The target of Erdogan's purge -- the movement led by U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen -- is not dangerous. It's one of the most moderate and socially constructive organizations in the Muslim world. In attacking it, Erdogan is planting the seeds for his own destruction.
I return here to Jean Birnbaum's book, Un silence religieux, which raises a thorny issue and advances debate by highlighting our systematic underestimation of the spiritual element when analyzing jihadism.
What was the image that crossed the mind of that Muslim president who was doing his utmost to save his people from a bloodbath announced by the Serbs? "We are the Warsaw ghetto," he wrote, "Will the Warsaw ghetto once again be left to die?"
These folks don't carry much (or any) political clout. No one in D.C. is listening to them. They don't have the deep pockets or White House access like the older more conservative clan does. So no one hears their voices.
The last time I was in Tunisia it was a few months after the fall of Ben Ali, and I wonder how much the country has changed now that a transition government led by the Islamist party Ennahda is in charge.
The crisis in Egypt has re-ignited the debate of whether moderate Islam is a reality or just a show. In the absence of a unified voice from the Muslim world and with time running out, it seems few have a clear idea.
The battle among Muslim progressives and Muslim fundamentalists is a family affair at heart. I've argued to progressive Muslims that the battle needs to be fought within families, beginning with simple candor on the part of progressives.
Where Maher should be expressing solidarity with progressive Muslims who would stand with him in opposition to violent extremism, he instead alienates them by making a fictitious cultural simplification.
You would be hard-pressed to find a Jewish text that permits the destruction of a mosque. Rabbis and other moderate voices should use this as a starting point to engage extremist settlers within their own communities.