9/11 anniversary: The end of Islamic extremism is far from nigh

by Michael Nazir-Ali, Telegraph

It is often described as the day that changed the world but, in fact, 9/11 only brought home to the West what had been simmering, and sometimes breaking out violently, in different parts of the world for nearly half a century.

The effects on America and Europe were nothing short of traumatic. There was an immediate questioning of a growing “globalism” and the emergence of a siege mentality. Heightened security has eased people’s minds, but there still lurks a basic anxiety about when, and where, the next attack will be.

Siren voices sometimes ask us to believe that 9/11 was caused by the pathological actions of a few, and that all Muslims should not be blamed for acts of terror. It is true that there are many moderate Muslims who condemn unequivocally what has been done in the name of their religion and assert that Islam had nothing to do with it. But we still need to ask how terrorism on such a vast scale was possible.

Apologists, both Western and Muslim, claim that Islamist extremism and terrorism have been bred by resentment of Western power. The military dominance of Israel, the roots of the Kashmir dispute, the megalomania of the Shah of Iran, and Suez are all seen to be examples of Western hubris and ill-will towards the Muslim world.

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