Ahmad Naim bin Zaid

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

University of Malaya


Research paper submitted as part of the requirement for the award of Doctor of Philosophy


This paper is a brief discourse on ‘global jihad’ focusing on the war in Syria. It presents an argument on the significance of the element of religion in the war and the fact that it can be a beginning for a large-scale religious war. While the West and its media attempt to downplay the significance of religion in this war, a fair reading on the conflict suggests otherwise. Resentment towards the tyrannical regime is the catalyst but the foundation of the uprising is definitely religion. The paper also explains how this war can lead to a religious war of a greater scale and the Global Jihad Movement with networks across the globe will be the main actor. The Shia, the West, Russia and all the current governments in the Muslim world will play the enemies of the movement. The war in Syria is far from over but the present stalemate will not last. However, current development shows that when it is over, whoever wins will face foreign resistance and Syrians will face the fate comparable to those in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as African Muslim countries. The likelihood of regime change is seemingly improving as the regime is losing in many parts of the country but the West is waiting and scheming to ensure that the winner will be one that can best serve its interests later. Iran has already moved to assist the regime alongside Lebanon’s Hezbollah but still the resistance is gaining momentum. The mujahideen is gaining more than the secular rebels. The Sunni-Shia enmity has reignited fully due to this war. A western occupation of Syria will amplify the anti-Western sentiments amongst Sunni Muslims. Russian involvement will increase support for the Chechen cause. The inability and refusal of Sunni Arab regimes has already erased any lingering trust the Sunnis have towards them. In the end, the frustration, anger, isolation and most importantly the religious obligation to defend Islam and Muslims will lead to a mass revolution through the method of jihad. The Global Jihad Movement will earn the legitimacy and a grand struggle towards the Caliphate shall begin with a momentum gained indirectly from the war in Syria. The study is based on library research only and much of the arguments are from deductions.

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