In this talk from a recent London-wide meeting of the Marxist Student Federation, Hamid Alizadeh – writer for In Defence of Marxism – discusses the rise of Islamic fundamentalism, and the links between jihadi organisations and Western imperialism.
After every barbaric terrorist attack, right-wing politicians and commentators attempt to whip up the idea of a “clash of civilisations” between Muslims and the Arab world, on one side, and liberal Western democracies, on the other.
But the inconvenient truth is that the ruling class in the West is behind the origins of Islamic fundamentalism as a political force.
As Hamid explains, political Islamic groups like the Muslim Brotherhood were built up historically as a counter-balance to left-wing Arab nationalism in Egypt and elsewhere.
In Afghanistan, meanwhile, the Taliban were originally supported by US imperialism in their fight against the Soviet Union.
And the jihadi terrorism seen across the world today is an export of the reactionary Wahhabi clerics in Saudi Arabia, backed by the rotten Saudi monarchy and their imperialist paymasters.
The fight against fundamentalism and terrorism today, therefore, must be linked to a revolutionary struggle against imperialism and capitalism.