Hizb ut-Tahrir and the General Election 2010

This is a guest post by Raziq


For those who don’t know, Hizb-ut-Tahrir (HT) is a global Islamist movement with a central goal: to engineer a military takeover in a Muslim majority country as a route to power and governance, a takeover which will allow them to position a central leader, one they will insist that all Muslims have to accept. From that point onwards HT will work to expand and capture both the allegiance of people and the lands people live in, justifying the use of violence to achieve these aims. Their ultimate aim is to have one unitary Islamist state ruling the world under their interpretation of shariah law.

According to HT, Islam, in the seventh century, came with a fixed way of governing people – a system, structure and even a political language that it fixed for all future civilisations. For HT, it is not the principles of governance that count so much as the system of governance.

HT’s efforts in Britain are to primarily disrupt the civic and political integration of British Muslims. They want Muslims to disown citizenship in their hearts, to reject government and all democratic institutions in their minds (this rejection extends through to the UN and the European Convention on Human Rights), and to encourage them to work semi-secretly for the return of a lost empire across a massive land base. HT members are also known to lie and use deceptive tactics to further to their ideas.

Last week Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT) issued its first (weakly argued) leaflet for the General Election 2010. In the leaflet they say:

“The aim of encouraging Muslim participation in the secular politics of Westminster is to see us endorse this kufr political system (based on man making laws), its values and policies, which have caused occupation and bloodshed, as well as leading to the misery of ‘Broken Britain’ today”

The leaflet also implies that the recent Despatches program exposing IFE’s infiltration of Tower Hamlets council was apparently proof that secular parties want Muslims to abandon policies based on Islam:

“The recent attacks by Jim Fitzpatrick MP and journalist Andrew Gilligan on the Islamic Forum Europe proved, if proof was needed, that the secular system and secular parties want Muslims to abandon policies based on Islam and adopt the secular values of the parties. The hopeless track record of the current Muslim MPs is clear proof of how they must abandon our communities and Islamic values to remain within those parties. The path of voting for, and participating in, these secular parties will no doubt bring harm rather than any good to our community”.

The rest of the leaflet is made up of the usual HT standard rhetoric. It uses narrow interpretations of Quranic verses such as: the Rule rests with Allah, to conclude that it is “clearly haram” to vote in the General Elections. As with all of HT’s leaflets, there is no scholarly endorsement. In fact scholars from Salafi, Deobandi, Brelwi and most other schools of thought say the opposite to what HTsay and encourage Muslims to vote.

HT’s is a rejectionist mindset that rejects the ideas of a full commitment to citizenship, that rejects democracy and its institutions that rejects the proper meaning of a British Muslim. For HT, there can only be Muslimsinside Britain, as if Muslims have got inside the enemy’s castle (read their literature more carefully and this becomes clearer). For HT, there is an ideological battle on and they see the world only in terms of land and allegiance.

These ideas lead to different methods, some clear and over ground including high visibility methods, and others more clandestine and underground. Although they welcome new members, they are NOT primarily driven by that – they are much more interested in getting their ideas and rejectionist thoughts across to enter Muslim discussions. HT deliberately creates a climate of fear, anxiety, anger and suspicion in which to thrive.

Like most revolutionaries plotting mass political change, they paint what they are against in simplistic terms, as opposites of what should be. They bundle together the worst of British society and western civilisation, including its politics, and then sentimentally offer “Islam” as a perfect all embracing “solution”. To paint their vision of the future, they paint history in simplistic, romantic terms. Such simplicities, built upon demonising your ‘other’, are hallmarks for HT as they are for many revolutionary organisations driven in that way.

Many of HT’s ideas are extensions, interpretations and misunderstandings of existing social and political Islamic thought, particularly of the 1940s and 1950s, when great political changes were taking place across the world. Today HT is an out of date movement with a bankrupt ideology and has nothing to offer to Muslims or to humanity at large. The sooner they realise this, the better.

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