Sunni Muslim fanatics from Bangladesh come very low within the racial hierarchy that is inherent within ISIS. They are considered inferior fighters and in Iraq and Syria they are never given any command responsibilities. “They are usually housed in groups in small barracks and are paid less than the Arab fighters and are provided inferior equipment” but they provide convenient “cannon fodder” (suicide missions), The racial hierarchy within ISIS (all Sunni) seems to be:
- Arabs from the “home countries” (S. Arabia, Syria, Iraq, Gulf states)
- North African “Maghrebian” Arabs ( Morocco, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Sudan, Egypt)
- “Light skinned” Muslims from central Asia (Bosnia, Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Chechnya, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan….)
- South Asian Muslims (Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia..)
- African (dark-skinned) Muslims (Somalia, Nigeria …)
The Bangladesh government insists that the spate of Islamic atrocities and the hacking to death of foreigners, intellectuals, hindus, christians and secularists are not being “directed” by ISIS. Some think this is denial on the part of the government, but I think the government is probably correct. ISIS may be vaguely aware of the activities of these maniacs and gives them some encouragement but probably does not “direct” them. ISIS is not that concerned or interested in Bangladeshi affairs. In fact the “disinterest” shown by ISIS in the Bangladeshis is probably a key part of their motivation to get some attention from ISIS.
france24: Eighteen of the 20 civilians who were killed in the Holey Artisan Bakery were foreigners. Nearly all were hacked to death with machetes, even though the hostage-takers had plenty of firearms. The attack was even more shocking as it came on the final weekend of Ramadan, with survivors describing how the hostage-takers made clear their targets were non-Muslims, separating locals from the foreigners.
Around 90 percent of Bangladesh’s 160 million people are Muslims but the state is officially secular. “By hacking people to death… they wanted to show the world that they can go to any extent for jihad,” said K G Suresh, a senior fellow at New Delhi’s Vivekananda International Foundation think-tank. “Once they attack a restaurant popular with foreigners on a Friday night their message is clear who they want to go after. By sparing Muslims, they wanted to send out the message that they are only against Westerners.”
According to the monitoring group SITE, the Islamic State organisation claimed responsibility for the attack which it said had targeted “citizens of crusader states”. But Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s secular government has long insisted neither IS nor Al-Qaeda have gained a foothold in Bangladesh despite both groups claiming many previous attacks.
I suspect that Bangladeshi Muslim fanatics are going for increasingly “spectacular” atrocities, where their “success” is measured by how much attention they manage to get from ISIS. Ultimately their atrocities are driven by their own perception of racial inferiority to their Arab role-models.