Malaysia can’t ignore IS tendrils spreading online: Researcher

(From Malay Mail Online)

Islamic State (IS) recruiters are gaining traction in Malaysia’s cyberspace and may negate authorities’ progress in tracking down and arresting militants in the real world, said a terrorism researcher from Singapore.

twitter-isis-400x206In a piece published by The Straits Times today, the researcher from the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) told Putrajaya that it would be folly to discount the dangers of a “Cyber ISIS” forming among Malaysians.

Muhammad Haziq Jani said that while Malaysian law enforcement were aware of such activities within the realms of social media, they must direct their attention further upstream where the ideology of the Islamic State supporters and recruiters were percolating into an “online ribat”.

“Through the evolution of its use by Muslim armies in warfare in the past centuries, ribat has been supplied with the notion of the ‘frontier’ that was injected by the period of conquests in Islamic history,” he explained.

This concept in the modern setting meant laying the groundwork: intelligence-gathering, battle-readiness, and possibly religious indoctrination.

“In non-military usage, ribat means a building prepared and put aside for ritualistic, academic and educational activities of the fuqaha (scholars of jurisprudence) and the Sufis. Ribat in this sense may be linked to jihad but only in the non-violent and symbolic sense, that is, against ‘the self’. Read more


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