Originally Posted by patteeu
They don't like our policies but they ALSO don't like our modern, infidel ways. When Sayyid Qutb breathed life into the Islamist movement that ultimately spawned both today's Muslim Brotherhood and al Qaeda, he wasn't critical of America just because we supported Israel. Nor was he critical of our relationship with Egypt (at the time we didn't have much of a relationship with the Egyptian government) or the presence of our military (there was none). He was complaining about what he considered the decadence he witnessed as a student here. Things like girls dancing with boys and going about without proper covering.
Nothing has changed since then. They still hate us for our freedoms (as well as our policies that bring our civilizations into contact), not in an intellectual way but in the same way that people like you like to say that the religious right hate gays, although I suspect that there's more real hatred among street rabble Islamists than the typical pro-life American.
Right, there will always be extremists and radicals. But extremist radicals don't compose 90% of the Middle East's population, and yet that's roughly the percentage that has an unfavorable view of the United States.
Something that pervasive and negative from such a diverse, heterogenous region goes far beyond who wears what, and who dances with whom. It goes right into America's shit policies for the entire region, from propping up dictators to both directly and indirectly terrorizing them to, yes, our no-questions-asked support of Israel.
Which is why extremist assholes figured out that was their best sales angle if they wanted new recruits. You need look no further than Osama Bin Laden or Anwar Al-Awlaki, two of the most gifted recruiters for Al Qaeda.