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Total number of comments: 1 (since 2014-07-01 13:05:35)

Adam

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  • The Debacle of the Caliphates: Why al-Baghdadi's Grandiosity doesn't Matter
    • I'm not entirely sure why many are characterizing the caliphate as some form of supreme religious leadership with talk of "legitimacy" and "authority" over Muslims. The caliphate was never a form of theocracy like the papacy. There is no religious edict or prescription of a caliphate. It was a purely political institution whose legitimacy and authority were entirely dependent on the willingness of people to be subject to it. On that note, your point still stands that this "caliphate" has neither legitimacy or authority. That's mostly because almost everyone, everywhere knows that a caliphate is an extinct form of government that cannot simply be revived by using the label. There are philosophical and historical connotations to the term "caliph" that are highly context dependent. The use of the word by ISIL, whoever they are, raises suspicions that the group is but another part of a war machine dependent on fear, fear that is conjured using old, irrelevant yet scary terms that a western audience can recognize. While the Arab and Muslim Worlds scratch their heads at the very bizarre, antiquated notion of a "caliph, " (everyone is asking who on earth would call themselves that these days?) Western drones and artillery ships are being mobilized.

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