Broken Wings Indo-Pak-Bangla 1947-71

Today, after many years have passed, I have nothing left out of that beautiful dream except painful memories flapping like invisible wings around me, filling the depths of my heart with sorrow, and bringing tears to my eyes; and my beloved, beautiful Selma, is dead and nothing is left to commemorate her except my broken heart and tomb surrounded by cypress trees. That tomb and this heart are all that is left to bear witness of Selma.

The silence that guards the tomb does not reveal God’s secret in the obscurity of the coffin, and the rustling of the branches whose roots suck the body’s elements do not tell the mysteries of the grave, by the agonized sighs of my heart announce to the living the drama which love, beauty, and death have performed.

Oh, friends of my youth who are scattered in the city of Beirut, when you pass by the cemetery near the pine forest, enter it silently and walk slowly so the tramping of your feet will not disturb the slumber of the dead, and stop humbly by Selma’s tomb and greet the earth that encloses her corpse and mention my name with deep sigh and say to yourself, “here, all the hopes of Gibran, who is living as prisoner of love beyond the seas, were buried. On this spot he lost his happiness, drained his tears, and forgot his smile.”

Ay that tomb grows Gibran’s sorrow together with the cypress trees, and above the tomb his spirit flickers every night commemorating Selma, joining the branches of the trees in sorrowful wailing, mourning and lamenting the going of Selma, who, yesterday was a beautiful tune on the lips of life and today is a silent secret in the bosom of the earth.

Oh, comrades of my youth! I appeal to you in the names of those virgins whom your hearts have loved, to lay a wreath of flowers on the forsaken tomb of my beloved, for the flowers you lay on Selma’s tomb are like falling drops of dew for the eyes of dawn on the leaves of withering rose. (Khalil Gibran, Broken Wings).

I belong to the race that ranges from the Indus in the West to the Karnaphully in the East. I am South Asian. The history of my people is rather a sad one, images of blood, bodies, dishonor and many horrors I feel ashamed to pen down here flash immediately. This is how court historians painted our minds. The colors are thick and deep, looking nearly impossible to remove from the canvas of our minds. We have been forced to believe that we fought to liberate our wings so that the bird of freedom could fly high. We blamed the other wing for whatever went wrong. The blame game just repeats year after year. What does it matter, I ask, if I blame my right hand or left hand for my crimes? We killed ourselves, we humiliated ourselves, and now we blame ourselves for what we did to ourselves with our own hands. What could be more pathetic than this ridiculous suggestion for our future generations as a way to know their history.

In Khalil Gibran’s classic, Broken Wings, he paints a picture of a lovely woman Selma, a prisoner of priests and rulers due to her circumstances. Selma is the poet’s metaphor for our beloved country, as is the Indian sub-continent for perhaps almost a billion people. The murderous campaigns of death committed upon Selma of Hindustan in the last one hundred years scream in silence beneath the smoke of nationalism, socialism and other isms crafted by the priests and rulers, local and foreign.

1905 Dhaka, birthplace of the Muslim League, the party founded by British loyalist Sir Agha Khan to act as a “bridge” between Muslim community and the British imperialists. Did Selma know that this was the beginning of the Priest-Politician syndicate? Selma’s lover (read common people) was fooled by the slogans and the Royal certifications and peerage given to him by his slave master – the British Royalty. The lover was dumb enough to believe that the founding fathers of the Muslim League were really looking after the Muslim community’s interest, as opposed to the British Royal imperial interests.

British loyalists told the lover to separate Selma from her family (Hindustan) for good. Why? Because her family disallowed eating Beef amongst other things. Leaving the family, the lover was told, would be in the best interest of Selma and would ensure a bright future for her, Selma would get her Freedom, her right to self determination, and it was for Selma to make that happen by abandoning her past, that is, a very long past.

Selma separated. Left a 1000 year inheritance behind. Left her people, her admirers, her protectors, her jewels, her fortresses, her monuments, her history, her culture, her Taj Mahal, because her lover believed this was exactly what was needed for Selma for her happiness. Her screams got louder yet only her tears heard them, her eyes looked back at what she was leaving behind, the legacy of her family built on the sacrifices over a thousand years, all vanishing before her. No worries, the priest-ruler syndicate reminded, we will build hundreds of Taj Mahals, bigger and shinier than the old junk left behind.

Selma gained independence granted to her by the imperial masters (read owners) at the price of cutting herself into two. She did that. So did her lover. Two Selmas and two lovers. Hearts of lovers must be jealous hearts. Each wing wanted Selma all for itself. Once again, Selma was told, by the priest-ruler club to cut her wings into another two. Only one lover could have Selma all for himself. The other had to die. This was in Selma’s best interest, she was quickly reminded, again. So it was, just as planned, by the priest-ruler camp, Selma was cut into two. One lover died. But this time, so did Selma. Selma died out of grief. The dagger that killed Selma was made with the steel of pain, sharp as her spirit’s screams and pointed like her tear drops.

The lover that survived manages still to live with the memory of beautiful Selma. He built a mural in her honor, drops roses in her name and visits her tomb annually singing praises and hymns about Selma’s virtue, eminence and elegance.

The question that Khalil Gibran might want to ask his dedicated readers is this.

Who do you think truly loved Selma? Or did she ever have a true love?

A true love in my eyes is one who makes the self sacrifice for his beloved, not the other way round. The priest-ruler class loved Selma for their own selves, for their own self centric ambitions. True lover of Selma would have gladly sacrificed his desires to keep Selma spiritually together, to not cut her up into pieces again and again, to protect her history, her honor, her culture, her legacy, her smiles, her happiness and to ultimately protect Selma’s family and her people. That would have been true love for Selma, to fight for her, to remove the iron chains from her neck, and if necessary to offer Selma the lover’s ultimate sacrifice.

The legacy of blood in the Indo-Pak-Bangla sub-con reminds us of our history of betrayal by the priest-ruler classes, over and over again.

Explore More : https://www.dawn.com/news/1359141

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Why Nawaz Sharif’s Economic Model Failed

South Asians (from India-Pakistan-Bangladesh) are well known for low wages, good work ethics and more importantly for delicious feasts. Investment Bankers from Europe and Americas like to congratulate South Asians for being at the center of global financial attraction and the preferred destination for investment. Especially since China, Singapore, Thailand, Korea and Malaysia have achieved their development objectives, its now time for South Asia to move up. South Asians however, disappointed the world and more importantly its citizens for repeated failures in Transparency, Governance and Rule of Law.

All this despite the fact that South Asia happens to be blessed with abundant resources ranging from the majestic Himalayas in the north to the beautiful blue waters of the Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal in the south. Population of 1.5 billion people, mostly young and hard working. Large agricultural lands add to its growing industrial base enjoying a good portion of world textiles and garments production. Resources couldn’t help Pakistan from spiraling down to its current low. South Asians would like to know “is it because of the corrupt politicians, or is it because of the System itself?”

First, there was the war of 1971, until then Pakistan was the combination of West and East Pakistan and a shining star for Development Economics, before the generals decided it launch genocide on its own citizens in the country’s Eastern Wing, resulting in a humiliating defeat for the Pakistan Army, making way for the birth of independent Bangladesh.

In reality, West Pakistani generals in their utter brilliance managed to secede from the majority part of the country (East Pakistan), breaking up a united Pakistan into the new Pakistan and Bangladesh. Statistics will show that the economic progress of united Pakistan in the 60’s came mainly from the export of Jute (East Pakistan) and Cotton products (West Pakistan), whereas the distribution of wealth favored mostly the Western wing, regardless of East Pakistan’s contribution or its majority population.

It doesn’t take rocket science to figure out why the poor farmers and workers in the East would stand up to this economic injustice. But the generals knew better, they chose guns and bullets to do the talking. By December 1971, Pakistan was defeated, general Niazi surrendered half of Pakistan to India along with 90,000 soldiers.  The highly prosperous, populous, hard working wing of the country had been lost forever. The stupid generals still couldn’t get it.

Neither did the politicians rallying around Bhutto understand what they lost. For them, it was not possible for Mr Bhutto to loose an election to a nobody called Mujib from the backward farm land of Bengal (East Pakistan). Heck, Bhutto was UC Berkley, Oxford, UN, Foreign Minister, Nuclear Weapons and all that, and what did Mujib have – nothing! that was according to the enlightened men and women around Bhutto. Mujib did have something. Brains. Yup, he knew how to talk to his people, he knew to what extent his people would tolerate injustice, he knew how to break that tolerance level. That was the magic of Mujib which Bhutto’s ego refused to see, no matter the consequences.

In post 9171 scenario, the country went from being Divided Pakistan to Weakened Pakistan. For decades the country saw the rise and fall of one military dictator after another. Politicians lined up to the generals like models holding signs reading “Take me, I’ll be obedient!”. Generals chose. And the “models” delivered, faithfully. In the process, some “models” earned billions. Connections with other equally shameful and corrupt “royals” were established and exploited for mutual gains.

Business was booming. Except for the poor man who had to work harder than before for his tax and Vat had to bear the responsibility for filling up the deep pockets of the greedy top brass. Electricity generation, foreign currency reserve, current account deficit, devaluation of currency, unemployment and inflation joined hands in an unholy alliance to convert a Weakened Pakistan into a Bankrupt Pakistan. None of these economic causes qualify as anything other than man made, the  work of few elites abusing the mass people, while billions of dollars found their way into European banks, picking up multi million pound flats along the way.

Nawaz Sharif’s economic model rested on Chinese and Arabian investments in mega infrastructure projects. While that sounds very promising, the country’s ability to sustain long term foreign debt was deteriorating quickly. Country’s ability to service foreign debt depends on its foreign currency earnings and reserves, not on Chinese investments in roads although in the long run good infrastructure becomes essential. Pakistan’s foreign currency reserve as of writing stood at 2 weeks imports. It should be more like 3 to 6 months imports. Exports stagnated while imports increased. Are workers becoming more costly to hire?

Foreign buyers like the low wages in South Asia. But that’s not all. Low labor wages is but one of the many ingredients making up total production cost. Energy, shipment, insurance, technology, labor efficiency etc contribute just as well. More than anything else, lack of power hindered manufacturers from investing in export driven factories, on the other hand, due to higher production costs foreign buyers preferred to look east, leaving the country with stagnating foreign currency earnings. This could not have happened without the contribution of the C factor.

This political-economic model, its architecture, guarantees the enrichment (beyond our imagination) of few elites at the top while the “productive forces” will continue to break their backs – working, paying vat and taxes and finally be forced to vote (thereby legalize) in favor of a blood thirsty greed based corruption ridden “system” of hidden imperialism. Imran Khan may be clean, but him alone hardly stands a chance to rectify the grand old system of greed and corruption that plagues the administrative machinery.

When would be a good time to strengthen the argument for upscaling an alternative to this unjust and harsh political-economic abusive system? Have you given the “alternative” a thought, would you even like to know what the alternative is…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A King and the Moon – and the Beginning of a 1000 year Civilization from India

On my lunch break right now, so I can afford to share my thoughts. On my way to work I read the ARABIC Grammar book. Four English to Arabic phrases from this book knocked me off few hours ago. Here are the 4 lines:

  1. Al Hindu watanun Adheemun. India is a great country.
  2. Al Hindu watanee. India is my country.
  3. Uhibbu Watanee. I love my country.
  4. Al Hunudu kulluhum Ekhwatee wa Akhawatee. All Indians are my brothers and sisters.

The book was written by Mr Amanulla Vadakkangara, a respected educationist from Malappuram District in Kerala, India. The author taught Arabic in an international Indian school in Doha, Qatar. Are you surprised yet? If not, then let me explain this in bit more detail.

The outside world thinks that Muslims of India are basically north Indians speaking Urdu and having more in common with Central Asian cultures as in Afghanistan and Uzbekistan which produced raiders and conquerors whose very names still evoke some kind mixed feelings in the common people. Pakistani books usually credit a young general called Bin Qasem with the honor of bringing Islam by the sword to India going back to the 8th-9th century Umayyad dynasty. It is said that Bin Qasem in an effort to rescue a band of Muslims wrongly captured by Raja Dahir of Sind arrived with about a hundred soldiers defeating armies much more numerical superiority paving the way for the firm footing of Islamic governance in the western region of South Asia (basically Sind and Punjab to some extent in today’s Pakistan).

This story is refuted strongly by another Muslim community called the Shiites. They say that Bin Qasem was actually ordered by the great butcher Hajjaj ibn Yousuf to hunt down supporters of the Ahl-al-Bayt (peace be upon them) who had takn refuge in the court of Raja Dahir who himself being overtaken by the nobility of the Shiite Muslims refused to give them up to anyone and in the process lost his Kingdom to the young Muslim Arab general.

Now, let me tell you that there is yet another story which clouds both the narrations stated above. Islam is said to have arrived in India much earlier than Bin Qasem, if we follow the history of a certain king based in Kerala in the 7th century. Kerala boasts of an interesting geography located in the southwestern tip of India placed right next to Tamil Nadu in the east and the Arabian Sea in the west, basically the Malabar coast is the site of Kerala where natives speak Malayalam housing 56% Hindus and 26% Muslims in its state. The Kerala Muslims (or Malyallam Muslims) also called Mappas locally have a rich story to tell and it goes back to the 7th century at the time of the Holy Nabi Sallillahu alihi wa aalihi wa sallam.

According to legend a noble king called Cheraman Peruman was out at night when he witnessed the splitting of the moon. His amazement could not be explained by any scholar in his court except when he approached visiting Arab traders about it who only promised to search for answers in their journey on the sea. Years later, the Arab traders came back to him with answers, and the answer was in their desert country of Arabia itself for a man had arrived in their midst who declared his appointment as the leader of mankind being the last and final Prophet and Messenger of ALLAH Swt. It was the blessed Nabi sallillahu alihi wa Aalihi wa Sallam who had split the moon into pieces one day as his miracle for the doubters’ minds. The Prophet (swm) had split the moon by asking ALLAH SWT for a miracle and it was that miracle which the noble king had witnessed and it was this even t that was responsible for setting off waves of questions and thoughts in the heart of the noble king.

He had decided. He would go to Arabia, meet the blessed Messenger (swm) of ALLAH SWT so that he could become a Muslim at the hands of none other than the man who was the Ambassador of God. The noble King set out for Arabia with his Arab friends. He is said to have reached the kafela of Muslims during the time of the Farewell Pilgrimage. There, the King was given audience with the Noble Messenger of God (PBUH) where the king said his shahadah to enter the fold of Islam as a believer. How could this meeting take place without some exchange of gifts as India was famous in the world for its exquisite and extra-ordinary beauty and flavors. The noble king brought with him Garlic Pickle as a gift which the Noble Messenger (PBUH) accepted very happily choosing to share them with his companions.

On the return journey through Yemen, the noble king fell seriously ill, not being able to make it to his kingdom he summoned his Arab friends to take his money back to Kerala and inform his family of what had happened and instruct them to light up Islam in Kerala starting with a Masjid for which his money should be used completely. King Cheraman Peruman Radi Allahu Anhu rests in Yemen while the Cheraman Jama Masjid in Kodungallor stands today as a testament to the noble king’s legacy.

Lets come back to my Arabic lessons. The fact that Kerala currently is called home by 8.8 million Muslims makes them a Muslim community equal to the Hashemite Kingdom Jordan. The Malayallam language should also be considered as an Islamic language if only to honor the brilliance of the Malayallam culture for upholding the dignity of Islam when the courageous followers of the noble king constructed the Islamic mosque letting the drops of Islamic knowledge accumulate over centuries into an ocean of art, culture, knowledge and scholarship for the benefit of all mankind.

Mr Amanulla chose to write the four sentences in Arabic and English it seems with another greater agenda more noble than learning another language for the sake of it. The agenda, it would seem to me is this, the word Hindu is an Arabic Islamic word, this should be known to all the Muslims in South Asia. Al-Hindu is the Arabic translation for India. In Sanskrit, India is called Bharat not Hindustan. It was the Islamic world that called Bharat as Al-Hind and the Central Asian Muslims called it Hindustan (as in Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan etc). Every Indian should therefore be a Hindu I terms of ethnicity, according to Arabic Islamic understanding. The plural form of Hindu is Al-Hunudu, that is all Indians which naturally includes Muslims and non Muslims also signifies the above statement which says that Hindu is a nationality not a religion as such. It were the colonialists British who had to severe the brotherhood between the natives by splitting the religious harmony through categorizing where the great Hindu brotherhood of Muslims and non-Muslims fell apart once the Hindu was given the religious shape and color. On the other hand Muslims were pulled away by another form of religion advocated by the British loyalist “Sir” Syed Ahmed Khan under the banner of the Two Nation Theory. It was a divisive theory that floated just after the First War of Independence conducted by the Sepoys in 1857 when Hindus and Muslims for the “second last” time united against a common foe. The “Last Time” for Hindu Muslim unity was under the banner of “KHILAFAT MOVEMENT” organized by Mawlana Mohammad Ali and his brother Mawlana Shawkat Ali, together called the Ali Brothers.

Islam’s forerunners were the noble companions among whom is the blessed king of Kerala Syedene Cheraman Peruman Radi Allahu Anhu. His travel to the Arabian peninsula in order to meet the Leader of all Mankind was the reason and the heavenly door for the entry of Islam in India, also known as Al-Hindu in the Islamic Arabic language. For 1000 years Islam contributed to the economic, social and educational advancement of Al-Hind. The cultural character of present day India can never be separated from its Islamic identity no matter how hard certain right wingers may try. The tear drop on the cheek of time, the greatest throne of the material world, the fort of jewels, the tomb of the emperor, and so on and so forth are the fruits of a work created in the mausoleum of love nurtured by the brotherhood of respect and dignity and long dreamed by a lonely king taking a night walk staring at the beautiful face of the moon.

 

 

 

 

Hajj Message 2017 – tell another Hajji

9th Dhil HAjj or the Day of Arafah is the important day for the global Muslim family. Day of Arafah for the year 2017 shall be on 31 August, Millions of Muslims shall gather in Makkah for the Holy pilgrimage and on this day the most important rite will take place on the plains of Arafah, a place just outside of Makkah, where pilgrims pray, supplicate and ask for God’s Mercy. Arafah can be distinguished by the site of Hajjis sitting on a mountain called the Mountain of Mercy (Jabal Rahmah), its where the Holy Prophet Muhammad Sallillahualihi wa alihi wa sallam gave the farewell sermon.

This great day of Muslims is followed by celebrations called Eid al Azha which lasts for about 3 days. In this Eid, Muslims sacrifice an animal as re-enactment of Prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son Ismail for the sake of Alimighty God. Sacrifice is usually followed by distribution of meat amongst the needy.

In addition to the religious ceremonies, Muslims have another golden opportunity to address the issues facing 1,7 billion Muslims. Political leaders may have succeeded in keeping Pakistanis away from Indians and Bangladeshis away from Rohingyas but in Makkah all of them will come together without any prejudice and without any care for boundaries or languages.

Hajj is indeed a great event. Its the world’s largest gathering of people who desire nothing but peace for Muslims and non Muslims. Makkah for five days becomes the political religious and social center of the whole world. The pilgrims come from countries around the world with only one agenda, ISLAM, peace, submission to God’s Will. It is therefore a truly common ground for bringing together people from two categories, from the grass roots – workers, farmers, laborers AND also from the landed aristocracy, elites and business empires etc. No other event in the world compares to this classless and self motivated and self financed attendance, and this is a potential weapon unknown to most Muslims.

Lets come to the point. Muslim world is being humiliated by the political and religious leaderships. Muslims should understand very well that, their only way out of the terrible situation is to throw away the junk at the top, reorganize their social and economic systems and ensure that accountability and transparency are never compromised again.

All the Muslims all over the world should know that they have a religious responsibility to make an effort to change their corrupt, despotic and dictatorial leaderships. Muslims should also remember that according to the monotheistic (unitary) principle there can be absolutely no room for racial, linguistic, nationalistic, tribal, wealth driven prejudices. The power to change a corrupt government lies with the mass people, the workers and home makers. This realization seems the hardest part to communicate to mass people although it happens to be in their primary interest. So long as Muslims continue to feel helpless, small wolves will pretend to be big lions.

The blood of a Kashmiri Muslim has the same value as a Punjabi, the life of a Rohingya child has the same value as a Bangladeshi child. The world, and everything in it, belongs to ALLAH swt, no man has the right to deny or deprive another human being their right to security of life and property. Kashmiri Muslims and Rohingya Muslims demand this security of life and property from their fellow Muslims in Pakistan and Bangladesh. May God have Mercy on them and on us if we failed to do that.
Yemen and Syria and two blessed lands. The entire Muslim world will have to answer for the genocide happening there. Misr still asks why the petro dollars were used to bankroll into office a psychopathic murderer? It needs to be reminded, the one who shows no mercy to those on EArth, the One in the sky will show no mercy to him on the Day of Judgement.

Muslim commoners are united in their hearts through the feeling of pan Islamic bonding. Its the political leadership and the economic system which needs to be thrown into garbage before something meaningful can once again begin to grow on Muslim lands.

Muslim World 2014 – Between Agony and Revivalism

From Cairo to Gaza to Peshawar – Muslims are desperately searching for a way out. The insanity, the madness, the killings, bombings, bloodshed and the heart-wrenching sights of mothers wailing at the coffins of little children has become a regular phenomenon. Oppression has its limits written only in the pages of books, but not in the reality Muslim lives. This situation is unique only in the Muslim world; the target of attacks is the Muslim community, the victims are Muslims and the perpetrators are also Muslims. In this issue we look at the critical areas gearing for Muslim revivalism.

 

Palestine

While the rest of the Muslim got together with their families to eat Iftar, Gazans were bombed mercilessly by the Israeli war planes. Shelling the Gazans continued while the powers of the civilized world looked on. Some cruel-hearted Zionists climbed a hilltop to watch and celebrate when the Palestinians were succumbing to Israeli attacks. The massacre of Palestinians in Gaza was no war. It was genocide in the 21st century. The UN failed to do anything about it. The US, the EU, NAM, NATO and other alliances in the world failed to stop the slaughter of innocent people day after day.

 

Gaza´s genocide has brought the reality of the Arab and the greater Muslim world to the open. First, the government of al-Sisi in Egypt refused to come to the rescue of Palestinians in Gaza. The only state which defeated Israel militarily is Egypt and its soldiers are highly respected amongst the Arabs for their valor and courage. But al-Sisi chose to look the other way this time. He closed the border with Gaza, stopped all supplies to them and destroyed the famous tunnels used by Gazans to bring in essential supplies and weapons for resistance. Historically, Egypt was given the responsibility for administering Gaza while West Bank administration went to Jordan. Both Sisi and King Abdullah II of Jordan have found themselves in the net of the Zionists. Their grip on power depends on their ability and success to keep the pro-Israeli lobby happy.

 

 

Pakistan

Few cowards belonging to Tehrike Taliban Pakistan (TTP) shattered the concept of humanity when they broke into Peshawar´s Army Public School, opened fire on students and killed 141 children all aged below 14. TTP declared in its website the attack was revenge for the Pak Army´s infamous operation called Zarb-e-Azb, which conducted combing operations in North Waziristan allegedly killing many men, women and children. TTP claims that it did not kill any children, it was the Pakistani soldiers who killed the children after they went in to rescue them.

 

Pak Army has started operations in Waziristan to capture (and kill) members of TTP. Two TTP convicts have been hanged so far. 27 TTP militants were killed in air raids. Army chief general Raheel Sharif in his tweet requested prime Nawaz Sharif for permission to hang 3,000 militants in 48 hours. The people of the civilized world join the people of Pakistan in their shock and outrage over this atrocious act by a terrorist group using Islam as its shield.

 

 

Iraq

 

ISIL opened the game with a big bang. They captured large swathes of territory in northern Iraq, exposing the inexperience and inability of the Iraqi army put together by US-friendly Iraqi regimes. ISIL quickly moved close to the Syrian border to do the only thing which carried immense strategic sense; it erased the Sykes Picot border between Iraq and Syria.

 

Much of the Muslim world looks at Abu Bakr al Baghdadi with suspicion. Some believe he is a Zionist spy trained by Mossad. This is according to Wikileaks and the famous US whistleblower Edward Snowden. Without the atrocities of ISIL it would have been impossible for the US forcesto re-enter Iraq. Since this is the beginning of another ghost war, another hunt for bogey men, the production floors of weapons industries will keep working full time.

 

While the world was furious about the genocide in Gaza, ISIL entered the scene with its famous poster boy, Jihadi John, executing innocent western charity workers. The anger of the world against Israel shifted to these desert executioners. The request to US legislators to authorize action against ISIL passed like a breeze. The game was on again. The war on terror continues under a different banner, war on IS.

 

Syria

Syria is another flash point in the Muslim world. The butcher remains supreme in Damascus, thanks to the help he keeps receiving from Moscow and Teheran. The success of ISIL did not translate into the fall of Assad. Cynics believe that Israel would like to see both Assad and Abu Bakr keep fighting each other until the time comes for it to occupy both to form Greater Israel according to its alleged master plan.

 

Lebanon

Lebanon is swinging between being Paris of the Middle East to being the center of Hezbollah, which is the only non-state entity to have defeated Israel in a battle. Lebanon as a state had to pay for the actions of Hassan Nasrallah (head of Hezbollah). Lebanon may not be a large country but its location and intellectual capital makes it a strategic nerve center of Muslim desire for a revival.

 

 

Arab Awakening

Four years after Arab awakening movements swept many long-entrenched dictators from power in the Middle East, it appears the old order is back with a vengeance. The uprisings were also referred to as the “Arab Spring” or “People’s movements” depending on the political orientations and preferences of those describing it.

Of all places, Egypt’s situation has been the most heart-wrenching because it has the potential to be on the cutting edge of the Islamic movement. Its loss to the military and by extension to the imperialist-Zionist duopoly is a major loss to the global Muslim Ummah. In the countries that experienced upheavals — Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen— only a few faces at the top were replaced, while the systems have remained largely intact. It could be argued that Tunisia has made a successful transition from the dictatorship of Ben Ali to a “democratic” dispensation. After Ben Ali’s overthrow, primarily because the military refused to come to his rescue, al-Nahda Party won the election but it was thrown out of office in the recent elections (end of October 2014). Ben Ali’s party is back in power. The problems that had led to the upheaval have not been addressed: unemployment remains high; corruption is rampant and the military is all supreme.

In Egypt, the situation is even worse. The military did not even wait for the political process to take its course as in Tunisia. Within one year of the election of Mohamed Mursi as president, the military returned with a sledgehammer. It not only ousted Mursi from power but also slaughtered thousands of innocent people, including women and children. People were not spared even when they sought refuge in mosques where they were ruthlessly gunned down.

Tens of thousands have been thrown in Egypt’s notorious dungeons while hundreds have been sentenced to death after kangaroo trials presided over by judges beholden to the brutes in uniform. What is even worse, many people have been terrorized into supporting the military’s brutal crackdown.

When the Ikhwan organized peaceful sit-ins in Egypt’s Rabia al-‘Adawiya Square and in Giza, these were allowed to continue for a few weeks before the military and other security forces struck with extreme brutality. On August 14 and 16, 2013, thousands of Ikhwan supporters, many of them women and children, were mercilessly killed. Even funeral processions were attacked. Worse, many Egyptians applauded the massacres claiming that Egypt had been “saved.” One wonders from what and for whom?

It appears that the west was not keen to have the Egyptian military strike so soon. Washington had already secured agreement from Mursi and the Ikhwan to advance its agenda. Mursi did not repudiate the humiliating treaty with the Zionist regime; he did not cut off gas supplies to Israel nor did Mursi do anything meaningful for the Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip. While the US may have been agreeable to Mursi remaining in power for a little while longer, the Saudis were not.

They viewed Mursi — and more broadly, the Ikhwan — as a threat to their claim to being the leaders of “Sunni” Muslims. While few Muslims outside the narrow circle of their paid agents accept their leadership claim, the Saudis continued to delude themselves. The Saudi regime was the first to congratulate the Egyptian military for its great “feat.”

The triangle of terror represented by the Saudis, Egyptian generals and the Zionist war criminals was complete. Since the coup, the Egyptian military has been busy destroying tunnels through which the besieged Palestinians used to smuggle much needed goods — food, medicines and household items — for mere survival. This was unacceptable to the Zionists and, therefore, to the Egyptian generals. The destruction of this triangle of terror is a pre-requisite for the Muslim liberation movement to have any chance of success.

 

Afghanistan

The year 2014 is a milestone year for the Afghan freedom fighters. In this year foreign troops left the country after 13 years of occupation. The Afghans have been left to wonder what did 13 years achieve for them. Although it may be too early to state conclusively, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the official name for Afghan Taliban) is already making plans for celebration. For them, this is a great victory, perhaps more significant than the joy of defeating the Soviets. Beating America and its combined help from NATO will most likely place the chief of the Afghan Taliban as the undisputed leader of the Muslim community in and around Afghanistan.

The new Afghan army of 200,000 recruits will probably be no match for the battle-hardened warriors of Mullah Omar. The west has also been preparing for such eventuality. In Qatar, Afghan Talibans opened a foreign office for holding talks with international players. It is a sign of the things to come in the near future. That near future may be knocking on our doors already.