Can a Mentally Ill Youth Who Was Bullied in School Also Wage Jihad?

Whenever a culture-enricher in the West goes on a rampage with a gun or a machete or a knife or a fork, police spokesmen and the media immediately float the idea that he was “mentally ill” or “had a history of psychological issues”. If the warbling cry of “Allahu Akhbar” eventually enters the picture, the loony-meme gets a little shaky. But the authorities hang onto it tenaciously until the perp’s martyrdom video emerges, with its black flag of jihad and an oath of allegiance to the Islamic State. Then they have to switch to Plan B, which is to portray the killer as a “lone wolf” who was “radicalized suddenly” on the Internet.

The thing is, I don’t think that a diagnosable psychiatric condition is incompatible with Islamic devotion. In fact, it may be a prerequisite for fighting jihad in the way of Allah. Entire societies made up of mentally ill people — why is that impossible?

A reader and Counterjihad colleague emailed me today with some questions about the Munich shooter, Ali David (more likely Dawud) Sonboly, who slaughtered nine people on July 22:

I don’t know if you saw this, but The Mirror and Focus have reported that Munich killer Ali Sonboly went to Iran in December to train with guns.

This strikes me as strange. Iran has strict gun control. They wouldn’t allow him or his dad to train and shoot unless they approved of it.

And there was also that report that he said Allahu Ackbar.

Of course, it could just be that this report in the Focus is suspect. I have no idea how credible they are. And I have also heard that he really was very mentally ill.

What do you think?

The “mentally ill” trope engaged my attention more than the part about Iran, and made me think about mental illness and violent jihad. Here’s what I said in reply:

In reverse order: I think that “mentally ill” and “Muslim” go together like soup and sandwich. It’s quite possible that every single mujahid is mentally ill in a clinical sense, as Western medicine understands the term. So that point is actually moot.

Yes, I heard about his visit to Iran; I think we had it in the news feed at some point. I think it’s a credible report. Iran allows foreign mujahideen on its soil and nurtures them, even the Sunnis.

The thing is, it’s quite possible that all four of these things are true:

1.   Sonboly was bullied in school
2.   He was mentally ill.
3.   He had revenge fantasies about mass murder.
4.   He carried out a jihad attack.

These statements are NOT mutually exclusive. The first three provide a fuel mix that supercharges the fourth one. If you, a disturbed young man, meet the first three criteria, then Islamic belief can provide a framework that justifies what you feel compelled to do, making it coherent and above all holy — killing infidels in jihad is a sacrament within Islam.

The Columbine shooters committed similar acts, but if they had also been Muslims, they would have seen their actions as righteous and sanctioned by Allah. The addition of Islamic belief probably makes acting out such fantasies more likely, and may help goad the killer to be as effective a murderer as possible before he attains his longed-for martyrdom.

What’s hard for a Christian to wrap his mind around is that theft, torture, rape, murder, and massacre are sacred rites in Islam. The commandments to do these things are all there in the scripture.

It’s a demonic faith; it inverts everything that we would consider sacred. Once you understand that, it all makes sense.

When the moment of understanding finally dawns, it brings with it a sick feeling in the pit of the stomach…

13 thoughts on “Can a Mentally Ill Youth Who Was Bullied in School Also Wage Jihad?

  1. A mentally unstable Christian or atheist will act in a manner that is relevant to his culture and belief system. A mentally ill Muslim will act in an Islamic manner – the presence or absence of psychiatric disorder is not really the issue, it is Islam that determines the actions or overt manifestations of the belief system, whether sane or not.

  2. QUOTE: The thing is, I don’t think that a diagnosable psychiatric condition is incompatible with Islamic devotion. In fact, it may be a prerequisite for fighting jihad in the way of Allah. Entire societies made up of mentally ill people — why is that impossible?

    REMARK: Had already said my piece under an earlier post when this subject was approach. Mental illness does not bracket out ideology or, more broadly, worldviews for being a *disease*. Certain illnesses grease the ease of certain ideologies.

    For example, if one has been deep down into the occult – of the Crowleyan sort, or simple old-fashion Satanism – one witnesses (all too often) the relaxed paring (a Helix winding) of *mental* illness and ideology. And I do mean relaxed, as if the mental illness has finally found anchorage and structure. The occult is a distinctive worldview which touches quite a few bases with Islam. I have used that to get a grip on both historic Islam and our present troubles.

    Suppose, we can, historically, give Christian examples; but under analyses such always break down, for the pairing, the Helix winding, cannot sustain itself, it is never a perfect match – between psycho/social diseases and the worldview of Christianity (or Judaism). No so with Islam. We have had centuries to demonstrate that Islam – as an ideology and worldview – can wind itself perfectly around psycho/social dissociative illnesses, or vice-versa. Maybe Islam can be viewed as a test population in fine-tuning the definition of dissociative diseases.

  3. How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries, improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live.

    — Winston Churchill

  4. Ah yes, it is that simple. But accepting these facts will be as popular as suppositories for diarrhea. The left will never accept the medicine to save themselves, but those with a strong urge to survive will take one for the Gipper.

  5. It seems that virtually all the murders committed by so called “lone wolf” muslim assassins are a result of mental health problems according to the police forces of many countries and nothing to do with islam.

    Perhaps the mental problems are a result of all the interbreedng (sarc) of the muslims worldwide resulting in the murder epidemic raging across the world. It seems that the only answer is to ban islam in the civilized world OR prepare to die.

  6. The Left tries to provide excuses for, and to euphemize Islam. If it thought Islam was good, it wouldn’t do this. Therefore, it knows Islam is bad and needs protection.

    So, the Left is fostering something that is knows is bad. Why?…because it is using Islam….this has to be the only answer.

    But it also knows that it will be eaten first if Islam thrives.

    Therefore, the Left must be suicidal.

    The big question is, therefore, why the Left hates itself so much.

    • Hating yourself is a core part of leftism, at least if you’re part of the enemy class. Otherwise, it’s about hating the class enemies. Read up on neo-Marxist critical theory and the Frankfurt school.

      Given that Islam is about hating the infidel, and a bunch of leftist infidels hate themselves for being class enemies, they fit together perfectly like a toxic exogenous ligand with a high binding affinity for a receptor on a cell membrane.

    • If they thought that the truth claims made by Islam were in accordance with reality, then they would all become Muslims.

  7. I think the argument could be made – and should be made, that belief in the teachings of Islam is a necessary condition for one’s becoming a violent jihadist.

    That is to say: the multiple excuses one hears about the motives of a jihadist could also be applied to many other non-Muslim people. Lots of Westerners have no hope, low paid jobs, feel alienated, were bullied at school, etc etc.

    But they are not going to go off and strap on a suicide belt and self-detonate in the middle of a football match. Those conditions are not by themselves sufficient to cause someone to become a violent jihadist.

    Only when the ‘missing ingredient’ is included – belief in the teachings of Islam – do we see young men and women express their displeasure and frustration at the way life has treated them by becoming a violent jihadist.

    Therefore: Belief in the teachings of Islam is a necessary condition for becoming a violent jihadist.

    • A yes, those “atheists”. Soon they will find themselves in the very deep trenches of Reality.

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