An excellent article which puts the violence of IS into context.
The following is an op-ed I recently published in the Otago Daily Times about the barbarism of ISIS and how we might put it in context:
The latest atrocity by Islamic State forces in Iraq in which a captured Jordanian pilot was burned to death has provoked an understandable wave of commentary from around the world. The horrific spectacle created by the killing raises a number of crucial questions for us to consider. Is Islamic State (IS) a new, more brutal kind of rebel group? What purpose can such brutality serve? How should the world respond to the increasing brutality of the war in Iraq, and what does this latest development tell us about Western strategy in the region?
Sadly, this atrocity, and those previously committed by IS, are actually fairly banal in the history of warfare. Depraved cruelty and inhumanity is part and parcel of the very nature of…
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