Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders
World Islamic Front Statement
23 February 1998

Shaykh Usamah Bin-Muhammad Bin-Ladin
Ayman al-Zawahiri, amir of the Jihad Group in Egypt
Abu-Yasir Rifa'i Ahmad Taha, Egyptian Islamic Group
Shaykh Mir Hamzah, secretary of the Jamiat-ul-Ulema-e-Pakistan
Fazlul Rahman, amir of the Jihad Movement in Bangladesh

Praise be to God, who revealed the Book, controls the clouds, defeats
factionalism, and says in His Book: "But when the forbidden months are past,
then fight and slay the pagans wherever ye find them, seize them, beleaguer
them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war)"; and peace be
upon our Prophet, Muhammad Bin-'Abdallah, who said: I have been sent with
the sword between my hands to ensure that no one but God is worshipped, God
who put my livelihood under the shadow of my spear and who inflicts
humiliation and scorn on those who disobey my orders.
The Arabian Peninsula has never -- since God made it flat, created its
desert, and encircled it with seas -- been stormed by any forces like the
crusader armies spreading in it like locusts, eating its riches and wiping
out its plantations. All this is happening at a time in which nations are
attacking Muslims like people fighting over a plate of food. In the light of
the grave situation and the lack of support, we and you are obliged to
discuss current events, and we should all agree on how to settle the matter.
No one argues today about three facts that are known to everyone; we will
list them, in order to remind everyone:
First, for over seven years the United States has been occupying the lands
of Islam in the holiest of places, the Arabian Peninsula, plundering its
riches, dictating to its rulers, humiliating its people, terrorizing its
neighbors, and turning its bases in the Peninsula into a spearhead through
which to fight the neighboring Muslim peoples.
If some people have in the past argued about the fact of the occupation, all
the people of the Peninsula have now acknowledged it. The best proof of this
is the Americans' continuing aggression against the Iraqi people using the
Peninsula as a staging post, even though all its rulers are against their
territories being used to that end, but they are helpless.
Second, despite the great devastation inflicted on the Iraqi people by the
crusader-Zionist alliance, and despite the huge number of those killed,
which has exceeded 1 million... despite all this, the Americans are once
against trying to repeat the horrific massacres, as though they are not
content with the protracted blockade imposed after the ferocious war or the
fragmentation and devastation.
So here they come to annihilate what is left of this people and to humiliate
their Muslim neighbors.
Third, if the Americans' aims behind these wars are religious and economic,
the aim is also to serve the Jews' petty state and divert attention from its
occupation of Jerusalem and murder of Muslims there. The best proof of this
is their eagerness to destroy Iraq, the strongest neighboring Arab state,
and their endeavor to fragment all the states of the region such as Iraq,
Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Sudan into paper statelets and through their
disunion and weakness to guarantee Israel's survival and the continuation of
the brutal crusade occupation of the Peninsula.
All these crimes and sins committed by the Americans are a clear declaration
of war on God, his messenger, and Muslims. And ulema have throughout Islamic
history unanimously agreed that the jihad is an individual duty if the enemy
destroys the Muslim countries. This was revealed by Imam Bin-Qadamah in "Al-
Mughni," Imam al-Kisa'i in "Al-Bada'i," al-Qurtubi in his interpretation,
and the shaykh of al-Islam in his books, where he said: "As for the fighting
to repulse [an enemy], it is aimed at defending sanctity and religion, and
it is a duty as agreed [by the ulema]. Nothing is more sacred than belief
except repulsing an enemy who is attacking religion and life."
On that basis, and in compliance with God's order, we issue the following
fatwa to all Muslims:
The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies -- civilians and
military -- is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any
country in which it is possible to do it [EMPHASIS ADDED], in order to
liberate the al-Aqsa Mosque and the holy mosque [Mecca] from their grip, and
in order for their armies to move out of all the lands of Islam, defeated
and unable to threaten any Muslim. This is in accordance with the words of
Almighty God, "and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all
together," and "fight them until there is no more tumult or oppression, and
there prevail justice and faith in God."
This is in addition to the words of Almighty God: "And why should ye not
fight in the cause of God and of those who, being weak, are ill-treated (and
oppressed)? -- 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 help!'"