S. K. Malik

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S. K. Malik (born 1930) was a soldier and officer of the Pakistan Army (Brigadier General, later Major General). He was a protege of General Muhammed Zia-ul-Haq (1924-1988), the chief of staff of the Pakistan Army, who ruled Pakistan between 1977 and 1988.

Quotes[edit]

The Quranic Concept of War[edit]

The Quranic Concept of War (1st ed.). Lahore: Wajidalis. 1979. ISBN 8170020204. 
  • When the Holy Quran commanded the Muslims to go to war with their adversaries, it dwelt at length at the causes that necessitated that decision. To understand these causes, we shall first of all, make an attempt to follow the basic Quranic law about the sacredness and preservation of human life. It would be recalled that when Islam appeared on the scene of the world, human life held little value. In Arabia, Rome, Persia, and in other parts of the world, human beings were killed, burnt or buried alive, and slaughtered like animals or tortured to death for the sake of fun, sport, pleasure, custom, tradition and superstition. Such merciless killings were restored to without any fear of accountability before law. Islam rose to denounce these inhuman practices, declared human life sacred, and issued strict commands for its respect, preservation an protection. It prohibited the taking of human life except for reasons of law and justice; and made all unlawful deaths accountable and punishable both in this world and in the Hereinafter. In the perspective of the Holy Quran, such an accountability ensured the preservation of human life and was in the larger interest of the human race itself.
    • pp. 18-19
  • As in the case of individuals, so inter-state relationship, war could only be waged for the sake of justice, truth, law and preservation of human society. The central theme behind the causes of wars, as spelt out by the holy Quran, was the cause of Allah. This cause manifested itself in different shapes and forms at different stages in the history of Islam. In the pursuit of this cause, the Muslims were first granted the permission to fight but were later commanded to fight in the Way of God as a matter of religious obligation and duty. The first Quranic revelation of the subject that granted the Muslims the permission to fight, read, "To those against war is made, permission is given (to fight) because they are wronged;—and verily, Allah is most Powerful for their aid. (They are) those who have been expelled from their homes in defiance of right,—(for no cause) except that they say, 'Our lord is Allah." Deliberating on the rationale behind the grant of the permission, the Book ruled, "Did not Allah check one set of people by means of another, there would surely have been pulled down monasteries, churches, synagogues and mosques in which the name of Allah is commemorated in abundant measure." At another occasion, the Holy Quran said, "Every time the kindle the fire of war, Allah doth extinguish it; but they (ever) strive to do mischief on earth. And Allah loveth not those who do mischief." What expectations did Almighty Allah place on that 'set of people' with whose help He planned to check the other? "(They are) those," the Book claims, "who, if we establish them in the land, establish regular prayer and give regular charity, enjoin the right and forbid wrong." A few months after the grant of the permission to fight in self-defence, came the divine command making war a religious compulsion and obligation. "Fight in the cause of Allah," it said, "those who fight you but do not transgress limits; for Allah loveth not transgressors." This revelation introduced new elements to the permissible causes of war. Fighting was to be in the cause of Allah. It was to be undertaken only against those who fought the Muslims first. During the conduct of war, the limits specified by God were not to be transgressed; those who did so were to incur divine displeasure.
    • pp. 20-21
  • The successful migration of the Muslims from Mecca to Medina had given a rude shock to the hopes of the Koraish to be able to destroy Islam. Consequently, they switched their tyranny and oppression over to the recently converted Muslims living in scattered dwellings in the desert. "And why should ye not fight in the cause of Allah," the Holy Quran asked the Muslims, "and of those who, being week, are ill-treated (and oppressed)?--men, women, and children, whose cry is, 'Our Lord! Rescue us from this town, whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from Thee one who will protect; and raise for us from Thee one who will help." After Hodaibiyya, a ten-year treaty of peace had been signed between the Muslims and the Meccans. But, the Koraish violated their obligations under the treaty and hatched underhand plots to discredit the Holy Prophet and to have him expelled from Medina as well. "Wll ye not fight people," the Book inquired of the Muslims, "who violated their oaths, plotted to expel the Apostle, and took the aggressive by being the first (to assault) you? Do ye fear them? Nay, it is Allah Whom ye should more justly fear, if ye believe." It follows, therefore, that the principal cause of war made permissible by the Book was the Cause of God. From the human point of view, it was a call for the deliverance of the weak, the ill-treated, and the persecuted from the forces of tyranny and oppression. It was the cause of the humanity in general and not that of the Muslim community in particular. Saving the places of worship, irrespective of religious discrimination, and protecting mankind from mischief and bloodshed were causes with a truly universal and humanitarian significance and application. There was no semblance of any kind adventurism, militarism, fanaticism, national interests, personal motives and economic compulsion in the whole affair. The Book also furnished mankind with an objective criterion of universal validity and application to assess the justness of their causes of war. War was made permissible only to fight the forces of tyranny and oppression.
    • pp. 23-23
  • When Clausewitz, the founder-father of modern military thought, defined war as a 'continuation of policy by other means', he did, in fact, throw a challenge to the students of Political Science and International Relations to develop a theory around 'policy'. Clasewitz thus put the cart before the horse and forced the policy-makers to conduct deeper research into the science of politics. It was not 'policy' that took the initiative to define the meaning, sphere, limites and extents of 'war'. On the contrary, 'war' forced 'policy' to define and determine its own parameters. It took the human mind hundreds of years to establish, if at all, the relationship between national aims and objectives, national interests, national policy and war; and even longer to realise that war was subservient to policy. Nonetheless, the political scientists did rise to the occasion to theorise; they opined that, in brief, policy was the pursuit of national interests and that war became an instrument of policy when vital but incompatible national interests were at stake. What they failed to establish, however, was concerning the rationale behind the determination of national interests.
    • p. 25
  • "National interest," concedes Bernard Brodie, "are not fixed by nature nor are identifiable by any generally acceptable standard of objective criteria. They are, instead, the product of fallible human judgement on matters on which agreement within the nation is unusually less than universal." Nor is the formulation of national interests, as is well-know to us today, necessarily or essentially governed by the consideration of peace. That being so, the logical outcome of the concept of national interests in the international system of today is tension and war, and not peace, harmony, justice and understanding. Indeed, national interest is: in train a vicious and never.ending cycle, the common denominator of which is 'war', not 'peace'.
    • pp. 25-26
  • The Yalta Conference that concluded the Second World War and formulated the Allied post-war strategy also came under heavy criticism for its inadequacy and short-sightedness. Like several other students of politics and war, General Fueller was also its vehement critic. His contention was that the Allied leaders had sacrificed the vital necessity of obtaining a durable peace at the altar of securing the unconditional surrender of Germany. The great military thinker had, however, no alternative of his own to suggest to them. As the Second World War came to a close, the Allied war effort also began to give way to their respective national interests. Each side, however, had its own interpretation of what constituted its interpretation of what constituted its enlightened national interests. Russia saw her interests in conquering the heart of Europe, the Allies, in the destruction of the German military might. The consideration of peace did weigh heavy on the minds of the nations of Europe whenever they developed the means to destroy one-another. Such an atmosphere prevailed after the conclusion of each devastating war and after the atomic explosion of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But, it did not last long. The Europeans soon came to realise that there did exist means of protection against weapons that were once looked upon as total and absolute. Once that happened, their baser and destructive elements again overtook the saner ones. Similar motives underline the present age of 'detente' and 'deterrence'. The considerations of peace come to human mind only when the choice is between 'suicide' and 'co-existence'. They are the by-products of exigency, not of a recognised or consistent policy or philosophy. They failed to stand the test of time in the past, nor are they resulting in durable global peace at present. Indeed, they have no worth while role to play in the future.
    • p. 27
  • The Holy Quran spelt out the object of the divine war against Paganism soon after it commanded the muslims to take recourse to fighting. "And fight them on," ruled the Book, "until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah." Similar instructions were repeated after the termination of the battle of Badr, about a year later. "And fight them on," the Holy Quran directed on that occasion, "until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah altogether and everywhere." These injunctions laid down the ultimate an absolute divine purpose behind this war which was 'to obtain conditions of peace, justice and faith.' The creation of such conditions demanded the eradication of tyranny and persecution. In turn, the eradication of tumult and oppression had several facets, but in essence, it meant the restoration of Muslims right to worship in the Sacred Mosque. In the initial stages of the attainment of this object the Holy Quran made liberal allowance and concessions to the Pagans to co-operate and contribute towards creating just and peaceful conditions. During this period, a number of checks and controls were imposed on the Believers to force them to seize the first opportunity to terminate the state of war. They were commanded to reciprocate every move made by their adversaries towards ceasing hostilities or entering into peace with them. "But if they cease," the Book directed them, "let there be no hostility except to those who practise oppression." It went further to emphasise, "But if they cease, verily Allah doth see all that they do. If they refuse, be sure that Allah is your protector—the Best to protect and the Best to help." The Holy Quran also decreed, "but if they cease, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." This implied that, in such a situation, there was to be no rancour against the enemy. The Muslims were to follow the 'oft forgiving and most-merciful' nature of their Lord and forgive their foes. Likewise, the Book commanded the Believers, "But if the enemy incline towards peace, do thou (also) incline towards peace, and trust in Allah: for He is the One that hearth and knoweth (all things). Should they intend to deceive thee, verily Allah sufficed thee."
    • pp. 27-29
  • To recapitulate, the fountain-head of the Quranic dimension of war lies in the fact that war is waged for the cause of Allah, and with the object of imposing conditions of justice and peace. To those who fight for this noblest heavenly cause, the Book promises handsome heavenly assistance. The index of fighting for Allah's cause is Man's total submission to His will. Those who fail to submit themselves fully and completely to the Will of God run the risk of incurring heavenly wrath. Nature has no particular or specific liking for any community of people as such; it helps only those who qualify themselves for it, and punishes the rest. Fighting involves risk to life and property that must be accepted willingly and cheerfully. Death in this world is inevitable; life in the Hereafter is certain; and the reward of those who fight for the cause of Allah is sage, splendid and sure. Our reward is in direct proportion to our performance. Those who die fighting for the cause of Allah never actually die. For those who believed and practised them, the Quranic dimensions revolutionized warfare in it real sense. They conferred upon them a personality so strong and overbearing as to prove themselves equal to, indeed dominate, every contingency in war. They dwarfed the psychological and moral dimensions discovered by the human mind after taking so long and labyrinthine a route. They conferred upon the Muslim armies a complete and total protection and immunity against all the psychological and moral attacks that the enemy could brin to bear upon them. They conferred upon the Muslim armies a complete and total protection and immunity against all the psychological and moral attacks that the enemy could bring to bear upon them.
    • p. 44
  • The Quranic philosophy of war is, for the better part, a philosophy of checks and restraints on the use of 'force' in interstate relations. The very Quranic command that directed the Muslims to go to war with the Pagans also bade them not to exceed limits. "Fight in the cause of Allah, those who fight you," it said, "but do not trangress limits; for Allah loveth not trangressors." Divine controls on war were imposed at all stages of the revelation of the Qurainc Message. For the first twelve years, the Muslims were called upon to put up with the atrocities, the Koraish perpetrated on them but hold back their hands from fighting. With the issuance of the divine command for fighting, were also specified the causes for which war could be entered upon. The Holy Quran also spelt out a clear and unmistakable object of war. The underlying theme behind the Quranic causes and object of war was the preservation and promotion of peace and justice.
    • p. 46
  • The modern ethics of war are embodied in the Geneva Convention. First convened in 1865, though the efforts of Jean Henry Dunant, a Swiss citizen from Geneva, the Geneva convention enjoys wide international acceptance. The three basic principles of the Convention are humanity, solidarity and universality. It provides for the rights of the sick, the wounded, the unarmed civilians and other humanitarian issues including the prisoners of war.
    • p. 50
  • In Islam, a war is fought for the cause of Allah. A Muslim's cause of war is just, noble, righteous and humanitarian. A victory of Islam is a victory for the cause of Islam. So noble and humanitarian a cause cannot be allowed to be attained through inhuman undignified ways. Humanitarianism thus lies at the very heart of the Islamic approach to war.
    • p. 50
  • In an article pertaining to the evolution of strategic thought, Harry L. Coles expresses the view that the history of strategy can be divided into two-time groups: the pre-1945 time-group during which strategy suffered from under think; and the post-1945 period in which it has been suffering from the opposite malady—the over-think. The climax of the pre-1945 strategic thought was the discovery that the decision should be sought in the psychological dimensions of war. With the advent of the nuclear bomb in the post-1945 period, the theory of strategy has, after passing through several evolutionary stages eventually come to be dominated by 'deterrence'.
    • p. 51
  • With the invention of the atomic weapons, there appeared, between 1945 and 1955, a class of strategists who looked upon the nuclear bomb as the 'absolute' weapon of war. Accordingly, they formulated the theory of the strategy of balance of terror, best described by the similitude of 'two scorpions in a bottle', a metaphor coined by J. Robert Oppenheimer. With further developments in nuclear bombs and greater knowledge of their effects came Dulles' theory of massive nuclear retaliation enunciated in 1954 and Mcnamara's flexible response. This was followed by other schools of thought hovering round graduated deterrence, second strike capability and the oceanic system. In 1959, Albert Wohlstetter denounced the theory of the 'balance of terror'. His thesis was that a deterrent force existed only if it was capable of inflicting reprisals. He laid down a set of six conditions for a second strike capability and came to conclude that the United States possessed none of them at that time. Dr. Henry Kissinger, in his famous book, 'Necessity for Choice' embraced the new gospel of limited wars and introduced the element of 'credibility' to 'deterrence'. "Deterrence," he wrote, "requires a combination of power, the will to use it, and the assessment of these by the potential aggressor." Since 1960, deterrence has dominated the realm of strategy in one from or the other; it has been variously described as active and passive; offensive and defensive; direct and indirect; relative and total or absolute; positive and negative; limited and general; counter-force and counter-city, and so on.
    • pp. 53-54
  • Let us now make an attempt to study the Quranic concept of strategy. The first step to his study is to understand the difference between total strategy, that is Jehad, and military strategy. The term, Jehad, so often confused with military strategy, is in fact, the near-equivalent of total or grand strategy or policy-in-execution. Jehad entails the comprehensive direction and application of 'power' while military strategy deals only with the preparation for and application of 'force'. Jehad is a continuous and never-ending struggle waged on all fronts including political, economic, social, psychological, domestic, moral and spiritual to attain the object of policy. It aims at attaining the overall mission assigned to the Islamic State, and military strategy is one of the means availabel to it to do so. It is waged at individual as well as collective level, and at internal as well as external fronts. Waged in its true spirit, and with multiple means available to it, the Islamic concept of total strategy has the capacity to produce direct results. Alternatively, however, it creates conditions conducive to the military strategy to attain its object speedily and economically. Military strategy thus draws heavily on the total strategy (Jehad) for its successful application. Any weakness or strength in the formulation, direction or application of the total strategy would affect military strategy in the like manner. In the absence of Jehad, the preparation for and application of 'force' to its best advantage would be matter of exception, not rule. Conversely, optimum preparation and application of the military instrument forms an integral part of Jehad.
    • p. 55
  • What then is the Quranic concept of military strategy? instructions pertaining to the divine theory on military strategy are found in the revelations pertaining to the battles of Badr, Ohad, Khandaq, Tabuk and Hodaibiyya. Recalling the situation at Badr, the Holy Quran reminded the Prophet of Islam (peace be upon him), "Remember, ye implored the assistance of your Lord and He answered you, 'I will assist you with a thousand of the angels, ranks on ranks'. Allah made it but a message of hope and assurance to your hears: (in any case) there is no help except from Allah, and Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise." The Book went further to add, "Remember, he covered you with a sort of drowsiness to give you calm as from Himself,...to strengthen your hears, and to plant your feet firmly therewith."
    • p. 55
  • Talking of Bard, the Holy Quran addresses the Prophet of Islam (peace be upon him), "Remember, thy Lord inspired the angels (with the message), 'I am with you: give firmness to the Believers: I will instill terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers." Again in the battle of Ohad, the Book identified the causes of the Muslims defeat and provided them divine guidance about their future course of action. Should the Muslims observe the divine code of conduct prescribed for them, the Book held out a promise, saying, "Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers." On the question of instilling terror into the hearts of the enemies, a reference is also available in Sura 'Ahzab', pertaining to the battle of Khandaq. "And those of the people of the Book who aided them," the Holy Quran referred to the treachery of Banu Quraiza, "Allah did take them down from their strongholds and cast terror into their hearts, (so that) sum ye slew, ans some ye made prisoners. And he made you heirs of their lands, their houses, and their goods, and of a land which ye had not frequented (before). And Allah has power over all things." We see that, on all these occasions, when God wishes to impose His will upon His enemies, He choses to do so by casting terror into their hearts. But, what strategy doesn He prescribe for the Believers to enforce their decision upon their foes? "Let not the Unbelievers think," God commands us directly and pointedly, "that they can get the better (of the Godly): they will never frustate them. Againt them make ready your strenght to the utmost of your power, includin steeds of war, to srtike terror into (the hearts of) the enemies of Allah and your enemies, and others besides, whom ye may not know, but whom Allah doth know."
    • pp. 57–58.
  • The Quranic military strategy thus enjoins us to prepare ourselves for war to the utmost in order to strike terror into the heart of the enemies, know or hidden, while guarding ourselves from being terror-stricken by the enemy. In this strategy, guarding ourselves against terror is the 'Base'; preparation for war to the utmost the 'Cause'; while the striking terror into the hearts of the enemies is the 'Effect'. The whole philosophy revolves round the human heart, his soul, spirit and Faith. In war, our main objective is the opponent's heart or soul, our main weapon of offence against this objective is the strength of our own souls, and to launch such attack, we have to keep terror away from our own hearts. The Quranic strategy comes into play from the preparation stage, and aims at imposing a direct decision upon the enemy. Other things remaining the same, our preparation for war is the true index of our performance during war. We must aim at creating a wholesome respect for our Cause an our will and determination to attain it, in the minds of the enemies, well before facing them on the field of battle. So spirited, zealous, complete and thorough should be our preparation for war that we should enter upon the 'war of muscles' having already won the 'war of will'. Only a strategy that aims at striking terror into the hearts of the enemies from the preparation stage can produce direct results and turn Liddell Hart's dream into a reality.
    • p. 58
  • Preparation must be 'to the utmost', both in quality and in quantity. It must be continuous and never ending process. Preparation should be at the plane of total strategy, that is, Jehad, and not of the military instrument alone. Military preparedness will yield the desired results only if it forms a part of the total preparedness. Quantitative preparation may have its physical limitations but qualitative preparation is limited only by our will and energy to acquire it. The lesser the physical resource, the greater must be the stress and reliance on the spiritual dimensions of war. The operational effectiveness of a fighting force depends upon its total strength: physical as well as spiritual. An army might be inferior in one field but should be superior to the opponent in the aggregate. the side that is inferior in the physical strength can draw on its spiritual strength to acquire a higher degree of aggregate strength. Physical strength must, however, be prepared for and applied 'to the utmost'. Physical preparedness is complimentary to spiritual preparedness and vice versa; none can compensate or intercede for the other. Terror struck into the hearts of the enemies is not only a means, it is the end in itself. Once a condition of terror into the opponent's heart is obtained, hardly anything is left to be achieved. It is the point where the means and the end meet and merge. Terror is not a means of imposing decision upon the enemy; it is the decision we wish to impose upon him. Psychological and physical dislocation is, at best, a means, though, by no mens, conclusive for striking terror into the hearts of the enemies. Its effects are related to the physical and spiritual stamina of the opponent but are seldom of a permanent and lasting nature. An army that practices the Quranic philosophy of war in its totality is immune to psychological pressures. When Lindell Hart talks of imposing a direct decision upon the enemy through psychological dislocation alone, he is taking too much for granted.
    • p. 59
  • Terror cannot be struck into the hearts of an army by merely cutting its lines of communication or depriving it of its routes of withdrawal. It is basically related to the strength or weakness of the human soul. It can be instilled only if the opponent's Faith is destroyed. Psychological dislocation can be produced by a physical act but this does not hold good of the spiritual dislocation. To instil terror into the hearts of the enemy, it is essential, in the ultimate analysis, to dislocate his faith. An invincible Faith is immune to terror. A weak Faith offers inroads to terror. The Faith conferred upon us by the Holy Quran has the inherent strength to ward off terror from us and to enable us to strike terror into the enemy, it must, in order to be effective be capable of striking terror into the hearts of the enemy. A strategy that fails to attain this condition suffers from inherent drawbacks and weaknesses; and should be reviewed and modified. This rule is fully applicable to nuclear as well as conventional wars. It is equally true of the strategy of nuclear deterrence in fashion today. To be credible and effective, the strategy of deterrence must be capable of striking terror into the hearts of the enemy.
    • p. 60
  • In his penetrating war, 'Strategy: The Indirect Approach,' Liddell Hart Made an attempt to epitomize, from the history of war, a few truths of experience which seemed to him so universal and fundamental as to be termed 'axioms.' According to him, the maxims applied to tactics as well as strategy alike. The great military think came to the general conclusion that all the principles of war could be concentrated into one single principle, that is, concentration of strength against weakness. To apply this principle, he put forward eight rules, six positive and two negative. The positive rules were: the maintenance of the aim; the adjustment of the means to the end; the adoption of the line of least expectation and resistance; the undertaking of a line of operation that threatened multiple objectives; and ensuring that plans and dispositions were flexible and adaptable to the circumstances. In the negative rules, he advocated that all the weight should not be thrown in one stroke while the enemy was on guard, and that an attack, once failed, should not be resumed along the same lines or in the same form.
    • 61
  • The Quranic approach to war is not narrow and one-sided; its causes and effects embrace the entire human race. According to the Book, was is waged to end repression and to obtain immediate conditions of justice and peace. The holy Quran provides a practical and workable mythology for the implementation of this aim. The Methodology is liberal and broad-based; it makes maximum allowance to the opponent to cooperate in the restoration of peace. When permitted, war aims at preserving and promoting, and not destroy, the human dignity and values.
    • p. 143
  • The Quranic philosophy of war is immensely rich in its moral and humanitarian contents. The Book prohibits the Muslims from transgressing the divine limits during the conduct of war. It forbids them from practising the stage and inhuman ways and methods of warfare practised during the Days of Ignorance. Though permitted to follow the Law of Equality and Reciprocity in their dealings with their enemies, the Faithfull are always counselled to prefer restraint and tolerance. Within its permissible purpose and limits, the book does not visualise war being waged with 'kid gloves'. It hives us a distinctive concept of total war. It wants both, the nation and the individual, to be at war 'in toto', that is, with all their spiritual, moral and physical resources. The Holy Quran lays the highest emphasis on the preparation for war. It wants us to prepare ourselves for war to the utmost. The test of utmost preparation lies in our capability to instil terror into the hearts of the enemies. The ability to strike terror into the enemy or to withstand the enemy attempts to terrorise us are ultimately linked with the strength of our Faith. Practised in their totality, the Quranic dimensions of war provide complete protection to the Muslim armies against any psychological breakdown. On the contrary, weaknesses in our Faith offer inroads to the enemy to launch successful psychological attacks against us. It is on the strength of our Faith, and the weakness of that of our adversary, that we can initiate plans and actions calculated to strike terror into the hearts of our adversaries.
    • p. 144
  • “Jihad,” the Koranic concept of total strategy…[d]emands the preparation and application of total national power and military instrument is one of its elements. As a component of the total strategy, the military strategy aims at striking terror into the hearts of the enemy from the preparatory stage of war…. Under ideal conditions, Jihad can produce a direct decision and force its will upon the enemy. Where that does not happen, military strategy should take over and aim at producing the decision from the military stage. Should that chance be missed, terror should be struck into the enemy during the actual fighting. The Book [Koran] does not visualize war being waged with “kid gloves.” It gives us a distinctive concept of total war. It wants both, the nation and the individual, to be at war “in toto,” that is, with all their spiritual, moral, and physical resources. The Holy Koran lays the highest emphasis on the preparation for war. It wants us to prepare ourselves for war to the utmost. The test of utmost preparation lies in our capability to instill terror into the hearts of the enemies.
    • Malik, The Quranic Concept of War, pp. 59, 1433, 144. in Bostom, A. G. (2015). Sharia versus freedom: The legacy of Islamic totalitarianism. Ch 7
  • The first step... is to understand the difference between total strategy, that is Jehad, and military strategy. The term, Jehad, so often confused with military strategy, is, in fact, the near-equivalent of total or grand strategy or policy in execution. Jehad entails the comprehensive direction and application of ‘power’ while military strategy deals only with the preparation for and application of force. Jehad is a continuous and never-ending struggle waged on all fronts including political, economic, social, psychological, domestic, moral and spiritual to attain the object of policy. It aims at attaining the overall mission assigned to the Islamic State, and military strategy is one of the means available to it to do so. It is waged at the individual as well as collective level; and at internal as well as external front. Waged in its true spirit, and with multiple means available to it, the Islamic concept of total strategy has the capacity to produce direct results. Alternately, however, it creates conditions conducive to the military strategy to attain its objectives speedily and economically. Military strategy thus draws heavily on the total strategy (Jehad) for its successful application. Any weakness or strength in the formulation, direction or application of the total strategy would affect military strategy in like manner. In the absence of Jehad, the preparation for and application of ‘force’ to its best advantage would be a matter of exception, not rule. Conversely, optimum preparation and application of military instrument forms an integral part of Jehad.
    • Malik, Brigadier S.K., The Quranic Concept of War, Lahore, 1979, New Delhi reprint, 1986. , also quoted in S.R. Goel, The Calcutta Quran Petition Section 1, Chapter 3. (1999)
  • Terror struck into the hearts of the enemies is not only a means, it is the end in itself. Once a condition of terror into the opponent's heart is obtained, hardly anything is left to be achieved. It is the point where the means and the end meet and merge. Terror is not a means of imposing decision upon the enemy. It is the decision we wish to impose upon him... Terror... can be instilled only if the opponent’s Faith is destroyed. Psychological dislocation is temporary; spiritual dislocation is permanent. Psychological dislocation can be produced by a physical act but this does not hold good of the spiritual dislocation. To instill terror into the hearts of the enemy, it is essential, in the ultimate analysis, to dislocate his Faith ...
    • Malik, Brigadier S.K., The Quranic Concept of War, Lahore, 1979, New Delhi reprint, 1986. , also quoted in S.R. Goel, The Calcutta Quran Petition Section 1, Chapter 3. (1999)
  • [W]hen God wishes to impose His will upon the His enemies, He chooses to do so by casting terror into their hearts….“Let not the Unbelievers think,” God commands us directly and pointedly, “that they can get better (of the Godly): they will never frustrate them. Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power, including steeds of war, to strike terror into (the hearts of) the enemies of Allah and your enemies, and others besides, whom ye may not know, but whom Allah doth know.’ (Q8. al-’anfāl, the Spoils of War / Voluntary Gifts, verses 59–60).
    • Malik, Qur’anic Concept of War, 57–58. in Ibn, Warraq (2017). The Islam in Islamic terrorism: The importance of beliefs, ideas, and ideology. ch 16
  • “Terror struck into the hearts of the enemies is not only a means, it is the end itself,” Malik states, “It is the point where the means and the end meet and merge. Terror is not a means of imposing decision on the enemy; it is the decision we wish to impose on him.”
    • Malik, Qur’anic Concept of War, 59 in Ibn, Warraq (2017). The Islam in Islamic terrorism: The importance of beliefs, ideas, and ideology. ch 16
  • Psychological dislocation is temporary; spiritual dislocation is permanent. Psychological dislocation can be produced by a physical act but this does not hold good of spiritual dislocation. To instill terror into the hearts of the enemy, it is essential, in the ultimate analysis, to dislocate his Faith. An invincible Faith is immune to terror. A weak Faith offers inroads to terror. The Faith conferred upon us by the Holy Quran has the inherent strength to ward off terror from us and to enable us to strike terror into the enemy.
    • Malik, Qur’anic Concept of War, 60 in Ibn, Warraq (2017). The Islam in Islamic terrorism: The importance of beliefs, ideas, and ideology. ch 16
  • “A victory in Islam is a victory for the cause of Islam.”
    • Malik, Qur’anic Concept of War, 50 in Ibn, Warraq (2017). The Islam in Islamic terrorism: The importance of beliefs, ideas, and ideology. ch 16

Preface and Foreword[edit]

  • This book brings out with simplicity, clarity and precision the Quranic philosophy on the application of military force within the context of the totality that is Jihād. The professional soldier in a Muslim army, pursuing the goals of a Muslim state, cannot become “professional” if in all his activities he does not take the “colour of Allah.” The nonmilitary citizen of a Muslin state must, likewise, be aware of the kind of soldier that his country must produce and the only pattern of war that his country’s armed forces may wage.
    • General M. Zia-ul-Haq, “Foreword,” in Malik, Qur’anic Concept of War.
    • Also quoted in Ibn, Warraq (2017). The Islam in Islamic terrorism: The importance of beliefs, ideas, and ideology. ch 16
  • When a believer sees that someone is trying to obstruct another believer from travelling on the road that leads to God, spirit of Jihād requires that such a man…be prevented from doing so and the obstacles…be removed, so that mankind may freely be able to negotiate its own path that leads to Heaven. To omit to do this is a culpable omission, if only because we…become passive spectators of the…forces imposing a blockade in the way of those who mean to keep their faith with God. Then ordinary wars which mankind has been fighting for…revenge or securing satisfaction of their desire of getting more land or more booty are not allowed in Islam. This is so because here the rule is, all striving must be for the sake of God….The wars in the theory of Islamic law are in the nature of an undertaking to advance God’s purpose on earth, and invariably they are defensive in character...
    It is a duty of a believer to carry forward the Message of God and to bring it to the notice of his fellow-men in handsome ways. But if someone attempts to obstruct him from doing so he is entitled, as a measure of defense, to “retaliate.” In other words, a Muslim has the right to fight anyone who stops him for spreading Islam and its message, and that is defined as a defensive measure.... In Islam war is waged to establish supremacy of the Lord only when every other argument has failed to convince those who reject His Will and work against the very purpose of the creation of mankind. Indeed, the person who goes to holy war virtually is offering testimony regarding the paramountcy and supreme authority of God’s law by giving up the most precious thing he has, namely, his life….Indeed the very word “Shahīd” which is roughly taken to mean as a martyr, literally signifies the idea that he has borne testimony as a witness that God’s law is supreme and anyone who attempts to obstruct the progress of those who are taking their path to God will be dealt with sternly—for that is the only way in which to restore and rehabilitate the authority of God on Earth...
    Many Western Scholars have pointed their accusing fingers at some of the…verses in the Qur’an….As to them it is sufficient answer to make…that the defiance of God’s authority by one who is His slave exposes that slave to the risk of being held guilty of treason and such a one, in the perspective of Islamic law, is indeed to be treated as a sort of…cancerous growth on that organism of humanity….It thus becomes necessary to remove the cancerous malformation even if it be by surgical means (if it would not respond to other treatment), in order to save the rest of Humanity.
    • Allah Bukhsh K. Brohi, “Preface,” in Malik, Qur’anic Concept of War, iii, v, vii. in Ibn, Warraq (2017). The Islam in Islamic terrorism: The importance of beliefs, ideas, and ideology. ch 16
  • Islam views the world as though it were bipolarized in two opposing camps—Darul-Salam (Islam) facing Darul-Harb—the first one is submissive to the Lord in co-operating with God's purpose to establish peace, order, and such other pre-conditions of human development, but the second one, on the other hand, is engaged in perpetuating defiance of the same Lord. Such a state of affairs which engages any one in rebellion against God's will is termed as “Fitna”—which word literally means test or trial. The term “Fitna” refers us to misconduct on the part of a man who establishes his own norms and expects obedience from others, thereby usurping God's authority—who alone is sovereign. In Sura Infa'al Chapter 8, Verse 39, it is said “And fight on until there remains no more tumult or oppression and they remain submissive only to God.” To the same effect are the words used in Sura Taubah Chapter 9, Verse 29, “Fight those who believe not in the Lord, nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which has been forbidden by the Lord and His Apostle nor acknowledge the religion of truth (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the jizya with willing submission and feel themselves subdued.” Many Western scholars have pointed their accusing fingers at some of the above verses in the Quran to be able to contend that the world of Islam is in a state of perpetual struggle against the non-Muslims. As to them it is a sufficient answer to make, if one were to point out, that the defiance of God's authority by one who is His slave exposes that slave to the risk of being held guilty of treason and such a one, in the perspective of Islamic law, is indeed treated as a sort of cancerous growth on that organism of humanity, which has been created “Kanafsin Wahidatin” that is, like one, single, indivisible self. It thus becomes necessary to remove the cancerous malformation even if it be by surgical means (if it would not respond to other treatment), in order to save the rest of Humanity…. Islam, in my understanding, does not subscribe to the concept of the territorial state and it would be recalled that even [Sir Muhammad] Iqbal in his lectures on “The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam” went so far as to suggest that, Muslim states, to begin with, he treated as territorial states and that too only as an interim measure since these states are later to be incorporated into a commonwealth of Muslim states. Each one of these states must first acquire strength and stability before it is able to prepare the ground on which a unified state of Islam can appear on the historical scene.
    • Allah Bukhsh K. Brohi, “Preface,” , Brigadier S.K. Malik. The Quranic Concept of War, Lahore /New Delhi, 1979/1986., pp. xviii-xx, in Bostom, A. G. (2015). Sharia versus freedom: The legacy of Islamic totalitarianism. Ch 7

Quotes about Malik and about The Quranic Concept of War[edit]

  • The continued relevance of The Qur’anic Concept of War is indicated by the discovery by US military officials of summaries of this book published in various languages on captured and killed jihādist insurgents in Afghanistan. This is hardly a surprising development as Malik finds within the Quran a doctrine of aggressive, escalating and constant jihād against non-Muslims and the religious justification of terrorism as a means to achieving the dominance of Islam around the world—dogmas that square with the Islamist ideology driving terrorism worldwide. The endorsements of Zia al-Haq and Allah Bukhsh K. Brohi, the late advocate-general of Pakistan and former Pakistani ambassador to India, “established Malik’s views on jihād as national policy and gave his interpretation official state sanction.”
  • Contemporary validation of the central principle of jihad terrorism—rooted in the Koran—(for example, verses 8:12, 8:60, and 33:265)—that is, to terrorize the enemies of the Muslims as a prelude to their conquest—has been provided in the mainstream Pakistani text on jihad warfare by Brigadier S. K. Malik, originally published in Lahore in 1979.
    • Bostom, A. G. (2015). Sharia versus freedom: The legacy of Islamic totalitarianism. Ch 7
  • Thus while he began the Islamization of Pakistan in earnest, Zia al-Haq took time to write what, at first sight, might seem an extraordinary endorsement of The Qur’anic Concept of War (1979), by Brigadier S.K. Malik... It is constantly quoted and referred to by modern jihādists. However, given the President’s Islamization programme for Pakistan and the fact that jihād is the quintessential Islamic duty, Zai al-Haq’s stamp of approval of Brigadier Malik’s treatise makes perfect sense... Brigadier Malik makes it clear that jihād is essential for the spread of Islam, and it is a duty incumbent on all Muslims until Islam covers the whole surface of the earth.
    • Ibn, Warraq (2017). The Islam in Islamic terrorism: The importance of beliefs, ideas, and ideology. ch 16

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