This lecture focuses on fundamental issues: the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s (may God rest his soul in peace) understanding of authority and its practical and moral applications, as well as its influence on Arab political thought. The lecture discusses the influence of the late Sheikh Zayed on the ways of exercising authority, both today and in the future. In comparison with contemporary Arab systems, the legitimacy of Sheikh Zayed’s authority was not derived from a sacred or absolute power, nor from one that promoted false achievements based on ideological propaganda.
This lecture also presents the problem of political authority from the perspective of the nation state and its interactions with other Arab experiences, whether it is the ruling class or civil society. The political achievements, both actual and moral, are recalled through the experiences of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan (may God rest his soul in peace). The late Sheikh Zayed established a culture that aimed to deepen the moral content of the state, form bonds with the people, and raise their general awareness. This was achieved through enabling the religious heritage (the spiritual aspect) and tribal heritage (the social aspect), as well as focusing on building and constructing. Thus a charismatic and wise figure transformed a political vision into reality and founded a country that can maintain its development and authenticity.
Based on the rich experiences of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan (may God rest his soul in peace) in the political field, the foundations of his civilizational project will be discussed. How these foundations contributed to the success of the union and the establishment of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) will also be explained. The late Sheikh Zayed instilled dynamism and optimism, achieving a distinctive system of government in the Arab world. He proved that it is possible to build modern, successful, and stable Arab countries, eliminating the excuses that some Arab countries use to justify their failures.