Wednesday, July 29, 2009

How Will Arabs Wake Up?

The Way to Power

(Political and Media Advisor at the Syrian Presidency, and former Minister of Expatriates. She is also a writer and professor at Damascus University.)


".....But it is undeniable that the Arabs failed to do one essential thing -- which is to build active institutions which are able to mobilize, regulate and organize the social, economic and political forces in their societies. As The Economist editorial mentions, but for reasons different from those I have in mind, “democracy is not only about elections. It is about education, coexistence, and building independent institutions like an independent judiciary and free media [COMMENT: You should tell that to your boss, El Presidente Asad, Dr. Shaaban]”. Real citizenship is not only caring about oneself and one’s family and relatives, iIt is about building a nation and caring about its future. Individual salvation is a dominant phenomenon in the Arab world, and seeking to secure the future of one’s children and grandchildren at the expense of the future of the nation, whereas building the future of the nation should be the only insurance policy for everyone.....

....The main driving force for development and modernization in the West remains the human mind. Modern technology is easy to come by compared with enlightened thought which produces technology, ideas, materials and institutions and all that which drive people towards a better future. There is nothing wrong in acknowledging that we have not woken up yet, but what is dangerously wrong is to remain complacently asleep while blaming colonialism and the enemies of freedom. Human beings remain the most precious capital, and education is the key to mobilizing this tremendous asset. So, let us start with an open and candid discussion of the condition of education as an indication of our awakening; and when the Arabs wake up they are bound to produce, as they did in the past, what is best for them and for humanity."

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