How do we address the rise in fundamentalism?
Dr. Dov S. Zakheim is a vice president of Booz Allen Hamilton where he is a leader in the firm’s global defense business, working with U.S. Combatant Commanders and allied and coalition ministries of defense worldwide.
Former United States government official Dov Zakheim was the Undersecretary of Defense and Comptroller from 2001-2004 in the George W. Bush administration, and was a foreign policy advisor to that administration during the 2000 election campaign. From 1985-1987, during the Regan administration, Zakheim was Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Planning and Resources. An Orthodox Jew, he helped to end the IAI Lavi Israeli fighter program. Previous to his work with the Bush administration, from 1987-2001, Zakheim served as a consultant to the Office of the Secretary of Defense and sat on a number of Defense Department panels, including the Task Force on Defense Reform, in 1997, and the Board of Visitors of Overseas Regional Centers, from 1998-2001. During those years he was also CEO of SPC International, a subsidiary of System Planning Corporation. Zakheim is on the editorial board of The National Interest Journal and has published a multitude of articles and monographs on defense issues. Zakheim earned his BA in government from Columbia University in 1970 and his PhD in economics and politics from St. Antony's College, Oxford University. He was an Adjunct Scholar at the Heritage Foundation, and an adjunct professor at the National War College, Yeshiva University, Columbia University and Trinity College, where he was also Presidential Scholar. He has been a Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and is currently a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, and the United States Naval Institute. Zakheim has received many awards for government and community service, including the Department of Defense Distinguished Public Service Medal, its highest civilian award.
Dov Zakheim: You know, there have been these urges, these bursts of Islamic fundamentalism before. The great scholar . . . had to flee Morocco because at the time, the . . . I forget the ruling family then. You know, it was a surge of Islamic fundamentalism, and so a lot of the Jews who lived in Spain and in Morocco had to clear out. It was in the 12th century. You get this. You get these bursts. The real question is, “What does Islam do about itself?” Outsiders can’t . . . The interesting thing about Judaism and Christianity is we’ve both had reformations of one sort or another. And clearly if there hadn’t been Martin Luther, I doubt that Catholic Church would be where it is today. And even as an orthodox Jew, I would say if it hadn’t been for reformed Judaism, I don’t think we would be where we are today. That hasn’t happened in Islam. I mean Shiaism is not a reform of Sunnism or vice versa. So you don’t have that. You have some moderate Islam approaches, the . . . imam and so on; but that’s different. That’s geographically centered. It’s not a fundamental questioning of, “Hey, maybe we need to look at the world differently.” Because that will affect Islam. They’ve gotta do it themselves. And the biggest challenge for them is to get it done, and the biggest challenge for us is to hold out until they get it done.
Zakheim discusses Islamic fundamentalism in the context of the Jewish and Christian reformations.
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