23 March, 1999

Fuller and Lesser Questions for Discussion

With collapse of communism, are Islam and the West on a collision course?

Does political Islam seek to enhance power of states with large Muslim majorities in relations with stronger Western


Why is the role of Islam likely to grow in the internal politics of Muslim countries? What is the antidote to the growth of

radical Islam? Exposure to and inclusion in the political process will Islamic politics become less radical.

How will social and political change away from authoritarian orders in the Middle East affect the growth of political Islam?

Is it more a threat to the established orders of Arab states than political Islam is a danger to the West?

In what way is Eastern Orthodoxy closely linked with ethnicity? Greek, Armenian, Russian, Serbian churches linked with

ethnicity in a way that Roman Catholic churches are not linked to specific countries.

For almost a Millennium, how was the Islamic threat a main strategic problem for Europeans?

Why do some scholars anticipate that there will be another clash between Christendom and Islam? Because there was an

historic cold war between Christendom and Islam and because the East West Cold War is over,

What is the potential for a Muslim axis composed of Turkey, Bosnia, Albania, and Kosovo?

During the Cold War, why were tensions between Islam and Christendom overlooked?

Why is the West more a target of political Islam than the East? Because of the convergence of colonialism and Islamic

interactions with the West, it is a target of political Islam.

How have Western perceptions of Islam been affected by events like the Egyptian Revolution, nationalization of the Suez

Canal, subsequent military action by Britain and France against Egypt, the Arab oil embargo, Iranian revolution, Gulf


Re Muslim perceptions of the West, why do some Muslims blame the West for the reversal of Islamic civilizationís

dominance and its replacement with a Muslim sense of siege?

How does Islamic civilization reconcile its weakened and subordinate position in the contemporary world with the

manifestation of Godís favor bestowed on Islamic nations since its flowering in the seventh century?

What do Muslims say about Christians? They took a wrong turn and worshiped the messenger rather than God himself.

What do Christians say about Muslims? Muslims are heretics.

Both Christianity and Islam seek converts and are hence universalistic in their aspirations in contrast to Judaism.

How did many Muslims view the Crusades? As forerunners to Western imperialism and as precedents for establishment of

Israel, which some Muslims view as a permanent Western outpost in the heart of Islam.

Why is generally more difficult for Muslims to live under nonĖMuslim rule than the reverse? Because Muslims are

enjoined to create a Muslim political order while Christians are Jews are not.

Christians do not view themselves as a community as many Muslims and Jews do.

Because of power differentials between Islam and Western Christian nations, many Muslims view themselves under siege,

persecuted as terrorists, and perceived as the enemy in the West.

Muslims are the last ethnoreligious group that can be ridiculed and caricatured with impunity.

Some Muslims see the West as driven to put down every Muslim challenger whether it is Nasser, Qadhafi, Khomeni, or