This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

The Canadian-Bangladeshi ISIL "Emir"

"He is from Windsor. People who knew him say he was a quiet guy. Not much else is known about him at the moment."
Professor Amarnath Amarasingam, Dalhousie University Resilience Research Centre
AFP Photo

"[Hinduism is a] filthy, cow-worshipping religion [whose faithful unwilling to submit to Islam should be] slaughtered."
"We let our actions do the talking. And our soldiers are presently sharpening their knives to slaughter the atheists, the mockers of the Prophet and every other apostate in the region [Bangladesh/Pakistan/Afghanistan/India]."
"[Bangladesh awaits IS action to] liberate the region. [Targeted killings in Bangladesh ] brought hope to the Muslims in Bengal after a lengthy pause in jihad in the region. They saw that with the help of Allah, a small number of mujahidin with limited means are able to target and intimidate the various sects of kufr [infidels] in any part of the region despite all the false claims of supremacy attributed to the taghut [rebel] forces and designed to intimidate the believers."
"Bengal is an important region for the Khalifah and the global jihad due to its strategic geographic position. Having a strong jihadi base in Bengal will facilitate performing guerrilla attacks inside India."
Shaykh Abu Ibraham Al-Hanif, aka Tamim Chowdhury, Bangladeshi-Canadian

"Targets of the so-called IS include a wide spectrum of people -- Hindu, Christian, Buddhist or Baha'i leaders."
Zayadul Ahsan, journalist, Daily Star, Beirut

"Soldiers of the Caliphate were able to carry out a security operation in the killing of a polytheist Hindu priest by slaughter."
"The knives of the mujahedin will continue to cleanse Bangladesh from the filth of the polytheists and apostates."
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant declaration
Ananda Gopal Ganguly, bicycling to his temple to conduct a prayer service Tuesday never made it to his destination. Three men on a motorcycle hacked him to death. "He left home this morning saying that he was going to a Hindu house to offer prayers. Later, farmers found his near-decapitated body in a rice field", explained local deputy police chief Gopinath Kanjilal. In the same week a Christian grocer and the wife of a police officer of the anti-terrorism unit were assassinated.

Al-Qaeda celebrates each of these deaths in Bangladesh accomplished by their local affiliate headed by Al-Hanif who left Guelph, Ontario to pursue deadlier pastures in his native Bangladesh. Sectarian killings in the country are on the rise. The ISIL propaganda magazine online, Dabiq identifies Al-Hanif as its Bangladeshi branch "emir", and he takes that title and his dedication to jihad seriously indeed. Some of the jihadis in his branch are Syrian war veterans.

The Muslim-majority country of Bangladesh with its 156-million population is seeing religious extremism on the rise. There have been attacks on journalists, bloggers and religious minority figures. And although the threat posed by the Islamic State is critically real and penetrating, the two major political parties don't appear to be disturbed about the situation. The ruling secular Awami League is more interested in stemming any increase in influence the Bangladesh Nationalist Party may attain.

Infusions of foreign aid and the presence of non-governmental organizations have helped the poverty- stricken country to make significant gains in child mortality and maternal health ameliorations. But the country's abysmal record on human rights, specifically guaranteeing rights of religious, ethnic and other minorities remains pallid. The concern of exterior sources looking in is that the country could emerge as an epicentre of Islamic radicalism.

And that spells trouble for the region with its close proximity to other large Muslim populations in South and South-east Asia for the potential destabilizing consequences outside the country itself. Religious zealotry is growing everywhere in the Muslim world, and it is hastened by the appeal of the Islamic State caliphate. Should they gain the leverage they anticipate, their presence and growing influence would have disastrous effects in West Bengal and Assam, in India.

Bangladeshi Awami League
Muslim zealots enforcing their jihadist mindset would inevitably spur Hindu radicals to respond. Violence would be assured. The regime of Sheikh Hasina Wajed has done nothing to put an end to the kind of zealotry that has victimized many of her citizens. She and her regime are more fixated on the religious party, the Jamaat-i-Islami, involved in the 1971 genocide and only last month a Jamaat leader was sent to the gallows for the slaughter of Bengalis during the civil war.

Free thinkers, gay rights activists, intellectuals considered to be atheists, have all been targeted by ISIL. A series of attacks on Hindu temples have taken place and priests killed, as have been Buddhist monks; hacked to death. While publicly decrying these events Sheikh Hasina declared"If anybody thinks they have no religion, OK, it's their personal view ... But they have no right to write or speak against any religion. ...When  you are living in a society, you have to honour the social values, you have to honour others' feelings."

Effectively giving righteous cover to the killing of those whom ISIL claims mocks Islam and its Prophet.

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