Of all the recent books on resurgent Islam in world politics, this study growing out of a Chatham House project is probably the clearest and most enlightening. Even so, the subject seems to defy the most expert and sophisticated authors because Islam as a factor in foreign policy cannot be easily defined or disentangled from other elements. What does come through clearly is that only in one state, Iran (covered well here by R.K. Ramazani), is foreign policy shaped by a coherent conception of an Islamic world order. The chapters are all country studies, covering the principal states of the Middle East and North Africa, plus Nigeria, Indonesia and the Soviet Union (where Islam is "a double-edged sword").
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