The Yemeni Observer reports that “last Tuesday, a new political party calling itself “Hizbu Tahrir” (Liberation Party) was declared in Sana”a when it held its first conference in Sana”a. The party is focusing on the creation of an Islamic orthodox caliphate-style state.”
The Caliph was the successor of Muhammad as the military, political, and religious leader of the Muslim community. Caliphs headed the great Islamic empires. After a long period of decline, the caliphate was abolished by the secular Turkish government in 1924. Muslim radicals worldwide have declared their intention to revive it and to wage offensive jihad against the non-Muslim world under its banner.
Hizb-ut-Tahrir is the international movement which, while ostensibly renouncing terror, openly declares its intention to:
1. Restore a worldwide Caliphate, uniting the world under Islamic rule;
2. Ban all faiths apart from Islam, Judaism and Christianity (the Qur’an’s “People of the Book”; members of other religions are not listed as “People of the Book” in the Qur’an, and thus are not allowed to practice their faiths even with the restricted freedom accorded to Jews and Christians);
3. Regulate all religious practice according to Sharia law;
4. “Give all non-Muslim states a choice between either joining the Caliphate under Sharia law, or paying a tax to the Caliphate. Failure to pay the tax would be punished by military attacks.”
In Yemen, “at the beginning of the meeting, a recorded speech, three minutes in length was read by the Emir of the party in Palestine, Ata Abu Arashta, he said that ‘a Caliph of the Muslims, a real Emir of Jihad is opening this conference.’ He went on ‘we are near the establishment of a Caliphate’ insisting that all indications especially ‘massacres against Muslims in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir, Sudan and other countries’ are a harbinger of the Islamic Caliphate.
“A member of the leadership of the Yemen branch, Nasir Abdu Allahbi told Yemen Observer ‘the party is seeking the creation of a Caliphate and the enforcement of Allah’s legislature ‘Sharia”a’.”
How could a party that is thus demonstrably anti-democratic participate in the electoral process? “The party, he said, took advantage of the participatory politics system to declare its existence spurred on by the fact that the party ‘has become international’ holding general conferences in the U.K, Sudan and Uzbekistan and gaining ground in Europe.”
What about terror? “The party doesn’t preach terror, noted Allahbi. A party insider made it clear ‘Erhab (literally terror) as viewed by the party has two forms; cowing of infidels, a commendable form of Erhab, and terror against Muslims by high-way robbery for example, a heinous crime as the name “terror” suggests.'”
Oh. So the “cowing of infidels” is ok “” just not the targeting of Muslims.
Meanwhile, the new party’s intentions to oppose any republican government are clear. “‘For the party, both the republican and democratic systems of ruling are ungodly’, according to Allahbi. ‘They are never linked with Islam.’ The party doesn’t seek to participate in ruling since ‘sharing power with the unjust regimes means sharing injustice with them.’ ‘The Arab and Muslim rulers are not applying Allah’s legislature “Sharia”a”.’
“As for the participation of the party in the Yemeni political landscape and the contrast between the beliefs of the party and the Yemeni constitution, Allahbi says ‘our ideas differ from the texts of the constitution. Nonetheless, we will try to avoid the hurdles and get licenses from the Parties Affairs Committee in order to carry out our politics and free campaigning to the general public.
“‘The party will take part in the next elections provided that a set of conditions, which we will specify in time, are met.’ The leaders of Hizbu Tahrir are anonymous until ‘we squeak through’ ‘for the time being,’ said the conference spokesman of the party. He acknowledged that there is ‘a media blackout about the worldwide activities of the party’ which is seeking to create an Islamic state by total [non-violent] change of Muslim and Arab regimes.”
I’m unclear as to why the Yemeni Observer thought it necessary or accurate to insert the words “non-violent” into that quote.