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The Islamist (original 2007; edition 2008)
by Ed Husain
The Islamist by Ed Husain (2007)
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"The author is probably the most religiously sincere man I have ever come across, and his current faith is revealed by the end of the book in a way which managed to impress even me, a life-long atheist with a very cynical view of all religion. It is Husain's journey to this point that provides the narrative, and in his calm and transparent prose the author has managed to pen the most terrifying story I have ever read. Here was an ordinary British Muslim with a loving and supportive family who started life a poster-boy for integration as a colour and faith-blind student at a multi-ethnic primary school. Without personal tragedy or disaster, without any poor experiences at the hands of the "Establishment", this happy schoolboy found himself recruiting "soldiers of Islam" to destroy his country, and toppled on the brink of taking that route himself. So complete was his indoctrination that even years after his epiphany he found himself experiencing a uniquely Islamic doublethink when it came to the traditions and institutions of his country. What terrifies about this book is the sheer ordinariness of Husain's experience. Through no great genius or inspiration on the part of those who recruited him to the Islamist cause he found himself turning his back on family and nation, burning with a hatred for everyone outside his own small clique. Husain was bright enough to see the cracks in Islamism - the lack of genuine Koranic scholarship, the transmutation of religion into politics, the racism at the heart of Saudi Arabia, and the exploitation of ignorance and disillusionment among young men. It is clear from his experience that most are not so well equipped. This book provides an explanation not only for recent events in the UK but also across the wider world. A must-read for anyone with an interest in the future" -- Amazon.com.
(summary from another edition)
An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.
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