Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Amid a tumult of alarmist babble, I recommend the occasional restorative dose of cold but refreshing water from Newsweek International editor (and strictlytrue girlie crush) Fareed Zakaria:
A cottage industry of scaremongering has flourished in the West—especially in the United States—since 9/11. Experts extrapolate every trend they don't like, forgoing any serious study of the data. Many conservative commentators have written about the impending Islamization of Europe (Eurabia, they call it, to make you even more uncomfortable). Except that the best estimates, from US intelligence agencies, indicate that Muslims constitute around 3 per cent of Europe's population now and will rise to between 5 and 8 per cent by 2025, after which they will probably plateau. The watchdogs note the musings of every crackpot Imam, search the archives for each reference to the end of days, and record and distribute the late-night TV musings of every nutcase who glorifies martyrdom. They erupt in fury when a Somali taxi driver somewhere refuses to load a case of liquor into his car, seeing it as the beginning of sharia in the West. But these episodes do not reflect the basic direction of the Muslim world. That world is also modernizing, though more slowly than the rest, and there are those who try to become leaders in rebellion against it. The reactionaries in the world of Islam are more numerous and extreme than those in other cultures—that world does have its dysfunctions. But they remain a tiny minority of the world's billion-plus Muslims. And neglecting the complicated context in which some of these pseudoreligious statements are made—such as an internal Iranian power struggle among clerics and nonclerics—leads to hair-raising but absurd predictions, like Bernard Lewis's confident claim that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad planned to mark an auspicious date on the Islamic calendar (22 August 2006) by ending the world. (Yes, he actually wrote that.)
The GDP of Iran is 1/68 that of the United States, its military spending 1/110 that of the Pentagon. If this is 1938, as many conservatives argue, then Iran is Romania, not Germany.

Fareed Zakaria, The Post-American World
Still, he wrote that in 2008, so I'm sure that in the past three years everything has completely changed and Melanie Phillips is right after all.



( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Sep. 6th, 2011 10:58 am (UTC)
He's dreamy. And more importantly, right.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

Latest Month

December 2015

Page Summary

Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Lilia Ahner