RSSAlle Einträge Tagged With: "Israel"

Islamische Politische Kultur, Demokratie, und Menschenrechte

Daniel E. Preis

It has been argued that Islam facilitates authoritarianism, contradicts the

values of Western societies, and significantly affects important political outcomes
in Muslim nations. Folglich, scholars, commentators, and government
officials frequently point to ‘‘Islamic fundamentalism’’ as the next
ideological threat to liberal democracies. This view, jedoch, 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. Hence, 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,
democracy, 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.

Political Islam in the Middle East

Sind Knudsen

This report provides an introduction to selected aspects of the phenomenon commonly

referred to as “political Islam”. The report gives special emphasis to the Middle East, in

particular the Levantine countries, and outlines two aspects of the Islamist movement that may

be considered polar opposites: democracy and political violence. In the third section the report

reviews some of the main theories used to explain the Islamic resurgence in the Middle East

(Figure 1). In brief, the report shows that Islam need not be incompatible with democracy and

that there is a tendency to neglect the fact that many Middle Eastern countries have been

engaged in a brutal suppression of Islamist movements, causing them, some argue, to take up

arms against the state, and more rarely, foreign countries. The use of political violence is

widespread in the Middle East, but is neither illogical nor irrational. In many cases even

Islamist groups known for their use of violence have been transformed into peaceful political

parties successfully contesting municipal and national elections. Nonetheless, the Islamist

revival in the Middle East remains in part unexplained despite a number of theories seeking to

account for its growth and popular appeal. In general, most theories hold that Islamism is a

reaction to relative deprivation, especially social inequality and political oppression. Alternative

theories seek the answer to the Islamist revival within the confines of religion itself and the

powerful, evocative potential of religious symbolism.

The conclusion argues in favour of moving beyond the “gloom and doom” approach that

portrays Islamism as an illegitimate political expression and a potential threat to the West (“Old

Islamism”), and of a more nuanced understanding of the current democratisation of the Islamist

movement that is now taking place throughout the Middle East (“New Islamism”). This

importance of understanding the ideological roots of the “New Islamism” is foregrounded

along with the need for thorough first-hand knowledge of Islamist movements and their

adherents. As social movements, its is argued that more emphasis needs to be placed on

understanding the ways in which they have been capable of harnessing the aspirations not only

of the poorer sections of society but also of the middle class.

Escalation in the Middle East: a lasting damage to peace and democracy

Paolo Cotta

The rapid and dangerous escalation of war operations in the Middle East has resulted in a very significant loss of life among Lebanese, Palestinians and Israelis, and serious damage to civilian infrastructures. Major operations began with a low-level conflict around Gaza,that involved the launching of some missiles into Israel, some (more deadly) Israeli retaliation on Gaza, and the attack on an Israeli military post outside Gaza to which Israel reacted swiftly and very strongly. In the chain reaction that followed, admittedly Israel’ sintention was, and is, to inflict on the other side a far heavier punishment than that taken by Israel—which may appear as a militarily sound posture aimed at avoiding incidents andattacks, but, in fact, it is the civilian population that has been mainly affected. As a result,the suffering of the Lebanese and Palestinian civilian populations (in terms of deaths,wounded and destroyed infrastructures) has to date been largely disproportionate to that of Israel. When, in the case of Palestine, this discrimination already follows about 40 years of discrimination in the same direction, hostility and adversarial relations are bound toincrease. So while Israel’s heavy deterrence through punishment may work temporarily and occasionally in preventing or reducing attacks, the general sentiment of hostility in the region is increased, and creates in the long range a bigger obstacle to peace.

Kommentar: Hollow-Ring für Demokratie

Arnaud de Borchgrave

WASHINGTON, June 24 (UPI) — The White House’s crusade for democracy, as President Bush sees it, has produceda critical mass of events taking that (Middle Eastern) region in a hopeful new direction.And Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice just toured the area, making clear at every stop whenever the United States has a choice between stability and democracy, the new ideological remedy would sacrifice stability.

Veteran Mideast hands who have dealt with five regional wars and two intifadas over the past half century shuddered. Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger first among them.

For the U.S. to crusade in every part of the world to spread democracy may be beyond our capacity,” he says. die US-. system, he explains, “is the product of unique historical experiences, difficult to duplicate or to transplant into Muslim societies where secular democracy has seldom thrived.If ever.

If stability had been sacrificed for democracy, the former national security adviser and secretary of State to Presidents Nixon and Ford could not have negotiated major Arab-Israeli disengagement agreements: Sinai I, Golan and Sinai II. Without the undemocratic, benign dictatorial figure of Anwar Sadat at the helm in Egypt, or without the late Syrian dictator and master terror-broker Hafez Assad, yet another page of war history would have been written.

With a democratic parliament in Egypt in 1974, presumably dominated by the popular Muslim Brotherhood, Sadat could not have made his spectacular, death-defying trip to Jerusalemand suddenly become the most popular leader in Israel. A peace treaty between Egypt and Israel and between Jordan and Israel were possible only because absolute rulersSadat and the late King Hussein, led both Arab countries.

Sadat knew his courageous act of statesmanship was tantamount to signing his own death warrant. It was carried out in 1981 — by Islamist extremistson worldwide television.

Rice proudly proclaims it is no longer a war against terrorism but a struggle for democracy. She is proud the Bush administration no longer pursues stability at the expense of democracy. But already the democracy crusade is not only encountering speed bumps, but also roadblocks on a road to nowhere.

The much-vaunted Palestinian elections scheduled for July have been postponed indefinitely.

In Lebanon, the ballot box has already been nullified by political machinations. Gen. Michael Aoun, a bright but aging prospect who came back from French exile to take on Syria’s underground machine, has already joined forces with Damascus. While denying any deal with Syria, the general’s henchmen concede he was compensated munificently for his retirement years in Paris from his post as army chief of staff and his time as premier. Aoun collected $22 million, which included compound interest.

In Egypt, Rice, presumably attempting to confer respectability on President Hosni Mubarak’s challengers, took time out to receive a known political charlatan who has over the years been exposed as someone who forged election results as he climbed the ladder of a number of political parties under a variety of labels.

Even Mubarak’s enemies concede Ayman Nour fabricated and forged the signatures of as many as 1,187 citizens to conform to regulations to legalize his Ghad (Tomorrow) party. His career is dotted with phony academic credentials, plagiarism, a staged assassination attempt on himself, charges of embezzlement by his Saudi media employer, and scads of document forgeries.

Rice had canceled a previous trip to Egypt to protest the indictment and jailing of Nour pending trial. And before Rice’s most recent accolade, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright had also gone out of her way to praise Egypt’s master political con man. Makes you wonder what kind of political reporting is coming out of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo.

With this double-headed endorsement by the United States, Nour is losing what little favor he still has in Egypt. He is now seen as a U.S. stooge, to add to a long list of failings.

Die Muslimbruderschaft, which is outlawed but tolerated since it renounced terrorism, is more representative of Egyptian opinion than Nour. There is also the Kifaya (Enough) movement that groups Egypt’s leading intellectuals. But they declined to meet with Rice.

The United States is seen throughout the Arab world as synonymous with Israel. This automatically limits the Bush administration’s ability to win friends and influence people. Those making the most out of U.S. pressure to democratize are organizations listed by the United States asterrorist.Both Hamas in the Palestinian territories and Hezbollah in Lebanon are now mining opportunities both above and underground. Islamic legislators in Jordan petitioned King Abdullah to allow Jordanian Hamas leaders, evicted six years ago, to come home. The king listened impassively.

It took Europe 500 years to reach the degree of political maturity witnessed by the recent collapse of the European Union’s plans for a common constitution. Winston Churchill said democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried. But Churchill also said, “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.This still applies in the souks of the Arab world, from Marrakech to Muscat.

Goldstone Report On Israel’s War On Gaza

Goldstone in Gaza

1. On 3 April 2009, the President of the Human Rights Council established the United Nations
Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict with the mandate “to investigate all violations of
international human rights law and international humanitarian law that might have been
committed at any time in the context of the military operations that were conducted in Gaza
during the period from 27 Dezember 2008 und 18 January 2009, whether before, during or
after.”
2. The President appointed Justice Richard Goldstone, former judge of the Constitutional Court
of South Africa and former Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former
Yugoslavia and Rwanda, to head the Mission. The other three appointed members were:
Professor Christine Chinkin, Professor für Völkerrecht an der London School of Economics
und Politikwissenschaft, der ein Mitglied der High-Level-Fact-Finding-Mission nach Beit Hanoun
(2008); Frau. Hina Jilani, Anwalt des Obersten Gerichtshofes von Pakistan und ehemaligen Sonder
Vertreter des Generalsekretärs über die Situation der Menschenrechtsverteidiger, wer ein
Mitglied der Internationalen Untersuchungskommission zu Darfur (2004); und Oberst Desmond
Travers, ein ehemaliger Offizier in der irischen Verteidigungskräfte und Mitglied des Board of Directors von
das Institut für Internationale Kriminalpolizei.
3. Wie üblich, das UNHCHR
(OHCHR) wurde ein Sekretariat die Mission zu unterstützen.
4. The Mission interpreted the mandate as requiring it to place the civilian population of the
region at the centre of its concerns regarding the violations of international law.
5. The Mission convened for the first time in Geneva between 4 und 8 May 2009. Additionally,
the Mission met in Geneva on 20 May, auf 4 und 5 Juli, and between 1 und 4 August 2009. Der
Mission conducted three field visits: two to the Gaza Strip between 30 May and 6 June, und
between 25 June and 1 Juli 2009; and one visit to Amman on 2 und 3 Juli 2009. Several staff of

1. On 3 April 2009, the President of the Human Rights Council established the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict with the mandate “to investigate all violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law that might have been committed at any time in the context of the military operations that were conducted in Gaza during the period from 27 Dezember 2008 und 18 January 2009, whether before, während oder nach.“

2. The President appointed Justice Richard Goldstone, ehemalige Richter des Verfassungsgerichts von Südafrika und ehemaligen Chefankläger des Internationalen Strafgerichtshofes für das ehemalige Jugoslawien und Ruanda, to head the Mission. Die anderen drei ernannten Mitglieder waren Professor Christine Chinkin, Professor für Völkerrecht an der London School of Economics and Political Science, der ein Mitglied der High-Level-Fact-Finding-Mission nach Beit Hanoun (2008); Frau. Hina Jilani, Anwalt des Obersten Gerichtshofes von Pakistan und ehemaligen Sonderbeauftragten des Generalsekretärs über die Situation der Menschenrechtsverteidiger, der ein Mitglied der Internationalen Untersuchungskommission zu Darfur (2004); und Oberst Desmond Travers, ein ehemaliger Offizier in der irischen Verteidigungskräfte und Mitglied des Board of Directors des Instituts für Internationale Kriminalpolizei.

3. Wie üblich, das UNHCHR (OHCHR) wurde ein Sekretariat die Mission zu unterstützen.

4. Die Mission interpretiert das Mandat als erforderlich es, die Zivilbevölkerung in der Region in den Mittelpunkt seiner Bedenken in Bezug auf die Verletzung des internationalen Rechts zu platzieren.

5. The Mission convened for the first time in Geneva between 4 und 8 May 2009. Additionally, the Mission met in Geneva on 20 May, auf 4 und 5 Juli, and between 1 und 4 August 2009. Die Mission führte drei Feldbesuche: two to the Gaza Strip between 30 May and 6 June, and between 25 June and 1 Juli 2009; and one visit to Amman on 2 und 3 Juli 2009. Mehrere Mitarbeiter OFTHE wurden Mission des Sekretariats in Gaza zum Einsatz von 22 Kann zu 4 Juli 2009 Felduntersuchungen durchzuführen.

6. Verbalnoten wurden in allen Mitgliedstaaten der Vereinten Nationen und der Vereinten Nationen Organe und Einrichtungen geschickt auf 7 May 2009. On 8 June 2009 die Mission einen Aufruf für die Einreichung alle interessierten Personen und Organisationen einladen relevante Informationen und Unterlagen vorzulegen in der Durchführung ihres Mandats zu unterstützen.

7. Öffentliche Anhörungen wurden in Gaza statt auf 28 und 29 Juni und in Genf auf 6 und 7 Juli 2009.

8. Die Mission suchte immer wieder die Zusammenarbeit der Regierung von Israel zu erhalten. Nach zahlreichen Versuchen gescheitert, die Mission suchte und erhielt die Unterstützung der Regierung von Ägypten es zu ermöglichen, den Gazastreifen durch den Grenzübergang Rafah zu betreten.

9. Die Mission hat die Unterstützung und Zusammenarbeit der Palästinensischen Behörde und der Ständigen Beobachtermission Palästinas bei den Vereinten Nationen genossen. Aufgrund der mangelnden Kooperation der israelischen Regierung, die Mission konnte nicht Mitglieder der Palästinensischen Behörde in der Westbank treffen. Die Mission hat, jedoch, treffen sich Beamte der Palästinensischen Behörde, darunter ein Mitglied des Kabinetts, in Amman. Während seiner Besuche in den Gazastreifen, die Mission Sitzungen mit hochrangigen Mitgliedern der Behörden in Gaza und sie dehnten ihre volle Kooperation und Unterstützung für die Mission.

10. Im Anschluss an die öffentlichen Anhörungen in Genf, die Mission war, dass ein palästinensischer Teilnehmer informiert, Herr. Mohammed Srour, war von israelischen Sicherheitskräften festgenommen, als auf der Westbank zurückkehrt und wurde besorgt, dass seine Inhaftierung vor der Mission eine Folge seiner Erscheinung gewesen sein. Die Mission ist in Kontakt mit ihm und weiterhin den Entwicklungen beobachten.