WITH USAMAH BIN LADEN
21st October 2001
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Allouni: So you say that this is treatment with
the same action? They kill our innocent, so we kill
Yes, so we kill their innocents, and that is valid
both religiously and logically. Because some of the
people who talk about this issue, some talk about
it from a religious point of view...
They say that this is wrong and invalid [laa yajuz],
and for proof, they say that the Prophet (sallallahu
`alayhi wasallam) forbade the killing of children
and women, and that is true. It is valid and has been
said by the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam)
(in authentic narration)...
This is what we are asking about exactly! This is
what we are exactly questioning ourselves about!
...But this forbiding of killing children and innocents...
is not general [mutlaqan] and there are other
writings that uphold it [nusus ukhra tuqayiduhu].
(subhannahu wa ta'aala) saying:
"And if you punish (your enemy, O you believers
in the Oneness of Allah), then punish them with the
like of that with which you were afflicted..."
scholars and people of the knowledge [ahlu al-`ilm],
amongst them 'Sahib al-Ikhtiyarat', and Ibn al-Qayyim
(rahimahullah), and Shawkaani, and a lot of
others, and Qurtubi (rahimahullah) in his tafseer,
say that if the disbelievers were to kill our children
and women, then we should not feel ashamed to do the
same to them, mainly to detter them from trying to
kill our children and women again. And that is from
a religious standpoint, and those who speak without
any knowledge in sharee`ah, saying that killing
such a child is not valid and what not, and having
full knowledge that those young men, that Allah has
cleared the way for, didn't intend to kill children,
but instead, they attacked the biggest center of military
power in the world, the Pentagon, which contains more
than 64,000 workers, a military base which has a big
concentration of army and intelligence...
What about the World Trade Center...?
As for the World Trade Center, the ones who were attacked
and who died in it were a financial power. It wasn't
a children's school! And it wasn't a residence. And
the general consensus is that most of the people who
were in there were men that backed the biggest financial
force in the world that spreads worldwide mischief
[ta`ithu fil ardi fasaadaa]. And those individuals
should stand for Allah, and to re-think and re-do
their calculations. We treat others like they treat
us. Those who kill our women and our innocent, we
kill their women and innocent, until they stop from
But now, Shaykh Usamah, the media outlets and the
security services also, say that you lead a network
with a very big reach, which spreads over 40 or
50 countries as some say, and that the al-Qai`dah
Organization has very big capabilities, and that
you use those capabilities a lot to order missions.
That you support many Islamic Organizations or movements,
which are called in some places "terroristic."
The question that we ask you is, what is the magnitude
of the involvement of the al-Qai`dah Organization,
or what is the type of involvement that exists between
the al-Qai`dah Organization and with the personality
of Usamah bin Laden?
Alhamdulillah. I say in response to what you
said, and which I have stated before, that this matter
isn't about any specific person [laa yakhussu al-`abd
al-faqir, lit. doesnt involve the poor servant],
and that it is not about the al-Qai`dah Organization.
We are the children of an Islamic Nation, with Prophet
Muhammad (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam) as its
leader, our Lord is one (subhannahu wa ta`aala),
our Prophet is one (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam),
our Qibla (the direction Muslims face during prayer)
is one, we are one nation [ummah], and our
Book (the Qur'an) is one. And this blessed
Book, with the tradition [Sunnah] of our generous
Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam), has
religiously commanded us [alzamatna] with the
brotherhood of faith [ukhuwat al-imaan], and
all the true believers [mu'mineen] are brothers.
the situation isn't like the West portrays it, that
there is an "organization" with a specific
name (such as "al-Qai`dah") and so on. That
particular name is very old. It was born without any
intention from us. Brother Abu Ubaida (rahimahullah)
al-Banshiri [Panjshiri, which is a a large valley
north of Kabul populated by Tajiks] created a
military base to train the young men to fight against
the vicious, arrogant, brutal, terrorizing Soviet
empire, which was a truth to all observers [al-baghi,
al-ghaashim, al-mulhid, al-irhaabi haqiqatan lil mu'aamilin].
So this place was called "The Base" ["Al-Qai`dah"],
as in a training base, so this name grew and became.
We aren't separated from this nation [ummah].
We are the children of a nation, and we are an unseperable
part of it, and from those public demonstrations which
spread from the far east, from the Philippines, to
Indonesia, to Malaysia, to India, to Pakistan, reaching
Mauritania... and so we discuss the conscience of
this nation [ummah].
young men that have sacrificed their selves - may
Allah accept them - in New York and Washington, those
are the ones that speak the truth about the conscience
of this nation [al-mutahaddithun `an dameer hathihi
al-ummah], and they are its vibrant conscience
that sees that it is imperative to take revenge from
the evildoers and transgressors and criminals and
terrorists [al-thalim, al-baghi, al-mujrim, al-irhaabi]
that terrorize the true believers. So not all terrorism
is restrained or ill-advised [mathmoom]. There
is terrorism that is ill-advised and there is terrorism
that is good feat [mahmood]. So, if we follow
their words, the criminal and the thief feels that
he is terrorized from the police. So, do we tell the
police that they are terrorists and that they terrorized
the thief? No, so the terrorism of the police towards
the criminals is good feat, and the terrorism that
is being exercised by the criminals on the true believers,
that is wrong and ill-advised [mathmoom]. So
America and Israel practice ill-advised terrorism,
and we practice terrorism that is good feat, which
deters those [yarda`] from killing our children
in Palestine and other places...
Alright, Shaykh Usamah, what is your strategy concerning
the Arab states? What is being seen is that some
Arab states have discussed what happened in New
York and Washington and they have backed the American
claims against you, and by standing behind what
happened in New York and Washington. Some Arab states
were most strong in their criticism, like for example
the latest speech of the Saudi Interior Minister,
who warned against you personally, and warned against
the following of your curriculum [nahjikum]
and what you say. So do you have a specific strategy
for Arab nations? And what is your answer about
the latest declaration by the Saudi Interior Minister?
I assure that we are a part of this nation [ummah],
that our goal is the victory of our nation, and the
struggle to lift mischief, inequality, irresponsibility
and the acceptance of staying away from them [dhul,
dhulm, hawaan, wal qunuu` `anha], and the removal
of the man-made laws that America has forced on its
agents in the area so that this nation [ummah]
could be ruled by the Book that has been sent down
by its Creator, Allah (subhannahu wa ta`aala).
I listened to some of the words of the Interior Minister
and he blamed us directly, also saying that "those
people call Muslims disbelievers" [yukaffiruna
al-muslemeen] - we seek Allah's refuge from this
[ma`athallah min thalik]! We think that the
Muslims are Muslims, and we don't call any Muslims
disbelievers unless they specifically commit one of
the well-known big wrongdoings [naaqitha] of
Islam, while having full knowledge that this is one
of the actions of wrongdoings in religion.
I say that, in general, our concern is that this nation
[ummah] unites either under the Words of the Book
of Allah (subhannahu wa ta`aala) or His Prophet (sallallahu
`alayhi wasallam), and the movement of this nation
to the establishment of the righteous Khilafah of
the nation [ummah], which has been prophesized
by our Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam)
in his hadeeth saheeh [narrated by at-Tirmidhi],
that the righteous Khilafah will return with
the permission of Allah (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam),
and the nation [ummah] is asked to unite itself under
this Crusaders' campaign, the strongest, most powerful,
and most ferocious [ashad wa a`naf wa ashras]
Crusaders' campaign to fall on the Islamic nation
[ummah] since the dawn of Islamic history.
There has been past Crusader wars, but there has never
been a campaign like this one before.
Bush has declared with his own tongue (words): "Crusade
attack." [Usamah bin Laden pronounced these
words in English] So the odd in this is that they
have said what we didn't have to say (that this
war is a crusade). Some people also believe, as
it is said about us, like the Minister's words, that
we make takfeer on Muslims - we seek Allah's refuge
from this [ma`athallahu min thaalik]! But,
when Bush speaks, people make apologies for him and
they say that he didn't mean that this war is a Crusade,
even though he said himself that it was a Crusade!!
the image of the world today is split in two parts,
like Bush said, either you are with us, or you are
with terrorism. Either you are with the Crusade, or
you are with Islam. Bush's image today is of him being
in front of the line, carrying his big cross while
yelling. And I swear by Allah Almighty, that whomever
walks behind Bush or his plan, has rejected the teachings
[millah] of Muhammad (sallallahu `alayhi
wasallam), and this ruling is one of the clearest
of rulings in the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of
the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam),
and I advise, like I have advised before and like
a lot of scholars have advised before, that the proof
for this is the Almighty's words while speaking to
the true believers:
you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians
as Auliyaa' (friends, protectors, helpers, etc.),
they are but Auliyaa' to one another. And if any amongst
you takes them as Auliyaa', then surely he is one
of them..." and this is the ruling: "And
if any amongst you takes them as Auliyaa', then surely
he is one of them..." "Verily, Allah guides
not those people who are the Zaalimoon (polytheists,
wrong-doers, and unjust)." [Qur'an (5):51]
scholars of knowledge have said, whomever takes the
disbelievers as friends, protectors, and leaders [awliya']
has become a disbeliever [qad kafara], and
the biggest signs of alliance [wilaayah] is
favoring their victory [al-munaasarah], in speaking,
discussing and writing [fil qawli, wafil sinaani
wa fil bayaan]. So whoever walks behind Bush and
his campaign against the Muslims, then he has disbelieved
[kafara] in Allah (subhannahu wa ta`aala) and
His Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam),
and Allah also says in the verse [aayah] that
follows the previous one:
you see those in whose heart there is a disease (of
hypocrisy), they hurry to their friendship, saying:
'We fear lest some misfortune or disaster may befall
us.' Perhaps Allah may bring a victory or a decision
according to His Will. Then they will become regretful
for what they have been keeping as a secret in themselves.
And those who believe will say: 'Are these the men
(hypocrites) who swore their strongest oaths by Allah
that they were with you (Muslims)?' All that they
did has been in vain (because of their hypocrisy),
and they have become the losers." [Qur'an
Katheer (rahimahullah) has said in his tafseer:
There was a lot of Companions [Sahaabah] who
didn't know that the spearhead of the hypocrites [munafiqoon]
was the disbeliever [kaafir] and the hypocrite
[munafiq], `Abdullah ibn Ubayy ibn Salul. So
when the arguments happened between the Muslims and
the Jews, and when the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi
wasallam) decided the punish the Jews, the spearhead
of hypocrisy [nifaaq] (`Abdullah ibn Ubayy)
moved and stood with the Jews, and he stood in the
way of the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wasallam)
with the Jews, so these verses [aayat] came
down for this reason, and its likes. So the ones who
take the disbelievers as leaders, friends, and protectors
[yatawallawna allathi kafaru], then they have
disbelieved in the Allah (subhannahu wa ta`aala)
and His Prophet, so I add the following verse, to
stress what I previously stated, because the one who
has taken the disbelievers as leaders [tawalla
al-kaafirin] has become an apostate [qad irtad],
so this verse came down:
you who believe! Whoever from among you turns back
from his religion (Islam), Allah will bring a people
whom He will love and they will love Him; humble towards
the believers, stern towards the disbelievers, fighting
in the Way of Allah, and never afraid of the blame
of the blamers. That is the Grace of Allah which He
bestows on whom He wills. And Allah is All-Sufficient
for His creatures' needs, All-Knower." [Qur'an
I tell the Muslims, to be very weary and careful from
befriending Jews and Christians, and whomever helps
them with one word, let him be devout to Allah, and
to renew his faith so he can repent about what he
Even the word, whomever upholds [yu'ayiduhum] them
with one word...
Falls into this apostasy??
Falls into apostasy [yaka`u fil ridda], a terrible
apostasy, and there is no might nor power except with
Allah [walla hawla wala quwata illah billah]...
But Shaykh, a big part of the nation [ummah]
falls into this...
No... No, it is not a big part. This is the rule of
Allah (subhannahu wa ta`aala), and a clear
statement in His generous Book, and it is one of the
clearest of rulings!
And the Arab and Islamic governments...?
Anyone that.... it is no use for you to say Amr or
Zayd [meaning, "so and so"]. If you
know the truth, you will know its followers. You will
not know the truth by looking at men [laa ta`rif
al-haqqa bilrijaal]. This is the Book of Allah
(subhannahu wa ta`aala) which is one of the
constants for us. If the world became full of people
who want to change things in it, that won't affect
us, and it won't change our convictions at all. It
is either truth or it is mischief [baatil].
Either it is Islam or either is it disbelief [kufr].
So these verses...
Just to make things clear, if you please. Isn't it
possible to forgive those states that are considered
to be impotent and weak [maghluub `ala amrihaa,
lit. whos command has been defeated]. Let us take
the state of Qatar, for example. The state of Qatar
is a small state, whose Foreign Minister once said
that he is surrounded by a supreme force that can
wipe out his existence in all ease. Therefore, he
is forced to become an ally of America and others.
Isn't it possible to forgive such states? Like Kuwait,
for example? Or Bahrain?
Concerning these matters, the matters that concern
Islam, the matters concerning the killing of true
believers [mu'mineen] and Muslims... so what
the previously mentioned people do, who use compulsion
[ikrah, meaning, force or being forced] as
an excuse, that is not the same compulsion [ikrah]
that is allowed by Islamic Law [sharee`ah].
That compulsion is not religiously allowed [yu`tabar
Now let's say (for example), if the Emir of Qatar
came and he ordered one of his men to kill your son,
then we came to that soldier asking him why he killed
the son of brother Tayseer, so he says: "Well
brother, I am forced to do it! [yaa akhee, ana
mukrah] And you know brother Tayseer, that you
mean a great deal to me, but I am obligated (forced
to kill your son)! [ana mukrah]".
So the blood of the Muslims will be lost with these
kind of excuses, with this compulsion [ikrah]
that isn't backed by the Islamic Law [sharee`ah].
The soul of that soldier isn't better than the soul
of your son. If he is killed, he will be killed by
violation and oppression [wa huwa mathluman], but
he (the soldier) isn't allowed to obey the Tyrant
(!) by killing your son. So this compulsion [ikrah]
isn't religiously allowed.
interview was obtained from Markaz
Derasat and translated by 'Muawiya Ibn Abi Sufyan'