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German Taliban video – Elif Media

 Well the first thing that strikes me is the rather blantantly obvious that these guys identify with the Taliban instead of al Qaeda. Yet, the nasheeds they are using are traditionally found in al Qaeda videos. I’m quite fascinated by this. Anyone out there with any thoughts on this. I haven’t seen that many Taliban videos in my travels due to their obvious issues with this medium and I don’t recall having seen nasheeds in them. Am thinking here of some epistemological confusion. But will leave to Jarret to unpack this.

UPDATE: Ibn Siqilli has pointed out to me that Taliban videos do in fact have Nasheeds in them.  Thank you! And how interesting. FYI links are provided in the comments below.

Meanwhile thanks as ever to Nick Grace for making me aware of this video. Links can be found here.


  1. Ibn Siqilli
    09/26/2009 at 7:47 pm

    Many of the recent videos released by the Afghan Taliban and Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan have nasheeds in them, though usually not in Arabic. You can find some examples of nasheeds in Pashtu and Urdu dotted around YouTube. Here are some examples:

    • Leah Farrall, Australia
      09/26/2009 at 7:58 pm

      Thank you very much for pointing this out. Much appreciated. And how interesting. I’ll have to go take a peek now. Thanks again (-:

  2. Ibn Siqilli
    09/26/2009 at 8:07 pm

    Here’s an “in-video” example from TTP:

    (The nasheed begins around the 20-21 minute mark)

    I’ll see if I can find a link to one that’s actually in one of the Afghan Taliban videos.

    • Leah Farrall, Australia
      09/26/2009 at 10:24 pm

      Thank you again!

  3. Charles Cameron (hipbone)
    09/27/2009 at 3:59 am

    I’d be very interested in any comments you might have on this video about the Mahdi and the “black flags of Khorasan” which (lacking the requisite language skills) seems to me likely to be of Trinidadian origin since the sheikh who delivers the central message is from Trinidad:

    Can you tell us anything about the source, the songs, the clips inserted from other videos, whether the forums have picked up on it, etc?

    Many thanks.

    • Leah Farrall, Australia
      09/27/2009 at 11:14 pm

      Hi there, thanks for the comment and the link. I’m completely swamped at the moment, but will try to take some time to look at it. Keep reminding me if I don’t get to it! Cheers, Leah

  4. Ibn Siqilli
    09/27/2009 at 7:37 am

    My pleasure! Enjoy your blog!

  5. Ibn Siqilli
    09/29/2009 at 5:08 pm

    The interview clip toward the end is from an al-Sahab video interview with Mullah Nazir Ahmad, a Pashtun commander in Waziristan.

    • Leah Farrall, Australia
      09/30/2009 at 12:04 pm

      Thank you for pointing this out. Much appreciated.

  6. 05/07/2010 at 10:48 pm

    Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him ordered muslims to be united, to be one, and he made the concept of united Muslims like The one body .. if one part of this body complained, the rest must complain .

    some of the german muslims applied this principle, all muslims must do, its in the holy quran and sunnah, and its the duty for all muslims .


    its funny how the CIA think about this war .. you people think the war is between America and its allies and Taliban or the terrorists in Iraq ?!
    To us ( Muslims who stand by the principle of forbidding allegiance to infidels ) The war is between America and its allies ( crusaders ) and All true muslims .. not Arab or Afghani people or iraqi people .. Muslims.

    its not necessary to raise a flag with cross on it to now this fact !!
    its a war against Terrorism ( that is : Islam that do jihad , and jihad is One of the Pillars of Islam ) then : its a war against Islam .

    the relationships between Al-Qaedah and Taliban is a Brotherhood relationships nothing more .. so dont be surprised to see the German muslims with taliban .. no difference .. Shiekh Osamah is under the command of mulla Omar, he said it himself .. thats because mulla Omar is the Ameir ( ruler ) of all afghani muslims there .. do more search on the concept of “Caliph” or “Baiah” in Islam ..

    PS : forgive my poor english .

    • Ibn Siqilli
      05/08/2010 at 4:09 pm

      Jihad, in its military sense (offensive or defensive) is not generally considered to be one of the pillars of Islam; some Muslim jurists argued it should be considered a “sixth” pillar.

      If all the “mujahideen” (so-called) are “united,” why are there so many different groups: Quetta Shura Taliban, Haqqani Network, Hizbul Islami of Hekmatyar, Islamic Jihad Union which left the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, Jaysh-i Muhammad, Sipah-e Sahaba, Lashkar-i Jhangvi, Lashkar-i Taiba, Al-Qa’ida Central, Ansar al-Islam, Jaysh Abu Bakr al-Siddiq al-Salafi, etc.

  7. 05/08/2010 at 9:26 pm

    Ibn Siqilli .. i dont know who you are , but i know that you are cooperating with infidels .. and i dont know where you belong , i am salafi .

    Lets get one thing clear : i have PHD in “Osol Al Feqh” in arabic : أصول الفقه .. its one of the Shariah knowledge .. so i may teach you a lesson or two about : jihad and its purposes in Shariah .

    you must know that parting Jihad into two parts ( offensive or defensive ) is the way of the latecomers scholars .. none of the ancient scholars adopted this theory, that doesn’t mean its wrong ..
    and you must know that Jihad is one of the pillars of Islam , dont tell me its not because the pillars of Islam is only five .. yes the five is Pillars that if some muslim didnt do one of them he become a Kafir ( infidel ) .

    but there are other pillars that considered pillars giving the general look to the muslims .. not the individual muslim .. so there is a difference between a Pillar that its benefits or harms back to the individual , and Pillars that its benefits or harms back to the general muslim ..

    if you have a little bit of knowledge about Ahkam Aljihad .. you would know that .

    there are many Hadiths that guide to this theory .. i will give you one of the hadiths of messenger of allah peace be upon him , and you do the translation :

    قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم : “رأس الأمر الإسلام وعموده الصلاة وذروة سنامه الجهاد” أخرجه الترمذي وقال حديث حسن صحيح ، وأحمد في مسنده ،والنسائي .

    so .. its obvious from the hadith , that the prophet considering Jihad is the thing that Islam cant complete except by Jihad ..


    as for the topic you referred to, that Mujahedeen are not united .. correction : jajaludden al Haqqani is under the command of Mulla Omar , he said it him self, and i was one of the people who wrote a question .. read his letter .

    but clearly you dont understand the meaning of salafis .. and the meaning of grouping and parting in Islam .. let me enlighten you in this topic in my blog , i wrote a subject about this , i explained the meaning of parting and grouping in Islam :

    there are people claims to be salafi ( Sunnis ) but they are not, like Saudis, they claim that they are walking in the footsteps of Imam Muhammad Ibn AbdulWahhab , but they are not , on of Ibn Abdulwahhab believes that he considers making alliances with infidels is Kufr ( Infidelity ) and that is the salafi’s ideas , and its what Islam based on.

    i explained that too in my blog :

    and this :

    • Ibn Siqilli
      05/09/2010 at 3:22 am

      In reality, I am still a graduate student and blog, to a large degree, for my own benefit (as it helps to formulate ideas in an initial phase) as much as for outside consumption. However, I am glad if others find what I write to be a little bit useful or interesting. As for “cooperating”, I’m not sure who I “cooperate” with, save my professorial advisers. I certainly don’t work for any government or think tank; I’m independent. If I’m “connected” to any institution, it is my university and more specifically my academic department.

      I would agree that the “pillars” concept is quite new, particularly in its language, i.e. the use of the term “pillar.” I also would agree that many Muslim jurists historically have argued that jihad, in its military sense, is akin to the so-called “5 Pillars.” However, I also know that there is no absolute consensus on the issues related to military jihad, either historically or, certainly, today. There is also no uniform “Shari’a”, as evidenced by the differing applications by different jurists. Debates and disagreements of Muslim scholars over jihad and a host of other issues weakens your argument that there is a single, or has ever been after the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad, “Shari’a” or set of interpretations.

      The hadith you excerpted is indeed interesting, but it would be more helpful if you included the isnad and more precise citations to where it appears in the mentioned collections. I am not a hadith expert, but have a friend who is (indeed he has a Ph.D. in the subject and is a muhaddith), who I can ask for his opinion.

      I also must disagree with you on the issue of “Salafis.” There is clearly no uniformly accepted definition of what being a “Salafi” entails, even among those groups that claim to be “Salafis” but squabble with one another.

      What Haqqani says in his media materials and what actually takes place on the ground are two different things. Transnational jihadi-takfiris claim to be “united” but in their actions, they clearly are not, though they may have some operational cooperation. Jama’at Ansar al-Islam is a case in point. Even after al-Zawahiri cajoled them to join the “Islamic” State of Iraq, Abu ‘Abdullah al-Shafi’i declined.

      Thank you for the links to your blog. They are relevant to some work I am doing for a professor.

  8. 05/09/2010 at 5:27 am

    Ibn Siqilli ..

    First : when i said you are cooperating with infidels i didn’t mean that you are operating under their authority .. what i was referring to is clear .

    Second : The meaning of pillars is not new , it has been mentioned in many Hadiths of the prophet Mohammad peace be upon him .

    Third : claiming that there is no consensus in Jihad , this saying is based on ignorance , yes there is no consensus between scholars in some provisions of the Jihad , but when it comes to obligatory of jihad on the Muslims , there is consensus based on Quran and Sunnah .

    Forth : “Shariah” is a term has been mentioned in many Hadiths of the prophet Mohammad peace be upon him , i actually have written lots of subjects about this in my blog , in fact .. most of my blog’s topics is about that .

    Fifth : the Hadith i mentioned before is considered one of the “Mutawater” Hadiths , this term means in Hadith knowledge : The most corrected hadith .
    Ibn daqiq Al Eied ( great scholar of Hadith ) mentioned it on his famous book “Ehkamu Alahkam” .
    Al Tirmidhi ( which i putted his name after the hadith ) mentioned this hadith and its ways in Isnad , in his famous book “Al Sunan” its one of the six books of hadith that Muslim scholars depend on .
    Al Nasaie also mentioned this hadith ..

    and all of them mintioned this hadith with Isnad .. look it up , because its hard to type it all .

    Sixth : clearly you misunderstood the meaning of “Jama’ah” ( uniting ) in Islam , there are two meaning :
    1- uniting in life issues under one leader .
    2- uniting in Aqeedah and Believes as one .

    what i was talking about is the second , even if some groups adopts the Salafi’s believes and differ with the rest of the groups in the command issues , still they are united in one believe and one Aqedah .

    Seventh : also clearly you dont know the meaning of salafis .. to explain it : every word in arabic can be translated to its meaning in English .. in Shariah there are words differs from its original meaning in arabic language , which means Shariah change its meaning to another .. in that case you must not translate the word or sentence to english by its meaning in arabic .. and this is where many Translators made mistakes in translation of Quraanic sentences or Hadiths , they translat by its meaning in arabic not by its meaning in Islam or Shariah .

    Here : the meaning of salafis in arabic , is taken from the word “salaf” , and salaf means : The Predecessors .. but in the Islamic meaning : The Companions and Followers of the Companions .

    now : whoever follow the way of the companions , he become a “salafi” attribution to them ..

    now if you look at Al-Qaedah , you will see that they are one of the few groups in the world that follow the footsteps of the “salaf” ..

    Eighth & last : i am not good with translating some of the Terms in Shariah to english , therefore i am very careful when it comes to translate some of the Terms in Shariah , my standard english dont help me to translate .

    • Ibn Siqilli
      05/09/2010 at 4:19 pm

      If what you said about my “cooperation” was, as you claim, “clear,” there would have been no misunderstanding. Since there was, it was obviously not clear.

      The narrowing down of “5 pillars” is not something that has always been agreed on.

      Your claim that there is a consensus on jihad in the general sense is, of course, correct. However, you go on to claim that there is uniform agreement on what Al-Qa’ida calls “jihad,” which I do not agree with. Nor do many, in fact the majority, of Muslim jurists and scholars. That is simply a fact.

      I never disagreed that the term “Shari’a” is not in Muslim sources. I said that there is no consensus on its requirements or methods of juridical interpretation, and I stand by that statement. It is clear to anyone who studies the diversity of Islamic law. Yes, there are many areas of agreement, yet no absolute consensus.

      Thanks for the additional information re: the hadith. I’m unsure of your transliteration system, though, so I’m not sure what the Arabic is for some of the names and titles. Of course I know al-Tirmidhi and al-Nasa’i.

      Re: Salafis, I stand by my statement that there is no single, uniformly-accepted definition of “Salafi”, beyond those who follow the predecessors, which I know is “Salaf,” namely the Prophet’s Companions and the Taba’un, etc. The disagreement of course comes when different groups attempt to define what that means exactly in practice. I agree in principle with your note about the difficulties and hazards of translation from one language to another. I don’t think translations, either literal or with the full meaning of the original language, is possible in some instances.

      Whether Al-Qa’ida follows the “Salaf” is a purely subjective question. The vast majority of Muslims disagree.

      Thanks for the clarifications and additional comments. However, we fundamentally disagree on a whole host of issues, though there are some areas of agreement, mostly technical in nature (i.e. the hazards of translation).

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Commentary on the videos at Jihadica and by Peter Neumann at FreeRadicals

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