By Ian Johnson
Within the wake of the inside track that the Sept. 11 hijackers had lived in Europe, journalist Ian Johnson questioned how this kind of radical team might sink roots into Western soil. such a lot bills reached again 20 years, to U.S. aid of Islamist opponents in Afghanistan. yet Johnson dug deeper, to the beginning of the chilly warfare, uncovering the untold tale of a bunch of ex-Soviet Muslims who had defected to Germany in the course of international struggle II. There, they'd been formed right into a well-oiled anti-Soviet propaganda computer. As that struggle ended and the chilly warfare started, West German and U.S. intelligence brokers vied for keep watch over of this influential workforce, and on the middle of the covert tug of conflict used to be a quiet mosque in Munich—radical Islam's first beachhead within the West.
Culled from an array of assets, together with newly declassified records, A Mosque in Munich interweaves the tales of a number of key avid gamers: a Nazi student grew to become postwar spymaster; key Muslim leaders around the globe, together with contributors of the Muslim Brotherhood; and naïve CIA males desirous to struggle communism with a brand new weapon, Islam. a unprecedented ground-level examine chilly warfare spying and a revelatory account of the West's first, disastrous come upon with radical Islam, A Mosque in Munich is as eye-catching because it is important to our figuring out the error we're nonetheless making in our courting with Islamists at the present time.
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Additional resources for A Mosque in Munich: Nazis, the CIA, and the Rise of the Muslim Brotherhood in the West
The unique characteristic of Islam is its conviction that belief in the oneness of God unites the Muslim community with all humanity because God is the creator of all humans, irrespective of their religious traditions. The Koran declares that on the Day of Judgment all human beings will be judged, irrespective of sectarian affiliation, on their moral performance as citizens of the world community. The idea that "the People are one community" is the foundation of a theological pluralism that presupposes the divinely ordained equivalence and equal rights of all human beings.
It also deemphasized the unity of humankind in the sphere of universal moral-spiritual discourse. The establishment of the first Islamic society was an important chapter in the Muslims' self-identification as a community endowed with a tradition of specific salvific efficacy. Moreover, in the sectarian milieu of seventh-century Arabia, early Muslims encountered competing claims to authentic religiosity by other monotheists like the Christians and Jews. These encounters, which generated interreligious polemics in the context of an Islamic public order where Muslims enjoyed a privileged position, led to the notion of the privileged status of Islam as a unique and perfect version of the original Abrahamic monotheism.
In this interpretive realm, an insightful investigator is able to discern the authorial pretexts of the earlier commentators that led to the distortion of the otherwise objectifiable context of Muslim existence. In addition, it is through the investigation of such distorted explications that a Muslim exegete is able to recontextualize the Koran and afford a fresh understanding of the divinely ordained Muslim umma. These considerations suggest the need for a meticulous sifting of the Koranic exegetical materials, both classical and contemporary, in order to bring to light the various (and subtle) possibilities of interpretation.
A Mosque in Munich: Nazis, the CIA, and the Rise of the Muslim Brotherhood in the West by Ian Johnson