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Jun 25, 2023
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Lebanese Researcher Nizar Ghanem: Neither Arab Secularists Nor Islamists Have A Vision Of How To Build A Modern Arab State; What The Arabs Need Is A Constitution, Not Coups

#10363 | 03:27
Source: Al-Hurra TV (The U.S.)

Lebanese researcher Nizar Ghanem said in a June 25, 2023 show on Al-Hurra Network (U.S.) that the Arabs are going through a "moral crisis" and that neither the Arab secularists nor the Islamists have a vision of how they would build a modern Arab state. He said that this was proven by the Arab Spring and the way it came to an end. The show's host, Egyptian journalist Ibrahim Eissa, said that the Left has allied with the Islamists because they are capable of launching protests against the existing rulers, adding: "The leftist infatuation with Islamist violence is not new." Nizar agreed and said that the Arabs do not need a coup, but rather a good constitution, saying: "The Left is as dogmatic as the Islamists."

Nizar Ghanem: "I believe that we Arabs are going through a moral crisis which is leading to all these clashes..."

Ibrahim Eissa: "Do you mean 'moral' in the daily social sense or in the political sense?"

Ghanem: "In the political sense as well as the cultural sense. We have no idea how to embark on the journey of the 21st century, and where we should go. This is also happening on the level of the Islamic civilization.

"Therefore, the problem, in my view, is that the secularists do not have a real vision of how they could build a modern Arab state, and the Islamists do not have such a vision either, as was proven in the Arab Spring."


Eissa: "[Some people in the left] believe that they can ally with the Islamists, despite the latter's antiquated views that belong in the Middle Ages, just because the Islamists have the capability to launch organized protests against the ruling 'dictator.' So the left has considered these Islamists to be allies, and we saw how many examples of this alliance between Left and the Islamists. Ultimately, the Islamists crush the Left, and then the entire thing repeats itself, and the Left forms this alliance again.


"We can even go back to the days of President Sadat's assassination, when leftist artists and poets glorified Sadat's killer, Khalid Al-Islambouli. When Al-Islambouli was executed, he was presented as a 'hero.' This leftist infatuation with Islamist violence is not new. There isn't really such a chasm between them."

Ghanem: "I believe that this infatuation depends on how we describe the Left. There is the Stalinist autocratic Left that has brought tyranny to the Arab world. See the Baathist regimes, for example. I think that perhaps the leftist populists are infatuated with the Islamist populists. Populism is their common denominator, as well as the belief that the way to a solution is a coup.

"I, however, believe that what we need in an Arab world is a good constitution, we need to agree, even with the Islamists, about the rules of the game. The problem with the Islamists is that when they reach power, they change the rules of the game. This is what brought an end to the Arab Spring.


"I believe that the Left in the Arab world collapsed a long time ago. What we have today are remnants of the Left – populist movements or ideas about the working class and about reaching power.


"Even in Lebanon, the left is infatuated with Hizbullah and the resistance.

"This is a fundamental problem, because the idea is that we fight an external enemy, and therefore, are in an eternal state of emergency, instead of bolstering the democratic game of [peaceful] transition of power. This is the big problem of the Left. In this sense, the Left is as dogmatic as the Islamists."

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