chapter  Chapter 27
Islamic State
ByFrancis Gaffney
Pages 10

Islamic State is an extremist Islamic organisation that grew out of a violent insurgent group that has changed its name a number of times to reflect its geographic ambitions. Islamic State has previously been referred to as 'Islamic State in Iraq' (ISI); 'Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham' (but also 'Islamic State in Iraq and Syria' – ISIS); 'Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant' (ISIL); and as Daesh. Islamic State's interpretation of Islam demands the harsh and absolute rejection of any innovation since the time of the Prophet. The Islamic State's ideology evolved within the context of the Iraq conflict in the early 21st century. This period saw the overthrow of the minority Sunni administration and Ba'athist Party in Iraq to be replaced by the majority Shi'a government supported by the West. Islamic State's three strands of activity require significant amounts of financial support. The strands include terrorist activity, state-building/governance, and insurgency.