Is Anti-Americanism Due To Envy?
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Is Anti-Americanism Due to Envy?

Questioner

Adam

Reply Date

Jan 30, 2017

Question

For many months, the liberal establishment in America attempted to frame the issue of the present war against Islamic-backed terrorism as: "Why do they hate us (i.e. America)?" I reject the assumption that the U.S. has victimized Islamic nations or peoples via foreign policy or otherwise, and believe America's prosperity makes an easy scapegoat for other cultures. So I ask you, why do Muslim cultures always focus blame outwards on others for their shortcomings, is it part of your religious doctrine?

Consultant

Answer


Is Anti-Americanism Due to Envy? - About Islam

This response is from About Islam’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.

Salam (Peace) Adam,

Thank you for your message and for contacting Ask About Islam.

Well, first allow me to comment on the use of the phrase “Islamic–backed terrorism”. It implies that Islam as a religion, backs terrorism.

Here, I fully disagree with you. I also do not support the distinction between Americans and non-Americans, or between America and Muslims.

Actually, millions of Americans are Muslims and Islam is the fastest growing religion at the moment. Therefore, I suggest you look again at your preconceptions.

As for your comment on the prosperity of America, it seems that you went beyond the question: “why do they hate us? ” to simply giving us a brief answer: “because they envy us!”

I think such an explanation basically leads us nowhere. It cannot explain the sweeping anti-American mood. This is not only in Muslim majority countries, but also in Europe, Latin America, and East Asia as well.

Examining American foreign policy is badly needed and this view is shared by an increasing number of both Americans, as well as other political decision-makers worldwide.

We do have some good reasons to put the blame on American intervention for their support of many authoritarian regimes in Muslim majority countries. The nature of this support is both financial and military backing.

Still, I do believe that shortcomings have domestic reasons as well, which need to be addressed by the democratic parties within Muslim majority societies.

America has done a lot of harm in the part of the world where I live. Still, if more people were ready to pay the high cost of freedom and independence, repression would have never succeeded, no matter how hard it tried.

Democratic transformation is, indeed, the key necessary process for economic and strategic-political change in the Islamic world.

On the other hand, to answer your question regarding our “religious doctrine”. No sir, this is not part of our religious doctrine, it is part of the real politics that trigger similar reactions, regardless of the “doctrine” and/or religion.

I sincerely wish that we can go beyond such animosity and hostility to have a more fruitful discussion about how we can overcome the atmosphere of polarization that partly resulted from the 9/11 events.

This has already happened in many cases, where people have reached out for the “other” and (re)discovered the wealth of world views and perspectives that exist and through which we can enrich our increasingly global culture.

I hope this answers your question. Please keep in touch.

Salam.

Please continue feeding your curiosity, and find more info in the following links:

US Muslims: We Will Not Allow Extremists to Define Us

Any Teachings to Justify Terror?

Nationalist American: Does Nationalism Contradict Islam?

The Past, Present, and Future of Islam in America

Teenage, White, American, & Muslim?




About Heba Rauf Ezzat

Heba Rauf Ezzat is an Egyptian political scientist and Islamic thinker and activist. She is a lecturer of political theory at Cairo University and currently a visiting fellow at the Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit at the London School of Economics.

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