11 Jun 2008

Where is PAN-MALAYSIAN ISLAMI C PARTY (PAS) among others

Do believe that Islam and democracy are
compatible and that the participation of Islamist political parties in democratic systems is
permissible and, indeed, desirable. With this principle established, the core contribution of this
study follows with an in-depth analysis of the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS), its evolution,
and its political agenda. The experience of PAS, which has a long-term record of peacefully
participating in Malaysia’s quasi-democratic system, may challenge many of the assumptions
commonly held about Islamist parties, while at the same time reinforcing others. This dual result
demonstrates the need to consider each Islamist group within its own particular context rather
than resorting to absolute conceptions of what Islamism is or is not in practice.

Since its establishment in 1951, the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party, known in Malay30 as
Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS), has taken an incremental approach toward its ultimate objective
of Islamic governance, which it has attempted to achieve within the constraints of the Malaysian
political system. While most analyses of Islamism focus on groups in greater Southwest Asia,
PAS has existed unnoticed by many commentators on Islamism despite its position as one of the
first Islamist political parties – over both the Jama’at-e Islami of Pakistan and the Muslim
Brotherhood of Egypt – to obtain real political power by way of constitutionally-sanctioned
democratic elections.31 As the largest and most powerful opposition party in Malaysia, PAS has
moved the country’s political discourse away from issues of secularism and nationalism toward
religious issues. In its pursuit of electoral seats, the group has adapted and evolved as a means of
overcoming the considerable challenges it faces, but has never abandoned its central objective of
creating an Islamic state in Malaysia.

Unlike the experience of many other Islamist groups that have been prohibited from
functioning in the open space of electoral politics, PAS is unique in that it has participated
openly in electoral politics since the period before Malaysian independence in 1957. While the
context in which PAS operates differs from that of many other Islamist parties, an in-depth
understanding of the group’s evolution and agenda could provide valuable insight into how other
Islamist parties might behave should they be allowed to compete in free and fair elections.
Despite the contextual differences that stand between the experience of PAS and other Islamist political parties, the PAS agenda is archetypally Islamist and could be mistaken for that of the
Muslim Brotherhood of Egypt or Jordan.

Along with the changes in leadership, PAS undertook several additional policies to
bolster its appeal. These include de-emphasizing its agenda on an Islamic state, calling for
enhanced civil liberties and freedoms of assembly and the press, building better relationships
with the Chinese and other non-Muslim communities, and enhancing the role of women in the
party...for further readings..download it in my MY SHARE BOX entitled.."Thesis PAS"

1 comment:

ruqayya said...

couldn't agree more..pas have shown its great attitude in facing most of global n internal issue! but still lot of thing 2 do..nway,pjuangan i2 spanjag hayat!=)

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