Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Islamic Revolution – How to Ensure Peace

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The revolution that started in Tunisia and has been spreading to other Islamic states is threatening the peace of Islam as well as that of neighbouring states. Something urgent and constructive has to be done to bring about immediate peace in North Africa and the Middle East.

What started as a Tunisian uprising has now spread like wildfire to Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Yemen, Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Oman, etc. The fact that all countries involved are Islamic countries shows that there is a problem with the kind of leadership provided by these Islamic Heads of State.

Recently Saudi Arabia sent hundreds of armoured vehicles and personnel to help suppress the protesters in Bahrain, a move which has since attracted international condemnation. As the center of Islamic worship it was expected that they should think of a way of solving the problem rather than oppressing the people with the power of the guns.

However, there are several ways to handle the current revolution and prevent future occurrences. Some of the options that could be exploited include:

 Dialogue: This remains the best option to stop the current crises. The people must sit together and discuss the causes of the problem and how to solve them. The use of force should be avoided.

 Avoid taking sides: Saudi Arabia must as a matter of urgency withdraw their soldiers from Bahrain and seek peaceful resolution of the crises.

 Change of leadership styles: All the countries involved must change their leadership style to carry the people along in the scheme of things and make them have a sense of belonging.

 Constitutional reformation: The constitutions of the countries involved must be amended to make leaders accountable to the electorate. Besides, the tenure of each elected or appointed leader must be spelt out and respected.

 Avoid deceit: The leaders must also avoid the temptation to deceive the led. The people have the right to know how their incomes are generated, saved or spent.

 Regional responsibility: There should be regional co-operation between the various presidents of the states that make up the regions. The leaders should ensure no elected president or head of State stays beyond his/her tenure. They should also have a mechanism for forcing out a leader who deliberately decides to plunge the regions into crisis.

 Religious influence:. Since these states are purely controlled by the application of Islamic laws, the Arab league must be able to influence the leaders to live according to the expectation of Allah and work within the confines of the Qur’an.

 World Influence: The United Nations must not exist in principle alone; it must be able to step into major crises to avert blood shed and genocide. Sanctions imposed on erring nations must be able to achieve the purpose for imposing them.

Implementing these options would help bring some relative peace to the Arab/Islamic nations and also ensure regional calm.

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