The diligent staff at MEMRI is back at it again -- scouring Arab media channels for newsworthy segments worthy of translation and dissemination. This time, a revealing clip was discovered featuring Saudi scholar, Aql al-Bahili, as he explains to his counterparts why the "freedom enjoyed in the West is a hundred times better than in Islamic countries."
Unafraid to speak the truth, al-Bahili continued:
"I know and I acknowledge that there is freedom in the Koran. Many Koranic texts state that people are free. But when the political implementation of a certain ideology has failed to accomplish justice for over 1,400 years, whereas others [i.e. the West] have managed to instate justice by means of a [different] political ideology, I believe that even though [Islamic justice] preceded them, this does not detract from the credit due to those who have reformed the path of human society, infusing it with freedom through an ideological platform other than Islam. Today, all the Islamists acknowledge that the freedom enjoyed in the West is a hundred times better than in the Islamic countries. […]
"Indeed, I am aware that Islam is all-encompassing. Our problem is that sacred texts are being cited by tyrants, by honorable people, and by Islamists alike. Today, we must adopt general principles by which human society abides: People must obtain their rights, public funds must not be plundered, a doorman may become a minister, and a minister may become a doorman, people must have the right to be safe from attacks, as well as the right to establish companies and political parties. These are the principles of human societies on planet Earth." […]
To speak such words can be a dangerous thing in the Islamic world. Many hope al-Bahili and others like him will not be silenced.
Video and transcript provided by MEMRI: