IRAQ - What If The US Does Leave.The Salafi extremists whose rage the world is feeling today are not only primarily Sunni, they are particularly engaged in a war against the Shiites. Zarqawi, typical of the most fanatic Salafis, calls the Shiite Arabs of Iraq monkeys and has said many bad things against their sect, describing them as being "worse than the Crusaders and the Jews". A consensus is beginning to develop that, if the US decides to leave Iraq it will leave the whole Middle East - giving Israel a free hand in the region. If the US left the Middle East, would the Salafi militants focus their attacks on Shiites?
In Iraq, which has been ruled and dominated by a Sunni Arab minority since the British created the state in the early 20th century, Salafi extremists are already targeting the ruling Shiite Arab majority. The Salafi extremists see the Shiites as impure im·pure
adj. im·pur·er, im·pur·est
1. Not pure or clean; contaminated.
2. Not purified by religious rite; unclean.
3. Immoral or sinful: impure thoughts. and have no compunction about targeting Shiite Arab civilians. Some scholars of Islam have warned that the US, in replacing a Sunni Arab regime in Iraq with a Shiite Arab-dominated one, faces unforeseen challenges as the shift in power is worked out. Some see wider dangers as its neighbours jockey for influence: What happens if turmoil in the new Iraq leads to an open confrontation between a Shiite-dominated Iran and the Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia (sä`dē ərā`bēə, sou`–, sô–), officially Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, kingdom (2005 est. pop. ?
Experts see trouble for the US if its eventual withdrawal from Iraq opens the door to a Shiite-led cleansing of Sunni Muslims - the much-discussed "civil war" which some Iraqis, including former prime minister Iyad Allawi, say has already begun. The Christian Science Christian Science, religion founded upon principles of divine healing and laws expressed in the acts and sayings of Jesus, as discovered and set forth by Mary Baker Eddy and practiced by the Church of Christ, Scientist. Monitor on Aug. 3 quoted Martha Crenshaw cren·shaw also cran·shaw
A variety of winter melon (Cucumis melo var. inodorus) having a greenish-yellow rind and sweet, usually salmon-pink flesh.
[Origin unknown.] , a terrorism expert at Wesleyan University Wesleyan University, at Middletown, Conn.; coeducational; chartered and opened 1831. There are special cooperative study programs with the California Institute of Technology and the engineering department of Columbia Univ. in Connecticut, as saying: "It could be very dangerous if the US pulled out [of Iraq] entirely. The [Salafi] jihadists would say that is what the US wanted all along, the extermination extermination
mass killing of animals or other pests. Implies complete destruction of the species or other group. of the Sunnis in Iraq... It could mean huge new problems for the US".
Is a backlash against jihadism building from within Islam? Contrary to the complaints of critics, mainstream Muslim religious men have taken steps to combat terrorism. American Muslim leaders have quickly condemned Salafi attacks, and have established programmes, notably with the FBI, to assist in rooting out extremism. Such commitments have been amplified since the July bombings in London.
Muslim scholars in the US and Canada recently issued a fatwa fat·wa
A legal opinion or ruling issued by an Islamic scholar.
[Arabic fatw (judicial ruling), condemning terrorism and declaring violence against civilians - including suicide bombings - impermissible im·per·mis·si·ble
Not permitted; not permissible: impermissible behavior.
im in Islam. Islamic scholars in Britain have taken similar steps.
However, experts worry that this focus on mainstream religious men is missing the mark, since radicalised youth often do not listen to religious leaders they see as Westernised. At the same time, debate grows about whether more needs to be done. Some experts argue that Salafi jihadi Adj. 1. jihadi - of or relating to a jihad violence can be ended only through opposition from within Islam.
So far, such opposition has not stopped attacks. The reason, some argue, is a chicken-and-egg scenario: The climate within Islam might change if Western policy changes. The establishment of a Palestinian state and the departure of US troops from Iraq could leave extremists with fewer arguments that resonate with Muslims. Thus, both Islam and the West face pressure to change their ways. But both sides confront risks of appearing weak in the process. A retreat by the US and its allies could embolden em·bold·en
tr.v. em·bold·ened, em·bold·en·ing, em·bold·ens
To foster boldness or courage in; encourage. See Synonyms at encourage. jihadists; mainstream religious men could lose credibility if a fatwa appears to have come in response to Western demands.