Islam Denounces Terrorism
God commands justice and doing good and giving to relatives. And He forbids indecency and doing wrong and tyranny. He warns you so that hopefully you will pay heed. (Qur'an, 16:90)
As Muslims, we strongly condemn the terrorist attacks on two major cities of the United States of America on September 11, 2001, which caused the death and injury of thousands of innocent people, and we offer our condolences to the American nation. These attacks propelled the important issue of the true source of terrorism to the top of the world agenda. Thus, it has been announced to the entire world that Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance that summons individuals to compassion and justice. Many world leaders, leading media organisations, television and radio stations said that true Islam forbids violence, and encourages peace between people and between nations. The Western circles that have come to a full grasp of the religion of Islam and are well-informed about Islam as commanded by God in the Qur'an noted clearly that the words "Islam" and "terror" cannot stand side by side, and that no divine religion permits violence.
This book maintains that the source of the terror that we condemn is definitely not from a divine religion, and that there is no room for terrorism in Islam. This is made clear in the Qur'an, the main source of Islam, and in the practices of all true Muslim rulers, the Prophet Muhammad being the foremost of them. This book reveals, in the light of the verses of the Qur'an and with examples from history, that Islam forbids terrorism and aims to bring peace and security to the world.
As is known, for centuries, various acts of terrorism have been carried out in different parts of the world by different groups for a variety of purposes. Sometimes a communist organisation, sometimes a fascist group, and sometimes radical and separatist factions assume responsibility for these acts. While countries like America often became the target of attacks by racist and marginal terrorist groups, the European countries have been centre stage for violent acts carried out by terrorist groups. 17 November in Greece, RAF (Red Army Faction) and Neo-Nazis in Germany, ETA in Spain, Red Brigades in Italy and many other organisations seek to make their voices heard through terror and violence by killing innocent and defenceless people. The nature of terrorism changes with changing world conditions and increases its impact and power with the new means made possible by developing technology. In particular, mass communication tools such as the Internet extend the scope and influence of the terrorist activities considerably.
Besides the Western organisations, there are also other terror organisations of Middle East origin. Terrorist attacks are carried out by these groups in all corners of the world. Sadly, the fact that the perpetrators of various terrorist acts carry Christian, Muslim or Jewish identities cause some people to put forward claims which do not concur with divine religions. The truth is that even if terrorists have Muslim identities, the terror they perpetrate cannot be labelled "Islamic terror", just as it could not be called "Jewish terror" if the perpetrators were Jews or "Christian terror" if they were Christians. That is because, as will be examined in the following pages, murdering innocent people in the name of a divine religion is unacceptable. We need to keep in mind that, among those who were killed in New York and Washington, there were people who loved the Prophet Jesus (Christians), the Prophet Moses (Jews) and the Prophet Muhammad (Muslims). Unless forgiven by God, murdering innocent people is a great sin that leads to torment in Hell. No one who is religious and fears God would do such a thing.
The aggressors can commit such violence only with the intention of attacking religion itself. It may well be that those who carried out this violence did so to present religion as evil in the eyes of people, to divorce people from religion and to generate hatred towards those who are religiously inclined. Consequently, every attack on American citizens or other innocent people having a religious facade is actually an attack made against religion.
Religion commands love, mercy and peace. Terror, on the other hand, is the opposite of religion; it is cruel, merciless and demands bloodshed and misery. This being the case, the origins of a terrorist act should be sought in disbelief rather than in religion. People with a fascist, communist, racist or materialist outlook on life should be suspected as potential perpetrators. The name or the identity of the triggerman is not important. If he can kill innocent people without blinking an eye, then he is a nonbeliever, not a believer. He is a murderer with no fear of God, whose main ambition is to shed blood and to cause harm. For this reason, "Islamic terror" is an erroneous concept which contradicts the message of Islam. The religion of Islam can by no means countenance terrorism. On the contrary, terror (i.e. murder of innocent people) in Islam is a great sin, and Muslims are responsible for preventing these acts and bringing peace and justice to the world.