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From Sweden to Macedonia: Radical Islam Continues Probing Europe

12:10 PM, Dec 14, 2010 • By IRFAN AL-ALAWI and STEPHEN SCHWARTZ
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With the extremists occupying most of the complex, fire broke out in two of the last remaining large structures under the control of the Sufis on Sunday, December 12. Baba Edmond Brahimaj, spiritual leader of the community at the site, noted that the Sufi mejdan or meeting house for spiritual exercises, where the blaze had its origin, had not been used to store flammable materials. According to him, an arson attack was the logical culmination of years of “usurpation and theft.”

Thus, at opposite ends of Europe, Islamist radicals continue to probe for weak spots where they may carry out their atrocious acts. Is there a direct connection between the fire and explosions in Sweden and presumed arson in Macedonia? Perhaps not; to paraphrase Sigmund Freud, sometimes a coincidence is just a coincidence. But there is an ideological link between those who plot such attacks, and between those who assault other Sufis and their monuments in the Balkans and in Pakistan. The connections remain focused in Saudi-funded Wahhabism and its Taliban satellites, the latter in South Asia, in Britain, and even in America.

Irfan al-Alawi is executive director of the Islamic Heritage Research Foundation in Britain. Stephen Schwartz is a frequent contributor.

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