Steven Martinovich in Enter Stage Right:
One can't help but be sympathetic to American Muslims in the post-9/11 era. Their patriotism has been questioned and they are simultaneously pulled in opposite directions by the fundamentalists and reformers in Islam. Though secure in their faith, many are beginning to question some of the assumptions that their communities have accepted and promoted, triggering what may be the beginning of an Islamic reformation. It is not surprising, therefore, that many Muslims in the United States are confused about their place in the world.
Ali Eteraz, noted blogger and lawyer, was certainly one of those Muslims. As he relates in Children of Dust: A memoir of Pakistan, he was born in Pakistan but was raised for much of his life in the United States. Told from an early age that he would play a prominent role in the Islamic world, his given name of Abir ul Islam translates into “Perfume of Islam”, Eteraz has suffered through a crisis of faith, fundamentalism and finally becoming a proponent for reform. Coming from a traditional culture like Pakistan has meant that he has also had to fight outsized battles against temptation, and not always successfully.