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01 October 2011

Arab Spring: A "Democracy" By Any Other Name Would Smell As Sweet?...

'Our' Revolution

The following excerpts are from an English language website for khilafah.  (That's caliphate to you and me.)  It begins by noting that language shapes the way you understand the world, and it quickly jumps to the word democracy.

While Americans associate the word with our rights and responsibilities, Muslims associate it with freedom from tyranny and oppression.  One and the same?  It depends on the tyrant, the oppressor, and what the oppressed have been prevented from doing.
[W]hen they [the Western world] talk[s] about the right of people to govern themselves, they also mean the prevention of religious interference in ruling - whether this is explicitly stated or not.
In viewing democracy as a word representative of being free from a specific tyrant or specific type of tyranny rather than freedom from conceptual tyranny, Muslims have un(?)intentionally misled Americans to believe that they embrace American-style governmental values, for example the freedom to practice your religion of choice and the prevention of the state from imposing a national religion.  The Muslim use of the word democracy has sent the wrong message; America has willingly, blindly, and egocentrically assumed that our definition of democracy is global.
Imagine a human-rights charity who decided that a swastika would be a suitable logo for their organisation, being ignorant of the symbol's association with the Nazis. So, being ignorant of the history and values that come with the symbol they proudly display it on their leaflets and posters. Would this convey the message they wanted?
Similarly while the Muslims believe they are simply calling for their rights by adopting the term ‘Democracy', the world views such a call for the removal of Islam from governing and for the implementation of secular liberal values.
It is through this confusion over the use of language that particular words such as 'Democracy' can be used as weapons against the Muslims. The word is pumped endlessly through the media and via secular political groups, until it becomes a slogan for the struggle and adopted by the masses, unaware of what it means.
What an unforgivable crime it would be if the sincere efforts and sacrifices of the Ummah to rid themselves of the chains of colonialism and dictatorship merely resulted in them replacing one set of chains with another [with secular, American Democracy], ones which they hang around their own necks?
Democracy -- American Democracy -- is as tyrannical and oppressive as dictatorship.  That's what this pro-caliphate article is saying.  Let's take a moment to pause and let that concept sink in.  
Democracy is part of a culture that is foreign to Islam. Democracy is a Western construct and therefore foreign to the Muslim world and Democracy is much more than elections. We have our own unique history and culture, and our own system which is distinct from that of the west: the Khilafah. It encompasses the right to elect the ruler, to hold him to account and remove him if he contradicts Islam. We have a judiciary to uphold the rule of law and the many other state institutions that the Muslim world demands, but it does not do so at the expense of the Islamic values that are demanded just as strongly.
The Islamic values, of course, are sharia law.  

Note: When you read the full article, check out the comments.  Quite informative.

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