It is unavoidable that IS is doing some things that seem weird and barbaric to the rest of us. They are killing hostages. They are destroying ancient artifacts that have historical and cultural value. They are wiping out whole villages. What’s going on with that?
They have noticed that the trend in human history if for pendulum swings from one extreme to another. Thus, their own extreemist positions will create an extremist backlash against them. They are simply breaking off the pendulum. They are locking in their victory. They are ensuring the disgruntled “Palestinians” of northern Iraq never have a chance to do UN petitions and fight a war of guppy attacks for the next hundred years. They are establishing their vistory over that area and that people as permanent and eliminating all possibility to dissent.
Where could they have gotten this idea?
When, North Korea has been the most successful cult-state. The people of NK are so deeply into their cult that they don’t want to ever leave it or be rescued.
The Democratic Party in this country is attempting to do something similar by replacing the native white population with one from the third world. Replace all those people who have a concept of the Rights of Englishment with people who are much more comfortable living under the patriarch and whatever he wants is OK.
To a lesser extent, The old Soviet union only managed to lock in their victory for 70 years. And the resurgence of Russians to traditional ways (notably the Russian Orthodox Church), happened almost instantly. Even Iraq itself is a study in breaking the pendulum. Saddam stayed in power as long as he did by not only executing dissent groups, but also be executing any competent allies. Thus, when he and his sons were “removed”, there was a measurable vacuum of leadership.
So, the ways of IS seem unfathomable to most of us, but they make perfect sense to me. They are here to stay. They are digging in. They are making sure that even if the Americans come back and kill them all, the area can never be restored to its former inhabitants and culture like it was before. The changes are locked in.