Good Muslim, Bad Muslim: A Political Perspective on Culture and Terrorism. Mahmood Mamdani. Department of Anthropology and. U. MAHMOOD MAMDANI. Good Muslim, Bad Muslim: A Political Pers on Culture and Terrorism. ABSTRACT The link between Islam and terrorism became a. Mahmood Mamdani’s Good Muslim, Bad Muslim: America, the Cold. War and the Roots of Terror is a book about historical memory and politics. Mamdani hopes.

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How, one may ask, does the literal reading of religious texts translate into hijacking, murder, and terrorism? In one of these articles, Eqbal distinguished between two broad traditions in the understanding of Jihad. Could it be true that an orthodox Muslim is a potential terrorist?

The demand was that governments must share power with terrorist organizations in the name of reconciliation – as in Mozambique, in Sierra Leone, and in Angola.

This was not a backwater family steeped in pre-modernity, but a cosmopolitan family. I think of it as an enlightened version, because it does not just speak of the other, but also of self.

Does culture stand for creativity, for what being human is all about, in one part of the world? As different factions fought over the liberated country – the Northern Alliance against the Taliban – they shelled and destroyed their own cities with artillery. We are now told to give serious attention to culture. The Islamic world had not seen an armed Jihad for centuries.


Good Muslim, Bad Muslim

Always, the idea was to leave a few to go and tell the story, to spread fear. And only someone who thinks of the text as not literal, but as metaphorical or figurative, is better suited to civic life and the tolerance it calls for?

But it settled for the next best, the son of an illustrious family closely connected to the royal family. By doing so, we broaden the bounds of lived community, and of lived humanity.

Some may object that I am presenting a caricature of what we read in the press. And so did the center of gravity of US-sponsored terrorism.

Good Muslim, Bad Muslim by Mahmood Mamdani | : Books

Here is one version mshmood the argument that the clash is inside – and not between – civilizations. All of this is true, but I don’t think it explains terrorism. Both have a sense of mission to civilize the world. This is why prosperity, and not adversity, is the real litmus test of how we define community.

Official America has a habit of not taking responsibility for its own actions. Just as, in another context, the Israeli intelligence created Hamas as an alternative to muxlim secular PLO.

The Question of Responsibility.

But now the CIA was determined to create one. Take the example of Islam, and the notion of Jihadwhich roughly translated means struggle. The question of responsibility for postwar reconstruction did not just arise as a moral question; it arose as a political question. The tendency of official America is to memorialize other peoples’ crimes and to forget its own – to seek a high moral ground as a pretext to ignore real issues.


America was built on two monumental crimes: It was determined to put a version of tradition at the service of politics. After the meeting, Reagan brought them out into the White House lawn, and introduced them to the media in these words: The first alternative gives you reason and evangelism; the second gives you the Crusades. The object of spreading fear was to paralyze government. Should official America be held responsible for napalm bombing and spraying Agent Orange in Vietnam?

But in times of prosperity, the ma,dani tend to walk away from others. How do we make sense of this? This conviction is so deep-seated that it is even found in its secular version, as in the old colonial notion of “a civilizing mission,” or in its more racialized version, “the White Man’s Burden.

The new thing was that these terrorist movements specifically targeted civilians. It is my own construction, but it is not a fabrication.

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