Suicide bombers

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by jimnyc, Nov 10, 2003.

  1. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    It's a shame that the terrorist portion of Muslims don't follow the rules/laws that the rest of Islam does.
    ****

    Why do they do it, and what does Islam say about their actions?


    "And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you. But do not transgress limits. Truly Allah loves not the transgressors."

    - Qur'an, Surah Al-Baqarah (2:190)

    The dangerous escalation of violence in the world is disturbing to all people of conscience, from September 11 to the Middle East battles, and other random acts of violence perpetrated at innocent civilians.

    In the fight against terrorism of all forms, it is important to understand who or what is our enemy. We can only fight against this horror if we understand its causes and motivations. What motivates a person to lash out in this violent, inhumane way? That is something that all of us -- mental health professionals, politicians, and common people -- need to understand, so that we can address the issues more honestly, prevent more violence, and find ways to work towards lasting peace.

    In Islam, several things are clear:

    * Suicide is forbidden. "O ye who believe!... [do not] kill yourselves, for truly Allah has been to you Most Merciful. If any do that in rancour and injustice, soon shall We cast him into the Fire..." (Qur'an 4:29-30).
    * The taking of life is allowed only by way of justice (i.e. the death penalty for murder), but even then, forgiveness is better. "Nor take life - which Allah has made sacred - except for just cause..." (17:33).
    * In pre-Islamic Arabia, retaliation and mass murder was commonplace. If someone was killed, the victim's tribe would retaliate against the murderer's entire tribe. This practice was directly forbidden in the Qur'an (2:178-179). Following this statement of law, the Qur'an says, "After this, whoever exceeds the limits shall be in grave chastisement" (2:178). No matter what wrong we perceive as being done against us, we may not lash out against an entire population of people.
    * The Qur'an admonishes those who oppress others and transgress beyond the bounds of what is right and just. "The blame is only against those who oppress men with wrongdoing and insolently transgress beyond bounds through the land, defying right and justice. For such there will be a chastisement grievous (in the Hereafter)" (42:42).
    * Harming innocent bystanders, even in times of war, was forbidden by the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). This includes women, children, noncombatant bystanders, and even trees and crops. Nothing is to be harmed unless the person or thing is actively engaged in an assault against Muslims.

    The predominant theme in the Qur'an is forgiveness and peace. Allah (God) is Merciful and Forgiving, and seeks that in His followers. Indeed, most people who spend time on a personal level with ordinary Muslims have found them to be peaceful, honest, hard-working, civic-minded people.

    In the Palestinian territories, those who support suicide bombing claim that it is merely a tactic of war in defense of their land and homes. Living under siege, and without the superior weaponry of their opponent, they see it as a heroic act of martyrdom, not suicide. In Israel, these attacks have usually been perpetrated by young men (and less often, women) who have lived their entire lives under humiliating occupation. In their point of view, it is a final act of resistance, stemming from desperation.

    Please visit the links above to read what Muslim scholars and Islamic governmental leaders have recently declared about this subject.

    "O ye who believe! Remain steadfast for Allah, bearing witness to justice. Do not allow your hatred for others make you swerve to wrongdoing and turn you away from justice. Be just; that is closer to true piety."

    - Qur'an, Surah al-Maidah (5:8)

    http://islam.about.com/cs/currentevents/a/suicide_bomb.htm
     
  2. SLClemens
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    Perhaps the "terrorist portions of Muslims" have grievances that are actually more political than religious or ideological? I wonder what these grievances might be?
     
  3. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    I have grievances as well. Grievances against our government, the state in which I reside, the mayor of my town, the corporate environment in NY, the corrupt Police... But you don't see me resorting to violence to correct the things I am against.
     
  4. SLClemens
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    So I wonder why you chose different means to redress your grievances from what a few suicidal Muslims do? Might things like the right to vote, to sue if you're directly harmed by state institutions, to protest legally, to share your views with strangers from all over the country on the internet, to tell whomever you want about your problems without fear of violent retribution, and the right to open affiliation with others who share your grievances perhaps have something to do with it?
     
  5. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    Are you stating that the lack of those means makes what they do ok, or understandable?
     
  6. SLClemens
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    I think it makes it more understandable, espeically given that US policy toward the Mid-East has been largely about keeping dictatorships in power. I wish they could find other ways, as most try to do, to redress such grievances, or at the very least not target civilians.
     
  7. Aquarian
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    It makes it understandable to some degree. It DOES NOT make it ok, at least in my eyes.
     
  8. SLClemens
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    More importantly, I think it sheds light on the path we need to take: empowering people to obtain justice through non-violent means.
     
  9. nbdysfu
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    [17 year old]Suicide bomber blows himself up in West Bank
    Mon Nov 3,11:16 AM ET Mideast - AFP



    AZUN, West Bank (AFP) - A teenage Palestinian suicide bomber who was being hunted by Israeli security services blew up himself up near the northern West Bank town of Qalqilya.
    No one else was injured in the explosion in the village of Azun, which lies close to the Jewish settlement of Shavei Shomron, Palestinian and Israeli sources said, the sources added Monday.


    One Israeli source told AFP the teenager had started running towards soldiers after being located but then blew himself up.
    The youth appeared to have been wearing a belt packed with explosives as his torso and lower body were ripped apart.

    ... a "terrorist" cell had been smashed as a result of information which had also led to the foiling of the suicide attack.

    The Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades claimed responsibility in a phone call to AFP and named the bomber as Sabih Abu Al-Saoud, a 17-year-old from Nablus.

    The Brigades is an armed faction linked to Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat (news - web sites)'s mainstream Fatah (news - web sites) movement.


    What kind of light does it shed on terrorist organizations who encourage young people to do this? Do you think every suicide bomber is truly doing it out of a need to express? Are some of them misguided by terrorists who abuse them by providing them a rationale to do so?
     

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