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It condemns later caliphates and the Ottoman Empire for deviating from what it calls pure Islam, and seeks to revive the original Wahhabi project of the restoration of the caliphate governed by strict Salafist doctrine.
Following Salafi-Wahhabi tradition, ISIL condemns the followers of secular law as disbelievers, putting the current Saudi Arabian government in that category.
For their guiding principles, the leaders of the Islamic State ...
are open and clear about their almost exclusive commitment to the Wahhabi movement of Sunni Islam.
It was better to recruit by calling to arms against corruption and tyranny than against the Antichrist.
Today, though, the apocalyptic recruiting pitch makes more sense than before.
The Arabs call it 'Daesh' and I will be calling them the 'Daesh cutthroats.'" Retired general John Allen, the U. Such symbolism has been said to point to ISIL's belief that it represents the restoration of the caliphate of early Islam, with all the political, religious and eschatological ramifications that this would imply.
According to German journalist Jürgen Todenhöfer, who spent ten days embedded with ISIL in Mosul, the view he kept hearing was that ISIL wants to "conquer the world", and that all who do not believe in the group's interpretation of the Quran will be killed.
Todenhöfer was struck by the ISIL fighters' belief that "all religions who agree with democracy have to die", When the caliphate was proclaimed, ISIL stated: "The legality of all emirates, groups, states and organisations becomes null by the expansion of the khilafah's [caliphate's] authority and arrival of its troops to their areas." Documents found after the death of Samir Abd Muhammad al-Khlifawi, a former colonel in the intelligence service of the Iraqi Air Force before the US invasion who had been described as "the strategic head" of ISIL, detailed planning for the ISIL takeover of northern Syria which made possible "the group's later advances into Iraq".
Al-Khlifawi called for the infiltration of areas to be conquered with spies who would find out "as much as possible about the target towns: Who lived there, who was in charge, which families were religious, which Islamic school of religious jurisprudence they belonged to, how many mosques there were, who the imam was, how many wives and children he had and how old they were".
Following this surveillance and espionage would come murder and kidnapping – "the elimination of every person who might have been a potential leader or opponent".