Before the great changes of the “Arab Spring” in 2011, it was the sectarian rivalry between Shia and Sunni, which employs most of the Middle East political analysis. Growing tensions and occasional clashes between believers of the two main strands of Islam have great concerns. Upheavals in the Shiite area of influence had changed the relationship: the Iranian revolution of 1979 changed the Iranian Shia politics and implications for regional Shiite communities, while the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq in 2003 began a new phase of the tension in Shia Sunni relations.
The specter of a sectarian war in Iraq, a diplomatic and military offensive against Hezbollah and Iran possibly nuclear weapons (with support from Tehran for Hamas) urged King Abdullah II of Jordan to warn of arising “Shiite crescent”. But away from these great geopolitical movements, the Sunni Shia relations through a network of local connections, regional and global reformulated.
This book presents a wide and current research that sheds light on the political, sociological and ideological processes that raises the dynamics within and affect the relations between Shiites and Sunnis worlds. Among the topics the ideological and dogmatic developments instead, contextualization of the main protagonists of political practice, transnational networks and the role of intellectuals, religious scholars and the media in the education and information of this dynamic relationship, and gives deep understanding of Shia and Sunni difference.