I suspect that the intellectual author finds Christianity and Judaism to be just as "atavistic" (ancient / backward) as Islam. When there are three great monothistic religions, two of which DO worship the same God (the Father), and one who does not, intellectuals see the failure of the imposter as reason to indict the other two as well. It was what they see as "equality" -- we know religion is bad, if one out of three monotheistic religions is a disaster and the other two are huge successes, it "proves" that religion is bad! Simple.
It's a good visitation of Arab history post '67 anyway ... an excerpt.
Fifty years after Azm and other Arab intellectuals started to mercilessly deconstruct their ossified political orders, reactionary and primitive religious structures, and stagnant societies, the Arab world has descended further into darkness. Physical, intellectual, and political desolation has claimed many of the once lively metropolises of the Arab region — Damascus, Aleppo, Baghdad, Mosul, Cairo, and Alexandria — with only Beirut still resisting, albeit teetering on the edge. For centuries, these cities constituted a rich human and linguistic mosaic of ancient communities including Muslims, Christians, Jews, Druze, Arabs, Kurds, Assyrians, and Circassians. In modern times, they were joined by Greek, Armenian, and Italian communities. A vibrant cosmopolitanism found home in the port cities of Alexandria and Beirut and the cities of the hinterland, such as Aleppo, Damascus, and Baghdad.