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Mandaville and Husain agree that the Soviet war and occupation in Afghanistan had a great impact on the formation of modern global Jihadi movements. When other radical Islamists joined the struggle of Afghan Arabs against the Soviet forces, they formed the “generation of Arab Afghans,” who later developed a transnational Jihadi system (Mandaville 242). This Jihadi system, however, can still be broken into several organizations, whose ideologies, priorities, and means differ widely from one another. The concept of jihad is gravely misunderstood in the West as meaning only “holy war,” when Muslim scholars define it in many ways, and so it is wrong to say that Islam defends and promotes violence against non-Muslims per se. Mandaville describes how religious scholars define the sub-categories of jihad, which includes “jihad, al-qalb (struggle of the heart), jihad b'il-lisan (struggle by the tongue), jihad bil-qalam (struggle by the pen), and jihad bil-sayf (struggle by the sword) (250). He stresses that Islam only uses jihad when it is under attack and it also does not condone all forms of violence, the way some Jihadi organizations have like al-Qaeda. Jihad also embraces fiqh-al jihad (jurisprudence of warfare), which is similar to the concept of Just War in Western theory (250). The diversity of Jihadism proves that Islamism and Islam do not unilaterally promote violence per se against non-believers without just causes and without the use of just means. Bajoria studies the origins and recent updates on al-Qaeda. Like Mandaville, Bajoria shows that al-Qaeda continues to survive, because its network of networks remain strong. Furthermore, Esposito,...
The concept of jihad is gravely misunderstood in the West as meaning only “holy war,” when Muslim scholars define it in many ways, and so it is wrong to say that Islam defends and promotes violence against non-Muslims per se. Mandeville describes how religious scholars define the sub-categories of jihad, which includes “jihad, al-qalb, jihad b'il-lisan (struggle by the tongue), jihad bil-qalam (struggle by the pen), and jihad b'il-lisan. He stresses that Islam only uses jihad when it is under attack and it also does not condone all forms of violence, the way some Jihadi organizations have like al-Qaeda. Jihad also embraces fiqh-al jihad (jurisprudence of warfare), which is similar to the concept of Just War in Western theory (250). The diversity of Jihadism proves that Islamism and Islam do not unilaterally promote violence per se against non-believers without just causes and without the use of just means. Bajoria studies the origins and recent updates on al-Qaeda. Like Mandeville, Bajoria shows that al-Qaeda continues to survive because its network of networks remains strong. Furthermore, Esposito, in a lecture at FIU in 2010, “Inside Islam: What a Billion Muslims Think,” shows that when Americans continue to know so less about Islam and Muslims, the less they know about how the majority of the Muslims feel about some Muslim terrorists' brand of jihad.
When Islamist believers see armed struggle as part of the cosmic struggle, they are more prone to use religion in defending and promoting their various convictions. ...Show more
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Summary

This essay provides a review of the literature on radical Islamism, U.S. relations with the Muslim world, and the rise of the global Jihadi movement. Hence, it is emphasized here that radical Islamism and Jihadism are largely misunderstood in the West…
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