Saturday, April 02, 2011

Plain Savages - Us

Afghan protesters angered by the burning of a copy of the Holy Quran by an obscure US pastor killed up to 20 people including seven UN staff members and security guards, beheading two foreigners, when they overran a compound in a normally peaceful northern city on Friday in the worst ever attack on the UN in Afghanistan. (Link)
What on earth is wrong with us? Although it happened in Afghanistan but I am using 'us' because Pakistan and Afghanistan are kind of a same when it comes to sectarian hatred, illiteracy and clergy control.

Here is what most probably would have happened. The clergy would have told people that Quran was burnt by the pastor, everyone in the US is supportive of this act, they all hate Islam and want to destroy Islam as a religion so revenge has to be taken. Simple minded people would have been enraged, add some more spice of inflammatory speech and voila! We have 20 innocent people dead.

People who died belonged to the United Nations who are 'infidels' doing the positive work for Afghanistan. They do not care what faith Afghanis have but rather work their for humanitarian concerns. Yes you can argue that hell lot of money is paid to them but wold you go and work in Afghanistan even if given so much money? Think again.

No body would have told these protesters that notwithstanding the fact that Quran burning was a terrible incident, this act was totally isolated, has no common acceptance in US society and nobody condones it there. Nobody amongst the protesters would have been told that showing anguish at this act was reasonable but attacking the UN compound was not advisable and killing innocent people not an act to be done. Killing those who are there to help you more so horrendous.

Pakistani and Afghani society resembles each other a lot. In fact you will not be able to tell the difference if you were to visit the areas bordering Eastern Afghanistan and Western Pakistan. Taliban are famous for ruthless killings in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Their counterparts, the Northern Alliance, in Afghanistan have an enviable dreadful human rights record. Though they may be the killing machines, the ordinary folks of both Pakistan and Afghanistan show a good deal of 'barbarism' when it comes to killing fellow human beings - if not supporting the person than the cause is supported. Remember Salman Taseer? 

He too was killed because he supported a christian woman accused of blasphemy and called Blasphemy Laws as called Black Laws. People hailed the killer Qadri as a hero as if he was a defender of Islam. He too was indoctrinated by clergy that Salman Taseer had insulted the prophet. Before his death, rallies were taken out and all sorts of inflammatory tactics were employed to incite people. And it did work.

I can see the same situation there in Afghanistan in this respect. I would have, perhaps, included illiteracy as one of the reasons in these cases but many well educated people in Pakistan supported Taseer's murder too. Anti Americanism did play a major role and religious incitement made it into a moving entity. Remember, there have been many protests on civilian deaths by US led NATO forces but no situation like this occurred. This time, religious aspect was involved too and it culminated in a terrible situation.

What is needed is an 'aware' society, educated yes but more importantly a society that is less reactive and more thoughtful in its act. The crowd that killed these people were no different, or perhaps more evil, than the pastor who burnt Quran. Both are condemnable acts. Humans are, I guess, no different when it comes to reasons for killing one another.

Related Posts

- Be Afraid. Be Very Afraid.
- 'I Hate You'

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