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ISIS cannot be squashed

Reader comment on item: ISIS' Imminent Demise

Submitted by Michael S (United States), Dec 8, 2015 at 02:58

Hi, Daniel.

You said, "On the first: ISIS is not exactly the equivalent of Nazi Germany. It's a little bug that the powers could quash at will if they put their minds to it. It survives only because no one really takes it seriously enough to fight with ground troops, the only gauge of an intention to prevail." I think I'm getting to be a cranky old man -- disagreeing with everyone, even with myself (am I Jewish? I don't think so). I might even have said we could "quash ISIS like a bug, if we wanted to", at one time. If I did, let me qualify that statement: Yes, we could squash the Islamic STATE; but we could not destroy their movement.

Maybe you had this in mind too. Just think about it. ISIS, Turkey's AKP, Al Nusra, Al Qaeda, the Free Syrian Army, the Muslim Brotherhood, Al Shabaab, Boko Haram -- they're all fungible: supporters of one become supporters of the other, it seems, overnight. There is NO DIFFERENCE between any of these groups in their ultimate objective; just in tactics. They're like the Green Berets vs. the USAF: same ideology, same motivating force, same loyalty; and they can't be counted in numbers. They're not like the German Army in World War II, that surrendered when the Fuehrer died. The Islamist movement has had many Fuehers, who have died, one after the other; and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi isn't even universally acknowledged as the current leader: AQAP doesn't recognize him, nor Al Shabaab.

Our FBI has its puny brain all tied in a twist, because they can't find a "chain of command" for the latest obvious ISIS attack in the US. That's because there is no chain of command, any more than there was a chain of command for Christianity when it overthrew the Roman Empire. In World War II, we had to literally burn the Japanese out of their holes, because they refused to surrender; but when they found out that Hirohito had renounced his divinity, they stopped fighting. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has never declared himself to be Allah, nor even the Madhi, nor a great prophet. He can renounce his religion and die in a pool of pig fat, and it won't make a difference; because these fanatics honestly believe they are serving the one and only, invisible, King of the Universe. People like that cannot be squashed like a bug.

ISIS may change its name and its leaders a hundred times, but it cannot be squashed. If we snuff it out in Iraq (as we failed to do, even with a decade-long war), they will re-establish themselves in Afghanistan (where we have been equally unsuccessful), or Libya, or Algeria, or Somalia, or Mali, to name a few places. Russia thought they had squashed them in Chechnya; yet here they are in Syria, fighting some of the very same individuals they were fighting in Chechnya. Does the US, or anyone, want to "squash these people like a bug"? Then they will have to convince these fanatical believers that the god they serve is not God.

If we bombed Mecca and Medina, instead of Raqqa; and if we bulldozed Al Aqsa and replaced it with the Temple Mount, I believe the Muslims would see the futility of their false religion; and if we are too scared to do those simple things (Yes, we have buldozers big enough), that just shows the Islamists that the puny god of the West is no match for Allah. Just FYI, I do not worship the god of the West; I worship Adonai Elohei, the God of Israel.


Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Daniel Pipes replies:

I said nothing about quashing the Islamist movement. That was not the topic of the UNSC resolution or the other fears of ISIS.

I agree that defeating ISIS does not end Islamism.

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Reader comments (47) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
ISIS, ¿Imminent Demise? [233 words]Guillermo TruebaJan 15, 2016 13:16227675
The recognition of ISIS and its Caliphate [55 words]DavodDec 30, 2015 11:08227368
Not quite [133 words]Yehuda PochDec 15, 2015 08:56227074
Fire and Wood [551 words]Michael SDec 24, 2015 06:18227074
An inaccurate statement [27 words]GeppettoDec 13, 2015 15:35227032
Islam and the world [60 words]arish sahaniDec 12, 2015 11:47226994
Must the West attack ISIS in Syria? [305 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
mythDec 12, 2015 05:35226964
ISIS in not self destructive [178 words]Curtis FreedlandDec 11, 2015 00:58226915
THE END OF ISIS [130 words]SANDRO LOEWEDec 10, 2015 14:47226907
let the US military offer ISIS a compromise [139 words]mythDec 8, 2015 19:45226888
some additional considerations [240 words]Arthur Pitz, Ph.D.Dec 8, 2015 12:58226878
Dabiq [83 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Elisha benAbuyaDec 8, 2015 12:22226877
Dabiq [33 words]Elisha benAbuyaDec 12, 2015 09:58226877
Paris and Sinai [191 words]AlexDec 8, 2015 12:09226875
1Forget about ISIS [74 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
François GravelDec 8, 2015 07:14226869
1ISIS cannot be squashed [605 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Michael SDec 8, 2015 02:58226858
I'm glad we agree; but "crushing" is easier said, than done [287 words]Michael SDec 12, 2015 07:13226858
1ISIS or its clones will take long time before they disappear [252 words]PrashantDec 7, 2015 22:34226855
Now you see me, Now you don't [388 words]P. PiperDec 9, 2015 16:24226855
Prashant, I agree with you entirely! [6 words]Michael SDec 10, 2015 15:29226855
Limited Light at the End of the Daish Tunnel [234 words]M ToveyDec 7, 2015 15:33226852
Squishy bugs. Oh my! [351 words]Michael SDec 10, 2015 17:35226852
Ezekiel 28:12 et sequiter [24 words]M ToveyDec 14, 2015 10:31226852
Things to come [313 words]Michael SDec 17, 2015 10:14226852
Regarding predictable predictions vis-à-vis Erdogan [115 words]FrankzDec 7, 2015 14:28226850
2The end of Daish [66 words]dhimmi no moreDec 7, 2015 13:32226849
1That may be.... [56 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Ib1netmonDec 7, 2015 12:43226848
1ISIS/ISIL/DAESH Are NOT easy to defeat [59 words]Brian O' ReillyDec 7, 2015 09:05226846
1ISIS's strength [244 words]AnonDec 7, 2015 01:36226842
No signs of ISIS demise on the horizon yet! [24 words]JaladhiDec 6, 2015 19:53226838
1a poisonous rose by many other names [249 words]Charles MartelDec 6, 2015 17:46226836
ISIS [2 words]BorisDec 8, 2015 14:28226836
2ISIS won't self-destruct for a long time [786 words]StephenDec 6, 2015 15:02226832
ISIS [1 words]BorDec 8, 2015 14:34226832
ISIS' Imminent Demise? Even if they now have WMD? [1 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
jmwtcllcDec 6, 2015 12:34226830
Yes. Exactly. [37 words]Doug MayfieldDec 6, 2015 11:39226828
'small bug'...like Xenopsylla cheopis? [354 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
PaulDec 6, 2015 10:54226827
Learn From ISIS [267 words]DaveDec 6, 2015 10:17226826
Are you calling them "JV League"? [87 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Haim ModianoDec 6, 2015 09:31226825
The Real Threat [167 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
BillDec 6, 2015 09:24226824
Agree with Dr Pipes but... [71 words]AnonDec 8, 2015 15:51226824
Unwinding Radical Islam [100 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Solomon BalasDec 6, 2015 08:02226822
Wahhabism and oil, a toxic mix [57 words]Colin RoseDec 6, 2015 04:32226817
1ISIS' Imminent Demise [96 words]Avinoam Ben DorDec 6, 2015 01:28226815
The real threat. [7 words]steven LDec 5, 2015 23:22226814
ISIS [28 words]Janusz KowalikDec 5, 2015 22:44226813
1Wouldn't ground troops need to be deployed indefinitely? [89 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Anon.Dec 5, 2015 17:24226812

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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