Those who think Islam is just another religion like Hinduism or Buddhism are not seeing this movement for what it really is. Islam is not just a religion. It is not even primarily a religion. It is a system of government, a political ideology which aims to control not only the expression of religion but every phase of human life. In Islamic teaching, there is no such thing as separation of church and state, or, in their case, mosque and state. “Islam” means submission. Its goal is to bring the world into subjection to its teaching. Contrary to Muslim claims that true Islam does not use force, the basic texts of Islam show that it promotes hate-filled, brutal violence toward unbelievers.
The teaching of the Koran alone should be enough to convince anyone that Islam is not the tolerant religion some try to make it out to be. The following verses are only a few examples.
“But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, and beleagur them, and lie in wait for them in every strategem (of war)…” (9:5)
“Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the last day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the Religion of Truth, from among the people of the Book, until they pay the jizyah with willing submission and feel themselves subdued.” (9:29)
“Therefore, when ye meet the unbelievers (in fight), smite at their necks; at length, when ye have thoroughly subdued them, bind a bond firmly (on them)…” (47:4)
There is a broader context of these passages, and that setting is even more incriminating than the Koranic verses. The backdrop to the Koran is found in the sira or life of Muhammed. One of the recognized Islamic sources on Muhammed’s life was written by Ibn Ishaq who was born about 85 years after Muhammed fled Mecca to go to Medina.1 His book The Life of Muhammed is 800 pages long (I am referring to Alfred Guillaume’s English translation). There we find the real context of the Koran and the true nature of the militaristic movement that masquerades as a religion. The life of Muhammed as a leader can be divided into two periods. The first period was his life in Mecca. There he claimed the angel Gabriel spoke to him and commissioned him to be a prophet (although at first Muhammed didn’t know if the message was from God or from demons). In Mecca he was a largely unsuccessful religious leader of a new sect. He was persecuted for his teaching and had only 150 followers after 13 years of effort. Opposition against him grew until he had to flee the city. He travelled to Medina where he had been asked to unite factions in the city. There he was welcomed with open arms. There he became not just a religious icon but also a successful political and military leader. From his newfound base he launched relentless raids on caravans traveling to his Meccan home, plundering and killing to avenge himself of the ill treatment the people of Mecca had shown him.
Ishaq says Muhammed took part personally in 27 raids. Obviously, he was more of a warlord in Medina than he was a religious figure. In one particularly gruesome scene from this period, Ishaq describes Muhammed’s campaign against the last Jewish tribe in Medina, the Bin Qurayza. Claiming that the angel Gabriel had appeared to him and told him to attack, Muhammed gathered his forces and beseiged them for 25 days “until they were sore pressed and God cast terror into their hearts.” When his enemies surrendered, he brought them out to the marketplace of Medina and dug trenches. “Then he sent for them and struck off their heads in those trenches as they were brought out to him in batches…There were 600 or 700 in all, though some put the figure as high as 800 or 900.”
To Muslims Muhammed is the model of human behavior, the perfect example to follow. They are taught not just to listen to what he said but also to imitate what he did. It should not surprise us that Muslims spread Islam through terrorism. Their founder was a terrorist.
In the hadith or Islamic traditions about the words and acts of Muhammed we find the same theme of violence against unbelievers in the name of Allah. The following examples are from Al-Bukhari, a famous Islamic historian who was born less than two centuries after Muhammed’s flight to Medina. The heading of this first set of hadith is entitled “The Book of Jihad (Fighting for Allah’s Cause).” The numbers indicate the particular tradition about Muhammed in Bukhari’s work:
“The Prophet said…’I would love to be martyred in Allah’s cause and then come back and then get martyred, and then come back to life again and then get martyred and then come back to life again and then get martyred.’” (2797)
“The Prophet said, ‘He who fights that Allah’s Word (i.e., Allah’s religion of Islamic monotheism) be superior, is in Allah’s cause.’” (2810)
“Allah’s Messenger said, ‘Know that Paradise is under the shades of swords (Jihad in Allah’s cause).’” (2818)
“Allah’s Messenger said, ‘You (muslims) will fight against the Jews till some of them hide behind stones. The stones will (betray them) saying, O Abdullah (i.e., slave of Allah)! There is a Jew hiding behind me; so kill him.’” (2925)
These are but a few of the statements from the Koran, the sira of Muhammed, and the hadith which clearly show that the aim of Islam is to impose its system of government upon the world by means of force. These three sources are the primary authorities in sharia law. Sadly, this information is unknown to many Americans.