Simpson senior presents research on ISIS


by Clayton Bowers, Staff Reporter

McLain studies religion at Simpson and has been researching ISIS for over a year. His research ranges from visiting the Middle East over the summer to creating fake ISIS accounts on Twitter.

“Ignorance sustains radical groups like the Islamic State,” McLain said. “The best thing we can do, is to lend a sympathetic ear to the Islamic State’s worldview.”

Being sympathetic to the causes of ISIS may seem impossible, although through embracing their culture not only do you understand their perspectives, but you can start to gather information on what their future attack plans may be.

“The organization uses the media as a powerful tool to recruit members,” McLain said.

Dabiq, an English-printed magazine created by the Islamic State in July 2014, has released 13 issues which help promote the organization on a mass media scale.

The name of the magazine comes from the apocalyptic literature. It signifies the city where Muslims believe the large battle between the Western coalition and themselves will start, ultimately leading to the end times.

“Every time a new country joins the Western coalition, ISIS cheers them on through Twitter because they believe it is getting them that much closer to the apocalypse,” McLain said. “The two armies will battle, and the Muslims will come out victorious.”

Contrary to popular belief, Jesus plays a large role in the Islamic state’s aggressive nature. Jesus is considered a great profit, who will descend from heaven after the Muslims win the battle at Dabiq. Satan also comes onto Earth and is stabbed by Jesus with a spear.

This depiction plays an important role in the Islamic state’s attitude towards the apocalypse. Since Jesus did not wait for Satan to die a passive death, the Islamic state also feels they should not wait for the apocalypse to arrive.

“Urgency matters,” McLain said. “The end times are fast approaching, so it is their duty to purify the world before the end times begins.”

This helps understand the mindsets of the recent terror attacks on Paris, San Bernardino, California, and countless other places that have fallen victim to the Islamic state’s violence.

So how does one combat such an aggressive force that will stop at nothing to purify the world before the apocalypse begins?

“The manner in which the United States responds to the fear is going to be one of the most important developments in the war against the Islamic state,”McLain said. “We have to acknowledge the Islamic State as a formidable threat, while not allowing it to instill so much fear in us.”

The Islamic State capitalizes on the word choices of politicians and leaders around the world. In Dabiq, they put quotes from these leaders with no background information, usually when we use the word “crusade.”

The Islamic State celebrates when leaders use this word because they believe it falls right into place with their apocalyptic literature.

If we put more time into analyzing the literature in Dabiq, it outlines exactly what their plans are for the future due to its aggressive policy on following their apocalyptic writings. By reading into these magazines, we could prevent future attacks from happening, and find out where the organization is weak.

“The Western world’s abilities to tune into the issues outlined in Dabiq will be essential to the Islamic state’s defeat,” McLain said.