Terrorists go to heaven after death

What can the Islamist martyrs or terrorists expect?

Al-Qaeda magazine tries to use paradise fantasies and "open source jihad" to advertise suicide bombers for "individual jihad"

Islamist terrorist organizations like Al-Qaeda have to convince people with promises not only to join them, but also to risk their lives in the process. When it comes to suicide attacks, people have to end their lives with an action in the service of the supposedly Islamic cause. They are then called God's warriors or martyrs (Shahid), who are promised entrance to heaven, in order to make earthly death palatable to them and to legitimize their bloody deed.

In the second, recently published issue of the al-Qaeda magazine Inspire (Yemen could become the next Afghanistan), the well-known and influential Islamic clergyman Anwar al-Awlaki, a US citizen with an immigrant background, who returned to Yemen in 2002, tries is to show what "price" awaits the Shahid if he reaches heaven through death in this world. Al-Awlaki presumably lives underground in Yemen and is known for his sermons that are circulating on the Internet. He is said to have been in contact with some of the 9/11 attackers and instigated attacks on others such as the Fort Hood gunman and Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. He is considered so dangerous by the US government that it was allegedly placed on the death list for drone attacks in Yemen last year. As the new issue of Inspire makes clear, he is probably one of the driving forces that want to get people in the USA to carry out attacks against the "infidels".

And one obviously also wants to make a career as a terrorist attractive for individuals by promising them adventures and showing them ways in which they can lead their jihad wherever they are, after all, as Inspire shows again, the religious terrorist movement besides the feeling of leading a decisive and final battle of fate, above all the fascination with weapons and violence, the adventure of war, the risky life and the will to kill. Perhaps it is not insignificantly a matter of experiencing reality through the presence of death, of making real experience, which means introducing irreversibility into the game as a contradiction to what is simulated.

Open source jihad

In order to reach the young men, one speaks of an "open source jihad". The idea is that you no longer have to make a dangerous trip to a terror camp because following the instructions in the manual you can spread fear and terror anywhere. And that is "America's worst nightmare". And jihad means: "Building bombs, security measures, guerrilla tactics, training on weapons". Basically, you don't have to do much more than commit your life. For example, for a suicide attack in the USA, Israel, France, Germany, Canada, Australia, Great Britain, Denmark etc., a pickup truck could be redesigned so that it "becomes a mower that does not mow grass, but mows down the enemies of Allah become". All you have to do is attach steel blades to the cooler of the pickup and then drive at great speed through a place like a pedestrian zone, where the largest possible number of people are. It is recommended to take weapons with you:

You keep fighting until you become a martyr. You start your day in this world and at the end of the day you are with Allah.

It is also recommended not to get in touch with like-minded people and not to visit jihad websites. Everything should come as a surprise, but you should take your time. Planning could take a year, and above all one had to think about the "maximum effect". A firearm attack on a well-frequented restaurant would be conceivable. Random shooting would be the easiest act that requires the least preparation anyway. Attacks like those with the "mower" would be better, of course, because this is a new, albeit simple, method and causes chaos and terror.

It takes innovation to cause the most casualties or economic damage. The "Islamic brothers" who have studied chemistry or microbiology are called upon to develop an effective poison or a weapon of mass destruction. It is "extremely important" to bring the war to the United States and use weapons of mass destruction. It is promised to present these topics in more detail in the next issues.

"Everything is clean in paradise"

In Inspire, Hazim Noor also calls on non-Muslims to convert to Islam as quickly as possible, otherwise they would suffer the consequences on Judgment Day. Those who have only looked for earthly life will suffer eternal torments from a punishing fire, but whoever becomes a devout Muslim may "enjoy life to the maximum" even if he is "the poorest person under heaven". In the hereafter, of course, things will get even better. There is no mention of the well-known virgins, but the pious Muslim awaits "joys that have not yet seen an eye, that no ear has heard and no mind has thought: an eternal life in joy and happiness, free from worries and difficulties":

The former imam, on the other hand, addresses the "martyrs" to make it clear to them that "between them and heavenly happiness there is nothing but death as a Shahid". Al-Awlaki, however, still prefers to delay the step a little and to persevere in earthly life. But in his words that is nothing compared to eternity anyway. If you divide that by the lifetime of the person who has lived the longest, you would get mathematically zero. Earthly life, in which everything is "spoiled", so al-Awlaki is very goal-oriented, is nothing, simply "worthless".

On the other hand, life after a martyr's death is completely different, but somehow the Imam's imagination does not seem to ignite properly when painting eternal life, some formulations are a little reminiscent of the adviser (ascension command) that was allegedly found at Atta:

Everything is clean in paradise. Everything is pure. You don't have to pee and you don't sweat. Our bodies have a different shape. Life is here forever. There is no time pressure. The people of Paradise can do what they want, when they want it and for how long they want it to be. One of them could lie back on his throne and talk to his wife for forty years.

Does one have to conclude from the first few sentences that the heavenly body is no longer its own sexual desire? The last sentence makes it clear that everything is very much geared towards men. One might ask whether that might not have a deterrent effect or whether the talking is just supposed to cover up something else? Apparently the imam means that the married couple will reunite in heaven. One would also like to know whether this also affects the entire family and up to which generation or the entire clan.

In fact, he comes back to it later and mentions that the famous Sunni scholar Ibn al-Qayyim wrote that a man could sleep with his wife for 80 years when he could have sex. But that is only a "weak hadith", says al-Awlaki, maybe he does not want to commit himself to married men, because single people should also become Shahid.

Ibn al-Qayyim, however, was clearer in his descriptions. Just as Augustine promised Christians and their martyrs, Muslims also arrive in heaven in their prime. For Christians at the age of the crucified, in Islam at the age of Adam, i.e. at 33 years of age. Augustine thought nothing of sexuality in heaven, apparently sometimes one saw differently in Islam, even if sexuality should somehow remain clean and tidy. The pious Islams have young boys as servants, their brides and wives are "young and busty" and unimaginably beautiful, and there is no aging:

"The cloth on her head is better than the earth and what is in it and it does not increase with age, but in its beauty. Free from an umbilical cord, childbirth, menstruation. Free from mucus, saliva, urine and other unclean things. Yours Youth never fades, her clothes never wear out, no robes can be made to match her beauty. No one with her can ever get bored, her attention is limited to her husband, she desires nothing but him, just as she does his attention is limited to her and he only desires her and he is with her in the utmost safety and security and no one has ever touched her, be it by the humans or by jinn. "

Al-Awlaki actually wants to make eternity palatable to the future martyr compared to the dirty and deplorable earthly life. He also gives an example of this. For example, you could come out of your house and sit down and look at a flower you like for 10 years. You have no obligations and no work, you can take it easy or spend a whole year with Mohammed. If he doesn't have time right now, maybe a billion years busy, then you can make up for that later. The only problem seems to be, what the Christian promise of redemption of eternal life has for the pious, that eternity is not particularly interesting and attractive when you imagine it more closely. Eternity, as al-Walaki explains, is the exposure of time and thus also the irreversibility that makes life as a martyr exciting:

It's infinity, it never stops, it goes on and on.

That sounds more like a nightmare, like a threat, less like a promise, because it is the opposite of what is earthly interesting, i.e. always new and different. Al-Awlaki grew up in the United States and apparently continues to be impressed by American advertising and technology. The penultimate sentence is called:

The Energizer bunny would die and you're still alive in jannah!

(Florian Rötzer)

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