What is “Islamo-fascism”?
Jul 20, 2007 Bahman Aghai Diba – Persian Journal Islamo-fascism is a new name but the concept has a long history. It is clearly a combination between the ways of looking at Islam, with the policies of the fascist regimes of the twentieth century in Europe.
(1) Although there are serious discussions about the exact meaning and extent of fascism
(2), and the roots of the term
(3) most of the sources agree that some characteristics are common in all fascist regimes such as:
1- Love of war and the acute need of the foreign enemies that can be accused of all shortcomings
2- Military rule.
3- Lack of tolerance and respect to other ideologies
4- Disrespect of human rights
5- Authoritarian or totalitarian regime6- Demagogic tactics to rally the support of people7- Using zealots and paid lackeys for putting pressure and even elimination of opponents.8- Feeling of having a divine mission9- The arrogance of believing in the superiority of one particular ideology (their own) over all others.We can find all of these characteristics in the regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran:
1- Love of war: There is no limit in fighting against the infidels in the ideology of the ruling regime in Iran. There is no distinction between the military and civilian population. Every person of the un-Islamic world is enemy. The people are divided to those of us and those of the others. The Muslims that do not cooperate with the regime of Iran are from the others. Mullah Khomeini, the so-called founder of the Islamic republic in Iran, always called the Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988) that resulted in killing of millions of people in Iran and Iraq and devastation of the two countries a God given blessing. The administration of Iran under the presidency of Ahmadinejad, claims to revive the legacy of Mullah Khomeini and for the same reason they are very interested to start same kind of war in the region.
2- Military rule. The regime of Iran has been heavily relying on the military elements who are indoctrinated by the ruling Mullahs. The Islamic Revolutionary Guards used to have many sensitive posts in Iran and in the last two year or so (especially since the administration of Ahmadinejad was installed in Iran by the rigged elections), they have taken many civilian posts.
3- Lack of tolerance and respect to other ideologies- the regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran has been promoting the religious intolerance. The freedom of expression for all groups has been violated and the mass media are under the strict control of the regime. Under the new administration in Iran the extent of intolerance towards all religious and non-religious groups are increased.
4- Disrespect of human rights- The principles of the Human Rights as mentioned in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UN Convention on the Civil and Political; and the Convention on the Social and Economic Rights are all considered as tools of expansion of the Western cultures and they are rejected as such. Killing of the violators of the Islamic rules is permitted by God. The women are not equal with men. Democracy is void. The population of the states, even in the Islamic states is not entitled to decide about their fate. The religious leaders decide what is good for the people. Arts, educational institutions, cultural activities, music, literature, painting, sculpturing, and so on must only are in the service of the Islamic tenets as defined by the religious authorities. There is no freedom of assembly, press and expression, the people rally in the streets when the officials say so and they demand whatever the religious leaders have defined. Religious and other minorities are not supported and there is clear contradiction between Islam and the universal standards of the human rights. Almost all 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of the Human Rights are seriously violated by the Islamic Regime of Iran. The most important cases are: the violation of women‘s rights (the regime of Iran is not ready to accept the equality of men and women and as such it has refused to adhere to the UN International Convention of the Elimination of all kind of Discrimination against women), violation of the fundamental freedoms for the minorities in Iran (including the Baha’is), violation of the fundamental freedoms of the Iranian people, mistreatment of the political prisoners, and denying the rule of law.
5- Authoritarian or totalitarian regime- the regime of Iran is openly enemy of democracy. The Mullahs of Iran have made it clear time and again that they do not believe in the role of people in determining their own destiny. Ayatollah Khazali, a prominent member of the Iranian Constitutional Assembly (called Majles Khobreghan or Council of Islamic Experts) has said: “…what is the meaning of the people’s demands? Who are the people to demand something? The people should only implement the rules of Allah.”
(4) Also, Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi, the Head of Imam Khomeini‘s Educational and Research Institute, has said: “…the legitimacy of the Supreme Leader comes from the infallible Imams, not from the people.”
(5) Khomeni had said: “…do not listen to those who speak about democracy. These are enemies of Islam. Anyone who wants a republic is our enemy…did you create this revolution to become like Swiss? We break the poisonous pens of those who talk about nationalism, democracy and similar things…” Also, Dr. Ali Shariati, the great demagogue and fabricator of the Islamic hallucinations, and at the same time, the biggest ideological backbone of the Islamic revolution in Iran has said: “leadership can’t be the result of common people’s votes. It can’t come out of the corrupt masses of the people. Imam is the directly responsible for the policy of the society and he has direct leadership in economy, army, culture, foreign and domestic policies…” He adds in another source (Shiitism, a comprehensive party) : “It is necessary to have blind obedience. This is the real meaning of emulation in Shiitism. The same applies to the deputy of the Imam…a person that does not know his Imam, is like a sheep that has lost its Shepard.”
6- Demagogic tactics to rally the support of people- the street demonstrations have become the standard method of the Iranian Islamic regime to show the will and demands of the people. However, it is clear that no rally or demonstration is held in Iran unless all of its arrangements (including the slogans and the resolutions) are defined by the government. The staged demonstrations are manned by the groups that get special privileges from the regime and in many cases the demonstrators do not know the subject of demonstration before they get to the pre-determined places.
7- Using zealots and paid lackeys for putting pressure and even elimination of opponents- the zealots that are trained to attack the opponents are an active part of the governmental apparatus of the Islamic regime in Iran. The religious thugs attack the gathering of the people, enter the houses and places of business and bother the people. They attack the speakers in the places that are not approved by the regime and the women that have not observed the Islamic code of dress. 8- Feeling of having a divine mission- it is one of the most important features of the Islamic regime in Iran that it thinks it has a divine mission to change the world order. The followers of the Hidden Imam in Iran think that he is going to appear and conquer the whole world and they should make themselves ready for the war in the army of the Hidden Imam
(6) The regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran believes that it has a divine mission to fight the Western culture and impose policies that it considers to be Islamic.9- The arrogance of believing in the superiority of one particular ideology (their own) over all others- the regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran believes in the supremacy of the version of Islam practiced by the Iranian Mullahs as the best arrangement for the whole world. For the same reason, Ahmadinejad had asked President Bush to have a free televised discussion with him about which system (the Western liberalism or the Islamic regime as practiced in Iran) was good to be the world order.
(7) The regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran believes that the Western way of life is corrupt. The regime of Iran is seriously thinking that the Western democracies are going to fall, as the USSR fell, and one of these days the Islamic regime will get a chance to introduce its role in the global level. It does not believe in validity of any arrangement with the “Western” infidels and all of the agreements with the West are temporary and subject to abrogation as soon as the Islamic power gets the possibility to do so. For the same reason they want to get nuclear weapons. A look at the regime of Iran reveals that all of these elements are clearly present in those government and politics of the present regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran and it very much deserves to be included under the title of Islamofacist regimes.
(1) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamofascism It is mentioned in this source that: “Islamofascism is neologism and political epithet used to induce an association of the ideological or operational characteristics of certain modern Islamist movements with European fascist movements of the early 20th century, neo-fascist movements, or totalitarianism. Organizations that have been labeled “Islamofascist” include Al-Qaeda, the current government of Iran, the Taliban, Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, and Hezbollah…”
(2) http://www.remember.org/his.root.what.html, dated 27 Sept. 1992. In this source, Chip Berlet describes: “…fascism and Nazism as ideologies, involve, to varying degrees, some of the following hallmarks:
1- Nationalism and super-patriotism with a sense of historic mission.
2- Aggressive militarism even to the extent of glorifying war as good for the national or individual spirit.
3- Use of violence or threats of violence to impose views on others (fascism and Nazism both employed street violence and state violence at different moments in their development).
4- Authoritarian reliance on a leader or elite not constitutionally responsible to an electorate.
5- Cult of personality around charismatic leader.
6- Reaction against the values of modernism, usually with emotional attacks against both liberalism and communism.
7- Exhortations for the homogeneous masses of common folk…8- Dehumanization and scapegoating of the enemy…
9-the self image of being superior form of social organization beyond socialism, capitalism, and democracy…”
(3)http://www.opinionjournal.com/forms/printThis.html?id=1100008822, dated 20 August 2006. in this source, Roger Scruton has mentioned: “…the term Islamofascism was in introduced by the French writer Maxine Rodinson (1915-2004) to describe the Iranian revolution of 1978….the word has therefore caught on, not least because it provides a convenient way of announcing that you are not against Islam, but only against its perversion by the terrorists….”
(4)http://www.iranian.com/News/2000/June/khaz.html, dated 08/27/2006, speaking for the congregational prayer.
(5)http://news.gooya.com/politics/archieves/2006/09/052663print.php, dated 09/10/2006
(6) the role of Hidden Imam in the history band politics of the Islamic Republic of Iran, http://www.iranian.ws/iran_news/publish/printer_15612.shtml, dated 03/13/2006
(7)http://news.gooya.com/politics/archieves/2006/09/052609print.php, dated 09/07/2006
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