As a lifetime student of classical mainline Islamic jurisprudential school of thought called “Sunni fiqh”, I feel saddened to note how the Western mainstream media succumbed to the Islamophobic propaganda of affixing the epithet “Sunni” to the militia of the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
I can confidently say that ISIS is not Sunni because all that ISIS has done is to contravene the ethical teachings of Sunni Islam.
I consider Sunni Islam as the normative Islam practiced by the disciples of the Prophet Muhammad, who are called Sahabah (model companions) and the righteous caliphs “Al Khalifah Rashidun” (The Rightly Guided Caliphs) who were democratically elected by the whole Islamic Ummah (community). When the Islamophobic Western media equates ISIS barbarity and inhumanity to the normative Islamic term “Sunni” (which literally means followers of orthodox Islam), the Western media is simply serving US Hegemonic interests: by ensuring that neo-colonial and hegemonic forces will continue unabated the rising Islamophobia against Muslims and by effectively maligning Sunni Islam which is the prevalent school of Islamic jurisprudence in the Middle East and the rest of the Muslim world.
I can honestly attest that as per my readings of Shariah principles of the Four Imams of Sunni Islam (Imams Abu Hanifa, Shafi’i, Malik and Ibn Hanbal) who were the eminent jurisprudents of classical Sunni Islam, I have never encountered any of their treatise justifying barbarism and inhumanity that are now being perpetrated by ISIS.