The Strange Alliance between Progressives and Islamists

March 20 2019

While Islamists’ positions on homosexuality, the role of women, and religion would seem to place them on the American right, in fact politically involved American Muslims sympathetic to Islamism have tended to align themselves with the hard left. Sam Westrop explains:

Prominent radical Muslim voices now argue for “intersectional feminism.” Groups such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR)—just ten years ago named by federal prosecutors as part of an enormous terror-finance network—rally for Black Lives Matter and campaign for “social justice,” prison reform, and a minimum-wage hike. Leading Salafist clerics protest President Trump’s immigration policies at the border. And the prominent activist Linda Sarsour dreams of “a world free of anti-black racism, Islamophobia, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, ageism, sexism, and misogyny.” . . .

[A] rising group of activists from Islamist circles genuinely seem to believe in a progressive-Islamist alliance. Branches of CAIR are increasingly staffed with young, hijab-wearing graduates of Muslim Student Associations, who appear to have reconciled working for an extremist-linked organization with publishing transgender-rights petitions on their social-media accounts. . . .

Other Islamists who have embraced and adopted progressive rhetoric are clearly being duplicitous, however. The Texas-based cleric Omar Suleiman, for instance, has been vocal in protesting the Trump administration’s immigration policies. . . . And yet, speaking before an Islamist audience, Suleiman has warned Muslim girls that if they are “promiscuous,” they may face death at the hands of a family member. [Still] other Muslim thinkers have begun to regret their forays into progressive politics. . . .

In 2018, the first two Muslim women elected to Congress—Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib—won office with the support of both Islamist and progressive voters. Intersectional Islamists have a much greater chance of imposing extremist ideas on American society than the Muslim Brotherhood or the Wahhabists ever did.

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More about: American Muslims, Ilhan Omar, Islamism, Politics & Current Affairs, Rashida Tlaib, U.S. Politics

 

A U.S. Withdrawal from Syria Would Help Russia, Iran, and Islamic State

Aug. 21 2019

Despite the president’s declaration last year that American troops would soon begin leaving Syria, about 1,000 remain. Charles Lister argues that their presence in the country serves vital U.S. interests:

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More about: Iran, ISIS, Russia, Syrian civil war, U.S. Foreign policy