10 years, 5 months ago
The Department of Defense has recently released a letter from a previously unknown (to the U.S.) but highly placed al Qaeda leader, “Atiyah.” There is some brief analysis by the U.S. Military Academy at the front end of the released document. The analysis by West Point focuses mainly on the dissatisfaction of the al Qaeda leadership with Zarqawi’s harsh tactics. So I want to add a few comments to the analysis that do not overlap with the main thrust of their analysis.
Of importance to the proper understanding of facist Islam today is not so much that the al Qaeda leadership counseled against Zarqawi’s use of harsh tactics. It is the question ‘why?’ We get a glimpse into their thinking when Atiyah encourages patience, stating:
The path is long and difficult, and the enemy isn’t easy, for he is great and numerous and he can take quite a bit of punishment as well. However, true victory is the triumph of principles and values, the triumph of the call to Islam. True conquest is the conquest of the hearts of people, and the regard for seeing the Treaty of Hudaybiyah as a victory.
The invocation of the Treaty of Hudaybiyah is particularly interesting. While Muhammed was still alive, access to Mecca was under the dispute by two different tribes, or clans. A detailed analysis of this treaty is beyond the scope of this post, but it may be briefly pointed out that Muhammed and his followers made a treaty with the Quraish tribe to have alternate access to Mecca (i.e., They retreated the first year his amassed followers made their pilgrimage to Mecca, and made their sacrafices outside the city, but the next year they were supposed to have unrestricted access to Mecca). In fact, not only did Muhammed and his followers have unrestricted access to Mecca, but within two years they were numerous enough that they demanded and obtained the surrender of the tribe in Mecca. The region soon saw a rapid spread of Islam.
The Atiyah letter is more than a little reminiscent of the Treaty of Hudaybiyah and the ensuing actions by Muhammed and his tribe.
“… be humble to the believers, and smile in people’s faces, even if you are cursing them in your heart, even if it has been said that they are “a bad tribal brother,