18 May 2024 09:12 AM


Humayun Gauhar | 23 NOVEMBER, 2015

Who Cast the First Stone?

Banksy street art

The Paris terrorist attacks by ISIS have provided grist to the mills of governments and the global media. Beirut could not because it falls in the category of the ‘other’ – Lebanese, Palestinians, Iraqis, Afghans, Pakistanis, Kashmiris, Rohingya, Sikhs, it matters little. But if it happens to ‘us’ that is another matter. All hell then breaks loose. East or West, white, brown or black, those killed are all innocent human beings, all the same and equal in the eyes of their Creator. They have every right to live and not be killed over satanic politics.

State and non-state terrorism, economic terrorism, ethnic terrorism, terror for extortion and kidnapping for ransom, terror against those who disagree or are of another belief system have always been there, just as the howls, screams and animal shrieks of the tortured often give torturers a big high. The fiend is just skin deep in human beings, the most destructive animal amongst all God’s creation; peel it just a layer and the beast emerges in all its sickening fiendishness. The study of human behaviour has got to be the most difficult study ever, more difficult than scientific study, for human behaviour knows no formulae, only action and reaction, attack and response, prejudice and impartiality, love and hate in equal measure.

The Bible tells us that Jesus arrived upon a crowd about to stone Mary Magdalene to death for being a prostitute. Said Jesus: “He who is without sin should cast the first stone.” Everyone dropped their stones, Mary Magdalene joined Jesus, some Christians say she married him and bore his child though both the Bible and Quran are silent on this because it matters not a wit except to those who would form a dynasty to get rid of the Pope.

In matters of Man’s perfidy no one is perfectly innocent nor anyone completely guilty. Man is an animal of causal relationships, cause and effect, action and reaction, attack and counterattack, blow, blowback and more blowback. None is without sin. To place the total blame on an entire people, religion or country is to put your thought processes along with logic and rationality on hold and become a mental hostage of propaganda and perception management. The West may have ravaged our countries, but why did we let them? Why did we let them conquer us by force and the poison of disunity? Now why do we let them conquer us by the honey of loans? The fault is ours.

Words, words, words and more of the same hollow words spewed out by hypocritical rulers – “our hearts and thoughts are with the victims and their families”. It is they who are responsible for spreading global state and non-state terrorism. Only Obama has taken the mature decision to not put boots on the ground in Syria despite persistent nagging. He knows that it will become a quagmire, which is just what ISIS wants. They are sucking them into their own lair by doing terrorism in their territories and domains.

‘Terrorism’ is as old as the hills. The word came into usage during the ‘Reign of Terror’ unleashed by the French Revolution of 1795. The Old Man of the Mountain who was a Muslim used terror tactics by getting his followers high on hashish to kill. The modern word ‘hash’ comes from hashish as does ‘sheesha’. His killers were thus known as ‘hashishians’ that morphed into ‘assassin’. People were in terror of them.

Spreading terror is a means to achieve political and economic ends by establishing hegemony over groups of people – family, neighbourhood, tribe, clan, country, state, region and now the world over – to impose by a combination of force and subtlety their way of life, culture, religion, systems of governance, education, behaviour, cuisine, apparel and so much more over others. Certainly it does damage but it also enriches societies and civilizations where there are any. Muslims did it two ways: through conquests and the teachings of Sufis as did Christians after the Industrial Revolution gave them superior arms coupled with the preaching of missionaries. Thus one saw many mosques built in, for instance, Spain when the Muslims ruled it and one saw many churches, cathedrals and monasteries built in the Indian subcontinent, Africa, Latin America and the Far East by European colonizers. Hegemony is also an engine of societal evolution by lessening cultural inbreeding. See how much the Hindus of South Asians have taken from Muslim culture and Muslims from Hindu culture.

The terrorized react. It is human nature. It is animal nature. Have you heard of a cornered tiger? There is a tiger in every being. Don’t awaken it. Reaction causes an upward spiral of blowbacks and counter blowbacks. The Paris massacre will be a watershed moment like 9/11. Through the blood-tinted glasses of their pain and rage, the French should think what actions of their governments caused this. It will change Europe. It will change moderate Muslim behaviour. Out will go Schengen visas. Muslims will have to rethink their holiday and shopping destinations, youth will look for education elsewhere, the poor other havens for escape from physical insecurity and economic hopelessness. They will soon find that they have no holiday destinations left except in their own countries. The hopeless will discover that their best bet is to save their countries from tyrants and tyrants in democrat’s clothing and make the most of what they have, which in national resource terms is a lot. What they woefully lack is leadership with brains and honesty. They have chosen and tolerated them for too long because they strayed from the Correct Path shown by God in the Holy Quran.

The French home minister says that not just France but the whole of Europe will henceforth be very tough on immigration and immigrants, expatriates present and future. If the huge influx of refugees from the Middle East ravaged by NATO meddling and bombardment find western doors closed they will have nowhere to go. Other Muslim countries being ‘good’ Muslims won’t welcome them either because they have forgotten the tradition of migration of their Prophet (pbuh). Don’t rule out the possibility that naturalized citizens and those with residence permits and work permits might well be given different passports or status or might even have to wend their way back to their original homes. Britain specializes in doing such things subtlety, like making life so difficult for migrants that they will themselves decided to leave. That will put greater economic, social and political pressures on their countries of origin. Welcome back to ruthless reality from western equality, justice, egalitarianism, democracy and freedom at home. NATO members will soon learn that they cannot deny citizens of Muslim countries the right to these freedoms without a blowback that will deny the same rights to citizens of their countries. It already has, what with the Patriot Act and emergency.

Common sense dictates that tyrants are the problem of their citizens, not anyone else’s. Who appointed the powerful to the office of foisting and overthrowing tyrants? Who charged you with the business of foisting your forms of government on others? You cannot have one rule for your own tyrants and another for others’ tyrants: hence you find the comical situation where the West is opposing Bashar al Assad and Russia is supporting him, the West supporting General Sisi and others opposing him. Let people get rid of tyrants through their evolutionary process. Let them have their own governance systems and learn from them. If they want dynasticism let them have dynasticism. Hasn’t dynasticism crept into the US electoral system, a Clinton wife and a second Bush son contesting election for president? Time to cast off the ‘White Man’s Burden’ friends before the ‘natives’ cast it off for you as they once cast it off the Europeans. If you don’t cast it off yourself you will get more horrendous events and so will the Muslim countries whose natural resources, pipeline routes, trade corridors, sea lanes, airspace and geo-strategic locations have become a curse for them, not an asset. There will be blowback causing another blowback, to blowback, to blowback ad nauseam until the entire world is rubble.

But common sense goes out the window when the tyrant starts damaging other countries, like Saddam’s occupation of Kuwait. Mullah Omar damaged others by giving a base to Al Qaeda. Saddam didn’t. Neither did Bashar al Assad: being friendly with Iran and Lebanon’s Hezbollah only damages other countries geo-strategy, but then the protection of Saudi Arabia and Israel raises its head and the mess starts. Hegemony through force of arms or money is innate in Man – the hackneyed “coercive hegemony versus consensual hegemony” claptrap. Unfortunately, coercion, not consensus that comes without compulsion and the hopelessness of self-inflicted bankruptcy, seems to be innate in Man too, even in personal life, no matter how ‘educated’. Only the few enlightened understand that formal education is only a tool to acquire knowledge; knowledge leads to enlightenment and enlightenment to wisdom. However enlightenment requires thinking and introspection that has unfortunately slowed down due to the ever-increasing rush of life that humans are trapped in. With little time to think and introspect, they have handed their minds over to the tyranny of the written and spoken word, especially by media, clerics and politicians. No media, no cleric, no politician is telling us the real reasons behind the global madness that has engulfed what was a largely peaceful world when I was growing up, travelling all over, not requiring a visa in most countries despite my green Pakistani passport. Now there’s nowhere I can go without a visa that I get after great harassment, embarrassment and waste of time. Soon, this will happen to all passports and we will become prisoners in our own states. Well done, humankind, you certainly are one of a kind.

This is a post-war stage in the movement of historical forces, the convulsions of the Leviathan shedding its skin the current global status quo to acquire a new skin the future status quo. The world will change meantime with new State boundaries. It always does after world wars. Not all your weaponry, books, universities, think tanks and amazing technology can save you when historical forces decide that your State belongs to the trashcan of history. Then they implode them. If you haven’t read Ozymandias, please do.

A young French couple said that we should all learn to get to know one another in order to understand one another. That is the best statement I have heard. Understand, even like each other, yes, but love...? Love and hate appear to exist in equal measure in the human animal that God calls the “jewel” of His Creation, and right now hate is winning hands down.

“Horrendous carnage” yes and yes again, but do the simple and innocent citizens of NATO know how much more horrendous carnage their own governments caused in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria and many other places? Only in Syria over 224,000 innocent civilians have been killed just to remove one man from office. The West’s response is the usual kneejerk “bomb them to smithereens”. They have started bombing Raqqa, but haven’t they already bombed enough that caused the Paris carnage? There will be another blowback and more carnage and so the merry-go-round of madness will continue until hypersonic weapons are brought into play.

Where did ISIS, Al Qaeda and the Taliban come from? Who caused it? Who had the brilliant idea to call the fight against Afghanistan’s Soviet occupation a ‘Jihad’? Do they realize what forces they unleashed by uncorking the bottle in which the worst kind of mullah was trapped? Do they realize how much damage their two-faced abandonment of post-Soviet Afghanistan, Pakistan (with sanctions) and the Mujahideen did? Do they understand what damage the needless war on Iraq on satanically fabricated ‘evidence’ caused? My western friends, please dwell on what I have been writing since 9/11: “State terrorism begets non-State terrorism”. Attack, counterattack, blow, blowback will continue as long as state terrorism exists.

You got rid of the tyrant Saddam but is Iraq better off without him? Is the region? Are you? You didn’t have a good post-Saddam plan. Will you be honest enough to admit that you put Saddam in power in the first place. That the disbanding of the Iraqi army created ISIS? That your allies Saudi Arabia and Qatar funded them and you and some of your NATO allies armed them? Then you (ostensibly?) lost control of your own monster that is now trying to kill you – Dr. Frankenstein’s story all over again?

So whilst we are at wits end to find ways to end global state and non-state terrorism, let us pause and ask the crucial question: “Who cast the first stone?” It is time we all found the answer and then a solution if we are to make the world a kinder, gentler, peaceful place. Remember, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall inherit the Kingdom of God.”