The result is that, because making Islam supreme through jihad is the greatest priority, anything and everything that is otherwise banned becomes permissible. All that comes to matter is one’s intention, or niyya.
From here one may understand the many ostensible incongruities of Islamic history: lying is forbidden—but permissible to empower Islam; intentionally killing women and children is forbidden—but permissible during the jihad; suicide is forbidden—but permissible during the jihad, called “martyrdom.”
Indeed, the Five Pillars of Islam—including prayer and fasting—may be ignored during the jihad. (So important was the duty of jihad that the Ottoman sultans, who often spent half their lives on the battlefield, were not permitted to perform the obligatory pilgrimage to Mecca.)
More recently, these ideas appeared in different form during Egypt’s elections, when Islamic leaders portrayed voting as a form of jihad—leading to the abuse and even killing of those not voting for the Muslim Brotherhood.
According to these two doctrines—which culminate in empowering Islam, no matter how—one may expect anything from would-be jihadis, regardless of how dubious the effort may otherwise seem.
Even so, this mentality, which is prevalent throughout the Islamic world, especially along the frontlines of the jihad, is the same mentality that many Western leaders and politicians think can be appeased with just a bit more respect, well-wishing, and concessions from the West.
Such are the great, and disastrous, disconnects of our time.
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