Exploiting fundamentalists Promoting religious fanaticism Exploiting religious fanaticism Engaging in religious radicalism Advocating religious zealotry
Exploiting fundamentalism occurs when clergymen or other leaders agitate religious followers to action, or instigate laws based upon religious interpretation, for purely political ends. Creating new heresies and identifying new religious enemies are proven means of deflecting public discontent with joblessness, inflation and clerical corruption.
[Islam] In Pakistan it is reported prosecutors use blasphemy laws, carrying capital sentences, against Christians and adherents of the Ahmadiyya, a minority faith. In Bangladesh and other Islamic countries, authors, writers and political activists have been threatened with death by Islamic radicals and with blasphemy trials by their governments for advocating new social reforms considered un-Islamic. Nonconforming newspaper editors, journalists and aid groups like the renowned Grameen Bank, whose offence has been to empower the poor, have found themselves targets for politically inspired fundamentalist attack. The political agenda behind accusations of un-Islamic practice can often be to divert public attention from social problems, create scape-goats, or more covertly to inspire mobs to take direct action, bombing houses and wrecking the offices of those groups in society deemed to be politically opposed to the national authority.
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