by Robert Spencer
Whatever they may disagree about, Western leaders are in complete agreement about one thing: the new self-styled caliphate, the Islamic State, has nothing whatsoever to do with Islam. It’s a comforting, reassuring vision for Western non-Muslims facing a massive influx of Muslim immigrants and jittery about the prospect of Islamic terrorism, except for just one problem: it’s entirely false.
Barack Obama has made it clear: “ISIL speaks for no religion. Their victims are overwhelmingly Muslim, and no faith teaches people to massacre innocents.” David Cameron intoned: “What we are witnessing is actually a battle between Islam on the one hand and extremists who want to abuse Islam on the other. These extremists, often funded by fanatics living far away from the battlefields, pervert the Islamic faith as a way of justifying their warped and barbaric ideology – and they do so not just in Iraq and Syria but right across the world, from Boko Haram and al-Shabaab to the Taliban and al-Qaeda.”
State Department spokesperson Marie Harf emphasized that Obama meant what he said: “ISIL does not operate in the name of any religion. The president has been very clear about that, and the more we can underscore that, the better.” British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond declared: “[ISIL]’s so-called caliphate has no moral legitimacy; it is a regime of torture, arbitrary punishment and murder that goes against the most basic beliefs of Islam.” The British opposition agrees: Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper said that Islamic State “extremists are beheading people and parading their heads on spikes, subjugating women and girls, killing Muslims, Christians and anyone who gets in their way. This is no liberation movement — only a perverted, oppressive ideology that bears no relation to Islam.”
Cooper’s statement was a bit more specific than most others of its kind, and shows up the weakness of all of them. For every Islamic State atrocity she enumerated, there is Qur’anic sanction:
Beheading people: “When you meet the unbelievers, strike the necks…” (Qur’an 47:4).
Subjugating women and girls: “Men have authority over women because Allah has made the one superior to the other, and because they spend their wealth to maintain them. Good women are obedient. They guard their unseen parts because Allah has guarded them. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to beds apart and beat them” (Qur’an 4:34)….