The terrorist group ISIL are growing stronger and bolder with time. Either heed the intelligence, or ignore it at everyone’s risk.
BBC Panorama‘s latest episode dealt with ISIL in Iraq and Syria. According to the BBC war correspondent, who traveled across the region in search of stories and images that capture the turmoil befalling the region, the situation on the ground is as serious as it is disturbing.
The documentary focused on a few key points. Here they are, in no particular order…
- ISIL [ISIS] started of posing as a caring and charitable organization to gain local support. Once it established a cultural and political foothold, it morphed into a ruthless enforcement agency that stopped at nothing to promote its version of extremist sharia law.
- Captives are slaughtered in public by ISIL’s hand, their bodies left in plain sight for the locals to behold. Most locals don’t support ISIL but are too afraid to voice their dissent. Confusingly enough, reports say that many Sunnis are sympathetic to the jihadi cause on account of the persecution they face by Iraq’s Shia-dominated administration.
- The Iraqi army didn’t stand and fight when ISIL advanced because many of the Sunnis soldiers were reluctant to fight against their Sunni brothers. As for the Shia soldiers, they weren’t interested in defending Sunni towns. Many of them deserted before confronting the jihadis. The fear of being killed or captured — which probably meant execution and decapitation — did little for the morale of those who stood their ground.
- ISIL is active on the web. It has a Twitter page, where it posts images and videos of prisoners getting manhandled, whipped and executed.
- Footage retrieved from a captured ISIL member shows scores of executed people getting dragged to mass graves with tractors and pickup trucks.
- ISIL never leave their dead behind. One of the reasons is that they don’t want to give away the identity of their foreign-born members. If they can’t take a body back with them, they destroy its face by emptying an entire magazine in it.
- An unrecognizable body was found wearing clothing items of British origin.
- Shia militias have gone to the front lines to fight ISIL. Their aim is either victory or martyrdom.
- Many locals, including Sunnis, believe that ISIL represent only 10% of Iraq. Give them their rights and they will go away, they claim. Others disagree. They believe that the jihadis won’t stop until they get what they want, or die.
- An ISIL defector reported that when he ‘asked out,’ he was told there was ‘no getting out of this business.
- There are an estimated 2000 jihadi sleepers in Iraq. A Briton who joined ISIL to become a martyr told the BBC that any hostility against them and their ‘brothers around the world’ would be met with violence, no matter the country of origin. Special mention was made to the US and the UK.
- During a Friday prayer in Mosul, ISIL leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, so-called – and self-declared – caliph of all muslims, said verbatim: ‘O Allah, honor Islam and Muslims, and humiliate those who worship others than You, and grant victory Your warriors, who only worship You, through the East and the West of the earth.’ (translation by the BBC.) The war correspondent correctly likened al-Baghdadi’s statement to a call for global war and world domination.
- Conflict with ISIL and their self-proclaimed Islamic State is inevitable, says radicalization expert Shiraz Maher of King’s College. The dilemma is whether to engage them now or later. Both alternatives involve great risks.
Photo Evidence of Mass Shootings from ISIL’s social media
Facing religious fascism so well-organized and well-funded, so utterly unhinged, we can’t look the other way, not without risk
It’s a disturbing tale that rekindles nightmares long forgotten. The religious clashes between the Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox people of Europe that plagued the continent for centuries have found a fresh conduit in the sectarianism between Shiites and Sunnis in the Middle East, which threatens to export itself across the globe. The world is getting sucked into another age-old conflict with a vengeance, facing religious fascism so well-organized and well-funded, so utterly unhinged, we can’t look the other way, not without risk. Pandora’s box has been jacked open and the spirits of rancor blow strong. Appeasement and peace are no longer an option.
Razed To The Ground
ISIL seem to know their military history. They understand all too well that the only lasting way to remove a civilization from their midst is to raze it to the ground, leaving behind no trace of it. There is ample video footage of Shia and Christian holy sites getting destroyed to serve the purpose.
Here’s the destruction of the tomb of the biblical saint Jonah…
And here’s news coverage of the destruction of various Shia mosques and shrines…
It sounds too scary to be true, and you may deem this article scaremongering. Maybe so, but before you make up your minds, let me refer you to my previous article on ISIL where I laid out in plain terms how the terrorist group’s actions affect people all over the globe.
ISIL A Little Silhouette (Scary-douche, Scary-douche)
Before you go, take a look at this Almonitor article. It reports how the black flag of the caliphate was raised in the town of Tell Abyad, Syria, near the Turkish border.
Who cares, you say? It’s too far away, and too close to the hostilities. Yes, true…
So here’s a picture of the ISIL black flag in the family-oriented tourist resort of Bodrum, Turkey, far away from the war zone.
It looks photoshopped to you? Then click here for a video by CNN Turk to corroborate its finding.
Moving further out, here’s a picture from Theva, Greece, where a black flag was raised near a power station.
Creepy enough for you? Maybe not, because this image could have been photoshopped.
Be Careful What You Place Your Faith In
I have a confession to make. The video above isn’t what I made it out to be, as the Turkish speakers among you already know. Here’s an article that explains how the black flag in the video above merely resembles the ISIL flag. It was crafted by your average Yusuf, who wrote something on it about where he lays his head to sleep (Metallica fan?). The issue was resolved without incident and your average Yusuf went back to his home on the sea, where he probably made tea, not bombs.
Why did I lead you astray? I wanted to make the point that one shouldn’t believe whatever one reads, or sees, or thinks one has heard. With all the fear and suspicion going around, it pays to be discerning. Speak boldly and carry a big pouch of salt, is what it’s all about.
Even so, just because there’s loads of crap out there, it doesn’t mean everything out there is crap. Each case should be judged on its own merit, according to the evidence.
Should there be a lack of evidence, all prospects should be kept open until one of them becomes more plausible than its alternatives.
Hence the black flags ostensibly seen in Tell Abya and Theva are not necessarily a cock-and-bull story. There may be merit in the reports after all.
Before you go, consider the following. Remember the point I made earlier about an unrecognizable body having been found among the ISIL dead, wearing clothing items of British origin? Let me elaborate. The clothing items weren’t a Lillywhites shirt and a Nike scarf that some Jihadi tourist bought in London on his way through. It was a pair of gloves featuring the insignia of Gold’s Gym in Surrey.
Creepy enough for you now?
From your devious, populist, common-sensical Spin Doctor,
Eyes open, mind sharp.