This week’s Russian strike against ISIS facilities in Syria, by many accounts successful, has raised hopes and worries at once. The terrorist organisation that has the nerve to call itself ”The Islamic State” has for years wreaked terrible violence and harm in the name of a religion that it clearly knows little about.

ISIS needed someone to step in and say ‘’enough is enough,’’ and one could sense an audible sigh of relief going up from the world (not just the ummah) when reports aired that the Russian strike had taken out nearly all of its targets in Syria.

But further reports of other groups rushing in to seize control of weakly held key areas and resources makes you wonder if the unlawful power won’t simply move from one set of hands to another. There’s also the possibility of retaliatory strikes some time in the near future. And recent years have clearly shown us that the media is not always a dependable source of truth and accuracy.

Alhamdulillah, we have the truth in front of us, if only we can take the time to study and comprehend it! And amid all the confusion, it may be helpful to return to the debate that was occupying many of us before the Russian attacks, which is this:

Does terrorism have a role in the Quran?


Does the Muslim have a right to wield terror in the name of Jihad?

Ironically, those who most loudly insist on answering ‘’yes’’ to this question are either extremists or nonMuslims. Contrary to their belief, a survey of the Quran grants us a very clear . . .

No. Only one being in the universe exercises the right to wield terror, and not even the angels are permitted to do so. The only righteous terror comes from Allah.

[Remember] when your Lord inspired to the angels, “I am with you, so strengthen those who have believed. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieved, so strike [them] upon the necks and strike from them every fingertip.” [Quran, 8:12]

And He brought down those who supported them among the People of the Scripture from their fortresses and cast terror into their hearts. . . [Quran, 33:26]

The ultimate terror will arrive on Judgment Day.

We will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve for what they have associated with Allah of which He had not sent down [any] authority. And their refuge will be the Fire, and wretched is the residence of the wrongdoers.  [Quran, 3:151]

Terror in the dunya is not the most favoured or effective method of reaching humanity’s ears.

. . . We put terror (and warning) into them, but it only increases their inordinate transgression! [Quran, 17:60]

The creation of terror is not the Muslim’s role.

So leave them alone until they encounter that Day of theirs, wherein they shall (perforce) swoon (with terror). [Quran, 52:45]


We hope this helps. We also hope it shows that knowledge of the Quran is the best lamp for all kinds of darkness. So keep on studying, and don’t lose heart! Who knows? Maybe together we can show that simply learning and spreading the message of the Quran is more effective in ending violence than a thousand air strikes.


May your mind and heart be opened,

The Understand Quran Academy Team


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