by Syarif Hidayat
The United States, along with its European and Israeli allies, prepares to launch yet another illegal war of aggression in the Middle East. A Pentagon MEMO: We’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran. “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran (all are Muslim countries).” – an unnamed Pentagon official.
General Wesley Clark, the retired four-star general who was the supreme allied commander of NATO during the Kosovo War described how an unnamed Pentagon official, just after the September 11th (9/11) attacks, talked about a memo that said the U.S. planned to take out seven countries in five years, including Syria.
GEN. WESLEY CLARK:
“About 10 days after 9/11, I went through the Pentagon, and I saw Secretary Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz. I went downstairs just to say hello to some of the people on the joint staff who used to work for me, and one of the generals called me in. He said, “Sir, you’ve got to come in and talk to me a second.” I said, “Well, you’re too busy.” He said, “No, no.” He says, “We’ve made the decision we’re going to war with Iraq.” This was on or about the 20th of September. I said, “We’re going to war with Iraq? Why?” He said, “I don’t know.” He said, “I guess they don’t know what else to do.” So I said, “Well, did they find some information connecting Saddam to al-Qaeda?” He said, “No, no.” He says, “There’s nothing new that way. They just made the decision to go to war with Iraq.” He said, “I guess it’s like we don’t know what to do about terrorists, but we’ve got a good military and we can take down governments.” And he said, “I guess if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem has to look like a nail.”
“So I came back to see him a few weeks later, and by that time we were bombing in Afghanistan. I said, “Are we still going to war with Iraq?” And he said, “Oh, it’s worse than that.” He said—he reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper, and he said, “I just got this down from upstairs,” meaning the secretary of defense’s office, “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.” I said, “Is it classified?” He said, “Yes, sir.” I said, “Well, don’t show it to me.” And I saw him a year or so ago, and I said, “You remember that?” He said, “Sir, I didn’t show you that memo! I didn’t show it to you!”
The US prepares another war of aggression in the Middle East
Eric Draitser, an independent geopolitical analyst based in New York City and the founder of StopImperialism.com in his article titled “The war on Iran begins…in Syria” published August 28, 2013 in Russia Today (RT) website, wrote “as the United States, along with its European and Israeli allies, prepares to launch yet another illegal war of aggression in the Middle East, the geopolitics of the US strategy could not be more apparent.
Despite the high-minded talk of humanitarianism, the US is advancing a transparently neo-colonialist agenda aimed at securing hegemony in the region by destroying what little opposition remains.”
The images and videos flooding the internet since last week purport to show ‘evidence’ of a chemical weapons attack perpetrated by the Assad regime. This development neatly and conveniently coincides with the declaration by the Obama administration that the use of such weapons constitutes a ‘red line’, merely a euphemism for the point at which the US would feel emboldened to militarily intervene on behalf of the rebels.
And so, as news outlets report on the ‘likely use of chemical weapons’ by Damascus without anything other than unverifiable hearsay and ambiguous video footage, the drumbeat of war gets louder and louder.
A clear-thinking and rational political analyst would immediately be suspicious about the attack considering the presence of international chemical weapons investigators in Syria, as well as the fact that Damascus was undeniably winning the war against the jihadi rebel factions in cities like Qussair, Homs, Aleppo and elsewhere.
That Assad would sabotage his own military victories and provide the perfect pretext for a foreign intervention is not only far-fetched, it runs contrary to his own record throughout this conflict. Remember that Damascus has shown restraint in the face of international war crimes committed against it by Israel, Turkey and other regional actors who have been fomenting the conflict in Syria for more than two years.
And so we see once again that we are living in what French philosopher and cultural critic Guy Debord called ‘The Society of the Spectacle’ – a world in which representation of truth is more important than truth itself, where videos of unknown origin and without verification take the place of authentic evidence and investigation, where wars that will destroy millions of lives and future generations are manufactured by paid actors on television who merely masquerade as journalists.
All this leads many to wonder whether the United States is really as stupid as it seems. Could Washington actually believe that a war in Syria will actually benefit the US and its interests? Could they truly be so short-sighted and unwilling to learn from past mistakes?
Although these questions would seem entirely valid, they presuppose that a war with Syria is actually the goal of a war with Syria. On the contrary, this illegal aggression against the sovereign Syrian Arab Republic is merely the opening phase of a greater regional war with the ultimate target being the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Smashing the Shiite crescent
In the decades since the revolution of 1979 which created the modern Islamic Republic of Iran, the US policy toward that country has been antagonistic and belligerent to such a degree that Iran has been forced, out of sheer necessity, to rely very heavily on its few regional and international allies.
And so, given the political posture of Bashar Assad, like that of his father before him, Damascus has been viewed as Iran’s key political partner, providing Iran with a crucial ally along the border with Israel and a bridge to the Hezbollah organization in Southern Lebanon.
Additionally, a multi-ethnic society like Syria with a dominant Shiite-Alawite demographic presents itself as a natural friend to Shiite Iran. However, the importance of this relationship does not stop at mere similarities.
Since the United States imposed draconian sanctions against Tehran, ostensibly over Iran’s alleged nuclear program, the economics of the Iran-Syria relationship have become even more significant.
As Tehran has been increasingly frozen out of world energy markets due to US and European sanctions that make it difficult if not impossible to settle international debts with the Islamic Republic, it has been forced to find alternative methods and infrastructure to sell its oil and gas and maintain its fragile economy.
A centerpiece of this strategy is the Iran-Iraq-Syria gas pipeline deal signed last month. Intended to provide Iran with a new delivery route to the Mediterranean coast, giving it renewed access to the Eurasian landmass and markets, the pipeline is obviously a blow to US-Israeli attempts to strangle the regime in Iran economically.
Syria, being the critical linchpin in this deal, figures significantly in the Iranian strategy to survive the sanctions, thereby necessitating Iranian involvement in the conflict if only to provide the critical support Assad needs to maintain control of the security of the country.
When one looks at the players involved in the war in Syria, it becomes clear that the Sunni monarchies – Saudi Arabia and Qatar primarily – have committed to the war in order to ensure their own continued hegemony, especially in terms of energy production.
Qatar, being one of the world’s wealthiest gas exporters, views the growing relationship between Iran and Syria, especially the gas pipeline deal, as an existential threat to their own standing.
The Saudis, long since mortal enemies and rivals of the Shia Iranians, also have come to view Syria as merely a battleground in the larger proxy war with Iran.
And then of course, there’s Israel. Perched comfortably on Syria’s border, Israel has played a key role in stoking tensions and fomenting unrest on the other side of the Golan Heights.
Not only did Israel carry out a number of blatantly illegal bombings inside Syria’s borders, there have been dozens of mainstream accounts, including videos, of Israeli Special forces commandos inside of Syria.
Naturally, Israeli intentions are to further their own interests which for decades have been centered on the destruction of Iran, their main regional competitor and rival.
Israel faces a strategic and very dangerous dilemma
Furthermore, as renowned author and geopolitical analyst F. William Engdahl has noted, Israel’s new gas discoveries off the Mediterranean coast add a new dimension to the struggle for dominance in the region.
Engdahl writes, “Now Israel faces a strategic and very dangerous dilemma. Naturally, Israel is none too excited to see Assad’s Syria, linked to Israel’s arch foe Iran, and Iraq and Lebanon out-compete an Israeli gas export to the EU markets. This could explain why Israel’s Netanyahu government has been messing inside Syria in the anti-Assad forces.”
Of course, Israel is not an entirely independent actor. As a principal player in the US-dominated imperial system, Israel serves as the bad cop to Washington’s good cop on Iran.
While the warmongers in Tel Aviv call for Iranian blood, the US is able to feign interest in nuclear negotiations to resolve the conflict and lift the sanctions.
At the very same moment, the US, EU and Israel foment civil war in Syria precisely to weaken the Iranians, already isolated politically and economically, thereby showing that not only are they not interested in peace with Iran, they are implementing a multi-phased strategy to destroy that country.
Adding insult to injury, the continued instability and violence in Iraq has politically weakened Prime Minister Maliki, a key Iranian ally. With Baghdad and Damascus in chaos, Tehran will find it very difficult to continue to support Hezbollah, another important piece on the chessboard.
So one can see without great difficulty that the war in Syria is, at a fundamental level, a means to an end – the end being the total destruction of the Shiite Crescent insofar as it represents resistance to the hegemonic designs of the US, Israel, and their puppet Sunni monarchies.
What has become ever more apparent in recent weeks and months is that the conflict in Syria is much larger than Syria itself. Like the Balkans almost exactly 100 years ago, Syria has become the proverbial powder keg in which Western leaders play with matches.
Tragically, the diplomatic brinksmanship of the imperial powers in 1914 unleashed upon the world one of the greatest tragedies in the history of humanity: the First World War. As the United States prepares to commence yet another war, let us hope that world war is not once again the outcome.
Israel wants Syria and Iran, crushed
Jonathan Cook in his article titled “Israel wants Syria and Iran, crushed” published in Informationclearinghouse website, September 2013, wrote President Barack Obama may have drawn his seemingly regretted “red line” around Syria’s chemical weapons, but it was neither he nor the international community that turned the spotlight on their use. That task fell to Israel.
It was an Israeli general who claimed in April that Damascus had used chemical weapons, forcing Obama into an embarrassing demurral on his stated commitment to intervene should that happen.
According to the Israeli media, it was also Israel that provided the intelligence that blamed the Syrian president, Bashar Al Assad, for the latest chemical weapons attack, near Damascus on August 21, triggering the clamour for a US military response.
It is worth remembering that Obama’s supposed “dithering” on the question of military action has only been accentuated by Israel’s “daring” strikes on Syria – at least three since the start of the year.
It looks as though Israel, while remaining largely mute about its interests in the civil war raging there, has been doing a great deal to pressure the White House into direct involvement in Syria.
That momentum appears to have been halted, for the time being at least, by the deal agreed at the weekend by the US and Russia to dismantle Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal. To understand the respective views of the White House and Israel on attacking Syria, one needs to revisit the US-led invasion of Iraq a decade ago.
Israel and its ideological twin in Washington, the neoconservatives, rallied to the cause of toppling Saddam Hussein, believing that it should be the prelude to an equally devastating blow against Iran.
Israel was keen to see its two chief regional enemies weakened simultaneously. Saddam’s Iraq had been the chief sponsor of Palestinian resistance against Israel.
Iran, meanwhile, had begun developing a civilian nuclear programme that Israel feared could pave the way to an Iranian bomb, ending Israel’s regional monopoly on nuclear weapons.
The neocons carried out the first phase of the plan, destroying Iraq, but then ran up against domestic opposition that blocked implementation of the second stage: the break-up of Iran.
“Keystone” axis against Israel
The consequences are well known. As Iraq imploded into sectarian violence, Iran’s fortunes rose. Tehran strengthened its role as regional sponsor of resistance against Israel – or what became Washington’s new “axis of evil” – that included Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza.
Israel and the US both regard Syria as the geographical “keystone” of that axis, as Israel’s outgoing ambassador to the US, Michael Oren, told the Jerusalem Post this week, and one that needs to be removed if Iran is to be isolated, weakened or attacked.
But Israel and the US drew different lessons from Iraq. Washington is now wary of its ground forces becoming bogged down again, as well as fearful of reviving a cold war confrontation with Moscow. It prefers instead to rely on proxies to contain and exhaust the Syrian regime.
Israel, on the other hand, understands the danger of manoeuvring its patron into a showdown with Damascus without ensuring this time that Iran is tied into the plan. Toppling Assad alone would simply add emboldened jihadists to the troubles on its doorstep.
Given these assessments, Israel and the US have struggled to envision a realistic endgame that would satisfy them both. Obama fears setting the region, and possibly the world, ablaze with a direct attack on Iran; Israel is worried about stretching its patron’s patience by openly pushing it into another catastrophic venture to guarantee its regional hegemony.
In his interview published yesterday by the Jerusalem Post, Michael Oren claimed that Israel had in fact been trying to oust Assad since the civil war erupted more than two years ago.
He said Israel “always preferred the bad guys [jihadist groups] who weren’t backed by Iran to the bad guys [the Assad regime] who were backed by Iran.”
That seems improbable. Although the Sunni jihadist groups, some with links to al-Qaeda, are not natural allies for either the Shia leaders of Iran or Hizbollah, they would be strongly hostile to Israel. Oren’s comments, however, do indicate the degree to which Israel’s strategic priorities are obsessively viewed through the prism of an attack on Iran.
More likely, Israel has focused on using the civil war as a way to box Assad into his heartlands. That way, he becomes a less useful ally to Hizbollah, Iran and Russia, while the civil war keeps both his regime and the opposition weak.
Israel would have preferred a US strike on Syria, a goal its lobbyists in Washington were briefly mobilised to achieve. But the intention was not to remove Assad but to assert what Danny Ayalon, a former deputy Israeli foreign minister, referred to as “American and Israeli deterrence” – code for signalling to Tehran that it was being lined up as the next target.
That threat now looks empty. As Silvan Shalom, a senior government minister, observed: “If it is impossible to do anything against little Syria, then certainly it’s not possible against big Iran.”
But the new US-Russian deal to dispose of Syria’s chemical weapons can probably be turned to Israel’s advantage, so long as Israel prevents attention shifting to its own likely stockpiles.
In the short term, Israel has reason to fear Assad’s loss of control of his chemical weapons, with the danger that they pass either to the jihadists or to Hizbollah. The timetable for the weapons destruction should help to minimise those risks – in the words of one Israeli commentator, it is like Israel “winning the lottery”.
But Israel also suspects that Damascus is likely to procrastinate on disarmament. In any case, efforts to locate and destroy its chemical weapons in the midst of a civil war will be lengthy and difficult. And that may provide Israel with a way back in.
Soon, as Israeli analysts are already pointing out, Syria will be hosting international inspectors searching for WMD, not unlike the situation in Iraq shortly before the US-led invasion of 2003.
Israel, it can safely be assumed, will quietly meddle, trying to persuade the West that Assad is not cooperating and that Hizbullah and Iran are implicated.
In a vein Israel may mine later, a Syrian opposition leader, Selim Idris, claimed at the weekend that Damascus was seeking to conceal the extent of its stockpiles by passing them to Lebanon and Iraq.
Obama is not the only one to have set a red line. Last year, Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, drew one on a cartoon bomb at the United Nations as he warned that the world faced an imminent existential threat from an Iranian nuclear weapon.
Israel still desperately wants its chief foe, Iran, crushed. And if it can find a way to lever the US into doing its dirty work, it will exploit the opening – regardless of whether such action ramps up the suffering in Syria.
‘Syria infiltrated by groups with CIA links’
No one knows for sure how the US aggression against Syria may play out, not even Washington, while Syria has been infiltrated by groups that have links to the CIA and are also backed by “certain Arab nations,” former Hezbollah MP Hassan Hoballah told RT.
RT: What are your relations with Hamas like? There has been talk in the media recently about some kind of a dispute between your group, Hezbollah, and Hamas.
Hassan Hoballah: There are lots of rumors passed around. There has been speculation in the Lebanese press, and in other Arab and international media, about some sort of tension between Hezbollah and Hamas. We have already refuted such claims in public. There are no tensions between Hamas and ourselves. We do, indeed, disagree on specific issues. But we also agree on a lot of issues, the single most important of them being resistance against the Israeli occupation. We agree in principle on joint action against the Israeli occupation in Lebanon, as well as in Palestine. Part of Lebanese territory is still occupied by Israel, the same as most of Palestine.
RT: What exactly is your disagreement with Hamas about?
HH: It concerns Syria. In a nutshell, Hamas has withdrawn from Syria and established relations with the so-called “Arab Spring countries,” including Qatar, Egypt, Tunisia and others. We have never opposed any of those Arab Spring governments, but we believe Hamas has made a mistake by quitting on Syria, because Syria is the main stronghold for resistance. It has proven that with real action rather than mere promises and political statements for the press.
RT: What do you think of the recent controversy related to the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria?
HH: We never engage in abstract speculation, whatever the subject. There is an international expert team that has been to Syria for an investigation. They have taken samples for further studies, and they have produced a report on the incident. But if chemical weapons indeed were used in Syria, it is important to find out specifically who used it. All the more so as there have been reports confirming that certain opposition groups had been supplied with chemical weapons. It is possible that they could have set up the Syrian government in order to provoke a foreign military intervention and thus turn the military tide in their favor.
RT: Could you please give us more details? What groups are you talking about, exactly? And who is presumed to have supplied them with chemical weapons?
HH: Syria has been infiltrated by groups that have links to the CIA, and are also backed by certain Arab nations. Their task is to topple the regime, since it has proved to be resilient.
The West has tried to distance itself from these groups to avoid being responsible for their terrorist activities. Right now those groups are fighting one another in northern Syria. They are trying to destroy the Free Syrian Army, as we can see from yesterday’s fighting in the Azaz area.
Those groups are blacklisted by the West as terrorist groups, but the West prefers to keep silent about it. The Americans back those groups, because they share the purpose of overthrowing the regime in Syria, since the Syrian regime has been supportive of the resistance against the Israeli occupation.
‘The opposition has chemical weapons too’
RT: Could you clarify exactly what evidence you have and whether you would like to hand it over to the international community?
HH: I have already said we need an investigation to find out who actually did it. I’ve also said we have leaks and media reports suggesting that some of the opposition groups have gotten their hands on certain chemical weapons.
Maybe those were exactly the weapons used in Ghouta. They say chemical weapons have been used in Syria several times, or something very similar to chemical weapons.
A very telling case was a supposed chemical attack at Khan al-Assal. It took the international community two months to take notice of it. All signs show that it must have been one of the opposition groups who used chemical weapons.
But there has been no investigation undertaken in order to find out which particular group did it and where it had gotten such ordnance. Our main conclusion is that the regime in Syria is not the only one in possession of chemical weapons: the opposition has them, too. So the question is: who actually did it at Ghouta and in other cases?
I definitely cannot speculate whether it was the government or the opposition. It would take a careful investigation to establish what actually happened there. But in any case, the West is using this incident as a pretext. They talk a lot about human rights, and about the legitimacy of a humanitarian intervention sanctioned by the UN.
But if they truly care for the civilian population in Syria, they should have responded to the numerous massacres committed in various parts of the country by opposition groups, who attacked villages and slaughtered women and children, using weapons banned by international conventions.
RT: We hear allegations that the Syrian regime was smuggling chemical weapons to Hezbollah…
HH: That is absolutely false. No chemical weapons were ever taken out of Syria – not to Lebanon, not to any other country. The Syrian government says those are strategic weapons, stored in Syria under government supervision. I think the reports you are referring to are false.
The Israelis constantly keep an eye on Syria’s chemical arsenals and on any movement across the border, and they know perfectly well that chemical weapons were never moved outside of Syria. So I think those reports have been falsified in order to validate military intervention against Syria.
‘Syria is a key element in an axis of resistance’
RT: You said earlier that in case of an American strike against Syria, Hezbollah would retaliate. Do you still adhere to this stand?
HH: In making political decisions, Hezbollah always relies on a plurality of facts collected in the field. Neither I nor any other member of the party leadership is entitled to decide single-handedly whether Hezbollah shall get involved in this or that conflict.
What I can tell you, however, is that Syria is a key element in an axis of resistance. This is why no one knows for sure how an American aggression against Syria might play out eventually, not even the Americans, who have been pushing for intervention. I think that is the main reason why the United States has been hesitating – I would say they are themselves wary of the military option.
RT: Do you think intervention is unlikely, then?
HH: Yes, definitely. The Americans are lucky to have been given an opportunity not to invade, because it’s in their best interest. The US has two principal issues of interest in the Middle East: the security of Israel, and oil. And a military intervention against Syria would jeopardize both. After all, it would target a country that lies in the very heart of the Arab world, a country that is officially at war with Israel, who is holding Syrian territory, the Golan Heights.
‘War in Syria in Israel’s interests’
RT: I met one Iranian politician in Damascus and asked him, ‘How would Tehran react in case of an American strike?’ He answered that this is would be the end of Israel. I hear that in your answer as well. Could you please explain exactly what the connection is between an American strike and the end of Israel?
HH: The situation is very complicated. The war in Syria is in Israel’s interests, mainly. The current events in Syria are not the result of the problems between the people and the authorities.
If Syria was in a different geographic location and there was some tension between the government and the people, we would see protests calling for a new government, changes, reforms, etc. But in Syria the opposition decided to take another path. NATO countries supplied them with weapons.
The opposition conducted military operations against strategic sites in Syria, for example, a research center or military plants. The goal of the revolution cannot be the destruction of military facilities, the nation’s security arrangements or its industry. Its goal must be to topple the ruling power, which means that what’s happening in Syria right now is a war waged by foreign forces, i.e. the US and Israel and, unfortunately, some Arab states.
The goal of this war is regime change in Syria, the destruction of the Syrian state [along the lines of] the Iraq scenario, with some deviations, of course. Iraq was invaded by US ground forces, while here we are seeing intervention that is indirect.
That’s why any aggression against Syria could threaten the interests of many countries in this region. I believe that Syria had to produce chemical weapons to have parity with Israel, which has nuclear weapons, and also because Arabs are not allowed to have nuclear weapons. This ban has been slapped [on Syria] by the US and Israel.
The goal of the ban is Israel’s domination in the Arab world and the Middle East. So it’s completely natural that if an Arab state were facing such a strong attack, it would have to strike Israel. Then an American-Syrian war would start, which would spill over and transform into an Israeli-Syrian one.
If it doesn’t happen, there’s no guarantee that some other foreign forces don’t step into the fray. Israel is hostile to all neighboring countries and all resistance movements. The interests of other big countries are at stake, too: Iran, Russia and China. Although Russia and China are far away, they sided with Syria and warned against the US military strike.
RT: What is your understanding of whom exactly is fighting against Assad today?
HH: These groups are not in hiding, they are not underground cells. The groups which oppose the Syrian regime are legal. They are straightforward about their hostile attitude towards the regime and proclaim their goals openly.
For example, when they kill young people, and tear out their hearts and livers, they say they’ve killed these people because they belonged to a specific confession.
They say that they attacked Maaloula because its residents belong to a wrong confession. These groups – we call them Takfiris – regard everyone else as infidels. They regard themselves as the only true believers.
That’s their understanding of faith. They kill for the sake of killing. They can’t imagine that someone could be of a different faith, could have a different mentality. That’s why they kill. There are a lot of groups like this in Syria.
That’s why they are not just fighting against the regime – they are also opposed to some of the opposition forces, to the whole of the Syrian people. They attack villages, break into homes, kill and rape women, guided by their backward ideas which have nothing to do with religion.
RT: Hezbollah means “The Party of God.” The militants in Syria also say they do what they do in the name of God – what is the difference between you and them?
HH: This is nothing new. This is an old story. As Jesus Christ entered a temple in Jerusalem he encountered the priests there who were at the same time thieves in the money-changing business.
They stole from the people in the name of God. And Jesus Christ took a stand against them. He delivered God’s will. Religion is about the faith of mind and believing in the good.
People need to see the difference between those who live according to the law of God from those who put forward religious slogans simply to hide behind them.
We, the Party of Allah i.e. Hezbollah, the Lebanon’s resistance movement, fought against the Israeli occupation and we won. After Israel left the southern territories of Lebanon, we entered there.
The local villages have people of different confessions.
Some of them had cooperated with the Israeli troops. But we didn’t kill or hang anyone. We treated them by the laws of our faith; therefore not a single murder was reported during the operation of liberating southern Lebanon from the Israeli aggressor.
If we disagree with someone, we don’t go on to kill them. If someone disagrees with us, we [have] a political dialogue with them. We don’t attack them, or kill them, or eat their liver. This is what religion means, whether it’s Islam or Christianity. Allah tells us so.
There is only one faith. What these people do is they hide behind the words of faith. They say that they are waging war in the name of Allah and for the sake of the faith. But in fact they act in violation of the faith. The faith tells us not to kill.
When Prophet Muhammad PBUH ordered his troops to engage in action he said, “Don’t kill the captives, don’t kill those who surrender. Don’t kill the wounded. Don’t fell the tree. Don’t torture a child. Don’t rough up a woman.” These are the instructions for the time of war.
In means that the Prophet gave his soldiers the order to protect human rights during the war. There is a very unambiguous verse in the Quran that says war is only for self-defense. The Lord said, “Fight those who attack you. But do not attack anyone. Allah loves the attackers not.”
These are the rules. But many people live in ignorance and don’t see those who abide by these rules from those who say they do only to do the opposite because they know not these rules. That’s the difference. (HSH)