The French Revolution
How Pervasive Is the Threat of Political Islam?
Even more disturbing, why do Muslim politicians from Egypt to Malaysia believe that their path to power lies in anti-Israel demagoguery? Why do these politicians, when faced with challenges to their own rule, invariably blame "Zionists"? Perhaps they blame Zionists because they recognize that within their own populations, there is a ready market for anti-Israel propaganda. They don't just manufacture the hate and anti-Semitism of their populations. They are fed and sustained by it.
As I have said before, I can't define "true Islam." I know that I'd chuckle if a Muslim lawyer—even one who was a student of Christianity—tried to tell me what "true Christianity" was. The definition and nature of true Islam I leave to Muslims, and it may very well be that true Islam is something quite different from the Islam that dominates the airwaves and political exchange of the modern Ummah as expressed by the OIC.
It is also undeniably true that many Muslims have demonstrated amazing courage and determination fighting extremism and anti-Semitism. Muslim-Americans have died fighting al Qaeda, the Taliban, and the potpourri of extremist groups in Iraq and Afghanistan. Similarly, Israeli Muslim citizens have given their lives for their own nation. Such sacrifices demand to be honored.
For some time our elites, on both sides of the aisle, have argued that our problems in the Muslim world have been caused by the so-called "few extremists" who've "hijacked" a great faith. But the Arab Spring may very well show the emptiness of that rhetoric. When the crowd (and not the military) finally rules in Egypt, what kind of government will it produce? If the Syrian protestors overthrow Assad, will they recognize Israel? Will they forsake their support for Hezbollah's terrorist mini-state?
Perhaps it is time for America to grapple with the same questions that Israelis have grappled with (at least) since 1948, when the newly-independent nation was immediately attacked by no less than seven Muslim countries. What if the problem isn't a "few extremists" exploiting Israeli or American missteps? What if there's literally nothing that America or Israel can do to placate vast segments of the Muslim world?
What do we do if political Islam is the problem?
David French is a lawyer, writer, soldier, and veteran of the Iraq war. He is Senior Counsel at the American Center for Law and Justice. Follow him on Facebook.