The Islam in Islamic Terrorism: The Importance of Beliefs, Ideas, and Ideology

Ibn Warraq, The Islam in Islamic Terrorism; the Importance of Beliefs, Ideas, and Ideology, New English Review Press, Nashville, TN, 

Book review by Nidra Poller

It has nothing to do with Islam… Mentally deranged, fragile personalities are hijacking a sublime religion… More people die in highway accidents… All religions preach violence and spawn fundamentalists…

Seventeen years since the start of the jihad-intifada, sixteen years after 9/11, Western societies are challenged to understand the connection between antisemitism, antizionism, and 21st century jihad conquest. These two studies address two major misconceptions about the source and nature of the sporadic violence that erupts in a range of intensity from the fatal stabbing of one or a few people in the streets of a European city to the mass murder of 3,000 in Manhattan.

Our societies are like an army with abundant ammunition… and no guns

Law enforcement, intelligence and security services, government leaders, judges, academics, commentators, journalists, and simple citizens are on the battlefield, fighting a rearguard operation, losing ground day by day, self-defeating, and briefed…by the enemy. This intellectual reversal, which is an essential weapon in the war against the West, goes unexamined because those that should be warning against it have in fact succumbed to the lethal narrative strategy of jihad conquest.  They do not think rationally, they react Islamically to assaults of all varieties, on all levels, from hijab fashion that they glorify to atrocious murders that they cover with flowers, candles and denial. The intellectual ravages are concealed behind a curtain of consensus.

Nancy Hartevelt Kobrin rips away, with her Jihadi Dictionary, the misleading separation between Islam and the mental illness frequently advanced to explain jihad murder. Yes, these enraged killers are mentally disturbed. But their insanity is specifically Islamic. They are not lost souls that arbitrarily wandered into an Islamic network and committed crimes that are then falsely attributed to Islam. Kobrin, an accomplished linguist, psychoanalyst, and counterterrorism expert, exposes from A to Z the psychological mechanisms by which the sons of devalued, terrorized mothers turn their own terror into annihilationist violence against the Other. Specialists may debate certain points and references to a given school or analyst, but the lay reader is impressed by the clarity brought to the issue by the rigors of a highly developed discipline as compared to the media chatter that reports on this ongoing assault on our lives and freedom. The dictionary format brings sharply focused definition to details that distinguish jihad violence from others forms of criminality that, however morbid, do not further a collective project of conquest.

Precisely. Ibn Warraq outlines the framework in which this culturally induced madness furthers a universal open-ended project of world conquest. The “beliefs, ideas, and ideology” of the subtitle of The Islam in Islamic Terrorism, are enshrined in the Koran, extended in the hadith and sunna, clarified and confirmed by certified Islamic scholars, and translated into action from generation to generation, from the time of Islam’s prophet to the present day. The stultifying uniformity of Islamic doctrine is exceeded only by the horrifying savagery of its practices. Erudite, intellectually scrupulous, and totally proficient in both Islamic and Western languages and culture, Ibn Warraq draws on a wealth of textual and historical evidence to sustain his thesis [quote] that the Islamic war currently waged against the West-and including “wayward” Muslims-is not a reaction to any geopolitical situation, not provoked by any outside causes, not misdirected by a minority of hijackers that could twist a peaceful religion into a relentless war machine.

The defenseless newborn, thrust from the womb into a merciless world, bonds with the nurturing mother, overcomes his existential fear, learns to distinguish self and other and, fortified with trust, achieves the separation from the mother which is absolutely essential to the formation of a healthy adult personality. The jihadi cannot bond with a mother that is devalued, excluded, mistreated and most often cast aside by a polygamous husband. Devalued as a girl child, dominated and terrorized by her brothers, subject to sexual abuse and at the same time held to preserve the family honor under threat of death, excluded from free and equal social communication, the jihadi’s mother cannot interact in a healthy relationship to her sons. The boy is perversely attached to his mother, detests and reviles her, and transfers his positive feelings onto motherfied objects or persons that he protects with extreme violence. In a hopeless attempt to relieve his unresolved childish terror the jihadi feminizes and terrorizes his victims to a degree that knows no limits.

And, as Ibn Warraq brilliantly demonstrates, Islamic ideology gives the jihadi the framework within which to exercise his brutalized will. It doesn’t matter if the individual jihadi has studied the texts or learned the history, he has been shaped by his culture into a handy tool for the masterminds that know the tradition and devise the strategy to fulfill their Islamic obligations. The Muslim delinquent in a European city that steals, batters, rapes and in the worst cases kills does not need to know chapter and verse of the Koran that give him the right, nay the obligation to dominate, terrorize, and dispossess the infidel. And still they are so many that recite koranic verses and belt out allahu akhbars as they commit the handiwork prescribed in their holy book. Why, then, is it so difficult to admit the connection?

Guardian editor David Shariatmadari is a sterling example of the determination to blind Western readers to the truth. Apparently fearing no contradiction, he constructs barriers, plays with distorting mirrors, buries the truth under heavyweight bullshit, casts aspersions on unnamed contradictors whose unjustified accusations against koranic Islam don’t even deserve precise references. In one of his more laughable assertions he claims: “The media uses shorthand, focuses on the present and immediate past rather than the vast contemporary and historical context, and therefore nudges us towards the conclusion that there’s something dodgy about this faith.”

Not so! The media, with rare exceptions, assumes like Shariatmadari that readers know nothing about the vast contemporary and historical context, and will believe him when he says “the history of jihadi terrorism is so very short: this is emphatically a late 20th and early 21st century phenomenon.”

Will The Guardian accept a rebuttal by Ibn Warraq whose command of the vast contemporary and historical context is unmatched? You can practically see him in the act of research, digging ever deeper and wider, to corroborate and enlarge his original reference, each name leading to another, each connection validating his hypothesis, sparing no effort to establish the uninterrupted chain of totalitarian oppression in the name of Doing Right and Forbidding Wrong. Decapitation, mutilation, iron discipline, zealous imposition on every hour every minute every gesture of the Muslim’s life, in a horrifyingly familiar pattern constantly repeated, endlessly renewed in the name of the prophet, of purity, of the koran…

Continue reading at Family Security Matters


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