The suicide bomb attacks in Sri Lanka, followed by the release of a video of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, raises questions of whether we are seeing the resurgence of ISIS. Speaking to SNI Opinion Editor Ashwin Ahmad, Dr Adil Rasheed, Research Fellow, IDSA and counter-terrorism expert believes the attacks were a bid by ISIS to rally ‘demoralised crusaders’. On why ISIS has not yet formed a base in India, Dr Rasheed believes India’s more liberal forms of Islam – Barelvis and Deobandi – is at odds with the hardline Salafi/Wahabi brands of Islam practiced by ISIS and Al-Qaeda ensuring these groups have so far ignored India. However, ISIS’s growing desperation and the migration of fighters to the Af-Pak region is a threat. Finally, speaking about the rise of affluent, educated Muslims turning to jihad, Dr Rasheed believes jihadis see themselves as ‘revolutionaries’ and history shows that ‘generally revolutionaries think and read a lot.’ To commit to jihad is not possible without some understanding of geopolitics however twisted that understanding may be.

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