Islam and Politics
By the way, the sobriety of the Turkish government and Turkish
Islamists has not been limited to their reactions to the Russians. The Israeli
Parliament recently approved thousands of new settlements in the West Bank and
conducted missile attacks on Gaza, but there has been great silence on the side
of Turkey’s government and Islamist circles.....
The Muslims do not think they have the extra burden of defeating the
BJP in each and every election. Rather there is an acute realisation that there
will be an electoral contest every now and then, and this democratic rite
should not be allowed to accentuate the differences and polarisation. Nor is
there any feeling that defence of the secular values and arrangements is their
particular burden. Secularism is a collective undertaking and commitment....
Arshad Alam, New Age Islam
Let’s us start with the grand secular alliance of the SP and Congress.
They are the favourites for the Muslim vote. But their record in terms of
Muslim empowerment and security is not as good as it is made out to be. For
one, Muslims have remained the most deprived category in Uttar Pradesh. The
level of education and employment is appalling. Not just that: A comparative
analysis will show that within Indian Muslims, they are perhaps the most deprived
in terms of social, educational and economic indicators.....
Shah Rukh Khan
I was accused – including by my leftist friends – of behaving like a
“Muslim” rather than an “Indian” voter after I wrote an article highlighting
the limited credible choices available to Muslims in the assembly elections.
The SRK-Raees debate is to be seen in this wider context of how all Muslims are
seen as being torn between their Muslim-ness and Indian-ness. To me, that’s
more troubling than SRK’s role in one film....
Admittedly, Salafism is a very confusing term and people use it very
loosely to refer to any number of phenomena. When the Ahl-i Hadiths or the
Salafists use it for themselves, they mean a theological commitment to a
certain understanding of God and to a certain interpretation of Islam which
tends to be very literal and tends to be against what they consider to be
innovations — new things that have come into Islam after the early
Rakesh Krishnan Simha
When Saudi Arabia announced that it had cobbled together a global
Islamic alliance to fight terror, and that the organisation would be headed by
Raheel Sharif, the recently retired army chief of Pakistan, there was derisive
laughter across the civilised world. After all, Saudi Arabia backs several
vicious Islamic terror groups in Syria, while Pakistan is the world’s largest
incubator and exporter of terror.....
Experts say the long leash given to the Jaish could be part of a
deliberate strategy by the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate. “The Jaish
is is not as publicity-oriented as the Lashkar,” notes scholar Ayesha Siddiqa,
“and has over years managed to stay aloof from popularity contests among the
jihadis, which is why it has managed to acquire the reputation of being India
and Kashmir focused.”....
Ministries she controls and officials she directly employs are
rubbishing the accounts of desperate people and repeating as fact the denials
of the Burmese army. That is the same army that has an appalling track record
of burning villages and raping women from Myanmar's many ethnic minorities.
Under pressure from abroad, Ms Suu Kyi did set up a commission to investigate
the alleged abuses and it is due to report back in the next few days. But it is
headed by the vice-president Myint Swe, a former general, and is widely
expected to be a whitewash. The truth about what has been happening in northern
Rakhine state may never be truly uncovered.....
The ultra-conservative alliance, buoyed by Trump’s policies, includes
Saudi-backed ultra-conservative ideologies and governments that are
beneficiaries of Saudi largess and opportunistically play politics with
religion, as well as anti-Saudi jihadists. Saudi largesse is part of a
massively funded, decades-long soft power play by the kingdom designed to
box-in Iran by globally promoting an ultra-conservative, supremacist, intolerant
strand of Islam...
Azis Anwar Fachrudin
Meanwhile, Rizieq’s prosecution, in my opinion, must continue. This
will give a lesson to the Muslim groups who insist on upholding the law that
the law can be used against them. This move is particularly significant given
that rational arguments cannot convince them. As an old Arabic proverb goes:
“He who lives in a house made of glass must not throw stones on others’.”...
Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi, New Age Islam
It cannot be denied that the eight million American citizens are at
increasing risk for the daunting challenge from terrorist groups operating from
outside the US, particularly Syria, Iraq and several West Asian and North
African Muslim countries. Some of these groups including ISIS, Al Qaeda, Al
Shabab, and Boko Haram have indiscriminately targeted the American citizens in
several nefarious terror attacks. Given this, the uncompromising counter-terror
stances such as the above will considerably help rescue the US citizens who are
wantonly attacked by the radical Islamist terrorists.....
Barnett R. Rubin
The administration’s counterterrorism policy would make a political
settlement impossible, which is probably fine with Mr. Trump. A peace process
requires differentiating the Taliban from global jihadists, integrating the
former so as to isolate the latter. The leaked draft of an executive order to
revive torture and re-establish black sites, however, referred to “a global
armed conflict with ISIS, Al Qaeda, the Taliban and other associated
international Islamist terrorist groups,” and made no distinction among
The United Nations has called the Rohingya; a Muslim ethnic group
denied citizenship in Myanmar, the world’s most persecuted minority. John
McKissick, head of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for
Refugees in the Bangladeshi city of Cox’s Bazar, near the Burmese border, said
in November that Myanmar’s government was trying to achieve an “ultimate goal
of ethnic cleansing of the Muslim minority.”....
After decades of warnings that the window of opportunity for two states
may be narrowing, perhaps last week we heard it finally close, not with a bang
but a whimper. We are at the intersection of a number of factors that jointly
threaten to kill the two-state solution:...
The Rohingyas are a people struck by tragedy: persecuted at home in
Myanmar, rejected or barely tolerated abroad, and sacrificed at the altar of
strategic calculations by powerful neighbours. ...
Stanley L Cohen
To make matters worse, despite its gratuitous dicta, the resolution
remains very much a toothless declaration without any enforcement mechanism
whatsoever - essentially relying upon a sudden burst of Israeli conscience to
reverse a steady march of indifference to international law that has led
Israel's way since the very first day it was manufactured from stolen land in
In addition, some analysts fear that turning the Rohingya into a
transnational Muslim cause could draw foreign jihadists of varying stripes to
Myanmar, adding terrorism to an already combustible mix and giving the Myanmar
military a convenient excuse for a draconian response. But after decades of
persecution and violence, to which the rest of the world largely responded with
a shrug, some Rohingya say an armed response is overdue.....
In 1915, Britain privately promised Hussein, the Sharif of Mecca, to
support an independent Arab kingdom after the war if he would mount an Arab
revolt against the Ottoman Empire. The venerable Sharif kept his side of the
bargain but Britain did not. On November 2, 1917, Britain issued the Balfour
Declaration, pledging its support for the establishment of a national home for
the Jewish people in Palestine. So Palestine became the twice-promised land....
After the 9/11 tragedy, however, the Western political establishments
and corporate media have become a lot more circumspect, therefore this time
around, they have waged covert jihads against the Arab-nationalist Gaddafi
regime in Libya and the anti-Zionist Assad regime in Syria, in which the
Islamic jihadists have been sold as “moderate rebels,” with secular and
nationalist ambitions, to the Western audience....
Why was this unremarkable formula unsayable for so long? Because
cowardice inhabits Washington, Jerusalem and Ramallah: This little diplomatic
flurry has been obscene. Kerry was honorable; Obama lacked courage. Netanyahu
dismissed the “last twitches of yesterday’s world.” It is a measure of where we
are that tomorrow’s may well be worse....
More realistic proponents of Palestinian self-determination will
immediately recognise that a half-century of the Israeli occupation of the West
Bank and Gaza Strip is not going to be meaningfully addressed by international
meetings. Unless the conditions have first been created by the Palestinians
themselves to make those meetings productive. This could happen through
mobilising all the resources at their disposal, both inside Palestine and in
the diaspora, and by effectively mobilising all those who support their cause.
It is a tall order with no alternative...
David Scott Mathieson
Positioning the deplorable repression of the Rohingya in this broader
political context does not exculpate the state’s failure to prevent and punish
any abuses, or exonerate Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi for her seemingly tacit endorsement
of heartless official denials. But only a more calibrated understanding of the
difficulties faced by her government and Myanmar as a whole — not blanket
condemnation — stands any chance of yielding practical measures that could
alleviate the Rohingya’s suffering....
The starting point of Islamist politics was to challenge the politics
of modernity in the name of justice and dignity, but ended up producing the
worst version of modern politics. Islamists managed to challenge the power of
the secular republican system and have come close to ending it altogether in
Turkey, but only at the cost of surrendering themselves to nationalist
authoritarianism with more religious flavour...
Upward of 500,000 are dead from the war, and an untold number of
Syrians have died indirectly from the conflict (the price for destroying
hospitals, targeting health care professionals and using starvation as a
weapon). With more than two million injured, about 11.5 percent of the prewar
population have become casualties. And close to half the population of Syria is
either internally or externally displaced....
The fall of Aleppo signals the beginning of the end of the Syrian civil
war, changing the relevance of many arguments about the specifics of the Syrian
conflict. Yet, the larger lessons remain. Whether we learn them is up to us...