What lies behind the Anglo-American imperialist chorus against "fundamentalism"?

In the period following the end of the Cold War, world imperialism, particularly the Anglo American imperialists, have launched a concerted attack against what are being referred to as "forces of Islamic fundamentalism". After the events of September 11, 2001 and the launching of the "global war against terrorism", this campaign has been further stepped up.

Ruling circles in many countries such as India have taken up this chorus of the Anglo-American imperialists. The working class and people fighting against the anti-social offensive of imperialism and the ruling class, against the imperialist interference in this region, is under intense pressure to oppose fundamentalism, particularly Islamic fundamental-ism. It is therefore important to understand what lies behind the Anglo-American imperialist chorus against "Islamic fundamentalism" and whose interests it is really meant to serve.

The Anglo-American campaign against Islamic fundamentalism is directed, first and foremost, against the peoples and countries of West Asia. Central Asia, North Africa and also South Asia and South East Asia. This vast region is the home of precious resources, including oil. The peoples of the different countries and nations of Asia and North Africa have a rich history, their own cultures, psychology, philosophies and traditions, their own historically evolved political institutions. Asia is today one of the biggest emerging markets and producer of goods. Conquest of Asia is central to the agenda of US imperialism to rule the world. This needs imposition of the Euro-Centric agenda on Asia. Central to the Euro-Centric agenda is to declare the economic and political system prevalent in the US and Western Europe as the last word and the only word to be imposed on all peoples.

The peoples of Asia and North Africa have never accepted unquestioningly Euro-Centric and Anglo-American definitions of political and economic systems, of philosophies and cultures. In particular the peoples of the Islamic faith, as also others have refused to do so. You are a fundamentalist if you disagree with Anglo-American imperialism, with Euro-Centric definitions about political systems and economic systems—this is the Anglo-American propaganda. Should the Indian people accept this—we, who have suffered for over 250 years under colonialism and the colonial legacy?

The US imperialists have always attempted to establish regimes that subserve their interests. Overtly, or covertly through their intelligence agencies, they have created and backed the most unpopular political regimes in these countries, to safeguard their interests. However, their attempts have sometimes backfired. The Iranian revolution overthrew the hated US backed regime of the Shah of Iran. In the Cold War period, the Soviet Union also actively intervened in this region. Various countries and regimes in this region, such as Iran and Iraq, Syria and Libya, Algeria and Indonesia, Sudan and Philippines, and many others, have, at different times, taken a stand, based on their own interests that hits US imperialist interests. The US imperialists have always viewed it as a threat to their interests in the region, if any of the countries or peoples of this region have stood up against imperialism or refused to toe the line of the imperialists. They have immediately responded with economic and military blockades and other such pressures, in an attempt to impose their economic and political system on these countries. Such countries and peoples, who have tried to withstand these pressures, have become the target of the Anglo American imperialists’ campaign against "Islamic fundamentalism".

The imperialists try to make out that their opposition to "Islamic fundamentalism" is due to their "concern" about the Islamic countries having exploitative regimes, where mediaeval practices and backward customs prevail, where women are cruelly exploited and oppressed, children are abused, where religious intolerance dominates, etc. Extending the old colonial logic of the "while man’s burden" to the present time, the imperialists argue that these regimes need to be opposed, attacked and even overthrown, as they are a threat to "democracy" and "modern civilisation". They try to make out as if their opposition to "Islamic fundamentalism" is motivated by their concern for the oppressed people of these countries.

Why is it that this opposition to "Islamic fundamentalism" is restricted only to those regimes that pose a threat to the interests of the Anglo American imperialists? How is it that the Anglo American imperialists’ "concern" over the exploitation of the people, the backward customs, the oppression of women, the lack of democracy, etc. did not extend to regimes allied to the imperialists’ interests, such as those of Saudi Arabia, Jordan or even Indonesia under the fascist Suharto regime? Anglo-American imperialists have actively worked, through coups and direct military intervention, to prop up the most fascist, exploitative and anti-democratic regimes in various countries and to defend them from the wrath of their peoples—this is what facts reveal!

The propaganda against "Islamic fundamentalism" tries to make out as if some barbaric, mediaeval, religious ideas are the main threat to the freedom and democratic strivings of the peoples of the world, and not the ruthless economic and military might of the imperialist powers. This is an utter lie. In reality, today, the biggest threat to the freedom and democratic strivings of the people comes from US imperialism and its allies, who stop at nothing, including military, economic and political intervention, to extend their domination over other countries and peoples.

Clearly, therefore, the tirade against "Islamic fundamentalism" is motivated purely by geo-political interests, by the plans for the conquest of Asia, which the US imperialists are aggressively pursuing at the present time. It has nothing to do with the genuine strivings of progressive, freedom loving and revolutionary forces throughout the world, who clearly recognise the Anglo American imperialists as the force behind the most barbaric and undemocratic regimes in the world.


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Against Imperialist War    Islamic fundamentalism    Jun 16-30 2002    Voice of the Party    War & Peace     Revisionism    Popular Movements    




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