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Black Tuesday

I read MG articles with great interest and appreciate your efforts.
Nadeem Shafiq Malik, Rawalpindi

United Religions
I have a suggestion which I want to be spread through the world. We, human population of this very earth have already an organisation called UN, yes! United Nations. Don't we miss a "UR"? What? Yes ofcourse: United Religions.
Benny Aalto, Finland

Hijab in Kerala
Apropos of your special report (MG, 1-15 Sept 2001) ‘Muslim Women in Hijab on the Road to Freedom’ by Arif Zain. I am very happy to see that, it was up the point. I wish to bring to your notice a point which I fear has been missed. It is about the role of ‘ Kerala Nadwatul Mujahideen’ which is one of the major motivating spirits behind this culture of Islamic dress code.
It is strange irony, indeed, that when the cloak of Christian nuns is considered a symbol of freedom and pride, Muslim women’s similar attire it is considered a sign of slavery and confinement! I congratulate the writer and the MG for publishing this.
PMA Gaffor Poongode,
Malapuram Kerala.

This refers to your editorial ‘"Brains in purdah". I am not going to argue whether any individual is authorized to enforce code of conduct for the community or not. But one thing is for sure that Islam has given equal status to both the sexes but has prescribed different duties for the two. Islam encourages regulated love in order to build up happy family lives since it is healthy families that provide the blocks to construct a healthy society; but it abhors promiscuity which ruins people's family lives and seriously damages people through the ultimate disaster of illicit sexual relationships. In this regard both believing men and women have been asked to lower their gaze and guard their modesty, and hijab has been made mandatory for a believing woman. So it is unfair to say that it is upto a woman to observe hijab or stay behind closed doors. As hijab is a binding dictat of the Qur’an and not of some Urdu book. Qur'an clearly says: ‘And play your role by being in your houses and do not keep exhibiting your beauty and decorations like what used to happen in the Jahiliyyah period (before Islam)’ (33:33). Islamic hijab is not a Jahiliyyah doctrine, that is why prophet (PBUH) allowed women to go out for necessities but with certain restrictions and allowed relaxations in the limits of hijab as demanded by the circumstances. That is the Justice of Islam.....
Tauheed Ahmad, Jhansi

Stand up!
Please, please, Mullas, Imams, stand up and say this atrocity in America is nothing to do with ordinary Muslims. To say this would help your fellow-Muslims a lot. (I speak as an agnostic, not a Christian).
Vivian Pritchard

Regret to say that this magazine is ONLY spitting venom. A nation comes first followed by harmony. Religion is a personal choice and it should NOT be misused. Convey the message of UNITY instead of HATRED.
J. Joshi, Tennessee

Tyagi arrest
Even the most accomplished professional contortionist will be ashamed by the expert machinations of the duo of Vilasrao Deshmukh and Chhagan Bhujbal, when it comes to bringing the former Police Commissioner RD Tyagi to justice as per the recommendation of Justice Sri Krishna Commission.
In Tamil Nadu, highest police officers in person can haul up a former Chief Minister of a state in the dead of night, drag him to jail without producing even an arrest warrant ---- all on allegation of a civil case of corruption; in Maharashtra, the Congress-led coalition government appears to be going through the motions of serving the noble cause of justice after a lapse of eight long years and has to depend on Supreme Court directions for each step in the procedural obstacle course, to bring to justice those accused of what Muslims overwhelmingly believe as ‘blatant mob style gang murder of nine innocent citizens of India’. The famous taunt of the policeman shot the innocent: India ka khata hai aur Pakistan ka gata hai ---shows up the limit of sickness that had corroded the morals of the communalised police force. No small blame should go to the vernacular media, which had whipped up the frenzy by printing totally untrue and exaggerated account of the so-called ‘Muslim attacks’ in the aftermath of Babri Masjid demolition.
Ghulam Muhammad, Mumbai

Re-writing history
The recent wave of deliberate efforts of some people-in-power to rewrite Indian history and implement "value-based" education has put Indian Muslims in a very precarious situation. The Muslims in India (or Muslims from India) are portrayed as unpatriotic unless they provide some proof of their patriotism. Even individuals like Shabana Azmi or Dileep Kumar have to constantly pass some kind of a litmus test all the time. For example, the statement issued by Shabana and her husband, Javed Akhtar, condemning demonstration by some Muslims protesting screening of the movie Ghadar was labeled as ‘her support for a fellow Muslim actor’. This is the same Shabana, who was chastised by a fraction of Muslims for shaving her head for a movie role.
Zafar Iqbal,


A re-play of Baghdad?
I feel genuinely perturbed at the crisis that is going to face us all in the Muslim world; an abiding regret is that the Muslim world seems least prepared to deal with the deluge knocking at its door. I get the feeling that we are back in the 13th century when the Mongols laid waste the Islamic world and ravaged it to such an extent that it hasn't fully recovered from that shock in 7 centuries.
Karamat Ghori, Toronto

Editor: The 'terrorist' tag will harm the world of Islam no doubt but I doubt that the 'war' will be allowed to reach a point where the long-term interests of the West will be harmed beyond repair since there is mutual need and inter-dependence and we are not living in the middle ages anyway. I hope I am correct that the 'war' will be localised and will serve to satisfy the internal demands for revenge rather than a long-term programme of war which, if happened, will only benefit the forces they will be trying to hurt and discredit in the first place. Their allies all over the world of Islam will fall like a pack of cards just as was witnessed in the Arab World after the emergence of Israel when Arab regimes lost all legitimacy in the eyes of the common man. They have many good brains and I sincerely hope that good sense will prevail after the initial outrage and they will learn from the past events.

KG: You're right. Prudence demands that retaliation be kept strictly localised and short-termed. Of course, any prolongation of it would destablise the very regimes that the west is ostensibly trying to shield from the encroaching shadows of radicalism. I've no doubt, like you, about the presence of sound minds in the midst of policy makers and leaders. I hope they are not blinded by the outrage and get carried away by surging emotions. That would be suicidal for the long term interest of the west. My only fear is the preponderance of Jews and Jewish interest in Washington. They have a pathological hatred against the Muslims and would try to steer the policy on this occasion to effect as great a chasm between the Islamic world and U.S. as possible.Interestingly, this realization has, very gently, very quietly, started to sink in that America has invited this massive wrath of Islam upon it because of its totally purblind support for Israel. As America's agony compounds, this feeling, currently incipient, would become a groundswell. We should pray for that watershed to happen, sooner than later.
Let us keep a close watch on what unfolds, in the next few days, in Pakistan and Afghanistan. There are rumblings of discontent already in Islamabad. The radicals in Pakistan aren't going to take Musharraf's decision to give a chance to Washington to swipe at the Taliban lying down. 

Black Tuesday

Suicidal Hijacker alive!
Abdulrehman al-Omari, the Saudi pilot named by the U.S. as one of the suicidal hijackers is very much alive in Jeddah and has contacted the U.S. Embassy there. Does it not prove beyond any shadow of doubt that the hijackers were travelling on fake documents? And that they deliberately chose Muslim names with Arab identities to mislead the half literate and minority elected President Bush and his henchmen towards Osama Ben Laden ­ a natural and readily acceptable enemy. The U.S. media has also broken under the pressure and gone berserk with Osama phobia. They are all sincerely advised to keep their composure and not be blinded by the pre-conceived notions of demanding Osama Dead or Alive. They must instead look all around, including inwards, for the real perpetrators of this most heinous crime for which the people of Pakistan fully sympathise with them.
Riaz Jafri, Rawalpindi

The tragic events of 11th September, 2001 were heart-rending. No words are enough to condemn the perpetrators of these criminal acts of terrorism which led to colossal loss of life and property. One of the unfortunate results is that this terrorism has given rise to a strong hostility to Muslims in some Western countries, but especially in North America.
I naturally feel much disturbed for my brothers and sisters there, for all of them. But for those who are known and close to me, either because of kinship or friendship, are naturally much more in my thoughts.
Zafar Ishaq Ansari, Islamabad

A full page advertisement in Economic Times, Mumbai, on September 18, 2001 announces ‘Solidarity Day against Terrorism- 18.9.2001’, where everybody is asked to observe a 2-minutes silence at 10.30 as a silent prayer: a silent resolve. The sponsor of the advertisement is not identified, though it was concluded with the slogan -- ‘The nation stands united behind the decision of the All Party Meeting on September 15, 2001.
The bone of contention is the arbitrary selection of four events as representing the face of terrorism: Mumbai Bomb Blasts-March 1993; Plane Hijack, Kandahar-December 1999; Anantnag Massacre, March, 2001; Attack on WTC, New York-September 11,2001. One wonders if all political parties have agreed to ignore the worst terrorist attack of India’s 54 year history: Demolition of Babri Masjid - December 1992., or is it the daylight hijacking of Indian history by the Sangh Parivar.
The public interest advertisement should have carried the full name of the sponsor/s to confirm the fact that all political parties are not only ‘united’ in the gesture of spending a lakh or two, to promote national resolve to fight terrorism, but are in full agreement with the sponsors in ignoring Babri Masjid Demolition and the resultant massacre of innocents as not a representative terrorist act to be included in the national shame.
Incidentally, the newspaper carries with the same issue a supplement on Israel, marking in the words of Israeli Ambassador to India ---through the unstinted efforts of ‘The Times of India Group’, the Jewish New Year ‘Rosh Hashanah’. Trying to identify Solidarity Day against Terrorism with Jewish New Year is a direct incursion in the public life of independent India. Those who are familiar with US media scene, will have no difficulty in noting that full page advertisements in New York Times are the brand of favorite Jewish public relations exercise.
150 million Muslims have every right to protest the new jugalbandi between the Sangh Parivar and Israel to hijack the nation in the name of all political parties. It is time people with foresight understand the full implication of this association and come out with their forthright responses.
Ghulam Muhammad, Mumbai-400050.

In the context of present crisis we have come up with some interesting facts, given below. Please try to get them published in maximum number of newspapers,covering all the main languages,in India/Pakistan etc.
Bush’s quagmire. Kill Taleban and Russia takes away Afghanistan. Don’t kill them and Israelis threaten, next target Airforce One. Solution, ask China’s help at home.
If US wants to remain a super power, know what masses of this world think NOT their leaders. If West wants to win against terrorism, take the masses of the third world with them NOT their leaders.
Israel has always manipulated US against Muslims, only difference this time was, Internet helped to uncover the conspiracy, even before the ‘proofs’ could be fabricated.
US could still destroy Taliban, but it has already lost the information war, thanks to Internet facility available to billions of Muslims in 52 countries.
If US punishes Bin Laden wrongly, imagine the havoc his groups, “well organised in various countries” can cause. If US finds, right culprits (short sellers at N.Y. stock exchange), imagine the goodwill, created in Muslim masses.
Fight terrorism, by creating good will for America amongst others, NOT terrorising them, and that too for pleasing just one country out of 159 countries.
‘Short sellers benefited by WTC attack’ say European leaders. By what stretch of imagination, the money trail will reach caves of Afghanistan. Advice: look for money lenders at home.
Have Americans already forgotten the CNN clip wherein Mr. Netinyahu threatened Mr. Clinton, to put Washington on fire if he keeps insisting on “land for peace” deal.
Afsar Zaman

The reason so many in the west are branding all Muslims is because the voice of the Islamic people has been deafening silent against the atrocities committed by those who purport to follow Allah's example.
We in the west see so many Muslims protesting against the release of Osama bin Laden to the states for justice. Where are Muslims who are truly for justice when the human atrocities are committed in the name of Allah? Seems Muslims are worried more about themselves than the blaspheming of Allah's name when scoundrels use his teachings to beget terrorism and annihilation.
I have searched the internet to see Muslim express sorrow and demanding that Osama Bin Ladin face justice. but instead what I see are weak-kneed responses by Muslims saying that we can not contribute to justice because Osamah himself is Muslim. As long as this continues and the Islamic world is hiding behind Allah instead of assisting justice I am afraid the Muslim world is continuing its downward toilet spiral in its image.
And so that you may not think I am a jew or catholic infidel, I am myself Muslim-born, West-educated. And my family strongly believes Osamah should be hanged in the West for his demonic deeds and that all Muslims should be fighting a war against Muslim extremists and terrorists. I am ashamed to identify my self as a Muslim because I am ashamed by the reaction of my faith since Sept 11.
Allah is great, Allah is good, and his followers are peaceful. Osaman Bin Laden and Al Quaeda are not muslims nor are Muslims who come to his defence and protest against the west.
A good Muslim seeks justice across religious boundaries and does not forsake a neighbor because his beliefs and practices are different. Allah speaks to this .
Aasyiah M Haji , North America

Spilling of human blood should, doubtlessly, be felt abhorring, be it by arrogant oppressors or the oppressed persons who have been made desperate. The fact is that the proud and arrogant administrators elected by American masses have forced many self-respecting people in many countries like Vietnam, Korea, Cuba, Nicaragua, Palestine, Lebanon, Libya, Iran and even America itself to resort to suicidal warfare to stop massive state terrorism.
The latest assault on America by such desperate bombers is really like the attack of an oppressed David on an oppressor giant Goliath:
There can be no peace so long as oppression and injustice continues in any part of the ever-shrinking world. The only Supper Power GOD, when angered, can turn towns into graveyards instantly by just shaking HIS earth for a few seconds!
S. Akhtar Khanpur Deh-392150


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