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Shaykh ʿUbayd al-Jābirī Warns against Anwar al-Awlaki

Al-ʿAllāmah ʿUbayd ibn ʿAbdullāh al-Jābirī

Questions posed concerning the corrupt statements of Anwar al-Awlaki and his incitement to violence and civil unrest.

Shaykh ʿUbayd al-Jābirī Warns Against Anwar al-Awlaki

[Q]: The praise is for Allāh, and may the peace and salutations of Allāh be upon the Messenger of Allāh and upon his Family and his Companions and upon those who follow the guidance. To proceed:

So these are some of the statements of one of the duʿāt (callers), his name is Anwar al-Awlaki.  You will find these statements on his official website. We present them to the noble Shaykh ʿUbayd Ibn ʿAbdillāh al-Jābirī – (may Allāh preserve him) – so that he may comment upon them so we can then spread the answers and the comments among the brothers here in America and in Britain and throughout the West in general.

The first statement: “The rulers in the al-ʿArabīan Peninsula are playing a central role in the fight against Islām especially the al-Saud family. The al-Saud of today is the ʿAbdullāh ibn Ubay of yesterday.”

And he says in the second statement: “May this be the beginning of the greatest Jihad, the Jihad of the al-ʿArabīan Peninsula that would free the heart of the Islamic world from the tyrants who are deceiving the ummah and standing between us and victory.”  Should I – O Shaykh – mention the third statement as well or can I suffice with this?

[A]: Present the third statement. 

[Q]: And the third is that this man says: “The Jihad in Ṣumālīa should carry on until the last AU soldier leaves the country and any forces that side with the AU -including the Sharif government – and Sharif is the president who won the recent election – become legitimate targets.

So what is your comment upon these statements, may Allāh bless you?

[A]: With the name of Allāh. The praise is for Allāh and may peace and salutations be upon his servant and Messenger Muḥammad and upon his Family and all of his Companions.

The summary of what has become apparent to me from these three statements that you have quoted from a specific forum or a specific website for Anwar al-Awlaki, and the name Awlaki (‘Awlaqee) proves that the origin of this man is Yemeni. The essence of what is comprised within these statements – in that which is apparent to me – are two affairs:

The first affair is his ignorance concerning the fiqh of Jihād.  And that he does not know anything about the Jihād, which is from the well-planned obligations that Allāh has established up until Allāh causes the earth and whosoever is upon it to perish.

And I suspect that this man has become polluted by the ideas of Sayyid Qutb al-Misrī and similar to him are Abū Qataad, Abū Muḥammad al-Maqdisī and many others besides them. All of these individuals and the same applies to this man have been influenced by the likes of Sayyid Qutb; and Sayyid Qutb, according to the people of research and experience with examining statements, is the flag bearer of takfīr in this time. His book, MaʿĀlim fī-Tarīq (Milestones) proves this clearly as Sayyid erroneously and falsely declared the entire Ummah to be disbelievers, the rulers and their subjects.

And Jihād according to Ahlis-Sunnah, who has inherited from Muḥammad (ṣallallāhu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) the correct understanding of the religion, the correct understanding of worship and the correct understanding of social dealings, this Jihād is of two categories:

Jihādut-Talab (the offensive Jihād) and Jihādud-Daf’ (the defensive Jihād). Jihādut-Talab is to mobilize the troops and to dispatch the armies and to prepare sufficient equipment in order to fight whosoever is surrounding them from the disbelievers to make the word of Allāh uppermost.  And this is the responsibility and special role of the Muslim ruler.  He is the one who can call to such an act, he is the one who establishes this and he himself is the one who leads it or he appoints someone to lead a military detachment.

So whosoever calls to Jihād in a general manner (without consideration of the legislated prerequisites or guidelines), then he is one of two men, either he is ignorant concerning the fiqh of Jihād or he is a person of desires who is misguided and misguiding others, an innovator.  And regardless of whether he is the former or the latter, it is obligatory upon the Ummah to be cautious of him and to have hatred for him.  And it is obligatory upon the Scholars to refute him and to warn against him.

The second is Jihādud-Daf’, and this is to defend against the assailant and the transgressor. So when an assailant and a transgressor from the disbelievers attacks and transgress against a Muslim country, then it is permissible for the people of that country to defend themselves and resist the attack in order to stop its evil and challenge its deception.  It is a required condition that they must have the ability and the strength to do this. So if they have the ability and the strength, they can mobilize themselves to defend against the subjugation of the transgressing party and defeat its endeavour and reject its tyranny.

If they do not have the ability and the strength for that, then they have two choices: they can either flee with their Religion and their honour to wherever they will be safe, or they can seek a treaty of peace with this tyrannical enemy and they can make contracts and agreements with him to preserve and safeguard the territory of the people of al-Islām.

Therefore, it can be concluded from this that the required condition for Jihādut-Talab (the offensive Jihād) is the ruler since it is from his special functions.  And the required condition for Jihādud-Daf’ (the defensive Jihād) is the strength and ability to carry it out.  And strength and ability are necessary for both of these acts in order to defeat the endeavour of the enemies of Allāh.

The second matter that has become apparent from the first two statements is that this man harbours resentment against the al-ʿArabīan Peninsula and he harbours resentment against the rulers from al-Saud. And due to this, he has described them with kufr (disbelief) or nifāq (hypocrisy) or both of them.  The crime of al-Saud according to him and his likes from the people of desires, splitting and the Khawārij is that their nation is a nation of Tawḥīd and the Sunnah – every person of Sunnah testifies to this.  And their nation has been the flag bearer of Tawḥīd and the Sunnah since its inception at the hand of al-Imām Muḥammad Ibn Saʿūd – may Allāh have mercy upon him; and verily it gives victory to Tawḥīd and the Sunnah.

Shaykh Muḥammad Ibn ʿAbd al-Wahhāb called to Tawḥīd and the Sunnah and the Imām, the Ameer Muḥammad Ibn Sa’ood used to aid him and defend him and he used to defend his call.  And the fruit of that effort was that Allāh made this righteous Imām, al-Mujāhid strong and influential due to his raising the flag of Tawḥīd and the Sunnah- I deem him as such and Allāh is his Reckoner. From the fruits of this daʿwah was the establishment of a mighty nation.  It has taken on the burden of establishing the Religion.  And there is no person of Sunnah, except that his heart is with this nation. Likewise, it has taken on the political and economic burden.  So these are all fruits of aiding Tawḥīd and the Sunnah.

The Khawārij in every time and place have always had enmity towards Ahl al-Sunnah, the rulers and their subjects, because Ahl al-Sunnah are the farthest of the people from takfīr (wrongfully labelling a Muslim a disbeliever), let alone tabdee’ (declaring someone an innovator) and tafseeq (declaring someone a disobedient sinner), except with a proof that obligates takfīr, or tabdee’ or tafseeq of the individual.  And this is known to those who are familiar with the history of Ahl al-Sunnah and their written works.  However, the one who has been overwhelmed by malice and desire has become deep-rooted within him, and then he opposes Ahl al-Sunnah and displays enmity towards them.

So it is not strange that Awlaki should take this path since he has a predecessor and he himself is from the later followers. Consequently, I warn the Muslims firstly against this man and I call upon them to boycott him and sever ties with him and refute him with a knowledge-based refutation that will expose his call and reveal his true condition and show that he is an enemy to the people of Islām and the Sunnah. This individual and his likes are from those who have disfigured the image of Islām and the image of the people of al-Islām to the extent that they have driven those who do not possess intellect from the Jews and the Christians to attack the personality of the Messenger of Allāh and to degrade the Mushaf. This is because due to their lack of intellect and due to their lack of knowledge about Islām and its people they think that he, his predecessors and his contemporaries represent the people of Islām; and that this path of theirs is the true path of the people of Islām and that transgressing against the honour, wealth and the lives of others, and that the nullifying of contracts and ratified treaties between our rulers and the rest of the non-Muslim nations of the world, such as those of Europe and America, then these fīble-minded fools and those who have been deprived of justice and fairness, they think that this is the Islām that we practice.

So how astonishing it is that America let this man remain therein, yet it raises its voice to say that it opposes terrorism, and as for us then we say that they are Khawārij. Indeed this man and his likes are the terrorists that the Europeans, Americans and the Western world, in general, refer to, and I think that even the non-Muslims from the people of the East like Russia have labelled them with this title.  So these individuals in reality are the instruments of terrorism and they are the river from which the Khawārij draw out what they draw out to support their transgression against the people of Islām and the Sunnah, and for their transgression against those with whom we have contracts and treaties with (i.e. the non-Muslim states) since they do not recognize any contract or treaty.  They only declare people disbelievers en masse.

This is what I liked to make note of and I ask Allāh, the Glorified and Most High to keep the people of al-Islām away from every evil and detestable thing and to withhold from them the evil of the Khawārij, whether they are the Khawārij who sit and incite others or whether they are the ones who physically participate themselves; and that He keeps the misery of the Khawārij among their own selves and that He allows the Muslims to see a lesson in them; and that He seizes the Khawārij with a mighty and strong seizure and that He makes them a lesson for those who take heed.

And may the peace and salutations of Allāh be upon our Prophet Muḥammad and his Family and all of his Companions.  This was dictated by one in need of Allāh: ʿʿUbayd Ibn ʿAbdullāh Ibn Sulaymān al-Jābirī, a former professor at the Islamic University of al-Madīnah.  And the date of this discussion was Wednesday night, the 23rd of Dhul-Qa’dah, in the year 1430H, corresponding to the 11th of November in the year 2009. And success is with Allāh.  And may the peace and salutations of Allāh be upon our Prophet Muḥammad and his Family and all of his Companions.

Published: November 23, 2009
Edited: February 3, 2023

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