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Several Arab governments have recently opened the door to dialogue with political Islam groups after years of tension between Islamists and secularists in the Arab world.
Broder writes about Dr. Wafa Sultan, a Syrian-American Muslim who recently complained bitterly against those who distort Islam. She strongly renounced terrorism, and Muslim backwardness and violence, saying these things were not what the Prophet Muhammad and the Qur’ān intended. The response, particularly in the Arab world, has been extremely angry, with some people ironically making threats on her life.
Dr. Wolfram Reiss discusses the obstacles and opportunities identified by a German project and accompanying international dialogue on the revision of school textbooks in the Middle East, in terms of their treatment of Christianity.
During meetings with some French Muslim converts, Arlette Khourī transmits their opinions and experiences of Islam, mentioning the official French perspective concerning the increase in the number of ‘new Muslims.’
The article covers the speeches given by Dr. Nasr Hamid Abu Zeid and Dr. Hassan Hanafy, philosophy professor, in a seminar titled “Criticism in Philosophy and Social Ideology" held as part of the activities of the conference of the Philosophical Association.
There is no fashion that produces the amount of controversy, violence and hysteria world-wide that the wearing of the veil by Muslim women does. Iranian women flee overseas in order to take the chador off. In Turkey, the veiled wives of government and party officials are not allowed to attend official celebrations. In Algeria, some women are shot by terrorist groups if they refuse to take the veil. In France, Germany, Italy and America a complete month can hardly pass without a media crisis because of Muslim veiled students. In Egypt, it is enough for any pedant to manipulate religion and religious slogans to guide large flocks of people to any direction he wishes.
Khadeja Qenna, the Algerian broadcaster of the news bulletin and political programs on Al-Jazeera TV station, stressed that her decision to take the veil is a personal one and does not reflect an approach of her TV station. She mentioned that she received telephone calls from Sheikhs Amr Khaled, Omar Abdel Al-Kafi, and Al-Qaradawi giving positive reactions to her decision.
Al-Ahram Al-Arabi devoted a six-article file to Islam in the Maghrib (Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco and Mauritania). The first and sixth article concentrate on mosques in the Maghrib, as a reflection of the history of Islam in the region. The second article deals with the development of the religious discourse in Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco. The third article speaks about the most prominent sheikhs and religious scholars. The fourth and fifth articles are interviews with the former Algerian minister of Islamic affairs and the vice president of the Tawhid and Islah [monotheism and reformation] movement in Morocco.
On the fourth of July, a Pakistani group called “The army of the Sahaba [Companions of the Prophet]” attacked a Shiite mosque, leaving 48 persons dead and 65 injured. The author comments on the incident and the group that committed it. He believes the group is the outcome of the efforts of Saudi Arabia to spread the Wahhabi ideology
The article is an interview with Abdel Raziq Al-Maqri who represents the Algerian radical opposition movement, which believes in the necessity of accepting others. He comments on the impact of the September 11 attacks on Islamic movements and extremist groups