[ by Charles Cameron — preliminary thoughts about an Indian group photograph, Tamils & the calphate ]
I talked about “caliphate” merchandise just the other day, and pointed specifically to t-shirts. I’m sorry to say those tees have now cropped up in my news feed a second time, this time under less auspicious circumstances:
Those, my friends, are Tamil (southern) Indians who support ISIS and the “caliphate”. Prayaag Akbar at Scroll.In has this anlysis:
A photograph has been doing the rounds of the Internet of a large group of young Tamil Muslims clad in black ISIS t-shirts. On the Internet it is being brandished by Hindu nationalists as justification for their narrow parochialism, but it should worry every citizen of India. Tamils have nothing to do with Iraq or Syria. Then why this adherence to ISIS over Al-Qaeda, indeed over the jihad in Kashmir?
The answer lies in ISIS’ rallying call. The politically savvy and militarily capable self-named Caliph of the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has astutely positioned his struggle as one against not the West but against Shia overreach. While many have characterised his ideology as pan-Islamist, it is in fact pan-Sunni. He seeks to create a Sunni state stretching across West Asia and the subcontinent. Needless to say, Shias will have at best subsidiary part in it.
There’s more on the Scroll.In site, of course, but those are the key paras for my current purpose.
Dots — as yet pretty much unconnected — to keep an eye onin the subcontinent:
Oy veh. Did I mention Pakistan?