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Our leaders are hiding their heads in the sand!

Reader comment on item: The U.S. Government Compiles a Bibliography

Submitted by dhimmi no more (United States), May 24, 2013 at 06:44

Dr. Pipes you wrote

I seek to answer burning questions: Who was Muhammad? What is the historical impact of Islam? When is warfare jihad? Why did Islamism arise? How does tribal culture influence political life? Where can one locate signs of hope for Islam to moderate?

And indeed these questions should be the questions that our leaders should be reading about

It is too bad but the US is not the place any longer to study Islam and its history and indeed the British and the Germans are far ahead of us because no one wants to be researching real questions as did Muhammad exist? I was even surprised to know that many Egyptians that study history of early Islam are reading Wansbrough and want to know more about literary criticism of the Qur'an! While here is the US we are not supposed to say that the Arabic word jihad means holy war!

In contrast, the NEH list offers a smattering of this and that – poetry, personal Dr. accounts, antiquities, architecture, religion and history, original texts, and a smidgeon of current events, preferably presented fictionally.

I was really amazed to find that Amitav Gosh's great book "In an Antique Land' is on the least. This book is about a (it is a real story) Jewish merchant that lived in Egypt in the 13th century and his Indian slave and tracing their lives in the Egypt of the 1970's which is a very different Egypt from the Egypt of 2013. And one can only see the relationship between Amitav and his Egyptian neighbors as no more than a background in the narrative in this very good book so what does this have to do with understanding what Islam is all about? I do not get it

The moral of the story is no one can draw any conclusions from the relationship between an educated Indian and his falaheen friends and be able to tell us about what Islam is all about as a matter of fact it seems that Mr Gosh went back to visit the village where he stayed (I believe that he was back in early 2000) and was able to see the Islamization of the village and of his friend that seemed to have changed and became an Islamist.

But what is missing from this list would be books about the non Muslim minorities that live in Islamic countries but again what do you expect to hear from our leaders that believe that jihad means to lose some weight and to exercise and to love your kuffar friends!


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