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Arab "Political" "Ummah" & Caliphate in the 21st Century

Reader comment on item: ISIS Rampages, the Middle East Shakes

Submitted by Ludvikus (United States), Jul 6, 2014 at 10:18

Dear Daniel Pipes,

You probably need to explain how untranslatable the Arab and Muslim term "Ummah" is for the Westerner and her languages. Besides your work, there is a French scholar who seems to understand the struggle to integrate Islamic political consciousness in the contemporary world: Mathieu Guidère (I wonder what your views on his mostly work in French are?).

In the mean time, here's the latest news involving the emergence od Arab Islamic IS (=Islamic State):

"What did Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi say?"


"A Message to the Mujahidin and the Muslim Ummah in the Month of Ramadan"


"Caliphate declaration 'heresy', say Islamists scholars"


As can be seen here, even the Muslim Brotherhood, considers Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi a.k.a. Khalifah Ibrahim proclamation of his Caliphate to be sacriligious, and al-Qaida is his mortal enemy on similar grounds.

I think it would be strategically very foolish for the USA to intervene in this Arab and Muslim struggle - especially since the Arab world itself is vehemently opposed to the current state of this alleged Caliphate.


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Daniel Pipes replies:

"Umma" means "the body of Muslims" or "Muslim nation."

Sorry, I know the name but am not familiar with the work of Mathieu Guidère.

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