Islamic Resistance to Imperialism

Islamic Resistance to Imperialism

Islamic Resistance to Imperialism

Islamic Resistance to Imperialism


Eric Walberg’s third book on geopolitical strategy focuses on the Middle East and the global ramifications of the multiple state destruction resulting from Western aggression. It addresses these questions:

What is left of the historic Middle East upheavals of 1979 (Afghanistan, Iran) and 2011 (the Arab Spring)?
How does 9/11 fit into the equation of Islamic resistance? Is al-Qaeda’s long term project still on track?
What are the chances that ISIS can prevail in Iraq and Syria? Are they and likeminded jihadists dupes of imperialism or legitimate resistance movements?

The imperial strategy of manipulating Muslims to promote imperial ends is at least two centuries old. Emerging most notably in the British use of Arabs to fracture the Ottoman Empire, it led to the creation of ‘Islamic states’ (Saudi Arabia and Pakistan) allied with the West; ongoing cooperation between western security forces and Islamists opposed to the atheism of socialist regimes; and the financing and training of jihadists.

But the largely nonviolent 1979 Iranian revolution, inspired by antipathy towards the neocolonial regime and a deep religious faith, was carried out in the name of Islam and had echoes in the Sunni world. That same year, it prompted Saudi rebels to occupy the Kaaba in a desperate attempt to spark revolution, Syrian Islamists to rise against their secular dictator Hafez al-Assad in 1980, and future al-Qaeda leader Ayman Zawahiri to conspire to assassinate Egyptian president Sadat in 1981.

But these uprisings were crushed, and the Sunni world remained mired in its neocolonial purgatory, defeated by empire’s machinations and falling prey to Saudi . . .


Capitalism’s resilience in the face of repeated crises over the past two centuries is impressive, its corrosive power to dissolve pre-capitalist cultures and harness disparate peoples around the world to its vision for humanity— formidable. Capitalism still prevails because personal material rewards are a powerful incentive in a world where most hover on the edge of starvation, and the market is the highest form of harnessing self-interest.

Capitalism in its corporate form motivates the amoral, egotistical, the clever to prevail and—most important—puts infinite wealth in the hands of those few who actually succeed at it. Godly society attracts a very different mindset, more unworldly idealist than Mr Moneybags—often ineffectual in resisting/ countering capitalism’s lure.

At the same time, devout Muslims are a hard nut for capitalism to crack, fearless Davids in the face of the powerful Goliath. Whatever I might think of the Taliban’s version of Islam, their selfless resistance to the US occupiers in Afghanistan leaves me in awe. It is almost impossible to recruit Muslims as spies. Post-9/11 CIA counterterrorism head Robert Dannenberg admitted: “It was much easier to convince a Soviet that your way of life was better. You could take them to Kmart in the US or to Wal-Mart, because they were driven by many of the same things that we’re driven by.” US officials continue to be stymied by . . .

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