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Al-Qaeda 2.0A Critical Reader$
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Donald Holbrook

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190856441

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190856441.001.0001

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The Islamic Spring, Part 1

The Islamic Spring, Part 1

September 2015

By Ayman al-Zawahiri

Chapter:
(p.185) The Islamic Spring, Part 1
Source:
Al-Qaeda 2.0
Author(s):
Donald Holbrook

Cerwyn Moore

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190856441.003.0013

First instalment of a multipart series, which Zawahiri begins by mourning the death of the leader of Al-Shabaab, whose fealty he had accepted in 2012, and reaches out to affiliates, allies and sympathizers in places like Somalia, Palestine, Yemen, North Africa, the Caucasus, as well as Syria. He claims to have wanted to temper his criticism of ISIL, hoping that the infighting between jihadis would come to an end, but ultimately to have seen no other option than presenting the evidence of al-Baghdadi’s transgressions, which he says go against the prescribed method of the prophet Mohammed. He challenges IS’s understanding of takfir, excommunication, and warns against ways in which religious zealotry can turn to tyranny. In presenting the Muslim Brotherhood as being too compromising and weak, and IS as being too extreme, Zawahiri thus charts a clear ‘middle way’ for Al-Qaeda and its understanding of the world, which he claims will ultimately be victorious.

Keywords:   Ayman al-Zawahiri, Al-Qaeda, Muslim world, Al-Shabaab, Jerusalem, Mullah Mohammed Omar

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