Customer Reviews for

The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Middle East

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  • Posted May 23, 2009

    Misleading and Inaccurate About Islam

    This book is no Idiot's Guide or Dummies book. It is not nearly as well organized and reader friendly as those series are. I expected a much more refined chronological or topical discussion of the issues and events. As one reviewer stated, the book is "uneven", I would add "sloppily organized."

    Now to substance.

    Three main themes fall far short of reality:

    One, the Arab-Jewish conflict predates the creation of Israel (1948). This is true. But regretably, this line if thought is not carried far enough. I expected Sieff to go back to 2000 BC, not merely to 1917. The earlier history of the of Jewish/Arab strife is significant in the larger context. Yes, there have been more recent periods of passivity of Arabs toward Jews (during Ottoman rule), but this is obviously the exception given 4000 years of history.

    Two, the author claims "Radical Islam Isn't Ancient." I guess this results from his ignoring Islamic history prior to the Ottoman Empire. He cites no credible Islamic experts such as Daniel Pipes, Robert Spencer, Michael Rubin, and Habib Malik among many others who would provide volumes of evidence against his shallow claim. The Quran and countless Muslim leaders in text after text, speech after speech, exhort the obligation of the Muslim to destroy Jews, to destroy the infidel, to be intolerant of other religions, to fight for supremacy over other forms of government, and to mimic the latter portion of Muhammads life of violent Jihad. The passive periods of Islamic history are what modern Islamists correctly teach is NOT the true Islam.

    And third, the author suggests that Iraq and the middle east ought to be handed over to Saudi Arabia because that Wahabbi/Islamic nation will be as successful at maintaining law and order as the Ottomans were. If that's the case, we ought to have left Hussein in power. He maintained law and order as well. Seiff is ignorant of the role of Saudi Arabia's sponsorhip of Islamic schools worldwide, many in the US. In the US, these schools teach children and young adults Islamic supremacy and ways to subvert our culture and government toward Islamic sharia law and wahabbist intolerance. Many are centers for stealth, if not violent jihad.

    This book is dangerously inaccurate becasue it reaches erroneous conclusions without considering many obvious facts about the nature of Islam and Saudi Arabia.

    Much better choices would be any be any book by Robert Spencer, or Mark Steyn's "America Alone".

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2013

    An unabashed apologia to the house of saud

    Never have I read a more biased account of the history of the modern middle east, and I'm a classic conservative. The thesis is poverty, despair, and despotism is the historic fate of the muslim world and since the saudi's are really good at it, get over it. They screw us and Israel when they want...but hey..get over it. Syria.."effective governance", Saddam? The monster we should have left in power for stabilities sake. Hey..you want the oil..pay the toll..the "guide" this provides is HEY! Those wacky Wahabbi's have our best interests at heart..so pay the freight and get your mind straight.:

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2008

    A reviewer

    A real eye opener and by far one of the best of the P.I.G. series. A must read for anyone interested in the Middle East.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 18, 2011

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