A Jihad Watch reader went undercover to the Hizb ut Tahrir conference in London on the caliphate last Saturday, and kindly sends us this exclusive report about what was said there:
The Need for Political Unity
Saturday 16th August 2008
Hizb Ut Tahrir — Britain
“The destruction of the Islamic Khilafah State over 80 years ago marked the beginning of dividing the Muslim World into countless nation states governed by a plethora of kings, dictators and western backed “˜democrats”. Today three major regions of the Muslim World are under occupation, Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan. Oil and food crisis has pushed millions of people into starvation. Sectarian divisions are fuelled by occupying powers to further divide and weaken us.
The Muslim Ummah now needs a new political thinking and direction. It requires a new leadership that will unify the Umma and utilize her resources to address these countless problems. This one day conference will address the obligation of unifying our Umma under one leadership and discuss how political unity is the only practical way forward for the Muslim Ummah.” — Hizb Ut Tahrir, Britain
Sajjad Khan: Realising Political Unity
Dr. Mahmad Salim: The Shariah and Unity
Sister Sultana Parvin: Scientific and Educational Potential under the Khilafah State
Jamal Harwood: Economic Development through Unity and Khilafah policy
Dr. Imran Waheed: Pakistan Case Study — an application of Unity and Khilafah policy
The Troxy is located in the heart of East London, Commercial Road, E1. The overwhelming majority were from the Bangladeshi community. A high number of women attended, with the majority in attendance being male.
Islam Channel, the satellite media broadcasters, were present as well, for media coverage.
Since 1924, the Muslim World saw the collapse of the Golden Age of Islam and the destruction of the Islamic State: the Uthman Khilafah I.E. the Ottoman Empire. Today, due to Islamic political parties such as Hizb Ut Tahrir, Muslims worldwide are supporting and working towards the re-establishment of this Islamic State.
Rallies, demonstrations, protests, and conferences take place in Turkey, Indonesia, Hebron, Kyrgyzstan, Al Quds (Jerusalem), Lebanon, Pakistan, Kenya, Bangladesh, Yemen, Ukraine, Australia and the United Kingdom. As part of a global campaign, Hizb Ut Tahrir are going from country to country announcing the need for political unity and establishing an Islamic State. Muslims in their thousands are responding to the call.
May this point be emphasized: Islam demands the political unity of the Ummah. The Muslim World united under one Islamic leadership and ruler.
This much-desired Islamic State is not some dream or vague imagination proclaimed just by Islamists, jihadists or extremists. No, this so-called Caliphate is a very real political and religious ideology long held in the hearts and minds of Muslims the world over. Indeed, since the days of the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, the yearning to return to the glory days of Islam never diminished.
British Muslims (despite their inconsistent condemnation and lack of public protests against acts of Islamic terrorism) state that Islam is a peaceful religion that seeks to live in harmony, not superiority with others. And so, as hard-working, law-abiding citizens of the respective countries in which they reside, they seek to be treated as such. They demand that they be recognized for their peaceful endeavors to encourage moderate Muslims to strengthen community cohesion. They want recognition for their achievements and contribution to society and should be supported. Instead, they feel victimised because of the global terrorism which has been carried out in the name of Islam. Thus we often hear complaints of “˜Islamophobic” attitudes within the community, government and media, which British Muslims say they are continually confronting post 7/7. Yet is this a backlash or rightly placed frustration with the British Muslim community for their lack of conviction in condemning acts of terrorism in the name of Islam?
I”m sure that some truly condemn terrorism. However, there is a problem. If this is the view of the majority of peaceful Muslims in the UK and the West; then how on earth did we all end up in this so-called clash of civilizations? Why are there ongoing debates about whether or not Islam is a religion of peace, how to differentiate between the moderates and extremists, and how to fight this perpetual “˜War on Terror”? Who are we actually at war with? Who can we trust to help us in this war? What values are we defending and from whom, exactly? Could the likes of Osama Bin Laden indeed be correct when they state that the West has launched Crusades against Islam (i.e., Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine and now perhaps Pakistan is next?). This is not a War on Terror, but a War on Islam — they say.
Well, the Islamic Liberation party “˜Hizb Ut Tahrir” certainly seems to think that the War on Terror is a War on Islam. And not only that, they are putting forth their case for the return of the Islamic State remarkably well, and ever so defiantly against the U.S. and U.K.
Their objective is to politically unify the Muslim World and its resources, to become the world’s one and only authentic Islamic State. A genuine and Sharia-governed Islamic State without Western designated “˜artificial” borders, without corrupt dictators and non-Islamic leaderships and without the influence of Western imposed democracy, Imperialistic and Colonialist agendas. An Islamic Superpower ruled under one leader — Islamically elected, of course.
One reason why the political case to unite the Muslim World and its resources is so appealing to Muslims is because this will also cause an affront to Western powers. And the following will prove it to be immediately obvious as to why.
Consider these facts:
“¢ Around 70% World’s Oil Reserves — Owned by the Muslim World
“¢ 55% World’s Gas Reserves — Owned by the Muslim World
“¢ 2 Trillion Dollars in Assets alone — Owned by the Muslim Gulf States, (6 Gulf nations alone). This is more than enough to wipe out the outstanding combined debt in the Muslim world.
“¢ 4.7 Million in Military Reserves — Muslim World
“¢ Massive Land Mass — 57 or so nations of the entire world are Muslim and/or Islamic
“¢ Major Sea ports for trade etc are conveniently surrounded by the Muslim world (Mediterranean, Black Sea, Caspian, Red Sea, Persian Gulf, Arabian Sea)
Also worth noting:
“¢ Islam is reported to be the world’s fastest growing religion. Conversion rates are claimed to have increased significantly post 9/11. At present the number of Muslims around the globe is reportedly around 1.3 Billion. 1 out of 4 people in the world’s population is Muslim.
“¢ The Financial World is looking to the Middle East for investments and developments as the new economic and financial headquarters, i.e., Dubai. While in the meantime the doom and gloom of the West’s dwindling economy and the dreaded credit crunch is grabbing headlines daily. I am beginning to be persuaded that the vision set out for the unity of the Muslim world is very real, and it needs to be addressed seriously by us in the West.
At the conference I repeatedly heard speakers say something on the lines of “How can it be that we have allowed our lands Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine, Kashmir, Chechnya, our people, our resources, our wealth and our very dignity to be eaten up and destroyed by the enemies of Islam, when we have such great potential among us? If only we unite as one Umma …”
How eager they are for the defeat and collapse of the West. In anticipation they gather to discuss, plan and put forth their proposals to revive the Golden Age of Islam: The return of the Khilafah.
What a paradox. At one stage we have the Shia Muslim leader of the Iranian regime, Mr. Ahmadinejad, anticipating the return of the Imam Mahdi, Shia Islam’s long awaited Messiah figure. And then we have this call from primarily Sunni Muslims for the re-establishment of the Khilafah that is governed by an Islamic Leader; the Imam Caliph. Perhaps they are in cahoots. Nevertheless, a resentment and humiliation remains deep within the minds of Muslims at the “˜Allies offensive” that brought down the collapse of the last Khalifah. In bitter memory of this crucial event in world history, Hizb Ut Tahrir vow to take back all that was stolen from them. And they will do so, by any means, despite the tailored peaceful political rhetoric that is used to back up the vision.
Trying to remain within the boundary of various incitement to religious hatred laws perhaps, Hizb Ut Tahrir have once again carefully scripted their words to get their point across and almost so eloquently manage to display authority and political clout to gain British supporters in favour of their arrogant, totalitarian and supremacist ideology.
It is a question of how long it will take to make this vision a reality. So far, this movement seems to have rallied enough support to start something serious. Hizb Ut Tahrir proclaim that they have members in their millions worldwide, yet will not disclose their exact numbers. Surely a political party would know the number of members it has? Despite the large crowds that entered the Troxy in London, I estimated that at least 2000-2500 turned up. The choice of this venue surprised me, as it didn’t have the capacity to hold any more than 3000. Perhaps this was due to the party aiming at gathering the local Bangladeshi community, who heavily populate the East London’s Aldgate East and Whitechapel. From what I saw at the conference of the kind of fervour and enthusiasm amongst the crowds, it doesn’t take much persuading for young impressionable Muslims to become passionate about the cause for Political Islam. They are easily swayed to think that the British government is their enemy, not just for supporting the Iraq war but for imposing democracy there. Democracy is non-Islamic. I know that many people may disagree with me saying this. But any good Muslim who is living according to Islam’s goals will never choose loyalty to their citizenship over loyalty to Islam.
That should end the “˜are you British or Muslim first?” debate there.
Session 1: Unity the only path to progress
Sajjad Khan — Chief Political Advisor HT Britain: Realising political unity
There is a lack of global unity in the Muslim World. 80 years on, after the end of the Uthman Khilafah, then began political divisions. A reflection on the past, and reminiscing the days of the Islamic Empire. The Muslim World is in a mess due to corrupt leadership, dictatorships and Western interference.
Quoting David Milliband and John McCain in their condemnation of the recent Russian military offensive in Georgia — ‘this is no longer the 19th Century, when States invade other States” — Implying how preposterous a statement to make after the U.S led invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan.
After discussing the impressive capacity of wealth, oil, and resources available in the Muslim World, Sajjad goes on to say how the West is an aging population, whereas in the Muslim World is a young and fast growing population. A young and vibrant military capability is attainable. The Muslim World has the money and the manpower to develop and build our own military; we need not buy from the West. We must establish our own Islamic Military, for the benefit and protection of the Umma. Some skeptics talk of the dated and medieval system of the Khilafah. What they don’t realize that it is separate individual states that are dated and medieval in the 21st Century. Because all the worlds problems are transnational, not individual. Therefore, the need for a Transnational state is the solution to the world’s problems. The Khilafah will be a Transnational Islamic State, without the discriminatory artificial borders that separate the Muslim World rather than unite it.
The Khilafah will not differentiate between Shia and Sunni, because the Islam that prophet Mohammed and the Sunna followed will unite us. No persecution, no force shall be imposed upon anyone within the Islamic State. When the Jews were being persecuted during the Spanish Inquisitions, they fled to the Ottoman Empire and found a safe haven. This is what the Islamic State was like.
So do not allow yourselves to be intimidated, afraid or deterred from supporting the re-establishment of the Khilafah. The West will use these scare tactics to put the Umma off and preventing this vision to be accomplished, in the name of fighting this so called War on Terror.
Dr. Mahmad Salim: The Shariah and Unity
Quoting extensively from the Quran and Hadith, Dr. Mahmad puts forth the Islamic obligation for Muslims around the globe to support this vision for the re-establishment of the Islamic State.
No longer must Muslims unite on the basis of or identify themselves as belonging to any nationality, but should unite only as Muslims, as part of the Ummah. National or patriotic feelings are unIslamic. In this manner, you will be stronger together as one Umma. Do not be divided over nationality. The enemies of Islam are quick to supply weapons to corrupt leaders in the Muslim World, which causes divisions between nations against nations. Our resources should be plundered by our enemies.
Recall the Shahada (Muslim confession of faith), and stand by it in your actions. Why should we fight amongst ourselves, when we should be united to fight together against our enemies?
When the Khilafah comes, the Imam will be responsible for the protection of the people of the Umma, and including the non-Muslims who are also under the State. The prophet Mohammed demanded political unity for the Umma; we cannot go against this command.
Sister Sultana Parvin: Scientific and Educational potential under the Khilafah State
Does the Organization of the Islamic Conference represent the Umma? No. They have their own agendas. We have nothing to help ourselves. We are dependent on others, mostly. How then are we going to get the courage and enthusiasm to unite? Our own Muslim governments don’t educate us. They can’t even feed us, and the protection of their own people is disgraceful.
There was once a place of excellence in the past, in our Islamic history. A time where women were treated equally, they were educated. There was a high level of science and education, and remarkable inventions and developments were achieved. Now our doctors, around 500,000 from around the Muslim World, are leaving their homelands to come here to the West to find better salaries, respect, and recognition of their hard work. Their own governments have failed them. There is no mark of achievement in the Muslim World now, so they come to the West. We have the resources, yet the wrong governments. We can regain what was lost, if only we unite together. Super status belongs to Islam, if we make it happen.
Session 2: Unity — The practical path
Jamaal Harwood: Economic Development through Unity and Khilafah policy
With the aid of many images, maps and diagrams, Jamaal Harwood opens his presentation. The Umayyad Khilafah was strong and powerful. Jamaal quotes Bernard Lewis, the famous historian regarding this empire, calling it “the greatest economic power the world has ever seen”.
The Muslim World controls some of the world’s most strategic water ways, Oil and Gas reserves, minerals etc”¦”¦..Yet with all this wealth, poverty remains high in the Muslim World. Our resources are being wasted and exploited by the greed of the nations especially the West. This is a case of chronic mis-management through corruption and bad leaders in the Muslim World.
Despite the Muslim World having more enough wealth to wipe out the debt owed by Muslim nations, it is not being done. The need for political unity is urgent and necessary. Our lands are fertile for agricultural produce, rich in oil wealth, abundant in minerals. The Khilafah will look to reform:
1. Food Security — Industrialisation
2. Land Reforms
3. Sharing Resources (land, manpower, wealth)
The Khilafah will have an independent policy, not 57 separate policies. To distribute the wealth of our lands fairly and justly. It is the opposite of Capitalism, which has failed and is on a downward spiral.
The Khilafah will not recognize the Confederation of Nations, be it the United Nations, The EU, the OIC etc. There is only one State, the Islamic State. One Khilafah.
Imran Waheed — Chief Media Advisor: Pakistan Case Study. An application of unity and Khilafah policy
Imran begins his talk using Pakistan as a prime example of a so-called Islamic nation that has suffered due to the lack of and the need for the Khilafah State.
The 3rd of March 1924 was the fall of the Ottoman Empire. It resulted in the sudden carving up of lands by the Imperialists and Colonialists, and thus began the era of division amongst Muslims. Separate, individual nations formed, causing sectarianism and disunity in the Muslim World. Pakistan was one such case. However, Hizb Ut Tahrir is working actively in Pakistan, and the people are demanding the return of the Khilafah.
There is a battle between Democracy and Dictatorship; both are opposed to the command of the prophet Mohammed. Each side of this battle in the Pakistani political scene is really fighting for their own political gains. We have heard of the corruption of Bhutto, Sharif and Musharraf. The popularity ratings for Musharraf are astonishing in the West. Shimon Peres has been quoted saying that he prays for Musharraf everyday (at which point the crowd begin to curse, bemoan and slander Israel).
The security service in Pakistan only works for America’s War on Terror. It has no care for its own people or for the implementation of Islam. Pakistan being a nuclear nation, it has become an occupying ground for the West, with the U.S setting up their bases all over the land. Pakistan allowed the U.S to attack Afghanistan because it gave them free passage. Now watch and see how Pakistan becomes the next U.S. target.
This is what happens due to the lack of the Islamic State. When the Khilafah returns, there will be a uniting of Muslim lands, without borders in Pakistan, Afghanistan and India. No more occupation of our lands. We will stand up against U.S. and Britain. (Takbir, Allah Hu Akbar)
An opinion poll recently carried out by the University of Maryland, 74% of Pakistanis support the establishment of a unified Khilafah in the Muslim World. The establishment of such an entity is therefore not a question of if, but when.