A white supremacist who idolised Adolf Hilter was jailed for ten years yesterday for producing chemical weapons. A major source of consternation for authorities was the fact that many of the books that Ian Davison read in order to learn how to make ricin, including the Anarchist’s Cookbook and The Poor Man’s James Bond, are easily available at Amazon.
It is excellent to see that authorities not only managed to apprehend this evil man before he was able to kill anyone, but also drew attention to the free availability of the literature that inspired the suspect.
Switch tack to Islamic jihad, however, and it's all very different. After all, those Muslims who commit, or attempt to commit, acts of terroristic violence have a wealth of inspiring literature available to them. Sticking with Amazon, a quick search reveals that the work of the famous and highly revered Muslim scholar Ibn Kathir is available in multiple elegantly decorated volumes. Ibn Kathir wrote the following about jihad:
“This honorable Ayah [verse] was revealed with the order to fight the People of the Book; after the pagans were defeated, the people entered Allah's religion in large numbers, and the Arabian Peninsula was secured under the Muslims' control. Allah commanded His Messenger to fight the People of the Scriptures, Jews and Christians...
“Allah said, 'until they pay the Jizya', if they do not choose to embrace Islam, 'with willing submission', in defeat and subservience, 'and feel themselves subdued', disgraced, humiliated and belittled. Therefore, Muslims are not allowed to honor the people of Dhimmah [protected religious minorities living under Muslim rule] or elevate them above Muslims, for they are miserable, disgraced and humiliated.”
A modern jihadist ideologue, Sayyid Abul A'la Maududi, is also represented. Here is the crux of his basic presentation on jihad:
“The purpose for which the Muslims are required to fight is not as one might think to compel the unbelievers into embracing Islam. Rather their purpose is to put an end to the sovereignty and supremacy of the unbelievers so that the latter are unable to rule over men. The authority to rule should only be vested in those who follow the true faith; unbelievers who do not follow this true faith should live in a state of subordination...Jizya symbolises the submission of the unbelievers to the suzerainty of Islam. To pay the jizya of their own hands 'humbled' refers to payment in a state of submission. 'Humbled' also reinforces the idea that the believers, rather than the unbelievers, should be the rulers in performance of their duty as God’s vicegerents...
“The simple fact is that according to Islam, non-Muslims have been granted the freedom to stay outside the Islamic fold and to cling to their false, man-made ways if they so wish. They have, however, absolutely no right to seize the reigns of power in any part of God’s earth nor to direct the collective affairs of human beings according to their own misconceived doctrines. For if they are given such an opportunity, corruption and mischief will ensue. In such a situation the believers would be under an obligation to do their utmost to dislodge them from political power and to make them live in subservience to the Islamic way of life.
“One of the advantages of jizya is that it reminds the dhimmis [non-Muslim subjects of an Islamic state] every year that because they do not embrace Islam...they have to pay a price – jizya – for clinging to their errors.”
Then there is Sayyid Qutb, the Egyptian Muslim writer who was a key inspiration for Osama bin Laden and many other al-Qaeda leaders, who wrote:
“As the only religion of truth that exists on earth today, Islam takes appropriate action to remove all physical and material obstacles that try to impede its efforts to liberate mankind from submission to anyone other than God...The practical way to ensure the removal of those physical obstacles while not forcing anyone to adopt Islam is to smash the power of those authorities based on false beliefs until they declare their submission and demonstrate this by paying the submission tax. When this happens, the process of liberating mankind is completed by giving every individual the freedom of choice based on conviction. Anyone who is not convinced may continue to follow his faith. However, he has to pay the submission tax to fulfil a number of objectives...by paying this tax, known as jizya, he declares that he will not stand in physical opposition to the efforts advocating the true Divine faith.”
The work of numerous other influential writers, such as al-Shafi and al-Mawardi, as well as several important manuals of Islamic law - all of which teach the same violent and supremacist interpretations of Islam - is also freely available.
And then, of course, there is the Qur'an, which says all of the following:
2:191-193 – “And slay them wherever ye find them, and drive them out of the places whence they drove you out, for persecution is worse than slaughter. And fight not with them at the Inviolable Place of Worship until they first attack you there, but if they attack you (there) then slay them. Such is the reward of disbelievers...And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah.”
4:95 – “Not equal are those believers who sit (at home) and receive no hurt, and those who strive and fight in the cause of Allah with their goods and their persons. Allah hath granted a grade higher to those who strive and fight with their goods and persons than to those who sit (at home). Unto all (in Faith) Hath Allah promised good: But those who strive and fight Hath He distinguished above those who sit (at home) by a special reward.”
8:38-39 – “Tell those who disbelieve that if they cease (from persecution of believers) that which is past will be forgiven them; but if they return (thereto) then the example of the men of old hath already gone (before them, for a warning). And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is all for Allah.”
9:5 – “Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.”
9:29 – “Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book [Jews and Christians], until they pay the Jizya [non-Muslim poll tax] with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.”
9:111 – “Allah hath purchased of the believers their persons and their goods; for theirs (in return) is the garden (of Paradise): they fight in His cause, and slay and are slain: a promise binding on Him in truth...”
So here's the question: If it is worrying that material which may encourage white supremacists to make chemical weapons is so easy to find and purchase on the Internet, shouldn't authorities be equally eager to question why literature that inspires jihadists is also easy to find, and to ask for it to be removed from Amazon's stocklist? And if they are not doing this, then why on earth not?