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I had been with the al-Thawra unit for six months, mostly operating their digital radios, sending messages in Arabic to confuse the Russians, translating letters from our helpers.

Sometimes I went with the fighters on ambushes, where I would jump out with the rest of the fighters to spray the cars with gunfire.

I know my leaders were watching me and checking me. Once they gave me a very important message to translate from English to Arabic and gave me a very cool radio phone to transmit it directly to some radio station very far away. For some reason one of my leaders checked the radio for hours after I carried out the assignment.

I tried to be straight in everything I did. I shot straight, never in to the sky, I always answered straight, walked straight, never sitting down to rest.

I must have done something right. Just when I learned to enjoy living in the mountains, freezing because we could not light fires so helicopters would not find us, one day Rashid told me that I was to go on a very special operation where I would be a very important asset. He didn’t say anything else and I didn’t ask when and what.

Several weeks afterwards we started late at night and we walked only at night, until we got to really high mountains. They told me this was the operation.

We went over mountain passes that had no roads, it was so hard and cold and snowy that we made our trek during the day only. Finally, we started walking down slope, and I heard that we were in Pankisi Valley, a valley in Georgia where many Chechens lived.

Our leader told me that we were going to surprise American advisors that the Georgian government invited there to teach anti-terrorist tactics. I would be very important, I would be an interpreter during interrogations of captured Americans. Knowing our al-Thawra traditions, after the interrogations the prisoners would probably be slaughtered to pieces.

We were walking through the woods over a refuge camp that was between us and the highway that the enemy used to travel. It was probably the beginning of the actual operation.

It was late at night, we had the whole night ahead of us. We were going to a clearing between two wooded hills when shooting started out of the blue. I thought it was thunder in the mountains, which happens in bursts. But it became the real gunfire, the thunder, the flashes, it all coming closer.

I heard bullets as they wheezed towards us, and I saw my fellow fighters charge ahead but drop all around me. Never seen this before.

I saw flashes of fire surrounding me. I thought I was going to be killed. I swung my stubby Kalash to lunge into fight till they mow me down or I run out of ammo, but I hit something in the dark and tumbled down a slope. I remember rolling over my dead friends.

I heard a lot of Americans screaming everywhere. I didn’t know what was happening. I was tumbling till I got caught by one who screamed, “Another live one!”

I pretended not to understand English.






Author's Note:
My Name Is Sayfullah http://www.lit.org/view/16449, A Crucible for Sayfullah http://www.lit.org/view/17459





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Comments

The following comments are for "The Last Jihad"
by Teflon

more Jihad
I had to get this out of the system. Once I got a glimpse into the world of a Sayfullah-like guy, and since then have had an itching idea to get it out. Please stand by for more Jihad :-) [God Forbid].

( Posted by: Teflon [Member] On: December 18, 2004 )

Very moving
This was very moving to read. As an American, it is interesting to read about these conflicts from the other side's perspective. Thank you for puting this up.

( Posted by: Pats [Member] On: December 18, 2004 )

Pats watch your thanks

This is a more sedate installment in the series. I got a slew of emails from people disgusted with subject of the previous parts. The emails were not exactly thank-you letters. As Hutch would say, "Gruesome situation."

( Posted by: Teflon [Member] On: December 18, 2004 )

Fawta you do it?

You appear to be striving to understand the "opposition" view, more difficult for you than for myself, i would think, considering your location and status as target of hatred and occasional genocide.

I believe insight may be our most powerful weapon in the "war on terror", as the number of those who hate us grows faster than we can kill them, in fact, grows faster the more we kill them.

There is no excuse for terrorism, but there is some reason for the hate*, and obviously a deep belief in their cause.
(*I'm referring here to resentment of Western ways, etc. There is no excuse for persecution of Jews)
I don't know what the answer is, but I believe it begins with asking the questions. I salute and admire your efforts.

( Posted by: drsoos [Member] On: December 18, 2004 )

@DrSoos, on Hutch
I have some insights from someone who in my posts I call Hutch, and whom I try to weave into fictionalized events.

The insights earned from being afar do complement well the insights earned in the field, here, but nothing can compare the experience of Jihad in Caucasus.

Just like thousands of miles from there, in the cozy snowiness of the Midwest, here, where even rocks are holy, to get an adrenalin trip and an inside scoop I do mingle with the mislabeled Ishmaelites, to realize how lucky I am that they are nowhere as smart as the Moscow-educated, Slavic-looking, cool and reserved Chechens.

( Posted by: Teflon [Member] On: December 19, 2004 )

Tina Nightingale
I know you are a Florence Nightingale of sorts, but do exercise due care reading the character. I got enough of mail from readers disgusted with the gore.
____________
Bloody Brit:

1 part Campari
1 part Gin

____________

Enjoy

Tefilling

( Posted by: Teflon [Member] On: December 19, 2004 )

jihad
Looking at it from the other's point of view isn't that difficult when it comes to the jihad mind. These people really believe in what they're doing. It's the 72 virgins incentive. Heard any good 72 virgin jokes lately? Good write.

( Posted by: DieBaronHobskewward [Member] On: December 21, 2004 )

on virgins, for Baron
It is important to note that the virgins is the lure offered for the uneducated impoverished kids in the slums of the Arab world,
among the educated Arabs growing up in the West it is a straight, textbook Islam: the whole world must be Dar al-Islam, i.e., the domain if Islam, the Arabs are obligated to carry out the Dawa proselyting in order to convert the local population, and whoever resists must be fought:

“Strike terror(sic!)into the hearts of the enemies of Allah and your enemies” ( Koran, Sura 8:60)

“I will instill terror into the hearts of unbelievers. Smite them above their necks and smite all their finger-tips off them. It is not you who slay them, it is Allah” (Koran, Sura 8:12, 17)

till they say "no more, I convert":

“I have been ordered to fight with the people until they say, none has the right to be worshiped but Allah” (Hadith 4:196)

To everyone's sorrow, it is more sophisticated than the 72 virgins.

Regards,

Tul Al-Falloun

P.S.
Did you know that "muffin" in Arabic means "disgusting"?

( Posted by: Teflon [Member] On: December 21, 2004 )

VIRGINS!
Thanks for the insight Teflon! I didn't know that. You really do your research. Hope to see more on this subject!

( Posted by: DieBaronHobskewward [Member] On: December 21, 2004 )

teflon's tale
Not bad. A good slice of life story in that the slice is taken from an undertold life. I like the pacing, and the vernacular of a mind less clutterred. I do think the story would have benefited from better puncuation however (5th paragraph, 2nd sentence, for example).
And you don't need "knowing our al-Thawra traditions" -- trust the reader to make that connection, otherwise you lose the flow of the story by telling us something. All in all, good.

( Posted by: brad [Member] On: December 28, 2004 )

My name is Say
Thanks. I tried to make the story imperfect, as if written by a high-school graduate. I know someone a Sayfullah-like individual, and he is redundant in his testimonies. "Knowing..." is a typical idiosyncrasy of his.

The sequel may contain similar imprefections.

Thanks for close reading!

ila illqaa,

Teflond

( Posted by: Teflon [Member] On: December 28, 2004 )

arent we the arab know it all?
The whole world must be dar al-Islam?whoever resists must be fought?My, your unbiased and balanced view of Islam is exemplary, such understanding, such education!

....Not

Your writing and position in regards to the Muslim World is racist and extremly biased at best - heh, funny how folks here seem to attack other writers for using the word "Jew" whilst here and may I add, all your "Sayefallah" writings reflect your hatred towards Islam and it's people.You disgust me.

History proves Islam's relative innovation and open-mindedness to others.The Egyptian and Syrian cities opened their gates to the Muslims seeking refuge from the Byzantines, the Persian Empire collapsed as the Orthodox and Baluchis (not to mention plutocrats of society) fled to the Islamic armies and need I remind you of the conversion of the berbers to Islam?Spain, the land which held Muslims, Christians and Jews is but an example of relative peace and tolerance.

The Quran and Hadiths are filled with examples "And speakith to them with wisdom and good grace, and debate them to which is good"

"And we have made you male and female, and we have made you nations and tribes so that you may know each other"

and "If Allah wishith, he would have made all those on the planes of mortality believe"

the Hadiths "That he who hurts a Kitabi (People of the Book) hurts me"

PS : There is a difference between "Qirfah" and thats Cinamon not Muffin, and Qaraf which is disgusting.

Get your arabic straight you hater.

( Posted by: Calipah [Member] On: February 23, 2006 )

Calipah
Now that you've expressed your disgust for Teflon as a human being, it might be a good time for you to offer constructive criticism as to how he could improve his writing technique. That's why we're here, right? Or are we here to throw clumps of shit at eachother like five year olds with leaking diapers? If you can't help but comment about perceived ideological atrocities, a PM to Teflon would save us all the time of slapping our heads and asking you two to take it outside.

( Posted by: strangedaze [Member] On: February 23, 2006 )

Danced with Wolves
hala beek and greetings!

I think you are temporarily wrong.

The stories are based on my experience with Moslems, Arabs at the grassroots level, and it is apparently different from the country of your ancestry, and, of course, your domicile.

That’s why in my Arabic “muffin-disgusting” is 99.99 the same – qarfa and qαrfa. In standard Arabic speech possessive agglutination shortens the precedent – hence if “sword” stand alone, it is sayyef, in a possessive – it’s sayf. In the literary Get close to the speakers of Syrian-Iraqi Arabic. Listen to them. These speakers say I speak very good fusha and as well as lajja ( 3amiya) forms.

I don’t think you really mean that I am a hater. Go visit mypersonal account of being an Arab(seriously!) Danced with Wolves, in Non-Fiction, on Writingforums (http://www.writingforums.com/showthread.php?t=55068)
I’d love to read your opinion, on either forum.

Habibi inta Allah owyak,

Tef-(bas ani mista3jil)-lon

( Posted by: Teflon [Member] On: February 26, 2006 )

Teflon Arabic?
Teflon, you are becoming ever more fascinating by the moment. You can speak Arabic. Intriguing.

( Posted by: Legs [Member] On: February 26, 2006 )





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