By Geoffrey Cook, TMO
March 29th–Albany (Calif.)–Some time ago on these pages, I predicted if the Indo-Pakistani conflict were ever to be settled, Pakistan would look Westward toward Jerusalem. At the moment the struggle for Arab Democracy in the west of Dar al Islam — partially successful so far in North Africa and the Maghreb.
Radical contemporary Jihadism actually arose in the Middle East, and emigrated to such South Asian regions (such as Afghanistan [which is in fact the bridge between Central, South Asia besides the Middle East], Pakistan, Bangladesh, (Islamic) India, the Maldives and the minority populations in Sri Lanka (formerly, Ceylon) and (even!) Tibet. The Violent Jihadi (versus the original Arabic theological import of inter-struggle) — reasserted itself in the historically central terrain of the Muslim world as a reaction to the repressive modern Post-Colonial governments of the region there.
At first, the Revolutions from the Colonial oppressors of the Middle East, were highly influenced by the thinking of President Nasser of Egypt, which was Nationalistic and progressive sense in the Western sense, but did not give much respect to the Islamic religion itself.
(In India, on the other hand, Nehru — a Hindu with definitely too little understanding of his contemporaneous (British) Indian Muslim aspirations was highly influenced by the British-generated Fabian Socialists and later by the Bloomsbury economist, John Keynes. The most horrible conflict on the other side of the Muslim-dominated world,, the Maghreb, was the Algerian civil war wherein between 150,000 through 200,000 people died are estimated to have died.. The great â€œbugabooâ€ is the â€œthreatâ€ of Islamism. The danger is Tel Avivâ€™ rejection of Islamism. The political philosophy of Islamism is slightly right-of-center. The Muslim Brotherhood are a democratic party who have taken part in democratic contests for many years. Jimmy Carter stated to your composer that the 2006 elections in Gaza, wherein Hamas soundly won, was the most free and fair he has ever seen. Of course, Turkey has been lead by an Islamist party for several years. The danger here is the reaction of Israel!
The real enemy to these fringe Arab groups — such as Alâ€™Qaeda — were wrestling the very nations which now the democracy movements are sweeping. During the last late Russian War (during the 1980s), many of these sub-national groups (â€œdissident revolutionariesâ€œ), were recruited to fight Russian Empire by primarily the American C.I.A. (Central Intelligence Agency) and its Pakistani equivalent, I.S.I. (Inter-Services Intelligence) as these two countriesâ€˜ surrogate soldiers.
The grave mistake of the Americans (and the reason your researcher considers Reagan so lowly of Reagan as one of Washingtonâ€™s worse leaders of modern times , for, after defeating the mighty Soviet Army; and, thereby, the U.S. President deserted these irregulars with the Taliban (rag-tag) army who accomplished the great victory for America instead of rebuilding the expanse of the Hindu Kush: (Much like a mini-Marshall plan).
Now, Kabul rules one of the poorest nations in the world, and instead of bolstering the people of homeland on the Mediterranean, we desert the deserving citizens which created a five-prong civil War. The Taliban ([Islamic religious] students) drove the five factions of the civil War into a one corner of the desert-mountain landscape.
At first the populace were grateful to their â€œyoungâ€ Afghani liberators, but their youth and unsophisticated understanding of Islam caused the residents of the Mountains and the whole world — except Saudi Arabia and Pakistan — to turn their backs on them in disgust.
Mullah Omar (the Chief of State) during the Taliban ascendancy was furious at Osama bin-Laden, when he heard that the latter man, whom he was harboring out of tribal curtsey within his Republic was endangering his people, for the Afghans were no more than human shields for these Arab mercenaries, and the Taliban State did not have a chance against the initial overwhelming power of America.
Al Qaeda works similar to the old Communist Party. So, an â€œAl Qaedaâ€ was formed independently in Iraq to fight the West, and Al Qaeda of the Maghreb is a considerable force, but the Democratic revolts in the Arab homeland (especially Yemen on the southern tip of the Arabian Peninsula), makes the Jihadist less relevant in those regions because, if these nations can make the transition to an Arab democracy, the necessity to fight repression there will lessen; and, thus, the Jihadi Movement will have less of an attraction within the Middle East, but where will the mercenaries go if the democrats (and, incidentally, the Jihadi) raison dâ€™etre is achieved? Your scribe would like to consider this next week.
A Robert Kaplan reported in the March 7th in the Washington Post, â€œWith the horrific carnage in Libya, the flaming of revolution in Bahrain, and the protest for political change in Jordan and Moroccoâ€¦the highest priority (for the U.S. and E.U. [the European Union] should be) helping â€¦[them] to democracyâ€¦â€
This should not be Jeffersonian Democracy or even West Minister Democracy, it should be an Arab and/or Islamic Democracy!