Wednesday 25 February 2015

Links 25/2/15

If ISIS is claiming to be Islamic, they will have to construct their claim for legitimacy and their law on precedence, but how they understand that precedence and how they engage with that precedence reveals more about the brutality of their ideology and methodology than it does about classical Islamic law. If ISIS is both fundamentally shifting the way the law is conceived, and also the very parameters which govern legal thinking in various arenas, then it requires that individuals reject a simple binary of Islamic and unIslamic and engage more deeply in these discussions. This is of course not to negate the fact that the existence of ISIS is emerging from the systemic and continuous military and cultural degradation of the area it now controls, but to seriously evaluate their own claim of being Islamic alongside the cacophonous sounds of either those who agree or disagree. 
Jadaliyya: Beyond Authenticity: ISIS and the Islamic Legal Tradition, February 24, 2015
As the debate about the right strategy to combat ISIS in Iraq and Syria continues, public opinion in the US about employing ground troops seems to have shifted. 

"The future of war will be robotic" (and a book recommendation: P.W. Singer's Wired for War, published in 2009.)

The Atlantic speculates how US foreign policy over the past decades has influenced Putin's view of the West. "In the aftermath of 9/11, Putin was mystified by the actions of his U.S. counterparts. In the absence of countervailing information, Putin initially saw American failure to respond to his warnings about the common threat of terrorism as a sign of dangerous incompetence."

Pictures from a very precarious ceasefire in Ukraine

Jacobin magazine on Syriza's, Greece's current radical left-wing governing party, position in Europe. 

France's right-wing populist party after the attacks on the Charlie Hebdo offices: 
"Citizenship in France is supposed to confer complete equality, but the National Front, and many French all over the political spectrum, believe that privilege comes with the expectation of strict assimilation...When it comes to laïcité, the differences between those on the left, the right and the far right are sometimes most apparent in the varying hostility with which they deliver remarkably similar views." 
The New York Times: The National Front’s Post-Charlie Hebdo Moment, February 18, 2015

Pop Culture: 

Today is the final episode of Parks and Recreation, a show that defies cynicism, celebrates friendships, showcases how cooperation and finding the things you love improves lives, and is in general probably one of the best things that have happened in terms of pop culture this decade. 

The A.V. Club on Agent Carter's (airing its final episode this season tonight) issues with diversity

Bob's Burger meets Sleater-Kinney's A New Wave, Bust meets Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson

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