Islam versus Terrorism
Terrorism is when innocent people are specifically targeted to instil fear in a population. It is categorically prohibited in Islam. The present era of our history has been blemished by indiscriminate violence in almost every society. The loss of innocent life has become extremely commonplace. Unfortunately, due to the actions of some ignorant Muslims as well as biased reporting in the media, the religion of Islam has come to be associated with terrorism. However, the appropriate question to be asked is: "Do Islamic teachings promote terrorism?"
As a matter of fact, Islam and terrorism are precise opposites; the very name, Islam, denotes peace and submission. The fundamentals of Islam direct its followers to maintain and promote peace throughout the world. Islam is a faith of moderation; thus a righteous and God-fearing Muslim can neither be a fanatic nor an extremist. There is no connection whatsoever between Islam and the violence practiced by terrorist groups in different parts of the world. In no way does it condone hijackings, hostage taking, and the torture and killing of innocent people in order to achieve particular goals.
The Islamic basis for national and international relations is peace rather than war. Prominent Muslims, Islamic organizations, and Islamic scholars have repeatedly denounced terrorist attacks and terrorism in general. Islam emphatically prohibits and disassociates itself from the violent acts that have been carried out by some of its members in the name of religion.
All religions and ideologies have some misguided followers, and it is surely unfair to judge any one of them by the behavior of such people. Accordingly, Islam should not be judged by the acts of misguided Muslims or even by the obvious corruption that permeates many Muslim countries. For in fact, what Islam teaches is one thing and what these so-called Muslims practice is something else. The only way to know the truth about Islam is to study its teachings, for they are the standard by which the actions of Muslims can be assessed as being right or wrong.
Islam emphasizes the sanctity of life in general, and particularly, human life. And the Qur’an prohibits murder in clear terms:
"And do not kill the soul which Allah has forbidden [to be killed] except by [legal] right."[5:32]
"Whoever kills a soul unless for a soul[i.e., in legal retribution for murder] or for corruption [done] in the land[ i.e., that requiring the death penalty] – it is as if he had slain mankind entirely. And whoever saves one – it is as if he had saved mankind entirely."[6:151]
Such is the value of a single human life that God equates the unjust taking of one life with killing all of humanity. Only a proper and competent court can decide whether an individual has forfeited his right to life by commission of a major crime. Individual Muslims can never take decisions about who should be killed or punished. Conviction and punishment may not be implemented except by a qualified judge under lawful authority.
Terrorism involves the indiscriminate use of force to achieve certain objectives, and in reality it manifests itself in various forms. The head of state who orders the bombing of entire cities, the councils that kill millions of civilians by imposition of sanctions, and the wealthy nations that would rather destroy their surplus food than make it available to those afflicted by famine are rarely punished for crimes against humanity.
Although it is recognized that Islamic history was not always filled with virtue, one should justly compare the number of civilians killed by Muslims to the number killed by communists and the Western nations who ignited two world wars within half a century, deployed the atomic bomb against a civilian population, are currently supporting the brutal Israeli military occupation of Palestine against its civilians, and have brought about the destruction of Iraq while thoroughly terrorizing its citizens.
While Islam seeks to promote peace, it also directs its followers to oppose oppression. Both these objectives may on occasion require the use of force. It is precisely for this reason that police use force against criminals and anti-social elements to maintain law and order in society. So Islam does allow taking up arms under particular circumstances. Any civilization that did not could never survive. However, it prohibits the slightest injustice, even toward those who oppose the religion. The Qur’an orders:
"And do not let the hatred of a people prevent you from being just. Be just; that is nearer to righteousness."[5:8]
Enmity toward any people or nation should not provoke Muslims to commit aggression against them or disregard their rights. As for the spread of Islam, this is supposed to take place peacefully by disseminating the message through the written and spoken word.
SomeTerrorist organization in USA
Animal Liberation Front
Animal Liberation Front (ALF) is a name used internationally by activists who engage in direct action tactics on behalf of animals. This includes removing animals from laboratories and fur farms, and sabotaging facilities involved in animal testing and other animal-based industries. According to ALF statements, any act that furthers the cause of animal liberation, where all reasonable precautions are taken not to endanger life, may be claimed as an ALF action. The group is listed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as a domestic terrorist organization.
Alpha 66 and Omega 7
Alpha 66 (still existent) and Omega 7 (now defunct) were two affiliated Cuban exile action groups who have carried out many bombings and acts of sabotage. While many of these attacks have historically been directed at Cuba and the Castro government, many of them occurred domestically, especially during the period of Cuba-US diplomacy and negotiations in the 1970s known as "el Diálogo" (the dialogue) when powerful anti-Castro figures in Miami attempted to terrorize those in their community who favored a more moderate approach. Luciano Nieves, for instance, was killed for advocating peaceful coexistence with Cuba. WQBA-AM news director Emilio Milian lost his legs in a car bomb after he publicly condemned Cuban exile violence. These cases of terrorism were documented extensively in the book Miami by Joan Didion. Human Rights Watch released a report in 1992 in which they claimed that the more extreme exiles have created a political environment in Miami where "moderation can be a dangerous position."
Army of God
The Army of God (AOG) is a loose network of individuals and groups connected by ideological affinity and the determination to use force to end abortion in the United States. Acts of anti-abortion violence increased in the mid-1990s culminating in a series of bombings by Eric Robert Rudolph, whose targets included two abortion clinics, a gay and lesbian night club, and the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. Letters sent to newspapers claim responsibility for the bombing of the abortion clinics in the name of the Army of God.
Aryan Nations (AN) is a white nationalist neo-Nazi organization founded in the 1970s by Richard Girnt Butler as an arm of the Christian Identity group known as the Church of Jesus Christ-Christian. As of December 2007 there were two main factions that claimed descent from Butler's group. The Aryan Nations has been called a "terrorist threat" by the FBI, and the RAND Corporation has called it the "first truly nationwide terrorist network" in the USA.
Black Liberation Army
A splinter group made up of the more radical members of the Black Panther Party, the Black Liberation Army (BLA) sought to overthrow the US government in the name of racial separatism and Marxist ideals. The Fraternal Order of Police blames the BLA for the murders of 13 police officers. According to a Justice Department report on BLA activity, the group was suspected of involvement in over 60 incidents of violence between 1970 and 1980.
The Covenant, The Sword, and the Arm of the Lord
The Covenant, The Sword, and the Arm of the Lord (CSA) was a radical Christian Identity organization formed in 1971 in the small community of Elijah in southern Missouri, United States.
Earth Liberation Front
Jewish Defense League
The Jewish Defense League (JDL) was founded in 1969 by Rabbi Meir Kahane in New York City, with its declared purpose the protection of Jews from harassment and antisemitism. FBI statistics show that, from 1980 to 1985, 15 terrorist attacks were attempted in the U.S. by JDL members. The FBI’s Mary Doran described the JDL in 2004 Congressional testimony as "a proscribed terrorist group". The National Consortium for the Study of Terror and Responses to Terrorism states that, during the JDL's first two decades of activity, it was an "active terrorist organization." Kahane later founded the far right Israeli political party Kach. The JDL's website currently condemns all forms of terrorism.
Ku Klux Klan
From reconstruction at the end of the civil war to the end of the civil rights movement, the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) used threats, violence, arson, and murder to further its white-supremacist, anti-Communist, anti-semitic and anti-Catholic agenda. Domestic terrorists with agendas similar to the KKK include neo-Nazis and white power skinheads.
May 19th Communist Organization
The May 19 Coalition (also variously referred to as the May 19 Communist Coalition, May 19 Communist Organization, and various alternatives of M19CO), was a US-based, self-described revolutionary organization formed by members of the Weather Underground Organization. The group was originally known as the New York chapter of the Prairie Fire Organizing Committee (PFOC), an organization devoted to legally promoting the causes of the Weather Underground. This was part of Prairie Fire Manifesto change in Weather Underground Organization strategy, which demanded both aboveground mass and clandestine organizations. The role of the clandestine organization would be to build the "consciousness of action" and prepare the way for the development of a people's militia. Concurrently, the role of the mass movement (i.e., above ground Prairie Fire Collective) would include support for, and encouragement of, armed action. Such an alliance would, according to Weather, "help create the 'sea' for the guerrillas to swim in." 
The Order, also known as the Brüder Schweigen or Silent Brotherhood, was an organization active in the United States between 1983 and 1984. The Order, a white nationalist revolutionary group, is probably best known for the 1984 murder of radio talk show host Alan Berg.
The Phineas Priesthood (Phineas Priests) is a Christian Identity movement that opposes interracial intercourse, the mixing of races, homosexuality, and abortion. It is also marked by its anti-Semitism, anti-multiculturalism, and opposition to taxation. It is not considered an organization because it is not led by a governing body, there are no gatherings, and there is no membership process. One becomes a Phineas Priest by simply adopting the beliefs of the Priesthood and acting upon those beliefs. Members of the Priesthood are often called terrorists for, among other things, planning to blow up FBI buildings, abortion clinic bombings, and bank robberies.
Symbionese Liberation Army
The Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA) was an American self-styled, far left "urban guerrilla warfare group" that considered itself a revolutionary vanguard army. The group committed bank robberies, two murders, and other acts of violence between 1973 and 1975. Among their most notorious acts was the kidnapping and the brainwashing of the newspaper heiress Patty Hearst.
United Freedom Front
The United Freedom Front (UFF) was a small American Marxist organization active in the 1970s and 1980s. It was originally called the Sam Melville/Jonathan Jackson Unit, and its members became known as the Ohio 7 when they were brought to trial. Between 1975 and 1984 the UFF carried out at least 20 bombings and nine bank robberies in the northeastern United States, targeting corporate buildings, courthouses, and military facilities. Brent L. Smith describes them as "undoubtedly the most successful of the leftist terrorists of the 1970s and 1980s." The group's members were eventually apprehended and convicted of conspiracy, murder, attempted murder, and other charges. Two, Tom Manning and Jaan Laaman, remain incarcerated today.
The Weather Underground Organization was a far left organization active from 1969 to 1975. It originated in 1969 as a faction of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) composed for the most part of the national office leadership of SDS and their supporters. The group collapsed shortly after the U.S. withdrawal from Vietnam in 1975.
From 1978 to 1995, Harvard University graduate and former mathematics professor Theodore "Ted" Kaczynski - known by the codename "UNABOM" until his identification and arrest by the FBI - carried out a campaign of sending letterbombs to academics and various individuals particularly associated with modern technology. In 1996, his manifesto was published in The New York Times and the Washington Post, under the threat of more attacks. The bomb campaign ended with his capture.
Attacks by the Jewish Defense League
In 2004 congressional testimony, John S. Pistole, Executive Assistant Director for Counterterrorism and Counterintelligence for the Federal Bureau of Investigation described the JDL as "a known violent extremist Jewish Organization." FBI statistics show that, from 1980 through 1985, there were 18 terrorist attacks in the U.S. committed by Jews; 15 of those by members of the JDL. Mary Doran, an FBI agent, described the JDL in a 2004 Congressional testimony as "a proscribed terrorist group". Most recently, then-JDL Chairman Irv Rubin was jailed while awaiting trial on charges of conspiracy in planning bomb attacks against the King Fahd Mosque in Culver City, California, and on the office of Arab-American Congressman Darrell Issa.
Oklahoma City bombing
This truck bomb attack by Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols killed 168 people on April 19, 1995 – the deadliest domestic-based terrorist attack in US history and, before the September 11, 2001 attacks, the deadliest act of terrorism in US history. It inspired improvements to United States federal building security.
Centennial Olympic Park bombing
The Centennial Olympic Park bombing was a terrorist bombing on July 27, 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia, United States during the 1996 Summer Olympics, the first of four committed by Eric Robert Rudolph, former explosives expert for the United States Army. Two people died, and 111 were injured.
2001 anthrax attacks
The 2001 anthrax attacks in the United States occurred over the course of several weeks beginning on September 18, 2001. Letters containing anthrax spores were mailed to several news media offices and two Democratic U.S. Senators, killing five people and infecting 17 others. In mid-2008, the FBI narrowed its focus to Bruce Edwards Ivins, a scientist who worked at the government's biodefense labs at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Maryland. Ivins was told of the impending prosecution and on July 29 committed suicide, by an overdose of acetaminophen.
Knoxville Unitarian Church shooting
On July 27, 2008, a politically motivated fatal shooting took place at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. Motivated by a desire to kill liberals and Democrats, gunman Jim David Adkisson fired a shotgun at members of the congregation, killing two people and wounding seven others.
Murder of George Tiller
On May 31, 2009, George Tiller, a physician from Wichita, Kansas who was nationally known for being one of the few doctors in the United States to perform late-term abortions, was shot and killed by Scott Roeder, an anti-abortion activist. Tiller was killed during a Sunday morning service at his church, where he was serving as an usher. Multiple action groups and media figures have labeled Tiller's killing an act of domestic terrorism and an assassination.
Roeder was arrested within three hours of the shooting and charged with first-degree murder and related crimes two days later. In November 2009 Roeder publicly confessed to the killing, telling the Associated Press that he had shot Tiller because "preborn children's lives were in imminent danger." Roeder was found guilty of first-degree murder and two counts of aggravated assault on January 29, 2010, and sentenced to life without parole for 50 years on April 1, 2010.
Austin IRS attack
On February 18, 2010, Andrew Joseph Stack III flew his airplane into the IRS building in Austin, TX killing one other person and injuring many more in an act of lone wolf terrorism. He cited many reasons for his grievance against the government of the United States as well as other facets of the country such as bailout of financial institutions, politicians in general, conglomerate companies of General Motors, Enron and Arthur Andersen, labor unions, drug and health care insurance companies, and the Catholic Church. He added a meeting with a poor widow who never got pension benefits she was promised, the effect of the Tax Reform Act of 1986 on engineers, the September 11 attacks airline bailouts that only benefited the airlines but not the suffering engineers, how a Certified Public Accountant he hired seemed to side with the government to take extra tax money from him, criticism of the FAA and the George W. Bush administration were reasons for him to call for violent revolt.
The following groups have been considered religious terrorist organizations in occupied Palestine :
- Gush Emunim Underground (1979–84): formed by members of the Israeli political movement Gush Emunim. This group is most well known for two actions. Firstly, for bomb attacks on the mayors of West Bank cities on June 2nd 1980, and secondly, an abandoned plot to blow up the Temple Mount mosques. The Israeli Judge Zvi Cohen, heading the sentencing panel at the group’s trial, stated that they had three motives, ‘not necessarily shared by all the defendants. The first motive, at the heart of the Temple Mount conspiracy, is religious.’
- Keshet (Kvutza Shelo Titpasher) (1981–1989): A Tel Aviv anti-Zionist haredi group focused on bombing property without loss of life.:101 Yigal Marcus, Tel Aviv District Police commander, said that he considered the group a gang of criminals, not a terrorist group.
- The "Bat Ayin Underground" or Bat Ayin group. In 2002, four people from Bat Ayin and Hebron were arrested outside of Abu Tor School, a Palestinian girls' school in East Jerusalem, with a trailer filled with explosives. Three of the men were convicted for the attempted bombing.
- Brit HaKanaim (Hebrew: בְּרִית הַקַנַאִים, lit. Covenant of the Zealots) was a radical religious Jewish underground organisation which operated in Israel between 1950 and 1953, against the widespread trend of secularisation in the country. The ultimate goal of the movement was to impose Jewish religious law in the State of Israel and establish a Halakhic state.
- The Kingdom of Israel group (Hebrew: מלכות ישראל, Malchut Yisrael), or Tzrifin Underground, were active in Israel in the 1950s. The group carried out attacks on the diplomatic facilities of the USSR and Czechoslovakia and occasionally shot at Jordanian troops stationed along the border in Jerusalem. Members of the group caught trying to bomb the Israeli Ministry of Education in May 1953, have been described as acting because of the secularisation of Jewish North African immigrants which they saw as 'a direct assault on the religious Jews' way of life and as an existential threat to the ultra-Orthodox community in Israel.
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