Basics on Al Qaida
Rob of Fine? Why Fine?: Couple points to two special breifings from the Christian Science Monitor. How radical Islamists see the world Jihad: Who's joining, and why? I don't think my regular readers will find much that is new in either of these. They are a very useful compilation of some important facts to keep in mind though. Here's a couple of teasers: From How radical Islamists see the world:
What do the militants want? For Islamist militants, the long-term objective is an Islamic superstate, or caliphate. Narrower objectives include the end of the state of Israel and toppling secular Middle Eastern regimes like Egypt's. It is an article of faith that the US and all secular Western states stand in their way, and weakening those states is seen as positive for all their objectives.and from Jihad: Who's joining, and why?:
Is the same thing happening in America? Perhaps not, or at least not as fast. Mainstream Muslim organizations in America note that US Muslims differ from their counterparts in Europe - they are generally more prosperous (often from more prosperous backgrounds in their home countries) and less confined to Muslim ghettos. Still, experts point out that the British Islamist bombers were not living in poverty. The key problem appears to be alienation that opens minds to radical thinking. And in that sense, America may have a problem. Recent cases in Virginia and California involving clerics allegedly recruiting young Muslims for jihad suggest the dissemination of extremist ideals exists in isolated cases.