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A New Caliphate?

PRINCETON – The recent declaration of a caliphate by the militant group the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is an unprecedented event in modern times. Regardless of how it turns out, one thing is clear: violent jihadism is now an entrenched feature of the Arab political landscape.

Not since the Turkish Republic abolished the Ottoman caliphate in 1924 has any Muslim group in control of territory made such a bid. Even Al Qaeda and the Taliban have limited their demands to the creation of statelets (emirates), which they hope will eventually coalesce into a caliphate.