A terrifying map shows ISIS’s ambition to control about half of the world in the next five years.
The map sets out the group’s territorial aims, which they hope to fulfil by 2020. It’s supposed caliphate extends from Spain to the eastern border of China, covering the Middle East, North Africa and parts of Europe.
It wants to re-take parts of Spain, Portugal and France that were occupied by the Moors, medieval Muslim crusaders, from the 8th to the 15th century.
The caliphate would be run according to puritanical Sharia law, under which homosexuals are currently thrown off tall buildings by the group, and people are regularly executed in other barbaric ways.
BBC reporter Andrew Hosken has written a new book about the terrorist group, called Empire of Fear: Inside the Islamic State. It’s from this that the map comes from.
He told the Daily Record:
People should realise Islamic State don’t want to create their caliphate and be left in peace.
They see us being under their rule too and having to abide by their ideology.
They have already destabilised Iraq and Syria, they have tried to destabilise Saudi Arabia and Libya and recently they almost destroyed Tunisia’s main industry, tourism.
And the worry is the longer they are there, the more likely it is they will develop biological or chemical weapons.
If they had weapons of mass destruction, they would use them. There is no question about that.
In another terrifying section of the book, Hosken talks about a spookily accurate seven-step-programme dating back almost 20 years, that he was told about when he met the founder of ISIS, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. It included the US being provoked into attacking the Muslim world between 2000 and 2003, as well as an uprising against Arab rulers between 2010 and 2013 – E.G the Iraq War and the Arab Spring.
Hosken warned Western leaders about being too hasty in committing soldiers on the ground to deal with the ISIS problem:
As you can see from the seven-stage plan, Islamic State would very much like it if we invaded there with our soldiers. There is a danger it would be a rallying cry to Muslims around the world to come and a join them.
So it could be a bit of an elephant trap. But at the same time, there are people saying if we don’t go in, we’re going to be stuck with Islamic State because the air campaign doesn’t seem to be working.
It’s a scary prospect, and a huge dilemma for the people tasked with dealing with ISIS.