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Devil's Game: How the United States Helped Unleash Fundamentalist Islam (American Empire Project) Paperback – October 3, 2006
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Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Contrary to what some may think, "Devil's Game" helps readers understand that Islamic fundamentalists are adamantly opposed to Arab nationalist movements such as Arafat's PLO on religious grounds. This includes opposition to the creation of a Palestinian state, a concept of far less importance to Islamists than their agenda of "first Islamizing Palestine and the Arab world.Read more ›
In the 1950s, the enemy was not only Moscow, but also Third World emerging nationalists in Egypt and Iran. Thus, the CIA tried to overthrow Nassar, despite his immense popularity, because of his independence vs. the Cold War, and worked with the Muslim Brotherhood - a member even tried to assassinate Nassar. Meanwhile, in Iran the CIA got the most political ayatollahs to support an overthrow of the elected government (it had nationalized oil assets) and restore the Shah (the U.S. got 40% of oil rights in return); what was not recognized at the time was the key importance of a young ayatollah involved - Khomeini's mentor, as well as Khomeini himself. In the '60s Arab socialism spread from Egypt to Algeria, Syria, Iraq, and Palestine. To counteract this seeming threat the U.S. joined with Saudi Arabia to export its Wahhabi religious right and Muslim Brotherhood factions. Even after the Iranian revolution of '79, the U.S. failed to recognize that Islamism was a dangerous force.
Carter's inauguration alarmed the Shah and encouraged Iranian opposition groups - both due to U.S. pressures and memories of Kennedy's earlier thoughts of replacing the Shah with a less authoritarian regime. Sensing blood the clergy began to mobilize the wealthy landed population against land reform, the Shah was overthrown, and soon we were in the midst of the 444-day hostage crisis.
Dreyfuss's most stunning account, however, involves the CIA's assistance to Afghan rebels PRIOR to the Soviet's invasion, and that it was INTENDED to provoke that reaction.Read more ›
From 1885 on, the British state fostered a pan-Islamic alliance against Russia and the Ottoman Empire. It also backed Ibn Saud, leading to the creation of Saudi Arabia, the Hashemites, who became kings of Iraq and Transjordan, the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamic fundamentalist party, and Haj Amin, the mufti of Jerusalem.
After World War Two, the US state took over Britain's role. In the 1950s it used the Muslim Brotherhood against President Nasser of Egypt and Prime Minister Mossadegh of Iran. From 1957 on, it allied with Saudi Arabia, whose money funded Islamist banks and madrassas across the world. In the 1970s, the US state used fundamentalists in Jordan and Israel against Syria and the PLO. From 1973 on, it funded the mujehadin in Afghanistan, including Osama bin Laden.
Dreyfuss shows that Al Qa'ida is not an existential threat to the USA. It has no access to weapons of mass destruction and since 9/11 it has not fired a shot in the USA. Bush inflated the threat from Al Qa'ida to create a pretext for US expansion into the Middle East and Central Asia. Dreyfuss argues that the US state could have destroyed Al Qa'ida without attacking Afghanistan and Iraq. He maintains that the war on terror was the wrong response to 9/11. It has not led to democracy or security but to tyranny, war and reaction.
The US state is now supporting Iraq's Islamists and still backs the feudal autocracy of Saudi Arabia. As usual, it is backing the worst people in every country, and the worst people back it. Instead, we need to back a Palestinian state and get the USA to withdraw its military presence from the Middle East.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very well written overview and history, but skip the intro or save it for later.Published 6 months ago by Fred C. Dobbs
The way I discovered this book was when two former CIA Afghani operatives sat down next to me at a bar in Washington, DC. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Dwight C. Douglas
Given the current instability in the Middle East this is one of the most important books anyone could read right now and I wish everyone would.Published 9 months ago by Art Donnelly
It is a must read for anyone who wants to understand the history of the islamic right. Read this along with the David Livingstone's "Black Terror, White Soldiers" and you... Read morePublished 15 months ago by CEB
This book is vital to understanding why Arabs/Muslims in ME are in such a tizzy... This book is a get your head out of the sand American public moment.. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Amazon Customer
Fantastic!! The history seems too detailed at times but after I moved into the 1950's and on, the picture became clear. Read morePublished 22 months ago by kenneth jamme