Why Radical Islam, Why Now?

[Washington Times] Victor Davis Hanson - Read any newspaper or turn on any news broadcast and you're bound to encounter stories of Islamic radicals fighting, killing, and threatening each other - and just about everyone else. Why has this violent, intolerant strain of Islam taken hold in so many unstable places - and at this particular time? Islamists claim to wage jihad against the modernism and globalization of the outside, mostly Westernized world. Such a message resonates in stagnant, impoverished Muslim countries. Of course, while the people of the region may be poor, the Islamist movement isn't. Huge oil profits filter throughout the Muslim world, allowing Islamists to act on their rhetoric. Another reason for the rise of Islamists is that they sense a new hesitation in the West. So they have also waged a brilliant propaganda war, adopting the role of victims of Western colonialism, imperialism, and racism. In turn, much of the world seems to tolerate their ruthlessness in stifling freedom, oppressing women, and killing nonbelievers.

2006-12-25 01:00:00

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