I guess I should begin by explaining why I have written this piece. Following the Chapel Hill shooting, I was named as an inspirational accomplice to this horrendous crime. The plagiarizing “journalist” in question, named me, along with other “New Atheist” authors as having inspired Hick’s horrible crime, and to support his fallacious and libellous assertion, he cited a tweet of mine which read, ‘ISIS is Islam.’  Before this incident, this atheist “journalist” and I had enjoyed some civil disagreements over how to approach the issue of religious criticism, particularly with regards to Islam, but given that he was my former publisher, I paid him the respect of not raising the issue of his proclivity to plagiarize the works of other authors.  As I have two young children who will one day grow up to read that irresponsible and libellous statement, that I was partially to blame for the massacre of those innocent Muslims in America, I took his irresponsible and heartless accusation to heart. As well as releasing a statement to CNN , I wanted to clarify what I meant when I said, ISIS is Islam.
Firstly, what I didn’t intend to convey with my statement was that all Muslims are terrorists. Most Muslims aren’t violent terrorists for the same reason that most Jews don’t stone disobedient sons, or murder people for collecting sticks on the Sabbath, despite the unequivocal doctrines of their religions that make such barbarism a religious requirement.
So, what did I mean?
If one examines the central doctrines of Islam, one will easily find justification for many of the horrendous crimes committed by ISIS; from beheading infidels, amputating the hands of thieves, raping female captives, looting in the name of Allah, destroying non-Muslim literature and works of art, and so on. Needless to say, if you can locate such crimes in the core doctrines, texts and practices of Islam, which I will show that you can, then you can’t say that ISIS are un-Islamic, because such scrupulous adherence to scripture represents the perfection of Islam.
Following ISIS’ beheading of Herve Gourdel in Algeria, thousands of French Muslims protested against this cruel and cowardly act. Anti-ISIS hashtags began to trend on twitter (#NotInMyName) and the French Council of the Muslim Faith released the following statement:
“This gathering is the strong and vibrant expression of our desire for national unity and of our unwavering will to live together” 
As sincere as these protests and this peaceful statement were, they contradict some of the core doctrines of Islam.
They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in the way of Allah (From what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks. Qur’an 4:89
Standing in opposition to the noble sentiments expressed by the French Council of the Muslim Faith, Dr. Ahmad Abu Halabiya enunciated the correct Quranic position on befriending non-Muslims, saying:
“Allah the almighty has called upon us not to ally with the Jews or the Christians, not to like them, not to become their partners, not to support them, and not to sign agreements with them. And he who does that is one of them, as Allah said: ‘0 you who believe, do not take the Jews and the Christians as allies, for they are allies of one another. Who from among you takes them as allies will indeed be one of them’. .. Have no mercy on the Jews, no matter where they are, in any country. Fight them, wherever you are. Wherever you meet them, kill them.” 
Before illustrating the scripturally accurate conduct of ISIS, I should point out that this Frenchman, Herve Gourdel, was an infidel (non-Muslim).
So, what does the Qur’an teach in this regard?
Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not. Qur’an 2:216
Fight in the way of Allah, and know that Allah is Hearer, Knower. Qur’an 2:244
To allay any concerns that I have misconstrued or mischievously misrepresented these verses, let’s turn to the one place where we can discover what fighting in the way of Allah entails, the Qur’an.
Surely Allah has bought of the believers their persons and their property for this, that they shall have the garden; they fight in the way of Allah, so they slay and are slain. Qur’an 9:111
It is clear that fighting in the way of Allah means physically fighting, killing and being killed, and this is just one of the ways in which the criminals of ISIS are truer to the Qur’an than the peaceful majority of the 1.6 billion Muslims living on the earth today.
Why does the Qur’an encourage Muslims to fight non-Muslims? Do these violent exhortations exclusively relate to given historical circumstances, or is there an everlasting religious reason at the root of these calls to Jihad?
The second chapter of the Qur’an sets out the central purpose for fighting infidels, and it is preceded by the following verse:
Slay them wherever you may catch them and expel them from the place from which they expelled you. The sin of disbelief in God (fitnah) is greater than committing murder. Do not fight them in the vicinity of the Sacred Mosque in Mecca unless they start to fight. Then slay them for it is the recompense that the disbelievers deserve. Qur’an 2:191
Let’s perform a quick exegesis of this verse before moving on to look at the central reason for fighting infidels.
Slay them (non-Muslim pagans) wherever you may catch them and expel them from the place from which they expelled you – The opening part of the verse is speaking about the pagans who, according to Muslim historians, were oppressing the Muslim community in Mecca.  It is clear that this part of the verse commands Muslims to slay the disbelievers, not defensively, but offensively, wherever they may catch them. The second part of this sentence sets up an additional requirement for the wanton slaughter of infidels, namely, to expel the pagans from the places that these pagans had previously expelled the Muslims. The aggression in this part of the sentence is defensive, but it is separate from, and in addition to, the offensive strategy encouraged in the first part of the sentence.
The sin of disbelief in God (fitnah) is greater than committing murder – This statement underscores the ethos of the central doctrines of Islam, i.e. that disbelief in Allah is a greater crime than murdering people in “his” name. Not only does such a teaching thwart the natural moral compass of the believer, who would, absent this belief, probably not be inclined to kill people for believing things that they did not, or conversely, for disbelieving things that they believed, but it underscores the precise ethos of ISIS.
Do not fight them in the vicinity of the Sacred Mosque in Mecca unless they start to fight – Here is the aspect of this verse that apologists employ to argue that; a) Muslims are only permitted to fight in self-defence, and b) that this verse is restricted to a specific historical context.
Firstly, note that this defensive strategy is exclusively restricted to fighting in the holy places in Mecca, and doesn’t extend to other places (wherever you may catch them). Nor does this part of the verse infringe upon the idea that disbelief in Allah is worse than murder. Finally, the historical context argument is entirely vacuous and let me draw upon a relevant analogy to explain why.
The Qur’an is allegedly the perfect word of the perfect god, Allah. It is believed to be completely infused with his everlasting advice to Muslims, and further, it is believed to be applicable in its entirety. Thus, these tales perform a similar function to various charter myths found in all religions; they justify rites, rituals and certain codes of conduct and in this way, they act in the same way as legal precedents. Arguing that the historical context restricts the application of violent proclamations prescribed in the Qur’an is akin to arguing that the landmark case of Roe v. Wade (1973) is irrelevant to legal issues surrounding abortion and women’s rights in 2015.
Then slay them for it is the recompense that the disbelievers deserve – Then (if the pagans fight you at the holy places in Mecca) is obviously defensive, but it only applies to fighting in the holy places, and the additional statement, for it is the recompense that the disbelievers deserve reinforces the previous statement, ‘disbelief in God is worse than murder.’
Now that we have that little exegesis out of the way, let’s look at the core reason why Muslims are commanded to fight and kill infidels. Verse 2:193 clarifies the central justification for killing infidels.
Fight them (non-Muslim pagans) until there will be no disbelief in God [fitnah] and until God’s [Allah’s] religion [Islam] will become dominant. If they change their behaviour, there would be no hostility against anyone except the unjust. Qur’an 2:193
The central purpose for fighting non-Muslims is to spread the religion of Islam until it dominates all other faiths and completely eradicates non-belief. But what about the final sentence, if they change their behaviour, there would be no hostility against anyone except the unjust? What behaviour? Was it the oppression of Muslims in Mecca or the refusal to submit to Islam? Well, to answer this question we need only refer to the previous verse (2:191), that commands Muslims to slay them (non-Muslims) wherever you find them, that disbelief in Allah is worse than murder, and that death is the recompense for those that disbelieve, for such recompense, we may logically conclude, is surely only applicable for the bad behaviour of disbelief, and of practicing faiths other than Islam; hence, those that perform this behaviour are to be slain wherever they are found. In addition, we must ask, how does the Qur’an distinguish between those who are just and those who are unjust? The Qur’an permits the slaughtering of the unjust, but can one be just and still stubbornly refuse to acknowledge the alleged supremacy of Allah and his mightiest prophet?
And who is more unjust than he who forbids that in places for the worship of Allah, Allah’s name should be celebrated?-whose zeal is [in fact] to ruin them? It was not fitting that such should themselves enter them except in fear. For them there is nothing but disgrace in this world, and in the world to come, an exceeding torment. Qur’an 2:114
Who is more unjust than those who conceal the testimony they have from Allah? But Allah is not unmindful of what ye do! Qur’an 2:140
Thus was he confounded who [in arrogance] rejected faith. Nor doth Allah Give guidance to a unjust people [those who reject Islam]. Qur’an 2:258
If you read through the Qur’an, you’ll see that the author(s) makes it abundantly clear that there is no such thing as a just non-Muslim, so when chapter 2 verse 193 says; no hostility against anyone except the unjust, it is setting forth an edict that encourages, nay prescribes, an everlasting jihad against all those who reject Islam.
Peaceful Verses Versus Violent Verses & Jihad
There are many verses within the Qur’an that encourage violence against non-Muslims. The most popular violent verse is dubbed the ‘verse of the sword.’  There is ongoing debate over whether these violent verses, which were added to the Qur’an later on, as the alleged angry afterthoughts of an all-knowing Allah, abrogate [nullify] the peaceful verses, or whether they are subordinate to their more peaceful predecessors. I’ll return to this issue, but needless to say, ISIS, along with the majority of Islamic states take the view that religious infidelity, blasphemy and apostasy should all be regulated by sword-like verses, and to prove this we need only look at the barbaric and petulant penal codes and general jurisprudence in countries like Pakistan, which prescribes the death penalty for blasphemy; Saudi Arabia, the literal Mecca of Islam, an Islamic state that murders homosexuals, apostates and “witches,” as well as committing other grisly human rights violations in accordance with violent verses from the Qur’an and the cruel exhortations from the secondary pillar of Islam, the Hadith. 
The verse of the sword is found in Surah (chapter) Nine, and it reads as follows:
And when the sacred months have passed, then kill the polytheists [unbelievers/idolaters] wherever you find them and capture them and besiege them and sit in wait for them at every place of ambush. But if they should repent (convert to Islam), establish prayer, and give zakah (compulsory payment of money), let them go on their way. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful. Qur’an 9:5
In a bid to defend this and other equally violent verses, some Muslim and Western apologists claim that it is specific to a certain historical context, one that no longer applies today. However, notwithstanding the obvious precedence that such verses establish, the historical context and its application over the centuries shed some very disturbing light on these inhumane teachings. If one examines this verse in its broader Qur’anic context, and couples such an examination with a thorough investigation of the historical context in question, it becomes clear that such verses were intended to be a call to violent Jihad against all non-Muslims, past and present. 
Defenders of Islam often argue that Jihad is a purely spiritual struggle against “evil,” and to support this proposition they rely on verses like the following:
O ye who believe! Take not for protectors your fathers and your brothers if they love infidelity above Faith: if any of you do so, they do wrong.Say: If it be that your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your mates, oryour kindred; the wealth that ye have gained; the commerce in which ye fear adecline: or the dwellings in which ye delight – are dearer to you than Allah, orHis Messenger, or the striving [jihad] in His cause; then wait until Allah brings aboutHis decision: and Allah guides not the rebellious. Qur’an 9:23-24
The jihad mentioned above has little to do with holy war; instead, it describes the internal struggle to remain faithful to Islam in the face of familial ties with infidels. As an aside, this divisive conversion and faith-maintenance strategy also appears in the Christian gospels, with “Jesus” having allegedly said:
If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, andbrethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:26
These “revelations” would have been extremely important in the early stages of the religion, for if only a son or a daughter belonged to the religion, which would have been quite common in its formative years, they would have been compelled by such manipulative teachings to reject their families and embrace the fledgling religion.
There are numerous other verses in the Qur’an that accommodate a peaceful interpretation of Jihad, but to suggest that they supersede the more violent ones, is to ignore a very large body of Islamic scholarship on Jihad,  not to mention the historical context provided by their application over the centuries.
Proponents of a purely peaceful Jihad fail to highlight, either out of ignorance or ‘taqiyya’ (deceit in defence of the faith),  that the concept of Jihad is multifaceted. I will address the source of this complexity in a moment, however, if Jihad were merely a spiritual struggle and not, at least in one regard, a violent call to arms in the name of Allah, how would one go about explaining the fact that women, children and the elderly are all excused from performing Jihad? (See Qur’an 9:46)
In classical Islamic law, Jihad, which loosely translates as ‘struggle,’ described (and still describes) the struggle of Muslims, whose duty it is to wage war against all those who have yet to submit to their religion. 
Discussing Jihad in the Medinan phase of Muhammad’s conquests, Chase F. Robinson of Cambridge University says:
Jihad (the struggle on behalf of God, which in this context meant nothing more or less than fighting on His behalf) was at the centre of Muhammad’s programme. 
Further, discussing the conquests of Mahmud of Ghazni, the Muslim who conquered the eastern lands of Iran and the north-western Indian sub-continent in the tenth and eleventh centuries, Robinson says:
Like his older contemporary in al Andalus, al Mansur ibn Abı Amir, he used the jihad as a way to legitimise political authority acquired by brute force. 
Returning to the Qur’an, Surah 4 Ayat (verse) 95 says that those who go to war in the name of Allah (perform Jihad) will be rewarded over and above those who stay at home and remain peaceful. The verse reads:
Not equal are those believers who sit (at home) and receive no hurt, and those who strive and fight in the cause of Allah with their goods and their persons. Allah hath granted a grade higher to those who strive and fight with their goods and persons than to those who sit (at home). Unto all (in Faith)(614) Hath Allah promised good: But those who strive and fight Hath He distinguished above those who sit (at home) by a special reward… Qur’an 4:95
This verse was allegedly reiterated by Muhammad:
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “The person who participates in (Holy battles) in Allah’s cause and nothing compels him to do so except belief in Allah and His Apostles, will be recompensed by Allah either with a reward, or booty (if he survives) or will be admitted to Paradise (if he is killed in the battle as a martyr). Had I not found it difficult for my followers, then I would not remain behind any sariya (military unit) going for Jihad and I would have loved to be martyred in Allah’s cause and then made Alive, and then martyred and then made alive, and then again martyred in His cause.” Sahih al-Bukhari 2:1:35
Performing a scholarly exegesis on Surah 4 Ayat 95, the Muslim scholar responsible for compiling ‘The Meaning of the Noble Qur’an,’ says:
In a time of jihad, when people give their all, and even their lives, for the common cause, they must be accounted more glorious than those who sit at home, even though they have goodwill to the cause and carry out minor duties in aid. The special reward of such self-sacrifice is high spiritual rank, and special forgiveness and mercy, as proceeding from the direct approbation and love of Allah. 
Further, one of the most respected and renowned Islamic scholars, Ismail Ibn Kathir, commented on the obligatory nature of Jihad in the following words:
In this Ayah, Allah made it obligatory for the Muslims to fight in Jihad against the evil of the enemy who transgress against Islam. Az-Zuhri said, “Jihad is required from every person, whether he actually joins the fighting or remains behind. Whoever remains behind is required to give support, if support is warranted; to provide aid, if aid is needed; and to march forth, if he is commanded to do so. 
Discussing jihad in relation to the exclusivist claims to truth made in the Qur’an, the hadith, and reiterated by the majority of Muslim scholarship, and Islamic history, the scholars responsible for compiling the Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an note:
From the standpoint of political organisation, exclusivist claims were effective in providing a legitimating and integrative discourse that could furnish members of the community with a reliable means to assert their collective and political identity. In addition, the newly fostered socio-political identity provided an effective basis for aggression and for exploitation of those who did not share this sense of solidarity with the dominant community of believers. Rationalisation of the aggression, characterised in religious terms as a ‘holy war’ (jihad), made it possible for the more powerful community to impose its hegemony over the ‘infidels’ by use of force in the name of some sacred authority. 
Despite the obvious violence inherent in the concept of Jihad and the violent verses it rests upon, apologists, as sincere as their misguided misapplications of scripture may well be, point to more peaceful verses in the Qur’an in order to circumvent valid criticism of Islam.
Here are some of the more peaceful verses:
Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error:whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah hath grasped the most trustworthyhand-hold, that never breaks. And Allah heareth and knoweth all things. Qur’an 2:256
- Say: O ye that reject Faith!
- I worship not that which ye worship,
- Nor will ye worship that which I worship.
- And I will not worship that which ye have been wont to worship,
- Nor will ye worship that which I worship.
- To you be your Way, and to me mine. Qur’an 109:1-6
Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you, but do not transgresslimits; for Allah loveth not transgressors. Qur’an 2:190
Another peaceful verse in the Qur’an that encourages Muslims to forgo fighting and emigrate if faced with oppression and violence, reads:
When angels take the souls of those who die in sin against their souls, they say: “In what [plight] Were ye?” They reply: “Weak and oppressed Were we in the earth.” They say: “Was not the earth of Allah spacious enough for you to move yourselves away [From evil]?” Such men will find their abode in Hell – What an evil refuge! Qur’an 4:97
These and other equally noble verses from the Qur’an are sincerely adhered to by the majority of peaceful Muslims living today, however, as with Christians and members of most faiths, the average Muslim is woefully ignorant of the textual, theological and historical scholarship that dictate the correct application of such verses in relation to the more violent and intolerant ones.
Abrogation (Nas’kh) – War Verses Versus Peaceful Verses
There are clear contradictions between the noble and peaceful verses in the Qur’an and their more violent and dangerous counterparts. On the one hand, the Qur’an advocates tolerance and on the other, in exactly the same circumstances, it encourages violence. So how does one go about reconciling these contradictions? More importantly, for the correct application of scripture, how have the majority of Muslim scholars, for the majority of the history of Islam, gone about reconciling these contradictions?
To answer these questions we must first acquire some historical context. The alleged revelations compiled in the Qur’an are divided into two primary categories – Meccan and Medinan. They are divided in this way because Muhammad allegedly received his first revelations in Mecca, in somewhat peaceful circumstances, and he later received revelations in Medina, in the midst of war.  Naturally, the more peaceful chapters and verses generally fall under the Meccan category, while the violent ones belong to the later Medinan class. 
The majority opinion regarding which category of verses apply today has been fixed for centuries, justified by the Qur’an, and clearly demonstrated by the violent propagation of the Islamic religion over the centuries.
None of Our revelations do We [Allah] abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar: Knowest thou not that Allah Hath power over all things? Qur’an 2:106
When We substitute one revelation for another,- and Allah knows best what
He reveals [in stages]- they say, “Thou art but a forger”: but most of them understand not. Qur’an 16:101
These verses form the foundation of the Islamic doctrine of Nas’kh (abrogation) and it is of central importance to the application of violent verses over non-violent ones.
With regards to the abrogation of peaceful Meccan verses and the supremacy of the violent verse of the sword (Qur’an 9:5), the Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an says:
An interesting instance of such categorisation is the verse to which Ibn al-Jawz refers, ‘the verse of the sword’. This is the name given to Q 9:5, a verse that begins, ‘And when the sacred months have passed, kill the idolators wherever you find them . . .’ According to one of the standard treatises on this topic, Q 9:5 abrogates at least 124 other [peaceful] verses, the last of which is Q 109:6 [To you be your Way, and to me mine.]. 
Further, in Robert Spencer’s Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (And the Crusades), he remarks on the mainstream Islamic scholarship on the issue of abrogation in the following words:
Tafsir al -JaIalayn, a commentary on the Qur’an by the respected imams Jalal al -Din Muhammad ibn Ahmad al -Mahalli (1389-1459} and Ja lal al -Din ‘Abd al-Rahman ibn Abi Bakr al-Suyuti (1445-1505), asserts that the ninth sura “was sent down when security was removed by the sword.”‘ Another mainstream and respected Qur’an commentator, Ismail bin `Amr bin Kathir al Dimashqi (1301-1372), known popularly as Ibn Kathir, declares that sura 9:5 “abrogated every agreement of peace between the Prophet and any idolater, every treaty, and every term…No idolater had any more treaty or promise of safety ever since Surah Bara’ah [the ninth sura] was revealed.” Ibn Juzayy (d. 1340), yet another Qur’an commentator whose works are still read in the Islamic world agrees: The Verse of the Sword’s purpose is “abrogating every peace treaty in the Qur’an. “” 
Thus, both the majority opinion amongst Muslim scholars and the history of Islam testify to the true relationship between peaceful verses and their violent substitutes. This frightening fact provides ISIS with Qur’anic justification for their vile beheadings and their violent jihad in general.
When your Lord revealed to the angels: I am with you, therefore make firm those who believe. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them. Qur’an 8:12
The Murderous Muhammad of the Hadith
ISIS isn’t only performing the violent practices encouraged by the Qur’an, but they are also bringing the violence in the secondary pillar of Islam to life. To provide you with some context, the hadith are a collection of manuscripts that are said to record the sayings and doings of Muhammad and his contemporaries. They are graded on a scale from least reliable to most reliable. The most reliable hadith are called Sahih (authentic/reliable) hadith and the two primary hadith in this regard are the Sahih al-Bukhari and the Sahih al-Muslim. These and other hadith provide historians and Muslims with a lot of biographic material on Muhammad, although it must be acknowledged that even the Sahih hadith are plagued with historical problems.  Notwithstanding these serious problems, the hadith are regarded as the secondary pillar of Islam, and as such, they are believed to be a wellspring of information about Islam’s founder. Another fact that must be understood when looking at ISIS’ conduct and comparing it to Muhammad’s behaviour in the hadith, is that there are numerous verses throughout the Qur’an that encourage Muslims to follow the example set by Muhammad.
The following verse is one such example:
Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern [of conduct] for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the Praise of Allah. Qur’an 33:21
Commenting on this verse, renowned Muslim scholar, Sayyid Maududi, says:
He [Muhammad] was always in the forefront to offer maximum sacrifices for the great objectives for which he was constantly asking others to make sacrifices. Therefore, whoever made a claim of being his follower should have followed the practical example set by the leader.
This is the meaning of the verse in the context here. But its words are general and there is no reason why it should be confined to these meanings only. Allah does not. say that only in this respect His Messenger’s life is a model for the Muslims to follow, but has regarded it as a model absolutely. Therefore, the verse demands that the Muslims should take the Holy Prophet’s life as a model for themselves in every affair of life and should mold their character and personality according to it. 
So, if Muslims are encouraged to follow Muhammad’s example “in every affair of life and should mold their character and personality according to it,” we must ask a very obvious question:
What example did Muhammad set for his followers?
According to one collection of hadith (Ishaq), when Muhammad returned from his raid on Ta’if, word spread that he had killed some of the men who had satirized and insulted him. The poets who were left spread in all directions (Ishaq:597).
Drawing upon this same collection of hadith:
Allah said, ‘A prophet must slaughter before collecting captives. A slaughtered enemy is driven from the land. Muhammad, you craved the desires of this world, its goods and the ransom captives would bring. But Allah desires killing them to manifest the religion.’ Ishaq:327
Another example of Muhammad’s conduct from this collection of hadith describes the assassination of a Jewish poet who had made critical remarks about Muhammad.
After hearing about this critic, Muhammad is recorded to have said, “Who will deal with this rascal for me?”
Following the call to assassinate Abu Afak, Salim b. Umayr, brother of B. Amr b. Auf, one of the “weepers”, went forth and killed him. Ishaq:675
Angered by the murder of Abu Afak, ‘Asma’ (daughter of) Bint Marwan, made insulting (accurate) remarks about Muhammad’s savagery and encouraged the non-Muslims to rebel against Muhammad’s medieval ISIS-like organization. For these acts of bravery she was murdered. The event is recorded in the following words:
When the apostle heard what she had said he said, “Who will rid me of Marwan’s daughter?” `Umayr b. `Adiy al-Khatmi who was with him heard him, and that very night he went to her house and killed her. In the morning he came to the apostle and told him what he had done and he [Muhammad] said, “You have helped God and His apostle, O `Umayr!” Ishaq:675
From the collection of hadith compiled by Muhammad Ibn Jarir al-Tabari, called al-Tabari, it is reported that Muhammad had a man tortured and killed for treasure. The account reads as follows:
Kinanah b. al-Rabi b. al-Huqyaq who had the treasure of B. Nadir was brought to the Messenger of God, who questioned him; but he denied knowing where it was. Then the messenger of God was brought a Jew who said to him, “I have seen Kinanah walk around this ruin every morning.” The Messenger of God said to Kinanah: “What do you say? If we find it in your possession, I will kill you.” “All right,” he answered. The Messenger of God commanded that the ruin should be dug up, and some of the treasure was extracted from it. Then he asked him for the rest of it. Kinanah refused to surrender it; so the Messenger of God gave orders concerning him to al-Zubayr b. al-‘Awwam, saying, “torture him until you root out what he has.” Al-Zubayr kept twirling his firestick in his breast until Kinanah almost expired; then the Messenger of God gave him to Muhammad b. Maslamah, who beheaded him to avenge his brother Mahmud b. Maslamah.” al-Tabari Vol. 8, p. 123.
Turning now to the Sahih Bukhari, remembering that Sahih hadiths are considered the most reliable accounts of Muhammad, we read:
“Eight persons from the tribe of ‘Ukl came to Allah’s Apostle and gave the Pledge of allegiance for Islam (became Muslim). The climate of the place (Medina) did not suit them, so they became sick and complained about that to Allah’s Apostle. He said (to them), “Won’t you go out with the shepherd of our camels and drink of the camels’ milk and urine (as medicine)?” They said, “Yes.” So they went out and drank the camels’ milk and urine, and after they became healthy, they killed the shepherd of Allah’s Apostle and took away all the camels. This news reached Allah’s Apostle , so he sent (men) to follow their traces and they were captured and brought (to the Prophet). He then ordered to cut their hands and feet, and their eyes were branded with heated pieces of iron, and then he threw them in the sun till they died.” I said, “What can be worse than what those people did? They deserted Islam, committed murder and theft.”… Sahih al-Bukhari 9:83:37
Muhammad ordered the deaths of numerous people who had crossed him and his religion, whether the victim’s crimes were serious or trivial, Muhammad had many people assassinated and executed. Although I have only given a few examples, if you read the various hadith, you’ll find a pattern of insane barbarism committed at the behest of this delusional madman. Allow me to offer one final example of Muhammad’s murderous rampage.
In this shocking account, Muhammad raped a 17-year-old Jewish girl on the same day that he had her family, including her newly-wedded husband mentioned above (Kinanah b. al-Rabi b. al-Huqyaq), tortured and beheaded. The Sahih al-Bukhari reports:
When he entered the town, he said, ‘Allahu Akbar! Khaibar is ruined…We conquered Khaibar, took the captives, and the booty was collected. Dihya came and said, ‘O Allah’s Prophet! Give me a slave girl from the captives.’ The Prophet said, ‘Go and take any slave girl.’ He took Safiya bint Huyai. A man came to the Prophet and said, ‘O Allah’s Apostles! You gave Safiya bint Huyai to Dihya and she is the chief mistress of the tribes of Quraidha and An−Nadir and she befits none but you.’ So the Prophet said, ‘Bring him along with her.’ So Dihya came with her and when the Prophet saw her, he said to Dihya, ‘Take any slave girl other than her from the captives.’ Anas added: The Prophet then manumitted her and married her.” Sahih al-Bukhari 1:367
The Bukhari continues this story in volume five, reporting:
We arrived at Khaibar, and when Allah helped His Apostle to open the fort, the beauty of Safiya bint Huyai bin Akhtaq whose husband had been killed while she was a bride, was mentioned to Allah’s Apostle. The Prophet selected her for himself, and set out with her, and when we reached a place called Sidd−as−Sahba,’ Safiya became clean from her menses then Allah’s Apostle married her. Sahih al-Bukhari 5:522
Rape and brutality toward women have become hallmarks of ISIS’ Islamic jihad. One of the most famous incidents in recent times involved a young Yazidi girl who had been forced into sex slavery, or as the Qur’an would put it, placed within the reach of the right hand of her captors. On one occasion, it is alleged that this girl managed to get a phone call out to rebel fighters and in a BBC report, Karam reported on the contents of her call, in which she was alleged to have said:
“If you know where we are please bomb us…There is no life after this. I’m going to kill myself anyway – others have killed themselves this morning…I’ve been raped 30 times and it’s not even lunchtime. I can’t go to the toilet. Please bomb us.” 
Other equally shocking sexual crimes have been reported by major News outlets, from the raping of girls as young as six, to the rape and abduction of women as “spoils of war.” 
To understand how ISIS’ heinous mistreatment of women is completely compatible with the core doctrines of Islam, you must first understand that marriage in the Qur’an is a very misogynistic institution and sadly, rape is an acceptable part of this patriarchal parcel for male members of the faith. Again, I must stress that I am not saying that most Muslim marriages are plagued with misogyny, but that the doctrines of Islam do not afford women the general compassion displayed by loving Muslim husbands, who cherry pick from the Qur’an and hadith.
Here are some examples from the Qur’an:
Men are the managers of the affairs of women for that God has preffered in bounty one of them (men) over the another (women), and for that they expended of their (men’s) property. Righteous women are therefore obedient, guarding the secret for God’s guarding. And those that you fear may be rebellious admonish; banish them to their couches, and beat them. If they then obey you, look not for any way against them; God is All-high, All-great. Qur’an 4:34
Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how ye will; but do some good act for your souls beforehand; and fear Allah. And know that ye are to meet Him (in the Hereafter), and give (these) good tidings to those who believe. Qur’an 2:223
If ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans, Marry women of your choice, Two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one, or (a captive) that your right hands possess [captives in Jihad]. Qur’an 4:3
Who abstain from sex, except with those joined to them in the marriage bond, or (the captives) whom their right hands possess– for (in their case) they are free from blame… Qur’an 23:5-6
The idea that men are permitted to force their wives to obey them, to possess slave girls, and do with them as they please, is a terrifyingly misogynistic and barbaric idea indeed. Most Muslim men don’t take advantage of these allowances, but unfortunately, many do – for not only does the Qur’an permit men to rape their wives and their sex-slaves, but the “perfect example of righteousness,” Muhammad, was also reported to have set such an example. We saw above that Muhammad had no problem accepting women as rewards for murder, but what was his philosophical position on raping captives?
Rape & Coitus Interruptus (Withdrawal at the point of ejaculation)
From the Sahih Bukhari we read:
Narrated Ibn Muhairiz: I entered the Mosque and saw Abu Said Al-Khudri and sat beside him and asked him about Al-Azl (i.e. coitus interruptus). Abu Said said, “We went out with Allah’s Apostle for the Ghazwa of Banu Al-Mustaliq and we received captives from among the Arab captives and we desired women and celibacy became hard on us and we loved to do coitus interruptus. So when we intended to do coitus interrupt us, we said, ‘How can we do coitus interruptus before asking Allah’s Apostle who is present among us?” We asked (him) about it and he said, ‘It is better for you not to do so, for if any soul (till the Day of Resurrection) is predestined to exist, it will exist.” Sahih al-Bukhari 5:59:459
Raping Married Non-Muslims
The Sahih al-Muslim tells the story of Muhammad receiving his “revelation” regarding the raping of married female captives:
Abu Sa’id al-Khudri (Allah her pleased with him) reported that at the Battle of Hanain Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) sent an army to Autas and encountered the enemy and fought with them. Having overcome them and taken them captives, the Companions of Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) seemed to refrain from having intercourse with captive women because of their husbands being polytheists. Then Allah, Most High, sent down regarding that:” And women already married, except those whom your right hands possess (captives and slave-girls)” (i. e. they were lawful for them when their ‘Idda period came to an end). Sahih al-Muslim 8:34:32
Rape, Ransom & Coitus Interruptus
Besieged with anxiety over a moral quandary, Muhammad’s medieval mercenaries came to him with a question. The story is as follows:
“Abu Sirma said to Abu Sa’id al Khadri (Allah he pleased with him): 0 Abu Sa’id, did you hear Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) mentioning al-‘azl? He said: Yes, and added: We went out with Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) on the expedition to the Bi’l-Mustaliq and took captive some excellent Arab women; and we desired them, for we were suffering from the absence of our wives, (but at the same time) we also desired ransom for them. So we decided to have sexual intercourse with them but by observing ‘azl (Interruptus Coitus – Withdrawing the male sexual organ before emission of semen to avoid-conception). But we said: We are doing an act whereas Allah’s Messenger is amongst us; why not ask him? So we asked Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him), and he said: It does not matter if you do not do it, for every soul that is to be born up to the Day of Resurrection will be born.” Sahih al-Muslim 8:3371
So, given not only Muhammad’s conduct, but his teachings on rape, can one really argue that ISIS is acting un-Islamic when they repeatedly rape those whom their right hands possess? I don’t think so.
As a final note, and to circumvent any mischievous apologies, rape isn’t dealt with at all in the Qur’an, but the Sahih al-Bukhari does make it a crime for a male slave to rape female “war booty,” but it doesn’t extend this prohibition to free Muslim men (Sahih al-Bukhari 1985, 9, 67).
Expelling Non-Muslims from Muslim Lands
ISIS is becoming renowned for their expulsion of members of competing faiths, particularly Jews and Christians.
In 2014, Aljazeera reported on the expulsion of Christians from Mosul in Iraq, saying:
Most Christian families have now fled Iraq’s second largest city, Mosul. The most recent exodus began on June 10 with the city’s takeover by the armed group known as the Islamic State group. Fears were exacerbated when two nuns and three orphans were kidnapped by the group’s supporters.
Though they were released after 17 days, the displacement further accelerated on July 19 with the announcement that Christians had the choice to either convert to Islam, pay a religious tax, leave, or face death.
Other religious minorities have been similarly targeted for persecution and expulsion. According to the United Nations, members of the Yazidi and Shabak communities who refused to convert or leave were sentenced to death by religious courts and executed. 
Following the expulsion of Iraqi Christians, The International Union of Muslim Scholars released the following statement on their website:
“The International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) condemns the forced expulsion of the Christian brothers of Iraq from their homes, cities and provinces…These are acts that violate Islamic laws, Islamic conscience and leave but a negative image of Islam and Muslims.” 
Have these scholars not read any of the hadith? Are they ignorant of the example set by the most perfect Muslim, Muhammad? Do they not know that Muhammad, although failing to expel the Jews and Christians from the Arabian Peninsula, desired nothing less than the complete and thorough expulsion of all who failed to share his narcissistic beliefs? Has it slipped their notice that Muhammad extracted Jizya (forced tax on non-Muslims) from all of the non-Muslims he was able to subjugate?
If they refuse to accept Islam, demand from them the Jizya. If they agree to pay, accept it from them and hold off your hands. If they refuse to pay the tax, seek Allah’s help and fight them. Sahih al-Muslim 19:4294
Regarding Muhammad’s desire to expel non-Muslims from Muslim lands, the Sahih Muslim reports:
It has been narrated by ‘Umar b. al−Khattib that he heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) say: I will expel the Jews and Christians from the Arabian Peninsula and will not leave any but Muslim. Sahih al-Muslim 19:4366
Although Muhammad was unsuccessful in his bigoted endeavour, Muhammad’s father-in-law, Umar ibn al-Khattab, was alleged to have succeeded after the death of Muhammad. The Sahih Bukhari says:
Narrated Ibn `Umar: `Umar expelled the Jews and the Christians from Hijaz. When Allah’s Apostle had conquered Khaibar, he wanted to expel the Jews from it as its land became the property of Allah, His Apostle, and the Muslims. Allah’s Apostle intended to expel the Jews but they requested him to let them stay there on the condition that they would do the labor and get half of the fruits. Allah’s Apostle told them, “We will let you stay on thus condition, as long as we wish.” So, they (i.e. Jews) kept on living there until `Umar forced them to go towards Taima’ and Ariha’. Sahih al-Bukhari 3:531
ISIS’ Looting Versus Muhammad’s Caravan Raids (Ghazu)
In a 2014 article in The New Yorker, David Kohn reported:
In Iraq, looting has been a serious problem for parts of the past decade. During a particularly violent period roughly between 2003 and 2006, organized looters took advantage of the chaos to pilfer many [archaeological] sites, especially ones in southern Iraq. But, according to Hanson, who is cataloguing the looting in both countries, most of the earlier activity was hand-digging rather than the bulldozing she’s seen from ISIS. 
As well as looting archaeological sites, collecting large ransoms from the families of captives, enforcing Islamic jizya on non-Muslims and non-Sunni Muslims, ISIS is also recreating the old caravan raids [ghazu] of Muhammad’s time.
In 2014, ISIS raided a bank in Mosul, and according to an NBC report:
ISIS now pays its fighters — and bureaucrats — from money it stole from the Central Bank of Iraq when its fighters overran Mosul and took control of the local branch last June. Just after the raid, the governor of Nineveh Province told the New York Times that ISIS fighters emptied the vaults in all the other banks in town as well, and estimated the total take at $400 million. 
Surely theft and robbery are un-Islamic acts, right? No. As mentioned above, these were the very means by which Muhammad funded the foundations of the Islamic religion – that is to say, Islam was built upon the piracy and theft we see being performed by ISIS.
In one of the earliest surviving biographies of Muhammad (7th century), on Muhammad’s first raid (Al-Is Ghazu), he was reported to have said:
Go forth against this caravan; it may be that Allah will grant you plunder. 
Caravan raids were a traditional way of life for pre-Islamic and later Islamic Arabians, and this way of life was preserved in both the primary and secondary pillars of Islam. In fact, the Qur’an dedicates an entire chapter to the issue (Surah 8 – Anfal or The Spoils of War). Here are some specific examples from both the Qur’an and the hadith that demonstrate the undeniable fact that ISIS’ raids and their looting are in complete harmony with the central doctrines of Islam:
They ask thee concerning [things taken as] spoils of war. Say: “[such] spoils are at the disposal of Allah and the Messenger: So fear Allah, and keep straight the relations between yourselves: Obey Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe.” Qur’an 8:1
And know that out of all the booty that ye may acquire [in war], a fifth share is assigned to Allah,- and to the Messenger, and to near relatives, orphans, the needy, and the wayfarer.. Qur’an 8:40
But [now] enjoy what ye took in war, lawful and good: but fear Allah: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. Qur’an 8:69
I could continue to cite the plethora of verses that encourage such criminal behaviour, but time and space are not on my side. Let’s now turn to the hadith.
As cited above with regards to Jihad, the Sahih Bukhari quoted Muhammad as saying:
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “The person who participates in (Holy battles) in Allah’s cause and nothing compels him to do so except belief in Allah and His Apostles, will be recompensed by Allah either with a reward, or booty (if he survives) or will be admitted to Paradise (if he is killed in the battle as a martyr). Sahih al-Bukhari 2:1:35
Such promises of both temporal and ethereal reward provided compelling incentives to loot and steal on behalf of the faith, and it is no different with the modern members of ISIS.
To preserve what precious space I have left, I will offer just one final example, but I have chosen it because it is central to the concept of believing in Allah alone, as the one true god. The example reads as follows:
He [Muhammad] ordered them to believe in Allah Alone and asked them, “Do you know what is meant by believing in Allah Alone?” They replied, “Allah and His Apostle know better.” Thereupon the Prophet said, “It means:
- To testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and Muhammad is Allah’s Apostle.
- To offer prayers perfectly
- To pay the Zakat (obligatory charity)
- To observe fast during the month of Ramadan.
- And to pay Al−Khumus (one fifth of the booty to be given in Allah’s Cause). Sahih al-Bukhari 2:1:50
It is obvious to anyone who has actually read the Qur’an and the various hadith, that looting and stealing is a pivotal part of the central doctrines of Islam, and for this reason, it is more than fair to argue that ISIS are complying with the central teachings of Islam in this regard.
Destruction of Non-Muslim Libraries, Landmarks and Artefacts
The Prophet entered Mecca and (at that time) there were three hundred−and−sixty idols around the Ka`ba. He started stabbing the idols with a stick he had in his hand and reciting: “Truth (Islam) has come and Falsehood (disbelief) has vanished.” Sahih al-Bukhari 29:3:658
This act of destruction was to be the precedent upon which the Islamic practice of destroying non-Muslim literature, artefacts, statues and sites would rest. Of course, not all non-Muslim literature was condemned to flames, for we have records that tell us that the literature of Aristotle, for example, was quite popular amongst early Muslim scholars.  Notwithstanding the few exceptions, the destruction of libraries, temples and artefacts became common practice for Muslim conquerors.
If we were forced to choose a single Islamic terrorist from history with whom we could compare the atrocious behaviour of ISIS, it would have to be Mahmud of Ghazni. This forefather of these modern soldiers of the religion of peace butchered his way across the Indian subcontinent and in the process, he not only plundered vast amounts of wealth from extravagant Hindu temples, but he destroyed tomes of valuable literature.  Continuing in the footsteps of his deranged father, Abu Mansur Sabuktigin, who had employed jihad as a means to either expel or convert every last Hindu in the region, Mahmud was endowed with the honorific title of al-ghazi (Allah’s Warrior) and he became the first Sultan of the Islamic religion.  Reading the chronicles of his brutal yet halal conduct in India is like picking up a newspaper and reading about the atrocities committed by ISIS.
Mahmud wasn’t the only Muslim conqueror to have destroyed libraries and literature that was antithetical to his misanthropic religion, for it was, as mentioned, quite a common crime amongst those who cherished the delusions harboured by Muhammad.
The Libraries of Rayy , Ghazna , Nishapur , Nalanda  and Pol i Khomri , were all destroyed and pillaged by Muslim forces of one generation or another, and one can only attempt to imagine how much valuable knowledge has been lost as a result.
Sadly, it wasn’t only libraries that crumbled beneath the narcissism of this exclusivist religion, but historical sites as well.
One famous example was the destruction of the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan. The Buddhas of Bamiyan were two massive and masterfully crafted statues carved into the cliff face in the Bamiyan valley in the Hazarajat region of central Afghanistan. These two sixth century statues were beautiful works of Buddhist art, art that would eventually be completely destroyed by the Taliban. In 1221, the Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb, used heavy artillery in an unsuccessful attempt to destroy them,  but it wasn’t until March of 2001, under the orders of Mullah Mohammed Omar, that these magnificent “idols” were completely crumbled. 
Again, I could cite many other examples in which Muslim armies destroyed literature, art and cultural heritage sites with the express approval of both the Qur’an and the hadith, but I think I have provided you with enough to establish this common Islamic practice.
Following in the footsteps of their forebears, and the common practice established over the centuries, ISIS have been destroying valuable literature in valuable libraries; they have been demolishing ancient historical sites and artefacts, and with the weight of Islamic doctrine and common practice at their backing.
On ISIS’ destruction of literature and historical sites and artefacts, CNN reported:
ISIS is continuing to bulldoze its way through the cultural heritage of Iraq and Syria, with the ancient Assyrian capital of Khorsabad apparently the extremist group’s latest archaeological victim. 
Thus far, ISIS have destroyed priceless artefacts in the Mosul Museum, burned thousands of invaluable books from the Mosul Library; they have defaced ancient frescos and works of art at Nimrud, molested the ancient palace of King Sargon II (built in the 8th Century BCE), and corrupted numerous other sites and important works of history that are extremely valuable for not only the cultural heritage of Syrians and Iraqis, but for the entire civilized world, as this location (Mesopotamia, specifically) is commonly referred to as the cradle of civilization, and much of our culture, and even the seeds of much of our modern knowledge in mathematics, astronomy and other branches of modern academia, all derive from this invaluable location on earth.
I have not presented the entire scope of parallels that exist between the brutal behaviour of ISIS and Islamic doctrines upon which they are firmly supported; nor have I proffered the entire width and breadth of the available evidence that further illustrate the striking similarities highlighted in this piece. Despite these concessions, I think it is fair to say that the parallels and evidence discussed provide any reasonable observer with strong justification to make the statement, ISIS is Islam. The central doctrines of Islam do exhort believers to slay non-believers, they do prescribe rape, looting and all of the other barbarism we are witnessing ISIS perform, and to ignore these facts, to turn a blind eye for the sake of pandering to outdated notions of political correctness, is to pay insufficient heed to the core problems associated with not only this band of barbaric pirates, but to the root of this problem, a religion that has spawned some of the most vile and inhumane behaviour that our modern world has witnessed.
- The Clarion Project: http://m.clarionproject.org/news/thousands-muslims-protest-isis-after-frenchman-beheaded
- Robert Spencer. The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (And the Crusades). Regnery Publishing (2005). p. 30.
- Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 5. 57:5:4; Sahih al-Muslim Bk. 19. Ch. 38; Chase F. Robinson. The New Cambridge History of Islam, Vol. 1: The Formation of the Islamic World Sixth to Eleventh Centuries. Cambridge University Press (2011). p. 173.
- Jane Dammen McAuliffe. The Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an. Cambridge University Press (2007). p. 187.
- Pakistan Penal Code 295C: ‘Use of derogatory remarks, spoken, written, directly or indirectly, etc. defiles the name of Muhammad.’; Ian Talbot. Pakistan, A Modern History. Martin’s Press (1998). p. 282.
- European Centre for Law and Justice. Universal Periodic Review 2009, Saudi Arabia; Also, see Saudi Arabia’s Criminal Code.
- The Verse of the Sword: Sura 9:5 And Jihad: answering-islam.org/Silas/swordverse.htm; Jane Dammen McAuliffe. The Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an. Cambridge University Press (2007). pp. 187-188.
- Chase F. Robinson. The New Cambridge History of Islam, Vol. 1: The Formation of the Islamic World Sixth to Eleventh Centuries. Cambridge University Press (2011). p. 190; Further, see Qur’an Tafsir Ibn Kathir (Specifically, Kathir’s commentary on Surat al-Baqara (the Cow) verses 216-218): http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=197; Sayyid Qutb. Milestones (Ma’alim fi’l-tareeq) Maktabah Booksellers & Publishers (2006). Chapter 4: Jihad in the Cause of Allah; Majid Khadduri. The Islamic Law of Nations: Shaybani’s Siyar. Johns Hopkins University Press (2001). p. 15.
- Richard C. Martin, Saïd Amir Arjomand, Marcia Hermansen, Abdulkader Tayob, Rochelle Davis & John O. Voll. Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World. Thomson Gale (2004). (Taqqiya) 678-679.
- Jane Dammen McAuliffe. The Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an. Cambridge University Press (2007). p. 298.
- Chase F. Robinson. The New Cambridge History of Islam, Vol. 1: The Formation of the Islamic World Sixth to Eleventh Centuries. Cambridge University Press (2011). p. 190.
- p. 376.
- The Meaning of the Noble Qur’an. (January 11th, 2006). p. 60.
- Ismail Ibn Kathir – ‘Jihad is Made Obligatory’ : http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=197
- Jane Dammen McAuliffe. The Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an. Cambridge University Press (2007). pp. 298-299.
- pp. 30, 42-43.
- pp. 25-30.
- pp. 187-188.
- Robert Spencer. The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (And the Crusades). Regnery Publishing, Inc. (2005). p. 25.
- Eerick Dickenson. The Development of Early Sunnite Hadith Criticism – The Taqdima of Ibn Abi Hatim al-Razi. Brill (2001). pp. 123-124.
- Abd al-Malik Ibn Hishām. (Trans. Michael Edwardes) The life of Muhammad, Apostle of Allah. Folio Society (1964). p. 95.
- Jane Dammen McAuliffe. The Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an. Cambridge University Press (2007). p. 194; Francis E. Peters. Aristotle and the Arabs: The Aristotelian Tradition in Islam. New York University Press (1968); Richard C. Martin, Saïd Amir Arjomand, Marcia Hermansen, Abdulkader Tayob, Rochelle Davis & John O. Voll. Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World. Thomson Gale (2004). 34-35.
- Romila Thapar. Somanatha: The Many Voices of History. Verso (2005). pp. 41-48; P.N. Chopra, B.N. Puri, M.N. Das & A.C. Pradhan. Comprehensive History of India: Medieval India, Part II. Sterling Publishers Pvt.Ltd (2003). p. 12.
- Surjit Mansingh. Historical Dictionary of India: (Historical Dictionaries of Asia, Oceania, and the Middle East). Scarecrow Press (2013). 376.
- Ruth Stellhorn Mackensen. Moslem Libraries and Sectarian Propaganda. Chicago University Press (1935). pp. 93-94; Josef W. Meri. Medieval Islamic Civilization, Vol. 2: An Encyclopedia. Routledge (2006). p. 452.
- Clifford Edmund Bosworth. The History of the Seljuq State: A Translation with Commentary of the Akhbar al-dawla al-saljuqiyya. Routledge (2010). p. 45.
- George Starton. The Tomb of Omar Khayyam. Isis, Vol. 29, No. 1 (July, 1938): 16; A. Boyle. The Cambridge History of Iran, Vol. 5: The Saljuq and Mongol Periods. Cambridge University Press (1968). p. 153.
- Radhey Shyam Chaurasia. History of Medieval India: From 1000 AD to 1707 AD. Atlantic Publishers and Distributors (2002). 121.
- Rebecca Knuth. Burning Books and Leveling Libraries: Extremist Violence and Cultural Destruction. Praeger (2006). 148.
- Paul Clammer. Lonely Planet Afghanistan. (Lonely Planet Travel Guides) (Country Travel Guide). Lonely Planet (2007). p. 119; Claudio (Ed.) Margottini andClaudio Margottini. After the Destruction of Giant Buddha Statues in Bamiyan (Afghanistan) in 2001 (Natural Science in Archaeology) Springer Berlin Heidelberg (2013). 16.
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xYYBlPWYb7Y; http://www.nytimes.com/2001/03/19/world/19TALI.html