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The difference between ISIL and ISIS is indeed non-existent.

Reader comment on item: There's No Difference between ISIS and ISIL

Submitted by Prashant (United States), Sep 13, 2014 at 11:15

Dear Dr Pipes,

No one should disagree with your statement that there is no difference between ISIS and ISIL. Some will argue that there is no difference between AlQaeda, Talebans, Hamas, ISIS and ISIL either. If we go to the root cause of this problem, modern fundamentalist Islam has made violence a free-lance business. Any individual anywhere can be recruited for an organization that claims to be fighting to defend the cause of Islam. And any group can take a leadership role and ask people (muslims) to unite to fight the cause of Islam.

And this is a vicious cycle. The more such organizations are born, the more they radicalize the people and the more lines of division are drawn between Muslims and non-muslim societies. This vicious cycle can be turned into a virtuous one. The religion of peace should make peace --not violence-- a free-lance activity. Muslim individuals should come forward and demand that their leaders offer a platform for negotiations and peace to every one they are fighting with. If America is bad then America should be negotiated with. Ditto for India. for with Israel. Ditto for the Philippines. Such platforms can emerge only if Islamic societies adopt democratic methods.

ISIS and ISIL both should be considered illegitimate organizations by both Muslims and non-Muslims because they did not attain their power by any legitimate means. The ISIL leader of today must ask himself how a successor of him will be found when he is too weak to hold the power. Will murder or jail be the only way to replace him? Very harsh but very true.


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