better a century of tyranny than one day of chaos

Ibn Taymiyyah (or Taimiya) was a fourteenth-century scholar of Damascus; this saying seems to have originated in his Kitāb al-Siyasa al-Shar’iya (Book of Divinely Ordered [literally, ‘Sharia’] Politics) written c 1311–15 (see quot. 1966).

1966 F. RAHMAN Islam 239 Ibn Tamiya immediately follows up the..alleged Hadith with the quotation, ‘sixty days of an unjust ruler are much better than one night of lawlessness’.

1994 H. MUTALIB Islam in Malaysia 64 Ibn Taymiyyah maintained that it is better to suffer a corrupt leadership for sixty days rather than face one day of chaos and anarchy.

2004 ‘Taking Hostages’ on http://www.pbs.org 30 Sept. You know there’s a very famous Arab saying that says..something like 40 years of tyranny, not one day of chaos. And this chaos..that has engulfed Iraq for the last year and a half is just devastating for the prospects of any future American backed government in Iraq.

2007 posting in Arizona Republic on http://www.azcentral.com 22 Jan. I wonder if, before waging war against Iraq, President Bush had ever heard the famous Arab saying: ‘Better a century of tyranny than one day of chaos.’


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