and democracy in Islam
wants the people to run their social, political and economic affairs
on the basis of justice and responsible freedom, and in accordance
with their own development and that of government systems.
Asked in his weekly seminar the following
question: How does Islam view taking part in elections
and the issue of government in general?
Religious Authority, Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah, said:
Islam has not
institutionalized any restrictions to prevent the people from
taking part in any political or electoral process that outlines
the way to promote their general and specific interests.
wants the people to run their social, political and economic
affairs on the basis of justice and responsible freedom, and in
accordance with their own development and that of government
systems. They should also strive to conform to the principles of
Sharia, on the basis of conferring and studying the priorities
to adopt the option that leads the nation to maintain the
straight path towards the future.
Thus, Islam has
left it to the nation to make its own future by means of
flexibility in dealing with the new political and economic
situations that is accompanied by the intellectual work in the
field of jurisprudence that is supposed to follow all novelties.
In this context,
the religious principles that deal with the issue of government
have emphasized the role of the nation in choosing the ruler and
in holding him and the representatives of the people accountable
before and after elections. The people have to verify that the
former’s attitudes and positions conform with the slogans and
agendas that they had proclaimed before the elections.
Based on this, the
role the voter plays is, contrary to what some might believe,
very important and influential. It certainly affects politics,
because it could, when joined with the other voters, decide the
destiny of the country, by choosing those who will run its
Yet there is a big
problem concerning what some has named the democratic process.
This problem has to do with the fact that many voters are not
well informed with the political and social issues of their
countries, and consequently they tend to choose on personal
basis. As a result, this attitude facilitates the interference
of the internal and external forces by trying to incite
instinctual stimulants and emotional reactions to try to forge
the electoral process.
plays an important role, with wealthy candidates exploiting the
poverty of the people to buy their votes, turning the voting
process into a problem instead of being a solution.
In addition, we
would like to draw the attention to the fact that some Arab and
Muslim regimes are trying to play the intelligence or partisan
game to pressurize the voter to vote in their favor.
They also try to
make the voter understand that voting is a game and not a
responsibility, so that they will be able to control the
turnover in a way that serves the plans they as well as certain
regional and international powers have drawn. But the voters
should know that they will be held responsible before Allah, the
most Exalted, if they fail to male the right choice that serves
the interests of the nation and not that of its enemies. Allah,
the most Exalted, says "And stop
them, for they shall be questioned".
There is another
problem that one should discuss… that is the role of the
political parties that no longer care about the national
interest, but rather their own partisan shares… That is why we
have seen that the efficient and ethical leaders and party
members have been back benched, since those who are close to
centers of influence are the ones that are put in the limelight.
We need to liberate
the voter from all these negative influences and insure that he
has the free will to choose those who put the general interest
of the country first… Those who could bring down the
government and not those whose only role is to vote yes on the
bills imposed by the regional and international powers.
Finally, we have to
draw the attention to what America is planning in the region
concerning the issue of the elections, and to what its president
has said about ending tyranny in the world. The C.I.A. wants to
coerce the nations that are holding elections, whether in a
direct or indirect means, to choose the candidates that support
the American occupation on the American project in general. We
have to be vigilant, knowing that America does not want to
reform the world, but to impose its hegemony over it.
We have to be very
careful and aware of the plots that are concealed by the
election front, and try to deal with it in a way that benefits
us and not that hurt our interests.