Revisions or Just a Change of Heart?
Islam Online, an Islamic website founded by Yusuf al-Qaradawi, recently published an article called “Jihadist Revisions or Changing Their Minds” by Jordanian writer Yasir al-Za’aterah. It argued that revisionists (see here, here, and here) may have shifted their positions on violence, but they have not changed their fundamental political views. Al-Za’aterah stated that the revisionists are basing their new approach on “religious legitimacy,” which is what they used to justify their violence in the past. He maintained that the issue of forcibly expelling an unjust leader who claims to be a Muslim is contentious in Islamic jurisprudence because it often involves many “mistakes”, making it closer to what scholars consider fitna or civil unrest, which is why many refuse to condone force against a Muslim ruler. Al-Za’aterah concluded that modern Islamic movements have not rejected armed insurrection because they consider violence non-permissible; rather, they have rejected it because such action