The issue of the transition of political Islam movements from the organizational state to the authoritarian state has been a matter of controversy in several circles due to the shortness of their experience in governance.

The developments of an entire decade that followed the revolutions of the Arab Spring constituted sharp turns in the intellectual structure of political Islam movements, which have been balancing between their constants and the concessions required by the governing authority, imposed by the nature of the societies that were subject to its powers, and the pressures of the international community, which looks at such movements from the angle of its understanding of the rights of Human rights and openness to Western customs, in addition to attempts to overthrow the Western democratic model on Arab societies.

** Political Islam

According to reports, at least 20 parties or movements that adopt the idea of ​​political Islam have emerged during the last decade, between 2011, which marks the beginning of those movements’ emergence and their forefront of the changing scene, and 2021, which is seen as the end of the last center of power led by political Islam movements, after The Moroccan Justice and Development Party lost the last elections.


Apparently, most of the emerging parties and movements ideologically converge with the “Muslim Brotherhood”, the most historically and most organized and widespread group in the Islamic world, and it is the most targeted of the “counter-revolutionary” forces in the media and politically.

There does not seem to be a consensus between the models that were put forward in the countries of the Arab revolutions, whose authoritarian scene was led by the political Islam movements, and the Western vision of the model of governance according to democratic mechanisms originally designed by Western thinkers and politicians in line with the reality of their societies.

Political Islam movements sought to be in line with Western wills by dropping the democratic model on Arab societies during the period of their assumption of power in a number of Arab countries, without considering the differences and contradictions between the social and religious traditions of their societies compared to their Western counterparts.

** Consecutive losses

Political Islam movements lost their power successively in Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco.

In Egypt, the authority of the Muslim Brotherhood ended on July 3, 2013, with a “military coup” supported by political movements and currents that are predominantly secular.

In Tunisia, the current president, Kais Saied, implemented what was differently described as a “coup” against constitutional institutions and the acquisition of all powers, and a new approach targeting corruption systems and saving the country from the economic crisis.

As for Morocco, the loss of the “Justice and Development” movement, calculated on the political Islam movements, may be a unique case through the ballot boxes, which came out at the lowest level for the leading party in the 2016 elections by about 124 seats, to get only 13 seats in the last elections.

** Structural defect

In addition to what researchers see as a structural defect in the organizational structure of political Islam movements and the adoption of “fragile” democratic mechanisms within them, others believe that most of these movements are designed to work within the circle of advocacy and social activities more broadly than work in the political fields.

The employment of religion, tribe and regionalism in the countries of the region plays an active role in the attitudes of the electorate more than the electoral programs of parties or movements.

However, this employment is not limited to political Islam movements or political parties in general. Rather, totalitarian and authoritarian regimes have invested in this by circumventing the electoral process by various means that lead to results that serve these regimes.

Several factors have contributed to a relative reluctance to accept democratic mechanisms in the “peaceful” change of the existing regimes, including the failure of the ruling experience in Tunisia and Morocco away from the causes of this, and the state of instability in Syria and Yemen, and until recently in Libya.

** Hopes and Fears

At the beginnings of the Arab Spring revolutions in Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Yemen and Syria, the Arab masses built high hopes for the possibility of “positive” change in the decades-old system of government, which was dominated by the character of “authoritarianism” or military dictatorships.

But the civil wars that Libya, Syria, and Yemen witnessed, raised many fears of a wide stream of the Arab masses that change in their countries would lead to similar situations, without attributing these turmoils and wars to the forces of “counter-revolutions” that aborted the three revolutions and diverted their “peaceful” path and forced them. on the military approach.

Political Islam movements did not show any reactions against the many violations that the peoples of the region were subjected to as a result of the practices of major countries, such as the United States in its occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Moreover, these movements did not adopt a real opposition to confronting the Westernization campaigns against Arab societies and their Islamic values. On the contrary, they identified with Western values ​​at the political and social levels, despite the criticism they receive from a broad mass trend described as “religious” or “conservative.”

** Reconsider

The “authoritarian” project or the forces of “counter-revolutions” succeeded to a large extent in establishing convictions among Arab societies seeking security and stability first, that any change in the existing conditions would inevitably lead to chaos and unrest, similar to what was witnessed in Libya, Yemen and Syria, which are countries that have taken the lead in movements Political Islam is a scene of change in it.

However, the recent events in Afghanistan have generated new convictions among the leaders of the international community of the necessity of dealing “realistically” with the movements of political Islam, as they are active forces in Arab and Islamic societies.

Western researchers believe that the international community must bear costly consequences if it continues to support the forces that prevent political Islam movements from exercising freedom of expression and forming their own parties that reflect their ideological orientations, and thus effective political participation in the elections.

With the absence of strong political parties from outside political Islam movements in most Arab countries, and the presence of marginal parties participating in power that do not reflect the aspirations of the masses, preventing these movements from forming their own parties or depriving them of political participation, “may” lead to the drift of a significant proportion. From its members to extremist, terrorist or extremist organizations or organizations.

** Cross-Border

The Muslim Brotherhood, which is the godfather of most political Islam movements, will remain a transnational group that raises the fears of authoritarian regimes and military dictatorships.

Political Islam movements are still an active and influential factor in Arab and Islamic societies, despite the series of failures that have plagued their path during the last decade.

Despite the pressure attempts exerted by the “counter-revolutionary” forces, the United States and Western countries maintained a consistent position refusing to criminalize the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamic movements and classify them on the list of terrorist organizations and organizations.


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