New Age Islam
Sat Oct 16 2021, 10:23 PM

The War Within Islam ( 27 Jun 2013, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Comment | Comment

Distortion of Islam’s Moderation and Tolerance



By Manal Abdul Aziz

June 23, 2013

Many observers have started to show concern at the developments going on in the Middle East in general and Syria in particular and are referring to a sectarian war between Muslim Sunni and Shia possibly breaking out. However, the ongoing developments in Turkey and Iran give positive indications of a prosperous future for this region.

The ongoing demonstrations taking place in big cities of Turkey against Erdogan rule, could be the start of a major uprising against the Justice and Development Party's rule in Turkey. The demonstrations started with an environmental movement against turning a public park into a mall and then developed into wide public and union demonstrations against the brutal security measures taken by the Erdogan government against the peaceful demonstrations.

The police insistence on taking violent measures to prevent angry unionists from reaching Taksim Square in Istanbul as well as on using Erdogan's supporters to confront the demonstrators will soon cause a widespread Turkish uprising against the religious rule of Erdogan.

In Iran, meanwhile, the reformist Hassan Rowhani, achieving rule in the first round of elections, clearly indicates the public despair of the rule of fanatical conservatives.  It is also indicative of their support (public) for one candidate who seems to care about their domestic troubles rather than his ambition of enforcing political domination over the region or spreading the Shi'ite sect in the surrounding Sunni states.

Rowhani pledged in his campaign to work to end the impasse with the West over the nuclear issue and the sanctions. The people of Iran wish that Rowhani would also work on upgrading their economy and enhance rights and freedoms long neglected by Ahmadinejad.

What has been said about Turkey and Iran could also apply to Egypt with the public intention of organising widespread demonstrations on June 30, marking the first anniversary of rule of President Mohamed Morsi. After just a year of experiencing the Islamist rule of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), the Egyptians have realised that the MB's main concern is to enforce their political plan rather than fulfill the principles of the great revolution of January 25, calling for bread, dignity, liberty, and social justice.

Instead of enforcing their so-called Renaissance (Nahda) programme for upgrading the living conditions of the Egyptians, the Muslim Brotherhood have focused on strengthening their grip on authority and the different state institutions and departments. They are following the example of the dissolved National Democratic Party, which, although it allowed the existence of multi-party rule, yet followed a strategy of weakening all opposition parties and dominating different state institutions and local government to ensure victory in any parliamentary or presidential elections.

In the meantime, they have neglected settling any domestic troubles, starting with lack of security, deterioration of the economy, devaluation of the local currency, spread of extremist Jihadists in Sinai and breach of eastern and western borders by drug and arm traffickers. This has occurred together with their readiness to give up parts of the Egyptian territory in the south of the Eastern Desert that is Halayeb and Shalatin to their southern neighbour Sudan so as to preserve their good relation with the Islamist government in Khartoum.

Their unhidden aim is to restore the Islamic Caliphate in the region, the goal for which they have strengthened relations with all fanatical elements and groups in Gaza, Libya, Sudan and now Syria.

To achieve this goal, they show no concern about Egyptian national security being breached by different Palestinian elements through tunnels in Sinai, even if they have led to the murder and kidnapping of military and police servicemen and border guards. 

Neither do they give due care for the potential trouble with Ethiopia over the creation of the Grand Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile. This branch of the Nile provides Egypt with more than 60 per cent of its quota of the river water, which some observers have considered as the major threat faced by the Egyptian republic in its modern history.

For these many reasons, the Egyptians seem very persistent today in ending the rule of the Muslim Brothers. The move started with the signing of the petition entitled Tamarrad (Rebel!), calling for withdrawing confidence from President Morsi and holding early presidential elections to choose a new president for Egypt.

The movement, although it was not created by any political party, has managed to gain the support and signatures of millions of Egyptians, which has convinced different opposition powers join it. They have also even offered all support in turning the June 30 events into a widespread public organised and peaceful move to end the rule of Morsi. At the same time this move has cared the MB and their Islamists supporters to the level of hastily organising ‘one-million man’ demonstrations a week ahead of the Rebel! events so as to express support for the Islamist ruler.

The Islamists, who seem to be losing their nerve now, are showing hysterical reactions to the preparations for June 30 with clear threats to use violence against the demonstrators, claiming that the movement is a conspiracy devised by remnants of the toppled regime of Mubarak to restore rule.

However, the strong presence of the revolutionary powers and noted activists in the campaign has defused these attempts at discouraging the public to join the protest. This has forced them to turn to their old game of depicting it as a movement against Islamic plans supported by secular powers, which they have even accused of being infidels!

Hopefully, the Egyptians will succeed in imposing their will on all these fanatical powers and end this rule that distorts not only the civil image of Egypt but also the moderate, tolerant nature of Islam.