Monday, July 10, 2006

Moderation In All Things

"Islamist moderate" sounds to most westerners like an oxymoron--for good reason. Not that Islam can't be compatible with secular government, but the idea of Islamists running the government conjures up images of authoritarian regimes bent on forcing the entire world to conform to a very narrow view of Shari'a law. Iran springs to mind. Michael Totten's (you know Michael Totten--one of my favorite bloggers/independent journalists) quest for moderate Islamists seemed to be in vain, until he discovered The Kurdistan Islamic Union, and interviewed some people who claim to be Islamists, but don't want to kill you if you don't convert to Islam, or make women wear a burkha, hiding in the house while men run the world; they don't want to force you to give up wine with dinner, or material possesions, or any of the other standard "life would be better if we all revert to the seventh century" talking points. Isn't that refreshing? I hope the moderate Islamist bug is catching. Totten, who at first doubted these people could really be Islamists, came around to believing that they are the real deal:

If all the world’s Islamists were like these mellow Kurdish Islamists there would be no Terror War and there would be no talk of any clash of civilizations. It’s no accident, nor is it merely a convenience, that the Kurds of Iraq are American allies.

Take the time to read the article. It's fascinating, and encouraging--the best of both worlds.


  1. I still can't help but feel sorry for these people--that they practice a religion that is not based on the truth (at least, according to truth as described in the Bible, which I wholeheartedly embrace). My only hope is that this more moderate form of Islam will make it less impossible for the Gospel to be presented to them.

  2. I can’t help but be glad that there is any openness to the concept that they don’t have the exclusive franchise on good ideas or right thinking. They give some credit to the notion that western civilization has its good points--a step in the direction of social and religious tolerance, which seems a necessary precursor to Gospel receptivity, at least on any widespread level. From a personal point of view, I’m just glad that if these people came into power, it seems that they wouldn’t instantly want to kill us for not sharing their religion. From a “sympathy for them” point of view, they at least don’t seem so full of hate that the very notion of listening to us is unthinkable. That opens the door to sharing what we believe is true, don’t you think?

  3. I agree. Well said!!