Listen up, Islamic apologists, especially those of you who claim that the main motivations of Islamist terrorism derive from Western colonialism rather from Islam. Listen up, Reza Aslan, Glenn Greenwald, Robert Pape, Karen Armstrong, and Nathan Lean: ISIS has explained in very clear language that you’re just wrong. It’s religion, stupid! After reading the article summarized in the 14½-minute video below, or the article itself, you’ll have a hard time blaming Western imperialism for terrorism, or claiming that ISIS is a perversion of Islam: “not true Islam.”
You may know that ISIS has mastered social media, including the production of a slick online magazine, Dabiq. In the latest issue there’s an article called “Why we hate you & Why we fight you.” (You can find a pdf of issue 15 of Dabiq, and the article, here.) The piece explains very clearly what ISIS wants and why it fights. And if you want to reject its reasons, then you’ll have to explain why the movement’s main organ of propaganda is simply lying to the West. (I’m sure that some people will claim that.)
See (or read) for yourself. The main reason, which you could have discerned from reading Lawrence Wright’s masterful (and Pulitzer-Prize-winning) book, The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11, is an Islamist terrorism that grew directly out of pure, unadulterated Islam: a literal interpretation of the Qur’an calling for extirpation of unbelievers, coupled with a hatred of the salaciousness and licentiousness of Western society.
Yes, among the reasons given below you’ll find colonialism and the war we’re still waging on ISIS, but they’re at the bottom of the list. As the video makes clear at 11:00, ISIS sees those reasons as secondary. Even if the bombing and colonialism stopped, they say (the latter largely has stopped), ISIS would still continue its battle, for they see foreign policy as “secondary.” What is primary is the requirement of the Qur’an to subjugate and kill nonbelievers.
This is a must-watch video—and a must-read article.
After reading or watching these, you’d be hard pressed to maintain that ISIS is “not real Islam.” I’d argue, in fact, that it is the truest form of Islam, for it’s simply interpreting literally a scripture that is meant to be taken literally, and then acting on its dictates.