In summing up, it is appropriate to point to two misinterpretations of Islamic fundamentalism in the West. Some contend that the emergence of fundamentalism is merely a by-product of poverty and the unequal distribution of wealth. They argue, therefore, that social and political reforms can curb and even eliminate fundamentalism. Without question, fundamentalists take full advantage of social deprivation. But at least in this part of the world,
The Persian Gulf region has 65 percent of the world’s total oil reserves. Of the 3.1 billion tons of oil on the market in 1990, some 843 million tons were produced in the Middle East. To appreciate the importance of oil in preparing the ground for the Khomeini regime’s export of fundamentalism one need only imagine how much less attention Islamic fundamentalism would have received had Khomeini seized power not in Iran, but in another third world country located far from the Middle East.
The Islamic world includes very different societies and tribes, stretching from Southeast Asia to North Africa. Muslims comprise over 85 percent of the populations of Afghanistan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Tunisia, Turkey, and most of the newly independent republics of Central Asia and the Caucasus. In Albania, Chad, Ethiopia, and Nigeria, Muslims make up 25 to 85 percent of the population; and India, Myanmar (formerly Burma), Cambodia, China, Greece, Yugoslavia, Thailand, and the Philippines have significant Muslim minorities.
Neka (northern Iran), Aug 31 â€“ The orphaned 16-year-old girl hanged in front of residents in this town close to the Caspian Sea on August 15 suffered years of brutal violence, exploitation and torture in the hands of relatives, local officials and plain strangers, and in a country where girls are the most vulnerable members of society, she had no one to go to for help.
The tragic picture emerges from dozens of interviews conducted by an Iran Focus correspondent with Atefeh Rajabiâ€™s classmates, friends, relatives and neighbors in this humid, overcrowded industrial town that sits on a busy highway linking Tehran with the north of the country.
A TIME investigation reveals the Tehran regime’s strategy to gain influence in Iraq–and why U.S. troops may now face greater dangers as a result
By MICHAEL WARE / BAGHDAD
The U.S. military’s new nemesis in Iraq is named Abu Mustafa al-Sheibani, and he is not a Baathist or a member of al-Qaeda. He is working for Iran. According to a U.S. military-intelligence document obtained by Time, al-Sheibani heads a network of insurgents created by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps with the express purpose of committing violence against U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq. Over the past eight months, his group has introduced a new breed of roadside bomb more lethal than any seen before; based on a design from the Iranian-backed Lebanese militia Hizballah, the weapon employs "shaped" explosive charges that can punch through a battle tank’s armor like a fist through the wall. According to the document, the U.S. believes al-Sheibani’s team consists of 280 members, divided into 17 bombmaking teams and death squads. The U.S. believes they train in Lebanon, in Baghdad’s predominantly Shi’ite Sadr City district and "in another country" and have detonated at least 37 bombs against U.S. forces this year in Baghdad alone.
Tehran, Iran, Aug. 21 â€“ A new sex-segregated park is under development in the city of Mashad, north-eastern Iran, according to the head of the National Womenâ€™s Council.
The new 110-hectare park will be used exclusively by women, Sedigheh Ghannadi told a state-run news agency, adding that men would not be able to see inside the park in any way, including from overflying aircraft.
Tehran, Iran, Aug. 20 â€“ The man designated by Iranâ€™s hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as his Minister of Justice vowed on Saturday that â€œimproperly-veiled womenâ€ will be treated as if they had no Islamic veil at all.
Jamal Karimi-Rad told the local press, â€œBeing improperly veiled and not wearing a veil are no different. When it is clear from the appearance of a woman that she has violated the law, then the crime is obvious and law enforcement agents can take legal measures against herâ€.
Tehran, Iran, Aug. 17 â€“ A scientific study conducted by two independent experts found that 71 percent of teenagers in Iran suffer from depression, a Tehran-based news agency reported.
Mahdieh Emami and Mona Mir-Mohammad Jaafari noted that teenage girls in Iran were twice as likely as boys to suffer from depression, the news agency SINA reported. They warned that the sharp rise in the incidence of moderate to severe depression among girls would soon develop into a social crisis.