It’s widely accepted that the only solution to extreme Islam is moderate Islam. But many moderate Muslims aren’t convinced it’s a real problem.
The short answer to the “why?” question is conspiracy.
What many in the west don’t realize is how much of the Muslim world believes 9/11 was an inside job. They think it was Israel, or the U.S., or some combination thereof.
And given that perspective you can guess what they think about ISIS. Here’s what they see:
- Israel is a powerhouse of espionage and politics, and master manipulators of world policy—especially as it relates to controlling the United States
- They either planned, carried out, or allowed 9/11 to happen (either with or without the U.S.’s help)
- The goal of the entire campaign is to turn the world against Muslims, so that they can gain favor for expanding Israel into Muslim-held territory
- ISIS was funded initially by the U.S.
- Where are they getting all this money and all these weapons?
- The whole thing could also be Putin’s idea, maybe with the help of Israel, since nobody is talking about Russia’s annexation of Ukraine anymore
- ISIS is not a real organization, with real beliefs. They’re a caricature of Islam designed to frighten westerners and empower Israel and those who support her
- If ISIS really was a Muslim organization, why are they not saying anything about Israel?
- Bottom line: if you want the world to hate Islam, the best way to do that is to create/fund/employ an ultra-extreme group who commits atrocities in its name, and that’s what they think is happening
I have several strong reasons why I think this narrative is false, but that’s not the point. The point is that it convincing to many. Many people who matter if we want to win this battle of ideologies.
We cannot enlist moderate Muslims to fight against extremism if they believe the bad guys are a false flag operation created by the West.
This is a problem.
- I don’t know the percentages that believe this narrative (or something like it), but I have reason to believe the numbers are quite large. Happy to hear opinions to the counter.