Lewis: Conflict seen as mainly religious

Discussion in 'Middle East - General' started by toomuchtime_, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. toomuchtime_
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    toomuchtime_ Gold Member

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    Muslims view the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Iran's showdown with the West as essentially a religious conflict, an expert on Islam said recently.

    "I think that in the Muslim perception, [the conflict] is basically a religious conflict," said Prof. Bernard Lewis in an address at the sixth annual Jerusalem Conference. "It is to decide who will dominate Islam, and whose version of Islam will prevail in the Islamic world."

    The world-renowned historian and Princeton University professor emeritus said that the Iranian nuclear threat has led moderate Arab countries in the Middle East to forge quiet alliances with Israel, as was evident in the recent military operation against Hamas in Gaza.

    "This represents a mortal threat to established Arab regimes in the region, and like Sadat in his day - but for even more compelling reasons - they are looking to Israel for help in dealing with what they see as the major threat," Lewis said.

    He made the remarks at the concluding session of the conference in a half-hour-long conversation with Dan Diker of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs.

    Lewis said the recurrence of what he dubbed the "Sadat gambit" - a realization that other threats were far more dangerous than Israel - came as for the first time in centuries, the predominantly Sunni Muslim world was seeing Shi'itism as a "mortal threat" to Sunni ascendancy, which has prevailed in the Muslim world since time immemorial.

    The nonagenarian historian, who first used the phrase "the clash of civilizations" 11 years before the 9/11 terror attacks on the US, noted that nuclear weapons in the hands of an Islamic regime with an "apocalyptic mind-set" represented an unprecedented danger.

    "Mutual assured destruction was the main deterrent preventing the use of nuclear weapons by the Soviets," Lewis said. "For [Iranian President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad and his group, with their apoclayptic mind-set, mutual assured destruction is not a deterrent but an inducement."

    He said there was a woeful lack of awareness of both the magnitude and threat of the jihadist goal of radical Islam, stemming from both ignorance and a provincial colonialist outlook of the threat as "some local trouble."

    Lewis: Conflict seen as mainly religious | Middle East | Jerusalem Post
     
  2. del
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    del BANNED

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    duh
     
  3. Shogun
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    Shogun Free: Mudholes Stomped

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    a jewish guy speaking to more jews at a jewish gala.


    bravo.



    *yawn*
     

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