The rise of Islamic movements in elections: Significance and context
Tunisia as a model
(A candidate article to win the second Alukah's writer competition)
After independance, the Arab world knew absolute totalitarian regimes which disguised in the progressive revolutionary trend and sometimes with national trend that took nationalism as a start to achieve their goals. The Arab people lived decades under these dictatorial regimes during which the people suffered oppression and tyranny. The security forces and intelligence services were calculating the breaths of people everyone and watching the movements of everyone, as it enjoyed absolute freedom of torturing anyone and encouraging anyone in the absence of standards of justice, transparency, and equity. These systems have played with national and religious trends in their own countries the game of collision or polarization; sometimes they chase them mercilessly and relentlessly and sometimes let them move in the street in the course of equilibrium that aim to reinforce the pillars of totalitarian regime and destroying the opponents and rivals.
The Islamic movements in the Arab world had the best chance of maltreatment and the exclusion of dictatorships, which made them gain people's sympathy. Many Islamic movements have succeeded in using this sympathy to attract many people. Mohammed Bouazizi's response to the oppression and dominance has succeeded in breaking the Tunisian Dictatorship and to open the door before other Arab dictatorships to fall down, starting from the Egyptian dectotorial regime which hid behind a strong security force that screened the fact that the regime is so frangile. The supporters of the regime could not understand this fact and tried to frighten the people in Tahrir Square, but the revolutionists understood that fact and were able to make the Egyptian President understand this fact and that the time of dectatorship has gone. After the President had failed to deter the ambitions of his people who were expecting freedom, justice, and dignity, President Mubarak exerted strenuous efforts to persuade the people, using all rational and emotional means to absorb the anger, which made the free people of Egypt went out in a million-demonstration that was attracting in its: organization, discipline, and design. Those demonstrations were peacful and civilized; by keeping these advantages, the Egyptian revolutionists freed their country from dictatorship, and the context in which these transitions occurred was characterized by important universal developments:
1 - First, the huge information flow which provided the news and information in various media means, taking away the regimes' ability to control the news, and controling the news after its circulation where confiscation and control are no longer an effective weapon in the shade of the enormous informational development and flexible exchange of information which the scientific development and the information revolution made possible.
2 - The emergence of social networks, its spread among the elite, widening the base of electronic publishing, and the difficulty to control it because of the multiplicity of alternatives, sites for overcoming the blocked sites, and multiplicity of multimedia.
If the Iranian revolution led by "Ayatollah Khomeini" was known as "the Revolution of the cassette," the coming revolutions shall be known as "the Internet revolution," or the revolution of Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, and other social networks which have become a more flexible and effective alternative, and perhaps it will be more widespread in the near future.
3 - The failure of regimes to assess the threat and its failure to achieve the minimum requirements of their people: Freedom, democracy, justice, and dignity; which doubled the indignation of the people and the elites who have seen the surrounding peoples enjoying security and safety with regimes that respect human dignity and provide the minimum requirements of social justice against Arab regimes that governed by leaders who live outside time along with their brutal security forces. These regimes are weird because they lack scientific and practical qualifications to run the public affairs and because of their engagement with ideas centred around the president without taking into account that he has rights and duties for their people and he did not even think for a moment that these peoples have ambitions, the first of which is dignity. The Arab revolutions are not revolutions for bread; the Libyan people live in affluence of luxury and bliss, but it lacks dignity, and tired of the regime which sees them as rats.
Finally, the lack of hope for peaceful change and the prevalence of injustice, oppression, and tyranny have bursted a volcano of anger to sweep Tunisian, Egyptian, Libyan dictatorships and soon it will sweep the Yemini and Syrian dectatorship. The Arab peoples have paid the tax firmly and courageously, even though it was very expensive as in the case of Libya. The Egyptian army has drawn the lessons from the courage of the people who are eager for freedom, justice, and dignity in the face of the supporters of Mubarak and the National Democratic Party; so it was more professional and harder in its military doctrine than the Libyan army whose soldiers turned from protectors of home to monsters who kill and destruct their own people.
In the face of these facts and in line with the laws of change, the peoples have succeeded in untying and breaking the chains, and removed the structure of injustice and corruption, though it has not yet achieved great success in bridging the gap and building institutional structures that believe in alternation and plurality, but just dropping these systems themselves is a noteworthy accomplish, but still we need to build new structure different of what has been already established. We can sum up some lessons and signs of which are the following:
1 - The Arab peoples have woken from their long nap and its jiant has broken the bottle, and they will not accept less than their due rights, such as: Freedom, justice, and dignity, and will not remain as a farm for a tyrant ruler whose interest is always focusing around himself, family, his children, or his wealth.
2 - The old methods of repression and murder are no longer possible in the one global village because despite the Barbaity of the Syrian regime, it cannot execute a massacre like that done by "Hafez al-Assad," in Hama due to the digital development, which provides documented news by video and audio and the power of the civil community throughout this global village which makes it impossible to keep silent about killing and barbaric attacks. No regime, no matter how many members they are or equipments, can face the entire world and that regime will escape or commit suicide. The Arab people who are armed by the permissibility of these requests, the justice of their cause, and the peacefullness of their means shall not be defeated by corruption. The Islamic movements, which have suffered exclusion and injustice, have a golden oppurtunity to achieve a major miracle to be added to their balance of facing injustice and tyranny.
They either open up to others, benefit from their potential intelligently and efficiently, and explode energies and talents of their peoples or to lock themselves in the cage of narrow idoelogies, partial fanaticism, and the policy of exclusion and then their fate will not be different from the dectatorial corrupt regimes which preceded them, but may be worse and quicker and will not rise from their fall forever.
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