Xxxv1th Congress of Asian and North African Studies
August 27- September 2.2000.
Abu_bakre. Leadership in Crisis
Mazin S. Motabagani, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Orientalistics
Department of Orientalism
Faculty of Da’wa, Al- Madinah Al-Munawwarah
Islamic University of Muhammad Ben Saud.
Few years ago, I submitted a proposal to an international conference in the field of Middle Eastern Studies titled “The World’s need for Political Leadership: Abu-Bakr an Islamic Example.” The reason for that choice was the many articles published in Western media and transmitted to Arab readership through some columnists complained that the present day leadership all over the world lacked the qualities possessed by the historical leadership in the West such as Churchill, Eisenhower, Kennedy, George Washington or even Hitler. I thought at that time that our Islamic leaders are not mentioned at all, even though we have great leaders by any standards.
The subject was turned down by that conference in spite of having a Muslim scholar who lived in the West for more than thirty years review my proposal to check that the proposal fits the academic criteria of an objective proposal. Anyhow, when the chance came to submit a proposal to this conference I went back to ht old proposal, changed few sentences here and there, and changed the title and without consulting anyone, I sent it. Luckily, the proposal was not only accepted but the organizing committee proposed that a whole panel be devoted to this topic and asked me to invite three scholars to join me in the panel.
I understand the reasons for refusing the first proposal. They were apprehensive that I started with prejudgment of the qualities of Abu_bakre. The matter is that the situation faced by Abu_Bakre was that of total chaos. If it were not for the leadership qualities of Abu_Bakre order would have been impossible to restore.