Ali Salim a scholar based in the Middle East.
Americans need to internalize that Western interests are in danger of being attacked and destroyed by both foreign and domestic enemies. If political Islam is not stopped now in the Middle East, it will explode in the West.
The mood in the Middle East is rapidly changing. The elation of the Arab Spring, which led to prosperity and an economic and social upturn in the lives of millions of Arabs, has now deteriorated into a sense that significant dangers are stalking the Arab-Muslim world.
Arabic TV, especially Al-Jazeera, has been broadcasting programs asking if bloodshed is the only mission of Islam, and if jihad [war in the service of Islam] still motivates believers to invade other countries with abandon and indulge in worldwide slaughter.
Given the current situation, the Middle East is obsessed with asking itself: Who is responsible for the Muslims' catastrophe? And what keeps us chained behind, while the rest of the world forges ahead in social, economic and technological progress? Needless to say, the imams do not blame themselves. They claim that to change the situation we need only more and closer study and practice of the Islamic faith.
As always, our Islamic society, constantly at odds with itself, blames everyone for our misfortunes. In the days of the Prophet (S.A.A.S.), we blamed the Jews of Khaybar in the Arabian Peninsula for our ills. Now the imams who head the militant Islamist organizations tell us that the Jews, a tiny people who pose no threat to the might of Islam, are responsible for all our ills and for all our failures.
Islamic radicals, however, hate not only the Jews but also the Christians, who have become, we are told, our sworn enemies. Christianity, like Judaism, is also vilified. The history of our hatred for the Christians began with the Crusades, and over the years the same hated Crusaders became the hated European imperialists and the hated colonialists.
The hatred for the Christian West is founded on a sense of deprivation, of humiliation and inferiority, of being threatened and exploited, all of which cast doubt on the eternal message of Islam as the only up-to-date religion, destined to rule the world and invalidate the other religions. The Islamic sages who interpret the will of Allah say that both Christianity as well as Judaism, while monotheistic, are anachronistic, and while temporarily they can exist -- with the patronage of, and overshadowed by, Islam -- eventually all Christians and Jews will convert to Islam.
Islam's openly-stated desire to control the world is now light-years away from its current wretched plight. The Muslims' low self-image not only makes us self-destructive, but leads to the desire to destroy anyone who succeeds, even if it means destroying ourselves as well. The unique prosperity and power of the Jews in Palestine, compared with the slaughter, poverty and backwardness of their Arab neighbors, create antagonism, jealousy, rage and an increasingly murderous desire for "revenge" among Muslims still under the heady influence of the Arab Spring and incited by the sheikhs of the Muslim Brotherhood.
The imams in the mosques brainwash the masses, claiming that Islam's real enemies are the Christians, "the Crusaders," manipulated by the Jews who control them. Attempting to fool the leaders of the Christian West and weaken Israel, the Islamists sugarcoat the real situation and tell the Christians that all they have to do is solve the Palestinian problem. Once that has happened, the artificial Jewish existence in Palestine will come to an end, the entire Middle East will metamorphose into paradise and blossom, and everyone will live in harmony forever. Unfortunately, many Europeans have swallowed this tale whole. In the meantime, however, when not speaking to the West and telling each other the truth, the Islamists repeat the ancient adage, "We will begin on Saturday and finish on Sunday," that is, first we will get rid of the Jews and then we will get rid of the Christians -- as we are seeing now in Nigeria, Iraq and especially Egypt.