Thursday, May 2, 2013

Ibn Taymiyyah on the Protection of Civilian Non-Combatants and those who Do Not Fight Islam

By Abu Amina Elias for
Ibn Taymiyyah writes in As-Siyasah Ash-Shariyyah:
Since lawful warfare is essentially jihad and since its aim is that the religion is Allah’s entirely and Allah’s word is uppermost, therefore, according to all Muslims those who stand in the way of this aim must be fought. As for those who cannot offer resistance or cannot fight, such as women, children, monks, old people, the blind, handicapped and their likes, they shall not be killed, unless they actually fight with words (by propaganda) and acts (such as spying or otherwise assisting in the warfare).
Some jurists are of the opinion that all of them may be killed on the mere ground that they are unbelievers, but they make an exception for women and children since they constitute property for Muslims. However, the first opinion is the correct one because we may only fight those who fight us when we want to make Allah’s religion victorious. Allah the Exalted has said in this respect:
وَقَاتِلُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ ٱلَّذِينَ يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ وَلاَ تَعْتَدُوۤاْ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لاَ يُحِبُّ ٱلْمُعْتَدِينَ
Fight in the way of Allah those who fight you but do not transgress. Indeed. Allah does not love transgressors.
[Surah Al-Baqarah 2:190]
In the books of Sunan it is reported that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, saw some people gathered around something, so he sent a man to say, “Go and see for what they have gathered.” He returned and said, “It was a woman who was killed.” So he said:
مَا كَانَتْ هَذِهِ لِتُقَاتِلَ
She was not fighting.
Khalid Ibn Waleed was in the advance guard, so the Prophet sent a man saying:
قُلْ لِخَالِدٍ لاَ يَقْتُلَنَّ امْرَأَةً وَلاَ عَسِيفًا
Tell Khalid not to kill women or workers.
[Sunan Abu Dawud, Book of Jihad, Number 2669, Sahih]
It is also reported in the Sunan that he used to say:
لاَ تَقْتُلَنَّ ذُرِّيَّةً وَلاَ عَسِيفًا
Do not not kill children or laborers.
[Sunan Ibn Majah, Book of Jihad, Number 2842, Sahih]
The reason is that Allah has only permitted to shed blood if that is necessary for the welfare of the creation. He has said:
وَٱلْفِتْنَةُ أَشَدُّ مِنَ ٱلْقَتْلِ
Persecution is worse than killing.
[Surah Al-Baqarah 2:190]
This means that although there is evil and abomination in killing, there is greater evil and abomination in the persecution of the unbelievers.
Now, the unbelief of those who do not hinder the Muslims from establishing Allah’s religion, is only prejudicial to themselves. In the same vein, the jurists have said that the one who propagates innovations that are contrary to the Quran and the Sunnah must be punished much more severely than the person (who holds such beliefs but) remains silent.
[Excerpt from Al-Siyasa Al-Shar’iyya fi Islah al-Ra’I wa Al-Ra’iyya. Translated in Peters, R. (2005). Jihad in classical and modern Islam: A reader. Princeton, NJ: Markus Wiener Publishers. p. 49]
وإذا كان أصل القتال المشروع هو الجهاد ومقصوده هو أن يكون الدين كله لله وأن تَكون كلمة الله هي العليا فمن امتنع من هذا قوتل باتفاق المسلمين وأما من لم يكن من أهل الممانعة والمقاتلة كالنساء والصبيان والراهب والشيخ الكبير والأعمى والزمن ونحوهم فلا يقتل عند جمهور العلماء إلا أن يقاتل بقوله أو فعله وإن كان بعضهم يرى إباحة قتل الجميع لمجرد الكفر إلا النساء والصبيان لكونهم مالاً للمسلمين والأول هو الصواب لأن القتال هو لمن يقاتلنا إذا أردنا إظهار دين الله كما قال الله تعالى
وَقَاتِلُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ ٱلَّذِينَ يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ وَلاَ تَعْتَدُوۤاْ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لاَ يُحِبُّ ٱلْمُعْتَدِينَ
وفي السنن عنه أنه مر على امرأة مقتولة في بعض مغازيه، قد وقف عليها الناس فقال ما كانت هذه لتقاتل وقال لأحدهم إلحق خالدا فقل له لا تقتلوا ذرية ولا عسيفا وفيها أيضا عنه أنه كان يقول لا تقتلوا شيخا فانيا ولاطفلا صغيرا ولا امرأة وذلك أن الله تعالى أباح من قتل النفوس ما يحتاج إليه في صلاح الخلق، كما قال تعالىوذلك أن الله تعالى أباح من قتل النفوس ما يُحتاج إليه في صلاح الخلق كما قال تعالى
وَٱلْفِتْنَةُ أَشَدُّ مِنَ ٱلْقَتْلِ
أي أن القتل وإن كان فيه شر وفساد ففي فتنة الكفار من الشر والفساد ما هو أكبر منه فمن لم يمنع المسلمين من إقامة دين الله لم تكن مضرة كفره إلا على نفسه ولهذا قال الفقهاء إن الداعية إلى البدع الخالفة للكتاب والسنة يعاقب بما لا يعاقب به الساكت
ابن تيمية السياسة الشرعية

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