The Taliban’s defense minister, Maulvi Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid, recently responded to news that the U.S. plans to station 2,000 troops at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul by presenting what he considered to be a tit-for-tat: according to the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), the austere diplomat tweeted: “If America wants 2,000 English [i.e., American] troops at its embassy in Afghanistan, we also want 2,000 Fidayeen Mujahideen [i.e., suicide bombers] from the Fateh Force at the embassy of Afghanistan in America.” Two-thousand suicide bombers in Washington! It’ll almost be like Congress, but bigger.
MEMRI explains that “fidayeen is another term used by jihadi groups for their suicide bombers. ‘Fateh Force,’ or ‘victorious force,’ is a ‘martyrdom force’ within the Badri 313 unit of the Islamic Emirate [of Afghanistan]. Badri 313 is named after the Ghazwa-e-Badr, the first Islamic battle led by Islam’s founder Muhammad in which 313 Muslims defeated thousands of non-Muslim tribesmen.”
The idea of a small band of true believers defeating a massively larger opposing force has been reinforced lately by Biden’s handlers’ disgracefully botched withdrawal from Afghanistan. The Taliban, like jihadis around the world, are emboldened by the Biden administration’s obvious weakness and see their struggle as the latest manifestation of the perennial struggle between Muslim believers and unbelievers who are determined to destroy what they see as the only true religion.
The justification for suicide bombing is likewise found in Islamic doctrine and is based on the Qur’an itself, which says: “Indeed, Allah has bought from the believers their lives and their wealth, because the garden will be theirs, they will fight in the way of Allah and will kill and be killed. It is a promise that is binding on him in the Torah and the Gospel and the Qur’an.” (9:111)
There is actually no trace in the Torah or Gospel of the idea that paradise is guaranteed to someone who kills for God and is killed in the process, but the idea that this promise is binding upon Allah is critically important. There is no other unequivocal promise of paradise in the Qur’an and copious, luridly detailed descriptions of the tortures of the hellfire that is reserved for unbelievers, hypocrites, and those whose bad deeds outweigh their good deeds on Allah’s grand scales (cf. Qur’an 21:47). The suicide bomber, however, doesn’t have to worry about any of his bad deeds at all, for a place in paradise is guaranteed to him if he kills and is killed in the process.
Maulvi Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid, in issuing his threat to station jihad suicide bombers in Washington, knows all this, as according to MEMRI, he is a “graduate of an Islamic seminary in Karachi, Pakistan.”
Related: Will the Taliban Get a Seat at the United Nations?
Will 2,000 suicide bombers really show up in the Afghan embassy in Kabul? That’s unlikely in the extreme, as human nature is everywhere the same, and people generally tend to love life and shun death. The idea of enthusiastically embracing death is not something that usually takes root in an individual’s mind without prolonged, relentless indoctrination, even with the promise of paradise being offered.
Nonetheless, Maulvi Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid’s threat is noteworthy for several reasons. One is that he issued it at all. After our ignominious exit from Afghanistan, the Taliban and many other enemy entities around the world are convinced that America is finished, a paper tiger that has seen better days and can be attacked with impunity. The Taliban don’t fear Joe Biden and don’t think he will pose an obstacle to any of their plans, and they are most likely correct. The Biden administration has emboldened the most sinister forces on the planet, and we have only just begun to see the consequences of that.
Another reason why foreign policy “experts” should ponder Maulvi Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid’s threat carefully (which they certainly will not do) is that it shows that despite endless claims to the contrary, the Taliban, as well as al-Qaeda and others like it, base their actions fully upon Islamic texts and teachings, and do not represent a twisted and hijacked version of Islam at all. This means that the Taliban and other groups could find sympathizers and even fellow workers among some Muslims outside Afghanistan. The Biden administration is devoting immense resources to hunting for “white supremacists,” but it would do well to spend just a bit of time and attention on this actual threat. Since it has no propaganda value for the administration, however, it is unlikely that administration officials will do this.
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