The Instigator
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4 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

Traditional Islam and constant warfare against non-Muslims are inseparable.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/8/2011 Category: Religion
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,705 times Debate No: 14316
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (13)
Votes (1)




Greetings all fair people of

The news are filled with it daily. Jihad against the kuffars. Coptic Christians are getting killed in Egypt and people are put to death in Pakistan just for being non-Muslims. Many people claim that this is a tiny minority of extremists.

However, I contend that not only is this belief false, but the opposite is true: Islam throughout its existence has been inherently violent against non-Muslims. I also contend that this is completely in line with the Quran, Hadith and the major schools of Islamic law.

Definitions for the debate:

Traditional Islam - Islam as it has been understood historically rather than modern reformations.

Jihad - Warfare against unbelievers (kuffar).

Inseparable - It's is part of the essence of Islam and removing it is removing Islam.

Remember: The debate is not whether Islam is true or not, whether Islam is justified in being violent against non-Muslims, whether the same can be said for my Catholic religion but whether it is an inseparable part of Traditional Islam or not. I pardon the perhaps patronizing tone, but my debates about Islam have ended up in these arguments plenty of times.

My opponent may use the first round for any change of definition, comments on the rules and other formalities etc. Arguments will be posted in round 2.



Although we Americans believe that warfare from Muslims against non-Muslims is an act that does not have to occur because most Americans do not understand the beliefs of Muslims. The killing of non-Muslim by a Muslim is to deny the non-Muslim from ever becoming Muslim sending the non-Muslim to hell whereas the Muslim is sent to Paradise. This would be an act of sin compared to a Catholic or Christian's point of view. No? On the other hand, to kill a non-Muslim that is at peace with Islamic beliefs, is a great sin to a Muslim. So to a Muslim's view, there is not a war against non-Muslims. There is a war against Muslims and non-Muslims who are not AT PEACE with Islamic Traditions. Therefore constant warfare can be terminated against non-Muslims allowing a Tradition Islamic Culture to exist if true peace is restored. I will not reply with another argument because you would first have to prove that warfare between Muslims and non-Muslims would always exist. You would also have to prove that Traditional Islam is in fact peace between Muslims and non-Muslims.
Debate Round No. 1


I thank my opponent for accepting my challenge and I wish him the best of luck for the debate.
Now for my arguments

1) The Quran

The Quran is the collection of Muhammad's revelations over his long ministry. The book consists of chapters sorted after length rather than theme or chronology. Now, let us examine some verses which support my case of persistent Jihad against non-Muslims.

Known as the "Verse of the Sword", this verse is usually featured by Jihadists: "Then when the Sacred Months (the 1st, 7th, 11th, and 12th months of the Islamic calendar) have passed, then kill the Mushrikun {unbelievers} wherever you find them, and capture them and besiege them, and prepare for them each and every ambush. But if they repent and perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat {the Islamic ritual prayers}), and give Zakat {alms}, then leave their way free. Verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful" (Quran 9:5)

It is very important to note that As-Salat and Zakat are among the Five Pillars of Islam. This means that the verse commands Muslims to wage war on unbelievers until they convert to Islam. It is also important to recognize "wherever you find them", which indicates that this is not particular unbelievers, but rather unbelievers in general.

Another verse:

And fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief and polytheism: i.e. worshipping others besides Allah) and the religion (worship) will all be for Allah Alone [in the whole of the world]. But if they cease (worshipping others besides Allah), then certainly, Allah is All-Seer of what they do. (Quran 8:39)

Here we have the verse making the Jihad constant against non-Muslims. There can never be peace before "religion will all be for Allah Alone".

Of course, we as Christians have another choice:

Fight against those who believe not in Allah, nor in the Last Day, nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth (i.e. Islam) among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. (Quran 9:29)

That is being second-class citizens who are not allowed to testify in court against Muslims and have to pay the Jizya, which is a tax levied only on Dhimmis(Jews and Christians under Islamic "protection"). We would not be allowed to demonstrate our faith in public areas and we would not be allowed to construct and/or repair churches.

2) Muhammad's example

In Islam, Muhammad is considered al-insan al-kamil (the "ideal man"). Muhammad is in no way considered divine, nor is he worshipped, but he is the model par excellence for all Muslims in how they should conduct themselves[1].

Knowledge of his life comes primarily from the hadiths ("reports"), which were passed down orally until codified in the eighth century AD, some hundred years after Muhammad's death. When the hadiths were first compiled, it became obvious that many were inauthentic. The early Muslim scholars of hadith spent tremendous labor trying to determine which hadiths were authoritative and which were suspect.
The hadiths here come exclusively from the most reliable and authoritative collection, Sahih Al-Bukhari, recognized as sound by all schools of Islamic scholarship[2]:

Volume 1, Book 2, Number 25; Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah's Apostle was asked, "What is the best deed?" He replied, "To believe in Allah and His Apostle (Muhammad). The questioner then asked, "What is the next (in goodness)?" He replied, "To participate in Jihad (religious fighting) in Allah's Cause."

Here, Muhammad gives his encouragement of Jihad.

"Sira, p367: Then he {Kab bin al-Ashraf} composed amatory verses of an insulting nature about the Muslim women. The Apostle said: "Who will rid me of Ibnul-Ashraf?" Muhammad bin Maslama, brother of the Bani Abdu'l-Ashhal, said, "I will deal with him for you, O Apostle of God, I will kill him." He said, "Do so if you can." "All that is incumbent upon you is that you should try" {said the Prophet to Muhammad bin Maslama}. He said, "O Apostle of God, we shall have to tell lies." He {the Prophet} answered, "Say what you like, for you are free in the matter."

This verse sends a quite cold feeling down my spine. I'm a Dane and a great lot of Muslims are declaring Jihad on Denmark because of the Muhammad Cartoon-controversy. Now you know why such petty problems are justification for Jihad.

3) Different schools of Islamic Law

Now, it is often said by Islamic apologists that Islam is not a religion of one mind, but of several schools of thought. This I agree with, but the problem of Jihad is not done away with as the major schools of Islamic thought all agree on the need for offensive Jihad[3].

Even the supposedly "liberal" school of Hanafi is Jihad-oriented:

In the Hidayah, vol. II. p. 140

It is not lawful to make war upon any people who have never before been called to the faith, without previously requiring them to embrace it, because the Prophet so instructed his commanders, directing them to call the infidels to the faith, and also because the people will hence perceive that they are attacked for the sake of religion, and not for the sake of taking their property, or making slaves of their children, and on this consideration it is possible that they may be induced to agree to the call, in order to save themselves from the troubles of war… If the infidels, upon receiving the call, neither consent to it nor agree to pay capitation tax, it is then incumbent on the Muslims to call upon God for assistance, and to make war upon them, because God is the assistant of those who serve Him, and the destroyer of His enemies, the infidels, and it is necessary to implore His aid upon every occasion; the Prophet, moreover, commands us so to do."

As we can see, there are plenty of reasons to believe that Traditional Islam is inherently bent on constant warfare against non-Muslims. There are more of such examples in the Quran and in the Hadith, but If my opponent has reason to doubt the understanding of these verses, then I will not post too many to refute.


2.The Canonization of Al-Bukhari and Muslim: The Formation and Function of the Sunni Hadith Canon.



I will give you another round to look over the comments and try to clear up any mishaps you have stated that mislead me to believe what you meant (if I took it differently than what you meant) and restate anything, so that this debate isn't as vague as what I believe it to be.
Debate Round No. 2


I have yet to hear from my opponent what needs clearing up. Until then, my case still stands.


Trojanman13120 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


Still waiting...


Trojanman13120 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4


Confucius91 forfeited this round.


Trojanman13120 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Confucius91 5 years ago
Mirza. A few comments:

"All these schools say that such a thing is wrong."

Look at my argument

"That's horrible because Jihad is the Arabic word for "strive" and/or "struggle."

Yes indeed, I was merely clarifying that I was discussing external Jihad.

"The Arabic word for "Holy War" is Harb ul-Muqadasa, which you don't find anywhere in the Qur'an."

I do not need the exact word to prove my case. I only need to prove that Islam as understood by Muhammad and his followers was for constant Jihad against Dar Al-Harb.

As for the Fitna-movie, I know it is not the best piece of research on the subject. I was just using the imagery to put Jihad in context.
Posted by Confucius91 5 years ago
@Trojan, what is the issue?
Posted by Trojanman13120 5 years ago
Anyway constant warfare against non-Muslims can be sepaerated by "Traditional" Islamic beliefes because it is a sin for any Muslim to take the life of a "peaceful" non-Muslim. It cannot be proven that this piece will not occur.
Posted by Mirza 5 years ago
"Traditional Islam - Islam as it has been understood historically rather than modern reformations."

There haven't been reformations. Have you heard of Schools of Thought? Muslim scholars belong to one of the four, and these schools of thought were formed centuries ago. Any opinion on warfare and such are reflected by these schools, and modern scholars say e.g., "I belong to the Hanafi school, which says killing non-Muslims is wrong." All these schools say that such a thing is wrong. So, reformation in Islam has never happened. The sects all agree on the same holy book, the Qur'an, and they can find the truth there.

"Jihad - Warfare against unbelievers (kuffar)."

That's horrible because Jihad is the Arabic word for "strive" and/or "struggle." The inner Jihad is about striving so you can pray every day, give charity, etc. The external Jihad is e.g., defending innocent people when they are being attacked, as the Qur'an says in Surah 4, verse 75:

"And why should ye not fight in the cause of Allah and of those who, being weak, are ill-treated (and oppressed)?- Men, women, and children, whose cry is: 'Our Lord! Rescue us from this town, whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from thee one who will protect; and raise for us from thee one who will help!'"

The Arabic word for "Holy War" is Harb ul-Muqadasa, which you don't find anywhere in the Qur'an. And if you translate the Bible to Arabic, you will find the word "Jihad," my friend, and it has been used by Jesus (peace be upon him).

As for your video, this PowerPoint presentation by Geert Wilders says nothing. You hardly hear what is being said, and he takes the Qur'an verses completely out of their textual and historical context. It's shameful. Why do you use that video? At least use something more credible.
Posted by Confucius91 5 years ago
I do not see how my claim is bigoted.


S: (n) bigot (a prejudiced person who is intolerant of any opinions differing from his own)
Posted by adealornodeal 5 years ago
"I also contend that this is completely in line with the Quran, Hadith and the major schools of Islamic law."
Posted by Confucius91 5 years ago
If you would be so kind to point out where I made a bigoted statement. As far as I can tell, I've only made claims without going ad hominem as you seem to be doing.
Posted by adealornodeal 5 years ago
Can you say "bigot"? I second what SusanBrei said. I hope someone competent takes this debate. Good luck defending your case, Confucius91.
Posted by Confucius91 5 years ago
Any given holy war for a Muslim would be a war against unbelievers. If they wage war on other Muslims then they are considering them to be unbelievers as well (Quran 5:51)

"If the tenets of "traditional islam" lead to endless holy war against non-believers, then all believers would be engaged in jihad at all times."
Not really. Like many religions, there are plenty of nominal Muslims who do not really know their faith. I'm a Catholic myself, but I see plenty of people in the pews, who know next to nothing about their faith. My topic is about whether Islam as understood by the early Muslims and Muhammad himself is inherently Jihad-oriented.
Posted by SusanBrei 5 years ago
This is a flawed topic. If the tenets of "traditional islam" lead to endless holy war against non-believers, then all believers would be engaged in jihad at all times. If the religion is incapable of change, there would be no modern, reformed version. The rules of the debate prevent comparison to other religious systems. The author of the debate wishes to define away any enlightening factors (geopolitics, differences between fundamentalist groups and modern groups, the percentage of people who actually commit murder). The topic is hopelessly complex, and would require a treatise and a lifetime of study to address fairly.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 5 years ago
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