Joshua Sinai offers a review of Robert Manne’s The Mind of the Islamic State: ISIS and the Ideology of the Caliphate for the Washington Times.
Ideology plays an important role in terrorists’ warfare. It provides them with a rationale, legitimacy and motivation for attacking their adversaries and a prism through which they perceive events affecting them, particularly the “illegitimate” actions of their enemies whom they are justified in killing because they have transgressed the tenets of their ideological framework.
Ideology is also an important recruiting tool to radicalize new adherents with a narrative to join their cause. It enables terrorists to justify their violence by displacing the responsibility for their violence onto their adversary governments, including even blaming the victims of their attacks.
Understanding the nature of the ideologies adopted by a variety of terrorist groups helps explain the “why and the how” of their warfare, which is one of the first steps required to effectively counter them physically and to formulate counter-ideologies that might weaken what are generally extremist ideologies and persuade their adherents to cease supporting them.
With al Qaeda and ISIS, the primary Islamist terrorist groups threatening Western countries (and their own as well), it is crucial to understand the militant jihadi ideology that drives them. In this regard, Robert Manne’s “The Mind of the Islamic State: ISIS and the Ideology of the Caliphate” is an important and well-argued book.
“The Mind of the Islamic State” traces the evolution of the jihadi ideology that drives such groups to justify their engagement in terrorist violence in pursuit of their extremist objectives. As the author points out, “Political ideologies take decades to form. The mind of the Islamic state represents the most recent iteration of an ideology that has been developing over the past 50 years.”
You can read the rest of the review via the below link: