The myth often parroted about Islam is it is "all about war", 1400 hundred ago Islam entered the world and Arabs had the sudden urge to attack and kill innocent infidels. The end.
There are a lot of facts that disrupt this theory:
1) The fact the early Muslim community was violently persecuted for over a decade prior to their first military conflict against their oppressors (i.e. Battle of Badr).
2) The fact every single passage in the Qur'an related to warfare clarifies the motivation behind fighting as a response to aggression, oppression or the breaking of a peace treaty by the enemy.
3) The fact the Arab pagans constantly broke their peace treaties with the Muslims by attacking and killing innocent people.
4) The fact the Jewish tribes that were attacked also attacked first and constantly broke their treaties. Examples include the tribe of Banu Nadir, which was exiled to Khaybar after they attempted to assassinate the Prophet (saw). They also assisted the Pagan Arabs in the Battle of the Trench from their new base in Khaybar, which is what led to the eventual invasion of Khaybar.
5) The fact the Byzantine and Persian empires were empires, not pacifists minding their own business and having no ill-intent whatsoever to invade and destroy the new Islamic polity.
6) The fact Jews and Christians migrated to later caliphates to escape mass persecution by the Byzantine Empire and European nation states, because they honestly had more freedoms and better living conditions among the Muslims
7) The fact the entire fiqh of jihad centered around the above realities and consistently emphasizes not targeting non-combatants.
8) The fact no major scholars are among contemporary terrorists or support terrorism.
The reality is, if these facts are included in their understanding of Islam, most would agree with Islam.
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