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Salafists urge ultraconservative Islam on post-Arab Spring governments

ScienceRocks

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Salafists urge ultraconservative Islam on post-Arab Spring governments
Washington Post ^ | Oct. 7, 2012 | William Booth, Karin Brulliard and Abigail Hauslohner

After Arab Spring, Salafists are building influence — at polls and at gunpoint - The Washington Post

CAIRO — The elections that followed the Arab uprisings elevated Islamists out of decades of repression and into the region’s most powerful posts. Here in Egypt, a former prisoner became president.

But to Salafists, adherents of a puritanical form of Islam who have embraced the country’s new freedoms with gusto, the emerging Islamist order has a serious flaw: It isn’t nearly Islamist enough.

“They say that the people do not want sharia,” said Gamel Saber, a back-slapping Salafist activist who said he dreams of a day when his country’s courts will fully implement Islamic law. “But that is not true. They are ready.”

Saber’s dream is shared by millions of allies across North Africa, and that reality is proving to be the most serious challenge yet for the months-old governments struggling to find their feet in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia.

As moderate Islamist leaders in all three countries begin to craft post-revolutionary constitutions, the Salafists in their midst are pushing — sometimes at the ballot box, sometimes at the point of a gun — to create societies that more closely mirror their ultraconservative religious beliefs and lifestyles.

The formidability of the Salafist awakening and the problems it poses for the new governments are unexpected. While challenges from remnants of the old regimes and from disgruntled liberals were widely anticipated, the Islamist bona fides of those who took power had been considered beyond reproach. All have vowed to restore Islam to its rightful place at the center of society after decades of marginalization.

But many Salafists, emboldened by what they see as growing public enthusiasm for their cause, have denounced the new leaders for being too timid in injecting Islamic thought into long-standing domestic and foreign policies. The time for more dramatic action, they say, is now. . .
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Yay, you fucking liberals just made this planet a little less free. How does it feel. Bastards. :eusa_whistle:
 

waltky

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‘Arab Spring’ Has Benefited Islamists...
:eek:
Intelligence Director: ‘Arab Spring’ Has Benefited Islamists
March 13, 2013 – The “Arab spring” has benefited Islamists rather than democracy advocates, while political transitions and unrest in the region have provided opportunities for terrorists to mount attacks against U.S. interests, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told lawmakers Tuesday.
Delivering the intelligence community’s annual report on threats facing the United States, Clapper gave what amounted to a downbeat assessment of the upheavals that many initially viewed as a promising movement towards greater democracy in a region dominated by long-ruling autocrats. “Islamist actors have been the chief electoral beneficiaries of the political openings, and Islamist parties in Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco will likely solidify their influence in the coming year,” he told the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence in a written statement. “Although some countries have made progress towards democratic rule, most are experiencing uncertainty, violence, and political backsliding. The toppling of leaders and weakening of regimes have also unleashed destabilizing ethnic and sectarian rivalries.”

Clapper said the transitions in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and Yemen, and unrest in Syria and Mali had offered opportunities for terrorists to target American interests. “The turmoil in the Arab world has brought a spike in threats to U.S. interests in the region,” he told the committee in verbal testimony, citing attacks on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya last September, and on an Algerian oil facility earlier this year.

He described the al-Nusra Front, called a Syrian offshoot of al-Qaeda in Iraq, as “one of the best organized and most capable of the Sunni terrorist groups.” “The dispersed and decentralized nature of the terrorist networks active in the region highlights that the threat to U.S. and Western interests overseas is more likely to be unpredictable, “ Clapper said. “Weakened or diminished counterterrorism capabilities, border control mechanisms, internal security priorities, and other shortcomings in these countries – combined with anti-U.S. grievances or triggering events – will sustain the threats to U.S. interests throughout the region,” he assessed. Clapper highlighted three specific issues in the region which he said would affect U.S. interests:

--The risk that the conflict in Syria, and the struggles of new governments to extend control in Libya and Yemen, will permit extremists to take advantage of ungoverned areas, using them to destabilize governments and prepare attacks against Western targets in those countries.

--Economic hardships and a failure to meet heightened expectations could set back progress in transitioning countries and destabilize vulnerable regimes like the one ruling Jordan.

--Negative views of America, with skepticism among some transitioning governments about cooperating with the U.S. having the potential to hamper U.S. counterterrorism efforts.

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