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Killing civilians in war

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Salam alaikum

Killing non-combatants in war is haram right? 

Is there a difference between intentional or negligent murder of civilians? How much care must be taken to avoid murdering innocents? 

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It seems to me that most modern methods of warfare must be haram: definitely nukes, chemicals, bio agents, bombing or shelling cities. 

If I remember correctly it's also haram to willfully do permanent damage to the land as an act of war, for example the ancient practice of salting cropland in defeated territories. 

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4 hours ago, notme said:

It seems to me that most modern methods of warfare must be haram: definitely nukes, chemicals, bio agents, bombing or shelling cities. 

If I remember correctly it's also haram to willfully do permanent damage to the land as an act of war, for example the ancient practice of salting cropland in defeated territories. 

If the entire religion stands on killing even Muslims who are being held hostage, according to some scholars this may be permissible because there is no other way.

But as far as I have seen only one or two scholars have voiced this opinion. Maybe someone else can share something more.

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3 hours ago, notme said:

If I remember correctly it's also haram to willfully do permanent damage to the land as an act of war, for example the ancient practice of salting cropland in defeated territories. 

Most Islamic warfare rulings seem to be very misunderstood and painted very romantically. This is not the case. One just needs to open up Kitab al-Jihad of one of our Fuqaha and see that things are not so lovey-dovey - which is sensible, because it is a war after all. It is of course not allowed to kill non-baligh children, women, the elderly and the insane (even if they are assisting), unless it becomes a necessity. Necessity means that for example women and children are taken as human shields and your victory depends on killing them.

As far as land or trees are concerned, or preventing the flow of water to them, or setting fire or poisoning them through poisoning their water-stream etc. those things are only Makruh in war and not Haram (especially if your victory is dependent on it).

The above is a summary of some rulings available in Sharh al-Lum'ah of Shahid Thani. 

Wasalam

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58 minutes ago, E.L King said:

If the entire religion stands on killing even Muslims who are being held hostage, according to some scholars this may be permissible because there is no other way.

The hostage rulings of a Muslim are that you have to ensure they are not killed, and if they have to be killed due to necessity, while there is no Qisas or Diyyah, it is still Wajib to pay the Kaffarah.

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9 hours ago, notme said:

It seems to me that most modern methods of warfare must be haram: definitely nukes, chemicals, bio agents, bombing or shelling cities. 

If I remember correctly it's also haram to willfully do permanent damage to the land as an act of war, for example the ancient practice of salting cropland in defeated territories. 

Israelis are always burning trees, takfiris and israelis have poisoned water. And the USA killed 120,000 civilians in 2 shots in Hiroshima and Nagasaki as the most overlooked act of terrorism ever commited. They literaly just nuked civilians. 

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1 hour ago, kirtc said:

Israelis are always burning trees, takfiris and israelis have poisoned water. And the USA killed 120,000 civilians in 2 shots in Hiroshima and Nagasaki as the most overlooked act of terrorism ever commited. They literaly just nuked civilians. 

Someone else doing it doesn't make wrong right. As Muslims and as followers of ahlul bayt we should be better than this. 

I don't think there are exceptions to whoever kills one innocent person, it is as if he killed all of humanity, whoever saves one, it is as if he has saved all humanity. 

We only need to look at the example of the prophet in battle - civilian captives were taken into families as wives, slaves, or servants, or sent home. Prisoner soldiers were not mistreated or summarily executed. People were treated like people. War is ugly, always has been always will be, but since it has become industrialized starting around WWI, it's very close to evil. Using technology for mass murder is evil. 

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35 minutes ago, notme said:

Someone else doing it doesn't make wrong right. As Muslims and as followers of ahlul bayt we should be better than this. 

I don't think there are exceptions to whoever kills one innocent person, it is as if he killed all of humanity, whoever saves one, it is as if he has saved all humanity. 

We only need to look at the example of the prophet in battle - civilian captives were taken into families as wives, slaves, or servants, or sent home. Prisoner soldiers were not mistreated or summarily executed. People were treated like people. War is ugly, always has been always will be, but since it has become industrialized starting around WWI, it's very close to evil. Using technology for mass murder is evil. 

How did you interpret my post as me justifying it? Do you really think I would justify takfiris and Israel? I am simply pointing out crimes. 

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3 minutes ago, kirtc said:

How did you interpret my post as me justifying it? Do you really think I would justify takfiris and Israel? I am simply pointing out crimes. 

I misinterpreted your words to mean if they do it to us we can do it to them. Apologies - of course I should have known better. 

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16 minutes ago, E.L King said:

Online, yes.

English, no.

If you know where to find them, can you post these sources and hopefully someone here will translate?  

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1 hour ago, notme said:

If you know where to find them, can you post these sources and hopefully someone here will translate?  

Brother Ibn Al-Hussain already summarised it.

Edited by E.L King

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1 minute ago, E.L King said:

Brother Ibn Al-Hussain already summarised it.

Yes I know. Is there a link to source? English is preferable on this English language forum, but any common language can be verified by other site users who speak and read the same. 

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:salam:

You won't find many translations of Shi'i jurisprudential works on Jihad in English. There is a high risk of misuse and misinterpretation of it by Islamophobes, particularly with the current world-situation. There aren't any translations done by orientalists either because they only began looking at Shi'i literature properly less than a 100 years ago, and their main focus has not been our Fiqhi works -  thus you don't find (m)any translations done by Europeans on this subject. Furthermore, rarely do you find a Shi'i jurist today publishing a Kitab al-Jihad - Sayyid Khoei has it in the first volume of his Minhaj al-Saliheen, but Sayyid Sistani doesn't. Some of Sayyid Khamenei's Behas Kharij lectures (highest level of jurisprudential lessons in the seminary) have been transcribed and are published on his website [http://farsi.khamenei.ir/page?id=7100].

Lastly, older works on jurisprudence were not written so simply like the practical law books we have today (which only started during the time of Ayatullah Borojerdi) and thus their translation isn't always so simple. The only English translation of a Kitab al-Jihad I know of is from the work al-Nihayah of Shaykh Tusi.

You can preview it here https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=FO6CBMZU5xgC&lpg=PR9&dq=Shaykh Tusi al-Nihayah fi&pg=PA214#v=onepage&q&f=false - read page 214 till the top of 218.

Once again, it is not half as comprehensive as Sharh of Lum'ah by Shahi Thani or other older deductive works we have, but it essentially gives you a glimpse of what Tusi's opinions were and the overall structure of the rulings jurists would have had almost 1000 years ago.

Wasalam

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1 hour ago, Ali_Hussain said:

There is an English translation of Shara'i al-Islam, I can't find it online, but Kitab al-Jihad has a few pages about prisoners of war. (v.1, p.277)

That's good to know. Thanks.

I wish more Islamic texts were available in hard copy in my area. Maybe someday if I get wealthy I'll open a library. Meanwhile, I'm limited to what is available online.

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Quote

Lastly, older works on jurisprudence were not written so simply like the practical law books we have today (which only started during the time of Ayatullah Borojerdi) and thus their translation isn't always so simple. The only English translation of a Kitab al-Jihad I know of is from the work al-Nihayah of Shaykh Tusi.

You can preview it here https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=FO6CBMZU5xgC&lpg=PR9&dq=Shaykh Tusi al-Nihayah fi&pg=PA214#v=onepage&q&f=false - read page 214 till the top of 218.

Could one study the fiq from this book and apply it? And are some of his opinions in this book outdated?

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This topic is critical cause in my opinion I think this shouldn't be a question. I don't get why ''It would be allowed to killed innocent people, by mistake or not!'' That is why the era of swords is near, inshallah! Bombs and Guns only is only easy way to do the work. This is everything in this satanic world! May Allah protect us from these kind of things!

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Sad but an inevitable part of war. 
Allah says, 
وَأَعِدُّوا لَهُم مَّا اسْتَطَعْتُم مِّن قُوَّةٍ وَمِن رِّبَاطِ الْخَيْلِ تُرْهِبُونَ بِهِ عَدُوَّ اللَّهِ وَعَدُوَّكُمْ وَآخَرِينَ مِن دُونِهِمْ لَا تَعْلَمُونَهُمُ اللَّهُ يَعْلَمُهُمْ ۚ وَمَا تُنفِقُوا مِن شَيْءٍ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ يُوَفَّ إِلَيْكُمْ وَأَنتُمْ لَا تُظْلَمُونَ - 8:60
And prepare against them whatever you are able of power and of steeds of war by which you may terrify the enemy of Allah and your enemy and others besides them whom you do not know [but] whom Allah knows. And whatever you spend in the cause of Allah will be fully repaid to you, and you will not be wronged.

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