Reflection 4

I found Dr. Boukhars’ lecture to be extremely interesting. I had always been interested in how groups such as ISIS manage to acquire so many recruits. I found the statistics mentioned in the lecture to be extremely fascinating. I found it especially interesting how a large number of ISIS recruits were delinquents without any sort of religious inclinations. What I wonder about though, or possibly what I missed in the lecture, is how such individuals could go from living such a secular, unruly lifestyle to a bastardized hyper-fundamentalist interpretation of Islam. It seems like a complete turnaround. I recall how one of my classmates brought up psychological profiles. Could it be that many of these troubled youths share certain traits that make them susceptible to the propaganda of extremist groups such as ISIS?

Dr. Boukhars also offered a viewpoint on the refugee situation that I had not encountered before. He said that refugees being kicked out of Europe would be an enormous win for ISIS. The reasoning behind this is that since panic and fear have made the Western world paranoid and unwelcoming to the Syrian refugees, it would take only a little bit more to make a number of those refugees turn towards extremism.

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