ROOTS OF MISCONCEPTION

IBRAHIM KALIN

In the aftermath of September 11, the long and checkered relationship between Islam and the West entered a new phase. The attacks were interpreted as the fulfillment of a prophecy that had been in the consciousness of the West for a long time, i.e., the coming of Islam as a menacing power with a clear intent to destroy Western civilization. Representations of Islam as a violent, aktivist, and oppressive religious ideology extended from television programs and state offices to schools and the internet. It was even suggested that Makka, the holiest city of Islam, be “nuked” to give a lasting lesson to all Muslims. Although one can look at the widespread sense of anger, hostility, and revenge as a normal human reaction to the abominable loss of innocent lives, the demonization of Muslims is the result of deeper philosophical and historical issues.
In many subtle ways, the long history of Islam and the West, from the theological polemics of Baghdad in the eighth and ninth centuries to the experience of convivencia in Andalusia in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, informs the current perceptions and qualms of each civilization vis-à-vis the other. This paper will examine some of the salient features of this history and argue that the monolithic representations of Islam, created and sustained by a highly complex set of image-producers, think-tanks, academics, lobbyists, policy makers, and media, dominating the present Western conscience, have their roots in the West’s long history with the Islamic world. It will also be argued that the deep-rooted misgivings about Islam and Muslims have led and continue to lead to fundamentally flawed and erroneous policy decisions that have a direct impact on the current relations of Islam and the West. The almost unequivocal identification of Islam with terrorism and extremism in the minds of many Americans after September 11 is an outcome generated by both historical misperceptions, which will be analyzed in some detail below, and the political agenda of certain interest groups that see confrontation as the only way to deal with the Islamic world. It is hoped that the following analysis will provide a historical context in which we can make sense of these tendencies and their repercussions for both worlds.

Islam in the West

Jocelyne Çesari

The immigration of Muslims to Europe, North America, and Australia and the complex socioreligious dynamics that have subsequently developed have made Islam in the West a compelling new ªeld of research. The Salman Rushdie affair, hijab controversies, the attacks on the World Trade Center, and the furor over the Danish cartoons are all examples of international crises that have brought to light the connections between Muslims in the West and the global Muslim world. These new situations entail theoretical and methodological challenges for the study of contemporary Islam, and it has become crucial that we avoid essentializing either Islam or Muslims and resist the rhetorical structures of discourses that are preoccupied with security and terrorism.
In this article, I argue that Islam as a religious tradition is a terra incognita. A preliminary reason for this situation is that there is no consensus on religion as an object of research. Religion, as an academic discipline, has become torn between historical, sociological, and hermeneutical methodologies. With Islam, the situation is even more intricate. In the West, the study of Islam began as a branch of Orientalist studies and therefore followed a separate and distinctive path from the study of religions. Even though the critique of Orientalism has been central to the emergence of the study of Islam in the ªeld of social sciences, tensions remain strong between Islamicists and both anthropologists and sociologists. The topic of Islam and Muslims in the West is embedded in this struggle. One implication of this methodological tension is that students of Islam who began their academic career studying Islam in France, Germany, or America ªnd it challenging to establish credibility as scholars of Islam, particularly in the North American academic
context.

Profesion, Kolonializëm, Aparteid?

The Human Sciences Research Council

The Human Sciences Research Council of South Africa commissioned this study to test the hypothesis posed by Professor John Dugard in the report he presented to the UN Human Rights Council in January 2007, in his capacity as UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in the Palestinian territories occupied by Israel (domethënë, the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, dhe
Gaz, hereafter OPT). Professor Dugard posed the question: Israel is clearly in military occupation of the OPT. At the same time, elements of the occupation constitute forms of colonialism and of apartheid, which are contrary to international law. What are the legal consequences of a regime of prolonged occupation with features of colonialism and apartheid for the occupied people, the Occupying Power and third States?
In order to consider these consequences, this study set out to examine legally the premises of Professor Dugard’s question: is Israel the occupant of the OPT, dhe, if so, do elements of its occupation of these territories amount to colonialism or apartheid? South Africa has an obvious interest in these questions given its bitter history of apartheid, which entailed the denial of selfdetermination
to its majority population and, during its occupation of Namibia, the extension of apartheid to that territory which South Africa effectively sought to colonise. These unlawful practices must not be replicated elsewhere: other peoples must not suffer in the way the populations of South Africa and Namibia have suffered.
To explore these issues, an international team of scholars was assembled. The aim of this project was to scrutinise the situation from the nonpartisan perspective of international law, rather than engage in political discourse and rhetoric. This study is the outcome of a fifteen-month collaborative process of intensive research, këshillim, writing and review. It concludes and, it is to be hoped, persuasively argues and clearly demonstrates that Israel, since 1967, has been the belligerent Occupying Power in the OPT, and that its occupation of these territories has become a colonial enterprise which implements a system of apartheid. Belligerent occupation in itself is not an unlawful situation: it is accepted as a possible consequence of armed conflict. At the same time, under the law of armed conflict (also known as international humanitarian law), occupation is intended to be only a temporary state of affairs. International law prohibits the unilateral annexation or permanent acquisition of territory as a result of the threat or use of force: should this occur, no State may recognise or support the resulting unlawful situation. In contrast to occupation, both colonialism and apartheid are always unlawful and indeed are considered to be particularly serious breaches of international law because they are fundamentally contrary to core values of the international legal order. Colonialism violates the principle of self-determination,
which the International Court of Justice (ICJ) has affirmed as ‘one of the essential principles of contemporary international law’. All States have a duty to respect and promote self-determination. Apartheid is an aggravated case of racial discrimination, which is constituted according to the International Convention for the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid (1973,
hereafter ‘Apartheid Convention’) by ‘inhuman acts committed for the purpose of establishing and maintaining domination by one racial group of persons over any other racial group of persons and systematically oppressing them’. The practice of apartheid, për më tepër, is an international crime.
Professor Dugard in his report to the UN Human Rights Council in 2007 suggested that an advisory opinion on the legal consequences of Israel’s conduct should be sought from the ICJ. This advisory opinion would undoubtedly complement the opinion that the ICJ delivered in 2004 on the Legal consequences of the construction of a wall in the occupied Palestinian territories (hereafter ‘the Wall advisory opinion’). This course of legal action does not exhaust the options open to the international community, nor indeed the duties of third States and international organisations when they are appraised that another State is engaged in the practices of colonialism or apartheid.

ISLAM, DEMOKRACIA & USA:

Cordoba Foundation

Abdullah Faliq

Intro ,


In spite of it being both a perennial and a complex debate, Arches Quarterly reexamines from theological and practical grounds, the important debate about the relationship and compatibility between Islam and Democracy, as echoed in Barack Obama’s agenda of hope and change. Whilst many celebrate Obama’s ascendancy to the Oval Office as a national catharsis for the US, others remain less optimistic of a shift in ideology and approach in the international arena. While much of the tension and distrust between the Muslim world and the USA can be attributed to the approach of promoting democracy, typically favoring dictatorships and puppet regimes that pay lip-service to democratic values and human rights, the aftershock of 9/11 has truly cemented the misgivings further through America’s position on political Islam. It has created a wall of negativity as found by worldpublicopinion.org, according to which 67% of Egyptians believe that globally America is playing a “mainly negative” role.
America’s response has thus been apt. By electing Obama, many around the world are pinning their hopes for developing a less belligerent, but fairer foreign policy towards the Muslim world. Th e test for Obama, as we discuss, is how America and her allies promote democracy. Will it be facilitating or imposing?
Për më tepër, can it importantly be an honest broker in prolonged zones of confl icts? Enlisting the expertise and insight of prolifi
c scholars, academics, seasoned journalists and politicians, Arches Quarterly brings to light the relationship between Islam and Democracy and the role of America – as well as the changes brought about by Obama, in seeking the common ground. Anas Altikriti, the CEO of Th e Cordoba Foundation provides the opening gambit to this discussion, where he refl ects on the hopes and challenges that rests on Obama’s path. Following Altikriti, the former advisor to President Nixon, Dr Robert Crane off ers a thorough analysis of the Islamic principle of the right to freedom. Anwar Ibrahim, former Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, enriches the discussion with the practical realities of implementing democracy in Muslim dominant societies, domethënë, in Indonesia and Malaysia.
We also have Dr Shireen Hunter, of Georgetown University, SHBA, who explores Muslim countries lagging in democratisation and modernisation. Th is is complemented by terrorism writer, Dr Nafeez Ahmed’s explanation of the crisis of post-modernity and the
demise of democracy. Dr Daud Abdullah (Director of Middle East Media Monitor), Alan Hart (former ITN and BBC Panorama correspondent; author of Zionism: Th e Real Enemy of the Jews) and Asem Sondos (Editor of Egypt’s Sawt Al Omma weekly) concentrate on Obama and his role vis-à-vis democracy-promotion in the Muslim world, as well as US relations with Israel and the Muslim Brotherhood.
Minister of Foreign Aff airs, Maldives, Ahmed Shaheed speculates on the future of Islam and Democracy; Cllr. Gerry Maclochlainn
a Sinn Féin member who endured four years in prison for Irish Republican activities and a campaigner for the Guildford 4 and Birmingham 6, refl ects on his recent trip to Gaza where he witnessed the impact of the brutality and injustice meted out against Palestinians; Dr Marie Breen-Smyth, Director of the Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Contemporary Political Violence discusses the challenges of critically researching political terror; Dr Khalid al-Mubarak, writer and playwright, discusses prospects of peace in Darfur; and fi nally journalist and human rights activist Ashur Shamis looks critically at the democratisation and politicisation of Muslims today.
We hope all this makes for a comprehensive reading and a source for refl ection on issues that aff ect us all in a new dawn of hope.
Thank you

SHBA Hamasi blloqe politike e paqes në Lindjen e Mesme

Henry Siegman


bisedimeve dypalëshe Gabim gjatë këtyre të fundit 16 vite kanë treguar se një marrëveshje paqeje në Lindjen e Mesme nuk mund të arrihet nga vetë palët. Israeli governments believe they can defy international condemnation of their illegal colonial project in the West Bank because they can count on the US to oppose international sanctions. Bilateral talks that are not framed by US-formulated parameters (based on Security Council resolutions, the Oslo accords, the Arab Peace Initiative, the “road map” and other previous Israeli-Palestinian agreements) cannot succeed. Israel’s government believes that the US Congress will not permit an American president to issue such parameters and demand their acceptance. What hope there is for the bilateral talks that resume in Washington DC on September 2 depends entirely on President Obama proving that belief to be wrong, and on whether the “bridging proposals” he has promised, should the talks reach an impasse, are a euphemism for the submission of American parameters. Such a US initiative must offer Israel iron-clad assurances for its security within its pre-1967 borders, but at the same time must make it clear these assurances are not available if Israel insists on denying Palestinians a viable and sovereign state in the West Bank and Gaza. This paper focuses on the other major obstacle to a permanent status agreement: the absence of an effective Palestinian interlocutor. Addressing Hamas’ legitimate grievances – and as noted in a recent CENTCOM report, Hamas has legitimate grievances – could lead to its return to a Palestinian coalition government that would provide Israel with a credible peace partner. If that outreach fails because of Hamas’ rejectionism, the organization’s ability to prevent a reasonable accord negotiated by other Palestinian political parties will have been significantly impeded. If the Obama administration will not lead an international initiative to define the parameters of an Israeli-Palestinian agreement and actively promote Palestinian political reconciliation, Europe must do so, and hope America will follow. Për fat të keq, there is no silver bullet that can guarantee the goal of “two states living side by side in peace and security.”
But President Obama’s present course absolutely precludes it.

islamizmi rishqyrtohet

Maha Azzam

Ka një krizë politike dhe të sigurisë përreth atë që është përmendur si islamizmit, një krizë paraardhes cilit gjatë paraprijë 9/11. Ne te shkuaren 25 vjet, ka pasur emphases të ndryshme se si për të shpjeguar dhe për të luftuar islamizmin. Analistët dhe politikëbërësit
në vitet 1980 dhe 1990 foli për shkaqet rrënjësore të militantizmit islamik si gjendje e sëmurë ekonomike dhe margjinalizimit. Kohët e fundit ka pasur një fokus në reformën politike, si një mjet për të minuar ankesën e radikalizmit. gjithnjë sot, aspektet ideologjike dhe fetare të islamizmit duhet të adresohen, sepse ata janë bërë tiparet e një debati më të gjerë politik dhe të sigurisë. Qoftë në lidhje me terrorizmin Al-Kaedës, reforma politike në botën myslimane, çështjen bërthamore në Iran apo zonat e krizës të tilla si Palestina apo Libani, ajo është bërë e zakonshme për të fi nd atë ideologji dhe fe janë përdorur nga palët kundërshtare si burime të legjitimim, frymëzim dhe armiqësia.
Situata është e komplikuar edhe më tej sot nga rritje antagonizmi ndaj dhe frika e Islamit në Perëndim për shkak të sulmeve terroriste e cila nga ana cenojë qëndrimet ndaj emigracionit, feja dhe kultura. Kufijtë e ummetit apo komunitetin e besimtarëve kanë shtrirë përtej vendeve myslimane në qytete evropiane. Ummeti potencialisht ekziston kudo që ka komunitete muslimane. Ndjenja e përbashkët e përkatësisë në një besim të përbashkët rrit në një mjedis ku ndjenja e integrimit në komunitetin përreth është e paqartë dhe ku diskriminimi mund të jenë të dukshme. Sa më e madhe refuzimi i vlerave të shoqërisë,
qoftë në Perëndim apo edhe në një shtet mysliman, më e madhe konsolidimin e forcës morale të Islamit si një identitet kulturor dhe të vlerës së sistemit.
Pas shpërthimeve në Londër 7 Korrik 2005 ajo u bë më e qartë se disa të rinj kanë pohuar përkushtimin fetar si një mënyrë për të shprehur përkatësinë etnike. Lidhjet mes myslimanëve në të gjithë globin dhe perceptimin e tyre se muslimanët janë të pambrojtur kanë çuar shumë në pjesë shumë të ndrysh erent të botës të bashkojë predicaments e tyre lokale në një më të gjerë myslimane, duke identifi ed kulturore, ose kryesisht ose pjesërisht, me një Islamin gjerësisht defi shkarko Pa.

ISLAM AND THE RULE OF LAW

Birgit Krawietz
Helmut Reifeld

In our modern Western society, state-organised legal sys-tems normally draw a distinctive line that separates religion and the law. Conversely, there are a number of Islamic re-gional societies where religion and the laws are as closely interlinked and intertwined today as they were before the onset of the modern age. At the same time, the proportion in which religious law (shariah in Arabic) and public law (qanun) are blended varies from one country to the next. What is more, the status of Islam and consequently that of Islamic law differs as well. According to information provided by the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC), there are currently 57 Islamic states worldwide, defined as countries in which Islam is the religion of (1) the state, (2) the majority of the population, or (3) a large minority. All this affects the development and the form of Islamic law.

Kulturës islame Politike, Demokraci, dhe të Drejtat e Njeriut

Daniel E. Çmimi

It has been argued that Islam facilitates authoritarianism, contradicts the values of Western societies, and significantly affects important political outcomes in Muslim nations. Si pasojë, scholars, commentators, and government officials frequently point to ‘‘Islamic fundamentalism’’ as the next ideological threat to liberal democracies. This view, megjithatë, is based primarily on the analysis of texts, Islamic political theory, and ad hoc studies of individual countries, which do not consider other factors. It is my contention that the texts and traditions of Islam, like those of other religions, can be used to support a variety of political systems and policies. Country specific and descriptive studies do not help us to find patterns that will help us explain the varying relationships between Islam and politics across the countries of the Muslim world. Prandaj, a new approach to the study of the
connection between Islam and politics is called for.
I suggest, through rigorous evaluation of the relationship between Islam, demokraci, and human rights at the cross-national level, that too much emphasis is being placed on the power of Islam as a political force. I first use comparative case studies, which focus on factors relating to the interplay between Islamic groups and regimes, economic influences, ethnic cleavages, and societal development, to explain the variance in the influence of Islam on politics across eight nations. I argue that much of the power
attributed to Islam as the driving force behind policies and political systems in Muslim nations can be better explained by the previously mentioned factors. I also find, contrary to common belief, that the increasing strength of Islamic political groups has often been associated with modest pluralization of political systems.
I have constructed an index of Islamic political culture, based on the extent to which Islamic law is utilized and whether and, if so, how,Western ideas, institutions, and technologies are implemented, to test the nature of the relationship between Islam and democracy and Islam and human rights. This indicator is used in statistical analysis, which includes a sample of twenty-three predominantly Muslim countries and a control group of twenty-three non-Muslim developing nations. In addition to comparing
Islamic nations to non-Islamic developing nations, statistical analysis allows me to control for the influence of other variables that have been found to affect levels of democracy and the protection of individual rights. The result should be a more realistic and accurate picture of the influence of Islam on politics and policies.

Saktësi në luftën globale ndaj terrorit:

Sherifa Zuhur

Shtatë vjet pas shtator 11, 2001 (9/11) sulmet, many experts believe al-Qa’ida has regained strength and that its copycats or affiliates are more lethal than before. The National Intelligence Estimate of 2007 asserted that al-Qa’ida is more dangerous now than before 9/11.1 Al-Qa’ida’s emulators continue to threaten Western, Europa e Mesme, and European nations, si në komplot kapur në shtator 2007 in Germany. Bruce shtetet Riedel: Thanks largely to Washington’s eagerness to go into Iraq rather than hunting down al Qaeda’s leaders, the organization now has a solid base of operations in the badlands of Pakistan and an effective franchise in western Iraq. Its reach has spread throughout the Muslim world and in Europe . . . Osama bin Laden has mounted a successful propaganda campaign. . . . His ideas now attract more followers than ever.
It is true that various salafi-jihadist organizations are still emerging throughout the Islamic world. Why have heavily resourced responses to the Islamist terrorism that we are calling global jihad not proven extremely effective?
Kalimi në mjetet e "pushtetit të butë,” what about the efficacy of Western efforts to bolster Muslims in the Global War on Terror (GWOT)? Why has the United States won so few “hearts and minds” in the broader Islamic world? Why do American strategic messages on this issue play so badly in the region? Pse, despite broad Muslim disapproval of extremism as shown in surveys and official utterances by key Muslim leaders, has support for bin Ladin actually increased in Jordan and in Pakistan?
This monograph will not revisit the origins of Islamist violence. It is instead concerned with a type of conceptual failure that wrongly constructs the GWOT and which discourages Muslims from supporting it. They are unable to identify with the proposed transformative countermeasures because they discern some of their core beliefs and institutions as targets in
këtë përpjekje.
Several deeply problematic trends confound the American conceptualizations of the GWOT and the strategic messages crafted to fight that War. These evolve from (1) post-colonial political approaches to Muslims and Muslim majority nations that vary greatly and therefore produce conflicting and confusing impressions and effects; dhe (2) residual generalized ignorance of and prejudice toward Islam and subregional cultures. Shtoni në këtë zemërim amerikan, fear, dhe ankthi në lidhje me ngjarjet vdekjeprurës i 9/11, and certain elements that, despite the urgings of cooler heads, hold Muslims and their religion accountable for the misdeeds of their coreligionists, or who find it useful to do so for political reasons.

Debatimi Demokracia në botën arabe

Ibtisam Ibrahim

Çfarë është demokracia?
Dijetarët perëndimorë karakterizojnë demokracinë një metodë për mbrojtjen e të drejtave civile dhe politike të individëve. Ai siguron për lirinë e shprehjes, shtyp, besim, opinion, pronësisë, dhe kuvendi, si dhe e drejta për të votuar, emërojë dhe të kërkojë poste publike. Huntington (1984) argumenton se një sistem politik demokratik në masën që krijuesit e saj më të fuqishme kolektive vendim janë zgjedhur përmes
Zgjedhjet periodike në të cilën kandidatët lirisht konkurrojnë për vota dhe në të cilën praktikisht të gjithë të rriturit kanë të drejtë për të votuar. Rothstein (1995) thotë se demokracia është një formë e qeverisjes dhe një proces i qeverisjes që ndryshon dhe përshtatet në përgjigje të rrethanave. Ai gjithashtu shton se përkufizimi i demokracisë perëndimore — Përveç llogaridhënies, konkurs, një shkallë e pjesëmarrjes — përmban një garanci e të drejtave të rëndësishme civile dhe politike. Anderson (1995) argumenton se demokracia termi do të thotë një sistem në të cilin krijuesit më të fuqishme vendim kolektiv janë zgjedhur përmes zgjedhjeve periodike në të cilën kandidatët lirisht konkurrojnë për vota dhe në të cilin praktikisht e gjithë popullsia e rritur ka të drejtë për të votuar. Ibrahim Saad Eddin (1995), një dijetar egjiptian, e sheh demokracinë që mund të zbatohet për botën arabe, si një grup i rregullave dhe institucioneve të projektuar për të mundësuar qeverisjen përmes paqësore
menaxhimi i grupeve konkurruese dhe / ose interesat konfliktuale. Megjithatë, Samir Amin (1991) bazuar përkufizimin e tij të demokracisë në perspektivën sociale marksiste. Ai ndan demokracinë në dy kategori: demokracia borgjeze e cila është e bazuar në të drejtat individuale dhe lirisë për individin, por pa pasur barazi sociale; dhe demokracia politike e cila i jep të drejtë të gjithë njerëzit në shoqëri të drejtën për të votuar dhe për të zgjedhur qeverinë e tyre dhe përfaqësues të institucioneve të cilat do të ndihmojnë për të marrë të drejtat e tyre të barabarta sociale.
Për të përfunduar këtë seksion, Unë do të thosha se nuk ka një përkufizim të vetëm të demokracisë që tregon pikërisht atë që është ose çfarë nuk është. Megjithatë, si ne re, shumica e definicioneve të përmendura më lart kanë elementet thelbësore të ngjashme – përgjegjësi, konkurs, dhe një shkallë e pjesëmarrjes – të cilat janë bërë dominuese në botën perëndimore dhe ndërkombëtarisht.

Demokraci, Elections and the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood

Israel Elad-Altman

The American-led Middle East reform and democratization campaign of the last two years has helped shape a new political reality in Egypt. Opportunities have opened up for dissent. With U.S. and European support, local opposition groups have been able to take initiative, advance their causes and extract concessions from the state. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood movement (MB), which has been officially outlawed as a political organization, is now among the groups facing both new opportunities
and new risks.
Western governments, including the government of the United States, are considering the MB and other “moderate Islamist” groups as potential partners in helping to advance democracy in their countries, and perhaps also in eradicating Islamist terrorism. Could the Egyptian MB fill that role? Could it follow the track of the Turkish Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Indonesian Prosperous Justice Party (PKS), two Islamist parties that, according to some analysts, are successfully adapting to the rules of liberal democracy and leading their countries toward greater integration with, respectively, Europe and a “pagan” Asia?
This article examines how the MB has responded to the new reality, how it has handled the ideological and practical challenges and dilemmas that have arisen during the past two years. To what extent has the movement accommodated its outlook to new circumstances? What are its objectives and its vision of the political order? How has it reacted to U.S. overtures and to the reform and democratization campaign?
How has it navigated its relations with the Egyptian regime on one hand, and other opposition forces on the other, as the country headed toward two dramatic elections in autumn 2005? To what extent can the MB be considered a force that might lead Egypt
toward liberal democracy?

Vëllezërit Myslimanë EGYPT'S: Konfrontimit ose INTEGRIMIT?

Research

The Society of Muslim Brothers’ success in the November-December 2005 elections for the People’s Assembly sent shockwaves through Egypt’s political system. In response, the regime cracked down on the movement, harassed other potential rivals and reversed its fledging reform process. This is dangerously short-sighted. There is reason to be concerned about the Muslim Brothers’ political program, and they owe the people genuine clarifications about several of its aspects. But the ruling National Democratic
Party’s (PDR) refusal to loosen its grip risks exacerbating tensions at a time of both political uncertainty surrounding the presidential succession and serious socio-economic unrest. Though this likely will be a prolonged, gradual process, the regime should take preliminary steps to normalise the Muslim Brothers’ participation in political life. The Muslim Brothers, whose social activities have long been tolerated but whose role in formal politics is strictly limited, won an unprecedented 20 per cent of parliamentary seats in the 2005 Zgjedhjet. They did so despite competing for only a third of available seats and notwithstanding considerable obstacles, including police repression and electoral fraud. This success confirmed their position as an extremely wellorganised and deeply rooted political force. At the same time, it underscored the weaknesses of both the legal opposition and ruling party. The regime might well have wagered that a modest increase in the Muslim Brothers’ parliamentary representation could be used to stoke fears of an Islamist takeover and thereby serve as a reason to stall reform. If so, the strategy is at heavy risk of backfiring.

Islami dhe Demokracia: Text, Tradition, and History

Ahrar Ahmad

Popular stereotypes in the West tend to posit a progressive, rational, and free West against a backward, oppressive, and threatening Islam. Public opinion polls conducted in the United States during the 1990s revealed a consistent pattern of Americans labeling Muslims as “religious fanatics” and considering Islam’s ethos as fundamentally “anti-democratic.”1 These characterizations
and misgivings have, for obvious reasons, significantly worsened since the tragedy of 9/11. Megjithatë, these perceptions are not reflected merely in the popular consciousness or crude media representations. Respected scholars also have contributed to this climate of opinion by writing about the supposedly irreconcilable differences between Islam and the West, the famous “clash of civilizations” that is supposed to be imminent and inevitable, and about the seeming incompatibility between Islam and democracy. Për shembull, Professor Peter Rodman worries that “we are challenged from the outside by a militant atavistic force driven by hatred of all Western political thought harking back to age-old grievances against Christendom.” Dr. Daniel Pipes proclaims that the Muslims challenge the West more profoundly than the communists ever did, for “while the Communists disagree with our policies, the fundamentalist Muslims despise our whole way of life.” Professor Bernard Lewis warns darkly about “the historic reaction of an ancient rival against our Judeo–Christian heritage, our secular present, and the expansion of both.” Professor Amos Perlmutter asks: “Is Islam, fundamentalist or otherwise, compatible with human-rights oriented Western style representative democracy? The answer is an emphatic NO.” And Professor Samuel Huntington suggests with a flourish that “the problem is not Islamic fundamentalism, but Islam itself.” It would be intellectually lazy and simple-minded to dismiss their positions as based merely on spite or prejudice. Në të vërtetë, if one ignores some rhetorical overkill, some of their charges, though awkward for Muslims, are relevant to a discussion of the relationship between Islam and democracy in the modern world. Për shembull, the position of women or sometimes non-Muslims in some Muslim countries is problematic in terms of the supposed legal equality of all people in a democracy. Në mënyrë të ngjashme, the intolerance directed by some Muslims against writers (e.g., Salman Rushdie in the UK, Taslima Nasrin in Bangladesh, and Professor Nasr Abu Zaid in Egypt) ostensibly jeopardizes the principle of free speech, which is essential to a democracy.
It is also true that less than 10 of the more than 50 members of the Organization of the Islamic Conference have institutionalized democratic principles or processes as understood in the West, and that too, only tentatively. Më në fund, the kind of internal stability and external peace that is almost a prerequisite for a democracy to function is vitiated by the turbulence of internal implosion or external aggression evident in many Muslim countries today (e.g., Somali, Sudan, Indonezi, Pakistan, Irak, Afganistan, Algjeri, and Bosnia).

Iraku dhe e ardhmja e Islamit Politike

James Piscatori

Sixty-five years ago one of the greatest scholars of modern Islam asked the simple question, “whither Islam?", where was the Islamic world going? It was a time of intense turmoil in both the Western and Muslim worlds – the demise of imperialism and crystallisation of a new state system outside Europe; the creation and testing of the neo- Wilsonian world order in the League of Nations; the emergence of European Fascism. Sir Hamilton Gibb recognised that Muslim societies, unable to avoid such world trends, were also faced with the equally inescapable penetration of nationalism, kundërlaicizim, and Westernisation. While he prudently warned against making predictions – hazards for all of us interested in Middle Eastern and Islamic politics – he felt sure of two things:
(një) the Islamic world would move between the ideal of solidarity and the realities of division;
(b) the key to the future lay in leadership, or who speaks authoritatively for Islam.
Today Gibb’s prognostications may well have renewed relevance as we face a deepening crisis over Iraq, the unfolding of an expansive and controversial war on terror, and the continuing Palestinian problem. In this lecture I would like to look at the factors that may affect the course of Muslim politics in the present period and near-term future. Although the points I will raise are likely to have broader relevance, I will draw mainly on the case of the Arab world.
Assumptions about Political Islam There is no lack of predictions when it comes to a politicised Islam or Islamism. ‘Islamism’ is best understood as a sense that something has gone wrong with contemporary Muslim societies and that the solution must lie in a range of political action. Often used interchangeably with ‘fundamentalism’, Islamism is better equated with ‘political Islam’. Several commentators have proclaimed its demise and the advent of the post-Islamist era. They argue that the repressive apparatus of the state has proven more durable than the Islamic opposition and that the ideological incoherence of the Islamists has made them unsuitable to modern political competition. The events of September 11th seemed to contradict this prediction, yet, unshaken, they have argued that such spectacular, virtually anarchic acts only prove the bankruptcy of Islamist ideas and suggest that the radicals have abandoned any real hope of seizing power.

Islami dhe Demokracia

ITAC

Nëse dikush lexon shtypin apo dëgjon komentuesve mbi çështjet ndërkombëtare, ajo shpesh është thënë - dhe edhe më shpesh nënkuptohet, por nuk tha - se Islami nuk është në përputhje me demokracinë. Në vitet nëntëdhjetë, Samuel Huntington vendosur jashtë një stuhi intelektuale, kur ai botoi përplasjes së qytetërimeve dhe remaking e Rendit Botëror, në të cilën ai jep parashikimet e tij për botën - shkrim i madh. Në sferën politike, ai vë në dukje se ndërsa Turqia dhe Pakistani mund të ketë disa kërkesë të vogël për të "legjitimitetit demokratik" të gjitha të tjera "... vendet myslimane ishin shumicë dërrmuese jo-demokratike: monarkitë, Sistemet e një-partisë, regjimet ushtarake, diktaturat personale ose ndonjë kombinim i këtyre, zakonisht pushimi në një familje të kufizuar, fis, ose baza fisnore ". Premisa mbi të cilën argumenti i tij është themeluar është se ata nuk janë vetëm "nuk na pëlqen", ata janë kundër të vërtetë për vlerat tona themelore demokratike. Ai beson, si të tjerët, se ndërsa ideja e demokratizimit perëndimore është duke u rezistuar në pjesë të tjera të botës, konfrontimi është më i dukshëm në ato rajone ku Islami është feja dominante.
Argumenti ka bërë edhe nga ana tjetër, si dhe. Një dijetar fetar iranian, reflektuar në një krizë në fillim të shekullit të njëzetë kushtetuese në vendin e tij, deklaroi se Islami dhe demokracia nuk janë të pajtueshme për shkak se njerëzit nuk janë të barabartë dhe një trup legjislativ është i panevojshëm për shkak të natyrës gjithëpërfshirëse të ligjit fetar islam. Një pozitë e ngjashme është marrë kohët e fundit nga Ali Belhadj, një mësues algjerian të shkollës së mesme, predikues dhe (në këtë kontekst) Lideri i FIS, kur ai deklaroi se "demokracia nuk ishte një koncept islamik". Ndoshta deklarata më dramatike për këtë qëllim ishte ai i Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Lideri i kryengritësve suni në Irak të cilët, kur të përballen me perspektivën e zgjedhjeve, denoncuar demokracinë si një "parim i keq".
Por, sipas disa dijetarëve myslimanë, demokracia mbetet një ideal i rëndësishëm në Islam, me shtojcë që ajo është gjithmonë subjekt i ligjit fetar. Theksi në vendin madhe e Sheriatit është një element i pothuajse çdo komenti islame në qeverisje, moderuar apo ekstremist. Vetëm nëse sundimtari, që merr autoritetin e tij nga Perëndia, kufizon veprimet e tij në "mbikëqyrjen e administrimit të Sheriatit", është ai që do të bind. Nëse ai e bën të ndryshme nga kjo, ai është një jo-besimtar dhe e angazhuar muslimanët janë të rebelohen kundër tij. Këtu qëndron arsyetimi për pjesën më të madhe të dhunës që ka pllakosur botën myslimane në betejat e tilla si ai që mbizotëron në Algjeri gjatë viteve '90

Në kërkim të konstitucionalizmit islame

Nadirsyah pantallona

Ndërsa konstitucionalizmi në Perëndim identifikohet kryesisht me mendim laik, konstitucionalizmi islame, e cila përfshin disa elemente fetare, ka tërhequr interes në rritje në vitet e fundit. për shembull, Përgjigja e administratës së Bushit për ngjarjet e 9/11 transformuar rrënjësisht situatën në Irak dhe Afganistan, dhe të dy vendet tani janë rishkrimin kushtetutat e tyre. si
Ann Elizabeth Mayer thekson, konstitucionalizmi islam është konstitucionalizmi që është, në një formë, bazuar në parimet islame, në krahasim me konstitucionalizmit zhvilluar në vendet që të ndodhë të jetë mysliman, por i cili nuk është i informuar nga parimet islame distinctively. Disa dijetarë myslimanë, në mesin e tyre Muhammad Asad3 dhe Abul A`la el-Meududi, kanë shkruar në aspekte të tilla të çështjeve kushtetuese, si të drejtat e njeriut dhe ndarjes së pushteteve. Megjithatë, në përgjithësi veprat e tyre bien në apologjetikës, si Chibli Mallat thekson:
Qoftë për moshën klasike ose për botën bashkëkohore myslimane, Hulumtimet shkencore mbi drejtës publike duhet të respektojë një sërë kërkesash axiomatic.
I parë, lexim i traditës nuk mund të interpretohet si një lexim i thjeshtë retrospektiv. Nga thjesht duke projektuar konceptet pranishëm-ditore prapa, kjo është e gjitha shumë e lehtë për të detyruar të tashmen në të kaluarën ose në mënyrë apologjetike e sajuar apo me kokën lart refuzues. Qasja është apologjetike dhe ndërtuar kur Faturat e të Drejtave të lexohen në, them, Kalifati i `Umerit, me supozim se "vetëm" Cilësitë e `Umerit përfshirë parimet komplekse dhe të artikuluar të një bilancit kushtetues gjen në tekstet moderne