ISIS bases much of its recruitment and expansion strategy around the idea that the end times are upon us.
The extremist group pushes the idea that the apocalypse is nigh and that Islamic fighters will battle the “infidels” of the West in Dabiq, a town in Syria that ISIS now controls.
ISIS (also known as the Islamic State) uses Islamic scripture and prophecies to bolster its assertion, but it conveniently ignores one particularly damning prophecy that could inherently challenge the legitimacy of its self-declared “caliphate” — the territory in Iraq and Syria it controls that is central to Islamic doomsday prophecies.
Will McCants, director of the Project on US Relations with the Islamic World at the Brookings Institution, mentions it in his new book, “The ISIS Apocalypse.”
“There is one prophecy about the Antichrist that the Islamic State and its fans have studiously avoided, even though it is in a collection of prophecies they revere: The Antichrist will ‘appear in the empty area between Sham [Syria] and Iraq,'” McCants wrote. “That, of course, is precisely where the Islamic State is located.”
As McCants explained in his book, Jesus and the Antichrist do have a place in Islamic foretellings.
“The Qur’an portrays Jesus as a messenger of God and his followers as those ‘nearest in love to the believers’ (5:82),” McCants wrote. “But the prophecies attributed to Muhammad outside the Qur’an foresee Jesus returning to fight alongside the Muslims against the infidels. As in the Bible, the appearance of Jesus heralds the Last Days. …
“He will lead the Muslims in a war against the Jews, who will fight on behalf of the Antichrist.”
US airstrikes in Syria are ineffective as long as Washington fails to coordinate its actions with those battling terrorists on the ground, Syrian FM Walid Muallem told RT, adding that Damascus fully supports the idea of a coalition genuinely committed to the cause.
The international community could have prevented much of the bloodshed in Syria by moving beyond empty declarations and sincerely respecting the obligations to fight terrorism, Walid Muallem told RT Arabic in an exclusive interview.
“We want to ask the international community…what have you done to fulfill the UN Security Council resolutions adopted in accordance with Chapter 7 [of the UN Charter]?” Muallem said. “Did neighboring countries implement the Security Council resolutions on fighting terrorism? Not a single one.”
Russia has long insisted on the creation of an international anti-terrorist coalition that would coordinate its efforts with the Syrian army battling the radical Islamist forces on the ground. Muallem says Damascus fully supports such an initiative.
“We declare that we are ready to coordinate our actions with any country in the world, which sincerely wished to fight terrorism in practice,” Muallem stated, adding that scrapping any support to terrorist groups would be essential proof of sincerity.
Muallem also commented on the information campaigns presenting the ongoing Russian-Syrian cooperation as some kind of growing threat or something illegal.
“Moscow is acting within the framework of international law, respecting the sovereignty of our country and in coordination with Syria,” he said. “We do not hide anything under the table … We regard Russia as our friend and strategic ally which is honest in its actions.”
Bavaria’s Interior Ministry has confirmed media reports that radical Islamists are trying to recruit young male asylum seekers arriving in the country unaccompanied. Up to 800,000 asylum seekers are set to be taken in by Germany by the end of the year.
“Salafists are trying to talk with unaccompanied youths who have come to Germany without their families and who are in particular need of support and connections,” a spokesperson from the Bavarian internal security service (LfV) told Süddeutsche Zeitung.
This has been reportedly happening not only at refugee camps, but also at Munich Central Station, where tens of thousands of refugees have arrived over the past week alone.
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“The Salafists are trying to use the desperate situation that refugees find themselves in for their own purposes,” the spokesperson added.
Salafism is an ultra-conservative movement within Sunni Islam, said to be the fastest-growing Islamist movement in Europe. It’s often described as being synonymous with Wahhabism.
Salafist preacher, who is well-known across the country, recently called on Facebook for his followers to reach refugees and win them to their movement, Süddeutsche Zeitung reported. He even reportedly gave a list of concrete ways for approaching asylum seekers. German intelligence services have reportedly drawn a link between Germany’s Salafist movement and jihadists who are radicalized before traveling to Syria to fight for Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS).
Refugee walks past refugee camp.