We live in a world where it seems like things are increasingly breaking down. The environment is degrading, and we are already beginning to notice this all around us. Extreme weather events keep breaking records. Even here in the UK, storms that would happen less than once a century now happen every decade, as we have seen with Desmond.
States are breaking down too. Syria and Iraq are clearly failed states. As are Libya, Yemen, Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, and quite a few others. Others still are very close to breaking point. But perhaps the most important thing is that the moral discourse, the political culture underpinning these states, and indeed the entire geo-political system, is breaking down. Not just in fragile states in the Middle East. Secessionism has been on the ascendant in Europe, in Scotland, Catalonia, Flanders and other places. Meanwhile nationalist fascism is on the rise in the political discourse across Europe, North-America and indeed the Middle East - if one takes radical Islamism to be counted as fascism. I would argue that it is very similar indeed.
But the odd thing is that the moral failures of the Western-dominated world order are not any worse now than they were in the past. Less than 75 years ago, when the Japanese attacked the U.S. at Pearl Harbor, the American government reacted by imprisoning in concentration camps every ethnically Japanese American they could find - over 110,000 people. It kept them locked up for the duration of WW2. Yet in 2001 when Al Qaeda attacked the U.S. in the heart of New York, there were no such communal reprisals against Muslims in the United States. This despite the fact that there was a popular backlash, and reprisals could have earned a Republican president such as Bush some votes.
We report on those who go to join ISIS, but do not give nearly as much coverage to the millions fleeing from the Islamic garden of Paradise that ISIS have established in their controlled territories.Dr. Azeem Ibrahim