Monday, August 28, 2006

Hey, you, off of my cloud

Middle East: case study: the tribal world of power-challenging. Nasrallah and Hizbollah threaten to throw Bin Laden and al-Qaeda off the jihad popcharts (requires TNR subscription). This has a sick-comic aspect to it, as JihadWatch explains.

EXTRA: To sign a petition to the US State Department to deny Iranian chief cleric Khatami a visa into the US, click here.

LATER: Oh well: Khatami got his visa. More about the Shia and their contemporary role in the Islamic world and the Middle East from Naval Postgraduate School professor Vali Nasr at BookTV (C-SPAN2).

At the bookstore recently, I again encountered Yale law professor Amy Chua's fine book of a few years ago, World on Fire. It explains why democratization and marketization of countries not ready for either is a really bad idea, a point Nasr also elaborates on. Briefly, the sudden transition immediately creates big winners and losers. This seems to be a growing decade-plus-long failure of globalization. It poses a potentially fatal danger to any hope that the Islamic world can be integrated peacefully into global civilization. It is also a major source of anti-Americanism.

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