Other countries have been even more extreme, but I chose Pakistan as representative of relatively moderate Islam.
That is a foolish position for you to take. The military dictatorship of Musharref wants to appear to be moderate in the eyes of the western democracies, so long as it can do so without infuriating the Pakistani people. The madrassas which trained the extremists of Afghanistan are located in Pakistan. In Arabic, talib
means seeker, and is used as the cognate for student. Refugees from the Afghan civil war, which has raged for over 40 years, became talib
, students, in the madrassas of Pakistan. There, they became "radicalized" as both Muslim fundamentalists, and as anti-western crusaders (and when Russia invaded Afghanistan, they were seen as representatives of the industrialized west--distinctions we may make about capitalist and communist are meaningless in most of the Muslim world).
The ethnic Pathans among them moved into the tribal areas of Waziristan (the "tribal" region which lies between Afghanistan and Pakistan) and began organizing not simply a resistance movement to Afghan Marxists, and later, to the Russians, but a resistance movement which called for the establishment of an Islamic state. These students, these talib
, became the Taliban.
Afghanistan is not a moderate Muslim state, it is the home of some of the most vociferous and violent Islamic extremists.