By Senator Rehman Malik
The historians will not forget to write about the worst miseries and killings in the Muslim world in the recent past starting from Indonesia to Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Indian occupied Kashmir, Middle East and right up to Ankara. Ironically, the UN and world powers have opted to become silent spectators and have deliberately shut their eyes for their vested interests.
Evaluating and reviewing the tragic history and sufferings of the Muslim world led me to believe that those charismatic Muslim leaders who spoke for the unity of the Muslim world were eliminated in very mysterious ways and circumstances.
Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto tried to create unity and to bring Muslim countries to one forum so that they could solve their problems by themselves but he and the other Muslim leaders who played a role for this cause met their fate through unnatural deaths. Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto hosted the Islamic Summit in Lahore in 1974 where Muslim leaders gathered to exhibit solidarity with one another, which was a landmark moment in the history of the Muslim Ummah. Fearful of the strength of a united Muslim Ummah under the charismatic personality of Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, vested powers used General Zia ul Haq – the handler and confidante of USA – to first topple his government and then to kill him. Similarly, King Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud was assassinated by his nephew Faisal bin Musaid who was also killed simultaneously to keep the real facts buried forever in history. It is strongly believed that Yasser Arafat was poisoned. In my presence, this message was conveyed to a diplomat posted in UK to be conveyed to Yasser Arafat. This fact was later confirmed through his post-mortem report. Similarly, Muhammad Anwar el-Sadat was assassinated on 6 October 1981 during the annual victory parade held in Cairo to celebrate Egypt's crossing of the Suez Canal by those who became Jehadis and one of them was Al Zawahiri, current leader of Al-Qaeda.
During the same period of uncertainty across the Muslim world, the Iranian Revolution took place, that overthrew the Pahlavi dynasty under Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, which was actually an anti-socialism move in the region.
With each passing day, the Muslim world is being pushed towards an uncertain future by design and in line with the perceived post 9/11 World Order. Analysing the new geo-political order, I find no other reason but the thirst for power and to control rich resources, especially oil and the pipelines and sea-lanes that connect them to global markets. As we know and understand, the Middle East contains 40% of the world's gas reserves, whereas OPEC countries currently hold 71.5% of the global reserves and more than 30% of the oil exporters are Muslims. So, it is a fight to meet the materialistic interests even at the cost of millions of innocent human lives. Many were optimistic and I was also wondering as to what the policy of the newly elected US President Donald Trump be? His opinion on the war against terror, his vision on the war in Iraq and his initiatives towards peace in Afghanistan were all points of interest.
The US media was initially hard-hitting on the professed policies of Mr Donald Trump during the election campaign, and all and sundry were talking about his probable hardline stance against CIA but, after hearing the speech of President Donald Trump, my doubts converted into reality and I became certain of the fact that he will follow the policies of CIA more willingly than his predecessors. I was confident that President Donald Trump would work towards peace in war-stricken regions and would bring stability there by reducing the arms race and will work for the unity of nations irrespective of their religious and regional identity by promoting inter-faith harmony. But, unfortunately now I feel doubtful that if he will do so. I had tweeted eight points as advice to President Donald Trump, which were later acknowledged by his office, urging him, inter alia, to fight alongside Muslims against terrorism, not against them. I had also advised him to not fight and condemn the entire Muslim community, as every Muslim is not a terrorist and every terrorist is not a Musli I feel that things are getting worse by the day rather than getting better. The foiled coup in Turkey and the Russia-Turkey conflict, followed by other international incidents has already destabilised the peace process.
An ordinary mind is bound to ask why terrorism is prevalent in Muslim countries only. Why are the forces of ISIS not striking Israel, which is considered the biggest enemy of Islam and Muslims? The reason is simple, because a snake does not bite its own tail. I feel sorry to say that the designers have played their card well and both the Muslim Ummah and their leaders have accumulated fear and subsequently have failed to stand up against conspirators and conspiracies. The Muslim Ummah is fighting against each other in Saudi-Iran proxy wars in Iraq and Syria and so on and so forth, whereas outsiders are taking full advantage of our disunity. This war is slowly and steadily engulfing both the South and the Middle East. This will further escalate the arms race and our country is likely to suffer more in terms of the return of thousands of Pakistani expatriates. In other words, the long awaited destruction through Arab Spring has entered into its final phase and God forbid if things do not settle down, it may drive us to World War III, which would set to be fought in the Muslim region.
Rapid regional developments, series of murders of Muslim leaders and the gradual control on divided Middle East is neither in the favour of Middle East nor in the favour of South Asia. Lastly, I would like to put forward this question; will we keep getting our leaders assassinated? Will we set our course to be slaves of Lawrence of Arabia or any other Uncle Sam again? The situation of Middle East and South Asia is correlated especially in Afghanistan/Pakistan. Hence it needs serious meaningful and result-oriented actions. The sectarian war between Iran and Saudi Arabia must end and they must not allow foreign powers to manipulate their beliefs, which have already taken the lives of thousands of innocent Muslims and thus it does not show a pretty picture for the future of Muslim Ummah. Last but not the least, it is time for the Muslim Ummah to unite against growing future threats, otherwise the Muslim world will continue to remain under trial with anti-Muslim conspiracies and endless accusations. Let me warn the Muslim world that the second Arab spring has started and may or may not lead to World War III, which may be housed in the Middle East. Can the Muslims act wisely to scale it back before it is too late?