“The Islamic State, they can call themselves what they want to call themselves. We shouldn’t compound the sin by allowing them to get away with it and calling them what they’re not. They’re not a state, and they do not represent Islam,” said Kerry at the House Foreign Affairs Committee’s hearing on the U.S. strategy against ISIS.
Kerry was responding to Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio), who expressed shock when President Barack Obama emphasized that Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIL) was not Islamic.
“Like everybody in this room, I’m sure I watched … the president – many I think were shocked – when he emphasized that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant was in fact not Islamic. They not simply refer to themselves as the Islamic State. They don’t call themselves the Methodist State or the Episcopalian State or the Baptist State. They’re the Islamic State, and I think for good reason,” Chabot said.
As CNSNews.com reported earlier, when Obama laid out his four-part strategy to defeat ISIS last week, he said: “ISIL is not Islamic. No religion condones the killing of innocents, and the vast majority of ISIL’s victims have been Muslim.”
Kerry noted that Islamic leaders “are reclaiming the legitimate Islam, and they’re separating it too.”
“So I wouldn’t compound the crime by calling them a state whatsoever,” Kerry said of ISIS. “They’re the enemy of Islam. That’s what they are, and as the 21 clerics yesterday said in Saudi Arabia, they are in fact the order of Satan.”
“There’s nothing in Islam that condones or suggests people should go out and rape women and sell off young girls or give them as gifts to jihadists and cut people’s heads off and tie people’s hands behind their backs and put them on their knees and shoot them in their backs,” Kerry said.
“These are war crimes, and they’re crimes against humanity, and we need to make clear that that is exactly what is the reality here,” he added.
“It’s clear to me that their [ISIS’s] motivation is their religious fervor, this fanaticism, however misguided it is. That’s their motivation here,” Chabot said.
“They use that. I don’t know if that is in truth. It’s part of it,” Kerry said. “The caliphate is certainly on the minds of many, but I think a lot of them are thugs and criminals and people who simply want to go out and maraud and take part in the success of vanquish and be opposed to modernity and a whole bunch of other things.”