Enfrentando el Reto Islamista

Nuestro entendimiento tradicional de las comunidades musulmanas asume que cuando el Islam llega a una zona se arraiga profundamente en la población y en la cultura, produciendo poderosas variaciones locales. Una comunidad musulmana en los Emiratos Árabes Unidos es muy diferente a una en Nigeria, y ambas son muy distintas al Islam en Indonesia. Los eventos recientes en Rusia, sin embargo, constituyen una afrenta directa a ese entendimiento, lo que explica la osada decisión del presidente Vladimir Putin de apoyar la guerra contra el terrorismo lidereada por Estados Unidos (EU) después de los ataques del 11 de septiembre.

El escenario es el mismo entre las comunidades musulmanas en toda Rusia. Llegan activistas jóvenes a un área en particular, típicamente provenientes de países árabes. Ellos saben cómo trabajar con las agencias legales locales e inicialmente sus actividades se limitan a obtener información para desacreditar a los líderes religiosos locales existentes (cuya edad promedio es de más de 70) y a trabajar hábilmente con los medios locales para asegurarse de que esa información difamatoria sea publicitada. Entonces la comunidad religiosa cede, remueve a sus viejos líderes y los jóvenes retadores asumen el control.

Los nuevos líderes proceden asumiendo que no necesitan (y sin duda no deberían ) adaptarse a las distinciones nacionales o culturales entre musulmanes, pues su meta es la unificación islámica, no la diferenciación. Envían a los partidarios locales más prometedores al extranjero, no necesariamente a países árabes, sino también a Francia, Inglaterra y EU, para que se entrenen para realizar el mismo trabajo, ya sea en la región del Volga (hogar del 40% de los musulmanes de Rusia) o en cualquier otra. La participación en estas redes convence a los nuevos reclutas de que son parte de una organización globalmente integrada.

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