In the aftermath of the jihad attacks in Washington D.C. and New York City on September 11, 2001, many thousands of Americans — even millions — became sensitized to the issue of Islam.
Most of us had never thought that much about it before. Muslims were just strangely-dressed foreigners, not particularly distinguishable from Hindus or Sikhs. We were vaguely aware that their exotic customs were related to their religion, but that’s where our knowledge ended. We regarded them with that vague, well-intended, but ill-informed tolerance that is a part of the American character.
Starting on the afternoon of 9/11/2001, a large number of Americans became interested in learning more about Islam. A few days later George W. Bush managed to lull some of them back into somnolence with his reassurances about the “religion of peace”, but others resisted such bland platitudes. Disregarding the official line on Islam, they looked more deeply into the history and teachings of Mohammed and his successors. Websites were established, non-profit resistance organizations were formed, and what is now called the Counterjihad took shape.
Ten years on, the number of dedicated anti-jihad information warriors has dwindled, perhaps by an order of magnitude or more. The remaining activists, however, are well-informed and committed to the cause.
What happened on September 11th generated what might be called a “9-11 consciousness” in those who were susceptible. People who stared at the screen all day and through the evening, and watched the horrific replays over and over into the wee hours of the morning. Who woke up the next day to the smoking heap of rubble. Who saw the smoldering gap in the Pentagon and the crater in Pennsylvania. Who watched the holes at Ground Zero take shape over the following months.
People with 9-11 consciousness never let go of the idea that something dangerous and demonic was loose in the world. They now recognized a force for evil that most of them had not noticed previously. From then on, however, they knew that they would have to resist it and push it back into the dark lands where it originated.
For some people, 9-11 consciousness began long before September 11th, 2001.
Bat Ye’or, for example, had been warning for years about the danger of Islam in Europe. Andrew McCarthy, the prosecutor of the terrorists who made the first attempt to bring down the World Trade Center in 1993, was at least eight years ahead of most people in his awareness of what was happening.
9-11 consciousness was first awakened in me thirty years ago, when I read Among the Believers: An Islamic Journey by V.S. Naipaul. When I finished it, I told Dymphna: “In twenty or thirty years we’re going to be at war with Islam. It can’t be avoided; the true believers will not be willing to co-exist with us.”
My awareness of what was coming lay dormant for twenty years, awakening briefly from time to time. The CIA funding and training the mujahideen of Afghanistan itched at my mind, and a little voice told me, “This doesn’t seem like such a good idea in the long run.” Then the first attack on the World Trade Center, and Khobar Towers, and the embassy bombings in Africa, and the attack on the U.S.S. Cole. Each of these was a reminder of what V.S. Naipaul had written.
That beautiful, awful September day reactivated my 9-11 consciousness permanently, but it was V.S. Naipaul who started it all back in 1981.
Mr. Naipaul is an atheist from Trinidad, but his family background is Hindu. No group has suffered more from the murderous depredations of Islam than the Hindus of the Indian subcontinent, so his approach to the writing of his book lacked any illusions about the “religion of peace”.
The author began his journey in Iran just after the Islamic Revolution, in 1979. He spent some time with mullahs and the ayatollahs as well as ordinary citizens, listening to what they had to say and trying to understand them on their own terms. He then traveled to other parts of the Islamic world in the Middle East and South Asia, studying the Islamic revival in both its Sunni and Shi’ite variants.
He concluded that Islam’s great awakening was a result of the confluence of Islam, oil money, and the revolutionary ideologies of the 20th century. Out of this toxic mix emerged a hybrid that was peculiar to our time and unique in the history of Islam. In the final paragraph of his book, V.S. Naipaul wrote:
The life that had come to Islam had not come from within. It had come from outside events and circumstances, the spread of the universal civilization. It was the late twentieth century that had made Islam revolutionary, given new meaning to old Islamic ideas of equality and union, shaken up static or retarded societies. It was the late twentieth century — and not the faith — that could supply the answers — in institutions, legislation, economic systems. And, paradoxically, out of the Islamic revival, Islamic fundamentalism, that appeared to look backward, there would remain in many Muslim countries, with all the emotional charge derived from the Prophet’s faith, the idea of modern revolution. Behzad the communist (to whom the Russian rather than the Iranian revolution was “the greatest turn in history”) was made by Islam more than he knew. And increasingly now in Islamic countries there would be the Behzads, who, in an inversion of Islamic passion, would have a vision of a society cleansed and purified, a society of believers.
Iran was not the only country where revolutionary communism influenced jihad doctrine, and the Shi’ites were not the only sectarians thus affected.
Hizb ut-Tahrir is a fundamentalist Sunni Islamic party that promotes the purification of Islam. Its long-term goal is to establish a worldwide Caliphate. The party’s manifesto was obviously influenced by the Leninist strain of revolutionary communism that caused so much human suffering in the 20th century.
Middle Eastern autocrats recognize Hizb ut-Tahrir as a threat to their existing regimes, and have accordingly banned the party. Western governments, however, feel required to accept the presence of HuT in their countries in the name of tolerance and multicultural inclusiveness. As a result it flourishes in Denmark, Australia, the United States, and especially Britain. In one of those peculiar parallels that so infest modern history, London has become the epicenter of radical Islamic ideology, just as it was the home of radical communist ideology a century half ago, when Karl Marx found refuge there.
Like the Bolsheviks, members of Hizb ut-Tahrir see themselves as the vanguard of the revolution. They alone possess the exclusive — even the occult — theological understanding that will allow the original nature of Islam to reassert itself and create the new Caliphate. It is their job to lead the ignorant masses to the future Islamic utopia that Allah has decreed for them:
[Hizb ut-Tahrir’s] aim is to resume the Islamic way of life and to convey the Islamic da’wah to the world. This objective means bringing the Muslims back to living an Islamic way of life in Dar al-Islam and in an Islamic society such that all of life’s affairs in society are administered according to the Shari’ah rules, and the viewpoint in it is the halal and the haram under the shade of the Islamic State, which is the Khilafah State. That state is the one in which Muslims appoint a Khaleefah and give him the bay’ah to listen and obey on condition that he rules according to the Book of Allah (swt) and the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (saw) and on condition that he conveys Islam as a message to the world through da’wah and jihad.
The Party, as well, aims at the correct revival of the Ummah through enlightened thought. It also strives to bring her back to her previous might and glory such that she wrests the reins of initiative away from other states and nations, and returns to her rightful place as the first state in the world, as she was in the past, when she governs the world according to the laws of Islam.
It also aims to bring back the Islamic guidance for mankind and to lead the Ummah into a struggle with Kufr, its systems and its thoughts so that Islam encapsulates the world.
Remember when the leadership of the Communist Party was required to bring to fulfillment the yearning of the struggling masses? When the workers needed to be guided out of their “false consciousness” into a “revolutionary consciousness” by the Party?
The plunger and needle on the revolutionary syringe are the same; only the drug is different. Marx and Engels have been replaced with Allah and Mohammed, but the process is the same.
What is manifested in these political actions is culturing the Ummah with the Islamic culture in order to melt her with Islam and to cleanse her of the corrupt creeds, false thoughts and erroneous concepts including the influence of Kufr thoughts and opinions.
What is also manifested in these political actions is an intellectual and political struggle. The manifestation of an intellectual struggle is through the struggle against the thoughts and systems of Kufr. It is also manifested in the struggle against false thoughts, corrupt creeds and erroneous concepts by demonstrating their corruption, showing their error and presenting clearly the verdict of Islam concerning them.
Like the Communist Party, Hizb ut-Tahrir envisions three stages in the process of revolution:
…the Party defined its method of work into three stages:
- The First Stage: The stage of culturing to produce people who believe in the idea and the method of the Party, so that they form the Party group.
- The Second Stage: The stage of interaction with the Ummah, to let the Ummah embrace and carry Islam, so that the Ummah takes it up as its issue, and thus works to establish it in the affairs of life.
- The Third Stage: The stage of establishing government, implementing Islam generally and comprehensively, and carrying it as a message to the world.
These correspond roughly to the three stages of Marxist historical inevitability:
- The First Stage: The Communist Party acts as a vanguard in raising the revolutionary consciousness of the proletariat.
- The Second Stage: When the workers have been sufficiently indoctrinated, the Communist Party leads the proletariat in a Socialist Revolution.
- The Third Stage: The Dictatorship of the Proletariat.
Also like the Communists, the Tahrirists focus on party discipline and propaganda to prepare the masses for the revolution:
At this stage of the da’wah, the Party focused its attention on building its body, increasing its membership and culturing the individuals in its circles by the concentrated Party culture until it had managed to form a party structure from people who were melted by Islam, and who had adopted the thoughts of the Party and had interacted with these thoughts and conveyed them to the people. After the Party had managed to form its structure and society had become aware of it, recognised it and its thoughts and what it was calling for, the Party moved to the second stage.
This stage is the interaction with the Ummah to make her carry Islam and to establish in the Ummah the common awareness and the public opinion over the thoughts and the rules of Islam adopted by the Party, so that she adopts them as her own thoughts and strives to establish them in life, and proceeds with the Party in the work to establish the Khilafah State and to appoint the Khaleefah in order to resume the Islamic way of life and carry the Islamic da’wah to the world.
Hizb ut-Tahrir even echoes the Communists’ “political struggle” against imperialism and “colonialism”:
- A struggle against the Kufr colonialist states which have domination and influence on the Islamic countries. The challenge against colonialism in all its intellectual, political, economic and military forms, involves exposing its plans, and revealing its conspiracies in order to deliver the Ummah from its control and to liberate it from any effect of its influence.
- A struggle against the rulers in the Arab and Muslim countries, by exposing them, taking them to task, acting to change them whenever they denied the rights of the Ummah or neglected to perform their duty towards her, or ignored any of her affairs, and whenever they disagreed with the rules of Islam, and acting also to remove their regimes so as to establish the Islamic rule in its place.
- To assume the interests of the Ummah and to adopt its affairs in accordance with the Shari’ah rules.
Just as they did with explosives and computers, Muslims have borrowed the concept of political revolution from the West, adapting it to serve the needs of Islam.
Hizb ut-Tahrir is enormously popular among Muslims in the West. It helps radicalize second- and third-generation Muslims in the Islamic diaspora. Carefully avoiding the instigation of violence or the staging of violent attacks, it points young zealots to the ideology and groups which will steer them into jihad and martyrdom.
This revolutionary-totalitarian ideology is just one of the many open secrets about Western Islam that anyone can discover by looking more deeply into the topic than the PC fluff presented by the newspapers or the soothing bromides of Muslim talking heads on television.
Once you have developed 9-11 consciousness and start investigating Islam on your own initiative, you realize that most of what is retailed by the media, the academy, and our governments — the Troika of Deceivers — is incomplete, inaccurate, and sometimes consists of deliberate untruths.
You learn about taqiyyah and kitman, the two forms of sacred lying. Muslims are permitted to lie about their faith or mislead non-believers when it serves the cause of Islam. If an action is mandatory under Islamic law, and the only way to achieve it is through lying, then lying is mandatory.
You learn about the Doctrine of Abrogation, in which verses of the Koran that were written later supersede those of earlier date. Strangely enough, the verses that order the believer to kill and enslave infidels came later than the more pacifistic verses in the earlier portions of the Koran.
Abrogation and kitman act in synergy whenever a prominent “moderate” imam goes on camera and quotes those peaceful-sounding verses. He is deliberately misleading non-believers, because telling the whole truth and nothing but the truth would not advance the cause of Islam. Advancing the cause of Islam is mandatory, so his deception is mandatory.
Not only is his dishonesty not sinful in the eyes of Allah, it is laudable.
Such are the fundamental differences between Islam and Christianity or Judaism. Understanding Islam requires that we grasp the nature of a totally alien system. The ideology of that system requires that those outside the system be kept from a full understanding of the system.
This makes our job a daunting task. 9-11 consciousness is the only thing that allows us to persevere.
The attrition of 9-11 consciousness over the past decade has enabled many Americans to return to the state of mind that existed before that brilliant blue sky over Manhattan became soiled with the smoke of thousands of incinerated victims.
No one wants to exist in a permanent state of emergency. To live with chronic crisis can cause mental and physical damage to those who are forced to endure it. It’s no wonder that so many people choose to believe what their leaders tell them, and stop paying attention the reality of what is happening to their country.
For some of us, however, 9-11 consciousness is irreversible. We have begun the long journey of resistance, and will continue until we reach our destination.