‘I think Saudi promotion of Wahhabism is absolutely a problem.’ So says Robert Ford, former US ambassador to Syria, about factors driving ISIL recruitment.
The former US ambassador says that the US ‘would be unable to defeat the global jihadist movement which is based largely on Wahhabism which is a state-sponsored religion of Saudi Arabia without somehow enlisting the support of the Saudi royal family in withdrawing its financial support for Wahhabism.’ He’s not alone. At a congressional hearing in January 2016, Democratic congressman Hank Johnson said, ‘the ideology of ISIL lines up with Wahhabism.’
There’s a clear link here. Takfiri terrorists kill Muslims who do not conform to their ideology. Takfirism is largely influenced by Wahhabism, the radical ideology dominating Saudi Arabia and freely preached by Saudi clerics. The recent spread of such foreign-backed extremist groups, especially in Iraq, Syria and North Africa, has led to conflict, crimes and the displacement of millions – plus the loss of hundreds of thousands of civilian lives.