States Without Citizens: Understanding the Islamic Crisis

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Praeger Security International, 2008 - Political Science - 112 pages


Terrorist attacks on America and its allies and persistent violence in the Islamic world point to a crisis in Islamic society, which States without Citizens attributes to an unfulfilled quest for an Islamic renaissance. The Islamic states, whose borders were arbitrarily imposed by Western states, are beset by pervasive socioeconomic problems--authoritarian rule, economic inequities, educational shortcomings, development project failures, sexual frustration--that are being exploited by radical Islamists. Native attempts to modernize Islamic society by adopting Western ways have repeatedly foundered because they have sought to replicate the trappings of state power while neglecting their foundation in civic ethics. To mitigate the violence engendered by the Islamic crisis, the author recommends that culturally authentic institutions must be created that will instill a civic ethics of common cause and public service.

The ideals of civic activism and public service that inspired the Western Renaissance are absent in the Islamic world. Islamic religio-moral ethics aim at salvation; Islamic social ethics aim at clan dominance. Western-inspired solutions to the Islamic crisis are inappropriate to Islamic states, in as much as they are states without citizens. To mitigate the violence engendered by the Islamic crisis, culturally authentic institutions must be created that will instill a civic ethics of common cause and public service. The author recommends this approach for policy makers and development managers and deplores the dangerous vacuity of such drumbeat cliches as the clash of civilizations that have gained currency in the war on terrorism.

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Contents

Cultures in History
13
Contrast in Ethics
27
Imagery of Active Virtue
39
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

John W. Jandora is Supervisory Analyst with U.S. Army Special Operations Command. He is retired from the U.S. Marine Corps at the rank of Colonel, with active service in the Vietnam and Gulf Wars. He is Adjunct Professor of International Relations at Webster University, Fort Bragg-Pope Air Force Base, and a frequent lecturer at U.S. military schools, including the Command and General Staff College. He was twice deployed to Baghdad as a senior advisor in the Iraqi national security arena and served as Senior Advisor to the military and technical schools of the Saudi Arabian National Guard. He is the author of Militarism in Arab Society: An Historiographical and Bibliographical Sourcebook (Greenwood Press, 1997), Saudi Arabia: Cultural Behavior Handbook, and The March From Medina: A Revisionist Study of the Arab Conquests. He took his PhD in Near Eastern studies and Arabic from the University of Chicago.

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