When the white missionaries came to Africa, they had the Bible and we had the land. They said “close your eyes and let us pray”. We did and when we opened our eyes we had the Bible and they had the land.
Archbishop Tutu was one of those blacks that struggled for S. Africans to get them back their land, keep their Bible and free them from a slavery called apartheid. But the best part is he left them a legacy not to pray with their eyes closed. That is how S. Africans began to enjoy prosperity.
Dr. Samuel Huntington died in December 2008 leaving the world a legacy to debate the clash of civilizations following the US post-cold war victory over the USSR. His most famous book “The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of the World Order” was published in 1993 and read by millions all over the world. What will be the agenda of one of the most powerful Empire? According to Huntington, the world would be shaped under seven distinctly civilizations namely the Hindu, Western, Islamic, African, Chinese, Japanese, Orthodox Christian and Latin American. Thus far the clash is being played out only between the Western, Orthodox, Islamic (Middle East) and Chinese (East) civilizations that are shaping the global economics and politics. All the other civilizations are spectators on the sidelines.
I’ve revived the issue about the clash of civilizations after I watched a rather interesting 10 minute video (bellow) titled “THE CLASH OF CIVILIZATIONS?” prepared by the eminent Pakistani educationist, scholar and scientist Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy in which he questions the validity of the West and Islam at war with each other. Is it really true that the West is not at war with Islam? Or is it that the West is at war with Muslims? Towards the end I’ll explain what is the Islamic ideology but for now let us examine which is true – the West at war with Islam or with Muslims? There is a historical element, both old and new, missing in Dr. Hoodbhoy’s arguments which needs to be examined before concluding who is at war with who. True, Muslims are more biased against each other today principally Sunnis against Shias. Historically these two sects of Islam have lived in harmony for several centuries and only once have Shias (beleivers in divine imamate or leadership from Muhammad’s family) ruled the Muslim world on political but not religious frameworks. That was under the Abbasid (from Abbas ibn Abd-ul- Mutallib from the Banu Hashim clan of the Meccan Quraysh) Caliphate supported by the Persians in 750 AD some 125 years after the demise of Muhammad. After the overthrow of the corrupt Ummayads (Arabs from the Banu Ummaya clan of the Meccan Quraysh) in Damascus, the Abbasids consolidated their power and moved their political seat from Damascus to Kufa (north of Baghdad) with the intention of being closer to Persia. This rule also ushered in the golden age of Islam in Baghdad through the miracle of learning and sharing of knowledge between Arabs and Persians and was devoid of ethnic issues.
What is rather very interesting, and probably what happened in hindsight, is that the US by ousting the Sunni Baathists under Saddam, repeated history by empowering Shia majority in Iraq and drawing them closer to Iran. One must remember that Iran and Iraq were once sworn foes and fought a war from 1980 – 1988 along geo-political boundaries. Saddam was supported financially by the Sunni monarchies and by the armaments of the western powers. The 2003 Iraq invasion was a strategic blunder by the west. As a result a very powerful Shia crescent has formed that has arisen not to threaten the Sunni Arabs but for the purpose of their very survival against an aggressive expansion of the US empire assisted by NATO partnership. Iran is a country rich in cultural civilization and learning. It’s agenda is not to allow the West to culturally, politically and economically rape it in a manner that it has done with Iraq and other Arab and Muslim countries. Iran aims to usher in a period of Islamic revival but for now the west is blocking that path. History is once again playing out after 12 centuries.
Where is the fault line (meaning the primary dividing line between civilizations) in Dr. Huntington’s clash of the civilizations? It comprises of the Muslim countries from the western North African continent, stretching across the Asian Arab Middle East then into Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan and the four Muslim SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization) “stan” countries. These Muslim countries are collectively the 57 member Organization of Islamic Countries (OIC). The OIC charter was formulated in 1969 “to preserve and promote the lofty Islamic values of peace, compassion, tolerance, equality, justice and human dignity”. The four important measurable distinguishable features of the OIC are population (2 billion inhabitants or 30% of the world), global energy (75-80% in terms of reserves), poverty level (ranging from 35-50%) and illiteracy (50-55%). Then there are some common immeasurable features such as corruption, injustice, human rights violations, fear and inequality. Of this there is no doubt that all these are prevalent among OIC nations. I’m originally from Pakistan and I know the deep extent of all these existing in Pakistan and yet as a Muslim in Canada I enjoy these without being in fear. What, however, perplexes Muslims is why are many of the leaders of the OIC being propped up by the Western countries.
Over 1400 years ago the cousin and son-in-law of prophet Mohammed, Ali ibn (son of) Abu Talib a man of extraordinary vision and knowledge, had said “if poverty were a man, I’d have killed it”.
So was the clash of civilizations an invention by the Americans after Dr. Huntington published his famous book? Changes just don’t evolve by the publication of a book which is just a medium to open a discussion. What really began to happen by design was that the brilliant Dr. Henry Kissinger had successfully maneuvered the disengagement of the US in Indo-China (Vietnam) in 1975 towards an engagement with the Arabs in the Middle East for the benefit of protecting the State of Israel. At the same time Soviet influence among the leftist Arab regimes had to be removed before a pre-determined policy implementation against Muslims. The US bribed Egypt’s Anwar Sadat with billions of military and economic aid to enter into peace accord with Israel and expel thousands of Soviet personnel by 1977. The gods further favored the West when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan in 1979. The US supported by the Europeans and Muslims (predominantly Pakistan and Saudi Arabia) drove the proverbial nail in the Soviet coffin in 1989. Thereafter the Soviet collapse is history that needs no repetition.
True, like many others from all over the world, Muslims too have enjoyed the charters of democracy and freedom in the US. Like myself and many others, talented Muslims have contributed to the Western, and specifically the American, success story in the field of academics, science, technology, medicine, space, etc. I’ve lived in the West for more than half of my life and I can never be thankful for the opportunities and freedom provided to me but the US has changed from a nation to an empire. As an empire it behaves arrogantly. America needed a foe for its survival but the new enemy would have to be weak, not strong as the Indo-Chinese and not very far from home and it needed a strong proxy among the Muslim of the Middle East who could stir up trouble when warranted. Israel was that proxy. By the mid-1970s the neo-cons had penetrated the US administration and legislative ranks for the purposes of formulating political, defense and economic policies that would favor their proxy in the Middle East. In order to accomplish that task, Muslims had to be demonized by employing the instrument of terrorism.
What is the New World Order (NWO)? The proposal for its implementation has been around for at least one century. In his 1991 book of the same title, the Christian evangelist Pat Robertson described it as a scenario where Wall Street, the Federal Reserve System, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bilderberg Group and the Trilateral Commission control the flow of events from behind the scenes, nudging people constantly and covertly in the direction of a world government. Today, we see those flow of events happening but will those events transpire into a reality with global morphing following the fall of the Soviet Union, rise of China and terrorism (al-Qaeda, Taliban and now ISIS)? The key challenge for the NWO is the fault line – the Islamic civilization as subtly proposed by Dr. Huntington. The Western powers who dream of the NWO have thus far controlled the adherents of Islam- the Muslims- through the outright purchase of the OIC leaders. The other day I was asked a question for which I’ve no answer – why does the West differentiate between Muslim and Arab “dictators” and “monarchs”. Are they not the same? Why prop up monarchs and kill the dictators? Maybe Saddam and Gaddafi did not play the Western oil game so they became terrorists and dictators and late King Abdullah was eulogized a great King which warranted Obama to fly from India to Saudi Arabia to pay his respects. David Cameron of UK praised Abdullah for being a bridge between faiths (while calling for Shia genocide) and IMF’s Christine Lagarde eulogized him for being a champion for women’s causes. What hypocrisy!
Islam is a way of life based on moral codes and an ideology that has granted humanity all that which the OIC leaders do not grant Muslims and all that which the western countries grant their citizens including those that are Muslims. In 1990 the OIC adopted what is known as the Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam (CDHRI). Among many other rights the declaration grants basic human dignity, sanctity of life, and justice in accordance with the shariah (Islamic moral codes). All of these are denied not only to non-Muslims (which Islam grants) but also to Muslims in OIC countries. As an ummah (community) all Muslims must be granted the rights even if they’ve a non-citizen status (e.g to a foreign laborer) but it is a well known fact that none of the articles of the CDHRI are applied in at least the 50 member countries (exceptions being Indonesia, Iran, SCO stans and Malaysia) and are blatantly violated by their leaders. Again, one would ask why do not the Western powers ensure that the CDHRI are implemented by the Muslim leaders. Why is there a double standard? The answer is the outright purchase of the OIC leaders by the West. The OIC leaders have amassed huge wealth in western countries that benefits the west but not their own citizens.
The Abbasids managed to oust the corrupt Ommeyads in c. 750 AD in Damascus and established an Islamic regime in Iraq which ushered an era of prosperity for both Arabs and Persian, not as Shias and Sunnis, but as Muslims. The Western powers have connived to open up the ethnic issue in order to divide and rule the Muslims with the help of corrupt Arab monarchies and Muslim leaders in the hope that a major war between the two groups will eventually realize their dream of the NWO with the ousting of all rebel leaders (operation now in progress against Syria to be followed by Iran). I’ve no control over the future events and neither does anyone but what I’ve concluded is that the west is not at war with Islam because it applies those principles internally but rather it is at war with the Muslims in conjunction with the OIC leaders who support the NWO by amassing wealth and depriving Muslims of their Islamic rights. The West cannot be at war with Islam but it is many of the corrupt OIC leaders that are at war with Muslims because of their fear of Islam. Under such authoritarian, repressive, exploitive conditions it cannot be discounted with a simple wave of the hand that those OIC leadership may not topple leading for the fault line to move away from the West towards the East under a new leadership that is sincere in eradicating corruption and implementing the OIC charter in line with moral codes that benefit humanity. There is a limit to human tolerance. When that limit is reached, it could be a watershed TOWARDS A “NEWER” WORLD ORDER -not a New World Order.
Muslims should learn from the words of wisdom and the legacy of Desmond Tutu. They must pray with their eyes open for sincere leaders like Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela who will not come from the West but from within their ranks.
Reposts are welcomed with the reference to ORIENTAL REVIEW.