: The 39 Principles of Holy War
Exclusive By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency
September 2003.......No media vehicle has proven more potent
for the spread of radical teachings of "Islamic Holy War" than the Internet.
Al-Qaeda knows it. In fact, one of the 39 principles of Al-Qaeda's Jihad, which
has recently been exposed in a private study by Israeli researcher Col. Jonathan
D. Halevi, explicitly illustrates a how-to chapter on Performing Electronic Jihad.
These people are not riding donkeys, rather these 21st century Jihadists have
their fingers dancing on computer keyboards across the globe.
the thousands of Islamic and Arabic Websites riding ISDN and ADSL, Halevi found
the proverbial terror manual needle in the Islamic Web village haystack. He descended
upon the Al- farouq Web site which is directly affiliated with Osama Bin-Laden's
Al-Qaeda terror network. The Web site bears the donkey and automatic rifle insignia
of Al-Qaeda on its homepage.
farouq recently published a newly written book on its Web site entitled: "The
39 Principles of Jihad".
to the author, Mohammad Bin Ahmad Al-Salem, the preface was completed on July
19, 2003 in Saudi Arabia's capital, Riyadh. The author's name Mohammad Bin Ahmad
Al-Salem does not appear in other writings, suggesting the possibility that the
author preferred to conceal his identity from the Saudi government. The Saudis
are presently under intense American pressure and have hardened their grip in
recent months on Islamic terror organizations and operatives.
has been a vast infrastructure for Al-Qaeda in Saudi Arabia," said former
UN Ambassador Dore Gold. "Saudi Arabia's financial support for terrorism
is well known and documented."
who recently published Hatred's Kingdom: How Saudi Arabia Supports the New
Global Terrorism, says that Halevi's research illustrates the dangerous idealogical
support for modern terrorism that is "spilling over into neighboring areas
of the Middle-East including Iraq and the Gaza Strip."
is evident from Al-Salem's style that he represents the "Salafi" outlook
originating from Ibn Taymia's and Mohammad Abd Al-Wahhab's school of thought and
other Saudian, Palestinian scholars affiliated ideologically with Al-Qaeda and
the Taliban regime in Afganistan," said Halevi.
is under over-all attack waged by infidel forces," Al-Salem states.
was the underlying motive which prompted Al-Salem to set pen to paper, says Halevy.
The enemy, which is directly implied as the United States and Western world (including
Israel), is said to be dominating Muslim countries one after the other and forcing
Islam into a defensive posture. The Islamic commandment of Jihad (holy war against
the infidels) is injected as the cure to the illness which plaques the Islamic
in the eyes of Allah, is the first and foremost value for all Muslims seeking
victory and is the choice weapon of delivery for the introduction of Islamic rule
worldwide. The study reports that there are several elements which have been created
to facilitate Jihad by every Muslim regardless if they are financially or physically
handicapped in approaching the implementation of carrying out the commandment
Jihad transcends expressions of violence against infidels as it comprises of diverse
acts for which every Muslim is commanded to perform in sustaining the Jihad. All
of these activities are based on the Islamic religious fundamental of reward and
punishment. The Muslim who executes these actions wins a reward equivalent to
that of the Mujahid (The Muslim fighter) who takes part in battle. On the other
hand, neglecting these activities will bring about punishment from God in this
and the next world.
The favored activities which sustain the Jihad have varied aspects for which the
most cherished is the gathering of money and donations to the Jihadi organizations
and their fighters. The study reveals that these fund raising activities are performed
on a private basis or by various Islamic non-profit associations. While asserting,
"money is the lifeline of the Jihad" Al-Salem also unintentionally points
out the "wicked spot" of currency.
aspects of Jihad mentioned in Al-Salem's book are compatible with "Daawa"
activity conducted by radical Islamic organizations which establish allegedly
innocent civilian infrastructure that supports the Jihad. In most cases the Al-
farouq Web site and Al-Salem note that these organizations possess separate and
unique educational systems which supply generations of believers in Jihad and
the organizational framework in which to spread Jihad throughout Islamic society.
"This serves as its ideological and logistic backing," said Halevi.
designates an important role to the academic community which does not confine
itself solely to the planting of ideological foundations for Islamic organizations
which practice terrorism but also includes "courageous" activity in
avoiding any kind of submission to a government's dictations, say Halevi. Therefore,
Al-Salem gives legitimation to the Jihad against infidels as well to the defiance
of local Muslim regimes which do not comply with the religious fundamentals set
by the radicals.
book sheds light on the intimate ties between the political and ideological echelon
of Islamic organizations and of their military wings which clarifies the importance
of civil infrastructure in terrorist activity. "Once again the remarkable
role of the Saudi and Palestinian scholars in supporting terrorism is exposed,"
says Halevi. "They still serve as the ideological source to radical Islam
and the concept of waging constant Islamic holy war against the West and all democratic
are the 39 principles of Jihad as described by Al-Qaeda in Al-salem's book:
Preparing and urging the mind for Jihad - Every Muslim must obey the call
for the Jihad against the infidels out of sheer belief and intention.
2. Sincere desire to attain martyrdom - Al-Salem, basing his arguments
on Sheik Abdallah Azzam (the spiritual leader of Osama Bin Laden, killed in Afghanistan
in 1989), emphasizes the importance of the sincere endeavor in
order to attain
martyrdom from Allah. The believer can perform the commandment concerning the
"preparation to the battle" (I'dad Al-'oda) and gain a reward from Allah
equivalent to the Saheed's reward (72 virgins and secure a close place near the
Divine presence in Heaven) even though he may die from natural causes.
3. Taking part in the Jihad - Every Muslim has to take an active role in
holy war against the infidels, prepared to self sacrifice for the sake of Allah.
Participation in Jihad is the most distinguished action in the eyes of Allah.
4. Financing Jihad - Muslims can take part in the Jihad by making donations
dedicated to the Jihad and the Mujahideen. The donation's value is determined
by its quality and destination and not by the sum total which is donated.
5. Supplying the fighters' needs - A believer who is unable to take part
in the Jihad (for instance women and handicapped) can perform his duty by supplying
the Mujahideens' needs in money and equipment. By doing so the donator is considered
Mujahid and deserves the same reward.
6. Taking care of the Mujahid's
family - A believer who supplies a Mujahid's family needs is considered Mujahid
and deserves half of his reward. If one neglects this act it may bring him misfortune
and death by the hands of God.
7. Assisting the fallens' families
- by supplying the special needs of the orphans and widows.
the families of prisoners and wounded fighters - by supplying their necessities.
9. Fund raising for the Mujahideen - money is the lifeline of the Jihad.
Its importance also stems from gathering donations which would arouse the spirit
of Jihad in the believers' hearts. There are many ways of carrying out this duty:
in mosques, public places, family gatherings, charity events, monthly donation
or by urging the wealthy to open their hands to the Mujahideen.
Granting charity donations to the Mujahideens - who enjoy priority status
11. Financing medical treatment for wounded Mujahideen
12. Praising the Mujahideen and their deeds - It is essential to educate
Islamic Nation on their values and to see them as a role model.
13. Encouraging the Mujahideen to stick to their ways - in order to
strengthen their spirit and moral.
14. Protecting the Mujahideen
-avoid publishing any information that may place them in jeopardy or spoil the
spirit of Jihad. Al-Salem warns his readers from the Arabic daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat
(Saudi orientated, published in London) which conducts the "crusader - Jewish
scheme" against Islam by publishing false information designed to destroy
the steadfastness of the Islamic Nation and the Mujahideens' spirit.
Publicizing the disgrace of hypocrites and defeatists - who strive to weaken
the Islamic Nation.
16. Preaching to Jihad - Enormous reward is
promised to every Muslim who serves as a catalyst for other believers to commit
the duty of the Jihad.
17. Providing strategic advice to the Mujahideen
- This can be translated in many ways including the supply of essential information
on the enemy and his plans in order to be well prepared.
secrecy concerning the Mujahideen
19. Prayers to Allah for the
sake of the Mujahideen and for the defeat of
Holding special prayer to avoid misfortune and to strengthen the Muslim community.
21. Publishing the Mujahideens' activities in order to arouse the notion
of solidarity and strengthen pride and hope among the believers, to praise the
ideal of self sacrifice for the sake of Allah and to break the media siege imposed
by the enemy. There are varied ways recommended for distributing information praising
Jihad including Internet websites and forums, distribution lists, circulating
publications in public places (for instance mosques, schools), sending SMS, etc.
22. Participating in the publishing process of books on the Mujahideen
23. Publishing Islamic laws supporting the Jihad - This mission falls on
the shoulders of the Muslim scholars who have the duty to guide the Islamic Nation
in the light of the Jihad and to call believers to join the Mujahideen and pray
on their behalf. Their followers are demanded to urge the scholars to act. In
this context, Al-Salem glorifies the role of Sheik Hamoud Al-Oqala Al-Shu'aybi
(radical Saudi scholar, deceased 2 years ago, backed the Taliban regime and al-Qaeda)
as an adorable scholar who thrived to strengthen the Jihadi organizations worldwide
by publishing Islamic laws justifying terror suicide attacks and holy war against
24. Keeping steady, consistent contact with scholars
and preachers in order to update them about the current happenings in connection
with the Mujahideen. The believer is asked to assist Islamic scholars who on certain
occasion are under government pressure or influenced by false information. He
has to update them regularly with reliable information, to support them and urge
them to persist with the call to Jihad.
25. Physical practicing
- A Muslim who designates himself to become a Mujaheed has to start gradually
by improving his physical fitness. Al-Salem elaborates in his book a recommended
practicing program which includes enhancing the endurance of both the heart and
lungs, increasing muscle mass and strength.
26. Acquiring shooting
skills - Al-Salem calls on Muslims not to be satisfied solely with the tuition
of Jihad but to prepare in performing in this duty by acquiring shooting skills.
27. Practicing swimming and riding horses - riding horses, explains Al-Salem
is still relevant in the battlefields of Afghanistan, Chechnya and Iraq.
28. Learning first aid skills - to help wounded Mujahudeen (splicing broken
bones, providing infusions, etc.).
29. Learning the doctrine of Jihad
- Al-Salem recommends dozens of books, articles and Islamic laws published in
recent years by Muslim radical leaders and scholars most of them Saudis by origin
(Osama Bin Laden, Hamoud Al-Oqala Al-Shuaibi, Abd Aziz Jarbou', Yusouf Al-'ayyiri,
Naser Al-Fahed, Ali Al-Khudier, Suliman Al-Olwan and more). One of them is the
Al-Khudier's Islamic law which justifies the use of weapons of mass destruction
against the U.S.
30. Supplying refuge and shelter to the Mujahideen
31. Expressing hostility and hatred toward infidels - A call for reconciliation
or co-existence with the infidels might weaken the Mujahudeen. One may call for
a Hudna, but to place it in practice is forbidden.
32. Constant action
to achieve the release of all prisoners - held in enemy jails and to use all
means for their escape or release.
33. Distributing current information
on the prisoners in order to keep their high moral.
electronic Jihad - Al-Salem attributes paramount importance to the Internet
as a component for Jihad. He calls believers to join the Jihad by participating
in Internet forums to defend the Islam and Mujahideen, to preach Jihad and to
encourage Muslims to learn more about this sacred duty. The Internet provides
an opportunity to reach vast, target audiences and respond swiftly to false allegations.
Computer experts are asked to use their skills and experience in destroying American,
Jewish and secular websites as well as morally corrupt web sites.
Alienation of infidels - Believers in other religions have to be isolated
from Muslim communities so they will be prevented from committing hostile actions.
36. Educating the younger generation to adore Jihad and the Mujahideen - The children,
asserts Al-Salem are the "fuel" of the next stage of confrontation with
the infidels. Parents have the duty to educate them to adore Jihad and the Mujahideen
and to prepare themselves mentally for self-sacrifice for the sake of Allah. Al-Salem
recommends believers to tell their young stories about the life of Prophet Mohammad,
his associates, the great Muslim conquerors and the Mujahideen in our time. In
addition it is recommended to display to the children Jihadi films and taped preaches
which praise martyrdom.
37. Abandoning the luxuries of materialism
- which might weaken the spirit of Jihad.
38. Boycotting enemy's commodities
- as part of the economic Jihad.
39. Avoiding the employment of foreign
workers - from enemy countries.