[ by Charles Cameron — and I should add that I don’t think it’s a matter of a minor side street crossing a grand boulevard ]
I have high regard for Mark Juergensmeyer, whose book Terror in the Mind of God is rightfully a classic, and I don’t by an means always trust tweets from a TV channel… but in this case I wouldn’t be altogether surprised if NBC Nightly News had it right, and Mark Juergensmeyer was shading things just a bit too cautiously.
Mark Juergensmeyer, Don’t Blame Religion for Boston Bombings NBC Nightly News, on Twitter
But look, I feel the way I do about the intersection of religious and political motives — in this and other cases — because I have some personal understanding of how passionate a matter religion can be, and a sense, too, that our secularizing age wouldn’t mind at all if religion quietly dropped off the edge of the world.
Having said that, I like to listen to the voices of those who may see things in a different light, so perhaps I may point you to two recent articles by two of the keener observers of the Islamist political scene — Olivier Roy and Gilles Kepel:
Olivier Roy, Boston: More Like Sandy Hook Than 9/11 Gilles Kepel, Après le printemps arabe, l’hiver islamiste… Est-ce une bonne description de la réalité
Two people with very rich exposure to the varieties of contemporary Islam speak to us in those two pieces.