IS­LAMIC … FUN­DA­MEN­TAL­ISTS CAUGHT THE WORLD’S AT­TEN­TION

Marie Claire (South Africa) - - REPORTAGE - By KHADIJA PA­TEL, colum­nist and jour­nal­ist

THERE IS A PAR­TIC­U­LAR ANX­I­ETY in try­ing to ex­plain the rise of armed po­lit­i­cal move­ments pur­port­ing to speak for so­cial, eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal cir­cum­stances turns into a mish­mash of big­otry that does lit­tle but blame, con­found and pro­mote hys­te­ria. And the head­lines this year cer­tainly didn’t help. The Nige­rian rebel group Boko Haram earned global in­famy after kid­nap­ping more than 270 school­girls in the north­ern Borno State in April. Boko Haram has been at war with the Nige­rian gov­ern­ment for years, bombing in­dis­crim­i­nately, lay­ing siege to civil­ians and elud­ing the muted might of the Nige­rian army. The hor­ror of the mass ab­duc­tion caught the world’s at­ten­tion when celebri­ties posted pic­tures of them­selves with the hash­tag ‘#BringBack­OurGirls’. The cam­paign, cre­ated in Nige­ria but then for­eign pol­icy de­ci­sions. Yet it says a lot about the tran­sient na­ture of so­cial-me­dia cam­paigns that the girls are still miss­ing.

Boko Haram’s bru­tal­ity, how­ever, would soon pale in com­par­i­son to that of Isis. The self-styled Is­lamic State of Iraq and Syria thrust it­self group de­vel­oped through the course of the Syr­ian civil war and has nur­tured a set of ob­jec­tives that few un­der­stand. And while the rest of the so-called civilised world as­sem­bles to do bat­tle against Isis, it is, in fact, Mus­lims who are its great­est vic­tims. To the West, Isis may rep­re­sent a brand of Is­lam – but it is Mus­lims who live in the shadow of its swords.

FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA; AN ISIS FIGHTER

STANDS GUARD AT A CHECK­POINT IN IRAQ; GEORGE CLOONEY WEDS AMAL ALA­MUD­DIN IN

VENICE, ITALY

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.