India-Trained ‘Radical Scholars’ Drive Global Islamic Caliphate Movement; Taliban-Led Afghanistan The Hub

Islamic scholars trained at the Deoband School of Islamic Jurisprudence in India are the driving force behind the moves to set up the Global Caliphate – where Sharia law will be followed — comprising the entire Asiatic Muslim world. Two Islamic organizations have taken it upon themselves to build Taliban-led Afghanistan into the Global Caliphate of their dreams. 

Deoband’s (in India) school of Islamic jurisprudence has effectively shaped the thinking of most of the Islamic scholars of contemporary times in India and abroad. Islamic resurgence is a significant phenomenon of the post-Cold War era.

Huge migration of “refugees” and “asylum seekers” from the regions of the Third World in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia to the European countries was allowed with twin presuppositions viz. refurbishing the depleted, mostly male, labor force in post-war Europe, and the West’s practicing liberalism.

The Islamization of many African Americans in the US sprang from the racist policy that Islam abhors.

The Caliphate

Islamic scholars and ideologues trained in Deoband’s scholastics believe that the entire Asiatic Muslim world has to be welded into a Caliphate and run by the Sharia law, discarding all other forms of political arrangement hitherto thrust on them by the colonialists.

The idea of a Global Caliphate, thus, gained momentum among Islamist circles.

Two main Islamic organizations that have undertaken the project of galvanizing the Muslim community (ummah) in the pursuit of a Global Caliphate are the Islamic Oasis based in Chicago and the Qamar Foundation in Kabul.

For public consumption, they declare their mission in soft words. The Islamic Oasis, for example, defines its mission as: “The Mission of Islamic Oasis Centre, established in 2008, is to be the premier knowledge resource and a recognized leader in promoting literacy, life skills, humanitarian efforts, and religious studies; locally and overseas… After years of intense research, giving dawah (calling to Islam), providing social services, and humanitarian work overseas, we found it necessary to establish a full-time dedicated Islamic Centre that provides our community with Islamic studies, social services, and after-school tutoring.”

Likewise, the Qamar Foundation asserts: “Founded in 2018, we aim to create awareness about the true nature of the Islamic faith and reclaim its original narrative by rolling out value-based campaigns, Islamic conferences, debates, and academic research on contemporary issues that assist in understanding Islam and removing common misconceptions about Islam.”

On The Ground

In his write-up “Western Islamists work to build the  Taliban’s Afghanistan into a global caliphate’, in the Focus on Western Islamism of February 22, Sam Westrop writes that an axis of Islamists in the US, Germany, and the UK — connected to Deobandis and international terror-tied Islamist movement Hizb ut-Tahrir — is working to provide ideological and material support for the Taliban while encouraging the violent regime to move beyond tribal and cultural identities and instead develop a global Islamist state under strict sharia law.

Westrop claims that the Chicago-based charity, Islamic Oasis, is working with a German-British organization named the Qamar Charity Foundation to build the ideological and welfare infrastructure for the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.

In Kabul, Islamic Oasis and Qamar Foundation are working in complete unison. They share staff and projects and regularly appear in each other’s promotional material as if they are a single organization. Together, they build mosques, teach in the Taliban universities, run joint events, and refer to each other as “our team.”

Taliban Response

The Taliban welcomes these charitable efforts. In December 2022, the office of the Taliban Prime Minister praised the Qamar Foundation and other institutions for their cooperation with the Islamic Emirate.

Chicago-based Islamic Oasis head Muhammad Shirazi paid his maiden visit to Kabul in January 2022. Besides meeting with the Qamar functionaries, he is reported to have met two provincial governors. In August of that year, the Taliban government funded the $83,000 bridge in Mehtar Lam, Laghaman, which Qamar claimed was built in partnership with Oasis. Almost immediately after the Taliban took control of Kabul, Islamic Oasis organized a discussion that featured Muhammad Shirazi, the chief of Oasis, and the Qamar chief, Rahmatullah Nowruz. Muhammad Malkawi, a prominent leader of Hizb ut Tahrir, and Omar Baloch, a radical cleric notorious for his promotion of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and supporter of the Caliphate, joined them to deliberate on the Caliphate issue.


What did these prominent members of the Caliphate think-tank discuss? Some clues are available. Shirazi, the founding member of Islamic Oasis, declared that the victory in Afghanistan was at risk from the “colonial mindset in the rest of the world. Baloch agreed and warned that Israel and India posed a particular threat.

He spoke about the collaboration between the “mushrikeen” (poly-theists, meaning Hindu) and the Yuhud, meaning the Jews. Nowruz said that while nobody was saying that the current Taliban government was perfect if they worked together, “we can make it perfect, at least better than the last four decades that we have lived.”

By November 2021, Shirazi and Nowruz were streamlining the concept of a Global Caliphate. Shirazi organized another Islamic Oasis webinar with Nowruz to discuss how the Afghan leadership could take the nation. Once again, the two were joined by Mohammed Malkawi. Yasir Nadeem al-Wajidi, a prominent Chicago Deobandi scholar who has long expressed open support for his Taliban brethren, was added to the discussion.

Malkawi stated that the ummah intends to provide full support to Afghanistan so that its mission of implementing Islamic law completely at all levels is achieved. Wajidi said that Afghanistan was the only region where hope was alive.

While discussing the economic challenges to the ummah, the opinion was that it had yet to be ascertained how a sharia economy would work. To avoid the notice of Western governments, it was suggested to use cryptocurrencies “not controlled by anybody, but decentralized so they can bypass the American banks.

Nowruz explained that he had been “discussing with organizations in America,” as well as Canada, the UK, and Germany, the means to coordinate this ideological effort in Afghanistan.

Islam moderation
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Afghanistan, The Epicentre

In messages broadcast to Islamic Oasis supporters back in America, Shirazi urged Western Muslims to come to Afghanistan. “What I am trying to say is that you can come here. There are obviously ways you can come here. I came from the US…. you can get a visa to come here. Professionals are needed here …”

Islamic Oasis and Qamar were serious about propping up Afghanistan as the epicenter of the Global Caliphate. Qamar’s Nowruz offered that his organization could arrange visas for American Muslim supporters of Islamic Oasis to visit the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and join this effort to build the new caliphate.

In Chicago, Islamic Oasis serves not just as an international aid charity but also manages various sister organizations, such as a group called ‘Men of the Ummah,’ which, through martial arts classes and similar activities, is dedicated to “cultivating an Islamic environment for Muslim brothers.”

Muhammad Shirazi

Sheikh Muhammad Shirazi established Islamic Oasis in 2008, along with his wife Essraa Abdel-Ghany. By 2022, Islamic Oasis claimed an annual revenue of over $ 5 million. Its recent financial supporters include a collection of reputable donor-advised funds, as well as smaller Islamist-run grant-making foundations.

Although Shirazi claims Deobandi’s ideological connection, he rejects the parochialism typically associated with that movement and works closely with other Islamist forces, including the radical international Salafi movement, Hizb ut Tahrir, which the British government recently banned as a terrorist organization. He has celebrated Hizb ut Tahrir’s conferences inside Afghanistan, but focuses more closely on how the entire ummah can build on “Taliban victory”.

In Gaza, Islamic Oasis works with other radical US Charities such as Rahma Worldwide and Pious Projects, both of which were recently caught collaborating directly with designated terrorist organizations. On October 7, 2023, Shirazi posted Hamas footage of the attack on Israel, praising the “mujahedeen shaking the earth” and calling for Palestine to be “freed from the filth that occupies it today.”

Shirazi On Kashmir

Shirazi strongly advocates arming Kashmiri Muslims against Indian forces and seeks to urge Pakistan to deploy nuclear missiles and other weapons systems. He dreams of a Pakistan army that will “liberate lands from Kashmir to Palestine.”

Back in the US, the Islamic Oasis of Shirazi also organizes frequent lectures with radical speakers and guests. In March 2022, he interviewed Mazhar Khan, an Islamist in Britain’s (now banned) terror organization Hizb ut Tahrir, to discuss the necessity of an Islamic Caliphate. After October 7, 2023, he was filmed chanting Jihad, which led the British government to ban Hizb ut Tahrir.

Financially strong and with a powerful network, the Western Islamists want to focus on Afghanistan as the epicenter of the contemplated Global Caliphate. Afghanistan is the only country that promises to strictly enforce sharia law.

However, the propagators of the Global Caliphate are apprehensive about whether the Taliban will come up to their expectations. So, they are using all possible means to mollify the Taliban and make them commit to the idea of the Caliphate.

Western Islamists are very active, and the states where they operate are aware of their activities and aspirations. How and when these states resolve to challenge the extremists is a billion-dollar question.