In its new issue’s editorial: “Islam Today” provides insights into the battles of the future
The Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) has released a new issue of its academic refereed journal “Islam Today”, available in an Arabic/English/French trilingual edition. The editorial of this issue deals with the “Battles of the Future” in their intellectual, cultural and civilizational dimensions.
Featured in this new issue are studies, research papers and articles covering the following subjects: “Cultures and Civilizations: From Dialogue, Rapprochement and Alliance to Countering Racist Currents” by Dr Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri, ISESCO Director General; “The Spirit of Islamic Civilization” by Sheikh Mohamed El Fadhel Ben Achour; “Man and Society: Between the Islamic Vision and Western Globalization” by Dr Muhammad Imarah; “The Quran Approach to Dialogue” by Dr Mohamed Kettani; “A Look at the Future: A Sweeping Knowledge Revolution” by Dr Ismail Serageldin; “The Culture of Dialogue in Islam: Freedom to Choose and Right to Differ” by Dr Mohammad Al-Sammak; and “The future of Arabic lies in the hands of its owners” by Dr Abdelali Ouadghiri.
The section on “Knowing about Islamic Countries” of Islam Today’s 33rd issue is dedicated to the Kyrgyz Republic.
In this issue’s editorial titled “Battles of the Future”, Dr Altwaijri writes: “The world is at war against terrorism and fell short of extirpating its roots after over 18 months of the creation of the international coalition against terrorism. This occurs at a time when the intellectual and denominational battle against Islam intensifies, not only via some Western media, political leaders and research centres, but also at the hands of certain Arab media which follow in the West’s footsteps, and intellectual elites that spare no effort to plot against Islam, through distorting facts, spreading vanities and preoccupying Muslims with suspicious issues, lies and evil. Obviously, this is a manifestation of the ardent clash between good and evil, between the carriers of the message of peace and harmony, on the one hand, and those who seek to make it crooked and strive after corruption, depart from civilizational values, human principles and tolerant religious teachings, on the other hand.”
The editorial explains that the interconnection between the war on terrorism, embodied in the so-called Islamic State and other organizations – regardless of their categorization -, and the intellectual, cultural and denominational war on Islam, its culture, civilization, heritage and language – intensifying ever since the 19th century – proves beyond doubt that the battle today is mainly intellectual. It also notes that it is a civilizational war in every sense of the word, rather than a political battle that uses military might to combat the terrorist organization which perplexes even men of understanding.
The editorial points out that “The goals are clear, the methods exposed, and the effects attesting to the enormity of losses obvious, not only in the material sense – although these, too, are extremely hideous – but also in terms of the intellectual and cultural outcomes, and the political and social repercussions on the Arab and Islamic communities as a whole. It becomes clear to the Editorial unbiased researcher that the battles of the future will take place in these spheres exclusively and that the weapon used therein will be thought that affects the daily lives of individuals and groups alike and can be discerned in the policies adopted and choices made.”
The editorial goes on to say that “The intellectual battle – that reached a peak in our times and permeated a great many fields – is unconventional warfare despite the similarity between the intentions of warmongers and the goals of conventional war that the powerful unleash against the weak. Weakness – which does not necessarily mean dearth of resources and underdevelopment – gnaws at the body from inside and destroys its immunity, and the poor may be strong provided they maintain their values, specificities, faith, identity and self-esteem”.
The editorial explains how future battles will be discrepant more in form than substance as their weapons will be innovative thought and cogent reasoning to handle major issues of concern to humanity at large. However, intellectual battles – against cultural and religious backdrops – will never cease, despite the marvellous advances in exact sciences, all disciplines of knowledge and ways of life on the planet. The editorial stresses that they will rather worsen and their effects will reach shocking proportions. In addition, human activities, nations and peoples will be largely affected unless the wise use good offices to halt conflicts before they engender dire consequences threatening world peace. “Such a scenario is not mere speculation, nor is it inspired by a pessimistic view of human reality in process, but rather a deliberate interpretation of the constant changes based on lessons drawn from the past for the future”, the editorial goes on.
Dr Altwaijri emphasizes that it is an established fact today that the deep aversion of Islam has become a widespread phenomenon, that the contempt of religions – particularly Islam – is one aspect of the cultural and religious conflict in our times of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the United Nations Charter, that several parties – with various cultural backgrounds – plot against Islam, distort its image and prejudice the supreme interests of Muslims.
The editorial concludes that, “Coping with such reality requires mature wisdom, based on moral values and human principles inspired by the heavenly messages, rather than hasty emotional reactions that confirm the ways of our opponents, including their phenomenon analysis methods to reach preset conclusions. When thinkers, intellectuals, religious leaders and men of knowledge in the Islamic world deal wisely with our opponents’ pack of lies the balance tilts towards justice and truth prevails, according to the Holy Quran: [We shall show them Our portents on the horizons and within themselves until it will be manifest unto them that it is the Truth.]”