TERRORISM & RELIGION

By Prabir Ghosh & Sumitra Padmanabhan

The present problems in India – namely, unrest in Kashmir, terrorist attacks in Indian cities and the more recent anti-Christian violence in Orissa and Karnataka– all have their roots in ‘religion’.

The old enmity between the Christian and the Islamic worlds erupted afresh as the Christian countries gradually developed into superpowers, leaving the Islamic nations lagging behind in all respects. This resulted in the ire and envy of the Islamic terrorist groups. The breakdown of the American Government’s pride and self-righteousness on September 2001 came as a sudden shock to the entire world. It was as if the biggest muscleman of the locality got a tight slap from a petty goon in the middle of the marketplace! To get back it’s lost glory, the Government of US plunged into direct warfare with the Afghan and Iraqi governments.

USA is a ‘civilized’ country, a ‘great’ country like India. But the main difference between India and America is that the Government of America does not terrorize its own citizens; it maintains perfect democracy within its territory. But the Government of India on the other hand continues reign of terror in the border states like Manipur, in Jammu & Kashmir and goes on acquiring regions to add to its number of states (for example Sikkim). America aroused the hatred of the oil-rich Arab Countries by trying to have its ultimate control over these rich but otherwise backward nations. The smaller and weaker nations accepted this highhanded attitude of the bullying big brother. Others wanted to retaliate. But how? At the moment, direct warfare with America is not a feasible idea. The only way is to carry out sporadic guerrilla war and occasional terrorist attacks by killing thousands of innocent people. After the destruction of the twin towers in 2001, America started its all out crusade to uproot the Taliban government and Al Quaida. In an ultimatum to the Taliban government, the American President demanded the following:-

(1) All the leaders of Al Quaida including Bin Laden should be handed over to America, (2) All terrorist Camps should be closed down (3) All imprisoned Western Nationals should be released (4) US should be allowed to carry out combing operations in Afghanistan.

America announced that further discussions on the matter were futile and this war was against all terrorists of the world – not only that Al Quaida. China and Russia did not like this stand – as the definition ‘terrorist’ was given by none other than America. They felt that at a later date, it might take an arbitrary look. On September 23, 2002 the Taliban government refused America’s 4-point proposal. But by this time America had got all countries under ‘NATO’ agreement by its side. With them were added the European Union. Then came – Pakistan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Jordan, Israel, Japan, Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and India. Iran and Sweden were impartial. Egypt and China protested.

Now, if we accept the definition of UN, we will have to agree that USA itself is a substantially large ‘terrorist’ in its own way. Anything against the interests of America is always interfered with. To keep its own people safe and secure, the US does not hesitate to perpetrate terrorism in other countries.

The difference in culture and values among nations also create alienation and hatred. The values of America and the medieval values existing in some of the Islamic countries are incompatible. This enhances the mutual hatred. Some Islamic nations – like Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Egypt, Morocco, Turkey, Jordan, Indonesia, Malaysia and Pakistan of course, tactically support the US government. But a majority of the poor people of these same countries nevertheless cherish a hatred for anything American or ‘Western’. Such is the influence of ‘religion’.

The present problems in India — namely, unrest in Kashmir, regular terrorist attacks in Indian cities and the more recent anti-Christian violence in Orissa and Karnataka– all have their roots in ‘religion’.

New Delhi, 14 September 2008

[Selected portion from e-book ‘Terrorism: A Rational Point of View‘. Click here to download. Published by UniqueEbook.com .]
Picture courtesy: Anandabazar Patrika

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