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The Arabs as Seen Fifty Years Ago

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Submitted by Matthew Nicholas (United States), Mar 6, 2012 at 09:33

I agree that this take on the Arab world in 1962 was typically patronizing and written more like a travelogue than a serious assessment of the Arab world. What doesn't surprise me is how little has changed there.

The following passage "Stewart even claims that "Arab civilization is part of western, not eastern, culture," whatever that might mean" is attributable to the fact that the Caliph's in Spain, Sicily and other parts of Europe lasted hundreds of years and were inculcated into Western culture. Much of our mathematics was developed by Arabic culture and disseminated from Royal Courts such as Palermo, Sicily, the intellectual capital of Europe pre-Renaissance.

It is indeed a shame that Stewart vastly underestimated the virus of Islamicism, Wahabism really, and failed to realize that the US has been dealing with it going back to the administration of George Washington, whose Navy had to combat Arab pirates on the high seas engaging in Jihad.

When will the citizens of Arab world shake of their post-colonial dictatorships and theocracies and take ownership of their destiny to improve their civil rights? Maybe the Arab spring is the beginning of this process. Time will tell if that is true, or if it is nothing more than our State Department and CIA fomenting rebellion.


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Daniel Pipes replies:

My guess is that he means Islam is part of the Western Asian cultural complex, not the Eastern Asian one. It shares more with Judaism and Christianity than Hinduism and Taoism.

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Reader comments (39) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
< In 2062, tell me how Im doing > [6 words]Jay1Mar 12, 2012 21:24194308
2The dark age [67 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
YovenMar 10, 2012 14:29194229
1Dominant religion [116 words]UgriMar 12, 2012 04:10194229
15Cairo and Egypt almost fifty years ago [409 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
dhimmi no moreMar 8, 2012 10:23194157
Arabs' imperial past [58 words]BenMar 7, 2012 09:18194079
6Islam was indeed different 50 years ago [133 words]saraMar 6, 2012 19:43194036
9Re:Sara [384 words]Rohit PatnaikMar 7, 2012 02:50194036
2Going out to the kings of the earth [178 words]UgriMar 7, 2012 03:10194036
from exotic to unicultural [117 words]mythMar 7, 2012 07:23194036
2This was a miniscule liberal elite [84 words]AsokMar 7, 2012 12:19194036
1Response to Rohit [269 words]saraMar 7, 2012 18:22194036
I agree, Rohit, with some caveats [558 words]saraMar 8, 2012 17:23194036
11Sayyed Qutb and el-ikhwan [504 words]dhimmi no moreMar 10, 2012 07:29194036
1Historical details [265 words]saraMar 10, 2012 17:45194036
What lands? [55 words]Amin RiazMar 23, 2012 14:44194036
2Lands that were at any time considered Muslim lands [85 words]saraMar 26, 2012 19:00194036
5You also forgot [174 words]Peter HallMar 26, 2012 19:57194036
taqqiya [12 words]cmtljnpkirptsvji1683Jul 7, 2013 08:14194036
Go back 92 years [22 words]smg45acpMar 6, 2012 19:20194034
The Arabs as seen over a century ago [618 words]Isa AlmisryMar 11, 2012 00:30194034
Isa, your comment just doesn't make sense! [18 words]Peter HallMar 14, 2012 03:59194034
This Was My Comment. [303 words]Isa AlmisryMar 16, 2012 00:29194034
9I guess it took a while, but you have shown your true position [547 words]Peter HallMar 16, 2012 20:33194034
Colouring Racism [242 words]Amin RiazMar 23, 2012 15:03194034
8... Amin, the master of double standards. [483 words]Peter HallMar 24, 2012 05:30194034
1peter [91 words]cmtljnpkirptsvji1683Jul 7, 2013 08:48194034
2Your Views are rather narrow! [292 words]Peter HallJul 8, 2013 20:53194034
Fifty Years Ago [188 words]Peter HerzMar 6, 2012 18:55194029
The Arabs As Seen Fifty Years Ago [196 words]JudithMar 6, 2012 14:28194014
1I can only wonder who had funded such misinformation. [80 words]David FiresterMar 6, 2012 12:30194007
The Arab World [47 words]Karla PoeweMar 6, 2012 12:28194006
5What is the Opposite of Fantasy? [698 words]Ron ThompsonMar 6, 2012 12:24194005
2The coming dark age. [134 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Asif W.Mar 6, 2012 12:22194004
Ahab [44 words]AlbertE.Nov 4, 2014 15:12194004
1Islamic tolerance [35 words]trans-parereMar 6, 2012 11:59194000
The Arabs as Seen Fifty Years Ago [213 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Matthew NicholasMar 6, 2012 09:33193983
Daniel Pipes Seen From 2062 [51 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
DaveMar 6, 2012 09:10193982
12012-onward will make the 60's seem like the 50's [24 words]Michael Hanni MorcosMar 7, 2012 00:21193982
1Camel [28 words]AlbertEl.Mar 10, 2012 17:17193982

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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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