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Article: Caliphate a dream, not a reality

December 14, 2006

Robert Spencer at JihadWatch links to an article from Reuters that quotes certain experts who claim that an Islamic caliphate is “a dream, not reality.” From the Reuters article:

Since September, President Bush has warned several times that al Qaeda wants to set up a violent, radical Islamic empire based in Iraq, to unite Muslims under one aegis.

Baghdad was once the center of an Islamic empire that lasted for four centuries — but experts say the chances of a revival of the ancient Islamic institution are remote.

“Al Qaeda could set up an Islamic state in the west of Iraq, if there is no American army there. But it would be difficult for them to penetrate any other state where there is an army and state apparatus,” said Saudi analyst Faris bin Houzam.

“Their big dream is to set up an Islamic state, but there’s nothing to suggest it could happen,” he added.

Robert Spencer has this to say in response (emphasis mine):

“….what no one quoted in this story ever discusses is the fact that however unlikely the prospect of success, the jihadists will soldier on, attempting to advance their cause by both violent and non-violent means.

Also, to dismiss the caliphate as “just part of (al Qaeda’s) war of slogans” fails to recognize how potent slogans can be in formulating public opinion — witness the success of the Palestinian cause in winning global support through canny use of terms like “occupation” and “apartheid” (and “Palestinian” itself). However unlikely its realization, the quest for the caliphate is increasingly popular — at least by the evidence of election results in the P.A., Egypt, Algeria, and elsewhere, and that fact could have extraordinarily serious consequences.”

Further down the same post, Hugh Fitzgerald chimes in (emphasis mine):

“The dream of Adolf Hitler — “heute Deutschland, morgen die ganze Welt” — was impossible of fulfillment, but in just trying, Hitler managed to cause the deaths of some 60 million people and damage, possibly forever, the civilization, and self-confidence, of Europe.

The dream of the Comintern and of some in the Soviet Union, of the proletariat of the world uniting, never came to pass… but in not coming to pass, nonetheless Communist dictatorships were either directly inflicted on many countries, as all those of Eastern and Central Europe, or helped to come into being, as with Communist China and North Korea.

In other words, while the “Caliphate” may be impossible of achievement, that and other, less dramatic or sensationalist goals of Muslims world-wide — are being achieved…”

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One Comment
  1. Another friend posited about this theory some months ago. I disagree with the notion that any movement is too small to take root and grow.

    I do, however, agree with Fitzgerald completely. One very little man aroused the passions of nations. How he did it was brilliant. Why he did it is debatable. WHAT he did with his power has damaged entire nations, ethnic groups, and nearly killed the heart and soul of Germany to the core.

    I read a quote from Dorthy Day last night:

    “People say, ‘What is the sense of our small effort?’ They cannot see that we must lay one brick at a time, take one step at a time.”

    Muslims are inculturated from birth with the virtues of self-discipline, perseverence, and pride in their heritage.

    Sadly, and for too many reasons to ennumerate here, we in the West appear to be fundamentally lacking in all three.

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