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Saturday, August 12, 2006

Peaceful Explosion II

The second and third perspectives are really interesting. As they were mentioned in part I they go as follows:

  • The war is between Israel and Lebanon.
  • The war is between Israel and the Arab world.

The principle issue with both perspectives can be considered rather internally. It highlights a plethora of defects in the Arab body in a very compact way; people will in opposition to rulers’ will. Regardless of any different motivations, the Arab rulers reacted in a way that, in fact, gave Israel the required cover to continue its barbarian attack on the Lebanese nation. Breaking the scene into parcels, the Arab rulers’ position may be described sequentially:

  • For Hezbollah is the aching thorn in their backs – each with his own considerations – they point out Hezbollah as the trigger of this unbalanced and unplanned fight.
  • Therefore, Hezbollah is blamed for the war.
  • They try to convince the peoples of their account. Each using his methods. Thanks to the KSA for lending its hand to the USA by claiming that it’s sinful for the Sunni to help the Shiite. The Egyptian peace dreamer Mubarak claims that Hezbollah destabilises the heavenly peace in the Middle East, forgetting those who die daily in Gaza, but why not? He actually forgot those two Egyptian soldiers who died for nothing on the borders with Israel.
  • They play the lead clowns who cry for a flourishing human spirit, so they politely ‘request’ a cease-fire.
  • The play is not finished yet, they allow local newspapers to damn Israel on every single page so that they deceive the plunging Arab anger.
  • Finally, they are on the safe side; Israel wins, their account is practically proven. Hezbollah/Lebanon wins; they will find a way to get around as they did many times in the past.

On the contrary, the main public Arab account refuses this uncivilised attack. However, the play goes on with the same set of rules, which prevents the public voice to reach any power position. This extreme dualism, typically, defines the whole Arab world. At this point I am directing my attention to a more internal level.

There are only two ways for the Arab countries to help Lebanon: a) being powerful countries and b) being united. Actually, this argument is, somewhat, misleading. A clearer argument would be for the Arab countries to be powerful they must become united, but still they can unite without each country becomes powerful. However, the two arguments are valid and highly related. But can the Arab country really unite? Can they really become powerful? Devastatingly, with the current Arab condition they cannot achieve unity or power. This leads us to another level; the national level.

I will take Egypt as an example throughout my arguments. I am not going to discuss whether the Egyptian ruling regime is formed to be a dictatorship or not, you can take a look at the rest of posts. Also, I am not going to discuss the relatively fabric subject – at least it is so in Egypt – of the effect of dictatorship on a country power and position. Simply, our experience in Egypt shows that this dictatorship has been leading us to an ever increasing humiliating position both locally in our own country and internationally. Not only cannot Egypt unite with other Arab countries but also it cannot be any powerful. By unity I refer to common goals, set of methods and mentalities at the political, economical and social level which aim at a prospering Arab world. Nonetheless, there are other types of unity taking place in the Arab world, for example, the somewhat common view of KSA and Egypt. But this latter type, in fact, aims to get the Arab world into a worse position, as both the Saudi and Egyptian rulers manage to remain, legally, in power. For they stay in power some will say it is not going any worse, I consider this foolish. As time passes and the same symbols of submission still present in the Arab world any forming social volition will always be weakened to the degree it does not make any difference other than temporal disturbance. This unity aims to break any symbol of resistance. By resistance I am referring to a state of refusal and rejection which is able to ally the people in the face of their rulers. So is Hezbollah becoming the symbol of resistance?

This section is for those who are pleased by swings. The argument is, basically, twofold; religious fundamentalism and refusal of current state – not the State or government and such things. I am picking the second part first. Hezbollah refuses to compromise with the Israeli streams of actions or even its existence. Also, it refuses to accept the American views concerning the Middle East, which when seen as a part of a whole it means the American views on general. Contrariwise, the Arab ruling regimes accept and aid just the opposite. Internally, the majority of social scenes refuse what the ruling regimes do, which groups them with Hezbollah in a way or another. This may seem an oversimplification, but it is not. What makes Hezbollah different from the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is very simple; Hezbollah is located in Lebanon. This means that Hezbollah does not claim rearranging the social hierarchy in Egypt, which when claimed by the Muslim Brotherhood is opposed by many accounts. Hezbollah just, remotely, materialises many Egyptians’ wishes. How many Egyptians feel happy and, oddly, victorious when Hezbollah damages an Israeli tank? They are so many. Also, many Egyptians believe that Hezbollah’s help to the Palestinians is honester and much more effective than that of the Egyptian ruling regime. Hezbollah challenges the current state, which is defended by the Arab ruling regimes. Thus, it challenges the Arab ruling regimes. Many people wish they could have been able to challenge the current Arab conditions or at least the Arab ruling regimes. So, Hezbollah, naively, symbolises resistance if it remains in focus. This is supported by the lack of any effective account which is able to challenge the current ruling regimes.

The second part is religious fundamentalism. Actually, this fundamentalism is a powerful drive for idealising Hezbollah position in the Arab world. In part because it unites the Arab world with other ‘Islamic’ countries – a term I wish I could find a replacement for, but this is how a world came apart due to religions may be described. One of these Islamic countries is Iran, which is seen a hero by the Arabian eye for its refusal to the American and Israeli plans in the Middle East. The more important reason is again the lack of any similar account which refuses the current state and realises its views. The most important reason is yet to come; when people suffer poverty, lack of cultural understandings or distorted ones, insufficient education process, inability to follow any political directions – mostly due to the previous sufferings – and, in turn, suppression of dictatorships, they are directed by virtue to their elementary intuitive backgrounds to judge different things. After all is gone the intuitive background is their religion. The evidence for this argument is really an apparent one; the Arab rulers know this condition well. So, they employ religion to direct the peoples whenever they are out of other tricks. They put on faith and go haunting for fearful souls of sin. Poverty is not a must suffering for this condition, but it is an extra and fertile reason to support the condition to hold. In Saudi Arabia poverty, as a suffering, may not be of significant importance, but the other factors drive the condition very well to fit into position. However, the condition is double sided as it became so apparent in the current situation of war. The forming condition of the Arabian mentality could not be used by the Arab rulers, so the tables are now turned. First, what happens in Iraq teaches the Arab peoples a very hard lesson about how wars and conflicts between the Sunni and Shiite may be. Ironically, the Arab rulers exploited the lesson to prove some of their account earlier, so it was hard for them to conflict themselves. Second, in a world where Muslims are treated and conceived differently and badly, then, there forms an intuitive unity between the Sunni and Shiite in face of others. However, KSA tried playing the trick again, so it received a very hard slap on the face. Nonetheless, there are people who are convinced with what the heavenly blessed Saudi Arabia has announced. The Egyptian peace dreamer figured out that he can’t play the trick form the beginning. Partially, because the Egyptian regime would be easily defeated in such a battle of religious advices as the Muslim Brotherhood would strike and gain more popularity – they did just the same with the Saudi position. In addition, the ‘official’ Islamic opinion of al-Azhar would not be so clear because of all the contrasts between the regime’s interest and the religious advice, especially with the Muslim Brotherhood stalking. The Egyptian church account was so expected; it just had the peace dreamer’s back covered. However, the church position is, actually, challenged by many Christian Egyptian figures. So, the final outcome is that Hezbollah is supported by the majority of the Arab people for its account and for many for its religious model as well.

The key to fundamentalism is distorted cultural understandings. These cultural understandings are yet outcomes of other factors; social, economical, familial and other cultural heritages. The interesting point here is that these factors are also the factors which remarkably form identity. However, this is not my concern.

My actual concern may be addressed in one question: can the Arab and Israeli live together in peace? There are situation when they both communicate in normal environments, such as, international youth camps. There, after some barriers resolve, both can communicate normally like any other people. They may have friendships for a while. Also, there are peace campaigns and organisations founded and run by both Arabs and Israelis to work together to find the missing peace in the Middle East. But the question which remains unanswered is whether this kind of human relationships is going to be lasting and fruitful. The answer can be found in everyday life; when two friends each goes through different life experiences so that their lives change, they, most probably, lose their friendship for their different livings, although they may still love each other. This is a very simple example which most of us experienced some day, but it also fits our issue very well. In Israel and the Arab world there are people who are willing to live in peace – regardless of morality of peace in this context. However, they are not the majority, but they form a potential reason for peace in the future. The other part is that of ruling regimes. In Israel the ruling regime is hunger for realising its ideological and religious views using the safety threshold to convince Israeli people of whatever it wants and aided with potential identity-related factors. In the Arab world the ruling regimes work solely to remain in power exercising every means of suppression on their people. The interest for both the Israeli and Arab regimes is to work together. For the Israeli regime this aids realising its views in an easier way and for the Arab regimes it helps them to stay as it brings the American aid. Interests in our world always defeat human values and goals; democracy became the cover for the kill and social orders turned out to be a tool to bring freedom and equality in line. From the accounts of ruling regimes in both Israel and the Arab world one may conclude that the motives and potentials for peace already exist. However, one would be wrongfully thinking. The account of the Israeli ruling regime shapes the feelings and thoughts of the Israeli people towards the Arab; it encourages them to discriminate and hate the Arab as they are of a lower rank. Nothing could be telling more than the photos of young Israeli kids writing on missiles, which will be finally launched to kill Arab people. The Arab regimes account is not so much different, although it employs different drive; Israel kill Arab people nearly on daily basis in Palestine, yet the Arab regimes co-operate with Israel. The resultant feeling is of humiliation and, in turn, more hate for the Israeli. When this feeling is coupled with the Israeli occupation of the holy land and barbarian actions the outcome becomes nothing expect anger which can only be directed to violence. It is no tragedy, but it is just a daily scenario of how our modern civilised life crushes humanities.

Israel is a fundamentalist country which is built around religion. Also, it is being threatened by religious fundamentalist. The Israeli people found their saviour in fundamentalism and so did the Arab. Each claiming rights it becomes a never ending maze. Although there are many historical pieces of evidence shows that the land which Israel claims is Arab’s, they have no reach to power. Finally, force becomes the resort. So, there will no peace in the Middle East as long as these conditions continue to exist. And as longs as religions find their way to make the world comes apart Israel will exist resulting in nothing but thriving violence.

The thing that we have to do in Egypt – and in most if not all other Arab countries – is changing the ruling regime so that a new Egypt may be able to help another Arab country. The mysterious part is that the method by which this regime may be changed, the model to which a change should lead and by whom a change may be brought. There will be more posts about this issue in the future.

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