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‘Tips to contain militancy’

Published Jul 15, 2013 07:25am


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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.


Comments (2) Closed

Ravi Jul 15, 2013 01:44pm

To Moez Mobeen: Please stop rationalizing extremism and violence. Let the militants contest elections and win power democratically and then they can change the state policies. Today, Taliban and their supporters are using violence to terrorize innocent people. How does killing women and children in Pakistan through suicide bombing help to address the "unjust policies of colonial powers" ?

Rana M. afzal khan Jul 16, 2013 02:47pm

Tips to Contain Militancy: Here the point being missed is that after each election in Pakistan the rightist (Religious & Fundamentalists) loose more ground to the Progressive point of view (not necessarily Western). So as a class with no plans to change, this category is becoming Isolated and thus become reactionary fearing extinction of Islam (actually their own extinction). Further they are split in many fiqas or factions and each wants to impose its own version. In a nation as badly divided as Pakistan (First into Provincial identity, than Casts, next religious fiqas and sub fiqas) such elements represent the smallest segment of the minced meet. Since they do not represent the vast majority and know that they are not being listened to, they resort to violence to force their point of view in the name of Islam. Now how to handle them. certainly not by giving up but by a persistent plan of action that includes bringing them into the main stream. Not a very good example could be red Indians in USA. Certainly by not giving them autonomy or control over an area. Political Parties who take every one along and more transparency with Democracy is the answer.