By Joel Gilbert, FAMILY SECURITY MATTERS
[..] Though lacking a shred of evidence, President Obama insists there exists a “vast majority” of “moderate Muslims” who do share Western values. After all, part of the “story” is that “radical Muslims” are just a small group of former “moderate Muslims” who have been “radicalized,” as one can become a “radical Muslim” only through brainwashing.
A more accurate description of political loyalties in the Islamic world is that the majority of Muslims are either active or passive supporters of the movement of Islamism. The movement for Islamic Revival or “Islamism,” is an indigenous, grass-roots movement championed by both poor and educated Muslims throughout the Muslim world. “Islam is the solution!” is the Islamist call to action against Westernization and secular governments in the Muslim world, which provide the masses with little hope or future. Islamists do not consider themselves to be revolutionaries, in the sense of revolution changing society in a new way. Rather, Islamists strive to rebuild internally by applying traditional principles to reestablish the past strength and glory of Islam. A return to success necessitates the purification of Islamic society from secular government systems, legislation, and institutions borrowed from or imposed by the West. For Islamists, political upheaval, if needed by the sword, is a necessary part of the purification of their society, hundreds of years in the making.
Islamism advocates the implementation of Shari’ah (Islamic law) and the restoration of the Koran as the sole authority for government in Muslim countries. Meanwhile, Western military presence in Muslim countries constitutes an affront to Islamists. Islamists believe that dominance by unbelievers is blasphemous, as it can lead to abasement of faith, immorality, and violations of Holy Law. Islamists view Israel as the center of a worldwide Jewish conspiracy, whose purpose is to infiltrate Muslim countries, destroy Islamic values, and instill the germ of Westernization, with the ultimate goal of eradicating Islam. Despite wishful thinking in the West, Islamism is the only serious alternative to secular forms of government in the Middle East, and does represent the aspirations of the majority of Muslims across the Islamic world.
Discarding President Obama’s fictitious “story” of “moderate Muslims” and “radical Muslims,” the true reality emerges with regard to Iraq and Afghanistan: America has no real allies in these countries, and there is little or no support for secular, Western democracy. Following a US withdrawal, its only a matter of time before the US backed governments collapse and Islamist forces seize power, leaving the American public to ask “what happened to our allies, the moderate Muslim majority?” The answer is that this was only a “story,” a yarn composed by politicians due to their lack of understanding. This misunderstanding has been the basis of US foreign policy failures for years. Jimmy Carter was guilty of it when he withdrew support from America’s ally, The Shah of Iran, believing Western secular democracy would break out in Iran. Its the very same misunderstanding that led President Bush to believe that once the Taliban and later Saddam Hussein were toppled, that “moderate Muslims” in those countries would establish Western democracies. Yet the “story” continues with President Obama, that a “vast majority” of Muslims are “moderate Muslims,” and are America’s allies. Absent any evidence, this “story” should be relegated to Saturday morning cartoons where such imagination is not fatal.
© 2010 Joel Gilbert
Joel Gilbert is an Islamic history scholar and writer/director of two recent documentary feature films on the Middle East. His newest release is the award winning ATOMIC JIHAD: Ahmadinejad’s Coming War for Islamic Revival and Obama’s Politics of Defeat.