Israel/Middle East (News & Politics)/ISIS
David, years ago after the first Afghanistan conflict, I predicted that what we are seeing now would happen-a war of ideas with militant Islam. From your perspective, how do you think this will play out? I think that for western countries to get involved is a big mistake and just what the radicals want. Do you think that Islam itself will survive? I cant help but believe that most moderate muslims are as horrified as non muslims, and many might be questioning their faith.
You ask some interesting questions so I'll try my best to give you some interesting answers.
Of course, I don't think I have to explain to you why the United States went into Afghanistan in the first place. But what was totally lost on US thinking was the veracity of militant Islam. The fact is, militant Islam is militant Islam whether the Taliban was in charge of Afghanistan or not. Consider the first World Trade Center attack and later, the massacre at Fort Hood and what happened in the Canadian Parliament, but also consider the attacks overseas - ISIS, Boko Haram, London, Madrid, Paris, Copenhagen. It is simply the nature of militant Islam to perpetuate terrorism against societies that are either more successful than they, or that are considered infidels. Therefore, the establishment of Shariah law in the west is the solution to this "problem". There is also the "clash of civilizations" factor as they see it. To them, Christians, or "Christians" are the descendants of the medieval Crusaders who want to destroy Islam, and Jews are their helpers especially in regards to the creation of the European-settler-colonial-state of Israel - in other words, western imperialism. In a past generation, that may have been true. Then again, there was also Arab or Muslim imperialism (which the militant Muslims conveniently overlook). But whereas western imperialism is now more or less history, Muslim, but especially Arab, imperialism still exists.
Nowadays, western countries feel they have to get involved in the region (sometimes with their non-western, Muslim allies), not only because of historical ties, as in the case with France, but also to fight terrorist states and regimes who have attacked them. But, for example, the fight against ISIS seems to be having little or no affect. Why? Because in the western and Arab mind, when they go into these countries, they are going into "Arab countries" and not Arab-occupied countries whose populations are mostly Arab because of a long historical process of oppression and colonization of the indigenous peoples. This reason alone (but also many others as well) is why the western battle against Islamic (Arab) terror will fail. Guaranteed. That's my prediction. What I'd like to see happen is the Arab-occupied indigenous peoples of the Middle East - half are Christian and half Muslim - would form one unified military organization, and not only help fight the terror, but more than that, free themselves from the Arab occupation of their lands. This would have the automatic effect of reducing militant Islam by about 90% and the ISIS state, which sits on ancestral Kurdish and Assyrian lands, would be totally eradicated. Thus far, the Jews are the only formerly Arab-occupied people in the region to free itself but why should they be the only ones?
I think that Islam will survive. It can't not. It's a religion with over a billion followers and in order for it not to survive, then what we see now in the Middle East will have to be multiplied a thousand times and engulf Muslims living outside the area as well. What we usually hear about Islam is the conflict between Sunnis and Shias. And in fact, these are the two main sects in Islam and most are moderate and peaceful, but in most cases, very apathetic. But there are also many other sects which are naturally moderate in their outlook. The Sufis for example, who are very horrified over what's going on right now, have long been persecuted by the mainstream Muslims, and the Kurds who are bearing the brunt of fighting ISIS, and who, in spite of being mostly Sunnis, have also long been persecuted.
How a Muslim views events and whether they are now questioning their faith will depend on the particular nation and individual you are talking about.