The Quranic [Koranic] Concept of War
The Quranic Concept of War by Brigadier S. K. Malik shows why the conflict with Islam is going to be a long, drawn out affair. To begin, it has been going on in spurts and fits for almost 100 years, since the end of World War I when the collapse of the Ottoman Empire exposed its former subjects to the benevolent colonialism of the West. From the betrayed promises to England's Arab allies, to the creation of Palestine and Israel, the Algerian War for independence in the 1950's, the attempt to overthrow Nasser, to the overthrow of Mossadegh's legally elected government in Iran in 1953 and the installation of the Shah's dictatorship with the assistance of the CIA trained Savak secret police, the illegal Israeli occupation, ethnic cleansing of and annexation of the West Bank, to the Iran-Iraq War, the canceling of the second round of the Algerian elections in 1992 because they were going to be won by the Islamic Salvation Front, to the military intervention in Turkish politics to prevent the rise of Islamic influence to the Gulf War and now the Occupation of Iraq it would be hard to argue that the west has contributed anything other than death and misery and stealing oil to the Moslem world. Now, in the tradition of all peoples who fight for their freedom and self-determination, the Islamists are fighting back.
George Bush and the neo-conservative nincompoops are waging a crusade to bring freedom, democracy and a capitalist "market economy" to the middle east. Whether these political and economic forms can ever work in a water deficit society remains to be seen. As has been written elsewhere, societies whose traditions evolved in water deficit parts of the world have socialist traditions almost by necessity. There can not be a market economy in water, the absence of which leads to death. Islam is the monotheistic religion that evolved in the desert. Bush seems to have repeated the mistake of the Gulf War, failing to understand that no one cares about land, because desert is useless in the absence of water.
Also, western strategy and war aims are significantly different from Islamic strategy, at least according to Brigadier Malik. For his own selfish domestic political purposes, Bush is the major progenitor of Islamic war aim of terrorizing the enemy. So Bush is the Islamic warrior's biggest ally. Malik also explains the function of suicide bombing.
"The Quranic military strategy thus enjoins us to prepare ourselves for war to the utmost in order to strike terror into the heart of the enemies, known or hidden, while guarding ourselves from being terror-stricken by the enemy. In this strategy, guarding ourselves against terror is the 'Base'; preparation for war to the utmost is he 'Cause'; while the striking terror into the hears of the enemies is he 'Effect'. The whole philosophy revolves round the human heart, his soul, spirit and Faith. In war, our main objective is the opponent's heart or soul, our main weapon of offence against this objective is the strength of our own souls, and to launch such an attack, we have to keep terror away from our own hearts.
"The Quranic strategy comes into play from the preparation stage, and aims at imposing a direct decision upon the enemy. Other things remaining the same, our preparation for war is the true index of our performance during war. We must aim at creating a wholesome respect for our Cause and our will and determination to attain it, in the minds of the enemies, well before facing them on the field of battle. So spirited, zealous, complete and thorough should be our preparation for war that we should enter upon the 'war of muscles' having already won the 'war of will'. Only a strategy that aims at striking terror into the hearts of the enemies from the preparation stage can produce direct results and turn Liddell Hart's dream into a reality.
"During peace-time, our 'Will' must find its expression through 'Preparation'. The war of preparation being waged by us during peace is vastly more important than the active war. Strategy has comparatively greater stakes in a drill square, during a training exercises, at a model discussion and in an operational conference than in the theater or zone of operations. Anything we do or fail to do during peace-time is creating a certain impact - favorable or otherwise - upon our potential adversaries. Seemingly trivial and innocent acts of commission and omission can also accumulate together to asume great importance. We must be constantly conscious of the fact that our strategy is working in full swing during peace-time, and by our actions, we are either contributing towards the attainment of its aim or are undermining it, as the case may be.
"Preparation must be 'to the utmost', both in quality and in quantity. It must be a continuous and never ending process. Preparation should be at the plane of total strategy, that is, Jehad, and not of the military instrument alone. Military preparedness will yield the desired results only if it forms a part of the total preparedness. Quantitative preparation may have its physical limitations but qualitative preparation is limited only by our will and energy to acquire it. The lesser the physical resource, the greater must be the stress and reliance on the spiritual dimensions of war. Their operational effectiveness of a fighting force depends upon its total strength: physical as well as spiritual. An army might be inferior in one field but should be superior to the opponent in the aggregate. The side that is inferior in physical strength can draw on its spiritual strength to acquire a higher degree of aggregate strength. Physical strength must, however, be prepared for and applied 'to the utmost'. Physical preparedness is complimentary to spiritual preparedness and vice versa; none can compensate or intercede for the other.
"Terror struck into the hearts of the enemies is not only a means, it is the end in itself. Once a condition of terror into the opponent's heart is obtained, hardly anything is left to be achieved. It is the point where the means and the end meet and merge. Terror is not a means of imposing decision upon the enemy; it is the decision we wish to impose upon him. Psychological and physical dislocation is, at beat, a means, though, by no means, conclusive for striking terror into the hears of the enemies. Its effects are related to the physical and spiritual stamina of the opponent but are seldom of a permanent and lasting nature. An army that practices the Quranic philosophy of war in its totality is immune to psychological pressures. When Liddell Hart talks of imposing a direct decision upon the enemy through psychological dislocation alone, he is taking too much for granted.
"Terror cannot be struck into the hearts of an army by merely cutting its lines of communication or depriving it of its routes of withdrawal. it is basically related to the strength or weakness of the human soul. It can be instilled only if the opponent's Faith is destroyed. Psychological dislocation is temporary; spiritual dislocation is permanent. Psychological dislocation can be produced by a physical act but this does not hold good of the spiritual dislocation. To instill terror into the hearts of the enemy, it is essential, in the ultimate analysis, to dislocate his Faith. An invincible Faith is immune to terror. A weak Faith offers inroads to terror. The Faith conferred upon us by the Holy Quran has the inherent strength to ward off terror from us and to enable us to strike terror into the enemy. Whatever the form or type of strategy directed against the enemy, it must, in order to be effective, be capable of striking terror into the hearts of the enemy. [Underlining added.] A strategy that fails to attain this condition suffers from inherent drawbacks and weaknesses; and should be reviewed and modified. This rule is fully applicable to nuclear as well as conventional wars. It is equally true of the strategy of nuclear deterrence in fashion today. To be credible and effective, the strateg;y of deterrence must be capable of striking terror into the hears of the enemy." p.58-60.
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