Qassem Soleimani, Iranian military leader, ideologue, and commander in chief of the Quds force- a branch of the Islamic Republic's Revolutionary Guard Corps that conducts extraterritorial military and clandestine operations- has been coming out of his shell and becoming more vocal in stating his opinions.
Turkey's journey of democratization toward EU membership stalled and made a U-turn during the third term of its ruling party AKP. Turkey's democratizing reforms have been both a state policy and a popular path throughout 90s and were accelerated under then-prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2003.
In the face of the fragility of life and mighty forces of hatred and fear, many will lapse into denial or despair, making decisions from a place of spiritual defeat. This is not what our tradition asks of us. We are called to fully acknowledge the reality of evil, and lovingly perpetuate life in spite of it.
Objectively, there's no denying that today Islamic extremism poses more of a threat than other types of religious fanaticism. There are complex historical, social, and cultural reasons for this. But this is not a matter of the text of the Qur'an being inherently more susceptible to intolerant interpretations than the Bible.
Although the UN does important humanitarian work, it is overgrown with the weeds of a dysfunctional bureaucracy and spineless leadership, and has become a watering hole for states that are prepared to sanction sex discrimination and extremist ideology without fear of serious challenge by the world body.