In 1961, a drug called Captagon (technical name: Fenethylline) was developed by a Degussa AG, a German pharmaceutical company with a stellar reputation for quality products.
They are the people who brought us Zyklon B, the poison used to great effect in the Nazi concentration camps.
Captagon, which is amphetamine based, was designed to be a “smart drug” with a lower side effect and abuse potential than other amphetamines. Also, unlike the others, it was not classed as nootropic as it was not held to enhance mental functions.
Originally designed to combat such conditions as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Depression and Narcolepsy, it was found to have several negative side effects.
But what has this to do with Extremism?
Allow me to explain.
Firstly, let me tell you about the side effects. Captagon can cause euphoria, it can make the user more susceptible to suggestion, it can cause the user to resist or ignore higher levels of pain and it is addictive.
It also allows soldiers to fight longer hours without fatigue. It doesn’t give the same level of rush or euphoria or mania that straight amphetamine would, but it allows soldiers to function for extended periods of time on little sleep and without significant decreases in alertness or performance. Eventually these soldiers are going to burn out, but it allows them to keep fighting, and potentially even to stay alive.
Basically, it allows soldiers to fight longer, harder and with less concern for their own health and well-being than they otherwise would be able to. There are also indications that even though it is not regarded as a nootropic, it does have the effect of reducing the user’s sense of their own mortality.
So you can see why military powers around the world might have an interest in such a substance.
As the drug has never passed the stringent standards for human consumption by several countries and has never passed the American Food & Drug Administration (FDA) tests, it has been designated a controlled (illegal) substance.
Also, because of the effects on the brain, it has become a recreational chemical of choice for many of the party animals around the world.
I’ll bet you’re wondering what this has to do with extremism, aren’t you?
What if I were to tell you that the sale and distribution of Captagon has turned into a multi $million illegal operation?
What if I were to tell you that the use of Captagon is rife amongst ISIL fighters and those sorry individuals who wear the dynamite vests?
What if I were to tell you that the single largest producer of Captagon in the world is Syria?
According to a report in the Guardian:
According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Syria has long been a transit point for drugs coming from Europe, Turkey and Lebanon and destined for the wealthy Gulf states. But the breakdown of law and order, collapse of the country’s infrastructure and proliferation of armed groups have now turned it into a major producer, Reuters says. Production in Lebanon’s Bekaa valley – a traditional centre for the drug – fell 90% last year from 2011, with the decline largely attributed to production inside Syria.
That’s right. Captagon is a huge source of income that ISIL draws upon to finance weapons, ammunition and explosives. They also use it to enhance the ability of their fighters in battle, and in the process caused the brutal deaths of in excess of 100,000 innocent people and the displacement of over 2 million refugees.
So the civil war and insurrection in Syria is nothing more than a war to control the international Captagon market with no regard to the cost in death and human suffering.
It doesn’t matter to these people that the long term detrimental effects far outweigh any benefits. In terms of its effectiveness against the various conditions it was developed to combat, has been less than stellar, showing no more than a mildly noticeable effect in 33% of the test subjects.
The unintended side effects that are exploited by terrorist organisation in the Middle East and elsewhere have been a great deal more successful. Basically, ISIL is an army of brainwashed drug addicts.
|Change in Sex Drive||62.5%||12.5%||12.5%||12.5%||0%|
|Feelings of Anger / Rage||0%||100%||0%||0%||0%|
|Irritability / Impatience||62.5%||12.5%||25%||0%||0%|
|Muscle / Joint Pain||0%||100%||0%||0%||0%|
|Relaxed / Calming Sensation||62.5%||12.5%||0%||25%||0%|
|Sensitivity to Light||85.7%||0%||14.3%||0%||0%|
Strangely, considering such widespread use of this (and other) illegal substance(s), drug rehabilitation in the Middle East is sporadic at best. Since Saudi Arabia is an Islamic country who’s laws comply with Sharia there are stiff penalties for alcohol and drug use and people having issues with substance abuse.
All well and good, but consider what the Qu’Ran has to say about the use of illicit chemicals:
“O You who believe! Indeed, intoxicants, gambling, [sacrificing on] stone alters [to other than Allaah], and divining arrows are but defilement from the work of Satan, so avoid it that you may be successful.” [Quran: 5:90]
That seems fairly conclusive to me, but let’s hammer the point home:
“Satan only wants to cause between you animosity and hatred through intoxicants and gambling and to avert you from the remembrance of Allaah and from prayer. So will you not desist?” [Quran: 5:91]
Not only that, but I can also show what several historically revered Islamic figures have ascribed to their prophet, Muhammad:
Jaabir reported that the Noble Prophet said: “Whosoever drinks wine, whip him. If he repeats it for the fourth time, kill him.”
He (Jaabir) continued: “A man was later brought to the Prophet who had drunk wine for the fourth time. He beat him, but did not kill him.”
The following Hadith clearly states that Muhammad explicitly prohibited intoxicants:
Ibn ‘Umar reported that the Messenger of Allaah said: “Every intoxicant is Khamr (wine) and every intoxicant is Haraam (unlawful). Whosoever drinks wine in this world and dies whilst having consumed it and not having repented from it will not drink it in the next world [i.e. in Paradise].”
Basically, if you don’t partake in this world, you get to be a junkie in the next.
Jaabir narrated that Muhammad said: “Whatever intoxicates in a greater quantity is also unlawful in a small quantity.”
So it’s not allowed at all.
Abdullaah bin ‘Amr reported from the Prophet who said: “One who is disobedient to parents, gambles, is harsh after charity or is a habitual drunkard shall not enter Paradise.”
But you can once you get to Allah’s garden. Way to have a double standard!
Ibn ‘Abbaas reported that Muhammad said: “If a habitual drunkard dies, he will meet Allaah like the one who worships idols.”
So drug abuse carries the death sentence then. Obviously, chemical simulation is frowned upon by Islam.
In other narrations, Prophet Muhammad allegedly described intoxicants as:
- The key to all evils.
- The head of all errors and lapses.
- The most terrible of major sins.
- The mother of all atrocities.
- The mother of all evils.
So let me see if I have this right…
Islam completely prohibits the use of chemical stimulants under pain of beating and death, yet the Islamic State:
- Consider themselves to be the most devout of all the denominations of the Islamic faith.
- Don’t see any problem with causing death and destruction on a truly massive scale in order to control an illegal drug operation to finance their terrorist activity.
- Rather than being religious zealots with a genuine, if misguided, belief. They are actually addicts who are only interested in getting their next fix, and don’t care what they need to to do get it!
Call me cynical if you must, but I am failing to see the difference between both sides of the conflict within Islam and the battles between Bloods, Crips and Outlaw Biker Gangs in America fighting to control their illegal operations, or the Thuggee cult of India who got high on hashish before committing murders… Except in terms of scale.
The War on Drugs and the War on Terrorism are the same battle.
And Islam, the ‘Religion of Peace’ has shown itself, yet again, to be nothing more than a collection of brutal, murderous, inhuman hypocrites!
The sooner we excise the cancer of religion, the better.