19 July 2017

Islam, Islamism and Islamophobia

"Many would question whether special legal accommodation should be available for Muslims on account of their “profound convictions”, unless we are sure that such convictions are compatible with our secular state. After all, the Inquisition acted from “profound convictions” which were not necessarily a guide to desirable behaviour."

 

Two Decades on from Samuel P. Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations


 

Some Westerners, including President Bill Clinton, have argued that the West does not have problems with Islam but only with violent Islamist extremists. Fourteen hundred years of history demonstrate otherwise.
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations1


 

The concept of “human rights” does not appear in any holy scripture, not least because the individual, as the creation of God, cannot be thought of as autonomously enjoying rights; only God bestows or protects rights. Therefore the concept of human rights, as formulated in the American and French declarations of human rights in the 18th century, was only able to develop in the intellectual context of the Enlightenment.

Murad Hofmann, Islam2

 

The political scientist Samuel P. Huntington, who died in 2008, originally published his theory of “The Clash of Civilizations?” (still with a question mark) in 1993 in the journal Foreign Affairs, and later expanded and published it in book form in 1996. Its critics were unstinting in their condemnation, not least because it seemed to question the view that all peoples of the world aspired with equal fervour to the freedoms and individualism of the Western democracies. David Brooks, writing a retrospective in The New York Times (3 March 2011) crystallised this objection: “He [Huntington] argued that people in Arab lands are intrinsically not nationalistic. He argued that they do not hunger for pluralism and democracy in the way these things are understood in the West. But it now appears as though they were simply living in circumstances that did not allow that patriotism or those spiritual hungers to come to the surface.” This of course was written in the first flush of enthusiasm for the so-called “Arab Spring”, the course of which has perhaps not wholly vindicated Brooks’s occidentally oriented view.

On the other hand, after the catastrophe of 9/11 and the subsequent rash of terrorist attacks by Islamic fundamentalists around the world, Huntington’s thesis attracted more positive attention in some quarters. Opposition to his work remained however and predated his influential book; already by 1986 his nomination to the National Academy of Sciences had twice been blocked on the grounds that Huntington dealt in “pseudo-science”, an accusation informed by the wider suspicion that “political science” was not “scientific” in the first place. In reality it is likely that the hostility to him was at least partly political (a lifelong Democrat, he was viewed as being too close to the American military establishment). Perhaps not surprisingly, it was his assessment of Islam that attracted the most unrestrained venom. For example, Edward Said denounced The Clash of Civilizations as “the purest invidious racism, a sort of parody of Hitlerian science directed today against Arabs and Muslims”.3

So what does Huntington actually say about Islam? And how do his comments stand up today, when Islamic terrorism and fears about inadequately controlled Muslim immigration dominate the media headlines, mainstream politicians find themselves somewhere between a rock and a hard place, and parties led by right- wing populists attract alarmed socialist and conservative voters?

For a start, the abuse directed at the book by Edward Said seems motivated by something quite other than a study of the text he denounces. “The unity of the non-West and the East–West dichotomy”, writes Huntington, “are myths created by the West. These myths suffer from the defects of Orientalism which Edward Said appropriately criticised for promoting ‘the difference between the familiar (Europe, the West, “us”) and the strange (the Orient, the East, “them”)’ and for assuming the inherent superiority of the former to the latter.”4 Certainly Huntington has been much criticised for simplistically dividing the post-1990 world into civilisations (Western, Hindu, Islamic, Sinic and so forth), all neatly set out in a map of the world provided near the beginning of the book. However the claim that this descriptive shorthand is an agenda for Hitlerian racism finds no support in the text itself and indeed seems a hysterical reaction from a scholar with an aggressive post-colonialist agenda of his own. On the other hand, Huntington is blunt about the ideological differences between western secular democracies, which incorporate checks and balances to power, and political Islam which, as President Erdoğan has obligingly reminded us, sees democracy as a means to an end, not the end itself.

 

ISLAM RESURGENT, THE WEST IN DECLINE?

 

All of which brings us to the vexed question of whether the true Islam, not the one that has been hijacked by Islamic State and Al-Qaeda franchises, is inherently a religion of peace and tolerance. Those Muslims and non-Muslims who maintain that it is can point to the millions of Muslims in non-Islamic countries who live at peace with their neighbours, are devout in private and model citizens in public. The totemic figure for this view is the current Mayor of London, a Muslim who is the son of a Pakistani bus driver and politically a moderate Socialist. Those who worry about Islam, on the other hand, point to the incongruities between Islamic scriptures (and in particular Islamic law known as shari’a) and some of the fundamental values of secular democracy which, for the most part, developed out of a Christianity that has “modernised” itself over the centuries. Such values include freedom of speech, tolerance of other beliefs or non-beliefs (insofar as their adherents practice reciprocal tolerance), female emancipation and the separation of religion from political governance.

These worries are not necessarily indications of “Islamophobia”, a phrase coined somewhat on the model of anti-Semitism, ironically so, in view of the widespread anti-Semitism among Muslims. Frequently the spectre of Islamophobia is trotted out in the liberal press to discredit cogent critiques of Islam, as if the “respect” demanded for Islam ruled out any analysis of it that did not a priori accept its fundamental claims. Yet the European Court of Human Rights, hardly a reactionary body if you look at its record, in 2001 declared shari’a to be “incompatible with the requirements of a democratic society”.5 Similarly journalist Samuel Schirmbeck quotes an open letter to the German Socialists in which the historian Thomas Spahn posed the question as to whether Islam is compatible with Germany’s Basic Law (Grundgesetz), the constitutional lynchpin of its modern democracy. He answers in the negative because (he maintains) adherence to Islam is compelled by birth and apostasy is theoretically to be punished by death according to Islamic law. This offends against Article 2 of the Basic Law, and also Article 4 which guarantees the right of every citizen to choose his faith without fear of reprisal.6 At the opposite end of the political spectrum, the former Archbishop of Canterbury has argued that elements of shari’a should be incorporated into English law so that ”groups of serious and profound conviction are not systematically faced with the stark alternatives of cultural loyalty or state loyalty”. It is unlikely that this lofty view of the matter is widely shared by the man in the street. To him it will seem clear that adherence to the democratically passed laws of your adopted state is an obligation, not a choice.7 Many would question whether special legal accommodation should be available for Muslims on account of their “profound convictions”, unless we are sure that such convictions are compatible with our secular state. After all, the Inquisition acted from “profound convictions” which were not necessarily a guide to desirable behaviour.

If we turn back to Huntington, we get a lucid vision of Islam’s trajectory to its present conflicted position both within its own community and with the non- Muslim world. Huntington (with many other commentators) states that “Muslims have traditionally divided the world into Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb, the abode of peace and the abode of war”.8 This dualism does not appear in the Qur’an or in shari’a, but derives from the Islamic scholar Abu Hanifa (699–767), becoming in due course an accepted taxonomy. (Mutatis mutandis, Huntington points out that American scholars at the end of the Cold War, themselves divided the world into “zones of peace” and “zones of turmoil”.) Look up Dar al-Harb in the German Wikipedia and you will find inter alia the following: “Campaigns against Dar al- Harb [the non-Muslim world] are traditionally not viewed as wars and therefore not designated as such, but as ‘openings’ (Futuhat). According to the traditional Islamic view, there can be no peace with Dar al-Harb, only a temporary truce. Wars against Dar al-Harb are commonly referred to as Jihad.”

Should this be correct, it is evident that the spread of Islam by violent means is not entirely ruled out. Moderate Muslims can argue it one way (e.g. by pointing out that Islamic countries have signed up to the United Nations charter); hard-line Salafists, increasingly influential in countries like Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, can argue the religious obligation of Jihad against the kafirs. The word Jihad itself is dangerously ambiguous – an apologist for Islam, like Murad Hofmann quoted at the head of this article, assures us that the word simply means the “effort” or “exertion” (Anstrengung bzw. Bemühen) demanded of the faithful. However Islamic conservatives and extremists seem to be in no doubt that Jihad implies a Holy War (which, however, Hofmann tells us is a Christian, never an Islamic, concept sacrum bellum).9

 

LA REVANCHE DE DIEU

 

The argument about the meaning, intention and actual practice of Islam, whether supposedly authorised by the Qur’an or not, will continue. What is clear is that secular western democracies have been wrongfooted by the resurgence of religion what Huntington calls “la revanche de Dieu”. As he puts it, “twentieth-century intellectual elites generally assumed that economic and social modernisation was leading to a withering away of religion as a significant element in human existence”.10

Actually religion has seen a revival, both in terms of Christian Evangelism (Christianity is said to be the fastest growing religion in China, despite efforts by the authorities to block it) and in terms of Islam. There is an ever larger question mark placed against the benefits of western-style modernisation with its consequences of alienation and anomie, its alleged widening of the gulf between rich and poor, its “globalisation” of assets, labour and political power. In Muslim lands, as Gilles Kepel has remarked, the aim switched from that of modernising Islam to Islamising modernity (italics added).11 The post-World War settlements imposed by Western powers in the Arab world have crumbled, while in Turkey, the country that attempted the most wholesale modernisation along Western European lines, Kemalism has gone up in smoke. “Islam,” Atatürk had said unflatteringly, “this theology of an immoral Arab, is a dead thing. Possibly it might have suited tribes in the desert. It is no good for a modern progressive state.”12 Anyone who publicly ventured such comments in contemporary Turkey should be sure to have made his will. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey’s firebrand President, has said: “For a person who says I am a Muslim, it is not possible to say at the same time I am a secularist. You will either be a Muslim or secularist. These two cannot exist together.”

Huntington makes a striking historical comparison between the remarkable phenomenon of the Islamic Resurgence today and the circumstances of the Protestant Reformation. The former, similarly to the latter, has been driven in part by demographic factors (a birth bulge leading to a disproportionate share of young people in the Muslim world), an increase in those with a certain level of education, and gross overcrowding in cities due to a flight from the land. Furthermore Islam has been helped by the collapse of Communism, the alternative creed to the capitalist West, as also by the fact that Islamic organisations have increasingly provided education and welfare that corrupt and tyrannical governments neglected. Significantly (and no doubt, for his critics, controversially) he adds the following comment: “The general failure of liberal democracy to take hold in Muslim societies is a continuing and repeated phenomenon for an entire century beginning in the late 1800s. This failure has its source at least in part in the inhospitable nature of Islamic culture and society to Western liberal concepts.”13

While the liberal left stresses that all civilisations are blends of different cultural influences, Huntington points out that it is the exclusive purity of Islam that appeals today to an immensely frustrated younger generation of Muslims, “a rejection of the West and of the secular, relativistic, degenerate culture associated with the West. It is a rejection of what has been called the ‘Westoxification’ of non-Western societies.”14

 

EUROPEAN INTEGRATION OR SUBVERSION?

 

The brief introduction to Islam from which I quote at the head of this article is written by a German convert and former diplomat. Its author is therefore an insider-outsider, who exhibits a believer’s empathy for his adopted faith, while at the same time anticipating the sort of European misconceptions (as he sees them) which have created a distorted view of it. Reading Hofmann, you acquire a picture of a religion that not only supersedes the great monotheistic faiths of Judaism and Christianity, but which is virtually an untainted source of justice, tolerance, peacefulness and pluralism. He adds that there is no clash between civilisations as per Huntington’s “alarmist” thesis, only clashes within “cultures and individuals”. Europe, he writes, is experiencing its third “impulse of pluralism” (after those, presumably, of the 16th century Reformation and the 18th century Enlightenment). Unfortunately this third pluralist impulse, instead of being welcomed as the Islamic contribution to a heritage that is “Judeo- Christian, Islamic and humanist” is rejected as if it were a hostile takeover, Islam inheriting the Feindbild mantle of Communism. Demonisation of Islam, according to Hoffmann, actually creates in Germany the very thing it fears, an increasing Islamisation of the Turkish minority.15

However the state of Islamic culture and society today stands in stark contrast to the golden ages of the Abbasid caliphate from the 8th to the 13th centuries and the Umayyad caliphate in Andalusia (929–1031). Beginning with translation of classic texts from the ancient world, Islamic scholars at that time made advances in medicine, philosophy, geography, mathematics, astronomy and other branches of learning. In both caliphates a measure of pluralism and tolerance ensured that contributions to scholarship by non-Muslims (Christians and Jews in particular) were welcomed. Significantly the most cultivated of the Baghdad caliphs, the half-Persian Al-Ma’mūn, adhered to the rationalist Mu’tazilite movement, which saw no conflict between orthodox Islam and scientific enquiry. Did not the Qur’an enjoin Muslims to study alsamawāt wal’arth (the skies and the earth) to find proofs of their faith? Both caliphates were far in advance of contemporary western Europe as regards intellectual freedom, scientific knowledge and the sophistication of their societies. An anecdote illustrates this Islamic superiority: the caliph Harūn al-Rashīd (763–809) sent an elaborate brass water clock as a gift to an amazed Charlemagne, who imagined it to be a work of conjuration because of its strange ticking.

The decline from these glorious caliphates is variously attributed to the rise of Islamic conservatism through the immensely influential theologian al-Ghazāli (1058–1111), the weakening of Islamic power as a result of the crusades, the Mongol storm that razed Baghdad and destroyed the House of Wisdom library in 1258, and the Reconquista in Spain completed in 1492. Jim Al-Khalili, in his masterly study of Islam’s golden age, warns against lazy or glib explanations about the subsequent stalled progress of Islamic intellectual enquiry. Equally the subjection of the Muslim world to Western imperialism is a destructive factor that Westerners tend to gloss over. As Huntington puts it: “The West won the world not by superiority of its ideas, values or religion (to which few members of other civilisations were converted) but rather by its superiority in applying organised violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”16 Nevertheless Al-Khalili sums up the disastrous impasse into which Islamic fundamentalism has led Muslims over the years as the “erroneous belief that all knowledge is contained in the Qur’an; that anything God felt it was worth mankind knowing, including the laws of nature and our place in the universe, can be found written in the Qur’an, so there is no point in scientific enquiry”.17

Christopher de Bellaigue, a respected writer on Islam, has striven to correct the downhill all the way” image of Islamic society over more than three centuries and stresses (for example) the cathartic effect of Napoleon’s invasion of Egypt in 1798. This resulted in improvements in public hygiene, some emancipation of women and the limited embrace of Western technology, as well as the beginnings of a free press. But he admits that up to then Islamic society had become amazingly backward, characterised by despotic government, almost universal illiteracy and the clergy’s monopoly over knowledge”. For most of Ottoman rule, book printing had been punishable by death.18 In any case, print technology was difficult to adapt to the calligraphic tradition of the Qur’an and this may have been an important factor in Islamic society lagging behind Europe once printing with movable type spread rapidly from Germany in the mid-fifteenth century.

Islam’s liberal moment was snuffed out by British and French imperialism, but even had that not been the case, it had long suffered from an ongoing tension between faith and reason that made life precarious for reformist scholars. The Egyptian intellectual Rifaa al-Tahtawi, according to de Bellaigue, spent five years in France and became convinced of the need for European science and technology to be introduced to the Islamic world, but chose “not to enquire about the link between a free intellect and a free spirit, or whether the inquisitiveness he admired in the French people might be in some ways connected to their quest for political liberty”.

Looking at political Islam through the lens of history, it is not hard to see why it seems to nurture a culture of resentment, not to say hatred, against the Christian and secular West. Yet there is also schizophrenia – a determination to appropriate or further develop the technologies that have made the West rich and powerful, while striving to leave intact the unnegotiable archaisms of a religion that Kemal Atatürk thought was no longer fit for purpose. Insofar as Muslim communities are set to grow larger in Western states, such an attitude, whether manifest through activism, violence or passive acceptance, will almost inevitably begin to challenge the host state’s political authority and the tolerance embedded in societal norms growing out of the Enlightenment. Referencing the historiographical commonplace that the hard won division between church and state “contributed immeasurably to the development of freedom in the west”, Huntington writes: “In Islam, God is Caesar; in China and Japan, Caesar is God; in Orthodoxy, God is Caesar’s junior partner.”19 As the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood put it: “Everywhere and always mankind must make a clear decision either to follow the law of God in its entirety or to hold to man-made laws. So the choice is: Islam or jahiliyya [the pre-Islamic state of ignorance].”20

 

POLITICAL ISLAM TODAY

 

The theocratic tendency in political Islam, as was seen the moment the Muslim Brotherhood took power in Egypt, is hostile to the individualism that is such a marked feature of Western democracies. As Huntington points out, the rolling out of Islamic power begins with simple welfare provision, then, crucially, moves to control of education, after which political power may fall into its lap. The tribal dynastic rulers in countries that hold out against a de facto theocracy are increasingly obliged to “Islamise” their states. This usually leads to parallel sources of authority with “vigilantes” brutally enforcing Islamic morality and behaviour, while the government is afraid to bring in desirable secular reform for fear of a backlash. Even Indonesia, the great success story of a pluralistic state with an overwhelming (87% Sunni) Islam majority, has recently had an ugly election for Governor of Jakarta where sectarian Islamic agitators managed to get the current Christian Chinese Governor prosecuted on trumped-up blasphemy charges (insulting the Qur’an), which carry a penalty of five years’ imprisonment. As The Economist report states, usually “all those charged with blasphemy are convicted, presumably because judges are afraid of being harassed by Islamists themselves if they dare to acquit supposed enemies of the faith”.21

The migration component of Islam’s contemporary upheaval, which Huntington addresses in detail, may be beneficial as a safety valve for overpopulated or dysfunctional Muslim states, but is also a clear source of future difficulty in Western societies. As Huntington remarks, “the idea of sovereign nation states is incompatible with belief in the sovereignty of Allah and the primacy of the ummah [the community of Islam]”.22 The actual incidence of death by Islamic terrorism may be statistically low (liberals are fond of pointing out that, for example, deaths by smoking are still much higher), but its symbolic power is great, especially when one adds in a hard-to-quantify passive support for militant Islamism among second generation immigrants. If Islam is criticised, its community leaders (often unrepresentative) are encouraged into a victimhood posture by left liberals whose political strategy is largely predicated on exploitation of grievance and victimhood. This despite the fact that most Western governments have hitherto made considerable efforts to treat their Muslim populations fairly with welfare programmes, although they have often failed to integrate them and prevent job discrimination. “Victimhood” is a politically exploitable commodity and can be used as a Trojan Horse to erode Western freedoms from the inside. When a Swedish website exhibiting one of the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons was closed down, the government said that was because it exposed Swedes to danger. One might have thought that the Islamists issuing death threats against cartoonists or writers they disagreed with were actually the ones exposing Swedes to danger; instead artistic freedom was to be constrained by what has rightly been called “the assassin’s veto”.23

Future peaceful coexistence with Islamic communities in European countries depends as much on the changing currents of political Islam in Muslim territories as on the challenges to it, or appeasement of it, in the West. Some scholars like Daniel Pipes are adamant that modernisation of Islamic society means Westernisation if it means anything,24 while reformist Muslim scholars from the 19th century onwards (for example the immensely influential Jamal al-Din al Afghani) tried to square the circle by claiming that modern ideas and values, after all, existed in embryonic form in early Islam. But the hardliners have benefited from political turmoil; the old struggle between faith and reason, largely resolved in the European Enlightenment, is not resolved in Islam. “The goal of the believer is not to know God but to obey him”, said Ibn Taymiyya, the forerunner of Wahhabism, a grim sentiment that could have come from the Puritans. Knowledge of what obedience to God actually means in terms of behaviour theoretically lies in the hands of the ulema, the religious hierarchy, for whom reason tends to be subordinate to faith. Jim Al-Khalili cites the Quaid-i- Azam University in Islamabad, which has several mosques on campus – but no bookshop. This is one of the leading research universities in the Muslim world.

While anti-Muslim populism is castigated for its generalised intolerance, one should not forget that militant Islam itself vilifies Western society and pours hatred on its peoples, swiftly however reverting to a victimhood posture when challenged. “People define their identity by what they are not”, writes Huntington, citing the distinctiveness theory of social psychology.25 The attacks of left-liberals, not only against PEGIDA26 or Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), but also against Brexit supporters, rather confirm the basis of the theory (we, the decent liberals, are not the nasty xenophobes and racists). For the left, the nation state itself becomes an obstacle to the desired multicultural utopia; or, as the then leader of the German Green Party put it during the mass influx of migrants to Germany in 2015, “There is no such thing as Germans, there are only Non-Migrants”.27

As Samuel Schirmbeck, who cites this, drily remarks, for the migrants there were certainly Germans, since they had no intention of joining the “Non-Migrants” in Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland or France.

What is now apparent after terror attacks, the ubiquity of hate preachers, and the often ambivalent statements of Muslim community “representatives”, is that the propaganda of militant Islam excoriates the host society, denouncing democracy which it does not believe in, but which nevertheless offers legal protection to all (including Muslims) that is lacking in almost all Muslim countries. To assert that this torrent of threats and hatred has “nothing to do with Islam” is as fatuous as to say the burning of Jan Hus or the activities of Torquemada had “nothing to do with Christianity”. Without Islam, there would be no Islamism and its violent franchises.

Equally fatuous is the prim shock-horror generated by Huntington’s phrase the “clash of civilisations”, since “throughout the 19th century and beyond, Muslim thinkers, emphasising Islam as a civilisation as well as a religion [italics added] sought to upgrade their culture and recapture its old élan”.28 This view dovetails with that of Huntington, when he says that “to a very large degree, the major civilisations in human history have been closely identified with the world’s great religions”.29

Although Islam is quite diverse and by no means free from sectarianism, it is also, like Christianity, universalist, missionary and secure in its conviction that it supersedes all previous and subsequent religions. The three great monotheist religions have in common their teleological and dualistic views of history, in contrast to the cyclical or static views prevalent in other religions of the East.

Yet Christianity has adjusted to secularism, whereas Islam mostly has not, and at one level believes in its ultimate victory over the world when the temporary truce with Dar al-Harb is over. Arch-conservatives in the Vatican like Cardinal Raymond Burke forcibly warn against this. He sees Muslim immigration as a threat, where the more liberal Pope sees only a humanitarian crisis. “The whole history of the Islamic presence in Europe”, he says, “is an attempt to conquer it.30 Meanwhile moderate Islamic scholars run the risk of being marginalised, men like Abdelwahab Meddeb, who has said that fanaticism was the sickness of Catholicism and Nazism that of the Germans, but fundamentalism is the sickness of Islam.

Especially where there is poverty and unemployment as in the Parisian banlieues, Berlin-Neukölln or the Molenbeek district of Brussels, Islamism may thrive. Indeed, by spring 2017, France’s state of emergency had been renewed four times since its introduction in November 2015. In German mainstream politics it has been left to SPD politicians like Thilo Sarrazin or Heinz Buschkowsky (former Mayor of Neukölln) to highlight the inroads that Islamism has made, most worryingly in schools, where very young girls may turn up wearing headscarves and there have been instances of children parroting the view that Christians should be killed or the staff of Charlie Hebdo deserved to die. As Buschkowsky (author of a searing account of his heroic efforts to achieve integration opposed by Salafists in Neukölln) has put it: “Integration is not progressing, but an occupation [of some areas of our country] by fundamentalist religious excess is.”31

To the unbeliever, the atheist or the humanist, Islam is perhaps no more bizarre than other religions; yet its insistence that the Qur’an is the unmediated (”uncreated”) word of God and its failure clearly to separate legal process from religion do not sit well with the essential freedoms of democracy. Perhaps that is why Huntington writes that in the long run Islamic resurgence will “have shown that ‘Islam is the solution’ to the problems of morality, identity, meaning and faith, but not to the problems of social injustice, political repression, economic backwardness and military weakness”. It seems to many a reasonable analysis and shooting the messenger is unlikely to help those trying to figure out how to deal with militant Islam.

 

 

NOTES:


1 Samuel P. Huntington: The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of the World Order (Touchstone, 1997, p. 209). Hereafter: Huntington: op. cit.

2 Murad Hofmann: Islam (Heinrich Hugendubel Verlag, München, 2001, p. 60.). “Der Begriff Menschenrechte’ kommt in keiner Heiligen Schrift vor, zumal Individuen als Gottes Geschöpf aus religiöser Sicht nicht als eigenständige Träger von Rechten gedacht werden können; denn nur Gott verleiht bzw. gewährt Rechte. Deshalb konnte sich die Vorstellung von Menschenrechten, wie sie den amerikanischen und französischen Menschenrechtserklärungen im 18. Jahrhundert zugrunde lag, nur im geistigen Klima der Aufklärung entwickeln.”

3 Edward Said: From Oslo to Iraq and the Road Map (Pantheon, New York, 2004, p. 293).

4 Huntington: op. cit,. p. 33. The Said quotation is from Edward Said: Orientalism (Pantheon Books, New York, 1978, pp. 43–44).

5 This judgement in fact upheld the recent banning of an Islamic party (Welfare Party/Refah Partisi) in Turkey, since the said party had announced that it intended to introduce shari’a and a theocratic state. The judgement was therefore highly political, but it also firmly indicated the extent to which the actual or aspirant theocratic Islamic state espouses fundamental ideals and values that are considered inimical to those of Western democracies.

6 Quoted in Samuel Schirmbeck: Der Islamische Kreuzzug und der ratlose Westen. Warum wir eine selbstbewusste Islamkritik brauchen (Orell Füssli Verlag Ag, Zürich, 2016, p. 245).

7 Dr Rowan Williams made his comments in a speech to senior lawyers on Friday, 8 February 2008. The remarks caused uproar and were widely reported. I have quoted the verbatim report in The Guardian.

8 Huntington: op. cit., p. 32.

9 Hofmann: op. cit., p. 73.

10 Huntington: op. cit., p. 95.

11 Gilles Kepel: Revenge of God: The Resurgence of Islam, Christianity and Judaism in the Modern World (Pennsylvania University Press, 1994, p. 2, quoted in Huntington: op. cit., p. 96).

12 Quoted in Harold Courtenay Armstrong: Grey Wolf: Mustafa Kemal An Intimate Study of a Dictator (1932), pp. 199–200.

13 Huntington: op. cit., p. 114.

14 Huntington: op. cit., p. 101.

15 Hofmann: op. cit., pp. 94–95.

16 Huntington: op. cit., p. 51.

17 Jim Al-Khalili: The House of Wisdom: How Arabic Science Saved Ancient Knowledge and Gave Us the Renaissance (Penguin Books, London, 2010, p. 126).

18 Christopher de Bellaigue: “Islam’s lost Enlightenment”, The Spectator, 25 February, 2017. See also Chistopher de Bellaigue: The Islamic Enlightenment: The Modern Struggle Between Faith and Reason (Bodley Head, London, 2017).

19 Huntington: op. cit., p. 70.

20 Sayyid Qutb (1906–1966), quoted in Samuel Schirmbeck: op. cit., p. 43.

21 The Economist, “Elections in Jakarta: Fighting Fake News”, 18 February 2017.

22 Huntington: op. cit., p. 175.

23 For an account of this and many other examples of capitulation to Islamist threats of violence, see Bruce Bawer: Surrender: Appeasing Islam, Sacrificing Freedom (Anchor Books, New York, 2010).

24 Daniel Pipes: The Path of God, pp. 197–8, quoted in Huntington: op. cit., pp. 71–2. However Pipes states elsewhere in the same volume (p. 191) that “Islam and modernisation do not clash”.

25 Huntington: op. cit., p. 67.

26 Patriotische Europäer gegen die Islamisierung des Abendlandes.

27 Claudia Roth, cited in Schirmbeck: op. cit., p. 99.

28 David Gardner paraphrasing de Bellaigue in his review of The Islamic Enlightenment, op. cit. David Gardner: A return to reason”, Weekend FT 25/26 February 2017.

29 Huntington: op. cit., p. 42.

30 Quoted in Financial Times, “Papal Populists” by James Politi, 8 March 2017.

31 Heinz Buschkowsky’s Neukölln ist überall (Neukölln is everywhere) was published in 2012. Thilo Sarrazin’s Deutschland schafft sich ab (Germany abolishes itself) appeared in 2010.






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