Citizen Islam: The Future of Muslim Integration in the West
by Zeyno Baran
Continuum, 240 pp., $24.95
In the divisive, decade-old War on Terror, one certitude unites the warriors and the conscientious objectors. It is that Islamism is not to be confused with Islam. "Whatever it's called," George W. Bush said, "this ideology is very different from the religion of Islam." Attorney General Eric Holder described the Islamism of the late Anwar al-Awlaki as "a version of Islam that is not consistent with the teachings of it." Zeyno Baran has come reluctantly to the conclusion that the Bush/Holder view is false. Her new book describes how Islamists have captured many Islamic religious and social institutions, including most of the Western ones. Islamism has supplanted more traditional tendencies and has become what most people, Muslim and non-Muslim alike, understand as mainstream Islam. Gullible American and European policymakers have partnered with the wrong Muslims, freezing out their friends and empowering those who wish them ill.