Understanding the political environment under the influence of other factors including religious and value differences can be challenging. The concepts of globalism and populism for instance, create a potential dilemma in the distinction of populations/ nations into different groups. On the one hand, the increasing prevalence of globalism somewhat implies that people are becoming more united, sharing ideas and understanding each others’ cultures. However, changes in the description of populism as a concept in the contemporary society, have resulted in even wider berths in nations’ groupings. In the current paper, the focus is particularly on Jihadist globalism, which is explored in the context of public protection and imperial populism. The paper is thus an exploratory paper that aims wholly at understanding specific concepts in globalism and populism.
Globalism and Populism
While the definitions of globalism and populism are clear across many spheres, there is also a bit of controversy over both terms. In the contemporary times, globalism has been defined as the integration of many spheres including employment, trade, manufacturing and monetary policies across the international context. The culture of globalism has been spread across the world particularly in the recent years and people have been living in it for the past decades. Most technology instruments are comprised of several parts adopted from several places in the world and then assembled in other countries. Using such implements therefore, gives the user a feel of the efficiency or the role of each nation in the creation of tools to make work easier (Shau, 2018). The implication of this is that people benefit from instruments made across the world without an iota of consideration for the specific communities who made the different parts. For instance, when one uses a computer, there is no distinction of the beliefs, socio-economic status, values or religions of those who make the components of the whole.
The unifying principle of globalism is distinct from the segregation that is commonly associated with populism. According to Shau (2018), populism is commonly described as the distinction between people based on their social and/ or economic classifications in a community. The term populism has been reversed in the contemporary times due to the emergence of governments led by those who describe themselves as populists yet are to the extreme of the political spectrum in their priorities. The results of such leadership changes that have resulted in changes in the distinction of populism include deprivation of living standards, human rights violations and civilian attacks on those who are on the other extreme of the political spectrum. Populism is also considered one of the strongholds of the wealthy on politicians as they ensure that the needs of the politicians are met.
Besides the change in populist populations, there have also been significant changes in the work force. Various factors drive many people out of the jobs they desire and/ or enjoy. There is a decreasing prevalence of people who would prefer to get a job they like, go to work, be paid and stay with the same company to retirement. The decrease in the number of such people is attributed to changes in population stratification patterns, which results in financial challenges among middle aged and older individuals (Shau, 2018). Religious matters have also not been left behind in the populism changes over time. In particular, such distinctions have resulted in increasing tendency to segregate others on the basis of religious beliefs and values. As more people realize the differences between their beliefs and others, there is an increasing perception of ‘them’ and ‘us’, which continues to destabilize political and social systems across the world.
Defending the Umma against Judeo- Crusader
El Fadl (2006) provided a review of some of the writings of Osama bin Laden, in which he cautioned Islamic faithful against being intertwined with some of their purported oppressors. According to El Fadl, the writings, which may be dismissed due to the awareness of Osama’s life as a criminal and a terrorist, can provide essential insights into the thought process of typical Islamist jihadists. The concepts presented therein can also be linked to the ideology of Islamist globalism, in which religious beliefs of Muslims are shared with all Muslims across the world (El Fadl, 2006). It is in the same context of globalism that radicalization occurs as youths are convinced using new ideologies that are supposed to help them get away from their perceived oppressors. One of such ideologies is the concept of the Judeo- crusaders. El Fadl (2006) describes the Judeo-crusader as a person of another religious faction whose intention is to exploit Muslim natural resources after occupation of Islamic holy sites. The Judeo-crusader essentially aims at asserting ultimate hegemony over Muslims and to fragment the Islamic world by dividing Islamic states into mini-states.
From this perception, the objective of the jihadists is to protect the umma (public) against oppression from the Judeo-crusaders. The crusaders want Muslims to be defenseless and eventually extinct, and to never be in control of some of their holy sites. The subject of protecting the umma against the Judeo-crusader therefore falls perfectly into the objectives of the Muslims, which include achieving their historic dreams of having a united Islamic umma, gaining control over all the Islamic holy sanctuaries and places, enjoying hegemony over the wealth of the Islamic countries and achieving historic ambitions associated with the religion (El Fadl, 2006). Protecting the umma against Judeo-crusaders would thus entail fighting against the leaders of the Arab Peninsula, some of whom the umma initially counted on for assistance, and who have since proven that they are in union with the so called oppressors. Some of the leaders, as reported by El Fadl (2006), have been used as tools for the oppression of the umma by forsaking the Islamic nation and getting attached to the Judeo-crusaders.
The concept of imperial globalism has gained minimum attention independently. However, market globalism, from which it stems, has been widely researched. Steger (2013) describes market globalism as one of the facets of globalism that give it meaning and form. In describing market globalism, the promise of a neoliberal, free-market and consumerist world is given. This promise implies that as the prevalence of globalism increases, the world should become a place where there is open access to all places to all people. Furthermore, the neoliberal promise means that the future should be such that economic control is no longer within the public control but to the private sector. This counters the position of the populist ideologies, in which economic control is in the hands of the public yet only a few benefit while the others suffer. The imperial globalism is an even more majestic form of market globalism, in which the accrued to the public can be attributed to a few (the private sector).
The imperial globalism phenomenon is shared by many powerful people across the world, with the claim that it shares benefits to everyone and also transmits democracy. However, what most of the proposers of the imperial globalism phenomenon do not point out is that it reinforces inequality, particularly through privatization of resources that could he held by many (Steger, 2013). The actions of the Islamic leaders and jihadists for instance, can be likened to the outcomes of imperial globalism in the sense that there is a segregation between what belongs to one group and what belongs to other groups. Individuals who do not ‘possess’ a particular source of livelihood are considered outsiders. This kind of globalism can also be politically motivated, particularly through influencers who create the perception that those ‘others’ are at the helm of power and would therefore oppress the rest of the populations. According to Steger (2013), religious globalism therefore, can be described as a part of the imperia globalism, in which members of a particular religious community fight for superiority over secular structures.
The fight for supremacy among different religions is founded on various religious characteristics and items, which are considered to be at the center of conflict. In most cases, such conflicts come about as a result of differences in ideology driven by globalism and purported danger. For instance, the belief in protecting the umma against the Judeo-crusaders is one of the key concepts that can be entirely linked to differential religious beliefs. Combined with religious globalism, such misconceptions can result in significant war and pain for people across the world.
El Fadl, K.E. (2006). The crusader: Why we must take Osama bin Laden’s writings seriously. Boston Review. Retrieved from bostonreview.net/el-fadl-the-crusader
Shau, K. (2018, November 10). A classical humanist approach to globalism and populism. Medium Philosophy. Retrieved from medium.com/@kevinshau/a-classical-humanist-approach-to-globalism-and-populism-4ab23c55c07d
Steger, M. (2013). Globalization, 3rd Ed. Oxford University Press. Retrieved from oxfordindex.oup.com/vie