Books and Documents

The War Within Islam

Tackling Terrorism: To Act or Not To Act against the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan
Najam Sethi

Can we therefore predict that a military operation is on the cards against all Taliban strongholds? Can we expect the Prime Minister to address the nation and tell us why he has been compelled to take off the velvet glove and reveal his iron fist....


Egyptians – or 98.1percent of Them – Carry On a Proud Tradition
Robert Fisk

So Egypt is back to the age of the dictators – or, as I always call it, the Age of Magic Statistics. The Egyptian people, no less – or at least 38.6 per cent of those who can vote – have endorsed their country’s new and pro-army constitution by a fantastical 98.1 per cent. This is such stuff as dreams are made on….


The Geopolitics of the Syrian Civil War
Reva Bhalla

Before the 1916 Sykes-Picot agreement traced out an awkward assortment of nation-states in the Middle East, the name Syria was used by merchants, politicians and warriors alike to describe a stretch of land enclosed by the Taurus Mountains to the north, the Mediterranean to the west, the Sinai Peninsula to the south and the desert to the east. If you were sitting in 18th-century Paris contemplating the abundance of cotton and spices on the other side of the Mediterranean, you would know this region as the Levant -- its Latin root "levare" meaning "to raise," from where the sun would rise in the east....


The AKP’s Test With al-Qaeda
Verda Özer

Criticizing al-Qaeda loudly and at the high ranks of the state is even more dangerous than getting identified with the group. Standing at the frontline in the front against al-Qaeda would turn Turkey into a tailor-made target. No need to mention that al-Qaeda is as the Turkish border when clashing with other Syrian rebels….


Anthropology, Not Politics, Rules in Egypt
Rami G. Khouri

When they become scared, they stop acting like individuals, and they move as a herd that instinctively seeks the closest water hole and food source. Thriving can wait. Survival is the imperative today, and order is its handmaiden….


Erdogan's Arab Allies Disappointed
Abdulrahman al-Rashed

Those who are defeated dream of a saviour coming even from afterlife. They exalt Salaheddine who died before 900 years and they carry the pictures of Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan. This is the state of some Arabs who invent images from the history or the present and decorate them, hoping that these will inspire change. Establishing a perfect image for leaders is a trap….


Libya’s Badlands: No Schools, Not A Single Health Clinic, People Die Of Scorpion Stings
Borzou Daragahi

The militia commander with the dazzling smile leads us through the desert towards the oilfields, his Toyota pick-up truck throwing up a cloud of exhaust and dust. Looming on the horizon are the steeply sloping mountain ridges surrounding the Owbari Valley. Overhead the midday sun is glaring down on the dunes, a sea of golden desert in what was once the ancient Roman province of Fezzan. The remote oil outpost we are aiming for, called the El Sharara fields, is part of the Murzuq basin and one of the most important in Libya, drawing out 350,000 or so barrels of oil daily from the parched earth….


Pakistan: The ‘Islamic’ Agenda of Saudi Arabia And Company Is Just As Damaging As a Western Agenda
Aasim Sajjad Akhtar

This ‘foreign hand’ is not of the American, or any other Western, variety. The ‘conspiracies’ hatched by this external power are presumably home-grown enough that our otherwise paranoid makers of public opinion simply do not feel the need to raise a ruckus. As such, when it comes to Saudi Arabia (and its clone Gulf kingdoms), we declare a holy exception....


Sorry, We Killed You Due To An Unavoidable Mistake!
Burak Bekdil

“Subconsciously (and sadly) the Muslim-Turkish thinking tolerates it if Muslims kill Muslims; does not tolerate it but does not turn the world upside down when Christians kill Muslims; pragmatically ignores it when too-powerful Christians kill Muslims; but is programmed to turn the world upside down when Jews kill Muslims.”…

Saudi Isolation Could Be a Threat to the Region
Samer Abboud

Western partners have refused to take much-needed action against them". Prince Nawaf's attempt to capture the moral high ground on the Syrian and Iranian issues conceals the Kingdom's growing isolation from the regional geopolitical scene. This isolation has manifest in increasingly tense relations with Western allies that have prompted calls for rethinking Saudi-Western relations and a growing distance between Saudi and its Arab Gulf neighbours on the Syrian and Iranian issues….


Can the Arab Revolutions Survive Syria and Egypt?
Hamid Dabashi

The Syrian debacle has put a damper on the Arab revolutions and beyond. Every country from Afghanistan to Iran to Morocco now points to Syria as a justification that all these revolutions were in vain, that the ruling regimes and all their atrocities are better than this carnage. This is a bogus binary….


Asymmetric War Extends to Syria and Saudi Arabia
Verda Özer

“Asymmetric warfare” is the war between two sides whose military power and strategies and tactics differ significantly. Such struggles often involve tactics of unconventional warfare and are characterized by extreme uncertainty. It is completely unknown how far this investigation can go. Yet it is certain that no symmetry will remain at all if this “asymmetric war” does not end soon….


Assessing the Conflicts in Syria and Egypt
Ramzy Baroud

The year 2013 has expectedly been terrible for several Arab countries. It has been terrible because the promise of greater freedoms and political reforms has been reversed, most violently in some instances, by taking a few countries down the path of anarchy and complete chaos. Syria and Egypt are two cases in point….


Turkey’s Post-Revolutionary Civil War between The Government Of Tayyip Erdoğan And The 'Community' Of Fethullah Gülen
Mustafa Akyol

This best-defence-is-offence attitude is not going to help the government much, however. Corruption is a serious matter and the real best defence would be to help bring those who are charged to justice. Meanwhile, the Gülen Movement, normally a civil society group, should help save itself from the image of secrecy and infiltration that it has been drawn into in the past decade….

Resurgence of Islam Today
Aiman Reyaz, New Age Islam

Resurgence of Islam Today
Aiman Reyaz, New Age Islam

Much of the 20th century saw that those countries which were more “modern” I.e., Western or secular like Turkey, Tunisia, Egypt, and Iran were seen as more advanced as compared to Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, which were regarded as religious and traditional and hence “backward.”.....

PAKISTAN’S Federal Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan’s condemnation of the hanging of Quader Mollah for his war crimes of 1971 actually reinforces the proof that Mollah was indeed a collaborator of the Pakistanis and a war criminal, and that he should have stayed back in Pakistan. ... What the Pak minister said is actually a confession that till now it had not accepted a liberated Bangladesh and its independent political existence. So far, those who opposed Bangladesh’s independence are Pakistan’s heroes. And therefore, what we hear about Jamaat and Islamist groups getting support in various ways from Pakistan, are perhaps all true.


Dr Qadri won the only National Assembly seat for his party in the 2002 general elections, and used to claim that General Pervez Musharraf had promised him the slot of Prime Minister. In less than a year, he resigned and quit politics. In 2008, he sought asylum in Canada, claiming he was facing threats to his life from Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. He got the asylum, and later Canadian nationality, but violated his agreement with his new country’s government that he would not visit Pakistan owing to the threats….


Whatever Happened To The Arab Spring?
Madawi Al-Rasheed

Three years after the Arab Spring, the dominant narrative about this region remains articulated in terms of binary opposites: vanishing republics versus resilient monarchies, the secular versus Islamist divide and the Sunni versus Shiite schism……


War Criminal  And Leader Of The Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh, Abdul Quader Molla's execution: As a Pakistani, I am neither 'saddened' nor ‘grieved’ by Molla’s death
Yaqoob Khan Bangash

I am sure that there are millions of my fellow citizens of Pakistan who would never condone the killing of innocent people in the name of the country, and would in fact be glad that a heinous criminal has received the just reward for his actions. As a Pakistani, I am neither ‘saddened’ nor ‘grieved’ by Molla’s death….


The popular uprising in Libya was massively influenced by the NATO military intervention. And it is now clear that the country, still undergoing reconstruction, is confronted with far more complex challenges than those facing Egypt or Tunisia, for example. The euphoria that followed the overthrow of Gaddafi has long since evaporated. Two years after the end of the dictatorship, there are still no functioning state institutions in the country.....


Pakistan Needs to Tell the Story Right
Shaheera Syed

Couple up this entire mixture of variables with a heightened civic sense of the community and you’ll get the current state of affairs of Pakistan. The government is facing exuberant amount of pressure from all sides to clearly define its stance on issues of national and international importance. Pakistan has to realize the dangers of continuing with the war on terror in its narrative-less state. This is not a sustainable policy and if not rectified, it will backlash soon....


If I am not wrong, we were taught in school that Two Nation theory was the base behind the struggle for a separate home land. Quaid e Azam, said .... we want a piece of land, where we can practically implement Islamic Principles to spend our lives according to religion ISLAM. Our elders sacrificed millions of millions lives and finally Pakistan came into existence with the slogan .....

The piece of land called ""PAKISTAN"" that appear on the map of Earth on the name of religion Islam ... was thought to be  an ISLAMIC COUNTRY but now after 68 years of existence, we start our day with MUSIC broadcast on Radio Channels and when we turn on Television, we find anchors (half expired teenager aunties and aunty type uncles) doing acrobats (following and preaching Indian culture) in their respective morning shows. 

Hoisted by its own petard, Pakistan has a story to tell. Decades ago, nobody believed the militants tasked by America with defeating the Soviet Union in Afghanistan would one day become Pakistan’s most implacable foes, turn into sectarian hounds, demoralise the armed forces, and eat into its vitals. In the Arab world, the fragrance of the Spring has turned into an overpowering stench enveloping the Fertile Crescent....

Culture of Impunity in Pakistan
Huma Yusuf

There is no romance of martyrdom or jihad in being incarcerated — there is just the fact of the violent crime. Given that the lure of militancy lies in the rhetoric of faith, mission, and martyrdom, what better way to undermine it than with the reality of criminality and justice? It is high time we highlighted that Pakistan’s pervasive culture of impunity is the root cause of its many woes, and addressing it — rather than its symptoms — is the only way forward....


The 1974 Ouster of the ‘Heretics’: What Really Happened?
Nadeem F. Paracha

Applauded for successfully regenerating a demoralised and fractured country’s pride (after the 1971 East Pakistan debacle), and igniting within the working classes a sudden sense of political consciousness, Bhutto is also remembered as the man who (to remain in power) continued to play footsie with reactionary political outfits and (thus) ultimately betraying his own party’s largely secular, democratic and socialist credentials. Not only did he attract fierce opposition from the right-wing Islamic parties, over the decades, the left and liberal sections of the Pakistani intelligentsia have also come down hard on him for capitulating to the demands of right-wing parties on certain theological and legislative issues....


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  • either it is a joke from GM or Muslims believe in jokes.and not a single sufi Muslim of NAI will give a node in ...
    ( By rational )
  • GMi also call spade a spade when i speak on religious matters.you were unable to catch one lie from my comments.and don't try to ...
    ( By rational )
  • It is a mistake to think the first three generations of Muslims were the best Muslims. All religions must continually evolve and try to ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Muslims should celebrate life, be joyful for God's bounty and be festive on Eid holidays, significant birthdays, Christmas,  Diwali and Republic Day.  
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Rational, I am calling a spade a spade. Your obsessive-compulsive and never-ending campaign of defamation of Islam is nothing but a hate war. If you ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Johan says, "All of this would be good of course, but utterly unacceptable to the vast majority of Muslims." . . .   If something is ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Johan summarises my suggestions as "these are “nice” ideas but utterly impractical." But the answer lies in breaking what Johan rightly calls "the inertia of 1.6 billion" Muslims. It ...
    ( By Sultan Shahin )
  • is there anything Muslims in 1400 years understood correctly?
    ( By rational )
  • Johan has made valid points.it is almost impossible to bring drastic changes in the beliefs of Muslims.it can be seen right here. all points ...
    ( By rational )
  • GM you are free to call it hate war or call me any name.
    ( By rational )
  • An islamophobe gives his comments about the above seven items  as follows:-#1. This is possible – in fact many Muslims today claim the right ...
    ( By Johan )
  • Pankaj,I am surprised that you  cannot clarify what you  meant by your own question. Although my language is very precise you confuse:1. A simple ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • For a moment, forgetting that Salman Taseer stood for justice and raised his voice for a noble cause, even if the murdered was a despicable human ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • And I assure all that I would not aske any further question if I am answered here by Mr. Naseer.
    ( By Pankaj Verma )
  • Dear Naseer! This could be very simple than reading a big article. I am not interested in knowing which god gonna burn my ass, ...
    ( By Pankaj Verma )
  • Dear Pankaj,In the question that you asked, clarify who did you think would would burn you in hell for eternity. If you are not clear ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Dear Naseer! the statement which u qouted from my comment was also a question for you, which you promptly replied that if I die ...
    ( By Pankaj Verma )
  • Dear Pankaj,You may clarify to yourself and the rest of us  from your question "would I burn in hell for eternity, as I do make ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Good article! To add to it:(6:12) Say: "To whom belongeth all that is in the heavens and on earth?" Say: "To Allah. He hath inscribed ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Dear Naseer! My question is "whom" not "what".
    ( By Pankaj Verma )
  • Pankaj repeatedly asks "From " whom" am I needed to be saved?"The answer lies in his original question below:"So you may wish to make ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Pankaj,You said "I do make clear again I do not believe or submit to your Allah (even after reading quran) and actually criticises quran ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Rational, there have always been wars and mayhem. All religions have dark histories. We try what we can to make things better instead of ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • "You still have a chance to save yourself. " How? Believing in one God and the last prophet!if you don't you will be burned?this ...
    ( By rational )
  • dear muhammad yunus - 7/28/2015 11:33:36 AMi can go arguing on your quotation from unislamic source not favorable to Islam.am i wrong to ...
    ( By rational )
  • GM don't portray yourself as saint free from inner demons. i knew how you will evade the question. you answered nothing. however keep speaking half baked truths ...
    ( By rational )
  • Mr. Alam is right in all points he has raised. SC has not said anything against women wearing burqa. It has upheld CBSE's right ...
    ( By mohammad imran )
  • Rational, I answered the question you  had asked. Now you are starting a no-holds-barred tirade against Islam as if you just can't tolerate any ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • GMyou are speaking half truths.can somebody quote from Islamic sources if there is nothing to quote? could i quote from the Quran, Hadith Seerah ...
    ( By rational the islamophobe )
  • Dear Naseer! "Rejected with full knowledge". Read my comment again. Search in my comment where I said Full knowledge. This term is a monopoly ...
    ( By pankaj verma )
  • Rational says, "why there should be any phobia of Islam if it is the message of pure peace," . . . .   Islamophobia is a ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Correction: . . .   Succession is a political matter, not a religious one. Both  Abu Bakr and Ali are respected figures in Islamic history, but only ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Succession is a political matter, not a religious one. Both  Abu Bakr and Ali are respected figures in Islamic history, but the Prophet alone ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • It seems Islam has become just an argumentation over what this or that phrase in the Quran or in a Hadith means. What happened to the ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • A way must be found to bring hate-spewing khutba deliverers to book.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Mr Afaqsiddiqi, I repeat my question since it is not answered. Who my God is should be obvious from my question. If you still don't ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )

  • ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Pankaj Verma says: "My college would be ashamed today to have an alumni like you." I would be ashamed to be an alumni of the ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • I forgot mr Nasser ahmad to tell you that my creator is known to me through my breathing. Oxygen.but I am not sure ...
    ( By afaqsiddiqi )
  • Dear Naseer!Save myself! From whom. Your God?
    ( By pankaj verma )