THE BATTLE BETWEEN IRAN AND SAUDI ARABIA: The Middle East tragedy

Black Wave. Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the Forty-Year Rivalry that Unraveled Culture, Religion, and Collective Memory in the Middle East
Author: Kim Ghattas
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company, USA

ISLAMISM: The traditional explanation for the conflict between Sunni and Shia Muslims is too superficial. A new, well-written analysis interprets the Middle East's major changes as a showdown between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

When we talk about Islamism in Egypt, we almost automatically associate it with the Muslim Brotherhood. It is the oldest form of Islamism in the country, and also the largest and most visible. Currently, it is also the Brotherhood that the Egyptian regime is cracking down on, because it is seen as a danger to the country's stability.

This is a crucial mistake if one wants to diagnose Egypt's Islamic challenges. For sure, the movement has fostered more radical thinkers like Sayyid Qutb, and probably the rhetoric from that side may seem dramatic and irreconcilable, but basically the Brotherhood is a humanitarian organization with a distinctly pragmatic approach to societal development.

Revolutionary or economic Islamism

Man skal i stedet rette blikket mod to andre islamiske retninger, som er langt mere potente. Den ene af dem er hvad man kan kalde den revolutionære  islamisme. Den er vanskeligere at identificere klart, fordi den lever i små demografiske lommer og primært tiltrækker unge mænd med behov for et ståsted.
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Hans Henrik Fafner
Fafner is a regular critic in Ny Tid. Residing in Tel Aviv.

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