Monday, December 04, 2006

Perspectives From Central Asia: Installment One

One of the formative conditions of many of the peoples in Greater Central Asia is the absence of the kind of certainties that make social life possible. The Soviet Union is no more. Capitalism is threatening and intimidating. Alien social elements, sometimes in the form of NGOs and missionary organizations from outside, bring social conventions that are unfamiliar. And of course the regimes in power are distrusted. For the next few days I want to post statements by individuals that reflect their quest for better social certainties.

Here is a statement by a mother of two young men imprisoned in Uzbekistan for their participation in Hizb ut-Tahrir, an Islamic movement that has gained popularity in the last few years:
"[P]eople want a just system. They want to live in a just and fair society with good governance. Nowadays, there is no justice. Corruption and bribery are everywhere. Unemployment is the people's biggest problem. That's why they read the word of God. Since the seventh century, when Prophet Muhammad, may peace be upon him, lived, there was a caliphate for 14 centuries. It was a just system. I also believe that if people learn these things, they will become more just."

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