Sudanese Cleric: 'Muhammad Said it is a Duty to Fight and Target America'
In a sermon delivered on June 20, Sudanese cleric Muhammad Ali al-Jazouli told his congregation to target and kill American men, women, and children, insisting that the Prophet Muhammad had called for war on America and that those killed by American forces would receive "144 black-eyed virgins" in the afterlife.
In an address translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), al-Jazouli, who has for years promoted violent anti-American sentiments, tells his congregation that all Americans are to blame for any deaths in Iraq. "American taxpayers share the blame for the blood of every Iraqi child," he says, explaining that "killing their women and children is permitted" because the Prophet Muhammad once said "their offspring constitute part of them." He argues that Muhammad had taught his followers that anyone who "helps kill a Muslim man... no longer enjoys protection," and, as such, all Americans were valid targets.
Al-Jazouli also argues that all civilians are fair game in war, allegedly as a tenet of Islam: "Islam recognizes no distinctions between regular armies and civilians." He goes on to claim that "the Prophet Muhammad said that it is a duty to fight and target America, and the same goes for targeting its allies." The Prophet Muhammad lived from 570 to 632 A.D., placing him more than a millennium away from the existence of the United States, and almost 1,000 before the discovery of America by Europeans. al-Jazouli does not note where in the Koran the Prophet Muhammad allegedly instructed pre-Columbian Arabs to "fight and target America."
The dubious claims do not stop there, however. Al-Jazouli mentions the popular "72 virgins" prize awaiting mujahideen, but adds a twist to the story: while regular mujahideen will receive great prizes for waging jihad in the afterlife, "anyone killed by America, or hunted down by the Crusaders, will receive 144 black-eyed virgins and may vouch for 140 of his relatives." He does not specify whether there is an exception for mujahideen who vouch for American relatives.
This particular cleric has been preaching violence for years. In another clip translated by MEMRI from 2012, al-Jazouli claims that the United States is suffering "in its south and west" from "the crisis of the black people" and "the crisis of the Indians," who are now "demanding revenge against the Europeans." In these statements, al-Jazouli vows that, "if only I had media power and political power... within six months, I would blow up these time bombs, turning the U.S. into a thing of the past."