The book Caliphates and Islamic Global Politics discusses about Islamic Politics and its features, glory and downfall. Here is its abstract.
As the year 2014 is slowly drawing to a close, we begin to look back with an attempt to understand why and how certain events happened. Islamist political groups enjoyed a strong surge of advancement in certain Middle Eastern/North African countries. They now represent an important type of non-state actors in contemporary international relations.
Groups like Islamic State or Ansar al-Sharia are declaring caliphates in the territories they seize, which challenges the sovereignty of established states like Syria, Libya, Iraq, and Lebanon. Who are these groups? What prompted their creation, and on what grounds do they operate? What real threat do they pose to regional stability and to the international community?
Political Islam is a term that is often used amongst circles of academics and policymakers, but its complexity is seldom acknowledged or understood. ‘Political Islamic movements’ believe that Islam has a built-in political system that every believer should adhere to and uphold (Khan, 2014).
In Caliphates and Islamic Global Politics, it is also discussed that how Islamist groups are motivated by the idea that there is “not enough Islam” in society (Woltering, 2002:1133). There can be no ‘Islamisation’ of society until an Islamic political system replaces the existing one. The path to reach said ‘Islamisation’ varies according to which group is operating and their specific circumstances, however, the implementation of sharia is a tool that is commonly held and for which is popularly advocated (Woltering, 2002:1133).
In the wake of the heightening of Islamist activity in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), particularly with the rise to pre-eminence of the Islamic State – also known as Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), Islamic State in Iraq and the Levantine (ISIL), or by the Arabic acronym Daesh – questions about this misunderstood legal tradition have been posed by Western media and policymakers, oftentimes demonstrating little understanding of the historicaal wealth and implications of this tradition.
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