Regardless the aspects of strength and weakness, did ISIS become a trend that encourages killing, in the name of religion, welfare, justice and humanity to love and sex, which encouraged many European women to join the organization, seeking a secure, strong Muslim marriage, or to fight defending the trend. This fact raises many questions amidst the terrorist attacks that implement the organization worldwide: “can openness on the political moderate Islam obstruct the spread on extremism and the fake Islamic groups? Would it establish “moderation” instead of violence? Will terrorist groups combat these attempts?
Experts and scientists specialized in religious affairs said that violence is “complex”, and the success of political moderate Islam in beating down violence and terrorism depends on separating the religious work from the political one, but they also stressed on the battle of awareness. Observers say that with the spread of extremist intellect that speaks in the name if Islam, concerned moderate authorities should try their best to provide the sound image of Islam.
Dr. Abdul Halim Mansour, professor and head of Comparative Jurisprudence Department at al-Azhar, supports openness toward the other and believes in the concept of citizenship. Mansour also supports humanitarian peaceful cohabitation based on all religions’ messages.
Mansour said that the spread of the political moderate Islam can be realized through sound understanding of this religion’s doctrines. It can also be realized when the moderate religious speech expresses authenticity of Islam and marginalize violence, terrorism, and terrorist groups that seek destruction.
In regard of extremist groups combating the intellect of moderation, the professor said that terrorism has no religion or nation, and no doubts that these groups will try to confront any party seeking to eradicate their extremist intellect.
On another hand, he adds that the real battle which the whole world should take part of against extremist groups is the “awareness battle”.
A recent survey applied on 3500 Arabian youth, showed that 80% reject the support of extremist groups mainly ISIS compared with 60% in the survey applied in 2014. The survey also showed that the involvement in terrorist groups is due to economic reasons, and only few join due to religious ones.
Mansour concludes that Muslims and non-Muslims shall support all institutions that adopt the moderate approach and believe in the citizenship and peaceful cohabitation with others based on equality, and far from discrimination based on gender, religion, or ethnicity. Dr. Mahmoud al-Sawi, professor of Islamic culture in al Azhar, said that the battle is pure cultural, and that the intellectual and cultural misunderstandings, which led the Islamic and Arabic nation to the extremism path must be settled.
Defining the term “Political Islam”, Sheikh Rasmi al-Aajlan from al-Azhar said that it is the group of political organisms that adopt the Islamic religion as a reference to lead the community. Some of these groups like the Muslims Brotherhood sometimes use violence when they need it.
Ajlan added that extremism occurs when people seek to impose their ideologies on others, compared with people who believe in moderation, who consider their ideology as an individual relation with God, and allow others to choose their best.
Concerning the adoption of the political Islam to substitute extremism, he noted that rashness in accepting any alternative before determining its efficiency is a mistake, saying that this alternative can be worse, and may lead to crises like those happening in Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, and Libya. Ajlan added that the quality measure that should be adopted to choose the alternative is its capability in responding to the primary needs of all society members like education, residence, job opportunities, free medical care, in addition to security, freedom, and social equality.
Sheikh Ajlan concludes that we should first review the intellectual, social, economic, and political project of the alternative and to verify the credibility of people who belong to it, by observing their practices, to avoid being tricked by fake slogans. If we adopt this measure, extremism, which clearly shows its neglect for the main needs of people, will fall.