Monday, October 24, 2011

The 'Arab Spring' Gives Rise To The Dark Days of Islamism

What many had hoped would happen with the advent of what eventually was coined the "Arab Spring" was a journey towards democracy for those who fought hard to rid themselves of  their ruthless autocratic leadership. Others, however, feared that with the removal of these dictators those mainly secular governments would give rise to fundamentalist Islamist political parties and they, in essence, would be replacing one evil for another.  Those concerns, it turns out, were entirely warranted.

Tunisia, a mostly secular nation that encouraged freedom of religion and gender equality, will now have a Moderate Islamist majority leadership.  The Ennahda Party is predicted to have won almost 40 percent of the 217 assembly seats with a 90 percent voter turnout.  Opposition groups claim that it was mostly the poor who voted for the party, which seems to confirm that it is mostly the ignorant, uneducated that are drawn to Islamist ideology.   In an effort to allay the fears of many Westerners and secular Tunisians, party members told the press that
“We would like to reassure our trade and economic partners, and all actors and investors, we hope very soon to have stability and the right conditions for investment in Tunisia."

“We respect the rights of women ... and equality between Tunisians whatever their religion, their sex or their social status.”

Sure, their elections were democracy in action, but Shariah law is the polar opposite of a democratic system of law. Women have very few, if any,  rights under Shariah, and minority religions (including minority Muslim sects) are persecuted and marginalized in countries that adopt Shariah as their rule of law.  And although Rachid Ghannouchi has vowed not to change the cultural fabric of society by imposing Islamic values on the Tunisian population, who knows if he will keep his word.

Then there's Libya.  They too claim the country will be a moderate Islamist state, but Shariah will be the law of the land. According to Interim leader Mustafa Abdel Jalil :

"Any law that violates sharia is null and void legally. The law of divorce and marriage... This law is contrary to sharia and it is stopped."

That was in reference to laws during Ghadaffi's reign that placed restrictions on polygamy, which is allowed under Sharia. They also intend on establishing Islamic banking in Libya.  They too are trying to reassure the world that they are moderates, but as is well documented there is no moderation in Islam  unless it is secular.

Next up Egypt. The Muslim Brotherhood whose founder Hassan Al Banna  admired Adolf Hitler and whose slogan is "Islam is the solution" and "jihad is our way" is poised to win a majority, as well.

The West needs to come to terms with the fact that our idea of democracy is a far cry from what Muslim majority countries view as democracy. Shariah law is as backwards as it gets, and any country that adopts it as its main form of legislative law, is taking major steps back towards the dark ages.

What amazes me most is that these people have been given an historical opportunity to rise up out of the shackles of oppression, and yet they have opted to replace one form of domination with another far worse. All they had to do was look at Iran or the Gazans in Palestine to see the outcome of voting for a religious leadership.  The Iranian people voted in the mullahs during their revolution in the late 1970s and are now suffering terribly the consequences of that decision, with no hope of gaining freedom in the foreseeable future. The Gazans voted overwhelmingly for Hamas, and they too are suffering under the governance of a hard-line, extremist group.   While Libya and Tunisia might start off as so-called moderate Muslim countries,  that will more than likely change over the years.  Only time will tell.

Sources: AlJazeera, AlArabiya, TelegraphUK,

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