I have just finished reading Salman Rushdie’s article in which he is quite vociferous in denouncing Pakistan as a terrorist state and all Pakistani bureaucracy and government agencies as allies of the fundamentalists.
‘Fundamentalists? The word itself is a misnomer and a huge one at that. Islam as a religion and a way of life is based on fundamentals and if you remove those the essence is lost.
Rushdie’s sentiments are strongly pro-Indian and equally anti-Pakistan. Below the article is a stream of supportive comments from all around the world. The article in question in addition is being circulated widely amongst international facebook and twitter users. There are very few who (judging by the feedback) hold back their passions rather than leapfrogging into a dynamite like rhetoric against ‘terrorism’, jihadis, fundos, beards and the like.
Let us for a moment leave religion out of this debate. What is left then? Salman Rushdie as one human denouncing a whole country full of millions of other humans on the basis of something that was or was not done by the ruling powers – that is shield Osama Bin Laden?
Alright, let us also suppose that they did shield him… and succeeded… on their own?
If Rushdie’s claim is correct, suddenly I feel like giving Pakistan a pat on the back! We succeeded in shielding OBL from the eyes of Big Brother? I’m dumbstruck.
Does anyone notice that the common man in Rushdie’s fantasia of a terrorist state has also been suffering due to intermittent bomb blasts and attacks? Does anyone care that several areas in the north ofPakistan had become no-go areas and that it is only recently that the army, which certain intellectuals have been denouncing repeatedly, has managed to clear those areas partially using its manpower – again the common man soldiers?
Religion happens to be one concept that ironically evokes passions in the breasts of even those who do not believe in any religion. Yet when Muslims protest against defamation of their ideals, it is taken as something akin to a stereotypical illiterate, uncouth, barbaric version of Conan the Barbarian.
Pronouncing judgement on a country never creates dialogue – it only creates hatred which in turn breeds more. Suddenly we have a rise of two clearly distinct viewpoints on the web. One professes the kill all the bearded ones hate tirade and the other sticks to its see what they are like? – Get-them-before-they-get-you part of the conversation.
And every debate has an audience. The ‘humans’ are watching and waiting – for judgement or Judgement day…