by Abu Dharr (Guest Editorial, Crescent International Vol. 36, No. 3, Rabi' al-Thani, 1428)
The Islamic Uprising in Iran a quarter of a century ago is too important and too special for Muslims to simply watch it wander from its original and true course. We remember all too clearly the impact this breakthrough had on Muslims everywhere. For the first time in modern history, Muslims had risen against a corrupt government and its imperialist and zionist sponsors, and were able to take control of their own country, and begin to show the rest of us how things should be done.
Of course, the road forward was not likely to be smooth. The sponsors of the Pahlavi regime could not be expected to sit and watch a people shape their own future on the basis of their Islamic faith and commitment. Throughout the last 25 years, America and Israel have been working to bring the Islamic government in Iran to its knees, with the support of their Western allies, Iran’s pro-Western neighbours and even supporters within Iran. Iran’s borders amount to some 8,000 kilometers; American troops are now based across six thousand kilometers of this border. This grim scenario has been gradually built over 25 years, and has passed almost unnoticed by most Muslims, and even most Iranians. There has never been any cessation of hostilities between the followers of the line of Imam Khomeini (r.a.), who refuse to compromise when it comes to the independence and sovereignty of the Islamic state, and the numerous other interests wanting to shape the state on their terms.
Part of our object in this new column is to look at some of the gaps that have developed since the passing of Imam Khomeini (r.a.), many of which are rooted in earlier events, and how these gaps have caused serious problems about which we can no longer remain silent. But before we walk into this sensitive area, one point needs to be made absolutely clear. This is that none of the points we make are intended to express any criticism of Imam Sayyid Ali Khamenei, the successor to Imam Khomeini (r.a.) as Rahbar of the Islamic State. Many of the points we make will be highlighting natural processes in the evolution of post-Revolutionary state and society. Others will indeed involve criticism of errors and failures in Iran, mainly on the part of those who have been responsible for aspects of Iranian government and policy at the executive level. It was inevitable that such errors and failures should emerge over a quarter of a century in an unprecedented and highly-pressured historical situation; unfortunately they have contributed greatly to what many now see as the Islamic experiment’s current stagnation.
Sometimes frank statements of truth can be bitter pills to swallow; we hope no-one will consider this column to be too bitter a pill. We say what we say only to express our honest understanding of the issues. If we are correct, we appeal earnestly to Allah to accept our humble words to our humble readers. If not, we request Allah’s forgiveness and correction from anyone able to do so; without, we hope, descending into personal issues or hidden agendas. Ameen.
The threat to Muslims from an imperialistic American-Israeli power will not go away even if “Islamic terrorism” ends. The war-elites in Washington and Tel Aviv spent most of the last century sapping the resources of the world in what was supposedly a life-and-death struggle with communism. When communism collapsed, the politicians went looking for a new enemy to justify continuing their aggressive policies. Unable to find any convincing enemies to promote, they set about creating one from the movements of resistance created by their own policies; and so we now have “Islamic terrorism” or “Islamo-fascism”.
Unknowns such as Mohammad ‘Atta, Abu Mus‘ab al-Zarqawi and Khalid Sheikh Muhammad have been promoted by Hollywood style news-reporting to become the modern-day equivalents of Leon Trotsky, Che Guevara and Ho Chi Minh. The attacks of 9/11 were treated as a new Pearl Harbor (although the parallel with the Gulf of Tonkin incident may be more accurate) to give the war cabal in Washington and their allies in Tel Aviv the rationale to declare a war without end against the new threat to freedom and democracy.
What started as an American knockout to the Taliban in Afghanistan has become an American quagmire in Iraq. George Bush’s war in Iraq is becoming America’s Frankenstein: the monster that destroyed its creator. By anyone’s account, the US is no longer fighting to win the war in Iraq; its only objective is to avoid losing it. The neo-conservatives, Israel’s closest allies in Washington, thought that they could use their shock-and-awe destruction of Iraq to bully other Western nation-states (principally the reluctant Europeans, the Russians and the Chinese) to acknowledge the US as the undisputed hegemon of the universe. This was to be the fulfilment of a political ambition that has been nurtured deep inside the corridors of power in Washington, through more than a century of American hubris from the Philippines to the Caribbeans or from the Halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli.
Right now, the real purveyors of terror are trained and equipped in American military bases in the US and around the world. These are the shock-troops of imperialism who are supposed to reclaim the legacy of colonialism and spread the white man’s burden of ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy’ around the world. These well-camouflaged killers-for-profits ignore the fact that the people of other countries all over the world really want the independence, freedom and self-determination that the West uses only as political rhetoric. They don’t care that there are hundreds of thousands of prisoners of war and prisoners of conscience whose main crime it is that they want freedom from Western hegemony above all else.
Power-blinded American officials gain strength not because of the merit of who they are but because of the fault of what we, the Muslims, have become. Across the quarter of the globe that is populated and ruled by Muslims, governments that fear the US more than they fear Allah have delivered their lands and people into the US’s control. General PervezMusharraf, a Pakistani equivocator, cannot move a finger when it comes to the American military, intelligence, and political appropriation of the “Islamic Republic of Pakistan.” The rulers of every other Muslim state bar Islamic Iran are in a similar position.
But the American-imposed war on the Iraqi people is bringing forward the hour of reckoning between the forces of Islamic resistance, led by the Islamic state in Iran, and the imperialist super-structure around the world. For decades the zionist-dominated government in Washington has armed, financed, and provided political and diplomatic cover for the zionist wolves in Biblical skin who have stolen the Holy Land. It is America’sIsrael that has killed individuals, massacred communities, and is attempting the total genocide a people who are both Muslim and Christian. And this is not a function only the current lunatic commander-in-chief, George W. Bush, but has been the pattern of American administrations of both parties for decades. Remember, many Muslims voted for Bush in 2000 as his predecessor, Bill Clinton, was seen as the most pro-Israel president ever. It was under his watch that the movement that has become known as “Islamo-fascism” was incubated.
What is crucial is that no-one is fooled by “moderate” American responses to the Iraq debacle. Look back at Algeria. “Terrorism” there was meant to destroy the popular appeal of movements for Islamic self-determination. Now, if the zionist brains within imperialism have their way, the Algerian model will subsume all the Muslims; the terrorism and violence of the last few years, culminating in the fratricidal sectarian maelstrom of Iraq, all generated by the zionists and imperialists, will scar and discredit Islamic movements for generations to come. Meanwhile, we will have honeyed voices from the West, regretting the excesses of the neo-cons, and seeking to make common purpose with moderate “Islamists” in the Muslim world, to find a way that the world can live in peace and harmony; provided, of course, that Muslims disown the “extremism” of Islamic activists who insist on genuine independence and self-determination for Muslim countries. Thus the essential objectives of the global conflict originated by the earlier powermongers and war-instigators, who set out to secure control over the resources in the oppressed and Muslim parts of the world, will be achieved by other means.
Key to this American strategy, of course, is the subversion of the Islamic State of Iran, the only country in which the Islamic movement is in power. The Western hope is that a “pragmatic” or “peace” candidate wins future elections in Islamic Iran, prompting the Islamic State to disengage from its Islamic responsibilities before the consolidation of Islamic power in the Islamic East itself; in this case, the Islamic Republic may save lives and money, as the West eases its pressure on it. But as the wheels of imperialism andzionism will grind on after “Iran” recoils into its nationalist self or is satisfied with a sectarian, truncated “Islam”; imperialists and zionists will still lash out at oppressed peoples and terrified Muslims; Israel will still shed Muslim blood and America will still draw Muslim oil. Israel will still kill Palestinians, other Arabs, and other Muslims and oppressed peoples at will. Iran without its Islamic commitment will become an Iran without an Islamic depth, and then such an Iran will be unprotected from the power above and from the people below. The zionist die-hards will still broadcast their threats from the safety of their nuclear club of nations. The pathetic oil-rich but cash-strapped rulers of Arabia will still make secret concessions and deposit more of their oil-revenues in zionist-controlled banks and financial interests. (The Saudi addiction to American support is little short of the American addiction to oil.) American aircraft based in Muslim countries will be ready to drop their bombs on Muslim populations whenever the zionists’ interests demand it.
Critics of the current confrontation between imperialist hegemony and Islamic self-determination contend that it is wiser to “fight” imperialism diplomatically than to do so on Islamic occupied territories; or that money spent on jihad would be better invested on civil society and security at home; or that the casualties sustained are too great a cost to bear; and that the Muslim peoples should make diplomatic concessions instead of a prolonged armed struggle. But these are tactical choices that must be made in any case. In the case of staying the jihadi course, at least, the long-term Islamic plan must be to confront foreign aggression and military occupation of Muslim lands and territories whenever and wherever necessary. And if that means that zionism and imperialism are to be buried somewhere between Tora Bora and Timbuktu, then so be it.
Some moneyed segments of the Ummah, who suffer less than other Muslims, and have more to lose than most, may feel that such a position is too expensive or too naive; but despite their objections, direct jihadi resistance against imperialist aggressors and thezionist occupiers who seek to terrorize people in their homelands and families in their homes is inevitable and inescapable. And the longer the struggle continues against the Anglo-American-zionist corporation of evil, the more the Muslim public will regain a clear vision of both their real representatives on the battlefield, and the real enemies they face. Already many Muslims are beginning to see how Taliban and al-Qa‘ida have been either set up (as with Taliban) or manipulated (as with al-Qa‘ida) as false positives, and are recognising that Islamic Iran and Islamic movements such as Hamas and Hizbullah are the real leaders of the Islamic struggle.
It is this clarity of vision that bodes well for the Ummah, whatever the problems we now face. When Muslims are attacked, and put under whatever pressure their enemies can bring against them, they do not forget Allah; they remember him. This is the simple fact that will ultimately thwart all the plans that our enemies make to defeat us.