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Thread: Debates and Divisions within al-Qa’ida and its Periphery

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    Default Violence won't work - Revisionist message from prison cell shakes al-Qaida

    Violence won't work: how author of 'jihadists' bible' stirred up a storm

    In a prison cell south of Cairo a repentant Egyptian terrorist leader is putting the finishing touches to a remarkable recantation that undermines the Muslim theological basis for violent jihad and is set to generate furious controversy among former comrades still fighting with al-Qaida.

    Sayid Imam al-Sharif, 57, was the founder and first emir (commander) of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad organisation, whose supporters assassinated President Anwar Sadat in 1981 and later teamed up with Osama Bin Laden in Afghanistan in the war against the Soviet occupation.

    Sharif, a surgeon who is still known by his underground name of "Dr Fadl", is famous as the author of the Salafi jihadists' "bible" - Foundations of Preparation for Holy War. He worked with Ayman al-Zawahiri, another Egyptian doctor and now Bin Laden's deputy, before being kidnapped in Yemen after 9/11, interrogated by the CIA and extradited to Egypt where has been serving a life sentence since 2004.

    Sharif recently gave an electrifying foretaste of his conversion by condemning killings on the basis of nationality and colour of skin and the targeting of women and children, citing the Qur'anic injunction: "Fight in the cause of God those who fight you, but do not transgress the limits; for God loveth not transgressors." Armed operations were wrong, counterproductive and must cease, he declared sternly.
    ....
    much more on the link:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/egypt/stor...rc=rss&feed=12

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    Moderator Steve Blair's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting this! Very interesting stuff.
    "On the plains and mountains of the American West, the United States Army had once learned everything there was to learn about hit-and-run tactics and guerrilla warfare."
    T.R. Fehrenbach This Kind of War

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Odd place answers are found

    Leaving aside the rported conversion in a cell. Most comments on de-radicalisation in custody point out it is "one on one" and so very intensive. How many clerics can be found, who agree with the cause and are willing to argue?

    In February 2007, in a discussion group on prisons in Western Europe no-one could cite an example of such work anywhere in the region.

    So we look to the Yemen and other places for an answer.

    If he has converted and the book is published - well done.

    davidbfpo

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    Default Prisoner deradicalisation

    There is an interesting 'de-rad' program in Singapore, the Religious Rehabilitation Committee, focusing on the JI members arrested there in 2001/02.

    A useful academic paper outlining its structure and practices is here:

    http://www.pvtr.org/pdf/Ideology%20R...insurgency.pdf

    It has apparently had limited success, with only a handful of people being assessed as suitable for release. As I understand it the Yemeni program has been largely discredited.

    The Egyptians and Malaysians reportedly also have such programs, but I am yet to find any open source material on these. It appears the US military is trying the concept also in Iraq:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20200546...wsweek/page/0/

    I think the role of prisons in the development of jihadist ideology and their experiences has not been sufficiently examined (imprisonment of Ibn Tamyiya, Qutb, al-Zawahiri, al-Maqdisi). It has played a key role in other contexts (NI, South Africa, Spain, and the Suffragette movement, to name a few).
    Last edited by gh_uk; 08-30-2007 at 06:47 AM.

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    Default Salvation

    I think hugs and alot of Mr. Rogers shows could go a long ways in convincing jihadists that it simply isn't nice to kill people. A kinder, gentler US military could go a long ways in persuading the rest of the planet that we know deep in our hearts that the world is really just one large village. For instance, when a patrol of US forces comes under fire in Iraq, they could throw some firecrackers in the direction of those trying to kill them, thus indicating that there is a high potential that US troops might defend themselves when attacked. Such a show of good faith on our part could go a long ways and result in some genuine dialouge with those fellows. It has been suggested that our troops patrol in Barney costumes, thus demonstrating to AQ and other assorted jihadists that we do not always have lethal intentions for those who try to kill us. Personally, I think our men would sweat too much dressed as Barney and could impose additional logistical stress providing them with extra water, unless Iraqi kids could be hired to tag along behind pulling little red wagons full of water bottles. Anyway, I am straying off topic here.

    Regarding conversion, I most likely would become a jihadist advisor if presented the opportunity to have a cushy, well paid job in such capacity and in knowing that none of my family would be killed and I wouldn't have my nuts crushed in a vise and an electrode inserted in my anus. Hello? Aren't Egypt, Syria and Jordan the designated torture centers of the planet? Ain't they the final destination of black ops snatch and grab missions or have I been reading too many of those magazines by the checkout counters in grocery stores??

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    Council Member tequila's Avatar
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    Jedburgh posted a Jamestown analysis on a similar Saudi program here.

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    Default non-violent != non-radical

    Maybe he read Tolstoy's "The Kingdom of God is Within You".

    At any rate simply renouncing violence does not make one less radical or less of a threat to those in power. An example? Ask Winston Churchill who's governments solidly defeated Hitler but, effectively, lost to Gahandi. I could tell you about ML King but we've all been there, so how about Keith McHenry. He's an anarchist radical whose Food Not Bombs is the fastest growing revolutionary movement in the US. Maybe you never herd of him and don't thing he's a threat; the FBI disagrees with you.

    Wait! Wait! and my favorite radical of all, Jesus the messiah himself.

    I think this should be considered more a change of tactic than a capitulation.

    Evan

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    Council Member AdamG's Avatar
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    The Rebellion Within
    An Al Qaeda mastermind questions terrorism.
    by Lawrence Wright
    June 2, 2008

    Last May, a fax arrived at the London office of the Arabic newspaper Asharq Al Awsat from a shadowy figure in the radical Islamist movement who went by many names. Born Sayyid Imam al-Sharif, he was the former leader of the Egyptian terrorist group Al Jihad, and known to those in the underground mainly as Dr. Fadl. Members of Al Jihad became part of the original core of Al Qaeda; among them was Ayman al-Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden’s chief lieutenant. Fadl was one of the first members of Al Qaeda’s top council.

    Twenty years ago, he wrote two of the most important books in modern Islamist discourse; Al Qaeda used them to indoctrinate recruits and justify killing. Now Fadl was announcing a new book, rejecting Al Qaeda’s violence. “We are prohibited from committing aggression, even if the enemies of Islam do that,” Fadl wrote in his fax, which was sent from Tora Prison, in Egypt.

    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2...urrentPage=all

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    Council Member 120mm's Avatar
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    Seriously, the prospects for peaceful conversion I think are much better, long term, for "Jihad".

    But as fast as Islam spreads through population exportation and conversion, "western contamination" will spread just as fast, or faster, which I think would be a greater threat to conservative/tribal Islam.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 120mm View Post
    But as fast as Islam spreads through population exportation and conversion, "western contamination" will spread just as fast, or faster, which I think would be a greater threat to conservative/tribal Islam.
    You never fail to crack me up!
    thanx

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    Small Wars Journal SWJED's Avatar
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    Default One Twenty...

    Quote Originally Posted by Sarajevo071 View Post
    You never fail to crack me up!
    thanx
    ... brings up a very valid point. Let loose the hounds of Hollywood, MTV and other icons of American pop culture. They are feared more by the so-called Islamic extremists than anything the US military can throw their way.

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    Default The Other Face of Al-Qaeda

    From a Quilliam Foundation email:
    In October 2010, the prominent Arabic language newspaper Al-Hayat published ‘The Other Face of Al-Qaeda’, an important 6-part series on al-Qaeda, written by the renowned Arab journalist Camille Tawil with key input from Noman Benotman, a Libyan former jihadi leader who is now a senior analyst at Quilliam.

    This document is a translation of the Al-Hayat series from Arabic into English, which was undertaken by Quilliam and published in November 2010. The translation was kept as close as possible to the original text with only minor changes and some additional footnotes. The document begins with a short introduction from the translators outlining the significance of the work.
    Link:http://www.quilliamfoundation.org/im...,2Q5RQ7,UGW9,1

    More to read one day.
    davidbfpo

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    Council Member bourbon's Avatar
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    Default Debates and Divisions within al-Qa’ida and its Periphery

    Self-Inflicted Wounds: Debates and Divisions within al-Qa’ida and its Periphery, Edited by Assaf Moghadam and Brian Fishman. Harmony Project - Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, December 16, 2010. (PDF)
    Chapter 1: Debates and Divisions within and around Al‐Qa’ida
    Assaf Moghadam and Brian Fishman…………………………………………………………….1

    Chapter 2: Tactics, Takfir, and anti‐Muslim Violence
    Mohammed M. Hafez……………………………………………………………………………19

    Chapter 3: Strategic Fissures: The Near and Far Enemy Debate
    Steven Brooke…………………………………………………………………………………….45

    Chapter 4: Al‐Qa’ida Central and Local Affiliates
    Vahid Brown……………………………………………………………………………………..69

    Chapter 5: Jihadi Strategists and Doctrinarians
    Brynjar Lia……………………………………………………………………………………...100

    Chapter 6: Arab and non‐Arab Jihadis
    Anne Stenersen…………………………………………………………………………………132

    Chapter 7: Jihadis and the Ikhwan
    Marc Lynch……………………………………………………………………………………..155

    Chapter 8: Jihadis and Hamas
    Reuven Paz……………………………………………………………………………………..183

    Chapter 9: Jihadis and the Shi’a
    Bernard Haykel…………………………………………………………………………………202

    Chapter 10: Do Jihadi and Islamist Divisions Matter? Implications for Policy and Strategy
    Brian Fishman and Assaf Moghadam………………………………………………………….224

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    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default KSM 9/11 planner changes his mind (a bit)

    A simple story, which may come as a surprise; the opening passage:
    The mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks now says that the use of violence to spread Islam is forbidden by the Quran, a major shift away from the more militaristic view he had put forward previously.
    A direct citation:
    The Holy Quran forbids us to use force as a means of converting" and that reaching "truth and reality never comes by muscles and force but by using the mind and wisdom.
    Link to report:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/0...?utm_hp_ref=tw

    Hardly a manifesto, a 36 page tract, but judge for yourself - the manifesto:http://data.huffingtonpost.com/docum...mads-statement

    Now whether you can accept his request is a moot point:
    Before you start reading, forget and neglect the writer or author's name..
    davidbfpo

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