President Bush, in one of his speeches, used the term "Islamic fascists." This is like the terms "Islamic terrorists" or "Islamic militants."
In his article on fascism, Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi argues that "Fascism was a political movement that emerged in 1919 in Mussolini's Italy. It spread in Christian Europe but it was not called "Christian fascism." Hitler was a baptized Christian. He used the New Testament as an inspiration to kill the Jews. His Nazism was a fascist movement, but it was not called "Christian Nazism" or "Christian fascism."
The question is: Why now is it called "Islamic fascism"? Is there fascism in Islam?
Fascism is very different ideology having no link with Islam. Enemies of Islam leave no stone unturned for maligning it. However, it is a great pity that majority of the Muslims are unaware of their basic beliefs, so that they are easily being duped by few hypocrites who are carrying out terrorists acts under the name of "Jihad". Let us understand clearly what is fascism and why Bush and others are linking fascism with Islam.
What is Fascism?
Literal meaning of the word Fascism:
• Fascism has come from Italian word "Fascio" meaning "union" or "league. It also refer to the Roman symbol of "an axe having bundles of sticks tied to it" that depicts the power of Roman authorities over punishing wrongdoers.
The core of fascist ideology :
• The ultimate authority of a dictator over all the issues of state.
• Propagating strong nationalism among the people.
• Rejection of liberal and democratic institutions like Parliament, Human Rights, Elections, etc.
• Italian Fascist 'Benito Mussolini" was the first who coined the term in 1919.
• The Fascist movement started in order to benefit from depressive economic and socio-political environment in European countries after World War I.
• Following the steps of Mussolini, German fascist 'Adolf Hitler' also succeeded in forming a fascist government under the name of "Nazism".
Reasons for hatred against Fascism:
• Millions of people were massacred during Holocaust and World War II.
• World War II started because of German fascist 'Adolf Hitler'.
• Nationalist tendency of fascist is not without hatred and aggressions against other nations; the main causes of the World War II.
Why Bush and others are saying Islam as Fascist?
Bush's and his various others associates' foolishness of relating Fascism with Islam is due to their lack of knowledge regarding true Islamic beliefs and their purpose. They regard "Jihad" as the reason for the fascist ideology of Islam. Although, Jihad has nothing to do with fascism and it has different types; one of them is to defend the Islam against aggressions. Let us understand the wrong perception of Jihad among Muslims as well as non-Muslims- the main reason for linking Islam with fascism.
Misunderstanding of the Muslim majority:
If someone; having a long beard; going to Mosque five times a day; spending whole nights in recitations; thus, making people believe that he is a pious Muslim. One day he says that he is launching Jihad against infidels because they are killing Muslims in Iraq, Palestine, Kashmir, etc. Hopefully, those who do not know what is Jihad would support him because they believe that he is a pious man and whatever he is saying and doing is Islam.
The emotional and psychological support of the general Muslim population for such a person is because of their lack of education and understanding of Islam. For majority of the Muslims, Islam is only for observing five days prayers; taking Holy Qur'an a miracle as well as charm and reciting it without knowing its meaning and essence. They don't bother to understand themselves the basic purpose of any belief in Islam; and don't ponder over whether someone preaching the right thing or not.
That's what Osama bin Laden, the founder of al-Qaeda is doing. He is pursuing Jihad against the US, and any country supporting the US policies, by "Suicide Bombings", "Plane Hijacking", "Kidnapping and Beheading of foreigners", "Causing anti-state activities in Muslim countries" "Bombing foreign embassies".
In the same way, more Osama like goons are breeding in our society. The recently held drama of Lal Masjid in which the two clerics, Maualna Abdul Rashid Ghazi and Maualana Abdul Aziz, resorted to Osama like approach and did the same things like kidnapping; threats of suicide bombing; anti-state propaganda; holding illegal arms; and various other minor crimes.
This is one side of the dilemma; on the other side, it is the majority of the conservative Muslims who blindly believe in the righteousness of whether it is Osama bin Laden or Ghazi brothers or others.
Reason for non-Muslims' accusations
Now think if Osama can easily dupe some Muslims; then, could one expect any true understanding of the Americans or non-Muslims regarding Jihad? Definitely, they would say Islam preaches suicide bombing; hijacking; beheading; bombing; or whatever heinous crimes being done by al-Qaeda.
That is the reason that non-Muslims are linking Islam with Terrorism, Fascism, Nazism, and Communism. Now the question arises what Islam actually says?
Rejoinder for Bush accusations?
Al-Qaeda and its believers are carrying out all their terrorist activities under the sacred Islamic belief, i.e., Jihad. There are various types of Jihad as given below:
1. Jihad-e-Akbar or Internal Jihad
2. Jihad-e-Kabeer or Intellectual Jihad
3. Jihad-e-Asghar or Physical Jihad or Lesser Jihad
1. Jihad-e-Akbar or Internal Jihad:
The first one, Internal Jihad, is to endeavor for self-purification. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) advised Muslims for incessant self-atonement and righteousness, as Satan is always busy in misleading the people even the pious ones are not fully secure from his allurements.
"He it is Who had raised among the Unlettered people a Messenger from among themselves who recite unto them His Signs, and purifies them and teaches them the Book and wisdom, although they had been before, in manifest misguidance" (62:3).
2. Jihad-e-Kabeer or Intellectual Jihad:
With regard to second Jihad, i.e., Intellectual Jihad, the Holy Qur'an says:
“So Obey not the disbelievers, but make a great Jihad (effort) against them (by preaching) with it (Al-Furqan 25:52)
The mission of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) has always been "intellectual jihad" in which he preached and practiced himself the true values of Islam. He never took aggressive actions against any non-Muslims. Even, they threw garbage over him; abused him; beat him; stoned him; tried to assassinate him; but the Holy Prophet (PBUH) always prayed for their guidance. It was because of His non-violent conduct and preaching the true path of Islam that even the die-hard non-believers accepted Islam.
4. Jihad-e-Asghar or Physical Jihad or Lesser Jihad:
Lastly, the third type of Jihad that has wrongly been used by the terrorists like Osama for pursuing their ulterior motives is called "Physical or Lesser Jihad". Jihad-e-Asghar or Physical Jihad is only for the defense of the Muslims when a foreign power invades their territory or persecutes the Muslims. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) once said, when he returned from "Tabuk" expedition:
"We are returning from the Jihad Asghar(the lesser Jihad fighting in self-defense) to Jihad Akbar (the greatest jihad, to struggle against oneself)".
Conditions for Jihad-e-Asghar or Physical Jihad or Lesser Jihad
The believers should be free, independent, have their social system and sufficient force to defend their religion. A Caliph or Amir must lead them. In the absence of conditions stated, Jihad is forbidden even that of "defensive" nature. For example, the Holy Prophet (PBUH) was not allowed to carry out Jihad by Allah when he was in Mecca; even he did not reply harshly the brutal conduct of the Qur'aish. But after migration in Madina, the Qur'aish launched an attack on Muslims. Then Jihad was obligated as a defense for the protection of Islam.
Moreover, the Prophet (PBUH) never allowed targeting the civilians who did not support or participate in aggression towards Muslims. He strictly prohibited for killing women, children, elders, priests, disabled, and even animals.
Therefore, targeting civilians and non-combatants is totally at odds with Islamic principle of self-defense.
After understanding the truth regarding Jihad and seeing the acts committed by the terrorists under the name of Islam, a sane minded person would not accuse Islam for such happenings. Hence, linking fascism and any other ideology with Islam is injustice; it is like blaming the whole Muslim population as criminals; if one of the Muslim carry out a crime.