the study itself: http://csc.asu.edu/wp-content/uploads/pdf/csc1202-quran-verses.pdf
A new study conducted by the Center for Strategic Communication in Arizona State University (ASU), America, revealed that the struggle of Al-Qaeda all these years is only a form of defense of their faith, not to destroy the Western civilization or in other words not to commit acts of terrorism as the West claims one-sidedly all this time.
The study which was released in the Daily Mail, Monday (10/7/2012), said that the Mujahideen of Al-Qaeda (and affiliated/similar groups) are not desiring to destroy the West, but only to defend themselves.
This argument was opposed by several parties and considered to be provocative, the ASU academics emphatically say that groups such as Al-Qaeda are largely only to protect themselves.
This study, which analyzes more than 2,000 propaganda texts of Al-Qaeda and other Islamic groups regarded as "extreme", stated that the goal of these groups is actually a form of self defense.
These observers were reviewing the quotes of the Quran'ic verses, which strengthens the argument that the "extremists" are fighting to defend their faith and hoping on jihad. According to these observers, the verses of the Qur'an, reputed to be the very bedrock of Al-Qaeda's struggle, are apparently less than what they expected.
Such as the 5th verse from surah At-Tawbah (9) which means, "...then kill the polytheists wherever you find them.." which made these observers surprised and believed that this verse was only used three times by Al-Qaeda.
The verse in context is an instruction for during war . It encompasses the experience of fighting the tyrannical, ruling tribe in Arabia at the time (The Quraysh) and especially, the fighting of the muslim against his own family members. Many of the muslim army tried to avoid fighting their family members in battle but the polytheist Quraysh tribe was were too upset at their sons/brothers/relatives embracing a new religion that they active sought to kill their family members in battle.
In full, the verse reads:
"Then, when the sacred months have passed(months were fighting is not allowed unless you're attacked - 4 months), slay the idolaters(polytheists/mushrikeen/Quraysh tribe/pagans) wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent (repent for worshipping other than god and their deeds) and establish worship (pray to god) and pay the poor-due (pay 2.5% Charity on earnings that exceed basic yearly living costs and the value of a small ammount of gold/silver), then leave their way free.
Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful." (At-Taubah 9:5)
Interestingly, giving the 'poor-due' charity would release an incredible ammount of wealth from bank accounts and many people believe it could destroy poverty entirely. When you consider that the worlds richest 1% of people horde 40% of the worlds wealth; this opinion seems plausible.
The observers also collected more than 1,500 catalogs quoted from the Qur'an used by the “extremists” to strengthen their argument, and then examine the representing surahs and verses.
"We were surprised at the very limited use of the 'verse of the sword' (as above)," said Bennett Furlow, an assistant observer and one of the three coordinators of the results of this study.
All this time, the West assumes that Islamic groups are determined to rule the world by basing on that verse, and these observers found things that are not significant. Which shouldn't be shocking when considering the context and revelation period of the verse.
"These findings refute the concept of 'a clash of civilization'," said the head of the study, Jeff Halverson, a professor in Liberal Arts and Sciences at the ASU.
"What the 'extremists' are actually saying to the Muslims is, our community is under attack and God will defend us if we have faith and courage," Halverson said.
However, Halverson still think that their credibility would be damaged if they (the West) acknowledge that Al-Qaeda and groups like them are the conquerors of evil, just as the Muslims, according to him, think of the Mujahideen as their helpers and heroes.
Al Qaeda terrorists do not want to destroy Western civilisation - and in fact aim to defend themselves, it argues. The study is certain to cause anger among relatives of victims of 'extremist groups'. The academics claim, however, that the goals of such groups are broadly 'defensive'.
The researchers looked at quotes from the Qur'an, and found that the extremists focused on maintaining faith and hope in the face of attacks. The researchers claim that simply altering the Western view of Islamic extremists as would-be 'conquerors' could help to halt the global conflict.
So called conventional wisdom says Islamists are bent on world domination and this verse is the justification. However, it is found to be very insignificant and it highlights that the struggle is defensive and offensive (seeking to 'conquer' Europe, America and East Asia).
‘These findings challenge the idea of a clash of civilizations,’ said the study's lead author Jeff Halverson, a professor of communication in ASU's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
‘What extremists are really saying to Muslims is, 'our communities are under siege and God will defend us if we have faith and courage.
If we try to portray them as evil conquerors when their audience sees them as protectors and champions, it damages our credibility and makes our communication less effective,’ he said.
It becomes a psychological issue for people to let go of the idea idea that muslims want to take over the world because it destroys illussions, pre-conceptions, historical thoughts/ideas and the feeling of belonging to a 'Christendom' or a "Christian Kingdom".
Perhaps more importantly though, the idea would destroy the morale of some of the most brave men and women that many countries have to offer (i.e armed forces perssonnel). It is something for them to believe in so that they can validate their participating in wars that were obviously created on false pretences.
In: Religion, Propaganda
Tags: ASU, SCC, Arizona, State, University, Strategic, Communications, Center, Centre Study, Al, Qaeda, Qaida, Islam, Islamic, Jihad, IMU, TTP, TTP, BIFF, MILF, Emirate, Shabaab, Ansar, Sharia, JMB, Tawhid, Tawheed, Taubah, Tawbah, Verse, Of, Sword, Caliphate,
Location: Arizona, United States (load item map)
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