An estimated 800 British Muslims have joined the Islamic State’s ranks as fighters. Reports say that the jihadi subculture has become “cool” with some British youth, a shift that has world leaders concerned that Islamic State (IS) is gaining global influence.
Iqbal Sacranie, adviser to the Muslim Council of Britain said, "This sub culture of this 'jihadi-cool' — as they call it in the media — within the margins of society ... that is the real challenge. This is a problem that affects all of us and it will only be dealt with more effectively if all of us are working together on this."
The filmed murder of American journalist James Foley gained international attention this week; in addition to the shock of his beheading came the surprise that Foley’s executioner appeared to have a British accent.
United Kingdom Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said in response to the horrific event, “This is something we have been tracking and dealing with for many, many months and I don't think this video changes anything. It just heightens awareness of a situation which is very grave."
Most of the 2.7 million British Muslims do not support the terrorism of the Islamic State. Sacraine said that families are reporting young men who join IS in an effort to stop the group’s violence and persecution.
Publication date: August 22, 2014