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Religion and Human SecurityA Global Perspective$
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James K. Wellman and Clark Lombardi

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199827732

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199827732.001.0001

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Popular Muslim Attitudes towards Violent Islamic Groups: The Case of Pakistan

Popular Muslim Attitudes towards Violent Islamic Groups: The Case of Pakistan

(p.67) 5 Popular Muslim Attitudes towards Violent Islamic Groups: The Case of Pakistan
Religion and Human Security

C. Christine Fair

Clark B. Lombardi

Oxford University Press

This chapter on Pakistan examines the phenomenon of public support for militant Islamic groups that promote violence in Pakistan's neighbors as well as in Pakistan itself. Since Pakistanis tend to self-identify as Muslims, the fact that Pakistanis support such groups might seem to support the hypothesis that religiosity coincides with an increase in violence as well as the toleration of violence. Parsing two large sets of polling data, the chapter questions such hypotheses. It finds considerable data to suggest that Pakistanis do not fully understand radical Islamic groups, nor do they understand the activities in which they engage. It suggests that current data does not support the claim that increased personal commitment to Islam has led the Pakistani public to support Islamic groups that engage in violence either within or outside of Pakistan.

Keywords:   militant Islamic groups, Pakistanis, public support, Muslims, violence

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