This volume accomplishes precisely what its author intended by providing those with sufficient intellectual curiosity a means of seeking deeper understanding of Islam and forming their own opinion of the Qur’an. This mission is both inspirational and aspirational. The gap we must close in modern society to achieve lasting international stability is vast. It is an intellectual divide that is multi-dimensional, layered, nuanced, complex, and sometimes maddening. Howk’s refreshed interpretation of the Qur’an is a noteworthy step in bridging this divide through respect and acceptance.
Understanding Western precepts of Just War Theory, analogous concepts within Islamic jurisprudence, and analyzing militant Islamic movement actions against them may offer strategists and policymakers philosophical means from which to attack the legitimacy of militant Islamic movements and thereby weaken their critical popular support.
Man, since creation, has had to kill and pillage in his quest for security and survival. Our complex characteristics such as greed, ambition, and lust have led us through generations to bear the teeth and spear against our kind in order to keep land, power, and wealth. War and the art of it has therefore been a handy tool for man to either destroy or rebuild.
Leveraging common principles found in different religions forms a foundation to undermine those using religious differences as a weapon. Expressing a deeper sense of religious understanding paints the U.S. as a pluralist society in a world where “more than eight-in-ten people identify with a religious group.” Some assert Samuel Huntington prophetically warned about a pending “Clash of Civilizations” citing religiously inspired violence ranging from organized terror groups to “lone wolf” incidents as evidence of a world bound for a cultural collision. Although terrorists represent only a small portion of a religious population, their ability to project global influence indicates the current international framework of nation-states is reaching a tipping point.
Dr. Flagg Miller is a linguistic anthropologist who has spent nearly a decade cataloging, translating, and interpreting a treasure trove of over 1,500 audio recordings of bin Laden and other jihadist leaders recorded between 1997 and 2001. The tapes served as an audio library for visitors to bin Laden’s Khaddar home and show the wear and tear of being listened to by his visitors.
There is a popular expression that says the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result. There are, of course, many different types of insanity. As one watches U.S. politicians and policymakers debate and form policy with respect to events taking place in the Iraq and Syria, one can’t help but contemplate that insanity in foreign policy is defined as adopting the same deluded and counterproductive policies around the world, decade after decade, expecting different results.