Allah clearly states in the Quran, “Allah does not forbid you from dealing kindly and fairly with those who have neither fought nor driven you out of your homes. Surely Allah loves those who are fair. Allah only forbids you from befriending those who have fought you for ˹your˺ faith, driven you out of your homes, or supported ˹others˺ in doing so. And whoever takes them as friends, then it is they who are the ˹true˺ wrongdoers” (Quran 60:8-9). These verses show that Muslims are prohibited to treat the non-Muslims who don’t try to harm them in a bad or unjust manner. However, if non-Muslims try to harm and attack Muslims, then of course they have the right to defend themselves. This is the exact same reason why pretty much every country has a military; it is not to harm people for no reason, but it is to be able to defend the country if someone attacks or transgresses against it.
In another verse, Allah states, “That is why We ordained for the Children of Israel that whoever takes a life—unless as a punishment for murder or mischief in the land—it will be as if they killed all of humanity; and whoever saves a life, it will be as if they saved all of humanity” (Quran 5:32). This verse shows the value Allah has put on just one innocent soul.
Extremism is prohibited in Islam. Just because there are extremist groups that are allegedly motivated by Islam does not mean that this is from Islam. There are extremist groups from every religion and even among secular groups. The KKK, who use Christianity as their motive, have killed thousands of African-American people and are still ongoing today. The Crusades, also motivated by Christianity, have killed almost 2 million people. Joseph Stalin, an atheist, killed at least 9 million people. Hitler, an atheist, killed about 6 million jews. Israel, which is a majority Jewish country, has killed hundreds of innocent Palestinian woman and children. A current genocide in 2022 is happening against the Uighur Muslims in concentration camps in China. The list goes on, but you never see anyone claiming that this violence stems from their religious beliefs. Why is that? Because everyone knows that a small minority of individuals does not and will never represent the vast majority of people. Moreover, most of these groups are not actually motivated by their religion, rather, it stems from a certain political agenda. Robert Pape, one of America’s leading terrorism experts, studied every case of suicide terrorism between 1980 and 2005. After his studies, he concluded, “The data show that there is little connection between suicide terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism, or any one of the world’s religions…Rather, what nearly all suicide terrorist attacks have in common is a specific secular and strategic goal: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from territory that the terrorists consider to be their homeland. Religion is rarely the root cause, although it is often used as a tool by terrorist organizations in recruiting and in other efforts in service of the broader strategic objective.”
So when one looks at the evidence, one quickly realizes the blatant double-standard that is set against Muslims. But when one reads the Quran, it is clear that these acts of terrorism are clearly impermissible in Islam, as quoted in the first two paragraphs above.
And Allah knows best.