Discuss the Rise of Radicalism in the Middle East, the Impact and Ramifications of That Occurrence
Nor is Iraq or, for that matter, the Middle East as a whole, the only locus of conflict depicted as being sectarian in nature, as the disturbing events in Burma/Myanmar, as well as in the Central African Repubic (CAR) and Nigeria clearly illustrate. With increasing frequency, media accounts of the civil war in Syria describe it in sectarian terms and report that the violence there has inflamed "sectarian tension" throughout the Gulf and beyond. Meanwhile, headlines have warned that the "sectarian divide" in Pakistan is widening and intensifying.
After World War 2, oil resources developed and sent imperialistic powers to the Middle East. This created a dependency on the Middle East and their resources. However, the relationship between major global oil economic powers and local populations in the areas of extraction has not been fostered; instead, an irreconcilable divide between Islam and the West emerged. Similar to British imperialism, the United States involves itself in the politics of the Middle East and takes it upon itself to solve the Middle East’s problems, initiating conflict and invasions. As Western influence increased, industry created a connection to Western culture, one that includes provocative clothing, music, and habits- all of which go against the fundamentalist interpretation of the Quran. These directly oppose the ideals of the fundamentalists and thus fuel anti-Americanism and further rebellion against modern progression. The reason why such radical religious organizations thrive is by their use of religious persuasion to impose the ‘true’ interpretation of the religious text. They oppose modernity and instead act on Sharia law, which instead of governing by secular laws, only looks toward Muslim rules and regulations based on strict interpretations by the Quran. In addition, when the United States began to occupy Iraq, it created an anti-American sentiment in the area that only grew as Muslims realized a long history of American negligence and indifference towards supporting followers of Islam. Conflicts in Bosnia, Chechnya, and Gaza, directly targeted Muslim victims, and these conflicts are “…given as an example of where Western nations have failed to act quickly or effectively to protect Muslim civilians/
In fact, rather than being ethno-nationalist, these claims are more based on transnational interpretations of Islam.
Propaganda from extremists about bombings and civilian casualties can be countered with success stories about effective cross-national cooperation, e.g., the joint humanitarian aid operational activities between France and Russia (the Istanbul event).
Byman, Daniel. 2016. "Understanding the Islamic State: A Review Essay." International Security 40: 127-65.
Buhaug, Halvard, and Kristian Skrede Gleditsch. 2008. "Contagion or Confusion? Why Conflicts Cluster in Space." International Studies Quarterly 52: 215-33.
Juergensmeyer, Mark. 2018. "Thinking Sociologically About Religion and Violence: The Case of ISIS." Sociology of Religion 79: 20-34.