memri
June 3, 2013 Inquiry & Analysis Series No. 973

Islamic Bookstore And Center In Australia Spreads Extremist Islam, Sympathizes With Global Jihad, Opposes Integration And Democracy

June 3, 2013 | By H. Migron*
| Inquiry & Analysis Series No. 973

Introduction

The Al-Risalah Islamic Bookstore in Sydney, Australia, which doubles as a community center, offers a wide range of lectures and activities for adults, children and teens. Al-Risalah's website and Facebook page, as well as videos of lectures it has presented and the background of some of the lecturers, indicate that it is spreading extremist and militant Islamic views. Both its online presence and the lectures presented there convey an ideology that is sympathetic to the global jihad movement, that rejects democracy and all man-made systems of government while calling for implementing the Islamic shari'a worldwide, and that strongly advocates the principle of al-wala wal-bara (loyalty among Muslims versus complete disavowal and repudiation of non-Muslims) It also advocates extremely rigid adherence to traditional gender roles.

There are indications that Al-Risalah has ideological, if not organizational, ties with Al-Muhajiroun, an extremist U.K.-based Islamic group which has been associated with terrorism, antisemitism, and anti-gay views and activity. Al-Mujahiroun was banned in the U.K. in 2010; Michael Adebolajo, who is charged with the May 22, 2013 alleged murder in the U.K. of soldier Drummer Lee Rigby and with the attempted murder of two police officers, is alleged to have links to it.

Among those who have lectured and taught at Al-Risalah are prominent cleric Abu 'Adnan, who is associated with Ahl Al-Sunnah Wal-Jaamah (ASWJ), one of several organizations established to replace the banned Al-Muhajiroun; notorious extremist Bilal Khazal, who is currently serving a 12-year prison sentence in Australia for terrorism-related offenses; well-known extremist television figure Musa Cerantonio; Mustapha Al-Majzoub, a cleric of Syrian descent who went to Syria to participate in the fighting against the Assad regime and was killed there, and Isma'il Al-Wahwah (aka Abu Anas), spokesman for Al-Tahrir in Australia, who is known for his radical views. Also featuring prominently at Al-Risalah is one Abu Sulayman, whose lectures, which can be viewed on YouTube and on Islamic websites, include many radical statements and shed much light on the ideology that is being spread by Al-Risalah.

This report reviews the activities conducted at Al-Risalah, the individuals who lecture there, and the ideology that it promotes, as reflected by the content on its website and its Facebook page and by a sampling of lectures by Abu Sulayman.

Al-Risalah's Activities

The Al-Risalah Islamic Bookstore, in the Bankstown area of Sydney, describes itself as a "non-profit Islamic Community Centre Bookstore" whose proceeds go towards da'wah (Islamic proselytizing),[1] and whose activities consist of "selling books and Islamic-related material and clothing; promoting a healthy body as a means to combat unhealthy and drug-related lifestyles; [offering] basic education [on] Islamic obligations such as prayer, fasting, manners, etc; and providing mediation services to members of the community."[2] The shop itself sells Islam-related books, DVDs, ritual articles, clothing, toys, posters, and the like.[3] It also offers courses and lectures on Islam for men and women (see below); adult activities such as a monthly outing for young men; and children's and youth activities such as the Al-Risalah Muslim Youth Group (weekly activities for boys), the Al-Risalah Girls' Youth Group (weekly activities for girls aged 13-25), and summer camps.[4]


Al-Risalah girls' and boys' youth groups


Al-Risalah summer camp

The Al-Risalah Fitness Center offers a gym and a range of fitness classes for children and adults, including weight training, kettlebell training,[5] and the Muslim Lions children's Taekwondo team.[6]

Al-Risalah's YouTube channel, called Strangermedia1, features videos of lectures delivered there. Al-Risalah is also involved in Street Da'wah, a project aimed at spreading Islam on the streets through the distribution of pamphlets and accosting of members of the public.[7] In addition, according to its websites, it engages in charity work and in providing humanitarian assistance to Muslims worldwide, e.g. collecting funds and sending aid packages to the Syrian people and building a school for the children of Syrian refugees in Lebanon.[8]

The September 2012 Riots In Sydney

The New South Wales Police has investigated Al-Risalah in connection with the September 15, 2012 unrest in Sydney, in which local Muslims enraged by the Muhammad film damaged public property and clashed with police.[9] During the unrest, protesters carried placards with messages such as ''Behead all those who insult the Prophet'' and ''Obama, Obama, we love Osama.''[10] Several of the protesters were seen to be wearing tee shirts bearing an image of an AK-47 rifle, which were sold by Al-Risalah (see images below). Other protesters wore shirts bearing the messages "Sixth Pillar" and "Struggle with your wealth and self," both associated with jihad.[11] According to The Australian, these shirts were also sold by Al-Risalah, although the shop staff denies this.[12]


Protester wearing tee shirt with image of AK-47 attacking a police car (image:
The Australian)


Activist A. Traljesic, arrested during the Sydney protests, at Al-Risalah. Behind him is the Ak-47 tee shirt (image:
The Australian)

Following the unrest, Al-Risalah issued a press release condemning all violence and harassment, denying that it had organized the protests, and accusing police of starting the violence. It also clarified that the center has no resident imam or community leader, and that it is interested only in "promoting Islam, the religion of mercy and truth."[13]

Content On Al-Risalah's Facebook Page

On its Facebook page, Al-Risalah announces upcoming events and activities, expresses its views on various issues and current events, and recommends websites and videos of potential interest to the readers. Some of the posts reflect the center's extremist ideology.

Support For Jihad And Mujahideen

Many posts on the Al-Risalah Facebook page feature symbols and images associated with the global jihad movement. One such image is the one below, posted January 10, 2013, of two AK-47 rifles, a Koran, and a black banner associated with global jihad, under a caption saying "the Book Guides and the Sword Triumphs."

Other posts are explicit in their sympathy for jihad and jihad supporters. The message below, dated November 12, 2012, expresses joy that Abu Qatada Al-Filastini, a radical Islamist sheikh affiliated with Al-Qaeda imprisoned in, the U.K., had been released on bail.

A November 10, 2012 post that calls for jihad in Palestine states: "[T]here is only one solution [to the Palestinians' plight], and that is jihad fi sabil Allah [for the sake of Allah]. For whoever comes [at] us with a sword will be met with the sword, and we are ready to call a public meeting in Lakemba Mosque and say that!..."

Links To Banned Millat Ibrahim, Al-Muhajiroun Movements

There are also posts reflecting the center's ideological ties with the German-based Islamist group "Millat Ibrahim." This group was founded in 2011 by Austrian-born Islamist Muhammad Mahmoud, aka Abu Osama Al-Gharib, who was jailed in Austria for four years for his involvement in the Al-Qaeda affiliated jihadi media company Global Islamic Media Front (GIMF).[14] Despite being banned in Germany,[15] Millat Ibrahim is now associated with an extensive network of extremist Islamic websites operating in various countries, including a recently-launched Australian Facebook page called "Millatu-Ibrahim – AU." [16]

Since the launch of this Facebook page, Al-Risalah's own page has posted many messages referring to it and linking to it, starting with the post shown below, announcing the establishment of "Millatu-Ibrahim – AU."

Moreover, since then, many messages posted on "Millatu-Ibrahim – AU" have also been posted simultaneously on Al-Risalah's Facebook page, such as the following message, which was posted on both pages on March 10:

It should be noted that the rhetoric used by Al-Risalah is strikingly similar to the rhetoric used by many speakers and websites affiliated with the Millat Ibrahim network (though the latter are even more extremist).[17]

It should also be noted that the German branch of Millat Ibrahim is known to have strong ties to a group of British extremists known as Al-Muhajiroun, which was banned in the U.K. in 2010.[18] This group has been associated with terrorism, antisemitism, and anti-gay views and activities, with the most recent incident the May 22 brutal beheading of a British soldier in Woolwich, London by Muslim convert Michael Adebolajo, who has been linked to it.[19]

Al-Risalah is connected to Al-Muhajiroun not only through Millat Ibrahim but also through another connection, Abu 'Adnan, a prominent sheikh who lectures and teaches there. He is associated with Ahl Al-Sunnah Wal-Jaamah (ASWJ),[20] one of several organizations that were founded in the U.K. to replace the banned Al-Muhajiroun.[21] The website of ASWJ in Australia features links to lectures by Abu 'Adnan,[22] and he has spoken at ASWJ conferences.[23]

Commitment to the Principle of Al-Wala Wal-Bara; Hostility To Democracy and Other Western Ideologies

Perhaps the most prominent feature of the ideology promoted by Al-Risalah is a commitment to the principle of al-wala wal-bara. This principle which is described, in very strong terms, as love and loyalty towards Muslims versus a deep and lasting hostility and even hatred towards non-Muslims (who are referred to by the blanket term of kuffar – "infidels"). A long post dated March 6, 2013 on the topic of following the ways of the infidels warns the readers that one who supports or befriends the infidels, or approves of their ways, is committing a major sin, for instance "one who loves the people of Democracy for the sake of Democracy, and loves the legislating parliamentarians, and loves the modernists and the nationalists and the likes of them," or one who "glorifies the kuffar; from honoring them, or letting them sit in front in the assemblies; or taking them as employees (instead of Muslims)."

In response to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald which warned that not enough has been done since the September 2012 Sydney unrest to combat extremism among Muslim youth, on February 11, 2013 Al-Risalah posted a message stating: "People, please tell your teachers, your mashayikh [sheikhs] [and] your scholars to teach you the fundamentals of Al-Wala Wal-Bara!! And if they refuse, or sugarcoat it for you, we are very happy to run a lecture or even a seminar if we have to, to get you to understand it, as this topic is part of your belief as a Muslim!! Don't be like those who are failing in understanding this crucial part of our deen [faith]!!"

The image below, posted February 8, 2013, advertises a new poster available at the bookstore that depicts a pair of swords, the global jihad banner, and the Koranic verse "Never will the Jews or the Christians approve of you until you follow their religion. Say, 'Indeed, the guidance of Allah is the [only] guidance.' If you were to follow their desires after what has come to you of knowledge, you would have against Allah no protector or helper [Koran 2:120]."

As part of the rejection of all things non-Muslim, Al-Risalah also conveys deep contempt and hostility for Western ideologies and practices, including democracy. In addition to the post condemning all who "love the people of Democracy for the sake of Democracy," another post, dated February 13, 2012, presents a table comparing the ideology of dar al-Islam (the domain of Islam) to that of dar al-kufr (the domain of heresy). According to this table (below), while the former is guided by the ideology of Islam and by the principle of "halal and haram" (i.e. permitted and forbidden by Islam), the world of heresy is guided by the ideology of "capitalism" and by the principle of "profit and loss." The post also stresses that in the world of Islam, Allah is the supreme source of authority, whereas in the world of heresy, this role belongs to the people. The column representing the world of heresy is accompanied by an image of the Statue of Liberty in a veil.

Advice for Women

Al-Risalah also advises Muslim women on proper behavior. A February 2, 2013 post reminds them how to behave when speaking to men: "Just a reminder! 'Women should not go out of their way to be loud and beautify their voice. They should be straight to the point no laughing and joking around.'"

Support For Mujahideen Fighting In Syria

Al-Risalah is intensely concerned with the war in Syria and the jihad there. Messages on its Facebook page and lecturers speaking at the center have expressed admiration for the mujahideen fighting against the Assad regime in Syria, and have exhorted the Muslim community to donate money in order to assist them as well as the civilian victims of war in Syria. The center has organized events to raise funds for the Syrians, and one of the center's leading figures, Abu Sulayman, raised over $200,000, which was used to purchase packages of medical supplies that were sent to Syria via Turkey. This project was carried out in cooperation with the Turkish IHH organization,[24] which has been accused of supporting terrorism and of having ties to global jihad. A series of YouTube videos show Abu Sulayman preparing the packages and then travelling to Turkey to deliver them.[25]

Lecturers speaking at the center often present the Syrian war as part of an ongoing global conflict between the Muslims and the infidels, and as a struggle to replace the oppressive Assad regime with an Islamic regime that will ultimately instate shari'a law. One lecturer, Isma'il Al-Wahwah, aka Abu Anas, who is spokesman for the Islamic Hizb Al-Tahrir movement in Australia, is known for his extremist views, such as his call to impose shari'a law in Australia, and throughout the world, by force of arms.[26]

In a talk at Al-Risalah, Al-Wahwah called the war in Syria a struggle "between Islam as a whole and heresy as a whole," and added that the blood of the martyrs would have been shed in vain if any flag but the flag of Islam and monotheism is raised there after the toppling of Assad's regime. Al-Wahwah said: "How do we waste the blood of the martyrs? [By allowing] a flag other than the flag of the Messenger of Allah to be raised over the land of Al-Sham [Greater Syria] after the victory, [and] if we raise a flag of jahiliyya, nationalism, secularism, capitalism or socialism... Our role is not just to die, but to die in order to revive Islam. We do not die so that the Secularists can lead our nations once again and detach them from Islam once again..."

He said further: "Al-Sham, which repelled the Crusader invasion and the Mongol invasion, is now resisting Western colonialism. It is Al-Sham that will repel the Crusader-Jewish assault today... The kuffar divided Al-Sham, giving one part of it to the Jews (Palestine), another to the Freemasons (Jordan), another to the kuffar in Syria and the rest to the Christians in Lebanon. They wanted to put an end to Al-Sham because it is a thorn in their throats – but Allah came at them from an unexpected direction, sending them Men who love death just as our enemies love life..." He concluded by beseeching Allah to punish the infidels: "Oh Allah, [punish] the oppressors, the kuffar, the enemies of Islam, those who wish evil on this ummah. [Punish] America, Europe, China, Russia and Iran, and the treacherous Arab leaders who have betrayed Syria and all those who have conspired against it..."[27]

It should be mentioned that this talk by Al-Wahwah was in memory of another figure who had lectured at the center, [28] Mustapha Al-Majzoub, an Australian cleric of Syrian descent[29] who was killed in Syria in 2012. According to one Muslim website, Al-Majzoub died "in a rocket attack while undertaking humanitarian work."[30] However, a website devoted to his memory states that he was not delivering medicine to Syrian refugees, but leading a platoon inside Syria, in a town called Salma, which was under heavy shelling."[31] The estimated 200 or so Australian nationals who have joined the fight in Syria are a source of concern for the Australian authorities, especially since about half of these Australians are believed to be fighting for Jabhat Al-Nusra, an Al-Qaeda-affiliated organization.[32] It is noteworthy that since Al-Majzoub's death, Al-Risalah often mentions him on its Facebook page and venerates him as a role model and an inspiration.

The jihad in Syria was also the topic of a talk delivered at Al-Risalah by Abu Sulayman. In the talk, titled "The Least We Can Do for Syria," he called on his audience for generous donations for the sake of the mujahideen in Syria, and also strongly implied that the best thing to do would be to join them in person.

Abu Sulayman began by lavishing praise on the mujahideen in Syria and elsewhere, stressing that those who are martyred while waging jihad for the sake of Allah attain the highest levels of Paradise. Then he clarified that if Muslims anywhere in the world are fighting the infidels but cannot repel them alone, it becomes the personal obligation of each and every Muslim to participate in their jihad and help them "with wealth and with blood":

"Today, our situation – does it allow us to say that we will not participate in jihad for the sake of Allah and [that] we will die in the lands that we live in, and just give zakat [alms] and give our du'a [propagate Islam]...? Absolutely not!... Because the ummah is one body and it cannot be separated... If the part of the ummah that is being attacked cannot fend for itself... then it becomes wajib [an obligation] of those who are next to them to help them and aid them. And if they are unable, then it becomes wajib on those who are next to them, and so on and so forth – until it may even cover the globe... There is not a [single] part of this world where the Muslims are being fought today that the Muslims there are not calling for us today. They are calling day and night for us to support them with our wealth and with our blood and with all we possess." Abu Sulayman noted that Allah rewards those who seek martyrdom even if they do not eventually achieve it but "die in their bed." However, he stressed that, when a person really wants something, he makes every effort to achieve it: "Nobody is going to come to your door and knock on your door and take you by the hand and tell you, 'here, go and fight the enemy.' And then when you get there, nobody is going to tell you, 'walk in this direction and you'll get a bullet straight in your head and straight to jannah [Paradise].' No, the path to jannah is filled with hardships... The path to jannah is the path of men! Where are the men of the ummah today that will do something!?"

Continuing, he says that jihad is the pinnacle of Islam, and that "Allah has set aside for the mujahideen a hundred levels in jannah... [The distance] between each level is like [the distance] between the earth and sky. So if you ask Allah [for anything], ask him for... the highest levels of jannah... Work for the highest levels of jannah. These were set aside for the mujahideen... So where are you going to be?"

In addition, an April 13, 2013 post on Al-Risalah's Facebook page conveys implicit support for Jabhat Al-Nusra, an Al-Qaeda-affiliated jihad group fighting in Syria. The post (below) condemns the West for its neutral stance on the conflict in Syria, and praises a group of fighters who have undertaken "to lift oppression and injustice, and in time implement the Shari'a of Islam!" At the bottom of this message is a link to a newspaper article about Australia's intention to list Al-Nusra as a terrorist organization and about the growing number of Australian nationals fighting in Syria[33] – suggesting that the "group" referred to in the post is indeed Jabhat Al-Nusra.

Abu Sulayman's "Nullifiers" Series

Among those who have lectured and taught at Al-Risalah bookstore are: prominent cleric Muhammad Kammoun, known as Abu 'Adnan, who lectures at the Global Islamic Youth Center (GIYC) in west Sydney[34] and at various other venues in Australia and abroad, and has been known to make statements in support of Al-Qaeda sheikh Anwar Al-Awlaki; Bilal Khazal, aka Abu Suhaib , who is currently serving a 12-year prison sentence in Australia for authoring a jihad manual and distributing it online, and who has been linked by the CIA to Al-Qaeda leaders; well-known extremist Musa Cerantonio, an Australian convert to Islam who lectures widely and who until recently had a regular show on the Saudi TV network Iqra;[35] Mustapha Al-Majzoub, a cleric of Syrian descent who, as mentioned, travelled to Syria to participate in the fighting against the Assad regime and was killed there, and Isma'il Al-Wahwah (aka Abu Anas), the spokesman of Hizb Al-Tahrir in Australia, who is known for his radical views.

Also prominent at Al-Risalah is Abu Sulayman, already mentioned above in a number of contexts. According to the website of Knowledge House, an Islamic center where he and Abu 'Adnan teach, Abu Sulayman studied under various sheikhs in Saudi Arabia and holds an MA in Education from Sydney University. He lectured for many years at Australian and Middle Eastern universities, and he gives courses on Arabic and Islam in many mosques and centers across Australia.[36]

Al-Risalah's YouTube channel features numerous lectures by Abu Sulayman. Especially noteworthy is the series of lectures dealing with 10 "nullifiers" of Islam as defined by Muhammad ibn 'Abd Al-Wahhab – that is, the 10 major sins that exclude an individual from the fold of Islam, that have to do with his attitude towards the faith and towards non-Muslims, among other issues. The following section presents a sample of statements from this series of lectures.


Abu Sulayman lecturing at Al-Risalah (image: YouTube)

A major theme in these lectures is the need for Muslims to maintain distance from, and feel hostility towards, all non-Muslims, regardless of their shared Australian nationality. In the lecture dealing with the third nullifier – not recognizing the heresy of an infidel[37] – Abu Sulayman stresses that anyone who is not a Muslim is an infidel, and that whoever doubts this, or considers the infidels' way and ideology to be in any way correct, is an infidel himself. Referring to "the People of the Book" (Jews and Christians), he stresses that Allah instructed the Prophet to fight them until they pay the jizya tax while in a state of humiliation, and quotes Koran 9:30: "And the Jews said, 'Uzair is the son of Allah', and the Christians said 'The Messiah is the son of Allah'... may Allah kill them!"

Interfaith Dialogue Is Pointless, Unless Its Goal Is To Convert The Infidels To Islam

Addressing the issue of interfaith dialogue, Al-Sulayman stresses that it is a ridiculous notion because it assumes that Muslims and non-Muslims have something in common, when the fact is that they do not, because the non-Muslims reject the belief in Muhammad: "Someone who comes and tells you 'I believe in Allah, and Jesus, and Moses... but not in Muhammad... Is there anything left in common between you and him? Nothing! Nothing is in common between you and him."

He concludes that interfaith dialogue is pointless unless its goal is to bring others to Islam, and adds: "If the end result after this [interfaith] debate is that we... hug and make up and kiss and live together... To this we say no. Full stop." He also notes that some Muslims even believe that Jews and Christians may have a part in Heaven, and remarks: "It is unfortunate that these misconceptions are growing, especially in the West... [They] are growing in a rate I can't believe."

Unfortunately, Some Muslims Regard Non-Muslims As Their Compatriots And Seek Unity With Them

Al-Sulayman notes with outrage that some Muslims consider the infidels to be their brethren and compatriots, and seek unity with them. This is happening even in the Middle East, he says, for instance in post-revolutionary Egypt: "After the Egyptian revolution, you have these people, I'm sure you've seen images of people holding up the mushaf [Koran] and a cross at the same time... And they are saying what? [That there is] no difference... The Muslim and the Christian [stand] together against oppression... [People also wear] necklaces with a crescent, which represents Islam, and inside the crescent there is a cross. People are wearing this, [even though] wearing the cross is clear kufr [heresy]. So many Muslims are wearing it now. Why? Because they do not want division. They want unity. [They say:] 'We are one nation. And what brings us together is our flag. What holds us together is our constitution. The glue between us is... our nationality. Patriotism'... This [attitude] has become rampant even in the Middle East!"

He adds that because of these misconceptions, Muslims who refer to the Jews and Christians as "infidels" are now accused of extremism and fundamentalism just because they assert the truth, namely that a Muslim is commanded to affirm the heresy of the non-Muslims, otherwise he is an infidel himself.

"One Who Mixes With [The Infidels] Obviously Loves Their Ways... [And] Prefers Them To The Muslims"

In the lecture dealing with the fifth nullifier – supporting and assisting the polytheists against the Muslims[38] – he explains that mixing with the infidels and living with them in happy coexistence is a form of apostasy, "because one who mixes with them obviously loves their ways. One who sits with the kuffar prefers them to the Muslims." He also warns his audience that anyone who imitates the ways of the infidels will share their fate on the Day of Judgement: "When you imitate someone, you do it because you like them, because you love them, because you want to be with them. And if you love someone, Allah will resurrect you with them on the Day of Judgement... So if you dress in a particular way... or walk in a particular way or talk in a particular way to imitate a culture... this tells me what's in your heart. It tells me that you prefer this to the culture or the practices or the way of [the Prophet]."

He warns the Muslims against "giving respect and honor to the kuffar" in an excessive manner: "For example, when a kafir walks through the door, you rush to meet him, and you raise your voice, and you make everyone around you notice that you are doing this, and you push the Muslims out of the way and give [the infidels] front row seats, or you gift them unnecessarily or perform acts that show your respect for them, like calling them particular names or giving them particular titles unnecessarily...

"For example, a politician comes forward, and you are addressing him, and you say 'the honorable' [or] 'his honor'... This is not acceptable in Islam."

He concludes: "You cannot be a believer if you have allegiance and friendship and love with those that oppose Allah... This is the 'aqida [religious principle] of having disavowal and disassociation from the kuffar."

You Can't Hate Heresy Without Hating The Infidel Himself

Abu Sulayman stresses that it is not possible to disavow heresy without disavowing the infidels themselves: "You can't say, 'I hate kufr but I don't hate the kafir... This is a call that many try to make, [in order] to bring people together. [They say,] 'I hate the kufr of the Christian but I don't hate the Christian. I hate the kufr of the Jew but I don't hate the Jew himself. I hate the kufr of the atheist but the atheist himself is a good person.' [However,] Hating kufr by itself is illogical, it doesn't make sense."

Abu Sulayman concedes that a Muslim is not banned from treating infidels fairly if they are not fighting him or opposing him in any way. "You can't just go to a kafir just because he is a kafir and punch him in the face," he clarifies, "especially if you are trying to spread a message [of Islam] to the kuffar." However, he reiterates that between the Muslims and the kuffar there is "enmity and hatred forever, until the kuffar worship Allah alone... We can't come to a compromise [on] this. This is the core of Islam, my brothers. The 'aqida of al-wala wal-bara."

The Muslims Owe No Gratitude To Australia

Al-Sulayman also says that the former mufti of Australia, Taj Al-Din Al-Hilali, claimed that Muslims in Australia should feel grateful towards the Australian state which had fed and sheltered them. Abu Sulayman's responds to this by saying that it is Allah, rather than the Australians, who saw to the Muslims' welfare, and then curses the mufti, saying "Allah qatalak, ya-zandik" ("God kill you, you infidel").

Anyone Who Votes In Elections Or Seeks A Ruling From A Non-Muslim Court Is An Infidel

Another major theme in Al-Sulayman's series of lectures is the need to accept, love and implement every detail of shari'a law, while wholeheartedly rejecting all man-made systems of government such as democracy. In the lecture dealing with the fifth nullifier – hating what Muhammad revealed[39] – Abu Sulayman emphasizes that anyone who disapproves of any part of the Islamic shari'a is an infidel, for instance anyone who feels uncomfortable with the notion of jihad against the Jews and Christians, the idea that women are not equal to men, the custom of polygamy, or the Koranic punishments such as stoning and chopping off hands.

In the lecture dealing with the fourth nullifier – belief that guidance other than Islam is better than the guidance of Islam – Abu Sulayman stresses that democracy is heresy (as are socialism, liberalism and communism), since it empowers mere mortals – and often infidels, no less – to make laws, which is supposed to be the sole prerogative of Allah. Hence, all legislators are infidels, and so are judges who rule by man-made laws. Moreover, anyone who votes in the elections, and anyone who seeks judgement from a non-shari'a court, is guilty of heresy.

While speaking of democracy and gender equality, he mocks Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, who "looks like a man" and is "in a de facto relationship with a hairdresser who looks like a woman," and implies that a woman is unable to rule the country because she is hormonal at a certain time each month and during pregnancy. Therefore, he says, Australia "is set up for destruction" and is "on a one-way trip to jehenum (Hell)."

Some Try To Claim That Jihad Against The Infidels Is No Longer Valid; Had The Prophet Shared This Mentality, He Would Have Never Waged Jihad

Abu Sulayman notes that some try to justify man-made legislation by saying that laws must change with the times. For example, some people try to claim that in this day and age, jihad against members of other religions is no longer legitimate: "They come and say: Jihad? Forget about jihad! Why? Because... we are living in a modern age, and the Jews have a religion, and the Christians have a religion, and the Hindus have a religion... and everyone has a religion. And we can't attack them because we've signed a treaty, and this treaty goes in accordance with the law of the United Nations. So we can't fight them. So jihad [has to] stop... [Instead we should] just give da'wa and talk about Islam and have hiwar al-adyan [interfaith dialogue] and... hold hands, sing songs and wear pink dresses... These people, they will come up with excuses after excuses. They will [also] try to justify [their position] to the people and say that we [can't wage jihad because we] are in a state of weakness..."

Abu Sulayman summarizes his opinion of these claims by saying: "If this was the mentality of our Prophet, he would have never gone to jihad. Never."

* H. Migron is a research fellow at MEMRI.

Endnotes:

[1] Alrisalah.com.au, accessed February 24, 2013.

[2] Aussiemuslims.com, September 25, 2012.

[4] Aussiemuslims.com, Al-Risalah Facebook page, accessed February 24, 2013.

[5] Alrisalah.com.au, accessed February 24, 2013.

[8] Al-Risalah Facebook page, accessed February 24, 2013.

[9] The Australian (Australia), Sept 18, 2013.

[10] The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia), Feb 11, 2013. See also: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3YNR7_s8db4.

[11] The five pillars of Islam – the five personal obligations that a Muslim must fulfill – are the shahadah (profession of faith), salat (prayer), zakat (paying alms), sawm (fasting during the month of Ramadan), and Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca). Unlike them, jihad is not a personal obligation but a collective one. However, jihadi circles often describe it as the "sixth pillar," thus lending it the status of a personal religious obligation incumbent upon each and every Muslim.

[12] The Australian (Australia), Sept 18, 2013.

[13]Aussiemuslims.com, September 25, 2013.

[14] See MEMRI JTTM report no. 4643, German Islamist Group Millatu Ibrahim and Its Extremist Agenda, April 10, 2012.

[15] See Spiegel Online International, June 14, 2012.

[17] For example, a March 7 post on the "Millat Ibrahim – Australia" Facebook page justifies jihad throughout the world: "Jihad is a foreign policy to expand the authority of Allah all over the earth. Those 'scholars' today who deny Jihad talab (Offensive Jihad), are misguiding the Masses and speaking on behalf of their ignorance regarding these matters of the Deen. Jihad will continue until the Day of Judgment, and the Enemies of Allah will continue to fight the Muslims until we turn back from our Deen." A March 5 post states: "As Muslims we are free from your democracy, we are free from your capitalism, we are free from your communism, liberalism, socialism and secularism we are free from everything that you worship besides Allah, we take Ibrahim [i.e., the Biblical Abraham]… as our example, we make takfir on you [i.e., proclaim you infidels], we reject you, and between us and you is clear hatred, animosity and enmity forever until you worship Allah alone."

[18] Icsr.info, June 14, 2012.

[19] Cnn.com, May 26, 2013.

[20] National Observer (Australia), July 23, 2013.

[21] News.bbc.co.uk, October 18, 2005.

[22] Aswj.com.au, accessed March 3, 2013.

[24] Abu Sulayman's Facebook page, accessed March 5, 2013.

[29] His brother, Fida Al-Majzoub, also a prominent cleric, is a member of the Syrian National Council.

[30] Muslimvollage.com, August 20, 2012.

[31] Aansariyya-steedsofwar.blogspot.co.il, August 20, 2013.

[32] The Australian (Australia), April 13, 2013.

[33] See: "Australians Answer the Syria Jihad Call," The Australian (Australia), April 13, 2013.

[34] Abu ''Adnan's Facebook page, accessed March 2, 2013.

[35] On Cerantonio, see the following MEMRI documents:

MEMRI Inquiry and Analysis no. 5102, Musa Cerantonio, Australian Convert To Islam, Promotes Jihadi Islam On Widely Aired Show On Saudi Iqraa TV, And Lectures Worldwide, December 11, 2012;

MEMRI TV clip no. 3760, Australian Islamist Musa Cerantonio Glorifies Jihad, Supports Jabhat Al-Nusra in Syria, February 14, 2013

[36] Knowledgehouse.com.au, accessed March 1, 2013;

MEMRI TV clip no. 3664, Australian Islamist Musa Cerantonio: We Must Fight the Infidels by Physical Warfare Until the Caliphate Is Restored, November 30, 2012.

Share this Report:

MEMRI
2021 End-Of-Year Campaign