The Shi'ite Movement in Iraq by Faleh A. Jabar. Publisher: Saqi Books, London, 2003. Pp.: 391. Pbk: ｣15.99/$24.95. By Nasr Salem Long treated as an underclass, the Shi'a community has moved to occupy a dominant role in the political arena of post-Saddam Iraq. Undoubtedly this change raises many questions about the course of Shi'a political activism in Iraq and the troubled relationship between the Shi'a community and the Iraqi state
Russia’s continuing war against the Chechen people is one of the many conflicts in which Muslims are involved which tend to be forgotten in the wider Ummah. Every few months, some major events elevates it to public consciousness for a while, as the atrocity of Beslan did last year. On that occasion, Chechens are confirmed to have been responsible for what can only be described at an appalling crime, even though the precise details of the episode and how it came to such a tragic end remain unclear.
A good conjurer or con-artist operates by diverting attention to one place while doing his nefarious work in another. This is exactly what the Israelis are doing in their current attempt to legitimise their occupation of Palestine.
The phrase ‘American Islam’ was originally coined by shaheed Sayyid Qutb (the Ikhwan ideologue who was executed by the Egyptian regime in 1966), and was later also used by shaheed Ali Shariati (who did so much to prepare the groundwork for the Islamic Revolution in Iran before his assassination by the Shah’s secret service in London in 1977) and Imam Khomeini (ra). For them, it signified a minimalist, quietest, personal Islam that could happily co-exist with American political hegemony and the norms and values of a materialist, secular, consumerist society. It has become a term used with contempt by Muslims around the world, as indeed most things ‘American’ are.
The problem of the Eurocentric nature of most modern education is now widely accepted, and there are numerous efforts to try to address it by developing indigenous forms of knowledge. But this is only one of many problems in contemporary Western academic discourse. YUSUF AL-KHABBAZ discusses.
The Shi'ite Movement in Iraq by Faleh A. Jabar. Publisher: Saqi Books, London, 2003. Pp.: 391. Pbk: £15.99/$24.95. By Nasr Salem
One feature of Palestinian politics for the last 15 years or so, since the first intifada, has been the increasing political importance of Hamas, the main Islamic movement in Palestine, despite the entrenched political positions of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) as the main representative of the Palestinian people on the international stage, and the Palestinian Authority (PA) as the main civil authority in Palestine since 1992.
President Husni Mubarak has turned one of the most powerful and influential Muslim countries into Uncle Sam's errand boy – humiliating Egypt, its people and Muslims at large in the process. The time is coming to be rid of him, his colleagues, collaborators and intended successors.
The protracted negotiations and bitter wrangling surrounding the formation of Iraq's new government have focused attention on the complexities involved in establishing a political balance among the country's fractious ethnic, religious, tribal and partisan mixture.
Like a large rock thrown into a still pool, the succession of ripples resulting from the assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik al-Hariri in a massive bomb-explosion on February 11 continue to emerge and spread by the day.
Lord Macaulay could not have imagined that his Minute on Education, written for the British Colonial Administration in 1835, would still be valid 170 years later. His idea to create “Brown Englishmen” in India is alive and well, but with an important difference: the brown sahibs have now arrived in Europe and North America as well, and are hard at work to please their masters.1
Despite intensive efforts to reach an agreement between the Manila government and Bangsamoro mujahideen in Mindanao, renewed fighting broke out in Sulu in February. In a special report forCrescent International, MAULANA ALONTO explains the background and significance of the new conflict.
As if the recent divine fury of the tsunami that struck South-East Asia last December were not enough, the prospect of a war between that region's only two predominantly Muslim countries, Indonesia and Malaysia, came into the limelight after the deployment of warships by both countries in a disputed area of sea.
It was inevitable: US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice's seven-hour visit to Kabul, the Afghan capital, on March 17 was bound to cause some joking: the only relief available to a people traumatized by 27 years of war and bloodshed. "We wanted bread but got Rice instead," said many Afghans.
Pakistan's deep social divisions are on display yet again in the case of two women, Mukhtar Mai and Dr Shazia Khalid, who have been raped but are finding it difficult to secure justice. The feudal system demands that they commit suicide so that the crimes can be hushed up and the criminals let off the hook.
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Russia has been striving to retain its control of the new Central Asian republics, among them Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan and Tajikistan. The UShas been trying very hard to replace Moscow's influence with its own; it has succeeded in acquiring, for example, a military base in Kyrgyzstan alongside Russia's.