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Deobandi Butchery in San Bernardino: 1977 Roots of the Jihad Carnage

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) whistleblower Philip Haney made a startling series of revelations Thursday evening (12/10/15) on Fox News’ The Kelly File. Haney described how he began investigating scores of individuals with links to the traditionalist Islamic Indo-Pakistani Deobandi movement, and its related offshoots, prominently, Tablighi Jamaat. He maintained the groups were exploiting the visa waiver program to transport suspected jihadist operatives in and out of the U.S., thus he started tracking them, and recording these findings within a DHS database. Haney’s efforts (as summarized by Chuck Ross of the Daily Caller) were eventually noticed by the National Targeting Center (NTC), which operates as an umbrella organization in U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Haney was subsequently asked to work for the NTC and rivet his attention on these Deobandi-related organizations. Over the course of his investigation, Haney received an award for identifying more than 300 potential jihad terrorists with links to the Deobandi affiliates.

Tablighi Jamaat certainly merited the attention Haney was giving it, having been connected to a series of jihad terrorist attacks, which included targeting the U.S.: the October, 2002 Portland (Oregon) Seven, and September, 2002 Lackawanna (New York) Six cases; an Aug. 2006 plot to bomb airliners en route from London to the U.S.; attempted bombings in London and Glasgow, Scotland, in July 2007; and involvement in the July 7, 2005, London bombings, which killed 52 and injured more than 700. French investigators have further estimated Tablighi Jamaat ideological indoctrination was associated with 80% of their jihad terror cases.

Haney’s fastidious investigations raised serious concerns about the San Bernardino Deobandi movement-affiliated Darul-Uloom al-Islamia mosque—attended by jihad-waging killer Syed Farook. In addition, Farook’s jihadist accomplice wife, Tashfeen Malik, attended a traditionalist Islamic education center in Pakistan, also connected with the Deobandi movement. Notwithstanding his patriotic, yeoman efforts, DHS shut down Haney’s probe, and revoked both his security clearance and access to the databases he compiled. Retributive investigations against Haney by DHS and the Obama Justice Department, however, revealed no wrongdoing on his part. Tragically, as Haney explained, had his probe not been terminated for alleged “civil rights violations” of jihad-indoctrinated Muslim followers of the Deobandi movement:

Either Syed would have been put on the no-fly list because association with that mosque, and/or the K-1 visa that his wife was given may have been denied because of his association with a known organization.

The Deobandi-linked jihad carnage that transpired in San Bernardino has much deeper roots, not only on the Indian subcontinent, but dating from at least 1977, within North America, as well.

The traditionalist Islamic Darul Uloom Deoband school was founded in conjunction with the mid-19th century Indian Muslim jihad against British colonial rule, becoming a hub of the broader global Caliphate revival movement centered in India after the humiliating Ottoman defeat during the 1877-78 Russo-Turkish War. Mahmood Hasan (1851-1920), the first graduate of the Darul Uloom Deoband, was active in early 20th century jihadist activities against British colonial India, and he was also an accomplished Koranic scholar whose seminal 20th century commentary on the Koran (via his pupil S.A. Usmani) remains an influential work for Indo-Pakistani Muslims. Moreover, per a reverent biography of Muhammad Ilyas (1885-1944), founder of the Tablighi Jamaat, who was “infused with the spirit of Jihad,” Ilyas “took the pledge of Jihad at the hands of the Maulana Mahmood Hasan for that very reason.” Muhammad Ilyas in turn, formally mentored Abul Hasan Ali Hasani Nadwi (1914-99)

Nadwi was a founding member of the Muslim World League, a member of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (now Cooperation), a member of the World Supreme Council for Mosques, and a member of the Fiqh Council of Rabita. He participated in a host of other activities under the umbrella of these, and other Islamic supremacist organizations and institutions, including, the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY). In India, during his “formative years,” Nadwi was associated with Maudoodi’s Jamaat Islami, in addition to Tablighi Jamaat founder Muhammad Ilyas. Nadwi later became president of the Academy of Islamic Research and Publications, which published his own 1983 hagiography of Muhammad Ilyas, who had written directly to Nadwi “perhaps the most detailed letters concerning the aims and principles of the [Tablighi Jamaat] Movement.” Most significantly, Nadwi served as rector of Darul Uloom Nadwatul Ulama [“Organization of Scholars”], sister institute of Darul Uloom Deoband, and a major disseminator of traditionalist Islamic, Deobandi teachings.

Gustave von Grunebaum published a brilliant analysis of Nadwi’s defining 1951 work, What Has the World Lost Through the Decline of the Muslims? Nadwi’s book invokes the words of the second “Rightly Guided” Caliph Umar’s [r. 634-644 AD] envoy to Yazdagird [III, d. 651], the last Sasanian king of Iran:

Allah has sent us so we can lead out those he wishes from the service of all the servants to the service of Allah alone, and from secular constraint into freedom and from the oppression of the (earlier) religions to the justice of Islam.

Arguing that the Muslim community (umma) is the only power with the ability to overcome the dominant, corrupting Western (European) spirit, Nadwi, as von Grunebaum observes, advocates “the transfer of leadership to the Muslim world,” because Islam’s message “holds as good now as it did in the seventh century.” Nadwi, in his triumphal exuberance, proclaims:

Behold the world of man looking with rapture at the world of Islam as its savior, and behold the world of Islam fixing its gaze on the Arab world as its secular and spiritual leader. Will the world of Islam realize the hope of the world of men? And will the Arab world realize the hope of the Muslim world?

But Nadwi also maintained that prior to re-assuming global hegemony, Islam must undergo a “spiritual revival” along traditionalist lines, while steeping itself in the sciences to master modern technology, commerce, and the arts of warfare. Von Grunebaum’s analysis concludes with this foreboding insight, all the more relevant today:

In his final chapter Nadwi calls on the Arab world to assume its traditional leadership of Islam. The religious importance of the Arabs is emphatically asserted. …For it is the Arab world to which will fall the generalship in the final ejection of Europe; its [Arab Islam’s] faith, the power of its message, and divine help will assist it.

[O]ne realizes that his prescription for the world is simply an injunction to return to, or, as he would say, to resurrect, a golden age that never existed. Salvation by sameness, the implied belief that what worked once will always work, and the unconcerned readiness to forego the wider horizons that have been opened by man, and for the most part, by Western man, during the last centuries—one cannot help feeling both frightened and depressed by the appeal that Nadwi’s message appears to have for certain Muslim circles. [NOTE: That “appeal” has mushroomed in the intervening half century]. The ultimate impenetrability of one civilization by another is demonstrated, unintentionally it is true, but, for that, all the more convincingly. Even as, in the late Middle Ages, orthodoxy in self-defense was prepared unhesitatingly to narrow down the scope of the Muslim experience by pushing Hellenizing philosophy and the natural sciences to the periphery, in precisely the same way, although perhaps with still greater radicalism, Nadwi is throwing overboard the Western concept of sciencethe objectivization of experience and its interpretation as a rational system—whose philosophical and operational meaningfulness he obviously never realized. Needless to say, Nadwi shies away from any specific suggestion of how a victorious Islam would remove the illnesses that he diagnoses in our world. Rather, he does not shy away from the specific; it simply does not occur to him that the model of the golden age might not provide the required panaceas. Not a word, therefore, on the position envisaged for the minorities…

A decade later (1961), Nadwi wrote an essay for the Islamic Center of Geneva, Switzerland, titled, “Responsibilities of Muslim Young Men Proceeding to the West,” which extolled the Sharia, and promoted its universal application, including, by inference, within non-Muslim societies.

The preserved treasure of the Islamic Sharia is present, without any distortion or amendment, as it was left behind by the bringer of the Sharia, the Prophet himself. The Sharia is the most complete and the most perfect jurisprudential system in the world. It denotes an admirable blending of the ancient with the modern and can serve the needs of all ages and climes. It is also well established for the future. It possesses such wise and sound foundations that the edifice of a healthy society or civilization can always be built on them.

But it is during a series of addresses Nadwi delivered in the summer of 1977 to U.S. (primarily) and Canadian audiences that one sees his unabashed advocacy of Sharia supremacism—overturning “infidel” Western legal systems—by these Muslim diaspora populations. The speeches are open calls for Islamization by both non-violent proselytization, and jihad (spelled, as per the Indian Muslim predilection, “jehad”), even jihad martyrdom. Nadwi appeals to North American Muslims for patience, and unwavering forbearance, but also gives explicit sanction for jihad martyrdom violence—so “Islam be made stronger and brought into power and authority”—entirely consistent with the San Bernardino carnage wrought almost 40 years later by Syed Farook and Tashfeen Mailk.

Nadwi’s own introductory comments (reproduced in the speech collection, “From the Depths of the Heart in America,” 1978) outline the itinerary of this 1977 tour, which included not only mosques, and Islamic centers, but major U.S. universities, and the United Nations:

This is a collection of my speeches in the United States and Canada which I visited in the summer of 1977. I went there at the invitation of Muslim Students Association, mainly to attend its Annual Conference at Bloomington in Indiana. After the Conference, a tour was arranged by the Association which took me to almost all the important cities and educational, cultural and industrial centres of North America where a considerable number of Muslims drawn from India, Pakistan and the Arab countries live for various reasons. The original itinerary included New York City, Jersey City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Salt Lake City, San Francisco, San Jose and Los Angeles in the States, and Montreal and Toronto in Canada, to which Washington was added later. In all, I addressed twenty gatherings, half of them in Arabic and half in Urdu. I had an opportunity of speak at five leading American Universities—the Columbia University at New York, the Harvard University at Cambridge, the Detroit University [sic; University of Michigan?] at Ann Arbor, the South Californian University at Los Angeles [sic; University of Southern California, or University of California at Los Angeles?] and the Utah University at Salt Lake City, and was, also, asked to give the Friday sermon in the Prayer Hall at United Nations Headquarters and in the Jami’ Masjids of Toronto and Detroit. Muslims who are studying in America or have taken up residence there took a keen interest in the meetings and came from far and near to attend them.

These preliminary comments introducing the collection of speeches also reaffirm Nadwi’s “constant endeavor” throughout his sojourn in North America to:

speak straight from the heart, without mincing the matters, and to offer some sincere suggestion to the Muslim brothers and sisters who have settled in the West, particularly in America. As for the Western Civilisation, it has been viewed from a height which Islam confers upon its followers and from which both the Old [Europe] and the New [America] Worlds seem narrow and empty, and their glitter false and unreal.

Nadwi brazenly elucidated Islam’s religious supersessionism in words delivered at the Muslim Community Center of Chicago, “before a large gathering of educated Muslims,” on June 19, 1977. Outlining what he referred to as the “Deputyship of Ibrahim” [Abraham of the Old Testament], Nadwi urged his Muslim audience to pursue their divine mandate to replace both Judaism and Christianity as the abiding North American faiths, with Islam:

This country [the U.S.] is an idol-hall in which the Azan [Muslim call] of Ibrahim has to be given, and this you, alone, can do. You are the real descendants of Ibrahim, not the Jews who have strayed far away from his path. Not the Christians who are the followers of the Christianity of St. Paul, not of Jesus. They have been divested of true Christianity. It was a colossal conspiracy that bore fruit. No religious conspiracy has,- perhaps, been so successful. It brought about a complete metamorphosis of Christianity. Now, whether Catholics or Protestants, they are the adherents of St. Paul. They have lost the claim to be the successors of Hazrat Ibrahim. You are his successor.

Finally, Nadwi delivered chilling speeches to Muslim audiences in Toronto (June 10, 1977), and again in Chicago (on June 20, 1977), which openly sanctioned waging jihad, and being martyred in North America as a paramount “responsibility for Muslim immigrants,” justified as endeavors at “protection of faith [Islam]” which “must take responsibility over everything.” Punctuated by Koran 2:193, Nadwi issued these clarion calls for jihad:

The Koran has alluded to it in these words: …. “Until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah. (II: 193).” What it denotes is that the state is reached in which Truth is triumphant and no battles are waged for the souls of men and they do not have to undergo the ordeal of deciding which way to turn: only Allah is obeyed and divine honors are paid to Him alone. There prevail justice and faith in Allah. For it is preaching, and the sanctioning of what is right and forbidding of what is wrong, and, if need be, even Jehad. For it is Islam to be made stronger and brought into power and authority so that even for the fainthearted people it might not become so hard to follow the path indicated by Allah that they gave way to despair and decided that it was beyond their endurance. …Allah may take from you the task of spreading the guidance in this land, and, one day, it might adopt Islam. It is not inconceivable…Your stay here is not only justified, but also a Jehad if you have made sure of the preservation of Islam for yourselves and your future generations and are carrying out the duty of the preaching and propagation of Faith and presenting an image of the Islamic way of life which is attractive to others. Look into your intention from time to time, and make it right. The aim and idea behind all your acts should be the propitiation of Allah and the service of Islam and Muslims. You will, then, InshaaAllah, earn the reward equal in value to that on Jehad, and, sometimes, even on martyrdom.

Nadwi’s invocation of a quintessential jihad verse from the Koran, 2:193, and his accurate assessment of “what it denotes” are consistent with the gloss on 2:193 by the early Deobandi ideologue Mahmood Hasan:

War against infidels is permitted for the eradication of wrong and oppression and for the prevention of the infidels from betraying other people from Islam and for the establishment of [an] Islamic system in the land…[Those] who are still active in spreading infidelity and barring others from Islam, they should be slaughtered of course.

Slaughtered of course, indeed. Jihadist butchers Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik certainly understood this Deobandi, and hence authoritative Islamic, Koran-sanctioned method for “eradicating wrong and oppression,” so they “slaughtered” the “oppressive” San Bernardino infidels. When will our criminally negligent political and law enforcement leadership be held accountable for the consequences of allowing this mainstream, genocidal Islamic ideology—jihad—to be preached with impunity throughout the U.S.?