Breeding Bin Ladens: America, Islam, and the Future of Europe

Breeding Bin Ladens: America, Islam, and the Future of Europe

by Zachary Shore
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

While American leaders wage war on extremists in the Middle East, they are dangerously detached from a potentially greater threat closer to home. In Breeding Bin Ladens, Zachary Shore asserts that the growing ambivalence of Europe’s Muslims poses risks to national identities, international security, and the transatlantic alliance.

Europe’s

…  See more details below

Overview

While American leaders wage war on extremists in the Middle East, they are dangerously detached from a potentially greater threat closer to home. In Breeding Bin Ladens, Zachary Shore asserts that the growing ambivalence of Europe’s Muslims poses risks to national identities, international security, and the transatlantic alliance.

Europe’s failure to integrate its Muslim millions, combined with America’s battered image in the Muslim world, have left too many Western Muslims easy prey for violent dogmas. Until America and Europe adopt new strategies, Shore argues, Europe will increasingly become the incubation ground for breeding new Bin Ladens.

The United States continues to spend billions of dollars and lose thousands of its young men and women to combat Islamic extremists, a group estimated to be as small as fifty thousand. What Western leaders have not done, says Shore, is seek to understand the millions of moderate Muslims who live peacefully in the United States and Europe. Many in this extraordinarily diverse group are deeply ambivalent toward perceived Western values. Although they may admire America's economic or technological might, many are appalled by its crass consumerism, sexualization of women, lack of social justice, and foreign policies.

Shore taps into this oft-ignored perspective through in-depth interviews with Muslims living across the European Union. He gives voice to people of deep faith who speak of the conflict between their desire to integrate into their adopted societies and the repulsion they feel toward some of what the West represents.

Shore offers a deeply nuanced and hopeful consideration of Islam's future in the West. Cautioning Western leaders against an anti-terrorist tunnel vision that could ultimately backfire, Shore proposes bold, creative, and controversial solutions for attracting the hearts and minds of moderate Muslims living in the West.

Read More

Editorial Reviews

Bloomsbury Review

Well-written overview of the state of Islam in Europe.

Choice

This is must read for anyone who wants to know more about the complex world of Europe's Muslims.

American Prospect - Aziz Hug

Shore captures much of the nuance and contradiction of a community being asked to integrate into national polities that exploit them economically, treat their faith as a second-class superstition, and fail to deal with persistent, widespread racism.

Financial Times - Gideon Rachman

The only one of the American authors to have taken the trouble to talk to a lot of European Muslims.

Foreign Affairs - Stanley Hoffmann

Shore's wise and thoughtful book addresses Europe's 'Muslim problems'... This eminently readable volume deserves to be widely known and seriously pondered.

Herald-Dispatch - John Patrick Grace

[Shore] proposes to alert American policymakers, business people and simply interested citizens to the challenge of paying attention to Islamic culture... And who's to say he isn't right.

H-Amstdy, H-Net Reviews - Elizabeth A. Barre

Shore's thoughtful and measured analysis stands out in a genre awash in oversimplification, misinformation, and polemics.

Foreign Affairs
Shore's wise and thoughtful book addresses Europe's "Muslim problems"— those problems faced by the 15 million Muslims in the European Union and those encountered by the EU in trying to cope with them. The issue, Shore points out, goes way beyond the matter of terrorism — and may get more troublesome as Europe, with its aging population and low birthrate, needs more immigrants. In his interviews with Muslims in most European countries, he has found deep "ambi-Americanism" and "ambi-Europeanism." There are, of course, profound political causes for their hostility to the United States, but there is also "among younger European Muslims a growing sense that Europe and America are spiritually empty" and a feeling of being rejected by the Europeans among whom they live. Their consequent fundamentalism (which "simply means returning to the fundamentals of a religious doctrine") is not synonymous with terrorism, but it is often perceived as a first step toward violence — especially since "Muslims on the whole still represent part of the underclass, overrepresented in unemployment, low wage earnings, and political disenfranchisement." Shore is, however, confident that solutions can be found, and he makes a series of "modest proposals" — such as retiring the vocabulary of war from the current language and creating a "Head Start" program for low-income Muslims in Europe. This eminently readable volume deserves to be widely known and seriously pondered.

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801892912
Publisher:
Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date:
05/08/2009
Pages:
240
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Related Subjects

What People are saying about this

Raju G. C. Thomas

Breeding Bin Ladens is a contemporary threat assessment of the rise of radical Islam. The method is that of painstakingly detailed investigative journalism based on interviews of some known and potential Muslim radicals in the field. This is quite an accomplishment in itself. The language is narrative, exciting and often anecdotal, reading like a thriller.

Raju G. C. Thomas, Marquette University, author of Yugoslavia Unraveled: Sovereignty, Self-Determination, Intervention

Anne-Marie Slaughter

'No one is born a terrorist; terrorists are bred.' That is the thesis of this remarkable book. It starts not with assumptions by Americans and Europeans about Europe's Muslim community, but with the voices of Muslims themselves. Those voices are vital for Americans and Europeans to hear and understand. Breeding Bin Ladens is a must-read for anyone interested in the future of the liberal democratic West.

Anne-Marie Slaughter, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University

Niall Ferguson

Zachary Shore realized earlier than most the potentially huge importance of the religious revival among young Muslims in Europe. The interviews and other evidence in his scrupulously researched and lucidly written book constitute powerful evidence of a disturbing trend. It is not simple hatred of the United States so much as ambivalence about Western society as a whole that has driven these teenagers and twenty-somethings into the arms of the extremists. And while America is prepared to fight (albeit clumsily) a war on terror, a post-Christian Europe seems caught between old fashioned xenophobia and post-modern insouciance.

Niall Ferguson, Harvard University

Read More

Meet the Author

Zachary Shore is an associate professor of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School and a Senior Fellow at the Institute of European Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He has served on the Policy Planning Staff at the U.S. Department of State through a fellowship from the Council on Foreign Relations. He earned his doctorate in modern European history from Oxford University and served as a national security fellow at Harvard's Institute for Strategic Studies. He is the author of What Hitler Knew: The Battle for Information in Nazi Foreign Policy and Blunder: Why Smart People Make Bad Decisions.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >