Islam and Political Reform in Saudi Arabia: The Quest for Political Change and Reform (Routledge Studies in Political Islam)

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Islam and Political Reform in Saudi Arabia: The Quest for Political Change and Reform (Routledge Studies in Political Islam)

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Islam and Political Reform in Saudi Arabia

Islam and Political Reform in Saudi Arabia comprehensively explores, using primary sources, the discourse and performance of influential Saudi Islamic new generation ‘ulama in their struggle for reform, covering the 1980s to 2006. By addressing the changing directions of their struggle, with the Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence], the dominant structure for the policy paradigm, Alshamsi demonstrates how Islamic thought may inform a reformist discourse and agenda. In developing its argument, the book ●





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explores areas of agreement and disagreement, peace and conflict in Saudi politics; discusses the contemporary Saudi civil political struggle and how it might turn into revolutionary action; explains how legitimacy can bring the ruling authority and opposition together; demonstrates how reformism is deeply rooted in an Islamic tradition; investigates how domestic, regional and global varieties can interact.

Providing a prodigious amount of innovative empirical research on Saudi Arabia, this up-to-date study will aid in understanding the dynamics, policymaking, activities, changing directions and struggle of contemporary Sunni movements. It will be of interest to students and researchers of Islamic politics, movements and discourse. Mansoor Jassem Alshamsi, a political scientist working for the United Arab Emirates Government, received his PhD in Politics from the University of Exeter, UK, in 2004. The author of many research papers and studies on Middle Eastern affairs, US foreign policy and Islamic movements, Dr Alshamsi emphasizes the necessity of applying scientific and objective methods to the understanding of Middle Eastern politics.

Routledge studies in political Islam

1

The Flourishing of Islamic Reformism in Iran Political Islamic groups in Iran (1941–61) Seyed Mohammad Ali Taghavi

2

The Political Thought of Sayyid Qutb The theory of Jahiliyyah Sayed Khatab

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The Power of Sovereignty The political and ideological philospohy of Sayyid Qutb Sayed Khatab

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Islam and Political Reform in Saudi Arabia The quest for political change and reform Mansoor Jassem Alshamsi

Islam and Political Reform in Saudi Arabia The quest for political change and reform

Mansoor Jassem Alshamsi

First published 2011 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon, OX14 4RN Simultaneously published in the USA and Canada by Routledge 270 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10016 Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business This edition published in the Taylor & Francis e-Library, 2010. To purchase your own copy of this or any of Taylor & Francis or Routledge’s collection of thousands of eBooks please go to www.eBookstore.tandf.co.uk. © 2011 Mansoor Jassem Alshamsi All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers. British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data Alshamsi, Mansoor Jassem. Islam and political reform in Saudi Arabia: the quest for political change and reform/Mansoor Jassem Alshamsi. p. cm. – (Routledge studies in political Islam; 4) “Simultaneously published in the USA and Canada by Routledge.” Includes bibliographical references and index. 1. Saudi Arabia–Politics and government–1982- 2. Islam and state–Saudi Arabia. 3. Islam and politics–Saudi Arabia. 4. Social problems–Saudi Arabia. 5. Opposition (Political science)–Saudi Arabia. 6. Democratization–Saudi Arabia. I. Title. DS244.63.A47 2007 953.805'3–dc22 2006037159 ISBN 0-203-96112-9 Master e-book ISBN

ISBN 13: 978–0–415–41241–4 (hbk) ISBN 13: 978–0–203–96112–4 (ebk)

Contents

Author’s notes 1

Introduction

viii 1

Background 2 Defining the movement 4 Constitutional, legal and political aspects 7 The leadership in the context of Islamic movements 9 The leadership in the context of Saudi politics 11 Procedure 12 Contents 14 Al-mudafa‘a 15 Summary 15

2

Context

17

3

The Sunni fiqh

30

The meaning of fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] 30 The sources of the fiqh 31 The significance of the fiqh 32 Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] 33 Al-tawhid and its political implementation 36 Summary 40

4

Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh Theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] 41 Al-huquq al-shar’iyah [Legitimate Rights in Islam] 42 The question of al-khuruj [revolution] 45 Fiqh al-muwazanat wa al-awlawiyat [Balances and Priorities] 49

41

vi

Contents

5

Intellectual interaction

51

Ahmad Ibn Hanbal 51 Ahmad Ibn Taymiyyah 52 The Najdi-Saudi ‘ulama 55 Muhammad Qutb 59 Muhammad al-Albani 61 Muhammad al-Rashid 61 Muhammad Surur 62 Summary 63

6

Political struggle: countering

65

Background 65 Countering in the 1980s 66 The policy of countering 71 External political interaction 74

7

Countering policy in the 1990s

78

Background 78 The Iraqi invasion of Kuwait 80 Historical/political initiatives 86 The continuing discourse 89 Continuation 98

8

Petitions and challenges

99

Background 99 Kitab Shawal/Kitab al-‘Ulama – May 1991 [Letter of Shawal or Letter of the ‘Ulama] 99 Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah – July 1992 [Memorandum of Advice] 102 Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR) 110 Domestic challenges 111 Continuation 116

9

The Monarchy and support Background 117 Tension, pressure, political resistance and arrest 117 Support, recognition and scholarly endorsements 132 Summary 134

117

Contents 10 Appeasement

vii 137

Background 137 The changed strategy: playing down the political factor 139 Positive elements 140 The expansion of opportunities 142 The Islamic da‘wah activities 143 The use of the Internet 148 Content of the Islamic reformist message 149

11 External focus: resumption of al-madafa‘a

153

Background 153 Countering the external – appeasing the internal 153 Domestic security focus – resumption of al-mudafa‘a [the dimension of countering] 164 Summary 169

12 Political realism

172

Background 172 The leadership and characteristics 174 The context of the Monarchy 176 The context of external factors 178 The context of the Islamic cause 186 The question of power, violence and jihad 187 Summary 195

13 Conclusion

198

Synopsis 198 Summary of actions 198 Discourse and actions defined 205 Other literature 211 Determining the future 218 Summary 225 Appendices Glossary Notes Selected references Index

226 227 241 282 289

Author’s notes

This book is based on my PhD dissertation, titled ‘The Discourse and Performance of the Saudi Sunni Islamic Reformist Leadership: 1981–2003’, updated till mid-2006. In translating sections of lessons or cassettes from Arabic, I have tried to retain the original thrust, and sense, behind the message rather than try to put the translation into everyday English, so as to retain the tone and essence of the message translated. I have also given a variation of translations to many of the Arabic words to specifically convey the essence of the word/concept. Space limitations have made it necessary to leave out most of the bibliography of documents studied, and only selected references are given, but I have placed many partial references in the footnotes. Any person wishing more information on any document is welcome to request a copy of the original bibliography by e-mail from [email protected]. Similarly, I have had to reduce on the Appendices and have only included a list of the titles of the most important Appendices, under their original numbers, but you are welcome to contact me by e-mail to request a full list, or a copy of any specific Appendix. I am greatly indebted – more than words can express – to my family, my wife and children, for their understanding, patience and constant encouragement. Honour and praise to Almighty Allah who made me capable of undertaking this work. Mansoor Alshamsi

1

Introduction

This book is based on the author’s PhD dissertation, titled ‘The Discourse and Performance of the Saudi Sunni Islamic Reformist Leadership: 1981–2003’, brought up to date to mid-2006. It investigates the discourse and performance of a contemporary domestic Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist leadership of three ‘new generation’ ‘ulama: Safar al-Hawali, Salman al-Oudah and Nassir al-Omar. As a scholarly Sunni Islamic reformist group, they are a political force that has sought political change and reform in Saudi Arabia through accommodation. Using primary sources, the author examines the development, phases and dimensions of the political struggle of the reformist leadership from 1981 to 2006. The primary objective of this book is to investigate the reformist leadership’s concepts on the question of political change and reform, and to understand the leadership’s dominant policy formation paradigm. This is essential for understanding the way in which the reformist leadership addresses the question of political change and reform, and the consequences of raising this question, which is important in understanding the policy applied to this end. The author examines the discourse, in its wider sense, of the reformist leadership since 1981. In this discourse, the question of political change and reform was born, and arguments and a number of policy formation models are defined in the reformist leadership’s literature. This has shown Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence], in general, and fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], in particular, as the foundation concepts for the three scholars. The reformist leadership’s fiqh is connected to a wider examination of Sunni Islamic jurisprudence and political juristic works, both classical and contemporary, and the author explains his understanding of the discourse and performance of the reformist leadership. This study endeavours to improve understanding by showing how the reformist leadership has taken a leading role in the movement for political change and reform. The reformist leadership’s relationship with the Monarchy, in particular, is defined and examined. It is concluded that al-mudafa‘a [dimension of countering], as a policy, has emerged as the dominant style of these scholars through the last two decades, indicating a two-dimensional policy of countering and appeasement, applied in a dynamic, systematic and flexible manner towards internal and external players.

2

Introduction

Background In contemporary Saudi Arabia, a new generation of ‘ulama [plural of ‘alim, one who knows, a scholar of Islam]1 is seeking political change and reform through ‘accommodation’ and not through revolution.2 This raises the decisive role of Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence], in general, and fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], in particular, as key factors in how these ‘ulama behave politically and shape their concepts. This domestic Saudi Sunni Islamic leadership comprises of three ‘new generation’ ‘ulama: Shaikhs Safar Ibn Abd al-Rahman al-Hawali, Salman Ibn Fahd al-Oudah and Nassir Ibn Sulayman al-Omar (hereinafter the reformist leadership, or leadership). Their political behaviour and discourses highlight key issues in dealing with political change and reform in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Proceeding directly to this group helps draw distinctions that, in turn, provide initial direction in studying political change and reform. The three leaders pursue an academic approach and place emphasis on their intellectual stance within the Sunni Islamic framework. Studying at Islamic schools, known in Saudi Arabia as al-ma‘ahid al-‘ilmiyah [Islamic scientific schools],3 they undertook their graduate and postgraduate studies at Saudi Islamic universities. The Sunni Islamic relationship between the three scholars is intellectual and organizational in nature. The intellectual dimension refers to the common core concern of the three scholars that al-hukm bima anzala Allah [applying the Islamic Law] must be applied by both state and society as a matter of iman [faith]. Al-Hawali, in particular, developed this intellectual dimension in his discourses of the 1980s; which gives him a leading and influential intellectual role in this triangular relationship. The organizational dimension refers to the character of the political Sunni Islamic struggle the three scholars have maintained over the last two decades; a civic–civil illustration of their struggle. Al-Oudah and al-Omar were mainly involved in developing the organizational base in their discourses of the 1980s and 1990s, and play a leading and influential organizational role in this relationship. Al-Hawali was born in 1372H/1952AD,4 and studied at al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi [an Islamic school]; reading for his bachelor’s degree at the Islamic University of al-Madina. He gained his Master’s degree in 1981 and his PhD degree in 1985, at the Islamic University of Umm al-Qura in the Holy City of Makkah. Becoming a professor at the same university, he later became Head of the Department of al-‘aqidah [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief]. Al-Oudah, born in 1376H/1955AD, also studied at al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi. He became a student at the College of Arabic Language for two years, and then studied at the College of Shari‘ah. On graduation, he became a teacher at al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi and taught there for four years, whereafter he entered the Al-Imam Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud Islamic University, al-Qassim branch, where he studied for his Master’s degree in the Department of Sunnah. Al-Oudah

Introduction

3

gained his Master’s degree in 1408H/1988AD at the Imam Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud Islamic University, where he registered his PhD dissertation while still a teaching assistant at the University. In 2004, al-Oudah gained his PhD degree. Al-Omar, born in 1372H/1952AD, finished his secondary schooling in 1390H/1970AD at al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi. He took his first university degree in 1394H/1974AD at the College of Shari‘ah, and then his Master’s degree in 1979 at the Al-Imam Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud Islamic University, and his PhD degree, gained in 1984, from the same university. In 1984, al-Omar became a teaching assistant and later a professor at the College of Usul5 al-Din6 [Foundations of Religion]. The theses and dissertations by these three scholars are published in more than one edition, which indicates their significance. They also supervised postgraduate students and conducted a number of studies while teaching at universities. The Sunni Islamic scholarly sphere laid the foundation for their movement, by raising questions of political change and reform from two main aspects: work in the academic environment and al-da‘wah al-islamiyah or da‘wah [Islamic call].7 While postgraduate students, and later professors during the 1980s, they decided to become du‘ah [Islamic callers], and to progress towards high scholarly Sunni Islamic status by becoming ‘ulama. While the reformist discourses of the three scholars were developing and growing at universities, mosques and public places, important regional events occurred in 1990. Iraq invaded Kuwait in August of that year, and the Saudi Monarch decided to accept foreign forces, mainly American, to confront the Iraqi threat to the Kingdom. Both the Iraqi invasion and the Monarch’s decision were criticized and condemned by the reformist leadership, who disagreed strongly with the policy of the Monarchy. The important discourses of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, dealing with these events were unique, and the reformist leadership questioned Saudi governmental decisions, directly and indirectly, through recorded lectures that reached vast numbers of people. The questions and critique were submitted as studies to the highest state Islamic institution, Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [The Council of the Senior ‘Ulama]. Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar continued delivering lectures to the public during, and after, these regional events, with lectures not only restricted to the subject of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait and the Monarch’s decision to receive American forces, but also included topics covering various matters within the Sunni Islamic juristic framework. By 1991, the question of political change and reform had become explicit, with not only the Monarch’s decision to receive American forces being questioned, but also Saudi domestic and foreign policies in general. Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar comprise a distinguished younger generation scholarly core, within the wider Saudi contemporary domestic Sunni Islamic movement, demanding political change and reform. This wider movement consists of senior and official ‘ulama, academics, technocrats

4

Introduction

and professionals, who voice the desire for political change and reform in the Kingdom. The wider grouping of Saudi Sunni Islamic reformers represent various regions and provinces in the Kingdom, and includes persons educated in Saudi Arabia and others educated in the West. This domestic Saudi movement, including the reformist leadership, approached the Monarchy through the submission of two petitions: one in 1991 and the other in 1992, which demanded political change and reform based on shari‘ah [Islamic Law]. The first petition has since become known as the Kitab Shawal [Letter of Shawal] or Kitab al-‘Ulama.8 It was submitted to the King’s office in the month of Shawal 1411H/May 1991AD, during the Second Gulf War. Kitab Shawal was also called the Address of the ‘Ulama as many of the signatories were ‘ulama. In Muharram 1413H/July 1992AD, a wider Saudi Sunni Islamic circle, with 111 signatories, including the leadership, submitted the second petition, Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice],9 which required political change and reform. The Memorandum of Advice was comprehensive in these demands, and raised ten major topics, including the economy, the societal and administrative system, human rights, the judiciary and the enactment of law and regulations, and foreign policy, with each discussed from an Islamic perspective. The role of the ‘ulama, in a state that applies shari‘ah [Islamic Law], was also raised, and by examining aspects of the topics, insights were gathered on rights, or performance, the Monarchy was failing to deliver. The Monarch was not pleased by earlier discourses, nor receptive to either petition, and particularly not to the Memorandum of Advice. The two petitions were important developments in contemporary Saudi political history, and were in general, and the Memorandum of Advice in particular, firmly constructed. They presented clear Sunni Islamic-based demands for political change and reform. Reformist suggestions and ideas were proposed to bring about change and reform to domestic and foreign policy. It was argued that the ruling authority and state apparatus should be questioned, checked and held to account on constitutional and institutional bases, and required that the Monarchy should introduce institutional, constitutional and legal-based reforms, with the ruling authority subject to Sunni Islamic Law. The demands for change, and the reform advocated, provided a basis for the transformation of the Monarchy into a constitutional Sunni Islamic Monarchy. The thinking behind the two petitions needs to be examined. The author sees al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar as consistent Sunni Islamic reformists leading forward a process of political change and reform. Within the signatory body of the two petitions, the leadership is considered an important force deserving special attention, as the discourses of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar historically preceded the two petitions, and continue in importance up to the present.

Defining the movement Defining the reformist leadership involves diverse, but complementary, elements. The three reformists are specialists in Islamic studies within different

Introduction

5

subfields: al-Hawali is a specialist in ‘aqidah, [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief], al-Oudah a specialist in studies of the prophetic Sunnah and al-Omar a specialist in Qur’anic [pertaining to the Qur’an] studies. This determines the scholarly focus of each: ●





Al-Hawali emphasizes the Islamic ‘aqidah, per se, and the intellectual bases on which this should be implemented in life. Al-Oudah emphasizes Islamic behaviour and conduct in more practical and empirical ways, and when he speaks he brings in examples, empirical cases, stories, incidents and smaller detail to support his argument. Al-Omar directly focuses on understanding Qur’anic methods for change and reform, with the various dialogues in the Qur’an important material from which he takes administrative lessons and builds organizational ideas.

These intellectual, behavioural and organizational aspects of the three scholars are complementary, and, collectively, the core argument is the necessity of applying shari‘ah [Islamic Law] as a comprehensive law for state and society. The leadership are du‘ah [Islamic callers] who spread Sunni Islamic knowledge through simple words, and they are also fuqaha [plural of faqih, jurisprudents, jurists], answering many legal questions from their audiences.10 They are ‘ulama, whose mission is to take Islam forward; allowing Islam to take hold, strengthen its elements, meet challenges and attract more people to its realm; and, as such, they require political change and reform. The political activities involve striving for the establishment of an ummah [nation] and a dawlah [state] that practices ‘adl [justice], fights corruption and implements the shari‘ah. The reformist mission of the three scholars is to maintain Sunni Islamic origins, and reactivate those origins when they have been challenged, changed, forgotten or discarded. The leadership manifests itself most notably in calling for comprehensive reform and change in state and society, and the reformist mission of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar is considered legitimate, historical and structured as an inherited Sunni Islamic scholarly and political mission. The goal has been to open a new phase of life in Saudi Arabia. The leadership is seen as a tajdid group or part of the wider contemporary Sunni Islamic tajdid movement. The term tajdidu al-din [to renew religion] is an accepted idiomatic Islamic term. The word tajdid relates to jadid, meaning to renew, and there are three connected and complementary meanings: ● ●



To renew means something was present, or existed, before renewal. This something experienced deterioration and decay, and became ‘outdated’. This something experienced restoration – to its condition and status before the deterioration and decay.11

6

Introduction

The Holy Qur’an contains expressions that contribute to the meaning of tajdid such as: islah [reform], ihya [restoration, renewal, regeneration], taghyir [change], nur [light], and tanwir [enlightenment]. These terms lead on to the meaning of maintaining shari‘ah [Islamic Law] and reflecting shari‘ah’s fundamental character. Shari‘ah is valid at any time and place as shari‘ah is khalidah [eternal, living forever]. Yet shari‘ah might experience deterioration and decay. So, tajdid is to be able to restore shari’ah to its condition and status before deterioration and decay, and to maintain its purity and origins. In this case, mujadidun [reformers] or ‘ulama work to restore shari‘ah to its original conditions. These reformers counter bid‘ah [innovation in religion, heresy], fasad [corruption, disorder], dhalal [straying from Islam] and counter opposing thoughts through juristic Sunni Islamic arguments and evidence.12 The term ‘reformist’ is restricted in this book and reflects the elements of tajdid. Reformist leadership,13 or leadership, refers to the ‘three scholars’ who require juristic-based Sunni Islamic political change and reform, and who are developing their discourse in this direction. In this case, the term ‘reformist’ is synonymous with the word islahi in Arabic and to the word muslih in the terminology of fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]. Both terms, islahi [reformist] and muslih [reformer] come from the words salih [upright, good] and islah [reformation]. In the terminology of the Sunni Islamic fiqh, the word salih is customary and conventional and describes a Muslim who applies shari‘ah in life. The word salihat [good works, righteous deeds] in the Holy Qur’an refers to specific works and deeds. Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar see themselves as islahiyun Islamiyun [Islamic reformers] and base their demands for political change and reform on Sunni Islamic Jurisprudence. The discourse of the leadership presents this jurisprudence which contains the concept of political change and reform. They understand islah, or reform, to refer to implementing change and reform based on shari‘ah. In this sense, the leadership has a specific perception of the term ‘political change and reform’, built on Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence].14 Between 1990 and 1994 the leadership’s discourses flourished and increased. The answer from the Monarchy to the discourse and performance of the leadership was to place them under arrest. The Monarchy had been increasing its pressure on, and coercion of, the leadership to give up its reformist arguments and activities. The policy of pressure and coercion escalated in different forms, but ended when al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar became prisoners of the State, from September 1994 until June 1999, when they were released from prison without official charges.15 The Sunni Islamic journey of the Saudi reformist leadership, from 1981 to early 2006, is the substance of this book, and situates the three scholars as an influential ‘new generation’ of ‘ulama in contemporary Saudi history. They provide patterns of political behaviour and arguments that must be examined, as through such examination the question of political change and reform in Saudi Arabia is addressed; an issue which is an essential dimension to the study of the reformist leadership.

Introduction

7

Constitutional, legal and political aspects The nature of the reformist leadership cannot really be understood without highlighting the constitutional, legal and political crisis for the Monarchy, with the core of this crisis including actions against its Sunni Islamic legitimacy. The Saudi Basic Law [Constitution], issued in March 1982, by Royal decree, and reissued in March 1992,16 places the legitimacy of the state on a Sunni Islamic foundation. This provides legitimate and lawful foundations for Saudi citizens to carry out Sunni Islamic reformist activities.17 ● ●









● ●



● ●





Article 1 states clearly that the Saudi Monarchy is a Sunni Islamic State. Part C of Article 3 refers to the first pillar in Islam ‘There is only one God and Muhammad is His Prophet’. Part B of Article 5 clarifies that allegiance to the Monarch is in accordance with the principles of the Holy Qur’an and the Tradition of the Venerable Prophet. Article 6 states that ‘Citizens are to pay allegiance to the King in accordance with the holy Qur’an and the tradition of the Prophet, in submission and obedience in times of ease and difficulty, fortune and adversity’. Article 9 stresses that Saudi families shall be raised on the basis of the Islamic faith. Article 11 states that ‘Saudi society will be based on the principle of adherence to God’s command . . . ’ Article 13 says that ‘education will aim at instilling the Islamic faith . . . ’ Article 23 states ‘the state protects Islam; it implements its shari‘ah; it orders people to do right and shun evil; it fulfils the duty regarding God’s call’. Article 26 includes ‘the state protects human rights in accordance with the Islamic shari‘ah’. Article 34 obliges each citizen to defend Islam. Article 43 gives the right to all citizens to complain or make a plea against injustice at the King’s court or that of the Crown Prince. Article 48 states ‘the courts will apply the rules of the Islamic shari‘ah in cases brought before them, in accordance with what is indicated in the Book and the Sunnah, and statutes decreed by the Ruler which do not contradict the Book or the Sunnah’. Article 55 establishes that the Monarch carries out Saudi policy in accordance with the provisions of Islam, and that the Monarch oversees the implementation of the Islamic shari‘ah.18

These constitutional articles provide shar‘iyah mushtarakah [a common legitimate base] for both the Saudi Monarchy and the reformist leadership, and a legal and lawful foundation for the leadership’s discourse and performance, with demands for political change and reform also based on the State Constitution. This raises questions as to why al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar were prevented from speaking out and voicing concern. The legality of their

8

Introduction

imprisonment is questioned, especially as they were released from prison after five years without official charges. The Monarchy’s act of imprisoning the reformist leadership is seen as part of the legitimacy crisis, as the Monarchy acted against al-shar‘iyah mushtarakah [a common legitimate base], which should bring the Monarchy and ‘ulama together as one Sunni Islamic political unit, even though they might experience mutual conflict, tension or struggle. There have been questions over the Islamic legitimacy of the Monarchy, but the major question remains: Who preserves this legitimacy, the Monarchy as such, the ‘ulama or both? The Monarchy’s Sunni Islamic legitimacy lies, in its origin, with the Saudi State as an Islamic-religious state in historical formation,19 and in constitutional terms, where the State’s Basic Law maintains this Sunni Islamic legitimacy. In some State policies, or in parts of certain State policies, this legitimacy has been questioned. The Monarchy is often criticized in terms of one of the most important principles in the Basic Law. Article 8 establishes that the ‘Government of Saudi Arabia is based on the premise of justice, consultation [Arabic: shura] and equality in accordance with the Islamic shari‘ah’.20 Yet the Saudi system is still based on exclusive power with absolutist rule by the Monarchy.21 Here, the Basic Law maintains that the King is the point of reference for judicial, executive and regulatory authorities.22 In other words, the King is ‘the final authority for all state’s power’.23 The outcome could be the creation or consolidation of Monarchical legislation, or an independent Monarch legislative authority. In empirical or practical terms, there is no clear and active institution-based supervisory system that checks the public policies of the Monarchy. This absolutist power has produced a de facto ruling elite or class, with massive power and almost unlimited access to the country’s wealth. Although this form of rule is subject to protest and criticism, and there is a yearning and demand for a more accountable state,24 the Monarchy continues its exclusive rule and almost absolute power. In his study on Islamic Law and the legal system in Saudi Arabia, Frank Vogal argues that the Saudi legal system professes Islamic Law, but the system experiences a Western legal process, which indicates secular influence, and he questions the Monarchy’s claim of applying shari‘ah or Islamic Law. The Monarchy faces the difficult task of reconciling the two legal forms.25 Vogal’s insight can be further noted in the case of the Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] of 1992. The Memorandum presents legal and political critique to the Monarchy, clarifying the way Islamic Law is challenged through the Monarchy’s public policies.26 The point of agreement, for example, between Vogal and the signatories, including the reformist leadership, of Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah is that Saudi criminal law has adopted non-Islamic codes.27 The Memorandum further points out other examples where non-Islamic laws were imported, as in the labour system, stock exchange system, commercial arbitration, company law, law against commercial fraud, military penal code, minister’s tribunal and the law against bribery.28

Introduction

9

From 1990 until 1999 the Monarchy practised forms of oppression against the leadership – who were threatened, denied their right to freedom of expression according to Islamic Law, dismissed from their work and then imprisoned for five years. This occurred in a context where the Monarchy was failing to meet Sunni Islamic juristic conditions for occupying ruling political office,29,30 and the leadership was advocating political change and reform. Nevertheless, the leadership did not depart from an agenda of non-violent political change. The leadership does not interpret the function of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] as requiring al-khuruj [revolt, revolution, rebellion]. This raises important questions: ●

● ●

What are the foundations for the politics and vision of the reformist leadership? How does the leadership view issues of political change and reform? How does the leadership see itself relative to the existing political system?

This book answers these questions, and addresses and clarifies the philosophy or rationale behind the leadership’s support of non-violent means in their political struggle.

The leadership in the context of Islamic movements ●







The leadership is harakah ‘ilmiyah islahiyah sunniyah salafiyah31 siyasiyah [a Sunni salafi reformist scientific and political movement], and takes al-jihad al-‘ilmi [the jihad of spreading Sunni Islamic education and knowledge] as its central method and function. The leadership differs from the Muslim Brotherhood Organisation, which is a sophisticated hierarchically-organized body and a wider institution, with political factors and activities as its central focus. The leadership is not a hierarchically-organized unit, and consists of ‘ulama who are scholarly and politically active, and who form a nizam [system], not an organization or association, and manage their own activities. The leadership, as a concept, indirectly indicates ideas of organization, system or tanzim. Al-Oudah explains that each Islamic da‘wah or movement needs to have three bases: (1) principles, (2) supporters and (3) leadership,32 and managing these elements cannot be without tanzim [organization, system], but, as yet, this organizational question remains a ‘challenge’ facing the leadership. The interaction between the leadership and the Muslim Brotherhood is in intellectual and policy arenas. The leadership has intellectually interacted with, or been influenced by, important Muslim Brotherhood Organisation political thinkers, such as Muhammad Ahmad al-Rashid, considered a strategic Sunni Islamic political thinker, whose discourse is directed to the whole Sunni Islamic movements’ members, adherents, audiences and masses.

10 ●

















Introduction An ex-member of the Muslim Brotherhood Organisation, Muhammad Qutb, was supervisor to Safar al-Hawali in his postgraduate studies. Al-Hawali used important thoughts from Sayid Qutb,33 an Islamic political thinker and a leading member in the Muslim Brotherhood Organisation, in his PhD dissertation Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought]. The three ‘ulama see the political question as a part, or component, of a complex Sunni Islamic fiqh, in which the political question is comprehensively analysed as a Sunni Islamic juristic concern linked to reality. Official parliamentary political life does not exist in Saudi Arabia, and the leadership relies heavily on its discourse to address the political question, either directly or indirectly, and uses public opportunities to address their concerns. The leadership is separate from Islamic modernists and ‘liberal Islam’. The leadership has no relationship at all, or connection with, liberal Islamic thinkers who have been influenced by Western liberal philosophy which believes in separating church and state or politics from religion.34 The leadership presents the political factor as a fundamental part of the Sunni Islamic faith, and also presents Sunni Islamic juristic-based explanations of freedom, human rights, democracy, change and reform quite differently to liberal Islamic advocates. The leadership’s policy of change and reform is distinguished from other Islamic jihadic [an adjective of the term jihad] movements which take military jihad as a central strategy to their goals or to express themselves. The leadership’s Sunni Islamic reformist line is distinguished from other Salafi Islamic groups, who focus on social and spiritual factors, with the political factor of little concern. The leadership’s Sunni Islamic reformist approach differs from other Salafi Islamic trends who consistently maintain loyalty to the status quo or to the de facto government. The leadership is distinct, and the three scholars represent a combination of concern for Islamic traditions and law; yet an ability to innovate – a matter of fiqh al-waqi‘ [jurisprudence of reality]. Fiqh al-waqi‘, as presented by al-Omar, involves methods of understanding politics; an important new Sunni Islamic juristic-based methodology that maintains Islamic traditions while seeking adjustments with the external world, including the general environment, different spheres and players, while working towards change and reform. The theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] helps the reformers maintain the pillars of Islam, or the Islamic tradition, and focus on the reasons behind Islamic regulations and decisions that need to be taken. Clarification of reasons helps adjustments with the external world, and, for ijtihad ‘amali [practical or empirical interpretation], helps

Introduction



11

reformers manage their activities and maintain their discourse and performance. The leadership’s approach shows the viability of Islam as a comprehensive religion with traditions that have thawabit shar‘iyah [fixed juristic Sunni Islamic bases], and methods or ideas, to bring progress and development to state and society, without modernity or secularism. Modernity and secularism are criticized by the leadership as two ideologies contradictory to the Sunni Islamic faith.

The leadership in the context of Saudi politics Vis-à-vis the Monarchy. The leadership shares with the Monarchy a Sunni Islamic legitimacy; yet conflict between the two was seen during the 1990s, however, post-1999, or after prison, the leadership and the Monarchy have come to an understanding or tacit alliance. The conflict during the 1990s is mainly seen as between the Saudi Suderis branch [Prince Naif al-Aziz, the Minister of Interior, and Prince Salman al-Aziz, the Governor of Riyadh] and the leadership. Vis-à-vis liberal/secular forces or al-hadathiyun [the modernists].35 The discourse of the leadership and other ‘ulama’s or shaikhs’ discourses leave the impression that the leadership is in conflict with liberal/secular forces, mainly located in the media and state bureaucracy. The leadership was criticized, and attacked, by the press during the 1990s. This gives rise to the thought that liberal/secular forces are against the leadership’s programme for political change and reform. The reformist leadership can understand, form alliances or cooperate with other Saudi Sunni Islamic forces, or even with official State Islamic bodies and policies against liberal/secular forces. This indicates the wide structure of the Saudi Sunni Islamic movement, in its official and nonofficial dimensions, which nevertheless can experience internal division or differences which can, in turn, affect cooperation. Vis-à-vis the ‘ulama. Although the leadership, as new generation ‘ulama, are independent of the established traditional Saudi Sunni Islamic scholarly institution or community, they are likely to form understandings, or alliances, with these bodies. Vis-à-vis jihadis. The leadership, who apply civic–civil methods and policy towards change and reform, has played an important role in neutralizing the jihadis, who tend to apply physical power or violent means towards change. The leadership’s discourse, influential and strong, can bring the jihadis into the civic–civil spheres of the Saudi Sunni Islamic community, or to the leadership’s Sunni Islamic scholarly reformist approach. Vis-à-vis government supporters. The leadership’s reformist discourse can appeal to government supporters, in the sense that the leadership’s discourse has influential social and spiritual dimensions that attract audiences. The Sunni Islamic juristic language is attractive and on common ground with audiences who are Sunni Muslim in their belief or origins.

12

Introduction

Procedure This book is exploratory in nature and observes the political behaviour of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, and the way they construct the question of political change and reform towards understanding their vision. Methodologically, the approach is based on qualitative methods that interact with the empirical process. Some explanation is needed for the term ‘political behaviour’: The term political behaviour refers, as often to a set of methods or dissertation perspectives, as to a subject of study, that is, human behaviour in a political context . . . The focus is on behaviour, in large part because this is observable. According to Heinz Eulau, the approach ‘is concerned with what man does politically and the meanings he attaches to his behaviour’.36 To build a holistic understanding of the leadership, one has to be aware of the texts of Sunni Islam, in general, and its political methodology and theory, in particular. The leadership’s political behaviour is linked to this realm of Sunni Islam. Here, fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] provides units of analysis, which can be applied to explore the world of the leadership. The author applies linguistic analytical methods to grasp in depth the meaningful elements of key juristic terminology. In this, the Arabic language is an important instrument towards further insight into the terminology employed by the leadership. This method should create an accurate picture of the foundation and structure of the political behaviour and vision of these scholars or the leadership. The author applies a comparative approach. The book covers certain important discourses by other historical and contemporary Sunni Islamic reformers and ‘ulama. These are selected on the assumption that these reformers and ‘ulama have formed, with the reformist leadership, a wider reformist circle, or contemporary Sunni Islamic tajdid movement. The ideas of the leadership have met, interacted and intertwined with, or been influenced by, the discourses of this wider reformist circle. The book documents this process of meeting, interaction, intertwining and influence within the wider tajdid movement. The leadership is not an isolated scholarly body, and, although an independent scholarly unit, its members have important intellectual links and interactions, both historical and contemporary. A holistic approach is needed to understand the way and the direction in which the leadership is moving and developing. The words, visions and expressions of the three scholars must be understood. Quotations and passages taken directly from statements by the leadership have been studied and linked to empirical consequences. The author gathered information from various sources, including the leadership itself. The empirical method provides a method of understanding the development of the leadership in chronological

Introduction

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terms. An understanding of the texts and an empirical approach enables the author to form a description, explanation and analysis of the activities of the leadership. Indeed, the author can refer to a remark by Shaikh al-Omar, who said, in dealing with the author’s curiosity on the question of political change and reform, and the role of the leadership in this matter, that ‘you have been able to understand us even more than our students’.37 Al-Oudah used similar words in dealing with the author’s interest in understanding the discourse and performance of the three scholars.38 The author’s interest begins with his own life experience. Before the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990, the author had heard of Safar al-Hawali, as an emerging and distinguished new generation ‘alim. On the eve of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, the recorded lectures of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar started reaching the Arab Gulf region. After the invasion of Kuwait, but before ‘Desert Storm’ was launched in January 1991, the author visited Saudi Arabia, and crossed the country from the eastern province, al-Ihasa, through the capital city of Riyadh in Najd, to the western province, al-Hijaz. From that visit, the author gained insights into Saudi Arabia and observed that younger Saudis were impressed by the lectures of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar. The three scholars drew attention to the fact that the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait was only one of many complicated problems, which needed to be solved. During the Summer of 2001 the author met al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, without restrictions, locally in Riyadh, al-Qassim, Jeddah and the Holy City of Makkah. Meetings and discussions were held, both individually and with their inner circles, while the author also interviewed and observed people who knew of the consequences of the arrest of the three shaikhs and later developments. The author visited certain state Islamic institutions, for example, the Hay’at al-Amr b’il Ma‘ruf wa al Nahi ‘an al Munkar [Presidency of the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice (Jeddah Headquarter)], and attended the Summer programme run by the latter. The author also visited al-Haramain [the two holy sacred Mosques] Charitable Organisation,39 the Islamic Education Foundation, the Co-operative Office for Islamic Call and Guidance, the Co-operative Summer Camp and the Charitable Association for the Memorization of the Holy Qur’an. The purpose was to familiarize the author with Islamic activities, works and programmes run and organized by the government. This book has five primary resources: ●





Cassettes covering the lectures, lessons and sermons of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, from the middle of the 1980s up to September 1994. Scholarly works of the three ‘ulama, including Master’s and PhD dissertations. Cassettes covering the lectures and teaching lessons of al-Oudah, made after prison.

14 ●



Introduction Various books, documents and studies relating to the subject; including unpublished works, some of limited distribution and some authorized texts by the leadership. Material from Internet websites, especially al-Oudah’s website, islamtoday.

The volume of references is such that it is impossible to include all of these. Any reader wishing to obtain more information is welcome to request, via e-mail, an electronic copy of the author’s PhD dissertation, which also includes a number of appendices. The author conducted interviews and conversations with the leadership’s students and audiences: in the United States of America from 1995 to 1998; in Saudi Arabia, during fieldwork in July and August 2001; and in the United Kingdom during the writing of this book. The author also interviewed and conversed with a senior shaikh, residing in London, during 2001–2003. Amnesty International sources also provide records on the leadership.

Contents Thirteen chapters are covered in the book: ●

















Chapter 1, ‘Introduction’, provides a comprehensive background of the subject. Chapter 2, ‘Context’, situates the book within the wider context of Saudi politics, international relationships and political Islam. Chapter 3, ‘The Sunni fiqh’, studies the reformist leadership’s perspective on Sunni Jurisprudence, and aims at understanding the nature, purpose and origins of the leadership; clarifying the political behaviour of the group. Chapter 4, ‘Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh’, discusses certain important elements of Sunni Jurisprudence to enable the reader to build on insights into how ‘ulama, in the case of the reformist leadership, pursue their policy. Chapter 5, ‘Intellectual interaction’, presents the interaction of the leadership with certain historical and contemporary Sunni Islamic ‘ulama and scholars. Chapter 6, ‘Political struggle’, examines the development of the reformist leadership’s policy of al-mudafa‘a from 1981. Chapter 7, ‘Countering policy in the 1990s’, focuses on the policy of al-mudafa‘a during the 1990s. Chapter 8, ‘Petitions and challenges’, examines the influence of the reformist leadership on the petitions of May 1991 [Letter of Shawal or Letter of the ‘Ulama] and July 1992 [Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah – Memorandum of Advice]. Chapter 9, ‘The Monarchy and support’, focuses on the tension between the leadership and the Monarchy during the 1990s, which gives an

Introduction









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insight into the leadership’s political resistance and the consequences of their being arrested by the government. Chapter 10, ‘Appeasement’, deals with aspects of the leadership’s appeasement policy since 1999 when they were released from prison. Chapter 11, ‘External focus’, explains the leadership’s resumption of its policy of al-mudafa‘a [dimension of countering] towards external aspects in the post-prison era, and explores the logic of the countering policy. Chapter 12, ‘Political realism’, gives an understanding of the reformist leadership’s present policy, through observation of their discourse and performance from June 2003 to June 2006, in a domestic, regional and global context. Chapter 13, ‘Conclusion’, is concerned with the actions and the leadership’s discourse in its wider context, and their important Islamic intellectual and political activities over the past 25 years. The chapter addresses the question of political change and reform in Saudi Arabia and possible directions in the future.

Al-mudafa‘a A central hypothesis of this book is that the strategy and actions of the leadership constitute an expression of the concept of al-mudafa‘a. The root of the word al-mudafa‘a, in Arabic, is the word dafa‘a [to push, pay over to, to repel, drive away, avert]. The word dafa‘a is to defend, and the word daf‘ is the act of prohibiting and prevention.40 Dafa‘a is to reject an argument by counter-argument or proof.41 So, daf‘ means to push away, to push back, to challenge others, to defend a position, to protect a thing or principle and to compete with others or against rival forces through argument, behaviour and policy.42 Al-mudafa‘a is to convince people by argument and by nullifying an opponent’s argument.43 Dafa’a also means pushing ahead, along and forward.44 Al-mudafa‘a implements the meaning, or strategy, of appeasement, where the appeasement policy does not contradict the dimension of countering, but aims to reduce the level of countering and the level of conflict in maintaining power, or the substance of power. The appeasement policy is a form of low-risk political struggle whereas the countering policy indicates a high-risk political struggle. Al-mudafa‘a thus indicates the leadership’s two-dimensional policy of both countering and appeasing, as applied to a civic–civil struggle for political change and reform.

Summary This chapter lays the holistic foundations for the book. The core of the study is to understand the world of the domestic Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist leadership of three, new generation, ‘ulama and university professors: Safar al-Hawali, Salman al-Oudah and Nassir al-Omar. The three scholars pursue

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Introduction

an academic approach, with their framework simply rooted in Sunni Islamic concepts. Their discourses and political behaviour, from the 1980s to the present, provide important insights into issues surrounding political change and reform in contemporary Saudi Arabia. Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] has clearly been a key factor in how these ‘ulama have fashioned their concepts and behaved politically. Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], in particular, needs to be explored and examined if the work and vision of the leadership is to be understood. On the basis of Islamic Political Jurisprudence, the leadership seeks political change and reform through accommodation and not through revolution. This accommodation incorporates a balance between conflict with, and acceptance of, the official consensus. The policy of accommodation can be understood in the context of al-mudafa‘a, which indicates a two-dimensional policy of both countering and appeasing. It involves civic–civil political work towards political change and reform.

2

Context

This chapter situates the book within the wider context of Saudi politics, international relationships and political Islam. General themes and analysis frameworks are addressed, with the intention of placing this book vis-à-vis available literature. Literature on political Islam, and politics and international relationships of Saudi Arabia is appreciable and wide ranging in its approach, but much of it does not address the particular focus of this book on the Saudi Sunni reformist leadership. The ‘levels’ or ‘circles’ in which the reformist leadership operates are the following: 1 2 3

4

The international sphere. With interaction between transnational Islamic movements and Western powers; and Saudi Arabia’s position in these interactions. The Saudi political system. Its formation, legitimacy basis, institutions, key power groups and issues of political contest. The intellectual/jurisprudence traditions behind the reformers. Islamic reform in general, the debate over whether Islamic reformism1 is compatible with modernity/reform, and the concepts/location of the reform movement among other Islamic views. Political action. To locate the reformist leadership in the wider discussion about ‘political Islam’, and Islam’s relevance to politics.

In literature on Saudi politics, a common discussion point is the paramount focus on the role of the Saudi political system. Most focus on the bounds of the politics of the Royal House, which could be called the ‘ruling house-centric’ approach. The struggle for power within the Saudi ruling house, and the way Saudi Monarchs determine and build their ruling power, are the main aspects.2 This book does not focus on the politics of the ruling family, as such, without, however, neglecting the ruling house or Monarchy, which, as a player, interacts with the leadership – who are the core interest of this book. The politics of the Saudi Royal House are complex. The Royal House should be seen as an influential domestic player among other Saudi domestic

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players who live and interact with each other. The Saudi domestic arena has three influential domestic bodies: 1 2 3

The Royal House. The Sunni Islamic reformist, conservative and traditional community or trends. The liberal and secular front or al-hadathiyun [the modernists].3

The Royal House and the Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist movement, which includes the reformist leadership, can experience conflict, differences, tension and mutual struggle; a reality during the 1990s, but they might also become strong allies or develop tacit agreements, illustrated in developments since 1999. Since September 11 (9/11), and in its aftermath, the Royal House, the reformist leadership and the Saudi Islamic movement as a whole, have started recognizing their common Sunni Islamic legitimacy, and they perceive certain threats, both external and internal, which can pose a danger to Saudi society as a whole. Saudi Arabia, in particular the Royal House and the Saudi Islamic movement, may experience destabilization in the following situations: ●













The United States can destabilize Saudi Arabia, through pressure, influence and forming alliances with certain Saudi domestic players. The United States can destabilize Saudi Arabia, by forming alliances with all or some of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, with these alliances structured as an axis against Saudi Arabia. The United States can destabilize Saudi Arabia, through pressure, influence or by forming alliances with certain Western powers or international bodies. Iran can destabilize Saudi Arabia, by influencing the Saudi Shiite community [which mainly lives in the Saudi eastern province], forming alliances with Iraqi Shiite ruling groups, which came to power in Iraq after the US invasion of Iraq in 2003. Taking some of the GCC or influential ruling elites as allies or under Iranian influence, being a tacit ally to the United States, building a military and nuclear power, and developing Iranian-Shiite hegemony in the region. Iraq can destabilize Saudi Arabia, through possible alliances with the United States and Iran. Gulf Cooperation Council states, although officially allied to Saudi Arabia as members of the GCC, can be influenced by, or form alliances with, the United States, or even Iran, which can also, as a result, destabilize Saudi Arabia. Domestic Saudi militant groups can destabilize Saudi Arabia, through violence and propaganda.

The Monarchy is at the heart of a struggle and is likely to defend policy against these forms of threats, by emphasizing its Arabic and Islamic identity,

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forming domestic alliances with the Saudi Sunni Islamic community and movement, including the reformist leadership, and by developing a national Saudi consensus bringing Islamic and other Saudi trends together. Alliances can be external which could include alliances with Islamic powers, such as Pakistan, and a regional understanding with Egypt, Jordan and Turkey. The Monarchy’s standing containment and détente policy also seeks to reduce tension with players posing threats to the Monarchy. The Royal House is a crucial part, or component, of the Saudi political system, and it is unnecessary to perceive the Saudi political system as an extension of, or overlapping with, the Royal House. The Saudi political system consists of institutions, trends and key powers, and includes: 1 2 3 4

The Royal House. The Council of Ministers. Majlis al-Shura [The Consultative Council]. Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [The Council of the Senior ‘Ulama].

These are the four influential central components of the Saudi political system and within this system one sees concepts, or ideologies, revolving around Islamism, nationalism and liberalism/secularism. These concepts, or ideologies, influence the Saudi political system and Saudi society. Despite the idea that liberalism/secularism has an influence on the Saudi government, Islamism remains State policy. Official domestic Islamic policy can be advanced in the Council through Islamic Ministers in charge of Islamic affairs. The Islamic voice, or Islamic reformist voice, is heard in the Saudi Consultative Council, Majlis al-Shura, where Shaikh Dr Salih al-Humaid is President, and Islamic figures are members of the Council. Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [The Council of the Senior ‘Ulama] can also influence Saudi politics through fatwa [legal opinion]. Saudi nationalism can be developed not only within the frameworks of Islamism but also within other ideological frameworks where royalists, Islamists and liberals all speak of nationalism. Observing the politics of Saudi Islamism and Saudi liberalism is relevant to the theory which suggests that there is an essential influence of both trends on the whole of Saudi politics. From a more realistic viewpoint, ‘Saudi Islamism’ is official, and seen within the Government, but it can also be populist, activist and a civil society where the reformist leadership and other Saudi Sunni reformist bodies, and official and non-official ‘Saudi Islamism’ can interact and, sometimes, overlap. The Royal House can be influenced by both Islamism and liberalism/secularism, but officially side with Islamism, which is linked to State legitimacy. The important point is the struggle between Islamism and liberalism/secularism which mainly takes place in the societal arena, in the media, on the Internet and elsewhere. Here the struggle can specifically be seen between Saudi officials or public figures [journalists, academics, writers, ministers] classified as leading the Saudi liberal and secular front, and the Islamic reformist movements, including the reformist leadership. The royalist leaders might take a neutral position, or

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Context

apply containment policies to both, or even be silent, but it is noted that the Monarchy can apply Islamic policies which can satisfy Islamic voices, or policies which can be classified as liberal or secular by Islamic voices. The Monarchy is more likely to either meet external pressure or satisfy domestic liberal/secular trends and powers. The Monarchy is faced with a dilemma between the desire to maintain the Saudi royalist position as an ally to the West, wanting to be seen as a moderate or more ‘open’ Muslim country, and a need, legitimately based on the Saudi State Law and history, to maintain the Islamic identity of the State and society. Domestic confrontation between secular/liberal trends and Islamic trends is tense and at the core of Saudi politics. During the 1990s, the domestic Saudi Islamic movement, including the reformist leadership, identified official liberal/secular powers or influences within the Saudi political system.4 After 9/11, and in its aftermath, the domestic Saudi Islamic movement mostly sees secular/liberal trends in the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia, as identifying their interests with external or international players, such as the US government, especially where the US government supports liberal/secular trends in the Islamic world, including Saudi Arabia, to lead change and reform.5 The Saudi liberal movement accuses the Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist movement of being ‘radical’, ‘extremist’ and provoking terrorism.6 The real political power is in the hands of key members of the Royal House and in the hands of the Council of Ministers both of which represent the Saudi executive power, whereas the Consultative Council and Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama are less powerful. This will remain the situation unless the Saudi Consultative Council can become more structured as an Islamic institution, and is expanded into a complete legislative power, where the Council of Ministers’ authority can be checked by Majlis al-Shura, and more Islamic figures can be appointed as ministers. This is a prime aim of Saudi Islamism, including the reformist leadership, so Islamic reform and change can smoothly and legally take place through parliamentary politics or through independent legislative authorities. Some Saudi royalist influences, including Prince Naif Ibn Abd al-Aziz, the Minister of Interior, and Prince Salman Ibn Abd al-Aziz, the Governor of Riyadh, were strongly against the leadership’s demands for political change and reform. Milton Viorst met the two Princes in the 1990s, after the imprisonment of the leadership, and quotes Prince Salman as being quite negative towards al-Oudah and al-Hawali and calling them troublemakers.7 Milton Viorst also quotes Prince Naif, who spoke negatively of the reformist petition of 1992 and the leadership. These leaders have changed their perception of the reformist leadership since 1999 when the leadership was released from prison, and the Monarchy has made further positive changes towards the leadership since 9/11, and in its aftermath, with the Monarchy and the leadership becoming allies, or tacit allies, after the United States classified the Monarchy as an ‘international

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threat’ to US security. The Monarchy, along with the reformist leadership, has started operating on the international scene, and at extra-domestic levels, seeking to counter this US perception. The role of Islam in developing important issues, such as the process of building a state8 and the creation of Saudi political nationalism,9 is discussed in some literature. Islam is seen as the core factor in the relationship between education, as an independent variable, and aspects of political development and stability in Saudi Arabia.10 These studies show that other factors play an essential role in developing these aspects, but confirm Islam is the important core of the Saudi national identity.11 Within this Islamic realm, one should recognize that contemporary Saudi Arabia, through official and non-official means, has developed an Islamic educational system which is identified with Saudi Islamism, and which, besides being a source of Saudi political nationalism, can be transnational/Islamic in thought, creating or influencing Islamic movements. These movements, or those that have been influenced by Saudi Islamism, can develop loyalty, or sympathy, with the Saudi Islamic experience, as seen in official and non-official realms. Other studies deal with the development of the state welfare system and the role played by this system in maintaining political nationalism.12 The Monarchy is the major player in the management of the welfare system. This system, per se, is compatible with the Sunni Islamic juristic theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] which concerns, among other things, maintaining Muslims’ welfare. The Monarchy can create, or maintain, Saudi citizenry loyalty, and empower state legitimacy by controlling the welfare system, or providing this system to citizens through state institutions. Here the Saudi political system can govern as a major force. In this case the reformist leadership, as a leading Saudi reformist Islamic front, has no choice but to deal with, or accommodate, this major state system, which limits the reformist leadership’s political action, but can provide various opportunities for the leadership’s performance and support Islamic programmes and policies in society. The process of modernization in the Kingdom13 is dealt with in some literature. Here, there are various arguments, mainly structured on ‘modernization’ versus ‘tradition’, as two contrasting variables. Modernization must either replace tradition or be resisted by tradition. However, other arguments emphasize accommodation, adjustment or compromise. In this sense, although modernization has taken place in Saudi Arabia, one can argue that the core religious tenets are maintained in Saudi society, especially if one takes into consideration the Islamic features in this society, such as Islamic institutions, laws, customs, tradition and the emergence of reformist Islamic trends in Saudi society since the 1980s, influenced by the reformist leadership. It is unnecessary to view modernization as opposing tradition and religion, as the process of modernization can be selective. In this sense, the Islamic intellectual/jurisprudence traditions, which the reformers support, have successfully brought Islamic reformist models, programmes or policies,

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with modernism Islamized – in this case, losing its liberal/secular characteristics, and becoming technical and administrative in nature, so that they will not contradict, or undermine, the Islamic structure. Other literature on Saudi politics discusses the reformist and scholarly role of the Saudi or Najdi ‘ulama and reformers. The discussion is mainly historical, with no single and definitive case specified on Saudi ‘ulama’s or Islamic reformist leaders’ experiences.14 Related literature is preoccupied with the historical alliance between Imam Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab and Emir Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud [ruler of the town of al-Dar‘iyyah, northeast of the capital Riyadh], in the eighteenth century, and the movement of Juhaiman al-‘Utaibi, in 1979, when he and his group seized the Grand Holy Mosque. These two historical, and other contemporary events, are applied as a paradigm to understand the contemporary role of the ‘ulama, as a whole, or as an institution, in Saudi politics.15 The Monarchy is concerned with maintaining Saudi Islamism, linked to the state-building realm and tradition, and, at the same time, works hard to secure the independent status of Saudi Islamism, separate from other Islamic schools, such as contemporary Islamic political thought and activism, mainly identified with the Muslim Brotherhood movement. The reformist leadership’s nature, roots, history and development identifies the leadership with Islamic intellectualism, activism and reformism, and the leadership cannot be identified separately from contemporary Arab Sunni Islamic reformist movements, with the Muslim Brotherhood at its core. Yet the leadership is dynamic and practical in relaxing this Brotherhood connection by maintaining Saudi Islamism and joining with the Monarchy and the Saudi Islamic community as a whole, especially in the post-prison era and since 9/11. This highlights Saudi Islamism, with historical ‘ulama and leaders (such as Imam Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab, Emir Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud, Shaikh Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz and other Saudi ‘ulama), as an Islamic experience different from the Muslim Brotherhood, which has other Islamic thinkers and leaders (such as Hasan al-Bana, Sayid Qutb, Muhammad Qutb, Abd al-Qadir ‘Awdha, Muhammad al-Rashid, Mustafa Mashhur, Ahmmad Yasin – founder of the Palestinian Islamic movement, Hamas). Yet they all rely on Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] in general, and fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], to shape their thought, movements, positions or actions. Various literature deals, primarily, with the Islamic da‘wah of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab, or ‘Wahhabism’, as often referred to in Western writings.16 The focus is on the historical background, emergence and origins of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab and his reformist movement, per se.17 Other studies are judgemental of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s da‘wah.18 In this book, the author does not address Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s Islamic da‘wah as such, with the focus narrowed to the role of the contemporary Saudi Islamic reformist leadership, without neglecting the linkage to Ibn Abd al-Wahhab. Wahhabism remains a structure in Saudi Arabia, and is a transnational/Islamic concept, as

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Wahhabism focuses on tawhid [monotheism] and gives specific or appropriate answers to deep, difficult and controversial concerns in our contemporary world experience. Although many might think that in the time of modernity, and post-modernity, questions related to monotheism are considered unsuitable, Wahhabism answers this quest and a person’s life can be affected. Other literature focuses on the ‘ulama’s role in establishing and managing the contemporary Islamic education system for women in Saudi Arabia.19 Although this form of literature better fits the educational realm than the political realm, Islamic education is an important element in the Saudi Islamic identity. In other studies, the role of ‘ulama in promoting change and reform is discussed in general, covering various Islamic regions.20 Educational issues and politics are linked together in studying Islamic literature, such as the Qur’an and Sunnah, and their related subjects, whose knowledge structures politics, or political issues of concern, without necessarily being studied directly. Domestic, regional and international politics are linked, and understood, to build an Islamic society including the political system which functions at these three levels. When ‘ulama promote change and reform, or are involved in politics, this is partially the result of their religious education. Sometimes, ‘ulama might not be directly involved in politics, but this does not mean that their religious studies prevent them from being involved in or dealing with politics, and this approach is from personal choice. Certain literature mentions the reformist leadership’s political struggle for change and reform during the 1990s. For example, some literature notes al-Hawali’s significant discourse on the Monarchy accepting American forces in 1990 and the reformist demands of 1991 and 1992.21 Nevertheless, the mention is brief and general. Al-Hawali’s vision is categorized in an ‘anti-Western’ framework without understanding the juristic background behind al-Hawali’s thoughts, and the complexity of political reality that caused al-Hawali to respond. This literature does not deal with reformist demands as intellectual consequences, developing from thought and concern, before the 1990s. The roots and origins of the quest for political change and reform are not understood, nor examined. Moreover, the literature does not go beyond 1992 to explore consequences related to the demands for political change and reform. Milton Viorst discusses the leadership, and other Saudi political cases, linked to the question of reform in Saudi Arabia. He discusses the leadership’s struggle for change and reform in the 1990s; the Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR) – an association established in May 1993 and devoted to Islamic law-based human rights; Dr Muhammad al-Mas‘ari’s opposition to the Monarchy; Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s Islamic movement and the Monarchy’s reactions to all these elements. Although Viorst stresses the necessity for the Monarchy to introduce a political system to satisfy those who want a more accountable state, he does not discuss the leadership case in depth, and the roots of the leadership’s struggle are not examined.22

24

Context

Since the 1990s, Islamic challenges to the Saudi Monarchy include reformist, scientific, intellectual and civic–civil based jihad, as with the reformist leadership, or seeking to overthrow the Monarchy through protest and propaganda, as with the UK-based CDLR, or by violence, in the case of Saudi jihad groups acting violently in Saudi Arabia since the mid-1990s. These opposition forces rely on Sunni Islam to legitimize their performance or political actions. The reformist leadership, with their scientific, intellectual and activist approach, has been able to construct its role within the official and non-official institutional framework. This has enabled the leadership to develop into a form of Islamic opposition, but, retaining its reformist vision and linkage to state institutions, maintain its existence and influence in Saudi domestic politics since the 1980s, whereas other forms of opposition have experienced decline and a lack of public support. Hrair Dekmejian discusses the rise of the question of political change and reform in Saudi Arabia in 1991 and 1992, but builds a negative image of the leadership, and their reformist allies’ demands for political change and reform,23 which does not help an academic, or neutral, understanding of the important political struggle taking place in Saudi Arabia. The leadership sought change and reform during the 1990s which brought the leadership directly into confrontation with the Monarchy, but since 1999 the leadership has been able, by shifting their political action towards consensus with the Monarchy, to focus on societal change and reform. The Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence], in general, and fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], in particular, provide the structure for an adjustable political action. In other literature, the focus is directed primarily towards international relations, foreign policy and the national security of Saudi Arabia.24 In these writings, Islam, the societal variable, which indicates the nation’s value orientation and national unity, and the economic variable, which shows that Saudi possesses vast oil resources, have been essential factors that influence Saudi foreign policy. Other arguments concentrate on Islam as the decisive force that influences Saudi foreign policy. In dealing with the formation of Saudi security policy, security-related alliances and alignment behaviour, together with the perception of regional threats, form the dominant framework of analysis. The issue of Saudi–American relationships or alliances has attracted the attention of many authors.25 Various subjects are covered, including American arms sale to Saudi Arabia and the various economic, military and security ties between the American and Saudi governments. The discussion also deals with the role played by Saudi Arabia over decades in promoting American influence in the Middle East. In all these writings, the frameworks of analysis are mainly ‘state-centric’, the ruling elitist power and small state theories. Although these theories can provide structures towards understanding Saudi Arabia’s international relationships, this subject is complex and

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understanding the Monarchy’s formation of foreign policy should also include consideration of the following aspects: ●









The Monarchy’s nature, or structure, is Sunni Islamic in its roots, and it sees itself as a guardian of the Sunni Islamic belief. Sunni Islamic movements, across nations, seek Saudi support or understanding, with continued royalist support of Islam providing cross-nation loyalty to Saudi Arabia. Criticism can be voiced about the Saudi political system, but not about the Saudi Islamic movement, or the reformist leadership, which have transnational characteristics. The Monarchy is alienated, or hostile, towards ideologies such as communism and atheism, as these ideologies oppose Islam. The Monarchy’s oil capability gives its ruling institution opportunities to finance development, construct citizen loyalty and support Saudi foreign policy. International friendships, cooperation or alliances, mainly related to the oil industry and the economic, commerce and financial realm, are developed, with the Saudi–US relationship, or alliance, mainly linked to this realm. The Monarchy’s legitimacy increasingly determines its foreign policy, particularly in the post 9/11 era, which makes the Saudi government likely to move closer to the domestic Saudi Islamic movement, in general, and to the domestic Saudi Islamic reformist movement, with the reformist leadership at the core of this movement. Saudi royalist voices, particularly in the post 9/11 era, describe the Saudi–US relationship as ‘equivalent or parallel’ and not a ‘patron–client relationship’26 which harms Saudi legitimacy. The economic-based Saudi–US relationship, or alliance, has impacted on Saudi political, strategic and cultural affairs. The Arab Sunni Islamic reformist movements believe that the Monarchy, despite its official Saudi Islamic character, has allied to the United States especially during the Cold War era, with the peak of the Saudi–US alliance in 1990–1991, when the Monarchy and the United States faced the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. The reformist leadership opposed the Saudi–American alliance on a Sunni Islamic juristic basis, which includes the political realm, during the 1990s, and this alliance, although it remains, has experienced a reduction in levels since 9/11. The leadership has not been focusing on the subject of Saudi–US relationships, as the focus has moved towards countering general US hegemony and influence in the region. Currently the Monarchy finds itself between conflicting policies: desiring the maintenance of good relations with the United States, yet suspecting the US role in the Middle East, which might undermine or target Saudi security. In a complementary manner, these aspects impact on the Saudi policy towards the Sunni Islamic reformist movements, either in Saudi Arabia

26

Context or outside, and the Monarchy is more understanding of these movements. Saudi consideration in influencing these movements religiously, and politically, is to attract them to the official Saudi Islamic realm, especially during times of difficulty and confrontation with the external.

The author undertook an exhaustive study of the literature on political Islam.27 The literature covers numerous issues on political Islam, and there are important themes in literature that need to be examined. General remarks on the literature as a whole, without always referring, or linking, certain themes or arguments to specific literature, are given below. Whereas some literature deals with political Islam in Saudi Arabia, the focus is general, with the Saudi situation framed within wider Middle Eastern and global Islamic situations. This draws attention to various cases instead of devoting a special and intensive focus to the Saudi case to consider its distinguishing aspects. Discussions on the Islamic legacy and trends in Saudi Arabia are mainly framed within the classical and dominant paradigm: the historical alliance and contract between Ibn Sa‘ud and Ibn Abd al-Wahhab in the eighteenth century. Although this historical aspect is important, the reformist leadership is more complex than can be found in the framework of the Islamic da‘wah of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab. The reformist leadership brings the political aspect to the Islamic school of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab and then, as a result, links Saudi Islamism to the Arab and Middle Eastern Sunni Islamic reformist movements. The contemporary Arab Sunni Islamic reformist movements, including the reformist leadership, emphasize certain policies: ● ●









Confirming the civic–civil political struggle for change and reform. Appeasing governments as these political regimes experience decay or internal crises. Approaching the West as ummah da‘wah [nations needing enlightenment about Islam]. Forming communication and dialogue with Western powers and intelligentsia. Countering certain Western governmental policies and media activities, such as imperialism, Americanism and secular/liberal influences, which seek to influence the Arab Sunni Islamic society. Attempting to bring Islamic reformist movements, organizations and trends together, through institutions and civil society activities, such as a global Sunni reformist movement. Reformists and activist ‘ulama, such as the reformist leadership and other Islamic leaders, take a leading role in the coordination of this international Islamic reformist body.

Some writings only structure the issue of political Islam within a framework of challenging Western dominance. Here, the internal intertwined juristic, socio-political, economic and security dimensions that contribute to political

Context

27

Islam are marginalized. As a result, there is a strong tendency in the literature of political Islam towards identifying the Islamic movements, trends, groups, Islamic world, or ‘Islamic fundamentalism’, as some like to call it, as a homogeneous reality that ought to be seen as posing a threat to the West. This is a polemic. The issue of political Islam, in general, and the question of political change and reform, in particular, should been seen as extremely complex. In this study, the quest for political change and reform is a complicated formula. It is a Sunni Islamic intellectual, academic and juristic development that intertwines with internal socio-political, economic and security factors, which, in turn, interacts with, and responds to, external factors. Certain literature shows that important Islamic critique, such as the critique of Sayid Qutb, with many Western thinkers sharing the same concern, is the natural response to modernization and Westernization. In this sense, the issue of political Islam is more likely to be seen as interacting and communicating with players or factors, than to be seen as promoting conflict. However, during interaction and communication, tension and conflict might well occur. A number of papers examine the issue of political Islam but rush to decide or make a judgement as to whether or not Islamic groups, parties or organizations have failed, or have been successful, in accomplishing their ends. This can be seen in Roy Olivier’s The Failure of Political Islam28 and Ibrahim Karawan’s The Islamist Impasse.29 The issue of failure or success is often relative, and it is difficult to reach firm conclusions or judgements. This is because the ends and the dynamics of politics are constantly changing, or adjusting, depending on the consequences. Political Islam is intertwined with the social in a major way, which produces socio-political Islam. Here, the question of political change and reform is a second priority to promoting Islamic normative codes in ethics and moral society. In this sense, preserving Islamic or religious force in social, societal and familial life is a vital gain. Political scientist, Dr Salwa Ismail, in her analysis of political Islam notes that ‘politics is understood in terms of practices of power and control and not only in terms of state and government’.30 The contemporary Arab Sunni Islamic reformist movements, including the reformist leadership, understand politics in a wider sense, and not only in terms of state and government. These movements mostly have a wide following, and could come to power through elections. The Islamic movements draw their legitimacy directly from the people, and from the Islamic Law, per se, and not from a government. Despite conclusions in Olivier’s The Failure of Political Islam and Karawan’s The Islamist Impasse, by mid-2006, the Islamic movements had become important political powers through elections in the Middle East, for example, Bahrain [37 seats out of 40], Kuwait [18 of 50], the Palestinian occupied territories [76 of 132], Morocco [42 of 325], Yemen [50 of 301] and Egypt [88 of 454].31 The Bahraini Parliament, for example, has been active in constructing a constitutional ‘checks and balances’ tradition, and advancing Islamic measurements and codes to lawful governmental projects or decisions.32

28

Context

In other literature, the analysis does not deal with the Islamic belief system in depth. This system is live, dynamic and rich in juristic and legal texts, insights, regulations, dimensions and historical experience. All need careful examination, objectively, neutrally and systematically, to build a theoretical framework to help understand the Islamic phenomenon or experience in empirical terms. The question of jihad, as part of political Islam, has been mistreated and simplified. This subject is a juristic question where complicated regulations and legal insights must be taken into consideration to scientifically tackle the issue of jihad. This book attempts to understand the way jihad has been applied in political change and reform, juristically and empirically. There are writings which are heavily involved in interpreting Islamic reformist or ‘fundamentalist’ leaders’ discourses, without giving the exact texts under examination. This book retains the exact texts in certain important issues, to help the reader form a better understanding of the political behaviour of the leadership. In other literature, the focus has been on the developments of the process of political participation through a parliamentary electoral system in some Islamic countries. Islamic parties have been involved in this process,33 but this is not the case in Saudi Arabia. However, the Monarchy held municipal elections, for the first time, in Spring of 2005, where a number of Islamic candidates were successful, which gives an indication of possible political change and reform in Saudi Arabia through free elections. Bassam Tibi’s argument that Islam does not contain a political realm34 cannot be accepted, either in theory or reality, and Tibi’s argument does not help an understanding of Islamic politics including the leadership’s politics. Islam is a comprehensive faith, with the political factor a part of this faith, as this book illustrates in the examination of the leadership’s struggle for political change and reform. The political realm does exist in Islam, and is represented by fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]. This book builds its theoretical structure based on this fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] and links Islamic political jurisprudence to reality and an understanding of contemporary politics. Bassam Tibi’s rejection of the existence of the Islamic essence35 cannot be accepted, and it is simplistic to believe that Islam, and particularly Sunni Islam, has lost, or does not have, its fundamental pillars, character or essence. Secularism, or other ideologies influencing Muslims’ Islamic faith, does not mean that Islam is secular or contains secular elements. Islam, and specifically Sunni Islam, is, in itself, an independent faith, belief and system of life. The author questions, and rejects, Ibrahim Karawan’s assumptions, conclusions and generalizations, such as: 1 2

Islamism’s most defining characteristic is its primary interest in gaining political power.36 For these movements, an Islamic system can only be established by political action to gain control of the state.37

Context 3 4 5 6

29

Their increased influence cannot be explained by reference to unchanging ‘Islamic essence’: Islamism acts as a channel of protest against ruling elites, not simply as a religious movement.38 An immutable ‘Islamic essence’ does not exist.39 Islamism’s growth is a manifestation of social, economic and political discontent in societies which do not have – or do not allow – institutionalized means to channel opposition.40 Despite the transnational language and ideology that Islamists adopt, their actions are primarily driven by national issues and concerns.41

In contrast, this book applies a Sunni juristic-based methodological framework and provides an empirical case study that can help readers understand why Karawan’s proposals are challenged. By studying and observing the discourse and performance of influential contemporary Arab Sunni Islamic reformist movements, such as the reformist leadership and Al-Ikhwan Al-Muslimin [the Muslim Brotherhood], one notes their primary interest is not to gain political power, and taking political action is not an exigent factor. These movements are a societal reality, and the concept of Islamic change and reform is comprehensive and complex with the political realm included together with other important non-political realms, such as personal, social and societal affairs. These movements function in an evolving process and can rearrange their priorities. Thus social and personal change and reform can come before the political issue or vice versa, with a better planned process of seeking gradual reform and change. The Islamic movements concentrate on technical political operations such as elections, pluralism and openness, as these channels are practical instruments towards Islamic change and reform, rather than struggling for immediate and comprehensive change and reform. These movements keep their political focus balanced, as they recognize the role of external players, for example, Western powers, in determining or influencing governments. Islamic movements mainly take their strength from a domestic level, and this means Middle Eastern countries such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt are at the heart of an international struggle as external players seek to maintain influence in the Saudi and Egyptian arena. This influences Islamic movements’ policies, as escalating confrontation with local government could mean confrontation with the external, which is unwise, as these Islamic movements can benefit from Western democratic techniques and traditions. National interests can be Islamized as Islamic nationalism can work to maintain order and stability in society by bringing various groups and factions, including non-Islamic parties, together, and finding consensus with governments in the civic–civil sphere of society can create a structure for Islamic performance in society and even in state institutions.

3

The Sunni fiqh

This chapter examines the leadership’s perspective on the Sunni fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence], and aims at understanding the nature, purpose and origins of the reformist leadership, and to clarify the political behaviour of the group. The author discusses certain Sunni juristic principles in discourses by the reformist leadership: the meaning of fiqh, the sources of fiqh and the significance of fiqh. A discussion is devoted to fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] and its related elements, and to the Islamic principle of al-tawhid [monotheism] and its political implementation. The author does not cover the view of each of the three reformist leaders on every subject, but al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar see themselves as one unit, and the author must assume that the view of one represents all three scholars.

The meaning of fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] Al-Oudah explains that, linguistically, the term ‘fiqh’ means understanding and knowledge. After the coming of Islam, the term took on a specific meaning: Islamic or religious knowledge. In this sense, the earliest Islamic ‘ulama used the term fiqh to refer to knowledge of the Qur’an and Sunnah. Al-Oudah refers to the lawful and practical dimensions of the word fiqh. A selection from al-Oudah’s ‘Islamic Law’, on the meaning of fiqh:1 [Therefore] . . . (1) Fiqh is a proper noun, referring to a discipline with specific subject matter and equally specific principles . . . (2) Fiqh is ‘knowledge of the injunctions of the Shari‘ah’. The injunctions of the Shari‘ah are those injunctions derived from revealed texts . . . An injunction of the Shari‘ah is a rule prescribed by the Divine Lawgiver on a certain issue. This injunction might outline a specific type of legal accountability, such as obligation or prohibition. In this case, it is called a ruling of accountability. It might also be devoid of accountability, like a ruling that something is legally valid or invalid. In this instance, it is known as a set ruling. (3) Fiqh is the knowledge of the injunctions of the Shari‘ah ‘that deal with outward practices’. This clause shows the injunctions that Fiqh is concerned with are those that pertain to the outward

The Sunni fiqh 31 actions of people, both in their worship and their daily interactions with each other . . . (4) The definition mentions that knowledge of the injunctions of Fiqh is ‘derived from their specific proofs’. The specific proofs intended are the individual proofs that come from the Qur’an and Sunnah . . . This means the only injunctions considered in the science of Fiqh are those derived from well-known sources of Islamic Law. On the basis that Islamic Law is derived from the Qur’an and Sunnah, al-Oudah emphasizes the independent character of the Islamic Law, and states ‘Islamic Law – or Fiqh – is not set down by any national government, but is Divine legislation derived from religious sources’. From these juristic insights, al-Oudah draws the meaning of faqih [jurisprudent, jurist] as one who demonstrates linkage to the Qur’an and Sunnah: The jurist is the one who derives each and every ruling from its proper piece of evidence. So . . . faqih is one who possesses clear knowledge of his religion derived exclusively from the meaning of the sacred texts; one who is capable of drawing from the texts the legal injunctions, lessons and benefits they contain.

The sources of the fiqh Al-Oudah draws attention to the sources of Islamic Law, which can constitute valid proofs for injunctions, and points out that fuqaha [jurisprudents, jurists] unanimously agree on the legitimacy of the Qur’an, the Sunnah and al-ijma‘ [consensus]. The majority of scholars, he says, also recognize al-qiyas [juristic analogy] as a fourth source of evidence. Secondary forms of evidence include juristic discretion, customary practice and the consideration of general welfare. Al-Oudah emphasizes that all these sources have their origin in the Qur’an. He points out that the Sunni jurist, Imam Muhammad Ibn Idris al-Shafi‘i (d.204H/820AD), the founder of one of the four Sunni schools of thought, considered that: ‘The injunctions must only be derived from the sacred texts or related back to them’. Al-Shafi‘i did not recognize anything other than the sacred texts, or matters that could be referred back to them, and accepted juristic analogy as the only valid way of referring new issues back to the texts. Other leading jurists had a broader view of acceptable ways of referring issues back to the texts, and added possible secondary sources of Law.2 Al-Oudah explains the sources of Islamic Law in some detail. The first source is the Qur’an, the origin of all Islamic legislation. The second is the prophetic Sunnah, referring to the statements, actions and tacit approvals of the Prophet. He points out that the word Sunnah can also mean the practical application of the injunctions during the prophetic era. The third source is al-ijma‘ [consensus], which refers to the unanimous agreement of the fuqaha of a given era on a legal ruling. To al-Oudah, it makes no difference whether the jurists are from the era of the Prophet’s Companions after the death of the

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The Sunni fiqh

Prophet or any era thereafter. The fourth source is al-qiyas [juristic analogy]. This refers, he says, to taking an injunction that applies in one case and applying it to another, on the basis that the latter shares a common characteristic with the former. In ranking juristic analogy as the fourth source of Islamic legislation, al-Oudah points out that this is more widespread and far-reaching than juristic consensus, as many injunctions in Islamic Law are based on this.3 In his explanation of the sources of fiqh, the author notes that al-Oudah maintains his linkage to the methods of ahlu al-hadith4 [people of the prophetic tradition, Sunni traditionalists who rely on the prophetic tradition, classical or Salafi5-established Sunni juristic schools]. This school experienced two forms of hadith specialists.

The significance of the fiqh Al-Oudah explains the significance of the Islamic fiqh as Islamic Law, which is the basis and spirit of the shari‘ah, has remained in its pristine state, strong and persevering, in spite of all the revolutions and changing circumstances that the Islamic ummah has been exposed to for the past fourteen centuries. With its permanence, constancy, and responsiveness to the spirit of civilization and the advancement of knowledge, Islamic Law has it own clearly distinct character. 6 In this spirit, al-Oudah published an important juristic dissertation, Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah [Standards for Juristic Studies].7 In this dissertation he stresses the importance of the historical legacy of Islamic juristic books and studies written by ‘ulama and fuqaha. Al-Oudah argues that these works constitute an important historical background for Muslim ummah. They were written as responses to ongoing issues, events and problems in a variety of fields: individual, communal, juristic, societal and political. This shows al-Oudah’s determination to link with his Sunni heritage and the desire that his ijtihad [interpretation, exercising juristic judgement] should not undermine this linkage. Al-Oudah clarifies his view of scholarly Islamic achievement by singling out several works which he regards as important. On Hadith and Sunnah, he mentions the works of Sahih al-Bukhari (d.256H/870AD), Sahih Muslim (d.261H/875AD), Sunan Abi Dawud (d.275H/889AD), Sunan al-Nasa’i (d.303H/915AD), Sunan al-Tirmidhi (d.279H/892AD), Sunan Ibn Majah (d.275H/886AD), Al-Muwatta8 of Malik (d.179H/801AD) and Al-Musnad 9 of Ahmad Ibn Hanbal (d.241H/855AD). These works hold an important position with scholars of Hadith and Islamic Law.10 In fiqh, the juristic work overlaps with work on other Sunni subjects such as the hadith, for example, Al-Muwatta of Malik the work of Sahih al-Bukhari, the Musanafat [compilations] of Imam Abd al-Razaq al-San‘ani (d.211H/826AD)

The Sunni fiqh 33 and the work of Imam Abu Bakr Ibn Abu Shaybah (d.225H/839AD) are recommended.11 Al-Oudah praises the tract on Islamic belief by Abu Hanifah (d.150H/767AD) entitled ‘Al-Fiqh al-Akbar’ [The Greatest Fiqh], which brings together theology, law and spirituality.12 Some juristic studies, al-Oudah points out, deal with fiqh in terms of their relationship with other Sunni subjects, such as the hadith. This is true of the Kitab al-Umm [Book of the Mother] of al-Shafi‘i; Imam Malik’s Al-Mudawanh;13 the Kitab al-Amwal [Book of Funds or Money] of Imam Abu ‘Ubaid al-Qasim Ibn Salam (d.224H/838AD); the Kitab al-Kharaj [Book of Land Tax] by Abu Yusuf (d.182H/798AD); and the Kitab Sharih al-Siyar [Explanation of the Campaigns] of al-Sarkhasi (d.490H/1096AD).14 The studies by the leadership, especially those of al-Oudah, rely on previous discourses and on wide-ranging Sunni scientific sources [scientific refers here to all branches of Islamic studies]. Despite his strong respect for traditional Sunni sources, al-Oudah also believes in the importance of ijtihad [interpretation, exercising juristic judgement]. Some jurists following a particular madhhab [juristic school of thought]15 placed too little emphasis on the Qur’an, per se, and relied on dha‘if [weak] and mawdhu‘ [fabricated] hadith.16 Al-Oudah raises these problems, not to undermine the juristic tradition, but simply to stress that these need to be taken into account.17 For al-Oudah, then, history is not suspended or shelved but must be dealt with as an ongoing scholarly process. He sees his position as a talib ‘ilm [student of shari‘ah] and an author of the Sunni juristic heritage. The scholarly status of al-Oudah, and of the leadership, shapes the philosophy behind their political activities, which emphasizes the strong sense of Sunni scholarly responsibility to others: the individual, the family, the society, the ruling authority, the community and the outside world in general. In many of these circles there is a lack of recognition of the importance of this heritage and its value. The important Sunni voice of the leadership is aimed at building up a feeling and consideration for the importance of this heritage, and is a necessary step for a transition to a life shaped and bound by shari‘ah.

Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] leans on shari‘ah.18 Al-Hawali emphasizes the necessity of building concern for political issues and affairs as part of the meaning of the Islamic religion.19 He emphasizes that the term al-shar‘iyah, which linguistically comes from the word shari‘ah [Islamic Law], refers to things or subjects that are based on shari‘ah.20 In Arabic, the word siyasa [politics, political, management] comes from the linguistic source of sasa. The word sasa and its related word yasus means to manage, to govern, to regulate, to form policy and to take

34

The Sunni fiqh

responsibility for others. Siyasa means the art of governing and managing domestic and foreign policies,21 and is the substance of fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah. The leadership’s attention to fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah as a method for political change and reform is made explicit by al-Oudah in a sermon on the duties of Muslim rulers. The message of this sermon underlines the Sunni political principle that a ruling governmental position is both a responsibility and a trust, and that the ruling authority should be questioned and be accountable, as this ruling position is not a privilege. In his explanation of public trust, al-Oudah mainly focuses on obtaining Islamic knowledge on life, and implementing this knowledge, as an Islamic requirement: There are two forms of amanah [trust, responsibility]: public trust and private trust. Public trust is when Allah has made each ‘abd [servant, man, human being] responsible to support al-din [religion], to obey Allah, and to follow the words of His prophets. Each mature and rational man has a responsibility towards the religion such as understanding Islam, the true ‘aqidah [belief], tawhid [monotheism] in its three forms (1) tawhid al-rububiyah [unity of Lordship, to believe there is only one Lord for all the universe and that is Allah] (2) tawhid al-uluhiyah [unity of worship, to believe that none have the right to be worshipped but Allah] (3) tawhid al-asma wa sifat [unity of names, qualities and the attributes of Allah], and to carry out your obligations and duties as a Muslim. This is a general or public trust in which each man is responsible . . .. In private trust each man has a responsibility according to the exact position or post that he occupies in life or work. For al-Oudah, the supreme political ruling office is mas’uliyah shar‘iyah [juristic responsibility, including the political]. The office is essentially a matter in which the Hakim or Head of the State is responsible for carrying out various duties towards society. Primarily, the ruler should maintain the welfare of people and encourage people to apply their religious duties. In the words of al-Oudah: The ruler carries a trust to look after the affairs of people. Prophet Muhammad demanded the ruler fulfil his obligation as a ruler, that he be responsible for the welfare of his people and advise people to follow religion. This advice is a general concept where the ruler should work towards bringing goodness to his people in this life and hereafter. Al-Oudah asserts the ruler is obliged to practise non-oppressive rule, to maintain the safety and security of people’s living, to apply Islamic Law, to protect the position of Islam in society, to practise justice and to encourage people to apply Islam in their life. These are elements of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law].22

The Sunni fiqh 35 The state bureaucracy is obliged to carry out certain responsibilities. Choice for public office should be by qualification and the reputation of being a good Muslim: Other form of trust is the responsibility of state officials who occupy public offices such as the minister, the emir and others in which they should carry out their responsibilities in proper ways. Salih [upright, good] and qualified Muslims should be chosen for public offices and important positions. But state officials also need to be checked to uncover mistakes and for accounting. It is important to prevent aggression by state officials against people . . . This is the wilayah [state public office, governing office, governing responsibility] in Islam, and this is the way to occupy public offices in Islam . . . Al-Oudah expands the duty of responsibility, and refers to the individual’s responsibility and to the responsibility of society as a whole: Nevertheless, some might think that responsibilities should only be placed on the shoulders of the ruler, the emir and the ministers. People tend to blame others in this sense. Islam says no. We all should carry out our private responsibilities. For example, fathers are responsible for maintaining their children’s needs, ethics, reforming their behaviour and caring about religion. Also, the teacher is responsible for his students; the wife is responsible for her family . . . 23 Al-Oudah gives examples of how fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah should operate. In a lecture he outlines the Sunni reformist role of the ‘alim [scholar] Abd al-Aziz al-Sulami, (d. 660H/1262AD)]. This ‘alim carried out, in public, the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice]. He criticized the ruling authority of his time in Damascus, and was then prevented from delivering public speeches and jailed. Later he migrated to Egypt as a sign of vexation towards the ruling authority in Syria. In Egypt, he was given eminent judicial positions, with the ruling authority in Egypt receptive to his reformist role. Later, however, al-Sulami experienced difficulty with the ruling Mameluke military elite in Egypt who started to reject his judicial decisions. He resigned from his judicial office and decided to leave Egypt, but the population stood by their ‘alim, and rallied behind him, forcing the ruling authority to make concessions and accept his demands. This historical example illustrates the pressure that can be exercised by an ‘alim seeking change and reform. Al-Sulami was involved in judicial affairs, educating people and defending public interests through demanding economic justice and criticizing the privileged ruling elite. He was clearly not isolated from the public, and was ‘living’ their problems and concerns. Al-Oudah, using this example, brings out the responsibilities of the ruling authority and the ‘ulama in Islam. 24

36

The Sunni fiqh

Applying shari‘ah is seen as the cornerstone of fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah. Al-Hawali considers that loving the Prophet and loving Allah requires shari‘ah, applied as a comprehensive law for state and society, as a manifestation of al-tawhid.25

Al-tawhid and its political implementation Al-Hawali links the Islamic principle of al-tawhid [monotheism] to the political factor, and clarifies that al-tawhid is a structure: In any ‘ilm [knowledge, science] of any field such as economy, political science, sociology, military issues, familial issues and social issues, we should be muwahidin [monotheists]. All . . . values, judgments and criterions should be taken from the Qur’an and Sunnah. This is the substance of tawhid.26 Al-Hawali’s most important contribution on this matter is to be found in his long series of lectures on ‘aqidah, on some 311 audio cassettes recorded over five years during the 1980s.27 Al-Hawali explains the ways in which al-tawhid can be implemented, and the factors that underline this principle, in juristic and empirical terms. Applying shari‘ah is part of the Islamic faith per se, and of tawhid, and should be applied comprehensively to govern the ruling and the ruled, the state and the society. The Qur’an states the obligatory manner of applying shari‘ah: ‘if any do fail to judge by what Allah hath revealed, they are unbelievers’, (S.5, A.44), ‘and if any fail to judge by what Allah hath revealed, they are wrong-doers’, (S.5, A.45), and ‘if any do fail to judge by what Allah hath revealed, they are those who rebel’, (S.5, A.47). These verses are at the core of discourses by al-Hawali.28 Al-Omar asserts that La ilaha illa Allah Muhammad rasul Allah [there is no God but God, and Muhammad is His Messenger] should be practised empirically.29 Al-Hawali explains that La ilaha illa Allah Muhammad rasul Allah requires, or needs, iqrar [affirmation]. Iqrar means establishing a commitment to Islam, and submission to its law, the shari‘ah.30 Al-Hawali’s insistence on relying on shari‘ah as governing the law of state and society, and of the ruling and the ruled, as part of the Islamic iman [faith], complements Dr Yusuf al-Qaradhawi’s insight into the same matter. The latter refers to applying shari‘ah as a manifestation of Islamic faith. Applying shari‘ah is an asl [foundation, fundamental, basis] in Islam of hakimiyatu Allah [the right of Allah to govern His creatures].31 Al-Hawali gives focus to the matter of state constitutions as part of the subject of al-hakimiya. His lecture: Qira’ah fi al-Dasatir al-‘Arabiyah [Readings in Arab Constitutions] considers the constitutions of various Arab countries, which have not abided by Islamic Law. This contradicts and harms the principle of al-tawhid.

The Sunni fiqh 37 Al-Omar not only stresses the necessity of carrying out Islamic Law, as part of faith, but also emphasizes the necessity of accepting this Law by heart. The heart should experience ridha [feeling of love, consent, satisfaction] towards the shari‘ah.32 Al-Omar therefore refers to al-Mawardi’s (d. 450H/1058AD)33 explanation of the Qur’anic verse: ‘fulfil the Covenant of Allah when ye have entered into it’ (S.16, A.91), which means a Muslim should faithfully observe obligations taught by Islam.34 Al-Omar’s view can be found in al-Hawali’s Min A‘mal al-Qulub [The Heart’s Works].35 The inclusive application of Islamic Law is vital, and al-Hawali considers that applying qanun wadh‘i [non-Islamic Law or positive law] is shirk [polytheism, associating anything with Allah]. It is recognition of the taghut [false deities, whatever is worshipped besides Allah] as having the authority of tahkim [arbitration]. This was the habit of the Arabs before Islam, when they relied on their customs and priests’ laws. Today, applying the positive laws, which came from Europe, has made people legalize haram [unlawful, forbidden things]. In this, the Qur’anic verse states ‘What! Have they partners (in godhead), who have established for them religion without the permission of Allah?’ (S.42, A.21). Here, al-Hawali refers to Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s explanation of the Qur’anic verse: ‘They take their priests and their anchorites to be their lords beside Allah.’ (S.9, A.31). People making priests and anchorites their lords means to obey them in making prohibited things lawful, and making lawful things unlawful. This is a form of ‘ibadah [worshipping] in which people worship these priests and anchorites by obeying them. Al-Hawali insists that leaving out Islamic Law and applying non-Islamic Law is an act of kufr [disbelief]. Accepting taghut’s laws or nonIslamic Laws is contrary to Islam and the faith is lost. This is the meaning, al-Hawali states, of La ilaha illa Allah Muhammad rasul Allah, to apply shari‘ah comprehensively.36 Al-Hawali considers the juristic dissertation of Shaikh Muhammad al-Shaikh’s Risalat Tahkim al-Qawanin [Letter of Resorting to non-Islam Laws] as an important dissertation which al-Hawali recommends for his students.37 Al-Hawali leans heavily on Ibn Ibrahim’s dissertation of Risalat Tahkim al-Qawanin, and explains this dissertation under the title Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin [Explanation of the Letter of Resorting to nonIslam Laws]. Both studies, the Mufti’s original dissertation and al-Hawali’s explanation, appear in a single volume. Al-Hawali’s Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin is essentially a juristic dissertation in which he interacts with the highest religious position in Saudi Arabia, the Grand Mufti. Ibn Ibrahim states that replacing shari‘ah with non-Islamic Laws is kufr akbar mustabin [clear and great disbelief].38 Al-Hawali refers to Ibn Ibrahim’s words as vital and fundamental Sunni juristic asl [basis, foundation], a fact that should not be ignored by any Muslim.39 Using Ibn Ibrahim’s basis, al-Hawali questions replacing shari‘ah with positive laws which are not accepted by any believer.40 In this, Ibn Ibrahim considers that relying on non-Islamic Laws for arbitration is a contradiction to, and an opposition of, Allah’s words ‘If ye

38

The Sunni fiqh

differ in anything among yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe in Allah and the Last Day: that is best, and most suitable for final determination.’ (S.4, A.59). So, Allah nullifies the faith of those people who quarrel and are involved in disputes, if they refuse to agree to accept the Prophet Muhammad as arbitrator. The Qur’an states ‘by thy Lord, they can have no (real) faith. Until they make thee judge in all disputes between them. And find in their souls no resistance against thy decisions, but accept them with full conviction.’ (S.4, A.65).41 In this matter, al-Hawali comments that the hearts of such people should accept Allah’s hukm [judgement, rule, sentence] or shari‘ah fully, and without upset or unease.42 Legal experts, Ibn Ibrahim says, claim that applying the positive law in the contemporary world is necessary, and this mistrusts shari‘ah.43 Al-Hawali criticizes legal experts in favour of applying the positive laws, and reasserts the comprehensive meaning of the Islamic Law which includes private affairs and state policies: People should obey Allah’s hukm [judgment, rule, sentence], perform tawbah [repentance] and return to shari‘ah . . . Shari‘ah has to be applied in every aspect . . . this include relations between states, between the state and the individual, among groups and among individuals . . . It is impossible to apply non-Islamic Law and iman [faith], . . . , as they cannot come together and one nullifies the other.44 Al-Hawali again turns to the legal experts, to clarify their religious position after their attempts to replace shari‘ah with the positive law. The word yuridun [want, wish] in the Qur’anic verse (S.4, A.60) indicates that they want to resort to non-Islamic Law, but they have not yet resorted to these . . . So, they just want to resort to taghut’s law instead of shari‘ah which they see as a normal act. This indicates they are starting their attempt to replace shari‘ah. Nevertheless, Allah nullifies their faith because they want, or wish, to resort to non-shari‘ah’s laws. Where someone has not yet committed the act of kufr [disbelief], he might become a non-Muslim in that he has a desire and a determination to apply kufr . . . If he considers the act of kufr as lawful, to be called istihlal, this someone becomes a non-Muslim . . . Therefore, applying the positive law is kufr . . . 45 Ibn Ibrahim continues his criticism of legal experts who attempt to replace shari‘ah with positive law. He considers them jahili [ignorant] who belong to jahiliyah [ignorance, pre-Islamic state and period] whether they like it or not. Ibn Ibrahim asserts these legal experts are worse and more untruthful than the people of jahiliyah who did not contradict themselves in the matter of their applied laws.46 Al-Hawali emphasizes that applying non-Islamic Laws is a jahili case, following the position of Ibn Ibrahim, and clarifies that one

The Sunni fiqh 39 either applies Islamic Law or non-Islamic Law, and gives contemporary political and economic examples that contain contradictions to shari‘ah. Ibn Ibrahim examines the consequence of putting shari‘ah as a second juristic source. The positive law has become legitimate law and has been given priority and a primary role vis-à-vis shari‘ah. Whosoever does this is a kafir [disbeliever] and should be opposed until he returns to the shari‘ah of Allah and His Messenger.47 At this essential point where Ibn Ibrahim clarifies the religious status of those who apply non-Islamic Laws, Al-Hawali comments: ‘This is a clear hukm [judgment, rule, sentence]’. 48 The Mufti states certain Qur’anic verses that deal with the matter of Islamic Law: ‘And this (He commands): judge thou between them by what Allah hath revealed, and follow not their vain desires, but beware of them lest they beguile thee from any of that (teaching) which Allah hath sent down to thee.’ (S.5, A.49).49 Al-Hawali refers to these Qur’anic verses quoted by Ibn Ibrahim as a’yatu al-hukm [Qur’anic verses of government or ruling] in which verses, and others, permission to apply the non-Islamic Law is not given.50 Ibn Ibrahim describes those who resort to non-Islamic Law as unbelievers, wrongdoers and rebels, in descriptions taken from the Qur’an. If Allah names the one who rules by non-Islamic Law an unbeliever, that person is an unbeliever.51 Here, al-Hawali applies the same words of Ibn Ibrahim, and states that if Allah names one who does not apply shari‘ah as an unbeliever, he is an unbeliever.52 Ibn Ibrahim explicitly presents the cases of kufr i‘tiqad [dogmatic disbelief] for a person leaving and relinquishing Islam, to be called naqil ‘an al-millah, and makes a call for change and reform. He asks those described as wise, rational and intelligent people, ‘How and why they accept to be governed by the positive law?’53 Ibn Ibrahim, again, protests the consequence of applying the positive law. He has given tawhid al-asma wa sifat [unity of names, qualities and attributes of Allah] a political dimension. Applying the Islamic Law is part of believing in Allah’s names and attributes, and the belief that Allah is wise and knowing. For example, Ibn Ibrahim says How do you let them govern you, your bloods, honours, families, wives, children, monies and the rest of your rights when they refuse to govern you by the law of Allah and His Messenger? . . . As the prostration cannot be performed for Allah, and worshipping cannot be performed for seeking Allah, people should not obey any law but the law of Allah; al-hakim [the all-wise], al-‘lim [the knowing], al-hamid [the praiseworthy], al-ra’uf [the affectionate], and al-rahim [the merciful] . . . 54 Al-Hawali supports Ibn Ibrahim’s appeal for change and reform This is the reality. Why do people deify (ta’lih) these? . . . Why do you accept this? Why do you accept to be governed thus, when the Book of Allah Almighty has been ignored? This is the appeal of the Shaikh to the ‘ulama, to the wise people, and to the whole ummah who have been forced

40

The Sunni fiqh to accept those laws. How has this been accepted? If people had protested these courts and laws, they would be changed. People have been silent and have started viewing this as normal. Why do you accept that? You are Muslims, believers and wise. Yet you accept government by the positive law in monies, bloods, honours, rights, families and children. Why has this occurred? 55

Summary The intellectual bases of the reformist leadership lie in Sunni Islamic scholarship. Their attitude towards the question of political change and reform must be seen in this context. The author thus focuses on the Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] as a key to understanding the reformist leadership. In particular, the stress is on fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], which provides the substance on which the reformist leadership has shaped their ideas on political change and reform. Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah provides legitimacy and a legal basis for peaceful and civic Islamic political struggle and activities towards political change and reform. Such peaceful political work lies at the core of Islam, and the author follows this through a number of political juristic theories and insights from the discourses of the reformist leadership, including the Islamic principle of al-tawhid [monotheism] and its political implementation.

4

Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh

This chapter discusses maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law], al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [legitimate rights in Islamic Law], the question of al-khuruj [revolution] and fiqh al-muwazanat wa al-awlawiyat [the jurisprudence of balances and priorities]. The latter fiqh – balances and priorities – is an important closure to the discussion of fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] and enables the reader to build insights into how ‘ulama or fuqaha, in the case of the leadership, pursue their policy.

Theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] The main, or core, aim of din or al-shari‘ah, and how this aim is linked to political change and reform is examined by discussing the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law], an important subject in fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah. Al-Oudah, in his lecture al-kalimah al-hurrah [The Free Word], deals with important issues in the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah. He conveys the aims of al-shari‘ah in terms of security and safety, seeking to protect people’s lives, family and children, property, intellect and privacy. But al-Oudah argues that the concept of security and safety should be expanded as Islam aims to protect and maintain the security and stability of people in this world as well as hereafter. This is seen as one complementary circle.1 Al-Oudah refers to al-Shatibi (d. 790H/1388AD),2 and it is relevant to provide some explanation of his theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah which asserts that the aims of shari‘ah are to protect religion, mind, soul, property or prosperity, and posterity. The core principle here is al-shari‘ah mu‘alalah fi asliha which means the general juristic judgements, in their origins, are based on ‘ilal [reasons, justifications or wisdoms]. For example, conducting daily salah [prayer] is based on an ‘illah [‘ilal is plural] that: ‘prayer restrains from shameful and evil deeds’3 (S.49, A.45), while conducting prayer can also be based on another ‘illah from the Qur’an: ‘Verily, I am Allah: there is no God but I: so serve thou Me (only), and establish regular prayer for My remembrance’4 (S.20, A.14).

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The structure of al-ta‘lil [wisdom, reason, justification] can be applied to political issues. Al-Shatibi maintains that there is no division between religious authority and political authority. Al-dawlah [the state] in Muslim society is a religious necessity.5 Political authority, an essential pillar in the structure of the state, is also a religious ‘necessity’. The individual and the political authority should both protect and support al-dharurat al-khams.6 Public interest should have priority over individual or private interests. People should develop a communal attitude and be linked with, and led by, al-jama‘ah [group, community]. Al-jama‘ah means those who follow the prophetic Sunnah, know religion and its ahkam, carry out these ahkam in life, and achieve the aims of religion.7 Al-Shatibi analyses shari‘ah as a single picture with complementary parts. Some of these parts are kuli [main, comprehensive, fundamental or bases], and other parts are juz’i [branches or smaller parts which come under the main and fundamental parts]. But the picture cannot be clearly seen unless its parts are joined together. This is the way to understand shari‘ah; similar to the human body which consists of parts, organs and limbs, where each part serves the other parts in a complementary manner.8 In the same lecture on al-kalimah al-hurrah [The Free Word], al-Oudah focuses on the way to protect al-dharurat al-khams. He refers to the secular forces that want him to be silent, and asserts that being concerned about the security and safety of the country does not include silence on al-fasad [corruption] that influences society. Al-Oudah speaks to his opponents about people dealing with al-mal al-haram [unlawful financial transactions] through usury, stealing and cheating. You want, he continued, al-shahawat [lusts, inclinations] to be spread in the society where people can satisfy their shahawat through unlawful conduct. If some speak against the spread of shahawat, you would say they are against national unity and undermine the security and safety of the country. Some people enhance class distinctions and inequality in society and facilitate envy. In this situation, would you like me to be silent as well, al-Oudah asks. He asserted that being silent on corruption is against national unity, the security and safety of the country.9

Al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [Legitimate Rights in Islam] Al-huquq al-shar‘iyah10 is an important aspect in al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] based on maqasid al-shari‘ah. ‘Legitimate rights’ clarify the duties and responsibilities of the ruling and the ruled; to establish and maintain a relationship between the two, which maintains safety, security and stability in society, including the state political system. Al-Oudah endorses a study, published in the West, on this subject, and the ideas found are taken to represent the leadership’s thoughts.11 The study was written by Dr Abdullah al-Hamid,12 one of the signatories of the Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] of 1992, and published in

Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh 43 London in 1995, under the title: ‘Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam’ [Human Rights between the Justice of Islam and the Tyranny of the Rulers]. The book is significant as it was published almost a year after the arrest of the Saudi reformist leadership in 1994. This study is based on classical and contemporary Sunni juristic resources13 and al-Oudah asserts that this study should be seen as juristic Sunni political theory.14 In his introduction to the study, al-Hamid clarifies that many people misunderstand Islam and think the issue of human rights has no relationship with Islam. These people think Islam supports dictatorships. This is an unfair judgement. Al-Hamid asserts Islamic reformers should clarify, to others, the human rights in Islam where these rights are Almighty Allah’s gift, established in Islam and in all al-diyanat al-samawiyah [heavenly revelations such as Christianity and Judaism]. This implements a common human heritage. Human rights in Islam are not to be seen as a grant from a ruler, a government or a declaration given by a domestic or international authority. The Sunni Islamic fuqaha clarify in their discourses that the sole resource of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah or the human rights in Islam is Almighty Allah.15 These rights are obligatory and neither authority nor people has the right to cancel, take, attack or nullify them.16 In this matter, al-Hamid includes an introductory chapter to his study to clarify that al-‘ubudiyah means worshipping Almighty Allah, and to be free and independent from others. In Qudsi [holy] hadith17 Allah states ‘O mankind I have created you to worship me in which I created every thing for you’. Allah obliges His ‘ibad [servants] to be completely free in their acts and sayings but this freedom should be conditioned by following shari‘ah. The substance of al-‘ubudiyah is to submit to Allah by applying His shari‘ah which maintains al-huquq al-shar‘iyah.18 Al-Hamid asserts the characteristics of human rights in Islam. The main goal of Islam is to free man from worshipping man towards worshipping Allah, while Islamic values and laws protect people and maintain their dignity. People obtain these rights not because of their citizenship but because of their human nature, and these rights should be seen as necessities and duties. Allah Almighty structured these human rights and they are fixed and confirmed at any place or time. Shari‘ah is therefore the origin and source of these rights and these rights are not subject to change, or removal, by the rule of majority or the ruling authority. These rights are also religious obligations to His Almighty and must be seen as huquq Allah [His Almighty’s rights]. Carrying out these rights is part of ‘ibadah [worshipping Allah]. Based on this Nazariyah al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [the theory of legitimate rights], the extended boundary includes al-ra‘iyah ghair al-Muslimah [non-Muslim citizens and residents]. Maintaining the legitimate rights of non-Muslims is a religious duty and undermining their legitimate rights are haram [unlawful]; committing this haram harms the Islamic belief of a Muslim, either as individual, group or state. In this matter, non-Muslims have the right to maintain their religion according to the principles of ‘To you be your way, and to me mine’ (S.109, A.6),

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‘Let there be no compulsion in religion’ (S.2, A.256), to maintain their al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: al-din [religion], al-‘aql [mind], al-nafs [soul, body], al-mal [properties, prosperity] and al-nasl [posterity or offspring], and their hurumat [sanctities]. All are protected and maintained and they are obliged to also respect shari‘ah or the Islamic system of the state.19 In his study, al-Hamid raises ten key elements:20 1 The right to personal security emphasizes rights to be given, protection to be provided and proscriptions to be established. 2 Rulers or governors are equal to all others, and as such are subject to the judicial system. 3 People should have the right to justice. 4 The right to possess or convey property and substance is essential. This applies to any person [man or woman, Muslim or non-Muslim] who is competent to act, and all are considered equal. There should, moreover, be a system for distributing wealth, to prevent a monopoly on wealth by an individual or a limited group of people. 5 The right to work should be upheld. Wages should be on time and sufficient to meet an employee’s needs in establishing a family, constructing a house and having access to transportation. 6 Intellectual rights are vital. For this, the ruling authority should grant people the right of education. The right to think and to express one’s self should be guaranteed for each individual in the society, within the guidance of the Qur’an and the Sunnah. 7 The right to carry out Islamic da‘wah [Call to Islam] is established. This principle means there is an established right, to observe, to advise and criticize the ruling authority, which cannot be exercised if the ruling authority is presented as holy and sacred. 8 Educational and societal rights are established to consolidate the independence and the belief status of a family. 9 Political rights are shari‘ah-based collections of principles and ideas aimed at stabilizing and consolidating the relationship between the ruling and the ruled. They should regulate power to prevent exploitation, and employ shura [consultation] to prevent anarchy. Islam asserts that the ummah is above the ruler.21 10 Finally, shari‘ah gives rights to the state. The most important right is to carry out al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice]. Shari‘ah recognizes state power as a means for carrying out this principle and for implementing all Islamic regulations. Submission to the ruler is a duty, and the ruler should be given respect and al-bai‘ah [a pledge of allegiance]. Submission is however restricted by that permitted in Islam, and al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar can be used as an instrument of pressure over the ruler to make him submit to Islamic Law.

Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh 45

The question of al-khuruj [revolution] The leadership is not in favour of al-khuruj [revolt, revolution, rebellion]. Throughout the last two decades, the discourses and practice of the leadership have manifested a peaceful approach for political change and reform. The method recommended is to maximize civil and civic opportunities for political change and reform so the option of revolution is either closed off or the possibility reduced. Al-Oudah sees the use of power as a legitimate Sunni Islamic instrument for change, but insists the use of power should be conditioned by the juristic framework. Thus, al-Oudah sets conditions for power being used for political change and reform.22 The legitimacy of revolution is clear in the case of tyranny or in the case of kufrun bawah [open, clear and undisputed disbelief]. In Sunni Islamic political juristic studies, the Imam or the Head of State must practise ‘adl [justice] as one of the conditions for remaining in office.23 Tyranny exists when a ruler practises oppressive rule and injustice where al-huquq al-shar‘iyah are partially, or comprehensively, violated. Here al-Oudah mentions the Sunni Islamic juristic visions of Ibn Hazm (d. 456H/1064AD), who deems al-khuruj legitimate in the case of tyranny if this khuruj [revolt] will not cause fitnah [riot, unrest, disorder, distress, sedition, corruption, trouble] and bloodshed.24 Al-Oudah also covers the legitimacy of revolution where the ruler has ceased to be a Muslim. In his juristic study, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences], al-Oudah discusses the relationship between the ruling authority and the ruled. On the question of revolt, he says: Obedience to the government is required as long as the rulers are Muslims and practice prayer [the daily five prayers]. Fighting rulers, or al-khuruj, is not allowed unless kufrun bawah [open, clear, and undisputed disbelief] is clear and demonstrated. If the rulers kafaru [become nonMuslim], it is a duty to oust them from office and replace them.25 Shaikh Ibn Baz [Saudi Grand Mufti] comments on this al-Oudah statement in the introduction to the study, and places a further dimension on the issue, by stating: If their [the rulers’] kufr [disbelief] has become bawah [open, clear, and undisputed] Muslims are able to carry out al-khuruj and oust them. But al-khuruj is not allowed if the Muslims cannot revolt, and fasad [corruption], fitn [riot, unrest, disorder, distress, sedition, corruption, trouble], killings of Muslims, and killing of du‘ah [Muslim callers] will occur . . . 26 Ibn Baz does not reject al-Oudah’s opinion on the removal of a Muslim ruler who ceases to be Muslim, but points to al-istita‘a [ability, capability, possibility] as a condition. Ibn Baz places a restriction on carrying out a revolt

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Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh

when the potential result of the revolution is disorder. In the 1980s, and in his Master’s thesis, al-Oudah criticizes the use of power and armed struggle for change and reform. This does not mean that applying force towards change and reform is illegitimate. Al-Oudah uses the juristic term ‘change by hand’, which indicates the application of power or force towards change and reform: The use of force towards the change of the vice is considered in juristic terms. The use of power is part of the understanding that change can be carried out by hand if possible. 27 The word possible, or al-istita‘a, indicates that obtaining real power is an important condition in applying force for change and reform. Al-Oudah puts a general restriction on the use of force: The use of force should be conducted at a suitable time, and be measured by al-dhawabit al-shar‘iyah [Sunni Islamic juristic fundamental roles and regulations]. This is to ensure that this instrument is not used by impetuous, unrestrained or reckless people . . . 28 In this instance, al-Oudah explains Sunni Islamic juristic roles and regulations that manage the use of power towards change and reform. Firstly, the change by hand can be applied when the authority, which carries the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, does not exist or is missing. It can also be applied in remote areas where the power of the ruling authority is weak. But when al-dawlah al-shar‘iyah [the legitimate Islamic state] which practices al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar exists and is a strong state, using arms without permission is a kind of anarchy, which should be avoided.29 The use of force should be based on the clear and undisputed foundation that using force serves the ultimate purpose – change and reform. Applying force to remove corruption should not give rise to further corruption. The notion that using power towards change and reform can give rise to corruption is fundamental. Al-Oudah notes that emotionally-based acts can create problems. These potential problems should be seen as sufficient reason to suspend the decision to revolt. Not only does al-Oudah discourage using force for change and reform, but he also gives those who commit the act a juristic and legal responsibility, and criticizes the tendency towards political violence, drawing attention to non-violent means towards change and reform.30 The decision to revolt should be based on a Sunni juristic basis, and the ‘ulama at the time should be involved in the decision, which can ensure that the use of power is not exploited to undermine the security and safety of society.

Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh 47 The involvement of the ‘ulama in al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, in general, and in the question of revolt, in particular, consolidates the leadership of ‘ulama in society. Al-Oudah states Relying on the ‘ulama in this matter brings vital benefits. It supports the position of the ‘ulama, empowers their status among people and creates a real influence for consideration by the ruling authority and other influential people. If the ‘alim and his assistants are concerned with al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, they will attain a high standing with the public.31 Al-Oudah tends to rely on Islamic history to support his arguments. Historical Sunni ‘ulama are important for lessons in which these ‘ulama faced hardship and difficulties in seeking change and reform. These historical cases discussed by al-Oudah show ‘ulama’s resistance to the ruling authority and their protests at its policies. The resistance and protest were exercised and extended, even to death, before being seen as revolution. 32 Reformist work should be legitimate and using force might harm this legitimacy, a focus of al-Oudah: The legitimacy means that reformist work should be based on observing the al-maslih [interests; benefits; advantages] and pushing back al-mafasid [corruption; sedition; riot; disturbance; trouble; unrest; disorder] and the work should be based on wisdom, ‘ilm [knowledge] and foresight away from thoughtlessness, zeal and precipitation.33 During the 1990s, the leadership continued ruling out revolt as an instrument for change and reform. This is seen in communications between the reformist leadership and the public. In a lecture, al-Hawali advised his students of the necessity to be patient during the journey towards change and reform.34,35 Al-Omar, during the peak of the struggle for political change and reform, delivered a significant lecture with the title: Al-Sakinah al-Sakinah [Calmness, Calmness]. The term al-sakinah carries an important political message. It occurs five times in the Qur’an; referring to the imminence of Allah; presence of Allah; a devout Allah-inspired peace of mind; and calm, tranquility and peace.36 In his lecture, al-Omar warns against the danger of being provoked, and of being brought towards unwise acts or violence.37,38 Al-Omar is aware of the dangers and the negative impacts of seeking political change and reform by violent means.39 In the post-prison era, after the leadership was released from prison in June 1999, they have emphasized peaceful means for political change and reform. Al-Oudah outlines methods for change and reform. He points to the problem of being too ambitious in seeking comprehensive change, highlighting the related problem of being dissatisfied with a gradual process of

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change. Efficiency and productivity of the person or reformer is seen as an important step towards change and reform. 40,41 Al-Oudah rules out revolutionary tendencies towards bringing political change and reform, and addresses the problem:42 The issue of reform is a difficult one. This does not mean that it cannot be approached or dealt with. The problem that repeatedly surfaces, throughout history, is that some zealous and righteous people become so enthusiastic about their religion, calling it to effect reform, and they push forward without the ability to do anything. In this way, they bring themselves and others to destruction. Al-Oudah relies on Abd al-Rahman Ibn Khaldun (d. 808H/1467AD) to justify his political vision, and applies the earlier political vision of Ibn Khaldun to the contemporary Islamic world. Revolt is not always the best solution for problems when change and reform can be brought about through a scholarly and educational process: Many contemporary experiences in the Muslim world reflect what Ibn Khaldun wrote. The people involved only considered the correctness of their position and the strength that they themselves possessed, without taking into consideration the strength being confronted. They were struck down by the hard facts of reality that cannot be changed except by those who possess experience and great patience. Beyond this, the nature of reform requires a deep knowledge and understanding of the Qur’an and Sunnah and the lessons of history. Obsession with one particular aspect of a situation and the belief that reforming it is the answer to all problems – like changing the political leadership for example – is an error in thinking and a gross misunderstanding of the issues. This outlook completely disregards the various and complex aspects of society. The best approach is a holistic one that seeks to develop every aspect of society in accordance with Islamic norms and values and also seeks to nurture scientific cadres in all fields. Al-Oudah underplays the thought that the ruling authority should be fought to bring about political change and reform. He underlines the necessity of obtaining education and professional abilities as methods for change and reform. The conduct of change needs patience and knowledge. This can be understood through understanding the Qur’an, the Sunnah, and historical events and experiences. Focusing on one factor only and changing this factor, such as changing the ruler, is a short-sighted solution, a simplification of the problem and ignorance of the society and its various dimensions. The reformist approach needs to be a holistic one that aims

Further perspectives on the Sunni fiqh 49 to teach the whole ummah about Islam, its ethics, values and laws, to produce qualified people and experts in various scientific fields, and to involve measurable experiences which are important to test theories. Yes, the responsibility of a ruler is special and important, and not similar or comparable to ordinary people’s responsibility. But there are forces, instruments and linked matters, observed by everyone, and the ruler should take these into consideration and know how to deal with them.43 Al-Oudah again underscores the factor of al-istita‘a [ability, capability] as an important factor in the process of change and reform, 44 and states that ‘al-istita‘a is required for individuals and groups . . .. In the case of ‘ajz [deficiency, to be unable], duties are to be relaxed . . . ’, which introduces the issue of fiqh al-muwazanat [the jurisprudence of balances] and fiqh al-awlawiyat [the jurisprudence of priorities] which provides the method of how ‘ulama, fuqaha or Islamic political leaders, in the case of the reformist leadership, can practice flexibility and can adjust while pursuing their policy.

Fiqh al-muwazanat wa al-awlawiyat [Balances and Priorities] The leadership practises essential elements in fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], such as fiqh al-muwazanat [the jurisprudence of balances] and fiqh al-awlawiyat [the jurisprudence of priorities]. Basically, fiqh al-muwazanat and fiqh al-awlawiyat focus on a balance and weighting between different and competing factors; to adjust and compromise between them or to choose the most important one. These two aspects provide a flexible method, and adjusting dynamic, that allows the reformist leadership to take certain roles while also applying their countering policy. Shaikh Yusuf al-Qaradhawi45 explains that fiqh al-muwazanat [the jurisprudence of balances] applies certain rules, and priority must be given to: ●







● ● ●

al-rabitah al-diniyah [religious linkages], as a factor that links Muslims together, over any other forms of linkage; al-usul [fundamental issues] over al-furu‘ [minor issues], with the most important having priority over the less important; building faith or maintaining al-‘aqidah [faith] as a most important factor; obtaining al-‘ilm [Islamic science/knowledge] before al-‘amal [work, function]; the Islamic pillars; to al-ahkam al-qat‘iyah [fixed Islamic regulations]; ethics and morality; and al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: al-din [religion], al-‘aql [mind], al-nafs [soul, body], al-mal [property, prosperity] and al-nasl [posterity].

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In the fiqh al-awlawiyat [the jurisprudence of priorities] and fiqh al-muwazanat [the jurisprudence of balances], one sees the reformist leadership practice ijtihad ‘amali [the empirical demonstration of ijtihad (interpretation, exercising juristic judgement)]. Ijtihad, here refers to policies applied in certain circumstances in which policies might differ; but they all seek maqsad shar‘i [law-based Islamic aim]. The jurisprudence of balances and the jurisprudence of priorities help in the classification of al-wajib al-shar‘i [Islamic Law-based duty], and differ between normal and exigent duty, where each duty has specific roles and regulations to be implemented. The problem, al-Oudah says, is to muwazanah [balance] between al-‘ilm [knowledge] and al-‘amal [work] where theory can be revealed as a whole in ‘ilm, but is not necessarily seen as whole in al-‘amal, while maintaining ‘awasim al-din wa muhakimatuh [Sunni Islamic juristic foundations and structures].46 Al-Oudah’s insight indicates a reformer struggling to put the Sunni Islamic jurisprudence or Islamic Law, as a whole, into practice, when facing tremendous problems and challenges that make him unable to comprehensively pursue his plan. Struggling to maintain Sunni Islamic juristic foundations and structures, required as a matter of faith, the reformer is under further pressure when facing opposition or opponents. Working for political change and reform requires more than one juristic language and fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah provides this variety, without undermining fundamental Sunni Islamic juristic principles. Here, the leadership can adjust or control the level of political risk they face during their struggle for political change and reform. The three scholars are more likely to form a dynamic movement than be fixed within thawabit shar‘iyah [fixed juristic Sunni Islamic bases].47

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Intellectual interaction

The author presents the intellectual interaction of the leadership with certain historical and contemporary Sunni Islamic ‘ulama and scholars. Examining this exchange provides further understanding of the leadership’s actions. Key thinkers with whom the leadership identify are Ahmad Ibn Hanbal (d. 241H/855AD), Ahmad Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 728H/1328AD), the Najdi-Saudi ‘ulama, Muhammad Qutb, Muhammad al-Albani (1914–2000), Muhammad al-Rashid (1938), and Muhammad Surur Ibn Naif Zin al-‘Abidin (1940–).

Ahmad Ibn Hanbal Al-Oudah refers to Ahmad Ibn Hanbal as the Imam of ahlu al-Sunnah [Imam, or leader of the Sunnis]. Among the Sunni Islamic fuqaha, the Sunni Islamic scholarly and reformist role of the fourth Imam, the youngest, Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, is distinguished.1 Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar all give special attention to the reformist role of Ibn Hanbal as a sound example to follow. In his study on Ibn Hanbal, al-Oudah states: There is no reader who does not know the Imam of the Sunni Muslims! Ahmad Ibn Hanbal is without dispute the one. Ibn Hanbal is an example of those ‘ulama whose names have become eternal not because of their wealth, family or monarchy, but because of their knowledge. In the words of Ibn Hanbal’s teacher al-Shafi‘i, ‘ . . . I have not seen better than Ibn Hanbal in his knowledge, fiqh [jurisprudence], and his taqwa [God-fearing]. Ibn Hanbal is the leading Imam in eight aspects: hadith, fiqh, Arabic language, Qur’an, zuhd [asceticism, self-denial], simple life or even poverty, sincere religion and devotion, and he is Imam in the Sunnah.’ 2 The political juristic role of Ibn Hanbal is manifest. The most distinguished and important element in Ibn Hanbal’s life was his stand against the Abbasid Caliph Abdullah al-Ma’mun.3 Al-Ma’mun was influenced by Mu‘tazilites’ thought,4 and oppressed and tortured Ibn Hanbal to

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make him follow the opinion of the Caliph. Ibn Hanbal refused to surrender his opinion despite oppression, torture and insult. He was imprisoned by three Caliphs: al-Ma’mun, al-Mu‘tasim (ruled: 218–227H/833–841AD), and al-Wathiq (ruled: 227–232H/841–846AD). During the reign of al-Wathiq, Ibn Hanbal was released from prison but was placed under house arrest. However, when al-Mutawakkil (ruled: 232–247H/847–861AD) came to power as Caliph, he was sympathetic to Ibn Hanbal’s cause and removed all restrictions placed on Ibn Hanbal. The Sunni Islamic thought and jurisprudence of Ibn Hanbal began to be supported and implemented by the ruling authority, and Ibn Hanbal was given the right to teach and spread knowledge. The crisis for Ibn Hanbal, which lasted for two decades, illustrates a particular type of ‘alim/ruling authority relationship. In spite of oppression, Ibn Hanbal resisted the ruling authority, held to his belief and defended it. Many people supported Ibn Hanbal and his adherents listened to him. A fatwa issued by him could have created a revolt against the ruling authority, but he did not provoke revolution. Al-Oudah underscores certain lessons from the case of Ibn Hanbal. 1 2 3

Ibn Hanbal practised the Islamic principle of promotion of virtue and prevention of vice. The ability of Ibn Hanbal to resist produced positive results. Imam Ahmad was tolerant.

During the reign of al-Mutawakkil, security reports accused Ibn Hanbal of planning a revolt against the ruling authority, which turned out to be false. Although he could have led the masses in revolution, he did not do so, as he did not see revolution or revolt as suitable solutions. He did not seek a position in the state. His human understanding was clear, enabling him to build bridges and maintain communication with people, including his enemies and those who were rivals to his thoughts.

Ahmad Ibn Taymiyyah Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz, the President of the Council of Senior Scholars and the Institution of Ifta and Scholarly Research, until he passed away in 1999, stated that ‘Safar al-Hawali is the new Ibn Taymiyyah’.5 This comment by the senior ‘alim, must be taken into consideration when dealing with the thoughts of al-Hawali. Al-Hawali’s work is clearly based on, or is influenced by, Ibn Taymiyyah’s thoughts, whose writings have, in fact, constituted an important source in discourses by the reformist leadership. Al-Omar writes: Ibn Taymiyyah, as a Sunni Islamic reformist, sprang from solid Sunni Islamic foundations. His method and strategy were reflections of his strong links to the Qur’an, and the Sunnah, his deep understanding of

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the Islamic ummah, and his ability to chart the path of change and reform without worry or reluctance. The secret of his success in spreading his Sunni Islamic knowledge was that he was involved in reality; in the daily life of people. He was available to the masses, teaching them, solving their problems, bringing their concerns to the rulers, communicating with the rulers in dealing with the necessity of change and reform, and insisting on his demands for Sunni Islamic change and reform. He was always trying . . . to pursue his aims.6 Al-Hawali, in his study of al-Hisbah [accounting; enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong], relies heavily on Ibn Taymiyyah’s essential juristic political work, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah fi Islah al-Ra‘i wa al-Ra‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence to reform the Ruler and the Ruled]. Al-Hawali discusses the comprehensive method of carrying out the principle of ‘promotion of virtue and prevention of vice’.7 Al-Oudah, in a significant study on Min Wasa’il Daf‘ al-Ghurbah [Overcoming Solitude], also relies on essential Ibn Taymiyyah’s work such as ‘Amalu Ahlu al-Madina [The Work of the People of Madina], Al-Hisbah fi al-Islam [accounting; enjoining what is right, and forbidding what is wrong in Islam], Risaltu Al-amr b’il Ma‘ruf wa al Nahi ‘an al Munkar [Letter on the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice], Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah fi Islah al-Ra‘i wa al-Ra‘iyah, and the collection of Ibn Taymiyyah’s Fatawa [Legal Opinions].8 Al-Oudah admires Ibn Taymiyyah and his student, Ibn al-Qayyim (d. 751H/1350AD) and writes: In dealing with ancestral ‘ulama I have benefited from Ibn Taymiyyah, and his student, Ibn al-Qayyim. I thank Allah that I am strongly connected to the heritage of those two notable Imams. I usually seek their opinions when I search each issue where their opinions are important, solid and distinguished . . . 9 Ibn Taymiyyah lived in difficult times. The Islamic world was experiencing political, ideological, scientific and societal crises. The long-standing Abbasid Caliphate collapsed under the Tartar invasion, and hundreds of thousands of Muslims were either killed or displaced from their homes. Great Islamic scientific achievements were destroyed by the invasion, and disputes and conflicts between Islamic kingdoms in the post-Abbasid era started developing. Sunni Islamic thought was suppressed. Islamic theoretical methods based on Greek philosophy, logic and dialectic were in control and exerted a hegemonic role. Muslims of the time were involved in heated debate and philosophical disputes, discussing controversial ideas and contradicting each other. At this time Ibn Taymiyyah emerged as an important Sunni Islamic reformer. He carried forward a reformist mission dealing with many issues: political, societal, cultural and scientific. His starting point of reform was ‘aqidah, [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief] and he devoted his efforts to explaining and clarifying the subject. He believed that if Muslims

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were able to attain purified ‘aqidah, they could carry out their Islamic obligations and duties more easily, and their outward practices would be correct.10 The political juristic discourses of Ibn Taymiyyah are of great importance. The most influential work is Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah fi Islah al-Ra‘i wa al-Ra‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence to reform the Ruler and the Ruled]. In this book, he explains that the government, the supreme ruling political office and public offices, which he calls al-wilayat, must be based on trust, duty, guardianship, responsibility, substitution, agency, leasing and a general political contract.11 Ibn Taymiyyah explains that Islamic policy and management is based on a’yatu al-umara [Qur’anic verse that deals with the functions of the rulers], which is: ‘Allah doth command you to render back your trusts to those to whom they are due; and when ye judge between people that ye judge with justice, . . . ’ (S.4, A.58).12 Ibn Taymiyyah emphasizes al-siyasa [politics, the political] is to protect al-din [religion] and to manage al-dunya [worldly life and affairs]. These are two main elements in the political thought of Ibn Taymiyyah.13 The idea that the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah has its roots in Ibn Taymiyyah’s work is explained by Yusuf al-Badawi, under six points: ●











Al-maqsad [aim, purpose] of al-wilayat [public offices: governmental, administrative and ruling positions] is to maintain and protect Islam and to maintain and protect al-dunya [worldly or present life]. Governing people is one of the greatest religious duties, and government is necessary to maintain religion and make people’s lives secure. The purpose of the Islamic wilayat is to carry out the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice]. This includes the police, the military and finance. Ibn Taymiyyah maintains that when the imamah [the supreme ruling office] has been taken by force, and when this action has been accepted by ahlu al-shawkah [people with power or military power] the imamah should be confirmed and people should submit to this authority according to the shari‘ah. Ibn Taymiyyah stresses, to those who seek public office, that each public office must have specific conditions according to the needs of the post that must be filled. Imamah al-ghalaba wa al-qahr [the ruler who sought authority by power, overcame others, and prevailed over rivals] is recognized if this ruler carries out ahkamu al-shari‘ah [Islamic Laws]. Public offices, or al-wilayat, are religious in their origin.14

Another important book by Ibn Taymiyyah is Al-Hisbah fi al-Islam, which focuses on methods of change and reform, which should be gradual. Resisting vice in one’s heart is crucial. Start speaking out; this prevents vice. Use power, allowed as an ultimate instrument in bringing about political change and

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reform. But using power is conditional, and it should not cause more harm or exacerbate al-fasad [corruption]. Applying the insights of the Sunni Islamic jurisprudence [such as patience, toleration and kindness vis-à-vis violence] is vital. Resisting and fighting corruption should not create more corruption or cause more harm.15

The Najdi-Saudi ‘ulama Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar live in domestic Sunni Islamic educational spheres. They studied at al-Ma‘ahid al-‘ilmiyah [Islamic Scientific Institutes or Schools] and at Islamic universities, and are in scholarly communication with the Najd-Saudi ‘ulama. Al-Oudah’s experiences demonstrate this aspect.16 Al-Oudah speaks of his childhood years in which he enjoyed a quiet Islamic educational environment. The early Islamic educational sphere was furthered when al-Oudah entered al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi [The Islamic Scientific School] to undertake his intermediate and secondary schooling. At al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi, the Islamic education was scholarly and wider compared to the Islamic environment of his early locality. Al-Oudah benefited from teachers at the Institute, and he mentions certain shaikhs at the School. He built a special scholarly relationship with Shaikh Salih al-Bilihi (d. 1989) and often visited him at home. Al-Oudah was in scholarly interaction and communication with certain other distinguished and senior ‘ulama, and was involved with, and interacted with Muhammad Ibn ‘Uthaymin [Member of the Council of Senior Scholars and the Institution of Ifta and Scholarly Research] Muhammad al-Mansoor [qadhi – judge], Humud al-‘Aqla [professor of shari‘ah] and Ibn Baz. Another important Saudi shaikh who influenced al-Oudah was Abd al-Rahman Ibn Muhammad al-Dussary (d. late 1980s). He was a well-known preacher and Islamic activist, giving wide and popular Islamic lectures during the 1960s and 1970s, who structured Islamism vis-à-vis opponent ideologies, such as communism and secularism. He endorsed Muhammad Qutb’s and Sayid Qutb’s literature, and built a wide relationship with Islamic leaders and activists around the world. Al-Oudah attended some of al-Dussary’s lectures, read all his books, including his explanation of the Qur’an, and built a close relationship with al-Dussary. At this time, al-Oudah was a university student at the College of Shari‘ah, then became a postgraduate student at Al-Imam Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud Islamic University, al-Qassim branch, and later a teaching assistant at the University.17 Al-Oudah states: I was not a student of other ‘ulama, but I benefited from their knowledge by sitting in at their scientific circles or reading books before them.18 This is the case of Shaikh Muhammad Ibn ‘Uthaymin (d. 2000AD). I attended his daily lessons during summers. . . . I also benefited as a scholar from Ibn ‘Uthaymin by sitting with him. . . . In the case of Shaikh

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Ibn Baz is an important and distinguished ‘alim and al-Oudah communicated and interacted with him, seeking the opinions and insights of Ibn Baz. As noted earlier on the question of revolution, there is a strong juristic interaction between al-Oudah and Ibn Baz in dealing with this important question. Ibn Baz’s opinion on revolt is in Ibn Baz’s revision and introduction of al-Oudah’s important study, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences]. In his introduction, Ibn Baz recommended talabatu al-‘ilm [students of Islamic science] to read al-Oudah’s book, and states: I have seen the book entitled Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal of our brother the ‘alim/Shaikh Salman Ibn Fahd al-Oudah. The book is valuable, and very useful . . . May Allah reward him . . . I advise talabatu al-‘ilm [students of Islamic science] to read the book and benefit from it.19 Al-Oudah devotes special attention to a study of the character, personality and experiences of Ibn Baz, and undertook a biographical study entitled Nassim al-Hijaz Fi Sirat al-Imam Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz [The Breeze of al-Hijaz in the Biography of the Imam Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz] in 1992.20 Al-Oudah emphasizes certain characteristics of Ibn Baz, which, al-Oudah believes, represents the style of his life and work. 1

2

3 4

Patience was important. Ibn Baz’s office21 was open to everyone. Many people, of different personalities, nationalities and class, came to his office daily, discussing many issues and requesting many things, but he had the ability to listen to them all. We need ‘ulama, like him, who meet people and communicate with them. He had the characteristic of forgiveness and tolerance. Ibn Baz was neither irritable nor provoked by others, and was able to maintain bridges and connections with others. He believed it unwise to create disputes, and saw himself as a Muslim da‘iyah [caller] working to attract people to the realm of Islam by words and behaviour. Ibn Baz was courageous. He directly criticized Arab governmental policies. The global concern of Ibn Baz was manifest. He was concerned about Muslim problems worldwide.

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Ibn Baz was always seeking ‘ilm [Islamic science], and to be an expert on hadith, but, Al-Oudah insists, this does not mean Ibn Baz is ma‘sum [infallible]. Ibn Baz did not spend his 90 years in a lavish lifestyle but devoted himself to jihad, da‘wah [Islamic call], patience and feeling for people’s problems and concerns. Ibn Baz was moral. He sought evidence on issues, investigated these and made sure of the safety of others, before forming opinions or making decisions. Ibn Baz accepted the validity of other juristic visions. In dealing with juristic differences, or differences on ijtihad-based matters, Ibn Baz was always conscious of avoiding the development of such differences into personal issues or personal differences. This point is important to al-Oudah, and he refers to the necessity of developing a non-offensive style of discussion and dialogue between people or intellectuals, and he says: Nobody will prevent you from developing your own opinion. But you should not put this opinion as religion, per se, or that you are the official speaker of the Qur’an and Sunnah, that those who have differences with you are not part of the Qur’an and Sunnah. Bring up your opinions with humbleness, i‘tidal [moderation], responsibility, wisdom and acumen. As al-Shafi‘i stated: ‘my opinion is right, but it is possible to be wrong, and the opinions of others are wrong, but it is possible they are right.’ During the peak of the recorded discourses of the leadership (1990–1994), they were subject to harsh criticism from other rival trends in Saudi Arabia.

An important habit of Ibn Baz was his regularly scholarly meeting with the talabatu al-‘ilm [students of Islamic sciences] including al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar.22 An example of this was Ibn Baz’s visit to al-Omar’s majlis where Ibn Baz met ‘ulama and talabatu al-‘ilm including the reformist leadership. At that meeting, Ibn Baz explained some Qur’anic verses to support his opinion that it is necessary for the reformers, while seeking change and reform, to practise patience, forgiveness and to contain their anger. At this meeting, Abd al-Rahman al-Barak [senior ‘alim] followed the recommendation of Ibn Baz when he emphasized patience and the endurance of any hardship during the reformist journey. A vital point, at the same meeting, was Ibn Baz’s endorsement of the discourses of al-Hawali and al-Oudah. This endorsement came when Ibn Baz answered a question on the validity and the credibility of recorded cassettes that attack and slander al-Hawali and al-Oudah and their discourses. Ibn Baz described the attack and slander as wrong and false, and said the cassettes should not be listened to and should be destroyed.23 The leadership maintains goodwill and respect for Ibn Baz. Al-Oudah in 2006 published articles on the legacy of Ibn Baz, describing him as ‘The Greatest Imam’, and considered his influential role. He was a crucial factor in

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maintaining balance in the Saudi society, through public trust in him, linkages to official bodies, wide relationships24 and communication with the ‘ulama and talabatu al-‘ilm.25 Ibn Baz praised Islamic political thinkers Muhammad Qutb and his brother Sayid Qutb who influenced the reformist leadership.26 It is important to recognize that Ibn Baz,27 as the State Mufti, extended legitimacy to the leadership. While the Monarchy was criticizing the leadership during the 1990s, Ibn Baz took a different position and maintained their legitimacy without retreat, and also gave tacit support.28 The leadership has extended their involvement in the domestic scholarly sphere to include interaction with the historical Sunni Islamic marji‘iyah [referential] of this scholarly environment, Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab [1115–1206H/1703–1791AD]. When al-Hawali explains the Risalat Tahkim al-Qawanin [Letter of Resorting to non-Islam Laws] of Ibn Ibrahim,29 he refers to Ibn Ibrahim as the offspring of the da‘wah of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab.30 Al-Hawali, through this statement, tries to empower the legitimacy of Ibn Ibrahim’s discourse. Al-Hawali, in his PhD thesis, emphasizes the essential role of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab as a mujaddid [reformer] in influencing contemporary Islamic revivalist movements: The blessed Islamic da‘wah [call] of Imam Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab created global reverberations. As a result, its opponents or rivals have been obliged to review the true state of affairs and the essence of faith, disbelief, shirk [polytheism, associating anything with Allah] and al-tawhid. The wave of colonial campaigns and the attraction of Western civilization have caused the Islamic ummah to move away from its religion and lose its identity. But from the Islamic da‘wah of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab and its results, Islamic revivalist movements have been developed and re-born, again calling to Islam.31 Al-Hawali, in his ‘aqidahs studies, relies on essential literature by Ibn Abd al-Wahhab. For example, al-Hawali deals with the theological framework of qa‘idat al-usul al-thalathah [the structure of the three pillars], which refers to the substance of ‘aqidah [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief]. In this, qa‘idat al-usul al-thalathah refers to the necessity of knowing and understanding four issues: ●

● ● ●

Al-‘ilm [knowledge]; to acknowledge Allah, His Prophet Muhammad and Islam. Applying this ‘ilm is a necessity. It is necessary to start calling others to Islam. Patience and enduring hardship is a fundamental principle while calling others to Islam.

Applying shari‘ah is the essence of qa‘idat al-usul al-thalathah and disbelieving taghut [false deities, whatever is worshipped beside Allah] is

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a duty. Ibn Abd al-Wahhab asserts that believing in Allah requires disbelief in taghut. In this sense, applying non-Islamic Laws is seen as taghut.32 The juristic interaction between al-Hawali and Ibn Abd al-Wahhab is seen in al-Hawali’s study of Nawaqidh al-Shahadatan [Matters Contradicting the Two Testimonials] which is influenced by Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s literature of Nawaqidh al-Islam [Matters Contradicting Islam]. Both consider the case of non-implementing of shari‘ah as a naqidh [contradiction] to Islam.33

Muhammad Qutb The intellectual interaction between the leadership and Muhammad Qutb is manifest through the scholarly relationship between al-Hawali and Muhammad Qutb. The latter was the supervisor of al-Hawali in his Master’s thesis of Al-‘ilmaniyah [Secularism] and his PhD dissertation Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought]. In al-Hawali’s dissertation discussion, Muhammad Qutb, comments on the academic performance of his student: ‘The student who submits today is one of the most brilliant and dedicated students at this university.’ 34 Muhammad Qutb and al-Hawali share the same research interests. Muhammad Qutb studied secularism and other ideologies such as atheism. He argues that Islam cannot be separated from life, and the particular problem here is that Islam is often excluded from being the law of the state in Muslim countries. This contradicts the first pillar of Islam.35 Muhammad Qutb’s theme was developed in the discourses by al-Hawali in his Master’s and PhD dissertations. Al-Oudah emphasizes that Muhammad Qutb’s book Waqi‘una al-Mu‘asir [Our Contemporary Reality], complements al-Hawali’s book Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought]. Al-Oudah considers that there is a parallel in the direction the two books take. This direction relates to the necessity of linking ‘amal [work, conduct, the outward practices] to iman [faith]. So, iman [faith] without ‘amal [work, the outward practices] is not valid. The problem of al-irja [postponement] explored by al-Hawali in his PhD dissertation is noted in Muhammad Qutb’s influential book, Hawla al-Tafsir al-Islami lil Tarikh [About the Islamic Explanation of History] in which Qutb criticizes the thought of al-irja.36 Muhammad Qutb, in Hawla al-Tafsir al-Islami lil Tarikh, criticizes Marxist and liberal explanations of history. Both explanations, he argues, focus on the materialistic side of mankind and marginalize man as a whole. Qutb asserts that thoughts such as Darwinism and consequences such as those from the oppressive history of the Church have influenced Europe in this materialistic direction. The Islamic explanation of history is independent from both explanations; it is a holistic outlook and has nothing to do with European history.37 Muhammad Qutb identifies the Islamic explanation of history as being based on established Islamic visions of the whole universe, the existence of

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Allah, the existence of mankind, the materialistic reality, the mutual relationship between the Creator and the creation and al-sunan al-ilahiyah [Allah’s conduct]. Successive historical cases of tyrannies, slavery, exploitations, feudalism and capitalism have occurred because Allah’s law has not been applied and other reasons are sought. Al-Hawali explores Muhammad Qutb’s viewpoint on the forces and consequences that shaped European thought, such as Darwinism and the oppressive role of the Church, and devotes part of his Master’s thesis to examining European history, as follows: ●







Al-Hawali studies religion in Europe and the way Christianity was distorted or changed. This distorted Christianity now contains myths and bida‘ [innovations in religion, heresies] in which Christianity does not represent the true religion of Allah or His shari‘ah. Al-Hawali examines (1) the Church’s religious, political and financial oppressive roles (2) the struggle between the Church and science (3) the French revolution which established a non-religious state, exploited by destructive forces (4) the theory of evolution and its influence on thought, behaviour and science. Al-Hawali discusses the economic theories of Karl Marx and David Ricardo, and the sociology theories of Emile Durkheim and Sigmund Freud. Al-Hawali discusses political theories of utopianism, divine right, social contract, Machiavellism, evolution and democracy.38

A further indication of harmony between al-Hawali and Qutb is their vision on the subject of applying non-Islamic Law. In his lecture Nawaqidh al-Shahadatan [Matters Contradicting the Two Testimonials] al-Hawali discusses one element that contradicts the first pillar of Islam, where the creation is given some of Allah’s names, qualities, attributes and some of Allah’s characteristics of al-rububiyah and al-uluhiyah. This is the case when some people take a Lord other than Allah and this Lord takes the position of Allah by becoming ma’luh [God].39 In this sense, Qutb asserts the greatest corruption is when people take ma’luh or a Lord other than Allah. Some people make themselves Lords. This is called ta’alluh, which means such people deify and raise themselves to the status of Allah. The rest of the people become subjects and make those people, who raised themselves to the status of Allah, arbab [Lords] instead of Allah. These arbab dare to forbid and allow bi ghair ma anzala Allah [applying non-Islamic Law] in which they make the unlawful halal [lawful] and lawful things haram [unlawful]. Qutb thus identifies the problem in which people follow these arbab or false Lords’ authority, as causing fasad [corruption] on earth.40 Al-Hawali and Qutb agree about shirk al-ittiba‘. Al-Hawali clarifies that shirk al-ittiba‘ [polytheism, associating anything with Allah] occurs when someone makes a sharik [partner] with Allah in ittiba‘ [adopting legal views],

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ta‘ah [obedience] and tahkim [arbitration]. Applying non-Islamic Laws manifests shirk al-ittiba‘.41 Qutb applies the same vision and explains that shirk al-ittiba‘ occurs when people do not recognize shari‘ah and do not submit themselves to shari‘ah. Those people are subject to their shahawat [lusts, inclinations] which causes them to deny shari‘ah. They argue against the implementation of shari‘ah, and prefer to follow and obey non-Islamic Laws. Thus establishing the life, behaviour, thought and feeling of man on non-Islamic structures is shirk and contradicts the first pillar in Islam.42 While the reformist leadership, in their early development during the 1970s and 1980s, interacted with al-Qutb’s school of thought [Muhammad Qutb and his brother Sayid Qutb], through reading their discourses or through academic supervision, as in the case of Muhammad Qutb and al-Hawali, the Saudi official radio used to transmit, during the reign of King Faisal al-Sa‘ud (1964–1975), readings on Sayid Qutb’s well-known discourse, al-Zilal [The Shadows; an explanation of the Holy Qur’an].43 This historical legitimacy was extended by the Monarchy to al-Qutb’s school of thought, and the Monarchy hosted Muhammad Qutb when he came to the Kingdom in 1973.

Muhammad al-Albani Muhammad al-Albani (1914–2000), a leading scholar of hadith, endorsed the Sunni Islamic scholarly status of the leadership,44 and al-Oudah refers to al-Albani as a source of intellectual influence.45 The substance of the scholarly contribution of al-Albani is his extensive work in distinguishing sahih al-hadith [authentic hadith] from weak hadith. Al-Albani legitimizes Islamic political activities to bring about political change and reform. He emphasizes that these activities should be peaceful and within the framework of civil order. He is known for his rejection of revolutionary methods and armed struggle as methods for political change and reform. His argument against revolution is similar to those of Ibn Hanbal, Ibn Taymiyyah, Ibn Baz and the leadership. He argues that there are two main instruments towards political change and reform: al-tasfiyah [purification of Islamic knowledge] and al-tarbiyah [education]. Al-tasfiyah is the implementation of Sunni Islamic reform thoughts, and the reformist mission should concentrate on the process of purifying Islam from any elements that contradict its principles and foundations. Then the purified, or authentic, Islam should be brought to the people and spread among them. Muslims should practise patience in dealing with tyranny, and governments and ruling authorities should be advised of the need to carry out shari‘ah.46

Muhammad al-Rashid A significant lecture by al-Oudah in 1993, was entitled Sina‘atu al-Hayah [Life-Making].47 The substance of this lecture is based on a discourse by

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Muhammad al-Rashid [a leading figure in the Muslim Brotherhood Organisation], which had the same title as al-Oudah’s lecture.48 Clearly al-Oudah saw al-Rashid as a significant source for his own thinking. Al-Rashid is strongly linked to the Sunni Islamic heritage, and uses features from this heritage, recasting them for contemporary life. He sees society as an arena where Islamic groups and trends should compete with others in civil life. He recommends that Islamic groups should concentrate on developing their skills and professional proficiencies. He argues in favour of Islamic perspectives in fields such as education, culture, ethics, bureaucracy, services and organizational procedures to give the reformer an eminent professional status. Islamic groups should be benevolent and compassionate to others and bring them benefits.49 The author contends that the reformist leadership, especially in the post-prison era, is moving towards these methods of functionalism and professionalism. The leadership has followed al-Rashid’s insight that an Islamic movement’s policy should be rational, flexible and adjust to, or accommodate, the environment50 while maintaining juristic Sunni Islamic foundations and structures.51 The leadership’s post-prison policy, in particular, focuses on the Islamic movement’s institutional and professional aspects, as seen in the realm of al-Rashid.

Muhammad Surur The reformist leadership has been identified with Shaikh Muhammad Surur Ibn Naif Zin al-‘Abidin; a Syrian Islamist in his 60s. During the 1950s and 1960s he was a member of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood group. Due to differences with the group about Islamic work issues, and the problem of partisanship, Surur called for reform,52 whereafter he left the Brothers, and started criticizing some of their methods. Surur started a separate Islamic line, independent from the Brothers, and yet close to the Muslim Brotherhood’s tradition of concentrating on political issues as a core. Surur emphasizes that Islamic movements, or activists, should practise Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] or ‘aqidah [Islamic creed] and Islamic morality. Surur left Syria in 1967, due to increasing pressure on Sunni, traditional and conservative Islamic movements and trends, and established in the al-Qassim province in Saudi Arabia. There he met al-Oudah, as a 12-year-old student, at al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi [The Islamic Scientific Institute] where Surur taught and al-Oudah studied, and they were active in Islamic cultural activities with other teachers and students.53 Surur left Saudi Arabia in 1973, following a security report sent to the Saudi authority, accusing Surur of spreading ideas against the Monarchy, and moved to Kuwait where he worked as a journalist at an Islamic magazine. In 1983, he left Kuwait and went into exile in the United Kingdom,54 where he lived, raised his family, and undertook academic and Islamic activities, such as publishing books and articles, through his

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UK-based Islamic magazine called al-Sunnah. Experiencing illness, he left England before the Summer of 2004 and returned to Jordan in the Middle East. The polemic issue of the reformist leadership’s linkages to Surur has been by their opponents, including security and intelligence apparatus, labelling them as ‘Sururists’ or sururiyah, indicating his leading role and the supposed existence of an Islamic organization led by Surur with the reformist leadership as part of this organization. This is a controversial issue. The leadership has been almost silent on this issue, indicating their rejection of this,55 and Surur, himself, criticized the term sururiyah.56 Surur did not ignore the relationship as he is proud of his role in influencing and making a contribution to the development of the leadership, particularly in the case of Salman al-Oudah.57 Elements in Surur’s ‘Islamic methodology’ have a place in the leadership’s discourse and performance, and yet not to the degree of seeing the reformist leadership as followers of Muhammad Surur, as the leadership has increasingly developed as an independent active Islamic scientific reformist body. In the discourse and performance of Surur, one sees: Political criticism. Surur applied political criticism, sometimes severely, against secular, totalitarian and authoritarian Arab governments, including Saudi Arabia. Alliance. He stands with the reformist leadership, and took up their cause during the political struggle of the 1990s. He described the Monarchy’s decision to imprison the leadership, in September 1994, as a ‘stupid decision’,58 and ‘Saudi terrorism’,59 but called for the leadership and their followers to be patient and to avoid violence. Sunnism. Surur is a specialist in studying, and politically analysing, or criticizing, ‘Shiism’. He takes up the ‘Sunni cause’ vis-à-vis Shiite and Iranian influence in the region, and his literature in this matter has been significant, and influential, in the region, and in Islamic movements.60 Balancing. A complex political method where an Islamic activist, or movement, balances between confronting states. Using power for change and reform can be applied, but juristically conditioned, or observed, according to fiqh al-istita‘a [the jurisprudence of the ability, capability, possibility].

Summary This chapter focuses on the intellectual interaction between the reformist leadership and other Sunni Islamic juristic and political writing, both historical and contemporary. This interaction represents a nexus of the Sunni Islamic reformist tajdid [renewal] movement of which the reformist leadership is part. This movement is a continuation of the historical reformist and political role of the Sunni ‘ulama and fuqaha, and is a model of Sunni Islamic

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reformist activity towards political change and reform within civil and peaceful boundaries. The Sunni Islamic fiqh provides an analytical unit and operates as the pivot around which the acts and discourses of the reformist leadership turn. The preceding three chapters assess essential elements in the dimension of mas’uliyat al-‘ulama [the ‘ulama’s responsibilities]. Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah allows for the ‘ulama and ahlu al-din [people of religion], if they are able, to take direct mas’uliyat shar‘iyah [juristic responsibilities including the political], such as al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice]. Where the ruling Muslim status quo experiences deficiencies (such as increasing proof of aggression on din [religion] and hurumat [sanctities]) and are unable to defend Islam, Muslims or other elements which are its legal responsibility, and where ‘isam al-din wa aslu al-iman [Islamic fundamental principles and structures] are threatened, the ‘ulama and ahlu al-din [people of religion] are also entitled to take action.61 Within the context of mas’uliyat al-‘ulama [the ‘ulama’s responsibilities], one can see that the legitimacy of the reformist leadership and its political function comes from Islamic Law, per se, and from their status as ‘ulama that guard al-shari‘ah [Islamic Law] or himayatu al-din [protection, guarding the religion], an important function in any state under Islam.62 The concept of legitimacy clearly includes shar‘iyah al-‘ulama [the legitimacy of the ‘ulama] and their political function, and the political function of the ‘ulama – including the reformist leadership as ‘ulama – is shar‘i [legitimate] and religious. Islam provides a lawful justifications and basis for undertaking political work and functions.

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Background This chapter examines the development of the reformist leadership’s policy of al-mudafa‘a [the dimension of countering] from 1981, when Safar al-Hawali produced his significant Master’s thesis entitled ‘Al-‘ilmaniyah’[Secularism]. Throughout the 1980s, the three scholars produced Sunni Islamic juristic studies on al-mudafa‘a, with arguments that countered rival or opposition thought, and developed political methods for bringing about change and reform, with the political factor embedded in a comprehensive dini [religious] framework. Sunni Islamic reform in general, and the elements of the question of political reform in particular, were focal points in the discourse of the reformist leadership in this period. By the end of the 1980s, the reformist leadership had structured the intellectual foundations and political dimensions of its countering policy. The reformist leadership built Sunni consciousness, and developed an important Sunni reformist vision, as the leadership sought to understand historical experience, and to formulate lessons, theses and general laws. In the 1980s, al-Hawali produced much of his scholarly work. Besides his study on Al-‘ilmaniyah [Secularism, its emergence, development and influence on Islamic life] (1981), he also produced Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya [Explanation of the ‘Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi],1 and Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought] in 1986.2 Al-Oudah developed a Sunni juristic study on the ‘solitaries’, by which he meant al-muslihun [the reformers]. Between 1988 and 1993, he produced Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries] that was made up of four parts: Al-ghuraba al-Awalun [The Earliest Solitaries], Sifatu al-Ghuraba [The Character of the Solitaries], Min Wasa’il Daf‘al-Ghurbah [Overcoming Solitude] and Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences]. These are studies in prophetic biography and Sunni jurisprudence, but, because of their richness and deep thought, political, activist or resistance lessons can be noted.

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In 1979 and 1984, al-Omar produced two Qur’anic studies in which he edited and explained some of the manuscripts in tafsiru al-Qur’an [Explanation of the Holy Qur’an]. In the early 1990s, he further developed his earlier Qur’anic studies and produced his works entitled Al-‘Ahd wa Al-Mithaq fi Al-Qur’an Al-Karim [The Covenant and Contract in the Holy Qur’an] (1992),3 and Suratu al-Hujurat: Dirasah Tahliliyah wa Mawdhu‘iyah [The Chapter of Inner Apartments: Analytical and Objective Study] (1993),4 both linked to his earlier Qur’anic studies. The leadership’s studies must be seen as the intellectual core, or basis, of their whole Sunni Islamic juristic discourse and performance since 1981 to the present. They are likely to maintain this juristic core, its principles and basic ideas,5 but the leadership’s actions might change. The leadership’s performance has varied depending on need, and this variation reflects the leadership’s policy towards changing consequences, conditions and variables, and towards different players, through the last two decades. The leadership, during the 1980s, also confirmed al-mudafa‘a through its reference to regional and global developments and events, such as the consequences of the Iranian revolution and its related issue of Shiite doctrine in the 1980s, the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan (1979–1990) and the related issue of jihad, and the start of the break up of the Soviet Union, in the late 1980s, and its implications for Communism. These thoughts engendered arguments that clarified the leadership’s political position towards those events, and gave other indications of the dimensions of the countering policy. The three scholars were concerned to link their Islamic studies with reality, referred to as fiqh al-waqi‘ [jurisprudence of reality], which involved methods of understanding politics. Al-Omar, defines this jurisprudence: Fiqh al-waqi‘ is the scientific Sunni Islamic method which seeks to understand contemporary events, the factors that influence societies, the powers that practice hegemonic roles over nations, and the thoughts directed towards undermining Islam, per se. It seeks, therefore, shar‘iyah [religious, Islamic, legitimate, and lawfully-based] ways to protect and to maintain the Muslim ummah and its progress in the present and in the future.6

Countering in the 1980s The leadership developed al-mudafa‘a as a ‘countering’ policy in four main areas: ● ● ● ●

Countering secularism. Countering fikr al-irja [the thought of postponement]. The methods of mudafa‘a. Engaging in external political interaction.

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Countering secularism In 1981, al-Hawali developed the concept of rejecting secularism, and this became an essential element in the political consciousness of the leadership. Towards this end, al-Hawali pointed out the importance of the first pillar of Islam La ilaha illa Allah [There is no God but God, and Muhammad is His Messenger], as a principle opposed to secularism. Al-Hawali saw the question of Islamic identity as central in this matter. The greatest gift from Allah to this ummah was sending the Prophet Muhammad to reveal the complete religion or the perfect shari‘ah. So, the ummah, to be called ‘Muslims’, was established and the real meaning of Islam was demonstrated. This is the Islam of the heart, the Islam of the external [acts, behaviour], the Islam of the individual, the Islam of the society, and the Islam of the whole life. Islam is contained within La ilaha illa Allah. The Islamic ummah enjoyed a leading global role for many centuries because of the ummah’s comprehension and consciousness of the words La ilaha illa Allah, where the words were implemented in life. Then the status of the Islamic ummah and its civilisation started to decline . . .. This is because the elements of La ilaha illa Allah were discarded or ignored. . . . The ‘vanguards’ of the attack and invasion have come with slogans, trends and an attractive façade to deceive or mislead the Muslim ummah . . . So socialism, nationalism, democracy,7 freedom8 and the philosophy of evolution, atheism . . . have come and have spread as infectious diseases invading the minds and hearts of those who misunderstand the meaning of . . . La ilaha illa Allah. The question of democracy in this passage from al-Hawali needs to be clarified to prevent misunderstanding. Al-Hawali, or the leadership as a whole, is not against democracy as such, and the substance of al-Hawali’s study of Al-‘ilmaniyah [Secularism] was to counter elements which pose a threat to Islamic values, and not to discuss democracy as a philosophy or political system. The bottom line for al-Hawali was concern that secularism poses a threat to Islamic values, in that democracy can be used as a gateway to spread secularism and liberalism, thus undermining Islamic values in Muslim societies.9 In 1993, al-Oudah responded to Francis Fukuyama’s work: The End of History and the Last Man10 in a lecture entitled Nihaytu al-Tarikh [The End of History] which questioned and criticized Fukuyama’s argument that sees liberal democracy as the final form of human civilized development, indicating the end of history.11 Al-Oudah also criticized Fukuyama’s perception of Islam as a threat. Fukuyama’s presentation of democracy, or liberal democracy, as a global hegemonic project, and as a development that poses threats to the Islamic world or values is polemic. Al-Oudah rejected this hegemonic, and threatening,

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tone of liberal democracy.12 Al-Hawali also opposed Francis Fukuyama’s The End of History and the Last Man and Samuel Huntington’s The Clash of Civilisation, on the grounds that both are militant and present the polemic element of democracy.13 The leadership built a balanced vision and applied a selective method towards Western democracy,14 as justified on a juristic Sunni Islamic basis. To reach a fair judgement on an issue, the faqih [jurist] studies the case from various angles and examines its components. He makes tamyiz [distinguish, differentiate] between angles and components, tarjih [give more weight to certain elements] with some, and ta‘dil [adjusting] some, according to Islamic Law.15 Juristically, al-Oudah emphasized, if Muslims know any truth of any kind, and must bear witness, they are obliged to give a true testimony on such issues or cases, as a religious function. In the Qur’an, one reads ‘and those who stand firm in their testimonies; (S.70, A.33), ‘Conceal not evidence; (S.2, A.283).16 Based on this, the negative side of Western democracy, in Fukuyama’s and Huntington’s arguments, or in other cases,17 should not overshadow its positive side, as in the case of accounting by, and questioning of, the ruling authorities in the systematic way of the West. The idea, per se, of preventing the establishment of a dictatorship is an important political achievement in the West. In Islam, the concept of accounting by, and questioning of, the ruling authority can be applied through the hisbah [accounting; enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong] and shura [consultation] systems. The leadership recognizes human elements such as Western domestic laws that protect the sanctities.18 In 1991, al-Oudah undertook a public lecture about Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam [Human Rights in Islam], and, in 1995, he endorsed a study about human rights in Islam entitled Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam [Human Rights between the Justice of Islam and the Tyranny of the Rulers]. Both the lecture and the study illustrated various human rights in Islam, to be called, according to fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [the legitimate rights]. Al-huquq al-shar‘iyah in Islam and human rights in Western democratic countries share some important similarities. These particular similarities, or complementary visions, should be seen as nullifying, or countering, Huntington’s theory on the clash of civilizations. Al-Oudah appreciates laws in democratic Western countries which allow Muslims to maintain their religion in the West,19 and also appreciates their scientific accomplishments. Al-Oudah disagrees with commentators, including Westerners, who speak of the collapse of the West, and stated that we do not hope, or seek, for the collapse of the West. In a justification of this, he notes that Western scientific and technical advancement should not only be seen as a Western achievement. It is a combined achievement in which various nations have participated in advances, and Muslims have played a distinguished and influential part. Today this scientific and technical advancement is global and of common interest for nations.20

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Returning to al-Hawali’s work on Al-‘ilmaniyah [Secularism], in Muslim societies which have been invaded by secularism, al-Hawali referred to the birth of the power of mudafa‘a, or the Islamic revivalist movement, as an attempt to counterbalance a deviation from Islam. Building the countering policy, or pursuing mudafa‘a, requires an understanding of others. Secularism has to be understood, and al-Hawali clarifies the reasons for studying secularism. Al-Hawali is concerned to counter secularism as a rival concept, clarifying and defining secularism vis-à-vis Islam. He undertook a critical analysis of the development of the secular philosophy in European history, then discussed secularism in Islamic life and the reasons for the spread of secularism in the Islamic world. Al-Hawali noted various secular influences, such as secularism in government and legislation, with examples from Turkey and Egypt, the secular movement in education and culture, and secular influences on sociology, morality and the issue of tahrir al-mar’ah [liberation of women] as a process to undermine the Islamic belief of Muslim women. In his early studies, al-Hawali observes secular influence on state and society.21 The process of political change and reform requires the elimination of secular influences, and comprehensive nullifying of the secular argument.22 Al-Hawali gives, in his work on Al-‘ilmaniyah [Secularism], a hukm shar‘i [Islamic law-based judgement or legal decision] on secularism, stating that secularism is shirk bi Allah [to set up or attribute associates to Allah, that is, to be a polytheist, polytheism].23 Al-Oudah followed al-Hawali on the subject of countering secularism. In 1409H/1989AD, al-Oudah delivered in Abha, the capital of the Saudi southern province, a significant lecture entitled Ma‘rakat al-Islam wa Al-‘ilmaniyah [The Battle Between Islam and Secularism]. In his lecture, al-Oudah discussed the following: ● ● ● ●

The hukm [sentence; judgement or legal decision] on secularism. Islamic perceptions of ‘ilm [knowledge, science]. Secular instruments in the Islamic world. The necessity of countering secularism.

Al-Oudah clarifies that the battle between Islam and secularism is a battle against al-jahiliyah [ignorance, pre-Islamic state and period] in which secularism is shirk bi Allah [to set up or attribute associates to Allah, that is, to be a polytheist, polytheism].24 Al-Omar also discussed the issue of secularism, and, in particular, focused on secular forces that sought to spread secularist ideology in Muslim societies.25 Countering al-irja [postponement] The leadership countered the idea of al-irja [postponement]. In 1985–1986 al-Hawali completed his PhD thesis, entitled Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr

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al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought]; a study seen as a continuation of his earlier study on secularism. The core thought in the study is that some people are subject to ‘wishful thinking’; imagining they can maintain their Islamic faith despite not carrying out lawful Islamic requirements and duties. This wishful thinking makes people postpone their Islamic duties or ignore them. Hence, al-irja endangers people’s faith, which might then be lost. Iman [faith] should be empirically manifested, as opposed to the belief that it is a matter for the heart only. Demanding political change and reform involves not only bringing in reformist policies, per se, but also restoring iman.26 In the words of al-Hawali, My first postgraduate study [Secularism] dealt with the problem of separating religion from life, while my second postgraduate study [Postponement] deals with the problem of separating iman [faith] from ‘amal [work, the outward practices] . . .. Although their subjects seem far from one another, both studies explain one issue. The first study was the guide to the second study. Through studying reasons for secular influence on contemporary Islamic life, I have seen that the reason for each deviation, humiliation, defeat and fragmentation in our life, is living far from the ahlu al-sunnah wa al-jama‘ah [the people of the Sunnah and collective opinion] in ‘aqidah, behaviour and way of reform . . . Al-fikr al-irja’i [the thought of postponement] controls our contemporary reality . . . Al-fikr al-irja’i is a phenomenon which has been emerging and developing to the degree of being a massive reality facing any tajdid movement . . .. The intention therefore has been to focus on rukn al-‘amal [the pillar of work] and its necessity for iman and da‘wah. The ummah have been avoiding the pillar of work. Al-irja has become a conscious movement aiming at leaving out works or outward practices and ta‘ah [obeying shari‘ah]. . . . So, the ummah has seen al-salah [prayer], al-zakah [almsgiving], al-siyam [fasting], and al-hajj [pilgrimage], simply as duties; they need to practice works.27 Al-Oudah and al-Omar agreed with al-Hawali’s attitude to al-irja, which draws attention to the authentic meaning of faith and encourages people to practise Islam, and not to neglect their Islamic duties. Al-Oudah sees al-Hawali’s work as clarifying the necessity of linking ‘amal [work] to iman [faith]. So, iman [faith] without ‘amal [work] is not valid, as evidenced in the Qur’an. Muslims, today, need to deepen their understanding of the relationship between faith and works in their hearts, to be encouraged to have outward practices, and not to depend on false claims, dreams and delusions.28 Al-Omar emphasizes the necessity of linking ‘ilm [knowledge] with ‘amal [work] in which the outward practices are manifestations of ‘ilm.29 In his book, Al-‘Ahd wa al-Mithaq fi al-Qur’an al-Karim [The Covenant and Contract in the Holy Qur’an], al-Omar emphasizes that being a Muslim requires an application of ‘uhud [‘ahd, plural ‘uhud; covenants] and mawathiq [mithaq, plural mawathiq; contracts] explained in the Qur’an and Sunnah.

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Implementing al-irja leads to breaking some, or all, of these ‘uhud and mawathiq which endanger or undermine the faith.30 Al-Omar has confirmed his vision of iman, which consists of qawl [saying, verbal statement from the heart], i‘tiqad [belief] and ‘amal [work, outward practices].31

The policy of countering During the 1980s, the three scholars delivered juristic Sunni Islamic and Qur’anic studies, which provide the central elements of the policy of al-mudafa‘a [countering]. Al-Oudah’s insights on al-Ghuraba [Solitaries],32 require some introduction. In Arabic, the word al-ghuraba comes from ghurbah, which means to be far, remote, far away or secluded. Ghurbah refers to physical separation from others, and also to abstract separation. The latter is when someone experiences istiqamah [Islamic-ethical behaviour], similar to first generation Muslims, and avoids fitn [all forms of corruptions] and ahwa [lusts, inclinations]. The believer holds consistently to Islam, although he receives little support and faces many opponents.33 In exploring the issue of involvement versus isolation, the leadership’s struggle for political change and reform includes involvement in domestic politics in which new generation ‘ulama, in the case of the leadership, tried to change the direction of domestic and foreign state policies, directly and indirectly, by demanding political change and reform. This was clear during the 1990s. Isolation, in the political sense, was not practised by the leadership. From 1988 to 1993, al-Oudah produced a comprehensive study of prophetic biography and Sunni Islamic jurisprudence entitled Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Letters of the Solitaries].34 This study consists of four series titled, ‘Al-Ghuraba al-Awalun’ [The Earliest Solitaries],35 ‘Sifatu al-Ghuraba’ [The Character of the Solitaries],36 ‘Min Wasa’il Daf‘al-Ghurbah’ [Overcoming Solitude]37 and ‘Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal’ [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences].38 Al-Oudah puts forward four connected ideas that illustrate the policy of countering: ●

He notes that, in historical terms, the Prophet struggled to establish the religion of Islam, overcoming difficulties and finally succeeding in establishing the Islamic religion and state. The Prophet Muhammad . . . was alone, and gharib in a world filled with shirk [polytheism], atheism and corruption. The Messenger came to change that reality and to make people return to worshipping Allah . . . Few people believed in him . . . or supported his da‘wah . . . Those believers had become ghuraba [solitaries] in their homeland, and among their people or relatives. The Prophet and the believers struggled for the sake of Islam, to bring more people to Islam, and to establish the Islamic state . . . 39

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Political struggle After the death of Prophet Muhammad, the Muslim ummah, at times, experienced difficulties, challenges and a retreat from Islam. Nevertheless, the reformers maintain or hold to Islam with patience, overcome difficulties, counter challenges and repel the consequences of Islamic retreat: After the death of the Prophet, the ummah started to experience weaknesses, retrogression . . . fragmentation, differences and conflicts . . . Nevertheless, successive reformers have emerged to carry out the mission of change and reform by calling others to the Qur’an and the Sunnah . . . The reformers practice al-sabr wa al-musabarah [patience, extended patience] and hold to Islam, and try to overcome the difficulties . . . 40



In re-establishing Islam and the Islamic state, there are three main instruments: jihad, al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice/enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong] and patience. The policy of countering and overcoming ghurbah can even be carried on when the use of power towards change and reform is restricted: There are instruments to push back ghurbah: (1) jihad (2) al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar and (3) practising patience and firmness vis-à-vis suffering, adversity and trials . . . Jihad is mufa‘lah [interaction] between two opposing sides in which each one tries to achieve victory over the opposite side . . . Jihad as an instrument could be manifest by al-nafs [human physical power], money and by tongue [jihad by word] . . . In dealing with al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, Islam defines this principle . . . The command and prohibition, per se, are human necessities in which each person on earth needs to be commanded and prohibited41 . . . Ignoring this principle creates various . . . negative effects such as . . . transforming the ummah to a secular ummah, without religion, in which people accept governance by any law . . . The way to carry out this principle should be through kind, lenient and just ways. Patience should be practised throughout the mission of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar . . . The Qur’an advises ‘enjoin what is just, and forbid what is wrong: and bear with patient constancy whatever betide thee; for this is firmness (of purpose) in (the conduct of) affairs’. (S.31, A.17) . . . Therefore . . . one of today’s errors . . . is using power and arms against al-mufsidun [the corrupt people], which causes fitn [riot, unrest, disorder, distress, sedition, corruption, trouble] and mafasid [corruptions] which are sometimes more than the original vice that needed to be removed . . . 42

Political struggle ●

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In seeking political change and reform, the reformers faced the dilemma of involvement versus isolation. They should both mix with people and interact with them to influence them, or be isolated from them so as not to be harmed or undermined. The policy of countering has two forms: (1) Overcoming the corruption of others, including that of the state, through isolation, not dealing with them, boycotting them, retreating from the public scene and limiting public relationships in an attempt to maintain salah al-nafs [self-reform]. (2) Overcoming the corruption of others through involvement and various reformist activities within state and society.

Nevertheless, involvement with people is an important strategy in carrying out the policy of countering. The choice between al-‘uzlah [isolation] and al-khultah [involvement] depends on consequences. It is more likely that the countering policy will be successful through involvement with people rather than in isolation. Al-Hawali studied the prophetic biography as guidance from which sunan al-mudafa‘a [policies or methods of countering] can be taken. He introduced the idea of countering by clarifying that ‘ubudiyah [worship] is only to be performed to Almighty Allah according to the Qur’an verse ‘I have only created Jinns and men that they may serve me’ (S.51, A.56). Al-Hawali points out that, historically, mankind was one ummah worshipping Allah and differences occurred later. The messengers came to solve those differences. The Qur’an states that ‘mankind was one single nation, and Allah sent Messengers with glad tidings and warnings; and with them He sent the book in truth, to judge between people in matters wherein they differed’ (S.1, A.213). Here, al-mudafa‘a is a power to restore this reformist mission of the messengers who aimed to implement the Book and to establish justice. The Qur’an states that ‘we sent our messenger with clear signs and sent down with them the book and the balance [of right and wrong], that men may stand forth in justice’, (S.57, A.25). The Prophet brought Islam as comprehensive laws and regulations aiming to accomplish happiness in this life and the hereafter. So al-mudafa‘a is a form of continuing effort and work to counter policies and matters that contradict shari‘ah. In this sense, the reformist movement aimed to restore ‘aqidah and tawhid by effort and mujahadah [strive, resist, extensive efforts]. The reformist movement is a form of Islamic society that has certain outlooks, visions and concepts, with internal interaction, coordination, loyalty and cooperation that reflect Islamic consciousness. Islamic society will always face challenges that need to be countered.43 Al-Omar placed an ethical–peaceful dimension on this countering policy. He asserts that akhlaq [moralities, ethics] should be implemented. Almighty Allah requested this from His messenger Moses when the latter was sent to Pharaoh who claimed to be Lord. Allah states clearly that ‘Go, both of you, to Pharaoh, for he has indeed transgressed all bounds; but speak to him

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mildly; perchance he may take warning or fear’ (S.20, A.44). Al-Omar notes that Moses was not requested to assassinate Pharaoh or to direct violent words or pose threats to him. Moses countered Pharaoh with words and arguments, and the Pharaoh found himself obliged to open a dialogue and discussion with Moses. Although Pharaoh did not believe in Moses he spoke and argued with him. In this matter, the Qur’an says ‘invite (all) to the way of the Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious’, (S.16, A.125) and ‘repel (evil) with that which is better: then will he between whom and thee was hatred become as it were thy friend and intimate!’ (S.41, A.34).44 In this way, the leadership built a juristic Sunni Islamic political foundation as an instrument towards political change and reform.

External political interaction The essence of countering can also be seen in the leadership’s external political interactions. In the 1980s, the leadership involved themselves with three main issues: the Iranian revolution and Shiism; the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan and the issue of jihad; the collapse of the Soviet Union and the issue of communism. Al-Hawali indirectly criticized the Iranian revolution, through a critique of its intellectual foundation; Shiism. Al-Hawali’s lectures on Shiism maintained that Shiism contradicts Sunni Islam. He referred to it as containing pre-Islamic Persian magus, Jewish and Christian elements, origins and roots.45 In his lecture on Shiism, al-Hawali refers, with approval, to a contemporary critical study on the Iranian revolution; Wa Jaa’a Dawr al-Majus [The Role of Magus Has Come], written by Abdullah al-Gharib,46 consisting of three volumes about the Iranian revolution. The author discusses the historical, political and Islamic elements of the revolution. His argument is that this revolution has not only been Shiite but was based on pre-Islamic Persian Magus ideas, which are against Sunni Islam and ‘urubah [Arabism].47 Al-Oudah, in a lecture delivered in 1992, warned against the Iranian Shiite hegemonic tendencies in the region, marked by Iran attempting interventions in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq and Lebanon.48 Al-Omar responded in a different way, and made a study of the Shiite movement in Saudi Arabia, which was submitted to Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [Council of the Senior ‘Ulama].49 It is clear the leadership’s critique of the Iranian revolution and Shiism was in harmony with Saudi foreign policy. During the 1980s, the Iranian revolution had become a new challenge to Saudi Arabia in the sphere of Islamic legitimacy. The Iranian press and propaganda started to build an image of Iran as a progressive Islamic state vis-à-vis Saudi Arabia’s reactionary state, allied to the West.50 This image posed a threat to the Islamic legitimacy of the Saudi Monarchy. Saudi Arabia also faced the problem of violent Iranian acts in Makkah during pilgrimages in the early 1980s. Developing a critique of the revolutionary Iran and Shiism had become necessary. The critique was,

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however, in the Sunni Islamic tradition of criticizing Shiism. Historical Sunni fuqaha were involved in critical studies of Shiism, and in defending Sunni Islam. Hence, while the leadership’s criticism can be seen as a continuation of the Sunni Islamic juristic tradition, it also constitutes recognition that the Saudi Monarchy is Sunni Islamic, and should be supported, and defended, against the Iranian revolution and Shiism. The second case of external political interaction in the 1980s was the issue of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan and the jihad movement in Afghanistan. The leadership condemned the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, and saw the jihad as a legitimate means to liberate Afghanistan, following the position of Shaikh Ibn Baz and other ‘ulama. Al-Hawali, however, criticized those who saw the jihad in Afghanistan as fardh ‘ain [individual duty; an injunction or ordinance, the obligation which extends to every Muslim]. Jihad, he said, was legitimate but is not obligatory.51 Al-Hawali brought up the necessity of giving priority to other forms of jihad: self-reform, societal reform, political reform, devoting time to Islamic education and sciences and developing charity works. Those activities, he said, should be called jihad of da‘wah and jihad ‘ilmi [Islamic scientific and intellectual jihad].52 Pushing back Soviet aggression was important, but Islamic civil works and activities were also important. The leadership did not encourage youths to participate in the armed struggle or to conduct military jihad in Afghanistan. A well-known saying of al-Oudah during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan was ‘donating the value of the travelling ticket is better than going there’.53 The leadership wanted to focus attention on forms of jihad such as involvement in Islamic education, learning Islamic ethics and behaviour, conducting voluntary societal reformist activities at home, and other forms of Islamic da‘wah and reformist activities. After the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan in 1989, and on the eve of the final collapse of the Afghan regime in 1992, al-Oudah called on the Muslim masses to continue supporting the jihad movement in Afghanistan so as to build an Islamic civil state, as Afghanistan needed infrastructure and construction. He called on the various Islamic Afghani parties which had struggled to liberate the country to solve their difference through non-violent means.54 The third case of the leadership’s external political involvement in the 1980s was related to the collapse of the USSR, from which various political and socio-political lessons were drawn. In the late 1980s, al-Hawali gave a series of lectures on the collapse of communism and the USSR with titles such as ‘Communism between Collapse and Reconstruction’, ‘The Lesson from the Collapse of Communism’, ‘Communism and the Collapse’ and ‘The Islamic World under the International Détente’. Al-Hawali put forward a series of political arguments in these lectures, noting that: ● ●

Communism has failed as an idea and as a practice. A new alliance between the West and the East against Islam and the Islamic world will develop.

76 ● ●

● ●





Political struggle More suffering in the Third World will now occur. Western democracy will not be a global phenomenon, but there will instead be various claims to be democratic which cover different realities. The West will keep trying to weaken China. In Palestine, the Jewish State and the Palestinian secular organizations will enter alliances against Islamic trends and fronts. The Western ruling elites, powers and circles might now make Islam its enemy, replacing communism. There is a potential for direct intervention, or a new crusade, against the Islamic world.

These international developments in the post-Cold War era, al-Hawali said, pose great threats and dangers to the Islamic world in general, and to Islamic movements in particular. A return to Islam, in which shari‘ah is implemented and there is Islamic unity and solidarity, is a necessary means to counter the threats and dangers.55 Al-Hawali presented socio-political insights such as linking communist ideology and al-hadatha [modernity]. He opposed both, arguing that modernity had become an instrument to globally spread Communist ideology, and stated that There is a link between al-Hadatha [modernity] and communist thought. Modernity is a deep and intellectual instrument to spread Communism. Modernity is a way to spread communism not through revolution but through ‘Glasnost and Perestroika’. Another dimension of state collapse was raised by al-Omar. Just one week before the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, al-Omar delivered a lecture on the collapse of Muslim Spain in 1492. In his lecture, he emphasized the necessity of taking lessons from the historical record of the collapse of Andalusia. The argument here is that the Muslim ruling elite of Andalusia had been guilty of corruption. The substance of this corruption was their deviation from the Islamic ‘aqidah, which produced other related political and social conditions, which, in turn, finally led to collapse. Al-Omar argued that the important lesson that could be drawn from this historical case was the need for a reformist role for the ‘ulama. The ‘ulama should carry out the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice/enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong] to prevent consequences that lead to an experience similar to that of Andalusia. Although the ‘ulama might not be listened to, as was the case when the reformist ‘ulama in Andalusia were not heeded by the ruling authorities, this should not prevent the ‘ulama from insisting on carrying out this principle.56 A key point in al-Omar’s lecture is his mention of the role of the reformist ‘ulama in Andalusia. Here, the author draws attention to the leading reformist role of al-Shatibi (d. 790H/1388AD): the Sunni Maliki faqih who

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lived during the domestic crises in Andalusia. Al-Shatibi’s core thought is the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of the Islam Law] that emphasizes the protection of religion, mind, soul, prosperity and posterity, called al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials], which is basic in the thoughts of the leadership. Al-Shatibi struggled for political change and reform through civic–civil means57 which is reflected in the actions of the leadership. The leadership sought to understand historical experience in formulating lessons, theses and general laws, and by the end of the 1980s, the leadership had structured the intellectual foundations and the political dimensions of their countering policy. The leadership built its Sunni Islamic consciousness, developing a political and critical Sunni Islamic reformist vision, with the political factor embedded in a comprehensive dini [religious] framework.

7

Countering policy in the 1990s

Background During the 1990s, the reformist leadership took the countering policy further once the idea of Sunni Islamic political change and reform had taken root and started growing. The leadership involved itself in various external and internal, or domestic, issues which are interrelated, constituting a nexus of interactions. The product was an important discourse aimed at countering certain international, regional and domestic developments. The discourse clarified the political position of the leadership towards events and players, and developed the leadership’s attitude to political reform. The essential dimension of the countering policy during this period was the development of confrontation between the leadership and the Monarchy. The countering policy highlighted a level of mudafa‘a, and, basically, formed an opposition policy, indicating a high-risk political struggle. The leadership laid considerable emphasis on the question of political change and reform. There were nine aspects to the countering policy: 1

2

3

4

The Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990. The leadership presented a discourse that countered the invasion, the State decision to accept US forces and the legitimacy of the State decision, indirectly addressing the question of political change and reform. Historical/political initiatives. Here the author refers to the leadership’s discourse of August 1990 and to the leadership’s project of the ‘monthly scholarly conference’1 as historical/political initiatives which brought new political developments and customs to Saudi politics. These political developments and customs further promoted the idea of political change and reform in the Saudi domestic sphere. The continuing discourse. After August 1990, the leadership produced a discourse that also dealt indirectly with the question of political change and reform. This discourse was important in its influence on Saudi politics, and was perceived as a bridge to the reformist petitions of 1991 and 1992. The first petition called Kitab Shawal [Letter of Shawal] or Kitab al-‘Ulama [Letter of the ‘Ulama]. In May 1991, the leadership joined a wider Saudi

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5

6

7

8 9

Sunni Islamic movement in demanding political change and reform based on shari‘ah, and formed a general, common, Islamic vision with the wider movement. The influence of the leadership’s discourse is seen in the Letter of the ‘Ulama. The demands in this petition were of a general nature. The second petition called Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice]. In July 1992, the leadership again joined the wider Saudi Sunni Islamic movement to demand political change and reform based on shari‘ah. Here, in a common Islamic vision with the wider movement, the influence of the leadership’s discourse is seen. Demands were comprehensive and detailed. The Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR). On 12 Dhu al-Qa‘da 1413H (3 May 1993), a group of senior Saudi ‘ulama and Islamic intelligentsia formed this committee to start lawsuits against state officials. The leadership was not involved in establishing the CDLR, but did not reject the Committee’s ideas. Domestic challenges. Those facing or confronting the leadership during the 1990s. Here the author observes three main domestic players that posed a threat to the leadership, namely: (1) the Saudi Islamic group of Jamiyah;2 (2) media elements and (3) Saudi liberal, or secular, intellectuals. Relationship with the Monarchy. With the three scholars facing increasing pressure from government, and ending with their imprisonment in September and October 1994. Elements of support and scholarly endorsement of the leadership after imprisonment. The support and endorsement can be seen as a form of opposing the State’s decision to imprison al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar. The support and endorsement is seen as recognition of the influential and leading role of the reformist leadership.

There were common elements running through these nine aspects. Pursuing the countering policy in the 1990s highlights the way ahlu al-‘ilm [‘ulama, people of Islamic sciences and knowledge] or talabatu al-‘ilm [students of shari‘ah], in the case of the leadership, tried to influence politics in theoretical and empirical terms. Here, one sees the countering policy taking different shapes when applied in different circumstances. The leadership played a different role in each of these aspects and in dealing with different consequences, players and issues. It is therefore important to put each one of these aspects in its special context. This context highlights certain historical senses, juristic dimensions, social dimensions, treatment of particular issues or problems, time and place consequences, interactions and certain players. Yet all actions are connected, reflectively and historically, and should be seen as parts of a complementary picture. In the remaining part of this chapter, the Iraqi Invasion of Kuwait in August 1990, historical/political initiatives and the continuing discourse are discussed. In Chapter 8, the first petition (Letter of the ‘Ulama) and the second

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petition (Memorandum of Advice) are addressed, followed by a discussion on the Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR), and domestic challenges. In Chapter 9, attention is given to the relationship with the Monarchy and to elements of support and scholarly endorsement.

The Iraqi invasion of Kuwait The Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990 and acceptance by the Monarchy of US forces on Saudi soil are important historical turning points. The political position of the leadership towards these developments is clear. On 2 August 1990, Iraq invaded Kuwait. On 9 August, King Fahd addressed the nation. He condemned the invasion, requested Iraq to withdraw its forces from Kuwait, noted the massing of Iraqi troops along the Kingdom’s border and agreed to receive Arab and other friendly forces, such as US forces, to protect the country’s territory and economy. He assured Saudis that the foreign forces were only for defensive purposes, and would leave after the causes, which necessitated their presence, were removed.3 On 9 August, President George Bush passed a letter to the US Congress, announcing his decision to defend the Kingdom.4 On 13 August, the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama issued a statement, which backed King Fahd’s decision and justified it on Islamic grounds.5 On 14 August, the Saudi Chief Judge and the judges of the Court of Cassation supported the Monarch’s decision.6 There are three important issues here, namely, (1) the Iraqi invasion; (2) the acceptance of US forces by the Monarchy and (3) the support of the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama for the Monarch’s decision. The leadership countered the Monarchy’s, and the leading ‘ulama’s stand. They condemned the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, objected to the acceptance of US or non-Muslim forces and rejected, or questioned, the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s backing for the Monarch’s decision on this issue. The leadership’s lectures marked an important turning point in their countering of Saudi foreign policy. Al-Hawali, the Head of the ‘Aqidah Department at Umm al-Qura University, took the initiative. On 28 Muharram 1411H (19 August 1990), he delivered a lecture entitled: ‘Fasatadhkurun ma Aqulhu Lakum’ [You Will Remember What I am Saying to You]. This lecture came directly after al-Hawali finished his regular general weekly lesson, when asked by his students to give his opinion on the consequences of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, and the Monarch’s acceptance of foreign forces. He gave his opinion within the overall context of Sunni Islamic reformist thought, while not directly confronting the political question. Al-Hawali started by putting two main questions, about the Iraqi Ba‘thist regime and about the issue of allegiance and loyalty. He encouraged his audiences to do a form of self-critique and think of their relationship with the Lord, placing a juristic framework to understanding the event. Al-Hawali touched on the real problem from this perspective. He linked the external

Countering policy in the 1990s 81 and internal problem; first pointing out the external problem, and then pointing out the internal problem with the question of change and reform addressed in general terms. Al-Hawali linked historical and current events in a further exploration of the problem, and then turned to an explanation of a juristic framework and an internal critique: The most important thing we should not forget is that it [the issue of being subject to others] is sunnah ilahiyah [Divine conducts; Allah’s will and way] for nations and societies who disobey Almighty Allah . . . Why have we become subject to this disaster? [Because] we are not respectful of Allah; we are not worried about His punishment, we do not listen to the Qur’an . . . For two weeks or more, we should have stopped listening, singing, playing or amusing ourselves, but we have not! We have been waiting for the usury to be prevented! . . . Have we prevented evil in the magazines and newspapers? . . . Our problem is with our Lord. We have not reformed our relationship with Allah. Hence, He sends these upon us . . . We are experiencing immorality and tyranny and each rational man who reads the Qur’an and the Sunnah would think that those things [the immorality and the tyranny] cannot continue without punishment . . . We have not performed tawbah [repentance; the turning of the heart from sin] and we have not carried out al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar . . . [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice/enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong] Al-Hawali directly questioned reliance on the United States in dealing with the problem of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. This reliance, he said, violated Islamic Law, and he drew attention to the probability that the United States would exploit the incident in promoting its political and strategic agenda: How can be the ummah of faith and tawhid accept reliance on America to solve the problem instead of Almighty Allah? . . . Since 1980 America has been training its army in similar geographical circumstances to the Gulf, such as in the Nevada desert. According to many analyses, it has been a US strategic plan to intervene in the Gulf, and the chance has now come for the US to put this plan forward . . . 7 A few days later, al-Oudah, on 7 Safar 1411H (28 August 1990), delivered a significant lecture entitled ‘Asbab Suqut al-Duwal’ [Reasons for the Collapse of States]. His lecture did not directly engage the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, or the matter of receiving US forces, but sought to provide an understanding in the context of the collapse of states, and he explained why the state of Kuwait had collapsed, and why other states might also collapse. He focused on a different dimension to al-Hawali, and drew attention to the domestic factor. Al-Oudah’s underlying message was the necessity of introducing domestic change and reform, to face challenges.

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Al-Oudah used Ibn Khaldun’s paradigm for explaining sunnah al-khalfiyah [succession], where everything will be succeeded, displaced or substituted by something else. The first period of a state involves powerful rule, succeeded by a less powerful ruling generation with a tendency towards lavish, luxurious living, and this leads on to a generation that has not experienced suffering in building a state, and lavishness and luxury are taken to the extreme. So, the end, or collapse, of the state comes as a result of these characteristics. After explaining Ibn Khaldun’s paradigm, al-Oudah summarized twelve reasons for the collapse of states: 1 The abnormal existence of a state; a state established in an unsuitable place in terms of geography, demography or culture, like the establishment of the state of Israel, which will always face challenges. 2 Exclusive and dictatorial rule, and the absence of shura. 3 The faulty selection of state officials. 4 Tyranny. 5 Weak checks on government policy. 6 Corruption in the economic sector. 7 The state’s negligence of the welfare system. 8 Extravagant living, with too many luxuries, and immoral conduct. 9 The lack of distinction between friends and foes. 10 The weak foundations of the state. 11 External factors. 12 Internal disputes and disunity.8 Al-Oudah’s theory of the collapse of states, which can be applied directly to any Muslim country, confirms that a Muslim state has important complementary parts or components. If one part or component experiences problems, the other parts, or components, will be negatively affected. Structuring dawlah shar‘iyah [an Islamic state], which is the manifestation of Sunni Islamic legitimacy, can prevent exclusive and dictatorial rule and tyranny. Important dimensions of al-dawlah shar‘iyah [the Islamic state] are for the government to be accountable, to apply shura, to select state officials based on their qualifications, to distribute wealth equally, to prevent exploitation of public wealth, to enhance and spread Sunni Islamic morality and ethics in domestic affairs, and to form state alliances that fit this Sunni Islamic legitimacy. In his lecture, al-Oudah therefore focused on the weakness of the state’s foundations as the most important factor that might cause a state to collapse. A strong state is seen as one family, based on religion: Some states are, for example, established on a religious basis, where the function of the state is to protect religion, Islamic da‘wah, and carry out the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, and apply

Countering policy in the 1990s 83 shari‘ah. This is the ‘asabiyah [substance of power].9 Each state has ‘asabiyah, and this kind of the ‘asabiyah of the state is religion. The people who support the state and devote their souls and monies to establish the state do not do so to favour a particular person or a particular family. The aim is to maintain Islam and to apply shari‘ah. If this state maintains its religious foundation and its legitimate aim, it will be a powerful state and will gain people’s support. If the state has missed the goal of maintaining Islam and applying shari‘ah, it will be missing the reason for its existence . . . 10 Al-Oudah did not directly refer to Saudi Arabia, but his words were clearly relevant to the Saudi situation, as, historically and constitutionally, the Monarchy is established on the religion of Islam. In the same lecture, al-Oudah was critical of the state media, which had been silent towards Saddam Hussein’s coercive policies before his invasion of Kuwait. Al-Oudah argued that the manipulation of the media is a problem. People should not be subject to manipulation by the media and should be able to speak out independently. Al-Oudah also drew his audience’s attention to the fate of oppressive rule, such as the dictatorships in the communist block and in the Islamic world. Al-Oudah described dictatorship as a destructive experience that oppresses the rights of people. Al-Oudah then demonstrated a balanced vision in referring to positive political achievement in Western democratic countries. He pointed out the element of stability in Western democratic systems, compared to other political systems in the Communist world and in the Islamic world. The absence of dictatorships in the West has been an important positive political factor. He praised, through a general statement, freedom of expression, accountability and the practice of political consultation in the West: the Western systems in America, Britain and France, if we are honest and realistic, have been more stable than the communist systems, and they have been more stable than all of the Arab and contemporary Islamic regimes . . . In fact, the Western systems are secular, and their main principles are based on materialistic gain and interests. Nevertheless, they are, to a considerable extent, stable governments. Why? Because they have no dictatorships . . . Without doubt, the government that cares about the individual, and about the concerns and opinions of individuals, is more stable than governments that are oppressive, discount the value of the individual and practice a coercive policy . . . In the West, they ask for opinions from their citizens, but in Muslim countries, even on issues that affect the affairs of people, decisions or opinions are imposed on people . . . A threat is made against those who think, or express an opinion . . .

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But al-Oudah’s positive general statement about certain political elements in Western democracy should be adjusted, if it is to be applied in a Muslim country, by Islamic Law11: So, in dealing with our reality, we need to have Islamic governments that practice shura systems which rely on the Qur’an and Sunnah and gives the individual a value given to him by Almighty Allah . . . 12 In dealing with the question of al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy], al-Oudah stated clearly that for a state to obtain al-shar‘iyah, it should apply the shari‘ah. He was asked whether the Kuwaiti government had obtained al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy]. His answer gives an important insight into his perception on political loyalty: Honestly saying we have no requirement to show ta‘ah [obedience] either to Saddam Hussein or to the al-Sabah [the royal family of Kuwait] or others. Our friend is the one who raises the banner of La ilaha illa Allah Muhammad rasul Allah, even if he is non-Arab, and from any nation or country. Our friend is the one who raises the banner of Islam . . . In reality, the Government of Kuwait has not been applying Shari‘ah . . . It has been applying positive laws.13 On 30 August 1990, al-Hawali delivered a further significant lecture entitled ‘Fafiru ila Allah’ [Escape to Allah]. From the beginning of his lecture, al-Hawali stated that he is delivering his advice and opinion, and put forward two main arguments: ●



The Iraqi Ba‘thist Party is atheist, apostate and an enemy, and it is the responsibility of ‘ulama or du‘ah to uncover its non-Islamic substance. The United States has an aim in the region, which the United States had been planning since President Nixon’s time, through successive administrations, to build a religious, geo-strategic and economically motivated hegemony in the region.

His conclusion was that shari‘ah must be implemented in a serious and genuine manner. Al-Hawali questioned the term ‘dharurah’ [necessity], which was used by Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama in its statement justifying the Monarch’s decision to receive foreign forces. According to al-Hawali, the principle of dharurah exists in Sunni Islamic jurisprudence. But, the statement by the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama did not present sound dalil [juristic proof or evidence]. The evidence put forward in the statement was invalid and did not justify the decision to receive non-Muslim forces.14 Al-Hawali’s lecture was distributed in the Kingdom and outside the Kingdom through audio cassettes in tens of thousands of copies.15

Countering policy in the 1990s 85 Al-Hawali subsequently increased his opposition to the decision to receive US forces. He delivered a study about US policy in the Gulf to the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama and its President Ibn Baz. Al-Hawali explained, in his study, the US hegemonic and imperial tendencies in the region since the 1960s in order to control oil. In this sense, the United States had been focusing on Saudi Arabia, to be used, mainly, as a military basis, as a cornerstone, or instrument, to build and enhance US hegemony in the region, particularly since the 1970s, and after the collapse of the Iranian Monarchy and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The United States sought an international alliance to carry out the occupation of the Gulf, and especially the oil fields in Saudi Arabia. Al-Hawali argued that the Kuwaiti government did not deserve the sacrifices that led to destructive wars in the region in which the Kingdom would lose its wealth, and the ‘Ulama should have sought a peaceful resolution to the crisis.16 In August 1990, al-Omar added his voice to the criticism in a lecture entitled Tada‘i al-Ummam [The Nations that Befall You]. He suggested there were four factors behind the crisis: first, an international plan to put the Gulf/Middle East region under external hegemony; second, the new nature of international politics in the post-Cold War era, which had enabled the United States to push forward its hegemonic plans; third, the Iraqi Ba‘thist Party’s secular and atheist characters; and fourth, the personality of Saddam Hussein as a dictator. Saddam Hussein and the United States, he said, had sought hegemony in the Gulf, and the United States in particular wanted to deter any potential rise of Islamic power in the region.17 In December 1990, al-Oudah visited the United States on the invitation of the Arab Muslim Youth League. He warned his audiences not to side with either the Saddam or US camp. He called on his audiences to stand with the Muslim peoples, who were being exploited by oppressors.18 The war was launched against Iraqi forces on 17 January 1991 and ended in March 1991 with the defeat of Iraq. The Saudi government organized ‘the jihad festival’ as an Islamic celebration in support of the State’s policy on the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Famous Islamic and religious figures such as the Grand Mufti of Egypt (Shaikh Sayid Tantawi) attended the festival.19 In the festival, the Saudi government also called for Saudi officials, such as Ghazi al-Qusaibi, Turki al-Sudairi and Hashim ‘Abdu Hashim, to participate.20 The state festival was seen by many as intended to contain, or undermine, the reformist leadership’s critical discourse, which had started to attract support.21 In August 1990, al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar countered elements in the Saudi foreign policy and addressed, indirectly, the question of political change and reform in their discourses. The discourse of Fasatadhkurun ma Aqulhu Lakum [You Will Remember What I am Saying to You], Asbab Suqut al-Duwal [Reasons for the Collapse of States], Fafiru ila Allah [Escape to Allah] and Tada‘i al-Ummam [The Nations that Befall You] can be called the discourse of August 1990, to distinguish this from other discourses which came later and further addressed the question of political change and reform.

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Historical/political initiatives ‘Historical/political initiatives’ refers to two important developments in Saudi politics: the leadership’s discourse of August 1990 and the ‘monthly conference’.22 These two developments are seen as contributing factors, among other factors, towards producing the two reformist petitions and defining the question of political change and reform. The discourse of August 1990 laid the groundwork for comprehensive attention to the question of political change and reform. On the eve of al-Hawali’s discourse ‘Fasatadhkurun ma Aqulhu Lakum’ [You Will Remember What I am Saying to You] in August 1990, a high-ranking Saudi officer, at the Ministry of Interior, stated in his majlis: Safar al-Hawali broke the silence and made people dare to speak out.23 A few days after the Saudi officer’s statement, al-Oudah delivered his lecture ‘Asbab Suqut al-Duwal’ [Reasons for the Collapse of States], and a few days later, al-Omar delivered his lecture of ‘Tada‘i al-Ummam’ [The Nations that Befall You], whereafter al-Hawali then delivered his second lecture ‘Fafiru ila Allah’ [Escape to Allah]. The core of the four lectures was a critique, either directly or indirectly, of state foreign and domestic policies and prepared the ground for questioning political change and reform. The discourse of August 1990 became a political initiative with politics openly and critically discussed. The influence of the discourse of August 1990 was clear even before the submission of the two petitions. For example, Shaikh Dr Muhammad al-Qahtani, a colleague of Safar al-Hawali, delivered a public lecture, which was distributed on audio cassette,24 and also adopted the leadership’s argument in dealing with the acceptance by the Monarchy of US forces on Saudi soil. He criticized the Monarchical decision and later had difficulty with the government as a result of his position, including dismissal from his University.25 The Saudi Monarch, Fahd Ibn Abd al-Aziz, listened to al-Qahtani’s audio cassette and was disappointed by the lecture.26 Historically, the discourse by the leadership laid the groundwork for the development of the concept of political change and reform. The three scholars brought a new style to Saudi politics. An ‘alim [scholar] or shaikh sitting in front of audiences in a mosque, university, majalis or other public place, discussing local and international politics, in a direct or indirect sense, and opposing elements in Saudi foreign policy, was a new development in Saudi politics. This is an empirical political tajdid, in which the term tajdid refers to a new practice. Al-Oudah clarified that one of the meanings of tajdid is to undertake political initiatives within thawabit shar‘iyah [fixed juristic Sunni Islamic bases].27 Al-Omar implemented a similar vision.28 The three scholars were the only ones who opposed, in public, the Monarch’s foreign policy, and who addressed the juristic-based Sunni Islamic demands for political change and reform. The three scholars were officially state employees as professors at their universities, yet formed an Islamic-based political critique of state policies, and started tackling the question of political change and reform.

Countering policy in the 1990s 87 This was the start of the three scholars being seen as the ‘new generation’ scholarly Sunni Islamic group, or a leadership that tried to establish the right to oppose state policies and to demand political change and reform through peaceful means. In the discourse of August 1990, the leadership addressed two main questions: the question of the Saudi–US alliance, and the question of corruption that a Muslim state might experience, without referring to the Monarchy by name. Yet the Monarchy understood the message. At this time, August 1990, the question of political change and reform had not been addressed in depth, and the three scholars were acting on their own. They took major political risks by countering elements in Saudi foreign policy29 in public, and indirectly addressed the corruption of the state, which had not previously happened. In their political vision in the discourse of August 1990, they presented their stand. This separateness, where the three scholars were acting alone, later changed to a ‘connection’ with a wider Saudi Sunni Islamic front. Between the discourse of August 1990 and the two petitions of 1991 and 1992, the leadership presented other discourses that revolved around Islamic identity, state corruption and human rights in Islam. These discourses were influential and aspects are seen in the petitions of 1991 and 1992, with these discourses seen as a bridge between the discourse of August 1990 and the 1991 and 1992 petitions. Before the discourse of August 1990, people referred to the three scholars only by their names such as Shaikh Safar al-Hawali, Shaikh Salman al-Oudah and Shaikh Nassir al-Omar. After the discourse of August 1990, their students, followers and audiences started referring to them as Mashayikh [an emphasis of the term shaikhs], which indicted a growing perception that the three scholars presented harmonious thought and leadership, with Mashayikh a prestigious religious title. Later, people started referring to them as madrasah al-mashayikh [the school of shaikhs], another indication of their intellectual harmony, organizational unity and leadership.30 This is also the case when Ibn Baz referred, in 1993, to al-Oudah not only as ‘alim [scholar] but also as ‘alamah [an emphasis on the term ‘alim].31 Politically speaking, the basis of the leadership’s thought was the ability to form juristic-based Sunni Islamic critique and political critique in parallel with the maintenance of state legitimacy. The leadership had run a difficult parallel course that maintained the critique of state policies, and, at the same time, supported the legitimacy of the state which was not challenged. The leadership emphasized the state legitimacy in a historical, original and constitutional sense, yet the leadership worked towards establishing the political critique as a thaqafah sha‘biyah [public culture] expressed within civic–civil boundaries. The term thaqafah sha‘biyah [public culture] highlights the means used by the leadership to transfer their concepts to the public. The reformist leadership transferred juristic Sunni Islamic knowledge, containing their political vision, to audiences through recorded cassettes, with this knowledge

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thus accessible to the public. The leadership widened the Sunni Islamic reformist and critical vision in the Kingdom, and their discourses engage with the outside world. They organize a clear, focused, simple, implicit and sometimes straightforward way to bring forward and discuss issues; with each cassette consisting of one particular subject, followed by questions, feedbacks and answers. Announcements about other lectures were made at the end of each lecture. Some subjects might take more than one cassette, or be organized in a series. Subjects were shelved in cassettes for availability to the public at low prices. Al-Oudah stressed the important role and advantages of the Islamic cassettes which had become a practical way to transfer knowledge and speeches to the public. In the usage of cassettes there are several points of interest: ● ● ●



The ease of listening to the cassettes by an individual. Cassettes are easily circulated and spread. The Islamic cassette covers wide sectors in the society; different ages or generations, literate or illiterate, can use them. The sound, the expression, the verses, the style and the way the letters are revealed are important influential elements. Listening to a cassette is like listening to the emotions, feelings and passions of the lecturer, with the listener directly affected by the lecturer.

These elements all give the cassette advantages over reading a book.32 The leadership established a new style of contact in speaking about domestic politics and international politics, directly or indirectly, by using critical juristic Sunni Islamic political language. Discourses were immediately distributed to the public. This system used by the reformist leadership was adopted and implemented by other new generation shaikhs, such as Bishr al-Bishr, Muhammad al-Qahtani, ‘Ayidh al-Qarni, Dr Abd al-Wahhab al-Turiri, ‘Awadh al-Qarni33 and Ali al-Qarni. These shaikhs became part of the inner circles of the leadership and the discourses of these shaikhs helped spread the arguments of the leadership. Each of these shaikhs has his own students, adherents and audiences, to be added to the students, adherents and audiences of the leadership. The result is a vast contemporary Sunni Islamic reformist mass movement, with the leadership at the centre of the movement. The second historical/political initiative was the ‘monthly conference’. The idea of organizing this ‘conference’ originated with al-Oudah. At the end of the Second Gulf War, in 1991, al-Oudah visited Ibn Baz to discuss public issues. In their private meeting, al-Oudah suggested to Ibn Baz the formation of a monthly scholarly meeting to discuss public issues that deal with the domestic and foreign affairs of state and society. Ibn Baz agreed and endorsed al-Oudah’s suggestion. Based on al-Oudah’s initiative and Ibn Baz’s support, from March 1991 to the imprisonment of the leadership in September–October 1994, a monthly scholarly meeting was held. Scholars and shaikhs, including al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, engaged in

Countering policy in the 1990s 89 a monthly meeting to discuss various public issues and produce internal papers – the two petitions were important products of the monthly meetings.34 The meetings are seen as a ‘monthly conference’ which emphasized important matters, and workshops, that paved the way towards the two reformist petitions, defining the question of political change and reform, and clarifying aspects in the leadership’s formation of policy. Al-Oudah was concerned to communicate with the highest Islamic or religious authority in the Monarchy, in the person of Ibn Baz, to obtain official legitimacy for these activities. Al-Oudah was also concerned to perform his Islamic activities within a wider Islamic communal circle and through a shura [consultation] system which supported the strategy of involvement. This strategy of involvement expanded and further developed after the period in prison.

The continuing discourse After the discourse of August 1990, the leadership continued with discourses that contributed to the question of political change and reform, with post-August discourses revolving around self-reform, indirect questions about state corruption, Islamic identity and human rights in Islam, which further facilitated the idea of political change and reform. These discourses were sometimes theoretical, and sometimes a mix of theoretical and empirical thought, where the three scholars interact with a certain empirical event, and then link that event to their theoretical perspective, and present a political critique that supports the need for political change and reform. Al-Oudah, during the military operations against Iraq in January–February 1991, spoke out in favour of self-reform and reformist initiatives in society. This he saw as one method of countering the difficult consequences facing the nation. In his lecture entitled Dawruna fi Zahmat al-Ahdath [Our Role during the Events], he did not speak of the ongoing military operations or the war, per se, but emphasized individual responsibilities towards external problems. He demanded that the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice/enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong] be carried out by official and non-official means, and said that students, teachers, state employees, fathers and mothers are responsible for implementing this principle in their living, visiting or work places. He asserted al-din [religion] and what is right should always be protected by power. The ummah, he said, should have a powerful identity which could prevent any tyrant from leading towards destruction. The nation or ummah needs to have large numbers of ‘ulama who could correct and check each other, rather than a tradition where there was a monopoly involving only one ijtihad.35 In another lecture by al-Oudah, relating to political change and reform, entitled Masir al-Mutrafin [The Fate of Opulent People], he argues that a materialistic life might cause the collapse and destruction of a nation. An opulent, sumptuous or luxurious life could cause neglect of Islam. In the

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Qur’an, al-mutrafin [opulent people] are the ones who oppose the Messengers’ missions, oppose Islam, and oppose the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar. Allah punishes nations which experience problems such as submission to opulent people or al-mutrafin,36 failing to carry out resistance, failing to carry out duties and failing to perform al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar. The spread of unjust conduct among people will cause them to be governed by tyranny as Allah’s punishment.37 The Islamic identity was seen as important to the process of political change and reform. The leadership’s discourses on women’s issues were of particular significance here. The discourses asserted that Muslim women should counter any opposite or non-Islamic thought, customs and habits that had spread in Muslim societies.38 The necessity of maintaining the Islamic way of life of the family and society means women should participate in all Islamic reformist and da‘wah activities in society.39 The discourses also addressed the issue of ahkam al-mar’ah, referring to the juristic regulations which deal with women affairs such as the hijab [scarf], the clothes, beauty, way of speaking, familial and social relationships, where Muslim women should observe the Islamic Law in dealing with these issues.40 The leadership addressed the issue of Muslim women’s identity through their responses to the women’s demonstration in November 1990. At the time the Monarchy allowed US forces to enter the country in response to the Iraqi occupation of Kuwait, a group of Saudi women backed, it seems, by secularists in the state system,41 demonstrated in Riyadh to obtain the right to drive cars.42 After the demonstration,43 Prince Naif Ibn Abd al-Aziz, Minister of the Interior, publicly stated his condemnation of the demonstrators.44 In the same week, the leadership opened the issue of Muslim women without directly mentioning the demonstration incident. Al-Hawali gave a lecture about Muslim women, warning against secularization in society. He criticized secular thought and the hadathiyun [the modernists]45 in society who exploit Muslim women for their secular agenda. He argued that the forces of modernity and secularism had been targeting Muslim women, including Saudi women.46 Al-Oudah’s position was that the key issue was not whether or not women should be allowed to drive a car.47 The critical aspect was that there was an attempt to remake, and reorient, society, according to a secular plan by domestic secular forces supported by external players.48 Al-Omar also commented indirectly on the demonstration, arguing that the secular process aimed to undermine the security of the nation, whereas the security of the nation required the maintenance of religion,49 while Westernization and secularization have negatively influenced Muslim women.50 In early 1991, Al-Oudah delivered an influential lecture on human rights in Islam or al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [the legitimate rights in Islam] entitled Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam [Human Rights in Islam]. Before directly examining al-Oudah’s themes in this lecture, there are three points that need to be clarified: the relationship between ‘human rights’ and al-huquq al-shar‘iyah

Countering policy in the 1990s 91 [the legitimate rights in Islam], the methods of critique in this lecture and the position of the lecture in the process of political change and reform in Saudi Arabia.51 In al-Oudah’s lecture, the term ‘human rights’, as such, refers to those found in the United Nation’s Declaration of Human Rights. The term al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [the legitimate rights in Islam] refers to juristic-based Islamic human rights. The United Nation’s Declaration of Human Rights, and al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [the legitimate rights in Islam] have many similar aspects. Yet al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [the legitimate rights in Islam] or the juristic-based Islamic human rights have certain different characteristics. Al-Oudah recognized in the United Nation’s Declaration of Human Rights elements that agree with shari‘ah, and he clarified that these elements are established in shari‘ah. Then he pointed out certain differences between the United Nation’s Declaration of Human Rights and al-huquq al-shar‘iyah in Islam. Al-Oudah’s methodology in the lecture was defined and specific, and reflected a balanced vision. When he criticized elements, he pointed them out in support of his argument, but noted cases and examples should not be generalized for other situations. For example, al-Oudah recognized the progress of human rights in the West, yet mentions certain violations of human rights seen in the West such as the imperial tendency of US foreign policy and some US domestic policies. The positive elements of Western democracy should not hide other negative elements. He also mentions violations of human rights in the ex-Communist camp and in the Islamic world. In dealing with the Islamic world, one should distinguish between the practice of Muslim governments and shari‘ah, and the violation of human rights in the Islamic world should not be seen as a reflection on Islamic Law. Shari‘ah has its established huquq shar‘iyah [legitimate rights] which refer to juristic-based Islamic human rights. Al-Oudah’s lecture on human rights was the first Islamic political lecture that touched on this subject in public in Saudi Arabia. Yet al-Oudah, in his lecture, used a gradual process to address the issue, and to link this issue with the question of political change and reform. He did not mention Saudi Arabia by name, or that it experienced violations of huquq shar‘iyah. But Saudi Arabia can be considered when he referred to the Islamic world, or when there were general statements than can be applied to Saudi Arabia. Before an audience of thousands of people, Al-Oudah laid the Islamic theoretical foundation for the subject of human rights in Islam. He recited Qur’anic verses, which clarify the link between man and His Lord, as an introduction to his subject: Read! And thy Lord is most bountiful, He who taught (the use of) the Pen, taught man that which he knew not’ (S.96, A.4), ‘The most Gracious! It is He who has taught the Qur’an, He has created man. He has taught him an intelligent speech . . .’ (S.55, A.1–4).

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Al-Oudah stated four reasons for addressing the subject of human rights in Islam: 1 2

Scholars of the positive law have known about human rights since medieval times. The subject of human rights has global dimensions. Here, al-Oudah spoke on a defined and specific point – Western misperceptions of Islam: The West knows about Islam through just three issues, polygamy, slavery and jihad where Islam, the West thinks, violates human rights. It is necessary to speak of human rights in Islam and to defend our religion.

3 4

The struggle for human rights is historic, and brought about changes in societies. The media problem in the West might contribute to the violation of human rights.

Then al-Oudah touched directly on the issue of violations of human rights. He pointed out that Muslims had been suffering violations of their rights in the world. He moved from the global scale to the individual level and encouraged Muslims to be familiar with their rights. This was a teaching process, and he drew attention to the importance of human rights and that people should struggle to obtain them: In dealing with the affairs of Muslims, there are various cases of oppression that have been practised against Muslims in many places in the World. Although Islam has given the Muslim legitimate rights, Muslims do not feel they have been getting their rights. The Muslim does not feel dignity, does not know about his rights, is satisfied to only obtain some rights, and might feel worried to speak out about his rights as a Muslim. Al-Oudah insisted that the ‘alim [scholar] should speak out on the subject of human rights. The ‘alim should also speak about public concerns and political issues. So, he criticized those who do not believe a religious scholar or faqih [jurist] has the right to bring up issues of human rights and other public and political issues: So, some people think it is strange to see a Muslim da‘iyah [Islamic caller] or student of shari‘ah speaking about legitimate rights or human rights in Islam. According to their vision, the faqih [jurist] is allowed only to speak about the regulations of taharat [purifications] and ‘ibadat [devotions, acts of worship] but not to speak about public issues. This is secularism . . . , as if . . . human rights are only obtained, in theoretical and empirical terms, by the West.52 The absence of consciousness about Islam has made Muslims vague about their rights established in the Qur’an and

Countering policy in the 1990s 93 Sunnah and they can demand these rights, but do not know how. People have not been moving towards using their rights and many Muslims have lost their rights. Al-Oudah mentioned the subject of freedom. The meaning of freedom is controversial, yet a meaning can be defined in which it is limited and conditioned either in the positive law or in the Islamic Law. So, he clarified the juristic Islamic framework on the meaning of freedom: Freedom is important. Yet it is important to understand that the meaning of this concept is controversial. Some writers define the meaning of freedom in terms of the right to act conditioned by not bringing harm to others, so, there is no unlimited freedom. Here, we should add to the meaning of freedom another dimension in which you should not harm yourself. The harm might be in this life such as harming yourself in materialistic and religious terms, or the harm might be in the hereafter. At the Day of Judgment, man will stand in front of Almighty Allah and might be subject to His question, accounting or punishment. Islamic Law defines the meaning of freedom as limited by the boundaries of halal [lawful] and haram [unlawful, forbidden]. There is no unlimited freedom. In the common societal life, the individual should yield part of his personal rights to others in order to maintain his personal safety and security. So, freedom might be decreasing. It is not allowed for a writer in the press to attack religion or morality, and while the writer might think his act is a part of freedom, this is not the case. Al-Oudah touched on the issue of government in Islam. He made general statements about the responsibility of the Muslim ruler to maintain al-huquq al-shar‘iyah, and criticized state bureaucracy where al-huquq al-shar‘iyah, which includes political rights, might be violated: Shari‘ah clarifies that the ruler is an individual that should have been chosen by people to manage and to organize al-huquq al-shar‘iyah between people according to Shari‘ah. So, the ruler is not allowed to violate those rights. All individuals should cede some of their personal rights and interests to maintain the common societal contract. It is part of the ruler’s responsibility to organize the state bureaucracy in an uncomplicated way, and not difficult, oppressive or polemic to burden and humiliate the dignity of people and their rights. In the violation of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah, people come under pressure and threats to surrender their opinions, so food, work, education, money are all difficult to obtain and accomplish without humiliation. Al-Oudah then turned to asserting the Islamic framework on the subject of human rights. Islam lays stress on the dignity of man, and man is mukalaf [obligated] to carry out duties.

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Al-Oudah asserted that Prophet Muhammad emphasized the human rights in Islam in his valedictory khutbah [sermon, speech] [10H/632AD] and in other hadith the Prophet clarified human rights in Islam. By referring to the prophetic khutbah and hadith, which dealt with the matter of human rights or al-huquq al-shar‘iyah, al-Oudah enhanced the juristic Sunni Islamic framework on this subject. Al-Oudah gave details about human rights in Islam and spoke about personal and body rights, judicial rights, thought and political rights, economic and social rights, educational and intellectual rights. Al-Oudah clarified that these rights, established by Islam, can also be seen in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights: Islam has established several rights. First, personal and body rights refer to the rights not to be enslaved, humiliated, killed, tortured, raped or subject to forced labour. There are other rights such as the rights of travelling, returning back from travelling, marriage, health care, and the sanctity of homes or residential homes, where breaking into homes is forbidden. The sanctity of communication is established and phone calls and post should not be subject to espionage. Second, the judicial rights refer to an individual having the right to defend himself. People stand before the law on equal terms, and immunity is not to be given to anyone at the expense of others. People have the rights to not be arrested, expelled, jailed or charged, unless under a working legal system. The judicial rights also refer to the rights of people to complain and to bring legal suit. Third, intellectual and political rights cover various, and many, issues. In some countries, people have the right to establish political parties and associations. Islam adds . . . the freedom of expression has to be regulated by al-usul al-shar‘iyah [Islamic juristic regulations]. So, carrying out the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [promotion of virtue and prevention of vice] is a duty which aims to counter mafasid [corruption] and to retain masalih [interests, benefits, advantages] where power is regulated to prevent exploitation and oppression. The freedom of the press is also considered. We know that in the West, the freedom of press has accomplished important developments, where the press can question the ruling authority and uncover the polemic of the rulers, such as in the case of Watergate. Fourth, shari‘ah establishes economic and societal rights such as possession or conveyance of property, to be protected against aggression, and to practice commerce, industry and agriculture. Part of economic and societal rights is assistance to people in cases of unemployment, disability and illness. The tax system, if permitted, should be according to real need and on equal terms.

Countering policy in the 1990s 95 Fifth, educational rights are duties in Islam, which the state should grant. Seeking knowledge is a fardh [duty, obligatory] according to the prophetic hadith. Al-Oudah pointed out differences between human rights in Islam and the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights. These differences are the legislative source, the belief of Almighty Allah’s direct supervision, and human rights in Islam, given as Almighty Allah’s gift. Muslims started to know about them when Islam came, and there are some human right elements in Islam not mentioned in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, such as the rights of orphans, neighbours, weak-minded, inheritance and rights of forgiveness. In the second half of his lecture, al-Oudah discussed the elements of ‘human rights between theory and practice’, which he linked to various cases and examples of violations of human rights. His political critique started with cases from the ex-Communist camp and the role played by the intelligence apparatus and KGB in the violation of human rights. Then he focused on violations of human rights that can be seen in the practice of the Western intelligence apparatus and Western foreign policy, such as supporting the State of Israel against the will and the rights of the Palestinian people. In this case, Western powers have used power and the language of law to force Palestinians and Muslims to accept the reality of the State of Israel. Cases of violations of human rights are also found in the Islamic world. On the question of who is committing violations of human rights, al-Oudah says: Transgressions on human rights have been carried out not only by governments but also by people who use their authoritative power or influence in unlawful ways. The richest in societies, such as the merchants, have violated the rights of the poor. Influential people in the state bureaucracy in Muslim countries have oppressed their employees. Al-Oudah proposed solutions to solve the problem of violations of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah: Finally, what are the solutions? I can summarize these in two main points: Firstly, make a division between legislative, executive and judicial authorities, as each one of these authorities should be independent. Secondly, apply an accounting and supervision system to ensure the application of Islamic Law in the state bureaucracy and system. Al-Oudah’s lecture on Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam [Human Rights in Islam] was significant and influential, and can be seen as a bridge between the discourse of August 1990 and the petitions of 1991 and 1992. The lecture was

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a crucial milestone on the route for political change and reform in Saudi Arabia. Al-Oudah, in his lecture on human rights, explained that political rights cover many and various issues, where, in some countries, people have the right to establish political parties and associations. Here, al-Oudah did not object to the idea of establishing political parties and associations. The condition for establishing this form of political competitive system is to be within al-usul al-shar‘iyah [Islamic juristic regulations] and under a lawful and constitutional Islam. This is the way to establish ta‘dudiyah siyasiyah islamiyah [Islamic political competitive system].53 He asserted that political rights include freedom of expression, to be managed under Islamic Law, and to carry out the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] – a duty that aims to counter mafasid [corruption] and maintain masalih [interests, benefits, advantages].54 Al-Oudah stressed the right of the ummah to exert accountability and to supervise the ruler, and he suggests establishing and consolidating a shura [consultation] system and dividing executive, legislative and judicial powers.55 Al-Oudah endorses a significant study, published in the West, on this subject, and the ideas found are taken to represent the leadership’s thoughts. The study was written by Dr Abdullah al-Hamid, one of the signatories of the Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] of 1992, and published in London in 1995, as: ‘Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam’ [Human Rights between the Justice of Islam and the Tyranny of the Rulers]. Commenting on al-Hamid’s statement that the ruler is a representative of the ummah,56 al-Oudah stated clearly in his lecture on human rights that shari‘ah clarifies that the ruler has to be chosen by the people to manage and organize al-huquq al-shar‘iyah. The ruler is not allowed to violate these rights. In a Friday khutbah [sermon, speech] in 1989, al-Oudah stated clearly that the ruler is a representative of the ummah.57 Al-Hamid’s point about the right of salih [good] and qualified Muslims to be chosen for public offices and important positions58 is based on the same idea covered by al-Oudah in his lecture on human rights. In his Friday khutbah [sermon, speech] of 1989, al-Oudah pursues a similar theme with regard to the duties of the Muslim ruler.59 In dealing with the practice of the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, in particular, al-Hamid expressed the same juristic equation which was applied in 1991 by al-Oudah in his lecture of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar. Al-Oudah’s juristic vision was originally drawn from Ibn al-Qayyim’s juristic opinion, which stated the prevention of vice might give one of these results: ●



The vice will disappear and be replaced by the good – the prevention of the vice, in this case, is a duty. The vice will partially disappear – the prevention of the vice is permitted but is not a duty.

Countering policy in the 1990s 97 ●



The vice will disappear, but will be replaced by a similar vice. The prevention of the vice, in this case, is neither a duty nor is permitted, but should remain under extensive thought and consultation to decide whether or not to carry out this principle. The vice will disappear, but will be replaced by a greater vice. Here silence is required.60

Al-Hamid noted that the freedom to carry out Islamic da‘wah and freedom of expression are not only rights but they are wajibat shar‘iyah [legitimate or religious duties]. Ahlu al-‘ilm [‘ulama, people of Islamic sciences and knowledge] are obliged to tell the truth, as those who conceal knowledge are subject to Almighty Allah’s punishment. The Qur’an states ‘Conceal not evidence; for whoever conceals it, his heart is tainted with sin’ (S.2, A.283). Dismissing al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar is a sign of a nation collapsing and of destruction.61 Al-Oudah discussed this concern when he spoke, in his lecture on human rights, about the freedom in Islam to be regulated by shari‘ah. In this regard, the ‘alim and the Islamic da‘iyah [caller] should carry out Islamic da‘wah which can be manifested through certain instruments, such as defending oppressed people, the fatwa [legal and juristic opinion], al-nasihah [advice], books, teaching, conversations and intervention. Al-Hamid applied al-Oudah’s vision in dealing with the question of revolution. Obedience to the government is required as long as the rulers are Muslims and practise prayer [the daily five prayers]; and ousting rulers, or al-khuruj [revolution] is not allowed unless kufrun bawah [open, clear and undisputed disbelief] is clear and demonstrated.62 Al-Hamid’s juristic statement can be seen in al-Oudah’s study of al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences].63 The influence of the leadership can be seen in the petitions of May 1991 [Letter of Shawal, or Letter of the ‘Ulama] and July 1992 [Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah (Memorandum of Advice)]. Here the reformist leadership and wider Saudi Sunni Islamic movement raised the two main questions in the reformist leadership’s discourse of August 1990 in a more detailed and extensive sense: ●



The acceptance of US forces on Saudi soil was extended, not only to question the Saudi–US alliance but also to question other aspects of Saudi foreign policy. State corruption was extended to query aspects of the Saudi domestic policy.

These two questions became the basis of the two petitions and one can see the influence of the reformist leadership.

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Continuation In Chapter 8, the first petition (Letter of the ‘Ulama) and the second petition (Memorandum of Advice) are addressed, followed by a discussion on the CDLR and domestic challenges. In Chapter 9, attention is given to the relationship with the Monarchy and to Elements of Support and Scholarly Endorsement.

8

Petitions and challenges

Background The influence of the reformist leadership is seen in the petitions of May 1991 (Letter of Shawal or Letter of the ‘Ulama) and July 1992 (Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah or Memorandum of Advice). In these petitions, the reformist leadership and the wider Saudi Sunni Islamic movement raise important questions related to State affairs. The two main questions in the reformist leadership’s discourse of August 1990 are also addressed in a more detailed and extensive sense, including: ●



The acceptance by the Monarchy of US forces on Saudi soil – questioning not only the Saudi–US alliance but also other aspects of Saudi foreign policy. State corruption; extended to query aspects of the Saudi domestic policy.

In the reformist leadership’s struggle for political change and reform, some non-governmental domestic Saudi players attempted to counter the reformist leadership’s arguments. The leadership faced enmity from three main players: (1) the Saudi Islamic group of Jamiyah or al-Salafiyun al-Judud [The New Salafi]; (2) media elements and (3) Saudi ‘liberal or secular’ intellectuals or al-hadathiyun [modernists].1 These challenges are discussed towards the end of this chapter.

Kitab Shawal/Kitab al-‘Ulama – May 1991 [Letter of Shawal or Letter of the ‘Ulama] In Shawal 1411H (May 1991), the leadership, together with a wide range of ‘ulama, judges, professors, du‘ah [Islamic callers] and Islamic intellectuals signed a petition presented to the Monarchy, called the Kitab Shawal [Letter of Shawal] or Kitab al-‘Ulama [Letter of the ‘Ulama].2 Al-Oudah stressed3 that the petition was directly related to State affairs, with the signatories of the petition making suggestions to Solve state and societal problems. It was unnecessary for the full juristic political theory,

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presented through al-Hamid’s study of human rights in Islam, and al-Oudah’s lecture on human rights in Islam, to be included in the petition of 1991. This is more suitable for a gradual process of change and reform. The Letter of the ‘Ulama presented general requests for change and reform, rather than an intensive study on change and reform, aiming to open a dialogue with the State. The complementary elements between the Letter of the ‘Ulama and the previously mentioned studies on human rights in Islam are clear. Based on al-Hamid’s definition of political rights, the Letter sought to establish political rights, and aimed to stabilize and consolidate the relationship between the ruling and the ruled, regulate power to prevent exploitation and employ shura [consultation] to prevent anarchy. It was the first time in Saudi Arabia that an Islamic coalition presented, through official, peaceful and direct means, a reformist petition, presenting their common and general vision on certain problems. The question of political change and reform had become clear and direct. The demands for political change and reform were endorsed and supported by Ibn Baz, President of the Council of Senior Scholars and of the Institution of Ifta and Scholarly Research,4 and Shaikh Muhammad al-‘Uthaymin, a member of the Council.5 The leadership played a leading role in the compilation of the petition. Between September 1990 and May 1991 when the Letter of ‘Ulama was officially submitted to the government, the three scholars held a number of meetings with various ‘ulama, shaikhs and Islamic intelligentsia, towards producing the reformist petition.6 These scholarly meetings were mainly part of the ‘monthly conference’.7 Ibn Baz participated in those meetings and used to sit privately, at the end of the monthly meeting, with the leadership to discuss public issues.8 The Letter of the ‘Ulama was the first organized demand for political change and reform within the State’s Islamic constitution. The Letter of the ‘Ulama demanded general changes and reforms, including: 1 Establishing a Majlis al-Shura [Consultative Council] to handle the State’s domestic and foreign policy, according to Islamic Law. 2 Revising all State regulations and laws in the political, economic and administrative sectors, to make them consistent with Islamic Law. 3 Choosing qualified and ethical people for State office – domestically or abroad. 4 Justice and equality to be established, where people should have rights and attend their duties. Exploitation, from any source, and attacks on people’s rights make for a division in society and destruction follows. 5 Making all State officers accountable, without exception, and particularly those in influential positions. 6 Establishing a just policy in distributing al-mal al-‘am [public funds] among all classes of the society, stopping State resources from waste or exploitation, removing all practices of ihtikar [monopoly] and applying the Islamic economic system.

Petitions and challenges 101 7 Carrying out military reform. 8 Ensuring the media and press reflect the State’s Islamic identity. 9 Building a foreign policy that maintains the interests of the nation; not becoming involved in alliances that contradict Islam, taking up Muslim causes in the world and bringing an Islamic character to Saudi embassies. 10 Developing and supporting the religious and da‘wah institutions. 11 Integrating all judicial institutions and ensuring a completely independent status for the judiciary. 12 Maintaining the rights of individuals, and the society, with all oppressive policies removed and people rights maintained according to shari‘ah.9 The leadership’s discourse of August 1990, in general, and al-Oudah’s lecture on human rights, in particular, influenced the Letter of the ‘Ulama, as follows: ●











The Letter of the ‘Ulama focused on bringing reform in Saudi foreign and domestic policies. These two aspects were the main themes of the leadership’s discourse of August 1990. The Letter embraced al-Hawali’s core argument that the Monarchy should not become involved in alliances that contradict Islam. Al-Oudah’s terms of karamah insaniyah [human dignity] and huquq al-insan [human rights] were used in the Letter of the ‘Ulama and later by Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah. Al-Oudah pointed out that maintenance of human rights enhances the stability and security of the State and society, whereas violations of human rights cause turmoil and disunity in society. Al-Oudah, in his lecture on human rights, insisted that the ‘alim [scholar] should speak out on the subject of human rights, and other public concerns or political issues. Al-Oudah, in his lecture on human rights, spoke of the necessity to protect the sanctities, and maintain judicial and justice rights. The Letter of the ‘Ulama has a general statement on this issue. Al-Oudah raised the question of government in Islam and the legitimate responsibility of the Muslim ruler where human rights might be violated. The Letter of the ‘Ulama asserted the necessity of applying justice and equality in society, while State officials, without exception, should be held accountable and questioned.

Ibn Baz supported the Letter, and then faced State pressure to disassociate himself from the signatories of the Letter.10 Prince Salman linked the signatories of the Letter and Juhaiman al-‘Utaibi’s movement of 1981 to convince Ibn Baz to drop his support for the Letter.11 The government placed pressure on shaikhs who were close to the leadership. Abdullah al-Jalali [senior ‘alim from al-Qassim and close to al-Oudah] had been imprisoned several times and was now ordered to leave his locality and

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home. Al-Jalali sent a letter to Ibn Baz in which he complained of the oppressive treatment of the government and requested Ibn Baz’s support.12 The government also arrested Samir al-Maliki, who was close to al-Hawali.13 While facing State pressure to drop his support for the Letter,14 Ibn Baz requested clarification of their demands from the signatories of the Letter of the ‘Ulama. The leadership took a leading organizational and juristic role in compiling the explanatory letter, which was sent to Ibn Baz,15 and later in compiling the Memorandum.16 The Memorandum of Advice was a product of extensive scholarly, intellectual and organizational efforts. During the ‘monthly conference’, the three scholars held various meetings and discussions with many ‘ulama and Islamic intelligentsia, such as Abdullah al-Jalali, Abdullah al-Jabrin [member of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama], Abd al-Aziz al-Qasim [legal expert], Muhammad al-Hadhif, Muhsin al-‘Awaji and Abdullah al-Hamid [all three professors at King Sa‘ud University]. The leadership, these intellectuals and ‘ulama took a leading role in producing the Memorandum. In particular, the leadership supervised the juristic status of the Memorandum17 and then endorsed it on a juristic Sunni Islamic basis.18 Abdullah al-Jalali19 and Abdullah al-Jabrin20 endorsed the Memorandum.21 In particular, al-Qasim compiled the Memorandum of Advice.22 Between the submission of the Letter of the ‘Ulama in May 1991 and the submission of the Memorandum in July 1992, the leadership produced other juristic Sunni Islamic political discourses that laid the groundwork, intellectually, for the submission of the Memorandum. Al-Omar’s lecture Fiqh al-Istisharah [Jurisprudence of Consultation] is a case in point. Al-Omar pointed out that shura [consultation] can be practised at the State level and at the ‘ulama and du‘ah [Islamic callers] level. He focused on the importance that the ‘ulama and du‘ah should practise internal consultation to avoid the problem of al-fardiyah [taking decisions without consulting others]. The shura is a form of ‘ibadah [worshipping Allah] which seeks the right decision, unity, arrangement between various efforts, training for the people involved in consultation and ways to discover talented people. The advice is a form of shura and an educational instrument for people to distinguish between lawful and unlawful things; ‘ulama and du‘ah should be consulted.23

Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah – July 1992 [Memorandum of Advice] In July 1992, the leadership signed, along with a wider circle of Saudi Sunni Islamic reformers, another petition that demanded political change and reform. This petition has become known as Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] and was more comprehensive than the petition of 1991. The Memorandum was submitted directly to the King’s Office.24 One hundred and eleven citizens, including ‘ulama, professionals, academics and technocrats, approached the Monarchy, and supported the Memorandum which required political change and reform.

Petitions and challenges 103 The Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah demanded the Monarchy undertake change and reform in a number of sectors. The Memorandum of Advice raised ten major topics, including the role of ‘ulama, rules and regulations, judiciary and courts, dignity and human rights, administrative affairs, finance and economy, the social institutions, the armed forces, media and foreign relations, with each discussed from an Islamic standpoint. The author summarizes the Memorandum below, [131 pages in its original Arabic text], and then illustrates the relationship between the Memorandum, the reformist leadership, in general, and al-Oudah’s discourses, in particular. Summary of the Memorandum 1 The role of the ‘ulama and du‘ah is extremely marginalized in public life, and their role should be enhanced. 2 The Islamic legal and judicial systems have been invaded by non-Islamic rules and regulations. The problem needs to be solved by comprehensively applying shari‘ah. 3 The authority of the Islamic court system has been weakened. The Islamic judicial authority needs to be enhanced. 4 The Monarchy has violated aspects of human rights and human dignity. This problem needs to be addressed and solved. 5 State administration has been witnessing corruption. The State should start administrative reforms that bring justice to people and punishes those responsible for damage to people’s interests. 6 The State has been involved in various non-Islamic financial and economic practices. Public funds have been irrationally exploited, which has endangered the security of the nation. The Monarchy has been financing corrupt regimes and dictatorships in various countries. This has negatively influenced the financial and economic ability of the State to improve its domestic services in education, health and infrastructure. A supervisory and accounting system should be introduced, and an Islamic financial and banking system established. 7 The State welfare system has been experiencing difficulties. It is necessary to promote public facilities and maintain a State welfare system. 8 The Gulf crisis has uncovered a series of problems in the military institution; the country has weak armed forces and has had to rely on an external power to defend the nation. The army needs to be quantitatively enlarged and qualitatively improved, and forms of military alliance and treaties that undermine the sovereignty of the nation should be cancelled. 9 As the propagation of Islam is the most honourable duty of an Islamic state which adopts Islam as a system of life, the media should play a greater part in fulfilling this role. The media should maintain and protect the Islamic identity of the ummah, defend Islam, support Islamic causes, promote all activities admissible by Islamic laws and values, and prohibit any that contradict or defame Islam.

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10 The Holy Qur’an and the tradition of Prophet Muhammad indicate that an Islamic state’s foreign relation should propagate Islam to all parts of the world, unifying Muslims, and supporting Islamic causes. The Monarchy has not seriously met these objectives. In particular, the Monarchy is involved in alliances, or cooperation, with non-Islamic countries, which serve the colonial objectives of such countries.25 Al-Oudah explained26 that the Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] was an empirical matter intended to directly address Saudi State issues, while his and Abdullah al-Hamid’s studies on human rights were theoretical. Yet the three discourses are complementary. The common core is the issue of seeking reform of a Muslim state’s policies, which includes the issue of human rights and political rights, according to shari‘ah. In particular, based on al-Hamid’s definition of political rights, the Memorandum sought to establish political rights which aimed to stabilize and consolidate the relationship between the ruling and the ruled, to regulate power to prevent exploitation and employ shura [consultation] to prevent anarchy.27 The relationship between the Memorandum and the discourse of al-Oudah, in particular, and of the reformist leadership, in general, is seen in the following: ●

Based on al-Hamid’s definition of political rights, al-Oudah, in his lecture on human rights, implemented and pointed out certain elements of political rights, such as: the right to establish a competitive political system within a lawful and constitutional juristic Islamic framework; the right of freedom of expression; the right to carry out al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] which includes the political dimension; the right to ask for accountability; questioning the ruler and the government; the assertion that the ruler has to be chosen by the people to manage and organize al-huquq al-shar‘iyah; separating the legislative, executive and judicial authorities; the importance of establishing a comprehensive hisbah [accounting] system; establishing a mazalim [review and appeals office]28 judicial system in which people can bring suits or complaints against the government, or influential State officials, with shari‘ah the sole source of rights.29

The Memorandum touched on most of these issues, and constituted a complete Islamic political programme with methods to establish political

Petitions and challenges 105 rights. In the words of a certain Saudi Islamic voice, who wrote an Introduction to the Memorandum: Some observers view it as an election program, which expresses the agenda of the modern Islamic movement in Saudi Arabia. For various reasons it caused deep and unprecedented concern for the Saudi government as it applied, for the first time, the Islamic view on a number of important issues: freedom of speech, independence of judiciary and separation of the legislative institution from the executive. ●





The Memorandum emphasized various political elements, such as (1) the equality of the ruler and the ruled before Islamic Law, based on justice equality and shura [consultation] in accordance with the Islamic Law; (2) the right of advice and constructive critique; (3) the necessity of establishing a hisbah [accounting] system and a mazalim [review and appeals office] judicial system; (4) looking into political crimes; (5) the independence of the judiciary; (6) the initiation of a Supreme Islamic Court, staffed with resilient, distinguished ‘ulama to function as an Islamic constitutional court dealing with fundamental cases to ensure the supremacy of Islamic Laws over the Head of State and his government; (7) the shari‘ah as the sole source of the rights; (8) freedom of expression; (9) the right to complain and express grievances by people over neglect of their rights by government employees; (10) setting up a system for the regular replacement of ministers and high-ranking officials who should be periodically substituted; (11) the State is not the owner of wealth, but is regarded as a deputy, agent and trustee; (12) banning all forms of monopoly and privileges and ensuring the right of individuals to fair competition; (13) abolishing all protocols and conventions by the government which infringe State sovereignty and independence in administering military affairs; (14) non-dependence of government on any foreign military power whatsoever, for the defence and protection of the Kingdom and (15) avoiding any form of alliances, or cooperation, by the Monarchy which serve colonial objectives. The Memorandum, as a whole, represented its signatories’ vision of Muslim government and the way a Muslim ruler should manage domestic and foreign policies. This is a core concern of the leadership in the discourse of August 1990, al-Oudah’s Friday sermon (1990), al-Oudah’s lecture on human rights (1991) and al-Omar’s lecture of Fiqh al-Istisharah [Jurisprudence of Consultation] (1992). The Memorandum asserted clearly the equality between the ruler and the ruled in Islamic Law. This is the substance of the juristic Sunni Islamic political discourse of the leadership, such as al-Oudah’s Friday sermon (1990), al-Oudah’s lectures on human rights (1991) and Tahrir al-Ardh am Tahrir al-Insan [Freeing the Land or Freeing the Man] (1992).

106 ●









Petitions and challenges The Memorandum of Advice, like the first petition, addressed al-Oudah’s concern on the role of the ‘ulama and du‘ah [Islamic callers] who should be involved in politics and discuss public issues. The Memorandum was signed by ‘ulama and Islamic intelligentsia and the first chapter of the Memorandum is devoted to discussing the role of the ‘ulama and du‘ah in the Saudi State and in society. The Memorandum demanded that all restrictions and orders which hinder the activity of the ‘ulama and du‘ah should be lifted; government should encourage and pave the way for establishing independent organizations and associations for ‘ulama and du‘ah; government should enhance the role of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama by appointing well-established scholars, known for their ability to conceive and advise on legislation; and all conventions and legislations intended for endorsement should be passed by Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama. It is apt here to refer to al-Hawali’s discourses which preceded the Memorandum and addressed the issue of the ‘ulama and du‘ah, such as his lectures of al-Mas’uliyah [The Responsibility] (1992), Wajibat al-Da‘iyah [The Duties of Islamic Callers] (1992) and Wajibuna Tijah Dinina [Our Duties towards Our Religion] (1992).30 The Memorandum devoted a complete chapter to ‘Dignity and Human Rights’. This chapter is mainly based on al-Oudah’s lecture on human rights. The Memorandum asserted that the responsibility of the Muslim government is to ensure human rights. The Memorandum clarified that the State’s violations of people’s rights causes the disunity of society and the collapse of the State. The Memorandum used Ibn Khaldun’s paradigm to prove state collapse in the case of corruption. The subject of state collapse is an important subject in the discourse of al-Oudah and of the reformist leadership as a whole. In his lecture of Asbab Suqut al-Duwal [Reasons for the Collapse of States] (August 1990), al-Oudah comprehensively discussed the issue of state collapse and he used Ibn Khaldun’s paradigm to prove that the spread of corruption causes the collapse of state. The Memorandum put al-Oudah’s statement about the violation of human rights in empirical illustrations, by referring to various cases of violations of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah in the Kingdom. The Memorandum also devoted extensive focus to the issue of maintaining and protecting al-hurumat [the sanctities]. In this matter, the Memorandum criticized the Saudi criminal code, and underlined various Islamic regulations on human rights. After setting the juristic theory, the Memorandum brought forward actual cases where sanctities were not respected. The Memorandum suggested constitutional clauses for crimes, including political crimes. The mention of political crimes was an important development on the way to obtaining political rights. This suggestion provided a constitutional basis to bring to account and charge State officials. The Memorandum applied al-Oudah’s treatment of freedom in Islam when he asserted that freedom has to be conditioned by the jurisprudence

Petitions and challenges 107







of halal [lawful] and haram [unlawful, forbidden]. The Memorandum thus emphasized prohibition of any call for forbidden deeds, scandal, striving for mischief through the land or the defamation of Islam. The Memorandum pointed out that imported foreign publications should be subject to Islamic criteria which may, on verification, ban the circulation of any publication engaging in propagation of ideas on unbelief, secularism, nudity, moral corruption or pornography. Al-Oudah asserted the necessity that the State bureaucracy should not be complicated, difficult, oppressive, polemic and a burden on, or humiliation of, the dignity of people. In this matter, the Memorandum devoted a chapter that enhances al-Oudah’s point that the administration policy should be based on simplicity of procedure, performance and perfection. Therefore, the Memorandum demanded an exigency of control and chastisement for negligent public servants. The Memorandum considered that the Saudi government should not depend on any foreign military power, and the Monarchy should avoid any form of alliances which serve an ally’s colonial objectives, as also requested in the leadership’s discourse of August 1990. The Memorandum used juristic language and juristic political language that appears in the leadership’s discourses, in general, and in al-Hawali’s discourses, in particular. The Memorandum countered secularism31 and asserted the same ayatu al-hukm [Qur’anic verses that deal with the issue of government] and other juristic frameworks frequently used by al-Hawali in his teaching lessons and lectures of Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya [Explanation of the ‘Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi] (1985–1990). Al-Hawali’s insistence on relying on shari‘ah as governing the law of State and society, and of the ruling and the ruled, as part of the Islamic iman [faith], complements the Memorandum’s insight into the same matter.

The leadership participated with the wider Saudi Sunni Islamic movement in presenting reformist petitions. In this case, the three scholars were activating and influencing the Islamic sphere as a whole, opening up opportunities for working with other Islamic figures and carrying out common Islamic projects, and were not an isolated Islamic scholarly group or leadership with limited followers. The pressure by the government on Ibn Baz, to disassociate himself from the signatories of the first petition, had an impact on the second petition. The Council of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, headed by Ibn Baz, rejected the Memorandum. Seven out of 17 members of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, were absent from the meeting of the Council when the decision of condemnation was taken, with ten members signing the decision.32 This leaves the impression that some members disagreed with the condemnation. Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s statement made several points against the Memorandum, saying it would lead to disorder and division in the nation, the way the

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Memorandum was distributed in public was wrong, it ignored State achievements, it benefited the enemy and has external or foreign linkages. The Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s statement, considered to be a response to the Memorandum, was only one page, did not use clear juristic and legal Sunni Islamic methods, and was not a clear response to the Memorandum’s 131 pages. The Council’s statement made a series of accusations against the signatories of the Memorandum, such as having foreign connections without, however, clarifying the nature of this external linkage. This justifies the strong tone of the subsequent countering statement. The leadership countered Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s condemnation of the Memorandum by issuing a statement entitled Rad al-Islahiyin [The Response of the Reformers].33 The countering statement was signed by al-Hawali, al-Oudah, al-Omar and their inner circle, including ‘Ayidh al-Qarni, Sa‘id Ibn Za‘ir, Muhammad al-Sihibani, Yahya al-Yahya, Muhammad al-Qahtani, Sa‘id Misfir, Sa‘ad al-Humaid, al-Turiri, Abd al-Qari, Abdullah al-Tuwijri and the senior ‘alim Shaikh Abdullah al-Jabrin.34 The latter was well-known for his support of the leadership. The leadership was concerned here to strengthen its countering statement by including other ‘ulama and shaikhs, particularly al-Jabrin. The presence of al-Jabrin brought official Sunni Islamic legitimacy to the countering statement, as al-Jabrin is a senior or official ‘alim and member of the Council of the Senior ‘Ulama. Issuing a common countering statement reduced the political risk. The State’s Sunni Islamic legitimacy was important for the signatories of the countering statement, and the statement started by pointing out that its signatories are concerned about the religious reputation and the scholarly status of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama. The condemnation of the Memorandum harmed the religious reputation and the scholarly status of the Council, and people, in their majalis, started defaming the Council. Here, the signatories of the countering statement advised the Council not to be like the Ministry of Information in which ‘condemnation cannot be distinguished from the Ministry of Information’s publications’.35 Here the signatories refer to the way the condemnation was written; propagandist rather than scholarly. Rad al-Islahiyin directed several points to the members of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, summarized in the following paragraphs. The signatories of the countering statement referred to themselves as talabatu al-‘ilm [students of shari‘ah]. This is an important linkage which indicates a common scholarly concern that links the leadership to other Saudi Sunni Islamic trends. This is also an indication of the policy of the scholarly alliances that the reformist leadership sometimes practised. Using the term talabatu al-‘ilm is a method of structuring juristic Sunni Islamic legitimacy for the countering statement. The first concern of the signatories was to defend themselves as they had not been behind the publication of the Memorandum,36 and they called the Council to focus on the content of the Memorandum. This aspect of the publication can be further commented on as one of the inner circles of the leadership complained to the author about the publication

Petitions and challenges 109 of the Memorandum. He said that some of its signatories were involved, intentionally or accidentally, in publicizing the Memorandum in Beirut, Lebanon.37 The signatories complained that the Council was annoyed by the publication of the Memorandum, yet the Council was not annoyed by State corruption. Here, the signatories wanted to draw Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s attention to the Memorandum’s contents which focused on State problems or corruption. Then the countering statement referred to the method of advising the ruling authority. The signatories clarified that they have the juristic right to select the method of advising the ruling authority whether in public or secret. The signatories mentioned they had been seeking a meeting with the Council to discuss the Memorandum, but the Council issued its condemnation before this meeting. The signatories described the statement of condemnation as lacking objectivity and neutrality. The countering statement rejected the Council’s questioning of the intentions of the Memorandum’s signatories. Here, it is immoral to accuse people because of their intentions when the Sunni Islamic juristic principle asserts that judging people should only be according to their external conduct. Again, the signatories reminded the Council of the necessity of maintaining its religious reputation and scholarly status. The countering statement questioned the Council’s accusation of the Memorandum’s signatories being externally linked or having foreign links. The signatories implied that the Council was influenced by the security apparatus’ arguments against the Memorandum’s signatories. The countering statement rejected the Council’s argument that the Memorandum’s signatories had ignored State achievements, by saying it is unnecessary to point out positive aspects of the State when discussing the problems of the State. The countering statement also rejected the charge that the Memorandum benefited enemies. The countering statement then poses several questions to the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, which focused on the scholarly and political status of the Council: 1) Has the Council’s mission become to condemn and denounce or is its mission to clarify the right, supported by proof, and to counter corruption? 2) The Council’s statement has not recognized any State problems, as in the media, economy and foreign policy. 3) Your statement has not mentioned or suggested solutions to problems. 4) Based on your statement, the ‘ulama have become defenders of the State’s errors. So, they have not only been silent but they have also started countering reformers. 5) Why have all the Council’s statements not been declared? Does the Council dare to declare all its statements? Can the Council discuss issues and declare its opinions towards these issues? 6) Your statement lacks juristic proofs.

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The signatories ended their statement by noting certain points that revolved around supporting the Sunni Islamic legitimacy of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama and the Monarchy. The signatories were concerned about forming a scholarly Sunni Islamic unity with the Council, and building an understanding with the government when they called for a dialogue. To place further pressure on Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama,38 Abdullah al-Jabrin issued a separate letter criticizing Bayan Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama Bisha’n Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Statement of the Council of Senior ‘Ulama on the Memorandum of Advice], and defended the Memorandum and its signatories.39 After issuing the countering statement in September 1992, the leadership continued with discourses that related to political change and reform. Al-Oudah’s lecture Matariq al-Sunan al-Ilahiyah [Allah’s Way of Punishments] was important. The juristic core of this lecture was to understand the Divine law in making ruling powers and civilizations rise and fall. Empirically, the more oppressive and corrupt regimes and societies are, the more likely they are to collapse. This is a historical fact; the Greek civilization, the Roman Empire, the former Soviet Union, the Eastern Communist Bloc and the Pahlavi Dynasty in Iran all collapsed. These should be seen as warning signs to any oppressive and corrupt regimes and societies. It is necessary to struggle and to make mujahadah [to strive, to resist, extensive efforts] towards change and reform as a way to maintain safety, security and advancement in this life, and in the hereafter, as practising justice is a form of ‘ibadah [worshipping] and required in shari‘ah. Change and reform should take five steps: to build a concern for corruptions that need to be removed; to believe there is a possibility of change and reform; to participate in the struggle for change and reform; to believe that the change and reform should be according to al-manhaj al-shar‘i [the Islamic method]; and to start reforming yourself, your family and things around you.40

Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR) On 12 Dhu al-Qa‘da 1413H (3 May 1993), the Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR) was established. The members of the CDLR were six Saudi Islamic ‘ulama and shaikhs: Abdullah al-Jabrin, Abdullah al-Mas‘ari (former director of the Diwan al-Mazalim – the review and appeals office), Sulayman al-Rushudi (lawyer), Abdullah al-Tuwijri and Abdullah al-Hamid (both professors at Imam Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud University), and Hammad al-Silifih (official at the Ministry of Education).41 In the declaration establishing the CDLR, it was stated that the purpose was to defend, to obtain and to maintain al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [legitimate Islamic rights].42 The CDLR opened its doors to complaints from people about grievances and about the injustice they had suffered.43 The government closed down the offices of the lawyers who had participated in establishing the CDLR, and all the members were dismissed from their posts.44

Petitions and challenges 111 The CDLR’s members were close to the leadership, who were not involved in establishing the CDLR, but did not object to the CDLR’s goals.45 The non-involvement of the leadership in establishing the CDLR can be understood in the light of the fact that, at the time of the establishment of the CDLR in May 1993, the leadership was already facing increasing government threats to stop their public activities.46 For the leadership to be members of the CDLR would have exacerbated the tension with the government.

Domestic challenges In the leadership’s struggle for political change and reform, some domestic non-governmental Saudi players attempted to counter the leadership’s arguments. The leadership faced enmity from three main players: (1) the Saudi Islamic group of Jamiyah47 or al-Salafiyun al-Judud [The New Salafi];48 (2) media elements and (3) Saudi liberal, or secular, intellectuals. Al-Jamiyah opposed the leadership during the 1990s. On the eve of the Second Gulf War in 1990–1991, the group emerged and started attacking and severely criticizing the leadership as well as the Muslim Brotherhood and Muhammad Surur49 whose complementary thoughts seek, according to al-Jamiyah’s argument, disorder or fitnah. The leaders of al-Jamiyah were Shaikhs Muhammad al-Jami (d. 1999), Dr Rabi‘ al-Madkhali50 and his brother Muhammad al-Madkhali. Politically this group rejected the reformist leadership’s focus on politics and the discourse of fiqh al-waqi‘ [the jurisprudence of reality]. Fiqh al-waqi‘ indicates the importance for the Islamic reformer of building political concern and analytical abilities by linking the fiqh to reality.51 After the Second Gulf War in 1990–1991, Rabi‘ al-Madkhali distributed a booklet that justified acceptance by the Monarchy of US forces on Saudi soil,52 and also distributed a recorded cassette in which he criticized [or attacked] al-Hawali’s discourse of August 1990 which opposed the acceptance by the Monarchy of US forces on Saudi soil.53 One observer refers to al-Jamiyah as hizb al-wullah [the party of the rulers].54 Muhammad Surur argues that this group claims to be the guardian of the Islamic Salafi55 movement. The term hizb al-wullah indicates unquestioned loyalty to the State. Absolute loyalty, complete obedience and submission to the rulers were the core characteristics of the group. The important difference between hizb al-wullah and the reformist leadership was the former’s rejection of the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar as interpreted by the leadership.56 The latter saw the hizb, for this reason, as a body which opposed their desire to speak out, to voice concern and to link religion with politics in analysis and argument. During the 1990s, the leadership did not respond to al-Jamiyah.57 The leadership’s strategy was to ignore the group or avoid conflict.58 The author raised the matter when interviewing al-Hawali. The latter thought that this group, or some of its members, might have been basing their opinions on certain

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ijtihad, and patience and tolerance towards them should be adopted.59 The leadership’s strategy of avoiding conflict was later confirmed by al-Oudah.60 The second source of criticism of the leadership was a Saudi newspaper. During the ongoing debate about the Memorandum of Advice, the local Saudi Newspaper, al-Nadwa publicized a series of articles about extremism. Initially, non-Saudi Islamic leaders, such as Dr Hassan al-Turabi of Sudan and Rashid al-Ghanushi of Tunisia, were attacked. Then al-Nadwa started attacking al-Hawali, and his colleague ‘Ayidh al-Qarni. This brought public anger against the writer, Yusuf Damanhuri.61 Prince Salman conveyed his apology, through a close shaikh friend, to al-Hawali, and complained about the writer to King Fahd, who suggested the writer should be removed from the editorial board.62 The government moved quickly to calm the situation and removed the writer from the newspaper’s board of editors. Abd al-Wahhab al-Turiri responded to Damanhuri in a Friday khutbah [sermon, speech] by defending the position of the leadership.63 The leadership did not respond. The third source of criticism of the leadership was a leading intellectual, Dr Ghazi al-Qusaibi, the Saudi ambassador in London and a former minister; perhaps the most serious critic. Al-Qusaibi wrote a series of articles in the London-based Saudi Arabic Newspaper, ASharq al-Awsat [The Middle East], in his column Fi ‘Ain al-Asifah [In the Eye of the Storm], after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990. In these articles he attacked the Iraqi president Saddam Hussein and then started writing about al-usuliyah al-Islamiyah [Islamic fundamentalism]. He linked Saddam Hussein and ‘Islamic fundamentalism’; using the term al-usuliyun al-Saddamiyun64 to describe Islamic fundamentalists siding with Saddam Hussein. He said that these fundamentalists were preparing to attack the ruling authority,65 and had put forward a plan to become the ruling authority.66 Then he linked local figures to the Sudanese Islamic leader, Hassan al-Turabi, and said that the grouping of these local figures is part of a strategic Turabi-based fundamentalist plan.67 The leadership countered al-Qusaibi’s argument indirectly and without referring to him by name.68 This discourse not only countered al-Qusaibi’s articles in ASharq al-Awsat but also countered other writings of al-Qusaibi, published elsewhere, aimed at a comprehensive countering of al-Qusaibi. Al-Oudah delivered a lecture entitled Al-Sharit al-Islami [The Islamic Audio Cassette],69 which began by defending the use of cassettes to spread views. He extensively discussed the positive and negative elements of the Islamic cassette and gave various technical and intellectual suggestions to improve the performance of this style of transferring Islamic knowledge.70 Al-Oudah referred to the Western attack on the Islamic cassette where political and press circles perceived the Islamic cassette as a source of concern. He clarified that he read the Western press and listened to Western news where the idea of attacking Islamic audio cassettes, and linking their use with Shiite revolutionary Iran, had been discussed.71 Al-Oudah was nullifying the argument that there is a linkage between the phenomenon of the Islamic audio cassette and the existence of fitnah [disor-

Petitions and challenges 113 der, turmoil]. He stated that al-hadathiyun [modernists] were falsely claiming that Islamic audio cassettes create fitnah in society and harm the purity of Islam. He remarked on this, ‘it is as if the secular trends care about Islam!’ Al-Oudah argued that the reverse is true ‘modernity and the secularism were the causes of destruction in society, and that those who care about Islam should contribute by protecting youth from the ideas of modernity and secularism’. In justifying the use of the audio cassette as an instrument to transfer ideas, al-Oudah raised the problem of limited opportunities for expression, and complained that al-hadathiyun controls the press and the media in Saudi Arabia, and Islamic voices have no chance to be heard. Al-Oudah referred to another article, published in Kuwait, about the ‘ulama in which the writer72 said: ‘We hope some of our ‘ulama stay within their fields. They should not drive themselves forcibly into the seas of politics in which they cannot swim . . . ’. Al-Oudah condemned criticism on the involvement of the ‘ulama in politics. In Islam, he said, there is no difference between something called religion and something called politics. Would the writer of the article,73 he asked, wish to disregard many of the fatawa of the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, which are related to politics?74 Here, al-Oudah referred to the fact that Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama had a political role, counter to the writer’s, or al-Qusaibi’s, claim that the ‘ulama should not involve themselves in politics. Al-Oudah questioned al-Qusaibi’s own involvement in different subjects and fields, such as politics, economy, development, health and Islamic fiqh. He asked al-Qusaibi what the principle of specialization, or specification, was for himself.75 In his lecture on Al-Sharit al-Islami, al-Oudah questioned the basis of the Islamic credibility of al-Qusaibi. To an audience of thousands, al-Oudah read some erotic poetry and verses from al-Qusaibi. In his poetry book, Ma‘rakah bila Rayah [Battle without a Banner]76 al-Qusaibi talks of matters from his life experience; which, if considered under Islamic Law, are unlawful or non-ethical. Those life experiences were read out, but al-Oudah apologized to his audience for reading these verses in a purified and holy place, the mosque. The reading aimed to discredit al-Qusaibi’s uses of juristic Sunni Islamic language to criticize the leadership, and to question his Sunni Islamic knowledge. Al-Oudah concluded his lecture by referring to al-Qusaibi’s articles in ASharq al-Awsat [the Middle East],77 questioned al-Qusaibi’s use of the term ‘usuliyun’ [fundamentalists], an imported Western Christian term, and criticized al-Qusaibi’s series of generalizations, such as ‘the . . . “fundamentalists” have been siding with Saddam Hussein’, ‘they are seeking ruling authority’ and ‘they are linked with Hassan al-Turabi’.78 Al-Omar’s response to al-Qusaibi broadened into countering of Saudi secular forces in general. He brought together the aftermath of the women’s demonstration on 7 November 1990, articles and comments by al-Qusaibi targeting the leadership and the achievements of Saudi secular forces in Saudi society. This was addressed in his lecture, ‘Al-Sakinah al-Sakinah’ [Calmness, Calmness]. In the lecture, al-Omar warned against provocative writing and

114 Petitions and challenges comment that targeted the Islamic sahwa [renaissance, revivalism] in Saudi Arabia which he said involved secular forces trying to provoke the shabab al-sahwa [Islamic young generation] to act violently. He referred to leaflets distributed after the women’s demonstration containing provocative verses aimed at pushing the youth towards violence. In al-Omar’s argument, ‘secular forces, the hypocrites, or the fifth column’, were behind some or most of these leaflets. He argued that secular forces have been steadily working against Islamic revivalism, and that their call for dialogue was intended to open the area to question al-musalamat al-Islamiyah [axioms, the basic principle or postulates in Islam]. Al-Omar commented that secular forces have, in some areas, succeeded in their plans. For example, in the economic sector they have been able to prevent the application of shari‘ah. The State has not been able to establish an Islamic banking system because of bureaucratic barriers. In the press and the media they have also succeeded. The State law on publications took into consideration Islamic codes, but secular forces have been able to violate the law in their publications. They have also been able to intervene in the State judicial system, and different State departments had taken over some of the authority of Islamic courts. Secular forces have made progress in their plan to mix genders in some institutions and public places.79 Al-Qusaibi apparently perceived al-Oudah’s lecture of Al-Sharit al-Islami, and al-Omar’s lecture of Al-Sakinah al-Sakinah [Calmness, Calmness], as targeting him. He published a book entitled Hata Latakun Fitnah [In Order to Prevent Turmoil] in which he criticized and attacked the leadership directly and by name.80 This book consists of five letters, three of which were directed to al-Oudah, al-Omar and ‘Ayidh al-Qarni. Al-Qusaibi rejected the accusation of being secular and accused the leadership of seeking fitnah [disorder, turmoil] in Saudi Arabia, and aiming to shed blood. He also argued that the Shiite Iranian revolution and its leader Khomeini had influenced the reformist leadership. Al-Qusaibi used juristic Sunni Islamic language in support of his arguments. After the publication of al-Qusaibi’s book of Hata Latakun Fitnah, the wider Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist circle came to the defence of the leadership.81 For example, Muhammad al-Qahtani, Professor of ‘Aqidah [faith] at Umm al-Qura University in Makkah and a colleague of al-Hawali, published a booklet entitled Wa Yakun al-Din Kuluhu Lil Allah [The Whole Religion is for Allah].82 He accused al-Qusaibi of provoking the ruling authority against the ‘ulama, defending secularism, making accusations without evidence, causing turmoil and being arrogant. Al-Qahtani attached documents that support his arguments to his booklet.83 Walid al-Tuwirqi, Sa‘id al-Zu‘air, Samir al-Malki, ‘Awadh al-Qarni and Muhammad al-Qahtani84 responded to al-Qusaibi by issuing a multiple-authored book entitled Al-Qusaibi wa Al-Mashru‘ Al-‘Ilmani Hiwar wa Munaqasha [Al-Qusaibi and the Secular Project: Dialogue and Discussion]. They argued that al-Qusaibi is strongly committed to secularism and modernity, attacked the ‘ulama of Islam,

Petitions and challenges 115 ignored the accomplishments of the Islamic renaissance, called shari‘ah into question, and attempted to provoke the ruling authority against al-Hawali, al-Ouda, al-Omar and other reformers. To support to their arguments, the authors mentioned various writings of al-Qusaibi through the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.85 After the publications of the wider Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist circle, al-Qusaibi published another book in London entitled Azmat al-Khalij Muhawala Lil Fahim [The Gulf Crisis, An Attempt to Understand].86 Al-Qusaibi, indirectly, mentions the reformist leadership and his perception of the leadership, without referring to their names.87 In the fifth chapter, al-Qusaibi tries to tackle various complicated issues, such as: ● ● ● ● ● ● ●

● ● ●

the expression ‘fundamentalists’; islamic political organizations; the role of Islamic ‘fundamentalist’ leaders during the Gulf crisis; the secular thoughts of Saddam Hussein; the ‘fundamentalist’ inclination towards Saddam during the Gulf crisis; Saudi ‘ulama as sympathetic to the ‘fundamentalist’ movement; Hassan al-Turabi’s organization, intellect and support for Saddam Hussein; the organization of the Muslim Brotherhood and its global leadership; the leadership’s objection to the presence of foreign forces on Saudi soil; politicized preachers in the Gulf.

Al-Qusaibi’s attempt to analyse all these issues in less than 20 pages is a difficult, if not impossible, task. He touched on the reformist leadership, criticizing their involvement in discussing political issues. Al-Qusaibi suggested88 that the reformist leadership, like al-Turabi, sided with Saddam Hussein, and that there are intellectual and organizational linkages between al-Turabi and the leadership.89 After the publication of al-Qusaibi’s book, Shaikh Abd al-Rahman al-Jabrin (oldest son of Shaikh Abdullah al-Jabrin [member of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama]) came to the defence of the leadership.90 Al-Jabrin’s critique of al-Qusaibi was particularly significant in his defence of the position of the leadership. His response came in his study on secularism and the Saudi secular movement, published in Beirut in AD 1992, under the title, Risalatu al-Islah [The Letter of Reform].91 Al-Jabrin started with a theoretical framework, pointing out that the struggle between the ‘ulama and Muslims on one side, and secular elements on the other, is severe and continuing. The struggle occurs in thought, education, influential and leading positions and over government. Al-Jabrin argued that, originally, the Saudi secular front emerged in the late 1950s. It experienced confrontation with the State, but, since the reign of King Faisal, changed its strategy of confrontation to one of working within the State system. The plan was either to change the State system or to envisage

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a secular development within the system, such as the separation of religion from State. This is an important point for al-Jabrin, where he referred to a struggle for opportunities within the State system between Saudi secular and Islamic forces. In the first part of his study, he reveals the operational strategy of the secular front. He then called on the Monarchy, in the person of King Fahd, to confront this front as a dangerous group invading Saudi Islamic society and State. He criticized al-Qusaibi’s Hata Latakun Fitnah and Azmat al-Khalij on two main grounds. First, al-Qusaibi’s discourse, he claimed, was full of provocation and distortions, changing the meanings of the discourse of al-mashayikh [the shaikhs: the reformist leadership], and using a sarcastic, mocking style. Second, al-Qusaibi was intellectually promoting secularism and modernity. Al-Jabrin accused al-Qusaibi of being secular, working against the shari‘ah, by subjecting it to discussion and of being an enemy of the ‘ulama and du‘ah whom he had described as a kahanut [priesthood] issuing fatawi which were raj‘iyah [reactionary].92

Continuation In Chapter 9 attention is given to the leadership’s relationship with the Monarchy, and to elements of support and scholarly endorsement, followed by a summary on the countering policy in the 1990s.

9

The Monarchy and support

Background Tension between the reformist leadership and the Monarchy increased between 1991 and 1994. The Saudi government had gradually started placing pressure on the reformist leadership to terminate its discourse. This led to the imprisonment of al-Hawali, al-Oudah, al-Omar and other reformers, in September–October 1994. During this period, the reformist leadership showed political resistance, as further documented in this chapter. In June 1999, the reformist leadership was released from prison without charge or trial. Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar were taken to Jeddah to meet the Minister of the Interior. The Minister requested the start of a new and positive era in the relationship between the two sides; the three shaikhs and the Monarchy. The underlying message was that the past should be forgotten; seen as a positive sign that a new relationship between the reformist leadership and the Monarchy could develop. During their political struggle, the three scholars received important scholarly support, recognition and endorsement. This indicates their struggle was within a recognized Sunni Islamic context. The author later examines the nature of this recognition and endorsement.

Tension, pressure, political resistance and arrest During the Second Gulf War (August 1990 and March 1991), a Saudi intelligence team visited the Umm al-Qura University.1 The team requested a meeting with Dr Safar al-Hawali, Head of the ‘Aqidah department. During the meeting with al-Hawali the intelligence team asked al-Hawali to commit to no longer speaking of, and criticizing, Saudi–US foreign policy. Al-Hawali rejected the request and, in writing, answered: I have already clarified my position. I do not need to hold a discussion with the intelligence authority. If there is any concern or question, you will find the answers and responses have been written and are with Shaikh Ibn Baz. Ibn Baz is the one who discusses the differences of juristic opinions.2

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The Monarchy further increased its pressure on the leadership. In 1991, the government established a committee called al-lajnah al-khumasiyah [five-member committee], with five ‘ulama, members of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [Shaikhs: Ibn Baz, Salih al-Lihidan, Abd al-Aziz al-Shaikh, Salih al-Fuzan and Abdullah Ibn Ghidayan],3 to confront, on a juristic Sunni Islamic basis, the arguments of al-Hawali, al-Oudah, al-Omar and other Sunni Islamic reformers. It requested the Committee start with the lectures of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and other Sunni Islamic reformers.4 The regime was seeking proof that the leadership was trying to foment revolution or fitnah [turmoil].5 The Committee stopped many from speaking out,6 but was not able to prevent al-Hawali and al-Oudah from voicing their concern. It held discussions with al-Hawali and al-Oudah, but found no grounds to confirm the State’s request that al-Hawali and al-Oudah be stopped from conducting lectures and lessons. The Committee did not delegitimize the discourse of the leadership on a juristic Sunni Islamic basis.7 During their several meetings and discussions with the Committee, the three scholars were able to defend and justify their opinions on juristic Sunni Islamic grounds.8 Through 1992 the leadership continued countering elements of the Saudi foreign policy, especially on the Palestinian problem and the Saudi position towards Israel. The Saudi government had participated in the Madrid conference for peace in the Middle East. The leadership opposed the conference and its results, delivering critical lectures about the issue of peace with Israel. Al-Hawali delivered his important lecture ‘Al-Wa‘ad al-Haq wa al-Wa‘d al-Muftara’ [The Right Promise and the False Promise]. He countered the Old Testament’s prophecies,9 which promised the Jews maintenance of their hegemony in historical Palestine. Here al-Hawali pointed out that the Old Testament was either misread or its meanings were changed and distorted. He argued that seven US Presidents had believed the Old Testament’s prophecies, and US support to Israel is therefore religiously motivated. The Madrid Conference was, thus, not to establish peace with Palestinian rights to be returned. On the contrary, the conference was a way to maintain Israeli security and hegemony.10 Al-Oudah followed the same path in his lecture Al-Ma‘rakah al-Fasilah ma‘a Bani Israel [The Final Battle with the Israelis]. He put forward arguments similar to those of al-Hawali.11 The two lectures were widely distributed;12 a form of domestic pressure on the Saudi government to not participate in negotiations with Israel. On the eve of the Madrid conference, al-Oudah delivered another lecture on the same issue entitled Al-Tatbi‘ [Normalization – referring to normalizing or establishing a relationship with Israel]. In this lecture al-Oudah questioned the peace process and expanded on mechanisms of struggle which go beyond armed struggle and include various civil, civic, intellectual and scientific means. Al-Oudah also referred to the fact that the Muslim fuqaha [jurists] discussed the matter of a temporary armistice between two parties, but this is not the case in al-Tatbi‘ or the normalization of relationships with Israel. Al-Tatbi‘ is a comprehensive project that aims to empower the

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existence of Israel, to change the Arab and Islamic way of thinking towards accepting the existence of the State of Israel and to build Israeli military, economic and scientific hegemony in the region. The Madrid conference was, thus, in the long run, aimed at maintaining illegitimate Israeli goals.13 From the perspective of the leadership, keeping the Saudi Monarchy out of the US-oriented peace process was part of the demand for political reform, while the initiation of a relationship with Israel was seen as enhancing the Saudi–US alliance. In September 1993, tension between the leadership and the Monarchy grew further. The Minister of the Interior, Prince Naif, sent an official letter to Ibn Baz, criticizing tajawuzat [overstepping or exceeding the proper boundaries or limits/errors] in some of the lectures and lessons of al-Hawali and al-Oudah. The Monarchy requested Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama to consider these tajawuzat.14 On 3 Rabi‘ al-Thani 1414H (20 September 1993AD), Ibn Baz responded to Naif’s official letter. Certain aspects relating to the letter need to be noted: ●





First, the letter was used one year later, in September 1994, by the government to justify the arrest of the leadership. The letter was supposed to be a private letter but the government published it.15 Second, Ibn Baz, in the letter, used the terms tajawuzat and errors in different places, which left the impression that he used them as synonyms. Third, Ibn Baz’s letter did not clearly say that al-Hawali and al-Oudah had been making errors. The letter said that Council would consider the actions of al-Hawali and al-Oudah, in a Committee, in which these actions were ‘uridhat [presented by others] to the Council, and would consider other errors presented by the government: The Council of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama has seen your Highness’ letter and its attachments which consist of the summary of some lectures and lessons of al-Hawali and al-Oudah . . . and a copy of Safar al-Hawali’s book: Wa‘ad Kissenger [Kissinger’s Promise]. The Council discussed the matter from all its aspects. The Council has also listened to some of their recorded discourse . . .. The Council took a collective opinion to consider al-Hawali’s and al-Oudah’s errors, which were ‘uridhat [presented by others] to the Council and any other errors that can be presented by the government, through a committee formed by the government. Two of the ahlu al-‘ilm [‘ulama, people of Islamic sciences and knowledge], chosen by the Minister of Islamic Affairs, can be members of the committee. If they [al-Hawali and al-Oudah] make an apology about their tajawuzat, and oblige themselves not to repeat them, this will be a satisfactory end to the case. If they refuse, they should be stopped from giving lectures, seminars, khutab [sermons], public lessons and recording . . ..16

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In supposed accord with Ibn Baz’s letter, the Monarchy formed a Committee to meet al-Hawali and al-Oudah. In September 1993, al-Hawali and al-Oudah were ordered by the State to attend a meeting at the Ministry of the Interior. After the meeting with the Committee, al-Oudah travelled from Jeddah, where the meeting was held, to al-Taif to meet Ibn Baz and advise him of the meeting. Al-Oudah complained of the consequences and results of the Jeddah meeting, and about the improper usage of Ibn Baz’s letter.17 Ibn Baz was upset to hear of the misuse of his letter, and requested a report from al-Oudah about the meeting.18 Al-Oudah and al-Hawali subsequently wrote to Ibn Baz about the meeting:19 1 2 3

Al-Hawali and al-Oudah noted they were ordered to meet the Minister of the Interior, but he did not attend the meeting.20 They clarified that the deputy Minister had not given them a chance, during the meeting, to discuss the matter or to defend themselves. They reported on the contents of the deputy Minister’s papers, read by him to the meeting. The contents consisted of the ‘tajawuzat’ [overstepping or exceeding the proper boundaries or limits/errors] committed by al-Hawali and al-Oudah in their discourse: ‘The points, called tajawuzat, are divided into four parts’.

Al-Hawali and al-Oudah then turned to these alleged tajawuzat, and provided arguments and a defence to each part.21 ●







The first part referred to general matters, without specification, and al-Hawali and al-Oudah said these matters lacked proof. The second part referred to specific statements by the two scholars which the government considered as tajawuzat. Al-Hawali and al-Oudah rejected the government’s accusation. They clarified that these statements are juristically based, and they have the right to voice them as part of the Islamic faith. The third part referred to statements that were myths. Here, al-Hawali and al-Oudah complained of the distortion and misperception of their discourses. The fourth part referred to debatable issues. Here al-Hawali and al-Oudah expressed their willingness to revise and reconsider their opinions and to retreat from them if the government, or opponents, could prove these opinions wrong, in terms of violating the Qur’an and the Sunnah.

The two scholars clarified they had been advised by Ibn Baz to cooperate with the Committee and not to be difficult, but al-Hawali and al-Oudah again noted they were not given a chance to discuss issues, nor to defend themselves.

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In the fourth point of their report, al-Hawali and al-Oudah noted that the deputy Minister placed a ‘confession’, and a commitment, to be signed in front of them. The confession and commitment recorded certain government decisions that should be accepted by the two scholars. Decisions aimed to control and place comprehensive restrictions on the discourses and activities of the leadership. In the last part of their letter on the meeting with the Committee, al-Hawali and al-Oudah noted the difficult conditions they faced. They had been confronted with two choices, either to sign acceptance of the confession and commitment, or to sign that they rejected it. The two scholars refused to sign the confession and commitment. They justified their objection to signing on two grounds: first, in signing acceptance it meant they accepted all the false accusations, and denied the correct and true issues in the confession and commitment, and second, signing the rejection meant they challenged, or confronted, the government. They clarified that, at the meeting, they were not allowed any reservation or rectification. The two witnesses signed that they had listened to comments in the meeting. Then a governmental decision was taken to prevent al-Hawali and al-Oudah from voicing concerns: Hence, the deputy Minster went out and then came back to tell us that the Minister of Interior has prohibited us from giving lessons, lectures, and khutab [plural of khutbah, sermons] from this moment [the time of meeting]. Previous government preventive measures against the leadership were confirmed, carried out and extended. A series of preventive measures were taken against al-Hawali and al-Oudah. In the fifth, and last, point of their report, al-Hawali and al-Oudah concluded that they were facing oppression and considered the governmental preventive measures an irrational decision. An important point here is that al-Hawali and al-Oudah exonerated Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama from the preventive decisions taken against them. Within the circles of the leadership’s students, adherents and audiences, the period from September 1993 until September 1994 is called fatratu al-tawaquf [the halting, pause, standstill period] in referring to the official/governmental preventative measures taken against the leadership. Yet al-Hawali and al-Oudah countered the State’s preventive decision by practising their right to receive students and others at their majalis [plural of majlis, private male sitting rooms]. In their majalis they defiantly voiced their opinions. They also visited relatives and others in their localities, where people asked their opinion on different issues and they answered and gave their opinions. The leadership, at this time, produced important Islamic and political essays, and developed certain political positions towards regional events.

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The leadership undertook a leading role in countering Saudi foreign policy by responding, independently, to regional problems and events. For example, in December 1993, al-Hawali and al-Oudah issued a statement dealing with the Algerian problem.22 They called on the Islamic forces to solve their differences, to cooperate and to be united before challenges.23 After this statement, the leadership [along with almost 30 Saudi Sunni Islamic reformers, ‘ulama, such as Abdullah al-Jabrin, Abdullah al-Qu‘ud] issued a further statement appreciating the Algerian people’s desire for shari‘ah to be their governing law, and expressed their support to the Front Islamique du Salut (FIS). The statement then notes the consequences of the Algerian problem not being resolved,24 which would undermine and destroy Islamic political achievements. Muslims were called on to support the Algerian people in their difficult time, and the Algerian army and security forces were asked not to involve themselves in shedding the blood of their Algerian Muslim brothers.25 The leadership, along with other Saudi Sunni Islamic reformers, issued another statement about the events in Yemen, as a result of disputes between socialist southerners and the northern groupings in the civil war which broke out in the Summer of 1994. The statement condemned the socialist southerners for their record of action against Islam and Muslims in Yemen [the successive communist governments, which ruled south Yemen from 1967 until the emergence of the united Yemen in 1990].26 The statement denounced the southern attempt to break up the Union. The leadership’s policies towards Algeria and Yemen were significantly different from Saudi foreign policy, which backed the Algerian junta regime and supported the separatist southern Yemenis. After receiving students and other visitors during Sha‘ban 1414H (January–February 1994AD), al-Oudah produced a series of discourses entitled Ahadith al-Rabi‘ [Conversations in the Spring]. These were neither lectures nor lessons, but ‘conversations’ held over four nights. This was one of the final discourses by al-Oudah before he was imprisoned. His concern was more to communicate with people and converse with them, than to focus on Islamic scientific, juristic or political subjects. The core aim of al-Oudah’s Spring conversations was to counter certain problems within the Islamic movement. These conversations can be seen as forms of functional Islamic discourses, directed to Islamic circles and members at a critical time when the leadership was increasingly under State oppression. In the first meeting, the discussion was on the problem of taqlid [imitation], when someone implements or follows the opinion, interpretation, sayings or works of others without thinking, without searching the proofs or evidence, and without performing his own ijtihad [here it means independent juristic judgement]. Al-Oudah emphasized the necessity of independent thought. Thought, he said, is a function and not a representation. No one should be allowed to think on your behalf. In the second meeting, al-Oudah continued speaking about al-ijtihad. Al-ijtihad should be practised, he said, according to scholarly ability and

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knowledge. Encouraging people to search for juristic proof and evidence does not create chaos in jurisprudence. Al-Oudah brought up the problem of al-ta‘asub [bias] within Islamic circles and societies. He criticized the habit of siding with particular Islamic leaders and shaikhs, implementing their visions only and being intolerant towards other Islamic ijtihad or opinions. These Islamic leaders or shaikhs, he said, are human; they make errors, and only represent themselves. So, people should liberate themselves from intellectual oppression. They should be independent in their thought, creative, talented and free, developing their own line and practices to serve Islam. The problem, in this case, is blind submission to others. Nevertheless, it is not good to be stubborn, and always challenge others or oppose them. The important thing is to be able to discuss the substance with others, calling on them to think, meditate and contemplate. In an environment of competition, Islamic youth should become experts in their fields, qualified and professional. They should work towards attracting all humankind to Islam, being creative and finding new ways. In the third conversation, al-Oudah focused on questions put to him. In his answers, he talked about the meanings of al-wasatiyah [being in the middle] and al-taba‘iyah [subordination, dependency]. Al-wasatiyah is a form of self-control, being calm and wanting to know and examine the facts, and what is right. Al-taba‘iyah is a problem. People should not make taqlid of others, including themselves. He advised his visitors to think of what they had been told, and then decide what is right and wrong. In the fourth and last conversation, al-Oudah put forward a vision of the Islamic reformist work, focusing on certain issues. First, he said, the juristic Sunni Islamic method of solving differences is by giving advice, not through denunciation. Some people, he said, insulted others and used sarcasm towards their opponents instead of advising them. Second, the scope of Islamic reform should be global. Islamic groups, trends, associations and leaders should not fight each other, or compete in their domestic sphere and localities, as there are many opportunities in the world which need their voices and Islamic da‘wah’s efforts. This brings the need to develop the habit of making concessions to each other. Third, the problem of underdevelopment in all aspects of life is the most important problem in the Islamic world. The substance of this underdevelopment is our falling behind in understanding and implementing our religion, Islam. Fourth, there is the problem of being hasty and precipitate. Muslims often forget the process of time and stages. Muslims who have been defeated in one battle, should, however, be ready to immediately enter the following battle. Efforts should continually be exerted, but results might only come later. People come and go, generations live and die, including Prophet Muhammad and the Messengers, but Islam remains. So we should practise patience and accept partial successes.27 In September 1994, a few days before being arrested, and at a time when State security activities were increasing in al-Oudah’s locality, and around his house in particular, al-Oudah gave a significant valedictory lecture: ‘Risalah

124 The Monarchy and support min wara’ al-Qudhban’ [Letter from Behind Bars] in his home city of Buraydah. Al-Oudah’s letter was essentially a final essay before imprisonment, and should be seen, the author argues, as a historical mudafa‘a summarizing the elements of the struggle for political change and reform. Al-Oudah defended his position as a Sunni Islamic reformer seeking political change and reform through civic and civil struggle, not only in Saudi Arabia, but also in the Islamic world. Hence he condemned and criticized the unjust governmental treatment he and his colleagues had been facing, pointed out the elements of comprehensive corruption that the country was suffering, and demanded al-huquq al-shar‘iyah be given to the people. The letter contains various elements: political critique, political resistance, understanding of difficulties on the road of reform, and a global Islamic vision. Al-Oudah’s sad, but resisting, voice came through:28 All praises are due to Allah. We praise Him, and seek His Assistance, and ask for His forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah from the evil in our souls and from our sinful deeds. Whoever Allah guides, no one can deceive, and whomever Allah misguides, no one can guide. I bear witness that there is no one worthy of worship except Allah (SWT). And I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and messenger. Al-Oudah gave his valedictory lecture the title of ‘Letter from Behind Bars’ which indicates his expectation of imprisonment. He told the vast audience that attended the lecture that al-Hawali had been arrested,29 and he would soon join him. He felt responsibility towards his colleagues who had been imprisoned, and even hoped to be imprisoned instead of them. Al-Oudah pointed out restrictive measures the leadership had been facing since September 1993. He, again, condemned these measures and described them as illegal, and focused on the problem of corruption which needed to be solved, not only in theoretical terms but also through action. Influential or ruling institutions are responsible for this corruption, he said. The struggle between reform and corruption is everlasting, so reformers have to be loyal to their principles; enduring hardship is part of the reformist mission and proof of this loyalty. Al-Oudah drew attention to the problem of cheating and deception. These are illegal and destructive either as a single act by an individual or as a larger act practised by an institution or authority. He underlined the importance of speaking out, and demanded, clearly and directly, his right to voice his opinion. He also mentioned the issue of reform which needed to be comprehensively introduced in the country. Al-Oudah linked domestic and regional affairs. In this case, reform is needed to face other forms of external corruption which aim to subject the nation to external hegemony and invasion. Yet the government prevented reformers from pointing out, or facing, this external threat and applying domestic change and reform. Applying social justice is a core principle in

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shari’ah, and he emphasized this subject and the issue of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah. Al-Oudah raised the necessity of publicly demanding reform; not to seek rewards from the State but to bring change and reform, and he denounced the oppression of many intellectuals. He again pointed out the subject of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah. The right of expression is established in Islam. The Prophet exercised consultation in various matters. So, Islam is not only a matter of performing prayer in the mosque but also a law that governs the whole life, including State policies. Al-Oudah strongly emphasized the necessity of introducing political change and reform. In the 1990s, the world had moved towards introducing and establishing more political participation than before, and global dictatorships, such as the former Soviet Union, had collapsed. So, Muslims also have the right to introduce changes and reforms, to establish political consultative systems, and to benefit from these global political consequences. He then focused on the consequence of al-Hawali and himself being called by the government, in September 1993, to a meeting at the Ministry of Interior. Al-Oudah informed the audience of the substance of that meeting, and said he and al-Hawali had been questioned about their political opinions and beliefs. Al-Oudah noted that the Islamic da‘iyah [caller] or a Muslim activist is subject to a series of accusations, such as seeking power, which lack proof. Yet historically, oppressors had the habit of accusing reformers of seeking power. Al-Oudah emphasized the necessity of forming internal, domestic and societal dialogue, and noted that it would not make sense to have a dialogue with distant parties, when our society is not able to discuss its own problems and consequences with its own people. He clarified that prison should not be the end of the reformist mission. Prison might become a means towards empowering reformist motivation and abilities. It becomes important then to have more reformers to carry out the reformist mission and continue struggling for change and reform. Al-Oudah concluded that it is necessary to stand with Islamic causes globally. The focus on bringing local reforms should not undermine the importance of seeking external reforms and providing assistance to the Muslim masses in need: We believe that part of our responsibility is to address the important issues that concern our ummah from the east to the west. We have to stand beside our fellow Muslims when disasters and hardships befall them . . . We have to inform other Muslims about their brothers’ problems . . . We must work hard to revive the notion of brotherhood among Muslims and try to make the necessary correction to various matters in their thoughts and lives. Hence, our objective includes helping Islamic associations with everything we have at our disposal, including spiritual, political and economic support. We live now with our fellow Muslims in

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The Monarchy and support Bosnia, Somalia, Tajikistan, Egypt, Syria, Palestine . . . We live with them moment-by-moment and hour-by-hour. We consider this to be part of our responsibility. Therefore, it is a betrayal on our part to neglect our fellow Muslims and leave them as easy targets for their enemies. If we cannot give them a hand, we should at least shed some light on their situation and expose it to the public. We can say a good word about them, which may ease their pain and comfort their feelings. We can make them feel there are brothers out there who are listening to their cries and are very saddened and hurt because of their suffering . . . . So the issue we are addressing is not a local one. In fact, it has no boundaries because it is an issue that concerns all Muslims, whether they are in China, India, Kashmir, Bangladesh, Kurdistan, Iraq, Turkey, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Palestine, Europe, America, Russia or any other place on earth. Allah (SWT) says: ‘The believing men and women are the protectors of each other, they enjoin good and forbid evil, and hold their prayers, pay their zakat and obey Allah and his Prophet; those are the blessed ones.’30

In September 1994, the government tightened its restriction on the leadership and certain other Sunni Islamic reformers. Al-Hawali was going to the Holy City of Makkah for his ‘umrah [minor pilgrimage] when the security forces called him for investigation. The security authorities requested that he stop speaking at any time or place about any subject. But this was not, as yet, long-term arrest, as al-Hawali was released. The news of the arrest of al-Hawali began to spread. In al-Qassim, the home of al-Oudah, the situation was tense. Al-Oudah was again called to al-imarah [the governing administration] to sign a statement that he would commit himself not to speak out, give lectures or give fatawa. Al-Oudah refused. He considered the State’s request a humiliation of his personality and dignity, and interference in his private life, given that his lectures and speeches had been delivered from his home. Al-Oudah told the Deputy of al-imarah: ‘You have three choices: (1) to give me freedom of da‘wah or (2) let me go outside the country or (3) put me in prison’.31 When al-Oudah returned home he found 7,000 supporters around his home. Near the neighbouring mosque, his adherents and other reformers started delivering speeches to support al-Oudah. Al-Oudah made a speech about the tajawuzat [overstepping or exceeding the proper boundaries or limits/errors] of the regime, the difficulties which had been facing the reformers, the Islamic da‘wah, economic corruption32 and State harassment against him. At 6.00 a.m. on Tuesday 13 September 1994, some 1,000 security force personnel surrounded the area where al-Oudah lived, and the shaikh was arrested.33 In the afternoon of the same day, vast numbers of people demonstrated against the arrest, and marched towards imarah al-Qassim [the governing administration of al-Qassim] demanding the release of al-Oudah. The security forces intervened and used force against the

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demonstrators.34 In the evening of the same day, thousands of people gathered around his home, delivering speeches and protesting against the arrest. Shaikh Abd al-Rahman al-‘Ajlan, President of the Courts of al-Qassim, and one of the senior ‘ulama, intervened and requested the people to be calm, promising to mediate with the authority to release al-Oudah.35 On Wednesday 14 September, in the north of Riyadh, adherents gathered in a manifestation of support for al-Oudah’s cause. Security forces intervened and arrested about 30 people. That evening various other people were arrested, including Shaikh Ibrahim al-Dubayan, who had already been dismissed from his work and prevented from giving the khutbah; Khalid al-Qafari, the private secretary of al-Oudah; Khalid al-Darwish, Professor at King Sa‘ud University; and Shaikh Sultan al-Khamis, Professor at King Sa‘ud University. Also, on 14 September, a group was arrested in al-Qassim, including Shaikh Sulayman al-Rushudi, a lawyer and one of the founding members of CDLR.36 On Friday 16 September, the security forces arrested al-Hawali in Makkah.37 Al-Hawali insisted the security team who came to his home to arrest him should have dinner with him. They accepted his invitation and then took him to prison.38 Two weeks later, on Sunday 2 October 1994, al-Omar was arrested.39 Other arrested at this time were Shaikh Muhammad al-Faraj, a khatib [preacher] from Riyadh; Shaikh Abdullah al-Jalali, senior ‘alim from al-Qassim and Shaikh Humud al-Harbi, a khatib from al-Qassim.40 Shaikh Humud al-Harbi was arrested because of his protest against the series of arrests. The total number of people arrested was between 400 and 500. This was the largest series of arrests since 1400H/1980AD, after the incident at the Mosque in Makkah.41 The number of arrested people, in September–October 1994, according to Amnesty International, was only 100 to 150 persons.42 The author, during September–October 1994, observed the news of the arrest which spread in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf region and to some Western media. Yet the government officially denied the arrest. On the first page of the Saudi Arab News, one reads: The Deputy Interior Minister Prince Ahmad denied Western media reports that the government had arrested some Saudi citizens. ‘These false reports which come from certain quarters have ulterior motives and people are fed up with such unfounded reports,’ he said. Prince Ahmad said Saudi Arabia is an open country and the people know what is happening in the Kingdom.43 Nevertheless, just two days after its denial of the arrests, the government admitted, and officially declared, the arrests on 27 September 1994. The Ministry of Interior declared in public, through the media, the arrest of al-Hawali and al-Oudah, with the main headline of the official Saudi newspaper, Arab News, ‘110 held in Kingdom for disruptive acts’.44

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The Ministry of Interior’s statement relied on Sunni Islamic legitimacy to justify the arrests. The Ministry of Interior started its statement by saying that the arrest of these people was because of their violations of the decisions of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama. By using the name of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, the Ministry tried to legitimize its decision to arrest on an official Sunni Islamic basis, which looked as if the Ministry was the instrument of the Council of the Senior ‘Ulama: The Interior Ministry announced today that its security officers had detained 110 persons for violating the decisions of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama and committing disruptive acts . . . The statement singled out the leadership by name. It accused al-Hawali and al-Oudah of committing violations and described their activities as perfidious. Then the statement mentions the consequence of events in September 1993 when the Ministry of Interior sent a letter of complaint to Ibn Baz about the discourses and activities of the leadership.45 The statement also described the activities of al-Hawali and al-Oudah as anti-government and against Islam. Here, the statement referred, again, to the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama. The Ministry tried to emphasize the legitimacy of its decision by clarifying to the public that the Ministry had been communicating with the Council before the arrest: The Ministry . . . detained only those who repeated the violations or played a leading role in the perfidious activities and took an adamant stand on their actions. The detainees included Salman Ibn Fahd al-Oudah and Safar Ibn Abd al-Rahman al-Hawali, who had committed several violations that prompted the government to assign Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama to study their excesses . . . The anti-government activities of al-Oudah and al-Hawali were against the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah . . . The statement mentioned the Ministry’s intention to investigate the activities of the leadership, accused of aiming to create disorder in the country: The persons who played a leading role in this disruptive act will be singled out to expose their plan aimed at creating chaos and confusion . . . The statement repeated its references to Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, seen as a continued attempt to structure Sunni Islamic legitimacy in its decision. Here, the reference was, in particular, to the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s meeting of September 1993 to discuss the matter of al-Hawali and al-Oudah,46 and to Ibn Baz’s letter sent to Prince Naif about the meeting.47 Misuse can be seen in the Ministry of Interior’s treatment of Ibn Baz’s letter, when the Ministry stated: The Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama studied violations committed by al-Oudah and al-Hawali, during its meeting held in Taif in [September 1993] and

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suggested Saudi society should be protected from their wrongdoing. The Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama found that the two persons had exceeded the limits in some of their speeches and classes. The Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama suggested the two should present themselves before a panel, including two Islamic scholars, apologize for their violations and give an undertaking that they would not repeat the same. It had also suggested that both should be banned from lectures, seminars, Friday sermons and public classes and recordings if they failed to give this undertaking. The Ministry of Interior stated that ‘the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama found that the two persons had exceeded the limits in some of their speeches and classes’. Difficult to be seen as either a statement, or a conclusion, in the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s letter which stated: The Council saw the Minister’s letter and its attachments which consist of the summary of some lectures and lessons of al-Hawali and al-Oudah . . . and a copy of Safar al-Hawali’s book: Wa‘ad Kissenger [Kissinger’s Promise]. The Council also discussed the matter from all angles, and listened to some of their recorded discourse . . . The Council took the collective opinion to consider al-Hawali and al-Oudah’s errors, which were ‘uridhat [presented by others] to the Council and any other errors that could be presented by the government through a committee . . . The Ministry of Interior’s statement that ‘the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama found that the two persons had exceeded the limits in some of their speeches and classes’ implies that Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama had already reached a final conclusion, or decision, that al-Hawali and al-Oudah had exceeded the limits in some of their speeches and classes. Ibn Baz’s letter did not contain a statement that the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama found the two persons had exceeded the limits in some of their speeches and classes. The Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama’s meeting did not discuss the errors as such, which had supposedly been committed by al-Hawali and al-Oudah, according to the Ministry’s statement. Ibn Baz’s letter stated that the meeting discussed the matter from all angles . . .. The letter said, also, that the Council would consider al-Hawali and al-Oudah’s errors, which were presented to the Council or are going to be presented by the government,48 through a committee.49 Clearly, Ibn Baz’s letter did not point out errors, and did not say that it found the errors or violations claimed by the Ministry of Interior’s statement. So, the Ministry’s statement, that Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama had found the two persons had exceeded boundaries in some of their speeches and classes, was questionable. Al-Oudah mentioned, to the author, the government’s use of Ibn Baz’s letter of September 1993 to justify his arrest and the arrest of other reformers in September–October 1994.50 The possible misuse of the letter is highlighted by the fact that the government was not able to get Ibn Baz or Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama to issue a new statement to justify the government’s campaigns of

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arrests in September–October 1994. The government thus found itself forced to use the one-year-old letter of Ibn Baz, which dealt with different matters, and was supposed to be a private letter, as justification for the arrests. It is clear the government used Ibn Baz’s letter for different circumstances, and a different purpose. On 2 October 1994, in an interview with the BBC, Prince Bandar Ibn Sultan, the Saudi Ambassador to the United States, referred to the consequence of the arrests in which he said that ‘these people use Islam as a cover and we had to refer their cases to the Islamic authorities’, and also said ‘The cases have been subjected to long deliberations by Islamic scholars and as many as 20 judges have passed their verdicts on them.’51 He added, ‘The detained individuals received support from extremists abroad who use Islam as a cover’.52 On 16 October 1994, the Saudi government announced that ‘it had released 130 people, arrested last month [September] for attempting to disrupt the country’s security . . . ’. Yet ‘the Interior Ministry said it was still holding 27 detainees for further interrogation, adding that some of them had played leading roles in inciting trouble and sowing dissention in the Kingdom. These people are still under investigation and their case will be decided when investigations are completed’. The Interior Ministry also said ‘it had arrested an additional 47 people after the original detainees identified them during interrogation’.53 On Sunday 30 October 1994, King Fahd spoke directly about the arrest.54 He gave a Sunni Islamic juristic foundation to the act of arrest by referring to Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama. He said the government had arrested some citizens because they had defied the orders of the Council, and stated the government was willing to let citizens voice their concerns. He rejected the idea that the Saudi government had been oppressive, emphasizing the Sunni Islamic legitimacy of the State, and defended the government. The King then referred to investigations in prison and confirmed the investigations would be fair. The arrests of al-Hawali and al-Oudah became part of Amnesty International’s records. Amnesty International noted the Ministry of Interior’s statement about the case: Security forces have arrested [Them] . . . after about one year of attempts to convince [Them] . . . to repent of their extremist ideas . . . which threaten the unity of the Islamic society in the Kingdom, or to stop giving such speeches, holding conferences and distributing tapes . . . 55 The arrest of the leadership gave rise to a domestic protest. Forty of the talabatu al-‘ilm [students of Islamic sciences], and academics, many with PhD degrees from Saudi Arabia and the West,56 presented a letter to Ibn Baz and the Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, in which they protested the arrest of al-Hawali and al-Oudah, and demanded their release.57 The signatories justified the demands for comprehensive reform as a legitimate and religious duty.

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They insisted that al-Hawali and al-Oudah were distinguished ‘ulama who should not be treated in an oppressive way, and that tyrannical acts would not solve problems. They said what had been happening in Saudi Arabia [the arrests] brought to mind similar acts occurring under oppressive neighbouring governments. Those oppressive policies had brought turmoil and destruction to their societies. To support their demand for the release of al-Hawali and al-Oudah from prison, the signatories advanced the following arguments: ● ●

● ●







It is unlawful to enforce or oblige an ‘alim to conceal his knowledge. It is unlawful for an ‘alim or ruler to enforce or oblige people to follow his opinion in al-ahkam al-kuliyah [general judgements/legal opinions], and unlawful to punish the ‘alim, even if mistaken, by jail or by any other means. It is necessary to start reform in the interests of the nation. The mission of the ‘ulama is to educate people about Islam, so the ‘ulama’s rights should be maintained, defended and their scholarly duty protected. The arrested ‘ulama should be given a fair trial, and reports on the ‘ulama, by majruhu al-‘adalah wa al-ma‘rifah al-shar‘iyah [people unqualified in juristic and scholarly Sunni Islamic knowledge], should not have credibility. The ‘ulama have the right to defend themselves, and to refute charges against them. It is a duty to allow ‘ulama who have been accused to clarify their positions and their ijtihad [interpretations, exercising juristic judgement] in public, and debate, discuss and defend themselves against those who charged them.58

The leadership was in prison for five years. In the first four months after the arrest, the leadership was subject to extensive security investigations.59 The government announced it would reveal the result of the investigations to the public, but never did.60 The non-publication of the result of the investigations indicates the government was not able to prove the leadership guilty.61 While the leadership was in prison, the security authority interviewed other prisoners,62 and found information, by chance, that al-Hawali had played an important role in countering violent acts planned against State officials. Those prisoners, who can be seen as a third party,63 revealed information to the security authority that planners or young people, sometime between 1990 and 1994, visited al-Hawali and asked him to issue a fatwa legitimizing their plan, which he refused and he had convinced them to cancel the plan.64 Security measures in prison were gradually relaxed. As a result, al-Oudah, for example, could buy books and start building his prison library.65 In prison, al-Hawali developed his English,66 and al-Oudah continued

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memorizing the Qur’an.67 On the other hand, while al-Oudah was in prison, his son, Abd al-Rahman, died in an accident. Al-Oudah requested permission to attend the funeral of his son but his request was denied.68 On this incident, al-Oudah composed an elegiac poem, widely distributed among students, adherents and audiences.69 During their imprisonment, the three scholars held various meetings and discussions on their Islamic activities. They decided when they were released from prison, to develop the strategy of infitah [opening up; involvement] towards various sectors in the State and society.70 A few months before being released from prison, the leadership received from the government an official letter, which asked them to write down their conditions or demands for being released. The three shaikhs demanded freedom of expression.71 In June 1999, the leadership was released from prison without charge72 or trial.73 Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar were taken by aeroplane, from prison to Jeddah, to meet the Minister of the Interior. The meeting held was probably seen as mujamalah [a comity or courtesy call],74 and the Minister requested the start of a new and positive era in the relationship between the two sides: the three shaikhs and the Monarchy. The underlying message was that the past should be forgotten.75 Some sources revealed that Crown Prince Abdullah also met the leadership. These remarks are seen as positive signs that a new relationship between the leadership and the Monarchy could develop.

Support, recognition and scholarly endorsements During their political struggle, the three scholars received important scholarly support, recognition and endorsement, indicating their struggle was within a recognized Sunni Islamic context. In 1991, Ibn Baz sent an official letter to al-Oudah, requesting al-Oudah continue his Islamic da‘wah activities with patience. Ibn Baz told al-Oudah he would assist him, to the extent of solving difficulties that al-Oudah might face with the government in this matter.76 In 1992, Ibn Baz allowed al-Oudah to publish Ibn Baz’s book about ‘aqidah.77 Ibn Baz’s allowing al-Oudah to publish this book was a sign, the author argues, of Ibn Baz’s trust in al-Oudah. Ibn Baz also issued, in 1992, a letter endorsing al-Oudah’s book Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences],78 and encouraged talabatu al-‘ilm [students of Islamic sciences] to read the book.79 Another important scholarly achievement by al-Oudah was obtaining ijazah [juristic scholarly Sunni Islamic permission and recognition given by a higher religious status or authority] from the senior ‘alim Shaikh Humud al-Tuwijri. This ijazah is comprehensive and consists of 53 pages.80 It is an important ijazah which links al-Oudah through isnad [plural asanid, ascription (of an Islamic tradition), (uninterrupted) chain of authorities on which a tradition is based] to Ibn Taymiyyah. Ibn Baz also formed a scholarly cooperation with al-Hawali. In 1992, Ibn Baz expressed appreciation, through an official letter, of al-Hawali’s scholarly

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efforts when the latter was Head of the Department of al-‘aqidah at the Islamic University of Umm al-Qura.81 In 1994, he sent an official letter to al-Hawali requesting the latter undertake certain theological research.82 In particular, Ibn Baz requested al-Hawali do a juristic investigation into the accuracy and validity, on a juristic Sunni Islamic basis, of certain published books and studies83 which were forwarded by Ibn Baz to al-Hawali. Ibn Baz issued a fatwa (10-4-1414H/27-9-1993AD),84 which allowed people to listen to the discourses of the leadership. His fatwa came in answer to a question. He was asked is it allowed to listen to the recorded lectures, khutab [sermons], and to read books of Islamic du‘ah and ‘ulama such as Shaikhs Salman al-Oudah, Safar al-Hawali, Nassir al-Omar, ‘Ayidh al-Qarni and Abd al-Wahhab al-Turiri; are they mubtadi‘ah [to bring innovation or heresy in religion] . . . non-Sunni, and khawarij85 and is ghibah [defamation] of them allowed? Ibn Baz answered their recorded cassettes are useful; they are not mubtadi‘ah, or khawarij. It is not allowed to slander them. On the contrary, they should be defended like any ahlu ‘ilm [‘ulama, people of Islamic sciences and knowledge] of ahlu al-Sunnah wa al-Jama‘ah [people of Sunnah and community]. No one is infallible as each does right and wrong . . . ’86 Abdullah al-Jabrin [member of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama] endorsed al-Oudah in 1993, stating: I have known my brother Shaikh Salman al-Oudah for the last few years. I have sat with him many times. I have read some of his books, attended some of his lectures and lessons, and listened to many of his cassettes. Thus I can say that he has a wide and deep knowledge in Shari‘ah and Sunnah . . . His words influence people and Muslims like him . . . His discourses are useful. We know that he has obliged himself to the method of ahlu al-Sunnah wa al-Jama‘ah [people of Sunnah and community] . . . 87 After the arrest of the leadership, Ibn Baz confirmed his previous fatwa through a recorded lecture. He was asked whether he still maintained his previous fatwa or whether he had retreated from it. He answered that he maintained his fatwa, insisting that the imprisonment of al-Hawali and al-Oudah did not undermine their scholarly Sunni Islamic status or legitimacy. For example, he said, Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal and Prophet Yusuf were imprisoned, yet they were great people and honourable.88 Muhammad al-Mansoor (senior ‘alim from al-Qassim; who taught al-Oudah) also endorsed al-Hawali and al-Oudah. Asked about the accuracy of the media

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labelling al-Hawali and al-Oudah as khawarij seeking fitnah [disorder], his endorsement referred to other senior ‘alim’s endorsements of the leadership: The two Shaikhs are respected du‘ah and good ‘ulama. Their ‘aqidah [belief ] is salimah [valid and accurate], they have not been seeking khuruj [revolt], and they have been courageous in their da‘wah and honest . . . al-Hawali has a solid ‘aqidah and wrote books in this field . . . Shaikh Salih al-Fuzan [member of the Council of the Senior ‘Ulama]89 said that ‘al-Hawali’s sayings90 about ‘aqidah are better than ours and he raised matters that we did not raise’91 . . . I taught Salman al-Oudah for a long time and I know him as brave in seeking to serve his religion, and honest . . . In dealing with the media and press, I have disagreed with the sayings against the two Shaikhs . . . 92 After prison, al-Oudah obtained two important ijazah [juristic scholarly Sunni Islamic permission and recognition]. The first ijazah was from the Grand Mufti of Yemen, Ahmad Zabarah,93 and the second from Shaikh Ahmad Klibati. The latter taught al-Oudah the hadith when the latter was studying for his Master’s degree at university.94

Summary The preceding three chapters, together with this chapter provide an examination of the development of the leadership through the 1980s and 1990s. The discourses and actions of the leadership manifest a policy of al-mudafa‘a [countering] and highlights the question of political change and reform. Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar countered the thought and politics of the Saudi Monarchy, and the case for political change and reform was constructed. The leadership’s interactions with domestic, regional and international politics uncovered the variations in the policy of countering and the components of the programme for political change and reform. The leadership publicly opposed certain governmental policies and played leading, politically active, roles in creating the atmosphere to address the question of political change and reform. This countering policy brought the leadership into increasing confrontation with the Monarchy, and they were thus imprisoned from 1994 until 1999. From August 1990 to September 1994, the three scholars moved the level of mudafa‘a towards an opposition policy. The question of political change and reform was of central concern, and the way to make progress was by addressing the question in public. The leadership asserted an important principle in fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]; the right of the ‘ulama and talabatu al-‘ilm [students of shari‘ah]95 to influence State domestic and foreign policies. The leadership addressed this issue in its discourse and in

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multiple other discourses, such as the two reformist petitions of 1991 and 1992, in which the leadership shared with other Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist forces its struggle for political change and reform. The domestic Sunni Islamic reformist alliance, with the three scholars playing an important part, further entrenched the countering policy of the leadership. A core qasd [aim] of the performance and the discourse of the leadership was to see the Saudi Monarchy as a constitutional Sunni Islamic Monarchy or fully imamah shar‘iyah [legitimate Sunni Islamic State]. Establishing the imamah shar‘iyah is an important element in fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] in general, and maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] in particular, and forming an Islamic political authority is a dharurah diniyah [religious necessity] as held by Imam al-Shatibi.96 Da‘wah al-mashayikh97 [the reformist leadership’s programme] has certain main features: ●





● ●







Al-shumuliyah which directs that change and reform should include all aspects of life, including State and society. Al-tawazun which indicates a gradual, step-by-step, process towards change and reform. Al-waqi‘iyah referring to the acceptance of reality and not being possessed by an idealistic vision, while striving for change and reform. Al-jama‘iyah; team-work and a collective effort. Tanzim [system], which refers to organized Islamic work, and not to hizbi [partisan, partial] work which might create a biased attitude. Fiqh al-waqi‘ providing the basis for a discussion of politics in terms of fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]. Al-‘alamiyah [globalization] with emphasis on understanding global politics and its influence on domestic politics, and emphasizing that Islam is both local and global. Maintaining a legitimate and suitable base to spread the reformist message.98 Obstacles the leadership face are found in six areas:









The Monarchy either misunderstands the leadership’s vision or does not wish to understand their reformist demands. The Monarchy’s international relations, commitments and linkages might have played a role in the Monarchy misunderstanding da‘wah al-mashayikh. The al-mala’ [inner circle of a ruling elite], referring to the inner circle of the Monarchy, opposed the leadership. Societal aspects have been influential with many people, and their interests, linked to the political system, make people reluctant to agitate for change and reform.

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The Monarchy and support Internal aspects have been influential, which includes the shabab al-sahwa [Islamic younger generation] who need to deepen their knowledge and experience towards change and reform. Other obstacles, seen in people who spread propaganda against da‘wah al-mashayikh and confront the leadership.99

The societal aspects are important because they focus on State–society linkages which can be obstacles to change and reform. People are more likely to identify their interests with the government than with reformist forces, in this case the reformist leadership. The construction of knowledge in the shabab al-sahwa [Islamic younger generation], is important because it highlights that the younger generation has not yet understood the requirements, knowledge or activities, for political change and reform. While struggling for political change and reform, the leadership obtained wide support, and scholarly recognition and endorsements. This emphasizes the juristic scholarly Sunni Islamic origins and status of the leadership. Maintaining this scholarly realm and support was an important political gain. Through the 1990s, the policy of countering advanced. The leadership extensively interacted with, and responded to, external and domestic events and players, and took their own political position. For the first time in Saudi contemporary history, the new generation of ‘ulama was able to directly oppose elements in the Saudi foreign policy and to question its direction. The leadership became involved with the wider Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist movement in demanding political change and reform through two reformist petitions in 1991 and 1992. The question of political change and reform had become open and direct. The leadership responded to various events and consequences: the collapse of the Communist block (1989–1991), the Afghanistan issue (1989–1994), the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990, the dramatic events in Algeria (1991–1993), the Madrid conference on the peace process between Israel and Arab governments (1992) and the Yemeni civil war (1994). This led the leadership into confrontation with the Monarchy and other domestic challenges. In 1993, the three scholars were dismissed from their academic positions, and were prevented from carrying out public lectures. Opportunities for expression of their beliefs were reduced. Nevertheless, to counter the State’s restriction policy, the leadership developed other means and opportunities, such as using majalis [private male sitting rooms], and issuing statements through leaflets. In September 1994 the government took the decision to imprison al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, and they spent the next five years in prison. In June 1999 they were released.

10 Appeasement

Background This chapter focuses on aspects of the leadership’s appeasement policy in the post-prison era. The appeasement policy, the second dimension of al-mudafa‘a, indicates a gradual reduction of confrontation, conflict and tension with the Monarchy. Since their release from prison in June 1999, the three scholars have been changing their mudafa‘a from an opposition policy, involving a high-risk political struggle as illustrated in earlier chapters, towards an appeasement policy, indicating a lower-risk political struggle. This does not mean political change and reform has become unimportant. The quest remains important, but the way to achieve this has changed. The leadership has reduced its focus on the quest for direct political change and reform, and the quest has become general and more indirect, and is embedded and implemented in new discourses by the leadership. This confirms and implements new priorities on the political agenda of the leadership, and reflects new political directions that underpin the appeasement policy towards the Monarchy. The elucidation of the appeasement policy merely reflects a fiqh al-muwazanat [jurisprudence of balances]. The leadership has balanced various masalih [interests, benefits, advantages] to choose the most beneficial, various mafasid [corruptions] to confront the most harmful and between masalih and mafasid to obtain maslahah [interest, benefit, advantage], and to avoid mafsadah [corruption, harm, disadvantage] or to endure or tolerate some mafsid to obtain important masalih. As a result, the juristic calculation of fiqh al-muwazanat has led to the fiqh al-awlawiyat [jurisprudence of priorities] where the leadership has given priority to certain factors. The author explores the logic behind the change to an appeasement policy and seeks answers to questions such as: ‘What are the reasons for the leadership deciding to adopt and develop this appeasement policy? Has the opposition policy been completely discarded, or is it functioning differently?’ In the following analysis, five aspects – all involving the central

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logic behind the appeasement policy towards the Monarchy – need to be borne in mind: 1

2

3

4

The first stems from the leadership giving less attention to the political factor and focusing on other factors, such as societal and educational factors. The leadership has developed a philosophy that justifies the relaxation of the call for political change and reform, which is no longer at the top of its reform agenda. This philosophy interprets ‘victory’ more widely than before, and goes beyond demands for political change and reform. The second relates to positive elements in some Monarchical policies towards the leadership since June 1999. The Monarchy is changing its negative attitude of the 1990s, when the leadership was described in the State media and official statements as posing a threat to State security. This perception of threat has disappeared from the State agenda, and the Monarchy has gradually started lifting measures, designed in the 1990s, to control the leadership. The third is the expansion of opportunities where the Islamic da‘wah can be promoted. In attempting to bring about change and reform in society and politics, the leadership has more to gain by concentrating on new opportunities and not directly confronting the government. The leadership is gradually returning to the public arena, and they have started giving public lectures and lessons, and conducting lectures and discourses over the Internet. Al-Oudah has been able to travel in the region, and has visited Kuwait and Bahrain to deliver lectures and lessons. The leadership is thus able to concentrate on society in applying its reformist vision. The social, normative and ethical dimensions are important in the reformist agenda of the leadership who are concentrating on enhancing functional and professional aspects of the Islamic reformist movement and da‘wah in local society and in the Islamic ummah. The fourth relates to the external environment, with the leadership focusing more on external political factors. Since June 1999 the leadership has been extensively interacting with important international and regional political developments. Among the latter have been the second Palestinian intifadha [uprising], developing since September 2000; the US policy in the Middle East in the light of the events of September 11; the related consequence of the crisis in the Saudi–US relationship; the US invasion of Iraq in March 2003 and the subsequent occupation of Iraq. These issues, and their impact, have taken an important place in new discourses by the leadership, indicating their exigent character in the political agenda of the leadership. The leadership is more likely to be motivated by the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] than before. The essence of this theory is to protect and maintain al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and posterity. The three scholars are concerned about stability in the

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Middle East, human suffering in Palestine, the war in Iraq and the potential negative impact of all these on Saudi society. The leadership sees itself as using juristic Sunni Islamic language and the language of international law to counter militant, chaotic and violent consequences in the region, and is concerned to maintain civil order in domestic society and the whole Middle East region. The fifth is derived from the leadership giving important attention to the domestic security factor, and focusing on policies that can counter domestic violence in the light of increasing regional violence and in the light of the Riyadh bombings on 13 May 2003. At the Saudi domestic level, the leadership has also countered militant tendencies that have recently emerged. As a result, on the political agenda of the leadership, the question of societal security has taken an important place.

These five aspects have a mutually complementary role in the rationale and logic behind the appeasement policy towards the Monarchy. The opposition policy is maintained when it relates to certain clearly threatening elements, but direct conflict with the government on issues of political change and reform is not deemed a suitable policy, although the question can be indirectly raised. The author argues here that the leadership has asserted and maintained its appeasement policy towards the Monarchy.

The changed strategy: playing down the political factor In the changed strategy, the leadership has played down the political factor and built a philosophy that sees the political factor as less important. The leadership can therefore direct its mission in other directions where change and reform can be applied or promoted. This philosophy is important in clarifying the meaning of victory. After prison, al-Omar delivered an important lecture, Al-Fajru al-Sadiq [The True Dawn] which argues that ordeals and adversities should be seen as normal on the road to change and reform. Optimism should thus be built and processed, with Islamic victory seen in various dimensions. Today, al-Omar says, there are increasing numbers of students applying to Shari‘ah colleges, and increasing numbers in ‘circles’ memorizing the Qur’an, with 200 circles attended by 40,000 women in the city of Riyadh alone. In another school of memorization of the Qur’an, the number has reached 100,000 men.1 Al-Omar reproduced and revised a lecture on the meaning of victory, delivered before prison, for application in the post-prison era. His first lecture on Haqiqatu al-Intisar [The Essence of Victory] was delivered on the eve of the Monarch’s decision to prevent al-Hawali and al-Oudah from speaking in September 1993. The Monarch’s decision gave the impression, and expectation at that time, that the two scholars were going to face serious punishment, so the underlying message of al-Omar to his colleagues, al-Hawali and

140 Appeasement al-Oudah, was that the imprisonment should neither be the end of the reformist mission nor the end of the reformers. His key idea is that the substance of triumph is relative and the reformer should seek other opportunities to promote change and reform. Focusing only on the political realm to bring change and reform should not be the only solution.2 In the light of al-Omar’s explanation of victory, the leadership’s political discourses of the 1980s and 1990s, per se, are seen as achieving political gain. This discourse is a manifestation of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] and fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]. In this matter, the leadership is attempting to prevent vice by word of mouth, seen as an important form of jihad. Based on fiqh al-istita‘a [jurisprudence of the ability, to be able], explained by al-Oudah, it is unnecessary to continue insisting on, and demanding, political change and reform as the reformer can carry out other Islamic reformist duties rather than directly demanding political change and reform. The question of political change and reform remains vital, but has been turned into an indirect concern and is embedded in new discourses. Here the leadership sees its struggle for political change and reform as a continuing process, and more than one battle, to change the course of events, might be needed to meet the demands of a new era. Al-Omar widens the battlefield, stretches the period of battle, and makes each battle a round in the continuing struggle. He calms the intensity of the political struggle and the insistence on immediate political change and reform. In the light of this broad definition of victory, it was to be expected that the leadership would reduce the level of tension and confrontation with the Monarchy.

Positive elements The release of the leadership from prison in June 1999, without official charges, conditions3 or trial4 was an important political event, per se, which positively affected the leadership’s view of the Monarchy. The Monarchy promised that the three would be allowed to return to their academic environment, to give public lectures and to teach.5 This promise is being kept and the Monarchy made a non-official verbal apology to the leadership for their imprisonment.6 Two positive elements illustrate developments after the release of the leadership from prison. In an interview with al-Omar in July 2001, he talked of developments since June 1999 and highlighted the nature of the negotiations between the leadership and the Monarchy: One of the agreements with the State is to give us [the reformist leadership] complete freedom to practise our scholarly activities. But the State requested a time period to fulfil its promise on this condition. So, since we [the reformist leadership] have been released from prison, we have

Appeasement 141 started to do certain work. In dealing with the public activity, the Minister of the Interior issued awamir [orders, instructions] in the year 2000 allowing us to give lessons. But . . . some unknown barriers . . . have arisen, and the Minister of the Interior’s order has not yet been applied. So, the promise is still being considered . . . We have therefore not been able to carry out certain public activities such as lessons and lectures. Our books are still banned by the State in respect of publication and distribution . . . Nevertheless these barriers have not prevented us from carrying out some activities such as public meetings at our homes, participating in social occasions, and establishing websites on the Internet. Therefore, we think that our return to activities such as teaching and delivering lectures is likely to happen . . . We see the importance of the gradual process . . . 7 On 27 December 2001, New York Times reporter Douglas Jehl interviewed al-Oudah and asked him whether he had to accept any conditions in exchange for being released from prison, and also asked how much freedom he had to speak and engage in public activities. The writer summarized as follows: I was released without any conditions. Instead, it came about through a mutual understanding of what my future circumstances would be. The administrative procedures that I am going through right now, however, do not allow me to give lectures or public lessons in mosques or organizations. As for my activities, I give regular lessons at home and do work for the Internet, especially for the website Islam Today. I also give lectures by phone. These activities all go on without any difficulties or hindrance.8 The leadership continued to assert its fundamental political key issues of the 1990s. At this time, al-Oudah answered a question posed by the New York Times reporter about the Petition of Advice he signed in 1992 and to what extent he still agreed with it: It does not appear there has ever been a problem with the petition. The only criticism was with respect to it being publicized. The petition itself was a collection of opinions and legal decisions that were not meant to be conclusive as much as they were intended to be the start of a serious dialogue.9 Al-Omar and al-Hawali have also stated their commitment to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah, and see the petition as a sound document and realistic vision, built on a juristic Sunni Islamic structure, to solve State and society problems and suffering.10

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The leadership has also not surrendered its 1990s’ view on the US military presence in Saudi Arabia. In this case, New York Times reporter Douglas Jehl asked al-Oudah if the presence of non-Muslim troops in the Arabian Peninsula was a problem from an Islamic perspective, and whether the time had come for the soldiers to leave. Al-Oudah replied: I believe that involvement in the affairs of others, whether political or military, is never welcomed by the countries and societies affected, because they wish to retain their sovereignty and be capable of defending themselves.11 The release of the leadership from prison brought political gain: first, in the absence of official charges against the three scholars; second, in the absence of conditions for being released from prison; and third, in their maintenance of the political position towards key political issues of the 1990s. The leadership sees the delay in their public activities being allowed as having been worthwhile. The process of return to public activity has seen further advances since July 2001, with important new essays that highlight the nature of the leadership’s Islamic work and their political vision in the post-prison era.

The expansion of opportunities The leadership has seen the increase of opportunities for the promotion of the Islamic da‘wah as an important gain. In attempting to bring about change and reform in society and politics, the leadership has more to gain by concentrating on opportunities and not directly confronting the government. It is more concerned with carrying out Islamic da‘wah, per se, than directly engaging in a power struggle for political change and reform. The leadership has been expanding its Islamic da‘wah activities, characterizing this as jihad al-da‘wah [striving and working towards spreading Islam]. It has concentrated on developing the Sunni Islamic revivalist and reformist movement, both domestically and in other societies. The focus has been on developing the social, professional and scientific contributions of the Islamic da‘wah. The social aspect refers to any form of social activities which can be directed towards promoting Islamic da‘wah, while the professional and scientific aspects refer to the forms of technology, press, media, Internet, projects and programmes that can be used, or developed, to promote Islamic da‘wah. These need to be empowered and maintained through civic policies. The leadership has seen this expanding peaceful domestic arena as a suitable sphere to use to expand its opportunities for freedom of action, and then to employ these opportunities consciously, and peacefully, towards change and reform. Bear in mind that the author covers more of the activities of al-Oudah than of al-Hawali and al-Omar, as al-Oudah launched his official website in July 2001, much earlier than the launch of the official websites of al-Hawali12 and al-Omar.13

Appeasement 143 The Islamic da‘wah activities The Islamic da‘wah, as such, has returned to the centre of the leadership’s activities. After prison, the leadership undertook an important survey; an empirical and analytical study, on the Islamic da‘wah. This study, entitled Nahwa Fadha’ Jadid lil Da‘wah [Towards a New Era of Islamic Call]14 explores the opinions of Islamic da‘wah leaders and ‘ulama, both worldwide and in the domestic Saudi sphere, on issues related to Islamic da‘wah and suitable methods to enhance da‘wah activities. The study deals with the following: Intellectual elements. The focus here is on the priorities of Islamic subjects in the da‘iyah’s agenda, such as Qur’anic studies, hadith studies, mujmalat al-din [basic principles of Islam], handling juristic Islamic differences, the authentic ‘aqidah, ethics, social justice and its relationship to societal security, women issues, the unity of Muslims, social reform, Islamic law-based freedom, the comprehensive concept of jihad in Islam, the methods of formulating critique, the Islamic civil project, the Islamic economy and the ijtihad. Relationships between Islamic da‘wah groups. Based on cooperation. Writings and publications that are important. The da‘iyah should see this as a strategic method to enhance the work of the Islamic da‘wah. TV satellites as a new development. The da‘iyah should use these to transfer information to the public. The fatwa as an essential instrument. Should be based on certain and clear juristic grounds, and on an understanding of reality. Administrative aspects. Important to organize the Islamic da‘iyah’s work. The political discourse and demands for the freedom of political opinion. Important subjects on the agenda of the Islamic da‘iyah. This issue should be managed carefully within juristic Islamic regulations and not undermine societal security, or the stability of society, public order or system. It is important to communicate and have dialogue with governments. Lessons and lectures. Still important methods of Islamic da‘wah. Social activities, services and societal associations. Essential da‘wah methods, and a way of influence, in bringing the da‘iyah closer to the masses and their needs. Globalization as a challenge and an opportunity. Steps need to be taken to face this challenge and to use this opportunity for spreading the authentic Islamic ‘aqidah, demanding civil rights, based on the Islamic Law or agreed by Islamic Law, facing the negative impacts of globalization on Muslim societies, communicating the whole Islamic ummah, and developing a global Islamic message.15 The leadership has specifically activated, and expanded, their Islamic da‘wah activities.

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In the Summer of 1421H/2001AD, al-Hawali delivered his first public lecture since imprisonment in the al-Baha district in the western province, his home locality. The lecture was on contemporary Islamic da‘wah activities and on the efforts that have been, or should be, made to expand those activities towards being professional, effective and powerful. His words reflect his confidence in contemporary conditions. He asserted the necessity of practising shura [consultation] within the Islamic movement. Al-Hawali said: During certain periods the Islamic da‘wah might experience ordeal, weakness and slowness, but after that, a new surge starts in which a rising renaissance and revivalism of faith in the heart begins, and the reformist movement starts to renew Islamic principles that have been weakened or have disappeared. I am pleased to inform you that we are experiencing a new era of Islamic da‘wah’s activities and that Islamic consciousness is spreading . . . we have no excuse to not participate in this developing Islamic work . . . Therefore, we need to empower our faith in Allah . . . we need the power to accomplish the right. Power includes powerful yaqin [perfect faith], powerful confidence that we are right, powerful attempts to carry out our Islamic duties . . . and we need to show sincerity in religion . . . Also, we need internal consultation in which the Islamic da‘wah does not mean each of us goes their own way, or follows their own judgments or determinations or desires, which could negatively affect the public’s interest . . . Today, the Islamic da‘wah is based on planning and co-operation . . . This da‘wah has become deep-rooted in society, and no wind can pull it out . . . We have confidence in da‘wah; it cannot retreat. But the ummah also faces great difficulties and problems . . . which we should resist. We should develop our work towards being professional . . . Public relations and communication are the best instruments to spread Islamic da‘wah . . . spread Islam as much as you can at your home, your work and at your shopping place . . . 16 Al-Omar, in August 2001, delivered his first public lecture, in the city of Buraydah, the capital city of al-Qassim province. The title of the lecture was Al-Fa‘iliyah [The Efficiency], with the term efficiency meaning the way Sunni Islamic reformers, either leaders or followers, should enhance their intellectual, professional and moral productivity in society.17 Al-Omar’s resumption of teaching in mosques confirms that he has been officially permitted to give such public lessons and lectures. The leadership’s policy of change and reform has become a ‘horizontal’, or sideways, movement in society. Al-Oudah, in particular, illustrates this direction. He has gradually expanded his public Islamic activities. In July 2001, at his home, al-Oudah started two-weekly juristic Sunni Islamic and general lessons.18 The focus of al-Oudah on teaching lessons reflects his concern for the need to spread Islamic knowledge in society. Therefore, he produced lessons entitled: Al-Dhaw’q al-Islami [The Islamic Taste], Al-Fa’al

Appeasement 145 al-Hassan [The Good Optimism] and Al-Khawf [The Worry]. In these lessons Al-Oudah discusses civility, ethics, courtesy, the necessity of being optimistic and the importance of taking initiatives in social and da‘wah work in society. Al-Oudah asserts that the Islamic da‘iyah [caller] should not only bring the reformist message to people but should also maintain communication and a relationship with them.19 He took a similar line when interviewed by local, regional and international magazines and newspapers, such as the New York Times in December 2001,20 Al-Rai’ al-‘Am [The Public Opinion] of Kuwait in January 2002,21 Al-Mujtama‘ [The Society] of Kuwait in April 2002,22 Al-Sumu [The Highness] of Kuwait in April 2002,23 Al-Da‘wah [The Call] of Saudi Arabia in July 200224 and Fawasil of Saudi Arabia in November 2002.25 In these interviews, he emphasized the necessity for spreading Islamic knowledge as a civilized contribution to society and to the world. He expressed his concern over youth problems in society and suggested solutions. He was also concerned with being close to the Muslim masses worldwide, considering their various problems and giving solutions. In this matter, he opened a page on his website for consultations, and also responds to letters consulting him on Islamic matters.26 Al-Oudah encourages Islamic movements to undertake internal critique and make their members or adherents more tolerant and inclusive. In one interview, al-Oudah was asked about difficulties the Islamic ummah faces. The questioner asked al-Oudah to indicate the main lines for the ummah’s salvation. Al-Oudah’s answer confirms the policy of gradual change and reform: Salvation starts by reforming the individual: in mind, in behaviour and in psychology. The reform then moves to the institution, then to the state, and then to the whole ummah.27 The Islamic programme Din wa Dunia [Religion and the Present Life], on Saudi TV28 hosted al-Oudah, for the first time, on 7 February 2002, to contribute to the programme on the role of Islam in building satisfaction and tranquility in the human soul. In the month of Dhu al-Hijja 1422H (February–March 2002) – the pilgrimage season – al-Oudah gave lectures on various subjects including the way to empower the Islamic brotherhood, the historical experiences and methods of the messengers of God, and causes of Muslims emigrants. He also gave juristic lessons to audiences from various nations.29 In September 2002, al-Oudah visited Kuwait on official invitation. Al-Oudah’s programme in Kuwait was varied and extensive. In his lectures, al-Oudah dealt with various issues and subjects. One lecture covered the meaning of peace and its regulation to manage the ‘whole’ life, which includes the affairs of the individual, the family, society and the ummah. Other lectures were on how to create unity among Muslims, difficulties facing those who committed themselves to Islam, the need for optimism and

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experiences from Islamic da‘wah. Al-Oudah attended public meetings in famous Kuwait mosques and diwaniyah [private male sitting rooms],30 where discussions on contemporary events and youth problems were held.31 In January 2003, al-Oudah participated in the National Festival of Heritage and Culture in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He gave a lecture on the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar, which focused on the negative results of neglecting this Islamic principle.32 During al-hajj [the pilgrimage season] of 1423H (February 2003), al-Oudah delivered extensive daily Islamic juristic lessons, educational programmes and other teachings, and gave some 26 lectures covering various juristic, societal and ethical subjects. At his open camp in Mina, close to Makkah, al-Oudah received pilgrims who asked many juristic questions.33 In March 2003, al-Oudah visited Bahrain on official invitation. Al-Oudah’s programme in Bahrain was extensive and can be divided into four activities: public meetings, lectures, official visits and sermons.34 Among the meetings al-Oudah attended were: ●









A meeting at the Islamic Association. Discussions were held on the Islamic da‘wah, the unity of Muslims, and coordination of leaders to empower da‘wah activities. On invitation, al-Oudah held a public meeting at ‘Askr, an area south of the Bahraini capital, at which he discussed contemporary events and the role of Muslims in these events. He emphasized the necessity for self-responsibility, and for not blaming others for one’s mistakes. On invitation, al-Oudah participated in an open meeting at al-Salam mosque where he discussed al-fitn [disorder, corruptions] and the way to counter these. A meeting at Jam‘iyat al-Islah [Association for Reform], one of the oldest Islamic associations in Bahrain, saw al-Oudah discuss the necessity for Islamic da‘wah to apply practical and down-to-earth programmes, to touch people’s feelings and meet their concerns. A meeting, held with Saudi teachers working in Bahrain, confirmed the necessity of a close and direct relationship between teacher and students.

Al-Oudah also undertook public lectures including: 1

2 3

A lecture on Qisatu al-Sira‘ [Story of the Struggle] at al-Nisf mosque, to an audience of 4000, in which he discussed the issue of struggle between right and wrong in the human soul, in life, in wars and the impact of this struggle. A lecture at the Gulf University about the problems facing the youth, to an audience of male and female students. A lecture at Ahmad al-Fatih Grand Mosque was entitled Muslimun wa kafa [Is it Enough that We Call ourselves Muslims?]. This covered the underdevelopment of Muslims and their ineffectiveness, discussing the

Appeasement 147 misunderstanding of concepts such as zuhd [asceticism, to renounce pleasure in worldly things], wara‘ [piety], qaddar [predestination], and the mixing of al-ghaib [the unseen, the invisible] and the myth. Bahrain TV invited al-Oudah onto the programme Hiwarat Fikriyah [Thoughtful Dialogues]. In this programme al-Oudah discussed the conditions for dialogue, and how to deal with changing situations. He clarified the way to maintain the Islamic pillars and foundations while opening dialogues with others. At Friday’s khutbah [sermon] at Hamad City, al-Oudah’s sermon was about influencing the future by applying both Islamic juristic principles and material means. He criticized feelings of despair and recommended that people should always build on hope. During April 2003 the opportunities in Saudi Arabia further increased. Al-Oudah gave a number of lectures in Saudi cities. He covered issues such as the practice of showing patience during crises and the important position of Prophet Muhammad, and he condemned those who attacked and criticized the Prophet.35 He also delivered two Friday prayer sermons.36 On 7 May 2003, al-Oudah officially received State permission to resume his public lessons and lectures.37 On 29 May 2003, al-Oudah delivered his first public lecture after official State permission, at Buraydah City, with 20,000 people attending his lecture. In the lecture, entitled Risalatu al-‘Asr [The Letter of the Epoch], he divided his subject into three parts. The first part was about the present, where he dealt with the contemporary conditions of the Islamic ummah, and emphasized the importance of showing care for Muslim causes and others in the world, and for the Islamic ummah to risaliyah [obligation to spread Islam and teach others about Islam] to maintain good in this life and hereafter; the second covered the importance of human resources in enhancing human output in all fields; and in the third, he spoke of the work to be done. The work should be based on the right iman [faith] as it is necessary for people to know al-iman al-haq [the right faith], to do al-‘amal al-salih [good deeds], to encourage each other to do good things, and to practise dialogue, as this is crucial in creating unity, to resolve differences, to practise patience and maintain i‘tidal [moderation] in life.38 Saudi TV recorded the lecture which was broadcast on 30 May 2003. On 2 June 2003, al-Oudah held a reception in Riyadh to celebrate the second anniversary of the launching of his website, www.islamtoday.net. The reception was attended by a large number of ‘ulama and others, and was under the auspices of senior Shaikh Abdullah Ibn Mani‘, a member of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [The Council of the Senior ‘Ulama]. Ibn Mani‘ endorsed al-Oudah’s website, describing it as a victory for Islam, serving the cause of Muslims. It is noted that, at that time, the number of visits to al-Oudah’s website had reached 125 million, with 27 million pages seen. The geographical distribution of visitors: 50% from Saudi Arabia; 25% from North America; 15% from Europe and the remainder from the rest of the world.39

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Since June 2003, al-Oudah has started a series of lectures through the State of Qatar’s Satellite Channel. This programme, called Al-Salamu ‘Alaykum [Peace upon You], broadcasts al-Oudah on a weekly basis. He addresses various societal, juristic, educational, social, moral, spiritual and psychological issues.

The use of the Internet The Internet has become a major opportunity for expression and the leadership is extensively using this opportunity to promote its vision. On his website, al-Oudah has written extensively. Subjects have included: Islamic da‘wah; Islamic movements; societal issues; juristic studies; psychological matters; the Palestinian problem and US foreign policy. In his opening article al-Oudah set the framework for his website, indicating his political vision and reformist policy. He stressed his website would not promote special interests or represent special organizations, and the opinions of others would be taken into consideration, provided they stayed within the Islamic framework and were presented in a composed and scientific manner. He wrote: We embark upon this work with a clearly defined objective before us. This objective is none other than to serve our faith, defend it, and call to it. In this way, we transcend the idea of a personal website concerned with promoting special interests. It is a website for propagating Islam, far removed from those special interests. Therefore I say: this website is not a forum for advancing the claims of certain individuals, organizations, foundations or other interest groups. Likewise, this is not a website that purports to discredit any individuals or organizations. The priorities of Islamic work and the vast expanse of universally accepted religious principles occupy all our efforts and place demands on all our abilities. We will strive for objectivity and moderation in presentation, steering clear of extraneous issues that hinder Islamic work and weaken the effect and efficiency of the call to Islam, causing attention to be diverted to secondary concerns. Moderation is an authentic Islamic approach. It is necessary to facilitate it and emphasize that excess and neglect are two sides of the same coin, and that they are both alien to the way of Islam. We will also make every attempt to inculcate in this site the values of Islamic discourse, which demand a mature and high standard in both subject matter and language, devoid of all forms of abuse, insult, and ridicule that only tends to mar and degrade language, reason, and the call to faith. The opinions of others are to be taken into consideration, neither suppressed nor discarded, as long as they stay within the Islamic framework and are presented in a composed and scientific tone.40 On 1 May 2003, al-Omar started on a similar path, launching his official website – www.almoslim.net. Al-Omar writes in a special section on his

Appeasement 149 website while the rest of the sections are open to others, and many writers and scholars write for his website. The website is divided into seven main sections: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

News. Covers various major events in the Middle East in particular, and in the world in general. Opinion and comment. Readers can find articles and studies which cover Islamic movements; Islamic da‘wah; US foreign policy; the Palestinian problem and domestic politics. Reports and files. Focuses on special studies, mainly about Arab politics. Political critique of Arab governmental policies which oppose Islamic tendencies and features, including political issues, in their societies. Dialogues. This section covers interviews with Islamic leaders. Scientific section. The scientific section is divided into three parts: the fatawa [juristic and legal opinions]; fiqh; and the weekly lesson. The website receives various juristic questions for answer. The supervisor’s production. Al-Omar puts his books, articles and oral lectures in this section. Educational section. The educational section is divided into four subsections: visions and readings; issues and dialogues; experiments, skills; and consultation.41

In his opening article al-Omar set the framework for his website, and gives the main aims, such as spreading Islamic sciences, Islamic da‘wah, Islamic educational policy and Islamic consciousness.42 Al-Omar also requested al-Oudah to write an article for the website. Al-Oudah turned, in his article, to the issue of the important contemporary role of the Internet, and argues that, through the Internet, the role, duty and responsibility of the individual can be clarified, and tension, from a lack of freedom of expression, can be alleviated. He stressed that a sphere of moderate freedom was the best way to build a wise and moderate people, citing historical stories of justice, practised by Prophet Muhammad and his companions, to illustrate his argument.43

Content of the Islamic reformist message The leadership is re-establishing itself as a scholarly Sunni Islamic reformist group and as political Islamic theoreticians. The focus is on enhancing the professional output of the Islamic reformist movement at domestic and external levels, and seeking to reform domestic politics under Islamic considerations. One can understand the nature of the Islamic reformist leadership in general, and in the post-prison era in particular, by noting al-Oudah’s response to a question forwarded to him in the Summer of 2001.44 Al-Oudah’s answer draws a comprehensive historical and up-to-date picture of the nature and organizational elements of Islamic work proposed by the

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reformist leadership. Al-Oudah starts by summarizing the question that was forwarded:45 I have been asked, . . . about the area of movement and area of calmness that should govern our concerns and our priorities, and about my position, as Salman al-Oudah, on this concern, . . . the honourable questioner has been insistent on knowing my personal vision. Al-Oudah presents the factors which he believes influence people’s concerns: I believe there are factors that influence our concerns and order our priorities as individuals, groups or even as states and nations. There are four factors: 1 The first factor is the dimension and impact of international, regional and domestic variables . . . 2 The second factor is the dimension of our scholarly and practical experiences in terms of their maturity, and the extent to which these experiences have been developing. 3 The third factor is the extent to which our feeling of responsibility exists . . . 4 The fourth factor is the extent to which we enjoy credibility with God, with ourselves and with people, and the extent to which we have the ability to make ideas clear. Al-Oudah appreciates the early Islamic da‘wah circle which gave him his knowledge about Islam, and helped build his global Islamic reformist concern. Al-Oudah then moved from the Islamic da‘wah circle to a wider range of Islamic reformist activities. Islamic revivalism is an active arena in which al-Oudah has communicated and interacted with various people and groups, involving mutual influence. Enlarging the activities of the Islamic revivalist movement has become essential, and al-Oudah thinks the reformist mission should go beyond domestic affairs and enter the global arena to meet people in need. Al-Oudah diagnoses the problem in the Islamic ummah as stemming from excessive self-criticism, and points to promising new global situations that can be used to promote Islamic activities and participation. In this respect, al-Oudah asserts the necessity of using existing institutions for change and reform. He indicates his concern for reform from within the existing system, asserting the importance of communications and interactions with the masses and also the elements of international Islamic suffering that need to be alleviated. The whole Islamic world and communities are arenas for change and reform. Involvement in society is important. This involvement socializes the reformers, and they can build a harmony of interests with the population by

Appeasement 151 being close to the causes of the society. In this sense, involvement is a mechanism that works against isolation. The reformer who is not involved in society is subject to isolation which might lead him to use violent means for change and reform. The jihad through word thus outweighs the military jihad. Al-Oudah speaks of the importance of reformers building harmony between private educational groups, the Islamic revivalist movement, and the ummah as a whole. Activities in these three circles should be complementary. Within this harmonious and complementary system, a reformer can tackle problems with consideration. Criticism should not cause division in the society. Again, al-Oudah emphasizes involvement as a strategy towards change and reform, not only at the domestic level but also at the international level. Al-Oudah states that the reformer involved in the surrounding sphere adjusts his reformist programmes according to changeable conditions at domestic and international levels. The ability to adjust means the reformer observes results, which indicates his linkage to reality and his examination of its conditions. Al-Oudah gives an example of the successful khatib [preacher], always concerned to give and find new ways to tackle problems. Al-Oudah asserts that Muslims should take advantage of regional and international developments, framing initiatives and participating, by putting forward Islamic-based reformist programmes. For example, the post-Cold War era of the 1990s provided a competitive sphere that created an opportunity to develop new forms of Islamic-based and humanistic programmes and visions. Efforts must be made to establish and maintain social peace, an important environment for Islamic progress, while aggression should be eliminated. Al-Oudah points out that al-ghulu [extremism] and the use of force, as instruments for political change and reform, are two linked polemic elements. Extremism, in the words of al-Oudah, has been present in Islamic history, with Muslims involved in the killing of other Muslims. Individuals’ lack of communication and interaction with society causes a reduction in common interests between them and the community where they live. In terms of Islamic thought, the individual may become reclusive and reject or rebut others. This may lead to a civil war or internal conflict if the individual decides to change the situation by force. The use of force leads to the loss of opportunities to use existing institutions for change and reform. The reformist mission is not just a slogan; it is an involvement in real life. Al-Oudah emphasizes the necessity of observing al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and al-nasl [posterity]. Criticizing situations does not mean setting a plan to undermine the security and safety of the society, and criticism should be fair and constructive: The principle of al-dharurat al-shar‘iyah aims to prevent bloodshed of Muslims, maintain their lives, the honour of their families, their wealth or money, and their rights. Shari‘ah comes to preserve and guard those necessities that are the pivots of the regulation of Islamic Law. Any risk in this matter cannot be accepted. Hence, there is a big difference

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Appeasement between Sunni Islamic juristic-based critique that is disciplined and observes al-dharurat al-shar‘iyah; and other forms of da‘wah or critique that undermine the stability that Muslims enjoy in their countries. If there are some people trying, for unknown reasons, to link critique with causing unrest, it is time for them to break this connection. Dissociation between critique and disorder is important to maintain opportunities of fair and constructive critique, to maintain the unity of the ummah, and to maintain the tranquility of the ummah and social peace.

Since June 1999 the leadership has been seeking, and finding, new opportunities to return to the public scene, and they have provided important guidelines that emphasize the civic–civil reformist policy. The leadership is more focused on al-tarbiyah al-da‘wiyah [Islamic da‘wah education] than al-muwajaha al-siyasiyah [political confrontation]. Significantly, focusing on al-tarbiyah al-da‘wiyah [Islamic da‘wah education] emphasizes the scholarly nature and roots of the leadership. Because their legitimacy is based on a juristic Sunni Islamic structure, the leadership claims their scholarly right to use all opportunities for their Islamic da‘wah activities. The three scholars are trying to influence society through public lectures, lessons, the media and the press, through visits and on the Internet, rather than directly raising the question of political change and reform. The absence of conflict between the leadership and the Monarchy suggests the leadership’s activities do not threaten the Monarchy’s legitimacy, and the Monarchy does not see their Islamic da‘wah activities as a threat to its legitimacy.

11 External focus Resumption of al-mudafa‘a

Background In this chapter the author proposes explanations for the leadership’s resumption of its policy of al-mudafa‘a [dimension of countering] towards both external and internal aspects in the post-prison era, explores the logic of the countering policy, presents illustrative examples and outlines the conditions under which the policy of countering has been conducted.

Countering the external – appeasing the internal The leadership applies the juristic Sunni Islamic principle which asserts that countering the greater mafsadah [corruption] has a priority over countering minor mafsadah. This is an essential realm in maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] which directs attention towards protecting al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and al-nasl [posterity]. In this case, the principle of maslahah [interest], which is part of the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah, is practised. Here, there are two forms of masalih [interests], and two forms of mafasid [corruptions, harms, hardships, injuries]. One of the aims of shari‘ah is to gain the more perfect interest, bypassing lesser ones, and countering greater harm or hardship by enduring the lesser interest. In this case, external player’s policies1 are seen as targeting, or seeking to harm, the five essentials more than internal player’s policies.2 So the hardship of tolerating and enduring, with patience, the internal policies is less than the hardship of being subject to external policies. The leadership’s policy of countering the external is thus a form of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] which seeks to reduce the mafsadah [corruption, harm] and bring maslahah [interest, good], as defined by Islamic Law. It must be borne in mind that Islamic law-based interest will be in harmony with international law in some cases, and the leadership uses the language of international law. In the author’s interviews with al-Omar in July–August 2001, he criticized the US foreign policy as having hegemonic, colonial and crusader tendencies. The Israeli State, in this regard, is an American instrument to serve US objectives in the Middle East. The United States is more likely to exploit Israel and

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the Jewish lobby than the opposite, and, therefore, defeating the State of Israel means a defeat of the US policy in the region.3 The leadership views external players as sources of danger or mafasid [corruption] which pose increasing elements of threats that need to be countered.4 The sources of danger are defined in the policies of the two allies, Israel and the United States, in the Middle East. These sources of danger pose threats that need to be countered by legitimate means defined in Islamic Law and international law. Towards building its countering policy, the leadership has undertaken juristic Islamic analyses, and has also relied on Western literature and values to support its argument.5 In the post-prison era thus the leadership is more likely to counter US and Israeli policies than to counter Saudi Monarchical policies. The leadership’s countering policy might well influence the direction of Monarchical policies. In a more direct sense, the author holds that the leadership perceives the Israeli and the US policies as posing threats to the civic–civil order and stability in the Middle East and the leadership has opposed the direction of US foreign policy since September 11. The US policy, besides its long and strong support to Israel, has, in the leadership’s view, taken militant and violent directions, demonstrated in the US wars in Afghanistan (2001), Iraq (2003) and the potential of other wars that might be conducted, directly or indirectly, in the future by the United States in other parts of the Islamic world. Certain, and influential, US media, press, State officials and institutions, have criticized and attacked Saudi Arabia, and these criticisms and attacks are seen, by both the leadership and the Saudi government, as posing threats to the Saudi nation. The leadership has extensively engaged over time in these matters and in building arguments on these political issues and taking positions towards them. In their interaction with these regional and international elements, the three scholars are concerned to point out rights, to nullify opposition argument and to counter threats. The leadership is more likely to negatively view external players’ policies than internal players’ policies, and maintains its policy of countering towards external players while the appeasement policy is applied towards internal players and the Monarchy. The reformist leadership and the Monarchy Tacit agreement as a response to external threats6 The policy of countering the external and appeasing the internal has made it more likely that the leadership will be seen to be in tacit agreement with the Monarchy, rather than an opposition group with a dissenting vision. The Saudi government has not protested against or rejected, officially or publicly, the leadership’s countering policy. But one should not assume that there is complete agreement between the leadership’s policies and Saudi governmental policies towards the external. The matter is relative, and it is more likely that the leadership and Monarchy experience relative agreement on their policies towards the external, rather than complete agreement.

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The Saudi government does not appear to have opposed, or protested, the leadership’s policy of countering the external. It could be argued that the Monarchy tacitly supported the leadership’s policy of countering the external, after developments since September 11: 1 2

3 4

5

The Saudi government has criticized the Israeli–US alliance, and has rejected the idea of al-tatbi‘, normalizing its relationship with Israel.7 The Saudi government asserted three main conditions to solve the Palestinian problem: (a) ending the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories, (b) maintaining the right of the Palestinian refugees to return and (c) Jerusalem as the capital city of Palestine.8 Israel is likely to reject these conditions. The Saudi government therefore lacks a genuine reason that might be used as a pretext to convince the Saudi domestic sphere to accept the formation of a relationship with Israel. Since September 11, 2001, the Saudi–US relationship has experienced crisis9 and the Saudi government has felt threatened by the United States.10 The Saudi government had not backed, at least not officially, the US invasion of Iraq in March 2003. The Monarchy called for a peaceful resolution to the Iraqi crisis11 when the United States decided on the military choice. Thus, compared to the Saudi–US relationship during the Second Gulf War in 1990–1991 against Iraq, which illustrated the peak of the Saudi–US strategic alliance, the Saudi government did not ally with the United States when the latter launched its war against Iraq. Bear in mind the leadership issued a fatwa [legal and juristic opinion], before the war and during the war, which does not allow for any form of assistance to be given to the US government in its war against Iraq.12 The Saudi domestic sphere is more critical of US foreign policy than before.13 Critique against US foreign policy is now more likely to be seen as acceptable and as public political language, than as a dissenting political vision in the 1990s. Accordingly, one can expect the Saudi government, whose legitimacy and integrity has been threatened by certain US players’ criticisms and attacks, to permit opportunities for expression by the leadership, to counter US foreign policy or external threats. Bear in mind that the leadership experienced criticism from external players, on their performance and discourse of the 1990s.

The countering policy is confirmed through the leadership’s extensive interaction with important regional and international political developments, including: 1 2 3

The second Palestinian cause and intifadha [uprising], developing since September 2000. US foreign policy and the crisis in the Saudi–US relationship after the events of September 11, 2001. The US invasion of Iraq in March 2003, and its aftermath.

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The Palestinian cause and the intifadha [uprising] The leadership views Israel as a source of danger which needs to be countered. It supports the Palestinian struggle for liberation, and contends that the Palestinian people have the right to resist and end the occupation of historic Palestine. The intifadha [uprising] and civil resistance are purveyed as legitimate and suitable instruments on the road of liberation, which might be long, and where patience needs to be practised. This appears consistent with government policy. At the Arab Summit in Egypt in March 2003, Crown Prince Abdullah asserted his country’s support for the resistance of the Palestinian people against the Israeli oppression, blockade and occupation.14 It is important to ask if it is possible to see the Saudi government establishing a relationship with Israel. The possibility of this happening is low, in the light of the militant policies of the Israeli government, official Saudi governmental statements dealing with the Palestinian problem and Saudi conditions to solve the Palestinian problem. The more the Saudi government is against establishing a relationship with Israel, the more likely it is that the leadership will agree with, and appease, the Saudi government. Al-Hawali describes Israel as ‘the largest terrorist organization in the world’.15 In his analysis, he not only counters Israel as such but also the US–Israeli alliance. He views the alliance as a danger which poses a threat to stability and civic–civil order, not only to the Middle East but in the world as well. In this regard, on the eve of the second Palestinian intifadha, al-Hawali published his study Yawmu al-Ghadhab [The Day of Anger],16 based on his study of the Torah. In the introduction to the book, he states that his study brings good news to Palestinians in the occupied territories and describes them as al-mustadh‘afun [oppressed]. Al-Hawali’s Yawmu al-Ghadhab has certain main themes. He tries to counter the religious argument of the American Christian Evangelical movement17 which strongly supports Israel. Al-Hawali argues that the international reader should know the background to this movement to understand the psychology and behaviour of its members and adherents.18 This movement works to push the world, in general, and the Middle Eastern region, in particular, into a destructive war, whereafter the movement believes Jesus will return to earth. This war forms part of the movement’s aims, and it believes that supporting the State of Israel facilitates the plan to start this war. The movement thus justifies the US–Israeli alliance on a religious basis. Al-Hawali then argues that the American Christian Evangelical (ACE) movement, and its allies, are misreading the Torah which gives the opposite prophecy to their expectations. Al-Hawali undertakes a textual analysis and quotes directly from the Torah and then singles out words and sentences that have either been ignored, or misread. Then he puts his explanation and comments under the original texts in which he clarifies the elements which give the opposite results to the expectations of the ACE movement. Al-Hawali explains that the Torah provides a basis for asserting that not only

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does the Israeli soldier fight an unjust war, but he should also stop this war and join the oppressed Palestinian people. Israeli settlers should be aware that they are going to experience God’s punishment and leaving Palestine or becoming Muslims are better solutions for them. Al-Hawali advises Jewish people in the occupied territories to consciously read the Torah, and not be subject to the clergy’s monopoly on explanations. He concludes that the Torah gives the perception that Israel is likely to collapse in the near future, and that many of the ACE movement’s expectations are false. Therefore, the ACE movement’s argument is dangerous, not only to the Middle East but also to global peace and civil order. Returning to the practical situation, al-Hawali, in his book, argues that, in reality, and since the second Palestinian uprising, the Palestinian problem has undergone dramatic changes. The changes revolve around an increasing concern that the Israeli government is not serious about solving the Palestinian problem and that the oppressive role of Israel has reached extreme levels. For the first time, al-Hawali argues, one can see ‘the rise of a wider Islamic consensus about jihad in which leaders, ‘ulama, strategic thinkers, populist leaders, preachers, public, illiterates, men, women and children see jihad as the solution to the Palestinian problem’.19 Al-Hawali considers the intifadha part of this growing resistance, where unarmed Palestinian children, with stones, have stood before the most advanced US military tanks of the Israelis.20 In April 2002, he made a call to all Muslims to support the Palestinian people and their resistance against the Israeli occupation: The jihad of our brothers in the occupied Palestine is a great jihad for the cause of Allah, to defend Islamic sacred places, to remove the tyranny poised over them, and to return back their land and the Muslims’ land . . . I do not know, today, of a jihad more perfect than forming a jihad with them21 either by money, nafs [body], word or du‘a [prayer]. Therefore, it is a duty to support them . . . Forsaking them22 is a . . . sin and misses an opportunity to obstruct the aims of Zionism . . . 23 Al-Oudah compiled various articles which contribute to the policy of countering Israel. In his article La Yunsarun [They Will Not be Given Victory], Al-Oudah counters the concept that Israel is a victorious State. He points out beliefs, principles and policies for use by Palestinians, or by others,24 in their resistance, to weaken or defeat Israel: 1 2 3

The Israeli army lacks the belief of the principle of shahadah [martyrdom] which makes Muslims ready to die for the sake of Allah. The Palestinians strongly believe their legitimate rights in that they have been expelled from their homes, killed and their properties stolen.25 There is a need to cut the relationship with Israel, where some Arab countries still maintain their relationship with Israel.

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External focus Practise an economic and diplomatic boycott against Israel and its allies. Relax or weaken relationships with the United States; alternative international relations should be built. The Palestinian people should be supported with money. Other form of civic–civil resistance should be practised.26

Al-Oudah, in his article Al Irhab wa al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah [Terrorism and Martyrdom Operations], discusses the legitimacy of al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah, 27 called in some Western media ‘suicide operations’. Al-Oudah makes a long and complex juristic analysis, which covers the political and strategic dimensions. He starts his article by reminding readers of the Israeli war on the Palestinians, which he describes as a series of crimes. As a result of the Israeli war, victims and other people started seeking something to counteract Israeli terror, leading to al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah. Similar operations, al-Oudah says, were seen during the US civil war (1861–1865) and the Second World War (1939–1945) by the Japanese. Al-Oudah comments that even the US definition of al-irhab [terrorism] cannot nullify the right of people to defend themselves, reject colonialism and refuse settlements. The Qur’anic definition of a just war means to fight those who fight you, to fight to protect oppressed people and to fight those who expel you from your home and take your money and property.28 Al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah, al-Oudah maintains,29 has almost become the only means in the hands of al-mustadh‘afin [the oppressed]. He examines prophetic hadith and juristic principles to decide whether these forms of operations carried out in Palestine are legitimate. He concludes they are legitimate, subject to certain conditions: 1 2 3 4

They should be for the cause of Almighty Allah. They should serve the goal of liberation and weaken the enemy. They should be limited to the occupiers in Palestine. They should be managed and organized by experts and should not lead to larger wars which Muslims are not prepared for.30

Al-Oudah asserts that the practice of patience is an important tool in facing the Israeli occupation; patience which can be practised during either military jihad or civil jihad. In July 2002, al-Oudah was interviewed in a Palestinian radio broadcast, ‘The Sound of Palestine’. A Palestinian listener asked al-Oudah questions on the meaning of the Qur’anic verse ‘O ye who believe! Persevere in patience and constancy; vie in such perseverance; strengthen each other; and fear Allah; that ye may prosper (S.3, A.200). In his answer, al-Oudah asserted the importance of patience: It is a great verse that contains Allah’s commands to practise patiense. The meaning of patience is known as a kind of murabatah [to be firm and constant] and to devote the self to good things, such as jihad, resistance, maintenance of the religion, obeying Allah, and accepting and tolerating

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His prescriptions . . . such as the difficulties or problems people have experienced throughout history. Patience has to be in the whole life in which Allah commands His prophets and messengers and their followers to practise patience, as life cannot be maintained without patience . . . So, our brothers in Palestine are murabitun [practising patience firmly and constantly]31 and they are defending themselves, their families, their properties, their honour and their land.32 Defending these things is legitimate, right and a duty according to shari‘ah,33 and also a duty according to logical, axiomatic and humanistic standards . . . 34 More than that, the brothers in Palestine are defending all Muslims . . . 35 Al-Omar was active in interviewing Palestinian Islamic leaders on his website.36 US foreign policy since September 11 The leadership has strongly countered the direction taken by US foreign policy since September 11. This needs to be placed in the context of the crisis in the US–Saudi relationship, which is analysed below, followed by an examination of the leadership’s countering policy. The crisis in the US–Saudi relationship The US and Saudi Arabia have experienced serious problems in their relationship since September 11. Soon after 9/11, the US media accused the Monarchy of being responsible for the attack. US investigators said that 15 of those who attacked the world trade centre were Saudi citizens. The Monarchy was subjected to massive US media criticism,37 and the Monarchy was accused of being at the root of the evil which produced terrorism.38 The US press and ‘think tankers’ accused Saudi Arabia and Egypt of being indirectly responsible for producing terrorism,39 and the New York Times called for intervention in the Saudi Islamic educational curriculum.40 A consultative council in the US defence department issued a report which described Saudi Arabia as a possible enemy of the United States, and as supporting terrorism.41 In June 2003, the President of the Judicial Committee of the US Congress, and some members of the US Congress, accused Saudi Arabia of supporting and financing terrorism.42 On 24 July 2003, a deep rift was created in US–Saudi relationships by the publication of the report of the US Joint Congressional Inquiry into the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001. According to the New York Times, the report contained an unreleased chapter which speaks of the Saudi government’s potential role in, or linkage to, the September 11 attack. After publication of the report, the Saudi government rejected the congressional charges43 and denied linkages to the September 11 attack.44 The Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prince Sa‘ud al-Faisal, expressed his dissatisfaction with the report. He described the

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charges as false, and an insult to his country, which had been a genuine partner to the United States for 60 years.45 The Saudi press also criticized the congressional accusations against Saudi Arabia. The press accused Israel and the Jewish and Zionist lobby in the United States, of being the forces behind the congressional campaign against Saudi Arabia.46 For decades, the Saudi–US relationship had been marked by extensive political, economic and military cooperation.47 Nevertheless, the Saudi government was critical of aspects of US foreign policy. It described US policy towards the Palestinian problem as unjust, and called on the US government to revise this policy so as to confront terrorism. The Saudi Minister of Interior, Prince Naif, has argued that terrorism does not belong to a certain people or religion, but is a personal act, and all should not only seek to confront terrorism, but should find the reasons for terrorism, for it to be uprooted. He insisted that there is a difference between terrorism and legitimate resistance,48 and that the US policy of linking terrorism to Saudis, and the attempt to intervene in the educational system and shari‘ah have increased people’s ill-feeling towards the United States.49 In April 2003, the Monarchy started reducing its reliance on the strategic alliance with the United States. At the end of that month, the US government declared that, with the agreement of the Saudi government, it was withdrawing its forces from Saudi Arabia and ending its military operations in the Kingdom.50 In May 2003, during a visit by the US Defence Secretary to the Kingdom, the US and Saudi governments mutually agreed on arrangements for the withdrawal. On 26 August 2003, Western military sources reported a celebration at the Prince Sultan military base, to the south of the Saudi capital Riyadh, to mark the exit of the last US battalion from the base which had housed the largest US military group since 1991.51 In August 2003, a Saudi State official52 countered the attacks in US media on Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s Islamic da‘wah, or so-called ‘Wahhabism’. The Saudi official confirmed the constitution of the Monarchy is based on the Holy Qur’an and the prophetic Sunnah. He rejected the idea that the Islamic da‘wah [call] of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab was responsible for producing terrorist groups. He pointed out that the da‘wah [call] of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab was not a madhhab [juristic school of thought; particular jurisprudence] but a da‘wah islahiyah [reformist movement seeking to spread Islam], and that it was far from ghulu [extremism] or tataruf [extremism, radicalism].53 Recently, the Saudi Monarchy has itself pursued a critique of the US policy in the region. This has made the leadership’s critical political language of the 1990s, as it related to the US foreign policy, appear more acceptable. Criticisms of the peace process, Israeli policy and US policy are no longer a political problem, as in the 1990s. This is a political gain for the leadership, as it no longer needs to convince the Monarchy of the negative aspects of the US foreign policy.

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Countering US foreign policy The leadership views US foreign policy as a danger which needs to be countered. To some extent, the Monarchy has come to rely on domestic scholarly Sunni Islamic circles, which includes the leadership, to counter these new external challenges and threats facing the Kingdom. On the events of September 11, the leadership expressed its objection, but the leadership holds the United States responsible as the events stem from reaction to US foreign policies, not only towards the Islamic world but also in other parts of the world. 54 In October 2001, al-Hawali issued a statement in conjunction with a letter he sent to US President George W. Bush. In both the statement and the letter, al-Hawali defends the Islamic ummah, and declares Muslims and Islam were not responsible for the events of September 11. Al-Hawali uses a juristic Sunni Islamic framework to criticize US foreign policy as oppressive, unjust and seeking global hegemony, and to criticize the oppressive and secular regimes in the Islamic world. This oppression, he says, causes those who seek change and reform to use violence. Al-Hawali advises the whole Islamic ummah to create unity in Islam to face increasing challenges. He demands the US government revise its biased policies towards the Islamic world, as in Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan. The United States, he says, should build on mutual respect, creating civic, civil and cooperative relationships that benefit both the United States and the Islamic world.55 Al-Oudah pursued a similar line. In April 2002, he criticized US claims on the role of Saudi charity associations in supporting terrorism, and also took up the case of US attempts to intervene in the Saudi educational system. The leadership has undertaken further countersteps against the US foreign policy. In April 2002, the leadership, along with 150 Saudi intellectuals, issued a declaration entitled ‘How We Can Coexist’, forwarded to American intellectuals who supported the US foreign policy. The declaration criticized the war-like tendencies of the US administration and set certain Islamic principles for dialogue and a just relationship with the West. Suggestions were made to avoid a clash of civilizations.56 In May 2002, al-Hawali criticized the militant campaign of the US government.57 In July 2002, al-Hawali sent a message to the US government through the al-Jazeera channel. He criticized the US policy towards the Islamic world and questioned US democratic values.58 In October 2002, al-Oudah published an article in which he argued that the US administration lacked experience and a sense of history. He called for the formation of an international alliance to face militant US activities in the world.59 On the first of Dhu al-Qa‘da 1423H (4 January 2003), al-Omar delivered his lecture Al-Aalam Mahadhin al-Aamal [Pains Incubate Hopes]. He also criticized the US foreign policy and referred to the politically difficult situation facing the Middle East, in general, and Saudi Arabia, in particular. He suggested optimism as an important instrument to face challenges, and emphasized that reform should be at a State and society level.60

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Since the events of September 11, the leadership and other Saudi intellectuals and reformers have expressed their criticism of external political factors without fearing consequences, and it would appear the Saudi government does not see the developing political vision as a threat to its security. The government seems to have come closer to the leadership than before. A number of recent moves by the government provide evidence. In January 2002, ‘Ayidh al-Qarni, a reformer who signed the petitions of 1991 and 1992 and who had, similar to the leadership, experienced a difficult relationship with the Monarchy was allowed to give a lecture in the housing complex of the Saudi National Guard to an audience of more than 30,000 men and women.61 In February 2002, the Monarchy appointed Dr Shaikh Salih Ibn Humaid, ‘alim and the Imam of the Holy Sacred Mosque of Makkah, as president of the Majlis al-Shura [Saudi Consultative Council]. The leadership viewed this decision as positive.62 In March 2002, the Minister of Interior, Prince Naif, established a global prize for contemporary Islamic and Sunnah studies.63 In September 2002, the Ministry of Islamic Affairs organized a conference on Islamic Da‘wah in South Africa.64 Saudi TV has also produced programmes that provide a critique of US policy, such as the programme which defended the role of Saudi charity associations. Participants in this programme stated that the Saudi charity associations were serving Muslims in need worldwide, and called for unity between the ruling and the ruled to face external threats.65 Later, in June 2003, the leadership was permitted to speak directly about public issues in front of the Saudi Crown Prince and the Saudi Grand Mufti. Countering continued – the US invasion of Iraq, March 2003 The leadership is at one with the Saudi government in criticizing the US invasion and occupation of Iraq. The leadership objected to the US plan to launch a war against Iraq, and Crown Prince Abdullah also asserted, at the last Arab Summit in Egypt, on 1 March 2003, that the Monarchy decisively rejects any external aggression on any Arab country.66 In October 2002, al-Hawali sent an open letter to the US Congress, during their discussions on the decision to permit the US President to declare war on Iraq. He warned Congress against violating international law and waging war against an independent State with internationally recognized sovereignty. Al-Hawali expressed his worry that a war against Iraq would cause numerous casualties and human tragedies. He warned of the accumulating anger of the Islamic world because of the tragic situation of the Palestinians, and because of US support for Israeli Prime Minister Sharon’s ‘terrorist policy’. In his letter, al-Hawali tells Congress that the Arabs are experiencing an Islamic renaissance, and Arab governments will not be able to control their peoples if the war develops into a religious conflict that goes beyond a ‘traditional’ war between two countries. He advises the Congress to think rationally, to

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apply a peaceful solution to the problem and to practise a just policy.67 The war was launched on 17 March 2003, and Baghdad collapsed on 9 April 2003. The leadership considered the invasion and the occupation to be aggression. Al-Omar issued a statement the next day stating that launching a war against Iraq is aggression against Muslim people. Al-Oudah stated the war was a major US error, and American interests would be harmed in the long run. The US plan went beyond changing the political system and disarming Iraq and envisaged more far-reaching goals. The war, al-Oudah argued, established dangerous principles of direct intervention in other States’ affairs, and changing political systems by violent means.68 Although the leadership was critical of US policy towards Iraq, the leadership also countered people’s attempt to go to Iraq to carry out jihad against the invaders. During the war, al-Hawali issued a fatwa discouraging people going to Iraq for military jihad. The meaning of jihad, he said, is comprehensive, and he encouraged people, the youth in particular, to carry out civic and civil forms of jihad in education, media, societal work and economic projects; seeking Islamic ‘ilm [knowledge] and carrying out Islamic da‘wah.69 In April 2003, the leadership, along with many Islamic intellectuals, worldwide, established Al-Hamla al-‘Alamiyah Limuqawamat al-‘Udwan [The Global Campaign to Resist Aggression]. The general secretary of this campaign is al-Hawali. The core aim is to counter external threats by civic–civil means, to further defuse war-like tendencies and to establish a global peaceful jihad to defend Islam. The campaign set itself six goals: 1 2 3 4 5 6

Working towards maintaining the identity of the ummah. Countering aggression and aggressors by all possible legitimate means. Encouraging Muslims to serve Islam, Islamic ummah and defend their rights. Presenting the correct picture of Islam, clarifying ethical and humanistic aspects of the Islamic Law and countering propaganda against Islam. Coordinating official and non-official efforts to serve Islamic and humanistic issues in Muslim countries. Working towards effective communication with peoples of the world and international organizations who reject tyranny and oppression.70

The leadership’s countering policy is limited and specific. It is an error to see the whole of the United States as the problem, given the United States includes people with concerns about justice.71 Al-Hawali maintains that creating dialogue with Western and American forces, conditioned by Islamic Law, constitutes a powerful instrument.72 The appeasement policy seeks to defuse any conditions that might lead to harming or undermining the stability and civic–civil order of Saudi society, reducing further the level of mudafa‘a from an opposition policy to an appeasement policy. The leadership has come to recognize, and appreciate,

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the civic–civil achievements of the State and society, which must be maintained and protected. In this, the question of political change and reform should not be directly raised, as a direct political struggle, as political change and reform is not feasible in times of regional confusion and danger.

Domestic security focus – resumption of al-mudafa‘a [The dimension of countering] The leadership has emphasized the domestic security factor, and has seen domestic stability as being at risk if domestic political violence is not curbed. The domestic security factor has also required the leadership to maintain its appeasement policy towards the Monarchy. This is explored under the headings of: ● ● ● ●

Maintaining domestic solidarity Countering domestic violence The Saudi intellectual conference, 15–18 June 2003 – Internal Dialogue The Reformist Leadership’s Statements – June 2000

Maintaining domestic solidarity Facing a new reality in the Middle East, the leadership is concerned to maintain stability and to defuse further conflict in the region, and, in particular, sees stability and civic–civil order in Saudi society as an essential goal, while countering external threats. In March 2003, the leadership, and other Saudi intellectuals and ‘ulama, signed a declaration, entitled Al-Jabha al-Dakhiliyah Amam al-Tahadiyat al-Mu‘asirah [The Internal Front Faces Contemporary Challenges]. The essence of the declaration is the necessity of maintaining internal unity, stability and security against external or internal challenges, threats and tendencies for violence. The declaration emphasizes that: ●









Jihad is a legitimate pillar in Islam. But there are conditions and reasons necessary to carry out this principle, which must be clarified by al-rasikhun min ahlu al-‘ilm [distinguished ‘ulama]. Governments in the region should strongly condemn the US intervention as it is a sin to directly, or indirectly, cooperate with the US government in its aggression. Muslims should together hold fast to the rope of Allah and not become divided as division is a fitnah [disorder, corruption]. Shedding blood is haram [unlawful], and killing non-Muslims who enter the country is not allowed. Attacks on Western interests, work and residential places are not allowed. Governments, particularly within the region, should not target Muslims by imprisonment, chastisement, torture or by any other harm.

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Enthusiastic youth should not rush into takfir [expiation, accusing the Muslim of becoming a non-Muslim]. Ahlu al-‘ilm [‘ulama, people of Islamic sciences and knowledge] should advise the rulers and the public to understand the reality of the ummah. Governments73 should be open for dialogue so important issues can be discussed.74

Countering domestic violence The leadership has asserted its policy of countering domestic violence. It has emphasized that the underlying issue is the maintenance of internal security and civic–civil order that might be threatened not only by external players, but also by internal players. The leadership condemned the Riyadh bombings of 13 May 2003 which targeted residential compounds where foreigners live, leaving at least 29 dead and 194 injured. Among the dead were seven Americans and seven Saudis.75 Social milieu differences distinguish the leadership and reformist allies from radicals or groups who apply a violence policy. These differences are mainly based on the reformist leadership and reformist allies’ scholarly and educational Sunni Islamic background and professional status, including various posts in government. Groups applying a policy of violence mostly lack this Sunni Islamic background and professional status. Al-Oudah issued a statement condemning the bombings,76 asserting the security element of maqasid al-shari‘ah, pointing out external and internal reasons for the incident, and suggesting ideas for change and reform. He asserted that the incident was haram [unlawful], as shari‘ah [Islamic Law] seeks to maintain security. He quotes Qur’anic sources: ‘If anyone slew a person – unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land – it would be as if he slew the whole people’ (S.5, A.32), ‘If a man kills a believer intentionally, his recompense is Hell, to abide therein (forever): and the wrath and the curse of Allah are upon him, and a dreadful chastisement is prepared for him’ (S.4, A.93). The purpose of shari‘ah is to gain masalih [interests] and prevent mafasid [corruption] and this kind of attack, al-Oudah maintains, can be considered the first step towards fitnah [disorder, corruption] and internal strife. It opens the door for hidden ambitions, and for tribal, regional and religious differences, and problems will arise. Al-Oudah then puts forwards some reformist ideas for change and reform. It is essential, he says, to develop the country, empower the shura [consultation], apply justice, and maintain people’s rights, equality and freedom of expression. The mission of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] also needs to be strengthened. Almighty Allah protects the just society that maintains shari’ah-based rights and freedoms. Violent means of expression, such as killing, bombing or assassination, usually occur when the doors for expression and dialogue are closed, and people feel they are oppressed and marginalized.

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Al-Oudah points to three main players that should act to solve the problem of extremism at the domestic level: ●





The senior and distinguished ‘ulama should open their doors to Muslim youth and be receptive of their concerns and juristic questions. The Saudi government should tackle economic problems in the country, such as unemployment. The US government should abandon its aggressive policy in the Middle East and the Islamic world, to eliminate causes of retaliation against the United States or Western interests.

Countering domestic violence was taken a step further in a statement by leading ‘ulama which followed al-Oudah’s statement. On 17 May, 47 Saudi ‘ulama and shaikhs, including the reformist leadership, issued a statement condemning the Riyadh bombings of 13 May 2003. The influence of al-Oudah is clear in the ‘ulama’s statement, and the statement uses al-Oudah’s words in describing the incident as haram [unlawful]. The ‘ulama’s statement insists that the bombings have nothing to do with jihad but harm the security and safety of society, create societal divisions, open the door for external enemies of Islam to create war against Muslims and give an excuse for those enemies to attack a Muslim country. The statement mentions the danger of attacking77 the educational curriculum, the judicial institution, Islamic Law and the institution of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar. It emphasizes the necessity of change and reform and of comprehensively applying shari‘ah, spreading justice and opening the door to dialogue and freedom of expression within ahkam al-shari‘ah [Islamic Law].78 It is significant that the statement was covered by the ASharq al-Awsat newspaper. This indicated a positive official attitude, given that ASharq al-Awsat represents the government’s position and used to criticize the reformist leadership in the 1990s.79 Further evidence of the official attitude came on 1 June 2003, when the Islamic Satellite Channel, Iqra,80 hosted al-Hawali, for the first time, to discuss the causes of violence. The rapprochement between the leadership and the Monarchy is further indicated by al-Hawali’s mediation between the government and a Saudi youth who was accused of involvement in the Riyadh bombings.81 The Saudi intellectual conference, June 2003 – internal dialogue The cooperative relationship between the leadership and the government reached a new stage in June 2003, when it was announced82 that Saudi ‘ulama, intellectuals and thinkers would hold a conference for intellectual dialogue, followed by a meeting with Crown Prince Abdullah.83 The conference was held at Riyadh from 15–18 June 2003, and was headed by Dr Abd al-Rahman al-Husain (General President of the Sacred Mosque).84 The

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leadership participated in the conference and then, after the conference, the leadership spoke, on behalf of participants, in a meeting with Crown Prince Abdullah on 19 June 2003. The Crown Prince’s statement at the conference, delivered by Shaikh Salih Ibn Humaid (President of Majlis al-Shura), pointed out the threats the Monarchy was facing, and stressed internal unity was required to counter these threats. The statement said: ●







The Monarchy is facing dangers and aggressive attacks which have targeted the ‘aqidah [faith] and national unity of the country.85 Intellectual and sectarian differences and diversities have been noted which reflect human nature. These should be managed through Islamic da‘wah, advice and dialogue, within the al-thawabit al-shar‘iyah [fundamental Islamic principles] of the Monarchy. The contemporary reality and new technical developments should be taken into account, and new policies should be formed to protect religion, country and citizens. The Islamic discourse, at both internal and external levels, should assert the Kingdom’s adherence to Islam and its linkages with the Islamic world.86

The conference focused on two main themes: (1) national unity and the role of the ‘ulama in maintaining this unity and (2) foreign relationships and treaties of the Monarchy. The final statement of the conference confirmed the necessity of internal dialogue and maintaining unity within the Sunni Islamic legitimacy of the Monarchy. 1 The Nation should make tawbah [repentance], return to Almighty Allah and submit to His shari‘ah to face challenges. 2 The conference should be developed. It is important to establish a centre for a national dialogue which can organize meetings, conduct studies and undertake research. 3 It is important to maintain national unity, based on al-thawabit al-shar‘iyah [fundamental Islamic principles]. 4 The role of the ‘ulama should be supported. 5 Development should be horizontal in the Kingdom. 6 It is important to continue developing education in accordance with the Islamic identity of the nation. 7 Youth problems must be examined, considered and solved. 8 The media and the press must consider national unity, maintain the Islamic structures of national unity and respect the ‘ulama, the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar and the Islamic da‘wah. 9 Reform must take into consideration the widening of public participation and maintenance of national unity. 10 Islam is a religion of the wasatiyah [middle] and asserts the prophetic Sunnah. Islam, therefore, does not accept al-ghulu [extremism] or

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External focus al-tahalul min al-thawabit al-shar‘iyah [leaving out or relinquishing Islamic principles]. Dialogue is an essential instrument for the expression of opinion which should be based on Islamic Law. The reality of differences is a historical fact and a natural phenomenon, which should be measured by shari‘ah to avoid negative results which harm coexistence. The rights of women shall be maintained according to shari‘ah. Freedom of expression shall be maintained in accordance with Islamic Law. The role of fatwa is essential and should be supported and institutionally organized. It is important to build consciousness about internal and regional politics, to assert justice as the basis for international relations, to represent Islam as a structure on which international relations can be built and to produce initiatives which present Islam as the means to solve global suffering. Jihad is a legitimate pillar in Islam, and Islam has clarified its juristic conditions. The declaration of jihad should be linked to authority, and not be misused or mistreated. There is a clear difference between jihad and spreading fasad [corruption] on earth. The participants in the conference assert that the resistance of the Zionist occupation of Palestine is a legitimate right, and participants support the Kingdom’s stand that Palestinian people be returned their legitimate rights. The participants feel sorrow and condemn aggression on Muslims and others where such aggression is fasad and against Islam.87

The follow-up to the conference created substantive new links between the reformist leadership and the State authority. The reformist leadership and the Monarchy are increasing mutual understanding; further explored during the participants’ meeting with the Crown Prince after the conference, where al-Oudah delivered a statement, on behalf of the conference’s participants, before the Crown Prince. Al-Oudah confirmed to the Crown Prince the conference’s concern to maintain national unity, the nation’s Sunni Islamic identity and character, and the need for political change and reform. Al-Oudah’s statement explains these elements. Al-Oudah thanked the Crown Prince for his support of the conference, and suggested the conference be developed into an institution for internal dialogue. Al-Oudah made suggestions for political change and reform in Saudi Arabia, and noted that rights to be supported should be based on Islamic Law. Al-Oudah mentioned the external and internal threats and dangers facing the security and stability of the country. But these external and internal challenges should not be the only reason to make changes and

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reform, and a genuine desire for change and reform is needed. He asserted, again, that change and reform should reflect and be consistent with shari‘ah: The dangers facing the country are many and can be seen as external threats and internal attempts to harm this country, its security and its stability . . . But we do not want these dangers to be the factors that make us start reform and change as if we are forced to change and reform. The dangers and other elements are variables, challenges and turning points and we should deal with them through genuine unity based on al-din al-haq [the true religion] . . . The fact that the Saudi people are mutadayinun [religious] should be the base for change and reform. In this case, thawabit al-Islam [fundamental Islamic principles], ‘ism al- shari‘ah, and muhakimat al-Qur’an wa al-Sunnah88 are the forces that make for change and reform . . . 89 The Monarchy90 agreed to the suggestion of developing the conference into an institution for internal dialogue. On 2 August 2003, Crown Prince Abdullah told the nation that King Fahd had agreed to establish the King Abd al-Aziz Centre for National Dialogue.91 The rapprochement between Crown Prince Abdullah, in particular, and the leadership, is consistent with Crown Prince Abdullah’s policy of maintaining a good relationship with the ‘ulama. This form of mutual understanding and tacit alliance, that links the Crown Prince, the reformist leadership and the scholarly Saudi Sunni Islamic community together, should enhance the legitimacy of the Crown Prince as the heir to the throne. The reformist leadership’s statement – June 2003 The cooperative relationship between the reformist leadership and the government reached a further new stage in June 2003. Leading Saudi ‘ulama and talabatu al-‘ilm [students of Islamic sciences or shari‘ah], including the leadership, visited the Saudi Grand Mufti, Abd al-Aziz al-Shaikh. At this meeting, al-Hawali delivered a statement, and, speaking on behalf of the delegation, emphasized the important position of the ‘ulama, and pointed to the ‘ulama’s responsibility towards state and society, particularly during times of crisis. He drew attention to the necessity of solving youth problems and discussed other public issues.92 The reformist leadership’s statement in front of the Saudi Grand Mufti marks a new era of cooperation between the leadership and the State’s highest religious authority.

Summary The preceding chapter and this chapter focus on aspects behind the reformist leadership’s appeasement policy towards the Monarchy in the post-prison era. The three scholars shifted their opposition policy of the 1990s, from

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a high-risk political struggle, towards an appeasement policy, a low-risk political struggle, in the post-prison era. The appeasement policy emphasizes that the leadership has reduced the level of confrontation, and the sphere of conflict and tension with the Monarchy. The quest for political change and reform has become more general, indirect, embedded and implemented in the new discourses by the leadership. The author explores five aspects behind this change of policy: the adjusted strategy; positive signs; the expansion of opportunities; the external focus and the domestic security focus. Each of these aspects contribute towards developing and maintaining the appeasement policy in the post-prison era. The first aspect of the ‘adjusted strategy’ refers to the leadership’s flexible policy on political struggle. In the post-prison era, the leadership has not seen confrontation, a dominant political strategy of the 1990s, as a necessary method towards political change and reform, and has relaxed the confrontation factor, and started focusing more on societal and social factors. The second aspect includes ‘positive signs’ towards the leadership since 1999, which shows that the Monarchy has become less coercive than in the 1990s. The leadership sees these positive policies as worthy of being maintained and functioning as new opportunities to aid their return to the public sphere. The leadership and the Monarchy observe a growing mutual positive approach that has started reducing the level of conflict and differences. The third aspect is the ‘expansion of opportunities’. It has been a gradual expansion of opportunities in which the Islamic da‘wah has been promoted at domestic, regional and international levels. In attempting to bring about change and reform in society and politics, the leadership has more to gain than before by concentrating on opportunities, instead of directly confronting the government. This draws attention to a central feature of the leadership; a scholarly Sunni Islamic leadership or fuqaha [jurists], who can address political questions as part of their new juristic studies, making the political factor an indirect enquiry. The leadership realizes the key to change and reform starts with society, and that they must prepare society to understand the quest for political change and reform before becoming involved in any more advanced movement towards political change and reform. The fourth aspect is the ‘external focus’, and the leadership has focused more on external political opportunities than on internal political factors. The external environment has presented challenges which turned out to be exigent questions on the political agenda of the leadership, and sources of political inspiration. Here the author refers to the Palestinian intifadha [uprising], which started in September 2000, the US foreign policy in the Middle East after September 11, the related crisis in the Saudi–US relationship and the US invasion of Iraq in March 2003. These external political consequences have produced instability in the Middle East, with the leadership responding to defuse further conflicts and maintain civic–civil order in the region. Attempting to influence the external environment refers to the

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leadership’s political manoeuvres that shift the focus from internal political factors to external political factors and leads to the leadership being seen, in a wider sense, as regional and global players. By focusing on external factors, the three scholars have found an area for building new political arguments that indirectly support the quest for political change and reform, as external factors have a strong interactive relationship with domestic factors. The fifth aspect is ‘domestic security’. Troubled by regional confusion and war-like tendencies, the leadership has shown much concern to defuse any potential impacts on Saudi domestic security or stability. The leadership has therefore further supported its appeasement policy towards the Monarchy in the light of Riyadh bombings of 13 May 2003. At the Saudi domestic level, the leadership also counter militant tendencies that have recently emerged. The question of societal security has taken an important place on the political agenda of the leadership, and they argue for the struggle for political change and reform to be dissociated from attempts to sow disorder and confusion in domestic society. The opposition policy has been selectively applied towards threatening elements at international, regional and domestic levels. Countering threats and violence, either external or internal, is consistent with the elements of the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law]. The essence of this theory is to protect and maintain al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and posterity, which are more likely to be maintained during peace, stability and civic–civil order than during war, revolution or under violent conditions. The author concludes that the leadership and the Monarchy have undertaken a gradual rapprochement, demonstrated through actual developments in Saudi politics. The development of this mutual rapprochement has not diffused the leadership’s quest for political change and reform. At a suitable time and through suitable action, one would expect the quest to be re-addressed by the reformist leadership.

12 Political realism

Background This chapter provides for an understanding of the reformist leadership’s present policy, through observation of their discourse and performance, from mid-2003 to mid-2006, in the domestic, regional and global context, by addressing the following aspects: ● ● ● ● ●

The leadership and characteristics; The context of the monarchy; The context of external factors; The context of the islamic cause; The question of power, violence and jihad.

Certain questions arise, for example, 1 Where does one situate the reformist leadership and the Monarchy in the international, regional, transnational-Islamic and Saudi arenas? 2 What are the elements, or changing characteristics, of the reformist leadership?1 To what extent can changes be seen? 3 How does the leadership pursue political change and reform? 4 To what extent is the leadership and the Monarchy of like mind? 5 How do external factors influence the discourse and performance of the leadership? 6 How can one construct the leadership’s role in the context of the Islamic cause, which includes Islamic work, movements and institutions? 7 What is the leadership’s perception, or philosophy, on power, violence and jihad? 8 What is meant by ‘Islamic revolution in process’? 9 Does understanding of the leadership’s discourse and performance aid understanding of the relationship between State and Islamic movements in a Muslim country? 10 In what sense can one understand the discourse and performance of the leadership in the context of the ‘Islamic civil society’ while violence, wars and struggles for power continue in the Middle East?

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The reformist leadership underlines the structure of their contemporary policy, and Nassir al-Omar sketches the Islamic reformer’s movement in state and society: The Islamic da‘iyah [one who invites people to Islam, Islamic caller, Islamic figure, Islamist] or one who practises al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [promotion of virtue and prevention of vice], or reformers, when they face or are confronted by vice [non-Islamic elements] . . . should act according to their ability . . . as going beyond their ability . . . is not required . . . So they should read [understand, observe] reality . . . and recognize the limit of their ability . . . and see what things they can reform . . . and then act within this limit, with wisdom, to change the vice or to gain most benefit and prevent most mafasid [corruption]. In this way they perform their duty, even though the vice might not be changed or cannot be changed, . . . If the Islamic da‘iyah, or reformer, rushes emotionally towards change, or reform, in an act which exceeds their ability, they might do wrong . . . , and the harm might become stronger . . . 2 The reformer needs to develop plans against external challenges or threats. Al-Omar, in his participation on the Conference of the Charitable Work in Kuwait, emphasized that Muslims should resist ‘globalization’ as ‘globalization’ is a ‘new colonialism’, and seeks the destruction of Islamic structures,3 while he also asserted, in a paper presented to the Ministry of Islamic Affairs in Qatar, that Islamic principles must be maintained.4 The reformer must recognize domestic reality or obstacles. Al-Oudah appeared on the al-Jazeera channel in a seminar on ‘The Regional and International Influence on the Gulf Islamic Trends and Policies’, in June 2006, along with Dr Abdullah al-Nifisi, a Kuwaiti Islamic and political scientist. Al-Oudah noted that the Islamic trend is not an alternative to reality but part of it and of the ummah’s consciousness. All Islamic ummah’s trends should be complementary and not conflicting.5 It is a valuable asset for Islamic trends to meet ‘others’, open dialogue or cooperate, based on a harmony of interests.6 Islamic institutions need to be constructed. Al-Oudah speaks of the Islamic trend’s economic failure where they do not possess effective economic institutions or complementary economic thought, despite certain Islamic achievements, as in the case of the Islamization of economic institutions and banks.7 The appeasement policy, developed immediately after release from prison in 1999, and consolidated in the light of the consequences of 9/11, has been maintained. The leadership’s appeasement policy has also been extended towards an ‘Islamic political realism’, which is concerned with (1) the way the Islamic movement can live and function in an international system which is anarchic and self-seeking, with regional and local politics affected by this chaotic situation; (2) states, either global or regional and local political systems that remain dominant players, which requires Islamic movements to

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deal rationally with these and avoid confrontation; (3) the necessity of the Islamic movement constructing a power base, and finding methods to meet, approach or balance other powers and (4) Islamic idealism and morality which should not lack understanding of the real world or reality, but Islamic projects have to be constructed, applied and marketed by all possible means. Within this interrelated appeasement/political realism framework, harakat al-mashayikh8 [the reformist leadership] has shown determination in leading or influencing a complex Islamic movement since the 1980s. Islamic trends in the Gulf region, including the reformist leadership, should recognize limitations and challenges; a recognition which should direct Islamic work. The leadership has been active over the last three years, especially al-Oudah and al-Omar, as al-Hawali has been ill. Al-Hawali’s illness nevertheless confirms his renown, through the support he has been given and attention in the Saudi media and on the Internet, despite only selective responses to events.

The leadership and characteristics The leadership has experienced some change in characteristics and consequences. Historically, the discourse and performance of the 1980s, and the 1990s in particular, have been taken up with Islamic-juristic and Islamicpolitical concepts, perceived by the Monarchy and opponents as abnormal, radical and against the government, but perceived by Muslim youth, and Islamic movements, both in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere, as unique, courageous, informative, combative and sometimes revolutionary in seeking comprehensive reform and change vis-à-vis a strong and long-standing State. To many, not only in Saudi Arabia, al-mashayikh [plural of shaikh, referring to al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar in particular] have become a reformist leadership and activist Islamic force for change and reform whose vision can be applied, and supported, in other countries and places. The discourse and performance of the 1980s and 1990s is a historic struggle, refreshing the memory of the ‘holy Islamic strife’, resistance and the jihad of famous Islamic leaders, figures or activists, such as Hassan al-Bana (Founder of the Muslim Brotherhood; assassinated in 1949, and the way he addressed the Islamic cause by lecturing to people directly, in mosques and other public places, throughout the country), Abd al-Qadir ‘Awdha (lawyer; member of the Muslim Brotherhood; executed in 1954), Sayid Qutb (executed in 1966), Abd al-Fatah Isma‘il (member of the Muslim Brotherhood; executed, along with Sayid Qutb, in 1966), Muhammad Qutb (Sayid Qutb’s brother, who was imprisoned and tortured during the 1950s/1960s. He contributed directly and strongly to the discourse of the reformist leadership). This discourse and performance established ‘legitimacy’ for these scholars, and their students, audiences and adherents identified with them. In contemporary terms, the leadership has moved towards ‘Islamic political realism’. In this respect, the leadership insists on civic and civil

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actions for change and reform, and calls for change and reform from within. This requires an inclusive and tolerant attitude towards others, openness towards society, concentrating on social, juristic, educational and moral ‘aqidah or al-‘aqidah [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief] subjects, developing institutional Islamic work and calling for the reduction of tension at global levels.9 Reasons for developing ‘political realism’ are understood by the scholars themselves and their inner circles, but not necessarily by their audiences. The author has noted in visiting religious and Islamic web pages, and through discussions, that there is the concept in some audiences that this change is purposely structured. The leadership does not view these changes as affecting the usul [structures], but justified by fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]. One can deduce in al-Oudah’s post-prison discourse and performance, in particular, the construction and nature of changes ‘necessary’ to meet changing conditions at domestic, regional and global levels. Diversity can be noticed within the leadership. Conceptually, al-Oudah revises the crucial Islamic term of al-mujtama‘ al-jahili [the ignorant society]; popular in the circles and discourse of Islamic movements. This term was mainly developed in the discourse of Sayid Qutb and Muhammad Qutb, and was juristically seen in the writings of Ibn Abd al-Wahhab, which, in particular, influenced Safar al-Hawali. The term al-mujtama‘ al-jahili, generally, refers to non-Islamic elements in State and society which need to be defined, recognized and noted for elimination, exclusion or fought against.10 The concept creates a psychological area and physical situation in which Islamic movements/trends/activists have had a continuing policy, or tendency, to distinguish, or separate, themselves physically and spiritually from ‘others’. This includes avoidance of corruption, by purifying or reforming themselves, and keeping a distance from ruling classes, or entities, which experience non-Islamic elements, jahili [ignorance] or corruption. Al-Oudah believes in the concept; but he may want to push Islamic movements/trends/activists towards more involvement in public life activities, or normalize them as part of their societies. Even though these societies experience non-Islamic elements, the consideration is the reduction of tension between movements/trends/activists and their societies, including the Government. Al-Oudah’s revision of the term al-mujtama‘ al-jahili was preceded by a similar concept from Mustafa Mashhur (Muslim Brotherhood’s Fifth Leader (1996–2002)). The latter, in his discussion of the Muslim Brotherhood’s policy, asserts that seeing contemporary Muslim societies as non-Islamic or jahili [ignorant] is a mistake, and creates divisions between Islamic trends and their societies. This approach is wrong as these societies are fields of Islamic da‘wah, where it can operate, and try to reform, recruit or mobilize people.11 Al-Oudah has opened dialogue with sectarian and ideological elements in Saudi society, such as Shiites, liberals and seculars; a direction not yet clearly seen in the al-Hawali and al-Omar camps. Academically, al-Oudah’s

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PhD research, completed in 2004, was on the function of prayer, a purely juristic subject, which is somewhat different to his Master’s work of Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries], from which many political activist lessons can be taken. The ongoing diversity within the leadership, al-Oudah’s ongoing independent tendency, and al-Hawali’s illness, highlight questions on the nature of the leadership’s organization, or system, and a related question of succession. Who can succeed al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar in their influential leadership role? This question is important, in that the Muslim Brotherhood, for example, has maintained its existence, role and function through organization, system and offices, such as Maktab al-Irshad [The Office of Guidance, which has functioned since the establishment of the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1920s], al-Murshid [The Counsellor/Leader, where the Brotherhood has had successive Counsellors or leaders since the death of the founder of the movement, Hassan al-Bana], and other organizational, systematic and official policies. The organizational nature of the Muslim Brotherhood creates challenges for the reformist leadership, for example, to either have a similar type of organizational structure, or to coordinate events organizationally with the Brothers as a most influential Islamic movement in the region. The three scholars are more likely to lead a harakah jamahiriyah [mass movement] than organize a clear and complicated tanzim [organization]. Al-Oudah, in particular, makes harakah al-mashayikh [the Islamic movement of the reformist leadership] appealing to many religious, liberals, seculars and others, in a flexible manner rather than leading people towards an organizational structure with its obligations, laws and rules to be observed by members. Al-Oudah might be concerned to attract more people who are sympathetic, or supportive, or who understand the idea of Islamic change and reform. It seems al-Oudah applies an ‘independent’ policy, and tries to keep Islamic work and activities separate from particular Islamic groups or movements, avoiding internal squabbles and differences, with the arena open for all to participate freely. It would appear the leadership has become more concerned with establishing and exporting thoughts and ideas, than producing a clear, concise, tangible and official leadership, which can lead to differences. This allows the leadership to maintain its own character, and also leaves the leadership with a potential dilemma or challenge.

The context of the Monarchy The leadership is balancing their appeasement policy towards the Monarchy against their demands for political change and reform, which leaves the question of change partially unresolved. The leadership is simultaneously constructing its concepts/direction, while maintaining the appeasement policy towards the Monarchy; the second dimension of al-mudafa’a, a policy undertaken since their release from prison in 1999, which indicates a gradual reduction of confrontation, conflict and

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tension with the Monarchy. They have changed their mudafa‘a from an opposition policy, involving a high-risk political struggle towards an appeasement policy, or lower-risk political struggle. This is the leadership’s general policy towards the Monarchy, maintained and carefully observed by the three scholars collectively, or individually. Within this policy paradigm, they have increased their activities, especially al-Oudah, and continued working for change and reform, mostly on the society and external levels, avoiding confrontation with the Monarchy. The State has become an arena for change, and this is an institutional achievement which needs to be maintained. The confrontation with the Monarchy has not only shifted to an appeasement policy but the leadership also took further steps towards realizing State legitimacy. This was seen, for example, when The Informative Institute of Islam Today, a private organization owned by al-Oudah, reported on the day of bai‘ah [contract, pledge of allegiance] to Crown Prince Abdullah when he became the new Monarch after the death of King Fahd in August 2005. This report contains an important introductory statement: The day of bai‘ah to the Custodian of the two Holy Mosques King Abdullah is a unique event at domestic and international level. The event is an occasion to renew bai‘ah, and to express allegiance to the Saudi Leadership, embodying a firm relationship between the people and their leadership in this country.12 The style of demanding changes has thus changed from being direct, comprehensive, structured, deep rooted and critical, as illustrated, for example, by Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] of 1992 and Salman al-Oudah’s valedictory lecture of 1994, towards being realistic, reasonable, moderate, gradual, comprehensible and within State legitimacy. Here the leadership has benefited from a growing Saudi and Middle Eastern influence, and external pressure, which seeks change and reform. Although this sphere, especially the external, or influenced by the external, focuses on democracy, a Western doctrine, as a policy towards change, the leadership uses this sphere to pursue their vision. This external pressure for change and reform has not been too opposed as the leadership attempts to change direction, and the concern is more likely to explore how much Islam can benefit from democracy rather than see Islam as being against democracy. The leadership is supportive of political development in Saudi Arabia, with municipal elections held in Spring 2005. The leadership neither stood as candidates for elections nor provided support to particular groups or candidates. Islamic voices and candidates won a majority, indicating Saudi Islamic trends, including the leadership’s popularity, or influence, in Saudi society. Introducing electoral life in Saudi Arabia is likely to be positively seen by the leadership as it opens the gate to introducing reform and change through institutional and constitutional channels. During the elections, al-Oudah visited several candidates, and supported this political development

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in Saudi Arabia; calling people to participate in the elections but to be realistic in their expectations. It was hoped the electoral system would include the Saudi Council of Consultation, to meet the transition and changes being experienced by consciousness and realism, and to encourage people to participate in positive work, as the electoral sphere helps establish productive discussion and dialogue.13 In August 2005, in a TV programme broadcast by the Saudi Islamic Satellite of al-Majd, a private organization, al-Oudah appealed to King Abdullah to introduce reforms in Saudi Arabia, and suggested the necessity of the Saudi Monarch choosing a suitable team to represent the Saudi people. It was also suggested that the Monarchy should not bow to external pressure in speeding up political reform, and should reactivate the royal pardon to include political prisoners such as Shaikh Sa’id Ibn Zu’air, Dr Abdullah al-Hamid, Dr Matruk al-Falih and Ali al-Dumini.14 The leadership’s strategy of maintaining an appeasement approach towards the Monarchy, has underlined similarities, in this particular strategy, between the leadership and other Saudi domestic Islamic trends. The result might be that the contemporary Saudi Islamism’s discourse can be accused, by new generation Islamic youth and others, of not tackling the real problems Saudi society experiences, although the discourse speaks about al-usul [Islamic juristic fundamental issues]. This creates pressure on the leadership and other Saudi Islamic movements to take up the Saudi masses’ cause, directly and tangibly, and the necessity of speaking about practical problems and concerns, including political issues. Al-Oudah again briefly addressed the issue of reform in an article introduced by goodwill towards the new King and hoped that the new King could lead change and political reform.15

The context of external factors The leadership’s policy is likely to be influenced by external factors, and the policies of certain players in the region, such the United States, Iran, Israel and the Gulf states, which causes the leadership to approach the Monarchy. The US policy towards the Monarchy, in particular, and in the region, in general, is important towards understanding elements in the leadership’s policy. Within this framework, or insight, the United States, as has been seen or understood by the leadership, has been developing sanctions, or applying pressure, against Saudi Arabia, to influence the country, as observed in various political, economic, military, security and religious matters. The political form is the collective US political pressure on the Monarchy as being responsible, directly or indirectly, for the attack of September 11, 2001. US media and officials criticized, attacked and threatened Saudi Arabia, and demanded the Saudi State and society be ‘liberalized’ and ‘democratized’. An official US delegation, visiting Saudi Arabia in January 2006, accused Saudi Arabia of mistreating their foreign labour force; a criticism

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refuted by the Saudi government.16 The municipal elections that took place during the first half of 2005, and the participation of Saudi women, for the first time, in the elections of the Chamber of Commerce of the Saudi eastern province in February 2006,17 were positive Saudi responses to US pressure and an adjustment that can help the Monarchy move towards democracy, although under Saudi conditions and consequences. The economic form, which also has political elements, comes from US attempts to link the smaller Gulf Cooperative Council (GCC) States (Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, UAE and Oman), separately from Saudi Arabia, to the United States economic structure through economic agreements and treaties, which could be developed against Saudi Arabia at a later date. Since 2004, there have been commercial, and economic, negotiations between the United States and these States to establish free trade zones in the GCC States. The free trade zones will benefit US products by direct access to the GCC markets, allowing a strong competitive position. The GCC States’ attempts to establish this form of economic and commercial agreements have not been without domestic challenge which perceives these as a US hegemonic ploy.18 Perceptions indicate the US economic plan, or certain codes in this plan, are likely to be at the expense of the GCC States’ sovereignty, and at the expense of the integrative and complementary economy of the GCC States, which includes Saudi Arabia. The military and security forms, which also have a political dimension, are illustrated by the US concern for maintaining military/logistic bases, networks and foundations in the GCC States and Iraq. Through this, the United States could directly weaken, threaten or intervene in Saudi Arabia. American difficulties in Iraq, facing Iraqi resistance and domestic violence, means that the United States finds it difficult to continue pursuing its military and security aims in Iraq, and faces increasing challenges in this matter. The GCC States mentioned are a strong alternative. The religious form refers to the US accusation against Saudi Arabia and Islam, that ‘Wahhabism’ is responsible for the attack of September 11, 2001, and calling on the Monarchy to change its religious basis. As a collective Saudi response to the US intervention on Saudi religious elements, ‘Wahhabism’ has, increasingly, become a ‘national symbol’ linked to the Saudi identity, which can help bring the Monarchy and the reformist leadership together. The leadership maintains linkages to both nationalism and Wahhabism. Al-Haras al-Watani (official magazine of the Saudi National Guard) interviewed al-Oudah in December 2004, where he discussed nationalism as part of the Islamic discourse, as long as nationalism maintains justice, equality and the dignity of humanity, whereas ‘Wahhabism’ is a name given by opponents or neutralists to Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s movement. (This interview is also seen as a sign of state legitimacy given to al-Oudah.) The movement is an Islamic reformist experience which can do right or wrong, and the Monarchy does not oblige people to believe in Wahhabism, as such, but in Islam. Al-Oudah asserted, ‘we [which could mean himself or the country]

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hold fast to any da’wah [Islamic call] which maintains the right understanding of kitab and sunnah [the Holy Quran and the Prophetic practice].’19 Al-Omar considers that criticizing, or seeking to undermine, Wahhabism harms Islam, harms the Saudi Monarchy, and harms Saudi Arabia as an Islamic State, which is the outcome of Muhammad al-Wahhab’s Islamic movement, with the Saudi State a political Islamic achievement.20 Iraq has become a wound that can harm Saudi security if the United States and Iran are able to build up or maintain their hegemonies, independently or collectively, in Iraq. In developing an Iraqi regime oriented by the United States, or an Iraqi regime directed, or influenced, by Iran in which Shiites gain power, the Saudi Monarchy will be subject to intervention. The Monarchy, as an accepted Sunni Islamic power, and the reformist leadership, as a Sunni Islamic reformist and scholarly body, can identify their common interest vis-à-vis threats posed to the Sunni structure, which can be internal or external, and linked to security elements. The Sunni structure includes the whole system, or way of life, based on, or influenced by, the Sunni belief, either in Saudi Arabia, or outside the Monarchy. For example, the bombing of Samarra’s al-Askari shrine in Iraq, on Wednesday 22 February 2006, destroyed one of the holiest Shiite sites. The Iraqi Shiite anger, reaction and retaliation to the blast targeted various Iraqi Sunni Mosques which were either destroyed or burned. A number of Sunni Iraqis were attacked, tortured or killed. The Saudi Imam of the Holy Mosque of Makkah, in his Friday speech of 24 February 2006, gave support to the Sunni in Iraqis and strongly condemned the Iraqi Shiite attacks against Iraqi Sunnis.21 Al-Oudah warned of developing civil war in Iraq which could bring disaster not only to Iraq, but also to the whole region and to the Islamic world.22 Al-Omar’s Internet home page, www.almoslim.net, reported the event as a clear plan against Sunni Iraqis, who lead the resistance in Iraq against foreign occupation. The attack on the Shiite shrine aimed at creating a domestic Shiite–Sunni conflict, so the Sunni Iraqi resistance movement would be weakened by a new war front instead of concentrating on fighting, or resisting, the foreign occupation.23 Here one can see the Monarchy, as presented in the official Friday speech, and the reformist leadership as united, with, at least, a tacit agreement towards the events in Iraq. Bringing the political and religious together, that is, building American Christian political conservatism or Iranian Shiite political influence in Iraq can lead to an Iraqi government or Iraqi domestic alliances which is likely to be seen by the leadership, or the Monarchy or other Sunnis, as seeking to undermine Sunni Islam in the region, which includes the Saudi Monarchy (as an accepted Sunni Islamic political entity), and the Saudi Sunni Islamic community. This has the potential for a tacit or a de facto American–Iranian alliance in Iraq, seeking empowerment of the Shiite community, linking Iraqi ‘new liberal’24 powers, or trends, not only against the Iraqi Sunni Muslims, mostly Arab, but also against Saudi Arabia as a traditional Sunni Islamic power in the Middle East. Western-allied Middle Eastern governments, such

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as Jordan, criticized Iranian-Shiites as seeking to build their hegemony in Iraq. King Abdullah of Jordan warned of a growing Shiite crescent in the region, starting from Iran, going through Iraq, and reaching the GCC States, including the Saudi Monarchy. In addition, Egyptian President Husni Mubarak commented on Iran’s intervention in Iraq, which has a de facto civil war. He pointed out that Shiite’s, who are spreading in the region, give loyalty to Iran.25 These comments from an influential Arab authority indicates that Iran is being recognized as a threat in the region at Arab state level, and by Sunni Islamic movements or Sunni conservative trends in the region. Later Mubarak adjusted his statement, which had caused Shiite anger in the region, by clarifying that he did not question the Shiite’s loyalty to their countries.26 The apparent development of a US–Iranian alliance in Iraq, seeking to empower Shiites, follows the American–Iranian alliance in Afghanistan in 2001–2002 where Iran played a crucial role in supporting the US forces against the Afghani Taliban government.27 Shiite-dominated Iran seems to be seeking domination, or influence, in the Arab world. This is observed in the influential Iranian role, for example, 1

2 3 4

in Iraq, a shattered country, which, by July 2006, has experienced violence, terror and a full-scale sectarian war led by Shiite militias and Shiite-run government forces against Sunnis,28 an influx of Iranians are seeking demographic change;29 in Syria through the long-standing alliance between the Republican Iran and the Syrian Shiite-Alawites-Ba‘thist ruling government; in Lebanon, through Syria and the Shiite Hezbollah, which is financed, armed and trained by Iran; in the Gulf region, including the Monarchy, where Shiite minorities are ideologically linked to, and, quite possibly, influenced by Iran.

The Monarchy and the reformist leadership have taken a position on the outbreak of the Israeli–Hezbollah war on 13 July 2006 when the Monarchy, although recognizing the legitimacy of resistance, blamed Hezbollah’s ‘irresponsible action’, in kidnapping Israeli soldiers, which has led to a destructive war that undermines Arab achievements.30 This position angered Syria,31 but Egypt, Jordan and Bahrain took a similar position to the Monarchy.32 The Monarchy’s position reflects deep and growing Saudi suspicions that Hezbollah acts as a proxy for Iran. Hezbollah exploits, or uses, the Palestinian cause to obtain legitimacy and influence in the Middle East and in the entire Islamic world, both for Iran and Hezbollah, and to serve Hezbollah’s domestic political aims. When the war escalated the Monarchy criticized US President George Bush for not making efforts to end the war, yet renewed its blame on Hezbollah for causing this war.33 This seems to have created a division between Saudi Arabia and Syria. After the war ended, based on the UN-brokered cease-fire between Hezbollah and Israel, on Monday 14 August 2006, the Syrian President, Bashar al-Assad, delivered a speech

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on 15 August, in which he severely attacked Arab states critical of Hezbollah during the war,34 although Hezbollah’s leader Hassan Nasrallah, later, admitted his mistaken strategy in starting this war with Israel.35 This official Saudi objection to Hezbollah’s military act is understood by the leadership. Al-Omar, who analysed the event within a global–regional framework, speaks of a growing feeling that a de facto or tacit harmony of interests between the United States and Iran, which seek hegemony in the region. These players’ struggle for power and influence is at the expense of the Sunni world and interests.36 Al-Omar’s homepage, almoslim, notes certain specific points in dealing with the war: 1 2 3 4

Hezbollah is a Shiite party. Hezbollah against Israel acts on its own agenda which differs from the Sunni agenda. Normally, Muslims should be happy when they see Israel resisted in Lebanon or Gaza, but this should not hide the sectarian reality of Hezbollah, while its allies in Iraq massacre Sunnis. Hezbollah is not fighting the cause of Sunni Muslims, either in Palestine or elsewhere. This party is an instrument of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, and directly acts to serve the Iranian agenda, especially where Iran faces increasing Western pressure about its nuclear power.37

Al-Oudah recognized the legitimacy of resisting an occupation, yet questioned the consequences and timing of Hezbollah’a act of kidnapping Israeli soldiers.38 Al-Oudah stated, through the MBC, that deep and fundamental differences with Hezbollah and the Shiites exist, but al-Oudah said that this is not the time for disputes or dissention, as the greatest enemy is ‘the Zion criminals’ who do not, in their aggression, distinguish between children and fighters.39 Then al-Oudah issued a public statement, through the media, describing the war as Israeli terror and stating that the US government was siding with this terror.40 This indicates a growing Sunni unease, at State and Islamic movement levels, towards Shiite Iran and its proxies’ role in the region. Saudi Arabia has been appeasing, or containing, Iran and certain threatening elements posed by Iran. Within this threatening context, the Iranian nuclear programme comes as a related element posing a threat to Saudi security, especially where Saudi Arabia has not built up their nuclear power to balance the Iranian nuclear programme. Saudi Arabia officially opposed the programme by calling on Iran to stop seeking to become a nuclear power.41 The Egyptian government took a similar position, and stated it does not accept the emergence of a nuclear military power in the region.42 On 9 April 2006, in a speech in the city of Mashhad the Iranian President Ahmadinejad announced that Iranian experts had succeeded in enriching uranium,43 and later he stated that Iran had became a great power.44 This declaration caused concern in the region including Saudi Arabia, and many requested Iran to maintain

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peace in the region.45 The Iranian government tried to reduce tension by sending, during April 2006, delegations to the Gulf States, explaining that the nuclear programme is civic and does not aim to endanger Gulf security.46 The GCC States47 are officially allies under the umbrella of their membership of the GCC organization. Common features are various and important, including the type of political system (monarchy), religion (Islam, Sunni Islam), language (Arabic), social system (Arab tribes and leading families) and a common history and tradition. Yet border problems, which can be related to controlling oil and gas fields, along with the tacit ruling familial competition, or struggle, remain an obstacle. In particular, this is seen in Saudi relations with Qatar and UAE, which creates tension, and which can be exploited by external players. Saudi Arabia, for example, remains an obstacle to the Qatari economic project of supplying gas to Kuwait through undersea pipelines which must go through Saudi maritime borders, which Saudi Arabia refused according to Qatari sources.48 The Saudi Monarchy is increasingly suspicious of alliances developing, or a tacit alliance or axis between these GCC States, or some of them, and the US government, to possibly be directed against the Monarchy. Linking some GCC State to the United States, against Saudi Arabia, has the potential to create problems, taking into account these States’ fear, or concern, either real or mythical, of Saudi ‘hegemony’ in the Gulf region which determines, to an extent, their political behaviour. The Monarchy tries to counter these forms of alliances by containment, appeasement and diplomacy, either towards the United States or these Gulf States. The Saudi government asserts it maintains an Arab identity, and it criticizes Arab states which form relationships, or alliances, with non-Arab countries at the expense of inter-Arab relationships.49 This reflects Saudi concern over a possible alliance between some Gulf States and the United States of Amercia, and a possible Syrian–Iranian alliance. The Israeli–Palestinian conflict has not yet been resolved, and uncertainty is its main characteristic. The Saudi government took part in the Madrid conference on the peace process between Israel and Arab governments (1992), but, at that time, the leadership opposed the conference and its results, and the reformist leadership faced difficulties with the Saudi government because of this opposition. The failure of the conference to solve the Palestinian problem brings the Saudi Monarchy and the reformist leadership together, with Israel, and its nuclear capability, remaining a threat in the region. Within the context of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic movement, remains an important factor influencing others, including the reformist leadership. Hamas’ recent political achievements enhances its position in the Middle Eastern and global spheres. Hamas’ important victory in the Palestinian parliamentary elections in January 2006 gives Hamas 76 of the 132 seats in the chamber, with the ruling Fatah party trailing on 43 seats. Hamas’ policy revolves around jihad, either military or civic, versus Israel, with Hamas’ jihad an attractive concept, which has the

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leadership’s support, which, in turn, enhances, or contributes to, the leadership’s legitimacy in the eyes of Muslims. One Hamas leader stated, during a Hamas movement visit to Moscow in March 2006 on official invitation from the Russian government, that Hamas is a Palestinian, National, Arabic and Islamic movement, with an important influence in the region, and states need to develop a relationship with Hamas, if these states want to develop a relationship with the Arab and Islamic spheres.50 Nassir al-Omar published an article immediately after Hamas’ political victory and underlined the following points: 1 2 3

4

Jihad is a structure towards solving the Palestinian problem and fighting Israel. Hamas’ achievement confirms the Islamic movements’ popularity, where non-Islamic organizations, such as the Palestinian Authority [PA], lack public support or have much less support than Islamic movements. Hamas has maintained internal solidarity, not engaged in conflicts with other Islamic movements, avoided conflict with the PA and not operated militarily outside Palestine, with jihad exclusively limited in Palestine. These elements confirm Hamas’ wise policy which needs to be maintained. Hamas should maintain jihad as a structure, and political and other civil performances should support this structure.51

Safar al-Hawali issued a statement supporting Hamas as a legitimate Palestinian government which has been facing, since its victory, financial sanctions besides other forms of external sanctions and pressures. Al-Hawali requested Muslims to give their zakah [almsgiving] to Palestinians.52 Hamas’ victory, the reformist leadership’s vision of the victory and other sympathetic positions towards Hamas by the Saudi Islamic public place pressure on the Monarchy, as an official Islamic power, not to be less ‘Islamic’ than Hamas, either in serving the Palestinian cause or in applying Islamic policies – otherwise, the Monarchy’s Islamic legitimacy may be questioned. The Monarchy officially received Hamas leaders in March 2006, indicating support, or recognition of, Hamas’ victory. The Monarchy, facing external pressure, and tending to build domestic solidarity, is more likely to be linked with, or identified by, Islam. One can thus see improved opportunities for bringing the Monarchy and reformist leadership together, and this partly determines the leadership’s discourse and performance. In practical terms, and towards balancing these growing challenges, the Monarchy has taken certain steps, including: ●



Identifying its interests with domestic Islamic forces, such as the reformist leadership, and tolerating Islamic activities in the country. Continuing developing Saudi internal national dialogue under the auspices of the King Abd al-Aziz Centre for National Dialogue, established in

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August 2003, (with the reformist leadership, in the person of al-Oudah, involved in this dialogue), which attempts to bring various Saudi trends, including Saudi Shiites and liberals, together against external opposition. Identifying the policies, or role, of external, regional and domestic players, such as the United States, Israel, Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, the Iraqi Shiite-run regime and violent Saudi domestic groups as responsible for uncertainty, violence, instability or terror. Enhancing the global Islamic position of the Monarchy. In December 2005, Saudi Arabia organized the Exceptional Islamic Conference in the Holy City of Makkah at which most Islamic countries were represented. This Islamic Summit, in an official declaration: – – – – –





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Maintains the Islamic identity of the Islamic ummah. Points out various challenges, and internal and external threats facing the Islamic ummah. Calls for common Islamic work and unity in facing challenges and threats. Notes the problem of domestic terror, and recognizes that terrorism is a global phenomenon, and requires global efforts to control. Notes Islamic causes in Palestine, Iraq, Kashmir and Cyprus, and calls for a solution with justice to these problems.53

Recognizing the civil and productive role of Islam, and that hostility towards Islam is an act of racism. Forming collaborations or alliances with non-Western global powers.

In January–February 2006, King Abdullah made an important Asian tour and visited China, India, Malaysia and Pakistan, resulting in a series of agreements, mainly economic.54 In August 2006, King Abdullah made a historic official visit to Turkey, the second visit since 1966 by a Saudi King to Turkey, resulting in a series of commercial, economic and technical treaties.55 These can enhance Saudi productivity or output, which can improve economic and living conditions for Saudis. This, in particular, meets the reformist leadership’s vision of diversifying Saudi international relations, and not being reliant on the West. Improving domestic living conditions helps reduce tension in Saudi Arabia. The leadership has to balance domestic struggle, seeking change and reform, with the necessity of maintaining domestic solidarity vis-à-vis external threats or challenges. Threats are posed to Islamic features in the Monarchy, State and society, and to the Sunni structure, and the leadership sees the necessity of adjusting its political position to emphasize ‘civil’ political work that can reduce the level of tension not only in Saudi politics, but also in Middle Eastern and world politics. A corporate spirit of unity, solidarity and containment of the American threat or wars in the Islamic world and violence or wars caused by regional entities inspires the leadership. Middle Eastern perceptions of an existence of American threat to the region

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can be better understood through Barbara Victor’s analysis of the increasing religious or Evangelical Christians’ influence on the current US presidency that intervenes militarily wherever Islam threatens Western values, which is seen as anti-Islam sentiment.56

The context of the Islamic cause The leadership plays an important role in the context of the Islamic cause, the Islamic movements, trends and institutions [official or non-official], Islamic communities and ‘ulama. The leadership is basically concerned with empowering, and maintaining, these Islamic elements and enhancing their operations. Despite Islamic elements becoming popular in the Middle East, politically speaking, Islamic trends are in a subordinate, or peripheral, position in state systems. The leadership’s policy here is important and functional. In March 2005, on the al-Jazeera Channel, al-Oudah commented on the role of fatwa [legal and juristic opinion] and the role of ‘alim [scholar] in the society. He noted that religion is the greatest component, or essence, of the ummah, and the fatawa [plural of fatwa, juristic opinions] is part of this. Forming fatwa should be exclusively by ‘ulama and specialists. The ‘ulama maintains shari‘ah and the fatwa should be composed in an objective manner. The religious institution is a most important civil society institution and protects the rights of powerless people. The religious institution should neither oppose, nor submit to the ruling authority, and the religious institution either in Saudi Arabia or in the Islamic world should be independent.57 Al-Oudah emphasized the establishment of an independent supreme institution for all Muslim ‘ulama as marji‘iyah [referential],58 with this institution independent of the ruling authority. In October 2005, on the MBC Channel, al-Oudah clarified his reformist vision dealing with the performance of Islamic movements which are facing various difficulties. He called for internal reform through objective and functional practice, and through self-criticism, revision and reforming the movement’s interrelationships. Understanding changing consequences is necessary, with Islamic projects and activities needing revision and checking, as human effort can lead to mistakes. He calls Islamic movements to transparency, to be tolerant, and not to be isolated, but to participate in their societies. The relationship between Islamic movements and their governments should neither be submissive nor should it be opposed.59 Al-Oudah linked the social and political factors, and expressed concern that people tend to negatively deal with others when they have had a disagreement. Such behaviour is a result of being under totalitarian rule. Nassir al-Omar, approached by Islamic voices asking what they should do, confirmed institutionalism and professionalism as an Islamic performance. The Islamic ummah needs specialists in many fields: information, politics, economics, finance, commerce, health and engineering, and as al-mujahid al-murabit [solider, frontier guardian].60

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The question of power, violence and jihad The leadership is seen, and acts, as an Islamic civil society force, which does not seek change and reform through violence. But the question of using power for change and reform, jihad, revolution, violence and terror61 remains, and is increasingly being articulated. This needs to be explored through the discourse and performance of the leadership. As an introduction to the subject, the concept of jihad, in particular, which is at its core, needs to be explored. In fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], the word ‘jihad’ is a term which has a specific meaning used by jurists or scholars, as they also use other words that meet the meaning of jihad, or part of it, such as fighting, war and invasion. Linguistically, the word jihad is derived from the word jahd [effort] that refers to hardship, and from other words, such as juhd [capacity, ability, capability, power and strength]. So the word ijtihad means spending effort and enduring hardship, intellectually and in thought, while the word jahad refers to a physical struggle in war. The word jihad has four basic meanings: 1 2 3 4

Physical struggle against an enemy, which refers to war. Jihad by word, which refers to thoughtful and intellectual resistance. Jihad by work, which refers to efforts applied in life to direct Islamic-based behaviours. Jihad by money, which refers to spending money to support Islamic causes.

In the Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] there are different levels of jihad: by nafs [soul, spirit, psyche, essence] which refers to efforts to learn Islam, calling people to Islam and to endure hardship, or jihad al-Shaytan which refers to opposing and resisting satanic insinuation and temptation, and physically struggling against a visible enemy. There are terminologies related to the word jihad which refer to its meanings, such as fighting, war, ribat [garrison, military post; permanent military installation, to take up fighting positions], ghazu [invasion, attack], and its subject ghazi [invader, attacker], referring to the consequence of seeking the enemy in their territory.62 There are related concepts of jihad where the war can be jihad al-daf‘ [defensive war – when a Muslim country is attacked by a non-Muslim country],63 for example, the contemporary Palestinian or Iraqi struggle, or jihad al-talap [war or military operations on enemy territory]. Al-Hawali, before he fell ill, was interviewed by the Islamic satellite channel Iqra,64 where he discussed the question of power, jihad, violence and terrorism. He tried to give a balanced view on the matter, and his view needs to be briefly examined and summarized through the following aspects.65 Al-Hawali asserted the necessity of introducing the subject of power and violence through a general discussion of a terminological problem in this concern.

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Political realism The subject of violence or terrorism suffers from a terminological difficulty, which can be seen in global thought, and also in Islamic thought. There are certain questions: What does the concept of violence mean? What does the concept of terrorism mean? Who had/has structured the terminology? Who defines the terminology? Who put the terminology into circulation? How is terminology understood in different environments? This is a crucial problem which has not been solved . . .

The terminology of this problem is confused, and players tend to pursue their political goals, influence or hegemony within this confusion or chaos. The terminological concern is a normal difficulty, but, it becomes polemic in the light of a massive global reality, which uses, makes or re-makes terms, and then functions, or circulates them, haphazardly, to the extent of deceiving oppressed nations, which cannot resist. In fact, this terminological polemic is a violent psychological war, which has been launched by arrogant oppressive powers against al-mustadh‘afun [oppressed nations], and, particularly, against this Islamic nation, which represents a competent counterpart, or parallel civilization, to the west . . . Islam is a religion of justice, and terrorism does not represent Islam. Yet, Islam permits the use of legitimate power for change and reform, but the difficulty is seen in the method of practising this Islamic Law, which is subject to people’s experiences. Islamic societies experience violence, and should identify State violence as being against Islamic trends. Islam condemns violence and brings justice to all, and we do not agree with al-ghulu wa al-tataruf [extremism], which can also be rhetoric. The terrorist activities which took place in Saudi Arabia are condemned, and whoever carried on these activities are condemned. Yet Islam permits the use of legitimate power for change and reform, but the problem comes in the application of this legitimate method, normally subject to people’s understanding and practices. Historically and in contemporary times, the phenomenon of violence and tyranny occurs in the Islamic World, which reflect people experience and not Islam. This phenomenon is seen through the practice of oppressive rulers against their peoples, and also through the behaviour, or style, of writers and ‘ulama. There is violence among us as Muslims. Islamic work and movements have also experienced violence. But, in many cases, the Islamists have been victims of violence, tyranny, dictatorships of governments and political regimes in the Islamic world, by seculars and totalitarian parties . . . These regimes removed the role of shari‘ah [Islamic Law] in Muslim societies, which is an act of violence.

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Al-Hawali holds that the West and totalitarian regimes in the Islamic world are responsible for the violence which has taken place. Western civilization was based on violence, exported to us as totalitarianism, which came from the west in the form of Fascism, Nazism, Communism and Socialism. During the colonial period, the Islamic movements, not the secular parties, led legitimate resistance and jihad, but not violence, against the colonial powers, which were not able to control the Islamic World because of this Islamic struggle . . . This was a legitimate struggle against the occupiers. Yet after liberation, secular governments controlled the Islamic countries, and the mujahidin [fighters for Islamic cause] were imprisoned. So extremism occurred in the Islamic World. In Europe, for example, the situation was just the opposite, resistance movements which led the struggle against occupation, aggression or a foreign role, were rewarded, and thus led and governed their nations . . . Al-Hawali pointed out the contemporary core policy, which he believes in, where Western hegemony in the Islamic world should be resisted or confronted. These consequences of internal Islamic struggle are almost finished [al-Hawali meant direct confrontations in the Islamic world between governments and Islamic movements, such as during President al-Nasser’s regime in Egypt (1952–1970), and similar violent experiences]. Yet the concern now is to face or counter Western power, civilization and terrorism. I was against sending youth to Afghanistan, during the USSR occupation, but during the 1980s, the US financed the Afghanis because their struggle was against the USSR. So, if the Afghanis are terrorists, the US had been the biggest financier of terrorism, but if they were good and just fighters, the US served justice. The principle of justice should be applied towards the enemy, even during resistance and confrontation. Violence polemic is a complicated issue, and both Muslims and non-Muslims experience this polemic. We apply a just policy towards the enemy, although the enemy is tyrannical. The tendency towards violence is a diseased polemic and a deviation where each person, in any country, or nation or time, can be violent. In the Qur’an there is the necessity to remove reasons for deviations in morality and behaviour, which leads to aggression on others. Our ‘ulama, such as Ibn al-Qayyim, before the Western psychologists, noted three motivations that lead people to violence: 1) shirk [polytheism] 2) irritation or anger, and 3) eroticism. These three elements come in this Qur’anic verse [Those who invoke not, with Allah,

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Political realism any other god, nor slay such life as Allah has made sacred except for just cause, nor commit fornication; (25.68)]. A complementary base for understanding the tendency towards violence is that we, as Muslims, are human beings, so we experience or practise violence, mistakes, deviations and aggression, while others do the same or even more. The goodness in our Islamic nation is more than the badness, or evil, but why do non-Islamic powers accuse al-mustadh‘afun [the oppressed], especially Muslims, of being violent?

The West has experienced violence, and the colonial period had many acts of violence. The violence polemic is historical. A deep problem exists in the Western psychology, or mentality, which goes back to the Greeks, the Romans, the oppressive history of Church, the modern power which started with the religious reforms, the French Revolution, and then the current reality we are witnessing. We note, in reading this Western or European history, there is racism, arrogance and speaking evil of others as mistakes. In earlier times, the West perceived the world as divided into two kinds, Romans and barbarians, then came the Western conquests, then Church rule during which much violence was committed, so the world protested, and then Europe revolted against the Church and the role of religion towards secularism. Many experts in the fields of violence and terrorism, point out that terrorism was started by Jacobins, after the French Revolution. From this historical point, characteristics of terrorism started taking root, and spread. Then the most dangerous period started, although European countries were small in size, they were able to colonize the world through geographical discovery and colonial movements. The question is why does the west have a tendency for violence? Al-Hawali referred to Noam Chomsky’s concepts in discussing the subject of the Western tendency towards violence. The Western psychology or mentality is polemic with a struggle between just values, seen in the West through human rights organizations and others who call, and fight, for justice, against the reality of Western tyranny and oppression. It could be the historical European religious monasticism contained the roots of violence, from the time Europe destroyed monasticism, with the result just the opposite; an excessive tendency towards sex, money and retaliation. This is a difficulty, explained by a Western writer Noam Chomsky who thinks this Western tendency towards violence is deep rooted. Chomsky noted that the US was the only country in the world accused by the International Court of Justice of being a terrorist State. The US views wars as ways for creating

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or activating State development and economy. So the wars on Muslims reflect this deep-rooted Western violence, which goes against its counterpart or opponent, the Islamic civilization. Al-Hawali put a direct and clear solution towards solving domestic violence in Saudi Arabia, through civic–civil means and not by security measures: The Afghani resistance movements experienced many internal difficulties, so when the Afghani liberation movement was completed, many people, who participated in jihad, returned home, or to their countries, but with a background of violence. Some returned to their normal life, some were attracted by violent groups and got involved in takfir [expiation, accusing Muslims of becoming non-Muslims]. Some were influenced by ‘ulama, and left the violent groups, and stopped believing the concept of takfir and violence. The ‘ulama’s dialogue with violent groups is a sound step towards solving the problem of terrorism. Only applying security measures in dealing with this problem will not solve it as the security measures have not been reaching ‘people who do and know’ [he might have meant the master-minds of terrorist activities in Saudi Arabia], but they reach even those who ‘do not know’. Reform in which Islamic movements are given opportunities for political participation is a critical step towards solving the violence polemic. Being Islamic or believing in Islamic ideals does not mean being involved in politics. The terrorist problem, is partly because political channels have been closed for Islamic groups in the Islamic World. In fact, many people just want to be mutadayinun [religious, good Muslims] and are not thinking of ‘opposition’ or being involved in Islamic political parties, or organizations, even though they have been oppressed. So, if this basic Islamic right to be mutadayin [singular of mutadayinun: religious, a good Muslim] is refused . . . violence might occur . . . . The ‘ulama and Muslim governments should take responsibility for solving the problem of terrorism, through dialogue and peaceful means; otherwise we will be facing tremendous crises. Then al-Hawali summarizes the subject of power, violence and terrorism by a careful balance between the role of external and internal factors in creating this polemic. I do not agree with the conspiracy theory which blames the problem of terrorism on external reasons, where the US, through its intelligence activities, seeks to provoke peoples against their governments [in the

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Political realism Islamic world]. Some of our officials, either in security, political or religious positions, try to prove they have done their duty, but because the terrorist problem came from outside, they say they cannot solve or control it. This is a pretext and a psychological trick. Some people would say, or claim, that we have good Islamic societies, which apply Islam, so the problem of terrorism is external and provoked. I do not agree and we need to be realistic. It might be that some of the events [terrorist events] in Arab countries were created by external powers to intervene, but we cannot apply this in all cases. Generalization can be a problem, and we are not societies of angels where we need an external devil to place other devils among us. We have had in our societies, hypocrites and criminals, who are ready to act, and our enemy seeks the opportunity to intervene.

The power, either in theory or practice, has to be linked to the question of organization. Here al-Hawali was approached via a question: In this country, and other Muslim countries . . . ‘ulama were excluded or their role dismissed, and, in some countries, Islamic structures were eliminated, and the gate for dialogue was closed. As a result, secret operations have started, with the question: Do ‘ulama of Islam support secret activities for change and reform? Al-Hawali answered the question, in a different way, by severe criticism of those governments in the Islamic world, claiming to be Muslim, fighting, or against, Islamic norms or laws. The problem is not the secret type of work. The problem comes when you have, for example, a Muslim woman’s veil forcefully pulled, or taken, off by police. When some countries, claiming to be Arab and Islamic, and, yes, without doubt they have a deep-rooted Islamic history, inspect or watch youths who attend prayer, bearded youths, and women attending circles for memorizing the Holy Qur’an. This is form of unprecedented despotism, even in some communist countries, and then we say that ‘there are some secret operations’. If secret operations deal with prayer or reading the Qur’an, they are welcome. Have we addressed, in our media, the problem of humiliating Islam, faith and religion to the degree that these basic religious practices must be prevented? When can the media protest? If some explosions occur and three Jews, or Germans, or French, are killed, the World will speak out about Islamic terrorism. Yet they [the World, or Arab and Islamic countries] do not protest those who use violence against people who pray or carry the Holy Qur’an. They [al-Hawali mostly means Arab and Islamic countries] fight/combat Allah, His Messenger, Islamic da‘wah, and coerce believers . . . I do not blame the Western media. Because, in any event, they are an enemy, but

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I blame Islamic media, which rushes to describe the situation as if we have a terror environment. If one violent accident occurred in countries, where tourism can be structured to the extent of having unlimited licentiousness, the talk will be about extremism, but how about nudism and licentiousness? Alcohol is being consumed, nudity clubs are being established, and tourists are given the right to sin and offend without being criticised, or restricted. We condemn these things. Patience, which is part of the civic–civil means for change and reform, should be maintained. But we want others to do so as well. I am not putting justifications for any tyranny, but as Islamic strivers, we should apply this Qur’anic method [certainly we would bear with patience your persecution of us; (14.12)]. So, do not be violent, but bear with patience the various forms of persecution which might come from people, government, family, work and others, and do not retaliate. Al-Hawali’s core elements were emphasized by al-Oudah. He countered the illegitimate ways of using power for change and reform and described violence in Saudi Arabia as fasad fi al-ardh [corruption on earth],66 made an analogy between Saudi violence and the violent consequences in Egypt during the 1990s, and in Algeria since 1991,67 and called for the violent groups to revise their violence policy towards civil work.68 He participated, along with other Islamic leaders from Islamic movement circles, or officials, in an Islamic conference against terrorism held in Egypt in August 2005, aimed at an Islamic plan to counter, contain or delegitimize terrorism in Islamic countries.69 Al-Oudah placed responsibility on Islamic governments for creating a sphere of violence in Muslim societies, as Muslim governments are totalitarian with comprehensive control, influence and hegemony over people, whereas they should enter dialogues with any opposition,70 and apply justice in their societies. He supported the Saudi Monarchy decision of forgiveness for violent groups, conditional on their stopping violent activities.71 Al-Oudah made an important effort to free journalists kidnapped in Iraq, and called on the kidnappers to free the journalists as an Islamic obligation. The kidnappers agreed.72 The leadership has seen jihad as a policy which can counter, contain or balance external threats. Al-Oudah sees physical power against the external as legitimate as long as it is used justly and legally, and considers a just war should bring peace and civilization.73 He condemned occupation and said that resisting and confronting an occupation is legitimate.74 Here al-Omar views the function of almujahid al-murabit [a solider, frontier guardian] as legitimate in seeking to protect the Islamic ummah.75 The leadership supports the use of physical power against occupying forces in Iraq. In November 2004, 26 leading Saudi ‘ulama, including the

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reformist leadership, issued an Open Letter [considered a fatwa or juristic opinion] to the Iraqi people, described as mujahid [carrying out jihad], calling on them for unity, cooperation, maintaining domestic solidarity and resisting the occupation, where jihad against occupiers is a duty on those able to do so. This form of jihad is called jihad al-daf‘ [self-defence, the act of prohibiting and preventing] and is legitimate against occupiers who are aggressors, where all religions have agreed on fighting them until they leave humiliated, and the laws recognize people’s legitimate right to resist occupation.76 The concept and elements of jihad are at the core of the leadership’s discourse and performance. Al-Oudah does not reject jihad as such, but he functionalizes and institutionalizes jihad through legality, rationality and civility. The leadership establishes an image of jihad in the following passage:77 Jihad is a word giving spirit and happiness. Yet it is subject to conceptual confusion and misunderstanding. The word jihad has been used in referring to blowing up institutions, destruction of buildings, killing of masses and spreading terror, so jihad is no longer guided by wise fiqh and opinion . . . Therefore there are certain questions in this situation: What is the correct concept of jihad? Is it necessary that jihad must mean either attack or defence? Is it possible that jihad aims to protect Islam from ‘aggression’ which goes beyond attack and defence? Is there a difference between: People who are actually engaged in fighting Muslims; so that war, or the potential, exists, with no contract, agreement, armistice or understanding to bring peace between them . . . ? People who do not fight Muslims, where contracts, and agreements between them and Muslims exist . . . Is obtaining capability considered a condition for jihad? What is this capability if fighting has become a duty for Muslims? Has jihad only become applicable to the battlefield? Is serving Islam, calling to Islam, spreading Islam on earth, reforming people’s conditions, which requires knowledge and sciences, now only gained through fighting? How correct are those who see physical jihad [fighting] as a duty for Muslims? Has the Islamic da‘wah been completed or do Islamic ummah still need da‘wah to guide its knowledge and work? What is our duty towards 80 per cent of people of the world who do not understand Islam or are ignorant about Islam, or only know Islam through its enemies?

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Do we suffer a lack of qualified and knowledgeable people and experts in various fields such as economy, information, administration, medicine, geology, maritime, space . . . ? Is Muslim suffering ended by establishing a declared Islamic state? How can we handle the psychology, or personality, which has a tendency for physical jihad; wanting quick results, but ignoring the form of jihad with fruits which come later? Is it just when we distinguish between those who practise physical jihad in battlefields, such as in Palestine and other places which deserve support, and the situation of those who start the fighting in Muslim countries? Are people of Islamic trends confident in their Islamic achievements and the correctness of their methods, and that they should not hurry? The Qur’an states [Therefore patiently persevere, as did (all) apostles of inflexible purpose; and be in no haste about the (Unbelievers) (46.35)] What is the purpose of Islam? Killing people or succouring them? Is da‘wah the main purpose of Islam? What is the structure of our relationship with others; war or peace? If da‘wah is the structure, how can a call to war be managed? What is the position of da‘wah? What is the position of war? Taking for granted that both cases have their position in Islam?

Summary This chapter examines the reformist leadership’s discourse and performance since mid-2003 to mid-2006, where the leadership has maintained their appeasement policy and developed an ‘Islamic political realism’ as a method, by: ●



● ●



recognizing chaotic situations in world politics, and its Middle Eastern dimensions where domestic and regional violence, terror and wars are developing, as these realties create limitations and challenges facing Islamic trends; continuing and maintaining their post-prison policy of al-mudafa‘a, indicating a gradual reduction of confrontation, conflict and tension with the Monarchy, as an appeasement policy, indicating a lower-risk political struggle; accepting the Monarchy legitimacy and working within this structure; presenting the leadership as an Islamic civil society force with peaceful means applied for change and reform, although the question of using power towards change and reform remains legitimate in certain situations, and at certain times; developing a form of diversity within the reformist leadership, but maintaining general unity and solidarity;

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Political realism questioning the organizational structure of the reformist leadership; whether to become an ‘organization’ or ‘system’, or just provide intellectual leadership is a challenge, or dilemma, facing the leadership; the reformist leadership along with other Islamic bodies, such as The Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, have become a leading Sunni Islamic force in the region; focusing on external factors, but influencing Saudi domestic affairs, which have become increasingly important in determining the leadership’s actions; analyzing the power, violence and terror polemic as a complicated issue to which external and internal factors contribute.

There is an adjustment in the leadership’s policy, with the leadership continuing with their political behaviour; neither incorporated by the State, nor acting violently against it. The leadership has adjusted its ‘educational/ social/enlightening’ approach to an ‘educational/social/political/enlightening’ role, with the ‘political factor’ incorporated, but mainly with an external dimension, and ‘Islamic political education’ where the leadership puts forward lessons and guides which contain criticism and call for self-reform. This dynamism allows the leadership to maintain its position vis-à-vis the authority. The three scholars are countering terrorism. Terminological difficulties, dealing with the concepts of violence, terrorism and power, remain, which highlights the complexity of the terror problem. The leadership notes that violence, as a phenomenon, is experienced in the Islamic world. But the West and Muslim States, or governments, hold responsibility for violence occurring in the Islamic world or elsewhere. Therefore, the leadership views the question of using power for change and reform, or jihad, as legitimate as long as it is applied justly, and towards countering, containing and balancing an external threat, which can be in the form of occupation, (as in Iraq or Palestine). An occupation or aggression on the hurumat [sanctities] of Muslims or Islamic ummah should not be tolerated, based on Islamic, human and international laws. The leadership’s discourse and performance can be understood within the framework of the contemporary, and continuing, Islamic revolution, referring to Islamic movements, trends and tendencies in society, and the desire to apply Islamic Law in public life and society. These movements work to gain power and influence in the region, with most of the revolution within the civic–civil realm. Contemporary movements towards ‘Islamization’, and ‘political Islam’ in particular, date back to 1928, with the establishment of the Muslim Brotherhood which structured the Arab/Islamic strife for change and reform based on Islam, as societies and many States need to return to Islam. Here Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Movement, has won an important victory in the Palestinian parliamentary elections in January 2006. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood made important gains in Egypt’s parliamentary

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elections in December 2005, when the movement won 76 seats and is on track to control 20–25 per cent of Egypt’s 454-member parliament, which will increase the Islamic presence in the Egyptian Parliament. Within this developing Middle Eastern Islamic sphere, the reformist leadership has had a continuing Islamic role of influencing the Saudi State and society; an influence which goes beyond Saudi affairs.

13 Conclusion

Synopsis This book is concerned with the actions, and their discourse in its wider context, of the contemporary Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist leadership,1 and their important nashat islami ‘ilmi wa siyasi [Islamic intellectual and political activities] since 1981 to mid-2006, and addresses the question of political change and reform in Saudi Arabia. The leadership’s discourse and performance are addressed in domestic, regional and global contexts. In concluding the book, the author summarizes the reformist leaders’ actions since the 1980s under Summary of Actions, and, in Discourse and Actions Defined, redefines the attitude of the reformist leadership from the viewpoint of: ● ● ● ● ●

al-‘aqidah [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief]; Islamic rationality; al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy]; organization or system; other literature.

A book of this nature would not be complete without discussing possible future implications, and consequences, of the reformist leadership’s role in Saudi Arabia, and the part their discourse might play in future developments, addressed under Determining the Future.

Summary of actions The leadership is comprised of three new generation ‘ulama: Safar al-Hawali, Salman al-Oudah and Nassir al-Omar, who have sought political change and reform through accommodation, and not through revolutionary means, with Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence] in general, and fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] in particular, seen as key factors illuminating their actions and vision. The question of using power, jihad and

Conclusion 199 revolution, for change and reform remains, and is increasingly articulated, with the leadership dealing with this issue through a legal, juristic and politically realistic framework. The reformist leadership’s intellectual and political Islamic activities include a peaceful struggle for political change and reform, pursued on the basis of a mafhum fiqhi [juristic concept] which is al-mudafa’a [dimension of countering].2 The author has taken this concept from the discourse of the reformist leadership and other linked Islamic political juristic discourses. It comes from the word dafa‘a [to push, pay over to, to repel, drive away, avert], indicating a civic–civil jihad aiming to counter, or reduce, mafsadah [corruption] and obtain maslahah [interests] as defined by Islamic Law. Here the quest for political change and reform means to achieve, or maintain, the Islamic character of state and society in maslahah shar‘iyah [law-based Islamic interests]. In this respect, al-mudafa‘a implies a dynamic political movement and actions; a continuous striving process and a balancing and flexible adjustment to the environment, without undermining ‘awasim al-din wa muhakimatuh [juristic Sunni Islamic foundations and structures]. The policy of mudafa‘a has created a common foundation for the activities of the three ‘ulama as a flexible and dynamic body, able to adjust their activities when these are hindered so as to keep the question of political change and reform alive, either directly or indirectly, and to avoid tension and confrontation with the ruling authority. The 1980s During the 1980s, the three scholars had not yet emerged as a clear reformist leadership. While studying and later teaching at universities, al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar set forth an intellectual foundation, underlining their juristic Sunni Islamic studies. They established a body of juristic Sunni Islamic discourses, with the following activities: ●





Countering opposing thoughts, ideologies, and concepts. Countering secularism and al-irja [postponement] in Islamic thought is a crucial intellectual foundation in the actions of the reformist leadership. Explaining Islam in a comprehensive way, as a system of life that governs state, society, family, individuals, vision and behaviour. Here, the discourse clarifies and points out ‘awasim al-din wa muhakimatuh [juristic Sunni Islamic foundations and structures] that govern actions and the discourse. Developing juristic elements and procedures to support the policy of al-mudafa‘a, and developing methods of supporting these activities. The prophetic sirah [biography] is the original source of this policy which aims to counter difficulties, problems and challenges facing the Islamic da‘wah [call] and reformist activities.

200 ●



Conclusion Engaging and addressing important regional and international politics. Here, one sees al-Hawali and al-Oudah, in particular, starting to engage with the regional and international environment, addressing political issues in public. Indirectly addressing the quest for needed change and reform. Direct action for political change and reform had not yet emerged as a clear and direct question.

This period did not experience tension, or confrontation, with the Monarchy, and the relationship between the leadership and the Monarchy was stable. 1990–1994 During 1990–1994, the three scholars emerged as a reformist leadership, and had taken political initiatives towards political change and reform, playing an influential and leading role. The reformist leadership developed a critical juristic-based Sunni Islamic political discourse with the following activities undertaken: ●









Focusing on State construction, and international or regional factors and players. While the reformist leadership had referred to external players, the leadership stressed the question of political change and reform as a subject matter. This emphasis on the use of international and regional politics to address domestic politics held new appeal for Saudi society, and was a form of political education that attracted people. Questioning of State foreign policies. This turned to direct demands for political change and reform on the eve of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990 and acceptance, by the Monarchy, of US forces on Saudi soil. The Monarchy, seen as a client of an external patron, was condemned and criticized. This indicates that the political issue had become an exigent factor on the agenda of the reformist leadership. Questioning of State domestic policies. In the reformist leadership’s discourse, the Monarchy’s domestic policies were, directly and indirectly, comprehensively criticized. This discourse criticized not only State corruption but also how the Monarchy should transfer to a constitutional Sunni Islamic Monarchy or imamah shar‘iyah [legitimate Islamic state]. The reformist leadership concerned itself, not only with Islamic Law, but also became increasingly aware of the differences, or contradictions, to be found in Saudi Monarchical politics, when compared with, or according to, Islamic Law. Discussions on regional and international politics, with the discourse including critique of external players. Increasing reliance on audio cassettes to spread their discourse; this made their discourse easily accessible to the public.

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Founding of domestic alliances between the reformist leadership and other domestic Saudi Sunni Islamic forces. The reformist leadership was able to build, or be involved in building, domestic alliances that empowered their position vis-à-vis the Monarchy and other opponents. Receipt of support from other domestic Saudi Sunni Islamic scholarly and intellectual players. The reformist leadership was concerned to maintain a relationship with senior ‘ulama and other Islamic intellectual forces which provided support to, and stood with, the reformist leadership during times of crisis and difficulties.

In summary, from 1990 to 1994, the reformist leadership experienced increasing tension and confrontation with the Monarchy; ending with imprisonment. The three scholars also experienced tension with other domestic players, who sided with the government against the reformist leadership. 1994–1999 From 1994 until 1999, the reformist leadership was imprisoned. The imprisonment can be seen as another form of al-mudafa’a, with al-mudafa’a becoming a silent resistance. They refused to comply with conditions for their release laid down by the ruling authority, such as signing a commitment not to engage in political activities. The reformist leadership did not advocate revolution as a method for political change and reform, but central to the reformist leadership’s view of change and reform was political action, or decisions to be taken by the Monarchy, by placing the Monarchy under increasing pressure and demanding political change and reform. In the reformist leadership’s argument, the consciousness, or interests, of the Islamic movement, led by the reformist leadership, and in direct and indirect conflict with the ruling authority, would grow, with the Islamic movement itself expanding following the spread of the Sunni Islamic reformist discourse and argument. In accomplishing change and reform, this political consciousness among the reformist leadership’s adherents, followers and audiences, in a society with the ruling authority vulnerable to fiscal and legitimacy difficulties, was to be aided by new sympathizers for the reformist leadership’s argument. Seeking political change and reform involves weighing up benefits. While seeking political change and reform, the reformist leadership tended to calculate the costs and benefits based on historic Islamic experience and future expectations. Developing a movement for change and reform that could be led, managed and organized by Sunni Islamic reformist and scholarly elite, was a central strategy, rather than laying groundwork for change and reform in the form of revolution, where people might take independent action. The reformist leadership’s discourse focused on the State in their perception of change and reform, as the culmination of evolutionary change should be within the State, rather than revolutionary change from without.

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Post-1999 Post-1999 the reformist leadership has constructed an appeasement policy made up of three complementary and intertwined elements: normalization, adjustment and political realism. In June 1999, the reformist leadership was released from prison, without official charges, and two complementary periods, from 1999 to June 2003, and from June 2003 to mid-2006 followed. From 1999 to June 2003, the leadership gradually re-entered the public sphere with a new discourse. The leadership aimed to normalize themselves to the public, with the image, or perception, of being ‘dissidents’, ‘radical’ or ‘anti-government’, needing to be eliminated. The following activities received attention: ● ●







● ●

Focus on Islamic da‘wah [call, missionary] as the first priority. Indirectly addressing the question of political change and reform, but maintaining a commitment. Concentrating on empowering and improving the professional, functional and ethical outputs of the Islamic movement, the Saudi Muslim society, and the Saudi Islamic reformist movement. The involvement of the reformers in society has become a crucial strategy for the reformist leadership. Focusing more on societal and social change and reform. Seeking to maintain al-tadayun [being Islamic or religious] in the familial and societal circles has been given priority. Giving more attention to regional and international politics than in the discourse of the 1990s, the reformist leadership has given the external factor a priority which indicates the exigent character of this factor in the reformist leadership’s political agenda in the post-prison era. Countering violence and terror developing at domestic and regional levels. Benefiting from global communication technology, including the Internet. This has become an essential means of expression, and has provided new opportunities for the spread of the reformist leadership’s discourse, within and outside Saudi Arabia.

The Monarchy has not protested, or opposed, the reformist policy in the post-prison era which indicates a growing tacit agreement between the reformist leadership and the Monarchy. This growing agreement is empirically noted in the Saudi royalist and Saudi Grand Mufti receiving the reformist leadership in June 2003. From June 2003 to mid-2006, the three scholars have continued, consolidated and developed their post-1999 policy’s elements or activities. They have restored themselves as a natural and ‘legitimate’ part of Saudi society and State, and have adjusted to consequences, with their critical vision maintained, but directed more towards the external and the necessity of self–reform. On internal critique within the Islamic movements the leadership is more concerned with enhancing the performance of Islamic

Conclusion 203 movements in the light of domestic, regional and global changes, in the following situations: ●









Emergence of al-Oudah as a leading Islamic public figure, becoming more active in using the media, official or private, especially al-Jazeera and MBC, to express his vision. This gives him an opportunity to speak out on subjects related to Saudi, regional and world politics, and issues related to the discourse and performance of Islamic movements. Al-Oudah is developing a significant new discourse, mainly social, educational, psychological and juristic, but he is also seen as a political and Islamic activist. In 2006, al-Oudah reaches wide audiences. Increasing status of al-Oudah as an ‘independent Islamic leader or thinker’, maintaining unity with al-Hawali and al-Omar, and seeking to form scholarly Islamic alliances with other Middle Eastern Islamic reformist forces. Absence of al-Hawali from the public scene because of his illness, although he has maintained his presence and influence through his home page, www.alhawali.com, developed in 2004, which presents the whole of his discourse since the 1980s. His discourse on his home page is scientifically organized, mainly for authors, but immediate response to events, or presenting daily events or news, as al-Oudah’s www. islamtoday.net does, is not undertaken. Al-Hawali has more time to consider events, and he prefers not to immediately respond to events. Al-Hawali’s responses to events can be selective, as in his stand with Hamas as a legitimate Palestinian government. Containment of internal threats, such as terror in Saudi Arabia, and external threats, such as the US policy in the Middle East, have been al-Hawali’s main focus, and he considers countering those elements is required for the benefit of the Islamic cause and the concept of change and reform. Countering of: – – –





Internal problems, such as domestic terror. External threats, such as the US and the Israeli policies in the region. The increasing elements of Shiite and Iranian power in the region.

Advising Islamic movements and trends is an important al-Omar activity. Identification of three threats in the region, namely US policy, Israel and growing Shiite and Iranian power. Countering, or containing, these elements and their influence, has become the reformist leadership’s general priority.

Sunni Islam, as a belief, philosophy, habit and system or way of life, has increasingly become the reality, substance and pivot in the Middle East. The reformist leadership, the Monarchy and many others, have identified their

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common interest with Sunni Islam with not only their legitimacy, morality and concepts linked to it, but also their basic life interests linked to it. Public life of the individual, state or society, is either based on, shaped by, linked to or influenced by Sunni Islam. All political, social, societal, educational, physiological, economic and financial aspects are components of this structure, and ‘Sunni conservatism’, ‘Sunni heritage’ and ‘Sunni tradition’ are the identity and results seen in historical, contemporary and realistic terms. The Monarchy, the reformist leadership of al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, Islamic groups or trends, and also, the public and masses, have seen this Sunni Islamic structure come under threat, which led them to identify with this structure and counter threats, such as: ●







US policy which creates internal problems in Iraq and facilitates a civil war or sectarian violence, mainly between Shiites and Sunnis, which can spread in the Gulf region, including Saudi Arabia, where the Shiites are a minority, and can be externally manipulated against the Sunni structure. The US policy brought Shiite groups to govern Iraq for the first time in history, although Iraq, over hundreds of years, had been governed by Sunni dynasties or elites. A de facto ‘US–Shiite’ alliance in Iraq is found, and US enmity towards the Sunni structure, or Sunni Islam, in Iraq or elsewhere, is increasingly clear, and likely to be noted by the Middle Eastern Sunni public, including the Monarchy and the reformist leadership. This contradicts long-standing alliances between successive American governments and Middle Eastern Sunni ruling elites, such as the Saudi Monarchy and the Gulf ruling houses, who are now under US pressure to support its policy in Iraq. The US policy puts pressure on Hamas, which came to power through democratic means in January 2006. Hamas is an Islamic, Palestinian, national Sunni movement, and part of the Muslim Brotherhood Organization, which provides a contemporary Sunni Islamic political discourse, which has become a tradition and heritage in the region, and a source of knowledge for various Islamic groups, trends and ordinary Muslims, including the reformist leadership. The US pressure seeks to force Hamas to recognize Israel, to abandon the armed struggle and support the Palestinian authority’s agreements with Israel. This is seen as threatening Palestinian achievements, such as the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza and Hamas’ victory in the Palestinian election. US pressure on Hamas is similar to the US policy in Iraq to undermine the Iraqi Sunni resistance which seeks to maintain the Sunni structure or order in Iraq. The Iraqi Sunni resistance and the Palestinian resistance, led by Hamas or other Palestinian groups, are a means to counter external influence, and also contribute towards maintaining the Sunni structure in Palestinian and Iraqi societies. The US policy towards Sudan, which is facing rebellions in various regions of the country, appears to be assisting insurgent movements – such as

Conclusion 205 the southern insurgence led by the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Army (SPLA) – and the separatists, or taking up their cause at the expense of the role of the central government in al-Khartoum and Sudanese unity, and seeking hegemony or influence in Sudan. Although the western Sudanese region, Darfur, has been experiencing violence and human tragedies, the Security Council Resolution 1706, at the end of August 2006, to deploy a UN peacekeeping force in Darfur, is a controversial decision and is seen as external intervention in Sudan which can undermine the Islamic political structure. The Sudanese government sponsored an Islamic conference in September 2006, and al-Oudah participated, calling on the ‘ulama and Islamic movements to understand reality, solve their differences, guide the ummah, and not be too concerned about, or occupied by, political issues.3 Thus Sunni Islam remains an important factor, as political Islam, which is mainly contributed by Sunni Islam, has had an influential role. Crucial Sudanese Islamic leaders and politicians have emerged, and a Sudanese Islamic movement, led by the Sudanese Islamic thinker Dr Hassan al-Turabi, was a major player in bringing an Islamic government led by President Omar al-Bashir to power in 1989. The Sudan situation gives the impression that external intervention in the Arab and Islamic spheres, including the Saudi Monarchy, is continuing and active, and needs to be countered or contained. The Islamic realm has increasingly become the leadership’s major concern, with this realm taking precedence over the political questioning of the Monarchy, although not over the questioning of external concerns. The political aspect has sought changes to the existing government, or changes in its directions and policies, through extensive pressure, which could be in the form of an extensive, or high-risk, political struggle. The reformist leadership emphasizes the Islamic ummah, including Saudi Arabia and all Islamic movements, still need sciences, education, morale building and development to spread, which can enhance people’s life conditions, and improve State and society’s productivity.

Discourse and actions defined The reformist leadership’s discourse and actions on political change and reform is defined, and can be understood, by observing the attitude of the reformist leadership to: ● ● ● ● ●

al-‘aqidah [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief]; Islamic rationality; al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy]; the ‘organization’ or ‘system’; other literature.

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Al-‘aqidah [Islamic creed and faith] The reformist leadership has linked the issue of political change and reform to their understanding of ‘aqidah [Islamic creed and faith]. The quest for political change and reform revolves around nazariyah al-haq [the theory of right] which is the essence of the juristic Sunni Islamic principle of iman [faith]. The theory of right represents forms of fixed rights: huquq ilahiyah [Almighty Allah’s rights], huquq insaniyah [human rights] and al-huquq al-mushtarakah [shared rights; Allah’s rights and human rights]. State and society must support these rights. The consequence of failing to do so, comprehensively or partially, will be ‘uqubat shar‘iyah [punishment instituted in Islamic Law] or ‘uqubat dunyawiyyah [worldly punishment], and ‘uqubat ukhrawiyyah [punishment in the hereafter]. Accomplishing these rights is part of Islamic iman, which consists of certain ‘uhud [covenants] and mawathiq [contracts] to be fulfilled as requirements of iman [faith]. In this matter, Safar al-Hawali, in his PhD dissertation on al-irja [postponement], seeks to show through juristic analysis that iman [faith] is batin [internal] and zahir [external] and consists of iman al-qalb [the heart’s belief or internal conduct] and iman al-jawarih [external belief or external conduct – al-jawarih: extremities of the body, limbs]. Faith is therefore a haqiqah murakabah [compound fact] which consists of qawl [saying, statement verbal and by heart] and ‘amal [work, conduct]. So, ‘amal al-zahir [external work and conduct] is a reflection of ‘amal al-qalb [the heart’s work, saying or belief]. Faith is not fixed, and increases by conducting a‘mal saliha [good deeds] and decreases through bad deeds or vice. All good deeds are part of iman, with iman like a tree which has roots, trunk, branches and leaves. Based on this, the demand for political change and reform means to declare, to maintain, to increase and to demonstrate the iman in empirical terms. Requiring political change and reform is part of the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice], which is also part of iman. Islamic rationality The central philosophy and the rationale behind the reformist leadership’s support of non-violent means in their political struggle revolves around the construct of the juristic Sunni Islamic theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] which is the core of Islamic rationality. This theory asserts that ‘Islam requests protection of al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and posterity‘, which may not be harmed, injured, undermined, lost or uprooted. These essential sanctities are more likely to be damaged during violence or war, than under peaceful conditions and tranquility. Based on this, the struggle for political change and reform has not extended to revolution; as such a radical policy is more likely to undermine existing lawfully based Islamic accomplishments,

Conclusion 207 projects and infrastructures extending through State and society. The existing aspects of Islamic hadhari [civil] society, such as religious or Islamic institutions, laws, systems, education, practices and patterns, are worth maintaining and protecting. A violent policy towards change and reform should not be considered as it is more likely to undermine or endanger Islamic civil accomplishments than serve them. Any violent policy is also more likely to endanger the lives of people and their hurumat [sanctities] than maintain or protect them. The reformist leadership does not presently see political change and reform as an exigent factor. Maintaining juristic or lawfully based Sunni Islamic societal, social, familial, ethical and moral values, and the security, safety and tranquility of society are essential aspects and components of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law]. Improving or retaining their quality is a core qasd [aim] of maqasid al-shari‘ah. If a state has mostly been observing maqasid al-shari‘ah in its systems and policies, seeking political change and reform should be carefully managed, and not pose a threat to existing elements of the maqasid. Seeking to remove shortcomings or faults should not lead to new shortcomings or faults. Al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy] The reformist leadership’s action and discourse have highlighted essential elements in the dimension of legitimacy. The three shaikhs have asserted that the application of shari‘ah is a condition for the State or government to be entitled to al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy]. To be legitimate, a ruler is obliged to apply Islamic Law. Al-shar‘iyah al-siyasiyah [political legitimacy] of the Muslim State is shar‘iyah diniyah [religious or Islamic legitimacy] in its origins. The origins, and roots, of the reformist leadership’s thesis on al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy] is clear from the literature on fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]. The imamah [the supreme ruling office, or the government] in Islam has maqasid [aims] which can be summarized as establishing shari‘ah, maintaining its role, carrying out al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice], spreading Islamic da‘wah, countering shubuhat [doubtful matters about religion] and bida‘ [innovations in religion, heresies], maintaining security, leading people towards applying shari‘ah or making them observe Islamic Law, forming Islamic law-based policies, justice, unity and carrying out al-‘umran [constructing the earth]. There is a bai‘ah [pledge of allegiance] between the ruler and the ruled; a form of contract between them. According to this contract, the state governs its citizens by Islamic Law, in return for their submission and obedience to its authority. The government, in this case, is obliged to apply shari‘ah and the ruled are obliged to obey the government in lawful Islamic matters. Shari‘ah thus defines the lawful boundaries of the behaviour or conduct of the ruler and the ruled, and both are obliged to maintain Islamic Law.

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In juristic and legal terms, the Monarchy has obliged itself to carry out Islamic Law. This is clear by reading the Basic Law of the Government, issued on 1 March 1982. The Basic Law is an expression of the free will of the State, and is binding on the ruling authority. The reformist leadership contends, however, that the Monarchy violated its Basic Law, as Sunni Islamic regulations and policies have not been enforced. Non-Islamic laws and regulations are seen in Saudi public policy. They are found, either in government or in society and these are supported by the Monarchy. It follows that the Monarchy is not totally entitled to the status of shar‘iyah [legitimate]. Nonetheless, the reformist leadership has not issued a fatwa delegitimizing the government. In empirical terms, the existence of legitimacy problems for the Monarchy is not a sufficient reason to apply revolution for political change and reform. The Saudi Monarchy does enforce some Islamic Laws and regulations, and does maintain elements of Sunni Islamic legitimacy constitutionally, in that: ●







The Monarchy recognizes shar‘iyah as the comprehensive and sole law of the State, and the State’s Basic Law refers extensively to Islam as the source of legitimacy. This is a crucial lawful and constitutional Sunni Islamic foundation of the State. The Monarchy manages institutions of the Islamic da‘wah, supports Islamic da‘wah activities, domestically and abroad, maintains qadha shar‘i [the Islamic court system], and applies Islamic education. For this reason, Safar al-Hawali, in his attempt to contain and counter the domestic violence of the events of the Riyadh bombings in May 2003, referred to the Saudi domestic sphere as mayadin al-da‘wah [spheres of Islamic da‘wah] in which violent means for political change and reform are more likely to harm than to benefit. Maintaining Saudi domestic security, safety and stability also means maintaining the sacred places, as millions of Muslims visit them each year and perform one of the pillars of Islam, al-hajj [the pilgrimage]. The Monarchy has applied security policies and administrative regulations which maintain al-hurumat [sanctities] of people living in the Kingdom, and violence has been confronted. The industrial, societal, educational, administrative, security, economic, political and financial infrastructures which have been put in place in the Kingdom are accomplishments. The theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] refers to such dimensions as al-‘umran [the construction] which maintain life and living. They must be maintained, and violent means for change and reform are more likely to harm than to serve them.

The reformist leadership does not, thus, totally reject the legitimacy of the Monarchy. Salman al-Oudah, responding to a question from a New York Times

Conclusion 209 reporter, in December 2001, gave a carefully balanced assessment of the positive and negative dimensions of the Saudi State: Many aspects of the government and society are derived from Islamic Law. It acts according to its dictates. But this does not mean that things should stand still, because Islamic Law is a system that encourages perfection to always be sought and its application and understanding to reach higher levels. Religion is the most important factor in the unity, security and stability of the country and it is the most important factor in the individual makeup of the people who live in it. This is why it is important to examine the institutions taken from the West and render them suitable to an Islamic framework. I think that stricter supervision is needed over public funds and how they are spent. I believe that there should be greater social justice, more avenues for people to express their opinions, and more opportunities available for those who are sincerely concerned with the affairs of this country to engage in fruitful and constructive dialogue. All of this would foster greater stability. In general, many of the existing regulations are good in what they entail but there remains a problem with respect to their practical application. In these things there is hope for reform. Al-Oudah directly extended ‘legitimacy’ to the Monarchy when he positively commented on the issue of giving bai‘ah [contract, pledge of allegiance] to Crown Prince Abdullah when he became the new Monarch after the death of King Fahd in August 2005. The issue of legitimacy highlights the reformist leadership’s significance for the Monarchy. Salman al-Oudah’s insights about the Islamic features of the Saudi State and society as a Sunni Islamic juristic system, and his further development of belief in the Monarchy’s legitimacy in August 2005, maintains legitimacy and a peaceful relationship with the Monarchy, and the possibility of revolt against the Monarchy either does not presently exist or is very low. Nassir al-Omar also uses a Sunni Islamic juristic method which structures the State’s legitimacy, maintains a peaceful relationship with the Monarchy and illustrates further the reformist leadership’s significance for the Monarchy. After prison and before September 11, al-Omar, in a discussion with the author about State legitimacy, maintains that the Saudi State was established in Islam. So, he said, it is a dawlah shar‘iyah [legitimate state] through bi yaqin [certain and clear juristic proof]. The juristic Sunni Islamic basis says that la yantaqil ‘an al-yaqin ila bi yaqin mithluhu aw aqwa minhu [clear and certain juristic proof can only be nullified by other equal or stronger clear and certain juristic proof]. Therefore, the legitimacy of the State remains, and this is the asl [basis, origin] of the political system, as a whole, derived from Islamic Law. In practice, there are non-Islamic elements in State policies, but this should not nullify the legitimate origin of the State.

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‘Awaridh al-ahliyah4 prevents the nullification of the asl or legitimate origin. Al-Omar said that the ‘ulama may have different views on this issue, but al-mashayikh [the reformist leadership] support the asl [basis], or original legitimacy of the State, until clear and certain proof is available which would nullify this asl. He also suggests that the youth should not be involved in this issue, which might create fitn [disorder, corruption, unrest]; further evidence of the reformist leadership’s concern to defuse causes that lead to revolution. The question of al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy] also directly applies to the reformist leadership which highlights another dimension of the reformist leadership’s significance for the Monarchy. On the basis of the juristic Sunni Islamic explanation of al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy], the legitimacy of the reformist leadership is based on an official state foundation in origins and constitutional terms, and on Islamic Law. The reformist leadership, as ‘ulama, is part of the Sunni Islamic legitimacy of the Monarchy which must, perforce, include all Islamic features and the ‘ulama. Therefore, the Monarchy, especially in the time of difficulties and threats, finds itself approaching domestic Sunni Islamic elements either in the form of ‘ulama, the Sunni Islamic scholarly sphere, or policies to reassert its Islamic legitimacy and character. Here, the reformist leadership plays an important role in maintaining the Monarchy’s Sunni Islamic legitimacy. The leadership, in the light of external pressures on the Monarchy after September 11, has supported the ongoing Monarchical struggle to maintain Sunni Islamic legitimacy by maintaining its appeasement policy towards the Monarchy, developing a new countering policy against external threats and by countering domestic violence which has threatened the Monarchy’s stability. This should reaffirm al-shar‘iyah mushtarakah [the common legitimacy] of the reformist leadership and the Monarchy. Based on the reformist leadership’s insights on State legitimacy and on the reality of the Saudi Monarchy, the author argues that shar‘iyah al-dawlah [the legitimacy of State] consists of many positive components or units, and clearly has partial legitimacy, but this al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy] is not complete and is inadequate in that parts of the requirements for complete legitimacy are lacking. For the regime to meet all requirements and build its legitimacy, it must carry out reform to ensure all aspects of legitimacy. Therefore, the reformist leadership’s struggle for political change and reform aims to enhance, to maintain and to enlarge the Islamic character of the State and society, which, basically, already exists. The reformist leadership’s struggle is a political strife to increase shar‘iyah [legitimacy] and restore the Sunni Islamic legitimacy of the Monarchy by countering non-Islamic elements in State and society. Al-mudafa‘a is political Islamic work to satisfy the requirements of State legitimacy, and to maintain and supplement the existing components of legitimacy. It is a struggle for opportunities in the society in its broad spectrum, which includes the State system. The reformist leadership is concerned to ensure that the domestic sphere does not become an area of conflict, but an arena of Islamic da‘wah, which means calling for all, including

Conclusion 211 the government, to implement Islam. This leaves the question of political change and reform to still be completely addressed. Organization or system The reformist leadership is mainly a scholarly and political force, (1) seeking to influence the public, including the Monarchy, Islamic groups and trends, rather than an organization; (2) applying administrative procedures, such as an official leadership, offices, regulations and recruiting members, similar to that of the Muslim Brotherhood Organization. These organizational elements have not been seen in the reformist leadership’s world, but the leadership understands the necessity of having a ‘system’, as Islamic work without a system can be chaotic. Without being a tanzim [organization, system], similar, for example, to the Brothers or Hamas, as the idea of tanzim is forbidden in Saudi Arabia, and negative in the Saudi governmental perception, one can see that the leadership, particularly in the post-1999 era, has been administratively organizing their work by developing private offices, media and press, which all serve the concept of influencing people. The leadership can mobilize their students or audiences through a call, for example, and the leadership can have, as part of a system, arrangements with other, or similar, Islamic trends, organizations or groups, as Islamic alliances are important to enhance the Islamic concept of change and reform.

Other literature The specific concern of this book is the leadership, focusing on three new generation ‘ulama, al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, and their Sunni intellectual sphere and reformist movement. This study has not found a single academic study that explores the area covered by this book, but certain books which have some bearing are briefly discussed. Saudi Arabia and the politics of dissent by Mamoun Fandy (1999) Effectively, the only work which sought to engage the topic is Mamoun Fandy’s study, Saudi Arabia and the Politics of Dissent.5 Although Fandy deals with dissenting Saudi voices, this does, however, raise certain problems. Fandy reveals an almost ‘incoherent’ category of ‘dissidents’. He places Dr Muhammad al-Mas‘ari, Dr Sa‘ad Faqih and their London-based Islamic Movement for Reform (IMR), al-Hawali, al-Oudah, Osama bin Laden and the Shiite opposition together in a single category as dissidents. Fandy fails to recognize al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar as distinct, in terms of the Sunni Islamic scholarly structure, and fails to see them as a unit for analysis, or as an independent category. Fandy has put kinship, preferring to use the concept of ‘family’, and patriarchy as explanatory models of Saudi politics. Simplistic generalizing is

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a mistake, and it is wrong to discount the significance of the ‘ulama’s religious discourse, and to conclude, as Fandy does, that ‘Islam has been secondary to ‘ai’la [family]; its main function has been to support the cultural hegemony of the ruling tribe/dynasty’.6 Islam, per se, is concerned with the maintenance of family, one of the cores of Muslim society, and it is unnecessary to put Islam vis-à-vis family. It is invalid to believe the family’s main function is to support the cultural hegemony of the ruling dynasty. The familial factor is complicated, and the family, can be with, or against, the ruling elite, either clearly or tacitly, or to varying degrees, and the family can be neutral towards government. Issues, such as the family’s position towards the ruling elite, need to be explored objectively and intensively to reach valid conclusions. The leadership’s family/tribal dimension can be addressed as a matter of fact, to help situate the leadership in Saudi society, without making, or stressing, this family/tribal dimension as a conceptual framework. The leadership’s politics are complex, and the family/tribal dimension cannot comprehensively explain their politics. The three scholars are Sunni reformers and political activists, and have grown up in urban spheres. In the age of globalization and nation-state systems, they know the tribal approach gives limited opportunities and support, whereas the global and regional levels, urban life, and the state as a whole, are arenas for opportunities and support for their activities. The leadership do not support the cultural hegemony of the ruling tribe/dynasty. Disputes between the leadership and the Monarchy are based on Islamic Law or religion. The leadership has opposed various Monarchical domestic and foreign policies not based on Islamic Law. Their dominant policy formation paradigm, as this book illustrates, shows a Sunni political juristic-based two-dimensional policy of countering and appeasement, applied in a dynamic, systematic and flexible manner towards the Monarchy and external players. The family/tribal dimension in this book is presented in a different way to Fandy, and the author presents the theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] that explains, as part of the Sunni Islamic juristic-based theoretical structure, the leadership’s politics. This theory emphasizes the protection of religion, mind, soul, prosperity and posterity, called al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]. Here, the author situates the family as crucial and the central unit in society, with the family needing to be protected. Protecting the family’s Islamic religion or belief must not be undermined, nor influenced by non-Islamic belief, the soul should not be lost, killed or injured, prosperity, should not be lost or undermined, and the family members, offspring or posterity, must be enhanced by all possible legitimate means defined by Islamic Law. The family/tribal dimension, as such, does not determine the Islamic movement or the leadership’s direction or policy; but the family is, per se, an important Islamic and religious unit for activities in life, according to Islamic Law. The Islamic or religious family can thus influence politics or State politics.

Conclusion 213 Fandy’s presentation of al-Hawali’s views and his discourses are narrowly based. He uses 20 randomly-selected taped sermons and two books. The problem here is that al-Hawali has produced more than 400 audiotapes on a wide variety of issues and subjects, while al-Hawali’s books chosen by Fandy are short books and he neglects the most extensive work by al-Hawali, namely his PhD dissertation, Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement7 in Islamic Thought]. This work is a substantial contribution on Sunni Islamic ‘aqidah [faith, tenet, doctrine, belief], and fiqh [jurisprudence] studies. Al-Hawali demonstrates in this work his Sunni scholarly ability in discussing and analysing complex and complicated problems in Islamic societies and states, covering many realms: social, political, cultural and psychological, in particular. Most of the 400 audiotapes are explanations of Sunni ‘aqidah, with explanations found on some 311 cassettes, representing the core of al-Hawali’s thoughts. Fandy overlooks much of this scholarly work. Fandy makes a similar mistake in dealing with al-Oudah’s discourses, where he has built a whole chapter, which should give a holistic picture of al-Oudah, based on only 15 cassettes. Al-Oudah, until the time of his arrest in September 1994, produced more than 800 audiotapes. Fandy uses a ‘cut and paste’ process8 leading the reader towards a very unclear, if not superficial, picture of the thoughts and role of al-Oudah. Substantial Sunni juristic works by al-Oudah, developed in the second half of the 1980s, have been ignored. Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries], and Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah [Standards for Juristic Studies] and other studies by al-Oudah, provide a critical insight into his Sunni Islamic scholarly nature and position. Fandy makes an assumption that the ‘Saudi oppositional discourse’ is more determined by exogenous variables, such as the Gulf War and the American role in the Middle East, than it is by domestic variables. There are two errors here. First, the word ‘oppositional’ gives the impression that the discourses of al-Hawali and al-Oudah are primarily political in character, whereas the discourses are Sunni Islamic juristic in nature. This argument for jurisprudence feeds all other parts of the analysis including the political question. The heavy emphasis on external variables must also be questioned. All three scholars, al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, were developing their views before the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait and the related consequence of American forces arriving on Saudi territory. Fitna: Guerre Au Coeur de I’Islam by Gilles Kepel (2004) (The Arabic Translation) The strength of this book is in its seeking to understand the Middle East in the light of the consequences of September 11 and the reasons behind the ‘violence’, either by al-Qaeda and its related groups, as a form of ‘Islamic jihad’, or by the United States in its declared strategy of ‘the war on terror’.

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The author covers a number of issues and tries to link them, including factors such as the failure of the Oslo Peace Accords, US neo-conservatism, al-Qaeda’s ideology, strategy and struggle, the consequences for Saudi Arabia in the light of 9/11 and ‘the US war on terror’, the Iraqi crisis, the danger of Europe becoming a battlefield for violence and terror, and the question of jihad and disorder in the Islamic world. The book contains important social, societal, economic, psychological and political insights dealing with the problems of Middle Eastern societies, suffering from unemployment while others accumulate wealth and gain important posts through power and fraud. This contributes to the violence, or tension, in these societies; making them unstable. The book contains certain insights about the use of Middle Eastern minorities, such as the Shiites and Kurds, by the conservative American government in promoting its agenda in the Middle East focusing, among other things, on weakening Sunni or Arab domination and hegemony in the region. The weakness of Gilles Kepel’s book revolves around specific aspects. The study has an irritable tone and subjective spirit. The issues raised by the author are complicated and various, dealing with Arab and Islamic politics, Islamic movements, Sunni Islamic Jurisprudence, American foreign policy and the consequences for Europe in the light of the violence taking place in some European countries, believed to be by Islamic groups related to the al-Qaeda organization. These issues need to be tackled in an objective and calm tone as the way to help understand them. The book’s discussion on Saudi politics, Saudi Arabia’s Islamic experience or Saudi Islamism, domestically or globally, by either state or society, together with related thoughts and intellectual concerns, is somewhat thin and superficial in core aspects – as if the author sees matters in a ‘crisis-logic’ framework. He implies that Saudi Arabia, state and society, ‘Wahhabism’, the Muslim Brothers’ thoughts, or a mixture of ‘Wahhabism/Muslim Brothers’ thoughts, and the reformist leadership – as he refers to al-Hawali and al-Oudah – has a violent structure, and is responsible for 9/11 and other violence in the Western world. Understanding the violence and roots of violence is necessary, whether using power for change or reform, jihad, terrorism or ‘revolutionary change’. Historically, politically, socially and religiously, Saudi Islamism, either through the practices of State or non-State players, should be seen as a historical development which is extensive and complicated and which should not be approached as a ‘reactionary response’, where the attacks of 9/11 tend to make authors focus on the Saudi Islamic question. Putting Islamic movements, Islamic thought, Muslim state Islamic experiences or Islam, as such, on trial will not help in understanding the consequences of violence either in the West, the Palestinian occupied territories or Iraq. Although the realist theory or ‘Realpolitik’ has its methodological polemic aspects, this need not be discussed here, but the author might at least apply this theoretical framework to objectively understand the consequences of struggle.

Conclusion 215 The discussion on the principle of jihad has been simplified. The author approaches the question of jihad through the practices of al-Qaeda or other jihadic groups and does not genuinely explore the Sunni Islamic juristic elements of the principle of jihad. The subject of jihad should be seen as a juristic question where legal insights must be taken into consideration to scientifically tackle the issue, and to then see how this fits with reality and politics, while people’s use of the principles of jihad, as an instrument of change and reform, is subject to their understanding and their experiences. The author’s discussion of the Shiite and Sunni questions in Iraq seems to lack balance, and is seen as being in favour of the first and against the second. The author’s treatment of the Islamic question in Europe, referring to the Islamic community and the European policy towards this community, is seen as an attempt to reverse the tolerant policy of Europe towards less tolerance, and to provoke European governments in this direction. To solve the problem of, or potential for, violence carried by Muslims into Europe, Gilles Kepel emphasizes the European Muslims, or Muslims residing in Europe, should be incorporated into the European system and mode of life. In this matter, Salman al-Oudah sees Muslim minorities in Europe or the West, through attitude and programmes, integrating themselves into European/Western societies or systems, respecting their laws and making a contribution to these societies while maintaining their Islamic identity.9 The author leaves out the necessity for European governments, as neighbours of the Islamic world, to be objectively and genuinely involved in solving the polemic of the Arab and Islamic perception of the West, as ‘imperialists’ or ‘crusaders’ (a perception developing in the contemporary Islamic world following the US military campaigns in Islamic countries) who seek to dominate, and humiliate, the Islamic east, with the Palestinian problem, the Iraqi crisis and the various Western hegemonic interventions in the Islamic world as examples. The question arises as to how this perception, or misperception, can be corrected in practical terms? In spite of the author dealing, in the conclusion, with his perceived desire for global peace to reduce global tension and various dangers facing the Islamic world, the book’s conclusion gives the impression that the author is more intent on structuring a ‘threat’ towards the Islamic world than concerned with seeking, or making, a global civic world that maintains the common interests of the Islamic world and the West and reduces global tension. The author implies that Muslims should direct themselves and their beliefs to modernity and the established culture of the ‘European renaissance’ or they might experience ‘a destruction in the House of Islam’, which is similar to US President George Bush’s assertion in late August 2005 that ‘the Iraqi people should accept the new Iraqi constitution (which has been opposed by many Iraqi domestic powers and civil society) or Iraq will experience a civil war!’ The ability of the United States to bring, or cause, destruction or disorder in the Islamic world, as the author implies, is known and has been seen in Afghanistan (2001–), Iraq (2003–) and Lebanon (2006) in supporting Israel’s

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attacks on Lebanon. Historically, external powers have brought disorder to the Islamic world, through colonialism and other forms of intervention. Contemporary politics, either external or internal, bring Islamic nations, or movements, the dilemma of living with domestic problems or living in worsened circumstances through external intervention. That the United States of America or other Western powers can pose a threat to the Islamic Holy Land of Makkah and al-Madina, as the author mentions, is expected, in that external forces may target Islamic shrines (as has occurred), and Muslims, as Islamic Law requires, should practise patience when using power to change and reform the situation (jihad) if they have the capability. Maintaining civic–civil order, either external or internal, is vital. Muslims believe in practising and carrying out legitimate jihad if they are able to do as Islamic Jurisprudence requires. In the Sunni Islamic fiqh [Law and Jurisprudence], the concept of fitnah does mean riot, unrest, disorder, distress, sedition, corruption, trouble, as the author mentions, but the concept of fitnah also refers to leaving the Din or Islam, the case of apostasy, either by choice or under repression. Muslims might tolerate materialistic destruction, rather than tolerate the soul’s destruction by leaving Islam, or by undermining basic Islamic principles, and, in the age of globalization, a destructive ability can be obtained by many, which will undermine global peace and tranquility, with uncertainty spreading. In Pursuit of Legitimacy, the Muslim Brothers and Mubarak, 1982–2000 by Hesham Al-Awadi (2004) This book discusses the relationship, from 1982 to 2000, between the Egyptian government under the leadership of President Mohammad Hosni Mubarak and the Muslim Brotherhood, the most influential Islamic trend in the Arab and Islamic world. The author’s main arguments can be summarized. The relationship between the Egyptian political system and the Muslim Brothers has largely been shaped by their simultaneous pursuit of legitimacy, each on different terms. Mubarak tolerated the Brothers during the 1980s because he thought that, as a new leader, this policy would bolster his political legitimacy, but he repressed them in the 1990s because he had, by then, redefined his pursuit of legitimacy. The State changed its attitude towards the movement largely because the social performance of the Brothers (which it had tolerated in the past) began to assume an activist trend. The confrontation between Mubarak’s regime and the Brothers in the 1990s deterred the Brothers and weakened their legitimacy but also undermined the legal legitimacy of Mubarak and exacerbated his legitimacy crisis. Al-Awadi’s book is a critical study examining the relationship between President Mubarak and the Muslim Brotherhood through ‘legitimacy’ as a key concept of the study, but certain points need to be addressed.

Conclusion 217 Where the author discusses the political struggle of one of the most influential Islamic group in Egypt and the Arab World, the Muslim Brotherhood, he needs to place his discussion in a regional and global context for the discussion of the relationship, or struggle, between the Muslim Brotherhood and the Egyptian government to be comprehensive. Structuring a domestic–regional–global framework will help place the Muslim Brotherhood’s political struggle in the correct perspective. Where al-Awadi discusses the political struggle of the Al-Ikhwan Al-Muslimin, he needs to comprehend and apply the movement’s understanding of legitimacy, based on fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], which determines the movement’s political struggle. Sunni Islamic political jurisprudence-based legitimacy can incorporate all the aspects or kinds of legitimacy addressed in this book. The Arabic word or concept of shar‘iyah, or legitimacy, comes from the word shar‘ [Islamic Law] as a basis. One can accept the author’s assumption that the Brothers’ struggle does not seek the overthrow of the government, but this does not imply that Al-Ikhwan Al-Muslimin, or other Islamic political trends, do not have a right to seek power, directly or indirectly, as power is a comprehensive and accumulative term, which includes the political aspect, which can be pursued by all possible legitimate means. The Relationship between the ‘Ulama and the Government in Contemporary Saudi Arabian Kingdom: An Interdependent Relationship by Alejandra Galindo Marines (2001) (PhD Dissertation, University of Durham, February 2001) Another recent work, that must be specifically examined, is Alejandra Galindo Marines’ work, The Relationship between the ‘Ulama and the Government in Contemporary Saudi Arabian Kingdom: An Interdependent Relationship?10 Her work investigates the relationship between the ‘ulama and the government in contemporary Saudi Arabia, from the end of the 1970s until 1999. She contends that the relationship between the ‘ulama and the government is based on interdependence, and the core argument is that the role of the ‘ulama is paramount for the legitimacy of the Monarchy. This particular insight agrees with this author’s argument that Sunni Islamic legitimacy of the Monarchy is crucial and the Saudi government strives to maintain this legitimacy. The author agrees with Marines’ conclusion that the Monarchy needs the ‘ulama to maintain its legitimacy, and this is an important understanding on the vital role of the Saudi Sunni Islamic scholarly institution, although she uses the term ‘official ‘ulama’ in Saudi politics. Other important remarks can be drawn from Marines’ arguments. Although she focuses mainly on the role of the ‘official ‘ulama’, she discusses, in the last chapter, the role of the ‘non-conformist ‘ulama’ or ‘the opposition’. She clearly means al-Hawali, al-Oudah and other Saudi Islamic trends or organizations such as the London-based Committee for the Defence of

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Legitimate Rights (CDLR). Her examination of the role of al-Hawali and al-Oudah is within the discussion on the reformist petitions of 1991 and 1992 that demanded political change and reform. Nevertheless, Marines’ specific focus on al-Hawali and al-Oudah is marginal and thin, relies on secondary sources, such as Fandy’s vision previously examined,11 and does not see al-Hawali and al-Oudah as a continuous and dynamic scientific, and political, Islamic movement. Marines has not discovered the shared elements between the Monarchy and the ‘non-conformist ‘ulama’ or ‘the opposition’, in referring to al-Hawali and al-Oudah, which the concept of ‘shared legitimacy’, by this author, can explain. The author expands Marines’ marginal, or thin, focus towards being holistic, complex and scholarly through a comprehensive focus on the political behaviour and vision of the leadership. In all the studies mentioned, the analytical frameworks focus on the ruling system, or government, as an important player in managing policies. In this case, Saudi domestic players, non-state players, or societal forces have had marginal or peripheral places in the literature or have been overlooked. In contrast, this book focuses on the role of individuals, and non-ruling players, in Saudi politics.

Determining the future The possibility of the reformist leadership’s accommodation policy changing to a revolutionary means of seeking political change and reform are further explored. The reformist leadership has eschewed revolution as a fundamental policy. The events of the 1990s clearly show the reformist leadership has not seen the struggle for political change and reform as requiring al-khuruj [revolt, revolution, rebel]. Since their release from prison in June 1999, up to 2006, the reformist leadership has been applying an appeasement policy towards the Monarchy; a further illustration of its accommodation policy. The reformist leadership has not withdrawn from the Saudi political system as have other Saudi Islamic oppositions, for example, the London-based Reformist Movement, which withdrew from the political system, escalated their political struggle against the Monarchy and has been operating a political struggle and directing activities from outside Saudi Arabia. The reformist leadership is different and inside Saudi Arabia: 1

2 3

operates within the political system and in areas permitted by the Monarchy, and, in the post-prison era, uses other technical opportunities, such as the Internet, and space in the media (the age of globalization gives opportunities to speak out, beyond State control or supervision); maintains its presence in the Saudi domestic sphere, its societal base; maintains its accommodation policy towards the Monarchy.

It is apt to see the reformist leadership’s movement as aiming to transform the whole Saudi society into an revolutionary process of Sunni Islamic

Conclusion 219 reformist consciousness, with a growing commitment to Sunni Islam, leading to gradual change and reform through non-violent means. The leadership’s accommodation policy does not necessarily mean the leadership has socialized itself into accepting the political system completely or without question. The leadership disagreed with the Saudi government during the 1990s and the political struggle, in that decade, served as a testing ground for the Sunni Islamic reformist movement’s ability to promote change and reform. The important Sunni Islamic reformist and oppositional aspects of the 1990s were: 1 2 3

the focus on the political system per se as the source of State and society problems, with the focus on the regime as a narrow political target; the development of the reformist leadership’s dissatisfaction as frustration, anger, alienation, goal conflicts, exigency and strain; The rise of the reformist leadership and other Sunni Islamic reformists.

In the post-prison era, the reformist leadership reduced the clash with the Monarchy by modifying some of its less salient political values, and the leadership has moved towards the Monarchy, modifying its behaviour and thereby seeking to influence the government in ways the leadership regard as desirable and acceptable to the Monarchy. Although the reformist leadership has been trying to influence the direction of Saudi governmental policy, they are still alienated from important parts of the political system, mainly dealing with the foreign and domestic policies which need, in the arguments of the leadership in the 1990s, to be reformed and institutionalized on a lawful and juristic Sunni Islamic basis. Al-Oudah requested, in 2005, that the new political development in Saudi Arabia, the municipal election, should include the Saudi Consultative Council as a legislative authority. The reformist leadership has not returned to their academic positions at universities, nor has the Monarchy appointed any one of the leadership to important or influential governmental positions. Until June 2003, the Monarchy was not seen to be applying reforms and changes required by the leadership and its Sunni Islamic reformist allies, demands the leadership still consider legitimate. Introducing the electoral system, although only at municipal level, for the first time in Spring 2005, is an important reformist step. The reformist leadership has certain juristic-based Sunni Islamic political values which conflict with the political system. Their loyalties have never been effectively tied to the Monarchical political system per se, as loyalty is a juristic Sunni Islamic question, a matter of faith and a concept to be defined and conditioned by Islamic Law. The sense of State legitimacy, and support for the government, is jeopardized when the political system comes to be viewed as inconsistent with, or non-supportive of, the basic juristic-based Sunni Islamic political values, and if the political system is seen as unable to protect, maintain or create the

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conditions requisite for holding or maintaining these values. In this view, a potential for conflict arises. Important Sunni Islamic and oppositional political elements might exist as a potential state of mind which, in turn, might create a Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary atmosphere. In the longer term, this Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary change can occur, and could arise from: expectations, interpretations, alliances, capabilities, revolutionary aspirations, secular policies and external ties, the institutional mechanism and other crises. These variables are interrelated components, complementary and intended to constitute the framework of a possible scheme of general conditions preceding a potential Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary change, or facilitating a transformation of the civil struggle for political change and reform into a revolutionary process. The likelihood and magnitude of a civil political struggle will vary directly with changes in these variables. Expectations Reformist expectations can play a role in creating a Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary atmosphere if they turn into high, intense and rising expectations. Although the reformist leadership demands change and reform, and expects Sunni Islamic based values, principles, goods and conditions, the leadership legitimately believes that, to attain these, they have perhaps not been expecting the Monarchy to meet all or most of their reformist demands. The reformist leadership is more in a position of enlightening Sunni Islamic reformist thoughts than in a position of a political revolutionary group that struggles to the end, and which might take a violent direction, to get its demands met. Expectations are not, or have not been, high, and are an insufficient pressure or factor that can push the reformist leadership to an act of revolution. The widening gap between expectations and reality, or between what the reformists think they ought to be getting and the reality, can give rise to a revolutionary change. The reformist leadership has been applying a juristic Sunni Islamic rationality that makes for low expectations, and this rationality points out that a formula of advance and retreat is equally applicable while struggling for change and reform. The civil political struggle towards change and reform seems to be satisfying the reformist leadership’s expectations. It also seems that the reformist leadership appreciates the Sunni Islamic based values, principles, goods and conditions attained. Any discrepancy between Sunni Islamic based values, principles, goods, and conditions sought and actual attainment has not given rise to thoughts of revolution. But the reformist’s expectations might increase, creating a gap between expectations and achievements, and the political struggle might again become a high-risk political struggle which will increase the possibility of a revolutionary situation. Increasing levels of

Conclusion 221 expectations will contribute to the possibility of seeing a Sunni Islamic reformist–revolutionary movement take root. The higher the expectations, the higher the possibility of revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change. Interpretation Reformist juristic Sunni Islamic interpretations can play a role in creating a revolutionary atmosphere if they turn into revolutionary interpretations. The reformist leadership has not made clear-cut Sunni Islamic reformist political revolutionary interpretations that legitimize any Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary movement. In the absence of this form of revolutionary interpretation or ijtihad there are more similarities between the reformist leadership and the Monarchy than differences. The similarities revolve around the Sunni Islamic principles and origins in general, and the Sunni Islamic da‘wah of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab in particular, with the general dimension, and the particular dimension, providing mutual legitimacy for the Monarchy and the reformist leadership. A method of mutual understanding with the juristic Sunni Islamic features a crucial joint structure that makes the leadership and the Monarchy have, to a certain extent, a common juristic language, mutual political harmony, certain security and mutual legitimacy that can deter the further development of conflict. The more the differences between the reformist leadership and the Monarchy, the higher the possibility of revolution, and revolutionary interpretations of the Sunni Islamic Political Jurisprudence, in general, and Ibn Abd al-Wahhab’s Sunni Islamic discourse, in particular, and the higher the possibility of a revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change. Alliances The reformist leadership recognizes the importance of building a wide-ranging Sunni Islamic reformist alliance, or coalition, crossing state and society as a strategic policy to bring political change and reform. The leadership seeks to form a communal Sunni Islamic reformist alliance, to formulate Sunni Islamic reformist public opinion which supports the demands for political change and reform and increases commitment to Sunni Islam. Towards this end, the reformist leadership directs its discourse to the whole Saudi Sunni Islamic citizenry in general, and to the reformist Saudi Sunni Islamic community in particular. This is where the Sunni Islamic juristic and reformist message can become a common public language that could attract and mobilize the Saudi Sunni Islamic citizenry body as a whole and the reformist Saudi Sunni Islamic community in particular. The reformist leadership seeks to be seen as a Sunni Islamic reformist body on a broader base and as representative of the whole Saudi Sunni Islamic citizenry and the reformist Saudi Sunni Islamic community in particular.

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This process should make the leadership identify its own specific interests with the interests of the whole Saudi Sunni Islamic citizenry body and with the Saudi Sunni Islamic community. The Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist alliance can be an effective broad-based professional political organization, but the possibility exists that this organization can be taken over by revolutionary elements. A revolutionary change can occur in the context of this organized and cohesive Sunni Islamic reformist and revolutionary political alliance which might create widespread popular participation under its command. The strategic position of the reformist leadership in directing this alliance is crucial. Capabilities The reformist leadership and Monarchical capabilities determine their political struggle. The leadership’s political struggle, demonstrated over the last two decades, has not led to a revolution with a group seizing the reins of political power from the ruling status quo and setting up a new political order under its own conditions. The leadership does not have the materialistic or coercive capabilities to be in a position to seize power against a State which enjoys coercive ability that can easily be used against the will of the leadership and other Sunni Islamic reformist forces. The reformist leadership’s capabilities are intellectual in nature and origin, and their Sunni Islamic intellectual ability is influential and independent. This ability can alienate the Monarchical coercive power and apparatus by fatwa or convincing argument during times of revolutionary change or political system crisis. Here the Sunni Islamic capability can outweigh the State’s capability, and Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary change can be more a moral and popular victory than a military victory. The greater the reformist’s Sunni Islamic intellectual capabilities being directed to alienate the State’s coercive capabilities, the higher the possibility of a Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary change. Revolutionary aspirations International and regional environments can create a revolutionary state of mind. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the reformist leadership interacted with the dramatic events of the collapse of the USSR and the communist block, arguing that change and reform could also be Sunni Islamic in character in other parts of the world. Where some nations can advance a democratic change or revolution, a liberal change or revolution, a Marxist/communist change or revolution, other nations can advance a Sunni Islamic change or revolution in a world of struggle, competition and interaction. The international environment can form ideas or aspirations for change and reform without necessarily following ideologically the type of change and reform that might take place in that environment.

Conclusion 223 Certain regional political change and development might be perceived by reformists as a positive cause, or political opportunity, inspiring a new wave of struggle for political change and reform. In this case, the international and the regional environments might produce a revolutionary state of mind that can facilitate the transformation of the civil struggle for political change and reform into revolution. The greater the revolutionary state of mind inspired by international and regional environments, the higher the possibility of a revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change. Secular policies and external ties The Monarchy’s secular policies and external ties can turn the present ‘low-risk’ political struggle into a ‘high-risk’ political struggle which will prepare the grounds for a potential revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change. The reformist leadership has considered the Monarchy’s secular policies and external ties, and association with foreign interests or ‘imperialism’, as a polemic. The leadership values its political struggle as a means of expressing political demands or opposing undesirable policies, such as the Monarchical secular policies or policies that are not consistent with the basic principles of the Sunni Islamic Law, and opposes Monarchical ties with external players. For example, in the 1990s, the reformist opposition against the Monarchy became increasingly strong, not only in terms of domestic affairs, but also in terms of Saudi Arabia’s relationship with the United States. The Monarchical secular policies and its association with foreign interests breeds discontent and this discontent will intensify if these policies and associations are further advanced. This might well facilitate the grounds for a Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary change. The reformist leadership is likely to continue opposing, directly or indirectly, the Monarchical secular policies and confronting these policies, and will continue opposing association with foreign interests, if this association is identified as against the Islamic Law, as immoral or as an association with ‘imperialism’. However, the greater the Monarchical secular policies applied and further the association with foreign interests or ‘imperialism’, the higher the possibility of a revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change. The institutional mechanism The institutional mechanism refers to three elements: 1 2

The Saudi government’s willingness to provide a means of expression for the reformist leadership and other Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist forces. The Saudi government’s ability to ally itself with the key principals of the Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist forces, such as the reformist leadership, and to make well-timed concessions, which are still possible in our

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Conclusion present time, by comprehensively or partially meeting the demands for political change and reform. The Saudi government’s willingness to apply the Saudi Constitution.

If the Monarchy is unwilling to permit lawful and institutional opportunities, for the expression of discontent, anger and non-violent hostility, the likelihood of these taking a revolutionary direction is possible. If the Monarchy is not able to form, or maintain, an alliance with key principals of the Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist forces, such as the reformist leadership, and make concessions to them by comprehensively or partially meeting the demands for political change and reform, the likelihood of a high-risk political struggle, with a revolutionary potential, is possible. Furthermore, if the Monarchy is unwilling to apply the Saudi Constitution, the reformist leadership and other Sunni Islamic reformist forces might escalate their political struggle for political change and reform and increase their pressure on the Monarchy, which can be justified as a struggle to restore the Constitution. The longer the Monarchy resists permitting opportunities of expression, the longer the Monarchy resists applying the Saudi Constitution and the longer the Monarchy resists meeting the demands for political change and reform, the higher the possibility of a Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary change. Other crises Internal crises the Monarchy and external players (who are allies of the political system) might experience can contribute to the possibility of a Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary change. The Monarchy might experience crises from within, such as a dynastic succession conflict, which might lead to armed conflict or struggle. The Monarchy might continue experiencing legitimacy problems, taking into consideration the variability of secular policies and external ties, and fiscal problems, for example, through the increasing Saudi population which might place economic and financial pressures on the State. Such internal crises or the further development of such crises will contribute to the argument that the political system, as such, is the source of State and society problems. External players, or allies, might also experience crises or political calculations and consequences which make them unable to intervene in a foreign country, such as Saudi Arabia, during the time of crisis, or they might further withdraw support to a local government, when domestic opposition becomes significant, united, legitimate, broad and strong. If it becomes clear that the external player/ally cannot intervene, or will not intervene, the revolutionary dimension of the political struggle for change and reform is likely to take place. Such non-intervention will increase the possibility of a successful revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change. In such a case, the reformist

Conclusion 225 leadership, in harmony with the Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist alliance and community in a broader sense, might increase their opposition to the Monarchy, especially if those crises take a security dimension in which public order is threatened. The greater the crises the Monarchy experiences, the higher the possibility of revolutionary change occurring, and the lesser the possibility of foreign assistance to a threatened regime, with a higher possibility of a revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change.

Summary If the Sunni Islamic reformist political order has to come about through a revolutionary Sunni Islamic reformist change, it would come with historical momentum, as an accumulative process, a policy choice and an application of the principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice] as a clear maslahah shar‘iyah [shari‘ah-based interest] and religious necessity. But should the reformist leadership countenance a Sunni Islamic reformist revolution, this will probably be a civic–civil reformist movement rather than violent revolution. This civic–civil political change will only occur if the reformist leadership and the Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist community, as a whole, perceive themselves incapable, or ineffective, within the political system, of bringing about the required changes. The possibility of this Sunni Islamic reformist revolutionary direction taking place in the longer term, conditioned by the variables noted, does not imply that the reformist leadership’s ongoing policy of accommodation is irrational. The reformist leadership can work effectively within the political system, state legitimacy and peacefully continue performing jihad, through heart and by word, and through Sunni Islamic reformist civil activities towards political change and reform.

Appendices

Appendix A – Kitab Shawal [Letter of Shawal] or Kitab al-‘Ulama [Letter of the ‘Ulama], Shawal of 1411H (May 1991AD). Appendix B – Non-official English translation of the Memorandum of Advice, 1992. Appendix C – The Saudi Basic Law [The Constitution], issued in March, 1982, by royal decree, and reissued on 27 Sha‘ban 1412 (3 March 1992). Appendix G – Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s endorsement to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice], Saudi Arabia: Buraydah, 18-12-1412H (20-6-1992AD). Appendix H – Shaikh Safar al-Hawali’s endorsement to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice], Dhu al-Hijja 1412H (June 1992AD). Appendix S – Shaikh Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz’s Fatwa [juristic and legal opinion] allowing listening to audio cassettes, and reading of discourses, by the reformist leadership: Fatwa No: KH/970, Date: 10-4-1414H (27-9-1993AD), Dar al-Ifta [The Office of Fatwa], Maktab Mufti ‘Am al-Mamlakah [The Office of the Grand Mufti in Saudi Arabia].

Glossary

[plural ‘ibad, servant, man, human being] [justice], qualification of character for appointment to office ‘ahd or al-‘ahd [plural ‘uhud, covenant, compact, convention, pledge, commitment, fulfilment, engagement] al-‘Ahd al-Qadim [the Old Testament] ‘ain zahirah [a prima facie resource] ‘ajz [deficiency, to be unable] ‘alamah [an emphasis on the term ‘alim] ‘alamiyah [globalization] ‘alim [scholar] ‘amal [work, conduct, the outward practices] ‘amal al-qalb [the heart’s work, saying or belief] ‘amal al-salih or a‘mal saliha [good deed, or good deeds] ‘amal al-zahir [external work and conduct] ‘aql or al-‘aql [the mind] ‘aqidah or al-‘aqidah [Islamic creed, faith, tenet, doctrine, belief] ‘asabiyah or al-‘asabiyah [leadership, tribalism, party spirit, substance of power] ‘awaridh al-ahliyah [this juristic term has three main factors: 1. having no knowledge or failing to know, 2. al-ikrah which means coercion or compulsion, and 3. interpretation] ‘awasim al-din wa [juristic Sunni Islamic foundations and muhakimatuh structures] [worshipping, worshipping Allah] ‘ibadah, al-‘ubudiyah ‘ibadat [devotions, acts of worship] ‘illah [plural ‘ilal, reason, justification or wisdom] ‘ilm or al-‘ilm [plural ‘ulum, knowledge, science] Here, it refers to Islamic subjects or al-‘ulum alshar‘iyah [Islamic sciences] ‘ilmaniyah or al-‘ilmaniyah [secularism] ‘abd ‘adl

228

Glossary

‘ilmi, al-‘ilmi, ‘ilmiyah ‘ubudiyah ‘ulama ‘umrah ‘umran ‘uqubat dunyawiyyah ‘uqubat shar‘iyah ‘uqubat ukhrawiyyah ‘urubah ‘uzlah or al-‘uzlah ‘uzlah al-qalbiyah a’yatu al-hukm a’yatu al-umara ahkam al-ahkam al-kuliyah ahkam al-mar’ah ahkam Islamiyah asasiyah wa taba‘iyah ahkam shar‘iyah ahlu al-‘ilm ahlu al-‘ilm wa al-Sunnah ahlu al-hadith ahlu al-shawkah ahlu al-sunnah wa al-jama‘ah

[scientific, indicates Islamic sciences, studies and curriculum] [worship] [plural of ‘alim, one who knows, a scholar of Islam] [minor pilgrimage which can be performed at any time during the year] [constructing the earth] [worldly punishment] [punishment instituted in Islamic law] [punishment in the hereafter] [Arabism] [isolation, not mixing with people, remote/separated from people, abstain from] [keeping the heart away from corruptions] [Qur’anic verses of government or ruling] [Qur’anic verses of rulers] [plural of hukm, orders, commands, rules, sentences, judgements] [general judgements/legal opinions] [juristic regulations which deal with women affairs] [Islamic fundamental regulations and their dependencies and branches] [juristic Sunni Islamic judgements, laws, regulations, ordinances of Islam] [‘ulama, people of Islamic sciences and knowledge] [people of Islamic knowledge or sciences and prophetic tradition] [people of the prophetic tradition] [people with power or military power] This term can be defined in different but complementary ways: [the people of the Sunnah and collective opinion] and [people of Sunnah and community]. The term ahlu alsunnah wa al-jama‘ah was constructed historically. Juristically speaking, this term refers to people who follow the prophetic tradition or the Sunnah, and maintain their positions as part of the collective opinion of leading Sunni Muslim ‘ulama. In particular, it refers to the ancestors or the forefathers of Muslims who were Companions of the Prophet and alTabi‘un [the Companions’ followers] and who had a collective agreement on explicit and

Glossary

ahwa akhlaq al nahi amanah al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar amwal arbab asl awamir bai‘ah bara’ah batin bi yaqin bid‘ah bida‘ da‘iyah da‘wah or al-da‘wah al-da‘wah al-islamiyah da‘wah al-mashayikh daf‘ dafa‘a, tadafu‘, df‘ dalil dawlah al-dawlah al-shar‘iyah dha‘if dhalal al-dharurat al-khams

al-dhawabit al-shar‘iyah

229

authentic explanations of the Qur’an and the Sunnah. The term ahlu al-sunnah wa aljama‘ah is equivalent to the term sunni in this research.i [lusts, inclinations] [moralities, ethics] [preventing] [trust, faithfulness, responsibility] [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice; enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong] [money, fund] [Lords] [foundation, fundamental, basis] [orders, instructions] [contract, pledge of allegiance] [immunity, exemption] [internal] [certain and clear juristic proof] [a novelty or innovation in religion; heresy] [plural of bid‘ah, innovations in religion, heresies] [Islamic caller; one who invites people to Islam] [Call to Islam] [the Islamic Da‘wah (call)] [the Islamic call of the shaikhs – referring to Safar al-Hawali, Salman al-Oudah and Nassir al-Omar] [the act of prohibiting and prevention] [dimension of countering] [juristic proof, evidence] [the state] [the legitimate Islamic state] [weak] [the straying, straying from Islam] [the five essentials, necessities or origins]. This juristic term refers to five essential and fundamental aspects: himayatu al-din [protection of religion], himayatu al-hayah [protection of life], himayatu al-‘aql [protection of mind or intellect], himayatu al-mulkiyah [protection of property] and himayatu alnasl [protection of posterity or offspring]. [Sunni Islamic fundamental laws, roles and regulations]

230 Glossary dharrar or al-dharrar dharurah or al-dharurah dharurah diniyah dharurat din or al-din dini diwan Diwan al-Mazalim diwaniyah al-diyanat al-samawiyah du‘a du‘ah dunya or al-dunya al-fa‘iliyah faqih fara’idh fardh fardh ‘ain

fardiyah fasad fatawa fatwa, al-futyah fikr al-fikr al-irja’i fiqh or al-fiqh fiqh al-awlawiyat fiqh al-istita‘a al-fiqh al-madhhabi

[harm, hurt, mischief, injury] [the necessity] [religious necessity] [plural of dharurah, necessities, essentials, needs] [religion, Islam] [religious] [department, council, office, court] [a review and appeals office – similar to ombudsmen in Britain] [private male sitting room or reception; majlis] [heavenly revelations – Judaism, Christianity and Islam] [prayer] [plural of da‘iyah, one who invites people to Islam, Islamic callers] [worldly or present life] [the efficiency] [jurisprudent, jurist] [duties, obligations] [duty, obligatory] [individual duty; an injunction or ordinance, the obligation extends to every Muslim], fardh ‘ain is an opposite to the term fardh kifayah [collective duty, a command which is imperative fardh (duty) upon all Muslims, but if some persons perform it, it is kifayah (sufficient), or equivalent to all having performed it] [taking decisions without consulting others] [corruption, disorder] [legal/juristic opinions] [singular of fatawa, legal and juristic opinion] [thought] [the thought of postponement] [Islamic Law and Jurisprudence, the sciences of shari‘ah. Also means understanding, comprehension and knowledge] [jurisprudence of priorities] [jurisprudence of the ability, to be able to] [the jurisprudence of a particular juristic school]

Glossary

231

[jurisprudence of balances] [Islamic Political Jurisprudence] [jurisprudence of reality] [plural of fitnah] [riot, unrest, disorder, distress, sedition, corruption, trouble] fuqaha [plural of faqih, jurisprudents, jurists] al-ghaib [the unseen, the invisible] ghair mashru‘ [illegitimate, unlawful] gharib [far from his homeland, who experiences solitary or the feeling of being alone] ghulu [extremism] ghuraba [solitaries] ghurbah [solitude] al-hadatha [modernity] hadathiyun or al-hadathiyun [the pro-modernity, modernists] hadhari [civil] hadith [the sayings of the Prophet; an action or practice of his; his silent approval of an action or practice of another person] hajj [pilgrimage] hakim [ruler or Head of State]; al-hakim [the all-wise] hakimiya or al-hakimiya [dominion, governorship, rule] hakimiyatu Allah or [the right of Allah to govern His creatures]; al-hakimiya al-hakimiya implies the obligatory matter of applying Islamic law or shari‘ah halal [lawful] al-hamid [the praiseworthy] al-Hanafiyah, al-Malikiyah, [names of the historical Sunni Islamic juristic al-Shafi‘iyah and al-Hanbila schools] al-haq [the right] haqiqah murakabah [compound fact] al-haquq al-mushtarakah [shared rights; Allah’s rights and human rights] haram [unlawful, forbidden] al-haramain [the two holy sacred Mosques] hawa [lust] Hay’at al-amr b’il ma‘ruf [the General Presidency of the Promotion of wa al nahi ‘an al munkar Virtue and Prevention of Vice] Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [Council of the Senior ‘Ulama] hiba ilahiyah [a Divine grant] hijab [scarf] hijrah [lit. migration] himayatu al-din [protection or guarding the religion] fiqh al-muwazanat fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah fiqh al-waqi‘ fitn fitnah or al-fitnah

232 Glossary hisbah or al-hisbah hizbi hudud or al-hudud hukm hukm shar‘i huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam huquq ilahiyah huquq insaniyah or huquq al-insan al-huquq al-shar‘iyah hurumat i‘tidal i‘tiqad i‘tizal Ifta ihtikar ihya ijazah ijma‘ ijtihad ijtihad ‘amali ijtima‘ imam imamah imamah al-ghalaba wa al-qahr imamah shar‘iyah iman iman al-jawarih iman al-qalb al-imarah intifadha intisar or al-intisar iqrar al-irhab irja or al-irja

[accounting; enjoining what is right and forbidding what is right and forbidding what is wrong] [partisan, partial] [plural of hadd, prescribes punishments] [judgement, rule, sentence] [Islamic law-based judgement or legal decision] [Human Rights in Islam] [Almighty Allah’s rights] [human rights] [the legitimate rights in Islamic law] [sanctities] [moderation] [belief, faith] [isolated, to avoid something] [deliverance of formal legal opinion, giving or deliverance of advisory opinion] [monopoly] [restoration, renewal, regeneration] [juristic scholarly Sunni Islamic permission and recognition given by a higher religious status or authority] [consensus] [interpretation, exercising juristic judgement] [the empirical demonstration of ijtihad (interpretation, exercising juristic judgement)] [community, gathering] [ruler, leading religious scholar, leader of prayer, political leader] [the supreme ruling office] [the ruler who sought the ruling authority by power, overcame others and prevailed over rivals] [legitimate Sunni Islamic state] [faith] [external belief or external conduct] [the heart’s belief or internal conduct] [the governing administration] [uprising] [victory] [affirmation] [terrorism] [postponement, delaying, deferring and putting-off of duties, to postpone or to neglect religious duties, wishful thinking]

Glossary islah islahi, muslih islahiyin islahiyun Islamiyun isnad istihlal istilahi istiqamah istita‘a ittiba‘ jadid jahda jahili jahiliyah or al-jahiliyah jama‘ah or al-jama‘ah al-jama‘iyah jawarih jawr jihad jihad ‘ilmi jihad al-da‘wah juhd juz’i karamah insaniyah khalidah khatib al-Khulafa al-Rashidun khultah or al-khultatu khuruj or al-khuruj khutab khutbah kufr kufr akbar mustabin kufr i‘tiqad kufrun bawah kuli la ilaha illa Allah Muhammad rasul Allah

233

[reform, reformation] [reformist, reformer] [reformers] [Islamic reformers] [plural asanid, ascription (of an Islamic tradition), the (uninterrupted) chain of authorities on which a tradition is based] [to believe or consider the unlawful thing that contradicts Islamic law as lawful or permissible] [idiomatic, technical and conventional] [Islamic-ethical behaviour] [ability, capability, possibility] [adopting legal views] [new] [endure hardship] [ignorant] [ignorance, pre-Islamic state and period] [group of people, community] [team-work and a collective effort] [extremities of the body, limbs] [injustice, tyranny, oppression] [struggle to the utmost of one’s capacity]. It could be a military jihad or a peaceful, civic–civil jihad. [Islamic scientific and intellectual jihad] [striving and working to spread Islam] [energy, hardship, effort] [minor issues or smaller parts which come under the main or fundamental parts] [human dignity] [eternal, living forever] [preacher] [the first four Muslim Caliphs who succeeded the Prophet] [involvement, mixing with people] [revolt, revolution, rebellion] [plural of khutbah, speeches, sermons] [sermon, speech] [disbelief] [clear and great disbelief] [dogmatic disbelief] [open, clear and undisputed disbelief] [main, comprehensive, fundamental or bases] [there is no God but God, and Muhammad is His Messenger]

234

Glossary

la yantaqil ‘an al-yaqin ila bi yaqin mithluhu aw aqwa minhu al-ma‘ahid al-‘ilmiyah al-Ma‘had al-‘Ilmi ma‘ruf ma‘ruf siyasi ma‘siyah ma‘sum ma’luh madhhab al-mafasid or mafasid mafhum fiqhi mahaba majalis Majlis al-Shura mal al-mal al-‘am al-mal al-haram al-mala’ manafi‘ al-manhaj al-shar‘i maqasid al-shari‘ah maqasid or al-maqasid marji‘ marji‘iyah al-marji‘iyah al-qanuniyah mas’uliyah mas’uliyah shar‘iyah masadir al-tashri‘ masalih masdar or al-masdar al-mashaqah mashayikh or al-mashayikh

[clear and certain juristic proof can only be nullified by other equal or stronger clear and certain juristic proof] [The Islamic scientific schools] [an Islamic school] [right and good things] [political virtue] [sin, offence, wrongdoing, any thing, laws or policies that violate or contradict shari‘ah] [infallible] [God] [juristic school of thought; particular jurisprudence] [plural of al-mafsadah or mafsadah; corruption; sedition; riot; disturbance; trouble; unrest; disorder] [juristic concept] [loving] [plural of majlis, private male sitting rooms] [The Consultative Council] [properties, prosperity] [public funds] [unlawful financial transactions, unlawful possessions] [inner circle of a ruling elite] [interests, benefits, advantages] [the Islamic method] [The Aims of Islamic Law] [the purposes, the aims] [reference, lawful resort] [referential] [the sole legal reference] [responsibility; mas’uliyat plural] [juristic responsibility including the political] [refers to the sources of legislation. They are: Qur’an, Sunnah, Ijma‘ (consensus) and Qiyas (juristic analogy)] [interests, benefits, advantages] [singular of masadir, source] [hardship] [plural of shaikh, an emphasis of the term shaikhs, religious scholars, ‘ulama]. Here it refers in particular to the reformist leadership.

Glossary maslahah maslahah shar‘iyah mawathiq mawdhu‘ mazalim mihnah mu’a’sasah shar‘iyah al-mu‘asirah or mu‘asirah mubtadi‘ah al-mudafa‘a mufa‘lah al-mufsidun mufti muhakimat al-Qur’an wa al-Sunnah al-muhaqiqun mujaddid mujahadah mujahidin mukalaf mukatabah mukhatabah munkar siyasi murabatah murabitun al-musabarah musalamat or al-musalamat al-musalamat al-Islamiyah muslihun mustadh‘afun or al-mustadh‘afun mutadayinun mutrafin muwahidin al-muwajaha al-siyasiyah

235

[interest, benefit, advantage] [shari‘ah-based interest, law-based Islamic interest] [mithaq, plural mawathiq; contracts] [fabricated] [Review and Appeals Office – similar to that of ombudsmen in Britain] [ordeal] [Islamic institution] [contemporary] [to bring innovation or heresy in religion] [to push away, to push back, to avert] [interaction] [the corrupt] [a specialist in shari‘ah delivering or issuing of formal legal opinion; the expounder of Islamic law] [established or fixed juristic Sunni Islamic bases, the Sunni Islamic fundamental principles] [the experts of the prophetic hadith, who investigate the validity or the accuracy of the hadith] [plural mujadidun, reformer] [to strive, to resist, extensive efforts] [who strive] [obligated], and a related term is takalif [obligations] [writing] [addressing, preaching] [political vice] [to be firm and constant] [practising patience firmly and constantly; frontier guardians] [the long patience] [axioms, postulates] [axioms, the basic principle or postulates in Islam] [reformers] [the oppressed] [plural of mutadayin, religious, one who observes Islam in his/her life] [opulent people] [monotheists] [political confrontation]

236 Glossary [allegiance, loyalty] [balance] [soul, body] [contradiction] [leaving and relinquishing Islam] [Islamic intellectual and political activities] [counsel, advice, recommendation, formation of advice] al-nasl [posterity or offspring] nass [text, version] nawaqidh al-Islam [matters contradicting Islam] nawaqidh al-shahadatan [matters contradicting the two testimonials] nazariyah al-haq [the theory of right] nur [light] qaddar [predestination] qadha shar‘i [the Islamic court system] qadhi [judge] qanun wadh‘i [non-Islamic Law or positive law] qasd or al-maqsad [aim, purpose] qawl [saying, verbal statement and by heart] qisas [penalty, retribution, chastening] qiyas or al-qiyas [juristic analogy] Qur’anic [pertaining to the Qur’an] al-ra’uf [the affectionate] [the merciful] al-rahim raj‘iyah [reactionary] al-rasikhun min ahlu al-‘ilm [distinguished ‘ulama] ridha [feeling of love, consent, satisfaction] al-riqabah al-ilahiyah [to believe that Almighty Allah sees you all the time] rukn al-‘amal [the pillar of work] al-sabr [the patience] al-sabr wa al-musabarah [patience, and long patience] sadaqah [anything given in charity] sahih al-hadith [authentic hadith] sahwa [renaissance, revivalism] sakinah [calmness] salaf or al-salaf [the ancestors] al-salaf al-salih [the venerable forefathers] Salafi [following the path of the first Islamic generation that includes the Prophet Muhammad, sahabah (the Companions of the Prophet), and al-tabi‘un (the successors of the Companions and who have conversed with Companions of Prophet Muhammad] muwalah muwazanah al-nafs naqidh naqil ‘an al-millah nashat islami ‘ilmi wa siyasi nasihah or munasahah

Glossary

237

[prayer] [self-reform] [upright, good]; salihun [plural of salih: one, who or that which is good, perfect, righteous] salihat [good works, righteous deeds] salimah [valid and accurate] sasa and yasus [to manage, to govern, to regulate, to form policy] shahadah [martyrdom] al-shahadatan [the two testimonials in Islam] shahawat [lusts, inclinations] shaikh [lit. old man, often or in this research, for religious scholar, scholar in Islam] shaikh al-Islam [leading religious scholar, leading scholar in Islam] shaikhs [plural of shaikh, religious scholar, scholar in Islam] al-shar‘ [Islam, Islamic law] shar‘i or al-shar‘i [legitimate, lawful] shar‘iyah or al-shar‘iyah [legitimacy, lawfully, religious, Islamic, legitimate] shar‘iyah al-dawlah [the legitimacy of state] shar‘iyah diniyah [religious or Islamic legitimacy] shar‘iyah mushtarakah or [a common legitimate base, the common al-shar‘iyah mushtarakah legitimacy] al-shar‘iyah al-siyasiyah [the political legitimacy] shar‘iyan [legitimate, lawfully] shar‘u [Islam, shari‘ah] sharh [explanation] shari‘ah or al-shari‘ah [Islam, Islamic Law, including both the teaching of the Holy Qur’an and of the traditional sayings of Prophet Muhammad] al-shari‘ah al-islamiyah [Islam] al-shari‘ah mu‘alalah fi asliha [reasons, justifications or wisdoms] This term means that the general Islamic juristic judgements, in their origins, are based on ‘ilal. sharik [partner] shirk [polytheism, associating anything with Allah] shubuhat [doubtful matters about religion] shumuliyah [comprehensiveness] shura [consultation] al-shurah [the ones who explain the prophetic hadith, relying on al-muhaqiqun]

salah or al-salah salah al-nafs salih

238

Glossary

al-shuyu‘iyah sifatu sirah or al-sirah siyam siyasa al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah al-dusturiyah sultan al-sunan al-ilahiyah sunan al-mudafa‘a sunnah

sunnah al-khalfiyah sunnah ilahiyah ta‘ah ta‘asub ta‘dil ta’alluh ta’lih ta‘zir taba‘iyah al-tabi‘un tada‘i al-tadayun tafsil tafsir taghut taghyir tahakum al-tahalul min al-thawabit al-shar‘iyah taharat tahdid tahkim tahrir tajawuzat

[communism] [a description, character] [biography, the Prophetic biography] [fasting] [politics, political, management]; or [being involved in political affairs] [Islamic political constitutional jurisprudence] [the ruling authority] [Allah’s conduct] [policies or methods of countering] [literally: ‘A path or way; a manner of life,’ As a term, sunnah is all that has been said or done by Prophet Muhammad, all his traditions and practices that are models to be followed by Muslims] [succession] [Divine conducts; Allah’s will and way] [obedience, obeying shari‘ah] [biases] [adjusting] [to deify, raise to the status of God or Allah] [to deify] [discretionary punishment] [subordination, dependency] [the successors of the Prophet’s Companions] Those who have conversed with companions of Prophet Muhammad. [befall] [being Islamic or religious] [clear and distinct explanation] [lit. explaining, interpretation, a term used for a commentary on the Qur’an] [false deities, whatever is worshipped besides Allah] [change] [to go together to judgement] [leaving out or relinquishing fundamental Islamic principles] [purifications] [threat] [arbitration] [liberation] [overstepping or exceeding the proper boundaries or limits/errors]

Glossary tajdid tajdidu al-din takfir al-takhrij talabatu al-‘ilm talib ‘ilm tamyiz tanwir tanzil or al-tanzil tanzim taqlid taqwa tarbiyah al-tarbiyah al-da‘wiyah tarjih

tasfiyah al-tashhir tashri‘ tashri‘i al-taswiyah tataruf tatbi‘ tawbah tawhid tawhid al-asma wa sifat tawhid al-rububiyah tawhid al-uluhiyah thabat thaqafah sha‘biyah thawabit thawabit shar‘iyah ummah usul usul al-din usul al-fiqh

239

[renewal, reform] [to renew religion] [expiation, accusing the Muslim of becoming a non-Muslim] [juristic investigation to see the validity of the hadith] [students of Islamic sciences or shari‘ah] [student of Islamic sciences or shari‘ah] [to distinguish, to differentiate] [enlightenment] [revelation, the Qur’an] [system, organization] [imitation, to imitate, to copy] [God-fearing] [education] [Islamic da‘wah education] [to give more weight to certain elements over others; rujhan al-dalil (preponderance, the superiority of juristic proof over other juristic proofs, excess of weight)] [purification of Islamic knowledge] [libel] [legislation] [legislative] [it means counting Allah as equal to other things or bodies] [extremism, radicalism] [the normalization of relationships] [repentance, turning of the heart from sin] [monotheism] [unity of names, qualities and attributes of Allah] [unity of Lordship, to believe there is only Lord for all the universe and that is Allah] [unity of worship, to believe that none have the right to be worshipped but Allah] [steadiness, firmness, constancy] [public culture] [plural of thabit, confirmed, verified] [fixed juristic Sunni Islamic bases] [a people, nation] [plural of asl, roots, foundations, fundamental] [roots, the roots or fundamentals of the Islamic religion] [Foundations of Islamic Jurisprudence]

240

Glossary

usul shar‘iyah or al-usul al-shar‘iyah al-wajib al-shar‘i wajibat shar‘iyah waqf or awqaf waqi‘ waqi‘una wara‘ wasatiyah or al-wasatiyah waswasa al-shaitan wilayat yaqin yatajadad yuridun zahir zakah zuhd

[Islamic juristic regulations] [Islamic law-based duty] [legitimate or religious duties] [endowment] [reality] [our reality] [piety] [being in the middle] [the whispering of someone’s mind, temptation] [plural of wilayah: state public office, governing office, governing responsibility] [perfect faith, certain] [to be renewed] [want, wish] [external] [almsgiving] [asceticism, self-denial, to renounce pleasure in worldly things]

Notes Some of the terms have similar or close meanings, such as the terms: fasad and fitnah. These two terms revolve around the elements of corruption, disorder, sedition, riot, disturbance, trouble and unrest. The definition of corruption has mainly come to be identified with the term fasad, and the definition of disorder by the term fitnah. Yet both terms overlap in their meanings. The author places in the text, one or two of these meanings as a definition of the term depending on the context. These are adequate definitions of the terms, although some definitions are abbreviated. The author therefore gives a deeper and more comprehensive meaning of crucial terms in the texts.

i

See Muhammad Abd al-Hadi al-Massri, Ahlu al-Sunnah wa al-Jama’a [People of the Prophetic Tradition and Collective Opinion], (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Dar Tayybah, 1408H/1988AD).

Notes

1 Introduction 1 The term ‘ulama is a title for teachers learned in Islam and its Law or Jurisprudence. 2 By ‘revolution’ is meant the use of physical power, violent means or armed struggle to confront or replace a government. Peter Calvert defines revolution in terms of physical force used to overthrow a government or regime. Peter Calvert, Revolution (London: Macmillan, 1970) p.15. Revolution can also be understood as the application of political violence for political change and reform. In this case, the term revolution ‘refers to all collective attacks within a political community against the political regime’. See Ted Robert Gurr, Why Men Rebel (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1971) p.4. In the terminology of fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence], the overthrow of an existing government or ousting of the Imam [ruler] is called al-khuruj [revolt, revolution, rebellion]. 3 ‘ilm [science or knowledge] or ‘ilmi or al-‘ilmi [scientific] indicates Islamic sciences, studies and curricula. 4 ‘H’ refers to the Islamic calendar [Hijri calendar], a lunar calendar beginning in 622AD–the date of the Prophet Muhammad’s emigration from the city of Makkah to al-Madina. 5 The term usul is the plural of asl. Usul means the roots, or fundamentals of the Islamic religion. 6 din or al-din means religion, and specifically means Islam here. 7 Islamic call or da‘wah aims to notify people about Islam, and convey information and ideas about Islam. The da‘wah also means to educate people about Islam, and the way to implement it in life. See Dr Muhammad Abu al-Fatih al-Bayanuni, Jihad al-Kalimah: Ma‘alimahu wa Dhawabitahu [ Jihad by Word: Characteristics and Standards] (1418H/1997AD), p.19. 8 Kitab Shawal [Letter of Shawal] or Kitab al-‘Ulama [Letter of the ‘Ulama] (Shawal 1411H/May 1991AD). 9 Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] (Muharram 1413H/July 1992) 10 At the end of their teachings, lessons and lectures, it is a custom that the three Shaikhs receive various questions about the lesson. Those questions are juristic and legal in nature. On his website, www.islamtoday.net, launched in July 2001, Al-Oudah, by the end of 2003, had received more than 10,000 letters from audiences asking him various questions, encompassing jurisprudence, theology, politics, Islamic activities and works, and da‘wah.

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Notes

11 Bastami Muhammad Khair, Mafhum Tajdid al-Din [The Concept of Renewal in Religion], Second Edition (Leeds Institute for Middle Eastern Studies, Leeds University, UK, 1416H/1996AD) pp.14–15. Bastami Khair currently teaches at Birmingham University. 12 Dr Saif al-Din Abd al-Fatah Isma‘il, Fi al-Nazariyah al-Siyasiyah min Manzur Islami [Political Theory: An Islamic Perspective]. PhD dissertation. The International Institute of Islamic Thought, VA, USA. Series of University dissertations, No. 25. Also published by The International Institute of Islamic Thought, Cairo, Egypt, 1419H/1998AD pp.14–17. 13 The reformist leadership is also referred to as the leadership. 14 Al-Hawali, Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya [Explanation of the ‘Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi], recorded lectures 1985–1990; al-Oudah, ‘Ibad al-Rahman [The Servants of Allah], recorded lecture (1992) and al-Omar, Al-Tawhid [Monotheism], recorded lecture (1992). 15 Amnesty International, London. AI Index: MDE 23-7-00. Amnesty’s report was confirmed by the author in Saudi Arabia in the Summer of 2001. No official charges were recorded against al-Hawali, al-Oudah or al-Omar. 16 See the Basic Law in: John Bulloch, Shura Council in Saudi Arabia (London: Gulf Centre for Strategic Studies, 1993). 17 To carry out Sunni Islamic reformist activities, Islamic da‘wah [call] and al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice]. See also Dr Shaikh Salih Ibn Ghanim al-Sadlan, Al-Anshitah al-Da‘awiyah fi al-Mamlakah al-‘Arabiyah al-Su‘udiyah [The Da‘wah Activities in Saudi Arabia] (1417H/1997AD). Also see Hay’at al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar: Tarikhuha-A‘maluha [General Presidency of the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, Its History and Activities], First Edition (1419H/1999AD). (This is a limited distribution publication). 18 See the Basic Law in Bulloch, Shura Council in Saudi Arabia, pp.30–39. Also see the Basic Law in Anders Jerichow, The Saudi File: People, Power, Politics (Surrey, UK: Curzon Press, 1998), pp.10–16. Saudi royalist voices are concerned about the Sunni Islamic legitimacy of the contemporary Saudi Monarchy, and have noted the Saudi State’s interests based on this legitimacy. This is seen in certain academic studies by Saudi royalist members. Dr Faisal al-Sa‘ud published a study asserting that the legitimacy of the royal family is drawn from the pillars of Islam, the prophetic Sunnah, and that they apply shari‘ah as governing law. He presents the Islamic da‘wah of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab as the origin of the State legitimacy and illustrates letters issued by Saudi Imams and Kings, since the first Saudi State asserted Sunni Islamic legitimacy, and their role in maintaining this legitimacy. Dr Mashaal al-Sa‘ud presented a PhD dissertation in the United States, asserting that Islam is the source of the Monarchy’s legitimacy. See Dr Faisal al-Sa‘ud, Rasa’il Aamat Da‘wahtu al-Tawhid [The Letters of the Imam of the Islamic Call] (1422H/2001AD) and Dr Mashaal al-Sa‘ud, 1982. Permanence and Change: An Analysis of the Islamic Political Culture of Saudi Arabia with Special Reference to the Royal Family. PhD dissertation, Claremont Graduate School, CA. 19 Shaikh Nassir al-Omar asserts that the Saudi State was established on Islam, in an interview with the author in 2001. Senior Shaikh Abd al-Dusary (d. 1980) used the term al-hukm al-dini [an Islamic or religious government] in referring to the origins of the Saudi State. Shaikh Abd al-Rahman Ibn Muhammad al-Dusary was a well known shaikh who crossed the country during the 1960s and 1970s to promote Islamic da‘wah.

Notes 243 20 See the Basic Law in Bulloch, Shura Council in Saudi Arabia, p.32. Also see Jerichow, Saudi File, p.1. 21 Based on the reading of Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah. the Arabic copy. 22 Article 44 of the Basic System of Rules in Bulloch, Shura Council in Saudi Arabia, p.37. 23 Rashed Aba-Namay, ‘Constitutional Reform: A Systemization of Saudi Politics’, Journal of South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, Vol. XVI, No. 3, 1993, p.59. 24 Al-Oudah, Risalah min wara’ al-Qudhban [Letter from Behind the Bars], recorded lecture (September 1994). See also Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah, the Arabic copy. 25 See legal study by Frank Vogal, Islamic Law and Legal System: Studies of Saudi Arabia (Leiden: Brill, 2000). 26 See Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah. 27 Vogal, Islamic Law and Legal System, Chapter Six, and Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah. 28 See Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah, Rules and Regulations, and Judiciary and Court. 29 Sunni Islamic ‘ulama and fuqaha, historical and contemporary, have discussed Sunni Islamic juristic conditions for choosing the Imam [the Supreme Leader of the State]; called the conditions of the pledge of al-bai‘ah [allegiance]. 30 Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah of 1992 provides a comprehensive discussion [or critique] of the public policy of the Monarchy. This highlights Islamic legal regulations and elements not met by the Monarchy. 31 The term Salafiyah or Salafi comes from the word Salaf which means ancestors. In the terminology of the Sunni Islamic fiqh [Jurisprudence], Salafi refers to following the path and tradition of Prophet Muhammad, sahabah [the Companions of the Prophet], and al-tabi‘un [successors of the Companions who have conversed with the Companions of Prophet Muhammad]. See al-Oudah, Hadith Hawla Manhaj al-Salaf [Conversation About the Venerable Forefathers’ Method], recorded lecture (10 Sha‘ban 1413 H/4 February 1993AD). Also see al-Omar, Kalimat fi al-Manhaj [Words about the Method], recorded lecture (1990–1994). 32 See al-Oudah, Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries], Four Volumes, Second Edition, Al-Ghuraba al-Awalun [The Earliest Solitaries], Second Volume (1421H/2000AD), p.225. 33 Sayid Qutb (d. 1965) was Muhammad Qutb’s brother. 34 Carl Ernst, in his introduction to Liberal Islam, C. Kurzman (Ed.) (1998). 35 In discussing ‘Saudi liberal/secular forces [the modernists]’ (1) the author clarifies that this description is based on the discourse and performance of the reformist leadership and other Saudi Sunni conservative and traditional reformist forces; (2) the author explores the reformist leadership’s perceptions, worldview and construct of knowledge; to understand the main influential trends and concepts/thoughts, which engage in debates, interaction or conflict with the reformist leadership; (3) in contemporary Saudi Arabia, there is a liberal–secular–modernist discourse and performance which opposes the reformist leadership’s and other Saudi Sunni reformists’ vision and programmes; (4) this term does not necessarily have the same meaning as Western liberalism, or agree with Western liberal traditions. Similarities can exist in certain general aspects; but Middle Eastern liberalism or the ‘New Liberalism’ (a term spreading in the Middle East), can take militant or violent tones, attitudes and policies, and seek radical change. 36 Dennis Kavanagh, Political Science and Political Behaviour (1983), Introduction, p.10. 37 Al-Omar stated this during the author’s fieldwork in the Summer of 2001. 38 Stated during a conversation with Shaikh al-Oudah on 24-5-2003. 39 The home page of this organization is http://www.alharamain.org.

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40 Deeb al-Khadhrawi, A Dictionary of Islamic Terms, Arabic English (1416H/1995AD), p.136. 41 Arabic Dictionary, League of Arab States (1989), p.454. 42 Al-Munjid, Arabic Dictionary (1986), p.218. 43 Al-Muhit, Arabic Dictionary, Second Volume, Second Edition (1994), p.558. 44 Dr Rawhi Ba‘lbaki, Al-Mawrid, Arabic–English Dictionary, Fifth Edition (1993), p.546.

2 Context 1 Often referred to in Western literature as ‘fundamentalism’. 2 For example, Gary Samuel Samore, 1984. Royal Family Politics in Saudi Arabia (1953–1982). PhD dissertation. Harvard University. 3 The new Saudi Monarch, King Abdullah, during his visit, in June 2006, to al-Qassim province, the locality of Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, a Saudi locality known for its conservative, traditional and reformist Islamic approach, criticized the classification into secular, liberal or extreme Islamic trends. The author understands the Monarch’s concern to maintain domestic Saudi consensus, but the contemporary Saudi domestic rhetoric and performance reflects the existence of these trends, or schools of thought, in Saudi State and society. The author listened to the Monarch’s speech on Saudi TV. In dealing with the question of Saudi liberalism or al-Badathiyun [The Modernists] see ‘Awadh Ibn Muhammad al-Qarni, Al-Hadatha fi Mizan al-Islam [Modernity in the Light of Islam], First Edition (Cairo, Egypt: Hajar, 1408H/1988AD). On 7 July 2006, Saudi TV hosted Dr Sa‘ad Abdullah al-Birik, who criticized those who attack Saudi Islamic trends, including the ‘ulama, and he asserted the necessity of respecting the religious legitimacy of the Monarchy. 4 See Chapter 1. This is explored further in later Chapters. 5 See al-Ikhtiraq al-Librali al-Jadid [The New Liberal Influence], in Al-Omar’s web page at: http://www.almoslim.net/Moslim%5FFiles/libr/ [8-7-2006]. 6 See Hassan Ibn Fahd, al-Libraliyun al-Sauduyun wa Takris al-Makarithiyah [The Saudi Liberals and Structuring of McCarthyism] in al-Omar’s web page file of [The New Liberal Influence] At: http://www.almoslim.net/print. cfm?artid1475 [8-7-2006]. See also Ali al-‘Amim, an Article on 9/11. In Arabic. ASharq al-Awsat [The Middle East], No. 8690, [13-9-2002]. 7 Milton Viorst, In the Shadow of the Prophet: The Struggle for the Soul of Islam (1998), p.232. 8 Tarik El Erris, 1965. Saudi Arabia: A Study in Nation Building. PhD dissertation. The American University. See also Bakor Kashmeeri, 1973. The Arabian Nation-Builder. PhD dissertation. Howard University. 9 Suliman Ibrahim Toufik, 1985. The Emergence of a National Identity in Saudi Arabia. PhD dissertation. University of Idaho. 10 Maher Mater Abouhaseira, 1998. Education, Political Development, and Stability in Saudi Arabia. PhD dissertation. University of Southern California. 11 Joseph Nevo, ‘Religion and National Identity in Saudi Arabia’, Middle Eastern Studies, Vol. 34, No. 3, July 1998, pp.34–53. 12 Yousif Uthaimeen, 1986. The Welfare State in Saudi Arabia: Structure, Dynamics, and Function. PhD dissertation. The American University. 13 There are various studies here. See Fatina Amin Shaker, 1972. Modernisation of the Developing Nations: A Case Study Of Saudi Arabia. PhD dissertation. Purdue University; Khalid Al Sharideh, 1999. Modernisation and Socio-Cultural

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14 15

16 17

18 19 20 21 22 23 24

Transformation in Saudi Arabia: An Evaluation. PhD dissertation. Kansas State University; Suleiman Abdullah Al Akeel, 1992. The Impact of Modernisation on Saudi Society: a Case Study of Saudi Students’ Attitudes. PhD dissertation. Mississippi State University; Mohammed Saad Al Salem, 1981. The Interplay of Tradition and Modernity, A Field Study of Saudi Policy and Educational Development. PhD dissertation. University of California, Santa Barbara; and Professor Tim Niblock (Ed.), State, Society and Economy in Saudi Arabia (1982). Abdullah Mutawa, 1989. The ‘Ulama of Najd from the Sixteenth Century to the Mid-eighteenth Century. PhD dissertation. University of California, Los Angeles. For example, Joseph Kechichian, ‘The Role of the ‘Ulama in the Politics of an Islamic State: The Case of Saudi Arabia’, International Journal of Middle East Studies, Vol. 18, 1986, pp.53–71. Also, see Ghassan Salame, ‘Islam and Politics in Saudi Arabia’, Arab Studies Quarterly, Vol. 9, No. 10, 1987, pp.306–326. Kechichian, ‘Role of the ‘Ulama’, p.56. For example, Mohamed Al Freih, 1990. The Historical Background of the Emergence of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab and His Movement. PhD dissertation. University of California, Los Angeles; and Khalid al-Dakhil, 2000. Social Origins of the Wahhabi Movement. PhD dissertation. University of California, Los Angeles. Ghassan Salame, ‘Islam and Politics in Saudi Arabia’, Arab Studies Quarterly, Vol. 9, No. 10, 1987, pp.306–326. Yahya Sullman Al Hefdhy, 1994. The Role of the ‘Ulama (Islamic Scholars) in Establishing an Islamic Education System for Women in Saudi Arabia. PhD dissertation. Florida State University. Muhammad Qasim Zaman, The ‘Ulama in Contemporary Islam: Custodians of Change (2002). Khalid Bin Sayeed, Western Dominance and Political Islam (1995), pp.85–89. See also Alain Gresh ‘The Most Obscure Dictatorship’, Middle East Report (197) Vol. 25, No. 6, November–December, 1995, pp.2–8. Milton Viorst, In the Shadow of the Prophet: The Struggle for the Soul of Islam (1998), pp.204–236. Hrair Dekmejian, ‘The Rise of Political Islamism in Saudi Arabia’, Middle East Journal, Vol. 48, No. 4, Autumn, 1994, pp.627–643. Abdul Aziz Bashir, 1991. Saudi Arabian Foreign Policy: Regional Perspectives and Objectives. PhD dissertation. Northern Arizona University; Faisal Abdullah Hafiz, 1980. Changes in Saudi Foreign Policy Behaviour 1964–1975: A Study of the Underlying Factors and Determinants. PhD dissertation. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Mohamed Mohsen Ali Asaad, 1981. Saudi Arabia’s National Security: A Perspective Derived from Political, Economic, and Defence Policies. PhD dissertation. Claremont Graduate School; Abdul Rahman Assa Hussein, 1995. Alliance Behaviour and the Foreign Policy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 1979–1991. PhD dissertation. George Washington University; and Nadav Safran, Saudi Arabia: The Ceaseless Quest for Security (1985); Bilimatsis, 1980. Small States as Major Powers: A Case Study of Saudi Arabia. PhD dissertation. George Washington University; Nizar Obaid Madani, 1977. The Islamic Content of the Foreign Policy of Saudi Arabia: King Faisal’s Call for Islamic Solidarity, 1965–1975. PhD dissertation. American University; Abdullah Saud Kabbaa, 1979. Saudi Arabia and the United Nations. PhD dissertation. Southern Illinois University at Carbondale; James Paul Piscatori, 1976. Islam and the International Legal Order: The Case of Saudi Arabia. PhD dissertation. University of Virginia; Lawrence Axelrod, 1989. Saudi Oil Policy: Economic and Political Determinants, 1973–1986. PhD dissertation. Columbia University.

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25 Isadore Jay Gold, 1984. The United States and Saudi Arabia, 1933–1953: Post-imperial Diplomacy and the Legacy of British Power. PhD dissertation. Columbia University; Salem Khalid Al-Nowaiser, 1987. Saudi Arabia’s and the United States’ Strategic Partnership in an Era of Turmoil: A Study of Saudi–American Political, Economic, and Military Relationship 1973–1983 – Dependence or Interdependence? PhD dissertation. American University; Jamal Mahmoud Merdad, 1989. Saudi–American Bilateral Relations: A Case Study of the Consequence of Interdependence on International Relations. PhD dissertation. University of North Texas; Gary Johnson, 1992. US Arms Shipments to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia during the Ronald Reagan Presidency: In Search of a Policy Paradigm. PhD dissertation. University of Southern California; Abdul Rahman Abdullatif Al-Osail, 1991. ‘A Special Relationship’, Arms Sales as a Means of Achieving Foreign Policy Objectives: U.S. Policy Towards Saudi Arabia. PhD dissertation. University of South Carolina; William Oliver Turner, 1982. United States Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia: Implications for American Foreign Policy. PhD dissertation. George Washington University; Robert Vitalis, ‘The Closing of the Arabian Oil Frontier and the Future of the Saudi–American Relations’, Middle East Report (204) Vol. 27, No. 3, July–September, 1997, pp.15–21. 26 During his official visit to Pakistan, in April 2006, Emir Sultan Ibn Abd al-Aziz, who became a Crown Prince after the death of King Fahd in August 2005, stated this concern. See al-Khaleej Newspaper, UAE, No. 9828, p.16, Sunday, 16-4-2006. 27 Those works include: Gilles Kepel, Jihad: the Trail of Political Islam (London: I.B.Tauris, 2002); Ahmad Moussalli (Ed.), Islamic Fundamentalism: Myth & Realities (1998); Bassam Tibi, The Challenge of Fundamentalism (1998); Abdel Salam Sidahmed and Anoushiravan Ehteshami (Ed.), Islamic Fundamentalism (1996); Henry Munson, Jr, Islam and Revolution in the Middle East (1988); Olivier Carre (Ed.), Islam and the State in the World Today (1987); Ahmad Moussalli, Moderate and Radical Islamic Fundamentalism (1999); Abdul Rashid Moten, Political Science: An Islamic Perspective (1996); Mehran Tamadonfar, The Islamic Polity and Political Leadership (1989); Abdul Malik Al Sayed, Social Ethics of Islam: Classical Islamic-Arabic Political Theory and Practice (1982); Tareq Ismael and Jacqueline Ismael, Government and Politics in Islam (1985); Khalid Bin Sayeed, Western Dominance and Political Islam (1995); Lawrence Davidson, Islamic Fundamentalism (1998); Youssef M. Choueiri, Islamic Fundamentalism (1990); Charles Butterworth and William Zartman, (Ed.) Between the State and Islam (2001); Mir Zohair Husain, Global Islamic Politics (1995); Gary Bunt, Virtually Islamic (2000); Hrair Dekmejian, Islam in Revolution: Fundamentalism in the Arab World (1995); Jochen Hippler and Andrea Lueg (Ed.), The Next Threat: Western Perception of Islam (1995); Roxanne Euben, Enemy in the Mirror: Islamic Fundamentalism and the Limits of Modern Rationalism (1999). 28 Roy Olivier, The Failure of Political Islam, translated by Carol Volk, (1994). Also, see Kepel, Jihad. 29 Ibrahim Karawan, The Islamist Impasse (1997). 30 Salwa Ismail, Rethinking Islamist Politics: Culture, the State and Islamism (2003), p.168. 31 These numbers are taken from news in Arab Middle Eastern media. 32 See al-Bayan Newspaper, UAE, No. 9510, 2-7-2006, No. 9514, 6-7-2006 and No. 9517, 9-7-2006. 33 Azam Al-Tammimi, The Islamic Participation in the Government (1993).

Notes 247 34 Bassam Tibi, Islam between Culture and Politics (2001), p.ix. 35 Bassam Tibi, ‘Islam and Arab Nationalism’, in Barbara Freyer Stowasser (Ed.), The Islamic Impulse (1987), p.59–74. 36 Karawan, The Islamist Impasse, p.7. 37 Ibid., p.8. 38 Ibid., pp.8–9. 39 Ibid., p.65. 40 Ibid., p.66. 41 Ibid., p.67.

3 The Sunni fiqh 1 Al-Oudah, Islamic Law. At: www.islamtoday.net/english [10-3-2002]. Official website as confirmed by Shaikh al-Oudah. These quotes on the meaning of fiqh are taken from this website. 2 Al-Oudah, Islamic Law. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/printme. cfm?cat_id8&sub_cat_id84 [10-3-2002] 3 Ibid. 4 Hadith refers to the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad – his action or practice, his silent approval of an action or practice of another person. 5 The term Salafi mainly means ancestral. A comprehensive definition of the term Salafi is given in the Glossary. 6 Al-Oudah, Islamic Law. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/printme. cfm?cat_id8&sub_cat_id0 [10-3-2002]. 7 Al-Oudah, Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah [Standards for Juristic Studies] (1412H/1992AD). 8 Al-Muwatta is the title of Imam Malik’s book in Hadith. 9 Al-Musnad is the title of Ahamad Ibn Hanbal’s book in Hadith. 10 Al-Oudah, Islamic Law. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/showme. cfm?cat_id8&sub_cat_id84 [10-3-2002]. 11 Al-Oudah, Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah, pp.21–22. 12 Al-Oudah, Islamic Law. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/showme. cfm?cat_id8&sub_cat_id79 [10-3-2002]. 13 Al-Oudah, Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah, p.22. 14 Ibid., p.22. 15 Madhhab or al-fiqh al-madhhabi means one particular Islamic school and jurisdiction. In this case, a Sunni Muslim could be Hanafi [the jurisprudence of Imam Abu Hanifah], Malki [the jurisprudence of Imam Malik], Shafi‘i [the jurisprudence of Imam al- Shafi‘i] or Hanbali [the jurisprudence of Imam Ahmad Hanbal]. Note that the terms al-Hanafiyah, al-Malikiyah, al-Shafi‘iyah and al-Hanbila refer to these juristic schools or madhahib. 16 A fabricated tradition attributed either to the Prophet, a Companion or to a successor. 17 Al-Oudah, Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah, pp.23–26. 18 Here the author examines the reformist leadership’s Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence]. For a further examination on Fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah, the reader can consult: ●

In historical terms, the classical works: Imam al-Haramayn [The Imam of the Two Holy Mosques]: Abi al-Ma‘ali al-Juwaiyni (Abd al-Malik Ibn Abdullah Ibn Yusuf Ibn Muhammad Ibn Abdullah al-Juwaiyni

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Notes (d.478H/1100AD)), Ghiyath al-Umam fi Iltiyath al-Zulm or Al-Ghiyathi [The Assistance], Dr Fu’ad Abd al-Mun‘im and Dr Mustafa Hilmi (Ed.) (Dar al-Da‘wah, No. 4668/1979), Shaikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah fi Islah al-Ra‘i wa al-Ra‘iyah [The Islamic Political Jurisprudence to Reform the Ruler and the Ruled] Bashir Muhammad ‘Un (E.d), and introduced by Muhammad al-Mubarak (1413H/1993AD), Abi al-Hassan Ali Ibn Muhammad Ibn Habib al-Mawardi (d.450H/1070AD), Kutab al-Ahkam al-Sultaniyah wa al-Wilayat al-Diniyah [The Book of Governing Regulations and the Religious Governing Responsibility], Dr Ahmad Mubarak al-Baghdadi (Ed.), First Edition (1409H/1989AD). In contemporary terms, the works: Abdullah Ibn Umar Ibn Sulayman al-Dimiji, Al-Imamah al-‘Uzma ‘Ind ahlu al-Sunnah Wa al-Jama‘ah [The Supreme Imam (Head of the State) in the view of the Sunni Muslims] (1407H/1987AD): Dr Muhammad Faruq al-Nabhan, Nizam al-Hukim fi al-Islam, Dirasah tatazam’n Ma‘alim al-Nizam al-Siyasi al-Islami wa Masadirih wa al-Sultat al-‘Amah fihi [The Ruling System in Islam: Dissertation Includes Milestones of the Islamic Political System, its Sources, and its Public Authorities], Second Edition (1408H/1988AD); Dr Muhammad Abd al-Qadir Abu Faris, Al-Nizam al-Siyasi fi al-Islam [The Political System in Islam] (Published by the author, 1980); Kayid Yusuf Mahmmud Qar‘ush, Turuq Intiha’a Wilayat al-Hukam fi al-Shari‘ah wa al-Nuzim al-Dusturiyah [Methods for the Termination of Ruling Offices in Shari‘ah and the Constitutional Systems] (1407H/1987AD); Dr Ali Muhammad Hassanin, 1399H/1979AD. Riqabaht al-Ummah ‘la al-Hukam: Dirasah Muqaranah bain al-Shari‘ah wa Nuzim al-Hukim al-Wadh‘iyah [The Supervision of the Rulers by the Ummah: Comparative Dissertation between Shari‘ah and Positive Ruling Systems]. PhD dissertation. College of Shari‘ah and Law, University of al-Azhar (Published 1408H/1988AD); Dr Ali Jarisha, Arkan al-Shar‘iyah al-Islamiyah [The Pillars of Islamic Legitimacy], Part Three (1399H/1979AD); the Supreme Imam Shaikh Abd al-Rahman Taj, previously Shaikh of al-Azhar University, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah wa al-Fiqh al-Islami [Islamic Political Jurisprudence and the Islamic Fiqh], Part One (1415H/1995AD); Abd al-Wahhab Khalaf, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah [The Islamic Jurisprudence], Sixth Edition (1418H/1997AD).

19 Al-Hawali, Hiwar Ma‘a Safar al-Hawali [Dialogue with al-Hawali], recorded interview (1989). Also see al-Omar, Fiqh al-Fiqh [Understanding the Jurisprudence], recorded lecture (1990–1994). 20 Al-Hawali, Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya [Explanation of the ‘Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi] recorded lectures and lessons (Saudi Arabia: 1980s). Also see al-Hawali, Mafhum al-Iman ‘Ind Ahlu al-Sunnah wa al-Jama‘a [The Concept of Faith in the View of Sunni Muslims], recorded lecture (1990–1994). It is also worth noting the reformist leadership’s argument about the influence of religions on nations. See al-Oudah, Athar al-Din ‘La al-Shu‘ub [The Influence of Religion on Nations], recorded lecture (1990–1994). 21 Al-Munjid, Arabic Dictionary, Ed. 28 (1986), p.362. 22 The subject or juristic Sunni theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] is essential to this book. The elements of this subject are discussed later, while the dimensions of this theory are also examined in later chapters. The

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23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

32 33

34 35

36 37 38

theory of maqasid al-shari‘ah has a strong relationship to the actions and discourse of the reformist leadership through the last two decades. The substance of this theory is also seen in the discourse of historical and contemporary ‘ulama, fuqaha and scholars the author presents in terms of intellectual interaction with the reformist leadership. Understanding the substance of this theory is an important foundation to understanding the behaviour and discourse of the reformist leadership. At this early stage it is important to examine al-Oudah’s passage above, which contains elements of maqasid al-shari‘ah. Al-Oudah, Wajibat Hamlu al-Amanah [Requirements to Implement Trust], recorded Friday Prayer’s Sermon, 1989. Al-Oudah, Sultan al-‘Ulama [King of the ‘Ulama] recorded lesson (1992). Also see al-Oudah, ‘Alim al-Shar‘ [The Scholar of Islam], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Hawali, Iblagh al-Ummah bi Kayfiyat Mahabtu al-Rasul [Notifying the Ummah of the Manner of Loving the Prophet], recorded lecture (1980s); and Rihlatu al-Tawhid [The Journey of Monotheism], four recorded lectures (1980s). Al-Hawali, Nazrah Fi al-Tarbiyah al-Haditha [Looking at Modern Education], recorded lecture (1411H/1990AD). Al-Hawali, Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya. The term tahawiya refers to a well-known Sunni Muslim scholar, Imam Sadr al-Din al-Hanafi al-Tahawi (d.746H/1389AD) born and died in Damascus. Al-Hawali, Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya. Interview with Shaikh Nassir al-Omar, Summer (2001). Al-Hawali, Jawanib Min Tawhid al-Uluhiyah [Elements in the Unity of Worship], recorded lecture (1989). Yusuf al-Qaradhawi, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah Fi Dhaw Nusus al-Shari‘ah Wa Maqasidiha [Islamic Political Jurisprudence in the Light of Shari‘ah and Its Aims] (1419H/1998AD), p.18. On this point also see Khalaf, Al-Siyasa alShar‘iyah; Qar‘ush, Turuq Intiha’a Wilayat al-Hukam fi al-Shari‘ah wa al-Nuzum al-Dusturiyah Abu Faris, Al-Nizam al-Siyasi fi al-Islam; the Supreme Imam Shaikh Abd al-Rahman Taj, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah wa al-Fiqh al-Islami. Al-Omar, Fastaqim Kma Umir’t [Be Upright as You Have Been Commanded], recorded lecture (1991–1994). Al-Mawardi is Abi al-Hassan Ali Ibn Muhammad Ibn Habib al-Mawardi. He is a leading faqih in fiqh al-siyasa al-shar‘iyah. His best-known work on this subject is Kutab al-Ahkam al-Sultaniyah wa al-Wilayat al-Diniyah [Book of Governing Regulations and Religious Governing Responsibilities]. Various studies have been done on this book such as the work of German Orientalist, Enger (1853AD). See Kutab al-Ahkam al-Sultaniyah wa al-Wilayat al-Diniyah al-Bughdadi (Ed.). Nassir Ibn Sulayman al-Omar, Al-‘Ahd wa al-Mithaq fi al-Qur’an al-Karim [The Covenant and Contract in the Holy Qur’an] (1413H/1993AD), p.31. Al-Hawali, Min A‘mal al-Qulub (Al-Yaqin) [The Heart’s Works: The Perfect Faith]; Min A‘mal al-Qulub (Al-Mahbah) [The Heart’s Works: The Love]; and Min A‘mal al-Qulub (Al-Ridha) [The Heart’s Works: The Content], recorded lectures (1989–1994). Al-Hawali, Nawaqidh al-Shahadatan [Matters Contradicting the Two Testimonials], recorded lecture (1980s). Al-Hawali, Nawaqidh al-Shahadatan. Muhammad Ibn Ibrahim in: Safar al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin [Explanation of Resorting to Non-Islamic Laws] of Shaikh Muhammad Ibn Ibrahim al-Shaikh, (sine loco: 1990s), p.6.

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39 The author has a juristic Sunni reservation. Juristically speaking and based on al-Hawali’s clarification earlier in this dissertation, it is important here to take into consideration al-Hawali’s introductory note. He points out that the purpose and the wisdom here is to start bitaqrir al-asl al‘am bitaqrir al-qa‘idah al-kuliyah [clarifying the general fundamental juristic foundation by defining the general juristic structure]. Exceptions and matters that do not come under this general and fundamental juristic foundation and the general juristic structure can be later clarified. See al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp.6–7. He means it is necessary to point out clearly the asl [foundation, fundamental basis] as a first step in making a juristic Sunni judgement on the issue. Exceptions or other matters not applicable to this asl are a different subject. Based on this, the author, by illustrating al-Hawali’s Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, has certain goals: (1) to only point out the asl or juristic Sunni structure and foundation, or the juristic Sunni theory, in dealing with the application of non-Islamic Laws, which is explained by al-Mufti and al-Hawali, (2) to show the reader the importance of applying Islamic Law to Shaikhs Muhammad Ibn Ibrahim and al-Hawali, as both the Mufti and al-Hawali strongly disagree about the non-application of Islamic Law and (3) to show the reader the important juristic interaction and agreement between the reformist leadership and the state, in the person of the Mufti, where the Mufti is the highest official religious position in the government. 40 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp.6–7. 41 Muhammad Ibn Ibrahim in Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp.7–9. 42 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp.9–10. 43 Ibrahim in Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, p.21. 44 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp.22–25. 45 Ibid., pp.25, 29. 46 Ibrahim in Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, p.32. 47 Ibid., pp.41–42. 48 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, p.42. 49 Ibrahim in Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp.42, 44. 50 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp. 44–46. 51 Ibrahim in Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, pp.42, 44, 47–48. 52 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, p.48. 53 Ibrahim in Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, p.82. 54 Ibid., pp.82–83. 55 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin, p.83.

4 Further perpectives on the Sunni fiqh 1 Al-Oudah, Al-Kalimah al-Hurrah [The Free Word], recorded lecture (1993). For further insights on maqasid al-shari‘ah [The Aims of Islamic Law] and al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials] see series of PhD dissertations on the subject. Published by The International Institute of Islamic Thought, VA, USA, Series of University’ dissertations, No. 1, 5 and 15, Ahmad al-Raysuni, Nazariyah al-Maqasid ‘Ind al-Imam al-Shatibi [Imam al-Shatibi’s Theory of Aims] (1995); Yusuf Hamid al-‘Alim, Al-Maqasid al-‘Amah lil Shari‘ah al-Islamiyah [The General Aims of Islamic Law] (1991); and Isma‘il al-Hasani, Nazariyah al-Maqasid ‘Ind al-Imam Muhammad al-Tahir Ibn ‘Ashur [Imam Muhammad al-Tahir Ibn ‘Ashur’s Theory of Aims] (1995). See also ‘Alal al-Fasi, Maqasid al-Shari‘ah [The Aims of Islam], Fifth Edition (1993).

Notes 251 2 He is Abu Is’haq Ibrahim Ibn Musa Ibn Muhammad al-Lukhami al-Ghirnati al-Shatibi, one of the leading Sunni Maliki ‘ulama in Muslim Spain. 3 This is ta‘lil [wisdom, reason, justification] and the prayer helps restraint from evil deeds. 4 This is another ta‘lil [wisdom, reason, justification] and the prayer helps remember Almighty Allah. 5 Al-dawlah [the state] is an instrument to accomplish goals and is not an end. 6 Here one can see the reason for establishing the political authority of the state. The next subsection discusses this issue in more detail. 7 Dr Hammad al-‘Ubaydi, Al-Shatibi wa Maqasid al-Shari‘ah [Al-Shatibi and the Aims of Shari‘ah] (1412H/1992AD), pp.241–249. 8 Imam al-Shatibi, Al-I‘tisam, 3v in 1v, (1913–1914). pp.328–329 in the First Volume. Al-Shatibi’s analysis of shari‘ah as a single picture can be found in al-Hawali’s juristic writings. 9 Al-Oudah, Al-Kalimah al-Hurrah. 10 In the Sunni Islamic fiqh the terms ‘human rights’ and huquq al-‘ibad [the rights of the servants] refer to al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [legitimate rights]. See al-Shatibi, Al-Muwafaqat fi Usul al-Ahkam, pp.96–97 in the First Volume. 11 Based on an interview in September 2002 with a senior shaikh close to the reformist leadership. In May 2003 and during a conversation with the author, Shaikh Salman al-Oudah confirmed his endorsement of this study. 12 Dr Abdullah Ibn Hamid Ibn Ali al-Hamid was born in al-Qassim, Saudi Arabia, in 1950. He gained his PhD in Arabic Literature from Al-Azhar University, Egypt. He taught at Al-Imam Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud Islamic University. He was dismissed from the University for political activity. 13 The author omits the resources of the study. Referring to the classical and contemporary juristic Sunni Islamic resources that appear in al-Hamid’s study will take up too much space. In the Abstract and the Introduction of his study, al-Hamid clarifies the Sunni Islamic juristic framework applied in this study, and at the end of each chapter of the study, there are references to classical and contemporary ‘ulama, jurists, legal experts and scholars and their discourses which al-Hamid relies on. In the text of the study, these references also appear. A reader who wishes to examine these resources can consult the original study by Dr al-Hamid. 14 Al-Oudah stated this during a conversation about al-Hamid’s study, on 24 May 2003. 15 Abdullah al-Hamid, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam [Human Rights between the Justice of Islam and the Tyranny of the Rulers], First Edition (London, UK: The Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights in Saudi Arabia, 1416H/1995AD), pp.5–6. 16 Ibid., pp.5–6. 17 In the Sunni Islamic fiqh, the Qudsi hadith refers to certain statements or words by Almighty Allah. 18 al-Hamid, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam, pp.7–8. 19 Ibid., pp.148–152. In this sense, the legitimate rights or al-huquq al-shar‘iyah are parts of huquq ilahiyah [Almighty Allah’s rights] and people have no right to surrender them. On this issue, see also Imam al-Shatibi, Al-Muwafaqat fi Usul al-Ahkam, Kitab al-Adilah al-Shar‘iyah, Third Volume, pp.158–164. For more detail on the theory of right, see Ahmad Fahmi Abu Sinnah, Nazariyah al-Haq fi al-Fiqh al-Islami: Asas Tashri‘i [The Theory of Right in Islamic

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24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35

36 37 38 39 40 41

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Jurisprudence: Legislative Foundation] (Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs, Rabi‘ al-Awal 1391H/May 1971), pp.173–234. al-Hamid, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam. Abdullah al-Hamid’s definition of political rights, which is approved by Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, understands the concept of political rights. Al-Oudah, Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries], Volume Three, Min Wasa’il Daf‘ al-Ghurbah [Overcoming Solitude], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD), pp.143–149. Abi al-Hassan Ali Ibn Muhammad Ibn Habib al-Mawardi (d. 450H/1058AD), Kutab al-Ahkam al-Sultaniyah wa al-Wilayat al-Diniyah [The Book of Governing Regulations and Religious Responsibility] Dr Ahmad Mubarak al-Baghdadi (Ed.) (1989), pp.4–5; Abd al-Rahman Ibn Abdullah Ibn Nasir Ibn Abd al-Rahman al-Shiyrazi (d. 589H/1201AD) Al-Manhaj al-Masluk fi Siyasat al-Muluk [The Adapted Method of the Rulers’ Policies], Ali Abdullah al-Musa (Ed.) First Edition (1407H/1987AD), pp.242–255; and Abdullah Ibn Omar Ibn Sulayman al-Dimiji, Al-Imamah al-‘Uzma ‘Ind Ahlu al-Sunnah Wa al-Jama‘ah [The Supreme Imam (the Head of the State) in the view of the Sunni Muslims] (1407H/1987AD), pp.251–259. Al-Oudah, Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba, Volume Four, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD), p.108. Al-Oudah, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah, p.104. Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz in: al-Oudah, Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba, Volume Four, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah, p.104. Al-Oudah, Min Wasa’il Daf‘ al-Ghurbah, pp.143–144. By the term ‘change by hand,’ al-Oudah refers to prophetic hadith in which ‘change by hand’ means to carry out the change by force. Ibid., p.144. Ibid., p.144. Ibid., p.146. Ibid., p.146. Ibid., pp.147–148. Ibid., pp.147–148. Al-Hawali, Nazrah Fi al-Tarbiyah al-Haditha [Looking at Modern Education], recorded lecture (1411H/1990AD). Al-Hawali, A’ftu al-Isti‘jal [The Disease of Haste] recorded lecture, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia (1991). See also al-Hawali, Al-Sabr ‘La al-Bala [Patience and Enduring the Hardship], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Hawali’s argument is analogous to al-Omar’s view. See al-Omar, Al-Hikmah fi Dhaw al-Kitab wa al-Sunnah [The Wisdom in the Light of the Qur’an and Sunnah], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Deeb al-Khadhrawi, A Dictionary of Islamic Terms, Arabic English (1416H/ 1995AD), p.199. Al-Omar, Al-Sakinah al-Sakinah [Calmness, Calmness] recorded lecture (1991). Ibid. Al-Omar, Dhabt al-Nafs [Self Control]; ‘La Raslikum [Hold Your Self]; and Al-Wasatiyah Manhaj al-Wasat [The Moderation and Be in the Middle], recorded lectures (1990–1994). Al-Oudah, October 2001. Iiza’at Fi al-Hiwar [Lights in the Dialogue]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid144 [2-10-2001]. Al-Oudah, November 2001. Al Entizar: ‘Uqdah am ‘Aqidah [The Waiting: Complexity or Belief]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/showarticlescontent. cfm?id37&catid38&artid238 [9-11-2001].

Notes 253 42 The next three quotes are taken from the official website of Shaikh Salman al-Oudah. Al-Oudah, October 2001. Until They Change What Is in Themselves: 3/3. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/showme.cfm?cat_id30&sub_ cat_id453 [15-8-2002]. 43 Al-Oudah, 2002. Hal Taghir al-Hakim Huwa al-Hal [Is Changing the Ruler a Solution?]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/qprint.cfm?artid1866 [28-1-2002]. 44 Ibid. 45 Ibid., pp.306–319. 46 Conclusion based on Salman al-Oudah’s juristic studies Maqulat fi al-Fiqh [Discourses on Jurisprudence] (2002). The paper is available in the author’s collection. 47 Ibid. The conclusion is further based on a general reading on fiqh al-muwazanat [jurisprudence of balances] in Islamic Law. See Yusuf al-Qaradhawi, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah Fi Dhaw Nusus al-Shari‘ah Wa Maqasidiha [Islamic Political Jurisprudence in the Light of Shari‘ah and Its Aims] (1419H/1998AD).

5 Intellectual interaction 1 Al-Oudah, Imam Ahlu al-Sunnah [The Imam of the Sunni Muslims] recorded lecture (23 Jumada al-Ula 1413H/12 November 1993AD), at the Saudi city of ‘Afif. 2 Ibid. 3 The Seventh Abbasid Caliph, Abdullah Ibn Hurun al-Rashid (170–218H/ 786–833AD; ruled: 198–218H/813–833AD). He supported the Mu‘tazilites and afflicted the people with the trial of dogma ‘The Our’an is a created object.’ This episode was called ‘al-Mihnah’ [The Ordeal]. 4 Islamic thought was influenced by Greek philosophy. 5 Interview: Shaikh close to the reformist leadership, Spring 2001. The private secretary of Shaikh Safar al-Hawali confirmed this. Summer 2001. 6 Interview: Shaikh Nassir al-Omar, Saudi Arabia. Summer 2001. 7 Al-Hawali, Al-Hisbah fi al-Islam [Enjoining What is Right and Forbidding What is Wrong], recorded lecture (1980s). 8 Al-Oudah, Silsilat Rasa il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries], Volume 3, Second Edition (San‘a, Yemen: Makatabatu Dar al-Quds & Markaz al-Sidiq al-‘Ilmi, 1421H/AD 2000); Min Wasa’il Daf‘ al-Ghurbah [Overcoming Solitude], Chapter 2; Second Edition (San‘a, Yemen: Makatabatu Dar al-Quds & Markaz al-Sidiq al-‘Ilmi, 1421H/AD 2000); Al-amr b’il Ma’ruf wa al Nahi ‘an al Munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD), pp.71–193. 9 Al-Oudah, ‘Ala Tariq al-Da‘wah [On the Route of the Islamic Call], recorded interviews (1990). 10 Shaikh Khaild al-Ka‘ak, Al-Usul al-Fikriyah lil Manahij al-Salafiyha ‘ind Shaikh al-Islam Taqi al-Din Ahmad Ibn Taymiyyah [The Theoretical Foundations of the Salafi Methods of the Shaikh of Islam: Ahmad Ibn Taymiyyah], (1415H/ 1995AD), pp.14–17. 11 Fu’ad Abd Ahmad, Shaikh al-Islam, Ibn Taymiyyah wa al-Wilayah al-Siyasiyah al-Kubra fi al-Islam [The Shaikh of Islam, Ibn Taymiyyah, and the Supreme Political Office in Islam] (1417H/1987AD), pp.213–231. 12 Shaikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah fi Islah al-Ra‘i wa al-Ra‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence to Reform the Ruler and the Ruled] Bashir Muhammad ‘Un (Ed.), introduced by Muhammad al-Mubarak (1413H/1993AD), pp.6–7.

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13 Ibid. See also Nazariyat Shaikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah fi al-Siyasa wa al-Ijtima [The Theories of Ibn Taymiyyah in Politics and Sociology], introduced by Dr Mustafa Hilmi, and translated by Muhammad Abd al-‘Azim Ali (1396H/1997AD). The original work is in French. See the French scholar, Henri Laoust, ‘Essai Sur Les Doctrines Sociales Et Politiques De Taki-D-Din Ahmad B.Taymiyyah (Cairo Egypt: French Institute, 1939). 14 Dr Yusuf Ahmad Muhammad al-Badawi, Maqasid al-Shari‘ah ‘Ind Ibn Taymiyyah [The Aims of Shari‘ah in the Writings of Ibn Taymiyyah], First Edition, (1421H/2000AD), pp.429–436. 15 Shaikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, Al-Hisbah fi al-Islam, Salah ‘Azam, (Ed.) (1976). 16 In dealing with Salman al-Oudah’s scholarly and educational experiences, the author relies on two main sources. Recorded interviews in the early 1990s, entitled ‘Ala Tariq al-Da‘wah [On the Route of the Islamic Call], and written material collected by the author during fieldwork in the Summer of 2001. 17 Certificate and letter issued by Al-Imam Muhammad Ibn Sa‘ud Islamic University, Date: 24-5-1408H (13-1-1988AD), 9-10-1408H (27–5–1988). The certificate and letter recognize the various Islamic activities and scholarly achievements of Shaikh Salman al-Oudah. 18 Reading before the shaikh means the student reads while the shaikh listens and comments on the reading of the student. This is a Najdi educational heritage which can take place at a mosque or at home. Some readings take months and some might even take years. 19 Introduction in al-Oudah, Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba, Volume Four; Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD). 20 Al-Oudah, Nassim al-Hijaz Fi Sirat al-Imam Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz [The Breeze of al-Hijaz in the Biography of the Imam Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz], recorded lecture (1992). 21 Shaikh Ibn Baz had two offices: at work and at home. See Abd al-Rahman Ibn Yusuf Ibn Abd al-Rahman al-Rahmah, Al-Injaz fi Tarjmat al-Imam Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz [The Biography of Imam Ibn Baz] (1421H/2001AD), pp.479–482. 22 Interview: Shaikh close to the reformist leadership, Spring 2001. Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s private secretary confirmed this. 23 Al-Omar, Ibn Baz fi Dhiyafat Nassir al-Omar [Ibn Baz hosted by Nassir al-Omar], recorded lecture (1992). 24 Al-Oudah, Ma’a al-Akabir [With the Greats], Islam Today, Vol. 18, May, 2006, pp.10–11. 25 Al-Oudah, al-Imam al-Akbar [The Greatest Imam], Islam Today, Vol. 19, June, 2006, pp.10–11. 26 Ibid. 27 Ibn Baz passed away in 1999 while the reformist leadership was still in prison. 28 This is explored further in later paragraphs and chapters. 29 See al-Tawhid and its political dimensions. 30 Al-Hawali, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin [The Explanation of Resorting to Non-Islamic Laws] of Shaikh Muhammad Ibn Ibrahim Ibn Abd al-Latif al-Shaikh (sine loco: 1990s), pp.83–84. 31 Al-Hawali, Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought] (1420H/1999AD), p.8. 32 Shaikh Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab, Qa‘idat al-Usul al-Thalathah [The Structure of the Three Pillars], Abd al-Najdi (Ed.) (1416H/1996AD). Safar al-Hawali, Fatawa Fi al-‘Aqidah [Legal Opinions in Theology], recorded lectures (1989–1990); Iblagh al-Ummah bi Kayfiyat Mahabtu al-Rasul [Notifying the

Notes 255

33

34 35

36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49

50 51 52

Ummah of the Manner of Loving the Prophet], recorded lecture (1980s). Readers can consult further studies about the thought of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab, see Ibrahim Ibn Othman al-Faris, Ahddaf Da‘wah al-Shaikh Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab [The Aims of the Islamic Call of Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab] (1410H/1989AD); Abd Ibn Baz, Imam Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab (1415H/1995AD); and Ibn Baz, Silsilat Shuruh wa Ta‘liqat Samaha al-Shaikh al-‘Alamah Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz: Kitab al-Tawhid [His Eminence Shaikh Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz’s Explanations and Comments: The Book of Monotheism], recorded lectures (1990s). Al-Hawali, Nawaqidh al-Shahadatan [Matters Contradicting the Two Testimonials], recorded lecture (1980s) and Muhammad al-Wahhab, Nawaqidh al-Islam [Things Contradicting Islam], Sulayman al-‘Alwan (Ed.) (1417H/ 1996AD). Muhammad Qutb, recorded statement during a discussion on the PhD dissertation of Safar al-Hawali, 1985. Various works of Muhammad Qutb: Al-Fikr al-Islami [Islamic Thought], recorded lecture (1980s); Waqi‘ al-‘Alam al-Islami [The Reality of the Islamic World], recorded lecture (1980s); Waqi‘una al-Mu‘asir [Our Contemporary Reality] (1410H/1990AD); Al-Islam [The Islam] (1413H/1993AD); and Hawla Tatbiq al-Shari‘ah [About the Implementation of Shari‘ah] (1412H/1992AD). Muhammad Qutb, Hawla al-Tafsir al-Islami lil Tarikh [About the Islamic Explanation of History], (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: al-Majmu‘ah al-Dawliyah, (1409H/1989AD, p.122). Ibid., pp.3–10. Al-Hawali, Al-‘Ilmaniyah: Nash’atuha wa Tatawuruha wa A’tharuha fi al-Hayatu al-Islamiyah al-Mu‘asirah [Secularism: Its Emergence, Development and Influence on Islamic Life] (Cairo, Egypt: al-Tayib office, 1999). Al-Hawali, Nawaqidh al-Shahadatan [Matters Contradicting the Two Testimonials], recorded lecture (1980s). Muhammad Qutb, Hawla al-Tafsir al-Islami lil Tarikh, pp.157–158. Al-Hawali, op cit. Muhammad Qutb, Raka’iz al-Iman [The Pillars of Faith] (1417H/1997AD), pp.121–122, 135. Al-Oudah, Ma’a al-Akabir. Muhammad al-Albani, Kibar al-‘Ulama Yatakalmun [The Leading ‘Ulama are Speaking], recorded testimonies about the reformist leadership (1991–1994). Interview: Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, Summer 2001, Saudi Arabia. Muhammad al-Shaybani, Hayat al-Albani wa Atharuh wa Thana al-‘Ulama Alayhi [Biography of al-Albani, his Legacy, and the Eulogies of the ‘Ulama], Volume 2, pp.514–526. Al-Oudah, Sina‘atu al-Hayah [Life-Making], recorded lecture (1993). Muhammad al-Rashid, Sina‘atu al-Hayah [Life-Making], Third Edition (1414H/1994AD). Muhammad al-Rashid, Ihya Fiqh al-Da‘wah [The Rejuvenation of the Jurisprudence of Islamic Call] Series: (1) Al-Muntal’q [The Start] (2) Al-‘Awa’iq [The Barriers] and (3) Al-Raqa’iq [The Spirituals] (1993). See also Muhammad Ahmad al-Rashid, As’ilah wa Ajwibah [Questions and Answers], recorded lecture (1980s). Muhammad al-Rashid, Al-Masar [The Route] (1418H/1998AD), p.317. Al-Rashid, series on Ihya Fiqh al-Da‘wah. See Muhammad Surur, al-Sururiyah, Al-Sunnah Magazine, Vol. 27, November, 1992, pp.46–60.

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53 Based on author’s observations. 54 Interviews with Muhammad Surur, London, Spring 2001. 55 The author gets this impression through observation of the discourse and performance of the reformist leadership, and during meetings or interviews with the reformist leadership. 56 Muhammad Surur, al-Sururiyah, Al-Sunnah Magazine, Vol. 26, October, 1992, pp.86–95, and Vol. 27, November, 1992, pp.46–60. 57 Interviews with Muhammad Surur, London, Spring 2001. 58 Al-Sunnah Magazine, Vol. 43, September, 1994, p.25. 59 Ibid. 60 Like his book, Wa Ja’aa Dawr al-Majus: al-Ab‘ad al-Tarikhiyah wa al-‘Aqadiyah wa al-Siyasiyah Lil al-Thawrah al-Iraniyah [The Role of Magus has Come: The Historical, Theological and Political of the Iranian Revolution], Sixth Edition (Published by the Author, 1408H/1988AD). The name of the author on the book is, in fact, Abdullah Muhammad al-Gharib, believed to be Muhammad Surur. 61 See, in particular, the work of Imam al-Haramayn [The Imam of the Two Holy Mosques]: Abi al-Ma‘ali Abd al-Malik Ibn Abdullah Ibn Yusuf Ibn Muhammad Ibn Abdullah al-Juwayni (d. 478H/1085AD), al-Ghiyathi [The Assistance] Manuscript (1979), pp.88–89. 62 Shaikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, Al-Siyasa al-Shar‘iyah fi Islah al-Ra‘i wa al-Ra‘iyah [Islamic Political Jurisprudence to Reform the Ruler and the Ruled] (1413H/1993AD).

6 Political struggle: countering 1 Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya [Explanation of the ‘Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi] are lessons and public lectures in Sunni Islamic Theology conducted by Shaikh Safar al-Hawali between 1985 and 1990 in one of Jeddah’s mosques. These lessons and public lectures were recorded on 311 cassettes. 2 Al-Hawali’s study of Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought] was his PhD dissertation in 1985, later published in 1998, in Egypt, and then republished in 1999, in Holland. Al-Hawali’s successive publications of his study are a clear sign and empirical evidence that he maintains his study’s argument. Based on fieldwork in Saudi Arabia in July–August 2001, and a private meeting with Shaikh al-Hawali during the fieldwork, the author confirms that al-Hawali maintains his basic concepts in his study of Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami. The author uses the 1999 copy – (1420H/1999AD). 3 Al-Omar’s study of Al-‘Ahd wa Al-Mithaq fi Al-Qur’an Al-Karim [The Covenant and Contract in the Holy Qur’an], published in 1993, is linked to his earlier Qur’anic studies of the late 1970s and 1980s. This is a significant study and is complementary to Safar al-Hawali’s studies of Al-‘ilmaniyah [Secularism], Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya and Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami. Nassir al-Omar’s Al-‘Ahd wa Al-Mithaq fi Al-Qur’an Al-Karim is also complementary to Salman al-Oudah’s Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries]. 4 Al-Omar’s study of Suratu al-Hujurat: Dirasah Tahliliyah wa Mawdhu‘iyah [The Chapter of Inner Apartments: Analytical and Objective Study] is another important study published in 1414H/1993AD. This study touches the issue of secularism, and the problem, or issue, of separating state from religion. 5 Evidence suggests that the reformist leadership has shown commitment to this discourse, described by the author as the core discourse, because: (1) the reformist

Notes 257

6 7 8 9 10 11

12 13 14 15 16 17 18

19 20 21 22 23 24 25

leadership has published this discourse more than once, (2) the three scholars have expressed their continuing scholarly commitment to the discourse, (3) the reformist leadership, in the post-prison era, has published new discourses, such as Salman al-Oudah’s Discourse in Islamic Law which is complementary to the reformist leadership’s core discourse; this new discourse and the core discourse together form a complete Sunni Islamic juristic whole and (4) the reformist leadership has not produced a discourse that contradicts, comprehensively or partially, the core discourse. Based on this, and other aspects illustrated throughout this book, the reformist leadership is likely to maintain their Sunni Islamic juristic core, principles and basic concepts. Elements of changes should be seen in the areas of the reformist leadership’s performance or policies and not in the area of the core discourse and its related discourse. Nasser al-Omar, Fiqh al-Waqi‘: Mughawimatuh wa A’tharuh wa Mmasadiruh [The Jurisprudence of Reality and the Ongoing Events: Its Foundation, Influences and Sources] (1412H/1992AD), p.10. The leadership counters elements in Western democracy and misuse of this philosophy and system. The leadership provides juristic Sunni Islamic boundaries to the concept of freedom. This is based on the author’s observation. See also Safar al-Hawali, Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya [Explanation of the ‘Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi], recorded lectures (1985–1990). See Francis Fukuyama, The End of History and the Last Man (1993). Al-Oudah, in his discourse of 2003, again criticized Francis Fukuyama’s The End of History and the Last Man, indicating al-Oudah’s strong rejection of Fukuyama’s argument. See Salman al-Oudah, Risalatu al-‘Asr [The Letter of the Epoch]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/show_articles_content.cfm?id37&catid38 &artid2643 [10-8-2003]. Al-Oudah, Nihaytu al-Tarikh [The End of History]. At:www.islamtoday.net. Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, How We Can Coexist. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/english/printme.cfm?cat_id29&sub_cat_id469 [29-4-2002]. Basically European and North American States. Based on Al-Oudah’s article on Dhawabit al-Tas’hih [The Rules of Reform]. June 2003. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2462 [22-6-2003]. Al-Oudah, Shuhada al-Ardh [The Witnesses of Earth], recorded lecture (1989). The reformist leadership refers to such cases in other discourses. Al-Oudah, Asbab Suqut al-Duwal [Reasons for the Collapse of States], recorded lecture (7 Safar 1411H/28 August 1990). See also Safar al-Hawali, Al-Hisbah fi al-Islam [The System of Enjoining What is Right and Forbidding What is Wrong], recorded lecture (1980s). Al-Oudah, Asbab Suqut al-Duwal. Al-Oudah, Nihaytu al-Tarikh. Al-Hawali, Al-‘ilmaniyah [Secularism], pp.11–19. Interview with Shaikh al-Hawali, Summer 2001. Also based on the author’s reading of al-Hawali’s study of Al-‘ilmaniyah. Al-Hawali, Al-‘ilmaniyah, pp.11–19. The author confirmed al-Hawali’s hukm shar‘i [Islamic law-based judgement or legal decision] on secularism during fieldwork, Summer 2001. Al-Hawali maintained his arguments found in this book. This recorded lecture was reproduced in 2002 as a book. Available at: www.islamtoday.net. Al-Omar produced various lectures on this subject such as Wasa’il Wiqayat al-Mujtama‘ [Instruments to Protect Society], recorded lecture (1989);

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26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43

44 45 46

47

Notes

Al-Muslihun al-Mufsidun [The Corrupted Reformers], recorded lecture 1991, and Al-Namlah [The Ant], recorded lecture (1992). Al-Hawali, Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami. Argument is based on an interview with Safar al-Hawali, Summer 2001. Ibid., pp.9–11. Al-Oudah, Questions about Safar al-Hawali’s Book, Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/qprint.cfm?artid1436 [27-8-2002]. Al-Omar, Fastaqim Kma Umirt [Be Upright as You Have Been Commanded], recorded lecture (1989). Al-Omar, Al-‘Ahd wa al-Mithaq fi al-Qur’an al-Karim [The Covenant and Contract in the Holy Qur’an] (1413H/1993AD). Al-Omar, August 2003. Al-iman Qawl wa I‘tiqad wa ‘Amal [The Faith is Saying, Belief, and Work]. At: http://www.almoslim.net/articles/show_article_ main.cfm?id137 [18-8-2003]. Shaikh al-Omar’s website. The author refers to Salman al-Oudah’s Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries]. Al-Oudah, Al-Ghuraba al-Awalun [The Earliest Solitaries], (1421H/2000AD), pp.21–26. Al-Oudah, Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [The Letters of the Solitaries], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD). Al-Oudah, Al-Ghuraba al-Awalun, Second Edition. Al-Oudah, Sifatu al-Ghuraba [The Character of the Solitaries], Second Edition. (1421H/2000AD). Al-Oudah, Min Wasa’il Daf‘ al-Ghurbah [Overcoming Solitude], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD) Al-Oudah, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD). Al-Oudah, Al-Ghuraba al-Awalun, p.5. Al-Oudah, Sifatu al-Ghuraba, pp.11–125, pp.198–206. This means that each person is obliged by law to do something or be allowed to do something. But this person is also obliged by law not to do certain things or is not allowed to do certain things. Al-Oudah, Min Wasa’il Daf‘ al-Ghurbah, various pages. Al-Hawali, Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami, pp.15–72. Also see Safar al-Hawali, Hikmatu al-Wujud [The Wisdom of the Existence], recorded lecture (1980s). For further elements on the term ‘ubudiyah [worship], Safar al-Hawali, Kayfa Nahya bi al-Qur’an [How Can We Live by the Qur’an], recorded lecture (1980s); and Wajibuna Tijah Dinina [Our Duties Towards Our Religion], recorded lecture (1992). See also Salman al-Oudah, Risalah ila al-Shabab fi al-Hayah [Letter to the Youth in this Life], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Omar, Suratu al-Hujurat, pp.119–125. Shaikh Nassir draws this study from his PhD dissertation on Qur’anic studies (1984). Al-Hawali, Shiism recorded lectures (1980s). Within the circles of Islamic groups and trends, the view is spreading that Abdullah Muhammad al-Gharib is Shaikh Muhammad Surur Ibn Naif Zain al‘Abdin, a Syrian Islamist, who lived in the United Kingdom from 1983–2004. Abdullah Muhammad al-Gharib, Wa Ja’aa Dawr al-Majus: al-Ab‘ad al-Tarikhiyah wa al-‘Aqadiyah wa al-Siyasiyah Lil al-Thawrah al-Iraniyah

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48 49 50 51

52 53 54 55

56 57

[The Role of the Magus Has Come: The Historical, Theological and Political of the Iranian Revolution], Sixth Edition (Published by the Author, 1408H/1988AD). Al-Oudah, Allah Akbar Saqatat Kabul [Allah is Most Great: Kabul Collapsed], recorded lecture (1412H/1992AD). Interview with Shaikh Nassir al-Omar, Summer 2001. The author listened to Iranian radio programmes, in Arabic, during the 1980s. In particular, Khutbah al-jumu‘ah [Friday prayers’ speech] was an important weekly speech called in Iran as al-Khutbah al-siyasiyah [the political speech]. Bear in mind that during the 1980s, the Saudi and US governments strongly supporting the jihad movement in Afghanistan. Travel to Afghanistan was facilitated by the Saudi government and Saudi youth went to participate in the Afghani resistance movement. The US government provided arms to the resistance. Here one sees al-Hawali’s position was not fully in harmony with the Saudi government’s policy in Afghanistan. Al-Hawali, Mafhum al-Jihad [The Concept of Jihad], recorded lecture (1980s). Interviews with Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, and some Al-Oudah audiences, Summer 2001, Saudi Arabia. Al-Oudah, Allah Akbar Saqatat Kabul. Al-Hawali’s recorded lectures: Al-Shuyu‘iyah Bayan al-Suqut wa I‘Adat al-Bina’ [Communism Between Collapse and Reconstruction] (1986–1990), Durus Min Suqut al-Shuyu‘iyah [Lessons from the Collapse of Communism] (1989–1992), Al-Shuyu‘iyah wa al-Suqut [Communism and the Collapse] (1990–1992), Al-‘Alam al-Islami fi Zil al-Wifaq al-Dawli [The Islamic World in the Shadow of International Détente] (1989–1990). See also Al-Hawali, Al-Muslimun Ila Ayn? [The Muslims: Which Direction?], recorded lecture (1980s). Al-Omar, Suqut al-Andalus [Collapse of Muslim Spain, Andalusia], recorded lecture (July 1990). On Imam al-Shatibi and his struggle for political change and reform, read Dr Hammad al-‘Ubaydi, Al-Shatibi wa Maqasid al-Shari‘ah [Al-Shatibi and the Aims of Shari‘ah] (1412H/1992AD).

7 Countering policy in the 1990s 1 This project was considered important. The monthly scholarly conference refers to a development in Saudi politics where the leadership took a leading role. 2 The term al-Jamiyah comes from the word Jami, which is surname of Shaikh Muhammad al-Jami [d. 1999] who was the leader of this group. He was a Saudi scholar, originally from Ethiopia, and taught at the Prophetic Mosque and at the Islamic University of al-Madina. This term is used in Saudi Arabia in referring to this group. Confirmed in discussions with a wide range of the audience of the reformist leadership. 3 The Arab News, Vol. XV, No. 256, Friday, 10 August 1990, p.1. 4 Anders Jerichow, The Saudi File: People, Power, Politics (Surrey, UK: Curzon Press, 1998), pp.319–320. 5 The Arab News, Vol. XV, No. 260, Tuesday, 14 August 1990, p.1. 6 The Arab News, Vol. XV, No. 261, Wednesday, 15 August 1990, p.1. 7 Al-Hawali, Fasatadhkurun ma Aqulhu Lakum [You Will Remember What I am Saying to You], recorded lecture (28 Muharram 1411H/19 August 1990AD). 8 Al-Oudah, Asbab Suqut al-Duwal [Reasons for the Collapse of States], recorded lecture (7 Safar 1411H/ 28 August 1990AD).

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9 It is likely Salman al-Oudah used the term ‘asabiyah as equivalent to ‘substance of power’. 10 Al-Oudah, Asbab Suqut al-Duwal. 11 Al-Oudah, Dhawabit al-Tas’hih [The Rules of Reform]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2462 [22-6-2003]. 12 Al-Oudah, Asbab Suqut al-Duwal. Later the author illustrates al-Oudah’s discourse of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [legitimate rights in Islamic Law] which considers the issue of political rights. 13 Al-Oudah, Asbab Suqut al-Duwal. 14 Al-Hawali, Fafiru ila Allah [Escape to Allah], recorded lecture (9 Safar 1411H/ 30 August 1990AD). 15 The lecture was well-known and widespread in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf and Muslim communities in the West. Audio-cassette shops in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf region had large sales of this lecture. 16 Al-Hawali, Wa‘d Kissinger wa al-Ahdaf al-Amrikiyah fi al-Khalij [The Promise of Kissinger and the American Aims in the Gulf], Dallas, TX (1412H/1991AD). 17 Al-Omar, Tada‘i al-Ummam [The Nations that Befall You], recorded lecture (August 1990). 18 Al-Oudah, Nadwah Hawla Azmatu al-Khalij [Symposium about the Gulf Crisis], recorded lecture (December 1990), USA. 19 Based on an interview with Khalid al-Qafari, private secretary to Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, Summer 2001. This festival is mentioned by Abd al-Jabrin in his book Risalatu al-Islah [The Letter of Reform] (1992), p.102. 20 Mahmud al-Rifa‘i, Al-Mashru‘ al-Islahi Fi al-Su‘udiyah: Qisatu al-Hawali wa al-Oudah [The Reformist Project in Saudi Arabia: the Story of al-Hawali and al-Oudah], p.35. Text authorized by Shaikh al-Oudah. 21 Interview by author with reformist leadership supporters in Summer 1997, USA. 22 The author introduces the term ‘monthly conference’. Based on an interview and discussion with Khalid al-Qafari, private secretary to Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, Summer 2001 and August 2003. 23 Mahmud al-Rifa‘i, Al-Mashru’ al-islahi Fi al-Su’udiyah, p.16. 24 Muhammad al-Qahtani, Lecture on the issue of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait and receiving US forces. 1990. The author listened to the lecture but the audio cassette was lost, thus the author is not sure of the exact title. 25 Interview by author with Shaikh Muhammad al-Qahtani in Summer 2001. Dismissal from his university work was probably not just as a result of this lecture, as he was also involved in the two petitions of 1991 and 1992. 26 Interview by author with Shaikh Muhammad al-Qahtani in Summer 2001. 27 Al-Oudah, Al-Tajdid [The Renewal], recorded lecture (1990). 28 Al-Omar, Fiqh al-Istisharah [The Jurisprudence of Consultation], recorded lecture (1992). 29 The author says ‘elements’ in the Saudi foreign policy, as not all elements were countered. 30 Based on the author’s observation of the development of the concepts, and scholarly status, of the leadership, and on discussions with students and the inner circles of the three scholars. 31 See Shaikh Abd Ibn Baz’s description in: Salman al-Oudah, Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba, [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries], Volume Four, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences], Second Edition (1421H/2000AD). 32 Al-Oudah, Al-Sharit al-Islami [The Islamic Audio cassette], recorded lecture (1991).

Notes 261 33 ‘Awadh al-Qarni, Nazrah ‘Aqa’diyah ila al-Nizam al-‘Alami al-Jadid [‘Aqidah-based View of the New World Order], recorded lecture (1991). ‘Awadh al-Qarni consulted 300 books, articles and documents, including Western literature, to compile this lecture. 34 Based on an interview with Khalid al-Qafari; private secretary to Shaikh al-Oudah, Summer 2001. 35 Al-Oudah, Dawruna fi Zahmat al-Ahdath [Our Role during the Events], recorded lecture (January 1991). 36 The author draws attention to the term al-mutrafin [opulent people], which can also refer to a corrupt ruling elite. 37 Al-Oudah, Masir al-Mutrafin [The Fate of Opulent People], recorded lecture (1991). 38 Al-Oudah, Al-Mar’ah fi al-Jahliyah al-Mu‘asirah [The Woman in the Contemporary Non-Islamic Condition], recorded lecture (1991). 39 Al-Oudah, Liqa Maftuh ma‘a Qadhaya al-Mar‘ah [Open Meeting on Women’s Issues], recorded lecture (1992). 40 Al-Oudah, Al-Mar’ah al-Muslimah: As’ilah wa Mushkilat [The Muslim Woman: Questions and Problems], recorded lecture (1991). 41 Perception of many individuals in conversations about the incident during the 1990s. 42 Based on the ‘ulama’s fatwa or opinion – women are not allowed to drive a car in Saudi Arabia. 43 Based on listening to lectures and speeches about the incident, the impression was gained that some 40–70 women were not wearing hijab [the scarf]. Some observers claimed some demonstrators discarded the hijab, but the author was not able to confirm the incident. 44 Talib ‘ilm [student of Islamic Law] interviewed by the author, Summer 2001. 45 The word al-hadathiyun comes from the word al-hadatha [the modernity]. So, al-hadathiyun refers to the poetic and literary movement in the Arab World, which is influenced by Western modernity and secularism. See Shaikh ‘Awadh al-Qarni, Al-hadatha fi Mizan al-Islam [Modernity in the Light of Islam], First Edition, (1408H/1988AD). This study is introduced and endorsed by Shaikh Ibn Baz. 46 Al-Hawali’s recorded lectures: Risalah ila al-Fatah al-Muslimah [Message to the Muslim Woman] (1990) Parts: 1 and 2, Al-Mua’amarah ‘la al-Mar’ah al-Muslimah [Plot on the Muslim Woman] (1991) Parts: 1 and 2, Akhtar Tuhadid al-Mar’ah al-Muslimah [Dangers Threatening the Muslim Woman] (1992). 47 Al-Oudah’s tone, or tendency, in the lecture is probably not a strong position against allowing women to drive a car. His position can be described as flexible on this issue, compared to other Saudi scholars who are strongly against allowing women to drive cars. 48 Al-Oudah, Al-Mar‘ah ‘Awdun ‘La Bid’ [The Woman: Returning to the Beginning], recorded lecture, Two Parts (1990). 49 Al-Omar, Wailun lil al-‘Arab min Shar Qad Iqtarab [Woe unto Arabs from the Evil that is Coming], recorded lecture (1990). 50 Al-Omar, Fatayatuna bayn al-Taghrib [Our Women and Westernization], recorded lecture (1991). 51 The passages about al-Oudah’s discourse on human rights in Islam are based on three main sources. The first source is al-Oudah’s lecture on Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam [Human Rights in Islam], delivered in early 1991. The second source is a conversation with Shaikh al-Oudah on 24 May 2003. The third source is Al-Oudah’s article al-Shari‘ah wa al-Huriyah [The Scope of Freedom in Islam],

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61 62 63

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November 2002. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1549 [3-6-2003]. Al-Oudah suggested this resource as it further explores the scope of freedom in Islam. This is not a negative statement about the West. Al-Oudah wanted to compare and introduce the Islamic law-based agenda of human rights. This argument can be based on al-Oudah’s lecture on human rights, and collections of other studies of al-Oudah Al-Shari‘ah wa al-Huriyah, Qira’ah fi Humum al-‘Amal al-Da‘wiy [Reading on the Causes of Islamic Da‘wah] (January 2003) and Wajib al-Waqt [The Duty at this Time] (March 2003). Shaikh al-Oudah, in June 2003, recommended these studies be read. At: http://www.islamtoday. net/nprint.cfm?artid1726 [17-2-2003] and http://www.islamtoday.net/ nprint.cfm?artid1849 [3-6-2003]. The principle of al-amr b’il ma‘ruf wa al nahi ‘an al munkar is also a right, and one can choose to not do it. Carrying out this right or duty depends on one’s ability. Al-Oudah, Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam. Abdullah al-Hamid, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr aql-Hukam [Human Rights between the Justice of Islam and the Tyranny of the Rulers.], p.105. Al-Oudah, Wajibat Hamlu al-Amanah [Requirements to Implement Trust], recorded Friday Prayer’s Sermon (1989). Al-Hamid, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr aql-Hukam, p.105. Al-Oudah, Wajibat Hamlu al-Amanah. Al-Hamid, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr aql-Hukam, p.108. See also Salman al-Oudah, Al-Amr b’il ma‘Ruf wa al Nahi ‘an al Munkar [Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice], recorded lecture (1991); Fiqh Inkar al-Munkar [The Jurisprudence of Preventing Vice], recorded lecture (1990–1994); and Al-Mafsadah wa al-Maslahah [The Corruption and Interest], recorded lecture (1990–1994). See al-Hamid, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr aql-Hukam, p.105–111. Ibid., p.107. Al-Oudah, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal, p.104.

8 Petitions and challenges 1 The use of these terms or terminologies (Jamiyah, al-Salafiyun al-Judud, liberals, seculars and al-hadathiyun) is to facilitate reading; and to identify domestic Saudi forces, their character or distinguishing features. These terms are widely used in Saudi domestic affairs or politics, which reflect the reality. 2 Interview with the reformist leadership, Summer 2001, Saudi Arabia. 3 Discussion with Shaikh Salman al-Oudah about the Letter of the ‘Ulama on 24-5-2003. 4 Shaikh Abd Ibn Baz, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Presidency of the Council of Senior Scholars and the Institution of Ifta and Scholarly Research: Letter No.1349 – 14-10-1411H (29-4-1991). 5 Shaikh Muhammad al-‘Uthaymin, Personal Letter, (14-10-1411H 29-4-1991). Shaikh al-‘Uthaymin had shown concern about the performance of the Islamic movements. See also Muhammad al-‘Uthaymin, Al-Sahwa al-Islamiyah [The Islamic Renaissance, Revivalism], recorded lecture 1-2/115, No.7763 (1990s). 6 Based on interviews with Khalid al-Qafari, private secretary to Shaikh al-Oudah, Summer 2001 and June 2003.

Notes 263 7 Based on interviews with Khalid al-Qafari, private secretary to Shaikh al-Oudah, Summer 2001, June 2003 and September 2003. 8 Based on an interview with Khalid al-Qafari, private secretary to Shaikh al-Oudah, September 2003. 9 See Kitab Shawal or Khitab al-Matalib [The Letter of Demands], or Kitab al-‘Ulama [Letter of the ‘Ulama], (Shawal 1411/May 1991). 10 This is the author’s belief. 11 Interview with a senior shaikh, April 2001. Proof that Ibn Baz faced State pressure to drop support for the Letter. 12 Shaikh Abdullah al-Jalali, Letter to Shaikh Ibn Baz (Issued on 8-10-1411H/ 23-4-1991AD). Leaflet. 13 Interview with a senior shaikh, April 2001. 14 This is the author’s opinion. 15 See the explanatory letter, 1991, leaflet. The author saw a copy and confirms the context of this letter. 16 Interview with Dr Muhammad al-Hudhif [ex-professor at King Sa‘ud University], Summer 2001. 17 Interview with a senior shaikh, April 2001. Interview with Muhammad al-Hudhif, Summer 2001. 18 Al-Oudah, Endorsement to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice], (18-12-1412H/20-6-1992AD). See also Safar al-Hawali, Endorsement to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice], (1412H/1992AD). Al-Hawali’s letter does not have a date. Date confirmed in interviews with private secretary of Shaikh al-Hawali. 19 Abdullah al-Jalali, Endorsement to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice], (1412H/1992AD). 20 The Saudi Islamic youth called Shaikh al-Jabrin shaikh al-Shabab [the shaikh of the youths] as he formed a close and friendly relationship with them. Interview: a student of Shaikh al-Jabrin, Summer 2001, Saudi Arabia. 21 Abdullah al-Jabrin (Member of the Presidency of the Council of Senior Scholars and the Institution of Ifta and Scholarly Research), Endorsement to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice], (23-12-1412 H / 25-6-1992AD). 22 Interview with a shaikh close to Salman al-Oudah, Spring 2001. 23 Al-Omar, Fiqh al-Istisharah [Jurisprudence of Consultation], recorded lecture (1992AD). 24 Interview with Shaikh Abd al-Turiri in Riyadh, Summer 2001. Al-Turiri is one of the new generation ‘ulama, close to the reformist leadership and was one of the signatories of the Letter of the ‘Ulama in 1991, and the Memorandum of Advice in 1992. He is Director of the Islam Today Office [Official website of Salman al-Oudah]. 25 Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah (Muharram 1413H/July 1992AD). 26 Discussion with Shaikh al-Oudah on the Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah on 24-5-2003. 27 Based on a conversation with Shaikh al-Oudah, 24-5-2003. 28 A role similar to that of an ombudsmen in Britain. 29 Al-Oudah, Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam [Human Rights in Islam], recorded lecture (January 1991). 30 Al-Oudah emphasizes the important role of the Islamic da‘iyah [caller] in society. Al-Da‘iyah wa al-Mujtama‘ [The Caller and the Society], recorded lecture (1990–1994).

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31 The whole Memorandum should be seen as a project that seeks to counter the secular elements of the Monarchical domestic and foreign policies. This is a core concern for Safar al-Hawali. 32 Bayan Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama Bisha’n Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Statement of the Council of Senior ‘Ulama about the Memorandum of Advice] (19-3-1413H/ 27-9-1992AD). 33 Rad al-Islahiyin ‘La al-Hay’at wa Bayaniha Bisha’n Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [The Response of the Reformists to Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama and its Statement about the Memorandum of Advice], leaflet (Rabi‘ al-Awal 1413H/September 1992AD). The author confirmed the issue of this response in interviews with the reformist leadership, and with Khalid al-Qafari, secretary to Shaikh al-Oudah. 34 Ibid. 35 Ibid. 36 The author explores the issue of the publication of the Memorandum in the following passage. 37 Interview with Shaikh Abd al-Turiri, who is close to the reformist leadership, Summer 2001. 38 This is the author’s opinion. 39 Abdullah al-Jabrin, Bayan Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama Bisha’n Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah (10-4-1413H/8-10-1992AD). 40 Al-Oudah, Matariq al-Sunan al-Ilahiyah [Allah’s Way of Punishments], recorded lecture (1992). 41 Interview: Dr Muhammad al-Hudhif [ex-Professor at King Sa‘ud University], August 2001. 42 In an earlier chapter the author deals with the issue of al-huquq al-shar‘iyah [Legitimate Rights, or Human Rights in Islam], and presents a study on al-huquq al-shar‘iyah by Dr Abdullah al-Hamid, one of the members in the establishing committee of CDLR. 43 I’lan Ta’asis Lajnat al-Huquq al-Shar‘iyah [Declaration of the Establishment of CDLR], leaflet (12 Dhu al-Qa‘da 1413H/3 May 1993AD). 44 Interview with a senior shaikh, April 2001. 45 Interviews in the United Kingdom (November 2001) and Saudi Arabia (Summer 2001) with senior shaikhs close to the leadership. 46 In September 1993, the reformist leadership was stopped from public activities by the government. 47 The term al-Jamiyah comes from the word Jami, which is the surname of Shaikh Muhammad al-Jami [d. 1999] who was the leader of this group. He was a Saudi scholar, originally from Ethiopia, and taught at the Prophetic Mosque and at the Islamic University of al-Madina. This term is used in Saudi Arabia in referring to this group. Confirmed in discussions with a wide range of the audience of the reformist leadership. 48 This Islamic group is sometimes called al-Salafiyun al-Judud [The New Salafi]. 49 Shaikh Muhammad Surur is an Islamic figure or leader, originally from Syria, but living in exile since 1967. 50 A Saudi from al-Madina al-Munawarah. He graduated from the Islamic University of al-Madina. 51 The author’s argument is built on general observations of the performance and the discourse of al-Jamiyah during the 1990s, and from conversations with some adherents. 52 The author saw Rabi‘ Ibn Hadi al-Madkhali’s booklet in the United States in February or March of 1991.

Notes 265 53 Rabi‘ al-Madkhali, Al-Bara’a ala Allah mima Ja’aa fi Sharit fafiru ila Allah, recorded lecture (October 1990). 54 The term ‘hizb al-wullah’ is used to describe this Islamic trend by Muhammad Surur Ibn Naif, Al-Salafiyah bayn al-Wullah wa al-Ghulah [The Salafiyah Between the Loyalists and the Extremists], unpublished study. 55 The term Salafi mainly means ancestral. 56 Naif, Al-Salafiyah bayn al-Wullah wa al-Ghulah. 57 Based on personal observation during the 1990s. 58 Based on author’s understanding of the performance of the reformist leadership. 59 Based on a conversation with Shaikh Safar al-Hawali, Summer 2001. 60 Al-Oudah, Defending Our Faith Comes First. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/ english/redirect7.cfm?cat_id30&sub_cat_id486 [31-8-2002]. 61 Yusuf Damanhuri is a Saudi journalist, and originally from Egypt, from the city of Damanhur, from whence he takes his surname. This is based on a conversation with one of the reformist leadership’s audience. 62 Muhmud al-Rifa‘i, op. cit. pp.43–44. 63 Based on conversations with talib ‘ilm [student of Islamic sciences] who listened to this recorded lecture or attended the khutbah. 64 Al-Qusaibi used the name of Saddam as an adjective to describe Islamic fundamentalists. 65 ASharq al-Awsat [The Middle East], No. 4463, 16-2-1991. 66 Ibid., No. 4464, 17-2-1991. 67 Ibid., No. 4469, 22-2-1991. 68 Can be seen as a strategy to avoid further conflict with Dr al-Qusaibi. 69 Al-Oudah, Al-Sharit al-Islami [The Islamic Audiocassette], recorded lecture (1991). 70 This can be seen as a general introduction to his subject. Al-Oudah emphasized the legitimate Sunni Islamic status of the Islamic cassette by referring to various educational and intellectual functions of this method of spreading the Islamic da‘wah and reformist message. 71 Al-Oudah tried to address the roots of the attack on the Islamic cassette. 72 Al-Oudah did not clearly state the name of the writer, but the author understands from the lecture that the writer was Ghazi al-Qusaibi. This was the second indirect reference to Ghazi al-Qusaibi. The title of the article was Yawmiyat Cassette [The Diary of the Cassette] and the newspaper, Sawat al-Kuwait [The Sound of Kuwait]. 73 Al-Oudah, again, did not mention the name of the writer. 74 This means Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama [the Council of the Senior ‘Ulama] has a political role in Saudi Arabia. Any argument that does not accept this political role should be questioned. Salman al-Oudah as a witness said there are various fatawa [juristic and legal opinions] of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama that deal with politics. Based on this, and the author’s observations, Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama should not be seen only as a religious body with no relationship to politics. Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama is mu’a’sasah shar‘iyah [Islamic institution], and dealing with political affairs is part of its function. The State might restrict the political role of Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama and might represent Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama as having no relationship to politics. This is a different subject. 75 It was clearer now for the audience, that al-Oudah was referring to al-Qusaibi. 76 This is a well-known poetry book by Ghazi al-Qusaibi. Referring to this book confirmed that al-Oudah was referring to Ghazi al-Qusaibi in particular. 77 In the last part of his lecture, al-Oudah referred directly to al-Qusaibi’s previous argument in ASharq al-Awsat newspaper. This was the main reason al-Oudah

266

78 79 80 81

82

83 84 85

86 87 88 89 90 91 92

Notes

made his lecture of Al-Sharit al-Islami. Yet as the reader has noted, al-Oudah expanded the realm of the lecture to a comprehensive countering discourse. This also highlights Salman al-Oudah’s style of addressing problems or issues. He sometimes does not directly tackle the problem, and makes a series of introductions until he reaches the core aspect he wants to address. To understand the vision of al-Oudah, it is important to see the introductions and then link them to the point he wants to address. See al-Oudah, Al-Sharit al-Islami. Al-Omar, Al-Sakinah Al-Sakinah [Calmness, Calmness] recorded lecture (1991). Ghazi al-Rahman al-Qusaibi, Hata Latakun Fitnah [In Order to Prevent Turmoil], Second Edition (Published by the author, 1991). After the previous countering discourse of Al-Sharit al-Islami and Al-Sakinah Al-Sakinah, the reformist leadership stopped responding to Ghazi al-Qusaibi, and did not respond to al-Qusaibi’s book: Hata Latakun Fitnah. The book is mainly based on previous arguments and had already been discussed or mentioned by al-Oudah in his lecture of Al-Sharit al-Islami. Muhammad al-Qahtani, Wa Yakun al-Din Kuluhu Lil Allah [The Whole Religion is for Allah] (Published by the author). This is a limited distribution discourse and does not show the year or place of publication. The author confirms the year of publication as 1991, and has this discourse in his private collection. The author discussed the book with al-Qahtani during fieldwork in the Summer 2001. Ibid. Al-Qahtani placed his Wa Yakun al-Din Kuluhu Lil Allah in this book. Al-Tuwirqi, al-Zu‘air, al-Malki, al-Qarni and al-Qahtani, Al-Qusaibi wa al-Mashru‘ al-‘Ilmani Hiwar wa Munaqasha [Al-Qusaibi and the Secular Project: Dialogue and Discussion]. A limited distribution discourse – does not show the year or place of publication. The author confirms the year of publication as 1992, and has this discourse in his private collection. Ghazi al-Qusaibi, Azmat al-Khalij Muhawala Lil Fahim [The Gulf Crisis, an Attempt to Understand] (1991–1992). Al-Qusaibi, op. cit. pp.107–128. See Chapter 5 in al-Qusaibi’s book. Al-Qusaibi, Azmat al-Khalij Muhawala Lil Fahim, p.123. One notes here that the reformist leadership did not respond to al-Qusaibi’s book. Abd al-Jabrin, Risalatu al-Islah [The Letter of Reform] (Published by the author, Muharram 1413 H/1992AD). Ibid.

9 The Monarchy and support 1 The author was not able to confirm the exact date. 2 Mahmud al-Rifa‘i, Al-Mashru‘ al-Islahi Fi al-Su‘udiyah: Qisatu al-Hawali wa al-Oudah [The Reformist Project in Saudi Arabia: The Story of al-Hawali and al-Oudah], p.37. Text authorized by Shaikh al-Oudah. 3 Interview with Khalid al-Qafari, Shaikh al-Oudah’s private secretary, Summer 2001. 4 Interviews with Khalid al-Qafari, Summer 2001, June 2003 and September 2003. 5 This is a conclusion by the author. The government was seeking juristic Sunni Islamic proof that the reformist leadership were intending al-khuruj [revolt]. 6 Stopping shaikhs and preachers from giving lectures and speeches was widespread in the 1990s.

Notes 267 7 Based on discussions with Khalid al-Qafari, Summer 2001. 8 This is the author’s conclusion on the reformist leadership’s meetings with the Committee, confirmed in a discussion with the private secretary of Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, Summer, 2001. 9 The term ‘Old Testament’ is used as a synonym of ‘Al-‘Ahd al-Qadim’. 10 Al-Hawali, Al-Wa‘ad al-Haq wa al-Wa‘ad al-Muftara [The Right Promise and the False Promise], recorded lecture (1992). 11 Al-Oudah, Al-Ma‘rakah Al-Fasilah ma‘a Bani Israel [The Final Battle with the Israelis], recorded lecture (1992). 12 The two lectures became popular and many know them or listened to them. 13 Al-Oudah, Al-Tatbi‘ [Normalization], recorded lecture (1992). 14 See Prince Naif’s letter, No.M/B/192/M/S, (21, 22 Rabi‘ al-Awal 1414H/ 8 September 1993AD) and Shaikh Ibn Baz’s response. 15 Shaikh Ibn Baz’s letter was written before the committee met. A committee to meet al-Hawali and al-Oudah to discuss the Ministry of the Interior’s comments or complaints was Ibn Baz’s suggestion. Yet the Ministry of the Interior used the contents of the same letter, in September 1994, to justify the arrest of the reformist leadership. 16 Shaikh Ibn Baz’s letter to the Minister of the Interior, [3 Rabi‘ al-Thani 1414H/20 September 1993AD). The letter comes in al-Rifa‘i, Al Mashru‘ al-Islahi Fi al-Su‘udiyah, p.106. The reformist leadership confirmed this letter during fieldwork in 2001. Also based on interviews with Shaikh al-Oudah’s private secretary, August 2003. 17 The author will present the misuse of Shaikh Ibn Baz’s letter. 18 Based on interview with Khalid al-Qafari, private secretary to Shaikh Salman al-Oudah, Summer 2001. It seems the Ministry of Islamic Affairs’ representatives did not report to Ibn Baz about the meeting. 19 Ibid. See al-Hawali and al-Oudah’s Letter to Shaikh Ibn Baz. Leaflet. The reformist leadership confirmed this letter during fieldwork in 2001. Also based on interviews with Shaikh al-Oudah’s private secretary, August 2003. 20 Non-attendance by the Minister was a problem; possibly a miscommunication. 21 The author marks these parts in accord with the way they were structured in the report to Ibn Baz. 22 In Algeria, in December 1991, the Front Islamique du Salut (FIS) won local elections which were cancelled by the military coup of January 1992. The Islamic forces fragmented after the coup. At that time, the Saudi government backed the military rule vis-à-vis FIS, and the Islamic trends. 23 Al-Hawali and al-Oudah, Risalah Ila al-Shabab al-Muslim fi al-Jazair [Open Letter to the Muslim Youth in Algeria], (13-7-1414H/27-12-1993AD), leaflet. 24 Since 1991, Algeria has experienced civil war, which has taken the lives of 200,000 citizens. 25 Bayan Hawla Ahdath al-Jaza’ir [Statement about the Events in Algeria] (January 1994), leaflet. 26 Bayan Hawla Ahdath al-Yaman [Statement about the Events in Yemen] (Summer 1994), leaflet. 27 Al-Oudah, Ahadith al-Rabi‘ [Conversations in the Spring], four recorded lectures (Sha‘ban 1414H/January–February 1994AD). 28 Al-Oudah, Risalah min wara’ al-Qudhban [Letter from Behind Bars], recorded lecture (September 1994). The original Arabic text is in the author’s collection. The English translation of this speech is on the Internet at: http://www. ummahh.net/jahid/auwdah.htm [Accessed 19-6-2002].

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29 This turned out to be a temporary arrest as al-Hawali was released and later arrested on 16 September 1994. 30 Ibid. Al-Oudah refers to ‘oppression’ several times in his Risalah min wara’ al-Qudhban. See discussion on the subject of oppression in al-Oudah, Al-Mustadh‘afun [The Oppressed], recorded lecture (1990–1994). 31 Interview by author with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. 32 Al-Oudah’s mention of economic corruption brings to mind domestic Saudi economic problems and difficulties in the 1990s. See Fareed Mohamedi, ‘The Saudi Economy: A Few Years Yet till Doomsday,’ Middle East Report (185), Vol. 23, No. 6 (November–December 1993), pp.14–17; and Report, ‘Abdullah and the Ebbing Tide,’ The Economist, Vol. 350, No. 8103, (23 January 1999), pp.59–60. 33 Conversations with part of the leadership’s audience who attended the gathering, USA, 1995. Also based on interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. 34 Interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Khalid al-Qafari, Summer, 2001. 35 Interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Khalid al-Qafari, September, 2003. 36 Based on interviews with Khalid al-Qafari, Summer 2001, June 2003 and September 2003. 37 Based on personal observation of the consequences of the arrest during the 1990s. The reformist leadership confirmed the date of the arrest during fieldwork in 2001. 38 Based on an interview with a senior shaikh close to the reformist leadership, Spring 2002. 39 Based on an interview with the reformist leadership, Summer 2001. Also based on personal observations of the consequence of the arrest during the 1990s. The reformist leadership confirmed the date of the arrest during fieldwork in 2001. 40 Interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. 41 Based on interview with a senior shaikh close to the reformist leadership, Spring 2002. 42 Amnesty International, London. www.amnest.org AI Index: MDE 23-7-00. 43 See Arab News, Vol. XIX, No. 301, Sunday, 25 September 1994, Rabi‘ al-Thani 20 1415H, p.1. 44 See Arab News, Vol. XIX, No. 303, Tuesday, 27 September 1994, Rabi‘ al-Thani 22 1415H. Headline p.1. 45 The Ministry of Interior’s letter to Shaikh Ibn Baz is mentioned earlier. The Ministry of Interior’s letter: No.M/B/192/M/S, (21, 22 Rabi‘ al-Awal 1414H/8 September 1993AD). 46 This meeting was held in September 1993 after an official request from Prince Naif. 47 Shaikh Ibn Baz’s letter to the Minister of the Interior, (3 Rabi‘ al-Thani 1414H/20 September 1993AD). 48 These errors were not found by Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama, but were presented by the government. 49 ‘Through a committee’ meant Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama had not reached a final decision about al-Hawali and al-Oudah’s errors. Forming a committee meant the matter was still under ongoing discussion and investigation. 50 Shaikh Salman al-Oudah interviewed by the author in the Summer of 2001. 51 The Ambassador’s statement that 20 judges passed their verdicts on the arrested reformers; including the reformist leadership, was not confirmed in any official statement.

Notes 269 52 See Arab News, Vol. XIX, No. 310, Tuesday, 4 October 1994, Rabi‘ al-Thani 29 1415H, p.2. 53 See Arab News, Vol. XIX, No. 323, Monday, 17 October 1994, Jumada al-Ula 12 1415H, p.1–2. 54 See Arab News, Vol. XIX, No. 337, Monday, 31 October 1994, Jumada al-Ula 26, 1415H, p.1. 55 Amnesty International, London. www.amnest.org AI Index: MDE 23-7-00. 56 For example, among the signatories was Dr Ahmad Ibn Sa‘id, who graduated from the University of Wales, Cardiff, during the 1980s. 57 This letter was presented after the arrest of al-Hawali and al-Oudah, and before the arrest of al-Omar. Al-Omar was one of the signatories of this letter. 58 Khitab Talabatu al-‘Ilm wa al-Acadimiyin lil Shaikh Ibn Baz wa A‘dha Hay’at Kibar al-‘Ulama Bishan I‘tiqal al-Shaykhayn wa Ikhwanihima min al-‘Ulama wa Talabatu al-‘Ilm wa al-Muslihin [The Letter of the Students of Shari‘ah and the Academics to Shaikh Ibn Baz and the Members of the Council of the Senior ‘Ulama About the Arrest of the Two Shaikhs (al-Hawali and al-Oudah) and their Brothers of ‘Ulama, students of Shari‘ah, and Reformers], leaflet, September 1994. 59 Interview with a shaikh close to Salman al-Oudah. 60 Interview: Shaikh Nassir al-Omar, Saudi Arabia; Summer 2001. 61 Ibid. 62 The author does not know those prisoners. Here the government collected information related to the reformist leadership from a third party. The information was helpful for the reformist leadership. 63 By ‘third party’ the author means other prisoners interviewed by the security authority. 64 Interview with a shaikh close to Salman al-Oudah. 65 Interview: Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia; Summer 2001. 66 Interview: Shaikh al-Hawali’s secretary, Saudi Arabia; Summer 2001. 67 Interview: Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia; Summer 2001. 68 Ibid. 69 Based on personal observation and on discussions with Shaikh al-Oudah, and his secretary. 70 Interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia, September 2003. 71 Interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia, August 2003. 72 The author’s interviews with the reformist leadership, conducted in Summer 2001, Saudi Arabia. 73 Amnesty International, London. www.amnest.org AI Index: MDE 23-7-00. 74 Interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. This confirms the meeting was not a sign of a real or genuine development of understanding between the Monarchy and the reformist leadership. But the meeting was an important step in that direction. 75 Interview with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. 76 Shaikh Ibn Baz’s official letter to Shaikh al-Oudah, No. KH/1150 (10-9-1411H/26-3-1991AD). Issued directly from Al-Ri’asah al-‘Amah li Idarat al-Buhuth al-‘Ilmiyah wa al-Ifta wa al-Da‘wah wa al-Irshad [Presidency of the Scientific Researches, Ifta, Islamic Call and Guidance], Maktabu al-Ra’is [The Office of the President]. 77 Shaikh Ibn Baz’s official letter to Shaikh al-Oudah, No. KH/2043 (2-11-1412H/5-5-1992AD). 78 Ironically, the Ministry of Interior had ‘protested’ against this book, endorsed by Shaikh Ibn Baz, during the meeting with the reformist leadership in September 1993.

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79 Shaikh Ibn Baz’s official letter; No. KH/767 (3-4-1413H/2-10-1992AD). 80 Shaikh Humud al-Tuwajri, Ithaf al-Nubala bi al-Riwayah ‘an al-A‘lam al-Fudhala, No. 35 (2-6-1413H/28-11-1992AD). 81 Interviews with the leadership, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. 82 Ibid. 83 Those books and studies were published by others. 84 Bear in mind this fatwa [juristic and legal opinion] was issued on 10-4-1414H/27-9-1993AD, the same day as the reformist leadership’s meeting at the Ministry of Interior. 85 ‘The Revolters’, a sect of Muslims which emerged during the reign of the fourth Caliph, Ali al-Hashimi (35-40H/657–662AD). They revolted against his Caliphate. 86 Shaikh Ibn Baz’s Fatwa No. KH/970 (10-4-1414H/27-9-1993AD), Dar al-Ifta [The Office of Fatwa], Maktab Mufti ‘Am al-Mamlakah [The Office of the Grand Mufti in Saudi Arabia]. 87 Shaikh Abdullah al-Jabrin’s endorsement to Shaikh al-Oudah: (19-10-1413H/ 13-4-1993AD), Al-Ri’asah al-‘Amah li Idarat al-Buhuth al-‘Ilmiyah wa al-Ifta wa al-Da‘wah wa al-Irshad. 88 Shaikh Ibn Baz, Fatwa, recorded (September or October 1994). 89 Shaikh Muhammad al-Mansoor refers to other endorsements of the reformist leadership. 90 The term ‘sayings’ means the discourses of al-Hawali. 91 The end of the quote. 92 Shaikh Muhammad al-Mansoor’s statement was issued on 27-4-1415H/ 18-9-1994AD. Leaflet. 93 Ahmad Zabarah, Ijazah to Shaikh Salman al-Oudah (18-11-1420H/ 23-2-2000AD). 94 Shaikh Ahmad Klibati, Ijazah (20 Muharram 1422 H/14 April 2001AD). 95 The term talabatu al-‘ilm can include the Islamic intelligentsia and new generation ‘ulama. 96 There is a relationship between the vision of Imam al-Shatibi and the leadership’s performance and discourse. 97 Shaikh al-Omar uses this term to refer to the leadership. Based on interviews with al-Omar, Summer 2001. 98 Conclusion based on interviews and conversations with Shaikh al-Omar, Summer 2001. 99 Based on interviews and conversations with Shaikh al-Omar, Summer 2001.

10 Appeasement 1 Al-Omar, Al-Fajru al-Sadiq [The True Dawn], recorded lecture (2002). Reproduced and revised in 2003. See al-Omar’s official website: www.almoslim. 2 Al-Omar, Haqiqatu al-Intisar [The Essence of Victory], recorded lecture (1993). 3 Interviews with the reformist leadership in Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. 4 Interview with Nassir al-Omar, July 2001. 5 Interviews with the reformist leadership in Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001 6 Interview with a shaikh close to the leadership, April 2001. 7 Interview with al-Omar, July 2001. 8 See NYT – Questions and Answers (Q&A). At: http://www.islamtoday.net/ english/redirect7.cfm?cat_id29&sub_cat_id449 [11-7-2002]. 9 Ibid.

Notes 271 10 Interviews with the reformist leadership, July and August 2001, Saudi Arabia. During these interviews, the three scholars used, in Arabic, a present tense to describe their commitment to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah. Since the interviews, the author has not noted changes in their commitment to Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah. 11 See NYT – Questions and Answers (Q&A). At: http://www.islamtoday.net/ english/redirect7.cfm?cat_id29&sub_cat_id449 [11-7-2002] 12 Al-Hawali’s official website was launched in 2005. 13 Al-Omar’s official website was launched in May 2003. 14 Al-Oudah (supervision and editing), Nahwa Fadha‘ Jadid lil Da’wah [Towards a New Era of Islamic Call], 1422H/2001AD. Unpublished study. 15 Ibid. 16 Al-Hawali, July 2001: Liqa’ Fi al-Baha [Meeting in al-Baha]. At: http://www. alsalafyoon.com/ArabicPosts/SafarBaha1.htm [12-1-2002]. 17 Lecture during the author’s fieldwork in Saudi Arabia, in the Summer of 2001. 18 Interview, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/ albasheer/show-news-content.cfm?id475 [21-1-2002]. 19 Al-Oudah, Al-Dhaw’q al-Islami [The Islamic Taste], Al-Fa’al al-Hassan [The Good Optimism] and Al-Khawf [The Worry], recorded lectures (2001). In the author’s collection. 20 At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/redirect7.cfm?cat_id29&sub_cat_id 449 [11-7-2002] 21 Interview at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid368 [10-1-2002] 22 Interview at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1428 [24-4-2002] 23 Interview at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1148 [10-4-2002] 24 Interview at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid3113 [8-8-2002] 25 Fawasil, No.105, 15 November 2002, p.18–21. A picture of Shaikh Salman alOudah is on the cover. 26 Can be seen on his website: www.islamtoday.net. 27 Interview at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1148 [10-4-2002] 28 http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid551 [6-2-2002] 29 See The Hajj [Pilgrimage] Report, 2002. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print. cfm?artid623 [20-2-2002]; http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid646 [20-2-2002]. 30 There is also a diwaniyah – a private female sitting room. 31 Al-Oudah, September 2002. Salman al-Oudah’s Visit to Kuwait. Report by Khalid al-Qafari. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid4310 [21-10-2002]. Al-Qafari, secretary to Shaikh al-Oudah, was also arrested in September 1994, and spent five years in prison. 32 Al-Oudah, January 2003. Al-Oudah’s Participation in the National Festival of Heritage and Culture in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/ nprint.cfm?artid7400 [14-1-2003]. 33 Al-Oudah, February 2003. Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s al-Hajj Activities. Report by Khalid al-Qafari. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1832 [19-22003]. 34 Al-Oudah, March 2003. Ahali al-Bahrain Yahtafilun bi al-Shaikh Salman alOudah [People of Bahrain welcome Shaikh Salman al-Oudah]. Report by Khalid al-Qafari, 2003 at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1901 [15-32003]. 35 The critique or attack on the Prophet and Islam was seen and noted in some US media and press such as Fox News and by religious leaders such as Pat Robertson. See http://www.alshaab.com/GIF/20-09-2002/Fox.htm [19-10-2002]. This is

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the official website of Hizb al-‘Amal [The Party of Work], the Egyptian Islamic opposition party. For a comprehensive understanding of the problem of attacking the personality of the Prophet and Islam, the reader can see various reports of the International Committee for the Support of the Final Prophet (ICSFP) [http://www.whymuhammad.com] [www.icsfp.com]. Saudi intellectuals and others established this organization to counter critique and attacks launched against the Prophet. ICSFP requested Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s support and this lecture is seen in answer to this request. Al-Oudah, April 2003. Report about Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s activity during April 2003. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid12422 [30-4-2003]. Al-Oudah, May 2003. Shaikh al-Oudah officially received State permission to resume his public lessons and lectures. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid 12702 [7-5-2003]. The author confirmed the news of al-Oudah’s resumption of public lessons and lectures, and discussed this event with Khalid al-Qafari [private secretary to Shaikh al-Oudah]. Al-Oudah, May 2003. Al-Shaikh Salman al-Oudah yad‘u ila al-Mahabah wa nabdh al-Baghdha [Shaikh Salman al-Oudah Calls to Love and to discard Hatred], Report by Abdullah al-Suhim. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint. cfm?artid13756 [30-5-2003]. The author discussed the elements and consequences of the lecture with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary on 1 June 2003. Later, the lecture was made into full text. See al-Oudah, August 2003. Risalatu al-‘Asr [The Letter of the Epoch]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/show_ articles_content.cfm?id37&catid38&artid2643 [2-8-2003]. Al-Oudah, June 2003. Al-Islam al-Yawm yuqim Haflahu al-Ta‘rifiy al-Awal [The www.islamtoday.net Website Celebrates it First Reception]. Report by Abd al-Hay Shahin. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid14056 [3-6-2002]. Al-Oudah, 2001. The Opening Message. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/ showme.cfm?cat_id26&sub_cat_id451 [18-1-2003]. Al-Omar, August, 2003. Hiwar Tarbawi [Dialogue About Education]. At: http://www.almoslim.net/tarbawi/show_article_main.cfm?id133 [2-8-2003]. Al-Omar, May, 2003. Iftitahiyatu al-Mawq‘ [The Opening Article]. At: http://www.almoslim.net/articles/show_artcile_main.cfm?id74 [12-7-2003]. Al-Oudah, May 2003. Idha ‘Aza Akhuq [When Your Brother Becomes Strong]. At: http://www.almoslim.net/print.cfm?artid73 [17-5-2003]. The author directed various questions to Shaikh Salman al-Oudah during fieldwork in the Summer of 2001. The shaikh said he would answer them at a later time according to his ability and readiness. The questions were mainly about his Sunni Islamic reformist experiences and political struggle during the last two decades. The following passages answer most of these questions. Al-Oudah, February 2002. Dawa’r al-Islah [The Circles of Reforms]. At:http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/show_articles_content.cfm?id37 &catid38&artid545 [24-5-2002].

11 External focus: resumption of al-madafa‘a 1 The author means the foreign policies of the United States and Israel. In the post-prison era, in the reformist leadership’s political discourse, in particular, and their Sunni Islamic juristic discourse, in general, the author can understand that the reformist leadership is likely to perceive the United States and Israeli policies as posing more dangerous elements in the Middle East than before. This is seen

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3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

11 12

13

through the negative impacts of the US wars in Afghanistan (2001–2002), Iraq (2003) and the oppressive Israeli policies against Palestinians since 2000. Those situations have caused ordinary people harm. Their sanctities, homes, livelihoods, education, work, properties, safety, security and their normal daily activities are disrupted, undermined or destroyed. In juristic Sunni Islamic language, this is fasad fi al-ardh [corruption on earth] which is haram [unlawful]. The elements that have been damaged, undermined or destroyed are part of, or incorporated into, al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials], all threatened by US and Israeli policies. The author mainly means the Saudi Monarchical policy, either domestic or foreign. In the reformist leadership’s political discourse, in particular, and its Sunni Islamic juristic discourse, in general, in the post-prison era, the author can understand that the reformist leadership is likely to perceive Saudi policy as posing less dangerous or threatening elements in the Middle East than the policies of the United States and Israel. The Saudi policy, unlike the United States and Israeli policies, has not endangered or threatened al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]. This requires the reformist leadership to direct its countering policy towards the United States and Israel. Based on interviews with Shaikh Nassir al-Omar, Saudi Arabia, Summer 2001. The terms threats, dangers and mafasid [corruption] indicate similar or complementary meanings and refer to hardships, harm or injuries, dangers and corruptions. The author uses the term ‘threat’ for all these meanings. The arguments of such literature and values do not contradict the elements/ philosophy of Islamic Law. ‘Tacit Agreement as a Response to External Threat’ is similar to ‘Alliances as a Response to Threat’ of Stephen Walt in The Origin of Alliances (1987). ‘Tacit Agreement’ indicates a lesser degree than ‘Alliance’. Al-Su‘udiyah Tujadid Rafdhaha lil Tatbi‘ ma‘a Israel [Saudi Arabia Rejects the Normalization of a Relationship with Israel]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/ nprint.cfm?artid14116 [5-6-2003]. It was reported that the Saudi ambassador in Washington presented the US government with an official document asserting these conditions. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid14116 [5-6-2003]. In his article, Graham Fuller reports some accounts on the crisis in the Saudi–US relationship. See Azmat al-‘Ilaqat al-Amrikiyah al-Su‘udiyah [The Crisis of the Saudi–US Relationship]. At: http://www.aljazeera.net/print.htm. [18-10-2002]. The ex-Director of the CIA, James Woolsey, stated, at Oxford University, in November 2002, that the United States should seek to change Arab political systems. The official website of the Ministry of Islamic Affairs and Endowments, State of Qatar. At: http://www.islamweb.net/pls/iweb/misc1.article?vArticle 33037&thelangA&p [16-11-2002]. See statement by Prince Khalid al-Aziz [Saudi Minister of Defence’s Assistant]. AShariq al-Awsat [The Middle East], No. 8874 (13 Muharram 1423H/16 March 2003AD), p.6. Al-Oudah, March 2003. Fatwa [Legal Opinion]. Fatwa publicized on the al-Jazeera channel. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid17928 [8-3-2003]. See also Nassir al-Omar, 2003. At: http://www.islamtoday. net/nprint.cfm?artid10339 [19-3-2003]. In October 2002, 50 Saudi ‘ulama and talabatu al‘ilm [students of Islamic sciences] signed a statement criticizing and condemning the US foreign policy – described as aggressive, hegemonic and containing crusader elements. See Bayan

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18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29

30 31

32 33 34

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Hawla Mukhatatat America [Statement About US Plans]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid1494 [29-10-2002]. ASharq al-Awsat [The Middle East], 2 March 2003. At: http://www.aawsat.com/ print/default.asp?did5id155586 [2-3-2003]. Al-Hawali, Yawmu al-Ghadhab [The Day of Anger] (Egypt, sine loco, 2001), p.11. Ibid. Reading al-Hawali’s work of Yawmu al-Ghadhab, the American Christian Evangelical (ACE) movement refers to US domestic forces called the Christian right who strongly support Israel for religious reasons. Al-Hawali has knowledge of this group through literature such as Halsel’s work: ‘Prophecy and Politics: The Secret Alliance between Israel and the US Christian Right’. Here al-Hawali tries to reach the global reader, as the ACE movement’s argument poses a threat, not only to security and stability in the Middle East but also globally. Al-Hawali, Yawmu al-Ghadhab, p.1. Ibid. The term ‘them’ refers to his previous expression of ‘our brothers in occupied Palestine’. Ibid. Al-Hawali, April 2002. Nida ila al-Muslimin Linajdat Ikhwanihim fi Filistin [Call to Muslims to Support their Brothers in Palestine]. At: http://152. 160.23.131/alasr/print.cfm?contentid2065&categoryID20 [11-11-2002]. Al-Oudah used the term ‘we’, which might mean the Arab countries, Islamic countries or other sympathizers with the Palestinian cause. Here, al-Oudah partially refers to al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and al-nasl [posterity] which are harmed by the Israeli occupation. Al Oudah, April 2002. La Yunsarun [They Will Not Be Given Victory]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/taheya/show_article.cfm?id816 [23-8-2002]. Al-Oudah, April 2002. Al Irhab wa al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah [Terrorism and the Martyrdom Operations]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid 752 [10-4-2002]. Here, also, al-Oudah mentions the elements of the theory of al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and posterity. Here, al-Oudah makes a semi-juristic reservation on using the term ‘al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah’. This term, he said, has been used by those who legitimize these operations. This implies there are conditions for this term to be an accepted common term or belief, and al-Oudah places juristic conditions on this term for its legitimacy. Al-Oudah, 2002. Al Irhab wa al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah. By using the term al-murabitun, al-Oudah gives an essential endorsement to the Palestinian people living in Palestine as they are defending the frontiers of Islam. In the Sunni Islamic fiqh, the word al-murabitun indicates defending and countering. Here, al-Oudah refers again to the elements of the theory of al-dharurat al-khams [the five essentials]: religion, mind, soul, prosperity and posterity. In this case, resisting the Israeli occupation is legitimate to defend and protect al-dharurat al-khams. Al-Oudah confirms the legitimacy of the Palestinian resistance in international law and from a humanistic viewpoint.

Notes 275 35 Al-Oudah, Liqa’ ma‘a Qanat Sawat Filistin [Interview with the Sound of Palestine Channel, 28-3-1423H/July 2002AD, recorded]. At: www.islamtoday.net [26-1-2003]. 36 See interviews at al-Omar’s official website: http://www.almoslim.net/ figh_wagi3/show_conv_main.cfm?id15 [17-7-2003]; http://www.almoslim. net/figh_wagi3/show_conv_main.cfm?id14 [17-7-2003]. 37 See a discussion on the US campaign against Saudi Arabia. At: http://www. aljazeera.net/programms/no_limit/articles/2002/1/1-23-1.htm [30-1-2002]. 38 Report, Ahdath September Wa Jurh Lan Yandamil Bayn al-Riyadh wa Washington [The Events of September, and Injury, Which Will Not Be Healed, Between Riyadh and Washington]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid 3755 [19-10-2002] 39 http://www.aljazeera.net/news/arabic/2001/10/10-12-8.htm [18-10-2002]. 40 Thomas Friedman, a correspondent from the New York Times, sent an open letter, in the name of President George Bush, to Shaikh Salih al-Shaikh, Saudi Minister of Islamic Affairs. In the letter he criticizes the Saudi Islamic curriculum. See Thomas L. Friedman (NYT), Dear Saudi Arabia, Late Edition, Final, Section A, p.31, Column 5, 12-12-2001, Friedman is ‘urging that Islam be interpreted in ways that sanctify religious tolerance and peaceful spread of faith, noting radicals educated in Saudi Arabia’s Islamic schools were responsible for September 11 terrorist attacks in US, which they justified in name of Islam.’ Abstract at: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?resF70714FE3E5B0C718DDDA B0994D9404482 [8-8-2003]. 41 http://www.alshaab.com/GIF/09-08-2002/n%20%201.htm [17-8-2002]. This is the official website of Hizb al-‘Amal [The Party of Work], the Egyptian Islamic Opposition Party. 42 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid15394 [29-6-2003]. 43 The report does not contain the 28-page classified chapter which links the Saudi government to the September 11, 2007 attack. Yet the Saudi government, in the light of the Saudi Minister of the Foreign Affairs’ statements, understands the chapter brings charges against the Saudi government. The Saudi government demanded the US government release the chapter. The US government rejected the Saudi governmental request for security reasons. See The New York Times, Bush Refuses to Declassify Saudi Section of Report, at: http://www.nytimes.com/pages/ national/nationalspecial2/index.html [2-8-2003]. See also http://:www. islamtoday.net [25-7-2003] and http://www.aljazeera.net/news/america/ 2003/7/7-25-9.htm [2-8-2003]. 44 Risen and Johnston, Report on 9/11 Suggests a Role by Saudi Spies. At The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/02/national/02SAUD.html [2-8-2003]. 45 Available at: http://:www.islamtoday.net [30-7-2003]. 46 Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/albasheer/show_news_content.cfm?id 17295 [2-8-2003]. 47 Kaiser and Ottaway (Washington Post Staff Writers), Marriage of Convenience: The US–Saudi Alliance/Oil for Security Fuelled Close Ties (Monday, February 11 2002; PageA01). (Washingtonpost.com) [22-3-2002]. See also Salem Khalid al Nowaiser, Saudi Arabia’s and the United States’ Strategic Partnership in an Era of Turmoil: A Study of Saudi–American Political, Economic and Military Relationship, 1973–1983 – dependence or Interdependence? PhD dissertation. American University, Washington, DC, 1988 (1992). 48 http://www.aljazeera.net/news/arabic/2001/10/10-1-2.htm [18-10-2002]. 49 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid5284 [24-11-2002]. 50 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2363 [30-4-2003].

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51 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid18688 [27-8-2003]. The author notes the al-Jazeera satellite channel also had news of the celebration at the Prince Sultan military base to mark the exit of the last US battalion from the base, referring to the French Agency as the original source of the news. 52 Al-Oudah’s website published the news, but did not mention the name or post of the Saudi official. 53 Official statement at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid17637 [8-8-2003]. 54 Al-Oudah, An Opinion on What has Happened in America. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/english/printme.cfm?cat_id29&sub_cat_id0 [28-4-2002]. 55 Al-Hawali, October 2001. Bayan lil Ummah ‘an al-Ahdath wa ma‘ahu Kitab Maftuh lil Ra’is al-Amriki Bush [Statement to the Ummah about the Events, Attached to an Open Letter to the US President Bush]. The document appeared on http://www.alasr.ws/. 56 How We Can Coexist, April 2002. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/ printme.cfm?cat_id29&sub_cat_id469 [29-4-2002]. 57 Al-Hawali, What We Are Defending, A Letter from Makkah, In Response to the Open Letter from Sixty US Intellectuals. Document, May 2002, pp.1–2. URL:http://www.alasr.ws/. Official website of the Islamic Assembly Of North American [IANA], USA. 58 The text of al-Hawali’s contribution on al-Jazeera is available at: http://152.160.23.131/alasr/print.cfm?contentid2648&categoryID20 [13-7-2002]. 59 Al-Oudah, October 2002. Falnatahalaf Dhid Irhab America [Towards an Alliance against US Terror]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1401 [1-10-2002]. 60 Al-Omar, January 2003. Al-Aalam Mahadhin al-Aamal [Pains Incubate Hopes] recorded lecture. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/show_articles_ content.cfm?catid106&artid1746 [24-1-2003]. 61 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid520 [30-1-2002]. 62 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid559 [7-2-2002]. 63 http://www.almujtamaa-mag.com/Detail.asp?InSectionID72&InNewsItemID [14-3-2002]. Official website of the Kuwaiti Islamic magazine, Al-Mujtama‘, one of the oldest Islamic magazines in the Islamic world. 64 http://www.asharqalawsat.com/default.asp?pagereligion&issue8690 [17-9-2002]. 65 The programme of Al-Islam wa al-Hayah [Islam and Life], Saudi TV, the Host: Dr Abdullah al-Kharashi, the Guest: Shaikh ‘Aqil Abd al-Aziz al-‘Aqil, Date: 20-8-2002. 66 ASharq al-Awsat [the Middle East], 2 March 2003. At: http://www.aawsat. com/print/default.asp?didid155586 [2-3-2003]. 67 Al-Hawali, October 2002. Open Letter to the Congress. At: http://152. 160.23.131/alasr/print.cfm?contentid3119&categoryID20 [21-10-2002]. 68 Al-Oudah, March 2003. Harb al-Ams wa al-Yawm [The War of Yesterday and Today]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2000 [29-3-2003]. 69 Al-Hawali, March 2003. Fatwa Jadidah fi al-Jihad [New Fatwa on Jihad]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1961 [23-3-2003]. 70 Al-bayan al-Ta’sisi Lil Hamla al-‘Alamiyah Li muqawamat al-‘Udwan [The Constituent Declaration of the Global Campaign to Resist Aggression]. April 2003. At: http://www.maac.ws/index.cfm?fuseactionPrint [30-4-2003]. The official website is www.maac.ws.

Notes 277 71 It is noted there are American forces that oppose the US foreign policy of President Bush. Here, the author refers to the 65,000 Americans who signed a public declaration, published in more than 50 American newspapers, where they criticized and condemned US foreign policy since September 11. The signatories rejected the United States occupation of Iraq, and opposed various oppressive measurements introduced by the US government in the United States since 11 September. See Salman al-Oudah’s website at http://www.islamtoday. net/nprint. cfm?artid11276 [8-4-2003]. 72 Al-Hawali, August 2003. Al-Sahwa . . . Al-Muwajaha wa Azmat al-Takhtit [Revivalism . . . Confrontation and Crisis in Planning]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2634 [10-8-2003]. 73 Instead of using the singular form ‘government’, the declaration uses the plural ‘governments’. The declaration refers to the Saudi government, but also refers to other governments without specifying them. 74 Reformist leadership and others, March 2003. Al-Jabha al-Dakhiliyah Amam al-Tahadiyat al-Mu‘asirah, [The Internal Front Faces Contemporary Challenges]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/bayan/print.html [18-3-2003]. 75 The Independent, http://news.independent.co.uk/world/middle_east/story. jsp?story406043 [18-5-2003]. 76 Al-Oudah, May 2003. Al-Tafjir wa Tada‘iyatuh [The Bombing and Its Impacts]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2252 [15-5-2003]. 77 The statement does not clarify or point out who is making the attack. 78 Bayan Hawla al-Tafjirat [Statement about the Bombings]. 17 May 2003. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/bayan/printr.html [19-5-2003]. 79 In an earlier discussion the author covers the dispute between the reformist leadership and Dr al-Qusaibi, who attacked and criticized the reformist leadership in a series of articles. 80 Iqra is run by a Saudi businessman, Salih Kamil, who is close to the Saudi government. 81 Mediations by Safar al-Hawali, June 2003. At: http://www.islamtoday. net/nprint.cfm?artid15449 [29-6-2002]. 82 Al-Oudah’s official website, www.islamtoday.net, was the first source to mention this event. This website is under development as a media agency. 83 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid14319 [9-6-2002]. 84 Dr Abd al-Husain is close to the reformist leadership and sometimes writes for al-Oudah’s website. 85 Monarchical recognition of a threat to undermine its al-shar‘iyah al-diniyah [religious legitimacy]. 86 Crown Prince Abdullah’s statement. At: http://www.islamtoday. net/nprint.cfm?artid2432 [20-6-2002]. The Islamic discourse at the internal level refers to the discourse that deals with domestic issues and the Islamic discourse at the external level refers to the discourse dealing with extra-domestic issues. This point on the Islamic discourse can be read in several ways: (1) in general, the Monarchy does not see the Islamic discourse that exists today in Saudi Arabia as a threat to its security, (2) the Monarchy sees the Islamic discourse as part of the Islamic State legitimacy and serves State interests, (3) the Monarchy tries to influence the Islamic discourse and (4) the Monarchy asserts its Islamic legitimacy by using the Islamic discourse to confirm the Kingdom’s linkages to Islam and with the Islamic world. 87 See the reformist leadership and others, 19-6-2003. Al-Bayan al-Khitami lil Hiwar al-Watani wa al-Tawsiyat [The Final Statement of the National Dialogue

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88 89 90 91 92

Notes

and the Recommendations]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid 2432 [20-6-2003]. These juristic terminologies all refer to fundamental Sunni Islamic principles. Al-Oudah, June 2003. Kalimatu al-Shaikh Salman al-Oudah Amam Waliy al-‘Ahd al-Su‘udi [Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s Statement in Front the Saudi Crown Prince]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2434 [20-6-2002]. The Monarchical decision was proposed by Crown Prince Abdullah, and agreed by King Fahd. See Al-Su‘udiyah Tuwafiq ‘La Qiyam Markaz Lil Hiwar al-Watani [Saudi Arabia Agrees to Establish a Centre of National Dialogue]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net [3-8-2002]. Al-Hawali, June 2003. Statement in front of the Saudi Grand Mufti in: Samahat al-Mufti Yastaqbil Wafdan min al-‘Ulama wa al-Du‘ah [His Eminence the Mufti Receives Delegation of ‘Ulama and Islamic Callers]. At: http://www. almoslim.net/fiqh_wagi3/print_N.cfm?id1309 [21-6-2005].

12 Political realism 1 The reformist leadership is further referred to as the leadership. 2 Al-Omar, 2006. Min Fiqh al-Da‘wah Fi al-Haj [The Islamic Call’s Jurisprudence in The Pilgrimage]. At: http://www.almoslim.net/admin_prod/show_ article_main.cfm?id1224 [22-1-2006]. Al-Omar advocates this role during the season of al-Hajj [Pilgrimage], but this role can be applied as a general policy or as a structure. 3 Al-Omar, 2004. Risalt al-Muslim Fi Huqbat al-‘Awlamah [The Muslim’s Mission in the Age of Globalization]. At: www.almoslim.net [1-7-2006]. 4 Al-Omar, 2005. Thawabit al-Ummah fi Zil al-Mutaghyirat al-Dawliyah [The Nation’s Principles in the Light of Global Changes]. At: www.almoslim.net [1-7-2006]. 5 Al-Oudah, 2006. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid7493 [28-6-2006]. 6 Al-Oudah, conversation with author, 17-7-2006. 7 Al-Oudah, 2006. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid7493 [28-6-2006]. 8 The term harakat al-mashayikh refers in particular to the reformist leadership. Harakat or harakah [movement], mashayikh or al-mashayikh [plural of shaikh, an emphasis of the term shaikhs, religious scholars, ‘ulama]. The author uses both terms in referring to al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar. 9 For example, al-Oudah’s articles and comments: [On Islamic Movement/State Relationships], at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid48260 [1-11-2005] and al-Qur’an wa al-‘awlama [The Qur’an and Globalization], at: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid4327 [31-8-2005]; al-Sa‘adah wa al-Iiman [Faith and Happiness] at: http://www.islamtoday.net/print. cfm?artid2952 [8-3-2005]; [On Introducing Reform in Saudi Arabia] at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid4327 [8-10-2005]. 10 The author first heard of al-Oudah’s revision of the concept of al-mujtama‘ al-jahili [the ignorant society] during a programme on MBC Channel (December, 2005). 11 Mustafa Mashhur, Min Fiqh al-Da‘wah [From the Jurisprudence] (1995) p.367. This book is a collection of articles written between 1976 and 1978, indicating an earlier attempt to revise al-mujtama‘ al-jahili.

Notes 279 12 http://www.islamtoday.net/print.com?artid5989 [8-10-2005]. 13 Al-Oudah, http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid5083 [12-10-2005]. 14 Al-Oudah, http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid45359 [8-10-2005]. The political prisoners were released after the appeal. 15 Al-Oudah, 2005. Inahum Muntazirun [They Are Waiting]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid6042 [13-8-2005]. 16 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, No. 9745, Monday, 23-1-2006. 17 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, No. 9774, Tuesday, 21-2-2006. 18 While the UAE team was negotiating with the United States on the signing of The Free Trade Agreement between the UAE and the United States UAE TV Channels broadcast programmes criticizing the treaty on security, economic and political grounds. Some UAE businessmen expressed reservations. See al-Bayan Newspaper, UAE, Saturday, No. 9425, 8-4-2006. UAE officials, participating in these negotiations, expressed their negative impressions on the issue. 19 Al-Oudah, 2005. http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid4837 [12-10-2005]. 20 Al-Omar, 2004. http://www.almoslim.net/admin_prod/show_article_main. cfm?id381 [22-1-2006]. 21 http://islammemo.cc/news/PrintNews.asp?IDnews100985 [25-2-2006]. 22 Al-Oudah, http://www.islamtoday.net/albasheer/show_news_content.cfm?id 52422 [25-2-2006]. 23 See http://www.almoslim.net/figh_wagi3/print_R.cfm?id787 [25-2-2006]. 24 The term ‘New liberal’ means forces that came to power by external means, and forces who rely on external players to bring change and reform domestically [e.g. Iraq]. 25 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, No. 9821, p.26, Sunday, 9-4-2006 26 Al-Bayan Newspaper, UAE, No. 9433, 16-4-2006. 27 See translated article on the Iranian role in supporting the US war in Afghanistan, al-Khaleej Newspaper, UAE, No. 9785, p.28, 4-3-2006. 28 According to Dr Shaikh al-Dhari, an Iraqi Islamic leader, the number of Iraqi Sunnis killed since the US invasion to Iraq has reached 200,000. At: http://www.alasr.ws/index.cfm?methodhome.con&ContentId7984 [12-7-2006]. 29 See the Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs’ comments at: http://www. al-vefagh.com/1384/840631/html/akhbar.htm#s63405 [17-7-2006] and http://www.alasr.ws/index.cfm?methodhome.con&ContentId7984 [12-7-2006]. 30 ASharq al-Awast [the Middle East], No. 10090, 14-7-2006. 31 ASharq al-Awast [the Middle East], No. 10092, 16-7-2006. 32 Al-Jazeera, http://www.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/604ED36D-5234-491F-ADA2FBF2A20411BA.htm [18-7-2006] and ASharq al-Awast [the Middle East], No. 10091, 15-7-2006. 33 Al-Bayan Newspaper, UAE, No. 9541, 2-8-2006. 34 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, No. 9950, Wednesday, 16-8-2006. 35 TV interview with Hassan Nasrallah, al-Jadid TV, Sunday 27-8-2006. 36 Al-Omar, http://www.almokhtsar.com/html/news/1243/4/print_56577.php [17-7-2006]. 37 Al-Moslim, http://almoslim.net/print.cfm?artid1609 [28-7-2006]. 38 Al-Oudah, http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid7608 [15-7-2006]. 39 Al-Oudah, http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid7650 [22-7-2006]. 40 Al-Bayan Newspaper, UAE, No. 9540, 1-8-2006. 41 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, UAE, No. 9739, 17-1-2006.

280

Notes

42 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, UAE, No. 9739, 17-1-2006. 43 From various news agencies, for example, the Iranian English newspaper Rooz, at: http://roozonline.com/eng/. 44 Al-Bayan Newspaper, UAE, No. 9432, 15-4-2006. 45 Noted in various newspapers in the region in April and May 2006. 46 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, UAE, No. 9830, 18-4-2006; No. 9836, 24-4-2006. 47 Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, UAE and Oman. 48 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, Economic Edition, No. 9773, p.20, 20-2-2006. 49 ASharq al-Awast [the Middle East], No. 10134, 27-8-2006. 50 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, UAE, No. 9785, 4-3-2006. 51 See Al-Omar, 2006, To Hamas. At: http://www.almoslim.net/print.cfm?artid 1298 [25-2-2006]. 52 See Al-Hawali, 2006, Call In Supporting the Palestinian Brothers, At: http://www.qawim.org/index.cfm?fuseactioncontentlangAR&categoryID 90&contentid508 [29-4-2006]. 53 Al-Khaleej Newspaper, No. 9700, p.21, Friday, 9-12-2005. 54 Al-Khaleej, No. 9746, p.22, Tuesday, 24 -1-2006 and No. 9759, p.22, Monday, 6-2-2006. 55 See al-Bayan Newspaper, UAE, No. 9547, Tuesday, 8-8-2006. 56 See Barbara Victor, The Last Crusade: Religion and the Politics of Misdirection (2005), pp.1–14. 57 http://www.aljazeera.net/Channel/aspx/print.htm [25-10-2005]. 58 http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid47464 [11-10-2005]. 59 Al-Oudah, http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid48260 [1-11-2005]. 60 Al-Omar, 2005, http://www.almoslim.net/admin_prod/show_article_main. cfm?id1186 [22-1-2006]. 61 These concepts can refer to one act, and reflect various views or perceptions of the same, or a similar, act. 62 Uthman Jum‘ah Dhumairiyah, Usul al-‘ilaqat al-Dawliyah fi Fiqh al-Imam Muhammad Ibn al-Hasan al-Shaybani, Dirasah Fiqhiyah Muqaranah [The Origins of International Relations in the Jurisprudence of Imam Muhammad Ibn al-Hasan al-Shaybani (Sunni Maliki scholar)], Comparative Juristic Study, Second Volume, First Edition, (1419H/1999AD), pp.907–929. 63 The situation in Iraq in the reformist leadership’s open letter to the Iraqi people. 64 June 2003 or thereafter. Safar al-Hawali, 2003/2004, Al-Muslimun wa al-‘nif Bayna al-Tuhmah wa al-Haqiqah [The Muslims and Violence: The Accusation and the Reality] At: http://www.alhawali.com/index.cfm?methodhome. ShowContent&ContentID682&FullContent1 [30-1-2006] and http:// www.alhawali.com/index.cfm?methodhome.ShowContent&ContentID683& FullContent1 [19-1-2006 and 19-2-2006]. 65 These are translations. Readers interested in more detail, can read the original text, written in Arabic, at: http://www.alhawali.com/index.cfm?methodhome. ShowContent&ContentID682&FullContent1 and http://www.alhawali.com/ index.cfm?methodhome.ShowContent&ContentID683&FullContent1. 66 Al-Oudah, 2004. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid4875 [12-10-2005]. 67 Al-Oudah, 2005. Mudakhalah Hawla al- ‘unf wa al-Da‘wah [Discussion about Violence and the Islamic Call]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid 4891 [8-3-2005]. 68 Al-Oudah, July 2005. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid5856 [12-10-2005].

Notes 281 69 Al-Oudah, August 2005. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid6047 [12-10-2005]. 70 Al-Oudah, October 2005. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid 47717 [17-10-2005]. 71 Al-Oudah, June 2004. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid3892 [12-10-2005]. 72 Details at: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid5549 [12-10-2005]. http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid5657 [12-10-2005]. http://www. islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid5668 [12-10-2005]. http://www.islamtoday.net/ print.cfm?artid5726 [12-10-2005]. 73 Al-Oudah, March 2002, Idha’at Fi al-Harb wa al-Salam [Enlightenment on War and Peace]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid641 [12-10-2005]. 74 Al-Oudah, October 2005. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid 48181 [29-10-2005]. 75 Al-Omar, 2005. At http://www.almoslim.net/admin_prod/show_article_ main.cfm?id1186 [22-1-2006]. 76 http://www.aljazeera.net/Channel/aspx/print.htm [25-10-2005]. 77 The passage following is a translation. Readers interested in more detail, can read the original text, written in Arabic. See Al-Oudah, 2005, Al-Jihad [Jihad]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid5165 [12-10-2005].

13 Conclusion 1 The reformist leadership is also referred to as the leadership. 2 Al-mudafa‘a is to convince people by argument or by nullifying an opponent’s argument. 3 Based on a conversation with Shaikh al-Oudah’s secretary, September 2006. 4 This juristic term has three main factors: (1) having no knowledge or failing to know, (2) al-ikrah meaning coercion or compulsion and (3) interpretation. 5 Mamoun Fandy, Saudi Arabia and the Politics of Dissent (1999). 6 Ibid., p.25. 7 The use of the term ‘postponement’ refers to the act of delaying, deferring and putting off duties. 8 Telephone interview with Dr Khalid al-Oudah, younger brother of Salman al-Oudah, 22-6-2002. Khalid al-Oudah criticized and questioned the objectivity of Fandy’s methodology in his book Saudi Arabia and the Politics of Dissent. 9 Salman al-Oudah, on MBC, 1-9-2006. 10 Alejandra Galindo Marines. The Relationship between the ‘Ulama and the Government in Contemporary Saudi Arabian Kingdom: An Interdependent Relationship? PhD dissertation. University of Durham, Centre for Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, February 2001. 11 Marines, pp.222–223.

Glossary 1 See Muhammad Abd al-Hadi al-Massri, Ahlu al-Sunnah wa al-Jama’a [People of the Prophetic Tradition and Collective Opinion], (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Dar Tayybah, 1408H/1988AD).

Selected references

Books Al-Hamid, Abdullah Ibn Hamid Ibn Ali, Huquq al-Insan bayn ‘Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam [Human Rights between the Justice of Islam and the Tyranny of Rulers], First Edition (London: The Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights in Saudi Arabia, 1416H/1995AD). Al-Hawali, Safar, Sharh Tahkim al-Qawanin [Resorting to Non-Islamic Laws] of Shaikh Muhammad Ibn Ibrahim Ibn Abd al-Latif al-Shaikh (London: The Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights in Saudi Arabia, 1990s). Al-Hawali, Safar, Al-‘ilmaniyah: Nash’atuha wa Tatawuruha wa A’tharuha fi al-Hayatu al-Islamiyah al-Mu‘asirah [Secularism: Its Emergence, Development and Influence on Islamic Life] (Cairo, Egypt: Al-Tayib Office, 1999). Al-Hawali, Safar, Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami [Phenomenon of Postponement in Islamic Thought] (Rosmalen, Holland: Dar al-Kalimah for Publishing and Distribution, 1420H/1999AD). Al-Omar, Nassir, Fiqh al-Waqi‘: Mughawimatuh wa A’tharuh wa Masadiruh [The Jurisprudence of Reality and Ongoing Events: Foundation, Influences and Sources] (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Dar al-Watan for Publication, 1412H/1992AD). Al-Omar, Nassir, Al-‘Ahd wa al-Mithaq fi al-Qur’an al-Karim [The Covenant and Contract in the Holy Qur’an] (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Dar al-‘Asimah, 1413H/1993AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah [Standards for Juristic Studies] (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Dar al-Watan, 1412H/1992AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba [Series of the Messages of the Solitaries], Four Volumes, Second Edition (San‘a, Yemen: Maktabatu Dar al-Quds & Markaz al-Sidiq al-‘Ilmi, 1421H/2000AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-‘Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal [Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences], Second Edition (San‘a, Yemen: Maktabatu Dar al-Quds & Markaz al-Sidiq al-‘Ilmi, 1421H/2000AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-Ghuraba al-Awalun [The Earliest Solitaries], Second Edition (San‘a, Yemen: Maktabatu Dar al-Quds & Markaz al-Sidiq al-‘Ilmi, 1421H/ 2000AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Min Wasa’il Daf‘ al-Ghurbah [Overcoming Solitude], Second Edition (San‘a, Yemen: Maktabatu Dar al-Quds & Markaz al-Sidiq al-‘Ilmi, 1421H/2000AD).

Selected references

283

Al-Oudah, Salman, Sifatu al-Ghuraba [The Character of the Solitaries], Second Edition (San‘a, Yemen: Maktabatu Dar al-Quds & Markaz al-Sidiq al-‘Ilmi, 1421H/2000AD). Calvert, Peter, Revolution (London: Macmillan, 1970). Denzin, Norman K. and Lincoln, Yvonna S. (Eds) Strategies of Qualitative Inquiry (London: Sage Publications, 1998). Fukuyama, Francis, The End of History and the Last Man (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1993). Gurr, Ted Robert, Why Men Rebel (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1971). Kepel, Gilles, Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam (London: I.B.Tauris, 2002). Mus’haf al-Madina al-Nabawiyah, The Holy Qur’an (English translation of the meanings and commentary), revised and edited by the Presidency of Islamic Research, IFTA, Call and Guidance (Riyadh Saudi Arabia: The Custodian of The Two Holy Mosques, King Fahd Complex for The Printing of The Holy Qur’an, 1413H/1993AD). Qutb, Muhammad, Hawla al-Tafsir al-Islami lil Tarikh [The Islamic Explanation of History] (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: al-Majmu‘ah al-Dawliyah, 1409H/1989AD). Vogel, Frank, Islamic Law and Legal System: Studies of Saudi Arabia (Leiden: Brill, 2000).

Documents and leaflets Al-Hawali et al. Bayan Hawla Ahdath al-Jaza’ir [Statement about Events in Algeria] (January 1994). Al-Hawali et al. Bayan Hawla Ahdath al-Yaman [Statement about Events in Yemen] (Summer 1994). Al-Hawali, Safar and al-Oudah, Salman, Letter to Shaikh Ibn Baz Dealing with their Meeting with the Ministry of Interior (Rabi‘ al-Thani 1414H/September 1993AD). Al-Hawali, Safar and al-Oudah, Salman, Risalah Ila al-Shabab al-Muslim fi al-Jazair [Letter to Muslim Youth in Algeria] (13-7-1414H/27-12-1993AD). Kitab Shawal [Letter of Shawal] or Kitab al-‘Ulama [Letter of the ‘Ulama] (Shawal 1411H/May 1991AD). Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah [Memorandum of Advice] (Muharram 1413H/July 1992AD). The Basic Law in: Anders Jerichow, The Saudi File: People, Power, Politics (Surrey, UK: Curzon Press, 1998).

Journal Al-Omar, Nassir, ‘Al-Ab‘ad al-Istratigiyah lil Harb al-‘Iraq’ [The Strategic Dimensions of the War On Iraq], Al-Bayan, Vol. 187, Rabi‘-al-Awal 1424H/May 2003AD.

Unpublished Al-Oudah, Salman (supervision and editing), Nahwa Fadha’ Jadid lil Da‘wah [Towards a New Era of Islamic Call], 1422H/2001AD.

284

Selected references

Audio cassettes Al-Hawali, Safar, A’ftu al-Isti‘jal [The Disease of Haste], recorded lecture (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, 1991). Al-Hawali, Safar, Al-‘Alam al-Islami fi Zil al-Wifaq al-Dawli [The Islamic World in the Shadow of International Détente], recorded lecture (1989–1990). Al-Hawali, Safar, Al-Shuyu‘iyah Bayan al-Suqut wa I‘Adat al-Bina’ [Communism between Collapse and Reconstruction], recorded lecture (1986–1990). Al-Hawali, Safar, Durus Min Suqut al-Shuyu‘iyah [Lessons from the Collapse of Communism], recorded lecture (1989–1992). Al-Hawali, Safar, Fafiru ila Allah [Escape to Allah], recorded lecture (9 Safar, 1411H/30 August, 1990AD). Al-Hawali, Safar, Fasatadhkurun ma Aqulhu Lakum [You Will Remember What I am Saying to You], recorded lecture (28 Muharram 1411H/19 August 1990AD). Al-Hawali, Safar, Jawanib Min Tawhid al-Uluhiyah [Elements in the Unity of Worship], recorded lecture (1989). Al-Hawali, Safar, Mafhum al-Iman ‘Ind Ahlu al-Sunnah wa al-Jama‘a [The Concept of Faith in the view of Sunni Muslims], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Hawali, Safar, Mafhum al-Jihad [The Concept of Jihad], recorded lecture (1980s). Al-Hawali, Safar, Nawaqidh al-Shahadatan [Matters Contradicting the Two Testimonials], recorded lecture (1980s). Al-Hawali, Safar, Sharh al-‘Aqidah al-Tahawiya [Explanation of the ‘Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi], recorded lectures (311 audio cassettes) (1985–1990). Al-Omar, Nassir, Al-Hikmah fi Dhaw al-Kitab wa al-Sunnah [Wisdom in the Light of the Qur’an and Sunnah], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Omar, Nassir, Al-Namlah [The Ant], recorded lecture (1992). Al-Omar, Nassir, Al-Sakinah al-Sakinah [Calmness, Calmness] recorded lecture (1991). Al-Omar, Nassir, Al-Tawhid [Monotheism], recorded lecture (1992). Al-Omar, Nassir, Al-Wasatiyah Manhaj al-Wasat [Moderation and be in the Middle], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Omar, Nassir, Dhabt al-Nafs [Self Control], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Omar, Nassir, Fiqh al-Fiqh [Understanding Jurisprudence], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Omar, Nassir, Haqiqatu al-Intisar [The Essence of Victory], recorded lecture (1993). Al-Omar, Nassir, Suqut al-Andalus [Collapse of Muslim Spain, Andalusia], recorded lecture (July 1990). Al-Omar, Nassir, Tada‘i al-Ummam [The Nations that Befall You], recorded lecture (August 1990). Al-Oudah, Salman, ‘Ala Tariq al-Da‘wah [On the Route of the Islamic Call], recorded interview (1990). Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-Kalimah al-Hurrah [The Free Word], recorded lecture (1993). Al-Oudah, Salman, Allah Akbar Saqatat Kabul [Allah is Most Great: Kabul Collapsed], recorded lecture (1412H/1992AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-Ma‘rakah Al-Fasilah ma‘a Bani Israel [The Final Battle with the Israelis], recorded lecture (1992).

Selected references

285

Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-Mustadh‘afun [The Oppressed], recorded lecture (1990–1994). Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-Sharit al-Islami [The Islamic Audio cassette], recorded lecture (1991). Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-Tatbi‘ [Normalization – referring to normalizing the relationship with Israel], recorded lecture (1992). Al-Oudah, Salman, Asbab Suqut al-Duwal [Reasons for the Collapse of States], recorded lecture (7 Safar 1411H/28 August 1990AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam [Human Rights in Islam], recorded lecture (1989–1991). Al-Oudah, Salman, Ma‘rakat al-Islam wa Al-‘ilmaniyah [The Battle between Islam and Secularism], recorded lecture (1989). Al-Oudah, Salman, Masir al-Mutrafin [The Fate of Opulent People], recorded lecture (1991). Al-Oudah, Salman, Matariq al-Sunan al-Ilahiyah [Allah’s Way of Punishments], recorded lecture (1992). Al-Oudah, Salman, Nassim al-Hijaz Fi Sirat al-Imam Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz [The Breeze of al-Hijaz in the Biography of the Imam Abd al-Aziz Ibn Baz], recorded lecture (1992). Al-Oudah, Salman, Nihaytu al-Tarikh [The End of History], recorded lesson, No. 69 (Rabi‘-al-Awal 1414H/September 1993AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, Risalah min wara’ al-Qudhban [Letter from Behind Bars], recorded lecture (September 1994). Al-Oudah, Salman, Sina‘atu al-Hayah [Life-Making], recorded lecture (1993). Qutb, Muhammad, Al-Fikr al-Islami [Islamic Thought], recorded lecture (1980s). Qutb, Muhammad, Waqi‘ al-‘Alam al-Islami [The Reality of the Islamic World], recorded lecture (1980s).

Other Discourses Al-Omar, Nassir, Al-fa‘iliyah [The Efficiency], unrecorded lecture attended by author (July 2001). Al-Oudah, Salman, Al-Dhaw’q al-Islami [The Islamic Taste], recorded lecture (2001). (From a collection al-Oudah gave the author for academic purposes).

Media Al-Hawali, Safar, Statement about the US foreign policy in the Islamic World, al-Jazeera Channel, July 2002. At: http://152.160.23.131/alasr/print.cfm? contentid2648&categoryID20 [Accessed 13-7-2002]. Al-Hawali, Safar, 1 June 2003. The Islamic Satellite Channel, Iqra, hosted Safar al-Hawali in a discussion on the causes of violence. Al-Oudah, Salman, Liqa’ ma‘a Qanat Sawat Filistin [Interview with the Sound of Palestine Channel] (Muharram 1423H/July 2002AD), recorded. At: www. islamtoday.net [Accessed 26-1-2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, al-Jazeera Channel phoned Shaikh al-Oudah and asked about the Riyadh bombings of 13 May 2003. May 2003. Al-Oudah’s statement is

286

Selected references

available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid13304 [Accessed 20-5-2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, Risalatu al-‘Asr [The Letter of the Epoch], public lecture, Saudi TV, 30 May 2003.

Internet Al-Hawali, al-Oudah and al-Omar, April 2002. How We can Coexist. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/english/printme.cfm?cat_id29&sub_cat_id469 [Accessed 29-4-2002]. Al-Hawali, Safar, July 2001. Liqa’ Fi al-Baha [Meeting in al-Baha]. At: http://www. alsalafyoon.com/ArabicPosts/SafarBaha1.htm [Accessed 12-1-2002]. Al-Hawali, Safar, October 2001. Bayan lil Ummah ‘an al-Ahdath wa ma‘ahu Kitab Maftuh lil Ra’is al-Amriki Bush [Statement to the Ummah about the Events, Attached to an Open Letter to US President Bush]. The document appeared on http://www.alasr.ws/. Al-Hawali, Safar, April 2002. Nida ila al-Muslimin Linajdat Ikhwanihim fi Filistin [Call to Muslims to Support Their Brothers in Palestine]. At: http:// 152.160.23.131/alasr/print.cfm?contentid2065&categoryID20 [Accessed 11-11-2002]. Al-Hawali, Safar, October 2002. Open Letter to the Congress. At: http://152. 160.23.131/alasr/print.cfm?contentid3119&categoryID20 [Accessed. 21-10-2002]. Al-Hawali, Safar, May 2002. What We are Defending, a Letter from Makkah, In Response to the Open Letter from Sixty US Intellectuals. Document, pp.1–2. At: http://www.alasr.ws/. Al-Hawali, Safar, March 2003. Fatwa Jadidah fi al-Jihad [New Fatwa on Jihad]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1961 [Accessed 23-3-2003]. Al-Omar, Nassir, January 2003. Al-Aalam Mahadhin al-Aamal [Pains Incubate Hopes] recorded lecture [online]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/ show_articles_content.cfm?catid106&artid1746 [Accessed 24-1-2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, September 1994. Risalah min wara’ al-Qudhban [Letter from Behind Bars]. An English translation available at: http://www.ummahh.net/ jahid/auwdah.htm [Accessed 19-6-2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, 2001. Until They Change What is in Themselves: 3/3. At: http:// www.islamtoday.net/english/showme.cfm?cat_id30&sub_cat_id453 [Accessed 15-8-2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, 2002. Hal Taghir al-Hakim Huwa al-Hal [Is Changing the Ruler a Solution?]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/qprint.cfm?artid1866 [Accessed 28-1-2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, 2002. Hal al-Jihad Wajib ‘Alayna [Is Jihad a Duty upon Us?] Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/qprint.cfm?artid668 [Accessed 24/01/2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, 2002. Islamic Law. At: www.islamtoday.net/english

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Al-Oudah, Salman, 2002. Nihaytu al-Tarikh [The End of History]. Available at: www.islamtoday.net. [This is the text of al-Oudah, Salman, Nihaytu al-Tarikh [The End of History], recorded lesson, No. 69 (Rabi‘-al-Awal 1414H/September 1993AD). Al-Oudah, Salman, February 2002. Dawa’r al-Islah [The Circles of Reforms]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/show_articles_content.cfm?id 37&catid38&artid545 [Accessed 24-5-2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, April 2002. Al Irhab wa al-‘Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah [Terrorism and the Martyred Operations]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/ print.cfm?artid752 [Accessed 10-4-2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, October 2002. Falnatahalaf Dhid Irhab America [Towards an Alliance against US Terror]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/ nprint.cfm?artid1401 [Accessed 1-10-2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, February 2003. Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s al-Hajj Activities. Reported by Khalid al-Qafari. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint. cfm?artid51832 [Accessed 19-2-2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, February 2003. America wa al-Irhab [The US and Terrorism]. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/show_articles_content.cfm?id37&catid38 &artid1851 [Accessed 1 March 2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, March 2003. Wajib al-Waqt [The Duty at this Time]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid1849 [Accessed 3-6-2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, May 2003. Shaikh al-Oudah Officially Received State Permission to Resume His Public Lessons and Lectures. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint. cfm?artid12702 [Accessed 7-5-2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, May 2003. Al-Tafjir wa Tada‘iyatuh [The Bombing and Its Impacts]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2252 [Accessed 15-5-2003]. Al-Oudah, Salman, June 2003. Kalimatu al-Shaikh Salman al-Oudah Amam Waliy al-‘Ahd al-Su‘udi [Shaikh Salman al-Oudah’s Statement in Front the Saudi Crown Prince]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2434 [Accessed 20-6-2002]. Al-Oudah, Salman, August 2003. Risalatu al-‘Asr [The Letter of the Epoch]. (This is the first public lecture of al-Oudah after obtaining official state permission to resume public lessons and lectures.) At: http://www.islamtoday.net/articles/show_ articles_content.cfm?id37&catid38&artid2643 [Accessed 2-8-2003]. Saudi ‘ulama and talabatu al-‘ilm [students of Islamic sciences], October 2002. Bayan Hawla Mukhatatat America [Statement About US Plans]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/print.cfm?artid1494 [Accessed 29-10-2002]. The reformist leadership and forty-seven Saudi ‘ulama and Shaikhs, 17 May 2003. Bayan Hawla al-Tafjirat [Statement About the Bombings]. At: http://www. islamtoday.net/bayan/printr.html [Accessed 19-5-2003]. The reformist leadership and others, June 2003. Al-Bayan al-Khitami lil Hiwar al-Watani wa al-Tawsiyat [The Final Statement of the National Dialogue and the Recommendations]. Available at: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint. cfm?artid2432 [Accessed 20-6-2002.].

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The US Declares an End to its Military Presence in Saudi Arabia. April 2003. At: http://www.islamtoday.net/nprint.cfm?artid2363 [Accessed 30-4-2003]. The author mainly consulted the following websites: www.alasr.ws/ (Website of The Islamic Assembly of North America (IANA)). www.aljazeera.net (Website of al-Jazeera Satellite Channel). www.almoslim.net (Website of Shaikh Nassir Al-Omar). www.alshaab.com (Website of Hizb al-‘Amal. The Party of Work – the Egyptian Islamic opposition party). www.asharqalawsat.com (Website of London-based Saudi Newspaper: Asharq Al-Awsat). www.islamtoday.net (Website of Shaikh Salman al-Oudah).

Index

Al-Aalam Mahadhin al-Aamal (Pains Incubate Hopes) 161 Abbasid Caliphate 51; Caliphs 51–2; the seventh Caliph 253; Tartar invasion 53 Abdullah, Crown Prince 156, 166, 177, 209, 277 Abdullah II, King of Jordan 181 Abdullah, Saudi King 244, see also Abullah, Crown Prince adjusted strategy 170 Afghanistan 74, 75; Afghani Taliban government 181; resistance 191 Ahadith al-Rabi’ (Conversations in Spring) 122, 123 Ahmad al-Fatih Grand Mosque 146 Ahmadinejad, Iranian President M. 182 Al-Ajlan, A. 127 al-hadathiyun (modernists) 113 al-Jazeera Channel 186, 203, 276 al-Nadwa 112 Al-Qaeda 214 Al-Albani, M. 61 amanah (trust) 34; public and private 34 American Christian Evangelical (ACE) movement 156, 157 Amnesty International 127, 242 al-amr b’il ma’ruf wa al nahi ’an al munkar (promotion of virtue and prevention of vice) 9, 35, 44, 96, 104, 140, 153, 165 Andalusia 76 appeasement policy 137–52, 170; analysis 137–9; expansion of opportunities 142–9; the Islamic reformist message 149–52; positive elements 140–2; reformist guidelines 152; strategy 139–40; use of the internet 148–9 aqidah (Islamic creed) 5, 206–7 Al-Aqula, H. 56 Arab Muslim Youth League 85

Asbab Suqut al-Duwal (Reasons for the Collapse of States) 81–4, 106 ASharq al-Awsat 113, 265 aspects of politics 7–9 Al-Assad, B. 181 Association for Reform 146 Islamic Audiocassette 112, 113, 265, 266 Al-Awadi, H. 216 Al-Awaji, M. 102 ’Awaridh al-ahliyah 210 Al-Aziz, Prince Naif 20, 90, 160; Minister of Interior 20, 90, 119 Al-Aziz, Prince Salman 20; Governor of Riyadh 20 Al-Aziz, Shaikh Abdullah 22 Azmat al-Khalij Muhawala Lil Fahim (The Gulf Crisis, An Attempt to Understand) 115 Al-Badawi, Y. 54 Bahrain TV 147 balances and priorities 49–50 Al-Bana, H. 174 Al-Barak, A. 57 Bashir, A.A. 24; studies 245 Al-Bashir, President O. 205 Basic Law in Bulloch 242 Basic Law of the Government 208 The Battle Between Islam and Secularism (Al-Oudah) 69 Battle without a Banner (Al-Qusaibi) 113 IbnBaz, A. 45, 52, 56, 57, 88, 118, 119, 133, 252; biography 56; President of the Council of Senior Scholars 52, 85, 100 BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) 130 Al-Bilihi, S. 55 Al-Bishr, B. 88 Britain 83 Bush, President G.H.W. 80, 161, 181, 215

290

Index

Calmness, Calmness 47, 113, 114 Calvert, P. 241; Revolution 241 capability in change 49 challenges 99–116; domestic 111–16 Saudi Chamber of Commerce 179 Chomsky, N. 190 CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) 273 The Clash of Civilisation (Huntington) 68 post-Cold War era 76 Committee for the Defence of Legitimate Rights (CDLR) 23, 24, 79, 110–11, 217–18 communication technology 202 community 42 competitive political system 96 Saudi Constitution 224 constitutional aspects 7–9 Consultative Council 19, 20, 100, 219 Conversations in Spring (Al-Oudah) 122, 123 corruption 124, 137 Council of Ministers 20 Council of Senior Scholars 52, 80, 107–9, 113, 128, 265 countering policy 78–98, 153–71, 203; continuing discourse 89–97; historical/political initiatives 86–9 countering policy (resumption) 153–71; domestic security 164–9; external focus 170–1; increased understanding with leadership 168–9; the Palestinian cause and uprising 156–9; reformist leadership and the monarchy 154–5; Saudi intellectual conference 166–9; US foreign policy 161–2, see also al-Mudafa’a Court of Cassation 80 Islamic creed 5, 206–7 Damanhuri, Y. 112, 265 Darfur 205 Al-Darwish, K. 127 Da’wah al-mashayikh (the reformist leadership’s programme) 135 Da’wah (Islamic call) 3, 126, 142, 202, 210, 241; activities 143–8; education 152; study 143 Dawruna fi Zahmat al-Ahdath (Our Role during the Events) 89 declaration: the Internal Front Faces Contemporary Challenges 164 Dekmejian, H. 24 al-dharurat al khams (the five essentials) 77, 151, 153, 171, 206 Al-Dhaw’q al-Islami (The Islamic Taste) 144 Dhumairiyah, U.J. 280

dignity 106 Al-Dimiji, A. 248 Discourse in Islamic Law (Al-Oudah) 257 dissent (politics of) 211–13 Divine Lawgiver 30 domestic security 164–9, 171 domestic solidarity 164–5 domestic violence 165–6 Al-Dubayn, I. 127 Al-Dumini, A. 178 Durkheim, E. 60 The Duties of Islamic Callers 106 eastern province 179 The Efficiency (Al-Omar) 144 Egypt: Arab Summit (2003) 156 Egyptian Parliament 197 The End of History and the Last Man (Fukuyama) 67 Escape to Allah (Al-Hawali) 84 The Essence of Victory (Al-Omar) 139 Eulau, H. 12 Exceptional Islamic Conference 185 Explanation of the ’Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi (al-Hiwali) 65 Explanation of the Holy Qur’an (Al-Omar) 66 extremism 151, 188 Al-Fa’al al-Hassan (The Good Optimism) 145 Fafiru ila Allah’ (Escape to Allah) 84 al-Fa’iliyah (The Efficiency) 144 The Failure of Political Islam (Olivier) 27 Al-Faisal, Prince Sa’ud 159 Al-Fajru al-Sadiq (The True Dawn) 139 Al-Falih, M. 178 Fandy, M. 211–13 Faqih, S. 211 Al-Faraj, M. 127 Fasatadhkurun ma Aqulhu Lakum’ (You Will Remember What I am Saying to You) 80 Al-Fatah, S. 174, 242 The Fate of Opulent People (Al-Oudah) 89 fatratu al-tawaquf (the standstill period) 121 fatwa 163; role 168 fighters for the Islamic cause 189 The Final Battle with the Israelis (Al-Oudah) 118 fiqh al-awlawiyat (jurisprudence of priorities) 137 Fiqh al-Istisharah (Jurisprudence of Consultation) 102, 105 al-fiqh al-madhhabi 247 fiqh al-muwazanat (jurisprudence of balance) 137

Index 291 fiqh al-siyasa al-shar’iyah (Islamic Political Jurisprudence) 1, 33–6, 41, 53, 54, 134, 140, 175, 187, 198, 247 fiqh al-waqi’ (jurisprudence of reality) 66, 111 fiqh (Law and Jurisprudence) 1, 30–40, 198; further perspectives 41–50; meaning 30–1; significance 32–3; sources 31–2 first pillar of Islam 67 Fitna: Guerre Au Coeur de I’Islam 213 the five essentials 77, 151, 153, 171, 206 five member committee 118 France 83 Free Trade Agreement 279 the Free World 41, 42 freedom 93, 97 Freeing the Land or Freeing the Man (Al-Oudah) 105 Freud, S. 60 Friedman, T. 159, 275 Front Islamique du Salut (FIS) 122 Fukuyama, F. 67; The End of History and the Last Man 67 Al-Fuzan, S. 118 Gaza 204 Al-Ghanushi, R. 112 Al-Gharib, A.: The Role of Magus Has Come 74 Ibn Ghidayan, A. 118 al-ghulu (extremism) 151, 188 ghurhah 72 the Global Campaign to Resist Aggression 163 globalization 143 Gold, I.J. 24; studies 246 The Good Optimism 145 Saudi government 155 the Grand Mufti 37, 39, 162; Egypt 85; Saudi Grand Mufti 45; Yemen 134 The Greatest Imam 57 Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) 18, 179, 183 The Gulf Crisis, An Attempt to Understand (Al-Qusaibi) 115 Gulf War 3, 115, 117 Second Gulf War 88, 117, 155 Gurr, T.R. 241; Why Men Rebel 241 al-hadatha (modernity) 76, 261 hadathiyun (the modernists) 11, 90, 243 Al-Hadhif, M. 102 Hamad City 147 Hamas 183, 184, 196, 204, 211, see also Palestine

Al-Hamid, Dr A. 42, 43, 96, 97, 110, 178, 251; study elements 43–4; work 43 Al-Hamla al-’Alamiyah Limuqawamat al-’Udwan (The Global Campaign to Resist Aggression) 163 Ibn Hanbal, A. 51–2 Hanifah, A. 33; Al-Fiqh al-Akbar (The Greatest Fiqh) 33 Haqiqatu al-Intisar (The Essence of Victory) 139 Al-Haras al-Watani (magazine of the Saudi National Guard) 179 Al-Harbi, H. 127 Hashim, H. 85 Hata Latakun Fitnah (In Order to Prevent Turmoil) 114 Al-Hawali, S. 1–6, 36–7, 39–40, 47, 69, 80–1, 117–18, 157, 192, 213, 250; lectures 106; Min A’mal al-Qulub (The Heart’s Works) 37; works 59, 65 Hay’at Kibar al-’Ulama (Council of the Senior) 80, 84, 107–9, 113, 265 Al Hefdhy, Y.S. 23, 245 Hezbollah 181, 182; Israeli-Hezbollah war 181 Hijri calendar 241 Al-Hishah fi al-Islam (Ibn Taymiyyah) 54 historical initiatives 78, 86–9 hizh al-wullah (the party of the rulers) 111, 265 holy Islamic strife 174 al-hukm anzala Allah (applying Islamic Law) 2 Al-Humaid, Dr S. 19, 162, 167–8, 277 human rights 43, 68, 90, 91, 92, 94, 95, 96, 101, 104, 106, 261 Huntington, S.: The Clash of Civilisation 68 Huquq al-Insan bayn ’Adl al-Islam wa Jawr al-Hukam (human rights between Islamic justice and tyrannical rulers) 43, 96 Huquq al-Insan fi al-Islam (Human Rights in Islam) 68, 90, 91, 95, 101 al-huquq al-shar’iyah (legitimate rights in Islamic Law) 41, 42–5, 90, 95, 125 Al-Husain, A. 166 Hussein, S. 83, 84, 85 Ibrahim, M. 37, 38, 39, 58, 249 ijazah (permission and recognition) 134 ijtihad (exercising juristic judgement) 50 Al-Ikhwan Al-Muslimin (the Muslim Brotherhood) 9, 22, 29, 62, 217 ilal (reasons) 41 ilm (Islamic science) 57 Al-’ilmaniyah (secularism) 59, 65, 69

292

Index

Imam of ahlu al-Sunnah (leader of the Sunnis) 52, see also Ibn Hanbal, A. In Order to Prevent Turmoil (Al-Qusaibi) 114 In Pursuit of Legitimacy, the Muslim Brothers and Mubarak (1982–2000) (Al-Awadi) 216 Institution of Ifta and Scholarly Research 52 intellectual and political activities 198 interests 137 International Committee for the Support of the Final Prophet (ICSFP) 272 Internet 138, 148–9, 202 interpretation 50 intifadha (uprising) 155–9 Iran: American alliance 180, 181; SyrianIranian alliance 183 Iranian revolution 74 Iraq 3, 13, 18, 76, 155, 215; Ba’thist party 84; invasion of Kuwait 78–85; new liberal powers and trends 180; Shiite anger 180; US invasion 138, 155, 162–4 AlIrhab wa al-’Amaliyat al-Istish’hadiyah (Terrorism and Martyrdom Operations) 158 Is it Enough that We Call ourselves Muslims (Al-Oudah) 146 Islamic belief: texts 33 Islamic fundamentalism 27 Islamic Law 5, 6, 10; aims 10, 21, 34, 41, 171; applying 2; laws over the Head of State 105; legitimate rights 41, 42–5; students 108; texts 33; theory of aims 212 Islamic Movement for Reform (IMR) 211 Islamic Scientific Institutes 55 The Islamic Taste 144 The Islamist Impasse (Karawan) 27 Islamization 196 Ismail, Dr. S. 27 Israel 153, 157; Israeli-Hezbollah war 181; Israeli-Palestinian conflict 183; policy 160 al-istita’a (capability) 49 Al-Jabha al-Dakhiliyah Amam al-Tahadiyat al-Mu’asirah (The Internal Front Faces Contemporary Challenges) 164 Al-Jabrin, A. 102, 110, 115, 133 Al-Jalali, A. 101, 102, 127 al-jama’ah (community) 42: see also Sunni Fiqh Al-Jami, M. 111, 259, 264, see also Jamiyah Jamiyah 79, 99, 111, 259, 264; Saudi Islamic group 111

Al-Jawziyya, Q. 96 Jehl, D. 141, 142 jihad 11, 28, 72, 74, 75, 157, 158, 168, 187–95, 194, 198, 213, 215; meaning of jihad 187 jurisprudence 140; balances 137; consultation 102, 105; priorities 137; reality 66, see also fiqh (Law and Jurisprudence) juristic judgement 50 juristic regulations 94 Juristic studies standards 32, 213 justice 96 al-kalimah al-hurrah (the Free World) 41, 42 Karawan, I. 28, 29; The Islamist Impasse 27 Kepel, G. 213 KGB (Committee for State Security) 95 Khair, B.M. 242 Ibn Khaldun, A. 48, 82 Al-Khamis, S. 127 Al-Khawf (The Worry) 145 al-khuruj (revolution) 41, 45–9 King Abd al-Aziz Centre for National Dialogue 169, 184 King’s Office 102 Kitab al-’Ulama (Letter of the ’Ulama) 4, 78, 97, 99–102 Kitab Shawal (Letter of Shawal) 4, 78, 97, 99–102 Klibari, A. 134 Kuwait 3, 13, 76, 145; Conference of the Charitable Work 173; Iraqi invasion 78–85 Kuwaiti royal family 84 La Yunsarun (They Will Not be Given Victory) 157 al-lajnah al-khumasiyah (five-member committee) 118 law and jurisprudence 1, 30–40, 198, see also fiqh (Law and Jurisprudence) leadership 87, 88; arrest of the leaders 124–30; characteristics 174–6; discourse 78, 80, 85, 86, 89–97; discourse and actions defined 205–11; the future 218–25; imprisonment of the leaders 131–4; increased understanding with monarchy 168–9; intellectual interaction 51–65; Islamic movement context 9–11; Islamic reformist message 149–52; monarchy 154–5; Saudi politics context 11; summary of actions 198–205; support 132–4, see also Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist leadership

Index 293 legal aspects 7–9 legitimacy 84, 207–11; legitimate rights 90, 95, 125 legitimate base 7 Letter of the Epoch (Al-Oudah) 147 Letter from Behind Bars (Al-Oudah) 124–5, 267 Letter of Reform (Al-Jabrin) 115, 116 Letter of Shawal 4, 78, 97, 99–102 Letter of the ’Ulama 4, 78, 97, 99–102 Letters of the Solitaries (Al-Oudah) 71–3 Saudi liberalism 19 Al-Lihidan, S. 118 al-Ma’ahid al-’ilmiyah (Islamic Scientific Institutes) 55 Al-Madafa’a 272 madhhab 247 Al-Madkhali, M. 111 Al-Madkhali, R. 111 madrasah al-mashayikh (the school of shaikhs) 87 the Madrid Conference 118, 183 mafasid (corruption) 124, 137 majlis al-Shura (Consultative Council) 19, 20, 100, 219 Makkah 185, 216; Holy Sacred Mosque 162 Maktah al-Irshad (The Office of Guidance) 176 al-mal al-’am (public funds) 100 Al-Maliki, S. 102, 114 Al-Ma’mun, Caliph A. 51, 52 Al-Mansoor, M. 56 maqasid al-shari’ah (the aims of Islamic law) 10, 21, 34, 41–2, 171, 248; theory 212, see also shari’ah al-maqsad (purpose) 54 Al-Ma’rakah Al-Fasilah ma’a Bani Israel (The Final Battle with the Israelis) 118 Ma’rakah bila Rayah (Battle without a Banner) 113 Ma’rakat al-Islam wa Al-’ilmaniyah (The Battle Between Islam and Secularism) 69 Marines, A.G. 217–18 Marx, K. 60; Marxist revolution 222 masalih (interests) 137 Al-Mas’ari, A. 110 Al-Mas’ari, M. 211 Mashhur, M. 175, 278 Masir al-Mutrafin (The Fate of Opulent People) (Al-Oudah) 89 al-Mas’uliyah (The Responsibility) 106 Al-Mawardi, A. 37, 249 Memorandum of Advice 4, 8, 42, 96–9, 102–10, 141, 177, 243; chapter on dignity and human rights 106

Min A’mal al-Qulub (The Heart’s Works) (Al-Hawali) 37 Min Wasa’il Daf’ al-Ghurbah (Overcoming Solitude) 53 Saudi Minister of Interior 20, 90, 119, 160 Ministry of Interior: statement on arrests 128, 129 the modernists 11, 90, 243 modernity 76, 261 modernization 21 the monarchy 11, 25, 86, 117–36, 176–8, 202, 208, 219; imprisonment of the leaders 131–4; policy 273; political resistance 117–23; pressure and coercion 6; reformist leadership 154–5; support for the leaders 132–4; treaties 167, see also the Royal House monotheism 23; political implementation 36–40 monthly conference 100 Moses 74 Mubarak, President M.H. 216 al-mudafa’a (dimension of countering) 1, 15, 65, 210; resumption 153–71 Mudhakkirat al-Nasihah (Memorandum of Advice) 4, 8, 42, 96–9, 102–10, 141, 177, 243; chapter on dignity and human rights 106 mujahidin (fighters for Islamic cause) 189 Muslim Brotherhood Organisation 9, 22, 29, 62, 196, 204, 211, 217 Muslim Spain 76 Muslimun wa kafa (Is it Enough that We Call ourselves Muslims?) 146 al-mustadh’afun (oppressed nations) 188 mutadayinun (good Muslims) 191 Al-Mu’tasim, Caliph 52 Mutawa, A. 245 Al-Mutawakkil, Caliph 52 Mu’tazilites 51 al-mutrafin (opulent people) 90 Nahwa Fadha’ Jadid lil Da’wah (Towards a New Era of Islamic Call) 143 the Najdi-Saudi ’ulama 55–9 nashat islami ’ilmi wa siyasi (Islamic intellectual and political activities) 198 Nasrallah, H. 182, see also Hezbollah Al-Nasser, President G. 189 National Festival of Heritage and Culture 146 national unity 167 nationalism 179 The Nations that Befall You (Al-Omar) 85

294

Index

The New Salafi 111, 243 New York Times 141, 142, 159, 208, 209; Bush Refuses to Declassify Saudi Report 275; interviews 145 Al-Nifisi, A. 173 Normalization (Al-Oudah) 118 the Office of Guidance 176 Olivier, R.: The Failure of Political Islam 27 Al-Omar, N. 1–7, 36, 52, 66, 85, 102, 139, 161, 173, 209, 256, 257; works 47 opportunities: expansion of 170 oppressed nations 188 opulent people 90 Oslo Peace Accords 214 Al-Oudah, S. 1–7, 30–4, 55–6, 68–9, 71–3, 89, 118–19, 122–3, 144, 173, 175, 203, 213, 261; articles and comments 278; freedom 93; human rights 92; increased understanding with monarchy 168–9; Letter from Behind Bars 124–5; works 45, 53 Our Duties towards our Religion (Al-Hawali) 106 Our Role during the Events (Al-Oudah) 89 Pains Incubate Hopes (Al-Omar) 161 Palestine 76; Israeli-Palestinian conflict 183; Palestinian cause 155–9; Palestinian Islamic movement 183, see also Hamas party of the rulers 111, 265 permission and recognition 134 Petition of Advice 141 petitions 99–116; domestic challenges 111–16 policies: appeasement 137–52; reformism 26; US in the Middle East 203, 204 political behaviour 12 political countering (1980s) 66–71; al-irja (postponement) 69–71; external political interaction 74–7; policy 71–4; secularism 67–9 political initiatives 78, 86–9 political Islam 196 political jurisprudence 1, 33–6, 41, 53, 54, 134, 140, 175, 187, 198, 247 political realism 172–97; external factors 178–86; the Islamic cause 186; leadership and characteristics 174–6; the monarchy 176–8; power, violence and jihad 187–95 political struggle: countering 65–77, 78–98 polytheism (shirk al-ittiba) 60 positive signs 170 postponement in Islamic thought 10, 59, 65–6, 69–70, 213 public culture 87, 88

public funds 100 public office 54; purpose of 54 Al-Qadir, A. 174 Al-Qafari, K. 127 Al-Qahtani, M. 86, 88, 114, 266 Al-Qaradhawi, Y. 36, 49 Al-Qarni, A. 88, 112, 114, 162, 261 Al-Qasim, A. 102 Qisatu al-Sira’ (Story of the Struggle) 146 Qur’an 6, 66, 73, 90; studies 5 Al-Qusaibi, G. 85, 112–16, 265 Qutb, M. 10, 58–61, 174 Qutb, S. 10, 27, 58, 174 Rad al-Islahiyin (The Response of the Reformers) 108 Rasa’il al-Ghuraha (Letters of the Solitaries) 71–3 Al-Rashid, Caliph Abdullah 253 Al-Rashid, M. 9, 61–2 Islamic rationality 206–7 Reasons for the Collapse of States (Al-Oudah) 81–4, 106 ‘reformist’: defining the movement 4–6; the future of the leadership 218–25; guidelines 152; Islamic reformist message 149–52; leadership’s statement 169; procedure 12–14 reformist leadership’s programme 135 renewal of religion 5, 6 The Response of the Reformers 108 The Responsibility (Al-Hawali) 106 revolution 41, 45–9 Revolution (Calvert) 241 Ricardo, D. 60 The Right Promise and the False Promise (Al-Hawali) 118 Risalah min wara’ al-Qudhban (Letter from Behind Bars) 124–5 Risalat Takhim al-Qawanin (Letter of Resorting to non-Islam Laws) 37 Risalatu al-’Asr (The Letter of the Epoch) 147 Risalatu al-Islah (The Letter of Reform) 115, 116 Riyadh 147 The Role of Magus has come (Al-Gharib) 74 the Royal House 17, 18, 19, 20 the ruling house-centric 17 Al-Rushudi, S. 110, 127 al-Sabah (Kuwaiti royal family) 84 Al-Sakinah al-Sakinah (Calmness, Calmness) 47, 113, 114

Index 295 Salafi 111, 243 al-Salafiyun al-Judud (The New Salafi) 111, 243 Saudi Islamic Satellite of al-Majd 178 Sa’ud, Emir M. 22, 26 Al-Saud, King Fahd 80, 86, 130 Saudi Arab News 127 the Saudi Basic Law (constitution) 7, 8 Saudi Islamism 19 Saudi National Guard: magazine 179 Saudi Shiite: community 18 Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist leadership 1, 26, 198–211; actions of (1980s) 199–200; actions of (1990–1994) 200–1; actions of (post-1999) 202–5; alliances and capabilities 221–2; crises 224–5; expectations and interpretation 220; future of 218–25; imprisonment (1994–1999) 201; the institutional mechanism 223–4; revolutionary aspirations 222–3, see also leadership Saudi Sunni Islamic reformist movement 18, 107 Saudi-US relationship 25, 87, 159 Sayeed, K.B. 245 the school of shaikhs 87 Islamic science 57 Second World War 158 secularism 59, 65, 69 Security Council Resolution (1706) 205 separation and mixing 45, 56, 97, 132 Series of the Messages of the Solitaries (Al-Oudah) 65, 176, 213 Al-Shafi’i, Imam M. 31 Al-Shaikh, A. 118 Al-Shaikh, M. 37; Risalat Tahkim al-Qawanin 37 Sharb al-’Aqidah al-Tahawiya (Explanation of the ’Aqidah of Imam al-Tahawi) 65 shari’ah (Islamic Law) 5, 6, 10; aims 10, 21, 34, 41, 171; applying 2; knowledge of the injunctions 30; laws over the Head of State 105; legitimate rights 41, 42–5; students 108; texts 33; theory of aims 212 Al-Sharit al-Islami (The Islamic Audiocassette) 112, 113, 265, 266 al-shar’iyah (legitimacy) 84, 207–11 shar’iyah mushtarakah (a common legitimate base) 7 Sharon, Israeli Prime Minister A. 162 Al-Shatibi, A. 41, 42, 76–7, 251 Shiism 74, 75 shirk al-ittiba (polytheism) 60

Shura Council in Saudi Arabia 242 Al-Silifih, H. 110 Silsilat Rasa’il al-Ghuraba (Series of the Messages of the Solitaries) 65, 176, 213 Al-Siyasa al-Shar’iyah fi Islah al-Ra’i wa al-Ra’iyah (Islamic Political Jurisprudence to reform the Ruler and the Ruled) 53, 54 solitude: overcoming 53 the standstill period 121 Islamic state: structuring 82 Story of the Struggle (Al-Oudah) 146 Al-Sudairi, T. 85 Sudan 112 Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Army (SPLA) 205 Al-Sulami, A. 35 Sunnah 5 Sunni: conservatism 204; heritage 204; tradition 204 Sunni Fiqh: the community of al-Jama’ah 42; Fiqh al-muwazanat wa al-awlawiyat (balances and priorities) 49–50; further perspectives 41–50; legitimate rights 42–5; the question of revolution 45–9; see also fiqh (Law and Jurisprudence) Sunni Islamic group 87 Sunni leader 51, see also Ibn Hanbal, A. Surur, M. 62–3, 256 Sururists 63 Syria: Syrian Shiite-Alawites-Ba’thist government 181; Syrian-Iranian alliance 183 Syrian Muslim Brotherhood 62 Tada’i al-Ummam (The Nations that Befall You) 85 ta’dudiyah siyasiyah islamiyah (Islamic political competitive system) 96 tafsiru al-Quar’an (Explanation of the Holy Qur’an) 66 Tahrir al-Ardh am Tahrir al-Insan (Freeing the Land or Freeing the Man) 105 tahrir al-mar’ah (liberation of women) 69 tajdid 5, 6 talabatu al-’ilm (students of the shari’ah) 108 al-ta’lil 41–2 Tantawi, S. 85 al-tarbiyah al-da’wiyah (Islamic da’wah education) 152 Tartars 53 Al-Tathi (Normalization) 118 tawhid (monotheism) 23; political implementation 36–40 Ibn Taymiyyah, A. 52–5; works 53–4 terrorism 188

296

Index

Terrorism and Martyrdom Operations (Al-Oudah) 158 thaqafah sha’biyah (public culture) 87, 88 The Greatest Fiqh 33, see also Hanifah, A. They Will Not be Given Victory (Al-Oudah) 157 Tibi, B. 28 totalitarian regimes 189 treaties 167 The True Dawn (Al-Omar) 139 trust 34 Tunisia 112 Al-Turabi, H. 112, 205 Al-Turiri, A. 88, 112 Al-Tuwijri, A. 110, 132 Al-Tuwirqi, W. 114 tyranny 43, 96 ulama shaikhs 6, 11 Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) 75 United Arab Emirates (UAE) 279 United Nations (UN): Declaration of Human Rights 91, 92, 94–5 United States (USA) 25, 153; civil war (1861–1865) 158; foreign policy 148, 161–2, 277; Free Trade Agreement with the UAE 279; invasion of Iraq 138, 155, 162–4; Iranian alliance 180, 181; Joint Congressional Inquiry 159; Middle Eastern policy 203, 204; neo-conservatism 214; Saudi Ambassador 130; Saudi-US alliance 87; threatening policy of 204; US-Saudi relationship 159–60; US-Shiite alliance 204 uprising 155–9 al-usal al-shar’iyah (Islamic juristic regulations) 94 Ibn Uthaymin, M. 55, 100 Al-’Uzlah wa al-Khultah: Ahkam wa Ahwal (Separation and Mixing: Rules and Consequences) 45, 56, 97, 132

vice 35, 44, 96, 104, 140, 153, 165 Viorst, M. 20, 23 virtue 35, 44, 96, 104, 140, 153, 165 Vogal, F. 8 Wa jaa’a Dawr al-Majus (The Role of Magus Has Come) 74 Wa Yakun al-Din Kuluhu Lil Allah (The Whole Religion is for Allah) 114 Al-Wa’ad al-Haq wa al-Wa’d al-Muftara’ (The Right Promise and the False Promise) 118 Al-Wahhab, Imam M. 22, 26, 37, 58, 160, 221, 254 Wahhabism 22, 23, 160, 179, 180, 214 Wajihat al-Da’iyah (The Duties of Islamic Callers) 106 Wajihuna Tijah Dinina (Our Duties towards Our Religion) 106 Al-Wathiq, Caliph 52 Western democratic systems 83 The Whole Religion is for Allah (Al-Qahtani) 114 Why Men Rebel (Gurr) 241 wisdom 41 women: liberation 69 Woolsey, J. 273 World War Two 158 The Worry (Al-Oudah) 145 Yawmu al-Ghadhab (The Day of Anger) 156, 157 You Will Remember What I am Saying to You (Al-Hawali) 80 Zabarah, A. 134 Zahiratu al-Irja fi al-Fikr al-Islami (phenomenon of postponement in Islamic thought) 10, 59, 65–6, 69–70, 213 Zawabit al-Dirasat al-Fiqhiyah (Standards for Juristic Studies) 32, 213 Al-Zu’air, S. 114, 178