Radical Islamic Butchers of ISIS Claim Responsibility for Horrendous New Year's Eve Attack in Istanbul

This image taken from CCTV shows the attacker, armed with a long-barrelled weapon, shooting his way into the Reina nightclub in Istanbul, Turkey on Sunday morning. (CCTV/Haberturk Newspaper via AP)

The radical Islamic butchers of ISIS have announced today that the man responsible for the terror attack at a New Year’s party in Istanbul is one of its members. Through its own Aamaq News Agency, ISIS calls the jihadist a “heroic soldier of the caliphate who attacked the most famous nightclub where Christians were celebrating their pagan feast.”


Although we’re not supposed to talk about it, the fact of the matter is that there are some conservative Muslim Turks who object to the celebration of New Year’s because they consider it a “Christian feast.” New Year’s parties, they argue, are based on the Western (and therefore Christian) solar calendar rather than on the Islamic moon calendar, and on the year Christ was born. Although  99% of Turks don’t celebrate Christmas (after all, 99% of Turks are officially Muslim), they do know and use Santa Claus. To them, however, he’s not related to Christmas but to the new year. Of course, Santa Claus is based on an ancient Christian priest from Smyrna, making him a symbol of Christianity.

The result? Every year, fundamentalist Turks organize anti-New Year’s and anti-Santa Claus protests. Here’s an example from 2013, when some fundamentalists stabbed a blow-up Santa. Although it’s clear that the New Year’s party attacker was a member of ISIS, there are more fundamentalist and even ultra-conservative Muslims in Turkey who share ISIS’ hatred for anything related to New Year’s and Christmas.


Yes, yes, I know: none of them actually go so far as to kill citizens for celebrating New Year’s, but some commentators have pointed out that this anti-New Year’s atmosphere isn’t exactly helpful if you want to promote peace and tolerance. Thankfully, Turkey’s Religious Directorate (called the Diyanet) has condemned the attack, while defending the New Year’s celebrations.

Back to the attack: as everybody with even an ounce of knowledge of the region understood immediately after the attack, it was carried out by an ISIS jihadist. The manhunt for the killer is still underway. According to the latest reports, the radical Islamic psychopath escaped by pretending to be a scared partygoer — a victim of the shooting rather than the perpetrator.


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