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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Are You Ready For a World Governed by Islamic Law?

“I have been ordered to fight the people until they all say: ‘None has the right to be worshiped other than Allah.’” — Sahih Bukhari Volume 9, Book 84, Number 59

Are you ready for a world dominated by Islamic law? On July 9, the international political group Hizb ut-Tahrir will meet for the “UK Khilafah Conference” in London. During the gathering, meetings will focus upon ways in which a caliphate can be instituted. A caliphate is an Islamic state that draws its authority from, and is based upon, Sharia law.

Hizb ut-Tahrir, which stands for the “Party of Liberation” in English, is an international political organization that seeks one, unified Muslim state that is dominated by Muslim law. This particular group stands firmly planted against the United States, accusing the Super Power of colonization, among other offenses.

Additionally, the group would like to see Israel, which it deems “illegal,” be dismantled. Below, you can see a graphic that the group is using to promote the conference.


You can watch the conference’s “trailer” for more. In it, you’ll notice that the group targets Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, among others, for assisting in “colonialism” and “oppression.” Also, look out for the words, “An Islamic call spanning the globe.” Watch below:

Sometimes a word, like a faded Hollywood starlet, makes a surprising return to the spotlight and so it is for caliphate. The word owes its renewed popularity to Glenn Beck, who first raised the possibility of a new caliphate on his Fox television show. Suddenly, the word went from relative obscurity to become one of Google’s most searched words, as revolution erupted in Egypt and the world began to wonder what would emerge from the anger in Egypt’s streets.

Simply, a caliphate is a form of government. More precisely, it is an Islamic state that draws its authority from, and is based upon, Sharia law. Get used to hearing the word; it is the form of government advocated by the Muslim Brotherhood.

What exactly a caliphate looks like depends on whether you are a Sunni or a Shia Muslim. Sunnis believe a caliphate should be a constitutional republic, whose leaders are elected by Muslims. Shias believe the head of state is divinely chosen via a lineage of religious clerics called Imams. Within Egypt, Sunnis outnumber Shias. But, either way will involve the rule of Sharia law, its just a matter of how it is imposed.

Those who dismiss the idea of a caliphate in Egypt are discounting the country’s history. Egypt is hardly a stranger to such a form of government; it was part of the Ottoman Empire from the early 16th century until in the late 19th century. The Ottoman Empire was the last great caliphate. It didn’t transition to a secular government model until 1924.

With almost four hundred years of history as a caliphate, it’s not surprising then that Egypt’s penal code is written and based upon Islamic law. Perhaps this is to be expected in a country where an estimated 90% of the people are Muslim. What is surprising is that Egypt’s government is, or at least has been, a secular model. But will it remain so?

Given the country’s history and the religion of the overwhelming majority of its people, the stage may be set for the return of a caliphate, rising out of the present turmoil. And what that means to you probably depends on who you are. A caliphate may sound fine if you are Muslim. It might chaff a little if you’re not. Christians and Jews were treated as second-class citizens under the Ottoman Empire. Certainly to the American mind, raised to believe in the “wall of separation between church and state” as articulated by Thomas Jefferson, a caliphate is an anathema. Under a caliphate of any color organizations like the ACLU, Code Pink, and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Alliance (LGBT). There are no civil liberties and homosexuality is a crime punishable by death under Sharia.

If the possibility of a caliphate in Egypt sounds improbable, consider these facts: Egypt’s current government is in collapse, the largest and most organized opposition, the Muslim Brotherhood, champions Islamic law and Egypt was once part of a caliphate.

It never works out well to ignore history or facts. The dramatic changes in Egypt cannot be denied nor can the implications for the entire region. An improbable word has made a comeback. The government it represents might not be so far behind.

Historically, Caliph (Khalifa) is the title given to those individuals who succeeded Muhammad after his death as the leader of the Muslims. The Arabic word khalifa means successor, and the full title khalifatu rasulil-lah means “successor to the messenger of Allah”. The Caliph is to be the political, military and administrative leader of all Muslims. The Caliph is the Pope, President and General of the Islamic world all wrapped into one. The office and government of the Caliph is known as the Caliphate (Khilafat). The Caliphate is the only form of government fully sanctioned within early Islamic theology. The purpose of the Caliphate is to govern the Islamic world under the Islamic Sharia law. Caliphs were also referred to with other titles such as Imam al-Ummah (leader of the Muslim community) or Amir al-Mu’minin (Commander of the Faithful).

From Muhammad’s death until the fall of the Ottoman Empire in 1923, various Caliphates or dynasties ruled the Islamic world. The most significant Caliphates in historical order were the Rashidun, the Abbasid, the Umayyid, and finally the Ottoman. At times in Muslim history, there have been rival claimants to the title Caliph in different parts of the Muslim world. Although the purpose of the Caliphate is to unify all Muslims worldwide, rarely has this genuinely been the case. Islamists however often downplay this fact and instead portray the first thirteen hundred years of Islam through a highly idealized lens:

From the first moment of its creation, the Islamic State implemented the Sharia comprehensively, conducted the affairs of the society solely according to Islam, and propagated Islam throughout the world for over thirteen centuries. Occasionally internal tensions fractured the integrity of the State, but incidents were short-lived. Throughout its thirteen centuries of existence, the Khalifa continued as a single indivisible entity that united all the Muslims under a single authority.

Today the Caliphate does not exist other than as a theoretical government that would govern the Islamic world under Islamic law. It was on March 3, 1924 that the last Caliphate—the Ottoman Caliphate—was officially abolished by the first President of the Turkish Republic, Gazi Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. It is essential that anyone trying to understand the present global Islamic movement understand the psychological impact that the abolition of the Caliphate has had on Muslims worldwide and how these factors are presently playing out throughout the Muslim World.

All Muslims regard themselves as members of one ummah, or community of Muslim believers. This concept dominates the Muslim world and mind. This sense of community and loyalty to Muhammad and Allah extends even beyond family and other societal ties. Thus, we find that Muslims do not hesitate to kill family members who give up the Islamic faith despite being their own blood and flesh. They consider it their duty to do so.

Add to this the simple fact that the Islamic sacred traditions are filled with prophecies foretelling the triumph of Islam over the whole world:

Muhammad said, “I have been ordered to fight the people until they all say: ‘None has the right to be worshiped other than Allah.’” —Sahih Bukhari Volume 9, Book 84, Number 59, Narrated Abu Huraira.

The eventual conquest and complete Islamicization of the earth is as natural of an expectation for most Muslims as the rising of the Sun. Theologically, Muslims have a sense of divine entitlement, believing that complete world domination is their calling and destiny. Therefore, for the past eighty plus years, since the actual abolition of the Caliphate, the Muslim believer has a felt a deep disorder in the power balance of the world. Rather than a united Islamic Empire under a Caliph, the Islamic World has existed as a network of underachieving and defeated nation states. They see the modern Muslims states in the Middle East as a product of the evil of the Western powers (despite being secular states, Muslims often see the West as being exclusively Christian nations) who divided up the Islamic Caliphate. This was Osama bin Laden’s view of the west and one of his big issues was to drive the United States and other western powers out of Saudi Arabia. It is also the goal of the al-Qaida and al-Qaida in the African Peninsula (AQAP).

At the same time, too often they have been ruled by corrupt third-rate dictators, like Moammar Qaddafi, who live in luxury while their people live in difficult circumstances. Again, they often see these tyrants as being installed or supported by the evil Western powers. A people who viewed themselves as the world’s foremost superpower for over thirteen hundred years have been a divided network of backwater nation states for nearly a century now with many existing on the oil they produce. And to compound this emotional blow, this humbling has taken place during the 20th century, a time when numerous other nations—particularly those founded on Judeo-Christian principles—have excelled in everything from government to human rights, scientific breakthroughs, prosperity, education, military and who can list everything else? So it has been the combination of the relative prosperity and advancement in so many parts of the non-Muslim world contrasted with the complete deterioration of the once thriving Islamic Empire that has been on display as the shame of the Muslim World. Add again to all this the fact that the Muslim world is an Eastern culture, where honor and shame mean everything. All in all, the psychological impact and the resentment of the Muslim world regarding all that we have discussed is nearly all consuming.

And of course, where does this resentment and pent-up anger fall? For in such a drastically disordered world, conspiracy theories and blame-shifting are the only tools sufficient enough to cope. Muslims then blame all of their ills on Israel (or as it is so often referred to as: “The World-Zionist Conspiracy”) as well as the various imperialist Western colonizing powers of the last and previous centuries. In order to remedy their shame and refusing to entertain the truth of the real root of their problems, many Muslims have seen no alternative other than painting themselves as victims of Western imperialist “crusader” forces.

Looking back upon the pre-colonial days of Islamic Empire, two thoughts are often seen to emerge in the modern Muslim mind: The first is to recapture the former glory, and the second is to punish those who have withheld it for so long. All of these aspirations are most often summarized negatively in the overthrow and destruction of Israel and the West, while they are expressed positively in the messianic expectations concerning the coming of the final Caliph, referred to as the Mahdi.

For additional comments and video you can visit where there is an interesting video on the coming of the Anti-Christ.

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