Articles of the year 2005

The Silver Lining
Published on July 19th, 2005

Pakistan is truly blessed. The tragic events of both 9/11 and 7/7, have served as a wake up call for Pakistan. In the espousal of Suicide as a weapon the dark forces may seem to have committed the same suicide, for they have brought into sharp focus the damage they are doing to Islam, thereby alienating the large body of moderate Muslims from whom they were drawing their support financial and otherwise. In fact it is the moderate and rational Muslim who will condemn these acts and the preachers of hate. It will also embolden those in the congregation to stand up to any Mullah who would continue to preach on these lines. He will also carefully scrutinize the use that his funds are being put to. He will certainly not donate to a body that serves to undermine his position in British society, one that has been difficult for him from the beginning. The beard was never acceptable in the west ( ask any Sikh) Now the focus is even narrower and sharper, and both the Hijab and Beard which were earlier tolerated as quirks of an alien culture have now begun to create a perception of an enemy to western society—dangerous, and committed. Also having used young People of Pakistani origin the bombers have given President Musharraf the required clear mandate from within the country, and from his two main supporters, Bush and Blair, a mandate to remove the Madressahs, and the preachers of hate. This opportunity should be grasped firmly, and the Mullahs of the MMA should be told to issue a categoric Fatwa denouncing the use of Suicide as a weapon. They are to be told firmly that they are either with us or against us. To be against should tar them as anti- Islam and anti Pakistan. This should be reiterated time and again through the Media relentlessly so that the Mullahs realize the danger they have exposed to the Pakistani people, here and abroad. The role of the Media has not been properly utilized by the Government, but it is time that the masses were told the truth about the dark side of the Madressah culture. We have enough talented personnel in the Media world who could and should be able to put this message across effectively. This should be seen as a silver lining for both True Islam and Pakistan.

The Pakistani people have a right to live without fear, a right seriously jeopardized in the UK, and now in the NWFP if the Hasba bill is put through. It is now the duty of President Musharraf to practice as President what he has been preaching for a long time—enlightened moderation, and now to enforce this moderation with a big stick if needed. The Mullahs respect only raw power. They should be exposed to power in its rawest state. The Taliban regime that had been established in Afghanistan was enforced by brute Power, and would never have been removed without the US bombings.

This is indeed the time for the President to call for a charge and to tell us, the moderates, to follow his lead. We the moderates are waiting for his lead, and we shall follow. Let there be a cleansing of the souls. The evidence is there. The Madressahs already have a disciplined, dedicated and committed pool of foot soldiers, who are certainly not Hare Krishna type peaceniks. They are battle-ready, for when the call is given . The bloodshed that will come later, will be at the call of the Mullahs. It should be prevented now by exposing the designs of the Mullahs, and the damage they are doing to Islam.

Unfortunately there is a shortage of sanity in the available Islamic intellectuals who can debate clearly and eloquently the cause of the moderates. The Sh Rashids of the Parliament would be counterproductive for this exercise. We need new and young blood to come forward and lead the charge. The stakes are far too high to let this opportunity pass. As we know perception is all important. It is Islam that is being perceived as a religion of violence, and now Pakistani origins are suspect. Both these perceptions must be corrected, and the real Islam with all its beauty should be brought to the fore.