In nearly all cases, the jihadi terrorists have a patently self-evident ambition: to establish a world dominated by Muslims, Islam, and Islamic law, the Shari'a. Or, again to cite the Daily Telegraph, their "real project is the extension of the Islamic territory across the globe, and the establishment of a worldwide ‘caliphate' founded on Shari'a law."
Terrorists openly declare this goal. The Islamists who assassinated Anwar el-Sadat in 1981 decorated their holding cages with banners proclaiming the "caliphate or death." A biography of one of the most influential Islamist thinkers of recent times and an influence on Osama bin Laden, Abdullah Azzam declares that his life "revolved around a single goal, namely the establishment of Allah's Rule on earth" and restoring the caliphate.
Bin Laden himself spoke of ensuring that "the pious caliphate will start from Afghanistan." His chief deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, also dreamed of re-establishing the caliphate, for then, he wrote, "history would make a new turn, God willing, in the opposite direction against the empire of the United States and the world's Jewish government." Another Al-Qaeda leader, Fazlur Rehman Khalil, publishes a magazine that has declared "Due to the blessings of jihad, America's countdown has begun. It will declare defeat soon," to be followed by the creation of a caliphate.
Or, as Mohammed Bouyeri wrote in the note he attached to the corpse of Theo van Gogh, the Dutch filmmaker he had just assassinated, "Islam will be victorious through the blood of martyrs who spread its light in every dark corner of this earth."
Bruce Thornton at VDH Private Papers also discusses this theme:
The jihadist enemy, on the other hand, is operating on principles and values squarely in the tradition of Islam, and thus unlike fascism and communism is expressing a spiritual need and an orthodox religious mandate: to fulfill by force the will of Allah that all the world be subject to Islam and an Islamic state, the caliphate, ruled by sharia, Islamic religious law. Those conquered infidels who refuse to convert are reduced to dhimmi, subordinated and humiliated peoples whose restricted rights, diminished lives, and circumscribed behavior testify to the superiority of their Muslim overlords and their divine right to oppress the infidel and exploit him economically. This dynamic of jihad and dhimmitude has been extensively documented by Bat Ye'or and other scholars, and is apparent on every page of Islamic jurisprudence, theology, and history from the eighth century to today.
Those who, like Hadley and Townsend,[article referenced in the piece- PS] suggest otherwise are contradicting not just that history but also the beliefs and sentiments of millions of contemporary Muslims, who understand clearly what their own religion teaches and how it should be practiced. How else do we make sense of the continued widespread support for homicide bombings and Al Qaeda visible in poll after poll of Muslims worldwide? Even so-called “moderates” and Westernized Muslims can't help letting slip their true beliefs even as they try to spin the latest terrorist murder. Dr. Azzam Tamimi, a senior member of the Muslim Association of Britain and a Hamas member who is frequently featured on the BBC, has made clear his support for Palestinian Arab murder of Israelis, his belief that Islamic religious law (sharia) should not be compromised to coexist with liberal democracy, his admiration of the Taliban, and his desire to see Israel destroyed.
Inayat Bunglawla, another “moderate” spokesman for the Muslim Council of Britain, has been all over CNN since the bombings in London. In a recent BBC4 interview, this is how he “condemned” homicide bombings: “Let me make clear then, once and for all, we condemn the killing of all innocent people wherever they are, human lives everywhere are of equal value, whether they are British, American, Iraqi, or Palestinian. Jewish lives are not worth more than Palestinian lives, all are worth equal, and it's been quite nauseating over the past week to see how Israel and its highly-placed supporters in the media have been trying to make political capital out of last week's atrocities against Londoners. It is shameful on them and shameful upon those who are trying to help Israel improving its PR image after the brutalities it commits against the Palestinian people.”
Here is a classic example of so-called “moderate” double-talk. Notice how Jews are left out of the list of “human lives” that have “equal value.” Notice how the statement “Jewish lives are not worth more than Palestinian lives” is not followed by the logical corollary, “Palestinian lives are not worth more than Jewish lives.” And finally, notice the usual hysterical smokescreen of alleged Israeli “brutalities” to shift the focus away from Muslim murder of innocents by concentrating on its supposed causes.
While one of the definitions of the word "martyr" is a person who sacrifices their life for a principle, in practice the entire Islamic concept of martyrdom is quite bizarre. If there is an underlying principle, then it is hatred, pure and simple.
Traditionally -- in Christianity, at least--a "martyr" was someone persecuted and killed by others for their religion's sake. In the lives of many martyrs, their shining love for their religion was so inspiring that it might even convert those who were responsible for the martyr's death.
But in Islam a "martyr" is a person who persecutes and kills others for their religion. Note the difference. By any rational definition, a person in this latter group is a monster. The indiscriminant slaughter of innocent lives inspires only the utmost revulsion in normal people. Converting to a religion that supports and encourages martyrs like that would be the height of insanity and self-delusion.
The blood of that kind of "martyr" can only spread an awareness of the fundamental darkness of the Islamic soul that that created it; and will bring only darkness and misery to every corner of the earth.