- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 5, 2015

The liberal news outlet Daily Kos raised eyebrows on Thursday with a new theory on the origins of the Islamic State group: climate change.

The website’s piece, “ISIS may have roots in climate change,” asserts that behind the beheadings and calls for jihad by the Sunni radical terror group, the real catalyst for its violence might be a four-year drought in Syria.

The Daily Kos linked to a recent Slate article that said “From 2006-2010, an unprecedented drought forced the country from a groundwater-intensive breadbasket of the region to a net food importer. Farmers abandoned their homes, school enrollment in some areas plummeted 80 percent, and flooded Syria’s cities, which were already struggling to sustain an influx of more than 1 million refugees from the conflict in neighboring Iraq. The Syrian government largely ignored these warning signs, helping sow discontent that ultimately spawned violent protests.”

The website’s analysis comes just one week after The Muslim World League’s three-day summit on terrorism in Mecca. “Islam and Counterterrorism” featured influential speakers within the Sunni Muslim community, who primarily saw the rise of Islamic State as a religiously motivated movement that perverts the fundamental teachings of Islam.

“The terrorism that we face within the Muslim Ummah and our own homelands today … is religiously motivated. It has been founded on extremism, and the misconception of some distorted Sharia concept,” Abdullah bin Abdelmohsin al-Turki, secretary-general of the Muslim World League, said, The Atlantic reported on Feb. 26.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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