Not ready for justice 80

Yesterday we quoted Bernard Lewis on the Arab rebellions and what it is that the Arab people want. (See the post below, Not ready for democracy.) We believe him that they want justice, not democracy or freedom as we understand those two concepts. But we wonder if they want justice as we understand it. He doesn’t say “social justice” – which means the actual injustice of forced redistribution of wealth – but suggests that a return to traditional tribal consultation and arbitration would satisfy them better than the rule of law. We suppose that the sheikhs would be guided by sharia, which is not remotely just, and is extremely cruel. It keeps  women subservient, and while Bernard Lewis deplores the condition of women in most Arab and Islamic countries, he  does not say how a return to the old tribal system would help their emancipation.

They – the Arab masses – want what we have. Sure, they want the products of our civilization, but are not ready for the freedom that makes the invention of those things possible, for the rule of law that makes freedom possible, for the impartial justice that applies the rule of law. Perhaps in time they’ll come to understand this. But to change their ways to our ways, they would have to renounce sharia, throw off the intellectual chains of Islam, and embrace secularism. There are no signs that they will.