Brigham Young University professor Quinn Mecham
Noting a "resurgence of various . . . jihadist movements," George Washington (GW) University's Marc Lynch, director of the Institute for Middle East Studies, opened a January 22 GW panel on "New Challenges for Islamist Movements." The panel highlighted the Middle East's growing and well-organized Islamist dangers with a refreshing minimum of politically correct Islamic apologetics before an audience of about forty.
Graduate international relations students in the audience corroborated a reporter's impression that Brigham Young University political science professor Quinn Mecham was the most intriguing panelist. Using the Fund for Peace's Fragile States Index, he evaluated the Islamic State's (IS) "trajectory of increasing stateness," ranking it as merely the seventeenth most failed state in the world, more stable than such countries as Afghanistan or Yemen. He observed that the IS's "multiple large revenue streams," such as oil and taxation, are the "envy of many poor states."
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