August 31, 2015 Special Dispatch No. 6145

Hizb Al-Tahrir Preachers Incite Against West, Israel, Jordan, PA At Al-Aqsa Mosque

August 31, 2015
Palestine | Special Dispatch No. 6145

An examination of sermons and lectures delivered at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in recent months, particularly by members of Hizb Al-Tahrir,[1] reveals increasing militancy and rampant incitement not only against Israel and the West but also against Jordan, Arab countries, and even the Palestinian Authority. As all these elements become targets for religious belligerence, it seems questionable whether any of the political players that claim any kind of sovereignty over this potentially explosive compound have the political will to exercise their claimed authority and quell the incitement.

Of the various Islamic organizations that hold religious and political activities at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Hizb Al-Tahrir is undoubtedly one of the most active. Movement members deliver lectures and sermons and teach classes on Islam at the mosque throughout the week. In addition to these addresses, which are usually attended by dozens, Hizb Al-Tahrir holds mass rallies in Al-Aqsa that are attended by tens of thousands.

Hizb Al-Tahrir rally at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, June 19, 2015

"We Shall Subjugate [Polytheists] to the Rule of Allah"

Hizb Al-Tahrir refuses to identify with the ISIS-founded caliphate, even though for over half a century Tahrir leaders have been advocating the unification of Muslims under a re-established caliphate. Notwithstanding the ideological discrepancies between them (on which see below), Al-Tahrir's jihadi discourse is strikingly similar to that of ISIS. For example, in an Al-Aqsa Mosque address on May 1, 2015, Sheikh 'Issam Amira, a member of the Palestinian chapter of Hizb Al-Tahrir,[2] echoed ISIS's reasoning in its war against the Yazidi community in northern Iraq:[3]

Sheikh Amira said: "ÔǪWhen you face a polytheist enemy, you should give him three options: They must convert to Islam, or pay the jizya poll tax, or else, you should seek the help of Allah and fight them. You should fight them even if they do not fight you. Seek the help of Allah, and fight them. Let the scholars hear this: You should seek the help of Allah and fight them. Only when they fight you? No! When they refuse to convert to Islam, and refuse to pay the jizya. In such a case, it is meaningless [to let them] keep enjoying their life in this world, eating from the sustenance bestowed by Allah, yet disbelieving in Him. No! Against their will, we shall subjugate them to the rule of Allah, without forcing them to convert to Islam." 

Hizb Al-Tahrir has also been vocal in its criticism of the U.S.-led coalition fighting ISIS in Syria and Iraq. In an address he delivered at Al-Aqsa in early October 2014, another member of the movement, Sheikh Omar Abu Sara, castigated the coalition's efforts: "In the news the other day, you could hear the 'good tidings': Warplanes from the UAE and Saudi Arabia participated in the air raids in Syria against our brothers from the Islamic State. They even bragged that they hit the targets accurately. According to the news, one of the planes was flown by a woman. They do not allow women to drive cars, but they let them fly planes, in order to kill whom? Are they fighting the Jews? The Russians? The Hindus? Allah Akbar! They are fighting our brothers, who profess that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is His Messenger, regardless of whether we have ideological disputes with them or not. These planes are bombing our brothers."[4]

"Our Main War is with America and Europe"

The main ideological difference between ISIS and Hizb Al-Tahrir lies in their order of priorities. While ISIS has already established its caliphate in the Middle East, intending to expand it gradually, Hizb Al-Tahrir believes that the path to establishing the global caliphate is through confrontation with the existing superpowers. In several Al-Aqsa lectures, its members have criticized Pakistan for refraining to place its army and nuclear capabilities at the disposal of the cause.[5]

Despite lacking a clear roadmap to the establishment of a caliphate, members of the Palestinian chapter of Hizb Al-Tahrir are optimistic about the prospect of global conversion to Islam. In another Al-Aqsa address,[6] Sheik Issam Amira said: "There is no need to worry about the Chinese. , because they are reasonable people. As for the Russians, they are stubborn, but once Moscow is liberated from the shackles of the USSR, of Bolshevism, of the Czar, and even of Putin, they will join Islam, and that will be that." The main obstacle, according to him, is the West. "Our main war is with whom? With the Byzantines, with America and Europe - with France, with Britain, with those places." In order to cause the West to convert to Islam, another "Battle of Badr" will be needed."

Pledges to conquer and Islamize various Western capitals are constantly made during Hizb Al-Tahrir's Al-Aqsa lectures and addresses. During a July 12, 2013 pro-Morsi rally in the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, Imam Ismat Al-Hammouri led the crowd in chanting, and called for the destruction of America and France, and for the conquest of Rome. "Oh Obama, listen up," he cried, "the army of Muhammad will returnÔǪ Down with America and with all its dogsÔǪ" [7]

Sheik Amira in an Al-Aqsa Mosque address: "No need to worry about the Chinese our main war is with America and Europe."

King Salman, Mahmoud Abbas, Sheikh Tamim, and King Abdallah Will Be Torn to Pieces

Hizb Al-Tahrir has been sympathetic with various Sunni Islamic movements in the Arab world, especially with the Muslim Brotherhood government in Egypt, in their opposition to the monarchic or military-backed regimes. As mentioned, in in July 2013 a mass rally was held at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in solidarity with the deposed Morsi, and Sheik Amira even ruminated two years later that things could have developed quite differently had Morsi purged the Egyptian army upon becoming president:

"If Morsi, when he came to power, had arrested 60-70 officers from among the American collaborators in the military, and had hanged them from the gallows, or even executed them in secret, the Egyptian army would have been all the way to Zichron Yaakov [a city in northern Israel] by now [May] Allah soon reward the Islamic nation with a second rightly-guided caliphate. It will mobilize the armies which will liberate the Al-Aqsa Mosque."[8]

Sheik Amira explained that the establishment of the global caliphate "requires destroying all the entities in the Islamic world. Make no exception. Show no mercy or compassion to any of those entities" He envisioned a gory future for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Jordanian King Abdallah, along with other Arab leaders: "When people are unleashed, they will shatter these false idols. Unleash the people upon banks that exact usury and they will destroy them. Unleash them upon unveiled women, and they will pounce upon them. I challenge any ruler to walk among the people in the streets without bodyguards. So we will not need to issue a decision to execute the rulers. We will only remove their guards and let them stay in their palaces. We will just declare that there are no guards protecting the palace of [King] Salman, of [Mahmoud] Abbas, of [Qatar's] Tamim, or of [King] Abdallah. Within ten minutes, you will not find a piece left of them."

Hizb Al-Tahrir lecturer Sheik Omar Abu Sara had similar words for Israel and the Jews: "I said to the Jews loud and clear: the time for your slaughter has come. The time to fight has come. The time to kill you has come. Allah willing, we are ready for the task - we and the loyal and faithful Muslims, along with the armies of the state of the Islamic caliphate, which will come to liberate this land from your filth."[9]



[1] Hizbullah al-Tahrir is a pan-Islamic political organization with chapters across the world that promotes the cause of establishing an Islamic caliphate.

[3] See for example MEMRI TV clip No. 4438, " ISIS Justifies Its War on Yazidis: We Called on Them to Convert to Islam First,"
August 20, 2014.

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