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‘Tips to contain militancy’

July 15, 2013

THIS is apropos Munir Akram’s article ‘Tips to contain militancy’ (July 7). Mr Akram has broken from the traditional narrative.

This narrative advocates a state-backed secularisation of the Muslim populace against the will of the population and sees the increasing conservatism of the masses as a problem which is often described as ‘extremism’ or ‘radicalism’.

Such a narrative demands that the state treat the ‘mindset’ of society ignoring the fact that it is the concepts, convictions and criterion of the people which define the structure and power of the state and the ruling class and not the other way round.

Mr Akram has rightly pointed out the roots of militancy in the Muslim world as an expression of Muslim anger at the colonial policies of Western powers and the inability and unwillingness of Muslim governments to reflect this anger into state policies.

So, a portion of an angry Muslim populace, which is frustrated with state structures that are unresponsive to their desire of political, intellectual and economic independence from the West, have taken upon themselves the right to challenge Western interference in their lands through violence because their respective governments won’t do the same.

In its essence the problem of militancy in the Muslim world is a political problem which is the problem of legitimacy of the state structures in the Muslim world.

No political institution can survive without the support of the masses. The state structures in the Muslim world are a legacy of European colonialists and, therefore, represent Western interests and not the interests of their people.

The Arab Spring has set straight the natural process in the Muslim world where concepts, convictions and the criterion of the people set the priorities of the state and not the other way round.

Whether anyone wants to accept it or not is one thing, the Muslim state is convinced about Islam playing a central role in politics and is determined to establish a state based on such a conviction.

Once the state does what it should do, the problem of violence from non-state actors would automatically recede.


PTI’s policy

THIS is apropos of the article ‘PTI in darkness at noon (June 23) by Muhammad Ali Siddiqi.

The writer was of the view that Imran Khan didn’t refer to 50,000 causalities in terrorist attacks during his first National Assembly speech and during his election campaign.

I think the writer has not followed the PTI’s election campaign.

It is on record that Imran Khan on many occasions during his election speeches, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa specially, said that because of the US’s war/drone strikes more than 35,000 civilians have been killed and billions of dollars have been wasted on the ‘war on terror’ but to no avail.

It is true that the PTI chairman didn’t refer to these figures in his speech in the National Assembly which he should have because human causalities are the most important thing to be addressed.