NY Daily News : Top Muslim scholar launches 600-page jihad AGAINST terror
Sunday, April 11th 2010, 8:38 PM
The top Muslim scholar has launched a potent new weapon in the war on terror - a 600-page document arguing against violence in the name of Islam.
Qadri, who is based in Toronto, believes his religious order, or fatwa, banning suicide bombings and other terrorist acts will save American lives.
But he admits there are hundreds of would-be bombers out there beyond reach.
"This is my jihad against terrorism," he told the Daily News of his recent ruling earlier this month.
"Human beings are human beings everywhere, there is no right of killing. This is against Islam and against every religion and against the values of humanity."
Pakistani-born Qadri, 59, admitted it would be slow progress achieving his aim.
"It will take some time but gradually it will work," he added.
"And it will bring very positive results in changing the mind of the youths, in America, in Britain, in the western world and in the Arab world too."
Still, he acknowledged that there are many youths - hundreds, at least - so "radicalized" that there is nothing to convince them to change their ways.
"They are radicalized and they have been brainwashed too - so now there's no place in their mind, no space for any evidence, any argument or any reason," he said.
The renowned scholar thinks most Muslim youths can still be saved from the extremists' grip - and that he's the man to do it.
"The basic reason is they know me," he explained.
Qadri founded the Islamic organization Minhaj-ul-Quran in Pakistan in 1990 and it is now active in over 100 countries, including the U.S.
He has been lecturing against violence for more than 15 years and claims to be the only preacher in Pakistan openly to support the war on terror after 9/11.
Meanwhile, his speeches are broadcast daily around the world for an hour on the Dubai-based Islamic cable television channel QTV. He has also authored more than 1,000 books and has more than 6000 sermons online.
"I wouldn't say, for example, this fatwa will change the mind of Bin Laden," Qadri added.
"But I would say the youth who are being radicalized and in future have the potential to be used for suicide bombings, this fatwa will affect on those areas. It will prevent them."
Although he has incurred the wrath of Al Qaeda for speaking out and received countless death threats over the past decade, Qadri refuses to live in fear.
"The one who lives in fear, he would never find courage to issue this kind of fatwa," he added.