This is from The Atlantic Monthly:
It is an excellent rebuttal to those who want to claim that there is no specifically religious violence, and that groups, such as ISIS, are violent for political or economic reasons and only use religion as a cover. A key quote from the essay notes that non-religious factors, must, of course, be acknowledged, but also notes the peculiar blindness of commentators who want to deny the influence of religious ideology:
“Without acknowledgment of these [economic and political] factors, no explanation of the rise of the Islamic State could be complete. But focusing on them to the exclusion of ideology reflects another kind of Western bias: that if religious ideology doesn’t matter much in Washington or Berlin, surely it must be equally irrelevant in Raqqa or Mosul. When a masked executioner says Allahu akbar while beheading an apostate, sometimes he’s doing so for religious reasons.”
This should be obvious to everyone. The only reason that it is not is due to the obfuscation promulgated by those who, due to ideological commitments or a misguided “sensitivity,” refuse to admit the role of religion in promoting violence.
This article is archived.