Regarding the issue of Algeria and Sheikh Abu Qatadah in the 1990’s
It seems that a lot of people till this day are continuously bringing up this argument against Sheikh Abu Qatadah that he allowed the killing of innocent women and children in Algera. This argument is picked up by many people, from laymen to even people who call themselves shuyukh.
The people who claim this are either of two categories – either they are ignorant about the issue, hence they should not be speaking on something they clearly don’t have knowledge about, or they are deliberately manipulating the reality for their own cause. Its quite sickening when you see someone who is considered an Imam (not mentioning names but there are plenty of examples of people with the title ‘Shaykh’ who have claimed this) not being fair or speaking on something he is ignorant about.
Did the Shaykh really allow the killing of women & men?
Lets go back to the fatwa that the sheikh had issued – the Regime was killing women and children, they were slaughtering everyone and hence the question came forward to Sheikh Abu Qatadah:
“Is it allowed to threaten the regime officers with targeting of their residential places where their families are present? until they stop from this act (to kill Women and children from the population)’.
Now lets note two things, firstly – there is not mention of actually carrying out these acts…secondly, this is in direct response to the military tactics used by the regime. So what we are referring to here is simply a military tactic that one will threaten them with what they threaten you with, in this case in fact its what they are carrying out already – this is not a fatwa actually legitimising these acts being carried out. And we quote further from Sheikh Abu Qatadah’s fatwa, where he said: “If it is impossible to prevent or stop the regime from doing these acts (killing women & children) in no other way than threatening that ‘If you don’t stop this, we will do so and so’ than it is allowed”
Lets also note what the Sheikh said here – again, clearly, the Shaykh did not legitimise the actual targeting of the families of these officers but simply the threatening and most importantly the Sheikh made a clear condition which was in case of neccesity that only if there is no other possible way to stop this, only then you can use this method as a military tactic, not carrying out these acts, but threating that ‘we will do so and so’ if you don’t stop killing our women and men.
And we conclude with the words of Shaykh Abu Qatadah, words of importance that really highlights the biasness of the people who accuse the shaykh of this, firstly they are misquoting the shaykh, a big misquotation – secondly as the shaykh says:
“If you go with this question to the Ulema, like Shaykh Ibn Uthaymeen (rahimahuAllah) you will find that he said words that are much more serious than what I said, so why only Abu Qatadah? Why not Sh. Ibn Uthaymeen (rahimahuAllah)”
And Allah knows best