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June 29, 2015



It's definitely one religion where you don't want the faithful to copy the behaviour of the founder. Unfortunately, that's exactly what the Salafists try to do. History shows Muslim states have been at their most prosperous and cultured when they've been a bit "decadent" in their religion. Compare Umayyad Spain before the fundamentalist Almohads and Almoravids took over, or the difference between Mughal India under Akbar the Great and his dogmatic descendant Aurangzeb, who effectively brought about the end of the Mughals as a great power with his bigotry.

It must be pretty easy for the Seumas Milnes of the world to defend radical Islamism because they've had a lot of practice defending communist dictatorships over the years. There are many similarities. The founding fathers (Marx, Engels, Lenin) are somehow never to blame for the atrocities and disasters of "actually existing Socialism", although the records show that Communist Party-run states which pretty much ignore Marxist-Leninist dogma are much more successful and less violent (compare China under Mao with China today).

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