What is ailing Pakistan and what can be done about it? I am surprised that so many people ask this question when the answers have always been so obvious. Perhaps the answers are not to our liking or are just too simplistic, but they are there and just can’t be ignored anymore.
Pakistan came into being in the name of Islam. It was supposed to be the world’s first modern Islamic state with Shariah laws, pious caliphs, beautiful mosques and lots of date palm trees and healthy camels too. Had we stuck to delivering the fruits of our original purpose of creating Pakistan, Pakistan today would have been one of the most powerful, prosperous and pious nations with its own colonies and influence, especially in and over Hindustan.
Instead of being the cronies of the West, we would have been conquerors, crafting our own swords and breeding our own camels. But that was not to be. Feudal lords and bureaucrats with the help of a westernised army and the malicious intent of the Bengali, Sindhi, Baloch and Pushtun nationalists robbed the people of Pakistan of their dream of living in a true Islamic state. But that dream remained alive. General Ziaul Haq did try to realise it in the 1980s, but the secular politicians continued to impede his gallant efforts until the brave general was assassinated in mid-air plane explosion (or was it a camel?) by a misguided Umayyad slave.
For over 60 years our corrupt rulers (except for the army) have throttled all efforts to make Pakistan into what it was supposed to be: a modern, powerful, meat-eating, date-planting, sword-wielding and Arabic speaking Islamic state and caliphate. Corrupt secular rulers (secularism is inherently corrupt) with the help of the Christian West, Hindu India, Zionist Israel and pagan Bengalis and now Baloch, have continued to undermine Islam and the Muslim ummah that was looking to Pakistan to bomb and conquer all of the Middle East, Africa and Asia (except Saudi Arabia).
The respite from this secular-thus-corrupt civilian rulers’ onslaught came during General Ziaul Haq Shaheed’s 11 years of blessed rule in which Islam ruled supreme and every (Muslim) Pakistani was given a Kalashnikov, and when heroin helped curb and decimate alcoholism in society. Those were brilliant moves that made people all around the world sit up and notice the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. But, alas, the greatest modern Abbasid caliph fell dead from the skies and so did Pakistan’s cherished dream of becoming a true Islamic state.
People who are so concerned and confused about all the problems Pakistan is facing should stop navel-gazing about things like democracy, provincial autonomy and what not. The answer to all our leading problems — obscenity, secular corruption, too much TV, Indian films, Persian words in Urdu, not enough Arabic words, alcohol-based perfumes, not enough Islamic banking, barber shops that continue to offer shaving services, women who refuse to wear the hijab/ burqa/ niqab/ tent, CD shops, kite flying, dog breeding, dog shows, not enough camels, more mango farms than date farms, etc. — lie in the imposition of a caliphate.
It is also worrying that in a so-called Islamic Republic we still have about two per cent non-Muslims. How can we tolerate that? It is our duty to convert them. Equally worrying is this growing habit of our corrupt secular rulers and their equally corrupt supporters to call true jihadists and potential purveyors of a true Islamic state, the Taliban and Al-Qaeda, terrorists and extremists. Shame on us.
So yes, the solution to Pakistan’s many problems lies in the imposition of Khilafah in which every citizen is a (Arabic speaking) Muslim, where there are no useless minorities or heretical sects, where women are free to give birth to as many male Muslim babies as their husbands want, where there are no ethnicities, where men all look and behave alike (true equality, this), where women can only be seen in their households by their mehrams, where alcohol drinkers are flogged, thieves’ limbs cut off and hanged, mango trees are replaced with date palms…
Now that we know what Pakistan requires, how can we achieve it? It’s simple: the army and the judiciary should join hands to get rid of all politicians. Then they should form a government headed by pious men who should then negotiate a peace deal with the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. After the deal, both the parties should form a Shura (assembly of wise male elders, and/or those with most weaponry, camels and date palms). The Shura should then elect a Caliph who is ready to impose strict laws.
How hard can this be? Not at all. All we need to do is to have the will, and the right man (yes, only a man) at hand to be proclaimed as Caliph. We should be ready to let go of our tainted claims of being one ethnicity or the other, or looking to western-style democracy. Instead, we could look to the Chinese democracy — until we reach the prescribed aim of electing a Caliph who can then, of course, go to war with China because they eat snakes, dogs and pigs.
Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and Dawn.com
He tweets @NadeemfParacha
The views expressed by this writer and commenters below do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.