Published on January 18, 2023
Muslim World in the New Global Order
By Abdus Sattar Ghazali
Table of Contents
3- Chapter 1 - The end of the caliphate
4- Chapter 2 - Mustafa Kamel’s religious reforms or anti-Islam measures
5- Chapter 3 - The Britain-backed/insinuated Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire
6- Chapter 4 - Turkey under Erdogan - Erdogan’s Foreign Policy & Religious reforms
7- Chapter 5 - Turkey under Erdogan - Abortive Coup against Receb Tayyip Erdogan
8- Chapter 6 - Turkey under Erdogan - Erdogan seeks revision of the Lausanne Treaty of 1923
9- Chapter 7 - Turkey under Erdogan - Arabs alarmed by Turkish soft power
10- Chapter 8 - The Curse of Oil in the Middle East
11- Chapter 9 - The Arab Betrayal of Palestinians
12- Chapter 10 - The failure of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC)
13- Chapter 11 - Islam as the Enemy of ‘Civilization’
14- Chapter 12 - The New World Order
15- Chapter 13 - China and the Muslim World
16- Chapter 14 - Russia and the Muslim World
17- Chapter 15 - The Muslim World in 2030/2050
To understand the present it is crucial to make an incursion into history which illuminates the present. This study is aimed to review the Muslim World history of the last 200 years when it was victim of brutal colonialism and neocolonialism. The machinations of the Western colonialism during the 19th and 20th centuries had the greatest impact on the contemporary Muslim World. In 1915, the secret Sykes-Picot agreement between Britain and France divided the territories of the Ottoman Empire which had sided with Germany during the First World War.
The study begins with the end of Caliphate in March 1924 by Kemal Ataturk, the founder of the Republic of Turkey in October 1923 after the collapse of Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman sultans were ex officio Caliphs. After defeating the Mamluks in Egypt and gaining control of the Mecca and Medina, the holy places of Islam in 1517, the Ottoman Sultan Selim I adopted the title Servant of The Two Holy Cities rather Ruler of The Two Holy Cities.
In October 1923 Mustafa Kemal became the first president of Turkey. On assuming office, Mustafa Kemal initiated a series of radical reforms in the country's political, religious, social and economic life that aimed at rapidly transforming Turkey into a modern state. For him, modernization meant Westernization.
Chapter three details the British insinuation and support of Arabs to revolt against the Ottomans in the midst of the World War I.
Chapters four to seven detail Turkey under the rule of President Receb Tayyip Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP). The reason for extensive coverage about Turkey is because among the Muslim countries perhaps only Turkey has potential to lead the Muslim World. Erdogan views himself as the father of a new Turkish identity, one aligned more closely with its Ottoman past, its Islamic heritage. Erdogan reversed several religious reforms of Mustafa Kamel Ataturk which were aimed at eradicating Islam from Turks’ life. In recent years, a slew of initiatives of President Erdogan have pushed Islam deeper into Turkey's nominally-secular education system. Erdogan survived a coup attempt in July 2016 said to be launched by U.S.-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen. Erdogan seeks revision of Lausanne Treaty of 1923 saying “we cannot act with the psychology of 1923.” Turkey has launched a series of dramas about historic Ottoman figures that have become very popular in the Arab and Muslim world causing unease in many Arab countries where these historic dramas are seen as Turkey’s soft power to promote its image.
Chapter eight concentrates on the story of oil and the race to secure it in the Middle East which began after the fall of the Ottoman empire. The curse of having oil, especially in the Middle East, has left the region plagued with war and violence for decades and the ramifications of colonization and a thirst for oil has led many countries to war and caused the death of hundreds of thousands of people.
Chapter nine deals with the betrayal of Arabs of their Palestinian brothers and sisters. Seraj Assi, the author of The History and Politics of the Bedouin: Reimagining Nomadism in Modern Palestine is perhaps right when he says: Arab leaders, desperately clinging to power amid regional chaos, have once again sold Palestinians out, believing that the road to Washington begins in Jerusalem, just as they believed a century ago that the surest path to Paris or London was to bypass Palestine. But history teaches us that trading Palestine for political survival and fanciful regional ambitions is a prelude to disaster.
Chapter ten highlights the role of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) which is the second largest inter-governmental organization in the world after the United Nations. Since its establishment in 1969, the Muslim World has witnessed suffered six major disasters which have reduced it to almost a non-factor in international politics. 1. East Pakistan Debacle (1971); 2. Soviet intervention in Afghanistan (1979-1989); 3. Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988); 4. The attack on Lebanon by Israel (1982); 5. U.S. invasion of Afghanistan (2001-2021); 6. U.S. occupation of Iraq (2005-2011) The OIC failed in responding meaningfully to any of these crises or demonstrate any unity of thought and action apart from issuing high-sounding declarations at the end of each summit. Nothing was done to contain the crises or avert the tragedies. The OIC remained merely a silent spectator.
Chapter eleven details the Western view about the role of Islam in the new world order. French author Pierre Hillard says that Islam is now the “last bulwark against the New World Order”. To the question that Laurent Fendt put to him on Radio “Ici et Maintenant”, on January 11, 2010, of “what would be in the case of a world government the enemy who would be put forward to continue to rule the world?”, Pierre Hillard replied: “Within the framework of the New World Order, the enemy currently is Islam (…) because Islam is still the only religion which brings hope for the hereafter (…) It is for the globalist spirit a competition that it cannot accept, because the Muslim will not – in any case much less – focus on material pleasures, on the consumer society; so it is necessary at all costs to destroy this Islam which does not extol the American way of life”. [Islam and the New World Order by Amir Nour, December 5, 2021]
Chapter twelve concentrates on the emerging new global order in the coming decades. The Global Trends 2040 study published by the US National Intelligence Council in March 2021, predicted that power in the international system will evolve to include a broader set of sources, but no single state is likely to be positioned to dominate across all regions or domains. The United States and China will have the greatest influence on global dynamics, forcing starker choices on other actors, increasing jockeying over global norms, rules, and institutions, and heightening the risk of interstate conflict. Other major powers, including Russia, the EU, Japan, the United Kingdom, and potentially India, could have more maneuvering room to exercise influence during the next two decades. Western leadership of the intergovernmental organizations may further decline as China and Russia obstruct Western-led initiatives and press their own goals.
Chapter thirteen details China’s growing relations with the Muslim World. China is investing over $400 billion in nearly 600 Belt and Road cooperation projects across the Muslim world. On March 15, 2022, China co-sponsored an OIC-backed resolution at the United Nations General Assembly to create an international day to combat Islamophobia. The resolution was introduced by Pakistan on behalf of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). It marks the day when a gunman entered two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, killing 51 people and injuring 40 others. Tellingly, the European Union, France and India opposed the resolution to observe March 15 as international day against Islamophobia.
Chapter fourteen details Russia’s relations with the Muslim World. With about 20 million Muslim population, Russia has an observer status with the 57-member Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) since 2005. Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that insulting Prophet Muhammad does not count as an expression of artistic freedom but is a "violation of religious freedom." Putin made these remarks during his annual press conference in Moscow December 23, 2021, adding that insults to Prophet Muhammad were a violation of "the sacred feelings of people who profess Islam".
Chapter fifteen attempts to see the Muslim World in 2030/2050. It is difficult to foresee the future trajectory of the Muslim world in various fields. This chapter is based on the western projections for 2030/2050 which presume that the current political and economic structure created by the West after the First World War will prevail. Not surprisingly, for the Islamic world economic and political forecasts are notoriously weak.
is tax deductable.