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Arab Spring with Different Opinions

Introduction

In this period of time from 2010 up to now in form of protests, great change that is happening in some of Arab countries which created a new era for Arab people which called the Arab spring. This new era shows that the struggling of Arab people to end the dictatorial systems and to have and implement democratic systems which will bring for every single civilian his or her rights completely. The countries that involved in this what so called Arab spring so far were Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Yemen and Syria. The results of this change are different from country to another, and I can divide them to three categories, first, a country successfully could start implementing their democratic system like Tunisia, second, some still facing a lot of challenges such Libya, Syria and Yemen, and the third one, successfully could have the democratic system but due to some external and internal factors, this system has been removed in undemocratic way like Egypt. Arab spring strongly takes a place in current issues and it is one of the most important and sensitive current issue in the world due to the great changes that could be shown in Arab countries in different parts. Generally, people have different opinions regarding any issue, and the Arab spring faces the same thing, there are people who support and others who stand against this sudden change. Therefore, to have clear view of people opinions, I would like to write about three different sides regarding the Arab spring issue which are; religious, political and economic sides.

Body

Always religion plays great role and impact regarding any issue that occurs to the adherents of that religion in anywhere. As the issue of Arab spring is one of the most important current issues in the world, it was affected by the religious views positively and negatively. Therefore, the religion was one of the main factors that really effects the flow of the revolutions in Arab Muslim countries. Due to the different understanding of Islamic instructions, there were two different opinions about the issue of uprising against rulers of the countries. The first opinion or belief was that Muslim scholars believe that going beyond the instructions of the Muslim ruler, is not allowed, fearing any kind of consequences. This comes clearly in the Quran which is “O ye who believe! Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger, and those charged with authority among you. If ye differ in anything among yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe in Allah and the Last Day: That is best, and most suitable for final determination” (An-nisaa, Ayat: 59) (Quran). Quran is the words of Allah and it needs more explanations by using another book which called Tafsser, which gives the meaning of the verses in the Quran. All Muslims believe and submit to whatever Allah orders and says. However, due to little different understanding of the explanation of Quran’s verses, some scholars and people believe that people should not stand against rulers according to their understanding. Therefore, they were against the Arab spring and the revolutions in the Arab countries which effects the flow of the Arab spring negatively. Also they effect other people’s opinion who do not have enough knowledge to express their needs of the freedom.

The second opinion was supporting the idea of standing against the dictatorial rulers who are oppressing civilians and stealing their rights to end their dictatorial system by using peaceful way. There are a lot of Muslim scholars and people who supports the Arab spring and they have their own justifications and reasons for doing so. Firstly, the argument that this people have is that, these dictatorial rulers are not democratically chosen by people and they just used their power to rule the countries for long time and pass the power to their family, which means they are not officially presidents in eyes of these people and they can go and ask for their purpose which removing these unofficial rulers. The another argument which they claim is that the way of asking their rights is peaceful and they do not use any kind of guns, they just protest which is a kind of showing their dissatisfaction of the rulers’ system. The third argument is that, the messenger of Allah, Mohammed peace be upon him said “My Ummah Will Never Agree on Error” (Muslim Village , 2011), Ummah means nation. And if we saw the number of people scholars, men, women and children who went out to streets asking for their rights we would see millions of people and they were the majority of the population in each country. The street protests going on in Egypt this month have been claimed as the biggest ever – even ‘the biggest uprising in history’ according to the BBC (News, 2013). which means that this people can never be wrong regarding the prophet’s saying.

The second perspective is the political; people in these Arab countries had two different views in term of politics regarding the issue of Arab spring. The first opinion was supporting the dictatorial systems due to some reasons. The first reason was that some people were satisfied with the dictatorial systems that were ruling the countries before the revolutions due to some benefits that they got from the previous dictatorial systems. Another group following the same opinion yet different reason which was fearing to happen any kind of violent conflict or other conflicts which let them support the previous regimes. On other hand, there were people who fear if the coming new system would be handled by Muslim brotherhood, which they have wrong reputation on this peaceful group that aimed to implement democratic system. These were the main reasons of the opinion of not supporting the revolutions and standing with the same system. The opposing view was supporting the revolutions, hoping to change the dictatorial systems and implementing the democratic systems. People who have this opinion were the majority in each country that involved in Arab spring. These people stood against the dictatorial rulers and asking for their rights that were taken from them and trying to have justice and get freedom. For example in Egypt, the country has been ruled by its military leaders for more than 60 years until the day of the first revolution came on the 25th /Jan/2011. Another reason that caused people protesting was lack of democracy, as we could have a look to the history of Egypt, we would know that president Hosni Mubarak took the power more than three decades that was brutal and unfair power. Moreover, the Egyptians President Muhammad Naguib, Gamal Abdel Nasser, Anwar Sadat and Hosni Mubarak, all of them were Military presidents and came to the presidency without any election. In addition, many political analysts said that Mubarak has a serious plan to inherit the presidency to his son Gamal. According to Alaa Al-Din Arafat said that “The Mubarak regime has systematically groomed Gamal for the presidency by marketing him internationally as a really liberal and reformer. … Succession is a part of the regime’s survival strategy. The Mubarak regime has a plan but it must be executed very carefully to ensure international and domestic acceptance.”(Alaa Al-Din Arafat,2011). These are the most political reasons that created Arab uprising and I took Egypt as an Example to show the real dictatorship in Arab countries.

To move to the third perspective which is the economic, there were two different views of people which showed the supporting of Arab spring and revolutions or standing with the dictatorial rulers. The first opinion was clearly standing against the uprising and revolution due to some different concerns. These people who were following the party of the president himself and also people who work in the government, they have benefits more than any other parties in any of those countries. Therefore, they were supporting the dictatorial systems in order to protect their positions and benefits that they got from the government. Another group of people believed that, the revolutions would cause a lot of harms in term of economic as well as they would immobilize the movement of economics. Moreover, they believed that the revolution would not be successfully achieved and it was just crisis. one the other hand, the role of different parties plays a major role to determine the fate of revolutions, and people who are with the government party divided to different groups, some who support the revolution due to the corruption, and some who stayed supporting the ruling system.

The opposing view was strongly supporting the uprising to remove the dictatorial systems. These people did not accept the corruption and the dictatorship of ruling these countries. As we know all the main reasons of Arab spring were the poverty, corruption, dictatorship, unemployment and etc. And if we have look on the economic of Egypt, during the President Hosni Mubarak era the corruption has reached the highest level. It is found everywhere in governmental sectors as well as privet sectors. According to the Transparency International (TI) Egypt ranked appeared at the end of the list of the most corruptions countries, in 26th of September 2009, Egypt gave the ranked 111 of the corrupt countries over 180 countries over the world. For example, bribe was everywhere in the country, so people had to pay extra money to obtain a driving license, to avoid paying a fine by the traffic police, to reduce the amount of taxes they should pay, to singe any document, to pay a simple monthly bill and also even to enrol their children in a certain university or school. Especially the Military College, people are not allowed to enrol in that college only if they have a relation with someone in the government otherwise they will not be able to do so. Last but not least, economic problem was reached to a point that cannot be solving any more. As it known, the price of basic needs are increasing daily and People are not able to buy a simple basic needs. According to Egypt ministry of agriculture more than 45% of the Egyptians under the line of poverty, whereas the estimate wealth of Hosni Mubarak Wealth and his family around 70$ billion dollar according to Susanna Kim, 2011 (Kim, 2011). These economic problems were the main reasons of Arab spring, which led to end the dictatorial systems in these countries.

Conclusion

It is obvious that in any issue people would have different opinions and beliefs according to their understanding and concerns. The Arab spring is great change and new era in the eyes of Arabs, which ends the dictatorial systems and trying to implement democratic systems which will bring for every single civilian his or her rights completely. The majority of population of these Arab countries stool up and raised their voices asking for their rights such freedom and justice. Despite the different opinions, Arabs could achieve the first part of their aim which is ending the dictatorial systems that have been long time governing the countries, and they still in process to achieve the second part of their aim which is implementing democratic systems. As I am one of the Arabs people, participated in this revolutions in my country “Yemen”, I strongly support the revolutions against the oppressing rulers who let us suffer a lot from different fields. I went out to street with most of people in my city demonstrating and asking by a peaceful way our fundamental rights.

References Transparency International . (2009). Retrieved December 22, 2013, from CORRUPTION PERCEPTIONS INDEX: http://www.transparency.org/research/cpi/cpi_2009 Muslim Village . (2011, April 18). Retrieved December 25, 2013, from “my Ummah Will Never Agree On Error”: http://muslimvillage.com/forums/topic/63757-my-ummah-will-never-agree-on-error/ Kim, S. (2011, Feburary 2). abc News. Retrieved December 25, 2013, from Egypt’s Mubarak Likely to Retain Vast Wealth: http://abcnews.go.com/Business/egypt-mubarak-family-accumulated-wealth-days-military/story?id=12821073 News, B. (2013, Julay 16). BBC News Magazine . Retrieved December 25, 2013, from Counting crowds: Was Egypt’s uprising the biggest ever?: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-23312656 Quran. (n.d.). Retrieved December 25, 2013, from Surat An-Nisā’ (The Women) – سورة النساء: http://quran.com/4/59

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