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rise of isis book coverReviewed by Sarah McCubbin

Turn on the evening news or click through social media and disturbing images and headlines glare you squarely in the face. Stories of genocide, massacres, bombings and beheadings run alongside the latest weather patterns in the evening news. So much violence, even the edited version, can cause fear and a sense of despair. Discerning truth from fiction must be navigated carefully. So, when we hear stories of ISIS, the latest militant Islamic terrorist group, knowing what to believe can be challenging.

In his book, Rise of ISIS: A Threat We Can’t Ignore, Jay Sekulow presents a solid picture of who these people are, who supports them, the threat they present and what we need to do to prevent their brand of terror from spreading. Much of this book centers on distinguishing ISIS and other terrorist groups like Hamas from normal military entities. Speaking to much of the conflict in the Middle East, he says, “Terrorists take a life to take a life. Americans and Israelis take a life in an effort to save civilians.” Terrorist groups break the established laws of war in order to push their agenda. Sekulow carefully documents the specific international laws and conventions that terrorists break when they initiate attacks from civilian neighborhoods and then again when they use innocent people as human shields. Many of these laws and rules dictate where you can initiate a military offensive. By doing so in high population areas, the terrorists ensure that many of their own people will die when return fire occurs. Thereby, ISIS and other terrorists are not working to protect their people but push their own radical agenda.

Meanwhile, there are a variety of government groups that are aiding terrorist groups by intentionally or unwittingly providing aid and a vocal international voice. By blaming lawful military efforts for civilian deaths, there is a movement to change the laws of war so that lawful retaliation cannot happen if it causes civilian casualties. Incidentally, the terrorists deliberately break laws and locate to civilian areas. If no one can retaliate lawfully, then that just allows these radical groups to push their agenda further with no consequence.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a wider perspective than that offered on the evening news. For those that enjoy audio books, the narration in this book flows as if listening to a news report and was very well done.

Rating: ★★★★★ 

Sarah McCubbin is a homeschooling and foster mom in NE Ohio where she resides with her husband and 7 children. In addition to reading great books, she enjoys gardening, traveling and blogging at Living Unboxed.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Audible.com. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.