By Frank Salvato

Western civilization’s delinquent knowledge of the Islamic faith leaves us naïve to many of its tenets. Many among us would be hard pressed to explain the differences between the Sunni and the Shi’ite, let alone the reasons why they have remained in conflict for almost the entire existence of the Islamic faith. This delinquency in understanding Islamic culture and doctrine makes those they consider non-believers – or kafirs – vulnerable both individually and collectively. This is especially true when we examine the Islamic concept of taqiyya.

Taqiyya is defined literally as: “Concealing or disguising one’s beliefs, convictions, ideas, feelings, opinions, and/or strategies at a time of eminent danger, whether now or later in time, to save oneself from physical and/or mental injury.” In essence, taqiyya can be generally defined as the legitimization of deception in times of danger.

Taqiyya is alluded to in the following Quranic verse:

“Let not the believers take for friends or helpers unbelievers rather than believers: if any do that, (they) shall have no relation left with Allah except by way of precaution (“tat-taqooh”), that ye may guard yourselves (“tooqatan”) from them…” [3:28]”

In his book, al-Durr al-Manthoor Fi al-Tafsir al-Ma’athor, Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti conveys these words by one of Sunni Islam’s most respected voices, Ibn Abbas:

“al-Taqiyya is with the tongue only; he who has been coerced into saying that which angers Allah (SWT), and his heart is comfortable (i.e., his true faith has not been shaken), then (saying that which he has been coerced to say) will not harm him (at all); (because) al-Taqiyya is with the tongue only, (not the heart).”

In most every reference to taqiyya in Islam it is held that there are only a very few times when it is permissible:
▪ To save one’s life
▪ To effect a peace or reconciliation
▪ To persuade a woman
▪ On the occasion of a journey or expedition
▪ To save the life and honor of the innocent person from the highhandedness of tyrants and oppressors 

In his book, Ihya ‘Uloom al-Din, the influential Egyptian Islamic scholar Abu Hamed Mohammad ibn Mohammad al-Ghazzali stated: “Safeguarding of a Muslim’s life is a mandatory obligation that should be observed; and that lying [taqiyya] is permissible when the shedding of a Muslim’s blood is at stake.”
Those of the Wahhabi ideology acknowledge the fatwa:
“Be dissociated from the infidels, hate them for their religion, leave them, never rely on them for support, do not admire them, and always oppose them in every way according to Islamic law.” 

Because Wahhabism is one of the predominant forms of Islam being disseminated in the mosques of the United States it must be surmised that Wahhabis are living among the “infidels.” In order to achieve their existence without open confrontation they must, therefore, employ taqiyya. 

So, it can be stated with a great deal of confidence that when a Muslim feels that his life, limb or property are in danger, in order to avoid or quell violent confrontation or to rescue himself or a fellow Muslim from the “oppression of tyranny” and death he can and should utilize taqiyya.

So why is this relevant?

As we continue to engage radical Islam in the war against Islamofascist aggression we need to be cognizant of our foe’s use of taqiyya. 

There has been a great deal of debate over interrogation techniques used by the United States and our coalition nation allies. While there are legitimate arguments on both sides of this debate each side has to be fully aware that those enemies who are caught on the field of battle – unconventional that it is – will most certainly employ taqiyya.

In addition, those who are faithful to the religious tenets of Islam must, as a religious duty, utilize taqiyya when interacting with government and law enforcement where giving damaging information on another Muslim is concerned. 

Should the situation arise where a practicing Muslim, loyal to the faith, were to be questioned about a suspected terrorist operation or criminal activity being planed or perpetrated by a fellow Muslim – whether here in the United States or anywhere in the world – that Muslim must employ taqiyya. This makes the gathering of credible information from within the Islamic community, regarding the criminal Islamic community, virtually impossible.

Further, the recognized religious duty of faithful Muslims to practice taqiyya makes the actions, statements and testimony of those who operate organizations such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the now defunct Holy Land Foundation and individual Islamic leaders such as Sami al-Arian (now deported for his relationship with Palestinian Islamic Jihad) both understandable and suspect. Understandable in there unwavering defense of almost every act committed by a Muslim regardless of its legality and suspect because of the fact that they would be violating taqiyya should they validate the “infidel” over another Muslim.
This also brings into relevance our government’s predisposition toward skepticism when entering into diplomatic negotiations with leaders of predominantly Muslim countries and the assurances they provide.

A perfect case in point is the current nuclear proliferation issue with the Islamic Republic of Iran and its leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Ahmadinejad, a most devote Shi’ite, who has indicated without reservation his blind faith to Islam, would be held to the Quranic tenet of taqiyya. This tenet, understood for its true meaning, it would make it impossible for any clear thinking human being to take Ahmadinejad’s words of peace at face value, especially in light of his violent declarations toward Israel, the United States, Western civilization and the non-Muslim world.

If the West – and especially the United States – is to survive this very real conflict with Islamofascist aggression, we must educate ourselves on the intricacies of our enemy’s beliefs and tactics.
Frank Salvato is the Executive Director and Director of Terrorism Research for Basics Project a non-profit, non-partisan, 501(C)(3) research and education initiative. His writing has been recognized by the US House International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention. His organization, Basics Project, partnered in producing the first ever national symposium series addressing the root causes of radical Islamist terrorism. He also serves as the managing editor for The New Media Journal. Mr. Salvato has appeared on The O’Reilly Factor on FOX News Channel and is the host of the NMJ Radio show broadcast global on NetTalkWorld global talk radio and broadcast live on BlogTalk Radio. He is a regular guest on The Right Balance with Greg Allen on the Accent Radio Network, syndicated on over 25 stations nationally and on The Captain’s America Radio Show catering to the US Armed Forces around the world, as well as an occasional guests on radio programs across the country. His opinion-editorials are syndicated nationally and he is occasionally quoted in The Federalist. Mr. Salvato is available for public speaking engagements. He can be contacted at