Sakset/Fra hofta

Tarig Ramadan forstår at volden under karikaturkrise 2.0 skader den islamske verdens omdømme mer enn noe annet. Offerrollen som krenket kombinert med vold er PR-messig den verst tenkelige.

Ramadan skal ivareta mange interesser når han kritiserer de som benytter vold. Han sier de er en liten minoritet. Han mener åpenbart at islamistene må få tid til å utvikle et demokrati på egne premisser, som om ytringsfrihet og respekt for minoriteter er annerledes i muslimske land enn ikke-muslimske.

Ramadan later som om islamistene skal lage noe nytt basert på islamsk historie. Det var slik bolsjevikene snakket om sosialismen i sovjet. At den skulle være noe unikt, og at vestlig demokrati var ubrukelig.

Siden islamistenes bakgrunn er unik har ikke vestlige forutsetninger for å forstå hva situasjonen krever. De bør derfor holde munn.

Westernized secular elites, for all their talk of democracy and human rights, often are carrying over former colonial agendas and are deeply disconnected from the people they claim to represent. Or if they aren’t — like some grass-roots movements on the left — their influence is marginal at best. Some have collaborated with dictators, accepted cronyism or benefited from official corruption. Others have remained close to the inner circles of the military (as in Egypt, Tunisia, Syria and Iraq). By standing against any overlapping of religion and politics, they have put forward a vision of democratization that is incoherent and disconnected from Islamic memories and traditions.

The Islamists have legitimacy, having paid a heavy price in opposing dictatorships for decades. They have made electoral gains in Morocco, Egypt and Tunisia by adapting to the shifts in power brought about by the protesters and cyberactivists. Yet they are facing contradictory expectations: they must remain faithful to their Islamic credentials while facing foreign pressure with regard to democratic processes, economic policies and relations with Israel. No figure embodies these contradictions more than Mohamed Morsi, Egypt’s new president, who tried last week to forcefully rebut President Obama’s absolute defense of free speech at the United Nations. But calling for limits on offensive speech is no solution. We don’t need more laws. We need courageous scholars and intellectuals who are willing to discuss topics their fellow Muslims don’t want to hear: their failings, their tendency to play the victim, the need to take responsibility for their actions. Only that sort of leadership will halt the tide of religious populism and emotionally driven blindness of the masses.

Ramadan har forstått at det ikke er smart å gå inn for global sensur. Svaret er modige intellektuelle som kan tolke islamsk lære for et moderne samfunn. Men dette må være muslimenes egne intellektuelle. Ramadan synes å se for seg en egen intellektuell elite som skal definere og stake ut kursen. Det er noe av Platons Staten over hans tanker. Selvfølgelig skal han selv være filosofen på tronen.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/01/opinion/waiting-for-an-arab-spring-of-ideas.html?src=recg