The Islamic State terror group represents a greater threat to world order than communism during the Cold War, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop says.
ISIL and similar violent jihadist movements like Boko Haram in Nigeria were “the most significant threat to the global, rules-based order to emerge in the past 70 years,” she said in a speech to the Sydney Institute last night, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.
Ms Bishop also suggested ISIL’s ideology is more brutal than Nazism.
“Over the past two years we have seen the emergence of a terrorist organisation backed by an ideology the likes of which we have not seen since World War II,” she said.
This borderless group was building “increasingly sophisticated transnational networks that would rival a multinational corporation” and used social media and the internet with “all the dexterity and understanding of an enterprising entrepreneur”.
Ms Bishop also noted that ISIL’s leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had declared a Caliphate for all the world’s Muslims in the territory held by his group, which spans parts of Syria and Iraq and which has no regard for the border between them.
As such, said Ms Bishop, ISIL was a threat to the centuries-old system of nation-states by which each country had sovereignty over its territory and affairs.
She added that officials in Tehran had warned that ISIL would win a massive boost should it capture capital cities such as Baghdad in Iraq or Damascus in Syria.