I opened eyes yesterday with the heartbreaking news of terror attack which is labeled in the media as the truck attack, in Nice, France. I was checking news updates for more details and noticed that instantly Islamist terrorism issue being discussed on Twitter. Today's article is about why I find Islamist terrorism is a surface issue, we are blaming without going into the roots of the ISIS.
Roots of Terrorism Present Beyond Religions:
A few years back, I had believed some propaganda and had felt that Islamist terrorism is the biggest threat to the world. Please note that it’s Islamist, not Islamic. The word Islamist is used about the religious fanaticism and not against the individual Muslims. My thoughts have absolutely transformed in the past few years. The problem of terrorism isn't Islam. The problem isn't even religion, which is believed on a level that it seems so.
I studied Pentagon Papers, last year, on infamous Vietnam War and my thought process changed the direction. The book had a line which is thought-provoking. I can't quote it as the book was from a library and I don’t have it with me right now, but I am sharing it in my words:
"The Government and people are like two intersecting spheres. What the public knows about the functioning of the government is only the which is the intersection of both spheres."
After studying Pentagon papers, I realized the helplessness of being an ordinary person, however disheartening it may be but I need to accept that it is what is the reality. If you are not in the government system at the top somewhere, then the chances are that you will find yourself unnecessarily annoyed sometimes by the system despite being highly successful or rich.
Most of our beliefs are created by a system we can’t ever name for long-term gains and implanted in the minds of people and we live with them trusting them as the truth. Humans get outrageous to protect those false beliefs and we become enemies of each other. These beliefs are not necessarily religious beliefs. I have no intention to accuse a particular country or an authority. However, I am sure that nobody will deny this truth, even the authorities themselves.
Will Religious Reforms Control Terrorism?
One common opinion is that reforms are necessary for Islam. But I think it will not be honest, completely to say that, referring to one particular aspect. I think reform is a continuing process which is needed in every field of life irrespective of our religion. For a peaceful society, we should not be rigid. And if we would blame religions and faith instead of introspecting how we interpret and practice it in our lives, our direction will not be correct.
Making reforms and whether they are needed or not will be easier to decide if we all would focus on what we choose to believe and practice. Whether I am religious or not, I should be kind and respectful to everyone is the basic courtesy and if I don't have it then there can be many excuses for being unkind behavior.
Okay, I am not writing this article to justify terrorism by ISIS. But it's the high time to think, debate and search for the truth.
Disturbing Questions on The Growth of Terrorism:
- How does ISIS get all the war weapons? Some news says that they deal from the 'dark web' and transactions are completed by Bitcoin. I fail to understand is it really that difficult to block such deals? These deals and transactions can’t be legal, so there must be some way to stop it.
- It's not possible for a few fanatics to wage a war like this globally, that too without some strong sources fueling them. A fanatic may kill some people, but terror attacks in different countries cannot be carried out without getting minute details of the place, targeted people, dates, thorough planning and crucial training or rehearsing. Can you believe that it's really so complicated to get the information before an attack?
- Privacy issues of ordinary civilians are in discussion for quite a long time. Then, I wonder why is it so difficult to get ANY information about terror attacks?
- Sometimes I feel we all are used like a puppet by the powerful system of governments or security agencies we never know. And we can't even accuse them of anything because perhaps nobody can prove it. It's a child's play to destroy the person who fights for the rights of innocent civilians. We know Snowden. We know Assange who was then ‘suddenly’ accused of rape. (Dan Brown's ‘Digital Fortress’ sheds light on the functioning of intelligence agencies with details. It certainly gives a different perspective to think in the direction which is not discussed in the media.)
- And after understanding all these disturbing aspects, you just can't blame the people of one particular religion. Puppets 'can't be allowed' have religion. For the system, however, democratic it may be, uses all of us in the name of defense, no sentiment matters, no faith matters. Period.
Exploitation of Faiths for Political Gains:
To make my point of view clearer, I would like to share a case of Hinduism.
The devotees of Lord Shriram are mostly spiritual people. Devotion, faith, including superstitions associated with Lord Shriram are rarely aggressive and harmful to anybody. Many spiritual organizations are devoted to working for encouraging devotion and inspiration from the life of Lord Shriram. Some devotees recite the name of Lord Shriram. Some write it as a form of worship. Some perform pujas and fasts.
No intolerance, no aggressive behavior, and no violence at all. But one incident of Babri demolition and all the political provoking associated with it harmed the image of this great spiritual faith forever. Jai Shriram is presented like a threat and not a devotional thing in media. But this was how it had happened. And they have the facts to share. It pains me deeply but has to witness the exploitation of our simple, innocent faiths because this issue is still provoked again and again by the right wingers with the hope of election gains.
When I see Twitter troll wars between the trolls of different political parties, when I see the abusive hashtag wars trending, I feel we don't need religion to hate each other. People can fight and create wars for their leaders, idols, or actually for anything non-existent if provoked with careful planning of election strategies. Sadly, these wars are not limited to Twitter or Facebook only. They are entering our real lives and relationships.
Just a few years back, people supporting the leaders who are opponents of each other, could be great friends. Diverse political opinions wouldn’t harm our relationships in those days. Nowadays, so many friendships are ended forever just for some political leader. It cannot be acceptable.
Our lives are burning, but we don't even recognize it, these days.
When there are terror attacks in a European country like France we show solidarity with the victims. But when the victims are in Iraq, Dhaka or in an African country we don't care to pray. We don't feel anything.
Unfortunately, our feelings grow with a root of 'Us' vs. 'They' mostly due to perhaps our social upbringing.
If 'they' are suffering, 'we' have nothing to do with it.
'We' are superior humans; ‘they’ are getting what they deserve.
I do not want to blame people for prejudices. My point is that we are dragged into all the bitterness and venom, sadly.
By writing this article, I don't intend to show how perfect or ideal I am. I often realize my mistakes that happened absolutely unwillingly. I just try to introspect and correct my mistakes wherever I can in my personal life and by my writing, genuinely. When I feel guilty, I pray to God for my thought purification.
Prayers and Love for The Grieving Victims:
I am feeling so sad reading every terror and war news, my heart wants to reach out to all the victims.
If my love would be powerful enough to bring peace I would truly feel better perhaps.
Although, I am feeling as much helpless as you all the victims of terror attacks must be going through and people who are trying to survive in war-affected regions must be feeling every day, I just want to say to all of you
I feel your pain, though not complete, but having faced inhumane miseries in my real life,
I have cried for several days in the helplessness.
I have lived under the grief of separation from my loved ones due to some harsh experiences.
So I feel your pain,
Sending all the love my heart feels
I am praying for you all
And sending my hugs to you.
May God bring peace in the world.
Let's continue to strengthen each other by sharing compassion and love.
References: Terrorism, Civilian Privacy, and Gang-stalking:
"In ITIC assessment, historically speaking there are similarities between the results of the American invasion of Iraq, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and the Israeli invasion of Lebanon. In all three instances the invading country failed to establish a new political order or to stabilize an effective, supportive regime. In effect all three invasions had a deleterious effect on the existing delicate politicalsocial fabric: in Afghanistan and Iraq they caused changes that contributed to the establishment of radical Sunni jihadi terrorist organizations and in Lebanon to a radical Shi’ite terrorist organization following Iranian ideology and receiving Iranian support."
"During the almost nine years (2003 — 2011) the United States army was stationed in Iraq the Americans failed to establish effective Iraqi army and security forces to fill the newly-created security vacuum. "
"Between 2008 and 2011 ISI’s power waned. That was mainly because of the American army’s extensive military campaign which began at the beginning of 2007, called the “surge.” The American forces were assisted by Sunni tribesmen in the campaign against the jihadi group, especially in Al-Anbar province, where the tribes despised the brutal practices of Al-Qaeda and the jihadi organizations. The tribesmen, who at the time received large financial incentives from the Americans, organized into groups called “awakening councils” or “awakening groups."
"A massive bombing campaign was launched. Targeting civilian infrastructure, this has nowcontinued virtually uninterrupted for 23 years. The 2,000 tons of depleted uranium dropped on Iraq caused vastly increased cancer rates, child mortality and birth defects. An extraordinarily harsh sanctions regime further reduced Iraq from a state with a reasonably high standard of living and advanced modern infrastructure to a nation barely clinging onto survival. Life expectancy plummeted from 65 to 58 between 1987-95, as Iraq fell from 54th to 127th on the United Nation’s development index. Sanctions directly caused at least 1 million deaths, including 500,000 children. For survivors, near-starvation diets, countless diseases and severe psychological trauma became the norm."
"Meanwhile, with occupying forces numerically incapable of maintaining order, central authority and civil governance utterly collapsed. The disastrous “de-Ba’athification” program, furthermore, fired hundreds of thousands of teachers, doctors, bureaucrats, police officers and soldiers overnight."
"With former army officers and soldiers joining the current uprising, the link between these conflicts and the legacy of 2003 is undeniable."
"The uprising has taken root in the same cities and provinces and is composed of the same social factions as the civil war. It has also been radicalized by extreme regional Islamist groups — forces that had no presence in Iraq before 2003."
"Representative Loretta Sanchez’s comments said after Congress was given a classified briefing by NSA officials on the agency’s previously secret surveillance activities that what was revealed was just the “tip of the iceberg” and that it is “broader than most people even realize”. "