Wednesday, 27 April 2016
The Daesh Chronicles: The Prognosis
by Ghassan Kadi
The world has got to realize that the ideology that underpins Daesh is coming to a head. It had been latent for a long time, and now it has fully awakened and will not put its case to rest before one of two things happen; either that it will get its way, or it will be crushed, both militarily and, most importantly, ideologically.
And if the world felt regretful because it allowed for Nazism to fester for two decades, affording enough time for Hitler to gain power and momentum, then it is now repeating the same mistake, but only to a much graver extent.
The more criticism these articles receive, the more this indicates that the challenge they raise is one that no one is prepared to undertake.
Some argue that the argument these articles bring should be addressed to Muslims only, but the problem with defining Daesh and combating it is global. Furthermore, those who refuse to see it for what it is, and the apologists who are giving it oxygen are by-and-large not Muslims.
Others argue that the Daesh Chronicles articles are designed to attack Islam, and I vehemently challenge anyone to quote any reference to this in what I have written. In fact, the objective here is to clean up the image of Islam so Islam and the whole world can move on.
For as long as Muslims, all Muslims, do not feel that they need to revise their understanding of the Holy Quran in a manner that sees it as it really is, a Book that clearly and vehemently condemns violence and coercion, then the recruitment drive for the Daesh mentality will not be put to rest.
And some have argued against the religious context altogether. Their argument is quite rational and questions the need for human interaction and behavior for religious interpretations. Reality however dictates otherwise. Many people are driven by religions, and their actions mirror those beliefs. As one cannot talk them out of this modus operandi, it becomes paramount to present to them that, unlike what they believe and think, their religion (and in this case Islam) does not call its followers to kill non-Muslims. If they get convinced that their beliefs of Jihad, Fateh and Shahada are wrong and distorted, then the whole drive for militarizing Daesh will be shot in the foot.
And then we have those who argue that the Daesh Chronicles articles have neither generated a true challenge, nor did they attempt to engage in discussion. A good look at the previous articles and the comments they raised puts this argument to rest.
And how can we forget those who want to condemn Islam and proclaim that it is a religion of violence and that there is no such thing as misinterpretation that has led to the creation of Daesh?
And then there are those who will forever only blame America and the West.
How naïve indeed.
Others argue that “The Saker” is not the “right” forum for this discussion. The question is what is?
If anything, The Saker readership is a microcosm of humanity, and no one in his right mind can blame it from not wanting to deal with the Daesh issue in depth. Who really wants to after all?
The sad reality however dictates that the Daesh problem is not going to go away, and unless it is confronted from a position of both knowledge and strength as soon as possible, in time, it will get stronger.
If or when it gets stronger, dealing with it then will be much more difficult than dealing with it now. Ignoring it is not any different from ignoring a cancer.
Different definitions of Daesh can therefore continue to exist and people can think of Daesh in any which way they like, but this will only provide more time for Daesh to gather more momentum and move from Syria to other places, and it has clearly already created a stronghold in the EU.
I am not trying to be either alarmist or pessimistic, but I firmly believe that when it comes to Daesh, the world “ain’t seen nothing yet”.
We can ignore the real driving force behind Daesh now, but are we prepared to see attacks like the Paris and Brussel attacks happening more often? And how often? And at what stage will the rest of the world then say enough is enough? And what will it do then?
The Paris and the Brussel attacks were nearly four months apart, and, just before the Paris attack, a Russian jetliner was bombed in the sky. Three major terror attacks in six months, and this is not to count bomb attacks in Beirut, Kabul, Bagdad, Peshawar and other places that the world, especially the West, forgets to remember.
What if, just what if, attacks outside the so-called “Third World” become much more frequent? What if they become monthly? Will this trigger off a major scale war against Daesh? And who will lead it and how will Daesh be defined then?
What if they become weekly? Will this be the benchmark to start off a blind Western-led campaign against anything and anyone who could be remotely associated with Daesh?
If weekly attacks are not enough, how about daily attacks? And what if Russia is included in all of this? Certainly, if Russia gets targeted, there is no reason as to why China, Japan, India and all non-Muslim nations should be spared, is there?
Is this possible? I cannot see why not. Keep ignoring the source of the problem and it will only get worse.
What will the world do then?
This is all speculative of course, but possible, if sadly not probable.
The first reaction in the West will be a major boost in the popularity of ultra-right wing political parties. If and when such parties get into power, they will take the Merkel-like policies and do a U-turn.
Just look at the Donald Trump political platform. The man is virtually already asking for a Muslim-free USA, is he not? He is getting support for his draconian policies even though the USA has not suffered from “Islamic Terrorism” since Sep 11.
Could anyone in his/her right mind imagine what will ultra-right wing politicians do if they get power in the USA and in what will be left of the EU?
Did the world forget George W. Bush’s “Patriot Act”? Did we forget the Afghanistan and Iraq wars?
Now, let’s take Sep 11, Madrid, Ottawa, Sydney, Paris and Brussel and squeeze them in chronologically and try to imagine if they become weekly and daily events.
If Daesh still indeed acts only on America’s command, and whether it was in inside jo or not, if Sep 11 was alone enough to invade both of Afghanistan and Iraq, with very frequent attacks we would be looking at a worse American/Western reaction, wouldn’t we?
This is the nightmare scenario that I foresee in the EU, and possibly concurrently in the USA:
1. Daesh attacks in the EU become more frequent.
2. Ultra-right EU parties get in power in some countries such as France, Belgium, Germany and Holland.
3. The rest of the EU braces and waits to see how these countries will deal with terror attacks.
4. Muslim EU nationals will be targeted, and eventually some new Muslim migrants will be deported.
5. Ultra-right wing parties in other EU nations will capitalize on the clamp down of their “comrades” and ride on the electoral band wagon to get themselves into power.
6. As attacks get worse, EU citizenship will be taken away from Muslims associated with terror attacks.
7. As EU governments tighten the noose on Daesh, Daesh will get sneakier and smarter. Attacks will not stop.
8. EU countries will then resort to more drastic measures. Citizenships will be taken away from Muslims who are remotely associated with those condemned with terror attacks.
9. As those measures fail to fully provide the EU security needed, EU citizenships will be taken away from all Muslims, and Muslims will be deported from the EU.
10. Whether the events in the USA take the same turn at the same time and pace or not, America will be forced to act.
11. By then, the USA will have a president who will make Donald Trump look like Mother Teresa.
12. When Western nations wrongly and stupidly see that targeting all Muslim nationals inside the West is not enough to stop terrorism, they will progressively wage an all-out war on Muslim countries, beginning with the ones they deem to harbour terrorism the most.
13. This can progress into a war in which the world finds itself deluded enough to believe that it must fight against all Muslims, all Muslim nations and Islam in general, in order to stop terrorism. But, on the other side of the coin, Muslims will naturally see that they are subjected to a holy war against Islam, and this will lure in more fighters to defend the religion than anyone could imagine. Both parties will fight and fight, and very fiercely.
If any reader sees that the above scenario is a paranoid reaction, then all that he/she has to do is to wind the clock back twenty years or so and look at today’s events from that perspective. Who would have thought back then that what we see today was fathomable?
Either way, I much prefer to err on the side of caution in raising the alarm.
This prognosis has gone far enough and it is as speculative as it may be, but it is not far-fetched. It is gruesome enough without including Russia.
But it is a scenario that can be avoided if the sane people of the world, Muslims and non-Muslims, stop for an honest moment NOW and make concerted and knowledgeable efforts to nip it in the bud, whilst they can, and if they sincerely want to.
Back to where we started. The Daesh ideology is coming to a head, but so are all similar fanatic religious and political ideologies. Leninist-Marxism imploded. Maoist China is now only Maoist by name. Western-style democracy will soon have to either redefine itself or face attrition. This is not only a case for religious ideologies to be seen for what they are. If humanity proves unable to analyze what it needs to analyze and face the upcoming challenges rationally, it will feel pushed in a corner and need to resort to wars.
Is it not time for rationality after millennia of irrationality?
I cannot and will not write about this matter anymore. I have said enough, and I have done my duty, and my conscience is clear.