الحمد لله رب العلمين و الصلاة و السلام على خير خلفه اجمعين محمد
و على اله الطيبين و صحابه الصالحين
This is my thoughts on Arab Nationalism.
It will not be as detailed as i planned it to be.
How should one define Arab Nationalism? Well, people differ. Personally, i am a staunch supporter of Arab Nationalism, but not in all meanings of the word. Arab Nationalism can also be used for “Arab Supremacism”, which i severely disapprove of. I believe in equality of mankind, all people and all races, like what our Master, the beloved Prophet (pbuh&hf) stated in Hojat al-Wada’a:
“Verily, an Arab is not better than an ´Ajam (non-Arab), and an ´Ajam is not better than a Arab, except in Taqwa (fearing Allah)”
The Arab Nationalism i believe in is not about Arabs being superior to Non-Arabs. It is about arab mutual solidarity – that we should care about our fellow arabs and help them in the problems they face. One would argue that this is what we should do about all people, and i agree – but the problems that my own people face is so severe that they are my main concern.
It is about unity in the Arab world – that we should stand together and by this free ourselves from foreign domination. Today the Non-Arabs do not directly dominate the Arab world, but their culture do. Today, we Egyptians have to obey the western world to some extent – if we dont, we will lose the US economic support, which would be devastating. The only way we can encounter the economic and cultural dominance of the west and the east is by uniting. Not under one flag – but under one name and one goal.
Perhaps “Arab Nationalism” is a wrong term to use. The only reason that i use it is due to the popular usage of this term.
Economically, i absolutely support Gamal Abdel-Nasser and his Socialdemocratic politics – this is what saved Egypt.
Let me bring one example from the beautiful country of Sudan. If i mention Arab Nationalism in this case, many will interpret it to mean “The Northern Arabs are superior to the Southern Africans”. But thats not what i believe. What i believe is that the problems that Sudan face is the concern of us all. We should treat the sudanese, northerners and southerners alike, as our fellow countrymen. How would we like it if our fellow countrymen were getting opressed by one another the way it is happening in Sudan? We would oppose it. And react.
Who is an arab, then?
A brilliant question. The answer that i prefer and believe in is that an Arab is the one whose mother-tongue is Arabic and who is familiar with the arab culture and social norms to some extends. As you might know, this varies from town to town, from tribe to tribe and from country to country. There is, for example, a significant difference between Lower- and Upper Egyptian culture. The reason why i believe in this is the following reasons:
First, The vast majority about people who self-identify as arabs and are generally considered arabs, have uncertain origins. I bet most of egyptians who consider themselves arab is unable to prove that their ancestors hails from an arab tribes rather than egyptian fellahin or greeks, jews, nubians or romans. The same is true in virtually all Arab countries except the Hijaz, Yemen and Khaleeg. If we should focus on this aspect, then only few of us should be considered Arab.
Second, the traditional muslim view is that whoever speaks arab then he is an arab, this was even true for Salman al-Farsi (ra) whose parents were Persians and he arrived to Arabia as an adult.
Third, even the ones who CAN trace their ethnicity back to ancient arabian tribes, an absolute minority of these have native arab ancestors – most are Adnany rather than Qahtany. Adnanites are the one who hail from Ismail (as), whose mother was african, and whose descendants came to speak the arab language and culture, and the Qahtanies are the ones who lived in the peninsula before Ibrahim (as) arrived. Among the Adnanites is the Quraysh – the tribe of the Prophet (asws).
Fourth, even the absolute minorty who descents from the Qahtanites only do that paternal. It is possible to be Qahtani, ones qahtani grandfather married a somali woman, their son married a somali woman. Their son would actually only be 1/4 Qahtani, but the rest would be somali. Should he loose his arab language and culture, he would be consideres somali, not arab.
The attitudes of an Arab country towards minorities
What about those who do not self-identify as arabs then, but live in a country where the majority is considered Arab? Such as the Dinka Sudanese, Kurdish Iraqi’s and Berber Algerians?
They are our concern too. Our responsibility. They live in our lands, and are exactly as native to it as we are. Somewhere even more native.
So while they are not Arab in the ethnical sence, they are in the political sense.
They should be citizens the exact same way as we are.
The same applies for the christian minority.
Our attitude towards Israel
Lets unite first, okay 😀