Sample Essay

The attacks of September 11, 2001 have caused many to nod over the seriousness of the issue as how little is known about the people of other religions and cultures. Lack of knowledge about one another, says David Schoem, is evident from the fact that although ‘our lives are intertwined socially, economically and politically’ yet ‘still mange to be ignorant of one another’ and what ‘we do learn along the way is to place heavy reliance stereotypes, gossip, rumor, and fear to shape our lack of knowledge’[1]. This lack of knowledge serves to create a negative and illusory image of any state, religion or a culture.

Zuckerman[2] sees the image of Saudi Arabia as being the supporter of terrorists as he traces the history of the involvement of Saudi Arabia in the militant funding that, he maintains, led to precipitate the events of 9/11 as well. By exporting ‘Islamic extremism’ outside their desert kingdom, claims Zuckerman, wealthy Saudis run ‘the risk of becoming casualties in the global war on terror’[3]. Zuckerman traces the root of terrorism from November 20, 1979 when the Mosque of Mecca[4] was seized by the fundamentalists and that event led to the rise of Wahhabism[5] in the kingdom, a force that the leaders of Saudi Arabia found difficult to suppress.


[1] Schoem, David. Inside Separate Worlds. University of Michigan Press, 1991

[2] Zuckerman, Mortimer B. “Who finances the fanatics?” The U.S News & World Report, 12 30, 2002

[3] As in 14

[4] The holiest place of worship of  the Muslims

[5] A puritanical sect of Islam

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