November 24, 2013
As non-Muslims come to understand the Islamist challenge, anti-Islamic sentiments in the West are increasing, probably at a faster rate than Islamic practices. As anti-Islam trumps Islam, (I have concluded) opinions "will grow yet more hostile to Islamism over time. In this way, Islamist aggression assures that anti-Islamism in the West is winning its race with Islamism."
Correct prediction? To keep track, this weblog entry documents the course of Western public opinion on a bundle of topics connected to Islam, including democracy, immigration, jihad, Shari'a, and women. To start with, two polls:
November 23, 2013
Comment: It will be interesting to follow this surely-doomed effort. Muslim-majority countries like Saudi Arabia and the Maldives can effectively ban other religions but not the reverse. (November 23, 2013)
November 23, 2013
"For the first time in nearly a decade we have halted parts of Iran's nuclear program" announced a jubilant Barack Obama after the news of the just-signed Geneva six-month interim agreement with Iran.
But the American goal for the accord was that the Iranians not "advance their program" of building a uranium nuclear bomb (and perhaps a plutonium bomb too); the apparent deal exactly permits such advancement, plus sanctions relief to Tehran worth about US$9 billion.
November 22, 2013
Like many of my generation, I was affected by John F. Kennedy's rise and fall. I have documented both the national issues and my own evolution in several writings.
November 19, 2013
In a brilliant 2007 analysis, Camelot and the Cultural Revolution: How the Assassination of John F. Kennedy Shattered American Liberalism (Encounter), James Piereson showed how liberals turned the communist murder of John F. Kennedy, a liberal politician, into a stain on conservatives, and how this distortion then caused liberalism to evolve into the sickly phenomenon it is today. (For my summary of the book, see "Lee Harvey Oswald's Malign Legacy.")
November 1, 2013
Since General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi overthrew Mohamed Morsi on July 3, the military-led government has been engaged in a ferocious crackdown of the Muslim Brotherhood and more broadly of Islamists (though some, like the Salafis of the Nour party, playing their hand carefully, have generally avoided trouble so far).
Not only has this assault been violent, with over a thousand deaths, and legalistic, with the Brotherhood banned and its top leadership jailed, but it has also been broadly cultural, economic, and religious. Even the mildest approbation of the Muslim Brotherhood can get one in trouble, with one's neighbors if not with the state. A very large swath of the population supports the crackdown and pushes for it. A few of the many, many examples:
October 3, 2013
This blog continues the analysis in "Islamism's Likely Doom," where I traced recent fissiparous trends among Islamists. They just can't seem to get along anymore. To quote Yusuf al-Qaradawi speaking in a different context (the prospect of U.S. forces attacking the Assad regime), "Allah pits the oppressors one against the other."
Plus, to know Islamists is to reject them. This weblog entry follows the two themes of in-fighting and unpopularity.
Jordan: The aftermath of the Egyptian coup d'état three months ago has left the Jordanian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, known as the Islamic Action Front, reeling. David Schenker of the Washington Institute for Near Eastern Policy finds that the old division between East Bankers and Palestinians has come to the fore; also, both Salafis and mild reformers, the latter in an organization called the Zamzam Initiative, have gained in strength.
September 29, 2013
He implied here that I am a lapdog of the Israeli government with no mind of my own, but a p.r. agent or lobbyist for whoever's in charge in Jerusalem, so my views should have no weight. His portrayal undermines my role as an independent analyst and therefore calls for refutation.
September 28, 2013
Has anyone else noted the similarity in today's top two Middle East news headlines – the telephone call between the Iranian and American presidents and the passage of U.N. Security Council Resoluton 2118 that calls for the "expeditious destruction" of Syrian chemical weapons? In both cases:
September 27, 2013
That looks like a parody headline but it's the entirely serious title of a New York Times article by Eric Schmitt. Some details: John Kerry and Ahmet Davutoğlu announced today at a meeting of the Global Counterterrorism Forum
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