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Fri Aug 27, 2021, 04:34 PM

So much confusion about ISIS, ISIS-K... ISIS this and ISIS that.

ISIS was founded by al Zarqawi in 1999... as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, aka Islamic State of Iraq and Levant, aka Islamic State of Iraq and Al Sham.

ISIS... as defined, is 90% dead or disbanded and their proto-State was dissolved.

However... Islamic radical groups have adopted the "Islamic State" moniker and have started "new chapters"

The folks in Afghanistan are actually IS-K... not ISIS-K. They're the Islamic State of Khorasan, formed in 2015 to oppose both the USA and Taliban.

And looking across the globe, one can find other IS "Chapters"

ISIL-YP in Yemen

IS-WAP, West Africa Province

IS-JAD in Indonesia

In summary, "IS" is a prefix meaning "Islamic State" just like "Democratic Republic" or "Federal Republic" or "Kingdom" or whatever...

After IS is where they're located. That's why I'm baffled that the media outlets would be calling everyone ISIS when they're... not.

Rant mode-off

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Reply So much confusion about ISIS, ISIS-K... ISIS this and ISIS that. (Original post)
WarGamer Aug 2021 OP
abqtommy Aug 2021 #1
Polybius Aug 2021 #2
Klaralven Aug 2021 #3
muriel_volestrangler Aug 2021 #5
Make7 Aug 2021 #4

Response to WarGamer (Original post)

Fri Aug 27, 2021, 05:21 PM

1. Any far-right Fascist group, which defines our reTHUGS and all jihadists from

the Taliban to all the ISIS groups will totally ruin my/our day as individuals or groups.
For now the ISIS in Afghanistan considers the Taliban to be ISIS Lite so an enemy. I
sure hope that doesn't change.

Depending on the U.S. MSM for truth and clarity is a waste of effort.

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Response to WarGamer (Original post)

Fri Aug 27, 2021, 05:34 PM

2. Why do they oppose the Taliban?

Is this like a hard-core neo-Nazi opposing Trump, because hes not far-right enough?

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Response to Polybius (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 27, 2021, 05:42 PM

3. Sort of like the Schutzstaffel (SS) versus the Sturmabteilung (SA)?


It's not uncommon for a faction of a movement to want to assert authority and to purify and discipline the movement.


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Response to Polybius (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 27, 2021, 05:45 PM

5. Yes, more or less - this is from an expert who wrote a similar summary for the Obama admin

in 2015:

IS-K is violently opposed to the Taliban. The reason for this is that the extreme, politicized version of Islam that the Taliban follow is rooted in Deobandi Islam with a much later added overlay of Saudi tawheed as a result of contact with the Saudi mujahideen who flocked to Afghanistan to fight the Soviets. Deobandism is an austere, anti-colonial focused version of Islam that originated in British controlled India in the late 1860s. The Saudi concept of tawheed, the radical unity of the Deity, is the central teaching and foundation of Adbul Wahhab’s theology that provided the doctrinal focus for ibn Saud’s conquest of the Arabian peninsula and formation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. For all that we see the Taliban as being extreme and unyielding, the Islamic State perceives them as not being pure enough in their understanding and application of tawheed.
The Islamic State, whether the original movement, the Islamic State in Iraq and al Shams (ISIS), or its offshoots like Islamic State-Khorasan (IS-K), is simply the most extreme, hardcore, politicized evolution of tawheed as an organizing doctrine and driver for violent extremist Islamic movements that we have yet see emerge. They are far more extreme than al Qaeda, who they are also in competition with and violently opposed to. For ISIS, IS-K, and the other IS offshoots, their doctrine is built around the teachings of Abdul Wahhab. Wahhab asserted that not only was the Deity one, which is not in and of itself a particularly radical idea in Islam, but that any innovation that took away from this glorious reality counted as shirk or polytheism. As a result he inveighed against the building of shrines and monuments, as well as the tradition of subordinate, intercessory prayers in addition to the mandated salat or Islamic understanding of prayer. Those who engage in such innovations are, at best, engaged in kufr and ridda – unbelief in the one G-d and apostasy. Moreover, Abdul Wahhab’s conceptualization of tawheed teaches that unbelief and apostasy must be stamped out, through violence if necessary. It also teaches that one can only be a real Muslim, a muwaheedun, if one lives where tawheed has been established as the rule for the ummah/community of the faithful. As Moussalli interestingly asserts*, the Wahhabi muwaheedun have been arguing for over 200 years that they are the true defenders of Sunni Islam, while at the same time being in direct and active opposition to 90% of Sunni Islam.

What makes this extreme understanding of tawheed, as the core doctrine, theology, and ideology of the Islamic State so dangerous is its unwillingness to tolerate non-muwaheedun Muslims and its ability to travel. Unlike bin Laden’s underlying doctrine for al Qaeda, which was partially rooted in bin Laden’s personal adherence to and understanding of tawheed as practiced in Saudi Arabia, the Islamic State’s application of tawheed and its theological component calls for targeting non- muwaheedun Muslims. While bin Laden did call for the removal, by violence if necessary, of the leaders of Muslims states and societies who were themselves unbelievers and/or apostates, he also made it clear that non-muwaheedun populations were off limits for targeting. The Islamic State makes no such distinction.
ISIS has two strategic objectives. The Islamic State, organized around the doctrine of tawheed, seeks to destroy the civil space, often referred to as the grey zone, in which Muslims live their day to day lives as the citizens and residents of Muslim and non-Muslim states and societies alike. This civic space, especially in Western liberal states and societies that allows people from different religious and ethnic background to have membership in the state and society despite not necessarily belonging to the majority ethnic or religious group. The concept of extreme tawheed obliterates this space. It tells Muslims, specifically Sunni Muslims, that they cannot separate their religious lives from their civic ones and promotes this idea to non-Muslims. Moreover, its focus on being unable to be a good Muslim, a muwaheedun, unless one lives where tawheed has been established as the governing concept reinforces the argument that proper Muslims must relocate to the Islamic State and its self declared caliphate. It is also the Islamic State’s argument for expanding the caliphate. Additionally, it supports the assertion that Muslim communities in the West cannot assimilate, are susceptible to ISIS’s information operations, and are a threat to the domestic security of the states in which they reside.


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Response to WarGamer (Original post)

Fri Aug 27, 2021, 05:44 PM

4. Islamic State Khorasan (IS-K)

Formation and Relationship with ISIS Core

In 2014, Pakistani national Hafiz Saeed Khan was chosen to spearhead IS-K province as its first emir. Khan, a veteran Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) commander, brought along other prominent TTP members—including the group’s spokesman Sheikh Maqbool and many district chiefs—when he initially pledged allegiance to al-Baghdadi in October 2014. Many of these individuals were included in the first Khorasan Shura or leadership council.

IS-K’s early membership included a contingent of Pakistani militants who emerged in Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province around 2010, just across the border from the former Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan. Many of these militants were estranged members of TTP and Lashkar-e Islam, who had fled Pakistan to escape pressure from security forces. The appointment of Khan as IS-K’s first emir, and former Taliban commander Abdul Rauf Khadim as his deputy, further facilitated the group’s growth, utilizing long established recruitment networks in Afghanistan and Pakistan. According to the Combatting Terrorism Center at West Point, as of 2017, some members of Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jamaat-ud-Dawa, the Haqqani Network, and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) had also defected to IS-K.

IS-K has received support from the Islamic State’s core leadership in Iraq and Syria since its founding in 2015. As the Islamic State loses territory, it has increasingly turned to Afghanistan as a base for its global caliphate. Following IS-K’s official pledge of allegiance to the Islamic State’s global “ummah,” Islamic State wilayats (or provinces) in Iraq and Syria publicly announced their congratulations for the movement’s expansion into Central Asia through media statements and videos. To that end, the Islamic State has invested some financial resources in its Khorasan province—as much as several hundred thousand dollars—to improve its networks and organization in Central Asia. Additionally, a recent United Nations publication commented that “[ISIS] core continues to facilitate the relocation of some of its key operatives to Afghanistan,” including Abu Qutaiba, the Islamic State’s former leader in Iraq’s Salah al-Din province. Afghanistan remains a top destination for foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs) in the region, as well as for fighters leaving battlefields in the Levant. IS-K’s public affairs prowess, global prestige, and sustained resources facilitate the recruitment of these FTFs, drawing them away from other militant movements.


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