Yemen, But What Sort of Yemen?
National Yemen, March 8th 2014
Today the country of Yemen is going through some difficult political problems. It is facing an ever-intensifying threat of internal conflicts and separatism; another major problem is high levels of poverty. So what are the most urgent problems that need to be addressed?
There are so many people who want freedom in Yemen, yet everyone has a different agenda for their pursuit of freedom; some want it for their sects, some for their tribes and some for their political views. Yet none of those groups want the same freedom for others. In addition, there are concerns that some groups -most particularly Muslim groups- might limit political and social freedom, freedom of thought and expression and go on to impede the flourishing of art and science in the country.
Yet in truth, Islam is a religion that provides every individual in a society with freedom of thought, freedom of worship, freedom of expression and effectively protects the rights of everyone. In other words, Islam offers true freedom to people.
A Sort of Yemen Where Religion Brings Freedom and Democracy.
Muslims in Yemen should advocate freedom of expression and faith for all in Yemen, regardless of group or sect. They should do so, because in the Qur'an, Muslims are commanded to respect the ideas, lifestyles and choices of others. Muslims should not oppose different ideas - and even atheistic ideologies - from being expressed. When this freedom is provided, Muslims will be able to provide a complete intellectual answer to such mistaken ideologies. Banning ideologies and thoughts is not something that would befit Muslims; on the contrary, it would only make the communication of Islam more difficult, and Muslims' intellectual struggle harder.
A Yemen Where Sectarian Differences do not Cause Tension.
The most painful sight witnessed in Yemen would doubtlessly be Muslims directing their guns on each other, although God has clearly entrusted Muslims to each other. It is an explicit order of God that Muslims should unite. Yet despite this clear command, Muslims are grappling with disagreements and as a result, clash with each other in Yemen, just like the rest of the Middle East.
It is a grave mistake for Muslims to attack each other with hatred and rage, despite the clear command of God related in Surah Al Imran, verse 103. It is of paramount importance that Muslims quit making the mistake of sectarian divisions and unite, just as God has ordered them to. The fact that God addresses Muslims as a single community in the Qur'an is again further evidence that Muslims should unite.
A Yemen where the Administration is Qualified.
The people of Yemen want their nation to be run competently and want their administrations to adhere to the rule of law and democracy no matter how difficult things might get, and prioritize the protection of fundamental human rights. They also expect their administrators to refrain from feeding their own egos by adopting tyrannical methods, as if they consider themselves to be the absolute owners of Yemen.
To be able to be a fair administrator, as described here, one has to have a sincere belief in God and fear God. The social, political and economic practices of such God-fearing people will not be influenced or led by anyone, as their actions do not depend on the pleasure of individuals that support their administration. Furthermore, they will be consistent in their democratic, fair and just attitude.
The decisions of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – both regarding the Muslims and other people from different religions, tribes or ethnicities – has always been the epitome of compassion and justice, and therefore constitute an ideal example of a perfect democracy where everyone is treated equally regardless of their differences.
A Yemen with Perfect Social Justice.
To ensure peace and welfare in Yemen, it is essential that the poverty and the vast gaps between income groups are eliminated. This social democracy can be achieved only when Islamic moral values are truly practiced in Yemen. God says in the Qur'an that wealth should not be hoarded by certain groups; on the contrary, it should be distributed to the poor and the needy. To ensure peace and welfare in Yemen, it is essential that the poverty and the vast gaps between income groups are eliminated. This social democracy can be achieved easily when Islamic moral values are truly practiced in Yemen.
How to Achieve the Desired Yemeni Model?
All this makes it abundantly clear that there is only one way to end the injustice, conflict, terror, killing, poverty and tyranny in Yemen: The moral values of the Qur'an.
A quick look at the problems in the country will make it clear that a general moral degradation has led to a lack of love, hostility, selfishness, indifference and cruelty and that is the reason for all these untoward sights in the country. The way to solve these issues and put an end to all the other myriad problems is love, compassion, mercy, an unconditional desire to help others, being sympathetic to other's problems, altruism, common sense and reason. All of these traits belong to people who follow Qur'anic moral values to the fullest.
The most urgent action to be taken in Yemen should be an intellectual struggle by Muslims to ensure that Qur'anic moral values defeat irreligion. Needless to say, one of the quickest ways to ensure that is in spreading the miracles of creation using science, so that the weakness of faith and atheistic influences over people can be effectively conquered. Communicating Islam to all is the most paramount and urgent duty of our time for all Muslims.