Beyond Paris: 10,000s Of Muslims Killed By ISIS Since Declaring Caliphate



“ISIS has killed more Muslims than certainly members of any other
religion,” noted Democracy Now!’s Amy Goodman after the Paris Attacks.

An Indian Muslim man holds a banner during a protest against ISIS, an Islamic State group, and Friday's Paris attacks, in New Delhi, India, Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Indian Muslim man holds a banner during a protest against ISIS, an
Islamic State group, 

and Friday’s Paris attacks, in New Delhi, India,
Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015. 

(AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

PARIS — After Daesh (the acronym for the Arabic name of the
group alternately known as ISIS, ISIL or the Islamic State) took credit
for the brutal attacks on Paris last week that left 129 dead and
hundreds of others injured, many were quick to blame the Muslim
community as a whole for the terrorist rampage.

However, a Muslim is far more likely to become a victim of Daesh than
to join it, and the vast majority of the group’s victims are fellow
members of the faith. This is due to the political motivations behind
Daesh rather than religious ones, where it’s receiving arms and funding
from nations like Saudi Arabia to foment sectarianism and civil strife
in an attempt for Arab Gulf nations to maintain hegemony over oil and
gas resources in the region.

In an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour earlier this year, French
journalist Didier Francois, who spent over 10 months as the group’s
prisoner in Syria, said that the captors cared little about religion and
were more politically motivated.

“There was never really discussion about texts or — it was not a
religious discussion. It was a political discussion,” Francois told

“It was more hammering what they were believing than teaching us
about the Quran. Because it has nothing to do with the Quran.” Francois
added, “We didn’t even have the Quran; they didn’t want even to give us a

Due to the chaotic nature of events in the region due to arms landing
in the hands of jihadists in a clamor for oil and gas, the exact
numbers of Daesh’s victims are hard to come by, but a United Nations report from September 2014
found that “at least 24,015” Iraqi civilians — the vast majority of
whom were Muslim — had been killed or injured by Daesh in the first
eight months of 2014. The authors of the report warned that their
numbers were likely too low, and did not include deaths from related

“Additionally, the number of civilians who have died from
the secondary effects of violence, such as lack of access to basic
food, water or medicine, after fleeing their homes or who remained
trapped in areas under ISIL control or in areas of conflict are

In September, Peter R. Neumann, a scholar who studies radicalization in the United Kingdom, reported that attacks on other Muslims is a major factor driving defections from Daesh:

“Many complained about atrocities and the killing of
innocent civilians. They talked about the random killing of hostages,
the systematic mistreatment of villagers and the execution of fighters
by their own commanders.”

On Nov. 12, days before the attacks on Paris, terrorists struck the majority Muslim city of Beirut, in a pair of suicide bombings that left 43 dead. A string of suicide bombings in Baghdad killed at least seven this week.
In a Monday interview,
Yasser Louati, a spokesperson for the Collective Against Islamophobia
In France, told Democracy Now!’s Amy Goodman that while they’re mourning
the attacks like the rest of their countrymen, Paris’ Muslims are also
terrified of a rising tide of violent Islamophobia in retaliation for
the terrorist strike. He noted that reports of attacks on mosques,
vandalism of Muslim-owned businesses and even physical attacks against
Muslims have flooded the group’s hotline.

The violence is especially misplaced, Goodman noted, because,
“Muslims by far outnumber any other group when it comes to being
targeted by ISIS. ISIS has killed more Muslims than certainly members of
any other religion.” Louati agreed:

“Definitely, like if they hit Beirut right before hitting
Paris. And before that, I mean, like they have been killing Muslims by
the thousands in Syria and Iraq. You know, what Islamic—I mean, like,
how can they call themselves so-called Islamic, when they are first
targeting Muslims?”