jihad is the mechanism that Islam uses to raise its 'army' and project its sovereignty.
The problem is Islamic government and law. A religion that functions as a nation state has no place in the modern world. Historically, Imams have had the power to declare war, field armies, levy taxes and enforce laws. Osama Bin Lauden is a classic example. All of the other religions of the world (That I know of) have long since ended this practice. Islam has yet to do this. Until this is accomplished successfully, the Islamic world will continue to provide violent, organized confrontations.
I have identified 8 concepts that initiate, support, encourage and enforce Islamic sovereignty. This is by no means a complete list.
1) Islamic law contains the penalty of stoning to death. Talk about a mob mentality. I saw a video of a stoning of a young girl who finally died when a cinder block was dropped on her head. The stoning was bad enough, but the final act was actually against Islamic law. This law dictates that the stones are not to be so small as to qualify as a pebble, and not so large as to kill with one blow, which was clearly the case in the stoning video that I saw. This 6th century idea has got to go. Like slavery, this must end. NO more stoning people to death! It is bad enough to still have laws that allow for people to be flogged, but this ‘law’ is about as ‘cruel and unusual’ punishment as you can get. (Flogging should be dropped as well) Yet a great risk is run when attempting to get rid of it, or ignoring it. This is a good enough reason to fight violence with violence. I mention this as a cause of war because of the violent resistance that is being seen when attempting to get rid of the stoning penalty. Riots occurred in Nigeria in 2006 because the court refused to have a woman who was convicted of adultery stoned to death. Nigeria is about 50% Muslim and 40% Christian. (10% ‘other’) This ‘law’ is an important one because similar problems have been seen in other parts of the world where attempts to ignore this same punishment have triggered responses similar to what Nigeria witnessed.
2) Beat your wife. Even though different interpretations say different things, this issue of beating your wife is still very large in Islam. In Saudi Arabia recently (Spring 2016) a television show was aired saying how it was important to 'lightly' beat your wife to keep any idea of her equality with you (the male spouse) repressed. How can this be even debated? Oh! No visible marks are to be left. Islamic law states you must not leave marks that can be seen. I can see why Islamic doctrine wants to cover up their women. You can't see any marks. This 6th century idea has come and should be long gone. Like slavery, this must end. Organized violence in the form of open warfare should be expected as resistance to getting rid of this. Yet a great risk is run when attempting to get rid of it, or ignoring it. (# 3 is the penalty for leaving Islam is death) This is a solid demonstration of how Islam has yet to evolve with modern ideas of human thought and dignity. This is another moral issue that is similar to that of getting rid of slavery. It will be almost impossible to stop violence without resorting to organized violence, particularly concerning issues like this. This is my second issue of Islamic law being a cause of war.
3) The penalty for leaving Islam is death.
This ‘Law’ has been enforced for 1400 years. Don't think so? A recent poll of Egyptians (Which is considered to be one of the most progressive Muslim countries) showed that 80% of the population is in favor of executing those who have left Islam. Part of the problem here is that the authority to execute people is supposed to be used only by a national government. Two ways that governments kill people: They execute their own citizens, or the government declares war and the professional army kills the enemy. Islam as a religion must not be allowed to retain this ability to terminate people’s lives. Islam allows people to take this type of action individually. Please remember, no national government existed to restrain this type of behavior. Just a kings authority. So the king who was Muslim would encourage the individual to act so that he did not have to get involved. Besides, it was much easier to enforce this way and enforcement much more through and widespread. This is the origin of 'Honor killings'. Islam also implements the killing of others through the authority that Imams exercise. They can field their own militias. This was an effective way of raising armies prior to the rise of the national government. This is also in conflict with the idea of governmental enforcement of the laws, not to mention government control of the armed forces. Even when governments enact this penalty for leaving Islam within the legal system, this reinforces the idea that once something is Muslim, it cannot revert back to anything else. This can be (And frequently is) applied to ‘waters’ and ‘occupation’ of land as well. I go into more detail on this issue in the law of “Kill the occupiers of Muslim land”. This concept goes well past national boundaries. As a result, this is an international issue that modern nations have and should go to war over. In addition, this law is a major structural problem for Islam.
The penalty for leaving Islam is death is the primary factor in the reasons why Sunni and Shiite have not been able to resolve their differences since 690 AD. (Islam was founded in 610 AD) Because the two sides differ in the line of succession of the leadership of Islam, (A major, fundamental difference) each side sees the other as having left Islam. In many of the cases where we hear of ‘sectarian’ violence, the Sunni/Shiite divide is what is being referred to. The large amount of this so-called sectarian violence throughout the Islamic world is a good indicator of how entrenched the law is within the Islamic world. Major attacks are occurring on an almost daily level. This demonstrates how this Islamic law is far more established than many of us 'Westerners' would like to believe.
A number of other differences exist in the interpretation of the Koran. (It is human nature for people to differ) When any group interprets the law in any way that is significantly different from others, they see the other side as having left Islam. Very few disagreements exists with the interpretation of ‘The penalty for leaving Islam is death.’ This cannot do anything but assist violent behavior. Historically, when ‘outsiders’ or infidels are involved, Sunni and Shiite will band together to defeat (kill) the common enemy before attempting to deal with the other, which is more of an internal problem. Execution of people is the sole responsibility of a modern national government, not a ‘religion’. Once again, Islam is in direct conflict with modern governance. Imams (And frequently, individuals) wield the power of governments when they can implement this penalty, along with numerous others that Islamic law requires. People and nations will fight violently to resolve these types of issues. It is about the only way to resolve them. Submission is another. No wonder it results in violence, on both sides.
4) The house of war: “In Muslim tradition, the world is divided into two houses, the house of Islam and the house of war.” (Bernard Lewis) If tradition sees the non-Islamic world as being in ‘the house of war’, then few if any excuses are required to start a war against infidels. (Non-believers) I would like to point out how this ‘tradition’ demonstrates Islamic attitudes about government and influences foreign policy.
At least part of the reason why Islam is so hostile is because so many of the ‘laws’ that dictate foreign policy follows this attitude. One example is when the Koran specifies when truces are to be made and when war can commence. Please note how truces are to be implemented, not peace. In other words, not permanent. Truces are to be broken when the situation changes to where Islam will gain an advantage by opening hostilities. In other words, the non-Islamic world can be attacked for any reason whatsoever, because it is infidel. The non-Islamic world truly is the ‘house of war’ simply because war can be waged against it any time Islam has an advantage. This is foreign policy by a ‘religion’, for a ‘religion’ and because of ‘religion’. Once again, execution of people, waging war and making treaties is the responsibility of governments. This is another area where Imams obtain authority from the ‘Nation of Islam’. This is where Imams get the authority to declare war. Declaring war is the sole authority of the modern national government. You simply cannot have priests or other religious leaders deciding to go to war and mobilizing their own combat units. However, this was how armies were created and mobilized in the 7th century, long before the modern nation-state and the professional army. As mentioned in other issues, the very fact that Imams have this authority is in direct conflict with the concept of the modern national government. In general terms, wars are to be fought when Islam can win. And when Islam is at a disadvantage or losing, truces can and should be implemented. Please note how peace can only be accomplished when Islam is dominant and the area in question is within the ‘house of peace’ or under Islamic control. In other words, continuous warfare until no other places exist outside of the ‘house of peace’. If this does not supply a full amount of excuses to start wars, I do not know what else will.
5) Separation of Church and state.
Islam was designed and built as a system of governance. (In addition to being a ‘religion’.) Only around 15% of the Koran concerns itself with what we think of as religion. (The 5 pillars) The remaining 85% is about Islamic law and sovereignty. Islam was around long before the modern national government even evolved. Throughout most of the Middle East, Islam has been the ‘law of the land’ since the 8th century, yet many of the modern governments in the Middle East were only established in the 20th century. Less than 100 years. The Ottoman Empire, which controlled the area for more than 500 years, was based upon Islamic law and is in fact considered by most as being the last caliphate, or true Islamic government. (ISIS has been called by some as being the new caliphate) As a result, loyalty to Islamic laws and culture is far more established than any government that has been put in place since. Once again, Bin Laden is a good example. He was loyal to Islamic government. He was certainly not loyal to Saudi Arabia, his country of origin. The colony of Virginia was around long before the U.S. government. In 1860, less than 100 years after our foundation, we still had many people, (Robert E. Lee is an excellent example) particularly in the Southern States, who were more loyal to their state (Or former colony) than to the Federal government. Concerning Islam, this loyalty is slowly changing, but the loyalty to the ‘Nation of Islam’ is still widespread. We still hear major Islamic leadership refer to the “Nation of Islam” and the “Sovereignty of the Islamic Nation”. We hear of Imams ‘declaring war’ upon the “occupiers” of Muslim “Land”. (Osama Bin Laden and the Imams in Istanbul in 2008 are excellent examples) The modern world has no place for a ‘religion’ that can declare war.
The modern world cannot accept ANY ‘religion’ that can field its own armies to protect its own ‘land’ or ‘waters’ from ‘occupation’. Historically, national sovereignty issues of this type have required open warfare to resolve. These are not issues that people change their minds over easily, nor quickly. If they ever change their mind at all. After all, did any Germans or Japanese change their minds once their governments became involved in World War II? They remained loyal, as did we. This is why war is required to settle the issue. Islam has no separation of church and state. The very idea of separating the two has been, is and will be, fought violently both spontaneously and in an organized manner. After all, if you separate the church from the state, you clearly have left Islam. How can you ignore 80% of the Koran without leaving Islam? The penalty is death.
One way Imams obtain this power is by fielding their own armies. Muqtada al-Sadr in Iraq is a good example of an Imam who formed his own militia and is a political leader today. He can trace his lineage to Muhammad. He was a major religious figure under Saddam Hussein and when the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003 formed a militia to resist the 'occupiers'. This fielding of combat units and armies by religions must end, TODAY. (Islam is the only exception to the general rule that this practice ceased more than 300 years ago.)
Another way of looking at it: I have heard of comparisons of “Islamic radicals” (Islamic nationalists) with our own ‘bible bangers’ or other radicals like Timothy McVeigh or those people who bomb abortion clinics. In sheer numbers, there can be no comparison. How many of those attacks occur in this country in a year? A few, maybe. How many attacks are occurring in a year by Islamic terror groups? All over the Middle East. And now even within our own country. Hundreds of attacks a year. Even more importantly, in capability, they are even further apart. Just compare the KKK with Hezbollah or any other Islamic nationalist group. Have you ever heard of the KKK fielding its own combat units with artillery? Not even close. Removing the influence and power fielded by Imams has and will result in violence. People do not give up that kind of power by choice.
These Islamic ‘armies’ (Islamic terrorist groups) are fighting for the implementation of their view of Islamic governance and ideology. Just look at how the terrorist groups get along with the ‘parent’ government of the areas where they operate. Even they don’t get along very well because of the conflict over the national sovereignty issues that separation of church and state resolves.
People will wage war to protect the power they have. Imams wield REAL political power. Giving this up will not come without a fight. Historically, this is another very common reason for wars being fought. An example: The Catholic Church is against abortion. However, the Catholic Church has NO power to overrule the law of the United States. As long as Catholics obey the law of the U.S., they can obtain abortions. All the church can do is attempt to persuade Catholics (And all others) to NOT obtain an abortion. We need to respect religious leaders, but Islamic leaders have historically held far more power than the modern world can accept. Imams can and do enforce Islamic ‘law’. This has been their historical role for the vast majority of 1400 years. Long enough to become a cultural norm. Losing this power has been and will continue to be fought with violence. The next issue with Islam is the concept of Tribute.
Even though this issue is not as prevalent today, Tribute is a good example of the conflict between Islam and the modern government. Islamic Tribute specifies payment of money from non-Muslims to Muslim authorities and exempts them from military service. Taxation and conscription are two functions of the modern national government. Islam and Imams have no business being involved in either of these functions. This has actually caused war between the United States and Islam. After the Revolution, the U.S. paid the Barbary pirates for passage of our ships in the Mediterranean Sea. Our country became stronger and began to build a fleet of warships. We then challenged the Barbary pirates because we believed in 'freedom of the seas'. The issue was the payment of “Tribute”. We owed them money because our ships were passing through seas that Islam had surrounded. Remember that once any 'land' is Islamic, it remains so until the end of time. So the issues were: “Freedom of the seas” on the side of the U.S. The pirates issue was payment of what infidels owe the Islamic world. Islamic land had at least at one time surrounded the Mediterranean Sea for the most part. Freedom of the seas versus payment of money for passage. War was the natural result. The battle cry went out “Millions for defense, not a penny for Tribute!”. One of our warships was captured in the Mediterranean. We attacked, killed those who attempted to stop us, burned our ship and left. We escorted our ships with warships. The pirates were not strong enough to continue to force the issue. We never paid Tribute again.
7) Kill the ‘occupiers’ of Muslim land.
This will cause a war EVERY time. (Please note the relationship with the next issue: Jihad) An example: The Catholic Church owns the land that a church in Chicago has been built on. If any group of armed people took it over; Catholics from Illinois, Mississippi, Brazil or Canada do NOT go in, form combat groups, negotiate with foreign entities for arms and supplies and then move in to take them out.
The U.S. government sends in the army, or National Guard or SWAT team or whatever. Islam has a long history of this type of action. It made sense in 610 AD. This was how armies were fielded prior to the rise of the nation-state and the professional army. (This is what Pope Urban II did to field the first crusade in 1098, as with all the other crusades.) As is being seen so often today, Islam still retains a sizable number of followers who believe that Islam allows for this. If your national government refuses or cannot act, then Islam must. If the means for open warfare is not available, irregular warfare is the natural result. It is only the next step to become what we consider to be a ‘terrorist’. With the proliferation of Islamic terrorist groups, it is easily seen that the respect that we hold for national governmental sovereignty is not nearly as strong in the places of the world where Islamic terror groups are active. This is in quite a few places throughout the world. Kill the 'occupiers' of Muslim lands is a strong influence. A religion like Christianity or Islam does not have ‘land’ or ‘waters’ to defend.
The following statement that was declared by Imams that met in Istanbul in March 2008 is a classic example:
“The obligation of the Islamic Nation [is] to regard the sending of foreign warships into Muslim waters, claiming to control the borders and prevent the smuggling of arms to Gaza, as a declaration of war, a new occupation, sinful aggression, and a clear violation of the sovereignty of the Nation. This must be rejected and fought by all means and ways.”
Please note the use of the terms “Islamic Nation” and “Muslim waters” and “Sovereignty of the nation”. Also note the reference to warships. Warships, like armies, project sovereignty. Governments declare war against other governments. The concept of Islam as a national entity is common throughout the Islamic world and contribute greatly to the warfare that is common where Islam is in contact with the nation-states of the world. Today, Islam is fielding armies. No wonder violence and warfare is so common throughout the world where Islam is in contact with other national entities and cultures. Two additional parts of this issue I would like to point out.
1) Once land becomes Islamic controlled, it can never revert back to anything else. Otherwise, it is considered to be ‘occupied’. Their is no time limit on this 'occupation'. The Islamic law about the penalty for leaving Islam is death is instructive. Islam has lots of death penalties. You can't get any more one-way than death. Once you are Muslim, you are in for life. This same concept applies to “Muslim land” and “Muslim waters”. As can be seen, this concept is one of the basic causes of the continuing Arab-Israeli conflict. All of Israel is sitting on ‘occupied’ land. As are many other parts of the world, like Spain and the Balkans.
2) This would be comparable to Native Americans launching attacks upon the rest of the population of the United States because all of the land that the United States sits on is considered to be ‘occupied’. By Islamic standards, this is correct. As would be for Mexico to send terrorists into our country because we sized Arizona, New Mexico and California from them in 1848. I list the killing of 'occupiers' of Muslim land as number 7 of the issues within Islam that causes open warfare.
This is the mechanism for fielding the Islamic army. This is how Muslims are “drafted” or “conscripted” to use a modern term. Many Muslims believe that Jihad is an internal struggle. This is supposedly the ‘greater Jihad’. However, they are not the majority. “For most of the fourteen hundred years of Muslim history, Jihad has been most commonly interpreted as ARMED struggle for the advancement or defense of Muslim power.” (B. Lewis) This is enough time for a concept to actually become culturally based. Cultural change is the most difficult and turbulent of all change. Thus it would be very, very difficult to reverse. The Koran mentions Jihad in the context of ‘internal’ struggle in about 5% to 10% of the references concerning Jihad. The other 90% concern armed Jihad and warfare. No wonder Jihad was (And is by many) most commonly interpreted as armed struggle. In addition, the reward for Jihad is booty in this world and paradise in the next. Booty was generally how armies were paid until the rise of the nation-state and professional armies. This did not occur until Islam had been established for close to 1000 years. The concept of booty as it was generally known is inappropriate with the concept of Jihad as an internal struggle. Jihad may be interpreted as an internal struggle, but the reward system in this world makes it a foreign policy. This can and has caused wars. This is the mechanism that supplies Imams the power of a modern government. Jihad provides Imams the ability to field their own personal militias and armies.
Another way of looking at it: If priests were able to form and lead armed combat units, many governments would have to go to war against the Catholic Church. As they should. The waging of war is the responsibility of governments, not ‘religion’. Naturally, wars are fought over issues like this one. The ‘terrorist’ organizations of today are in fact the Islamic ‘army’ in action. These very same organizations speak of jihad in the context of armed struggle. Many have declared war against the U.S. and Israel already. (Declaring war as if they are the leadership of a government) In fact, the ‘Nation of Islam’ is at war against ALL modern governments. Jihad is not the type of issue that negotiation can resolve. People will wage war to resist or resolve. Negotiation could not convince the South to give up slavery. It took open warfare to rid the United States of slavery. Nor will negotiation change the interpretation of jihad. Better health care and better economic opportunities are not going to change anyone’s mind on this issue. Economic opportunity will not revoke the authority that Imams have that enables them to field these ‘jihadist armies’, nor will it win the war against these organizations.
Although not specifically mentioned in the Koran, this concept is widespread. A number of Muslim countries have laws with penalties ranging from fines to life imprisonment or death. From what I understand of the origins of this issue, the idea of penalties for this is a result of jurisprudence that has taken place since the time of Mohammad. In any case, sharia blasphemy is directly in conflict with the first amendment of the U.S. Constitution allowing for free speech. Many nations in the entire world are having difficulty with sharia blasphemy because so many Muslims are adherents of this concept, along with so many other Islamic concepts. Sharia blasphemy is just another issue that is a potential cause of open conflict. After all, the First Amendment is kind of important.
If you do not believe that this is not worth waging war both for and against, then don't count it. I believe differently enough to add this as a supplement to the 8 issues in my list as to why Islam causes violence and warfare.
Another issue that I carry as a supplement is how traditional Islam treats the homosexual community. The penalty is death. Lot's of death penalties in Islam. As one Islamic cleric recently put it, the only point of theological debate is not whether the homosexual should be killed, but how it should be done.
Another is honor killing: Family members kill thousands of Muslim women every year to save the 'honor' of their families. (A minority of victims are men) Just do your own research on this issue and you will find plenty of disturbing patterns of violence concerning honor killings due to Islamic doctrine and ideology.
I mention these because my list of 8 reasons is by no means complete. Sharia blasphemy, killing of gays and honor killings are just more conflicts that traditional Islam has with our very culture, not to mention our legal and political systems.
This is Islamic sovereignty. This is actually a combination of all in the list. This is where “Muslim waters” comes from. Mosques are considered to be Muslim land. Like an embassy. But who does a national government negotiate with? Imams have the authority of a national government as if he (Never a she) is a nation state. It is comparable to dealing with the Native American tribes in 19th century North America. That worked out so well! Today's Imams are the “priests” who are forming and leading their own combat units. This cannot go on into the 21st century. On top of this, Islam is not very accommodating.
Even Saudi authorities do not represent the Islamic nation or Islamic sovereignty. Osama Bin Lauden declared war against the United States because we had soldiers in Muslim territory, even though they had been invited by the Saudi government. Osama did not recognize the authority of the Saudi government on this issue. Mosques are embassies of Islam. As such, they are sovereign territory of Islam. Not like churches. Try sending a policeman into a Mosque, anywhere in the world. Let's see what happens. Care to guess? History has shown violence far more often than not. I wonder why?
A large practical demonstration of Islamic sovereignty is how Imams have the authority to declare war. How else besides war, can you deal with a foreign entity that claims that it should and intends to kill your soldiers and/or civilians? Justification to attack is rarely needed anyway as Islamic doctrine (house of war) has plenty of room for lots of violence against it's opponents. Islam tends to hit first after they have been 'offended'. They see it as hitting back at the any number of insults they have suffered. No real excuses required. Justification for war is easy under these circumstances combined with the relative low level decision making Imams represent on a global governmental scale. Combining with nuclear weapons is only a recipe for disaster.
Islamic nationalism is medieval in almost everything. One example is in the medieval behavior of the armies that Islam is fielding. Another good cause for war that is left out of the general conversation. If not for anything else but the sheer barbarity of the enemy. Atrocities occur in all wars. (You could argue that war itself is an atrocity) A direct correlation exists between the amount a training an individual or an particular unit undergoes and the amount of atrocities that unit or individual will commit. I am referring to battlefield atrocities, not those ordered by the government. (The Holocaust, for example) The higher the training, the fewer the atrocities. The cause of this is the discipline that is instilled. Naturally, irregular forces lack this training and discipline. Historically, they commit far more atrocities than professional armies. This is particularly true of the Islamic armies. Look how well they treat their captives. This is as good a reason in and of itself for waging war to rid the world of this medieval force. Islamic nationalism causes war. It must go the way of the Dodo bird. Don't think for one moment that any attempt to ignore Islamic nationalism or get rid of it will NOT cause open violence and warfare. As is being seen on a daily basis.
Islamic sovereignty causes war: Conclusion
The number one rule of war is to “know thy enemy”. In this case, Islamic sovereignty and Islamic nationalism. An analysis of Islamic sovereignty and how entrenched this view is necessary. The source of the concept of a sovereign Islam is obviously the Koran. The Koran is basically a book of phrases. These phrases are organized by their size. Largest phrases first, smallest or shortest last. (Exception: The first “chapter”.)Scattered throughout are a mixture of religion as we in the West know religion. Most of the Koran is devoted to legal and economic laws. Most of the 'religious' or peaceful phrases in the Koran were spoken early in the formation of Islam when Mohammad did not have the power and authority of a ruler. The five 'pillars' of Islam, praying 5 times a day, a pilgrimage to Mecca, fasting from dawn to dusk during holidays, these are what we in the west call 'religion'. The Koran specifically states that in cases where the ‘laws’ are contradicting, the later rules are to be followed. (Remember, the Koran is NOT organized by when the phrases were spoken, but by the length of the phrase) The phrases that were spoken in the later times are the ones that mainly concern governance and foreign policy. This is when Islam held the power of government. Rules had to be made for governance. This is also where the war against the modern government and in particular the U.S., begins.
As far as the ‘Nation of Islam’ was concerned, the United States was just another infidel country. During our first 150 years of existence, the Barbary pirates was the only notable clash or direct contact. A big change occurred during the mid-20th century with the U.S. support of Israel. Even then, the United States was only indirectly involved. However, our influence was resented. This is human nature. In 1982 and 1983 when the U.S. troops were in Lebanon, we were violating Muslim land directly with our ground forces and had to be thrown out. We became 'occupiers' of Muslim land. From Islam’s point of view, the U.S. was successfully thrown out when we withdrew. Then in 1991, Iraq invades the national sovereignty of Kuwait. When U.S. troops moved into Saudi Arabia and other Muslim countries in order to kick Iraq out of Kuwait, we became ‘occupiers’ again. Even if the Saudi national government invited us in. Osama Bin Lauden declared war on the U.S. because of this. Islam does not recognize the authority of the modern national government, even where Islamic law is a basis of it's legal system.
Ever since then, Islam has been 'officially' at war directly against us because we continue to be ‘occupiers’. However small the numbers may be, we still have troops in Muslim 'lands'. Soldiers, like ships and aircraft, represent sovereignty. The Islamic terrorist groups are the ‘army’ of Islam. These are not ‘extremists’ as much as they are followers of that particular version of Islamic system of governance. Even these suicide attackers are not crazy, anymore than the Kamikaze pilots were in Word War II. This 'Nation of Islam' can override any and all national governments. Bin Laden is an excellent example. He believed (as do many others) that the sovereignty of Islam is being challenged. Historically, sovereignty issues are always present in the cause of open warfare. Determining what is the 'law of the land' in the area being contested is the issue. In addition, defending your country (Or in this case, Islamic sovereignty) and it's territory tests the loyalty of the population.
Most Muslims worldwide are ‘good’ people. They do not want war. However, they will fight for their way of life. Like the ‘good’ southerners in 1862 who fought for the Confederacy. The ‘good’ Germans and Japanese in 1944 fought for their countries as hard as anyone else. It made no difference if any of them were really 'good' people or not. Many Muslims are already fighting against a foreign influence that is in conflict with Islamic governance and ideology. Just look at the shooter in the Orlando attack in June 2016. He was born and raised in the U.S. He beat his first wife who had to be rescued from him. In Islamic countries, many families would have killed their own daughter or sister for defying Hubby. Yet where did he learn about beating his wife? Not from our culture. Domestic violence does happen in our culture, but it is not that common and is officially discouraged and punished. This is not the case in Islamic culture. Naturally, this type of behavior would be far more common and carried to more extreme in environments that encourage it and are not punished. Culture is the key here. That shooter in Orlando called a media outlet and spoke very calm and collected. He wanted us to know why he did it. The Kamikaze attacker in the 1940's did not have this outlet, so they made a ritual prior to the attack, much as we have seen in many Islamic suicide attacks in the past.
Naturally, Islamic reaction is hostile to infringement upon what is considered to be it's sovereignty. Islam has a relatively low threshold for waging war. As was common prior to the rise of the modern nation state. War tends to make people chose. Most will naturally chose the side that they live with and understand. Even if that side is evil, like slavery in the Confederate States of America or the Nazi government. We can expect that many if not most, Muslims will side with Islamic culture and ideology in any open conflict. Human nature demands this. This is what is being overlooked with analysis of our presence 'over there' and how it supposedly 'creates' new enemies. Wars ALWAYS create new enemies. The U.S. literally obtained more than 100 million new enemies on December 10th, 1941 than we did only a few days prior. What 'occupation' is really doing is exposing those who are willing to speak out and/or take action against us out of their belief in Islamic sovereignty. These are not 'new' enemies. We can see them now. Just because we can now see so many more does not make them new enemies. And is this not the problem with fighting terrorism? Knowing who they are?
Even if you disagree on a number of the issues I have listed, this is enough to explain why peace has been so elusive in the Middle East and with Israel in particular. Far to many issues within Islam are of a nationalist nature to NOT cause organized violence. Take note of how Islam and the modern national government do not get along.
Just look at how well the governments that are host to Islamic organizations like HAMAS and Hezbollah relate with those very same governments. They may be in agreement on a number of important issues, but the government is supposed to be accountable for the actions of it’s own people within its borders. These Islamic nationalist groups are NOT accountable and this creates a very serious conflict of interest. So why do these Muslim governments support them or even put up with them?
Two possibilities exist: Either the host government can't stop them, or will not stop them. I believe that in most cases, the host government(s) agree on enough issues that they allow this to go on. We can see far to many of these situations to be otherwise. Example: 16 of the 19 attackers on 9/11/01 were from Saudi Arabia. Newly declassified information demonstrates that an uncomfortable portion of the Saudi government knew about it. This should be no surprise. Turkey is another example. I do not believe that the declaration of 2008 by those Imams in Istanbul caught the government of Turkey by surprise or in disagreement. Why else has the Turkish government never disavowed it? Not a word. Remember, Turkey revoked permission for the 4th division to invade Iraq from it's territory less than 24 hours prior to our invasion. No way was that unit able to be redeployed in time. You can't convince me that this was not a deliberate attempt to aid our enemy. My conclusion is that the Turkish government (Along with a lot of other Islamic based governments) agree with the concept of Islamic sovereignty. As does much of the population of these countries. We should expect outrage. Having the KKK field combat units? We just do not see any real amount of opposition in any of the areas where these Islamic units are operating. So these Islamic nationalist groups continue to commit acts of war that the host government can avoid taking responsibility for. These types of Nationalist issues will continue to cause wars in order to obtain a resolution. This is where separation of church and state is necessary with Islam and by doing so, will trigger violence and open warfare.
Religions cannot be allowed to muster armies today like they could in the 7th century. Only national governments should be able to raise and deploy armies. The fact that Islam is doing so today (as if we are still in the 14th century) creates national sovereignty issues that historically have taken wars to resolve. On top of this, Islam in general has a very low threshold for waging war.
The Koran allows for the waging of war far more easily than ANY modern government would consider. The nation-states of today are far more powerful than what existed before the 17th century. As a result of technology, warfare is far more destructive today. This makes war much more dangerous and more of a threat to each governmental body than when Islam was born, when governments as we know them today did not exist at all. Kingdoms rose and fell at a far more rapid pace than governments today. Kingdoms (Governments of that time) changed frequently, sometimes multiple times within a single persons short lifetime. Far fewer governments exist today and do not change nearly as often, if at all. The national governments of today are far stronger and more resistant to external change and conquest than the kingdoms of the ancient past. Hence the movement of Islamic nationalists toward irregular warfare in the form of terrorism. This really was how war was waged prior to the rise of the professional army and the modern national government. Yet the nationalist nature of Islam has remained. Since the breakup of the Ottoman empire in 1919, Islamic nationalism is weaker. Toss in the great structural flaw of the Islamic law being the penalty for leaving Islam is death. This keeps Islam badly divided. However, cultural change on this level takes far more than a few generations to even gain a majority. Unless massive change was forced upon it, like Japan after World War II. Clearly, this is NOT the case concerning Islamic nationalism.
Notice how Zionism is a term commonly used by leaders in the Muslim world to describe the political nature of the ‘Nation of Israel’? The ‘Nation of Islam’ can easily identify with this concept because this is precisely what ‘political’ Islam is. The key difference is that the nation of Israel is a modern national government whereas the nation of Islam is not. I have studied wars for more than 40 years. I have never studied one where so many GOOD reasons exist for violent conflict in order to resolve. And it only takes one side to start a war. Just look at the German invasion of Poland in 1939. How much more could Britain and France have done to avoid the war? In fact, they went way to far.
Speaking of political entities, “Islamic electoral policy has been classically summarized as “One man (men only), one vote, once”” (B. Lewis) In other words, once Islamic law has been voted in, no other form of law is acceptable. Another one-way street. No more voting. Islam does not vote on anything. It dictates everything. Islamic governance is the most authoritarian legal system I have ever studied. It makes the Nazis look like school children. The best way to understand this is to study Islamic law. It is not all that difficult. After all, we have 1400 years of Islamic jurisprudence to rely upon. Just look it up. All I ask is to attempt to keep an open mind. Concerning Islam, this can be difficult to implement. Not any middle ground to work with. You see what you want to see. That is human nature. If you don't want to see something, you will not. That is also human nature. The trick is to know what you own prejudice is. Rule Number 2 of warfare: Know thyself. What is left is only one side or the other giving in. War can be the only result to such situations. Negotiations do not work on these types of scenarios.
Until one side or the other implements some very large changes, this war can only be just beginning.
It has been a long time since the last major, world war. History has demonstrated that major wars occur every so often. (Like the big arguments with your spouse. They just happen every so often.) On top of this, it is only a matter of time before one of these Islamic sovereign (terrorist) groups obtains and deploys an effective WMD. Control of the war can easily be lost at that point. It will become difficult, if not impossible to prevent the war from escalating. After all, escalation is generally how wars are won. You escalate the war until the other side either cannot or will not match. Time is NOT on our side. Europe and the U.S. government are currently playing for time. Hence, the war is growing with attacks occurring within our own homeland several times a year now. (Year 2016) In any case, it is worth waging even massive conventional warfare than to wage war involving WMD. I am referring to nuclear weapons although any really effective WMD that could yield similar results will qualify. In fact, nuclear weapons are a good way to wage punitive war. They kill everything. The very definition of punitive war. The sovereign ‘Nation of Islam’ IS the cause of the warfare that is called “Radical Islamic terrorism”. In order to stop this, we need to challenge Islamic sovereignty. This means conventional warfare unless we want to wait until they are able to attack us with WMD. Think that once the capability is available, the Islamic “radicals” will not use them? Islamic sovereignty must be smothered. Challenged at every turn practical.
We need to challenge 'kill the occupiers of Muslim land'. Boots on the ground. Two ways exist to wage war: The first is the war of conquest. This is where you work with the people in the area and help them so that they will eventually join you. The other is the punitive war. You kill everything. The Romans excelled at this. It is unlikely that they often put salt in the ground to prevent anything ever growing again, but the idea was to wipe out the ability to ever come back. Punishment wars were far more common before the modern government arrived. The modern government and republics typically don't wage this type of warfare. In addition, republics do not sustain long wars very well. Why would they? After all, who the hell wants to go risk their life in some God forsaken place? My two sons are nearing draft age. Think I want them to risk losing a leg, or their life? Not if I have anything to say about it. You can see how a functioning Republic that responds to the will of its population would not tolerate a long war. In the Vietnam war, we eventually got tired of the war. (This war was not strategic in nature like the irregular war we face today.) Another case in point: The war in Iraq. After a few years, we elected a new President who pulled us out. And so many of us knew that we were going to have to go back. Because this is a long war that will likely last many decades. It already has.
The battleground must be in the Middle East, not in the U.S. We need to “occupy” as much as we can just to keep our enemy occupied and his resources committed. Traditional Islam must attack our forces in ANY Islamic country. Much better to force our enemy to attack our armed forces instead of every where else. Combat favors the conventional forces over irregular units. Conventional forces have greater firepower, better training, better mobility and generally they outnumber the 'insurgent' forces. The more the combat, the better. The attrition rate for irregular forces is naturally higher because their supply and medical resources are limited, at best. In Iraq and Afghanistan from 2001 to 5/29/2012 the U.S. lost 4425 dead and 32223 wounded. We killed better than 10 to 1. This should give us an idea of what type of losses our enemy can endure. Where are these guys now that the casualty rate is so much lower today? Up to no good for us. We can expect more suicide attacks within our homeland. Coordinated attacks like in Paris and Brussels can be expected eventually within the continental U.S. We must stop the inflow of this ideology.
No more stoning to death, or flogging. No more armed jihad. We must protect those who leave Islam, even if it means open warfare. This is an important one, because so much of the Koran must be either deleted or ignored that in order to do so, you clearly have left Islam. How else can you separate the church from the state than to leave Islam? No more beating your wife. Tribute must not be paid. The concept of “House of war” will have to be ignored by Muslims. I don't know how to challenge this one, except through general practice with the above challenges. Mosques cannot get special treatment, particularly regarding police entry. Much in the same way as churches. If we need surveillance within Mosques, we had better do it. If we have to send in undercover police, we must do it. I don't know what the laws are concerning these issues with churches. We need to go as far as the law allows. Mosques are NOT embassies and cannot be allowed to be thought of as such. Islamic law must perish from this earth.
The bad news is that this will trigger open warfare. As it already has. “Occupation” is an excellent way to mount this challenge to Islamic sovereignty. This was one of the main reasons why I was interested in ‘invading’ Iraq. It did not matter if Iraq had WMD or not. That was the excuse. It forced our enemies into attacking our military in the desert, an ideal environment for mechanized warfare. Our forces excel at this type of warfare. Our enemy is not a mechanized force. (Number 1 rule: Know thy enemy. Number 2: Know thy self) To use a sports analogy, the match up is excellent for us, bad for our enemies. Certainly better than allowing them to attack our shopping malls and schools. By our 'occupation' of Iraq, we chose the battlefield on ground to our advantage and to the disadvantage of our enemy. This is how wars are won. No war has ever been won by allowing the enemy to choose the battlefield. This would be like an American football game where one side always is given the ball. This is not fair. War is not fair either. Either we choose the battlefield, or our enemy will. This war cannot be won by fighting in our cities and shopping malls and schools. We must take the war to Islamic sovereignty. “Occupation” is probably the quickest and most certain path. Nation building in other words. The very culture must be changed. Similar to what occurred with Japan after World War II. As is being seen today, it is obvious that we did not stay in Iraq nearly long enough. In fact, we are back at a level that is so low that we are not seriously challenging any of the issues at stake.
The lead really should be taken by the U.N. The governments of the world really should mount a concerted effort to challenge and eliminate Islamic sovereignty. However, I do not see the U.N. nor any real majority of the major nations uniting in this way. The winning of the war truly rests upon us. We need to build a coalition of nations in whose it is in our best interest to end this damn thing before it gets out of control. Wars tend to do just that.
Islamic law and nationalism has to disappear just as Christian nationalism died during the rise of the professional army and the modern national government. Otherwise, the war Islamic nationalism is waging against us will go on. Like it has for the past 1400 years. And sooner or later, nukes or some other WMD are going to enter the picture. Then the real war will begin.
The crisis of Islam: Bernard Lewis Copyright 2003
In the footsteps of the prophet: Tariq Ramadan Copyright 2007
Suicide Weapon: A J Barker Copyright 1971
The first Crusade: Thomas Asbridge Copyright 2004
*It took a few months to figure out Osama's three mistakes on 9/11/01. He hit too soon, both tactically and strategically. I count this as two mistakes. The time of day was not late enough. Those buildings would have held many times more people if the attack had occurred just two hours later. Then they did not hit us hard enough. We recovered without any noticeable effect on our ability to hit back. They have not had the ability to hit us with coordinated attacks within our country since. This is about to change. Anyway, if they had waited long enough to obtain nuclear weapons, they could have decapitated our government. This is why President Bush recalled that 'shadow' government that President Eisenhower had established back during the Cold war. Osama did not hit us hard enough. They just don't have the ability to use WMD, but I can't see them holding back if they ever were able to obtain some. Combining this with their sheer numbers makes them a much greater threat than most analysis would suggest.