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Global Extremism, Bloodsheds, Destructions and a Ray of Hope

The world politics has entered into a complex phase. Ethics and values have been disappearing. The lust for power has overshadowed major socio-political and economic issues. Strangely, religious, political or any other type of extremism has been playing the role of a driving force. The pseudo-religious Messiahs and elected or self-made emperors, who proclaim themselves as super democrats, have been littering the world. These litterbugs are responsible for unimaginable miseries, large-scale destructions and colossal loss of precious human lives. The al-Qaeda terror network took refuge on Islam to advance its mission of taking revenge against the west, particularly against the most arrogant super power, the United States of America. The al-Qaeda’s Islamic fundamentalism got befitting reply from equally blind, intolerant and hegemonic political fundamentalism of the US ruling clique led by Bush and Cheney.

These two fundamentalisms are fighting fiercely against each other as two giant mad elephants. As a result, the nations and peoples around the world including America and the American people are suffering immensely. Iraq and Afghanistan have been paying the price dearly. Killings have become routine acts in these two countries. Nobody has time to sensibly reflect on the loss of thousands of human lives. Afghanistan has been suffering due to the role played by the religious barbarians called Taliban and al-Qaeda, whereas Iraq has been slaughtered by the political barbarians, who are residing on the seats of power in Washington and London.

These two types of barbarians together have made the world difficult to live in. They have not only been manufacturing fear, insecurity and hatred but also are exporting these emotions to several other countries, communities and peoples. By learning from these masters, the South Asian jungle cats also have been repeating the same exercises. Pakistan could not sleep a single night peacefully if that day it failed to harm India. Moreover, India could not sleep, eat or breathe if it failed to hurt Pakistan. India, even the so-called cultured and informed media, brings out from its archive the Pakistan-haters like Parthasarathi and Dixit and provokes them to spill out some liters of venom from their stock. When North Korea tested nuclear device, Parthasarathi was busy spilling venom against China and Pakistan. India has been progressing in many areas except in politics, governance, equity and social justice. Particularly, India has failed miserably in making its mainstream politicians and high level bureaucrats cultured, judicious and ethical. The same applies to Pakistan. In the media, without any need or reason they parade General Gul, the former boss of ISI and the illegitimate father of the Taliban. Perhaps, he is one among the most arrogant individuals still residing in Pakistan. In Korean peninsula, the cousins are busy bringing doomsday for both of them, now with the destructive power of nuclear arsenal, either developed locally or gifted by Uncle Sam. The US, super evil of the region, has been presiding over the destruction of either side of the 38 parallel. The extreme political and military position of the North has increased the dependence of the South on the US for its survival. The political extreme of the North on one side, and supper arrogance and power blindness of the US on the other have destabilized the entire north-eastern Asian region.

Unable to play with such extremes; China, Japan, Russia and South Korea are facing a situation of bewilderment. In the middle-east, the Israeli hegemony and Islamic fundamentalist responses are responsible for the killing of thousands of people and destruction of invaluable infrastructure and property. The Arab fundamentalists instigate Arabs to throw stones or to fire a few bullets targeting Israelis. In return, Israel kills them. The west, particularly the US, supports these killings. Perhaps, they consider that these Arabs are born to be killed by the Israeli bullets and bombs. Probably, each and every Muslim is a terrorist or a would-be terrorist on the eyes of the rulers in the west. Therefore, they pamper Israel and even provoke it sometime. This is the process that started in 1948 and is still continuing. Now, most probably the west is going to open a new battlefield by launching war against Iran. The US has given license to itself to attack and finish any regime, which it considers terrorist or dictatorial or producer of weapons of mass distraction. It has also included in the license the provision that it should not be held responsible for any of its acts whatsoever. Therefore, it may launch a full scale attack against Iran provided that it escapes the unforeseen counter offensive strategies and actions of the Iraqi nationalists, Saddam loyalists and al-Qaeda operatives there. The US and India are pushing Pakistan hard to do more on anti-terror front. Thus, they are interfering in each and every activity of Pakistan. Sometimes, they instigate their Afghan foster child called Karzai to throw verbal barbs against Pakistan.

The US marginalized North Korea so much that it retaliated with the explosion of nuclear device. Similarly, expecting too much from Pakistan will create a scenario when hard-line pro-Islamists within the military leadership would stage a coup de’ tat and start threatening India. Alternatively, the anti-America and anti-India popular sentiment in Pakistan could provide fertile ground for al-Qaeda to build access to and gain control over Pakistani nuclear arsenal. In such situation, the US and India, both, may move resolutions at the United Nations condemning al-Qaeda. In fact, the United Nations neither has any tooth nor credibility nor capacity to deal with major political conflicts. Contrary to such nonsense, al-Qaeda would be planning to drop some nuclear bombs over Diego Garcia targeting American bases. Also, it may direct the nuclear missile launchers to target several Indian cities. This could be a probable scenario provided that al-Qaeda gets access to or hold over Pakistani nuclear arsenal. But, the political extremists in Washington and New Delhi will not go by logics; they simply succumb to their emotions. This has been amply clear when America attacked Iraq without any compelling reason and India goes to US or UK to plead its case against Pakistan. They fail to understand the simple fact that it is neither Pakistan nor Iraq nor Iran, but the enraged Muslims all over the world are committing all sorts of extremist acts against them. If the Americans contribute meaningfully to solve middle-eastern problem and the Indians sit together with the Kashmiris and Pakistanis to find out a just solution, the attacks against them shall come down significantly.

The extreme political positions have affected even the most peaceful, civilized and tolerant part of the globe – the Scandinavian region. The Danish cartoon controversy is an example. It is also affecting the media. The CNN’s highly biased Iraq reporting and Indian television channels’ anti-Pakistan rhetoric are a few examples. Now, the peace-loving peoples and nations around the world should come forward in an unimaginable number to voice their opposition to extremism of any type or form. Particularly, the people in the US should send back the preachers and practitioners of the rightist political adventurism to the ranch in Texas or to the chambers at Halliburton. Similarly, the warmongers like Blairs, Howards and their political cousins should test the bitter pills of political wilderness. Among the South Asian hawks, the rightist radicals of the Indian Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party and Pakistani fundamentalists such as the religio-political lots in the Muthahida Majlish-e-Amal should get slap on their faces at the hands of the electorates of their respective countries. The people of Saudi Arabia should rise and overthrow the Wahabi fundamentalist rulers, who provide resources and export raw materials of fundamentalism, finally to be processed by al-Qaeda and Taliban. Therefore, rather than hunting Osama bin Laden in the rugged mountain terrains somewhere either side of the boarder between Pakistan and Afghanistan, the war against terror should be launched at its source, whether that supplies fundamentalist ideology or resources for it. If and when the Wahabi Saudi rulers are tamed, the breeding ground of Islamic fundamentalism – the politically motivated Madarshas around the world will die a natural death. Osama bin Laden would be unemployed when politically motivated Madarshas disappear, injustices against Muslim peoples, regions and nations stops and logic prevails.

This will greatly contribute to ease the tension in the middle-east, Kashmir and Chechnya. A nuclear North Korea is a new reality and it would be wise to accommodate it within the so-called nuclear club of nations. When India and Pakistan could join the club, why not North Korea? If wisdom prevails, North Korea should act responsibly and should commit not to proliferate. The rest of the world, particularly the hawkish US, should be tolerant and accommodative. The people around the world are more aware that the political or religious fundamentalists are the worst culprits. This great enlightenment guarantees the triumph of tranquility and would contribute for the defeat of the enemy of world peace. The downward journey of the fundamentalists has already begun. It could be seen in the public opinion polls in America where Republicans are fast loosing ground. Similarly, the third force, once again, is gaining strength in India. South Koreans are pleading for restrain. Blair is looking outside standing at the gate of 10-Downing Street to start his march towards political wilderness. Pakistan has felt the heat of al-Qaeda’s resurgence and aggression and is devising strategies to fight against it. Russia has been stabilizing. Mainland Europe is rediscovering its balancing role. China has been contributing to cooling down the heat. And, the middle-east, once again, has been getting serious attention due to heroic deeds of Lebanese, Iraqi and Palestinian fighters, whoever they may be – revolutionaries, terrorists, nationalists, Islamists, loyalists or ordinary men and women on the street. The fundamentalists have already scaled their heights and are climbing down fast. Their bullfights would be over. Certainly, the world would shine one fine morning and the people could smile.

3 thoughts on “Global Extremism, Bloodsheds, Destructions and a Ray of Hope

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  2. Historic Peace Negotiation: Get Rid of Infantile Disorders and Move Forward

    – Govinda Neupane

    In Nepal, unemployment of people from every stratum has been increased. When the ceasefire came into effect, not only the Maoist and government armies have been staying away from fighting, perhaps, their political leaderships also got no meaningful jobs. Therefore, they have been busy staging political dramas. It is strange that till today they have not been able to start any sorts of meaningful peace negotiations; rather they are spending time in teasing and testing each other. Perhaps, they were tired and thought to refresh a bit by organizing series of roundtables in a festive environment. These roundtables, at least, kept their workers, media persons, ‘civil society’ chieftains and several hundred onlookers busy. This became some sorts of political orchestra and the people participated in enthusiastically. Therefore, the negotiation exercises became no less than colorful Jatras (traditional public shows full of entertainment with a mix of singing, dancing and drumming).

    Everybody, with a minimum information base and a critical approach knew that the serious issues are that of the monarchy and management of arms. After wasting several months of precious time, they have now discovered these critical areas. It is understandable that the seven party alliance is superficial and halo; but the Maoist leadership, who claims as the student of logic and objectivity did not behave differently.

    As far as the process of negotiation is in review; this is all messy. Nobody knows who is negotiating with whom? In the country, there are two functional governance mechanisms (de facto governments). Are these two governance mechanisms involved in the process of negotiation? Looking at the initial phase, it sounded like that as there were two teams representing two governing sides. Either they did nothing or the ambition among the galaxy of leaders derailed the process. The big leaders themselves sounded in hurry to entertain each other. They even organized seven party “plus” ‘summit meetings’. And, this “plus” was the Maoist side, as if that was just the eighth party. This was nothing other than messing up of the negotiation process.

    The crux of the problem is the unification of governance mechanisms and transformation of the Nepalese state and society. How that could be done? The seven political parties are behaving as if they can increase the size of their playground by insulting the monarchy locally and by defaming the Maoists internationally. Their whole game plan has two ingredients – retain the monarchy but throw as much mud over it as possible to fool the public at large, and implement the guiding policies of the regional and international power centers to prevent Maoists coming to power. Many among these parties are suffering from infantile disorders and relieve at public places making the environment difficult to breathe. They are happy throwing propaganda tantrums, rather than behaving as serious negotiators. Sometimes, even a weakest link among these leaders presents himself or herself as a state onto himself or herself. Such mind set and such game plan may provide some entertainment, but will certainly fail to resolve the conflict, forget about transforming the state and society.

    On the other side, the Maoist leadership also is being infected from the infantile disorders of the seven parties. In fact, they had to start the negotiation with the government not as a political party, but as a governing political entity, which could be “People’s Government” or “United Political Consultative Council” or “State Council” or something like that whatever they call for their de facto government. And, they should sit on the other side of the negotiating table as equals. But, they came as a political party, and were busy intermingling with the seven parties forgetting, perhaps, their place, role, strength and nature. They should be negotiating with the government as another governing mechanism, which has effective control over entire Village Nepal and has strong presence in towns and cities. But, they came as comrade-in-arms of the seven parties. This is their strategic weakness, if they do not have eggs in other baskets than what they have put for auction. Such weakness may lead to differences of opinion on tactical course and political line and may contribute to divisions and splits among their own ranks. It would be most unfortunate, if they will have division or even split at this critical juncture. They should know that that is the mission of the regional and international power centers.

    The self-proclaimed Messiahs of peace in Kathmandu propagate that the United Nations could contribute effectively to establish peace in Nepal. Even some of them advocate handing over the administration to the UN. Either this is the result of bankruptcy of ideas or they are paid agents of big powers. In essence, the United Nations is run by a well known superpower politically and by the bureaucrats administratively. Therefore, expecting major contribution in resolving the political conflict with the help of the UN is nothing more than a mirage. The UN could be helpful as a humanitarian actor or as a development partner. Its facilitation role has serious limitations in resolving the conflict that has its origin in class contradiction. In fact, the power to resolve the conflict is not outside. One has to see inside the Nepalese boundary for solutions. That could be resolved either negotiating with each other or fighting against each other. Both, political or military solutions are within the reach of the two governing entities existing in Nepal at this particular time. When the course of negotiation has been selected, perhaps, negotiated solution could be attained by approaching through several different processes. Among many such probable processes, one process has been proposed below.

    1) Stop Baluwatar Jatras. Stop the ‘summits’ and super meetings. Clean up the mess. Go one step backward and start afresh.

    2) Recognize that there are two governing mechanisms. If you could not say two governments on technical ground simply give any other name. Accept both mechanisms Headquartered at Singh durbar and at Sisne-Jaljala as equals. Form two official teams representing two respective Headquarters. The teams should be that of authorized negotiators not that of spineless messengers as it has been done now. Do not tarnish the images of your own leaders and cadres by giving them responsibility without authority.

    3) Take the bull by horn. Make three agenda – monarchy, management of arms and election of the constituent assembly. If the teams fail to resolve the issue of monarchy, that too could be referred to the constituent assembly by keeping it under suspended animation. Similarly, if the management of arms becomes an obstacle, then keep both the armies inside their barracks. Form a strong, powerful and well equipped election commission and keep both armies under its control till to the date of first meeting of the duly elected constituent assembly. The major strategic issues would be decided by the people’s representatives, particularly elected for the constituent assembly to design a political system, to restructure the state, to insert values and visions and to ensure transformation of the society by giving reflection of the desired reality in the new constitution. Therefore, rather than wasting time on strategic issues, it would be better to agree on the process, procedure and date of the election and constituting an all powerful election commission.

    4) Form an interim government by bringing representatives from both sides to assist in the process of election and to run the day-to-day administration till the constituent assembly appoints a new government to run the business. That government formed by the constituent assembly would continue up to the time that a new constitution is ready and the new elected government is in place. The new constitution would address the tactical and strategic issues that may include but not limited to amalgamation of two armies and two governing mechanisms and restructuring the state and society.

    If both sides are serious to resolve the political conflict democratically, organizing election of the constituent assembly should get prime importance. The recommendation made by the government to constitute a new election commission is nothing more than an unhelpful attempt, which could spoil the environment. Moreover, it heralds the mind set of the government and its insensitivity and lack of seriousness towards the historic election. Both the governance mechanisms, the one Headquartered at Singh durbar and the other, Headquartered at Sisne-Jaljala, should refrain from creating new problems. Also, they should stay away from trying to occupy the space and discharge the roles of the constituent assembly. And, for this reason, they should get rid of infantile disorders. Most importantly, they should negotiate meaningfully to organize the election peacefully, where people could exercise their voting right without any kind of threat.

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