For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled. 2 Corinthians 10:2-6 KJV
How could an all-powerful, all-loving God allow evil to exist?
From out latest series with Dr. Ravia Zacharias entitled "Ravi Zacharias Answers Questions From Europe, the Middle East and America" This series can be purchased at http://www.jashow.org/resources/ravi-...
Worst Year Yet’: The Top 50 Countries Where It’s Hardest to Be a Christian Islamic extremism now has a rival, according to 2017 World Watch List.
For the third year in a row, the modern persecution of Christians worldwide has hit another record high. But the primary cause, Islamic extremism, now has a rival: ethnic nationalism.
Thus, Asia increasingly merits concern alongside the Middle East, according to the 2017 World Watch List (WWL) released today by Open Doors.
This being the list’s 25th anniversary, Open Doors also released an analysis of persecution trends over the past quarter-century.
The annual list examines the pressures faced by Christians in five spheres of life(private, family, community, national, and church), plus levels of religiously motivated violence, in order to rank the top 50 countries where "Christians face the most persecution." [Full list below.]
CT’s coverage of recent WWL rankings noted how North Korea was getting competition, as well as how the annual list aims for effective anger and shows persecuted believers that they are not forgotten.
In 25 years of “chronicling and ranking” the political and societal restrictions on religious freedom experienced by Christians worldwide, Open Doors researchers identified 2016 as the “worst year yet.”
“Persecution rose globally again for the third year in a row, indicating how volatile the situation has become,” stated Open Doors. “Countries in South and Southeast Asia rapidly rose to unprecedented levels and now rank among such violent areas as the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa.”
The findings and trends noted by Open Doors are stark:
* Approximately 215 million Christians experience high, very high, or extreme persecution.
* North Korea remains the most dangerous place to be a Christian (for 14 straight years).
* Islamic extremism remains the global dominant driver of persecution, responsible for initiating oppression and conflict in 35 out of the 50 countries on the 2017 list.
* Ethnic nationalism is fast becoming a major driver of persecution. “While this took an anti-establishment form in the West, in Asia it took an anti-minorities form, fueled by dramatic religious nationalism and government insecurity. It is common—and easy—for tottering governments to gain quick support by scapegoating Christians.”
* The total number of persecution incidents in the top 50 most dangerous countries increased, revealing the persecution of Christians worldwide as a rising trend.
* The most violent: Pakistan, which rose to No. 4 on the list for a level of violence “exceeding even northern Nigeria.”
* The killings of Christians in Nigeria saw an increase of more than 62 percent.
* The killings of Christians were more geographically dispersed than in most time periods studied. “Hitting closer to home, 23 Christian leaders in Mexico and four in Colombia were killed specifically for their faith,” said Open Doors of the “rare” event.
* The worst increase: Mali, which moved up the most places on the list from No. 44 to No. 32.
* Asia is a new center of concern, with persecution rising sharply in Bangladesh, Laos, and Bhutan, and Sri Lanka joining the list for the first time.
Open Doors noted that India rose to its highest rank ever, No. 15, amid the continued rise of Hindu nationalism. “An average of 40 incidents were reported per month, including pastors beaten, churches burned and Christians harassed,” stated Open Doors. “Of the 64 million Christians in India, approximately 39 million experience direct persecution.”
In Central Asia, persecution spread due to both Islamic extremism and government attempts to restrict it. “In many countries, governmental raids of suspected Christian households increased, certain Christian books have been banned,” stated Open Doors, “and the membership requirement to remain a legal church doubled, resulting in many churches to be deemed illegal overnight.”
The top 10 nations where it is most dangerous and difficult to practice the Christian faith are:
1. North Korea� 2. Somalia� 3. Afghanistan� 4. Pakistan� 5. Sudan� 6. Syria� 7. Iraq� 8. Iran� 9. Yemen� 10. Eritrea� Yemen was the only new country in the top 10, replacing Libya. Over the past 25 years, only three countries have topped the list: North Korea (2002 – 2017), Saudi Arabia (1993 – 1995; 1998 – 2001), and Somalia (1996 – 1997). The top 10 nations over the 25-year span are: 1. North Korea� 2. Saudi Arabia� 3. Iran� 4. Somalia� 5. Afghanistan� 6. Maldives� 7. Yemen� 8. Sudan� 9. Vietnam� 10. China� Six countries appear on both lists—a sign of the concerning stability of persecution, noted Open Doors.
The WWL data is compiled from reports spanning November 1, 2015, to October 31, 2016. The annual list is audited by the International Institute for Religious Freedom.
Open Doors defines persecution as “any hostility experienced as a result of identification with Christ.” “Christians remain one of the most persecuted religious groups in the world,” it stated. “Christians throughout the world continue to risk imprisonment, loss of home and assets, torture, beheadings, rape and even death as a result of their faith.”
“The Open Doors World Watch List is the most accurate, thorough and intensive research available on the persecution of Christians,” said David Curry, president and CEO of Open Doors USA. “It calculates not only deaths reported in the news, but also persecution at a grassroots level, where family-to-family persecution is tracked. The 25-year research shows where the most unstable areas for Christians have historically been and, in many countries, remain.”
CT previously reported the WWL rankings for 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, and 2012, including a spotlight on where it's hardest to believe. CT also recently compiled 2016’s 12 most-read stories of the persecuted church.
CHRISTWAR INSTITUE: Documentary Film #002 Radical Islam's Vision for America By The Third Jihad The Islamic War on Christians Islam is not a Religion, it's a Political Government.
The Third Jihad: Radical Islam's Vision For America is a 2008 documentary film directed by Wayne Kopping of South Africa and Erik Werth, and produced by Erik Werth and Raphael Shore, a Canadian-Israeli, with financing from the Clarion Fund.
The film dwells on the idea of the alleged threat of radical Islam in the United States, and centers around a Muslim Brotherhood document, accepted as evidence in the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development terror financing trial. The filmmakers contend, based on that document, that radical Islamists are engaging in a "multifaceted strategy to overcome the western world," waging a "cultural jihad" to "infiltrate and undermine our society from within". The film is narrated by Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, a controversial Muslim American.
The film later created widespread controversy when media discovered that it was being shown to NYPD recruits.
According to the filmmaker's website, the film "reveals that radical Islamists driven by a religiously motivated rejection of western values cultures and religion are engaging in a multifaceted strategy to overcome the western world." In contrast to the concept of violent jihad, the filmmakers introduce the concept of "cultural jihad as a means to infiltrate and undermine our society from within." The overriding theme from their perspective is how this "cultural jihad" is a threat to United States national security. The film contains excerpts of speeches by Islamic organizations and terrorist groups, includes interviews with government officials, interspersed with footage of terrorist attacks, human rights violations, and growing support of jihadist movements. A distinction is drawn between radical Islam and Islam as a whole. However, the film accuses "much of Muslim leadership here in America" of having the goal to "infiltrate and dominate".
Persons interviewed in the film include: former Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Director of the American Center for Democracy Rachel Ehrenfeld, founder and president of the Alliance of Iranian Women Manda Zand Ervin, former Jammaa Islameia terrorist Dr. Tawfik Hamid, British columnist and author Melanie Phillips, Cleveland E. Dodge Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University Bernard Lewis, Wayne Simmons, founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD) Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, Senior Fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies Walid Phares, head of Masjid Al Islam mosque in Washington, DC Imam Abdul Alim Musa, Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman, former CIA Intelligence Expert Clare Lopez, FBI Assistant Director for Public Affairs John Miller, President of the National Ten Point Leadership Foundation Rev. Eugene Rivers, journalist and author Mark Steyn, former CIA Director during the Clinton Administration Jim Woolsey, and Police Commissioner of New York City Raymond Kelly.
For more information: www.TheThirdJihad.com
Originally Published on Published on Oct 28, 2015 -
By Clarion Project - Challenging Extremism | Promoting Dialogue
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Islam is not a Religion, it's a Political Government.
The term, which originally denoted the religion of Islam, first appeared in English as Islamismus in 1696, and as Islamism in 1712. The term appears in the U.S. Supreme Court decision in In Re Ross (1891). By the turn of the twentieth century it had begun to be displaced by the shorter and purely Arabic term "Islam" and by 1938, when Orientalist scholars completed The Encyclopaedia of Islam, seems to have virtually disappeared from English usage.
The term "Islamism" acquired its contemporary connotations in French academia in the late 1970s and early 1980s. From French, it began to migrate to the English language in the mid-1980s, and in recent years has largely displaced the term Islamic fundamentalism in academic circles.
The use of the term Islamism was at first "a marker for scholars more likely to sympathize" with new Islamic movements; however, as the term gained popularity it became more specifically associated with political groups such as the Taliban or the Algerian Armed Islamic Group, as well as with highly publicized acts of violence.
"Islamists" who have spoken out against the use of the term, insisting they are mere "Muslims", include Ayatollah Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah, the spiritual mentor of Hizbullah, and Abbassi Madani, leader of the Algerian Islamic Salvation Front.
A 2003 article in Middle East Quarterly states:
In summation, the term Islamism enjoyed its first run, lasting from Voltaire to the First World War, as a synonym for Islam. Enlightened scholars and writers generally preferred it to Mohammedanism. Eventually, both terms yielded to Islam, the Arabic name of the faith, and a word free of either pejorative or comparative associations. There was no need for any other term until the rise of an ideological and political interpretation of Islam challenged scholars and commentators to come up with an alternative, to distinguish Islam as modern ideology from Islam as a faith... To all intents and purposes, Islamic fundamentalism and Islamism have become synonyms in contemporary American usage.
The Council on American–Islamic Relations complained in 2013 that the Associated Press's definition of "Islamist"—a "supporter of government in accord with the laws of Islam [and] who view the Quran as a political model"—had become a pejorative shorthand for "Muslims we don't like." Mansoor Moaddel, a sociologist of Eastern Michigan University criticized it as "not a good term" because "the use of the term Islamist does not capture the phenomena that are quite heterogeneous."
The AP Stylebook entry for Islamist now reads as follows:
"An advocate or supporter of a political movement that favors reordering government and society in accordance with laws prescribed by Islam. Do not use as a synonym for Islamic fighters, militants, extremists or radicals, who may or may not be Islamists. Where possible, be specific and use the name of militant affiliations: al-Qaida-linked, Hezbollah, Taliban, etc. Those who view the Quran as a political model encompass a wide range of Muslims, from mainstream politicians to militants known as jihadi."
Some Islamic revivalist movements and leaders pre-dating Islamism include:
Ahmad Sirhindi (~1564–1624) was part of a reassertion of orthodoxy within Islamic Mysticism (Taṣawwuf) and was known to his followers as the 'renovator of the second millennium'. It has been said of Sirhindi that he 'gave to Indian Islam the rigid and conservative stamp it bears today.'
Ibn Taymiyyah, a Syrian Islamic jurist during the 13th and 14th centuries who is often quoted by contemporary Islamists. Ibn Taymiyya argued against the shirking of Sharia law, was against practices such as the celebration of Muhammad's birthday, and "he believed that those who ask assistance from the grave of the Prophet or saints are mushrikin (polytheists), someone who is engaged in shirk."
Shah Waliullah of India and Muhammad ibn Abd-al-Wahhab of Arabia were contemporaries who met each other while studying in Mecca. Muhammad ibn Abd-al-Wahhab advocated doing away with the later accretions like grave worship and getting back to the letter and the spirit of Islam as preached and practiced by Muhammad. He went on to found Wahhabism. Shah Waliullah was a forerunner of reformist Islamists like Muhammad Abduh, Muhammad Iqbal and Muhammad Asad in his belief that there was "a constant need for new ijtihad as the Muslim community progressed and expanded and new generations had to cope with new problems" and in his interest in the social and economic problems of the poor.
Sayyid Ahmad Barelvi was a disciple and successor of Shah Waliullah's son and emphasized the 'purification' of Islam from un-Islamic beliefs and practices. He anticipated modern militant Islamists by leading an extremist, jihadist movement and attempted to create an Islamic state with enforcement of Islamic law. While he battled Sikh fundamentalist rule in Muslim-majority North-Western India, his followers fought against British colonialism after his death and allied themselves with the Indian Mutiny.
After the failure of the Indian Mutiny, some of Shah Waliullah's followers turned to more peaceful methods of preserving the Islamic heritage and founded the Dar al-Ulum seminary in 1867 in the town of Deoband. From the school developed the Deobandi movement which became the largest philosophical movement of traditional Islamic thought in the subcontinent and led to the establishment of thousands of madrasahs throughout modern-day India, Pakistan and Bangladesh
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CHRISTWAR INSTITUTE: Teaching Program #006 Islam's Impact on Christianity / Teaching By Dr. Bill Warner Islam is not a Religion, it's a Political Government.
An Arab Legion soldier in ruins of Hurva Synagogue.
Islamization of East Jerusalem under Jordanian occupation is what occurred during the Jordanian annexation of the West Bank between 1948–1967, when Jordan sought to alter the demographics and landscape of the city to enhance its Muslim character at the expense of its Jewish and Christian ones. At this time, all Jewish residents were expelled, and restrictions were imposed on the Christian population that led many to leave the city. Ghada Hashem Talhami states that during its nineteen years of rule, the government of Jordan took actions to accentuate the spiritual Islamic status of Jerusalem. Raphael Israeli, an Israeli professor, described these measures as "Arabization"
While Christian holy sites were protected, and Muslim holy sites were maintained and renovated, Jewish holy sites were damaged and sometimes destroyed. According to Raphael Israeli, 58 synagogues were desecrated or demolished in the Old City, resulting in the de-Judaization of Jerusalem. The Western Wall was transformed into an exclusively Muslim holy site associated with al-Buraq. 38,000 Jewish graves in the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives were systematically destroyed, and Jews were not allowed to be buried there. This was all in violation of the Israel-Jordan Armistice Agreement Article VIII - 2 "...; free access to the Holy Places and cultural institutions and use of the cemetery on the Mount of Olives;...."  Following the Arab Legions expulsion of the Jewish residents of the Old City in the 1948 War, Jordan allowed Arab Muslim refugees to settle in the vacated Jewish Quarter. Later, after some of these were moved to Shuafat, migrants from Hebron took their place. During the 1960s, as the quarter continued to fall into decay, Jordan planned to turn the quarter into a public park.
In 1952, Jordan proclaimed that Islam was to be the official religion, and according to Israeli professor Yehuda Zvi Blum, this was applied in Jordanian-held Jerusalem.[
In 1953, Jordan restricted Christian communities from owning or purchasing land near holy sites, and in 1964, further prohibited churches from buying land in Jerusalem. These were cited, along with new laws impacting Christian educational institutions, by both British political commentator Bat Ye'or and the mayor of Jerusalem Teddy Kollek as evidence that Jordan sought to "Islamize" the Christian Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem.
In order to counter the influence of foreign powers, who had run the Christian schools in Jerusalem autonomously since Ottoman times, the Jordanian government legislated in 1955 to bring all schools under government supervision. They were allowed to use only approved textbooks and teach in Arabic. Schools were required to close on Arab national holidays and Fridays instead of Sundays. Christian holidays were no longer recognized officially, and observation of Sunday as the Christian Sabbath was restricted to Christian civil servants. Students, whether Muslim or Christian, could study only their own religion. The Jerusalem Post described these measures as "a process of Islamization of the Christian Quarter in the Old City.
In general, Christian holy places were treated with respect, although some scholars say they suffered from neglect. During this period, renovations were made to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which was in a state of serious disrepair since the British period due to disagreements between the many Christian groups claiming a stake in it. While there was no major interference in the operation and maintenance of Christian holy places, the Jordanian government did not allow Christian institutions to expand. Christian churches were prevented from funding hospitals and other social services in Jerusalem.
In the wake of these restrictions, many Christians left East Jerusalem.
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CHRISTWAR INSTITUTE: Teaching Program #005 Hijra, Islamic Migration Teaching By Bill Warner, PhD Islam is not a Religion, it's a Political Government.
Learn more about this topic. Go to my website bookstore http://www.politicalislam.com/shop/ to find short books that make Islamic doctrine easy for everyone to understand.
The Hegira (also called Hijrah, Arabic: هِجْرَة) is the migration or journey of the Islamic prophet Muhammad and his followers from Mecca to Yathrib, later renamed by him to Medina, in the year 622. In June 622, after being warned of a plot to assassinate him, Muhammad secretly left his home in Mecca to emigrate to Yathrib, 320 km (200 mi) north of Mecca, along with his companion Abu Bakr. Yathrib was soon renamed Madīnat an-Nabī (Arabic: مَـديـنـة الـنّـبي, literally "City of the Prophet"), but an-Nabī was soon dropped, so its name is "Medina", meaning "the city".
The Hijrah is also often identified with the start of the Islamic calendar, which was set to 19 April 622 in the Julian calendar.
The first Hijrah is dated to 615 or Rajab (September–October) 613 when a group of Muslims counseled by Muhammad to escape persecution in Mecca arrived at the court of the Christian monarch (Negus) of the Ethiopian Empire, Ashama ibn-Abjar. Muhammad himself did not join this emigration. In that year, his followers fled Mecca's leading tribe, the Quraysh, who sent emissaries to Ethiopia to bring them back to the Arabian Peninsula. However, the Negus refused to send them back.
In Mecca, at the pilgrimage season of 620, Muhammad met six men of the Banu Khazraj from Medina, propounded to them the doctrines of Islam, and recited portions of the Quran. Impressed by this, the six embraced Islam, and at the Pilgrimage of 621, five of them brought seven others with them. These twelve informed Muhammad of the beginning of the gradual development of Islam in Medina, and took a formal pledge of allegiance at Muhammad's hand, promising to accept him as a prophet, to worship none but one God, and to renounce certain sins such as theft, adultery, and murder. This is known as the "First Pledge of al-Aqaba". At their request, Muhammad sent with them Mus‘ab ibn 'Umair to teach them the instructions of Islam. Biographers have recorded the considerable success of Mus`ab ibn `Umair in preaching the message of Islam and bringing people under the umbrella of Islam in Medina.
The next year, at the pilgrimage of 622, a delegation of around 75 Muslims of the Banu Aws and Khazraj from Medina came, and in addition to restating the formal promises, they also assured Muhammad of their full support and protection if the latter would migrate to their land. They invited him to come to Medina as an arbitrator to reconcile among the hostile tribes. This is known as the "second pledge at al-Aqabah", and was a 'politico-religious' success that paved the way for his and his followers' immigration to Medina. Following the pledges, Muhammad encouraged his followers to migrate to Medina, and in a span of two months, nearly all the Muslims of Mecca migrated to Medina.
During the early seventh century, Medina was inhabited by two types of population: Jewish and pagan Arabs. The Jews there had three principal clans – Banu Qaynuqa, Banu Nadir, and Banu Qurayza. The Arab pagans had two tribes – the Banu Aws and Khazraj. At that time, the Jews there had the upper hand with their large settlement and huge property. Before the encounter between Muhammad and the six men from Medina in 620, there ensued a terrible battle between Aws and Khazraj, known as the Battle of Buath, in which many leading personalities of both the sides died and left Yathrib in a disordered state. Traditional rules for maintaining law and order became dysfunctional, and, without a neutral man with considerable authority over things, stability seemed unlikely. As the pagan Arabs of Medina lived in close proximity to the Jews, they had gained some knowledge about their scriptures and had heard the Jews awaiting the arrival of a future prophet. It is because of this knowledge, taken together with their need for an adjudicator, that the six men who met Muhammad at the pilgrimage season of 620 readily accepted his message, lest the Jews should steal a march over them.
According to Muslim tradition, after receiving divine direction to depart Mecca, Muhammad began taking preparation and informed Abu Bakr of his plan. On the night of his departure, Muhammad's house was besieged by men of the Quraysh who planned to kill him in the morning. At the time, Muhammad possessed various properties of the Quraysh given to him in trust; so he handed them over to 'Ali and directed him to return them to their owners, and asked him to lie down on his bed assuring him of God's protection. It is said that when Muhammad emerged from his house, he recited the ninth verse of Surah Ya Sin of the Quran and threw a handful of dust at the direction of the besiegers, rendering the besiegers unable to see him. Soon, Muhammad joined Abu Bakr, left the city, and the two took shelter in a cave outside the city. Next morning, the besiegers were frustrated to find Ali on Muhammad's bed. Fooled and thwarted by Muhammad's plan, they rummaged the city in search for him, and some of them eventually reached the threshold of the cave, but success eluded them. When the Quraysh came to know of Muhammad's escape, they announced a heavy reward for bringing Muhammad back to them, alive or dead. Unable to resist this temptation, pursuers scattered in all directions. After staying for three days, Muhammad and Abu Bakr resumed their journey and were pursued by Suraqa bin Malik. But each time he neared Muhammad's party, his horse stumbled and he finally abandoned his desire of capturing Muhammad. After eight days' journey, Muhammad entered the outskirts of Medina around June 622, but did not enter the city directly. He stopped at a place called Quba', a place some miles from the main city, and established a mosque there. After a four-day stay at Quba', Muhammad along with Abu Bakr continued their migration to Medina, participated in their first Friday prayer on the way, and upon reaching the city, were greeted cordially by its people.
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CHRISTWAR INSTITUTE: Teaching Program #004 The True History of Muslim Conquests.
Dr. Bill Warner Radio Interview Islam is not a Religion, it's a Political Government.
The early Muslim conquests (Arabic: الفتوحات الإسلامية, al-Futūḥāt al-Islāmiyya) also referred to as the Arab conquests and early Islamic conquests began with the Islamic prophet Muhammad in the 7th century. He established a new unified polity in the Arabian Peninsula which under the subsequent Rashidun and Umayyad Caliphates saw a century of rapid expansion.
The resulting empire stretched from the borders of China and the Indian subcontinent, across Central Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, and parts of Europe (Sicily and the Iberian Peninsula to the Pyrenees). Edward Gibbon writes in The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire:
Under the last of the Umayyads, the Arabian empire extended two hundred days journey from east to west, from the confines of Tartary and India to the shores of the Atlantic Ocean ... We should vainly seek the indissoluble union and easy obedience that pervaded the government of Augustus and the Antonines, but the progress of Islam diffused over this ample space a general resemblance of manners and opinions. The language and laws of the Quran were studied with equal devotion at Samarcand and Seville: the Moor and the Indian embraced as countrymen and brothers in the pilgrimage of Mecca, and the Arabian language was adopted as the popular idiom in all the provinces to the westward of the Tigris.
The Muslim conquests brought about the collapse of the Sassanid Empire and a great territorial loss for the Byzantine Empire. The reasons for the Muslim success are hard to reconstruct in hindsight, primarily because only fragmentary sources from the period have survived. Most historians agree that the Sassanid Persian and Byzantine Roman empires were militarily and economically exhausted from decades of fighting one another.
Some Jews and Christians in the Sassanid Empire and Jews and Monophysites in Syria were dissatisfied and welcomed the Muslim forces, largely because of religious conflict in both empires, while at other times, such as in the Battle of Firaz, Arab Christians allied themselves with the Persians and Byzantines against the invaders. In the case of Byzantine Egypt, Palestine and Syria, these lands had only a few years before being reclaimed from the Persians.
Fred McGraw Donner, however, suggests that formation of a state in the Arabian peninsula and ideological (i.e. religious) coherence and mobilization was a primary reason why the Muslim armies in the space of a hundred years were able to establish the largest pre-modern empire until that time. The estimates for the size of the Islamic Caliphate suggest it was more than thirteen million square kilometers (five million square miles).
The prolonged and escalating Byzantine–Sassanid wars of the 6th and 7th centuries and the recurring outbreaks of bubonic plague (Plague of Justinian) left both empires exhausted and weakened in the face of the sudden emergence and expansion of the Arabs. The last of these wars ended with victory for the Byzantines: Emperor Heraclius regained all lost territories and restored the True Cross to Jerusalem in 629.
Nevertheless, neither empire was given any chance to recover, as within a few years they were overrun by the advances of the Arabs (newly united by Islam), which, according to Howard-Johnston, "can only be likened to a human tsunami". According to George Liska, the "unnecessarily prolonged Byzantine–Persian conflict opened the way for Islam".
In late 620s Muhammad had already managed to conquer and unify much of Arabia under Muslim rule, and it was under his leadership that the first Muslim-Byzantine skirmishes took place in response to the Byzantine forces incursions. Just a few months after Heraclius and the Persian general Shahrbaraz agreed on terms for the withdrawal of Persian troops from occupied Byzantine eastern provinces in 629, Arab and Byzantine troops confronted each other at the Battle of Mu'tah as a result of Byzantine vassals murdering a Muslim emissary. Muhammad died in 632 and was succeeded by Abu Bakr, the first Caliph with undisputed control of the entire Arab peninsula after the successful Ridda Wars, which resulted in the consolidation of a powerful Muslim state throughout the peninsula.
CHRISTWAR INSTITUE: Documentary Film #001 The Hidden Story & Truth of ISLAM
By Historian Tom Holland The Islamic War on Christians Islam is not a Religion, it's a Political Government.
This Video: Many historians are challenging long-held opinions of the origins of Islam. Tom Holland
examines whether the religion was born fully formed, or if it evolved over many years. Adopting the theories of academic historian Patricia Crone as a basis, Holland asserted that there was little hard evidence for the origins of Islam and asked why it took several decades after the death of Muhammad for his name to appear on surviving documents or artifacts. Arguing that there was little evidence for how the faith was born, he suggested that the city of Mecca may not have been the real birthplace of Muhammad and Islam, and – while not clearly disputing Muhammad's existence as a real historical figure – claimed that much of the Islamic origin story was later developed in the early years of the Arab Empire.
Reaction to European colonialism
In the 19th century, European colonization of the Muslim world coincided with the retreat of the Ottoman Empire, the French conquest of Algeria (1830), the disappearance of the Moghul Empire in India (1857), the Russian incursions into the Caucasus (1828) and Central Asia.
The first Muslim reaction to European colonization was of "peasant and religious", not the urban origin. "Charismatic leaders", generally members of the ulama or leaders of religious orders, launched the call for jihad and formed tribal coalitions. Sharia in defiance of local common law was imposed to unify tribes. Examples include Abd al-Qadir in Algeria, the Mahdi in Sudan, Shamil in the Caucasus, the Senussi in Libya and in Chad, Mullah-i Lang in Afghanistan, the Akhund of Swat in India, and later, Abd al-Karim in Morocco. All these movements eventually failed "despite spectacular victories such as the destruction of the British army in Afghanistan in 1842 and the taking of Khartoum in 1885."
The second Muslim reaction to European encroachment later in the century and early 20th century was not violent resistance but the adoption of some Western political, social, cultural and technological ways. Members of the urban elite, particularly in Egypt, Iran, and Turkey advocated and practiced "Westernization".
The failure of the attempts at political westernization, according to some, was exemplified by the Tanzimat reorganization of the Ottoman rulers. Sharia was codified into law (which was called the Mecelle) and an elected legislature was established to make law. These steps took away the Ulama's role of "discovering" the law and the formerly powerful scholar class weakened and withered into religious functionaries, while the legislature was suspended less than a year after its inauguration and never recovered to replace the Ulama as a separate "branch" of government providing Separation of powers. The "paradigm of the executive as a force unchecked by either the sharia of the scholars or the popular authority of an elected legislature became the dominant paradigm in most of the Sunni Muslim world in the twentieth century."
The modern political ideal of the Islamic state
See also: Islamism and Islamic state
In addition to the legitimacy given by medieval scholarly opinion, nostalgia for the days of successful Islamic empire simmered under later Western colonialism. This nostalgia played a major role in the Islamist political ideal of the Islamic state, a state in which Islamic law is preeminent. The Islamist political program is generally to be accomplished by re-shaping the governments of existing Muslim nation-states, but the means of doing this varies greatly across movements and circumstances. Many democratic Islamist movements, such as the Jamaat-e-Islami and Muslim Brotherhood have used the democratic process and focus on votes and coalition-building with other political parties. Radical movements such as Taliban and al-Qaeda embrace militant Islamic ideology. Al-Qaeda was prominent for being part of the anti-Soviet resistance in Afghanistan in the 1980s. Both of the aforementioned groups had a role to play with the September 11 attacks in 2001, presenting both "near" and "far" enemies regional governments and the United States respectively. They also took part in the bombings in Madrid in 2004 and London in 2005. The recruits often came from the ranks of jihadis, from Egypt, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, and Morocco.
20th and 21st century
Following World War I and the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, and the subsequent dissolution of the Caliphate by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (founder of Turkey), many Muslims perceived that the political power of their religion was in retreat. There was also concern that Western ideas and influence were spreading throughout Muslim societies. This led to considerable resentment of the influence of the European powers. The Muslim Brotherhood was created in Egypt as a movement to resist and harry the British.
During the 1960s, the predominant ideology within the Arab world was pan-Arabism which deemphasized religion and emphasized the creation of socialist, secular states based on Arab nationalism rather than Islam. However, governments based on Arab nationalism have found themselves facing economic stagnation and disorder. Increasingly, the borders of these states were seen as artificial colonial creations - which they were, having literally been drawn on a map by European colonial powers.
Some common political currents in Islam include
Traditionalism, which accepts traditional commentaries on the Quran and Sunna and "takes as its basic principle imitation (taqlid), that is, refusal to innovate", and follows one of the four legal schools or Madh'hab (Shaf'i, Maliki, Hanafi, Hanbali) and, may include Sufism. An example of Sufi traditionalism is the Barelvi school in Pakistan.
Fundamentalist reformism, which "criticizes the tradition, the commentaries, popular religious practices (maraboutism, the cult of saints)", deviations, and superstitions; it aims to return to the founding texts. This reformism generally developed in response to an external threat (the influence of Hinduism on Islam, for example). 18th-century examples are Shah Wali Allah in India and Muhammad ibn Abd-al-Wahhab (who founded Wahhabism) in the Arabian Peninsula. Salafism is a modern example.
Islamism or political Islam, embracing a return to the sharia or Islamic principles, but adopting Western terminology such as revolution, ideology, politics and democracy and taking a more liberal attitude towards issues like Jihad and women's rights. Contemporary examples include the Jamaat-e-Islami, Muslim Brotherhood, Iranian Islamic Revolution, Masyumi party, United Malays National Organisation, Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party and Justice and Development Party (Turkey).
Liberal movements within Islam generally define themselves in opposition to Islamic political movements, but often embrace many of its anti-imperialist and Islam inspired liberal reformist elements.
Sunni and Shia differences
According to scholar Vali Nasr, political tendencies of Sunni and Shia Islamic ideology differ, with Sunni Islamic revivalism "in Pakistan and much of the Arab world" being "far from politically revolutionary", while Shia political Islam is strongly influenced by Ruhollah Khomeini and his talk of the oppression of the poor and class war. Sunni revivalism "is rooted in conservative religious impulses and the bazaars, mixing mercantile interests with religious values." ... Khomeini's version of Islamism engaged the poor and spoke of class war.
This Cleavage between fundamentalism as revivalism and fundamentalism as a revolution was deep and for a long while coincided closely with the sectarian divide between the Sunnis - the Muslim world's traditional `haves`, concerned more with conservative religiosity - and the Shia - the longtime outsiders,` more drawn to radical dreaming and scheming."
Graham Fuller has also noted that he found "no mainstream Islamist organization (with the exception of [shia] Iran) with radical social views or a revolutionary approach to the social order apart from the imposition of legal justice."
Originally Published on Aug 9, 2015 - By PANGEA
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Original Title: Islam: The Untold Story (Historian Tom Holland)
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CHRISTWAR INSTITUTE: Teaching Program #003 A Brief View of The Political Islam PART 2 of 2. Dr. Bill Warner Interview Islam is not a Religion, it's a Political Government.
Origins of Islam as a political movement are to be found in the life and times of Islam's prophet Muhammad and his successors. In 622 CE, in recognition of his claims to prophethood, Muhammad was invited to rule the city of Medina. At the time the local Arab tribes of Aus and Khazraj dominated the city and were in constant conflict. Medinans saw in Muhammad an impartial outsider who could resolve the conflict. Muhammad and his followers thus moved to Medina, where Muhammad drafted the Medina Charter. This document made Muhammad the ruler and recognized him as the Prophet of Allah. The laws Muhammad established during his rule, based on the revelations of the Quran and doing of Muhammad, are considered by Muslims to be Sharia or Islamic law, which Islamic movements seek to establish in the present day. Muhammad gained a widespread following and an army, and his rule expanded first to the city of Mecca and then spread through the Arabian peninsula through a combination of diplomacy and military conquest.
Today many Islamist or Islamic democratic parties exist in almost every democracy with a Muslim majority. Many militant Islamic groups are also working in different parts of the world. The controversial term Islamic fundamentalism has also been coined by some non-Muslims to describe the political and religious philosophies of some militant Islamic groups. Both of these terms (Islamic democracy and Islamic fundamentalism) lump together a large variety of groups with varying histories, ideologies, and contexts.
Islamic State of Medina
The Constitution of Medina was drafted by the Islamic prophet Muhammad. It constituted a formal agreement between Muhammad and all of the significant tribes and families of Yathrib (later known as Medina), including Muslims, Jews, Christians and Pagans. This constitution formed the basis of the first Islamic state. The document was drawn up with the explicit concern of bringing to an end the bitter inter-tribal fighting between the clans of the Aws (Aus) and Khazraj within Medina. To this effect, it instituted a number of rights and responsibilities for the Muslim, Jewish, Christian, and Pagan communities of Medina bringing them within the fold of one community—the Ummah.
The precise dating of the Constitution of Medina remains debated but generally, scholars agree it was written shortly after the Hijra (622). [Note 1] [Note 2] [Note 3] [Note 4] It effectively established the first Islamic state. The Constitution established: the security of the community, religious freedoms, the role of Medina as a haram or sacred place (barring all violence and weapons), the security of women, stable tribal relations within Medina, a tax system for supporting the community in time of conflict, parameters for exogenous political alliances, a system for granting protection of individuals, a judicial system for resolving disputes, and also regulated the paying of blood money (the payment between families or tribes for the slaying of an individual in lieu of lex talionis).
Early Caliphate and political ideals
See also: Caliphate and Islamic ethics
After the death of Muhammad, his community needed to appoint a new leader, giving rise to the title of Caliph, meaning "successor". Thus the subsequent Islamic empires were known as Caliphates. Alongside the growth of the Umayyad empire, the major political development within Islam in this period was the sectarian split between Sunni and Shi'ite Muslims; this had its roots in a dispute over the succession of the Caliphate. Sunni Muslims believed the caliphate was elective, and any Muslim might serve as one. Shi'ites, on the other hand, believed the caliphate should be hereditary in the line of the Prophet, and thus all the caliphs, with the exception of Ali, were usurpers. However, the Sunni sect emerged as triumphant in most of the Muslim world, and thus most modern Islamic political movements (with the exception of Iran) are founded in Sunni thought.
Muhammad's closest companions, the four "rightly guided" Caliphs who succeeded him, continued to expand the state to encompass Jerusalem, Ctesiphon, and Damascus, and sending armies as far as the Sindh. The Islamic empire stretched from Al-Andalus (Muslim Spain) to Punjab under the reign of the Umayyad dynasty. The conquering Arab armies took the system of Sharia laws and courts to their new military camps and cities and built mosques for Friday jam'at (community prayers) as well as Madrasahs to educate local Muslim youth. These institutions resulted in the development of a class of ulema (classical Islamic scholars) who could serve as qadis (Sharia-court judges), imams of mosques and madrasah teachers. The political terminology of the Islamic state was all the product of this period. Thus, medieval legal terms such as Khalifa, sharia, fiqh, maddhab, jizya, and dhimmi all remain part of modern Islamic vocabulary.
An important Islamic concept concerning the structure of ruling is shura, or consultation with people regarding their affairs, which is the duty of rulers mentioned in two verses in the Quran, 3:153, and 42:36. One type of ruler not part of the Islamic ideal was the king, which was disparaged in Quran's mentions of the Pharaoh, "the prototype of the unjust and tyrannical ruler" (18:70, 79) and elsewhere. (28:34
The Rubin Report
Published on Jun 6, 2016
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Dr. Bill Warner
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