This week has been a motley week of bizarre happenings. First terrorists, who have more or less become permanent fixtures in modern day life, have proven beyond doubt that terrorism has no affections or soft corners. Even in ancient times, arts and sports were beyond the reach of war. During the Olympics, all warring nations would cease their war efforts and participate in unity in the games. As times progress, humanity is said to have moved deeper and deeper into civilization. May I safely assume, that the present day behavior of terrorists, that shows gross disregard to sports, and to innocent civilian life, is actually a regressive step towards barbarianism? Is this the civilization of tomorrow? Well, Pakistan is already crumbling. What with the Taliban in the Swat valley, and with and economy sunk in debt. Cricket was by and far their only saving grace. They did have a decent team, that could actually give World Champions a run for their money. At such a time, a planned terror attack that challenges the well being of visiting, touring cricketers spells doom for any of Pakistan's prospects of resurrecting its failing image. More so, when the visitors were Sri Lanka, who also are sufferers of the same plague called 'terrorism and lack of internal security'.
Bangladesh Rifles - mutiny. The last time I heard this word was when I learnt Indian history that spoke of the Sepoy mutiny of 1857! I mean, what does it look like? Does the Indian sub continent look for some damn reason to be in the news? For all the wrong reasons that too????
Next up. The whole mess surrounding Gandhiji's things. There's a Tamil saying about a guy who left an elephant's trunk and tried to catch it by the tail - 'Thumba vittutu Vaalala Pidikkara Kadhai'. We Indians seem to operate in a similar manner. Cricket matches to Indian prestige issues. We almost always let go of a victory at the top of the innings and depend on Kumble and Harbhajan to bail us out in crunch matches. Likewise, why do we always sit by the sidelines and drag our feet, in global matters pertaining to Indian things? Remember the patent on Basmati and turmeric? Almost similarly, some Otis guy comes up with Gandhiji's things to put on auction, and only then do we realize that something of historic and sentimental value to us is being 'sarey aam neelaamofied'! And then it hits our government to do something in this regard. And even then they hunt, and think, and discuss and decide and lawfully try to work their way through goodness knows what, till finally, a beer baron goes on, bids at the auction and gets the memorabilia and donates it to the government. Strike one, two and three!
And finally, its time for Africa. A beautiful continent, with rich environmental resources. Gold and diamonds more than anywhere in the world put together. Forests and wildlife better than anywhere else in the world. But poverty, angst, disease, death, ethnic cleansing, genocide - the only place in the world to boast of these vices. Sad? Very! To watch what can actually be a thriving continent, that can perhaps fruitfully employ its vast resources, wither away into decadence and waste, is saddening, to say the least. Africa can make use of its people, who are traditionally hard workers. She can popularize her culture into a unique art. She can put her geographical vastness and strategic location to good diplomatic use as well. But internal issues that have festered for centuries on account of either complete condoning by superpowers or tacit complicity of powerful people with what is wrong have reduced Africa to a wasteland. Take Zimbabwe. With inflation well over one million percent, the economy is in shambles. With a simple disease like cholera claiming 85,000 lives, the country's infrastructure is in ruins. With election results being botched amid high bloodshed, the country itself is in dire need of a messiah. Morgan Tsvangirai, the PM who was sworn in a few weeks ago in a highly publicised 'power-sharing deal' seemed to have at least some right answers. And today, a car crash has left his wife dead and him in hospital. Is there any hope at all for this angst-ridden country nee continent? May God's grace come upon Africa to try to protect the beautiful continent from self destruction.