Ignorant Experts on False Islamism
Martin Kramer directs us to an observation by a man genuinely knowledgeable on Islamism and strongly critical of false experts who speak without knowledge:
Graeme Wood (The Atlantic), in his new book [The Way of the Strangers: Encounters with the Islamic State] on ISIS: "In my conversations with [Western] scholars of Islam, few of the people who dismissed the Islamic State as a product of false Islamism - Jacobinism with an Islamic veneer - were able to name a single cleric or [Muslim] scholar associated with the Islamic State, or a fatwa or other statement by that [Muslim] scholar. The level of ignorance is as appalling as if a scholar of Marxism declared the Soviet Union 'not Marxist' and turned out to be unfamiliar with the name of Trotsky or Lenin." [The Way of the Strangers: Encounters with the Islamic State, page 76]That means I know more than most so-called experts. Yet, I know that I know next to nothing about anything. By the end of the semester, however, I should know quite a bit more than next to nothing, since my Islamism course appears to have enough students to take place this time.