Islam,Terrorism and Jihad
Dr Tariq Rahman
It is, however, true that some of the Taliban leaders like Mulla Fazlullah are in Afghanistan and, indeed, the group which has killed the children in Peshawar is in Afghanistan. But then for years the Taliban who used to attack targets within Afghanistan were based in Pakistan. There was a period of ten years when Pakistan, Afghanistan and the US could have eliminated the militants and forced them to surrender arms but all three of us missed that opportunity......
The long-term goal must be the decrease, if not elimination, of the poison that works as the erosion of our collective wellbeing: indoctrination. It starts at the madrasa (18,000-24,000 registered, countless unregistered), where children from low-income backgrounds are enrolled in pursuit of education, and many end up learning much that has nothing to do with science, mathematics and the real teachings of Islam, but bigotry and hatred for different religious and ideological structures. The so-called “mullah” is not an authentic teacher of the glorious tenets of Islam, which are distorted to suit the myriad hegemonic agendas of the clergy to manipulate the population. Many mosques are instruments of dissemination of hate and incitement of violence to those who follow sects of Islam distasteful to the clergy. ….
"Thanks to misinformation in the media and misrepresentation by Islamic extremists, many Westerners associate the word Jihad with 'Holy war' and suicide bombing. To set the record straight, jihad literally means 'effort' and refers primarily to the spiritual effort to evolve into the fullness of one's being, to improve relationships with family and neighbours, and to work for justice. The more militant concept of jihad, that so threatens the Western mind, refers only to self-defence when under attack. The idea of jihad as 'holy war' simply does not exist in the Quran,….
The Pakistan Army is understandably rattled by the Peshawar carnage as many of the children who were gunned down belonged to Army families, particularly of middle ranking personnel. The visit to Kabul by the Pakistan Army chief indicated that he was trying to send a message down the line that he would ensure that those responsible for the massacre were caught and killed as early as possible. He has also called upon the country's civil government to execute jailed terrorists in the next 48 hours, something which is obviously the result of a knee-jerk reaction…..
When Baghdadi, aged 33, arrived at Bucca, the Sunni-led anti-US insurgency was gathering steam across central and western Iraq. An invasion that had been sold as a war of liberation had become a grinding occupation. Iraq’s Sunnis, disenfranchised by the overthrow of their patron, Saddam Hussein, were taking the fight to US forces – and starting to turn their guns towards the beneficiaries of Hussein’s overthrow, the country’s majority Shia population. The small militant group that Baghdadi headed was one of dozens that sprouted from a broad Sunni revolt – many of which would soon come together under the flag of Al Qaeda in Iraq, and then the Islamic State of Iraq.....
The wars in Syria and Iraq have set grim new standards for the exploitation and abuse of children. Thousands of them have been killed or maimed through indiscriminate bombings, in crossfire and, in some cases, executions. Young girls from minority groups, especially Yazidis in Iraq, have been captured as sex slaves by the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL. Young boys have been given rifles and told to staff checkpoints or patrol neighbourhoods — or have been recruited, as Usaid was, to become suicide bombers. ...
Under Jihadi Rule, People Don't Even Have Water, Medicine
A mother who lost her son in the carnage told the BBC that there is no such thing as a good Taliban. The only good Taliban is a dead Taliban. In Pakistan, amongst the common people, there are many Taliban lovers, like Jamaat-e-Islami and Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan. Even after the Peshawar attack, the Chief Mullah of Islamabad's infamous Lal Masjid, Maulana Abdul Aziz, told worshippers he “shared the grief” of the victims' families but said the Pakistani Taliban's response was understandable and any army reprisal against them will not be good…..
As long as thousands of young Muslims from the West, and from Arab states, are joining the ranks of those who are murdering their Muslim brothers, and as long as there are no young people who are joining the battle against jihad, the mass murder festival will continue. And there appears to be no real change in the horizon.....
….my poor mother spent an entire day in Toronto waving a rainbow-coloured flag thinking she was supporting a post-apartheid South Africa. She even asked me, “Why does the pride parade logo look exactly like the old Hum TV logo?” I stayed mum. What could I say? I couldn't bear to shatter her conservative utopia and reveal who the Humsafar was in this case. My mother's was a simpler time. Her generation did not have this fad of liberalism. Everyone accepted that they had no rights, and as a result, they all led fairly happy lives....
Located near the mosque was the world's biggest madrasa for women with 6,000 students. Musharraf's support for the global war on terror brought him into direct conflict with Lal Masjid. Most of the students were Pushtoon. Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, a coalition of religious parties claimed that 400 to 1,000 students were killed — European news channels gave the death figure as 300. That boosted militancy sky high. But the murder of 132 school children in uniforms is an unspeakable tragedy of a different order. It brings to mind Habib Tanvir's translation of "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?" Phool Woh Saarey Gaye To Aakhir Kahaan Gaye?....
Dr Altaf Hussain Pandith
Watching the live telecast of the 16th December Peshawar School massacre, I instantly thought: Had Prophet Mohammad (P.B. U. H) been physically with us today, he would have probably done two things. One, he would have banned the organized religion in public life and declared it a private affair; second, he would have declared war against Taliban and Talibanised Islam till last Talib, and the people of that religiosity, remained alive. This, for the simple reason that the religion of Mohammad (PBUH) was pro-life: it was to protect life, its dignity, integrity, freedom and beauty…..
Mehr F. Husain
This consciousness is what is fuelling the anti-Taliban sentiment in urban areas, including Islamabad and Lahore, two crucial cities as one is the capital and the other, home to PML N. And the knowledge that no one is safe from the TTP has strengthened the resolve amongst parliamentarians, activists and civil society that something has got to change to ensure this bloodshed ends.....
Not long ago, a civil society protest outside the Lal Masjid – where he leads the Friday prayers – would be unthinkable. Not anymore. “This den of terrorism must be razed,” said rights activist Farzana Bari, one of the organizers. “Down with Abdul Aziz,” shouted a protestor on megaphone. “Down with Abdul Aziz,” the crowd repeated…..
Thus far, the establishment has been no more than a bystander as Aziz spat venom in the media and in his speeches. And today, as the world grieves for this nation’s slain generation, Aziz had the temerity to call the radical slayers his brethren and state that he did not condemn the tragedy. The noose has tightened around Aziz. Incensed protesters encircled his mosque, undaunted by threats from the Taliban…
The vast majority of Pakistanis may be united in grief for the school children murdered in Peshawar - but many say they still don't know who carried out the attacks. For the media - both in Pakistan and abroad - the issue is clear enough: the Pakistani Taliban did it…..
There is no word for a parent who buries a child. No equivalent of widow or orphan in any language that I know. We do not have the language to describe a parent who lays his child into the earth before his time. So with what tongue do we speak of the dead now? It is a sorrow too large to bear. But with sorrow, there is anger in Pakistan today. There is anger at those who turned their eyes away from terror and let the cost be paid in human lives…..
It appears that the civilian leaders have scrambled into action by the swift response of the army chief, General Raheel Sharif, to the Peshawar massacre when he caught the first flight out to Kabul to coordinate anti-terrorism measures with the Afghan and American authorities and followed it up by executing two terrorists condemned by a military tribunal. But the proof of the pudding is in the eating of it….
To understand the TTP attack in Peshawar, we need to first understand the structure of the TTP. It is an umbrella organisation of at least 13 groups started in 2007 by Baitullah Mehsud. Last year, the leadership of the TTP came to Maulana Fazlullah, also called the ‘FM [radio] Mullah’, a man who has violently opposed education for children, most clearly evinced in his instructions for the shooting of Malala Yousafzai. When Fazlullah assumed the TTP’s leadership, four splinter groups emerged (alongside the pre-existing TTP Punjab) — the Ahrar-ul-Hind (February 2014), the TTP South Waziristan (May 2014), the TTP Jamaat-ul Ahrar (August 2014), and the TTP Sajna (May 2014). The groups emerged because of sharp differences on insurgent strategy between Fazlullah and other competing insurgent chiefs within the TTP, including the remaining members of the Mehsud clan…..
Angry and emotional speeches were punctuated by cries denouncing the Red Mosque establishment as friends of the Taliban and traitors. Particular ire was directed against Abdul Aziz, the mosque leader who in a television appearance after the killing of 141 people at the army public school in Peshawar on Tuesday refused to unconditionally condemn the attack claimed by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Some in the crowd mocked him as “Mullah Burqa” after his infamous attempt to escape the 2007 siege in an all-enveloping woman’s veil.....
An unbearable heaviness of being a Pakistani surrounds the entire ambiance. Held between the khaki hammer of strategic depth and puritan anvil of Taliban terror, one feels like screaming. One is not even allowed to mourn in peace. The vultures in the persons of Hameed Gul, the father of Taliban, and Sarkari-beards land our mourning and funerals with familiar but ugly squawk. Hameed Gul and his urbanised children--- the Taliban in suite and tie ---as usual want us to blame India for the Greek tragedy….
The first clash between Hamas and Islamic extremist groups occurred in August 2009, before the emergence of the Islamic State (IS). Back then, the security forces affiliated with Hamas stormed into the Ibn Taymiyyah Mosque and killed Abdul Latif Moussa and 16 of his followers, following his declaration of the “Islamic Emirate in Jerusalem.” Hamas fought against extremism, bombed the mosque and killed those espousing the same Islamic ideology…..
What has been buried with the 141 bodies in Peshawar is also dissent against the new national security narrative and the state. In the coming months and days, it may be difficult to ask questions about dumped dead bodies or missing people. There is, in fact, the likelihood of an increase in such actions because, like in the US, excessive questions are distracting. People are eager to see dead bodies of terrorists. It doesn’t matter if the military goes in partnership and kills the terrorists using American drones. Perhaps, many who made anti-drone films and talked against drone attacks will now have to chew their findings….
“We didn’t see it coming,” a former senior United States intelligence official said. “We were focused on many other things — Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Pakistan’s nuclear weapons, the Iranians. It’s not that things were missed — they were never put together.” After the assault began, the countries quickly disclosed their intelligence to one another. They monitored a Lashkar control room in Pakistan where the terror chiefs directed their men, hunkered down in the Taj and Oberoi hotels and the Jewish hostel, according to current and former American, British and Indian officials. That cooperation among the spy agencies helped analysts retrospectively piece together “a complete operations plan for the attacks,” a top-secret N.S.A. document said.....
Nawaz Sharif is terrified of the Taliban and not in a hundred years can have his heart and soul in any fight-to-the-death against the curse of Takfiri Islam…that brand of the faith, now spread across wide swathes of the world of Islam, which considers all heretics (those who do not agree with it) deserving of death by the sword, or the bullet. Boko Haram in Nigeria is of this persuasion. Daish or the Islamic State, in Iraq and Syria, is spurred by the same belief. The perpetrators of the Peshawar carnage were fired by the same spirit…carrying out their slaughter, with not a tremor in their fingers or compunction in their hearts, in the name of Islam……
Dr Mohammad Taqi
The TTP has a Deobandi doctrinal hue but Fazlullah’s own creed remains Salafi due to his education at the Panjpir madrasa (seminary) that was established and run by the security establishment’s darling, Maulana Tahir Shah. Another Panjpir alumnus, Jamil ur Rahman, founded the Salafi emirate in Kunar and Nuristan in the 1980s…