Holy War or Funny Jihad
Jihad an Islamic term, is a religious duty of Muslims. In Arabic Jihad appears frequently in the Qur’an and common usage as the idiomatic expression “striving in the way of Allah”. A person engaged in jihad is called a mujahedin, the plural is mujahideen. A minority among the Sunni scholars sometimes refer to this duty as the sixth pillar of Islam, though it occupies no such official status. In Twelver Shi’a Islam, however, Jihad is one of the 10 Practices of the Religion. In the Qur’an, the Holy Book of Islam, and the prophetic example the word jihad implies warfare in the large majority of cases. Whether the Koran sanctions defensive warfare only or commands an all out war against non-Muslims is not clear and depends on the interpretation of the proper passages, since it does not explicitly state the aims of the war Muslims are obliged to wage: the passages concerning jihad rather aim at promoting fighters for the Islamic cause and do not deal with military ethics. In classical Islamic jurisprudence jihad consists of warfare with the aim of expansion and defense of Islamic territory. In later centuries, especially in the course of the colonization of large parts of the Muslim world, emphasis has been put on non-militant aspects of the jihad-concept. Today, Muslim authors only recognize wars with the aim of territorial defense as well as the defense of religious freedom as legitimate. In western societies the term jihad is often translated as “holy war” Muslim authors tend to reject such an approach stressing non-militant connotations of the word. In technical literature regarding the concept of jihad the term “holy war” is often used to describe it. However, scholars of Islamic studies often stress that both words are not synonymous.