On page 68 of the 9/11 Commission Report the following statement is made, and then elaborated upon: "Bin Laden also relies heavily on the Egyptian writer Sayyid Qutb." Qutb makes clear that there is no middle ground in the fight between Islam and unbelief so all Muslims must take up arms in this fight and any Muslim who rejects his ideas is just another nonbeliever worthy of destruction.
Qutb is a very important thinker. He is the premier Islamic radical, the one who made the hatred of the West into an ideology, and did this through his understanding of Islam, especially in his
In the Shade of the Qur’an, still the most widely read commentary on the Qur’an. Osama bin Laden is deeply influenced by Qutb, and, by the way, Qutb’s brother was bin Laden’s tutor.
Ashbrook Scholars write a Statesmanship Thesis (senior thesis, if you like) before graduating. Normally they start work on it during their Junior year, hand in the last draft a month before graduation, and also defended in public a few weeks before graduation. Each year we choose the best thesis for the Charles E. Parton Award, named after the second director of the Ashbrook Center, one who encouraged students to write a serious thesis before graduation. This year’s recipient of the Parton Award was Luke Loboda. His Statesmanship Thesis is entitled, "The Thought of Sayyid Qutb: Radical Islam’s Philosophical Foundations." Although long, it is worth reading, especially now. Enjoy it. Luke was a history and political science major, his intention is to teach in a good high school.