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Book Review

Dugin against Islam

Realpolitik alliances should not fool committed Muslims
Charles Upton [Sidi Akram]

This artilce is based on excerpts from Dugin against Dugin: A Traditionalist Critique of the Fourth Political Theory by Charles Upton (published December 2018).

The Russian ideologue, philosopher, and political leader Aleksandr Dugin has much to say about religion in his many books, including Islam. However, like many in the West, he tends to view religions in geopolitical rather than moral or spiritual terms. This article will explore the implications for our din of an alliance between Islam and Dugin’s Neo-Eurasian Movement, such as Dugin proposes in a number of places.

In 2017 my colleague Dr. John Andrew Morrow met with Aleksandr Dugin at the Arba‘in Pilgrimage to the Shi‘i holy places in Iraq. To provide a bit of background, since 2013 Dr. Morrow and I have been involved in a movement called the Covenants Initiative, an international Muslim peace movement to defend persecuted Christians, based on his book The Covenants of the Prophet Muhammad with the Christians of the World. In the Prophetic Covenants, Muhammad (pbuh) commands all Muslims not to kill or rob or damage the buildings of peaceful Christians, or even prevent their Christian wives from going to church, but rather to actively defend them against their enemies until the end of time. Consequently, we accept these covenants as legally binding upon Muslims today.

Dr. Morrow reports that Dugin, much to the delight of his listeners, spoke of the commitment of his Neo-Eurasian movement to support Shi‘i Islam, and the wish of Russia that all nations be at liberty to pursue their own self-determined lines of development, free from interference and control by US Empire — unquestionably a desirable outcome. Yet he had just expressed, in his book The Rise of the Fourth Political Theory (2017), his willingness to make alliances-of-convenience against “Atlantis” (Dugin’s name for the liberal West headed by the United States) with the takfiri terrorists, to whom the blood of the Shi‘ah is considered halal. These are the same takfiris who, in the guise of ISIS and al-Qaeda, have been entirely willing to take arms, funds, and logistical if not strategic direction from Western nations, especially the United States, in their proxy war against Russia and Iran, just as they and their predecessors have been doing ever since the British supported the Wahhabi insurgency against the Ottoman Sultanate before and during World War I. In Eurasian Mission, Dugin writes.

Jihadis are universalists… We don’t like any universalists, but there are universalists [that is, the “Atlanticists”] who attack us today and win, and there are also non-conformist universalists who are fighting against the hegemony of the Western, liberal universalists, and therefore they are tactical friends for the time being… I don’t like Salafists. It would be much better to align with traditionalist Sufis, for example. But I prefer working with the Salafists against the common enemy than to waste energy in fighting against them while ignoring the greater threat…

In this passage, published in 2014, Dugin is obviously bidding against the US, in the name of Russia, for control of the Salafists in Syria and Iraq. And for Dugin to say that it would be better to align with the Sufis, but that he is willing to work with the Salafis if necessary, is for him, in effect, to threaten to align with the Salafis, to whom the blood of any Sufi is considered halal, unless the Sufis get in line. In the face of such affronts one would have thought that no self-respecting Sufi would be caught dead allying with Dugin, seeing that the salafi takfiris universally consider the Sufis to be heretics and have been massacring them for generations. Nonetheless, worldly power — or at least worldly recognition — remains a powerful temptation.

And what was Dugin doing on a Shi‘i pilgrimage? He is no Shi‘i; he isn’t even a Muslim. The more naive among his listeners — and the more desperate in the face of US pressure — were undoubtedly flattered and heartened by his empty gesture toward Islam, just as some equally unwary Muslims were delighted when Pope Francis prayed from the noble Qur’an, ignoring the obvious fact that he doesn’t believe in the Qur’an any more than he does in Catholic theology, as witnessed in his declaration that “God does not exist,” though the Three Persons of the Trinity do.

But all Muslims are by no means that naive; those of us who dedicate our din to Allah (swt) instead of trying to recruit Allah to support our own particular agendas for our din will have little sympathy with those who flatter religion but rarely mention God.

Covert support for militant religious extremism is an integral part of the Western and globalist plan to weaken the world’s religions so as to better control them; the violence of the extremists acts powerfully to justify the complementary and more visible “interfaith” prong of their pincers-movement against the traditional faiths, namely the attempt to form a One-World Religion, or at least to federate the religions of the world under a single, international, nonreligious authority. Inter-religious violence helps further such plans because it leads many to believe, with little supporting evidence, that an amalgamation of the religions is the only hope for peace between them. The kind of broad-scale unification of the faiths proposed by certain globalist visionaries may never in fact be achievable; nonetheless the various incomplete attempts to achieve it have already had a harmful effect on their doctrinal integrity and jurisdictional independence.

There is little common ground between the more extreme Islamicists, as represented by the takfiri Wahhabis and Salafis, and those Muslims who follow the true, integral, civilizational Islam. Traditional Sunni Muslims accept the five madhhabs or schools of Islamic law, and traditional Shi‘is, the two Shi‘i schools; the takfiris reject all the madhhabs, follow one or more of their own severely truncated versions of the Shari‘ah, and are content to accept a radically edited version of the prophetic hadiths, or else to base all their rulings on certain ayat of the Qur‘an taken in isolation and out of context.

Traditional Muslims love the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) like no other man who ever lived — if not as what the Sufis call the Muhammadan Light, the first reality created by Allah (swt) and proximate source of all the others. The takfiris, on the other hand, despise the chivalrous and humane example of the Prophet almost as much as they hate the idea that Allah is al-Rahman and al-Rahim, the Mercy-Giving and the All-Merciful.

We of the Covenants Initiative know this because we have been in a race over the past few years to secure copies of the Covenants of protection that Muhammad (pbuh) granted to the ancient monasteries of Syria, Iraq, and elsewhere — a race against ISIS, who are dedicated to destroying every one of them, along with the buildings that house them and those buildings’ occupants, precisely because the justice and tolerance of these documents show the mad dogs of Da‘ish to lie under the curse of Allah (swt).

Masha’allah their attempts have backfired, since their threat to destroy the Prophetic Covenants has been one of the factors that led to many of these documents being rediscovered, shipped to protected archives, transferred to microfilm, translated into many languages, and published throughout the world. Any Muslim willing to better familiarize him-/herself with the Covenants of the Prophet will come to a clear understanding that takfirism is not traditional Islam, but rather a narrowly-based reaction against modernism that has been unable to free itself from modernism because it neither accepts nor understands the Islamic tradition.

Dugin’s attempt to bring the takfiris into the Neo-Eurasian Movement — that is, to place them under the control of Russia — has been part of his agenda for some time. In the English version of The Fourth Political Theory, published in 2012, Dugin says,

The most recognised form at present [for the rejection of globalization] is the Islamist world vision, which aspires toward the utopia of an individual state based upon a strict interpretation of Islamic law, or else a Universal Caliphate which will bring the entire world under Islamic rule. This project is as much opposed to the American-led transitional [that is, transitional to globalism] architecture as it is to the existing status quo of modern nation-states. Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda remains symbolic and archetypal of such ideas, and the attacks which brought down the towers of the World Trade Centre in New York on 9/11, and which are supposed to have “changed the world,” are proof of the importance of such networks.

Here is where we must decide whether this passage represents abysmal ignorance or crass misrepresentation of the truth. I vote for the latter. In August of 2012, a Defense Intelligence Agency document was obtained by the investigative group Judicial Watch, through a lawsuit pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, which makes it clear that the creation of a Salafist State in Syria along the lines of ISIS is exactly what the powers supporting the anti-Asad coalition wanted. Below is Section 8, paragraph C of that document, probably the most relevant passage,

If the situation unravels, there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran) [the entire text is available here].

This “principality” is obviously what went on to become the so-called Islamic State. The story of US support for the creation of ISIS is told by Seumas Milne in his June 2015 article in the Guardian, “Now the truth emerges: how the US fueled the rise of ISIS in Syria and Iraq”.

Dr. John Andrew Morrow was already denouncing ISIS at the House of Lords in London, and elsewhere in Europe, in the Summer of 2013, after their satanic nature had become abundantly clear based on their own “public relations” campaign. Dugin probably could not have foreseen the rise of ISIS in 2009 when the Russian original of The Fourth Political Theory first appeared — though the so-called “Arab Spring” began soon after, in December of 2010 — but by 2012 when the English version was published it should have been obvious to anyone knowledgeable in international affairs that the US was backing the terrorists.

It was also common knowledge by that time that the US had armed and organized al-Qaeda to fight the Russian invasion of Afghanistan (1979–1989). Also available was over a decade of mounting evidence that both the United States and Israel had a hand in the attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, in order to justify the massive US intervention in the Middle East that followed in short order, obviously according to plans that were already in place. Maybe Dugin was just a little slow, not quite paying attention, dreaming of his Neo-Eurasian utopia with his head in the clouds; maybe Russian intelligence had been asleep at the wheel for 30 years. Or, as is much more likely, maybe Russia was still placing bids against the United States for the services of the salafi Wahhabi terrorists as of 2012.

Perhaps some are still naive enough to believe that ISIS and al-Qaeda broke free from US control at one point, switched sides and suddenly became “opposed to the American-led transitional architecture” in the name of Islam. This version of events ignores a number of realities: (1) that the destabilization of the Middle East brought about by the conquests of ISIS and al-Qaeda, and equally by the battle against them by the US-led coalition, perfectly serve the process of globalization by preventing the growth of strong national entities in the region, reducing it to an outlaw area of failed states that would require ongoing outside intervention to keep it contained; and (2) that in November of 2017, the US granted safe-passage to ISIS fighters out of Raqqa in Syria just as the city was about to fall — these privileged personages undoubtedly representing the leadership, the elite mercenaries on the US payroll, not the expendable lower tier cannon fodder made up of gullible true believers.

In view of these facts it is extremely interesting that Dugin and the leadership of the United States are unanimous in propagating the lie that the salafi takfiris are dedicated fighters for Dar al-Islam against the West, instead of what they really are: a fifth column of mercenaries and traitors largely organized by the West to destroy Islam in its ancient heartlands. This unanimity of propaganda between Dugin and the US military and State Department suggests — though it does not prove — a covert strategic collusion at the highest levels, possibly global in scope.

Article from

Crescent International Vol. 47, No. 12

Jumada' al-Ula' 26, 14402019-02-01

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