In his official response to the attacks of September 11th, George W. Bush invoked the Crusades, tapping into a centuries-long history of fear and aggression. The West's longstanding perception of Islam as a threat has taken on new and more complex implications in the twenty-first century, as years of migration and resulting demographic shifts have brought the "enemy" within Western borders. Virulent opposition to the planned construction of an Islamic center near the 9/11 attack site in New York City reveals much about the intensity of public sentiments simmering just below the surface. As the United States and countries across Europe struggle with a resurgence of unexamined fear and antagonism, often directed against their own citizens, the imperative for better understanding could not be greater.
Crusade 2.0 examines the resurgence of anti-Islamic sentiment in the West and its global implications. John Feffer discusses the influence of three "unfinished wars"—the Crusades, the Cold War, and the current "war on terror." He presents a timely, concise, and provocative look at current events in the context of historical trends and goes beyond a "clash of civilizations" critique to offer concrete ways to defuse the ticking bomb of Islamophobia.
Praise for Crusade 2.0:
"John Feffer's Crusade 2.0: The West's Resurgent War On Islam offers a brief but effective exposé of a social cancer that continues to grow exponentially, in America and Europe, threatening the security and civil liberties of Muslims and the principles and values of Western democracies."—John L. Esposito, author of Islamophobia and the Challenge of Pluralism in the 21st Century and The Future of Islam
"John Feffer's illuminating and important new work, Crusade 2.0, sheds light on the disturbing phenomenon of Islamophobia in America with a clear-eyed view of history, meticulous research, and persuasive arguments. This accessible and informative book shows how fear-mongering, when married to ignorance and selfish political agendas, not only threatens to marginalize entire communities of innocent people but also undermine the core values of pluralism, tolerance and fairness that define America."—Wajahat Ali, author of The Domestic Crusaders and lead author of Fear Inc., The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America produced by Center for American Progress
"If you want to understand the particular madness of America's twenty-first century, you need to read John Feffer's account of how Washington launched "crusade 2.0," including two invasions and occupations of Muslim lands and a Global War on Terror sporting aptly named Hellfire missiles aimed directly at the Muslim world. Add in the injection of fear of Islam directly into the American bloodstream and the rise of Islamophobia as domestic political red meat, and you have a truly American nightmare. Feffer is its Homer and this is our sad Odyssey."—Tom Engelhardt, author of The United States of Fear
John Feffer is co-director of Foreign Policy in Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, including North Korea, South Korea. His essays have been published in the New York Times, The Boston Globe, and elsewhere. He had been interviewed by CNN, MSNBC, Al Jazeera, Democracy Now! and other international news media.