FAQ :: Is ISIS a dangerous Islamic organization?

Yes. In the continuing dismantling of the Iraqi government, a Sunni group known as ISIS has spread panic and fear in much of northern Iraq and continues to destabilize what once was a form of democratic government. Members of ISIS are led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, a fundamentalist Islamic leader who is said to have a far more organized and powerful military than existed under al-Qaida and Usama bin Laden. Their military attacks have proven effective, and they continue to take over major Iraqi cities, killing Shia Muslims and Christians in their path of terror.

ISIS is an acronym for the “Islamic State in Iraq and Syria” as the organization operates in both Iraq and Syria. Like many jihadist groups, its goal is to establish an Islamic state that is true to the teachings of Mohammed, with their current way being a fanatical military movement that is experienced and has a strong leadership directing the military strategy. Thus far, its exercise over northern Iraq and parts of western Syria make it the most successful jihadist movement in history.

This success is being watched closely by neighboring countries such as Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey who fear that the expanding military operations of ISIS may come to roost in their own backyard. ISIS recruits many of its members from untrained volunteers from other parts of the world, then trains them to be suicide bombers. For the neighboring countries, this means members of ISIS can act covertly within their own borders. The group is extremely violent and will use any means necessary to establish its Islamic state in Iraq.

Stepping away from the violence and media coverage, ISIS is one of several hundred splinter groups of Islam looking to unite its people before the return of Mahdi, a descendant of Muhammad to conquer the world and convert the entire world to Islam. The ISIS way seems to be that this will take place through a violent and autocratic ascension to power. As they mercilessly kill all those who are not believed to be true Muslims, those who will be left are the faithful. Then the jihad can expand around the globe.

ISIS rose to power when Sunni influence and power in the political process was marginalized after the end of the Iraq war, even though promised otherwise by the Iraqi government. The idea of unifying the various Muslim sects in the country through a democratic government was turned to rubble by the majority Shia political group. It seems a political solution to the problems of Iraq are no closer to being resolved than at the end of the war.