Space For Rent

Space For Rent
Friday, September 26, 2014, Ashwin 11, 1421, Zilqad 30, 1435 Hijr

Muslim insurgents, freedom fighters or terrorists?
Khan Sarifuzzaman
Publish Date : 2014-09-26,  Publish Time : 00:00,  View Count : 220
Insurgency, conflict, civil disobedience, upheaval and revolution, have been a common scenario in the Muslim World, especially in Middle East, which are observed in post 9/11 incident staged in America. Question may arise whether these are separate occurrences or consequences of some other factors.
Of late, the activities of ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) have drawn the attention of international community. ISIS is a Sunni jihadist group active in Iraq and Syria. In its self-proclaimed status as a 'Khilafat', it claims religious authority over all Muslims across the world and aspires to bring most of the Muslim-inhabited regions of the world under its political control beginning with territory in the Levant region. USA and her capitalist allies have again been committed to kill these millions of 'terrorists'. Using the rhetoric 'war on terror', the US President Barack Obama vowed to fight the ISIS 'by any means necessary'.
At the outset, following the above reality we need to analyse the root cause of the emergence of these types of fighters who have huge support across the world, especially among the Muslim community. Literally, the leaders of the Muslim world are mainly responsible for the political instability in the Muslim lands. Most of the rulers of the Muslim world are agent rulers who were installed after the First World War with the demise of Ottoman Caliphate. Besides, around 57 artificial and weak states were created by western capitalists' alliance. Most of them, with a military or hereditary background, never represented and preserved people's socio-economic rights and aspiration. As a consequence civil disobedience, insurgency, militancy emerged inevitably.
Secondly, International geo-strategic trap is also gripping some Muslim countries and lands. In the same reality, Israel was forcefully and illegally established in the heart of Muslim land in Palestine. Accordingly, if the deprived generation of Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan dream to liberate their land using any means will we call them 'terrorists'? Somewhere they are fighting against capitalist colonial aggressors (USA-UK), somewhere against socialist occupiers (Russia). When the Taliban youth were armed and used to fight Soviet Union, they were welcomed by Washington and were called 'freedom fighters'. With the span of time when the same Talibans grew to be problematic for the geo-strategic interest of the US, they turned into 'terrorists'.
Thirdly, in the previous years, ISIS troops have reportedly received training from US instructors at a secret base in Jordan. At the Turkish border with Syria, NATO - represented by Germany, the US and the Netherlands- deployed patriot missiles and 1200 troops, prompting any Syrian pilot to think twice before venturing within NATO's reach in northern Syria, the location of the main ISIS stronghold. The US has knowingly contributed to shipments of weapons most of which have been delivered to Jihadi hardliners, fighting Bashar Al- Asad. But when the ISIS took control over large swathes of territory in western Iraq, like Taliban of Afghanistan in 1990 against Russia, US turned its back to its older ally, quickly sent Apache helicopters, drones and missiles to Iraqi regime. Targeting Assad is fine, but turning your weapon against your ally is a matter of betrayal. It appears ironical to view a man as a 'freedom fighter' and a 'terrorist' at the same time!
Urgent to refer, in our subcontinent martyred Titumir and Khudi Ram also were called 'terrorist' by the British colonial power. Furthermore, earlier communist revolutionaries were also called 'terrorists' by the US and capitalist block. American president Nixon in his book 'Victory without war' wrote, "Communist and Islamic revolutionaries are ideological enemies adopting a common aim: Desire to achieve power by any necessary means with the aim of imposing a dominant dictatorship base upon their ideals which are unbearable". S P Huntington also echoed same in his 'Clash of civilization' (1993) theory. Nothing to be astonished to see the West, especially the American authority playing the same symphony today to their ideological enemies and killing hundreds of civilian including children and women.
Leaders of around 30 Muslim countries' allied with the US desperately want to stop the ISIS 'terrorism', but few days back, when Israel was committing genocide in Palestine, where was this alliance who utters humanitarian slogan? Where was the OIC? Even, moderate Islamists (as the West terms them) like Brotherhood and Hamas were not allowed to rule their country despite winning through democratic election.
Whole world's people are not bound to grant American type democracy. Every community should have the right to live as well as lead its way of life according to its public opinion, culture, tradition and belief. And the ISIS's khilafat is nothing new in the history of the Muslim world. Throughout the human history we observed the role of religion in politics and ruling the people. If fully religion based country Vatican City or Israel can survive, why not the ISIS? Is their violation of human rights greater than that of the USA, Israel and the imperialists of the present world? Or millions of people who dream of the world free from American capitalist view are 'terrorists' who do not have the right to live?

The writer is an MPhil researcher on Middle East politics at Dhaka University and author of the book 'Dilemma in Muslim world & world politics'. He can be reached at [email protected]

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