Iran’s nuclear case: Does Islam Forbid the Nuclear Bomb?


by Diba

Iran’s nuclear case: Does Islam Forbid the Nuclear Bomb?

By: Bahman Aghai Diba, PhD International Law

Officials from the Islamic Republic of Iran have claimed on several occasions that Islam forbids the nuclear bomb. The claim is meant to allay international fears and the concern of the IAEA over proliferation and the potential for Iran’s military use of its nuclear program. The claim is quite baseless and little more than an attempt at deception.

For starters, it is based on the religious ruling (fatwa) of Seyyed Ali Khamenei, the present supreme leader of Iran. Even to Khamenei’s followers, this has limited value. Let us not forget that Khamenei lacks serious credentials as a religious scholar and, for that reason, has extended the scope of his religious authority to Shiite communities outside Iran’s borders, where his background is less well known. Within Iran itself, very few Shiites accept him as an authority or a source of imitation (taqlid). The concept and practice of “imitation” is peculiar to Shiites. Sunnis, who constitute 90 percent of the world’s Muslims, do not believe in or practice it. Therefore, when Iranian officials claim that “Islam” forbids the nuclear bomb, the only Muslims bound by such a position would be those Shiites who follow the Iranian supreme leader as their source of imitation—in effect, a small percentage of a small percentage. The death of Ayatollah Khomeini in 1989 made it possible for Khamenei, a junior cleric with no scholarship to his name, to rise to the position of supreme leader. This political decision created conflict on the issue of the sources of imitation, and Iran’s mullahs finally concluded they had to separate the religious notion of imitation from the political office of the supreme leader. The constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran was correspondingly altered to eliminate religious qualifications from the position of the supreme leader. The Association of Instructors at the Qom Seminary has identified those it considers qualified to be sources of imitation in Iran. Chief among them is Mohammad Fazel Lankarani (now, deceased); third in line is Khamenei.

Inasmuch as any fatwa must have a basis in Islamic jurisprudence, it is not clear what forms the basis for the claim that “Islam forbids nuclear weapons.” If it is the extent of “mass destruction,” then one is entitled to ask, “How much destruction qualifies?” Large numbers of people were killed on the battlefield during the Iran-Iraq war, especially owing to Iran’s “human wave” strategy whereby Iranian soldiers, many of them children and teenagers, ran en masse over minefields. In no single case did Ayatollah Khomeini, who wielded more power and authority than any Iranian leader in recent memory, issue a fatwa condemning these levels of destruction and loss of life as contrary to Islam.

Evidence suggests that Iran’s nuclear program had started sometime during the Iraq-Iran war. The Iraqis had been actively pursuing nuclear power, especially before the destruction of the Osirak nuclear facility by the Israelis. Khomeini never condemned the Iraqi project as “un-Islamic,” nor did he stand in the way as Iran pursued a nuclear program with potential for military application. Had either side won the nuclear race, there is little doubt it would have used it against the other with no hesitation; Iran would have justified such action as a “victory for Islam.”

Let us also consider religio-legal rulings in Islam on the issue of the accidental or even deliberate killing of non-combatants. As confirmed by many sources of jurisprudence, Islam condones the killing of civilians or those caught in the middle of military action, even Muslims, if such action is necessary for the victory of the forces of Islam; collateral damage is recognized as a necessary evil.

Shiite Islam provides further for political flexibility. The practice of taqiyyah, or dissimulation, gives the Shiite believer religious sanction to deny his faith if he is under duress and his life, property or honor are threatened by virtue of his religious belief. This opens the way for the telling of an expedient lie when circumstances demand it. Shiism also affirms that the “door to issuance of [new] fatwas is open.” This grants the source of imitation the freedom to say one thing today and change his view tomorrow, and it is rationalized by the belief that Iran’s supreme leader is the nominal deputy of the Hidden Imam, thereby giving him a connection to divine authority. Iran’s two supreme leaders (Khomeini and Khamenei) have said a number of things that have proven to be wrong, but no one can question them or hold them responsible, though they were and are the commander-in-chief, be it of the regular forces with their military structure or the street thugs that are more loosely organized into vigilante units.

The claim that “Islam” forbids the nuclear bomb to the Muslims is a deception and a fabrication. The banner of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards bears the following advice to the believers from the Koran (8:60): “And make ready for them whatever force you can.”


more from Diba

Islam allows everything when dealing with Kafirs.

by Roozbeh_Gilani on

With regards to dangerous , reckless nuclear policy of the islamist regime, which slowly , but surely is pushing our nation towards a disasterous war:

The undeniable right of Iranian people is for at least some of the petro dollar income to be diverted from the personal funds of ahmadinezhad,khamenei, hassan nassrullah and other terrorist gang leaders to pay for:

Food, Jobs, education, housing and  social justice.



There is only one reason for hostility

by radius-of-the-persian-cat on

There is only one reason for hostility, Jeesh Daram, and you should know this:  It is the permanent claims of MA and his "Gang" to wipe Israel off the map. And currently they don"t mind doing this just with money (actually stolen from the iranian people) that they hand over to Hisbollah and Hamas. So do you think that the international community can not make a link between these daily verbal acts of aggression from of the IRI regime, and the danger of IRGC beeing in possesion of nuclear weapons ?

In your essay you somehow try to make a link between nuclear weapons and more sovereignity of Iran. There is (luckily) absolutely now evidence in history for this !!!  Do you think that North-Korea (virtually economically collapsing) or Pakistan are international respected countries ?  Do you think that the worldwide biggest arsenal of nuclear war-heads in the former Soviet Union prolonged the existence of the system a single day ?  Germany, happily, never had nuclear weapons, but I guess it found its way back into the international community after 1945 also because of this. Do you think that two typical nuclear super-powers (UK and France) nowadays have any benefit from this in terms of their role in international politics ?  Forget it ! What counts today is an innovative and powerful economy and the right demografic structure. The idea of becoming a respected international player by building up a stock-pile of nuclear arms is an idea from the last century, and this idea never worked before and does not work today.

If one wants a strong Iran, than try to raise its human ressources. Give the iranians freedom and the possibility to turn ideas in innovation. Why do you think that so many iranian ex-pats become successful scientists, artists, engineers and media people as soon as  they are outside ?  It is because they were longing for a free world where they can live and work without beeing treated like a slave by the mullahs.

Instead of your ground-less complains about a general hostility against Iran from the rest of the world, I would rather like to see a discussion about the Iran-Iraq war and the role the US had therein. This is something that really happened and deserves clearification. Even if the US State Department open their files only in 25 yeas, there must be documents somewhere else. Maybe ask Israel. If I am informed correctly, than Israel was the only country then in the Middle-East which supported Iran. These were the real events, wheras the global anti-Iran Hostility is something that - let me assure you - is only present in your imagination.

Maryam Hojjat

Jeesh Daram, Well said

by Maryam Hojjat on

Excellent writining & elaboration to why Iran must have nuclear Tech.

I like very much This paragraph:

All Iranians should focus only on changing the regime to a secular regime so that all of us go back to our country and build a giant industical nation with many things to produce among which will be alll kinds of weapon that would work as a deterence for hostile nations.  


I've got a story for ya!

by پندارنیک on

I too have a retarded nephew who had no effing clue whether it is the Sun which rotates around us or it's the other way, let alone knowing where ME was located on the globe........Anywho......let me make it short .........He applied for Science after he got his high school diploma with a low grade, and waited for the mail to arrive. Well, the mail finally arrived ..........

The admission office had- most understandably- rejected his application for science, but.........Are you still with me doc?....The university had instead,  offered him admission to Social Science and Humanity......and guess what....yup doctor, you guessed it right:

The bozo became a specialist in humanity and international stuff and other stuff overnight. Now he writes some stuff too........I'm just sayin' know..

You dare come back to me with a " seems it runs in your family" cutie...

Jeesh Daram

Iran's entitlement to nuclear weapons and energy

by Jeesh Daram on

I do not think Islam has anything to do with an attempt to build nuclear bombs by the Iranian government. Regardless of what type of government would have won the revolution of 1979 we would be building nuclear bombs today and we would be trying to develop nuclear energy today. We are surrounded by hostile neighbors who either own nuclear bombs or are protected by proxy nuclear bombs of others.

If a nationalist and pragmatic Iranian group had won the revolution, the first thing they would  have done was to start developing the country, industrial self-sufficiency, militray strength to protect self interest and building gasoline refinaries and would have tried to minimize Iranian dependency on imports. The list above I assure you that would have caused the British, Russians and the American government to not tolerate and allow the chance for the Iranians to fulfill their aspiration to become a great nation. Thus Iran would have faced hostility in other ways. It would no longer be an axis of evil because of Islam, but it would have been an axis evil because of its aspiraitons and its ability to become a regional superpower. Such hostilities would have forced Iran to start building nuclear weapons to preotect itself in case of a war. 

You don't go to a gunfight with a knife. The natural course of events for all regional nations in that part of the world has been and is to arm themselves to the teeth. This is the reality. 

Nulcear bombs if built with perfection are great deterents although they might not be good weapons to use.  Today Iran is in danger of being attacked far more than it has any intention of attacking any country. Iran as we all have heard a zillion times here, has not attacked any country for more than two centuries.

All Iranians should focus only on changing the regime to a secular regime so that all of us go back to our country and build a giant industical nation with many things to produce among which will be alll kinds of weapon that would work as a deterence for hostile nations.  

Islamic doctrine in terms of a republic in Iran has been the main cause of industrial and cultural regression in Iran. We should have had our bomb around 1985 if the British had not introduced Khomeini to Iran. Today due to all the sanctions and manipulaitons and media induced paranoia Iran is a weak country no matter how much it attempts to portray itself otherwise. Iran is extremely vulnerable to military attacks leading to an immediate shortage of food, water, medicine, communications and modern weapons.

Please attempt to show the world that Iran is not the military might that world press claims it to be. The called Saddam's regime "the fifth most powerful nation on Earth" something you would expect to hear it in comedy clube, but world believed it and they ruined that country in 48 hours and have been killing its citizens during the past 20 years.

Now, you make the conclusion. What would be your weapon of choice? Submission?