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Jihad Pigs, Part IV

Jihad Pigs, Part IV

S.K. Malik’s Quranic Concept of War illustrates that during the late 1970s, the Pakistani military began adopting hardline conceptions of jihad in order to resolve a major crisis in national morale. This allowed the military to rehabilitate itself following a series of major defeats, and move against leftist and secessionist factions in the country. More»

The Future is Not What it Used to Be

The Future is Not What it Used to Be

Few writers in the Anglosphere have written about the situation of modern capitalism, and its cultural consequences, than British scholar Mark Fisher. Whether in books, in Wired and New Statesman, or on his own blog, Fisher prose cuts to the chase, capturing subtle nuances without feeling the need to drown the reader in verbiage. More»

Jihad Pigs, Part III

Jihad Pigs, Part III

Brigadier General S.K. Malik expounds on the purpose of warfare in Qu’ranic Concept of War by inverting the arguments of Carl von Clausewitz. Clausewitz famously argued that war is a “continuation of policy by other means,” while Malik believed that the ethical bases of war forces policy to define and determine its specific parameters. More»

Jihad Pigs, Part II

Jihad Pigs, Part II

A major criticism of Islamic militants is the fact that they fight during Ramadan. S. K. Malik’s Qu’ranic Concept of War complicates this argument by highlighting a strong Qu’ranic justification for jihad during the “prohibited month.”  More»

The War of Poetry

The War of Poetry

It seems like a long time ago, when rebellious poets lashed out against a takeover of the field by academics who, according to the familiar curse, “had everything but an audience.” They were trying, in part, to return poetry to its popularity in the early twentieth century–think of Carl Sandburg’s large following when he was only years from his socialistic journalism—before modernism turned most radical poetry inward. More»

Philosophy Against Capitalism

Philosophy Against Capitalism

If I may begin with a bit of oversimplification, Slavoj Žižek basically writes two kinds of books: long and incomprehensible, and short and to the point. His Less Than Nothing is an example of the first sort. More»

Taking Advantage of Islam

Taking Advantage of Islam

On January 7 2015, Cherif and Said Kouachi, two French Algerians radicalised by the war in Iraq, entered the offices of Charlie Hebdo. It was a Wednesday, and the writers had gathered for an editorial meeting. When the shooting began, the satirists thought it was firecrackers. More»

Jihad Pigs, Part I

Jihad Pigs, Part I

Brigadier General S. K. Malik’s book Quranic Concept of War was published in Lahore in 1979. Malik articulates a uniquely Islamic contribution to ‘just war’ theory, using the Qu’ran to discuss wartime ethics and the nature of modern jihad. More»

Don't Call It Freedom Rock

Don’t Call It Freedom Rock

I’d been looking forward to reading ex-Bitch Magnet guitarist Jon Fine’s Your Band Sucks, his memoir of his life in the indie rock scene, for some time. I’d been fascinated with (the stupidly named) Bitch Magnet ever since I first heard Ben Hur in Thirty Ought Six front man Sean Roberts’ basement in Portland a couple of lifetimes ago. More»

Night Politics

Night Politics

Several years ago, I spent the night carousing in Prenzlauer Berg. As things broke up after two, I realized that I had stayed out too late – which meant until after the north-south U-Bahn lines had stopped running. In those days, I was living in Neukölln which, for those unfamiliar with Berlin, is a considerable distance. More»

Capitalism Will Eat Itself

Capitalism Will Eat Itself

The economist Joseph Schumpeter is one the most fascinating and, it is probably fair to say, underappreciated figures of the 20th century. He was a product of a remarkable multigenerational school of economic thought in the last decades of the Habsburg Empire. More»

Wars of Position

Wars of Position

PSYOP: Post- 9/11 Leaflets: Operation Enduring Freedom, is a collection of leaflets dropped by the United States military on Iraq and Afghanistan since 2001. The book, which was put together by Christoph Büchel and Giovanni Carmine, was published in 2005 by Win With Words as part of an exhibition at the 7th Sharjah Biennale, in the United Arab Emirates. More»