US Suspect in Pakistan Defends ‘jihad’ Plans

For years I could remember Islamic apologists practically swearing to me, that American Muslims were different than Muslims anywhere else. If that is so, then why do we see more and more of them joining the jihad? Please wake up guys, the problem exists across the world, America included.

US suspect in Pakistan defends ‘jihad’ plans
By ASIF SHAHZAD

SARGODHA, Pakistan – One of five Americans detained in Pakistan said their aim was to go to Afghanistan to wage jihad against Western forces, defending their intention as justified under Islam.

But he denied any links to al-Qaida or plans to carry out terrorist attacks in Pakistan, as alleged by Pakistani authorities.

Monday was the first time the young Muslims from the Washington, D.C., area have addressed a court after being arrested in early December in the eastern Pakistani city of Sargodha. The case has spurred fears that Westerners are traveling to Pakistan to join militant groups. Pakistani police have said they plan to seek life sentences for the men under the country’s anti-terrorism law.

“We are not terrorists,” one of the men, Ramy Zamzam, told The Associated Press as he entered a courtroom in Sargodha on Monday.

“We are jihadists, and jihad is not terrorism,” he said.

Jihad has several different meanings in Islam, but Zamzam seemed to be referring to the duty to fight against foreign forces viewed as occupying a Muslim country.

The men, aged 19 to 25, denied they had ties with al-Qaida or other militant groups during a court appearance Monday in Sargodha, said their attorney, Ameer Abdullah Rokri.

“They told the court that they did not have any plan to carry out any terrorist act inside or outside Pakistan,” said Rokri. “They said that they only intended to travel to Afghanistan to help their Muslim brothers who are in trouble, who are bleeding and who are being victimized by Western forces.”

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