Yarislav Trofimov should throw a couple of dollars Thomas Lippman's way as his book review of Trofimov's Siege of Mecca
directly led to me buying it today. Sadly for the Washington Post it was about the only thing worth reading in the whole Sunday paper.
From the book review:
... but the book's value goes well beyond these findings [about the siege of Mecca]. It establishes two points essential to understanding the turbulence in today's Middle East and the rise of al-Qaeda:
First, the Islamic extremists who seized the mosque on Nov. 20, 1979, and their leader, Juhayman al Uteybi, represented a crucial link in an unbroken chain of radical Islamic violence that runs from the fundamentalist warriors who helped Abdul Aziz ibn Saud take over the Arabian peninsula and create Saudi Arabia early in the 20th century, through the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, to the group that assassinated Egyptian president Anwar Sadat after he made peace with Israel, to the Taliban in Afghanistan and, finally, to al-Qaeda and today's terrorists. None was an isolated phenomenon; all are part of the same movement. Their tactics differ, but their aspirations are the same: a return to what they imagine as a pure, pre-modern Muslim society as the Prophet Muhammad would have run it, untainted by Western ideas and Western materialism.
Second, Uteybi and his surviving companions, who were publicly beheaded after French commandos helped Saudi authorities retake the mosque, may have lost the battle, but they won their war. Saudi rulers, terrified by what Uteybi represented, essentially gave in to his demands that the country's drift toward liberalization be reversed. Women were taken off television, theaters were closed, and huge amounts of cash were disbursed to the country's most xenophobic, reactionary preachers and teachers. Therein lie the roots of the terrorism that arose from Saudi Arabia two decades later and brought down the twin towers of the World Trade Center.
"At the time," Trofimov explains, "such an embrace of the Wahhabi orthodoxy seemed like a wise survival policy for the House of Saud. It was only after decades of this indoctrination produced a new generation of al Qaeda radicals that some senior princes realized the extent of the folly."
I have argued in the past that the cure for terrorism is liberal secularism
. It is interesting that Tromifov identifies the internal or domestic organisational technology in Saudi Arabia as being an issue.
More Reading on Yarislav trofimov
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Most Popular Restaurants in Phoenix
Phoenix Eats Out
is the restaurant review site for Phoenix
and Old Town Scottsdale
which lists the modernist and contemporary restaurants, taverns and bars in the greater Phoenix area.
This is the list of the most popular restaurants pages from phoenixeatsout.com that have been viewed the most;
My personal favourite restaurants in Phoenix are AZ88
, Humble Pie
, Orange Table
, The Vig
and others coming close behind. View the complete list with the photo-journalistic style images on phoenixeatsout.com
Most Popular Hikes in Arizona
Arizona is an outdoor state and has lots of hiking in the city and around the state. Phoenix is unusual for most cities in having several large mountains in the center of the city with great hiking. Anyone who comes to Phoenix has to do the Echo Canyon trail on Camelback
and the Summit Hike on Squaw Peak
or Piesta Peak. The views of the city, suburbs and surrounding mountains are wonderful from Camelback and Piesta Peak.
For more experienced hikers there is the McDowell Mountains in North Scottsdale that has several difficult and strenuous hikes in Tom's Thumb
and Bell Pass
. Alternatively, you can hike the highest mountain in Arizona. At 12,600 feet Humphrey's Peak
is a long and difficult hike.
Alternate Australian Constitutions
Between 2004 and 2009 this site, southsearepublic.org
, was a constitutional blog based on scoop which focused on Australian and global constitutional issues.
One of the strongest aspects of it was the development of constitutions by those involved in the blog. These constitutions are the outcome:
The constitutions were built using principles from Montesquieu's separation of powers, the enlightnment's universal political rights and the ancient Athenian technology of sortition and choice by lot.
Archives For South Sea Republic
South Sea Republic started in 2004 as an Australian constitutional blog in 2004 based on scoop software. It was an immigrative outgrowth of Kuro5hin. The archives for each year since then;
The articles are ordered by views.
Who Is Cam Riley
I am an Australian living in the United States as a permanent resident.
I am a software developer by trade and mostly work in Java and jump between middleware and front end.
I originally worked in the New York area of the United States in telecommunications before moving to Washington DC and
working in a mix of telecommunications, energy and ITS. I started my own software company before heading out to
Arizona and working with Shutterfly. Since then I have joined a startup in the Phoenix area and am thoroughly enjoying myself.
I do a lot of photography which I post on this website, but also on flickr. I have a photo-journalistic website which lists
the modernist and contemporary restaurants in phoenix. I have a site on the Australian Flying Corps [AFC]
which has been around since the 1990s and which I unfortunately
lost the .org URL to during a life event; however, it is under the www.australianflyingcorps.com
The AFC website has gone through several iterations since the 90s and the two most recent are Australian Flying Corps Archives(2004-2002)
Australian Flying Corps Archives(2002-1999)
which are good places to start.
Websites Worth Reading
Websites of friends, colleagues and of interest;