Radical Islam Reaches Critical Mass in Middle East
This doesn’t sound too promising…
Author Barry Rubin writes that radical Islam has now reached a critical mass in the Middle East in his article today at the GLORIA Center:
What has happened now, however, is that radical Islamism has reached a critical mass. It now poses serious challenges to Arab nationalism as the leading opposition in every Arabic-speaking country. Islamism plays a key role in governing Iraq; Hamas defeated Fatah on the Palestinian front; and Hizballah is close to gaining at least equal power in Lebanon.
For years, probably decades, to come, the Middle East will be shaken by a titanic battle between Arab nationalism and Islamism for control. This struggle, and certainly not the Arab-Israeli conflict, is the central theme and underlying factor in every regional issue.
This is so for several reasons. One is that the Islamist cause is now promoted by an alliance including two regimes, Iran and Syria, as well as by Hamas and Hizballah, which both rule territory. Syria’s government, technically “secular” and ruled by a non-Muslim Alawite minority no less, behaves like an Islamist one, especially in its foreign policy, as to keep loyal its Sunni Muslim majority.
It is folly to think that this HISH alliance (Hamas-Iran-Syria-Hizballah) can be split. After all, the parties have common aims and ideologies, their cooperation is so mutually beneficial, and last but not least they think they are winning.
Historically, there were two barriers for Iran’s trying to become the Middle East’s leading power: the Persian-Arab and Shia-Sunni divides. How could Persian, Shia Iran appeal to Arabs who mostly were Sunni? The HISH alliance solves that problem. Three of the four members are Arab, and Hamas is Sunni as is the majority of Syrians. If one adds Iraq’s Sunni Arab insurgency that breakthrough becomes even clearer.
Nor does this exhaust the Islamist forces working today to seize state power throughout the region. Al-Qaida is a factor, mostly in Iraq–where it cooperates closely with Syria–and Saudi Arabia. Al-Qaida is far more a threat in terms of terrorism, however, than in a strategic sense. Since it has only one tactic, in comparison to other Islamists’ flexibility, al-Qaida is unlikely to take over any countries.
There is more from Barry Rubin at GLORIA Center.
HotAir has more on the “cross-pollination” between the Iranian-linked terror groups.
Here’s another example:
The US released information in July on Ali Mussa Daqduq, the Hezbollah leader apprehended in Iraq, who is responsible for terrorist acts and is funded by the Iranian Regime.(MNF-I)