Speech of Osman Bakhash in the Shariah & Khilafah Conference Held in Kuala Lumpur
Speech of Osman Bakhash, Director of The Central Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir, in the Shariah and Khilafah Conference, Held in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday, October 3, 2015 CE
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Outlooks on the Lessons Learned from the Arab Spring
Former Tunisian President Mohamed Moncef Marzouki said in a lecture in the Moroccan capital Rabat on 03/08/2015, that "All the dreams of the Arab Spring have been dashed", and that the, Arab Spring has "turned into a nightmare in Syria and Yemen and a vicious counter-revolution in Egypt, which will drag Egypt into a kind of civil war..." And he said that "the current Egyptian government is actively moving towards fascism and has already gone beyond authoritarianism".
How true are Marzouki's words? Has the Ummah's uprising really turned into a nightmare so perhaps the Ummah regrets the sacrifices it made to end up in the renewal of the Western colonial grip under new faces? Or is it premature to proclaim the end yet? What lessons can we draw from what happened so far? We will discuss these issues under the following headings:
1. Preface: The reality of the Ummah and the Western hegemony over it; exposing the colonial animosity against Islam and Muslims.
2. Arab Spring: Breaking the wall of fear. Brief account of the events: igniting a spark of hope, toppling the thrones of tyrants, the West hastening to ride the wave to contain the uprising in order to deflect it from the correct course thus renewing the grip of the colonial powers.
3. The reasons which led to the failure of the Arab Spring
4. The way forward.
1. The reality of the Ummah: Western domination over the Ummah
After Western colonial powers achieved the demolition of the Khilafah at the hands of Mustafa Kemal, they were determined to impose a new reality that allows them to keep Muslims in the state of weakness that prevents the return of their strength; their strength which is derived from their Aqeedah and the Law of their Lord. Thus, France and Britain divided the region according to the Sykes-Picot Agreement between them. And so the Ummah was divided into dozens of meager entities based on arbitrary grounds solely to serve the interests of the colonists. In order to ensure the sustainability of their hegemony and domination on the necks of the Muslims, the colonial powers, imposed traitor rulers whose first concern is the service of their masters in the West. On the other hand, the colonial powers had disabled the provisions of the Sharia law and imposed policies, regulations and laws aimed at fighting the Islamic personality within Muslims that was already suffering from weakness as a result of the decline of the Muslims.
In order to make Muslims forget the provisions of Islam and the Islamic way of life, these regimes and governments resorted to promoting the concepts of Western civilization with its corrupt branches of secularism, nationalism, patriotism, and educational curricula that aim to distort the concepts of Islam in the young generations and embellish the joys and poisons of Western ideas. To be able to apply these systems and laws, the colonialists hired a class of political, ideological and cultural agents from the sons of the region, whose hearts absorbed the love of Western civilization and devotion to serving and defending it, while having negative outlook toward the Islamic civilization and disdaining it. Since the concepts of Western civilization are contrary to the Islamic Aqeedah altogether, it was necessary for these regimes to be police-states relying on the repressive intelligence apparatus with the utmost precedence, fully committed to oppressing the sincere sons of the Ummah who call to resume the Islamic way of life by the application of the Shariah of their Lord. Hence, these regimes were brutal dictatorships innovative in using methods of oppression and tyranny against the people. All of this taking place with full support of the West, with Western countries ranting slogans of democracy and human rights and the like...
It must be noted here that the fear of the Western countries is not only losing control of the massive wealth and natural resources that are abound in Muslim countries, but also fear the awakening of the Islamic giant and the return of the Islamic civilization to life. Thus, the existence of this civilization, embodied in the entity of the Khilafah State upon the method of the Prophethood, means to provide a model of civilization based on the divine message of Islam which brings justice and mercy for all humanity. And this is a harbinger of the abstention of the people, who have been scorched by the disasters and scourges of the capitalist civilization, from it and their yearning for the Islamic model. Hence we saw the Western countries, immediately after the fall and the collapse of the Soviet Union, and what it represented of an alternative socialist model, we found them quick to magnify and dramatize the factitious threat of "Islamic terrorism", and adopting intensive policies aimed at strengthening the hatred, animosity and fear of the Western people against Islam and Muslims. This is in order to enable the Western governments to follow the policies of hegemony and control over Muslims countries and control their affairs in every arcane detail, without finding public opinion against it. The following are few examples highlighting this fact:
- Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger saying: "The basic adversary is the radical, fundamentalist militant fringe of Islam, which aims to overthrow both moderate Islamic societies and all others it perceives as standing in the way of restoring an Islamic caliphate". (Newsweek Magazine, November 2004)
- Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said at the Labour Party National Conference on 16/7/2005 about the July 7th 2005 London bombings: "What we are confronting is a movement that demand the elimination of Israel; the withdrawal of all Westerners from Muslim countries, the establishment of Sharia law in the Arab world en route to one caliphate of all Muslim nations".
- British Home Secretary Charles Clark in a speech at the Heritage Foundation, on 6/10/2005 said: "There can be no negotiation about the re-creation of the Caliphate; there can be no negotiation about the imposition of Islamic law".
- Former US President George W. Bush in his address to the Americans on 6/10/2005 said: "The militants believe that controlling one country will rally the Muslim masses, enabling them to overthrow all moderate governments in the region and establish a radical Islamic empire that spans from Spain to Indonesia".
- On 5/12/2005 US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld at the Johns Hopkins University said, "Iraq would serve as the base of a new Islamic caliphate to extend throughout the Middle East, and which would threaten legitimate governments in Europe, Africa and Asia. This is their plan. They have said so. We make a terrible mistake if we fail to listen and learn".
- On 10/11/2006, Bush asserted three times during a lengthy news conference at the White House that "America's presence in Iraq is precisely to thwart the establishment of "a strong Islamic state, caliphate," which will "endanger Western interests and threaten America at home". "They want to extend an ideological caliphate that has no concept of liberty inherent in their beliefs". And "they want us to leave, but we are staying so as not to regret and to teach the American people then that our presence in Iraq was worth the risk and bet". "The extremists are trying to intimidate rational people in order to topple moderate governments and to extend the caliphate".
- Bush said in an address dated 25/10/2006, "The failure to establish a state in Iraq would enable the extremists to exploiting the country to establish a militant empire that spans from Spain to Indonesia."
2. Arab Spring: Breaking the wall of fear
The spark of Arab Spring started from Tunisia, on 17/12/2010, and spread like wildfire to destabilize the Western domination of the Muslim countries, so it reverberated in the east and the west of the Islamic world, revealing the truth about the unity of the feelings of Muslims that reflect the unity of their Aqeedah. And this is not surprising for any Muslim, for their Lord is one, their Prophet is one, their Book is one and their Qibla is one. They fast and perform pilgrimage in a scene reflecting emotional unity of Muslims which collide with the political reality imposed by Western colonialism, so the Arab Spring spark came to expose the fragility of the situation imposed by the West. It must be noted here that the spark that started from Sidi Bouzid in Tunisia did not burst the popular rage out of vacuum, since the repressed rage exists in the chests of Muslims simmering throughout decades of colonial domination. Prisons, detention centers and intelligence cells in most Muslim countries are the best witness to that. I visited Tunisia in November 2006, and I was standing with my friend of on the corner in the famous Bourguiba Avenue, he pointed out whispering to me to look at the Interior Ministry building, which is located at a distance from where we were standing, then continued saying that the ground we stood on has secret prisons cells of the Tunisian intelligence beneath. Yet, as I witnessed that the Mosques were overflowing with worshipers at Friday prayers where they were occupying streets and sidewalks as the Mosques did not accommodate them...
Yes wherever a traveler walked in the capitals, he would find the same phenomenon from East Turkestan to Central Asia to Turkey and Russia, all the way to Ash-Sham and North Africa... where the "oppressive rule" dominated over the people, and the criminal rulers committed atrocities of unspeakable cruelty. However, the heat of boiling resentment and discontent was increasing in the chests of the believers who chose the pleasure of their Lord over this transient world and over the life of servility.
Thus, the reality of the Muslim countries applies to the precise description of Gustave Le Bon, who said:
"The real cause for the great upheavals which precede changes of civilizations such as the fall of the Roman Empire and the foundation of the Arabian Empire, is profound modification in the ideas of the peoples...The memorable events of history are the visible effects of the invisible changes of human thought. - The present epoch is one of these critical moments in which the thought of mankind is undergoing a process of transformation".
So when the cry, "The people want to overthrow the regime", arose from Tunisian squares, it quickly reverberated in Muslim countries. And this is what prompted the Russian President Medvedev on 14/07/2011 to compare the Arab Spring to the fall of the Berlin Wall (1989), which heralded the end of the communist regime and model and allowing for the single hegemony of the capitalist world order.
This cry inspired "Occupy Wall Street" movement, a movement that has spread to include 200 global cities in November 2011 to demand a fair and compassionate system for people who are crushed by the vampires in banks and financial markets in collusion with their men in the governments.
Hence, it was natural that the Western leaders hasten to deceit against the Ummah's uprising. And they have followed several methods to do so, including appearing as a friendly mentor at times, by providing advice that the stink of the dictatorships have hit the noses, and that reform is needed, but with intimidation and warning of the consequences of chaotic change that would destroy the roof over everyone or sink the ship of the society including the rulers and the ruled. As Tony Blair said on CNN that "It is necessary to change, but the desired change should enhances stability...", so what is the meaning of enhanced stability? It is the stability which serves Western colonial interests and do not threaten it...
Also, David Cameron said at the G8 Summit, end of May 2011: "The most powerful nations on Earth have come together and are saying to those in the Middle East and North Africa who want greater democracy, greater freedom, greater civil rights, we are on your side."
But pay attention here to two points: First he is contriving by pinning falsities to the uprising that they call for democracy, freedoms and human rights. And secondly he used the words "we support their demands for "greater" democracy..." which means that, under the previous regimes, there was "some degree" of democracy, freedoms and human rights... And this position is extremely diabolic and a concealment: for what was his position, him and his fellow rulers of the West, toward the barbaric and inhuman practices of their agent rulers?
Let us take the example of Obama's response, responding to the question: whether he regards Hosni Mubarak an "authoritarian ruler" before he was toppled in the revolution of January 25, 2011? He said: "I tend not to use labels for folks, he is an important ally of America, and has been a force for stability and good in the region." While French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe has acknowledged on 16/04/2011 the mistake of Western policy in supporting governments which suppress freedoms and quell the progress of societies in the Middle East, under the pretext of fighting Islamic extremism, which is taken as an excuse to overlook the tyrannical practices of the repressive dictatorships.
3. Reasons which led to the failure of the Arab Spring:
The first reason: Dominance of colonial influence
The Western colonial influence is pervasive in the region, and it prevents the emancipation of its people from its dominance, as a highly sensitive strategic area, rather the West deems a breach of its influence a strategic threat to its interests. The Middle East possesses Islam, which represents a unique way of life that imposes a distinct social, economic, moral and political system, qualifying to be a strong global competitor if the sovereignty is achieved for it and the authority for its nation. Also the region has tremendous wealth and human capabilities, a history full of inspiration and a geographical location that constitutes the heart of the world and connects three continents together; for this reason US President Barack Obama was clear and firm about America not abandoning the area when he delivered a comprehensive speech before the United Nations General Assembly on 24/9/2013, where he laid out the American policy toward the volatile Middle East and North Africa, affirming "that the United States will take direct action to eliminate threats when necessary and will use military force when diplomacy fails", refusing to "disengage from this region", saying that this will lead to "creating a vacuum of leadership that no other nation is ready to fill".
The Russian Foreign Minister, Lavrov, has openly called for the colonial states to unite to prevent the establishment of the Khilafah State. He said in his speech before the sixty-eighth session, the General Assembly of the United Nations, on 27/09/2013: "The goals they pursue have nothing to do with democracy, they are based on intolerance, directed at the destruction of secular states, and the creation of caliphate". He also said on 11/10/2013 about the importance of holding the Geneva 2 Conference: "The more we delay it, the firmer the advocates of radical Islam, who have already announced their goal - to implement Sharia by establishing a caliphate in Syria and around it- will become engrained in Syria". He also said on 1/10/2013, "The task is to not lose any more time and to bring to the negotiating table with the government those opposition moderate groups that... think not about creating a caliphate in Syria". He also said in remarks to the Russia-24 Channel on 14/12/2013: "the prevailing conditions clearly forces all moderates Syrians to realize what the most important for them; either to fight alongside those who want to transform Syria into Khilafah or to be united to return the real image of their homeland as a secular state of multi-sects and ethnic groups"...
From here, we find that the policies of major countries, headed by America, are trying hard, either through military coups as happened in Egypt, or by allowing an overwhelming bloody chaos as happened in Iraq and Syria, to circumvent the attempts by popular uprising to emancipate and change. So that they contain them and thwart them and even impose on the people to surrender to their imposed fake solutions. It is within this context that America raised the slogan of combating terrorism to justify disregarding the crimes of the tyrant rulers in Egypt, Syria and others.
Thus it is very necessary to deal with the Kaffir Western countries as an enemy, and we must renounce its agents, projects and its malicious solutions firmly, without compromise. For change would not be feasible in cooperating with the major countries, or in aligning with them, or in alliance with its agents or being dragged in their projects... All this is a plague on the Ummah and on the movement of the change.
The second reason: Lack of clarity in vision
No revolution can succeed and reach its goals without a clear vision of an alternative, the way to achieve it and the method to implement all this practically in reality. The lack of clarity of the above leads to disagreement, turmoil, chaos, confusion and despair; allowing Western countries, which possess massive influence and capabilities, to exploit this confusion and push their agents and followers to penetrate people's mobility through maneuvers, initiatives, projects and personalities that distract the uprising away from their destination and devolve them to an inevitable failure.
Therefore it becomes necessary to deepen the people's understanding of key ideas and concepts about the process of change; in particular:
- to create awareness that the only feasible and acceptable change is the change that occurs by Islam to implement it and establish its state. Especially as we know that the West continues day and night in desperate attempts to manufacture agents who will enable the renewal of the colonial grip on the Ummah, and thwarting the Ummah's eagerness to resume the Islamic way of life through the Khilafah Rashidah State on the method of the Prophethood. The western powers also work at the same time to distort the idea of the Khilafah through highlighting the ugly face of the blunt practices of some factions and organizations that spread terror and blind murder which affects everyone, under flimsy pretexts that have no legitimate evidence or sound view and reasoning. Instead by these practices they are serving the Western policy, aimed at raising sectarian and nationalist conflicts between Muslims and plunging the region in the midst of devastating wars that drain the energies of the Muslim Ummah, and wasting their strength against each other instead of uniting efforts and energies against the colonizer and its criminal agents.
- Limit the process of change in the Ummah and its forces, and reject any change coming from the West or its agents since this is a mere suicide, and would lead to catastrophic disasters. America has no problem with discarding Pervez Musharraf or Hosni Mubarak or Bashar al-Assad, once it finds an alternative that it trusts that will serve its interests, whether he is with or without a beard. This requires constantly revealing the West's plans and exposing the pernicious role of the agents who promote it to lead Muslims to perdition while they think that they are doing well.
- Regulate the method of change by the provisions of Islam and the methodology of the Prophet (saw), who did not call for reckless revenge and blind retribution, and did not call for futility, chaos and destruction. The attribute of mercy was manifest in his Seerah, especially when he (saw) had power over his enemies and came into his grasp after they hurt him and persecuted his companions from Mecca, he (saw) said to them: «ما تظنون أني فاعل بكم؟» "What do you think I am going to do to you?" He replied: "You are our noble brother and the nephew of a generous man. He (saw) said: «فإني أقول لكم كما قال يوسف لإخوته ﴿لا تثريب عليكم اليوم يغفر الله لكم﴾. اذهبوا فأنتم الطلقاء». "I will tell you, as Yusuf said to his brothers "No blame will there be upon you today. Allah will forgive you", Go you are free." Thus, we find that the methodology of change that the revolution pursues to reach its objectives must reflect the ideas, orientations and objectives of the establishment of Islam in life.
- The overthrow of the regimes of tyranny, corruption and dependency does not aim to change individuals, but to change the false systems and replacing them with the system of government in Islam, and that is the only way to put an end to the tragedies, sorrows and pains experienced by the Ummah. And any other call for the establishment of national or nationalist regimes, liberal, democratic or otherwise, is contrary to Islam and affirms the subordination of the Ummah to the other culturally and politically.
The third reason: Lack of congregation on an ideological conscious leadership
The success of the revolution in achieving its goal requires obviously an ideological, sincere, honest, conscious, keen, intellectual, inspirational, and creative leadership that directs the movement with insight. It is a leadership that mobilizes people and sharpens their eagerness and directs their energies productively. A leadership that possesses a political, social, economic and moral comprehensive vision; that stems from the doctrine of the Ummah and its culture, achieves its aspirations and hopes, deals with its pains, and draws for it a clear methodology to follow to accomplish the change by Islam, for Islam and in favor of the Ummah of Islam, the nation of mercy, goodness, justice, and true humanity.
The reality has shown that the people in Egypt and Tunisia have given their trust to those who raised the banner of application of Sharia and "Islam is the solution" slogan. The realities also revealed the fact that those who arrived in power did not put Islam in the position of application due to their lack of the right political vision and their betting on pleasing Western politicians and following Machiavellian policy that contradicts the divine legitimacy policy. Masks also fell off the vaunted followers of the Salaf "early Muslims", especially in Egypt, after many of them lined up alongside the men of America in the military, and the best of them observed the silence of the graves, and would only speak about menstruation and post-natal bleeding and the like!!
4. The way forward
While recognizing the enormity of the potential of the major countries, it can be confronted if the leadership of the Ummah is seized from the agents, the Ruwaibidah, the incapables and the abusers of its fate. For those have overwhelmed the Ummah, overburdened it, and prevented its revival and the completion of their desired change. For this it was necessary to work on correcting the revolutions' paths and protecting them from hijack, theft and containment, through raising public awareness in the Ummah on genuine thoughts that brings to the people the criteria that they need to distinguish the wheat from the chaff and right from wrong. It also needs a clear indication of the challenges confronting it, and exposing conspiracies being hatched against them precisely and unambiguously. As stated in the verse:
((إِنَّ اللَّهَ لا يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوْمٍ حَتَّى يُغَيِّرُوا مَا بِأَنفُسِهِمْ))
"Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves." [Al-Ra'du: 11].
Thus, it is a must to make an intellectual and emotional change, and the opportunity is very conducive through direct and effective interaction with the Ummah particularly that:
- The reasons that led to the eruption of the situation in our country and the outbreak of revolutionary storms persist in it. Since poverty, injustice, deprivation mixed with humiliation, and other oppression doses that generated the rage and the outburst; those reasons are still prevalent exactly and entirely, rather, in a state of a steady escalation.
- The people renounced the oppression, humiliation and tyranny of the rotting regimes, and there is no choice in front of them, but their salvation from them, since submission to these regimes means more misery and sliding into the inevitable abyss and perdition.
- Our peoples confirmed, in word and deed, that they are against the reality of the misery that they live in. And that they are living peoples, full of vitality, and are willing to sacrifice, giving generously and enormously to change their status.
- The elites, who tried to westernize the Ummah over a century, has fallen. Especially after the advocacy of the vast majority of its symbols; leftist, liberal, secular, nationalistic and patriotic for the corrupt regime, and their hostility to the clear choice of the Ummah to restore Islam a living reality in their lives became clear.
- The Ummah has turned significantly towards the Islamic solution in politics and transactions, at the same time it appeared alienated from the West, which its plots against the Ummah and its aversion to all the values that it brags by as a reckless peacock are exposed. And the overwhelming majority of Muslims have realized there is no salvation of the Ummah, but their independence from the West and the arbitration of their Islam in the reality of their lives.
Finally, we do not forget that the procession of the nations and peoples is not measured by the events through a few years, yet it is a continuous journey. And if the rulers of the West managed in the past to control the destinies of peoples remotely, this time has passed, rather we can say with confidence that the intensification of darkness marks the upcoming arrival of dawn. And what the Ummah is living these days of difficult labor brings the glad tidings of the end of the "oppressive rule" which the Messenger of Allah (saw) told us about in the Hadeeth:
«... ثم تكون ملكًا جبرية فتكون ما شاء الله أن تكون، ثم يرفعها الله إذا شاء أن يرفعها، ثم تكون خلافة على منهاج النبوة، ثم سكت»
"Then there will be rule of force, and it will remain as long as Allah will it to remain. Then Allah will end it when He wills. Then there will be a Khilafah on the Way of the Prophetood." Then he fell silent
And if the Honourable Prophet (saw) was able in eight years after emigrating to reach the edge of Roman lands, we by the grace of Almighty Allah, are preparing to avail the Islamic world under the shadow of the second Islamic Khilafah State on the method of the Prophethood, soon by Allah's permission, in a record time; dependent firstly on a success from Allah, and then on the ardent desire of our Ummah to support Allah and His Deen, and live its life as its Lord loves and is pleased with.