The Ku Klux Klan has a corrupt version of Christianity. If you don’t behave as they wish, they think they have the right to kill you, gruesomely. ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) has a corrupt version of Islam. If you don’t behave as they wish, they think they have the right to kill you, gruesomely.
The Klan wore white hoods to hide their identity. ISIS wears black hoods to hide their identity.
The Klan is still alive and well in the U.S., maybe not as deadly as before, but just as hateful towards those they don’t like. See “At Gateway to Hamptons, Ku Klux Klan Advertises for New Members”, Al Baker, New York Times, 2014-08-29. The Klan’s targets are immigrants.
The Klan bombed black churches. ISIS bombs Shiite mosques.
Christian leaders outside the South condemned the Ku Klux Klan. Those Christian leaders in the South who spoke out against the Klan would be intimidated overtly or covertly. An illustration of how much courage it took to stand up for the rights of Negros is “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee.
Muslim leaders outside the areas controlled by ISIS have spoken out against ISIS. One is Othman Atta, Executive Director of the Islamic Society of Milwaukee. Some British imams have issued a fatwa calling ISIS “heretical” and stating that it is “prohibited to support or join” ISIS. A Muslim cleric in India declared ISIS is “not just anti-Islamic but are enemies of humanity as well.” I can’t verify it with multiple sources, but supposedly ISIS executed 12 clerics in Mosul because they would not swear fidelity to ISIS.
For more see “How Islamic State resembles the Ku Klux Klan”, Brian Denson, The Oregonian, 2014-08-24, http://www.oregonlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2014/08/how_islamic_state_isis_resembl.html
Some are calling on President Obama to do something about ISIS and do it yesterday. But what can the United States do other than make matters worse? It is an outside power that really doesn’t understand all the dynamics of other countries and cultures. Look at the messes in Afghanistan and Iraq. They were in turn caused by one man, Osama bin Laden, a former ally, who didn’t like the U.S. putting troops into his Holy Land, Saudi Arabia. Bin Laden decided to strike back at the U.S. and did so several times. Will ISIS strike back in similar ways?
Consider that fighting ISIS may be fighting two enemies with different agendas. ISIS are a set of fanatical jihadists who want everyone to follow their way or die. They are allied with Sunnis who resent the Iraqi government, dominated by Shias, exercising too much control over the Sunni dominated areas.
Wouldn’t you think that Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Iran would be under a bigger threat from ISIS than the U.S. would? All of these have bigger armies than ISIS. It seems only Iran is making any known effort to contain ISIS, and even that is trying to be done with a low profile.
The United States gave over one billion dollars in military assistance to Egypt in 2012. Egypt can easily spend that as it sees fit. It has an estimated annual military budget over seven billion dollars. ISIS supposedly has stolen over two billion dollars, but who will be selling it arms and how much of that money can it actually access and use, like gold bullion?
Saudi Arabia is a big customer of military suppliers. It has 233,500 active military personnel, over a thousand tanks, and over 200 attack aircraft. Should not that force be sufficient to overwhelm ISIS with firepower and personnel? ISIS has more than ten thousand fighters as of July 2014 and estimates keep climbing. Even if ISIS has 100,000 fighters, would they be a match for Saudi Arabia with all of its aircraft?
King Abdul of Saudi Arabia said recently, “Fight terrorism with force, reason and speed.”
Turkey has been fighting ISIS at its border with some success, but groups like ISIS will keep coming back.
It seems this is another case of “Let’s you and him fight.” Let the U.S. come in and settle other people’s problem (or think it had) and let the U.S. take the blame if things go wrong. When it comes to war, Murphy’s law definitely applies.
So I have two big questions. Why haven’t Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Iran taken a much larger and forceful role in combatting ISIS? ISIS is a much greater existential threat to them than to the U.S. Is President Obama pushing on these countries to do more?
So, your Majesty, why not be the leader of the Islamic world and take on ISIS? Don’t you have the advantage of force, reason and speed? You don’t have to get your parliament’s permission, tacit or otherwise. And you don’t have to get the backing of your people.
Mel keeps wondering who elected the President of the United States as “leader of the free world.”
Published in the Reader Weekly at http://duluthreader.com/articles/2014/09/04/4020_is_isis_islams_ku_klux_klan, 2014-09-04.
The blog version includes corrections to the published version.