by Shajahan Madampat
Columnist Shajahan Madampat writes about Islamism and democracy being inherently incompatible with each other. He writes:
DOES the emergence of Islamism, or political Islam, as a potentially transformative force in the Arab world augur well for democratic prospects in the region? Will Islamism graduate, under the compulsions of realpolitik, to become the Arab Muslim equivalent of Europe's Christian Democrats or use the electoral route to eventually try and establish a scripturally vindicated form of theocratic or theo-democratic tyranny?
The question assumes special significance now, as political developments over the past one year have confirmed that the fall of dictatorships in Arab countries is most likely to be followed by the rise of Islamists to power. Are the core beliefs and ideological fundamentals that the Islamists stand for compatible with even the elementary concepts of democracy?