Geopolitics behind overpopulation

November 20, 2009 at 4:23 am (Economics, Global Issues, Governance, Khilafa, Politics)


By Sharique Naeem

The geopolitics of today, steered by the imperial powers with their ulterior designs, perplexes one by its ability of cunning deceit. The capitalist system, which dominates the global arena, deems its intricate and institutionalized failures as external evil, and then strives to exorcize them with fuming abstract notions that emanate from its own capital-oriented principles. Consider for instance the issue of ‘overpopulation’.

The rate of population growth over the last century has been labeled the underlying cause of the world standing on the brink of disaster; it is argued we are running out of food to sustain such growing population. It is argued by the proponents of over-population that the huge growth in world population is responsible for poverty, environmental destruction and social unrest. Economic development in the third world is impossible as long as populations continue to grow. As a result, international agencies and governments have developed numerous programmes to curtail the rate of population growth. All of these have been implemented in the third world.

This alleged over-population has to be in relation to something to qualify it being over. That something is the use of resources. The resources being consumed leading to global imbalances are attributed to population sizes.

When all assumptions on the effects of population growth are scrutinized population, it can be seen that population increases in no way have ever contributed to the many ills of the world today and what becomes clear is that there is a lucid political agenda in attributing the increasing global population as the cause of the world’s potential disaster. This agenda is to shift the real cause away from the lifestyles, living patterns, un-sustainability of consumerism, poverty and blatant abuse of the third world in order that the western world can live of the third world. Much of the world problems are direct results of capitalism, which principally allows unbridled accumulation of capital and freedom of ownership. The irony is that, they are able to achieve this by loyal dictators, such as in Central Asian countries, e.g. Uzbekistan, or Pakistan; by subservient monarchs in the Middle East; and when need be – quite conveniently – through democratically elected governments as we see in South Asia. When all else fails, a direct military intervention by the imperial powers is adopted to extend their control, as seen in Iraq, and Afghanistan.

In the face of this capitalist hegemony, stands the ideological challenge presented by Islam. As opposed to the capitalist myopic viewpoint, Islam presents a uniquely realistic approach to the crises the world faces at large, and the third world bears in particular. From the perspective of Islam, resources are sufficient to fulfill the basic needs of humanity, and any imbalances are the results of constriction in distribution. It is therefore no wonder that the governance and economic system of Islam – embodied in the Khilafah, presents detail injunctions, to deal with the plethora of problems the world faces today. The economic system of Islam gives considerable focus on ensuring circulation of wealth. Islamic revenue generating mechanism, unlike capitalist taxes, such as GST, Income Tax, etc (which disproportionately burden the masses), are based on Ushr, Kharaj, Jizya, Thoghoor, Rikaz, etc. It ensures that natural mineral resources are effectively utilized by the Khilafah state, for the betterment of the people, by making their privatization illegal.

Also, it ensures, a significant net amount is generated by taxing savings of rich people via Zakat, a sum which is then only to be spend on the restricted category of people who are poor, needy etc. Moreover, essential resources such as oil, gas, electricity, are considered public property, which the state manages for use by the public, and is forbidden to earn profits from. The centralized ruling system, a decentralized administration, coupled with the unique courts structure in Khilafah, ensure, a transparent governance and use of funds, along with timely accountability. This stands in stark contrast with a shared ruling system such as democracy, where responsibility is blamed on one another, and laws can be manipulated by foreign hands. The Khilafah is, therefore, immune to foreign interference, and thus is a vibrant and firmly grounded state.

The Islamic State will deal with the issues, in the light of the solutions that emanate from Islam, instead of resorting to wrongly constructed notions such as Overpopulation. For the reality today is, that the world in not overpopulated, the capitalist west just consumes disproportionately. Overpopulation is a convenient excuse, which ironically – yet strategically – is being used to admonish the millions who suffer in abject poverty, hunger, disease, lack of vital facilities, while at the same time, channeling capital in the hands of the few profiteers sitting at the seats in international monetary institutions, war-mongers in the west and corrupt and incompetent bureaucracy, etc.

A Khilafah, without an iota of doubt is the need of our time. And a coming of such a state on the international arena will have significant impact. It will for good, unveil many of the myths and false reasons that the developed world uses to manipulate socio-economic and political conditions in the third world. The Islamic state will also strive to uproot the main problem -capitalism – that is at the heart of global injustice. Subsequently we would be moving towards a world, with a much different, realistically beneficial, more fascinating and positively transformed geopolitics.

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