August 6, 2015: Mosque bombing in Saudi Arabia

On this day in 2015, ISIS claimed responsibility for a bombing at a mosque in southwest Saudi Arabia that killed 15 including security forces members.

Islamist terrorists seem to have no end of hate and even target those whom one would think are of the same faith (kinda) as them.

ABHA, SAUDI ARABIA — If you read any piece of propaganda issued by Islamist extremist groups such as Al Qaeda (AQ) or Islamic State (ISIS) or any such outfit you come to the immediate conclusion that they have a lot of hate for a lot of people. And I mean a lot.

The things they hate make for a long list. When it comes to people, and more narrowly people’s faith, they do not seem to suffer from a lack of targets. In no particular order they hate:

  • Christians (whom they call ‘cross worshipers);
  • Hindus (whom they call ‘cow worshipers);
  • Jews (whom they call by all sorts of nasty names);
  • Sufi Muslims (whom they call ‘sorcerers’); and
  • Shia Muslims (whom they call the ‘rafidain’ – Arabic for ‘rejectionists’).

As a consequence of this litany of hate, these jihadi terrorists have attacked many places of worship associated with those they detest (Coptic Christian churches in Egypt. Shia mosques in Iraq, etc.). These extremists will tell you that they are not just Sunni Muslims but the ONLY Sunni Muslims who happen to have a monopoly on the ‘truth’.

It should not be surprising then that these groups have targeted other Sunni Muslims for attacks. It happens more than you may think. In fact, I would wager that the vast majority of victims of Islamist extremism worldwide are in fact fellow Muslims (attacks against non-Muslims, particularly those which take place in the West get a lot more media coverage however). Like the attack featured today.

On this day in 2015 ISIS claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing in a Saudi Arabian mosque that killed at least 15 people, including 12 members of a Saudi special forces unit. The terrorist group stated it had targeted the men because they enabled the rule of Saudi Arabia’s monarchs and their western backers, and because they allegedly tortured ISIS sympathisers: it also promised more attacks were forthcoming.

In a speech in the spring, the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, issued a scathing denunciation of Saudi Arabia and its rulers, predicting the monarchy’s collapse and describing its war in Yemen as a “final spasm” before its death.

This is not the last time we will see carnage of this nature. After all, as Taylor Swift sang “Haters gotta hate”.

By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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