byÂ Raymond Ibrahim:
A video ofÂ Dr. Yusuf al-QaradawiÂ calling on the U.S. government to wage jihad for Allah in Syria, is currently making the rounds on Arabic media and Facebook, to mockery and dismay.
In theÂ recorded speech, Qaradawiâ€”one of the most influential Islamic clerics in the world, spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, author of over 100 books on Muslim doctrine, and head of the International Union of Muslim Scholarsâ€”sarcastically thanks the U.S. for supporting the “freedom fighters” in Syria, adding that “Allah willing, your [U.S.] aid will increase.”
Then, while working himself up because the U.S is only providing weapons to the jihadis in Syria, as opposed to directly intervening, Qaradawi declares in frustration: “We want America to take a manly standâ€”a stand for Allah!”
Yusuf al-Qaradawi is famous for declaring that killing Â apostates is what keeps Islam alive
- Qatar told to tell al Qaradawi to cool it with anti-UAE outbursts—Shameful that we allow Yousuf Al Qaradawi to continue his insults, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Mohammad Gargash says
Needless to say, all Muslim Brotherhood opponents in the region are pointing to this as yet more proof that Qaradawi and the Brotherhood are mercenaries who interpret jihad any which way, so long as it helps them consolidate power: otherwise, how can “infidel” America take “a stand for Allah” by waging jihad on fellow Muslims?
It should further be noted that the classic formulation of the Arabic wordÂ jihad, as in “fight,” Â appears in the Koran with the additionÂ fi sabil Allah, that is, “fightÂ in the cause of Allah.”
In other words, calling on the U.S. to strike Syria’s Bashar Assadâ€”and calling it “a stand for Allah”â€”is essentially synonymous with calling on the U.S. to fight “in the cause of Allah.”
Amazingly, then, Qaradawi employs classical jihadi rhetoric to incite American leadership to action.
As one televised politicalÂ commentatorÂ in Egypt discussing this anecdote put it,
Sheikh Qaradawi of course is the great and prominent Sheikh of Jihad, who issues those famous fatwas we all know ofÂ to kill and destroy on his orders.Â Really, the man has reached the point where he is now calling on America to wage jihad and take a stand for Allah.Â No comment; what’s there to say at this point?…Â Now jihad is being asked of America and to be waged against Muslims.
Nor is it any secret that this administration does act on the calls of Â Qaradawi.Â As Clare Lopez summarizes for theÂ Gatestone Institute:
[T]he current administration consistently and repeatedly appeared toÂ respond eagerlyÂ to the calls for revolution from the Muslim Brotherhood’s senior Islamic scholar, Yousef al-Qaradawi. When al-Qaradawi said thatÂ Mubarak had to go, the U.S. waited a whole three days before throwing America’s key ally in the Middle East for over three decadesÂ under the bus. When al-Qaradawi called for Libyan rebels toÂ kill Muammar QaddafiÂ (so the al-Qa’eda jihadis in his jails could get out and join the revolution), the U.S. led theÂ Western military campaignÂ that brought al-Qa’eda, the MB, and chaos to Libya. And when al-Qaradawi issued a call forÂ jihad in Syria, in early June 2013, the U.S. quickly issued an invitation toÂ Abdullah bin BayyahÂ (al-Qaradawi’s vice president at the International Union of Muslim Scholars), who told an Al-Jazeera reporter that, “We demand Washington take a greater role in [Syria].” It took the U.S. less than one week after al-Qaradawi’sÂ fatwaÂ to announceÂ authorization of stepped-up military aidÂ to the al-Qa’eda-and-Brotherhood-dominated Syrian rebels. The White House announcement came just a single day after bin Bayyah met with National Security and other senior administration officials.
The problem, then, is not that Qaradawi has in desperate senility confused the U.S. with the jihadis, but rather that he mayÂ knowÂ that prominent elements of U.S. leadership are committed to struggling “in the cause of Allah”â€”and so he unwittingly employed jihadi rhetoric to remind them of their duty.
Unfortunately, in today’s surreal climate of U.S. politics, no interpretation is so absurd as to be implausible.