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Our neighbour’s role in the millennial war

Monday, April 16, 2012

Fatal Faultlines (Pakistan, Islam and the West) by Irfan Husain examines the history and politics behind the prolonged confrontation between Islam and the occidental powers that has been on in various degrees of conflicts for centuries. 

As an impartial columnist and observer, Husain has often been labeled a CIA or a Mossad agent, sometimes even a RAW agent. There is however an emerging thought bank in Pakistan that does see things his way. The opposing views reveal the ambivalence towards the United States and the West that prevail in the Muslim world. A closer examination of mindsets, even in India, reveals the deep animosity and downright hatred that millions of those who practice Islam harbour for the United States, and also to an extent to Britain, for its supportive role in American operations in the Gulf, particularly Iraq.

The difference and the inherent danger when it comes to anti-Americanism of non-Muslim countries, is that non-Muslims have not declared jihad against the US and are not pre-occupied with targeting US interests and citizens around the world. The one-off kidnapping of a white man by some non-Muslim outfit does not constitute certain death of the victim, as is the case of various factions owing allegiance to some Islamic fanatic or the other. The hospitality extended to most terror outfits, also to the late Osama bin Laden, exposes the pivotal role Pakistan has been playing in the entire sordid equation.

Husain balances the religious sanction being accorded to violence, especially by Saudi-based organizations and clerics, against the new Arab Spring movement, and holds out some hope for the doves.  
Fatal Faultlines by Irfan Husain HarperCollins Publishers Rs.299

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