Children and The Koran
Instilling a Lifelong Desire to Kill and be Killed
'He was a child and came to kill children’: ISIL suicide bomber kills 43 — most of them boys — at soccer match ...
A total of 43 people died [on the evening of March 25, in Asriya, Iraq] — 29 of them boys younger than 17 who had either been participating in the match or were watching their friends play.
The bomber also was a teenager, no more than 15 or 16.
Washington Post, April 8, 2016
Death's Pied Piper
The Prophet said, "A single endeavor (of fighting) in Allah's Cause in the afternoon or in the forenoon is better than all the world and whatever is in it. A place in Paradise as small as the bow or lash of one of you is better than all the world and whatever is in it ..."
Narrated Abu Huraira:
I heard Allah's Apostle saying, "The example of a Mujahid (Muslim fighter) in Allah's Cause — and Allah knows better who really strives in His Cause—is like a person who fasts and prays continuously. Allah guarantees that He will admit the Mujahid in His Cause into Paradise if he is killed, otherwise He will return him to his home safely with rewards and war booty."
Muhammad's example established fifteen as the age a boy could join the fraternity of holy warriors and to participate in the organized slaughter of unbelievers and abscond with the possessions of those he killed, including wives, daughters and sons whose immature physical appearance, i.e., no signs of pubic hair, made them less likely to be murdered, but rather taken into slavery.
Narrated Ibn Umar:
That the Prophet inspected him on the day of Uhud while he was fourteen years old, and the Prophet did not allow him to take part in the battle. He was inspected again by the Prophet on the day of Al-Khandaq (i.e. battle of the Trench) while he was fifteen years old, and the Prophet allowed him to take part in the battle.
Narrated Abdur-Rahman bin Auf:
While I was standing in the row on the day (of the battle) of Badr, I looked to my right and my left and saw two young Ansari boys, and I wished I had been stronger than they. One of them called my attention saying, "O Uncle! Do you know Abu Jahl?"
I said, "Yes, What do you want from him, O my nephew?"
He said, "I have been informed that he abuses Allah's Apostle. By Him in Whose Hands my life is, if I should see him, then my body will not leave his body till either of us meet his fate."
I was astonished at that talk. Then the other boy called my attention saying the same as the other had said.
After a while I saw Abu Jahl walking amongst the people. I said (to the boys), "Look! This is the man you asked me about." So, both of them attacked him with their swords and struck him to death and returned to Allah's Apostle to inform him of that.
Allah's Apostle asked, "Which of you has killed him?"
Each of them said, "I Have killed him."
Allah's Apostle asked, "Have you cleaned your swords?"
They said, "No."
He then looked at their swords and said, "No doubt, you both have killed him and the spoils of the deceased will be given to Muadh bin Amr bin Al-Jamuh."
The two boys were Muadh bin 'Afra and Muadh bin Amr bin Al-Jamuh.
If they themselves were killed fighting Allah’s battles, not to worry—there was the promise of Firdaus.
Um (the mother of) Haritha came to Allah's Apostle after Haritha had been martyred on the Day (of the battle) of Badr by an arrow thrown by an unknown person. She said, "O Allah's Apostle! You know the position of Haritha in my heart (i.e. how dear to me he was), so if he is in Paradise, I will not weep for him, or otherwise, you will see what I will do."
The Prophet said, "Are you mad? Is there only one Paradise? There are many Paradises, and he is in the highest Paradise of Firdaus."
The Prophet added, "A forenoon journey or an afternoon journey in Allah's Cause is better than the whole world and whatever is in it; and a place equal to an arrow bow of anyone of you, or a place equal to a foot in Paradise is better than the whole world and whatever is in it; and if one of the women of Paradise looked at the earth, she would fill the whole space between them (the earth and the heaven) with light, and would fill whatever is in between them, with perfume, and the veil of her face is better than the whole world and whatever is in it."
A veteran of the Iran/Iraq war warned me that what Muhammad said and did (recommended reading: 1001 Sayings and Deeds of the Prophet Muhammad, Boreal Books) was a much more powerful incentive for young people to go to their death than anything Allah revealed in his Koran. His example, he explained, was not lost on boys as young as 12 years old, perhaps even younger, who, in a tactic sanctioned by Khomeini, were used to clear a path through minefields or in suicidal attacks to test Iraqi defences (experienced soldiers were too valuable to risk in such enterprises).
Before the actual advance across a minefield or terrain to be shredded by enemy artillery, the children were given small plastic keys to hang around their necks, and told this was the key to Paradise. The signal to run to their death was a man in the distance on a black horse, dressed in the black garb copied by Islamic State warriors, brandishing a sword and pointing towards the Iraqi positions. The children were told this was Prophet Muhammad. Their hero would be there to welcome them into Firdaus should they be martyred.
The boy who murdered other boys playing soccer was not born the misguided individual he became. A child is not born a holy warrior. The process of creating suicide bombers and willing executioners for the likes of Islamic State, al-Qaeda, the Taliban, Boko Haram, Al-Shabab, etc., begins with rote learning, by millions of children around the world, of the most pitiless, appalling mainstream piece of religious text ever revealed. Muhammad’s example and his promised out-of-this-world rewards for killing and dying in Allah’s Cause would have had a lesser but still significant impact on young minds if his encouragement was not backed by the incendiary words of the god for whom he claimed to speak.
A Pitch for Martyrs
An imagined pitch for suicide bombers
using only verses from one surah
Revelations about the conduct of hostilities against unbelievers are scattered throughout the Koran, sometimes in highly concentrated form such as in the third surah, “The Family of ‘Imran” where the word martyr is first encountered. It is from this surah that I imagined an Al-Qaeda or a Taliban recruiter in the role of prayer leader making a clandestine pitch for martyrs during Friday prayers, which to the uninitiated would not seem out of the ordinary since prayers in Islam are mostly verses from the Koran selected by the prayer leader. A few verses here may have been quoted elsewhere.
In the Name of Allah,
the Compassionate, the Merciful
3:1 Alif, Lam, Mim.
3:2 Allah, there is no God but He, the Living, the Everlasting.
3:3 He has revealed the Book (the Koran) to you in truth, confirming what came before it; and He has revealed the Torah and the Gospel,
3:4 Aforetime, as a guidance to mankind. And He also has revealed the Criterion (the Qur'an as determiner of right and wrong). Verily, those who have disbelieved in Allah’s Signs, a terrible punishment awaits them; Allah is mighty and stern in retribution.
3:5 Indeed, nothing is hidden from Allah whether on earth or in the heavens.
3:6 It is He Who forms you in the wombs as He pleases; there is no God but he, the Mighty, the Wise.
3:8 Lord, do not cause our hearts to vacillate after You have guided us and grant us Your Mercy. You are indeed the Munificent Giver.
3:10 As to the unbelievers, neither their riches nor their children will avail them anything against Allah; in fact, they shall be the fuel of the Fire.
3:11 Like Pharaoh’s people and those before them who denounced Our Revelations. Allah smote them on account of their sins. Allah is Stern in retribution!
3:12 Say to those who disbelieve: “You shall be defeated and driven together into Hell; and what an awful resting place.”
The heart of the pitch! Life on Earth may be good, but Paradise is better
3:14 Attractive to mankind is made the love of the pleasures of women, children, heaps upon heaps of gold and silver, thoroughbred horses, cattle and cultivatable land. Such is the pleasure of this worldly life, but unto Allah is the fairest return.
3:15 Say: “Shall I tell you about something better than all that?” For those who are God-fearing, from their Lord are gardens beneath which rivers flow, and in which they abide forever [along with] purified spouses and Allah’s good pleasure. Allah sees His servants well!
And who are those who seek “purified spouses and Allah’s good pleasure”?
3:16 Those who say: “Our Lord, We have believed, so forgive us our sins and guard us against the torments of Hell.”
3:17 They are the patient, the truthful, the devout, the charitable and the seekers of forgiveness at daybreak (when battles are usually engaged).
If you can’t believe God, who can you believe?
3:18 Allah bears witness that there is no God but He, and so do the angels and men of learning. He upholds justice. There is no God but He, the Mighty and Wise One.
The difference between you and them:
3:19 The [true] religion with Allah is Islam. Those who were given the Book (the Jews and the Christians) did not disagree among themselves, except after certain knowledge came to them, out of envy among themselves. Whoever disbelieves in Allah’s Revelations will find Allah Swift in retribution!
Those who are not of your religion must be made to submit.
3:83 Do they desire a religion other than Allah’s, after everyone in the heavens and on earth has submitted to Him willingly or unwillingly; and unto Him they shall all be brought back!
3:85 Whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted from him, and in the Hereafter he will be one of the losers.
You are the best!
3:110 You were the best nation brought forth to mankind, bidding the right and forbidding the wrong, and believing in Allah. Had the People of the Book believed, it would have been far better for them; some of them are believers, but most of them are sinners.
Not so for your enemy!
3:111 They will only cause you a little harm; and if they fight you, they will turn their backs on you (in defeat), and will have no support.
3:112 Ignominy shall attend them wherever they are found, unless [they are bound] by a covenant from Allah and a covenant from the people. They will incur Allah’s anger, and wretchedness shall be stamped on them, because they disbelieved in Allah’s Revelations and killed Prophets unjustly. That is because they disobeyed and exceeded the limits (doing what is unlawful).
In case you should harbour doubts about God’s methods for dealing with the unbelievers, i.e., evil-doers.
3:128 It is no business of yours whether Allah forgives them or punishes them; for they are indeed evil-doers (sic)!
3:129 And to Allah belongs what is in the heavens and on earth; He forgives whom He pleases and punishes whom He pleases. Allah is All-Forgiving and Merciful.
3:131 And guard yourselves against the Fire which has been prepared for the unbelievers.
Now, obey God and the Prophet and ask forgiveness.
3:132 And obey Allah and the Messenger, that perchance you may find Mercy.
3:133 And hasten to forgiveness from your Lord and a Paradise as wide as the heavens and the earth prepared for the God-Fearing;
A reminder that there is a war on, and that God is on our side, therefore, you cannot lose if you are steadfast and don’t let emotions get in the way.
3:139 Do not be faint-hearted and do not grieve; you will have the upper hand, if you are true believers.
The first mention of martyrdom!
3:140 If you have been afflicted by a wound, a similar wound has afflicted the others (the unbelievers). Such are the times; We alternate them among the people, so that Allah may know who are the believers and choose martyrs from among you. Allah does not like the evildoers!
Will you help Him help the believers by killing the unbelievers?
3:141 And that Allah might purify the believers and annihilate the unbelievers.
Don’t expect to be first in line to Paradise if you have not helped God rid the world of unbelievers.
3:142 Or did you suppose that you will enter Paradise, before Allah has known who were those of you who have struggled, and those who are steadfast.
You were hoping for death to join Him in Paradise; well, now is your chance.
3:143 You were yearning for death before you actually met it. Now you have seen it and you are beholding it.
Role models from the past are exalted.
3:146 How many Prophets with whom large multitudes have fought; they were not daunted on account of what befell them in the Cause of Allah. They did not weaken or cringe; and Allah loves the steadfast!
3:147 Their only words were: “Lord, forgive us our sins and our excess in our affairs. Make firm our feet and grant us victory over the unbelieving people.”
3:148 Therefore Allah granted them the reward of this life and the excellent reward (Paradise) of the life to come, and Allah loves the beneficent!
Don’t trust the unbelievers; trust Me.
3:149 O believers, if you obey the unbelievers, they will turn you upon your heels (turning you back from your true religion), and thus you will become complete losers.
3:150 Rather, Allah is your Protector, and He is the Best Supporter!
A reminder to keep on killing until victory is assured. Do not be distracted by booty like the believers who fought at the Battle of Uhud.
3:152 Allah fulfilled His Promise to you when, by His Leave, you went on killing them; until you lost heart and dissented about the affair and disobeyed, after He had shown you what you cherished (the booty).
We all have to die sometime.
3:168 Those who said to their brethren, while they themselves stayed at home: “Had they obeyed us they would not have been killed?” Say: “Then ward off death from yourselves, if you are truthful.”
A gracious, forgiving Host will welcome you to Paradise should you die fighting in His Cause.
3:157 And were you to be killed or to die in the Way of Allah, forgiveness and Mercy from Allah are far better then what they (the unbelievers) amass.
3:158 And were you to die or to be killed, it is unto Allah that you will be gathered.
Many of the verses quoted herein could be considered an incitement to hate and murder. A cleric using these verses, and these verses alone, as part of a recruitment effort for martyrs in a sermon in Arabic (the lingua franca of Islam), in a mosque or madrassa just about anywhere in the Western world, would not be prosecuted because of Western tolerance of hate speech as long as it is based on scriptures.
Considering the Koran’s unrelenting, unmitigated condemnation, dehumanization and demonization of unbelievers, this has to be a real cause for concern. Ordinary people do not kill others unless they have good reason. Suicide bombers would not do what they do unless convinced that their murderess enterprise was sanctioned by God. This is why the Koran is such a powerful instrument when it comes to war-mongering and the mass murder of innocent men, women and children.
Allah talks up the rewards of killing and dying on His Behalf, but a greater incentive for becoming a martyr is to avoid His nightmarish Judgement Day extravaganza during which He brags about scaring children—whom He will separate from their parents—white.
Children Scared White
From: Alice Visits a Mosque to Learn About Judgement Day, Boreal Books, 2020.
Alice: Rejoicing, getting pleasure from watching another of our kind who has never harmed us in any way, or wished us harm, in excruciating pain! If it wasn't for the sadism, that would be so childish!
Imam: It is not being childish! Allah is not a child or a sadist and neither are the people of Paradise, the believers! Enjoying seeing wicked people getting what they deserve is not sadism, it is celebrating the triumph of good over evil and there is nothing wrong with that. And as to children, they too will not be spared the terror of Judgement Day. Allah said:
73:17 So, how will you guard, if you disbelieve, against a Day which will make children white with fear?
Alice: Children being scared white! How awful! What kind of god takes pleasure in scaring children? I thought Jesus was one of Allah’s Messengers and Jesus loved and was very protective of the innocent; he even said that the Kingdom of Heaven was theirs?
Imam: Yes, Jesus was a Messenger of Allah, but not His son. That is a lie told by Christians to diminish the Compassionate. To associate other Gods with Allah is the sin of shirk. There is no greater sin, and every time Christians say Allah has taken a son they commit the greatest sin of all.
Alice: What about Jesus saying that the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to children?
Imam: HE WAS WRONG! It belongs to Allah. It was to correct such miscommunications that Allah sent the perfect human being, the perfect communicator, His Greatest Messenger, the Prophet Muhammad, the peace and blessings of God be upon him, to correct lesser, less capable Messengers like Jesus.
Alice: Still, it is difficult to believe that Jesus was the Messenger of a God who would brag about scaring children to the extent that blood will drain from their faces.
Imam: How many times do I have to say it, Allah loves children, and they will be welcomed in His Paradise if they behaved and feared and worshipped Allah and only Allah when told to do so. Allah on Judgement Day will treat children fairly, just like the adults who submitted, and just like their mothers and fathers, they will appear before him to be judged alone. Allah said:
31:33 O people fear your Lord and beware of the Day when no father shall stand for his child and no infant shall stand for his father in the least. Allah’s promise is true, so let not the present life delude you or let any deceiver delude you regarding Allah.
Alice: O MY GOD! The poor children appearing before the same person who scared them almost to death, by themselves [wipes away a tear].
Imam: Do not refer to God as a person. He is Allah the Wise, the Magnificent, the All-Powerful.
Alice: I am sorry [regaining her composure], you are right; no person that I know or have known is capable of what He is capable of.
Imam: Allah is capable of everything; He is Allah!
Alice: Is it possible that Allah's scaring of children has anything to do with Him making an orphan of His Greatest Messenger when he was only six years old, and wanting to make amends for depriving the Prophet of a normal childhood by getting back at children who grew up with one or both parents?
Imam: Allah does not make amends; Allah does not need to make amends. Have you not considered that Allah's scaring of children is done for the same reasons He frightens adults, so that they will be scared of Judgement Day and therefore remain loyal, and on the strait path that leads to Paradise?
Alice: I just think that if the Prophet Muhammad had grown up with a loving father and mother he would have at least tried to temper Allah's terrorist side when it came to children [sniveling].
Imam: ALLAH IS NO TERRORIST!
Alice: Of course; it is not what I meant.
Imam: What people mistake for terrorism is simply a caring god acting in the best interest of His loyal followers, making sure they remain loyal by letting them know what is in store for them if they betray His Trust, and humiliating, and yes, scarring their common enemy, the unbelievers; BUT THAT DOES NOT MAKE HIM A TERRORIST.