MUMBAI ATTACKS-FOLLOWING THE WESTERN PARADIGM WILL ENTANGLE INDIA
By Firoz Osman
As fear turns to anger in the aftermath of the ghastly Mumbai attacks which resulted in nearly 200 deaths and 300 injured, the Indian governments focus now must be to avert a repetition of these atrocities in the future.
Intelligence agencies from the USA (CIA/FBI), Israel (Mossad), and the Britain (MI5/6), and Interpol, have raced to India offering RAW (India’s Research and Analysis Wing), their experience and advice. Yet, in their haste to do so they can offer India very little apart from hiding their own ineffectiveness. Much of their collective failure is the result of ignoring the legitimate cries of pain emanating from victims of the unjust policies of their respective governments. Since none of these groups can claim any definitive success in countering what they claim to be “Islamic terror networks”, it is left to be seen whether policy changes by Manmohan Singh’s government will provide any relief.
If allegations that the attack was linked to the Kashmir freedom struggle are true – though it is hardly likely to be the case – it would be naive in the extreme for the Indian government to single out Muslims as "enemies". Like wise infiltrating so-called "Islamist terror” networks; curtailing civil liberties; eavesdropping; promoting “moderate” government – or self-appointed leaders; spying; closing mosques; and other tactics which to date have failed, it would be more prudent that India addresses some fundamental issues.
And the root cause, in the overwhelming majority of cases, is the unjustifiable brutalisation, invasion, oppression, and occupation of a people.
The United States of America raided the indigenous American Indian and Mexican population confiscating their lands, usurping their resources, imprisoning, torturing and massacring them, in an act that persist to this day in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Britain, a pre-eminent, rapacious imperial power continues to plunder Iraq’s oil resources, is responsible for the continuing conflicts in Palestine, Kashmir, and elsewhere, and has been a staunch supporter of USA’s aggression.
Israel, too, invades, occupies and oppresses, in blatant violation of International law and protected and armed by the USA and Britain, Palestinian land and its people. It committed horrendous crimes against the Lebanese civilians in the 2006 invasion, and still occupies its territory.
Is it a surprise then that the Mumbai attackers singled out citizens from these three countries for their murderous rampage? And why has India become the latest target? India’s claim of belonging to the exclusive club of democracies, (the longest (USA), largest (India) or only (Israel), cannot cloak its vile and reprehensible deeds in Kashmir, or indeed, against its own Muslim citizens of 140 million.
Since October 1989's massive Kashmiri revolt against the Indian occupation, New Delhi has adopted a liquidation approach to silence each and every individual demanding implementation of the UN resolutions. It has resulted in crackdown, house-to-house search; rape; disappearance; arbitrary detention; custodial killing; extra-judicial execution; politically motivated carnage; looting and plunder, and extended curb on political activity.
During the past 16 years, the 700,000 strong Indian forces have killed more than 93,000 Kashmiris; property worth hundreds of millions dollars has been destroyed and the suffering and devastation continues unabated. No self-respecting people can be expected to remain unmoved while their families and friends are being killed, tortured and gang raped, their houses burnt down, their businesses destroyed and humiliation of the worst kind heaped upon them through the instrument of state terrorism.
Within India the minority Muslims are educationally and economically backward, way behind even lowest Hindu castes. Almost 95% of Muslims who live below poverty line do not receive free food grains; and 60.2% of Muslims do not have any land in rural areas. Sixty per cent of Muslims in urban areas have never attended schools, while only 0.8% of Muslims in rural areas, and 3,1% in urban areas, are graduates.
Despite the overt discrimination against Indian Muslims, it is the right-wing Hindu groups such as the BJP and Abhinav Bharat, that have been implicated and their members arrested for the bomb blasts in Nanded, Parbhani, Malegaon, Kanpur, Thane, Tenkasi and Kunnur .
LK Advani, Narendra Modi and other leaders of the BJP and RSS have, with indecent haste, rallied to exploit this tragedy for the benefit of their parties in the forthcoming elections. In the Indian state of Gujarat, Chief Minister Modi is the face of hardline Hindu nationalism. His administration is believed to have instigated some of the worst communal violence in India since the 1947 partition and the killing of 2,000 Muslims in 2002.
Recent threats to Hemant Karkare, the head of the anti-terror squad killed in the attack, uncovered an unholy alliance of so-called Hindu holy men and army personnel, that has killed more than 150 people this year alone. The terror campaign has now engulfed Christians as well, 600 of whom have been killed since the year 2000. The politics of terror has replaced the politics of communal riots and is the new strategy of communal fascism.
The USA, Britain and Israel have opportunistically clasped India into a tight embrace because of its newfound economic, strategic and military clout. India has the fourth largest army in the world; a navy larger than Australia’s, and a huge market of 300-million middle class flush with cash.
India should not abandon the principles and philosophy of its founding fathers, Ghandi and Nehru, the Non-Aligned Movement of the 1960’s and 1970’s. It stood firmly opposed to imperialism, Zionism, racism, exploitation and occupation. The only way to avert these dastardly deeds in which the innocent suffer is to establish the universal principles of social justice equally across the world and for all nations.
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