Why I Left Jihad:
The Root of Terrorism and the
Return of Radical Islam
A former terrorist speaks
Review of the book by
M D Roberts
The writer describes himself at the outset as having been born in Bethlehem of Judea, Israel. The significance of this precise statement emanates from the text as the reader is confronted with the author's experiences and personal faith, first as a devout Muslim and then as a born again Christian.
The source pulls no punches as he declares himself to be a former Palestinian Liberation Organisation terrorist who has been imprisoned for his participation in acts of incitement and violence against Israel.
It is difficult to remain unmoved when confronted with the account of how, from childhood, the hatred of Jews is described as having been his "education" and how he grew up believing that it was a righteous thing to hate and kill Jews.
The book describes how Walid's life was turned upside down, when through his studies, he discovered that "..everything that he had been taught about the Jews was a lie..."
The context surrounding this profound change of heart/mind, and what is cited as an "addiction of hate", presents the reader with a series of events encompassing Walid's attempt to convert his wife to Islam.
The book narrates how his wife refused to accept the validity of Walid's virulent hatred of the Jews and how he recounts her saying "show me in the Bible the bad things the Jews did". To accommodate her he then began to diligently study the Bible, factual history and other sources in order to substantiate his indoctrinated hatred.
What transpired becomes the platform for this excellent study, which is not only an autobiographical account of Walid, but also a detailed investigation into anti-Semitism, the Middle East, Christianity and Islam itself.
As the book progresses the writer declares that "...I am no longer a terrorist. I am a Christian, dedicated to peace and truth..."
Indeed, the entire message of this book cited as being written with the declared intent of bringing love and truth to anyone who is prepared to listen.
The brutal yet gripping honesty of the writer's involvement in terrorism, hatred of the Jews, and his uncompromising look at almost all the fundamental tenets of Islam is often quite disturbing.
The author describes how he found it amazing that when he was a self confessed terrorist, and a hater of the Jews, he was hailed as a freedom fighter. Yet, by way of comparison, when he became a Christian and began loving the Jewish people, he was suddenly abused as a "racist" and a "traitor".
The former PLO terrorist leaves the reader with the clear message that terrorists recognise no ethics or moral code and that the Israelis face an enemy with whom they cannot negotiate because the primary goal is not the territory. Basing such statements on personal knowledge/experience, the reader is shown that such aspirations are purportedly only secondary issues with the primary intent being the elimination of Israel itself. A plethora of references are provided to support this assertion.
The book illustrates how vigorously the West today is focussed upon creating a Palestinian state, while allegedly sidestepping he Palestinian Charter that is cited as calling for an Arab state in the place of Israel, with no Jews, and with Islam as the official state religion.
The book also investigates the alleged misinformation in the media together with what is called the "miasma of words that insulates the public from the evil of terrorism" in the wake of recent terrorist attacks. The book demonstrating how it is not difficult for extremists to allegedly explain Islam in a completely untruthful fashion to the unquestioning moderates and win them over by the droves. Such a statement being made within the context of sincere concern as to how so many Westerners, especially on the far left side of politics, allegedly demonise Israel and exonerate Islamic-Arab terror.
In the text (page 28) another issue expounded & discussed is that the alleged mentor of Osama bin Laden and the actual inspiration for Al-Qaeda was purportedly a Palestinian named Mustafa Azzam. The implications of this are addressed.
Through an abundance of references the reader is shown how Palestinian schools/textbooks are allegedly required to portray the existence of Israel as a catastrophe and how hatred of the Jews is purportedly an integral part of their curriculum.
The study also proceeds to investigate the Jewish claim to the Holy Land as described in the Hebrew Christian Scriptures. The book discusses how some elements of the professing Church within the Middle East allegedly adhere to the doctrines of replacement and liberation theology and do not recognise what he cites as the true place of Israel as literally cited in the Bible. One senior Church leader in Jerusalem is quoted on page 39 as being recorded on tape by the author as stating that "Israel must be eliminated, by whatever means".
Indeed, the entire situation in the Middle East is also discussed from a Biblical perspective, including the prophetic sections of the Hebrew Christian Scriptures pertaining to the end times and how such compare with those within the Islamic faith that the writer once adhered to.
Having studied the Arab-Israeli conflict and the Middle East for some three decades, I personally consider this to be one of the most timely, gripping and relevant studies of recent years and an account which is an absolute "must read" in relation to the ongoing situation in the region.
Walid Shoebat speaks out