"Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed."

Friday, December 5, 2014

The Arab Spring

I had an interesting talk with a friend yesterday.  He and his cousin are both Syrians living in Germany, and while visiting together last weekend, they got to talking about how well they were treated by the Germans.

S said he ponders how non-Muslims treat them better than Muslims. How that saying about going to the West to see true Islam, but not as many Muslims was maybe true.

I countered, "Ah, but you know Muslims in Muslim countries aren't that way! Dictators rule so that is why people are mistreated!"

What he said surprised me. Otherwise I'd not have jotted it down for this post.

Here's the gist of it:

Before the Arab Spring I would have said the same thing: Arabs are oppressed by their dictators.  But now, no.  Arabs are at fault!  A sizable majority like their dictators, and the ones who don't - the ones who want freedom from dictators - are not willing to put aside their differences to make something better.  

They go back to "primitiveness" and tribalism takes over.  No common goals, but each person for himself at the expense of the whole country.  

If we really wanted freedom, we would be different.

I don't have time to go into any more right now, but that made me curious what the Arab Spring has taught others.


Haitham Jafar said...

I'll only speak of some of the Arab countries that I know; "A sizable majority" is not accurate. They r minority (quantity wise) who r scared to pieces for their "privileges" to disappear. Also, they r the ones who cannot, or it is v hard to, escape, so they stick by the ruler/regime until the very, very, end and by all means available!
I agree with ALL the rest of what your friend said.

Susanne said...

Perhaps "sizable minority" would have been more accurate. You make a good point about those people being scared of their privileges disappearing. S has spoken of this among many wealthier and connected Sunni families of Damascus who are allied to the regime, likely for this reason.

Thanks for your thoughts on this!

jaraad said...

I have to disagree with him slightly. Many Arab countries lived under dictatorship for a long time. We can't simply ask them to change their mentality over night.

The beneficiaries of America's civil war and the French revolution were not the generation involved but the generations who came later.

I doubt we can see change now but at least the "Arab Spring" is a step forward.

So, hopefully the next generation of Arabs will be more tolerant to different opinions.

Susanne said...

good points! thank you! :)