Seldom do we humans learn from others’ mistakes, but I sure hope people in the Arab spring countries will learn from ours in Sudan and Iran.
Woman holds sign in protest in Lahore Photo: Reuters
No, I’m not talking about Binyamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Liberman – though they
fit the title perfectly, I must say. I’m actually referring to the rather
strong, and very influential, union of Islamist leaders that has formed
Let’s also get one more thing out of the way beforehand
– I do not intend this to be a piece wherein you, the reader, nod away and
mumble “them Muslims,” or “them A-rabs,” or anything of the sort. This is my
critique, as a proud Muslim, of the dark forces endangering my future as such.
If you’re looking to fuel your latent (or not so latent) Islamophobia or racism
let this be water in your bigoted gas tank.
The rather distasteful public
expression of “friendship” between the old, experienced Islamist leaders and the
novices continues to repulse me daily, ever since parliamentary elections
started in the Arab Spring countries. And the utter nonsense about the unified
Islamic state they spout each time they meet is the reason why I have a
shoe-shaped smudge on the wall behind my TV set.
I can’t tell whether
they are completely disconnected from the scary reality of the extremely fragile
present of the Arab Spring counties, and the seemingly dark future, or are just
cruel enough to toil to speed up the process.
THE EGYPTIAN people, for
example, are under enormous, unbearable pressure at the moment due to high
unemployment, severe inflation and the mountain- high national debt. Meanwhile
in Wonderland, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi and his government are
head-over-heels trying to catch every single prayer at the local mosques, and
the members of the Islamist-infested parliament are too busy passing bills
censoring Internet pornography, legalizing pedophilia, necrophilia and adult
Of course, these reckless, meaningless actions are
applauded by the older Islamist dictators in the region, who have invested a lot
of money in the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, and apparently being a useless
waste of oxygen is the MB’s way of paying back.
What saddens me most is
that this scenario of a bearded bunch taking over a country right after a
revolution, only to then take it back to the stone age, is practically a cliché.
In contemporary history, this exact scenario happened twice in the MENA region –
in Iran and Sudan.
And look where these countries are today: secular
socialist countries turned into regimes where women are publicly whipped for
wearing jeans, couples are stoned for having sex and homosexuals executed for,
well, being born homosexual.
Seldom do we humans learn from others’
mistakes, but I sure hope people in the Arab spring countries will learn from
ours in Sudan and Iran. I don’t claim to know how the future of Arab Spring
countries will unfold, if only for a lack of psychic powers, but I know this
much: If people in these countries don’t do anything to change the dangerous
status quo ASAP, and put an end to their neighbors’ “helping hand,” it won’t be
long till they start referring to the pre-Arab Spring period as “the good old
The writer is a Sudanese human rights activist and a member of the
YaLa – Young Leaders movement.