|Reviving the Caliphate|
|By Professor Moshe Sharon|
In an interview with Karby Legget, published in the December 23-26 edition of “The Wall Street Journal,” Hassam al-Masalmeh, the leader of the Hamas group at the municipal council of Bethlehem, described a tax which should selectively be imposed in the Islamic state which to be established on the ruins of Israel. He said: “We in Hamas intend to implement this tax someday. We say it openly – we welcome everyone to Palestine but only if they agree to live under our rules.” Al-Masalmeh was referring to a tax which non-Muslims living under Islamic rule throughout Islamic history had to pay in order to receive the status of dhimmi, namely “protected” inferior minority. Failure to pay this tax, called “jizyah,” denied the non-Muslim, mainly Christian and Jew, this “protection,” and put his life and possessions in jeopardy. This tax, or tribute, was imposed in concurrence with the Koran (Surah 9 verse 29): “Fight those who had been given the Book (i.e Jews and Christians) until they pay the tribute out of hand and have been humiliated), and according to the Muslim law – the Shari’ah. It placed all the non-Muslims in a position of second and third class subjects, making them the hostages of the Muslim rulers.
Hamas is a terrorist movement directed by Islamic ideology, and practicing faithfully the Islamic law. It does not represent a small fringe group. It is an integral part of an ever growing movement of Islamic revival consistently militant, globally spread and appealing to ever growing number of Muslims who believe that the Islam is destined to establish himself as a World-State in which the implementation of the Islamic law would assure the superiority of the Muslims and the inferiority of Christians and Jews (“infidels”).
Since the time of Muhammad Jews and Christians have been regarded as the enemies of Islam and as such the eternal object of Islamic hatred. Lately, the Egyptian-born Abu Hamza al-Masri, a Muslim cleric, is being tried in Britain on charges of incitement to murder. Until 2003 Al-Masri had been head preacher at Finsbury Park mosque in north London, which has been linked to several terrorist suspects, including suspected Sept. 11 plotter Zacarias Musawi and "shoe bomber" Richard Reid.
In a 90-minute video recording of a lecture shown at his trial Tuesday 17 January 2006 al-Masri was seen telling his supporters that Jews and Christians were on a list of enemies of Islam, and as such the targets of Muslim enmity.
In the same vain, Shaykh Abd al-Aziz Fawzan Al-Fawzan, a Saudi professor of Islamic law at al-Imam University urged Muslim to show “Positive Hatred” of Christians, because they are infidels, for they say that Allah is one in a Trinity and worship Jesus. He also added that and whoever says that he does not hate such a Christian is not a Muslim.
What has it all to do with religion?
It has to do with Islam. But Islam is not a religion as most of the Westerners understand it. For Western media and apologetic thinkers, Islam is compared to Christianity, and Muslims groups in the European and American countries are defined as religious communities. Such definition entitles them to all the “religious services” according to local laws. Accordingly they demand and receive the support of the state for the building of mosques, and subsidies of the state for religious functionaries, for special Muslim schools, and even for the establishment of an “Islamic University” (in Rotterdam, The Netherlands).
Had Islam been a religion in the usual meaning of the word, namely a system of beliefs and rituals centered on the relation between man and God, then the demands of the Muslim communities in the Western World to enjoy the same services as the other religions would be justifiable and understandable.
But Islam is not only a religion in this “narrow” sense. It is much more than that. It is a system of law, it is a social and political system; it is a way of life. It has full control over the behavior of the individual, the society, and the state. It deals with war and peace, it defines the relations between the Moslems and the rest of the world, and as we saw, it also determines the attitude to non-Muslims who are unfortunate to come under Islamic rule. The particular nature of Islam was best described, concisely and accurately by a famous tradition which says: “Religion and the state are twins.” That means that there is difference between the sacred and the secular in Islam, there is no such thing as separation of state and religion. It follows that community of Muslim Believers is seen as the army of Allah whose main raison d’être is to fight the enemies of Allah, all non-Muslims, in order to bring as much as possible of the world under the rule of Allah, that is to say under the jurisdiction of an Islamic government guided by the Koran, the tradition of Prophet Muhammad and the Islamic Shari‘ah.
Westerners have the tendency to use Western terminology in order to describe Islam, which causes them to misunderstand Islam altogether.
A few examples will suffice to demonstrate this misconception. Speaking about the mosque as “church of the Muslims” is a mistake. The mosque is not only a house of prayer. It is a religious, social and political institutions put together, the church is only a house of worship. The mosque has always represented the authority of the ruler as much as the authority of the Allah’s law. The oath of allegiance to any new ruler was taken in the mosque, but rebellion also began in mosques. The sermon in the mosque encouraged obedience to the ruler as much as it gave vent to grievances and fomented agitation, and started revolutions. “The Koran is of the Bible of the Muslims.” Wrong! There is a huge difference between the Bible, created over millennia, representing variety of literary styles and variety of messages, and the Koran created by one man in one style and containing a few faces of limited number of messages.
“Friday is the Sabbath of the Muslims.” Wrong! There is no day of rest in Islam, and Friday is only the day of public prayer, and the time for public sermon. And Jihad, Holy War, the pivot of Islamic history and faith, is not war against the evil inclinations, as the apologetics of Islam present in a politically correct language to innocent Westerners. The Holy War (what an oxymoron “HOLY WAR”) is a real war, not virtual; it is a bloody affair – the eternal war of Islam against the non-Muslim world until its total conquest.
These few examples representing the misconception of the West, call for the definition of Islam not as a religion but as a civilization. This civilization realized itself best within an empire which was created by Jihad, Holy war, conquering the lands of other people and reducing them to insignificant minorities.
In the present world the great dream of the Muslims is to renew the empire and to revive the ethos of Jihad. Both these concepts define the attitude of Islam to the Israel, to Jews and Christians and to the Western world in general.
Israel is the obstacle in the Middle East to the recreation of the Islamic Caliphate – the imperial body stretching over huge conquered territories and, as in the glorious past, responsible for keeping the spirit of Jihad kindled and the actual Jihad – war in the path of Allah – active.
The caliphate is not a dream but a plan of action. It is a goal to be achieved. This is the message coming from Bin Laden’s al-Qa’idah, from the doctors at Universities, from preachers in every mosque in the world of Islam. The achievement of this goal begins with weakening the Christian enemy from within by using its own legal institutions and liberal media, by playing the victim, by terrorizing its civilians, by suffocating its economies; in short by waging multiple-front Jihad.
Iran’s plan to get atomic weapon, the Jihadist declarations coming from Palestinians and al-Qa’idah’s various offshoots, and the open hostility of the Muslims in England, France, Holland and other European countries to their hosts, the education of Muslim children from kindergarten on to cherish the idea of martyrdom and to wish for martyrdom (shahadah), are all part and parcel of the age-long Islamic agenda.
Whether the Caliphate dream can be realized or not time will tell, but the knowledge that there is a huge anti-Western power active, as it was in the Middle Ages, is not any more a theoretical, or romantic dream as most of the Western Media presents it. It is the real thing, because Islam being an army of the Faithful, has positioned itself again against the House of War the term reserved to that part of the world which is not yet under Islam.
Conflict was always the best habitat for Islam. Now, once again Islam is revitalized by a new exciting conflict, toying with helpless Europe. This conflict was created by Muslims for Muslims and must go on until the infidels succumb to Allah’s law.
By regarding Islam as a religion, the Europeans are enabling the Moslems to use the funds of the Western states to build the infrastructure of an Islamic entity within each state as bridgehead to conquer it from within. But what is more disturbing is that the billions of dollars, which stream from the EU and America to Muslim terror groups under various disguises are nothing less than Jizyah money paid by the dhimmis of Europe to the Muslim rulers. Like the Jizyah, the money which the non-Muslim had to pay to secure a limited security for himself, so also the European money is the collective Jizyah paid by the Europeans from the money of their taxpayers with the (false) hope that it will secure for them the status of the dhimmi.