The tension caused by religious/extremist linked activities globally is at an all time high. I expected leaders to be careful not to encourage a further upsurge of these activities. They should not sleek away in fear or stay silent. Rather strategic plans on how best to deal with the problem from the grass roots should be addressed. Verbal abuse or the use of colourful language should be strictly avoided when confronting the issue. Diplomacy is vital.
The words of the London Mayor describing the jihadist is nothing short of lighting a flame beside a petrol tank. I am not a fan of extrimist activities but his remarks in my opinion went off the mark. It became a personality attack.
The London Mayor says the terrorists are “tortured” men who are “rejected by women” and are “in desperate need of self-esteem”. Citing an MI5 report into Muslim extremism, London’s Mayor told The Sun newspaper: “If you look at all the psychological profiling about bombers, they typically will look at porn. They are literally w***ers. Severe onanists.”They are tortured. They will be very badly adjusted in their relations with women, and that is a symptom of their feeling of being failures and that the world is against them.” They are rejected by women, they are not making it with girls, and so they turn to other forms of spiritual comfort – which of course is no comfort.” He later told Sky News: “Certainly, the young men who get involved in this kind of thing do have a lot of problems in their lives.” Source: http://news.sky.com
Some of his remarks can be considered as inflammatory. Understanding an individuals profile is vital to dealing with them appropriately, brandishing said profile with colourful language definitely does not improve relationships or successful outcomes. According to the Islamic supreme council of America,”The Arabic word “jihad” is often translated as “holy war,” but in a purely linguistic sense, the word ” jihad” means struggling or striving.The arabic word for war is: “al-harb”. In a religious sense, as described by the Quran and teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (s), “jihad” has many meanings. It can refer to internal as well as external efforts to be a good Muslims or believer, as well as working to inform people about the faith of Islam”.
They go on to explain what Jihad is not: It is not a violent concept neither should it be a declaration of war against other religions. According to them the Koran specifically refers to Jews and Christians as “people of the book” who should be protected and respected. All three faiths worship the same God. Allah is just the Arabic word for God, and is used by Christian Arabs as well as Muslims.Military action in the name of Islam has not been common in the history of Islam. Scholars says most calls for violent jihad are not sanctioned by Islam. It is believed that the Prophet engaged in military action on certain occasions, but they were battles for survival, rather than conquest, and occurred when fighting between tribes was common.
Going by the above explanations the mayors words has lumped both the extremist and the regular Muslim as one. This is wrong, especially when the most power tool for effectively addressing the extremist actions lies in the hands of genuine Muslims. They understand the right way of practicing Islam and understanding is very important to laying an appropriate strategy to curb the radicalization of their members. Its also easier for an insider to trace the history and off shoots of the problems. Its one thing for a stranger to say stop and another for a family member to say so. When it comes from within your group it carries more weight because you know its non judgemental rather a balanced call to stop erring. The place of trust can’t be overemphasised.
Our leaders must practice diplomacy, or else stand the chance of losing their authority to settle disputes.