Viable political models needed for the Crescent

When one looks at states where Islamic movements have come to power, such as Iran and Sudan, it is depressing how far removed they are from the Islamic ideals of justice and mercy. For example in 1988 Ayatollah Khomeini, then supreme leader of Iran, issued an edict to the effect that the leader can unilaterally suspend any aspect of Islam if the interest of the “Islamic government” is best met by pursuing secular policies in contradiction to Islamic law. What is the point in creating an Islamic state if the caliph can end up suspending Islam on his own judgment? I know Khomeini was Shia, but the same principle would be found in a Sunni caliphate. Why is it that monarchies, dictatorships and tyranny are able to thrive in the name of Islam but, with the exception of Turkey, representative democracy and accountable governments are dismissed as unIslamic? It would be of the greatest benefit if political models in general use in the West could be accepted as “universal” within the Islamic world. After all, the West did not “invent” these structures. They are very much an amalgam of best practices observed and borrowed from all cultures and civilisations.


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