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2010

Khawaja: The Arabs and the West: How Wrong Thinking and Wickedness have Misled the Humanity?
Sunday, 07 November 2010 08:43
by Mahboob A. Khawaja, Ph.D.

Leaders create leaders. There are no “people-oriented” proactive leaders at the global theatre of politics sensitive to humanitarian thinking and actions and striving to make rational policies and decisions to lead the besieged humanity out of the man-made catastrophic wars of deaths and destruction engulfed in the 21st century age of reason. The contemporary world is coerced to egoistic political governance by the wrong people, with wrong thinking, wrong agenda and doing the wrong things. The issue that whole of humanity faces is how to change the wrong thinking of the wrong people into positive thinking  and rational human discipline articulating basic human values of freedom, morality, compassion, equality, justice and service to all.

Irony of the Ironies: Failure of the 21st Century Global Institutions

All the global organizations- the presumptuous claimant of representatives of the human ideal principles and values, have failed miserably once again to bring the whole of humanity to tragic man-made conflicts and consequential horrible impacts of the sophisticated wars on human life and habitats. The same ideals embodied the making of the League of the Nations- a first global experience in peacemaking and collective security but its members led it to failure. The UN carried on another human attempt to recover from the past mistakes and to usher hope for the remaining humanity but the superpowers selfish aggrandizements made it impotent long before it was supposed to be working for the good of the humanity. Individual visions failed to materialize the collective goodness for all of the living humanity. The deliberate destruction of human civilizations is well in progress. The US led “War on Terrorism” devastated the impoverish humanity, killing millions and millions and destroying their lives, businesses and habitats just to satisfy the ferocious mindset of the few neo-conservatives governed by George W. Bush, now a candidate for war crimes. So is the former British PM Blair actively sought by the concerned global humanity for alleged war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan. The office bearers of the UN responsible to save the humanity form scourge of war and to foster global peace and security now turned out to be incompetent master of lies and deception. They were all knowledgeable people and chosen to govern the people-based liberal democracies but proved ignorant and arrogant to the human principles of freedom and justice.

The Western policy makers claim power (knowledge and material possessions) and have used it to pave the ways for influence and hegemonic control over the rest of the world. The Two World Wars and now the US-British led “war on terrorism” are the outcome of that absurd thinking. The others less fortunate in knowledge and material possessions (power) – the generally described Third World (not sure, who are the club members of the First World and where is the 2nd World), a connotation full of sarcastic formula and inhuman thought serves the interest of the policy planning agenda in the superpowers chess board game.

E.H. Carr had assigned the history as teaching-learning guide for the mankind - the very essence ignored and denied by the global power brokers- the so called Five Power gangsters pretending to be godfathers of the UN Security Council- a dormant and functional debating circle irrelevant to the global affairs. The facts of human life speak for themselves as the global institutions of collective security have flunked under pretensions and counter-claims of concerns to serve the interest of the humanity. The institutionalized one-track organizations do not represent the humanity but hypothetically carved-up nation states of the world-some legitimate some otherwise. The humanity does not sit at the UN. NATO, the EU, NORAD and so many other titles and names that are composed of the nation states, not of the living mankind. The paper-based names and legally incorporated titles could easily be rescinded, changed and transferred as was the case with the former USSR. They are hardly a point of reference for the beleaguered humanity oppressed by the powerful states. Animals do not commit massacre of their kind and specie nor set-up rape camps for the war victims, the Western led wars against the humanity have and continue to do so at a global scale without being challenged by any global establishments. Perhaps, they view humanity just in digits and numbers, not as the living entities with social, moral and human values and progressive agendas for change and development. Every beginning has its end. It is just that most advanced nations have failed to learn from the living history- a slap at the EH Carr precious thoughts of human history. When they see the end, it is irreversible. Had Pharaoh a choice, he could have come out alive from Red Sea. Modern Pharaohs have failed to grasp the reality of human history. George W. Bush, Cheney, Blair and so many others would never acknowledge that there was something basically WRONG with their THINKING until they see the tribunal for war crimes? You wonder, how almost 3 million human beings have been killed in Iraq and millions of them made homeless and forced to leave their habitats to seek shelters in foreign lands and the same is going-on in Afghanistan and Pakistan - the blessings of the wrong thinking of the few. The Christian led wars of Crusades have never ended against the Muslim living in one humanity-one world. It has assumed the name of American led Crusade of hi-tech weapons submerged in the waves of fear and ferocity – the minds of the US belligerents in which presently reason and mankind are entrapped.
 

In Search of Educated Leadership to Conduct Global Affairs

Peace is sought against war. Knowledge against ignorance, truth against falsehood, day against night, right from wrong and so on. After the end of the horrifying human sufferings during the two world wars, the humanity hoped for sustainable peace and human enrichment of co-existence and friendly relations across the globe. Not so, it was just a hollow dream, an illusion of the left-over humanity tarnished by the draconian warlords of the Western world with complacency of the authoritarian Muslim rulers- the bootlickers of the Western game of political power. There are too many pretensions for peace and services to the humanity. For more than sixty years, Arabs have done it, Israelis have longed it, West European and the US have professed it and the former Community bloc led by now the dead USSR tried to copycat the scenario of peace and friendship often marked with timetable - Twenty Year Friendship Treaty, as if the doomsday was suppose to follow after the time expiry of the treaty. Could anyone be held accountable for cruelty and deception to the well being goals for the humanity?  Not so, there was no accountability for those who forced the humanity to fight during the two world wars and now in the bogus war on terrorism conducted by the bankrupt US political leaders.  Form the human audacity to the US Presidency, Obama seems to have misread the US history of freedom and the Principles of human equality, dignity and justice. Otherwise, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan would have been stopped and daily bloodshed reversed. It is needed for face saving to the US policy makers- the ardent proponents of the New World Order lost in its home setting. Again, the world is in shackle and death and human destructions make the headlines of the news media presentations. Who is responsible for this miserable 21st century landscape? Nobody else except the Wrong Thinking, Wrong Agenda and Wrong Actions of the Few controlling the political nerve centers of the global political chess games. The Us-Britain and others are fighting for new territories with opportunities to exploit the natural resources and enlist human armies to fight for the capitalism. Few of the controlling elite make the majority to fight for their political goals - for profit, exploitation and political power. A century earlier C.E. M. Joad (Guide to Modern Wickedness, 1936), described it well:

“The necessity for fighting entails large armies of citizens willing able to fight. Foreseeing this necessity, capitalism provides for it in advance by establishing Fascist regimes, Fascism being the method by which in the last phase of Capitalism, the dominant capitalism class reduces its own working class to such a state of dupery and subjection that they are willing to fight without question for the interests of their masters.”

For sure, the human THINKING can be changed and reformed. The Divine words of God illustrate it clearly: “Allah does not change the conditions of the people unless first they change themselves (Al-Qura’an, Surah Al-Raad.). Are there any human being listening with a living conscience that humanity is engulfed with untold torture, killings and displacement that must be stopped and those responsible be held accountable?

Ideas and Ideals that have been wronged by the Leaders

Since the middle of the 20th century, Arab leaders achieved economic prosperity and unplanned rise in higher standards of living via the oil exports- a natural gift from God. It was something that they have not worked for it to have its true importance, understanding and value. John Perkins (Confessions of an Economic Hitman) explains “how the Western elite are milking the Arab cows until the sunset.” The oil export business is managed by the Western enterprise. Almost 75% of the Arab oil wealth is invested in mostly American banks and other West European economic sectors. The policy and decisions are made and approved by foreigners to fit the Arab authoritarian leadership taste and ideals. The Arab rulers have little to share in terms of contemporary and much needed proactive visionary leadership. What if there was a Sultan Salhuddin and conscientious of the Arab-Islamic interests, he could surely have developed a balanced relationship with the West without being object of their aims and political games. There are no proactive leaders in the Arab-Islamic world to THINK of the Muslim’s interests and strategic priorities. They live in closed palaces, not with the people to understand the prevalent changing and challenging realities of the global politics.  They maintain armies but for the self, not to defend the Muslims and Islam. Freedom and statehood of Palestine is the focal issue in the Arab-Israelis affairs in the Middle East. But the problem and freedom of Palestine never comes up as an active agenda item for planned actions. The Arab leaders had over sixty years to plan and prepare themselves to encounter the growing Israeli force and political presence in the Middle East.  They could have planned and developed the strategic capacity to pursue a balancing act in the Palestine-Israeli conflict management and conflict resolution. It was the capacity that makes differences at the policy table, not the actual acts and military challenges. The Arab leaders have not listened to educated voices of reason to change and reform their own failing capacity of the mind and non-existent leadership role. The drum beats of the Arab power and influence are a fallacy of the Western created illusion and nothing else. They have no public institutions to persuade the West for change and policy impacts. Organizations like the Arab League, OIC and others are paper-based set ups manned by those who have neither vision nor educated leadership to extend sense of moral, political, and intellectual security to the Muslim Ummah.

Throughout the Arab-Muslim world, there is not a single institution to educate people in peace, security and conflict analysis and conflict resolution. This should have been the top most priority to plan and develop the moral and political capacity of the Arab-Islamic perspectives and policy stance. Two decade earlier (“Strategic Policy Planning: Comparative Analysis between the Muslim world and the West’) published across the Arab world attempted to focus on institutional development capacity-building and active role for peace and conflict management. A decade earlier, I made several proposals to an affluent Arab ruler and a foreign minister, but my voice ended up in dead-ends. The ideas and ideal for New THINKING and strong and rational political standing continued to live in denials across the Arab-Muslim world. The traditional uneducated policy makers and the governing elite must have felt threatened by these new ideas and vision for the Arab-Muslim nations to have the institutionalized capacity to be active in global political governance.  Imagine, if there were several “think-tanks” and established academic institutions in Islamic thinking, global peace, security and conflict management conducting research, examining workable alternatives to critical economic and political issues and leading in policy making and advisory role, would the Arab-Muslim world not be powerful and effective to encounter the global challenges? When would the so called Muslim rulers listen to voices of reason and honesty for change and reformation of their own thinking and behaviors? In reality, the failure of the Arab-Muslim leadership has victimized not just the Palestinian people but the Muslim Ummah as well.

Towards Understanding the agony of the Palestinian People and Looking for Conflict Resolution

If you will analyze, you will see that all the institutionalized establishments to peace making and security  links are connected to Israel and Israeli lobbyists in the US and Western Europe. Israelis have no peace and security without sharing the same with the Arabs and Palestinians. It is not a one way street. The Arab rulers need to reform their thinking and upgrade their institutionalized capacity to conduct peace and security affairs. If nobody has peace and security, how could they give it to others? Being oil-rich living in splendid palaces and greedy consumer does not scare the Israelis or the Western policy makers. If the Arab leaders had posed an intellectual and political challenge to them, they would have taken it seriously to respond with measurable rationality and purpose for policy change and workable co-existence for peace and security in the Arab Middle East.

The Western mass media has been used as a weapon to misinform the masses and create a culture of animosity against the rights of the Palestinian people. They are the victims of the global conspiracy and a living example of the failed Arab leadership and indifference. Most of the global community seems to have failed to comprehend the true nature of the sufferings and agony of the Palestinian people living under continued Israeli occupation. Their homes are occupied, displaced from ancestral lands and forced to live in the UNRWA camps- refugees in their homes. Today, if the Arabs had educated leadership, strong public institutions and proactive visions and advisory, they could have been in a position of strength and not in weakness to resolve the Palestine problems and to establish an independent state for the beleaguered Palestinians to live in peace and harmony with Israelis. Educated Jews have worked hard to establish their thoughts and presence across the mainstream politics of the Western world.  Intellectual Jewish resources and heavy financial contributions to the US lobbyist networks have strengthened the Israeli views and stance in the Western political culture.  With abundance of intellectual and financial resources, have the Arab leaders any thought how to manage their vital political interests and global affairs? Don’t blame the Israelis for all the engulfed miseries and battlefronts as they will continue to do so for their survival and presence in the Arab Middle East. The Arab leaders should face the mirror and comprehend their collective failure to grasp the political realities is one of the major factors for the continued unresolved Palestine issue. The world will listen and pay attention only if you know how to communicate your ideas with reason, intellect and plea for political equality and human justice. Freedom cannot be denied to the Palestinians.

 

How to reform the absurdity of THINKING and articulate a sustainable future?

Could the people and nations live harmoniously in man-made superficial conflict and war zones? When policy makers and leaders of the nation share sense of responsibility, their eyes and minds are open to listening and learning and thereby prospective change in behavior. It is one of the most pertinent characteristics of modern leadership to be listening and learning without agreeing or disagreeing with public inputs. Those reject the necessity of listening, are often end-up in failure, disgrace and eviction from political life. Is Obama is listening? No. Are the oil riched Arab leaders listening? No. Are the democratic Israelis listening? No.  Everyone pretends to be doing something right but they are all WRONG and terribly naïve of the consequences of their selfish thinking and its futuristic consequences. More wars are looming on the innocent humanity- the foremost victims of human ignorance, injustice and travesty. 

The proponents of wars engender decadence, hatred and degenerate the human positive thoughts and energies to make the human beings acts like animals and dummies. The Western policy planners are well equipped with instincts of pugnacity and political hatred and ferocity. Theses instincts serve the agenda for their strategic plans against the Arabs and Muslim people. With bribed and bought collaboration of the Western mass media, they have carved –up images of the Arabs and Muslims as “extremists”, “fundamentalists” and “terrorists.” When ordinary folks see theses video manufactured images, they tend to take them seriously and believe in them for their fear of survival and security. There are no planned counter-balanced rational illustrations exposing the Arab-Muslim viewpoints to balance the imbalanced imagery making propaganda. Wars are fought and capitalized on such images to make the home audience that the US and British are fighting against the “terrorists” in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The media campaigns never tell that the “US-British led terrorism of wars have terrorized the rest of the humanity” for the much sought out oil and gas resources in the Muslim world. What is ultimate motive for the war of aggressions against the Arab and Muslims?, Nothing except a desire for control of the natural resources, profit and political power. C.E.M. Joad (Guide to Modern Wickedness) notes: “Human beings fight because they are afraid, afraid that worse will happen to them if they do not. They might, for example lose their possession, or sustain a wound in their pride or even in their honour.”

Men who have led the humanity to fight in wars were ignorant and foolish. They failed to imagine the outcomes of the human killings and consequences of the wars against the very humanity that they claimed to be part of and to serve. Were they wicked and stupid in totality? CEM Joad is again very telling to us:

“If the human nature is in part wicked and in part foolish, how can the human beings be prevented from suffering of the result of their wickedness and folly?”  C.E.M Joad shares a wise answer:

“Men simply do not see that war is foolish and useless and wicked. They think on occasion that it is necessary and wise and honourable, for war is not the work of bad men knowing themselves to be wrong, but of good men passionately convinced that they are right.”

To make peace and ensure the human security, policy and attitudinal changes and reformation is much needed across the globe. More so in the Arab Middle East than anywhere else. The so called “war on terrorism” or terrorism of wars by the US must be stopped and the victimized humanity should be safeguarded and compensated by the warmongers. The Arab authoritarian leaders and the Western democratically known to be elected leaders should learn from the events shaping the contemporary history. Defying the history would deny the prospects of future-building for peace and human security. There are challenges ahead for more critical and greater in scope to deal with global warming, sustainable human growth and development and peaceful con-existence after the continued theatre of absurdity waging the crusading “war on terrorism.” If there is One Humanity, living in One World, it must come to understand and respect the URGENT need for human and leadership capacity-building to be listening and learning from the voices of REASON and proactive vision awaiting a different, more progressive and promising future for the humanity as a whole as ONE UNIT.

 (Dr. Mahboob A. Khawaja specializes in global security, peace and conflict resolution with keen interests in Islamic-Western comparative cultures and civilizations, and author of several publications including: "Muslims and the West: Quest for Change and Conflict Resolution", University Press of America; How America Lost the War in Iraq and Afghanistan and Mujahideen Won; To America and Canada with Reason, VDM Publishers, 2009; “President Obama – War is War, Not Peace”, 2009; and “Is President Obama Remaking America?”  “The Arab Time Capsule- Once You Were the Leaders of Islamic Civilization.”  “The Arab People Look for Peace and New Leadership.” “Arab-Israeli Search for Co-Existence: from Animosity to Insanity Called Peace Talks.” Comments are welcome at: kmahboob@yahoo.com).

 
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