Saturday, May 23, 2009

It’s Time to Stop Them!

By Saeed Qureshi

It is time to stop Taliban's impending advance and rumored forays on Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan. The pervasive fear is that once Taliban secure their foothold, the nuclear arsenal of Pakistan will pass into their hands and that is the paramount and the biggest worry variously expressed by United States. So in order to preempt and forestall such dreadful eventuality, America might herself pressurize Pakistan to hand over the guardianship of the nuclear weapons to her.

Either way it would be a stunning blow to the Pakistan’s image as a sovereign country. Do our leaders realize that by giving a field day to savage, reckless perniciously brain washed students of the antiquated religious seminaries to rule Malakand with tyranny and inquisitions of the bygone dark ages, they have unleashed the scavengers of death and destruction also to prey on Pakistan? By willful indulgence our leadership has moved Pakistan towards religious anarchy, ideioligcial despotism and danger of disintegration.

Who gave the right to ANP of NWFP and PPP at the center to sign the death warrant of the state of Pakistan, a country, created by an epic struggle and with monumental sacrifices? Is there a new, patriotic, nationalist voice in Pakistan that can assail, condemn and protest at the abject act of cowardice and docile surrender of the sovereignty and independence of Pakistan to the bands of marauding barbarians? No amount of logic and plethora of arguments by any one can justify the grievous cut inflicted on the body politic of Pakistan by the sell-out agents now occupying the saddles of power. The NAR (Nizam-e-Adl Regulation) implicitly cuts across the judicial and legal system of Pakistan. Is there a cotemporary-civilized society where two systems of justice are operating side by side?

The Taliban's justice system renders the constitution of Pakistan irrelvant. Sufi Jan Muhammad the top idelogue and arch cleric of Taliban has ruefully and sternly rejected the prevailing judicial and democratic order in Pakistan by dubbing it as un-islamic. The frightened and bewildered Pakistani nation has yet to see Pakistan’s political stalwarts, if not the president or the prime minister to at least give a verbal assurance that the onslaught of the present day Hashishaians (Assassins) would be resisted and stopped.

It is in this appalling and bleak situation that the people of Pakistan look up to the armed forces, to step forward and come down with full fury and military might, upon the marching Taliban militants and their accomplices within Pakistan and eradicate this swelling menace both to the faith of the Muslims as well as to the territorial integrity of Pakistan. This time, assuredly, the support and prayers of the entire nation minus the power greedy politicians would be with the army, as it is the army only that has the capacity and prowess to brace against the ready to kill and die religious fanatics. The black turbaned hordes of marauders recall to one’s mind the Assassins of Alamut Mountains, who for centuries (1090-1256) kept hanging on the successive Islamic dynasties like a specter of fear and blackmail. Although the Mongols destroyed the Islamic civilization by pillaging Baghdad, yet in equal measure they wiped off the dreaded Assassins by dragging them out of their hideouts in the inaccessible mountains. There is a great deal of similarity between the Assassins of yester years and the Taliban of the on going era.

The existence and activities of Taliban are not only perilous to a sovereign Pakistan but also pose a challenge to the commonly practiced beliefs of the Muslims with different shades of beliefs and dogmas. It is an unwarranted interference in the faith and beliefs of the Muslims with various denominations and sects and therefore this ideological thrust must be resisted at any cost. It was in 1804 that a similar religious group vandalized the Haram Sharif at Mecca, took away precious gifts kept inside it, and desecrated the holy prophet’s tomb in Medina.

The territory of Pakistan would not be an easy prey for the Taliban’s to succeed in their nefarious maneuvers. Pakistan is bigger in size and in population than Malakand. Here we have the army, the civil society and the people. But despite this, we cannot obviate the precedent that they succeeded in capturing Afghanistan, which was also populous and had an army and a large population. Their advent into the mainland Pakistan would plunge the country into a civil and sectarian strife.

In such a chaotic situation, the threat of breaking away of Balochistan from the federation cannot be ruled out. There is no guarantee that the NWFP and the Sindh provinces would not follow suite of Balochistan. And let us not forget that such disintegration would be aided and hastened by the external enemies of Pakistan from far and near.

The government of Pakistan has every right to renege upon the Nizam-e-Adl agreement with the Taliban because Sufi Jan Muhammad and his cohorts also broke their pledge to remain confined to Malakand and Swat only. No sacrifice is too costly and precious than the one to be made at the altar of freedom and for saving the territorial integrity of Pakistan. This is the prime duty of the armed forces of Pakistan and it is the time that they ready themselves to perform this historic role. People of Pakistan look up to the army as the only savior from a horrendous calamity that is directed at tearing the cohesive fabric of Pakistan and further dismembering it after the tragic truncation in 1971. The Pakistan army, with the support of the people, has to wage an all-out war against Taliban and keep fighting it till the task of flushing them out is accomplished.

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