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For the first time in a blue moon, Anglo-American liberals are telling the truth. Islamic State (or ISIS) are increasingly unpopular with ordinary Muslims. Although few can doubt that the actions of the terror regime are explicitly rooted in Quranic text, the exotic barbarism and random flashes of violence employed by its fighters are rarely endorsed by anyone outside of its own ranks. A swelling number of Muslim regimes (themselves backward and detestable in separate ways) are calling for the annihilation of the Caliphate, with some even looking to the infidel West for help in doing so.
The bigger picture here is fascinating. I’m starting to wonder if the very public cruelties of ISIS are causing a quiet crisis of identity for hundreds of millions of mildly devout believers. Magnifying the most extreme implication of this, I’m starting to wonder if ISIS may prove to be Islam’s fatal wound.
Islamic State is the Quran in action. That point is very important to understand. When you read the Quran, you are reading the basis for the blood-soaked terror currently engulfing Syria and Iraq. If you believe the text is endorsed by heaven, you are silently condoning the same slaughter. Now, I don’t believe that the majority of Muslims are stupid or lacking in humanity. Most of them are ordinary people, often very good-natured people, who have simply been brought up in a climate of ritualised stupidity. Given the deep roots of their cultural heritage, it was always going to take something frightful and extreme to make them question it. Has that ‘something’ now entered the stage of history?
Recall that Communism, as a philosophy and as an aspiration, declined greatly in the latter half of the Twentieth century. Most scholars agree that this process had something to do with the discovery (by historians and statisticians) of the Biblical-scale famines and state genocides of the first half of that century – events that were previously only rumors (deniable rumors). When faced with the realities of the Gulag even the most hard-hearted card-carrier began to wonder if his system of thought stood on faulty ground.
As ISIS continues to expose the consequences of applied Islam, even Saudi Arabia (the ideological source of many ISIS doctrines) finds itself swerving into panicked hypocrisy. Last month it was announced by Saudi officials that the Kingdom will be building a multi-million dollar wall spanning the entirety of its northern border to lessen the threat of an ISIS invasion.
The state of Jordan, after one of its pilots was murdered in the most bestial manner, has sworn to mobilise its military to crush the Islamic State. Egypt, having witnessed the spread of ISIS to neighbouring Libya, has brutally crushed Islamist forces within its own territory. In Tunisia, after Islamic State blew up a tourist destination in the capital city, the local population exploded in horrified shame and patriotic anger. Even Iran is warming to the West (and vice versa) as both powers seek to contain the same barbarism.
As someone who monitors these things, I have personally seen the membership of atheist groups rooted in Muslim countries swell in recent months. The citizenry of countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Morocco, Bangladesh, Qatar, Bahrain and Algeria are increasingly aware of how fragile Islam makes their prized social peace and growing economic fortunes.
Has Islamic State – organised to promote and expand the domain of Islam – sent the religion into its death-spiral?
Food for thought.