Few Muslims have accepted al-Baghdadi's declaration of the Khilafah in parts of Iraq and Syria. Most scholars see him as an upstart and usurper. The entire project is likely to end in disaster causing immense damage to the Ummah. In the photo, al-Baghdadi is seen wearing a suit and tie: some Khalifah, this man!
Saturday July 05, 2014, 13:07 DST
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s ‘Khilafah’ project is finding few takers outside the small coterie of extremist misfits that surround him.
Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the prominent Sunni religious scholar, has “dismissed Baghdadi's caliphate announcement as violating Islamic law,” according to the Qatari-based Al-Jazeera network on July 5.
The Qatari network further quoted al-Qaradawi as saying that the declaration was “void under sharia”.
He went on to say: “The declaration issued by the Islamic State is void under sharia and has dangerous consequences for the Sunnis in Iraq and for the revolt in Syria,” he said. “We look forward to the coming caliphate,” al-Qaradawi added.
Sheikh al-Qaradawi is not the only leading personality in the Muslim world to dismiss al-Baghdadi’s pompous claims who appeared in a video posted by the terrorist group on Friday while giving a sermon.
Hizb ut-Tahrir, whose rhetoric and black flag al-Baghdadi has usurped, rejected his claims as “empty speech without substance.” The group went on to say that al-Baghdadi’s self-proclaimed Khilafah (Islamic State) had no real “authority” in implementing Islamic rule.
Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi, a Jordanian Salafi leader, went even further in his denouncing the group as “deviant”.
While al-Baghdadi’s pompous rantings have attracted disgruntled and alienated Muslim youth from some parts of the world, his recent “successes” have little to do with the group’s military prowess. They were the direct result of treachery in the ranks of the Iraqi army as well as support lent to the rebellion by disgruntled Iraqi tribal leaders dissatisfied with the sectarian policies of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.
The latest self-proclaimed ‘Khalifah’ is also not above accepting the support of secular Ba‘athist military officers that were nursing their own grudges since the ouster of Saddam Hussain from power and his subsequent hanging.
It must be borne in mind that al-Baghdadi (real name Ali Ibrahim al-Badri al-Samarrai) had also served in the Iraqi army. It is not inconceivable that he had struck friendships with the Ba‘athist thugs at that time. Later, al-Baghdadi seems to have been adopted by the Americans.
In order to furbish his image, al-Baghdadi delivered the Juma (Friday) sermon in the grand mosque in Mosul dressed in black and wearing a black turban claiming descent from the noble Messenger (peace be upon him).
The group put out a video in which he quotes verses from the Quran on jihad, on the need to establish Shariah rule and how God had helped the “jihadists” in establishing the so-called caliphate.
He stole words from the sermon of the first Khalifah of the Muslims, Abu Bakr Siddiq (ra) when he pronounced: “Obey me as long as I follow the commands of Allah.”
Al-Baghdadi further said, again stealing words from the first Khalifah whose name he has also adopted: “If you see that I am wrong, advise me and put me on the right track, and obey me as long as I obey Allah.”
The first Khalifah of the Muslims, Abu Bakr Siddiq (ra) had also told the congregation that if they saw him doing anything wrong, they had no obligation to obey or follow him.
One wonders why al-Baghdadi skipped this part of the sermon of the first Khalifah: is it because he knows he has perpetrated horrible crimes and that he would soon be caught and would have to face the consequences of his murderous deeds?