By Paul Berman
Two decades in the past, Ayatollah Khomeini referred to as for the assassination of Salman Rushdie—and writers all over the world instinctively rallied to Rushdie’s protection. at the present time, in accordance with author Paul Berman, “Rushdie has metastasized into a whole social class”—an ever-growing staff of sharp-tongued critics of Islamist extremism, specially critics from Muslim backgrounds, who continue to exist in basic terms as a result of pseudonyms and police safety. And but, rather than being applauded, the Rushdies of this day (people like Ayan Hirsi Ali and Ibn Warraq) usually locate themselves brushed off as “strident” or as no larger than fundamentalist themselves, and contrasted unfavorably with representatives of the Islamist circulation who falsely declare to be “moderates.” How did this ensue? within the FLIGHT OF THE INTELLECTUALS, Berman—“one of America’s major public intellectuals” (Foreign Affairs)—conducts a searing exam into the highbrow surroundings of the instant and exhibits how a few of the West’s top thinkers and newshounds have fumbled badly of their efforts to grapple with Islamist rules and violence. Berman’s research of the heritage and nature of the Islamist stream comprises a few remarkable revelations. In interpreting Hassan al-Banna, the founding father of the Muslim Brotherhood, he exhibits the increase of a big and sometimes violent worldview, parts of which survives this day within the brigades of al-Qaeda and Hamas. Berman additionally finds the stunning tale of al-Banna’s affiliate, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, who collaborated in my view with Adolf Hitler to incite Arab aid of the Nazis’ North African crusade. Echoes of the Grand Mufti’s Nazified Islam might be heard one of the fans of al-Banna even at the present time. In a gripping and fashionable narrative Berman additionally indicates the legacy of those political traditions, most significantly by way of targeting a unmarried thinker, who occurs to be Hassan al-Banna’s grandson, Oxford professor Tariq Ramadan—a determine greatly celebrated within the West as a “moderate” regardless of his troubling ties to the Islamist stream. taking a look heavily into what Ramadan has really written and stated, Berman contrasts the truth of Ramadan along with his photo within the press. In doing so, THE FLIGHT OF THE INTELLECTUALS sheds gentle on a few glossy issues—on the vastly reinvigorated anti-Semitism of our personal time, on a newly trendy flip opposed to women’s rights, and at the problems we've got in discussing terrorism—and offers a beautiful observation in regards to the sleek media’s strange lack of ability to discover and research the most harmful principles in modern society.