Defence of the Muslim Lands: The Ruling of Fighting

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Defence of the Muslim Lands
By: Sheikh Abdullah Azzam (Shaheed)
Biography of Abdullah Azzam and Introduction
The First Obligation After Iman
The Ruling of Fighting in Palestine and Afghanistan
Fard Ayn and Fard Kifaya
Important Questions
Final Word
Letters of Acknowledgement and Translators Note

Palestine and Afghanistan

It has been made clear in the previous chapter that if the Kuffar infringe upon a hand span of Muslim land, jihad becomes Fard Ayn for its people and for those near by. If they fail to repel the Kuffar due to lack of resources or due to indolence, then the Fara'id of jihad spreads to those behind, and carries on spreading in this process, until the jihad is Fard Ayn upon the whole earth from the East to the West.

In this condition, no permission is required from, the husband for the wife, the parent for the child, the creditor for the debtor.

1) The sin is suspended on the necks of all the Muslims as long as any hand span of land that was Islamic is in the hands of the Kuffar.

2) The sin is measured according to one's authority or capabilities. The sin for the Ulama, Leaders, and Da'i, who are well known in their communities, is greater than for the ordinary civilian.

3) The sin upon this present generation, for not advancing towards Afghanistan, Palestine, the Philippines, Kashmir, Lebanon, Chad, Eritria, etc, is greater than the sin inherited from the loss of the lands which have previously fallen into the possession of the Kuffar. We have to concentrate our efforts on Afghanistan and Palestine now, because they have become our foremost problems. Moreover, our occupying enemies are very deceptive and execute programs to extend their power in these regions. If we were to resolve this dilemma we would resolve a great deal of complications. Their protection is the protection for the whole area.

Jihad in Afghanistan

Whoever can, from among the Arabs, fight jihad in Palestine, then he must start there. And, if he is not capable, then he must set out for Afghanistan. For the rest of the Muslims, I believe they should start their jihad in Afghanistan. It is our opinion that we should begin with Afghanistan before Palestine, not because Afghanistan is more important than Palestine, not at all, Palestine is the foremost Islamic problem. It is the heart of the Islamic world, and it is a blessed land but, there are some reasons which make Afghanistan the starting point.

1) The battles in Afghanistan are still raging and have reached a level of intensity, the like of which have not been witnessed in the mountain ranges of Hindu Kush, nor in recent Islamic history .

2) The Islamic flag being raised in Afghanistan is clear: and the aim is clear, "to make Allah's words uppermost". The second article in the constitution of Itihad Islamy consisting of Afghani Mujahideen is: "The goal of this unification is to bring forth an Islamic state in Afghanistan." And in the third article it states: "Our goal is taken from the words of the Exalted: "...the command (or the judgement) is for none but Allah... " [Surah Yusuf:Verse 40]. The rule is solely for the Lord of the Worlds.

3) The Islamists have been the first to take control of the battles in Afghanistan. Those who lead the jihad in Afghanistan are the sons of the Islamic movement, the Ulama and Hafiz of Qur'an. While, in Palestine the leadership has been appropriated by a variety of people, of them sincere Muslims, communists, nationalists and modernists Muslims. Together they have hoisted the banner of a secular state.

4) The situation in Afghanistan is still in the hands of the mujahideen. They continue to refuse help from any Kaffir country, while Palestine depends completely on the Soviet Union, who withheld their help in Palestine's time of dire need. They were left to face their predicament by themselves in front of the world conspiracy. The situation has become a game in the hands of the great powers. Gambling with the land, the people and the 'Ard of Palestine, pursuing them even into the Arab states, until their military power is exhausted.

5) There are more than 3000 kms of open border in Afghanistan and regions of tribes not under political influence. This forms a protective shield for mujahideen. However, in Palestine the situation is entirely different. The borders are closed, their hands are bound, the eyes of the authorities spy from all sides for anyone who attempts to infiltrate its borders to kill the Jews.

Shaffie said in Al Umm 4/177: "If there is a situation of different enemies, one is more threatening and more frightening than the others, the Imam engages the more frightening and threatening. This is acceptable, even if his home is further away." The reason being, Insha Allah, in this manner you prove that you are not afraid, and make an example for the others. This decision is because of necessity, being that what is permitted in times of necessity is not permitted in other times. This happened in the time of the Messenger of Allah (saw) when he heard that Harith Abi Dirar was gathering his forces to fight him. He (saw) attacked him, though there was an enemy closer to him. Also, when he was informed that Khalid Bin Abi Sufian Ibn Shuh had gathered a force, he sent Ibn Annis who killed him, thus engaging him though there were closer enemies.

6) The people of Afghanistan are renowned for their strength and pride. It seems as if the Glorified and Exalted prepared the mountains and the land there especially for jihad.

"Had it been a near gain (booty in front of them) and an easy journey, they would have followed you, but the distance (Tabuk expedition) was long for them, and they would swear by Allah, "If we only could; we would certainly have come forth with you. II They destroy their own selves, and Allah knows that they are liars." [Surah at Tauba:Verse 42]

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