Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Where is this world heading?

44 innocent people were killed and 140 more were injured in a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan. This time among the victims were some Indians. When, I wonder, will the carnage end?

Till now the people who were primarily on the receiving end were Afghans. In an attempt to show their dissent, the extremists blew up their own brethren. But here, hapless individuals who went with the idea of aiding in the reconstruction are being sacrificed. Where may we apportion the blame?

Let us begin with a small delineation of the story that was. Afghanistan was living happily, maintaining her culture, freedom, although stifled, and under non-extreme, non-fundamentalist leadership. After all, Afghanistan does indeed have a lineage of cultural diversity, having been one of the bedrocks of the Central Asian regimes over the ages. As a result of various other changes in the political climate over the ages, a cold war ensued between USA and Russia. On account of its strategic proximity to Russia and its key vantage point in Central Asia, Afghanistan became the person from whose shoulder the American gun was fired. Afghanistan’s neighbor Pakistan also played a stoking hand in the politics. Various fundamentalist Jehadi groups were funded by USA in Afghanistan as a means to suppress resistance from Russia. What began as a political game of one-upmanship, soon ballooned out of control into the specter called terrorism. Legend has it that the entity called Osama was created as a counter move by the Americans. Black magic is practiced in villages in Kerala, India. And this witchcraft is employed by a person to cause harm to his enemies. However, there is a belief that the witch that is employed here boomerangs to come back and affect the initiator. A similar situation hit America when her own self-created specter came back to haunt her. Had someone reminded the policymakers and powers-that-be then, of the old adage, ‘As you sow, so shall you reap’, life could have been a lot more calm and peaceful the world over.

Think about it.
By making use of Afghanistan during the cold war, and funneling all important resources into the wrong hands, fundamentalist, extremist groups got the necessary wherewithal to build up their case. The Iranian Ayatollah Khomeini had already proclaimed that the west especially USA was an anathema on the rest of the world. And traditionally Christianity and Islam never got along at all. So funds and most importantly encouragement to fundamentalists led to the emboldening of the feared and severely extremist Taliban. No one complained then since vested interests were being served. However, going forward, no one expected a terror attack on a nation as strong as the US. But when that happened, the US decided to strike back. The result, no doubt was the routing of the Taliban from the government of Afghanistan, but as subsequent times have shown the routing has been effective only from Kabul. A fragmented yet ideologically united Taliban continues to lurk in the shadows, looking for the correct opportunity to strike back. Meanwhile, they are making their presence known all over the world by orchestrating such cowardly acts of terrorism under the guise of demanding their independence.

Likewise, the case of Iraq. As if the US did not have enough to worry about, they set off to establish democracy in Iraq. Well, Iraq is legendary for its Shiya-Sunni fights. Although a dictator, and a rather tyrannical one, Saddam knew how to keep his people in check. At least the people did not roam around killing one another on the roads through suicide bomb attacks. But once the Iraqi leader had been captured and rather hastily executed, the whole world wondered, ‘what was going on there?’ Almost 80% of Americans, a survey revealed, felt that the war in Iraq was pointless and was serving some other ulterior motive. Prime Minister Tony Blair was made to publicly apologize for his gross lack of judgment and his decision for having agreed to the nefarious plan of the war on Iraq. Many also believe that this failure in judgment was responsible for his ouster from 10 Downing Street. The CIA itself has declared that the whole 'weapons of mass destruction' story was precisely that... a cock and bull story. The decapitation of the Iraqi dictator literally decapitated Iraq, throwing open the lid of a can of worms. And the rest as they say was chaos! It has been almost a year and a half since Saddam was captured and executed and even now, the law and order is precarious in Iraq. Force and interference have never led to any fruitful gain anywhere. In a way I wouldn't hold the Afghans and Iraqis entirely at fault. Anyone who is made to genuflect to a foreign nation and be governed by a puppet government run by their arch nemesis is bound to react. And react violently. But effecting such a flawed destruction of 2 nations? Can America be accused of Democide? A very harsh statement indeed. But well, they did kill Saddam because of his political views and because of the 'potential threat' he posed for US. And that in turn resulted in 'genocide', though not in the real sense of the word in Iraq. All in all, some decisions by the powers-that- be, have resulted in the virtual wipe out and destruction of 2 countries. And why is the world up in arms against this? Well, all because the whole of the world community is losing its citizens to the barbaric acts of terrorism.

India never interfered in the politics of another country. Yet a part of her Kashmir is gobbled up by Pakistan. China continuously stakes claim on one North Eastern state after another and she loses so many of her sons in pointless suicide attacks or kidnappings elsewhere, not to mention the number of worthy soldiers lost each year in cruel brushes with terrorist infiltrators in Kashmir. And within the country itself, Mumbai shares the nefarious honor of having faced two bomb attacks by terrorists.

As a world community we need a neutral approach and a permanent solution to this problem. Stop allowing one country to take matters in their own hands and play God! Leave a country's natural resources well enough alone. Their resources are theirs and theirs alone. Maybe we need to empower the United Nations to step in and curb the high handed behavior of some of the world's most powerful nations as well. Since clearly the problem causers need not necessarily be from the barbaric, uneducated depths of the third, fourth and fifth world.

I am just worried, that tomorrow, if someone manages to find oil in the Garhwal Himalayas of Uttar Pradesh, we (India) may need to add US into our list of enemies, as they in turn add us to their list of ‘terrorist states’. And the rest as they say.... CHAOS SHALL PREVAIL...........

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