Sunday, March 27, 2016

The Face of Terror

This evening in the heart of Pakistan, the city of Lahore, a man walked into a children’s park, which was packed with kids and families, and decided to blow himself up. As of this writing 65 women and children have been accounted as dead and over 300 injured.  Within hours of the terror attack the Pakistan Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack. The horrifying nature of this insane act aside, the fact that a religious party can even claim such an attack as theirs shows the demented and misguided nature of these religious extremists. Indeed to say they represent the any face of Islam would be totally wrong. This is not the religion I practice and nowhere in the Quran does it allow the taking of life in such a manner.

The Holy Quran is very clear on this matter:

We ordained for the Children of Israel that if any one slew a person - unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land - it would be as if he slew the whole people: and if any one saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people. Then although there came to them Our messengers with clear signs, yet, even after that, many of them continued to commit excesses in the land.” (Qur’an, 5:32)

(For the unacquainted audience the reference ‘unless it be for murder’ means when a murdered is handed out capital punishment and ‘spreading mischief’ refers to idolatry and warring against the State (as convicted) and in a sense these religious terrorists are violating this injunction of the Quran too.)

Within Pakistan the malaise is so deep that no one will speak up against the terror of these self appointed apostles of our religion. Taliban and its followers are not Muslims and anyone who can even try and justify such a heinous crime should be ashamed of himself or herself. Some have pointed out that a large number of the people in the park where the attack occurred were Christians enjoying the Easter break. That does not justify the act of terror; lest we forget that Christians who are Pakistani’s are first and foremost Pakistanis too.

After the terror attack on the Army school in Peshawar two years back there was no doubt in the mind of our people that the religious extremists had gone too far. This attack also targeted against children drives that very point home again. More than ever before this calls for national unity not only to condemn the act but to take effective steps against the Taliban and all such radical groups who have hijacked our religion and given us a bad name.

It time to say ENOUGH, its time to launch a national campaign to bring tolerance into the fabric of our country, its time to make a difference to stop these senseless acts of violence. The crime of keeping quiet will only mean that we have all collectively given up caring. Failure to do anything about this will result in a surrender of our country to these narrow minded and mostly misguided people. 

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