By Ali Bhurgri
I woke up today, with the devastating news of the terrorist attacks in Paris and Beirut. Heart wrenched as yet again innocent civilians died. With more than 128 killed in the former and 50 plus, in the later.
The media’s coverage for the Paris attack, superseded that of Beirut. Even in times of emergency, we are guilty of dissimulation. However, that’s a debate for another day. In such times, we have emergence of the Jehovahs of morality. Some blaming religion and some defending it. On the day where innocent lives, are lost its sad that we are discussing something as insensitive as religion.
Terrorism is the most misused and abused word I can think of. The two questions I deal, with in this piece are, Are terrorist created by themselves, and what is Islams connection with it ? I thought today is the day these questions should be answered. The people blowing them selves up, have twisted ideologies. These are fundamentalist with fringe interpretations. Although, without a doubt, Geopolitics has played massive role in rising terrorism, the world faces today.
A stat goes on to show that the deaths from terrorism after 9/11 have increased by 4,500 %. The invasion of Iraq and then Afghanistan have led to dehumanization there. Which has further given the extremist elements a reason to rise and empower their ideologies. Our goals from, making this world the greatest civilization to investing everything in war, against an enemy that we truly don’t have even known.
In Iraq, before 2003, there were no suicide attack, recorded in that country, however after the invasion, there have been 1,892 suicide attack which have killed 20,000 people. One Al Qaeeda, strategist, named Abu Musab, said, “The war in Iraq almost single handled rescued the Jihadi movement” As a matter of fact, ISIL didn’t existed at the time of 9/11. But it does today. We are not really fighting a certain class, we are fighting a mindset. That has fueled to commit more atrocities.
As unjust and unfair it is, to blame terrorism on this one particular factor, it is equally essential for France and the world not to over react the same way as America did after 9/11. Let’s not give the opportunity to these extremist to paint us as the monsters. Let’s fight ISIL’s ideologies not its name. If we fight this war, we fight it out way, not theirs. That’s answering the first question.
Moving on to second one, this does not mean, that everything is to be blamed on geopolitics. There are certain injunctions in Quran which the extremist have been falsely using to support their vision. They may have a fringe interpretation, but our source is the same. And I quote from the Quran, (2:191-193) “And kill Them, wherever you find them and turn them out from, from where they have turned you out, and Al Fitnah, (disbelief and unrest) is worse than killing” this is what fundamentalist emphasis on. But growing up in a Muslim household I have been taught, this. I quote from the Quran again, (5:32) “Whoever kills an innocent person, it is as if he has killed all of humanity”
So today, Muslims coming on any platform and saying, these terrorist are not part of the 1.6 billion Muslims are as ignorant as those who are blaming all Muslims for it. The time has arrived where we need to come out of denial and accept that these fundamentalist, are part of us. They are within us.
The majority of ordinary Muslims, don’t follow the interpretation that the tiny minority does, however we can’t be dismissive. Because They are like cancer and if we don’t act now, it will be all too late. We need to do this, not because we belong from this community but because this community needs it the most today.
Pakistan from 1987 to 2002, we only had one suicide attack, however since, 2002 we have had more than 486 suicide attacks in which 6,000 have died. . As a Pakistani, Muslim. I want to start by standing against people like Mulana Abdul Aziz, and everyone like him, who sympathizes with extremist.
For the Muslims, around the world. It’s time to act against all kind of fundamentalism. The silence has to be over. The selective condemnation needs to end, either it’s an Israeli life or a Palestinian. All are equally important. It’s not about communities anymore, it’s a war. Between humans and demons. And there is only one side we go to, because it’s now or never.