CAIRO – 16 September 2017: The Islamic State (IS) group, (also known as Daesh, which are the group’s initials in Arabic), is a jihadist militant group, found in a number of Arab countries, mainly Iraq and Syria, where it was designated a terrorist organization. In November 2014, Ansar Bayt al-Madqis extremist group based in Egypt disclosed allegiance to to the IS, changed its name to Sinai Province, which became, inarguably, Egypt’s most dangerous militant group.
Hearing news about youngsters joining the IS, which promotes itself as an Islamic movement, blowing themselves up among innocent people, Azhar Sheikh Eraky Hamed, an Islamic researcher, talked to Egypt Today on how Islam depicts the IS.
The IS claims that its supreme purpose is to retrieve the Islamic Caliphate (Islamic territory) and apply Sharia (Islamic law). How do you see the group?
Establishing a true Islamic Caliphate has certain rules and standards, and these rules are not applied by such a terrorist group. However, it has distorted the clear image of Islam. I believe some persons support the IS for personal gains.
Due to common features, some people compare the IS with the “Khawarij” extremist group, which killed Prophet Muhammad’s cousin, son-in-law and fourth caliph, Imam Ali Ibn Abi Taleb, during his term (c. 656-661). How much are the “Khawarij” and the “IS” similar?
Prophet Muhammad foretold about the “Khawarij”, and warned us of them, in order to avoid their extreme danger and deception abilities — exactly like Daesh. They are youngsters and weak-minded. The prophet said, “in Akhiruzzaman (the end time), there will appear young people with foolish minds. Their faith will not pass through their throats, and they will go out of Islam as an arrow goes through the target. If you meet them, then kill them, for killing them will bring reward to the one who killed them on the Day of Resurrection.”
In addition, such traits were found in Khawarij’s ideologies over time.
- They disobey rulers, as their leader Zul-khwaisra did with Prophet Muhammad. They also declared their disobedience to consecutive Caliphs Othman Ibn Affan and Ali Ibn Abi Taleb (they murdered them both).
Zul-khwaisra accused Prophet Muhammad of injustice during a share divide, while one of their members, Ibn Moljam, stabbed Imam Ali with a poisoned sword, during his term as a Caliph, thinking that he has done quite well when he murdered him, shouting, “Allah (God) is the only ruler, not you or your friends, Ali.”
- They are bigots. They disrespect Islamic scholars who hold different opinions from them, considering sahabah (companions of Prophet Muhammad) apostates (renounced Islam), and legitimizing their murder.
They think they have to fight the unjust ruler, his soldiers and all those who accept or support him.
Some Islamic righteous forefathers said that the Khawarij represent the Quran’s verses: “Say, (O Muhammad), Shall we (believers) inform you of the greatest losers as to [their] deeds? (They are) those whose effort is lost in worldly life, while they think that they are doing well in work" — Al-Kahf: 103-104
Five “IS” children shooting five Kurds in a video released in August 2016
The IS have killed Muslims. The group has killed hundreds of Egyptian soldiers and claimed responsibility for many attacks that targeted Arab Muslims in Iraq and other countries. Why do you think the IS, which claims it represents Islam, kills Muslims?
Prophet Muhammad said about that group, “they will kill Muslims but will not disturb the idolaters. If I should live up to their time, I will kill them as the people of ‘Ad’ were killed (i.e. I will kill them all).” This is what the IS is apparently doing. The real enemy are those who seized and occupied the Palestinian lands, but they never took action to save Al Aqsa Mosque and didn’t defend the Muslims there. However, they consider many Muslims as apostates, blow themselves up among them, saying, “we kill apostates first.”
“A message signed with blood to the nation of the cross” operation - video released by the IS
The IS released a video in 2015 that showed the beheading of 21 Coptic Christians in Libya. One of them appeared in the video pointing to the Quran verse: “And fight against the disbelievers collectively as they fight against you collectively.” Did Islam really order Muslims to kill non-Muslims?
Murder is prohibited in Islam, and all souls are inviolable. Non-Muslims’ souls are sacred in Islam, as Prophet Muhammad warned, “whoever kills a Mu’ahid (a person who is granted the pledge of protection by the Muslims) shall not smell the fragrance of Paradise, though its fragrance can be smelt at a distance of forty years (of traveling).”
A disbeliever deserves to be fought only if he starts fighting Muslims. Otherwise, he still has the right of security and inviolability.
An IS militant - Reuters
Some young people think that joining an organization like the IS is considered a way to serve Islam. How will you give them advice?
The spread of such thoughts among the youth has many reasons, including the ignorance of true Islam, getting informed about religion from unqualified persons, besides social inequality and the feeling of marginalization.
My advice to all is to listen to the youth’s problems and to solve them as fast as possible. In addition, the qualified Islamic scholars should be allowed to guide the youth and inform them, through mosques, educational courses and other means.
How would someone differentiate between an organization that really aims to serve Islam and those like the IS?
Islam is as clear as day, and God has blessed mankind with the human mind, through which they are able to differentiate the truth from lies. A Muslim asks God for guidance, several times in each prayer, reading the Quran verse: “Guide us to the straight path.”
Muslims should always consult the knowledgeable Islamic scholars and seek the purpose of such groups. Do they really aim to support the religion, or to victimize Islam and Muslims? ٍubsequently, the truth would be revealed.