Border, Leadership and Partner Change

Leaders in moderate Muslim countries have the difficult task of bringing their followers, as well as Muslims of less moderate countries, into a state of grace and understanding such that the desire to enter paradise will overcome the promises of those false leaders who offer martyrdom as the reward for certain political acts such as murder and mayhem in South Thailand, suicide in Pakistan, Iraq, or killing demonstrators in Libya. It would be nice to have a real Caliph once again, who could tell us which “jihad” was the true one, and however, we must now make do with what we have in our religion, and our own intelligence. Continue reading

Virgins for suicide bombers?

This piece appeared originally in

Noordin Mohd Top, Asia’s most wanted terrorist, was shot dead by a crack Indonesian anti-terrorism squad during a shoot-out in a village in Central Java.

The 41-year-old Malaysian-born Noordin, who had eluded the authorities for nine years, was gunned down along with three others in an ambush at his hideout in Solo. He was said to be responsible for a string of deadly bombings in Indonesia, including those in Bali in 2002 and two luxury hotels in Jakarta recently. Continue reading