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al-Qā’idah in the Arabian Peninsula releases its first English language magazine “Inspire”

UPDATE 7: Inspire Magazine has been translated into Arabic as an ‘Īd al-Fiṭr gift to the Muslim ummah (community) by the Arabic Anṣār al-Mujāhidīn Forum.

Click here: Inspire Magazine Arabic

UPDATE 6: The Investigative Project on Terrorism weighs in on “Inspire Magazine” and its potential negative effects on radicalization.

UPDATE 5: Katherine Zimmerman of the American Enterprise Institute’s Critical Threats Project explains the implications of AQAP’s “Inspire Magazine”.

UPDATE 4: Aaron Weisburd of the Internet Haganah provides his take on the full release of AQAP’s “Inspire Magazine”.

UPDATE 3: After 12 days, AQAP releases the full version of “Inspire Magazine” without corruption. Also, checkout Jarret Brachman’s quick take analysis of the new magazine.

Click here: AQAP – Inspire Magazine Volume 1 – UNCORRUPTED

UPDATE 2: J.M. Berger of IntelWire along with Thomas Hegghammer of Jihadica posted new blog entries detailing past English language magazines by jihādīs and the continued lack of understanding by the mainstream media when reporting on the “Inspire” magazine.

UPDATE: After the forums released the new English language magazine “Inspire” within an hour or so they took it down since the pdf file was corrupted. The first three pages — the table of contents — was fine, but afterwards the text was gibberish. I am still keeping this corrupted file up so people can see what it looked like. For more on why the file was corrupted and taken down check out the Internet Haganah’s analysis. Also, it is worthwhile to read J.M. Berger of IntelWire’s critique of the US media coverage of the “Inspire” magazine release.

NOTE: al-Malāḥim Media, al-Qā’idah in the Arabian Peninsula’s (AQAP) media outfit, released a new English language magazine called “Inspire”, which features interviews with the amīr (leader) of AQAP Abū Basīr (Nāṣir al-Wūḥayshī) and Anwar al-‘Awlakī.

Original corrupted file (won’t harm your computer, gibberish after a few pages): AQAP – Inspire Magazine Volume 1

Al-Katāayb Foundation for Media Productions presents: “The African Crusaders”

NOTE: Al-Katāayb Foundation for Media Productions is the media center used by al-Qā’idah-linked Ḥarakat al-Shabāb al-Mujāhidīn based in Somalia. Ibn Siqilli on this video:

Harakat al-Shabab’s media outlet, the Al-Kata’ib (Brigades) Media Foundation, released a video entitled “The African Crusaders” yesterday in which the AU’s forces are labeled agents of the United States, which seeks to persecute Muslims in Somalia and across the globe. Battle footage shows fierce fighting between Harakat al-Shabab militiamen and AU forces, particularly Uganda Army soldiers. Ugandan “crusaders” were discussed in Harakat al-Shabab’s groundbreaking September 2009 video “Labbayk Ya Usama” (We Heed Your Call, O’ Usama), which I wrote about at some length HERE.

Citizens of the African nations contributing soldiers to the AU mission in Somalia, namely Uganda and Burundi, are asked to consider whether they wish to sacrifice their sons to a failed mission in Somalia to support a weak, failing government, that led by PresidentShaykh Sharif Ahmed. The video’s narrator asks Ugandans to consider whether their soldiers would have been better employed defending them from the insurgents of the Lord’s Resistance Army led by Joseph Kony in northern Uganda.

In one part, audio of the late Harakat al-Shabab leader Aden (Adan, Adam) Hashi Ayro (he was killed in a U.S. missile strike in March 2008) is used and a current commander, Husayn Fidow, is shown speaking. The group also recently released photographs of its fighters burning captured AU vehicles.

New statement from the Islamic Emirate Of Afghanistan: “Regarding The Puppet Regime’s Mining Contract With Foreign Companies”

NOTE: This message is by the Afghan Ṭālibān and unedited below.

Statement Of The Islamic Emirate Of Afghanistan Regarding The Puppet Regime’s Mining Contract With Foreign Companies

Rajab 14, 1431 A.H, Sunday, June 27, 2010

In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

According to a news report, American geologists have found $1 trillion worth of valuable minerals, including iron, copper, cobalt, gold, and lithium. This report is followed by the news stories of awarding contracts by the corrupt and puppet Karzai administration for mining these deposits. In fact the occupation forces are disgracefully facing the most horrible situation in Afghanistan. In order to save their face, both the American and their puppets in Kabul very restlessly “disclosed” this news to show their “eagerness” the betterment of the Afghan Masses.

Through these measures the American forces and their dazed military leadership are trying to get maximum benefit from the Afghan wealth in form of gaining support from vital American companies in favor of Obama’s Afghan Policy.

Secondly, it intends to use it as a bribe to those allies of this shattered alliance, who no more wants to stay in Afghanistan. The US believes that monetary greed will make them stay along the US in this graveyard. Another design behind “breaking” this news was to drag those countries to Afghanistan who have been opposing the US occupation. The last but not least, the news aims at diverting the global attention from US’s defeat and acquire more time to stay in Afghanistan. Perhaps, the whole world is aware of these deceitful and failed efforts by the US.

Now when the US and its puppet regime in Afghanistan want to achieve their illegal goals, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan consider it necessary to issue a policy statement regarding these minerals and the agreements for mining these minerals by the puppets Afghan regime.

1. The recent reports are no revelations as the vast deposits in Afghanistan were no secret. In fact Afghanistan is well known for its mineral wealth. These natural deposits are Afghan’s wealth. The mining of these minerals and all related agreements can be awarded by an independent and legal Afghan government only, not the one being imposed over the Afghan masses through force, tanks and warplanes.

2. The puppet regime set up in Kabul by the occupation forces is the most corrupt, ineffective, and weakest of the world community, the fact which has been confessed by the Americans and their puppet president in Kabul. Now who can ensure transparency in such circumstances? This is why, The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan declares any accord in this regard as illegitimate and the parties to the contract as a looter of the Afghan wealth.

3. The Americans and their puppet elements hold that these minerals and contracts in this regard will change the destiny of Afghan masses. This wealth will make the reconstruction of Afghanistan possible and help the Afghan economy to become stable. It is worth reminding that the puppet regime in Afghanistan has received billions of dollars from the international community in the past. In how much transparent manner has this amount been spent and how much has it helped a common man is not secret from the world. Then, why will be they let to plunder the wealth of this oppressed nation? Who can guarantee the wealth excavated under this administration will be spent for the betterment of common man and reconstruction of his country?

4. Therefore, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan warns all foreign companies, entering into contract with the puppet regime that no guarantee of the life of their worker can be given. Whosoever, enter into contract with this puppet regime regarding the natural resources, their contract will be considered as illegal by the Afghan masses and the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan hopes that the contract for mining these minerals after the defeat of the United State of America will be awarded on merit to those companies which have the sincerity and capability to carry out this important work.

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan

Ḥizb ut-Taḥrīr publishes new article: “Islamic Ruling on Military Alliances with Non-Muslim States”

NOTE: Ḥizb ut-Taḥrīr (The Party of Liberation) is a Sunni pan-Islamist movement whose goal is to unite the Muslim ummah (community) and reinstate the Caliphate (al-khilāfah). Once the Caliphate is reinstated, the government would be ruled by Islamic law (sharī’ah) with the Caliph (khalīfah) being the head of state elected by a shūrā (consultation) council. Ḥizb ut-Taḥrīr was founded in 1953 in Jerusalem by Taqī ad-Dīn al-Nabhānī who was an Islamic scholar (‘ālim). Currently, Ḥizb ut-Taḥrīr is located in more than forty countries and is especially active in the United Kingdom and maintains a branch in the United States. The article is unedited below.

Today, we find Muslim countries making military alliances with the kuffar and fighting alongside them. Turkey is a member of NATO and has sent troops to Afghanistan under the UN International Security Assistance Force.

Pakistan has entered a military alliance with America to fight Muslims in the tribal areas and support the Afghan war.

Many Muslim countries participate in numerous other military alliances and collective security agreements.

Historically, the Khilafah entered in to military alliances with kafir states at certain times.

In America and Europe we find a small minority of Muslims joining the western armies and being sent to Iraq and Afghanistan with some scholars even issuing fatwas that this is permissible in Islam.

The Islamic ruling on military alliances and their permissibility is given below. This is taken from the bookShakhsiya Islamiyya (Islamic Personality) Volume 2 by Sheikh Taquideen an-Nabhani. The extract below is based on a draft translation from Arabic.

Al-hilf” linguistically means covenant (‘ahd) and friendship. It is said “halifuhu” derived from “‘ahiduhu” (he covenanted with him). However, the technical definition of the word “al-hilf” specifically means military alliance.

Military alliances are the alliances contracted between two or more states that make their armies fight together with a common enemy, or exchange military intelligence and weapons between them, or if one of them enters in to war they will consult with the other state to enter war with them or not according to the interests they see.

These alliances could be dual treaties (mu’ahadat thinaiyya) contracted between two, three or more states, but they do not consider aggression upon one state as an aggression against all of them. Rather if aggression occurs upon one of the treaty states, the other states with which it has a military alliance have the option of joining the war alongside the state facing aggression or not according to what is in their interests.

These alliances could also be collective alliances in which aggression against one of the treaty states is an aggression against all of them. So if war occurs between one treaty state and another state then the other states with which it has a military alliance will enter the war alongside it.

All of these alliances, whether they were dual, collective or other than these, necessitate that the army fights with its ally to protect it and its entity whether there were numerous leaders or a single leader.

These alliances are void from their basis and are not contracted legitimately in Islam. The Ummah is not obliged to follow them even if the Muslims’ Khaleefah contracted them since they contradict the Shar’a. This is because these alliances make the Muslim fight under a kafir leadership, under a kufr banner, in order to preserve a kufr entity, all of which is haram. It is not allowed for a Muslim to fight except under a Muslim leadership and under the Islamic banner.

There came a prohibition in the sahih hadith against fighting under the disbelievers’ banner and their leadership.

Ahmad and An-Nisa’I narrated from Anas who said: The Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم said: “Do not seek light with the fire of polytheists.” i.e. do not make the polytheists’ fire a light for you.

The fire is an indication of war. It is said the “fire of war was kindled” (awqada nar) i.e. its evil and violent passion was called into existence. The fire of fright (tahweel) is a fire the Arabs in jahiliyyah would kindle during alliances. The hadith alludes to war with polytheists and adopting their banner, so the prohibition of war together with polytheists is understood from it.

Alliances would also make the disbelievers fight with Muslims while preserving their entity i.e. they would fight as a state and not individuals. The Messenger prohibited seeking assistance of the disbelievers as an entity.

It came in the hadith of Adh-Dhahhak (RA), “that the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم went out on the day of Uhud, when all of a sudden there was a good squadron or a harsh squadron so he صلى الله عليه وسلم said: ‘Who are these?’ They said: ‘The Jews of so and so.’ So he صلى الله عليه وسلم said: ‘We do not seek assistance of disbelievers.'”

Al-Bayhaqi said: The authentic report is what Al-Hafidh Abu Abdullah informed us via a chain leading to Abu Hameed as-Sa’idi who said: “The Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم went out until he left behind Thaniyya al-Wada’, and all of a sudden there was a squadron. He said: ‘Who are these?’ They said: ‘Banu Qaynuqa and they are the people of Abdullah bin Salam.’ He صلى الله عليه وسلم said: ‘Have they embraced Islam?’ They said: ‘Rather they are on their deen.’ He صلى الله عليه وسلم said: ‘Tell them to return for we do not seek assistance of the polytheists.”

The Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم rejected assistance from the Jews and said in general manner: “We do not seek assistance of the disbelievers…We do not seek assistance of the polytheists.”

One should not say that we seek assistance with disbelievers against our enemy and seeking assistance with the disbeliever is allowed because the Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم consented to Quzman fighting together with him in Uhud and he was a disbeliever, and he صلى الله عليه وسلم accepted assistance from some Jews of Khaybar in war. One should not say this because seeking assistance with disbelievers is allowed if they are individuals under the Muslims’ banner. Those whom the Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم sought assistance from were individuals not an entity or state.

When Banu Qaynuqa came to the messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم they came as a tribe with their own leader, and they were like a state that previously made a treaty with the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم. They came to fight with the Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم and they were upon this situation and it was said to him: “They are the company of Abdullah bin Salam” so he refused to seek assistance from them due to this. Accordingly it is not allowed to seek assistance from a kafir army and under the banner of their disbelieving state.

Imam As-Sarakhsi said in ‘Al-Mabsut’ in the book of ‘Siyar': “From the hadith of Adh-Dhahabi (ra) ‘that the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم went out the day of Uhud where there was a husna squadron or he said khushna. So he صلى الله عليه وسلم said: Who are these? They said: The Jews so and so. So he صلى الله عليه وسلم said: We do not seek assistance of disbelievers.’ Its interpretation (ta’weel) is that they were powerful in themselves not fighting under the Muslims’ banner. For us, we only seek assistance from them if they were fighting under the Muslims’ banner whereas if they come independent with their own banner then we do not seek assistance from them. This is the interpretation of what was narrated when the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said: ‘Do not seek light from the fire of the polytheists’ narrated by Ahmad and An-Nisa’I via the way of Anas and he صلى الله عليه وسلم said: “I am free (bariu) from every Muslim who fights together with a polytheist’ meaning if the Muslim is under the polytheists’ banner.”

From this it becomes clear that military alliances with disbelieving states are haram in the Shar’a and they are not contracted.

It is not allowed for the Muslim to shed his blood in the way of defending the belligerent disbeliever. Rather the Muslim only fights people so that they enter into Islam from disbelief (kufr). As for fighting disbelievers to enter from kufr into kufr and to shed his blood for that, this is also haram.

Articles of the Week – 6/19-6/25

Sunday June 20:

“Legitimate Demands [2] Barack’s Dilemma” – Adam Gadahan, As-Saḥāb Foundation for Islamic Media Publication: http://bit.ly/c6dQXK

“Forget the substance of Gadahn’s post, it’s the tech that matters” – J.M. Berger, IntelWire: http://bit.ly/dty6tR

“Good Deal for Gaza” – Marc Lynch, The Middle East Channel: http://bit.ly/blRn8x

Monday June 21:

“Kandahar Timeline 1979-2010″ – Alex Strick van Linschoten, A Different Place Blog: http://bit.ly/aM0bld

“The 2010 Failed State Index Rankings” – Foreign Policy Magazine, July/August 2010: http://bit.ly/9kutY3

“State of Jihad: 2010 and Beyond” – Matthew M. Reed, International Affairs Review: http://bit.ly/cYX4w4

“Politics and prayer”- Review of “A Mosque in Munich” – Issandr El Amrani, The National: http://bit.ly/95mbax

Jihadi Websites Monitoring Group, Periodical Review June 2010 – No. 1, International Institute for Counter-Terrorism: http://bit.ly/ab2WDN

“Profiles of the 15 known Saudi Guantanamo recidivists” – Thomas Joscelyn, The Long War Journalhttp://bit.ly/bL1CEw

“A New Taleban Front?” – Thomas Ruttig, The Afghanistan Analysts Networkhttp://bit.ly/aexJjQ

Tuesday June 22:

“Yemen: Avoiding Freefall” – Ginny Hill, The World Today, Volume 66, Number 7, July 2010: http://bit.ly/aA7kln

“West Africa and the Maghreb Security Brief June 7, 2010 – June 22, 2010″ – Critical Threats Projecthttp://bit.ly/cHdVL7

“Punjab’s growing militant problem” – Interview with Hassan Abbas, The AfPak Channelhttp://bit.ly/c9Rvm4

“West coast jihad” – Brian Fishman, The AfPak Channelhttp://bit.ly/dzmznm

Wednesday June 23:

“Militant’s Path From Pakistan to Times Square” – Andrea Elliott, New York Timeshttp://nyti.ms/b1ZJEX

“Veiled Truths- The Rise of Political Islam in the West” – Marc Lynch, Foreign Affairshttp://bit.ly/caa3UL

Thursday June 24:

“The Iraqi Elections of 2010—and 2005″ – Kanan Makiya, The Crown Center for Middle East Studies, Middle East Brief 42, June 2010http://bit.ly/9OfrOA

“Puncturing Pakistan’s “madrasa myth”” – Gregg Carlstrom, The Majlishttp://bit.ly/9vNjZR

Friday June 25:

“Saudi Preacher: The West Implements the Humane Values of the Shari’a Better than the Muslims” – Middle East Media Research Institutehttp://bit.ly/9KHXNj

“The Legal War on Terror for the week of 6/18-6/24″ – Andrew Lebovich, Foreign Policyhttp://bit.ly/cI0a7I

“Al-Qaeda losing supporters in jihadi groups across Arab world” – Camille Tawil, Magharebiahttp://bit.ly/bZw7yr

“Islamist Preacher Zakir Naik, Barred from U.K. and Canada – An Ideological Profile” – Steven Stalinsky, Middle East Media Research Institutehttp://bit.ly/cXSiR4

‘Scratching the Surface of Radicalism in Germany” – Andrew Lebovich, The Washington Note: http://bit.ly/9ZsTHm

Scratching the Surface of Radicalism in Germany

NOTE: This article was originally published at The Washington Note and is being cross-posted here with permission from the author, Andrew Lebovich.

German-police.jpg

On Monday Germany’s domestic intelligence agency, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, announced the launch of a new counter-terrorism initiative, a hotline for members of radical Islamists groups to call where they can get advice for leaving the group. The idea, based on long-running programs for Germans leaving neo-Nazi groups, has gotten relatively favorable coverage from wire services and news sites. German Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière described it as a “valuable preventive effort” in helping counteract the threat of domestic radicalization.

For the last few years German officials have expressed increasing concerns about radicalization, first of German Muslims from immigrant backgrounds and more recently from German converts to Islam. Germany reportedly monitors 29 different Islamist organizations, and estimates that roughly 36,000 members of these organizations pose potential security risks. The 2007 Sauerland cell arrests raised the specter of terrorism against German and American targets, and more recently anecdotal evidence suggests a small but steady flow of young Muslims and converts (estimated to be about 40 per year) to conflict zones such as the Afghanistan-Pakistan border region. The death of wanted militant Eric Breininger and the publication of his jihadist memoirs/travelogue soon after shone a spotlight on this phenomenon, and brought new attention to the persistent rumors of a “German colony” of jihadists in Pakistan.

Religious and potentially violent extremism is thus a clear problem in Germany, as in other European countries, but a jihadist recovery hotline hardly qualifies as de-radicalization. And while not a bad idea at all, this idea is neither preventive nor likely to be particularly effective.

On the one hand, many factors have to converge for someone to even use this hotline; an individual, having joined a radical organization, would have to have come to the decision not only to leave an organization with likely tight-knit members, but also overcome the very real fear of retribution as well as accept the possible arrest of friends and associates in the group as a result of their return from an extremist environment. This is a small group of people, though by all means governments should provide them the support they can.

Yet the real problem lies not in getting through the social and security pressures placed on militant group members, but letting the process radicalization get that far in the first place. In a 2009 report the Muslim Public Affairs Council attempted to lay out the complex and ill-understood manner in which an individual progresses from a so-called “normal” life, to possessing radical ideas, and perhaps to action. The report lays out a variety of factors (economic, political, social/cultural and personal) as well as steps that generally occur as someone grows more radical.

While radicalization is different for each person, the report helps demonstrate that a long process precedes the act of joining an activist or militant group, whether the seeds for this progression are sown in a mosque, amongst a circle of friends, or on the internet. Waiting for someone to join, lose taste for, and summon the courage to leave a militant organization is not preventive, it is reactive. And it means that for every person who goes through all of these steps, many more undergo radicalization unabated.

I do not doubt that German officials understand the threat posed by radicalization. And thankfully the threat from domestic terrorism, whether in Europe or the United States, remains low. But the fight against terrorism requires continuous effort to understand and treat the causes of radicalization, rather than dealing with symptoms as they appear.

Andrew Lebovich is a Research Associate for the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation. He writes the weekly column “The Legal War on Terror” for Foreign Policy and blogs at The Washington Note. You can follow him on twitter at twitter.com/tweetsintheme.

Jamā’at Anṣār al-Sunnah release their first propaganda video: “The Knight of Ansar #1″

UPDATE: IbnSiqilli has clarified the similarities between the two Jamā’at Anṣār al-Sunnah in Gaza and Iraq. The Iraqi groups’ members are mostly Kurds, therefore it seems unlikely that Palestinians have been part of their group. Rather, it is just a popular name.

NOTE: Jamā’at Anṣār al-Sunnah is an al-Qā’idah-linked group based in the Gaza Strip. It is speculation on this authors behalf, but there is a group in Iraq that has the same name, therefore it is possible that Jama’at Ansar al-Sunnah in Gaza is a faction of past Palestinian foreign fighters in Iraq. Jama’at Ansar al-Sunnah in Gaza also claimed responsibility a for rocket attack this past March, which landed in Israel, killing a Thai worker. The attack in response for the so-called “Judaization” of sites both holy to Jews and Muslims.


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