By The New Indian Express, 02nd July 2016
(Note: Yes, if ISIS took root in Iraq and Syria, who was finally responsible for it? To me it was George Bush chasing a desert mirage called “Weapons of Mass distruction” of Sadam Husain, which never existed. He or rather the US created a power vacuum which no one could fill in but the ISIS easily could. More military strikes of the type Bush used could only aggravate the situation. It is no solution. More military strikes can only spread the murderous cancer helping it to migrate to safer heavens like India as it happened when it spread to Paris and Brussels. What is needed, it looks are peace ambassadors to penetrate ISIS hide outs to study their psychological, social, religious and financial problems and to remedy them. The modalities can be worked out only by peace loving not by war and military ware exporting countries like US and Russia but all supervised by UN. james kottoor, editor)
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has been on the backfoot in the Middle East. Not so long ago, it had to beat a retreat from its long-held bastion of Fallujah following relentless air strikes by the US-led coalition forces and a massive ground assault by Iraqi troops. But, before anyone could celebrate the big breakthrough, the dreaded terror outfit struck at the Istanbul airport in Turkey, in what is being seen as a retaliation. Hours later, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) raided several places in Hyderabad and busted an ISIS module, which was on the verge of carrying out terror attacks in the city — it could have been the first such carnage by ISIS in India had it not been thwarted on time.
What does this show? Almost exactly two years after declaring its so-called Caliphite, the barbaric organisation may be losing ground in the blood-soaked lands of the Middle East but its toxic ideology and its capacity to strike anywhere in different parts of the world remains as strong as ever. It’s a fact that in India, its reach is limited but make no mistake, it seems to be slowly but surely succeeding in brainwashing vulnerable young Muslims. For ISIS, recruiting even a few in the Indian sub-continent would be a success. Admitted that the case against the suspects arrested in Hyderabad is yet to be fully substantiated, but available evidence suggests their diabolical plans were at an advanced stage. If one sees this in the backdrop of ISIS efforts to gain a foothold in Afghanistan and Bangladesh, India has every reason to worry.
The NIA deserves a pat on the back for its intelligence operation. Nonetheless, there is little room for complacency. As pointed out in these columns earlier, the battle against ISIS must be waged simultaneously at the ideological level. The government must proactively involve Muslim religious leaders to reassert the peaceful nature of Islam and stop fanatics from propagating poisonous ideology.