This statement was delivered by Engineer Hisham Al-Baba, Head of the Media Office of Hizb ut-Tahrir, Wilaya of Syria - at a press conference held at Hizb ut-Tahrir's offices in Tripoli - Lebanon on Thursday 28th Ramadan 1433 [16/08/2012].
The revolutions of the so-called 'Arab Spring' broke out in order to change rulers and regimes. From the outset, their main demand was clear and unambiguous. It was that which we heard in the chant: 'The people want to overthrow the regime.'
What happened in the revolutions of Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen is that a ruler was either ejected from his post or killed. Yet the ruling system continued on the same design since colonial times: democratic, civil and secular - similar to the ruling systems in the West. All that has changed are some faces and some forms of nomination, appointment or election.
So the joy that came with those blessed revolutions vanished when these revolutions derailed and accepted the Western prescription of civil democracy given to them (or rather allowed for them) - until the revolution of Al-Sham tipped the scales and introduced different ideas into the language of the 'Arab Spring'.
The revolution of Al-Sham did not accept the insertion of poison into honey. It refused secularism, democracy and the slogan of the civil state.
It refused to be satisfied with a mere change of face - asking, with astonishment: Isn't Bashar secular?! Aren't his regime and the constitution of his government civil?! Haven't we witnessed the Western capitalist democratic system itself failing as a global system?! Why should we rewrite failed experiments to return our country back to its whirlpool, while the constitution decreed to us by the Lord of the worlds is in our hands?!
The revolution of Al-Sham confirmed its Islamic identity when its people declared: It is for the sake of Allah and counted their suffering as sacrifice in anticipation of Allah's سبحانه وتعالى reward; when its women followed the example of Khansaa, one after another; when the banners of al-Uqab were raised; and when the calls demanding Khilafah started to resound. Thus, this revolution was not typical.
The international powers observed the peculiarity of this blessed Syrian Revolution. This angered America (the sponsor of Bashar and his regime), who in turn joined the Syrian regime in its crimes: providing him with deadlines, holding conferences, announcing initiatives, sending Arab and international observer missions. They also instructed their open and hidden agents to support the criminal Syrian regime, paying no heed to the waterfalls of blood abundantly flowing in Syria. The conspiracy of the international community against the people of Syria reached to the extent of offering Bashar the chance of resignation in return for securing a safe exit for him and his family, after all the crimes he committed. This is the level at which they are now dealing with the Syrian revolution.
We in Hizb ut-Tahrir firmly believe that this revolution is worth more than to fall into the swamps of secularism and the heresy of a civil state; nor should it exchange the better for the worse - i.e. take Western democracy and leave the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم. We want it to proceed to establish the law (shar') of its Lord - a rightly-guided Khilafah on the model of prophethood - so fulfilling two of the Bisharat (good news) of the Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم about the last days: One for all Muslims, which is his صلى الله عليه وسلم saying:
ثمّ تكونُ خلافةٌ على منهاجِ النبوّة
"Then it would be Khilafah on the model of prophethood."
and the other is for the people of Al-Sham in particular, which is his صلى الله عليه وسلم saying:
ألا إن عقرَ دارِ الإسلامِ بالشام
"Be aware, the centre abode of Islam is in Sham."
[Narrated by Al-Tabarani, in 'Al-Kabeer,' on the authority of Salamah b. Nufayl]
In this revolution we see signs that encourage that.
We present this document included within it: Hizb ut-Tahrir's manifesto for the political system, for which it calls to be applied after the removal of the regime in Syria; and a road map to reach this goal. We are very keen that this revolution be safeguarded from being hijacked by the colonial powers and from being usurped by opportunists who orbit in the sphere of the West, carrying the West's viewpoint for resolving the crisis.
The manifesto of Hizb ut-Tahrir for the ruling system in Syria is founded on the following tenets:
• The Islamic 'Aqeedah (doctrine) should be the basis of the State and the basis of the constitution. The Qur'an and Sunnah, together with what they referred to - namely Ijmaa' us-Sahaba (the consensus of the companions) and the Qiyas (divine analogy) should be the source of all of its articles. Thus, the Islamic Shari'ah (divine law) would become the system of life, the society and the State.
• The form of the ruling system in Islam is the system of Khilafah, which is fundamentally different from the forms of ruling systems in place today. So, it is not royal, imperial, republican, dictatorial or federal.
• Its State is neither religious theocratic, civil nor democratic. It is rather a human state, where sovereignty in it is for Shar', where it applies the provisions of Islam, while the sultan (authority) is for the Ummah (nation).
• The security (aman) of Dar al-Islam, which we seek to establish is realized by security provided by the Muslims only; which requires preventing any foreign interference in our country, in compliance with the verse:
وَلَنْ يَجْعَلَ اللَّهُ لِلْكَافِرِينَ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ سَبِيلًا
"Allah will not allow the disbelievers to have a way 'authority' over the believers." [An-Nisaa, 4:141]
Foreign intervention in Muslim countries is one of the great sins that take the country and people away from ruling with Islam and from living under its shade.
• The system in the Khilafah State is humane - that revives man as a human being, regardless of race, religion or colour. It addresses its problems - as a human being - with the best and most just provisions known on the face of the earth; because they are from Al-Hakeem (Most Wise), Al-Khabeer (Well Acquainted).
• The bond that links the citizens of the State is their citizenship. So, all of those who hold the citizenship of the Islamic State (Muslims and non-Muslims) have the full right to enjoy guardianship. The State is not allowed to exercise any discrimination between the citizens in terms of governance, justice or managing the affairs.
• The articles of the Constitution of the Islamic State are divine provisions, which the State is obliged to apply; and all citizens must obey them. The Muslims obey them as orders and prohibitions from Allah, His Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم and the ruler. Whilst non-Muslims obey them as laws of the state that look after their own affairs and preserve their lives and rights, the same like Muslims. This is in line with the divine principle that states: "They have the same fairness enjoyed by Muslims; and they are also accountable like Muslims."
• Non-Muslims are left to practice the provisions of their own beliefs, worship, food-stuffs and clothing - beside matters of marriage and divorce, according to their religions, within the general law. They rejoice under the State and enjoy its fruits as citizens like Muslims. Among the most prominent examples of this are the provisions of public ownership and the distribution of the products of its enormous wealth to all its citizens equally.
• There is no distinction in the Islamic State in terms of looking after the affairs of the Muslims and non-Muslims; it also deals equally with all races and peoples; so it does not distinguish between the Kurds, Arabs and Turkmen, etc. It rather abides by the verse:
إِنَّ أَكْرَمَكُمْ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ أَتْقَاكُمْ
"The best among you in the sight of Allah is the most pious of you." [Al-Hujraat, 49:13]
The State considers any call to racial, tribal or national bonds as tribal and jahili that splits the nation (Ummah) and the State; besides it is a great evil. The hand of the West - who have pursued (and still pursue) an agenda to split the Ummah, weaken it and make her allegiance to it, rather than to Allah, His Messenger and the believers - must be severed.
• Islam ensures, through its economic policies the satisfaction of the basic needs of food, clothing and housing for each of the State's citizens, and it enables him or her to satisfy luxuries (beyond the basic needs) as much as he or she could. It also ensures for the whole Ummah security, education, medication and the various basic needs of the community. Its injunctions explain the means of ownership, the means of investment and the manner of expenditure. They show the types of properties: namely individual/personal property; the state and the publicly owned property, such as oil and minerals wealth, which would enable all members of the Ummah to enjoy them. They show rules relating to land, such that not an inch of land is left uncultivated. They have made gold and silver the basis of currency, so securing a stable exchange rate for the currency that is reflected in stable commodity prices. They have set up rules for currency Exchange that prevent the Islamic State from falling into crises similar to that which have occurred in the capitalist financial system. They have identified the terms of internal trade between individuals, which does not need pursuance from the state; and the provisions of Foreign Trade, which is made under the State's supervision. They allow the establishment of companies, according to the divine rules, and prevented them from monopoly. They prohibit usury, selling of debt, selling that which is not owned yet, and fraud. Overall, this policy has taken into account the targeted model of society, which would live peacefully and happily within an order of Halal and Haram. They work for the distribution of wealth amongst the members of the State, individually; and made the property as servant for man, rather than making man a slave to it.
• The external relations of the State with other states are established in accordance with the provisions of Islam, by carrying the call to them and undertaking jihad for the sake of Allah (fee sabeelillah). The State is committed to the divine injunctions regarding upholding of conventions, peace treaties, ceasefire armistices and diplomatic representation.
In regards to the road map through which we hope to realize the Khilafah State after the overthrow of the regime:
It is based, in its general framework, on the method of the Prophet peace be upon him in change; and it can be summarized as follows:
• Muslims in Syria, in general, make known that they want to overthrow the regime and return back to the rule of Allah by establishing the Khilafah in compliance with the example achieved by the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم where he generated a public opinion for Islam in Madinah, a little before the establishment of the first Islamic State. This aspect has now been achieved in the Islamic Ummah a long time ago. And it has become, in the era of 'the Arab Spring', clearer than ever, by the Grace of Allah, The Almighty - especially amongst the people of Syria who started to declare day and night the slogan of the Islamic State. The West no longer hides its apprehension and worry that Islam is the heir to the era of the criminal seculars in Syria. However, it remains a duty upon the leaders of opinion and thought who hold Islamic thought, to speed their strides for crystallizing and clarifying the Islamic system amongst themselves and amongst public opinion, so that none are deceived by movements who raise Islamic slogans but they embrace a secular project under the name of the civil state.
• The believers from amongst the people of power (the influential) amongst the officers of the regular army, the dissidents from it and the armed groups, which include the purest of Muslims, have to work for establishing the Islamic Khilafah. They have to work together to prevent the West, its agents and its tools from the local secular politicians, from even approaching authority and decision-making. They have to choose for positions of authority those from the people who are fit for it, who hold the Islamic political project, understand it precisely and in whom there is great hope in their ability to apply it properly, away from allying themselves to opponents, namely the secularists and their masters in the West.
This is what we have started to see, by the Grace of Allah, in the field of people of power who have declared that they want to rule by Islam. We thank Allah that this Ummah has become rich with people of governance, politics, management, judiciary and economy. So preparing for this great duty all means required for its achievement - in terms of an Islamic draft constitution, an ability to apply Islam properly, in order to attain the highest levels of life for the citizens of the Khilafah State - both Muslims and non-Muslims; and the ability to lead the Muslims intellectually for spreading Islam in the world; and political experience that enables them to engage in the international struggle on an ideological basis rather than a colonial utilitarian basis, and to make the Islamic State the leading state in the world.
We, in Hizb ut-Tahrir announce through this conference that we work with the sincere people of this revolution, and we provide all that we have of potential, capability and competence to achieve all the elements of this plan, whose execution and success are feasible; and can bring, most importantly, the true change and the great pleasure of Allah, the Almighty.
The squares of revolution have overflowed with the uqab flags and the banners of Islam. The throats of the demonstrators raised the call of takbeer and chanted: "We want Syria an Islamic Khilafah" and "The people want Khilafah again." Our members exist in the depth of the revolution; and the Media Office of Hizb ut-Tahrir, Wilaya of Syria, is one of the channels open for communication and interaction with the revolution. The party, in general, and its branch in Syria, in particular, has pursued the revolution since its inception, day-by-day, even moment-by-moment. So, it issued successive statements and bulletins in parallel with the events of the revolution, to strengthen the rebels, lift their determination and spread awareness among them about the conspiracies plotted against them, reminding them always of the need to link their revolution with a sublime objective, which the opportunists cannot reach.
And we put in the hands of the media people and journalists a dossier, the majority of which has been so far compiled.
- Hizb ut-Tahrir works to contact the various military forces to organize them in one unified work that can destroy this regime from its roots and establish the Islamic rule; hoping this will be soon.
- The Hizb has prepared itself for this great task; it has been its main preoccupation for more than half-a-century, not only in Syria, but in different Muslim countries, indeed the whole world. It gained through this period all the elements of successful leadership that enables it to reach with the Ummah to achieve the duty towards Allah in the establishment of His rule and spreading of His message. Therefore, the efforts of its members came together in the whole world in support and help of the rebels - from Indonesia to the Maghreb through Al-Quds; and in Western capitals from Europe to Australia and America. All of them have stood - and still stand - responding to the call of the duty of support to and in defense of the rebels of Al-Sham, calling upon Muslim armies parked in their barracks to move in the name of Allah and with the blessing of Allah, for the help of the oppressed Muslims in Syria. The people of revolution were delighted with the calls of our members in the Al-Aqsa Masjid, where the heroic stances moved from Al-Quds to all parts of Palestine, the captive, and swept over the Arab world, particularly in Lebanon, and more specifically in the posts of troops (Ribat) and Jihad, Tripoli of al-Sham, which hosted this conference. We do not also forget the stances of our members in Jordan, despite the restrictions, the blockade and prevention.
Their cries were not less than the cries of their brothers in the various parts of the blessed land of Sham.
- It is worth mentioning in this paper that "Hizb ut-Tahrir" was founded in response to the command of Allah, The Almighty in the verse:
وَلْتَكُنْ مِنْكُمْ أُمَّةٌ يَدْعُونَ إِلَى الْخَيْرِ وَيَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ ۚ وَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ
"And let arise from amongst you 'ummatun' a group (at least one) - who invite to goodness; and enjoin the right and forbid the evil; and indeed those are the successful." [Al-Imran, 3:104]
and for the resumption of Islamic way of life through the re-establishment of the rightly guided Khilafah, in pursuance of the divine principle, "Whatever a duty cannot be performed is itself a duty".
This party has prepared its members to become statesmen. It does not carry the concept of a ruling party. Rather, once the Khilafah is established through the legitimate method, and the Khaleefah was from it, he would not be the Khaleefah of the party, but the Khaleefah of the Muslims, where he looks after their affairs with justice, in word and deed. Then, once the post of Khaleefah became vacant after that, the Ummah would choose "a man from amongst the candidates, who possesses the legitimate conditions", where the Ummah would give him pledge of allegiance to listen and obey, as a Khaleefah of the Muslims, rather than of any party. Hizb ut-Tahrir, whether its candidate or any other candidate of the Ummah reached to the Khilafah post, would continue to watch together with the Ummah the progress of governance and the State, by advising, suggesting, criticizing and accounting, in pursuance of the command of Allah, The Almighty in the above mentioned verse.
We ask Allah, the Almighty to grant these efforts with near success, an immediate victory, and a great joy by the establishment of the Khilafah; and this is not difficult for Him, and it is not slight for the majestic steadfast revolution of Al-Sham. Allah, the Almighty says:
وَنُرِيدُ أَنْ نَمُنَّ عَلَى الَّذِينَ اسْتُضْعِفُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَنَجْعَلَهُمْ أَئِمَّةً وَنَجْعَلَهُمُ الْوَارِثِينَ
"And we want to be gracious to those who were oppressed in the land, and make them leaders, and make them inheritors." [Al-Qasas, 28:5]
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds.
Engineer: Hisham Al-Baba
Head of the Media Office of Hizb ut-Tahrir - Wilaya of Syria
28 Ramadan 1433 / 16/08/2012