Will IS terrorists challenge our economic system?

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by Björn Schöpe

January 15, 2015 – The Islamistic movement IS is reaching far beyond Iraq and Syria with its actions. They aim at the USA, Europe and the whole Western economic system. They do not only threaten with bombs or assassinations but with a return to the gold standard.

Recently the terrorists spread the news through online media that they intend to revive a historical currency, the dinar or dirham. During the seventh century this currency was prevalent in the Middle East and, as it used to be at the epoch, it was made of precious metals. Online you can find different designs of a future dirham already. Two gold coins are planned, three coins made of silver and two of copper. Being linked to the value of the material they are made of the exact value of these coins cannot be established. The highest face value will be a 5 dinar gold coin weighing 21 grams. Its current value would equal to some 700 US dollars. The silver coins would be worth between 45 US cents and 4.50 US dollars. The smallest copper coin will close the range at the bottom with a value of approximately 7 US cents.

Where and how IS plans to mint the coins, they did not reveal. Anyway, the sole announcement made the headlines in the international medias. After all, a gold based currency would mean nothing less than attacking the global economic system. IS stated they wanted to ‘free Muslims from the tyrannical monetary system that was imposed on them’.
Since 1973 the US dollar being the world’s predominant currency has no longer been backed by gold; today money’s value is not in its metal’s value but simply a guarantee by the central banks. Conservative politicians have been demanding to return to the gold standard all over again as for example Republican leaders Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich in the USA. They wanted to prevent that debts are paid with the money printing press.

In case the IS successfully established a gold standard in the Middle East, the Islamists would prove to all critics of the Western economic system that the ‘medieval’ economic system actually offers a working alternative. This would mean a much bigger hit than all their bomb attacks.

You can see some images and read an article in The Daily Mail

… and the International Business Times.