Sa’dullah Zara’i takes the reader through a brief history of the Islamic world ending with the victories of Islamic resistance. He answers the all so important question of who will replace the fallen regimes in the region.
Islam is the most important commonality between the countries of northern Africa and southwestern Asia. It is also the most attractive factor for defining these two region’s culture and civilization.
Islam was born in these regions and remained there throughout the centuries. This region has been recognized by Islamic identity for centuries. It has been able to face the physical, political, and cultural attacks of its enemies by using this identity as well.
Throughout the past 14 centuries, the Islamic world has been severely attacked twice. One of these attacks was carried out by the Mongols in 618.
The Mongols attacked the Middle East, especially Iran, while the crusades were just starting. These attacks lasted for 180 years; almost two centuries and resulted in important parts of the Islamic world falling into their control. They took over countries such as Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan.
After the Mongols, the Islamic world was attacked by the Tatar army and it was feared that the Islamic world would be completely destroyed. But, during these 500 years of extremely difficult times the Islamic world did not fall.
Of course, the countries therein were devastated and lost many of the opportunities that they would have had without these attacks. The Islamic world has also been severely attacked by the west in the last two centuries.
The Ottoman Empire, which controlled a large portion of the Islamic world, fell. The west took control of many of the countries in northern Africa and southwestern Asia during the two world wars. Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Iraq were taken over by the British, French, and Italian armies.
The International Society, which was later transformed into the United Nations changed the form of occupation to into nationalistic occupation which allowed England to hand over Palestine to the Zionists.
The Second World War hit England, France, Italy, and Germany hard. Due to these difficulties they were unable to continue their expensive occupation of the Islamic world.
Therefore, between the years 1950 and 1970 Islamic countries gained their independence one after the other. But, this was only a deception because America stepped foot into the Middle East and northern Africa after the Second World War.
Directly occupying countries was expensive and difficult; but indirectly governing them by governments which are made dependent is easier.
This is what America did. They created governments such as the Pahlavi dynasty in Iran, the Namiri dynasty in Sudan, the Al Sibbah dynasty in Kuwait, the Al Khalifah dynasty in Bahrain, the Sadat and Mubarak dynasties in Egypt, and the Burqibah and Ben Ali dynasties in Tunisia. These countries became subservient to America without American having to use its military.
The west had complete control over the countries of northern Africa and the southeastern Asia between the years 1945-1979. This control lasted for 35 years. Then, the 1970s ended with the victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran which catapulted change in the region.
The western regimes which controlled the Islamic world were put in danger. The military which was dependent upon America in Turkey changed. Jafar Namiri in Sudan fell.
Anwar Sadat was assassinated. Israeli expansion was stopped and they were forced to retreat. Other important events occurred in Islamic countries as well, such as Islamists won parliamentary seats in democratic elections.
After the victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, Islam was once again seen in the thought process, civilization, and government of the Islamic world. The general public of the Middle East desired an Islamic government. The west felt that it was in a sensitive situation while the level that normal citizens of the Middle East hated the west increased.
The methods that the west used to influence the Middle East were losing their effects. The only solution that the west saw was to destroy the face of Islamic government and turn it into something barbaric. They started a wave of negative media against the Islamic Republic of Iran.
They also showed groups such as Al-Qaeda in the media in order to equate Islam with these groups in the minds of the world. Then, the west further showed their faces when they occupied Afghanistan and Iraq; when they threatened other Islamic countries, and when they presented plans for a New Middle East which would break up many of the larger Islamic countries into smaller, weaker entities.
The 33 Day War against Hizbollah and the 22 Day War against the Palestinian Resistance in Gaza showed the west’s anti-Islamic and anti-Arab disposition. Many leaders of Arab countries in northern Africa and the Middle East cooperated with Israel or remained silent during these wards. This seriously affected the citizens of their countries.
But the west was not able to destroy Iran; it has remained despite all of the political, military, economic, diplomatic, and media pressure that has been levied against it. Iran has also been able to advance academically and economically during these years of pressure.
Despite the efforts of the west to destroy the face of the Islamic Republic, the political participation in this country is something that the west desires for itself. Over 85 percent of the population took part in the previous presidential elections.
There have been other victories for Islamic resistance in the region as well. In Afghanistan, the Afghan soldiers were able to resist the onslaught of Russian forces two decades ago. Hizbollah was also able to defeat the mythological Israeli army in the 33 Day War in 2006. Other examples can be found in Yemen, Palestine, and Iraq.
These victories in the Islamic world; victories which are all lumped under the phrase Islamic Resistance answers the question about who will replace the regimes that were subservient to the west. Northern Africa and the Middle East are facing a special time right now.
They have finally broken free from the chains of 200 years of western slavery and have brought Islamic identity back into the mix. This identity will gradually form their new cultures and civilizations.
Chinese Muslims pray during a ceremony for breaking fast on the first day of Ramadan at Niujie Mosque in Beijing, China EPA