Understanding ISIL in the Aftermath of the French Attacks:
By Donovan Reynolds Blogger and Independent Writer.
Subsequent to the attacks that killed 130 people in Paris, the French Government decided to deepen its military air strikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Syria. French President Francois Hollande took the bearish stance of a war leader and avowed to exact revenge on behalf of the French casualties. Many are of the view that in order to respond appropriately and effectively to the perverse version of Islamic revolution and the fathomless level of wickedness that they commit-we have to first to begin to understand their underlying motives.
ISIL is an intractable insurgent group born under the leadership of Jordan-born Abu Musab al Zarqawi during Iraq’s insurgency as of 2003, which was defeated by Arab Sunni tribes in Iraq in 2008, but which then gained momentum when it withdrew to Syria as its state collapsed in 2011. The group is so belligerent that al-Qaeda cut all ties with ISIL in 2014, accusing the group of its failure to consult and “notorious intransigence”. It is estimated that over 20,000 foreign fighters have travelled to Iraq and Syria since fighting broke out in 2011. Muslim leaders around the world have condemned ISIL’s ideology and actions, arguing that the group has strayed prodigiously from the path of true Islam and that its engagements do not reflect the religion’s true teachings or virtues.
ISIL earns revenue primarily from a number of different sources. illicit proceeds from activities such as bank looting, extortion, control of oil fields and refineries, and robberies of economic assets and illicit taxation of goods and cash that transit its territory where ISIL. It also funds its activities from the proceeds of ransoms gained from numerous kidnappings, donations and its trading of oil to Turkish businessmen.
Historians and political analysts often attribute the spontaneous factor in the rise of ISIL, as a reaction to the “ancient Shia-Sunni conflict”. Some writers has even o exaggerated it as resurrection of the medieval caliphate. ISIL has also confirmed this belief locating its violence as a continuation of the middle ages religious crusades. Others sight American exceptionalism instigating and fuelling civil wars throughout the Islamic world and for the installation of tyrant client regimes in the region. Some political theorist attributes the rise of Islamic fundamentalist such as ISIS to the” Clash of Civilization hypothesis” postulated by the late Samuel Huntingdon. Huntingdon proposed that the new world order will be typified by fault lines between cultures and different civilizational groupings. Extreme interpretation of the current state of Suicidal bombings carried out by young male extremist as a crisis in masculinity. The assumption is that these cruel acts of aggression are perpetuated by lonely male Muslim outsiders translating feelings of rejection into desperate bids for notoriety.
What makes ISIL so frightening to accept, is the extent of its unlimited wickedness and how in a short span of time it functions on both national and transnational levels. Mainly because of its vast networks of cells along with the ability to recruit and manipulate vulnerable young Muslim in the west to join its organisation using the internet as a recruiting tool. The recent past does more to explain the rise of ISIL than the deep past. ISIL is a complex, hybrid 21st-century organisation that poses challenges conceptually as a political unit in the international system. It is indeed this hybridity that constitutes a transmittable and violent challenge to the West, moderate Muslims and none Muslims around the world.
In the aftermath of ISIL incursion in France and the bombing of a Russian passenger plane over the Sini Desert alleged to have been planted by ISIL operatives. French President Francois Hollande told Russia’s Vladimir Putin at a recent meeting in France those world powers must build a “grand coalition” to combat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants who control swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq. At the recent G20 Summit in Belek, Turkey -US President Obama although jolted by ISIL shootings in France urged a cautious reaction. When pressed by journalist for “a take-out these bastards approach”. He argued against a shoot first and aim later response. Pressure has been mounting among American right wing politicians for a more robust military intervention to ISIL that should include boots on the ground. The British Prime Minister David Cameron is preparing to take the biggest gamble of his premiership by staging a parliamentary vote on British military action against Isis in Syria this week – despite deep uncertainty over how many Labour MPs will back him in parliament and fears among Syrian citizens about loss of civilian lives.
Jeremy Corby the British leader of opposition and the Labour party is involved in bitter internal row over whether to vote for airstrikes against Isis in Syria. The rift has expanded as MPs in favour of military action accused Jeremy Corbyn of trying to sidestep his shadow cabinet by appealing to grassroots supporters for their views.
Many pacifists have taken to social media to float the idea that: Western bombing attacks on Syria are not likely to achieve any significant reduction to the chances of terrorist’s attacks by ISIL supporters. They believed that it did not prevent France from being attacked. If anything, they may help to recruit more terrorists. Furthermore there is a US-led 62 coalition partners already in place against Isil and their contribution is already hefty and fraught with confusion and decoupling of roles.
Yet the threat by ISIL is real and the evil brand of ideology that they brandish is aimed at creating divisions among people of the civilised world. It is difficult to fight an idea especially one that is willing to make its perpetrators turn-on themselves to prove their point. The idea of ISIL laying its hands on long range missiles and nuclear weapons is rather cringe worthy and nerve wrecking for intelligence services across the globe.
The days and months ahead will be rather interesting as we sit on the edge of our sofa with a cringing eye on the TV and the other on the sick bucket. We should never forget that history has a way of creating a vacuum for the diffusion of wicked ideologies. If we can recall: Nazism and Fascism threatened our collective security less than a hundred years ago. Today those twin evils are but a faint memory. Let’s fight the scourge of ISIL with self-defence public education and diplomacy. As we look ahead with great uncertainty. Please be comforted by the fact that history has proven that the human race is a resilient specie in the face of pure evil.
This article was written by Donovan Reynolds CEO and edited by Ann Smith Managing Editor of Kingston-Mouth .com. Donovan Reynolds is an Independent Blogger and Human Rights Activists who is of a Jamaican descent and a legal academic that has an interest in Human Rights, Culture and International Development Issues.