November 08, 2009
Major Hasan: "Jihad means holy war"
Asra Nomani's article on the Ft Hood shooter has new information about Major Hasan's views derived from conversations he had with another member of the Muslim Community Center in Silver Springs, Golam Akhter (HT: HotAir). We reported on the Salafi extremism of this mosque back on Thursday.
Akter's final analysis? "He was a typical fundamentalist Muslim."
Not long ago, inside the quiet library of the Muslim Community Center here in Silver Spring, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, D.C., Golam Akhter, a local Bangladeshi-American civil engineer, 67, got into a fierce debate with a young Muslim doctor over how to interpret the concept of “jihad” within Islam. Akhter argued, “Jihad means an inner struggle, fighting against corruption and injustice.”
The young doctor responded. “That’s not a correct interpretation. Jihad means holy war. When your religion isn’t safe, you have to fight for it. If someone attacks you, you must fight them. That is jihad. You can kill someone who is harming you.”
The conversation would be just another theological debate, interesting but irrelevant, except that the doctor was Maj. Nidal Hasan, 39, the gunman in the tragic Fort Hood rampage. After being posted to Walter Reed Hospital as a psychiatrist, Hasan called the Muslim Community Center his local mosque.
And then there's this:
In the midst of the many conversations he had with Hasan, Akhter stood outside the Muslim Community Center, distributing photocopies of a Washington Post article about an Afghan mother who tried to stop her radicalized son from carrying out a suicide bombing; the bomb exploded in the family’s home, killing the mother, her son and her three other children. In a later email to mosque members, he urged them, “Let us wake up,” and take note of who are “potential terrorists, who are fanatics, who are fundamentalists” in the community.
No one in the mosque responded with concerns about Hasan’s extremist views. Rather, when he had distributed the newspaper article, Akther said, a member of the mosque yelled at him, charging him with causing “fitna” in the ummah.
Two years later, this past Friday after the Fort Hood massacre, TV crews and journalists thronged the yard of the mosque with questions about the religious identity of one man: Maj. Hasan.
Nomani's article is a must read.