Definition of Islamism: Quotes of Khalid Duran and Abdul Hadi Palazzi


The following quotes were taken from the book "Countering Suicide Terrorism" by the ICT:

"Islamism is a late 20th century totalitarianism. It follows in the wake of fascist and communist (ideologies), picking up from those and seeking to reify their methods of domination. Islamists mould tradition so as to serve to their political ends, and this causes them to clash with traditionalist Muslims who try to resist this manipulation of religion for power politics." - Prof Khalid Duran

"Islamism is not a reaction of people feeling a loss of religious meaning, but a reaction to a sense of loss in the political sphere. It is a thrust for power, an attempt to conquer the state, not to regain independence for religion, and, least of all, independence for individual fate." - idem

"Like most totalitarian ideologies, Islamism is Utopian. (...) It is an anachronistic mode of thinking, in conflict with modern concepts of democracy, pluralism, and human rights." - idem

"Islamists (..) refuse to accept a secular state that puts a member of a non-Muslim minority on equal footing with a member of a Muslim majority, or accords a woman equality with a man." - Prof Abdul Hadi Palazzi

"The Qur’an says that Mohammed has been sent as an 'admonisher,' as a 'warner,' as 'someone who calls to God,' as 'a shining light.' But it never says that that he was sent as a political leader or as a head of state.
Islamists, on the other hand, take the opposite view. They maintain that the diffusion of Islam cannot be separated from the creation of what they  call 'the Islamic State.' The role of Muslim scholar is immediately confused with the role of leader of a political movement or party." - idem

"Islamists incessantly repeat that Islam is both religion and government, and this can be seen as the slogan for their creed. But they fail to prove that the word, Islam, does indeed refer to both religion and government. (..) As a matter of fact, the slogan joining religion and politics was coined by Taqiyyu-d-din Ibn Taymiyyah, a scholar who lived during the 13th and 14th centuries of the Christian era — and he was condemned to life imprisonment for his numerous heresies." - idem

"Those who repeat the slogan, 'Islam is religion and government,' are the same people who, for instance, ceaselessly advocate the liberation of Jerusalem from the hands of the Jews. But unfortunately for them, Ibn Taymiyyah, from whom they take their slogan, strongly denies any special role for Jerusalem in Islam.
Ibn Taymiyyah openly writes, 'there is no Muslim holy place in Jerusalem.' But his followers claim to be fighting for the liberation of Jerusalem in his name. This a clear example of how confused an ideology Islamism is, and of how contradictions are simply passed over in silence." - idem

"While many western researchers tend to describe Islamism as a form of “resurgent” Islam, traditional Muslim scholars read its appearance as a symptom of secularisation, a reshaping of their religion in the form of a modern ideological totalitarianism." - idem

N.B: Prof. Abdul Hadi Palazzi is the Director of the Cultural Institute of the Italian Islamic Community, in Rome (Italy); and Professor Khalid Duran was a visiting professor at the Temple University of Philadelphia.


  1. Lots of statements to ponder.

    I would just note that all the Suras of the Koran were issued by Mohammed from both of his positions of supreme authority: The role as king of his followers and the role as priest+prophet.

  2. Sadly, no islamist will read these two worthies. Nothing will change. I live among Muslims and for most of them, their mind set is something that I find difficult to understand because it is so set. Let us take simple things like their identification with Arabia. The Arabs treat them like dirt but these worthies still want to emulate Arabs like slaughtering camels for id and getting aged, out of work camels from Rajasthan for that purpose!

  3. Jerusalem is not mentioned in the Quran not even once! The connection to the Holy City is a Soviet and Arab fabrication during the cold war!

  4. Islamism is starting to give birth to the rise of the far right: in England, mosques are being burnt already! What's next, I ask?

  5. Olá Max! Excellent article, congratulations!


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