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Iran made history in February 2009 when it launched into orbit the Muslim world’s first domestically constructed satellite. What made this development even more stunning is the fact that under sanctions and with a belligerent US continually spreading propaganda against Iran, it has managed to indigenously develop a space based programme.
Iran has managed to develop advanced ballistic missiles and now satellites and is the only Muslim country to have launched these with little external help.
Industrialisation can be defined as when an economy is geared around manufacturing and this then acts as a stimulus to other sectors of the economy. An example of this was the British Empire which made manufacturing central to its economy. The manufacturing of ships, ammunitions and mining propelled Britain into a global superpower with the ability to rapidly mobilise for war and allowed it to colonise the world. In times of peace such industries were used for civilian purposes.
This is the fundamental reason for any nation wanting to industrialise, having an independent manufacturing base makes a nation self-sufficient and become capable of opposing the leading states. By not industrialising a nation will not be politically and economically independent, it will be reliant on other nations for its defence and it will always be dependent on the will of other states, like the Islamic world is today.
If we look across the Muslim world there has in fact been some technological and military developments even though these nations have not industrialised. However the overall economic and industrial standing of the Muslim world is very far from where it can be and should be. The Muslim world today lags far behind the industrial nations of the world. Whilst the West went through industrialisation 150 years ago the Muslim world has remained largely unindustrialised and in many cases reliant on the developed world.
Many commentators and analysts across the world have portrayed the Muslim world to lack the necessary ingredients to develop. They cite the education systems across the Muslim world as still residing in the medieval era. They have argued that the Muslim world lacks the rationality that the West has taken towards enquiry and science as necessary prerequisites. Many liberal thinkers have even argued Islam is the obstacle holding the Muslim world back and that only through a reformation can salvation occur.
At the same time the Muslim rulers managed the economies of the Muslim world with little direction, they have relied upon short term policies and on the very few occasions due to impending war’s have funded elements of industry, but even this was driven largely for nationalist reasons rather than for the long term benefit of the Ummah. The Muslim rulers in the Middle East have constantly argued they cannot regain Palestine due to the military might of Israel, Yasser Arafat argued on many occasions at Palestinian refugee camps that Israel’s possession of nuclear weapons meant negotiations were the only means to tackle the Palestinian issue. Pervez Musharraf argued he had no choice but to support the US in its efforts in Afghanistan as Pakistan had no political power or a military deterrent, large enough and hence was too weak in the face of US demands.
The aim of the book is to asses the current status of the economies and position of the industries in the Muslim world. The claims by the Muslim rulers will be assessed as well as many of the assertions Western analysts have made about the prospects of industrialisation in the Muslim world. The reality and prospects of the Muslim world will be shown alongside the myths that unfortunately have become accepted as truths amongst Muslims. A general blueprint will then be outlined showing how the Khilafah could industrialise the Muslim lands and change the status of the Muslim world from its current malaise to one of a superpower.
14th October 2009