Islam Under Scrutiny by Ex-Muslims

Pakistan: A Blinkered Nation

It is a bad and a sad time to be in Pakistan. The ever lengthening power cuts and the winter chills with overcast skies are only adding to the depression. Just a thinking of the power situation in summer, which is just round the corner, makes one break into a cold sweat. In newspapers, one finds at some forlorn corner of the third page that 80% of the sewage is being discharged into the sea untreated, prompting an environmental catastrophe. Factories, the ones which are running, are flouting all environmental rules in connivance with corrupt local ruling bodies. Both people and the industry are using rivers as toilets and refuse bins. Swat is quietly being handed over to the lovers of Muhammad, so that they may acquire and barter as many unschooled child-girls as bride as possible; and to top it up, the entire nation is as usual in complete denial, in no mood for self-inspection. Some liberal papers seem to agree. Here is what Daily News, a popular English paper, had to say in its Editorial on Saturday, January 03, 2009:

The remarks by a Foreign Office spokesman on Jan 1 that Pakistan has no terrorist infrastructure on its soil is going to be taken with a very big pinch of salt – by even many Pakistanis..

When Zardari, hiding behind the NRO, managed to blatantly cheat Nawaz sharif and become President without reinstalling the judges he had promised to, I had the foreboding urge to shout from my rooftops that, rather than accepting or ignoring this, we should fear the day when this behavior would be accepted as norm in a country already blighted with lawlessness and hypocrisy. Most of my letters and articles went unanswered and unprinted in local newspapers. I am under no illusion that my lone voice would have made a difference. There are people in Pakistan who are much more qualified and eloquent than me to comment on this, but winds of hypocrisy and ‘doublethink’ and the fear for their life and limb keep them at bay.

After the Mumbai massacre, the Pakistani media and ruling elite, the real one, went into a zealous overdrive. They were bombarding the people with the message that denial and lies, which has a distinguished place in Pakistan’s arsenal (stored right next to those “nuclear assets”), needs to be massively deployed. They were literally training people into new ways of denial, lying and cheating. The likes of Zaid Hamid, a remarkably dimwitted orator, whose fascistic and inflammatory monologues distorting the history are well and truly appreciated by a blinkered nation, and his mentor ex-ISI chief Hameed Gul, a certifiable terrorist, are in such big demand on the network channels that they are hard-pressed to visit wardrobe in-between shows. After keeping the building of Islam aloft by hook or crook, they are now spreading the cancerous lies even more by applying the same tools. Here are some basic lies, which you must learn, in order to be able to converse in any decent Pakistani gathering:

  1. Islam is a peaceful religion and against killing: quote 5:32 from Quran, which you heard some moron repeating on FM radio that morning, without knowing what 5:32 means (it mentions a nonsensical verse about Israelites, which was stolen and rehashed by Muhammad from Talmud) or what the very next verse 5:33 says. This one exhorts a most macabre punishment for non-compliers to Islam and genuinely belongs to that crazed duo, Muhammad and Allah.

  2. We must talk to and protect the Taliban as they are our Muslim brethren completing skirting the ground reality that Pak army is fighting a life-and-death war in northern areas, which has now spread to Peshawar.

  3. Ajmal Kasab is not from Faridkot in Pakistan, although a Pakistani organization tried to prove that he was kidnapped by India from Nepal in 2006 to be used in the murder of hundreds of multinationals in Mumbai; Nawaz Sharif and Geo TV network are traitors and liars for admitting the truth.

  4. India started and lost all previous wars; and if India attacked again, it would receive a “befitting” reply.

  5. RAW, Mossad, MI6, CIA and Barack Obama are all in cahoots with the Israeli lobby in the US; they are all plotting against the nuclear weapons of Pakistan (don’t ask who plotted and destroyed Pakistan before 1998 nuclear weapons issue. If you do, you will receive a “befitting reply”). Thinking commentator Dr Farrukh, a rare breed in Pakistan, recently wrote in a column titled ‘Conspiracies against us’:

“It's a Jewish conspiracy. Medinat Yisra'el or the State of Israel has appointed Yuli Tamir, a PhD from the Oxford University, as their minister of education. This has happened when Pakistan didn't even have a minister of education and then the Islamic Republic appointed Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani, this gentleman was ordered arrested by Supreme Court for presiding over a Jirga order for handing over 5 minor girls in compensation. Consider this: Zubaida Jalal Khan, our one-time minister of education, is being investigated by a Senate committee for her role in the Rs. 3.6 billion Tawana Pakistan Project scam. Just look at this other fact: exactly when Zubaida Jalal was running Tawana Pakistan, Yuli Tamir was a research fellow first at Princeton and then at Harvard. How cunning, indeed, the ministry of education in Israel gets to spend $1,500 every year on each Israeli citizen while the ministry of education in Pakistan has a mere $20 per year for every Pakistani man, woman and child”.

What can anybody do with such ‘in your face’ bellicosity? Here is a lesson from Zardari.

In the first year of their rule, Zardari and his clan settled in for a nice lucrative ride to replenish their coffers, which were beginning to sound a bit tinny after PPP being out of power for 12 long years. They intimated that they would love to settle things with India, get rid of maybe not Islam yet but the Islamists at least, and convinced the agitated and highly volatile populace that it is in Pakistan’s interest to do so. They made all the right noises like calling Islamic terror a cancer, calling Kashmir insurgency a terrorist operation and even assured India of NO FIRST USE of their dreaded ‘assets’. They even placed all the wrong people in the right places to channel the loot when it begins to roll in. The only problem was that none of this facade was matched by real intent or commitment. The world is quite weary of the duplicity of Pakistani leaders. Musharraf played a "double bluff" quite successfully with the incompetent Bush Administration; the ISI is still at it.

Just ponder over these two excerpts from a recent interview conducted by Der Spiegel with ISI head, General Pasha. First he soothes the West: "We may be crazy in Pakistan, but not completely out of our minds. We know full well that terror is our enemy, not India." Then later in the interview he plays his "double bluff", equating terrorists and murdering jihadis with democrats: "Shouldn't they be allowed to think and say what they please? They believe that jihad is their obligation. Isn't that freedom of opinion?"

Facing this blatant double-game and with Zardari carrying his reputation for hypocrisy and sleaze up his sleeves, the world should be demanding more real commitment and action.

In his quest for power and hard cash, Zardari may have even delivered the goods; but then the Islamists and their ISI backers played the Mumbai card. Now all bets are off. The media, which was already right of the centre, using the crutches of Islam and patriotism, has begun to mobilize the mob mentality in the Ummah. They have even been handed the prize of Israel’s admittedly disproportionate response in Gaza to work the volatile crowds of Pakistan into frenzy, especially after the dangerous Friday prayers. The Islamists in the North have begun to regroup. Using violence and Islamic piety, they might soon bring large parts of the blinkered Ummah under the sword of Islam. Whispers of Zardari being pulled down from his high perch are gaining strength. What could replace him in this nuclear-powered uranium keg of Islamic Jamhooria of Pakistan will cause many sleepless nights around the globe.

Batten down your hatches and just hope.

Welcome to 2009, Pakistani style.

Postscript: I want to thank everyone for their support after my last article. For once my email box was packed with considerably more good wishes than curses and threats.

The good news which I would like to share with you is that my wife has seen the truth. Even better is the news that, where I had failed to convince her completely as she perhaps understandably doubted my impartiality, a couple of true Muslim mullahs, explaining on Peace TV that according to the Quran, nonbelievers are Najis (unclean) and must be put to the sword if they don’t convert, succeeded. My wife who lived and worked in England for a long time, was devastated that the people she worked withculturally rich Hindus and Sikhs and affable, loveable Englishwere all unclean and under death penalty according to Allah! She has renounced Islam and joined the rest of humanity. Thank you Peace TV.

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