Few thoughts regarding the lengthy article published by the Atlantic: What ISIS really wants.
The White man’s perspective rears its ugly head once again in this article to mislead us and remind us that no matter how much research and resources are deployed these self-proclaimed “experts” still get it very wrong. Throughout the article, Graeme Wood tries to present daish as a cancer where in reality it is one symptom of western capitalism and militarism. As if to say that, the years of bombardment, colonization, vilification, dehumanization and enslavement of people in Islamic regions meant nothing.
For starters one needs to compare the way past colonialist literature perceived and portrayed people in Africa, the Arab region and India with this article. Then we can read this is for what it is: a neo-colonialist misreading.
I think the author slipped into a well-known Western Orientalist view of Islam and its subjects, compounding the 1.5 billion Muslims as one entity, functioning with one mindset. He has tried to dodge this by citing Edward Said but his imagination has clearly failed him all along. In regards to Daish his view, like the majority in the West and co, is that of an exotic phenomena that emerged out of thin air. No recognition is given to the realities (mostly a creation of western foreign policy and their Arab dogmatic dictators) that shaped such a nihilistic collective. By this token, the author’s line of thought is that of the west; of refusing to recognize that it failed in its “tolerant” approach towards it’s non-white citizens. Immigrants, especially from Muslim countries, were never integrated; they are still kept in ghettos treated and portrayed as the untrustworthy marginalized other, the homo sacers.
The west also refuses to see Daish as a mirror. For example, when Bush launched a war that destroyed the Middle East’s already worn out fabrics it was his god (a Christian one) that told him to do so. In addition to that, we have the already existing rise of rightwing Christian violent movements who bomb abortion clinics and degrade women using biblical terms/texts (just to name one). These backwards elements are very much in common with Daish’s practices. Moreover Israel, an extension of the West, can be viewed literally as the Jewish advance model of Daish. Ultimately, Saudi Arabia is the motherland of Daish also known as America’s second best friend in the region. Inside and through Saudi this apocalyptic ideology has been manufactured for tens of years, given international cover and support; first to fight the spread of communism/socialism and second to empower cliental puppet regimes loyal to the U.S. while they dumb-down and deprive their own people. What we have missed in this process is state building and citizenship…
Over analyzing these doped bewildered Jihadis as the author did is basically doing them a propagandistic favor. Isn’t this apocalyptic myth that is given so much weight in this article precisely the opium that Daish uses for recruitment mixed with the jihadis’ drug of choice: Captegon? To put it in plain terms Daish is today’s go to outlet for vengeance.
The Left and its ongoing inaction have also left a void of Ideology meanwhile capitalism is on steroids, pioneering future methods in human enslavement, taming and control. This ideological void has left a gap which Daish has handsomely capitalized on.
Finally, I would like to add that the circumstances for recruitment and ultimately the want for vengeance are a result of the war on terror and the diesel that drives the war on terror; that Daish/AQ and the leaders of the war on terror are but two sides of the same coin. End the brutal war on terror, stop bombing weddings, stop the corporate driven foreign interventions/ support for oppressive sectarian regimes, end the occupation of Palestine and Daish will have little chance for survival. Keep the war on terror and the above hegemonies and Daish will continue to balloon. Keep enriching the 1% and soon many Daish wannabe movements will spring up all over the globe.
Bombing problems into supposed nonexistence will only continue to unfold a bleak future that awaits our region. One where we will be kept in check by drones buzzing over. Enclosed either in fortified shopping islands protected by private security firms and local militias or in refugee camps governed from the inside by the survival of the fittest and on the outside by “peace keeping” troops who have orders to shoot and kill any wretched refugee who manages to slip out. The war on terror is the one to blame for such dystopia.
Therefore, daish can only be viewed as the mutated monster of unfettered capitalism which self-proclaimed “experts” in the west ought to focus on instead of producing another misleading Islamophobic narrative. Thus, I think, the reason why we get such misleading nonsensical analysis is because the latest capitalist society has become so focused on viewing the other as an inherently alienated creature devoid of human commonality.