By Umer Ali
Beirut was rocked with bombing on Thursday, a day before Paris attack. There was no reaction from most of the Muslim world. It was just another day of terrorism for most. Some condemned but many thought it was a good riddance since Shias were killed. Many celebrated because Hezbollah’s stronghold was attacked. Rest didn’t just cared. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack and it was over.
A day passes and Paris attack happens. Unlike the Muslim world, westerns are empathetic, alive and defiant people. They came out together to protest, to grieve.
Facebook introduced a “Mark yourself safe” feature and allowed its users to apply a French flag filter on their profile pictures to express solidarity with France.
Read more: Paris Attacks and our Extremist Mindset
This outraged a lot of people on Pakistani social media. Hamza Ali Abbasi was one of the first ones to point out the ‘hypocrisy’ of Facebook by asking why was there no filter for Palestine? Or Syria? Or Iraq?
Here is the Post:
Interestingly, Hamza didn’t write any post condemning Beirut attack – like most of us. Also, filter feature was introduced by Facebook after LGBT rights were approved by the US – months after APS attack.
While I totally agree that there must not be selective outrage and Syria, Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan must not be ignored but an important question here is; do we care about them? I’m sure most of us can’t even locate Beirut on a map.
There is another section who blames it on West – that it funds extremist groups for their own vested interests (which I tend to agree with) and cry foul when these rogue groups come back haunting the West itself.
Before putting blame on the West for ‘creating’ likes of ISIS and Al-Qaeda, take a moment to ponder. Yes, US has been finding the terrorists for years but is that it? Does these groups thrive only on Western funding? During Afghan Jihad, funding might have come from West but it was a sentimental call for sacred war which drove thousands of Arabs to Afghanistan. Osama Bin Ladin was one of them.
Read More: Muslims, Islam and terrorism
In the same way, ISIS may or may not have been funded by Western money but its foot soldiers, the warriors who fight, people who join ISIS from all over the world, TTP warriors, Afghan Taliban – all of these groups don’t kill and die because US gives them money but because they think they are fighting a sacred war and are promised a big reward in the life after.
Also, putting the whole blame of Syrian conflict on West is a shallow and far-fetched conclusion. Anyone with even a remote knowledge of the issue would tell it’s not only the West but Iran and Saudi Arabia are the biggest players, both aiming to advance their influence in the region.
So, it’s the ideology that has to be blamed along with the funding source because money and resources come one way or another, it’s the ideology that needs to be countered instead of mere complaints.
If you are ready to be used, why wouldn’t your enemy take the advantage?
Moreover, West also needs to re-evaluate its policy. Gone are the times when you would fund and assist terrorists thousands of miles away from your home expecting to be safe.
We, Muslims claim to be one ummah but we are not. All Muslims countries together could have made a group to put forward demands for resolving outstanding issues but all of them have their own vested interests attached with these issues unresolved.
Instead of decrying West mourning over the Paris attacks, go figure what is missing within us that stops us to do so.
On a concluding note, among the list of ‘victim’ Muslim countries, I didn’t see Yemen – destroyed and wrecked by a fellow Muslim country.