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ISLAM: Wahabite influence in the US
Stephen Schwartz has written a volume entitled The Two Faces of Islam. He maintains that most Muslim mosques and leaders in the US are subsidized by Saudi Arabia and support Wahabite Islam, which completely distorts the great variety of Islam. I have no way of checking this, but it is quite possible. Since the 9/11 tragedy was carried out mostly by Wahabites, we should see the dangers represented by Islam in the US. Shwartz is an interesting character. I knew him when he worked for the San Francisco Chronicle. His opinions apparently displeased the editor, and he was relegated to covering the police beat. He quit, went to the Balkans and married a Catholic. He was a member of WAIS, but he was incensed by some comment about the Catholic Church and quit. Originally Jewish, he says he is now a sufi, which he says means that he is trying to bring together the three monotheistic religions. This is not the traditional concept of sufism, which makes religion a personal mystical relationship with God. Other Muslims, especially the Wahabites, detest it, but the US is encouraging relations with the sufis as Muslins the US can deal with. Schwartz speaks very warmly of President George W. Bush, whose administration I imagine returns the compliment. Sxhwartz is a highly intelligent individual, but I make no comment on his views.
Ronald Hilton - 2/3/03