The Problem with Hizb-ut-Tahrir

By Taimur Rahman

Hizb-ut-Tahrir (HT) claims to be a pan-Islamist sunni organization. It proposes that the enforcement of Khilafah over the world is a solution to the miseries that afflict mankind.

Let us examine the political and economic views of Hizb ul Tehreer. If the politics of the HT is to be put a nutshell, they are reactionaries that want to take Muslim societies back a couple of hundred years. Here are their reactionary views:

Democracy

Much like the Taliban, the Hizb ut-Tahrir rejects democracy as a western system and unislamic despite aspects of it such as elections existing in the Islamic political system. Hizb ut-Tahrir argues democracy as a system is:

the rule of people, for the people, by the people. The basis of the democratic system is that people possess the right of sovereignty, choice and implementation. … it is a Kufr system because it is laid down by man and it is not from the Shari’ah Laws.

In place of rule of by and for the people, they want to introduce the rule of by and for the mullahs. They call this the establishment of a Khilafah.

In this Khilafah non-Muslims will be prohibited from serving in any of the ruling offices, such as the position of the Caliph, nor vote for these officials, as these positions require those who fulfil them to believe in the system. Only Muslims have “the right to participate in the election of the Khaleefah [head of state] and in giving him the pledge (ba’iah). Non-Muslims have no right in this regard.”

Hizb ut-Tahrir believe Islam forbids women from ruling positions such as caliph, Chief Justice, provincial governor, or mayor citing Prophetic traditions. Article 109 of the party’s draft constitution prescribes segregation of the sexes in public activities such as school, sporting activities, etc. Article 114 of the constitution specifies that women should not be allowed to be in private with men other than their husband or members of their immediate family (father, brother, son). Article 116 stipulates that once married a woman is obliged to obey her husband.

HT says that Muslims who “have by themselves renounced Islam … are guilty of apostasy (murtad) from Islam [and] are to be executed.” That is the main pillar reserved for socialists, communists and others who may try to organize workers and peasants for a classless society.

Economy

The idiocy and reactionary nature of the HT can be guaged by their economic policy. Their ideal economic system is one in which modern economies are taken all the way back to a form of barter trade.

… it is the duty of the Khilafah State to make its currency in gold and silver and to work on the basis of gold and silver as it was during the time of the Messenger of Allah and his Khulafa’a after him

Anyone who does not have the common sense to understand that the substitution of the money economy by trade in gold and silver cannot be accomplished without utterly destroying the productive forces of modern society. To even suggest this as a serious proposition in the modern world is absolutely insane.

There is no point in going any further into their economic views since it should be blatantly obvious from this one quotation that it would be an utter waste of time.

These simple facts prove very clearly that the HT is a fundamentalist organization full of nutter, idiots, reactionary misogynist, and reactionary idiots.

Many on the Left may admonish me for using such words. They think that I must be kind courteous and polite to such organizations. They write long tracts about how the Left is isolated and unconnected to the people and that these right-wing organizations have come to represent the “aspirations of the people”. This is an utterly incorrect argument.

Mao said “We counted the mighty no more than muck.” And this is exactly what I think of these fundamentalist organizations that are reactionary to the core

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “The Problem with Hizb-ut-Tahrir

  1. Shareef

    The use of gold and silver as an exchange mechanism is no more a system of barter trade than exchange of paper money backed by gold and silver. What they are proposing is the Gold/silver standard which incidently is used by Venezuela (100% back by gold) and Switzerland (part backed by gold) and others. The gold/silver standard certainly has many beneficial properties and many serious economists suggest this is the way out of the world financial crisis that we are currently seeing. Google “Gold Standard” and you will see. Thank you.

  2. LOL…where do these idiots come from?

  3. YLH

    Taimur,

    This is an excellent and logical rebuttal to the hogwash that they give out at lectures. Some of their social ideas are even crazier than their economic ones.

    In my view they are a bunch of crooks.I challenged some of their historical fallacies in my article : “myths of the golden age of Islam”.

    In Pakistan they thankfuly alienated a lot of people when they started their campaign to win followers by abusing Jinnah.

    According to them, Jinnah was one of the two traitors the Muslim world has produced- the other being Kemal Ataturk.

  4. Reza

    After googling found that even Alan Greenspan thinks the Gold Standard is a good idea (from Wikipedia):

    “However, many prominent economists have expressed sympathy with a hard currency basis, and have argued against fiat money, including former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan (himself a former Objectivist), and macro-economist Robert Barro. Greenspan famously argued the case for returning to a gold standard in his 1966 paper “Gold and Economic Freedom”, in which he described supporters of fiat currencies as “welfare statists” intent on using monetary policies to finance deficit spending. He has argued that the fiat money system of today has retained the favorable properties of the gold standard because central bankers have pursued monetary policy as if a gold standard were still in place”

  5. bonobashi

    @Reza

    Alan Greenspan as a macro-economic authority in the year 2009?

    After the laissez-faire mess that he has dropped the world into, isn’t any advice from him likely to have a contrary effect?

  6. Anwar

    I agree with the author – HT is a cosmetic version of Talibans and nothing else.

  7. Rashid

    HT wants to establish and “islamic” government…with one head of state i.e. Khalifa….and force its citizens to practice islam…all they want is to force islam from top down…
    Haven’t we seen examples of such FAILED efforts….Pakistan, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, and Iran.

    Real change in Muslims life is only possible when change comes from bottom to top. When people are rationally and logically convinced that Islam is the best way.

  8. yasserlatifhamdani

    Atleast don’t put Pakistan in that list. Pakistan has always been a nation state where the ruling elite has at times used religion as a tool of state-craft. There has never been any imposition though despite our horrible record otherwise.

  9. Salim

    I am so stupid that I speak of gold and silver standard in the whole economy without actualizing whether it will meet all the economic factors, transactions as that is what the hizb want!

    Secondly, they speak of gold and silver and then they speak of paper currency, whilst they forbid derivatives!!! How can they have paper derivatives for their currency when it is haram?

    They are just a bunch of mad looney ametuers whom the Taliban thought were out of touch! Ask them, even the Taliban told them to get lost!

  10. Tariq Khan

    I may not agree with Hizb- Ut – Tahrir on many things, but Taimur Rahman talks a lot of rubbish. Western economies are in serious trouble and in the U.K. were heading for a double dip recession. We have accumulated unprecedented amounts of debt that will take decades to pay off. This is because of Capitalism and Globalization. Capitalism is inherently flawed.
    Hizb-ut-Tahrir is nothing like the Taliban. As for Pakistan… it is a “banana republic”; neither democratic nor Islamic; with Mr. 10% acting as President. Saudia Arabia and Iran are not Islamic S
    tates…anyone with half a brain should know that. We were doing alright with the Gold standard back in the days, but the Americans saw to that.

  11. Shamsul Wahid

    Taimur

    Its easy to critique an idea – whats your alternative model?

    Shamsul

  12. Salman

    While there are challenges to bringing back the gold and silver backed currency, it will be done since Islam has advocated it and Islam is from the Divine one.

    It will take political will and the establishment of the Khilafah.

    Mr Taimur may ridicule HuT for this policy but the financial crisis and the printing of fiat money has exposed the flaws of capitalist economics that he makes sujood to. Where is your God now Mr Taimur??

    The economic system of Islam will radically change global economics by returning stability and confidence to trading markets, which are characterised by real and not false commodities like stocks and shares, derivatives and futures. People will create real wealth which is productive for humanity unlike the monsters created by the capitalists which have made so many in the world impovrished