Q&A Friday #44: Is Al-Qaeda On The Left Or Right?

Question: “If you had to categorize Al Qaeda on the right or left, would you say they were leftist or rightist?” — D-Vega

Answer: Since they tend to believe in total state control over every aspect of people’s lives from what kind of business they can run right down to how much facial hair they have, I’d say they’re more properly identified as being on the left than the right.

But in all fairness, their beliefs don’t really fit on any sort of modern political scale. The radical Islamists are trying to follow a political blueprint that a man, Muhammad, invented roughly 1400 years ago to try to keep control over a bunch of tribesmen and bandits. Those same rules that worked so well back then are hopelessly inapplicable to the modern world in many respects for reasons that go well beyond divisions between liberalism and conservatism.

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