Issues

Iraq 55000, Afghan 17000, Palestine 3000 children killed, but Obama cried only when his home attacked

“Our hearts are broken today,” Obama said on December 15. A tearful President Barack Obama expressed “overwhelming grief” for the victims of a shooting rampage at a Connecticut elementary school.

Mr. Obama, did you ever regret the child casualties that took place in the countries US invaded and in Palestine? No one can estimate the exact death toll of Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine. A web portal says that 55000 children were killed in Iraq, in Afghanistan 17000 and 3000 in Palestine.

I always go back to this analogy: Imagine if your neighbour’s family got wiped out by an accidental missile strike. The 17 year old son who studied really hard every day after school and was planning to go to college, is dead. The mother with her two young daughters is dead. The dad is dead. Grandma is dead.

Obama called on Americans to set aside politics and “take meaningful action” to prevent more tragedies like that of Yesterday’s. But Mr. Obama, when you are going to set aside the hidden agendas and take meaningful action to prevent more wars?

I do not condone the senseless killings of these children, but this is exactly what happened in other countries, perpetrated by the US, and nobody shed tears for them, least of all Obama. Do not the victims in these countries also have blood flowing in their bodies? Or do they have tomato sauce running through their veins? Do they not have souls? Or have they less value for life than some do? Do not their families (what’s left of them after the butchering) also mourn the loss of their loved ones? Or are their hearts made of stone? Are not the lives of these unfortunate people turned topsy-turvy by these imperialists? Where family breadwinners are wiped out like flies on the wall? How do the survivors carry on with their lives without any real means of survival? Always fearing it may be their turn to be eliminated the next day?

What do we as responsible fellow Muslims do? Other than commiserate over their plight? Do we object? Do we make our voices heard? Where it matters? Or are we too busy making advancements in our lives and careers to overly concern ourselves with these mundane matters?

And our Muslim brothers pour into these imperialist countries for a better standard of living. And contribute to the economic well-being of these countries. And pay federal/income taxes to these countries which are used to butcher our Muslim brothers in unfortunate countries. Do we stop to think? Or is micro thinking better than macro thoughts? Is thinking on these lines irrelevant?

These are questions we need to ask ourselves. Is it worth prostituting our principles “for a few dollars more”? Or can we survive with less? If any human is killed senselessly, Muslim or otherwise, we need to feel for this, and make our voices heard. And shun such perpetrators, for they are wicked. Not the individuals, but the countries as a whole, and what they stand for. But do we do anything other than paying lip service?

Will we not be questioned on these matters on the Last Day? What do we do then? Plead ignorance and helplessness? Or at least show that we cared enough to do what was possible from our end? Introspect my brothers and sisters.

The double standards of the West need to be exposed. Not that they are not aware of it. But they are used to us Muslims not caring enough about it. We Muslims care more about our bank balances. Too harsh? Is it not something that really describes our pathetic attitude towards what is really going on in the world?

Adam, Chennai

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 1-15 January 2013 on page no. 2

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