6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Are the other reviewers joking??????,
This review is from: Islamism (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)This book is billed as objective, balanced, and easy to read.
I have an honours degree in law with Politics, and read very widely on Middle East issues and Islamism. I know how to read, and I know the facts concerning Islam and islamism.
This book contains a veritable fog of impenetrable academic language, and despite the praise for the methodology used, it reads like a diatribe and apology for islamism.
There are many direct quotes from "millitants" (who most rational people describe as TERRORISTS and MURDERERS) are not balanced or challenged in any obvious way.
Any mention of terror attacks by Hamas, Hezbollah, or state sponsorship of them by rogue governments such as Iran or Syria is met with moral silence - there is no question or discussion as to why these acts are so far beyond wrong that they need to be condemned, not understood.
In places there seemed to be some judgements made as to whether the islamist groups are in any way justified in what they do, but even the account Hezbollah's lies about Sha'ba Farms feels like a whitewash: Lebanon never owned this territory, so Hezbollah invents a claim in order to prolong the war, which was over by everybody else's standards.
In short, this book is not objective, and is published just in time to miss the slide in islamism in the "Arab Spring", which appears to be handing much of the Middle East from the hands of evil marxist dictators into the hands of dangerous islamist groups who make Fatah seems like cute teddybears. I am thoroughly sick of "experts" trying to justify the unforgiveable, and both academics and journalists seem to be the worst culprits of this culture of lies. I would have given negative starts on this review if it had been possible.
The book tells you what these groups are like, but seemes to avoid telling what it is like to live under their control. I met and spoke to Israeli Arabs who hated Arafat, and he was as nothing compared to what is coming in Egypt, and possibly now in Syria...
If you can find a copy (and believe me, it is hard to find, but still relevant), I strongly recommend a book by a serious jounalist called Dagger of Islam which was written before the rise of many of the groups described in "Islamism", and seemed a lot more objective and honest.
I confess to being angry when I wrote this, but I see it from a different viewpoint, and I see this as the kind of muddle academic thinking which almost seeks to justify terror by calling it "millitancy". When people you know have died at the hands of these "millitants", "criminal" or "lunatics" seem better words.
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Initial post: 27 Jun 2012 16:38:26 BDT
Darren Simons says:
Although I agree this is a very one-sided view of Islamism, bordering on apologetic, judging by the start of the last chapter the entire purpose of the book is to highlight how various Islamist movements are completely different to one another both politically and religiously. I must (bebrudgingly) admit this they have achieved... although I hadn't realised that was the intention of the book until the last chapter
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