Pew Survey Highlights Global Prevalence of Sharia-adherent Islam

Last week,  the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion and Public Life released the results of a multi-year survey of beliefs and practices by the world’s Muslims. You can read the survey here, which was based on (impressively) 38,000 face-to-face interviews with Muslims in 39 different countries and territories.

The report has several interesting findings; in particular, the survey found that a majority of Muslims in 32 of 39 countries believes that “There is only one true way to interpret the teachings of my religion.”

This finding of rigid orthodoxy among Muslims follows up a 2011 Pew survey among American Muslims, which rather shockingly found that American-born Muslims are far more likely to be rigid about their Islamic adherence than Muslim immigrants.

According to strategic policy and intelligence expert Clair Lopez, writing for, this finding indicates that “the Salafist indoctrination efforts of Muslim Brotherhood-dominated madrassas, mosques and Islamic Centers across the U.S. are successful at turning out home-grown, Sharia-adherent Muslims.”

Lopez — who was fellow co-author with AFLC Co-Founder and Senior Counsel David Yerushalmi of the Team ‘B’ counter-terrorism report, entitled, Shariah: The Threat To America, An Exercise in Competitive Analysis, which was published in 2010 by the Center for Security Policy — went on to say that this finding “correlates well with the results of the Summer 2011 Middle East Quarterly “Mapping Sharia” study by Mordechai Kedar and David Yerushalmi, which found that teaching at U.S. mosques is overwhelmingly (80%) of the hard core Salafi variety that advocates violence.”