Terror in the holy cities

K.N. Pandita, Recently terrorists were holed up in Mecca and Medina, the two historic and holy cites of the Saudi Kingdom. Saudi police found them activists of Al-Qaeda, the crusaders of the 18th century puritanical Sunni ideology of Abdu’l-Wahhab. Ironically, when Banu Saud clan of Nejd was fighting to raise a kingdom in Arabia, it sought political support from Wahhabism, which had made deep inroads into the Arab society. Today Wahhabism has come home to roost.

Emboldened by the success of 1979 Islamic revolution culminating in the dismissal of monarchy in Iran, , Ayatollah Khumeini began mounting criticism against the Saudi monarchy calling it unlawful and hence non-acceptable to Islamic community. Once again the Saudi monarchy was obliged to invoke political-social support of Wahhabism, this time to counter the rising popularity of Khumeinism.

Thus Wahhabism resurfaced and with vengeance not only to overshadow Iran’s rising Islamic crescendo but also to sensitise vast Sunni Muslim world to the puritanical Islam of its early days. When the Americans made good use of this sensitivity in their geopolitical strategies, there was no stopping to the adventures of radicalised Sunni-Wahhabi Islamic groups. These groups have now come to be called terrorits.

This is not the first time that anti-monarchy terror has struck in the holy kingdom. The American military camp was the first to the targeted two years ago and, thereafter, some installations and government buildings were blasted. The Al-Qaeda said it fights against the presence of the Americans in Saudi Arabia..

However, Saudi government always tried to underplay the events of Islamic terrorism on its soil and even often blacked out the news, Its compulsions are obvious.

There are numerous reports stating that through its strong intelligence network, the Saudi monarchy has been funding Muslim extremist groups in different parts of the world to forcefully propagate Wahhabi ideology, particularly in countries where the Muslims are in a minority. Most of the Islamic seminaries (madrasah) in many countries receive funding through organizations connected to Medina based al-Rabita al Islami, the core organization disseminating Wahhabi ideology.

The method of propagating Wahhabi ideology essentially to raise cadres of crusading ideologues differs from country to country. Nevertheless, the ultimate objective steadfastly adhered to remains the same – -the modern Islamic Caliphate.. Thus Islamization process in Indonesia has its own local version and Uzbekistan its own.

A couple of days earlier,400 bomb blasts in one day came as a big shock to the people of Bangladesh (not debated in the media). The blasts may not have caused much human loss, yet loud and clear was the message of the perpetrators that if the constitution was not replaced by orthodox Islamic sharia law, Bangladesh government could be in for a major crisis. Already several million non-Muslim Bangladeshi nationals have fled to West Bengal or Assam regions because conditions of safety and security had dismally deteriorated in their native towns and villages.

Secularism is not an article of faith either with the Saudi or with the Bangladeshi governments. These two countries have their own governments and their own laws, whatever these be, but never at variance with Islam.. As such, the terrorism there is not what may be stated a “freedom movement”. It is simply theo-fascism let loose by the perpetrators..

.It, therefore, follows that reasons like economic backwardness and disparity, alienation, dispossession, unemployment etc. are not the root cause of terrorism in contemporary times. There is something beyond these factors that generates the will to kill and get killed.

At the United Nations, experts are engaged in providing a cut and dried definition of terrorism. They agree that a precise definition is elusive. However, the definition comprises two parts each running into the other. One part is what is terrorism and the other is what does it want to achieve. To say that it wants to create dread and fear or that it wants to topple the governments is saying half the truth.

This definition falls short of hard reality. Certainly it is not wholesome. From the two examples of Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh, it becomes sufficiently clear that the objective of religion-based terrorism is to forge the supremacy of Islamic orthodoxy.

Again to say that only a handful of Muslims are involved in the act is a very loose statement. The terrorists project themselves as defenders of Islam and consider themselves catalysts in the realisation of Islam’s global supremacy both as an ideology and as political power. No Muslim will and can challenge this stand. Therefore, in ideological terms, Muslims all over the world are solidly behind the pioneers of contemporary Islamic resurgence movement remarkably depending on violence as the arbiter.

Now remains the crucial question of violence. This has to be understood without an emotion. The role of brute force as a decisive factor in shaping the destiny of a people is excellently stated by Iqbal, the thinker who had floated the idea of a separate state for the Muslims of the sub-continent.. He says

main tum ko batata hun taqdir-e umam kya hai
shamsheer o sinan awwal tawus o rabab akhir

(Let me tell you what the destiny of a nation is
it is the sword and the lance first and the lute and the flute last)

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.