IS Book Burnings Target Minorities

In an interview with Al-Monitor, Mohammed Dujaili, director of Dar al-Rafidain, asked, “Haven’t Christians suffered enough killing and displacement? I do not know what scares terrorists about this book! Maybe they are destroying this book, which documents the deep Christian roots in this country, to complement the brutality of their terrorist acts? I feel sorry for my fellow Christians in Iraq.” He also said that IS had confiscated a large number of other books, costing his company close to $80,000.

This censorship of publications falls within the scope of IS' general goal of “purifying” Earth of all that differs from their Salafist version of Islam, including humans who do not believe as they do, religions, architecture and educational curricula. In December, the German journalist Juergen Todenhoefer spoke to CNN about his visit to IS-controlled territories. He inteviewed a number of fighters, including one who claimed that the organization was preparing the largest religious cleansing campaign the world has ever seen.

The IS project is being carried out not only at the territorial level, but also at a temporal level. IS seeks even to cleanse history of the of Christians, Yazidis, Shiites and all other non-Salafists. Thus the group's censorship of publications not only includes those involving non-Salafist religious concepts or opposing Salafism, but also those covering cultural history and religious diversity in the areas under its control. IS believes these publications potentially consecrate the historical right of non-Salafist minorities to their lands in Iraq.

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