ISIS or ISIL and now simply Islamic State is not just an organization which is working as jihadist group with an aim to unsettle foreign elements from Middle East by terrorist activities but it has taken shape as an institution working with an extreme ideology and with an aim to create a new order in its area of influence. Islamic State is a religious institution which believes in establishing an Islamic religious state worldwide by inciting all Muslims worldwide to devote in its cause. This structure is led by religious authorities with caliph as their head. Caliph is person who they believe is direct successor to Prophet Muhammad and holds supreme authority over Muslim religion. The ideology of IS is thus different from terrorist groups like al-Qaeda because it don’t want mere ouster of foreign forces from middle east but it wants complete authority in spheres of political, religious and military in the Muslim world. IS calls this authority as caliphate and aims to achieve it. A caliphate is a Muslim religious state which IS believes should be restored to its earliest and purest form. IS thus opposes the legality of all emirates, groups, states and organizations in the Middle East. It aims to establish state which should still live in a period of early Muslim religion, untampered by later caliphs and deviation they believe Ottoman Empire has caused.
In the attempt to create this caliphate IS has opposed all secular states in the religion such as Saudi. They follow a stricter interpretation of Quran and calls all those infidels who doesn’t follow this interpretation. Last year they attacked group of Hamas as IS declared they are incompetent to lead jihad and need to be taken down to mark it as first step in war against Israel. IS has been doing mass genocide of minorities by strategically placing their attacks on cities and afterwards controlling it where they either execute or convert people who doesn’t follow their ideology. IS governs the territory it grabbed by Sharia law, it’s a strict system of codes and procedures which is taken from religious text to govern the behaviour of people. Sharia deals with many topics, including crime, politics, and economics, as well as personal matters such as sexual intercourse, hygiene, diet, prayer, everyday etiquette and fasting. Sharia laws though forms basic Muslim jurisprudence and act as authority in many Muslim states such as Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Brunei, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Sudan faces controversies. Many people believe it is incompatible with democratic structure, basic human rights and fight of women for equality. Sharia is also used by IS to oppress minority groups by treating them with physical punishments such as stoning. Freedom of speech and expression is also largely restricted in context of religion by sharia by harsh blasphemy laws even prescribing death penalty. Islamic State led by extremists, brainwashed soldiers and diabolic people who give commands have been using sharia to impose complete restrictions on basic fundamental rights of humans. An unprecedented scale of murders, torture, rapes and physical violence is happening under Islamic state territories at this moment. These extremists beheads people arbitrary and put their heads on city’s main circle to create example which is sad symbol of how they tend to move human civilization backwards to the barbaric and inhumane times.
Success of Islamic state can be largely attributed to two factors first is its active social media propaganda which has attracted large number of youths from all around the world. It has placed a social media cell and recruitment centres to spread propaganda videos and texts all across internet to attract these young people. Some of these young people often respond to extremist ideology and attraction towards anarchic culture but majority of them also respond to the large amount of monetary resources they offer. This brings to second largest factor of Islamic State, the finance. Islamic State today operates over five oil fields and has looted many government reserves from the territories they have captured in Iraq and Syria. They have black market buyers and sellers and an active trade structure. Recently a more horrific news was surfaced that the victims of propaganda videos which Islamic State releases are stripped off their organs which ISIS sells in international black-market. Its finance also comes from human trafficking and selling people like slaves. ISIS has truly foster evil intent giving regard to no moral codes and human life which makes it biggest threat of our times.
The argument thus meets the ground reality why world hasn’t been able to contain the ISIS? Why we cannot effectively destroy an open structure which very much operates in light of day unlike other jihadist groups which works in shadow? While western forces are trying to help but they have till now have taken only half measures. USA and allies are in fear of starting another conventional war on the same turf which they were fighting for decades. The best way to deal this situation is to strengthen the secular states around the Islamic state. USA negotiations with Iran is also crucial in this context. There is no doubt that humanity is at lowest point since the second world war but to fight against such institution half measures aren’t going to sufficient anymore.