While I don't have a very deep understanding of either Christian or Islamic theology, with what I do know I honestly see no significant differences between them in strictly theological terms. Or Judaism, for that matter.
In social terms, the different religions are at different stages of development in different communities, and it's somewhat dangerous to generalize. For example, Christianity in, say, Sweden is clearly at a different stage then in, say, Guatemala. It does seem to me that the Arab world generally seems to be at a stage that's a bit like where the West was perhaps 200 years ago. You have a very devout core of believers, and you have a much more secular part of society who still give lip service to the religion, since it's not really socially acceptable to directly challenge the religious establishment.
Also remember that the Arab world and the Muslim World are not the same thing. Indonesia is the most populous muslim country in the world, and it's decidedly not Arab. It also seems to have a somewhat mellower brand of Islam.
I do think what's been going on in the Middle East is more about economics, politics, and social issues then about religion per se. I would suggest that most of the time when a religion is associated with bad behavior, it is usually the case that the religion serves as a vehicle to facilitate the bad behavior, and not the source of it.
I think you may be confus9ing religion with ideology. I define ideology as a combination of an absolute belief that one is correct and a belief that this makes one morally superior to non believers. I agree that all ideologies come down to the same thing, but not all ideologies are religions, and not all religions are ideologies. In fact, *any* set of ideas can be turned into ideology. Including atheism - remember the Soviet Union?
Also, a small nit to pick - if you're referring to the period of Japanese history between the Meiji Restoration and WWII, it was the native Shinto religion that was turned into a national ideology, not Buddhism.