Us Versus Them
They label anyone, including Muslims of different traditions/sects, non-Muslims, and secular states, as “infidels” to justify their actions and hatred.
They consider themselves “special” and an exclusive “saved sect” (al-Firqah al-Najiya). Only their way of life is acceptable. To remain “untainted” they must cut of ties with the West and all those who do not share their beliefs and ideas.
Neo-Interpretation of Scripture
They abandon the historical context in which the Qur’an and Hadith were revealed and use scriptures selectively. They fail to use the accepted methods of interpreting sacred texts and commentaries, which leads them to draw absurd and illogical conclusions.
They disregard centuries of accomplishments and the heritage of Islamic civilizations. For example, the massive body of jurisprudence, theology, ethics and morality, and works of recognized scholars and jurists are deemed “faulty.”
They trace all evil back to the “West” and its residents. The West is seen not only as the perpetrator of all oppression but as the perpetual wager of war against Islam.
Pessimism About the State of the World
Their view of the current state of the world is extremely negative. They feel a sense of urgency about ending Muslim suffering around the globe, and view themselves as the saviors of the downtrodden.
Rejectionist and Fanatical
Their obsessive mind-set prevents them from tolerating other views and opinions and they reject groups who achieve change proactively and peacefully. They are convinced that only through violent revolution and radical means will their goals be achieved.
They believe that the End of Time is coming and they focus on the afterlife over the present. They believe they are God’s specially appointed and divinely aided party (al-Ta’ifah al-Mansurah) charged with waging war and fulfilling the prophecies regarding the ultimate battle between good and evil.
Revive Caliphate to Gain Legitimacy
Establishing a caliphate will create a land of God’s chosen people. They prioritize the creation of a political state over living an upright life, giving charity, respecting people of other beliefs, doing good deeds, and other divine commandments. They regard these as “minor” issues compared to meeting their political ends.