Some things just don’t add up, but that has never bothered the Islamic extremists in ISIS. In Raqqa, schools have been taken over by ISIS which has reduced classes on such things as science and mathematics in favor of Sharia and the calling of the jihad. When kids do math, they also have to do without the plus sign, which has been declared as too close to a Christian cross (+) and thus a corrupting influence. Instead the kids use the letter “z”.
ISIS has made course of Sharia mandatory and teachers are told to repent and “purify their minds.” Islamic manners are taught in school and the Tawhid (or the fundamentals of Islamic doctrine) as were as the Arabic language. Music is gone. History classes cannot discussed voting or democracy. Interaction between girls and boys are forbidden.
Then there is the plus sign which has been deemed a Christian symbol that imitated the infidels. It does not seem to matter that the sign is actually the result of the abbreviation of the word “et,” meaning “and” in Latin. Instead of writing “et” astronomer Nicole d’Oresme in the middle of the fourteenth century simply put a slightly crocked plus sign. It does not seem to matter that early mathematics can be claimed by the Middle East as one of the great achievements of the Bablyonian and later the “Golden Age of Islam.” It was Persian mathematicians such as Al-Khwarismi (right), Omar Khayyam and Sharaf al-Dīn al-Ṭūsī that fostered such studies. Of course, Al-Khwarismi would be likely beheaded today by ISIS for simply being a Shia, let alone someone with an intellectual bent.
Of course, this is all assuming a level of interesting the truth from fanatics who blow up ancient sites and take sledgehammers to art. After all, ISIS is really known for subtraction rather than addition: subtracting people from populations; art from museums; books from libraries. The minus sign could be the very symbol of the new Caliphate.