Guest Post by Farrah K Raja
For quite a while we the visitors on this blog at least have been going through ups and downs and heated debates, we are not afraid to confront our political traumas and to discus religious or social dilemmas.
We the Pakistanis are a surprise to ourselves. Largely we contained our anger, most importantly in response to Bombay blasts, reading back through comments there are so many different aspects and we have discussed that rationally.
We have tried to maintain our pride, nationalism and genuinely tried to separate and investigate facts from propaganda and in a way it has helped us to understand propaganda against us.
Challenge on a personal or a national level is always good, I am glad we come up with our best. We the Pakistanis where ever we are, are not ready to put religion after ourselves. In Europe and United States religion does take generally speaking a second place, first place is human being itself.
In my honest and humble observation of British people they have provided the best solution to Terrorism. Tabloid journalism and sensationalism about Suicide Bomber at its own place for Tabloid Journalism handles everything from death of Dianna, to Prince Charles and Camilla affair, to remarks of Sir Rowan Williams, Head of English church in the same manner, as they deal with Muslims. I do not think it is prejudice; it is the way they think.
So far Britain has dealt with Terrorism in a very wise manner and to be honest and fair British society to an extremely tolerant society. They do put humanity before religion.
I have not found any hindrance in practicing my religion in any way and manner. During Ramadan when I am fasting and do not take lunch break, they do send me home early. If there is any office party etc they do take into consideration that we the Muslims are fasting. Everyday lunch or party they make sure there is halal and vegetarian food available. They do allow me fifteen minutes for my prayers; I choose not to offer prayers in the office though.
After July 7, bombing they provided police protection outside mosques in case there was an back lash. They accepted that Muslims are a wider part of their society and do try to accommodate us. In fact I think British are surprised despite equal rights, protection, why Muslims particularly of Pakistani origin are still so closed within themselves. There were some assaults on Muslims and I am not saying everything is rosy in this garden but what I am saying is that they have tried to understand terrorism and tried to address it. Many of the people, including Guantanamo bay detainees and rest who were caught up in Afghanistan or were caught after July 7 attacks have been provided help to break free of extremism.
Barack Obama has announced that Guantanamo bay will be scrapped.
I want to welcome this as a positive step, it means Obama is going to follow what he claimed during his election campaign. The other heartening thing about Obama Campaign is he did not accept fat cheques from the lobbying campaigners. For example in George Bush election campaign major donors were various Jew lobbies and Indian businessmen contributed a lot, whereas Obama campaign is fought on the funds and contributions made by average and aspiring Americans. No country would and should allow anyone to work against its national interest. Of course Obama’s first and foremost interest is to secure interest of his own people.
For the same time it seems President of United States understands what does the word, World Leader actually means.
Over and again he has used one sentence throughout his campaign that he wants to be the president of those as well who have not voted for him. He always intended it towards American citizens. This man can offer so much to the world .Up till now in his speeches, he means every word, he says. He stands for what ever he said. Actions speak louder than words.
Muslims of the world and Pakistanis should not think that he would be soft towards us, no; indeed he would not. We the Pakistanis for the first time would be able to talk to the person who would not talk down on us.
It is up to the people of Pakistan to put aside their prejudice and try to communicate to this man. He is far more willing to understand and address the problems, to find solutions..
Obama would not have only Pakistan on his plate or on his foreign policy. It is time people of Pakistan and our representatives present our case not as beggars to have more money and aid but at present our most urgent need is to be understood that we the Muslims are not extremists, we want opportunities and freedom and prosperity. We are trying to curb Terrorism and our nuclear plan is not to end the world but to defend ourselves from the hostility of India and Israel.
India must back off from Pakistan. We are concerned for Kashmiri people only because of genocide, torture, abuse, rape and murder taking place there .We are doing so for deliverance of justice to the people of Kashmir. They should also have access to free life and opportunities free of oppression of India. Pakistan is not looking for to extend it’s borders instead Pakistan feels that we are a mature nation and should speak up for the injustice taking place in our neighborhood. We have extended unlimited support to Afghan refugees. We have tried our level best to help people of Afghanistan to establish a stable government. We have accepted open door policy with India in the faith that this will bring peace in this region. We are not an aggressive nation .We want to work towards stability our army has served United Nations and very responsibly has met all the challenges and has provided support to United Nations and USA itself. We only want to put an end to all the conflicts . We are trying our level best to curb Terrorism and for that we need support from USA ,instead of condemnation. USA must play it’s part to uphold justice and not brutality.
People of Pakistan think as a responsible nation we must support Kashmiris .It is a verbal support, we must listen to the plight of Kashmiri people as well as people of Afghanistan. Afghan people have been homeless for more than thirty years.
Pakistan should be given a membership to United Nations as well .There should be at least one Islamic country to represent the case of Islamic world which is the second largest faith in the world.
All I am asking my government and my people of Pakistan is let us put our defence high but let us put aside our prejudice and try to judge or see the new world with the new eyes.
Are we ready for that? Or would we keep complaining about being misunderstood and misjudged without trying to get our massage across. Let us make this last gesture. We have our all hopes dashed anyway but to be honest let us try this chance called