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Numbers and beyond

Reader comment on item: Counting Islamists

Submitted by Rebecca Moulds (United States), Oct 8, 2008 at 22:29

Statistics and estimates such as the ones presented here provide little comfort to those who believe that a moderate Muslim is no Muslim at all; they will argue that a moderate Muslim in the eyes of a radical or fundamental follower of this religion, is as bad as an "infidel" according to the Islamic definition of the word.

The same could be said for any religion; an Orthodox Jew could view a Reformed Jew as not a Jew; a more liberal Christian might be anathema to an Evangelical. And so on. As do other readers, I also think that Dr. Pipes' numbers may be on the low side. Whether one visits the great metropolises of the Middle East, such as Cairo, or goes deep into the desert villages, it is evident that Islam is making a huge sweep of that region, and reaching beyond, into Europe, S.E. Asia and America.

Where once many women in the Middle East dressed in Western fashion, now the hijab and niqab are becoming the vogue. More and more men are sporting the full beard and "raisin" on the forehead, a tell-tale sign that they have been praying fervently. Sometimes outward appearances can be a gauge to just how radical a people or religion is heading.

But how do they figure in these estimates? How will these numbers affect the freedoms of the Western world as we know it? Is radical Islam becoming such a force that we must fear it? Even with the very conservative numbers that Dr. Pipes has presented, there is a massive, unseen growth of radicals, and with that radicalization comes the fear of Shari'a law, something we must not allow to creep into our country.

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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