The Arab Radicals

In This Review

The Arab Radicals

By Adeed I. Dawisha
Council on Foreign Relations, 1986
171 pp. $8.95

This subject surely needs clarification and Adeed Dawisha provides some, particularly in giving a rational definition of Arab radicalism; the term remains elusive, as a radical state or movement may, in changing conditions, turn moderate, and vice versa. The analysis shows how the currents of secular nationalism, militant Islam, social protest and personal or ethnic rivalry can combine or divide-and sometimes produce terrorists. The author is content to explain; perhaps wisely, he refrains from prophecy and from specific advice to Western nations on how to cope with the Arab radicals. There is no incontrovertible truth about many of these matters except in the minds of those who think they possess it.

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