*This article is not written by me but a guest blogger who wishes to remain anonymous. A first guest-written piece and an interesting, insightful perspective!*
Exponents of the term “Islamism” most commonly describe Islamism along the lines of “ohhh it’s just a warped interpretation of Islam that is about politics and nothing inherently to do with the religion of Islam” but there is no distinction at all made in Islamic doctrines between “Islam” and “Islamism” as being just a political interpretation of Islam that is not essential to Islam. Most crucially Mohammed didn’t describe himself as an “Islamist” and according to Islamic sources themselves he was the political/militant leader of the whole of the Arab peninsula by the end of his life.
So we see today Muslims who today desire to emulate Mohammed’s political and military legacy are erroneously misbranded “Islamists” by most people. The archetype “Islamist”Mohammed is (as you are probably aware of) the same person who is the founder of Islam and himself regarded his political and militant accomplishments as Islam and implementing Allah’s will then, yet embarrassingly some(including academics) categorise “Islamism” as something completely separate from mainstream Islam or what they regard as “True Islam”.
A lot of non Muslims and even some who call themselves Muslim use the term “Islamism” because they are afraid of being branded as Islamaphobes or Racists by Muslims and Guardian readers, yet despite going out of their way to mollify Muslims by using the term “Islamism” when criticising the negative effects of Islam they are still condemned as “Islamaphobes” and “racists”, so it has to be asked what purpose does it serve to continue this disingenuous expediency?
The narrative that Islamism is just a “distorted political/militant ideology that is separate from the true Islam” actually impedes addressing the doctrines of Islam used by fundamentalist Muslims. It’s perilous to not to precisely discern nefarious ideologies as it leads to them not being tackled holistically and any level of evasiveness in analysing the enemy’s ideology allows them to get away with even more iniquity than they could otherwise. To inoculate a dangerous strain of a virus, it must firstly be correctly diagnosed then it can be given the appropriate vaccination required to eliminate it as best as possible. Mollycoddling how Islam has been put into practise only helps those who desire to follow Islam thoroughly and seriously in the format it has expressed itself almost in its entirety since its inception when and where it has and had authority and governance.
There are thick books written about the political and militant components of Islam within Islamic doctrines, but here I will exhibit it briefly. The Verse known as the verse of the Istikhlaf (http://quran.com/24/55) elucidates the Islamic basis for a Caliphate(A Political Entity led by an Islamic leader) for the believers. This verse of (http://quran.com/4/59) digresses how political discourse amongst authority should refer to Allah and his messenger. There are countless verses validating conditional militancy against non-believers. This specific verse is the only verse (http://quran.com/9/29) that instructs an unconditional order to kill.
Being forthright is a virtue and it’s candour to call the Muslims who don’t for whatever reason bother following the political/militant aspects of Islamic doctrines as “apolitical Muslims” or “selective Muslims”. Putting it frankly there is no “Islamism”, the actions and views of those categorised as Islamists has always been part of normative/orthodox Islam unless you consider 1300 years of Militant/Political entities of Islamic Empires as mythology or folk tales that are as fictitious as the stories of Ali Baba and the 40 thieves.