It is not just driven by religious zealotry, but by frustration and anger at U. It is vital to understand, however, that the vast majority of Muslims are appalled by the acts of violence committed in the name of their faith. It is essential that we distinguish between the religion of Islam and the actions of extremists like Osama bin Laden, who hijack Islamic discourse and belief to justify their acts of terrorism. This brief, clear-sighted book reflects twenty years of study, reflection, and experience on the part of a scholar who is equally respected in the West and in the Muslim world.
It will prove to be the best single guide to the urgent questions that have recently forced themselves on the attention of the entire world. He clearly and carefully explains the teachings of Islam, Islamic law, holy war and the use of violence, and terrorism. Esposito methodically leads the reader through the complicated history of Islam. He explains the various conceptions of jihad, or holy war, ranging from internal movements for community reform to the modern explosive threat to all things external to Islam. The Reut bookstore offers insights into the canon of books most relevant to the policy challenges facing the Government of Israel.
Your purchase from the Reut bookstore helps to support the Reut Institute. Perform an advanced search by typing in a query, modifying the time constraints, mini-site, title or both title and contents, and specifying specific product categories. Once logged-in, clicking the briefcase icon allows you to save and categorize relevant Reut products according to their needs. Members User:. Forgot Password. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages.
More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Unholy War , please sign up. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details.
More filters. Sort order. Feb 05, Hannah rated it it was amazing. If George Bush knew how to read I would recommend this to him. It's relevant and I think it would set quite a few people straight. Aug 30, Kamil Yilmaz rated it it was amazing. My review: Esposito, J. Unholy War, Terror in the name of Islam.
Oxford University Press. ISBN I read this book first at a time of its early release, about one year after the September 11 attacks. I witnessed the second plane crash on September It was one of the most unforgettable and heartbreaking experiences in my life. I was totally shocked and flabbergasted. A My review: Esposito, J.
Already was it my conviction that there was a stereotyping for all Muslims by western powers before September 11, I realized that when it became clear that so-called Islamic extremists committed the attacks, many Americans, if not all, continued to equate the religion of Islam with global terrorism. As a Muslim I was quite disturbed about this equation, because I am sure that Islam condemns such acts.
That was the biggest reason for me to read Unholy War. The September 11 attacks left the western world, as well as the Muslim world stunned, angry and uncomprehending. Since the actors were the Muslims, people struggled to learn more about the religion to justify these attacks. In this level-headed and authoritative book, John Esposito delivers an entertaining account and perspective and elucidates Islam—explaining Quran, the example of Prophet Muhammad, and Islamic Law regarding Jihad, the use of force, and terrorism.
He skillfully chronicles the rise of extremist groups and examines their modus operandi. After reading it twice, I believe this book is an excellent resource to students, educators, and for those who are not knowledgeable enough about the religion of Islam. I can say that quite detailed information, which is not even known by the majority of the Muslims, was given clearly in an only pages book. In reviewing this book, the principal criteria included content and organization. In the preface to the paperback edition, the author discusses the changes that occurred after September 11—including the continued threat of terrorism, the American-led war on terror, and the exponential growth of anti-Americanism.
He argues that the reason for anti-Americanism is the equation of the religion of Islam with global terrorism by Americans and the conviction that the American-led war on terrorism was in fact a war against Islam.
Esposito, , p I think this is one of the most important and accurate messages given by the author in this book. Because, as a Muslim and knowing the Muslim mindset I believe that the majority of Muslims around the globe, including many admiring the fundamental principles of the West--political participation, human rights, freedom of speech, accountability--, think that America is acting regardless of the International Law and Treaties, and there is a double standard—these American principles and values are applied selectively or not at all when it comes to the Muslim world.
He asserts that Americans have been challenged to move beyond the stereotypes, historic grievances, and religious differences, to recognize their shared values as well as interests, and to move collectively to build their common future with the Muslim world. In the following chapter, the Preface to the book, he argues about the reasons why Muslims hate America; attempts to examine why Islam is perceived more militant than other religions; discusses what Quran says about the Jihad or Holy War; and whether there is a clash of civilizations between the West and the Muslim world.
Moreover, He suggests that yet it is more important than ever that Americans and western world educate themselves about Islam and the roots of Terrorism. I like to commend him here that even though Islamic Terrorism seems to be the biggest threat to the world in the last decade, there are still many different sources of terrorism around the world, therefore one should not generalize the terrorism in the name of Islam, because the vast majority of the Muslims are tranquil individuals and are in favor of peace in the world.
The mission is to spread the word of god, not to indulge in massacring people.
We ourselves are the target of killings, destruction, and atrocities. We are only defending ourselves. This is the defensive Jihad. We want to defend our people and our land. This is simple formula that even an American child can understand. Live and let live. I like to give a big credit to the author for this part of the book, because these names are the most well known people in the Islamic history and it requires a lot of research and in-debt analysis to provide readers with such detailed information.
In the next chapter the author examines the creation of different Islamic extremist groups in the history of Islam. I strongly agree with the author on the evolution of Armies of God. He argues that the Armies of God have passed several stages, becoming ever more global in outreach. They were primarily Algerian, Egyptian, or Tunisian movements. He suggests that the Afghan jihad against Russia has marked a turning point as Muslims in record numbers traveled to Afghanistan to join the jihad against the oppression of Muslims.
The experience and success of that jihad created a new, more global jihad sentiment and the culture embodied in Arab-Afghans and other Muslims who had fought in Afghanistan- and in a sense of solidarity, which subsequently brought Muslims from various parts of the world to participate in jihads in Bosnia, Kosovo, Kashmir, Central Asia, and Chechnya. Jihad today has thus become the evocative symbol to the holy and unholy wars, in wars of resistance and liberation as well as global terrorism. Nonetheless, I think the author is missing one important point here regarding with the roots of jihad mentality.
Unholy War: Terror in the Name of Islam and millions of other books are available for instant access. Unholy War: Terror in the Name of Islam Paperback – November 13, John L. Esposito is University Professor, Professor of Religion and International Affairs and of Islamic. Unholy War. Terror in the Name of Islam. John L. Esposito. Publication Date - November ISBN: pages. Paperback /16 x 8 inches.
That is the Humiliation in Islamic society. This concept has to be mentioned here, because Islamic society is a shame society and after the series of defeats such as six-day wars, it deeply affected Muslim world and this in turn has led to the risings of the Islamic extremist groups. He successfully attempts to demonstrate the root causes of hatred against America; searches if there is any relationship between Islam and anti-Americanism; understand whether there is a clash of civilizations between Islam and the West; and find out whether or not Islam and modernity are incompatible.
In response to these questions Esposito argues that many people think that it is a necessity to learn more about the religion of Islam to deal with the problem.
However, this dangerous oversimplification mimics the distorted, polarized worldview and message of Bin Ladens of the world. He argues that if Americans start out presuming that the other is completely different, they can find whatever they are looking for. Esposito also realizes that as we move forward to the twenty-first century, a key reality to keep in mind is that Islam is the second largest and fastest growing religion not only out there, but also in America and Europe. Esposito quotes Paul Kennedy, in an attempt to show how we can rationalize the anger of Muslim world against America and the West: [H]ow do we appear to them and what would be like were places in the world reversed…Suppose that there existed today a powerful, unified Arab-Muslim state that stretched from Algeria to turkey and Arabia- as there was years ago, the Ottoman Empire.
Suppose this unified Arab-Muslim state had the biggest economy in the world, and the most effective military. Suppose by contrast this United States of ours had split into 12 or 15 countries, with different regimes, some conservative and corrupt. Suppose that the great Arab-Muslim power had its aircraft carriers cruising off our shores, its aircraft flying over our lands, its satellites watching us everyday. Suppose that there was a special state set up in North America for fifty years ago, of a different religion and language of ours, and the giant Arab-Muslim power always gave it support.
Suppose the Colossus state was bombarding us with cultural messages, about the status of women, about sexuality, that we found offensive. Suppose it was always urging us to change, to modernize, to go global, and to follow its example. Hmm…in those conditions, would not many Americans steadily grow to loath that Colossus, wish it harm? And perhaps try to harm it? I think so. His ability of causal thinking and consistency to the topic is worth to be given credit.
Finally he argues that America will not defeat terrorism solely by military or economic means. He suggests that public diplomacy must be a critical component. He discusses that there can be no excuse for terrorism in the name of Islam. Suicide attacks, bombings, assassinations, and hostage takings in the name of any cause; whether justified in the name of God, justice, or state security, are still terrorism. He suggests that quick responses such as moves to Arab Street through overwhelming force may seem satisfying in the short term, but in the long run it will prove that it is ineffective and contribute to greater radicalization and extremism.
The cancer of global terrorism will continue to afflict the international body until addressing its political and economic causes, causes that will otherwise continue to provide breeding ground for hatred and radicalism, the rise of extremist movements, and recruits for bin Ladens of the world. One aspect of the book that one might criticize is the fact that Esposito tries to take on more than can be adequately handled in a single book.
Clearly, the topic of religion of Islam involving terrorism is quite complex. He tries to provide a bit of everything; therefore, it may seem to many readers that he remains on the surface of the various topics without discussing them in depth.