The Radicals are Desperate

(Newsweek) Fareed Zakaria - That Islamic extremist groups are now targeting Shiites is surely a sign of desperation. Unable to launch major terrorist attacks in the West, unable to attract political support in the Middle East, militant Islam is searching for enemies and causes. Over the past three years the terrorists have killed mostly Muslims, which is marginalizing them in the world of Islam. Support for violent Islam is waning in almost all major Muslim countries. Discussions from Libya to Saudi Arabia are all about liberalization. Similarly, Islamic extremists are losing the battle against modernity. Few Muslims want a Taliban-style regime or life. The persecution of Shiites has been the dirty little secret of the Islamic world. Mainstream Sunnis are more likely to be shocked and embarrassed by the airing of this hatred. It will also remind people how extreme the Islamic radicals are. By waging war on fellow Muslims, Islamic radicals are proving that the war against terror is not a clash between civilizations, but a clash within a civilization. And the bad guys are losing.

2004-03-09 00:00:00

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