Protests flared today throughout the Islamic world as people took to the streets in front of U.S. and European embassies in Tunisia, Yemen, Egypt, Sudan and other countries over an anti-Muslim video that was made in the United States. But parse the news stories, many of which are primarly focused on the violence, and you’ll find some interesting reports that offer insight into how the silent majority and unheard voices feel about the protests.
One report describes the frustrations of Syrian activists who took to social media to denounce the protesters, saying they should be less upset about a video and more upset about the blood of their fellow Arabs being spilled by civil war. And then, there were the moving pictures from a pro-American rally in Libya after the U.S. ambassdor was killed in Benghazi. Another story offered an opinion from a Cairo resident, who was disappointed by the violence and said the protestors gave other Muslims a bad name– many of whom hadn’t actually seen the video in the first place and may be driven by elements of Islamic fundamentalism.
Ebrahim Moosa of Duke University describes why reforming Islamic literacy could help counter fundamentalism within the Muslim world.