Calm down, it was ‘Deash’ not ISIL

Calm down, it was ‘Deash’ not ISIL

When the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) made its debut in the highly competitive marketplace of Islamist terror last summer, it became popular with its serial beheadings and other mass killings in order to impose Islamic law in the large swaths of Syrian and Iraqi lands that it captured. ISIL systematically made its extreme brutality a popular but disgusting visual material accessible by everyone. 

In precisely those days, Turkish pollster MetroPOLL found that 11.3 percent of Turks did not view ISIL as a terrorist organization. Marginal? Maybe. But not in a country of 78 million people: The revealed that nearly nine million Turks think sympathetically of the pro-Sharia murderers who have the habit of beheading every infidel, Muslim or otherwise. If a mere one percent of ISIL’s Turkish sympathizers decided to join the jihad it would mean an army of 90,000 soldiers inside Turkey.

So, gentlemen, don’t bother creating a buffer zone inside Syria just because a jihadist blew herself up together with 31 innocent people in Suruç, injuring over 100 others. There must be many of them inside Turkey waiting for their moment to become a “martyr.”  

Last October, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan thought he could avert the evil simply by – funnily - inventing a linguistic euphemism in line with his Islamist cause. In a Paris speech, he corrupted ISIL’s Arabic acronym, Daesh, (from “ad-Dawla al-Islamiya fi-l-Iraq wa-sh-Sham,” or “the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) into “Deash,” claiming that terrorists cannot flag a name that contains the word “Islamic.” It was fine if it contained the word “al-Islamiya” (Islamic) in Arabic. 

The little linguistic game reflected Mr. Erdoğan’s rigid belief that Islam cannot come together with any evil. Fine. Let’s say Monday’s bomb did not kill in order to advance “an Islamic state,” but rather it did so in order to advance “ad-dawla al-Islamiya.” Let’s hope Mr. Erdoğan is relieved at that. 

Mr. Erdoğan is the inventor of the not-so-convincing theory that “there is no Islamic terror.” They have every liberty to believe that the attack in Suruç was a clandestine operation conducted by the FARC guerrillas in Colombia. The trouble is that with such self-deception and denialism they will expose Turkey to the risk of more “Deash” bombs and bullets. Without a scientifically credible diagnosis you cannot prescribe a cure. 
With our dead already buried, any Islamist spin doctor can now claim that the suicide attack in Suruç was the work of Zionists, intergalactic forces, the Christian West, or Kurds killing pro-Kurdish people in a false-flag operation. That will not stop the next bomb and its victims in another Turkish city. 

It is an impossible task for any security organization to track over one million foreign visitors who have dispersed across all corners of the country, or to know with what motives they have dispersed across the country. No one knows which of these guests may have planted bombs over the past three years, or in which buildings, waiting for the right moment to detonate them.

Turkey is too weak to defend itself, with its deeply ideological state apparatus and its yellow press. Only recently, one of Mr. Erdoğan’s many “Pravdas” ran a headline stating that the Kurdish militia fighting “Deash” in Syria was more dangerous than “Deash.” The nation later observed the governor (of the same province where “Deash” has just killed over 30 people) ordering the detention of three journalists after they asked him questions about “Deash.” 

In order to understand the dynamics that may have led to the bomb in Suruç, one must recall Feb. 20, when Nazmi Gür from the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) filed a parliamentary motion asking for an inquiry into ISIL’s activities inside Turkey. The next day, the motion was rejected by the majority votes of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). 

That’s fine. ISIL does not exist. It does not kill. It has nothing to do with jihad. There is nothing to investigate. Enjoy your “Deash.”