ABC News has published a map that shows ISIS’ alleged 5-year expansion plan.
The map shows a possible future caliphate based upon previously held Islamic territory throughout history. The map seems to confirm everyone’s worst fears of a new global jihad inspired by ISIS.
Except, according to Tim Fernholz at Quartz, the map itself is a fake.
“It’s an old image put out by fans of the group,” Aaron Zelin, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and editor of the blog Jihadology told Quartz. “There is nothing official about it nor is there some alleged 5-year plan.”
The map is a fantasy that harkens back to the initial age of Islamic expansion. What the creators of the map seem to gloss over, however, is that this expanse of Islamic-ruled lands was never centrally controlled. Instead, there have always been a number of rival power centres throughout the Muslim world that have vied for control — often bloodily against each other.
Over the weekend, ISIS changed its name to simply “the Islamic State,” and pronounced its leader to be the caliph, or the global leader of Islam. However, a number of religious leaders have come out against the claim, saying that ISIS is making a mockery of Islam.
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