When I first arrived in Sham and walked the streets of Atmah, Dana, and its surrounding areas, I felt an immediate kick of excitement that I was in the land of jihad and carrying a gun gave a sense of honor. However as the weeks went on and the initial excitement faded away, I started realising that there was a lot of vice and munkar around me.
The womenfolk were not dressed according to the teachings of Islam (tight tops, jeans, tight long skirts, glamorous and glittering clothes with designs that attract the eye, etc.); men smoking openly without a shadow of fear or respect for JN when we walked past; so many shops played music videos on their TV with taxi drivers also playing music as they drove around the streets; hardly anyone prayed salaah, as the adhaan was called, shops remained open, people walked past the masjids. I started feeling as if I was back in Edgeware Road in London. The only difference being, that I had a gun.
As this was a Dawlah town before, the population had been living under the Shariah for the year long period that Dawlah remained in control. So it seemed illogical and irrational for us not to continue on with where Dawlah left off (if we truly wished to rule by the Shariah).
When Dawlah was in town, all vice was prohibited. I asked many locals and they said how Dawlah was ‘extreme’ because music and smoking were prohibited, and how all shops had to be closed for salah and women had to be dressed in niqab and all in black.
This was the state of affairs. Yet JN’s fear of being labeled as extremists lead them to ‘free the people’ from the so-called shakles of Shariah.
Yes they need tarbiyah (religious upbringing), however the solution was not to let them go back to sin. The more sins a person does the harder it is for naseehah to hit their heart.
You would walk out the masjid and have women dressed up all glamorous walking past you. You would enter the shops and the beardless chubby man would not notice who walked into his shop due to his eyes being fixed on the music channel hewould be watching on TV.
So many times I spoke to my amir about this, and he advised me not to forbid the evil I saw least the locals start to hate us. This (us not forbidding the evil) has many negative impacts, from among them was that we were indirectly telling the people that smoking, missing salah, wearing glamorous clothing for women, music, etc, that all these were fine and acceptable according to the Shariah.
We were saying we were an Islamic group, yet by us not prohibiting the evil that Dawlah was prohibiting, we were indirectly telling the locals that Dawlah were the extrmists by prohibiting these evils. We were indirectly telling them that smoking was halal, that music was halal, that a women dressed provocatively was halal.
Likewise, FSA were around the corner, so any indication that we want to have the Shariah in town would have caused them to suspect us to be Dawlah, and as I mentioned in part 1, JN never saw the fight between FSA (the people of democracy) and Dawlah (the people of tawheed) as ‘our fight’. A cowardice approach indeed. But more on the cowardice of JN in the upcoming articles.
My purpose of jihad was to raise the Word of Allaah the highest, i.e, to live under the Shariah. And I was unwilling to remain in a group who showed a lack of concern for the Shariah and making sure the people have an Islamic upbringing.
This may shock many readers, and many may doubt my words, however I only narrate what I saw and I have many brothers who were with me in Jabhat An-Nusrah who are in Dawlah now who can also confirm this. I saw with my own eyes the widespread evil and the laxity the Amirs of Jabhat An-Nusrah had for this.
I was not going to die while killing the Shiah to have no replacement of previous laws out in place. Why should I die for a land and then make the land a place where the Word of Allaah (the Shariah) is not raised high? This is not the foundation of jihad.
Likewise there was a refugee camp nearby and it was well known to everyone that prostitution was rampant. Yet what did Jabhat An-Nusra do to counter this problem? Nothing.
You couldn’t even tell someone to stop smoking even though we had a gun on us. Hardly anyone in the town had respect for Jabhat An-Nusrah and their approach to implementing the Shariah was weak and futile.
And before anyone claims this is all false and I should have spoken to someone higher up, I would like to mention that I am narrating what I saw with my own two eyes. And he who sees is not like he who does not see.
Furthermore, I also spoke to their official English speaking spokesman, Abu Sulayman Al-Muhajir (the Australian), this was on the 14th of March 2014 in “Reef Muhandiseen” in his masjid / safe house. In this meeting which I attended with 3 other brothers, I asked him why we do not implement the Shariah in the areas we control.
His responses were very illogical and impractical, not to mention stemming from ignorance. But more on Abu Sulayman will be said in the next article.
The main points I wished to highlight as I end this third part of this series, is that evil was widespread in Jabhat An-Nusrah controlled areas, nothing was being done to forbid the evil nor were any steps being taken to teach the people the deen, and when me and a few friends voluneered for this, our proposal was brushed away.
So this is the reality of Jabhat An-Nusrah on this position, and actions speak louder than words. Nay even their words are a proof against them (as I shall show in the upcoming article).
In part four to this series of why I left Jabhat An-Nusrah, I will talk about the ignorance of their top Amir and official Spokesman, Abu Sulayman Al-Muhajir, and the discussion I had with him regarding implementing the Shariah, and his ignorant approaches.
Abu Sa’eed Al-Britani (Kik: “shaykh.anwar”)
09/06/1436 (Corresponding to 29/03/2015)