Quite a number of people seem to be criticizing the Islamic religion for the role it has to play in encouraging war. Some have even gone to say Islam only leads to war since it commands people to use it as a way of rescuing the oppressed or putting to an end the domination of injustice. However, this is not really the case since Islam actually means peace and hence strives to establish it throughout the entire world.  Therefore, associating Islam and war is something people should shun away from because war is a manifestation in the collective life of humankind and has been in existence since time immemorial.

The Islamic religion has set clear guidelines as to when war is viewed as ethnically right and how the guidelines are to be conducted.  Some of the situations where Islam allows war is during self-defense, when another state is oppressing its own Muslims or when another state has attacked an Islamic state.  Therefore,people who use war for their own personal gains in the name of Islam will be going against what is stipulated by the religion. Actually, such people should have to deal with the long arm of the law.

Even though there are some instances where Islam permits war, you need to conduct it in a disciplined way.  In addition, you must use minimum necessary force while at the same time offering humane treatment towards prisoners of war.  It is also mandatory that you avoid injuring non-combatants at all cost. Despite this, some Muslims still go to war with anger while others are doing it in order to earn a living. Well, this is going against the teaching of the Islamic religion since you are only doing good to yourself.

Some Muslim thinkers today seem to have a different opinion on Islam and war. They say that other verses in the Quran, the so-called “Sword verses” have “nulled” the verses that only permit war in defense. Instead, they use these verses in justifying war against the unbelievers as a tool of spreading Islam.  Others use this as the opportunity to regard non-Muslims and Muslims who do not conform rigorously to the Islamic code as non-believers.  Therefore, they consider these people as ‘enemies of God’ and hence find it legitimate in using violence against them. However, the notion of a total and unrestricted conflict is completely against the Islamic religion.

Using Islam as a reason to go to war is completely unacceptable as it only leads to loss of life and massive destruction to property. In the end,we are the only ones who are going to suffer since war is definitely going to cause destruction. Remember, the verses do not order war but allow it on condition that you are doing it in God’s cause and for defensive purposes. You must therefore consider the limitations that Islam has set on the conduct of relations before, during and after conflict.  It is then that you will avoid using Islam teachings for your own personal gain.

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