The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) said:
“The best Jihad is the word of Justice in front of the oppressive ruler.” (Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, ibn Maja)
Hundreds of thousands of people are on the streets of Egypt tonight calling for the removal of the tyrant Hosni Mubarak. Inspired by the protests in Tunisia which forced another tyrant Ben Ali from power the Muslims of Egypt are losing their fear of the regime and its security forces. They bravely face the tanks, guns and water cannons demanding an end to the decades of tyranny under Mubarak, the close friend of Obama.
As with Tunisia, western hypocrisy has been exposed for all to see. The US Vice-President Joe Biden was asked if he would characterize Mubarak as a dictator. Biden responded: “Mubarak has been an ally of ours in a number of things. And he’s been very responsible on, relative to geopolitical interest in the region, the Middle East peace efforts; the actions Egypt has taken relative to normalizing relationship with – with Israel. … I would not refer to him as a dictator.”
The west has no problems with dictators and their brutal policies if they continue to serve western interests. As US President Franklin D. Roosevelt famously remarked on Nicaragua’s dictator, “Somoza may be a son of a bitch, but he’s our son of a bitch.”
Egypt was opened up to Islam during the Khilafah of Umar bin al-Khattab. The Christians living in Egypt at the time witnessed the justice of the Islamic system compared to the man-made system of the Byzantines.
Nabil Luqa Bebawy, a Coptic, religious author compares the conditions of Copts before and after Islamic rule. He said that Orthodox Christians were brutally tortured at the hands of Byzantines. The number of Copts who were killed during the rule of the Byzantine emperor Diocletianus [284-305 AD] is estimated up to one million Coptic Egyptians. The is why the Orthodox Coptic Church called that age the age of martyrs and the Coptic calendar starts at this age.
When Islam came to Egypt, all conditions changed dramatically and Copts witnessed an age of freedom that they had not known before. About the Jizya imposed on non-Muslims, Dr. Bebawy says that they were part of the “security pact” made between Muslims and Copts. Jizya was a tax paid in exchange for exempting Copts from joining the Islamic army.
Finally, Dr. Nabil Luqa Bebawy stresses that the ill practices of some Muslims rulers in dealing with Copts are individual behaviors that have nothing to do with Islamic teachings.
Today, both Muslims and Christians in Egypt are facing oppression at the hands of a tyrannical regime implementing a man-made secular system, ruled over by a modern Pharaoh who cares only for accumulating the wealth and luxury of the world.
The way forward is to establish the Khilafah in Egypt as a starting point for change throughout the Middle East, North Africa and the rest of the Muslim world. Egypt would then become the seat of the Khilafah once again as it was from 1261 to 1517, after the ransacking of Baghdad and the murder of the Khaleefah by the Mongols.
We need Muslims in the government and armed forces like Ubadah ibn as-Samit, one of the commanders who opened Egypt to Islam.
Ubadah was sent as the head of a delegation to the Byzantine ruler of Egypt where he said:
“The reason for our campaign against our enemies who wage war against Allah is not hope of worldly gains or the accumulation of wealth; rather Allah has permitted that to us and made the booty we acquire permissible for us. But none of us cares whether he has a qintar of gold or has nothing but a dirham, because all we want from this world is something to eat and ward off hunger, and a cloth to wrap around ourselves. If one of us owns nothing more than that, that is enough. If he gets a qintar of gold he will spend it for the sake of Allah and be content with the little that is left in his hand, because the pleasure of this world is not true pleasure and its luxury is not true luxury; rather real pleasure and luxury come in the Hereafter.” [Dr Ali Muhammad as-Sallabi, ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab his life and times,’ Vol. 2, p. 327]