Islam Under Scrutiny by Ex-Muslims

Our Ubiquitous Garden Variety Bangladeshi Talibans!

A few days ago the foreign Minister of Bangladesh, while speaking with the foreign correspondents based in Bangladesh, declared that there are no Talibans/Islamic fundamentalists in Bangaldesh.  He was referring to the article recently published in FEER about the activities of Islamic fundamentalists in Bangladesh.

Let us see whether we have Talibans/al-Qaeda Jihadis in Bangladesh or not:

On February 23, 1998, an Islamic Fatwa was published in Al-Quds al-'Arabi'. I am including a part of this fatwa, which clearly calls for the killing of all American citizens and the supporters of America:

All these crimes and sins committed by the Americans are a clear declaration of war on God, his messenger, and Muslims.  And ulema have throughout Islamic history unanimously agreed that the Jihad is an individual duty if the enemy destroys the Muslim countries. This was revealed by Imam Bin-Qadamah in "Al- Mughni," Imam al-Kisa'i in "Al- Bada'i," al-Qurtubi in his interpretation, and the Shaykh of al-Islam in his books, where he said "As for the militant struggle, it is aimed at defending sanctity and religion, and it is a duty as agreed.  Nothing is more sacred than belief except repulsing an enemy who is attacking religion and life."

On that basis, and in compliance with God's order, we issue the following fatwa to all Muslims:

The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies - civilians and military - is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it, in order to liberate the al-Aqsa Mosque and the holy mosque from their grip, and in order for their armies to move out of all the lands of Islam, defeated and unable to threaten any Muslim. This is in accordance with the words of Almighty God: "and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all together, "and fight them until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in God

This is in addition to the words of Almighty God "And why should ye not fight in the cause of God and of those who, being weak, are ill-treated and oppressed - women and children, whose cry is 'Our Lord, rescue us from this town, whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from thee one who will help!'"

We - with God's help - call on every Muslim who believes in God and wishes to be rewarded to comply with God's order to kill the Americans and plunder their money wherever and whenever they find it.  We also call on Muslim ulema, leaders, youths, and soldiers to launch the raid on Satan's U.S. troops and the devil's supporters allying with them, and to displace those who are behind them so that they may learn a lesson.

Almighty God said "O ye who believe, give your response to God and His Apostle, when He calleth you to that which will give you life.  And know that God cometh between a man and his heart, and that it is He to whom ye shall all be gathered."

These were/are the signatories to the above Islamic Fatwa

Statement signed by Sheikh Usamah Bin-Muhammad Bin-Ladin; Ayman al-Zawahiri, leader of the Jihad Group in Egypt; Abu- Yasir Rifa'i Ahmad Taha, a leader of the Islamic Group; Sheikh Mir Hamzah, secretary of the Jamiat-ul-Ulema-e-Pakistan; and Fazlul Rahman, leader of the Jihad Movement in Bangladesh.

Please note the name of Fazlur Rahman, leader of Harakatul Jihad in Bangladesh. 

I would like to ask our Hon. Foreign Minister what he and his government consisting of this Jihadi party has to say on this fatwa?  Does he deny that Harkatul Jihad does not exist in Bangladesh?  What are the aims and objectives of this Jihadi party? 

Our Hon. Foreign Minister should not try to fool the world especially the independent journalist's reports.  Our foreign Minister cleverly tries to link the 'politically correct' statements of the Western Government official to mislead the world that 'there are no' Talibans/Islamic fundamentalists in Bangladesh. 

Our Prime Minister has invented a new word called 'information terrorism'. Well, let us ask our PM about the following: 

1.        64,000 Madrassahs.  That counts as more than one Madrasshas per square mile of total area of Bangladesh.  Why do we have so many of these religious schools? What are the aims and objectives of these Madrassahs?  Who are financing these? What do they learn there?  What do these Murids do after they graduate from these religious schools----does our Government know the whereabouts of these Murids after they have finished their religious indoctrination?  Are they not specifically designed to manufacture Talibans and other Islamic fanatics? 

2.        Two sworn Jamaatis in the cabinet: Can our present Government leaders enlighten us as to the aims and objectives of the Jamaat?  Do they want to establish an Islamic state in the style of Saudi Arabia or not?  What does the manifesto of Jamaat say?  How can our BNP leaders deny the fact they have in their midst Islamic fundamentalist whose major aim is to convert Bangladesh into a Islamic Paradise? 

3.        Khatib of Baitul Muqqarram characterizes America as a Terrorist nation and supporting Osama Bin Ladin's terrorist action in American soil.  This is very old news.  The whole world is aware of this clerics public declaration of Jihad against America and its allies in the same line as al-Qaeda.  Will our BNP leaders tell us what punitive/disciplinary action has been taken against this fanatic cleric? 

4.        Bangaldeshi Jihadists taking part in Afghan War: There are clear evidence to suggest that a few of the prisoners taken at Guantanamo Bay prison camp are from Bangladesh.  Bangalee speaking interpreters are used to interrogate these prisoners.  Why?  Can our BNP-Jamaat Government refute these claims that many al-Qaeda soldiers are from Bangladesh? 

5.        In many public meetings Khilafat Andolon, IOJ, and many other smaller Islamic party openly declare to convert Bangladesh into another Taliban nation.  Dhaka's wall is pasted with slogans such as "Bangla Hob'e Taliban."  Can our Government refute this claim? 

All the above claims are nothing new.  Not a single editor in Dhaka can refute these claims.  But surprisingly they surely attacked the messenger, i.e., Mr. Lintner who wrote this FEER investigative report that shook the world. 

Here are my conclusions: 

The FEER article is an eye opening articles for the rest of the world no matter how much our present BNP-Jamaat try to hide the truth. 

It correctly identified Bangladesh's many fringe Islamic political organizations as the safe haven for Jihadists. 

Mr. Linter is right when it says Bangladesh is the cocoon of terror.  Bangladesh should accept Linter's characterization of present-day Bangladesh, or else in future, the country will become a full-blown Islamic nation.  This is the sole agendum of Jamaat-i-islami.  They may sound very accomodating at this time but when their influence will grow, then their tone will change.  Lest we forget, this is the party of late Abu Ala Moududi of Pakistan.  Look what this party and other smaller Islamic party have done to Pakistan.  Do we want to see another Pakistan in the making?  We have enough time.  Bangladesh should say sayonara to parochially bent politics.  Bangladesh's founding fathers had correctly identified the Jamaat to be an evil party.  We should ban these political parties right now or else the future of this nation looks very shaky.  Bangladesh was formed to get away from the grip of another Islamic nation (read Pakistan).  Why go back to the days of Pakistan.      

When we beg from the West for the development fund (in Paris), we deny vociferously that there are Talibans/Islamic fundamentalists in Bangladesh.  On the contrary, when we go to the Saudis to beg for Islamic money (read alms or dan-khoirat) we swear that we are turning Islamic fundamentalists and soon we will become an Islamic state.  The world (especially the West) is not stupid enough to detect this chameleon colour of Bangladesh leaders.  Let us not play this dangerous double game.  Let us admit the truth and rectify the cancer (religious fanaticism) that is spreading in our society.  Unless we do the therapy now, bad times will befall Bangladesh. 


Abul Kasem writes from Sydney, Australia.  His e-mail address is -