Fred A. Reed’s fifth book on the Middle East and “the wars of the Ottoman succession” traces the roots of Islamic fundamentalism, as currently enacted by Hezbollah and other Islamic fundamentalist organizations, to the iconoclasts of sixth- and seventh-century Damascus.
The emergence of Iconoclasm, as sudden and overwhelming as it was catalytic, was at once the product of the forces released by the new social, political and religious teachings of the Prophet, and of their encounter with the Christian world at its far periphery.
They are forces that are quite alive and at large in today’s world, as the Western crusade against this latest prophetic dispensation of the Abrahamic tradition assumes a form both aggressive and invasive.
Shattered Images covers all of the major Islamic faiths in its search for the origins of contemporary fundamentalist movements: the Shi’a, Sunni, Ismaili (and their connection with the Assassins) and many of the minor tributaries of Islam, including the “secular” (and related) Syrian Ba’as and Iraqi Bath parties.
As American tank turrets turn from Iraq and take threatening aim at Syria, current events increasingly confirm Reed as an astute expert on Middle-Eastern politics.