Youth Awareness











{July 21, 2013}   What if there was No MQM ?

Image

I sometimes wonder what would happen to Pakistan’s politics if there was no MQM. Who would they blame for all their misery and plight? Who would be the common enemy? Who would be branded as traitors? Who would be used to distract the people of Pakistan of their real issues like electricity, jobs and security? What would happen to those who like to find all solutions of their troubles by just criticizing MQM ?

What more? What would happen to the people of Karachi and Southern Sindh who have gotten there as where they are today because of MQM ? So what would be the world like without MQM today. I’m blogging to draw an outline of a Karachi and Hyderabad without MQM. Than let you decide if you could have a progressive Pakistan without MQM and its leader Altaf Hussain.

1986 was the year when I was in Class three when I heard a sudden burst of fire next to my school whose window over looked into the Qasba area of Karachi. As my teacher came to take me down stairs. I could see people which I would not name taking aim at my school. I remember strongly my worried father rushing to take me back home. The same year I remember that whilst shopping with my Dad one Friday afternoon; all chaos broke loose when again a certain ethnicity was about to attack the area and we remember that my Dad drove our Toyota 74 Corolla like crazy into the thin alleys to save us from the probable attackers. I remember growing up out of fear at that time. These were the formative years of MQM.

Now lets assume if MQM by any chance was not formed. The Jihadist who were behind all these actions at that time and not an ethnicity would have taken over the city. Imagine if at that time those who suffered did not fight back or by any chance people would not have united behind MQM and its leadership especially Mr. Altaf Hussein. What could have happened to the city? We all crib today that lawlessness was introduced by MQM. But people MQM came into existence fighting off the same lawlessness. What if the guy taking an aim at my school would have shot me or my friends? I am sure any one even living in Lahore or confines of Islamabad would not like to even imagine it for a moment.

Technically speaking, three parties or may be a fourth would have held between them the mandate of the city. So would it have still stopped the Bhatta in the city since it always there before MQM and since we as a nation anyways decided to host an international terrorist like Dawood Ibrahim in our city in the mid 90’s, which we of course deny. He would have introduced it any ways. Would Lyari known for pushing drugs and smuggling would have desisted from doing their traditional way of business? I doubt so.

Come 1996 when Taliban movement picked up. And possibly with strong roots in Karachi without MQM many of our sons would have become fodder in an insane conflict in Afghanistan. Without MQM we might have been under attack post September 11 as it was MQM which showed solidarity with the international world by taking a peace rally and rightfully so; as now we are discovering via many commissions that most of the Al Qaeda terrorists were in Karachi. Imagine all of us would have been assumed in the same stride and an emotional USA’s reaction could have been painful.

The people of Karachi who are today seen as liberal and reformists in the eyes of the world would have been seen as terrorists instead. Would there have existed a Zamzama, even the modern schools which we all take pride in? Would there have existed even Cinema’s which were burned at the first opportunity during riots by Islamists? Would our daughters and sisters have been allowed to go to schools or colleges? Imagine without MQM; the influx of Talibans or Jihadists life could have been like living as in some parts of KPK. What worst we could have handed over a strategic port to these elements since we can see our establishment do not look in control over them.

Now lets not forget the feudals and landlords who were in control of the city. Do you think they would not have continued grabbing land. The nucleus of all parties which is corrupt would not have continued doing what they are good at i.e. loot and plunder? Who would have stood for your rights as we can see there is no allocation in the recent Sind budget for Urban Sind and there was hardly anything before.

Today, what ever any one might say. Karachi is not Talibanized. The people of Karachi who anyway would have been called Mohajirs for the rest of the life feel empowered to serve the nation. Now don’t say they would not have as in interviews during 90’s including myself at the Army application center I was reminded that I am a son of a Mohajir very rudely. Karachi continues to be the hub of Pakistan against all odds where efforts were made to malign its position by pushing development elsewhere and most importantly a united Karachi and Urban Sind has a more say in the center. Unlike where sorry to mention that now only one or two cities i.e. Lahore or Islamabad run the country whilst the rest are there to support. Correct me if I am wrong the same Nawaz Sharif who was so anxious to see Chief Justice to go to Mazar e Quaid on May 12th 2007 is yet to visit it after taking oath as a Prime Minister.

ImageKarachi Nights

Now I am sure I would invite the ire of many. But in my view and the many others. MQM and its leadership is the most sincere party to the Urban Sind whilst the rest like JI and PTI just want to use it as one of the cards up its sleeve in the center whilst for MQM this is the only card. All the more reason why they are sincere to it. Now we should not forget that MQM stood shoulder by shoulder with our Army and its intelligence when Talibans were cutting to size our soldiers elsewhere in the country. MQM has contributed through its manpower and its support to build Pakistan. Whilst they still await justice for Qasba massacre, Hyderabad carnage and the 1992 operation. They still stand by Pakistan. Now this shows clearly their sincerity to the nation that their forefathers built and I am sure if given its due credit can pull Pakistan out of its misery where they have proven if they could do it against all the odds in Urban Sind with hands tied. I am sure due to their strong nucleus and leader ship could deliver the same for Pakistan. Now I leave that for you to decide. Do you still want to see a Pakistan with or without MQM? My vote lies with it for our Pakistan. Pakistan Zindabad!

 

By Danish Kazi




Fatima Zakir

I am in UAE these days. Just for a week. On vacations. I don’t have a life here; I don’t have a job hence I don’t have anything productive to do. I don’t have friends. I don’t really know the places so I don’t travel alone. I practically have no control in this country. Yet… I feel alive. I am happy. I am at peace. I can move about freely without worrying about my dress and my appearance. No one stares at me and no one passes comments on the streets. I like staying here.

My hometown is Karachi. I was born there and have virtually lived there all my life in the city of lights. I have a life there. I have a pretty good job. I have friends there. I know the entire city; the malls, the shopping centers, the best of the cafes and etc. I am quite in my skin there. Yet… I am always frustrated, I am always irritated and I am nearly never at peace. My parents don’t allow me to go out late in the evenings and if I get late from work, even 10 minutes, my parents start calling frantically to know my whereabouts. I am always conscious about what I am wearing and where I am going. I am scared when I travel in a rickshaw, you can forget about public buses. I am constantly watching out for my bag when I am out shopping and I keep my mobile phone safely tucked in my bag whenever I am on the streets, even if I am inside my own car.

It is ironic. I absolutely love this place which is not my home, and would love to stay here for as long as possible but after a while I start missing home, my family and friends. Most important, I miss working. Why can’t I have the best of both worlds? Is it too much to ask for? Living in my own city has made me so stressed that I have actually thought of seeing a psychologist, and I might even do that when I go back there. And no, it’s not because I think it’s a cool thing to do. It was just a simple question by a friend I just made here; how do you guys live in Pakistan what with the situation always so dangerous – crimes, terrorism etc?

My friend asked: There is no electricity most of the day; there is no gas at homes; without electricity you can’t use your computer, and when you can the net is too slow; watching TV is another stressful endeavor as it almost seems like the world is coming to an end. And because of the maddening situation in the city/country where anything can happen anytime, you can’t go out as freely at any time of night (sometimes during the day) as one would like. There are no activities… how do you, I mean the young crowd, live? My instant response was; we are used to it, but that got me thinking… (I sensed that outside my beloved country/city I don’t get infuriated as easily as I do back home). I am a changed person.

Last night the internet over here was very slow. I couldn’t even reply to an email- that painfully slow it was, yet I wasn’t irritated. If it was Pakistan, I would have been annoyed but here I didn’t feel a thing. Yes, you can say that I am too much in love with this place so I am being unjust but think about it… I was out the whole day, went to a couple of fun places, did some activities, had dinner out, if it wasn’t for checking my email for some job alerts, I wouldn’t have bothered switching the laptop on. But in Pakistan, since there is nothing else to do this is the only ‘fun’ thing for us. I reach home at 7 or 7:30 from work daily. That’s the time for load shedding which lasts for two long hours. Even then, there are days when the lights go out after half an hour for an hour or maybe longer. That’s when I get upset and say to my mom that I won’t come back from work from tomorrow.

Back home, you go out and you find people ogling at you. You go shopping and you hear comments from everywhere. You go to work and you face cut-throat office politics, where you hard work is disregarded and the ‘unworthies’ who have weaseled their way into the ‘right circle’ get all the perks. You ‘try’ going home after a long day but are usually stuck in traffic jams, road blocks due to protests and rallies, or jams due to VIP movements. You reach home and there is no electricity. There is no security of life. No surety of life.

It’s freaky. Recently, I have noticed some drastic changes in myself. I used to be an extremely happy-go-lucky, optimistic and calm person but within some months I have turned into an extremely angry, frustrated and miserable being. This didn’t happen overnight. It took months, in fact a couple of years, but all my optimism, my love for life and my cool has drained out. I know there are hundreds thousands people living in an even worse condition in Pakistan and they are satisfied. I know I am just being thankless but we have to realize that adjusting to situations is not always a good idea.

We are too adaptive to our environment that we take in all the bad things around us very easily and adjust accordingly. Those who find it difficult get stressed and lose patience. I don’t want to be this way. I don’t want to be whiny all the time –don’t want to be angry at every little thing. I don’t want to be rude to my parents. I want to be happy again. I want to be optimistic about life again. I want to believe in the power of greater good. I want to have my sanity back. I want the reasons to believe in Pakistan… again! Just need that something to be able to do that.



{February 29, 2012}   Mohajir identity – Ali Chishti

Supporters of Muttahida Quami Movement attend a rally in Karachi

In my book tracing the origins of the word, Mohajir, I wrote, “the word Mohajir (capital M) is vaguely traced to the 1970s and 80s, when the persecution of people of Indian ancestry gained momentum. It simply stated, when the Punjabis started calling them “HindustaaNRaan”, and the Pathans and Sindhis labelled them as “Panah Guzeer” and “Makars”, the immigrants started calling themselves “Mohajirs”, since they cannot really relate with the other four ethnicities.

Article Box

Article Box

Now, the word with the capital M has come to symbolise, correctly or incorrectly, all people who came from minority provinces of India or are the descendants of those immigrants. For me however the word “Mohajir” is not an honorific title or something to complain about – it’s simply a statement of being from somewhere else. In fact, “Ansaar” is a more positive word which means “those who help” which is something similar to democratic ideals vs democratic party. Similarly when the white Americans were searching for all kinds of nomenclature for African Americans (Negros, coloured people, and worse) these African Americans chose to call themselves “Black” Americans.

But there’s a serious identity crisis within the Mohajir community be it a general in the army or a ‘babu’ at the foreign office, or a butcher in Orangi town – it’s a community in search of its roots because in all ‘practicality’ and there’s a strong feeling that the ‘Mohajirs’ had been rejected by other ethnicities in Pakistan. Later, Altaf Hussain, the man who is credited to have given the Mohajirs a somewhat-political identity in a book titled “Safar-e-Zindagi” published in 1989, described Mohajirs as “those who migrated from smaller provinces of undivided Hindustan to Pakistan”.

The Partition was something no-one really wanted and it only became inevitable when the Congress leadership rejected the Cabinet Mission Plan after initially accepting it.

Mohajir identity has evolved through the years and transformed from being a right-wing Jamaat-e-Islami or JUI supported movement to a centrist ethno-political identity

Jinnah, the Quaid-e-Azam, could do no more than to console his countrymen, “We have been squeezed in as much as was possible and the latest blow that we have received is the Award of the Boundary Commission. It is an unjust, incomprehensible and even perverse Award. It may be wrong, unjust and perverse; and it may not be a judicial but a political award, but we have agreed to abide by it and it is binding upon us. As honourable people we must abide by it. It may be our misfortune but we must bear up this one more blow with fortitude, courage and hope.” Mohajirs migrated from as far as Calcutta, Malabar, Aurangabad, Amritsar, Patna and Ahmadabad and other Muslim minority provinces leaving not just “everything” but “everyone” behind.

Pakistan originally envisioned by Iqbal had no Bangladesh but only consisted of what is Pakistan now. The leadership of Pakistan later made sure that Pakistan would transform from Jinnah’s Pakistan to Iqbal’s Pakistan resulting in yet another partition that ruined the ideological basis on which the first Partition took place. And that is why the 1971 setback hurt the Mohajirs.

And there are warnings more such partitions are likely if the status quo does not change. Many Mohajirs, Sindhis, the Baloch, Pathans, and even Kashmiris will reach the point of no return. Islam could not eventually become a unifying factor for East and West Pakistan.

The 18th Amendment had been a good start of a new social contract which is not ground-breaking, but a start nevertheless.

Be it a general in the army or a ‘babu’ at the foreign office, or a butcher in Orangi town – it’s a community in search of its roots

But to save, Pakistan we need full provincial autonomy and nothing else. We should realise the gravity of situation in Baluchistan, Pakhtunkhua and Sindh where million’s are dying of hunger and the frustration against the state is at its height. Perhaps we need to take a breather, reflect on the situation, consider all our options, and then have a polite national debate, without the use of force, riots, Rangers, or street power, to decide if and how we can live together, or if we should go our separate ways.

During his rule, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto began to crush his opposition within Sindh. He started “Sindhisation” campaign and introduced the Language Bill in 1973-1974 making Sindhi language compulsory for all students in Sindh, a move which caused rioting in Sindh. During nationalisation move, Mohajirs believe only the businesses they owned were targeted. Similarly, they say the quota system deprived the deserving Mohajir the right to get into universities and jobs and hundreds of less educated and less competent people were appointed as schoolteachers.

The army inspired action against Mohajirs in the 1990s led to an exodus of many talented families from Karachi/Hyderabad. Hundreds and thousands of educated boys and girls were forced to migrate. They now feel secure and have no desire to return, and that leads to the impending problem with Karachi and Pakistan in general – the loss of valuable human capital. In what was called “Operation Clean-up”, more than 15,000 Mohajirs were murdered in extra-judicial killings in Karachi alone. Women were raped and were even seen carrying the bodies of their dead male relatives. The operation also ruined the economy of Karachi.

In an interesting study I carried out about Mohajir identity at various colleges and educational institutions for my upcoming book tracing the roots of Mohajir political movement and identity, 73% of adult student’s identified themselves as Mohajir first and Muslim second. This shows that Mohajir identity has evolved through the years and has transformed from being a right-wing Jamaat-e-Islami or JUI supported movement to a centrist or a left-wing ethno-political identity which surpasses religious identity. The MQM – which has now transformed into ‘Muthida’ but is in fact a Mohajir-centric party made to safeguard the rights of Mohajirs in Urban Sindh – is a clear example of this new identity.

And while the word Mohajir remains controversial and often used by lower classes, the middle and upper classes in the community tend to classify themselves as “Urdu Speaking”. For them, the term Mohajir represents the “hateful past”.

During my research work, I met MQM Rabbita Committee’s Kunwar Khalid Younas – one of the soft faces of MQM – who has been writing in English for years defending the MQM and coining or using terms like the “Urdu Speaking Community” or USC. But one sub-community, the Memons, do not agree, because Urdu is not their first language.

So where does the Mohajir identity stand today, and has it become weaker or stronger with time? Statistics of ethnic violence show that in a very polarised Karachi, Mohajir nationalism or identity has become stronger, except in the middle class.

The real issues that Pakistan faces today are poverty, illiteracy, and violation of human rights. And the people of Pakistan must realise that these are the issues political decisions should be based on. Mohajir nationalism will only weaken when the sense of equality and justice is restored in the society.

Ali Chishti is a TFT reporter based in Karachi. He can be reached at akchishti@hotmail.com 



{February 10, 2012}   HOW TO COPE WITH COLD WEATHER

Basically the human beings are hot animals and they can not bear cold weather.

Life disturb due to cold weather in most parts of the country

Therefore they have to make some adaptations like wearing warm cloths in order to adjust in the cold environment. For the humans to survive they need to produce enough body heat by in- taking large quantities of food and by controlling the loss of heat with the help of warm shelters and clothing.
A lowest temperature that a person can bear may vary from person to person but normally at 25 degrees a person may start feeling cold. Soon after shivering starts to occur and skin starts giving other responses as well.
These physical responses mean that a moderately fortunate full adult can maintain their temperature in still air above freezing point with light cloths. This mending of temperature becomes overmuch fractious in afoot air and also in blunt or wet conditions. If the extremities fall down the freezing level than a lasting harm may occur. The cooling essence of afoot air is suitable. Paul Siple of America explained that wind raises the rate of temperature loss.

His unique experiments were conducted in Antarctica in 1941 by evaluating how longer it took h2o to immobilize in baked beans tins in varied strengths of wind and at dissimilar temperatures.

The use of cool wind is used to guide the efficient temperature at a certain wind speed. For example in cold conditions a person wearing warm cloths may even be in a little danger. A light wind has the same effects as the temperature of -44 degrees when a person is exposed.
There are certain tips as well that may help you to cope with the cold temperature. The ones that are most common and helpful are to wear layer of cloths, take warm drinks and soups etc.



{December 17, 2011}   Open Letter to Mr. Nawaz Sharif

Nawaz Shareef

Preseident PML(N)
Raiwind, Lahore, Pakistan

Dear Mr. Shareef
First of all please accept my congratulations on being elected as party president unopposed. This indicates the trust your workers have in your kindself. However
I want to inform you (although you must be aware of it) about the deep concerns of Oversees Pakistanis about the day by day growing relations of PMLN with notorious Terrorist Organizations like Taliban, Sipah e Sahaba and now Laskar e Jhangvi as well.

PMLN is one of the biggest political parties in Pakistan and we want to see it growing day by day through legal and democratic means.
For the last 1 year, there have been dramatic changes in your party’s policy about joining hands with the organisations, banned by previous Governments (including your own Government as well) due to their involvement in terrorism against the state and people.

Firstly there was a “Verbal Move” by your brother and CM Punjab saying “We and Taliban have the SAME goal” whilst every Pakistani knows Taliban are being funded by anti Pakistan powers to weaken Pakistan on one hand and blot the sacred name of Islam on the other hand by their Satanic activities.

Then PMLN drew a shameful agreement with Sipah e Sahaba in June 2008 bye elections while Mr. Shahbaz Shareef was to be elected “Unopposed” from PP 48, Darya Khan, Bhakkar. Molvi Abdul Hameed of Sipah e Sahaba with drew in his favour in exchange for an assurance for releasing all the mass killers and blood thirsty terrorists including Ghulam Rasool Shah and Malik Ishaq which by no chance could be released without the involvement of Government.

Thursday, July 14 was a “Black day” for each Pakistani when Malik Ishaq was released with 100s of bullets fired outside the Jail to give him a “Red Carpet Welcome” by the Punjab Government. All other terrorists had already been released as the government did not peruse their cases. Ishaq himself had acknowledged in Papers to kill more than 100 innocent Pakistanis in target killings, bomb blasts and attack in Mosques. He was also involved in killing of Iranian Diplomats and “Organized” an attack on Sri Lankan Cricket Team, certainly due to the facilities provided to him by the Punjab Government within the Jail. He further managed to kill 8 witnesses against him one by one while he was “under trial” in the so called “Courts” and on each killing, the government acted as a “Silent Spectator”.

The recent news is that your nephew Hamza Shahbaz is to contest from Jhang District, and Shahbaz Government as an exchange would facilitate the release of some more mass killers from the Jails by not persuing their cases and “Gifting” a seat in Senate to Molvi Ludhanvi who is the master mind of most terrorist activities being carried out in Pakistan.
Mr. Shareef!

While the “unchallenged” (rather state sponsored) terrorism is the biggest problem in Pakistan and the poverty strickenpeople are having blood baths every day, PLEASE do not leave the people on mercy of these blood thirsty terrorists.

PLEASE do not embrace these enemies of Islam, Pakistan and the people of Pakistan in an attempt to grab few votes.
PLEASE do not release any more terrorists; we cannot see the innocent blood running in the streets shed by your allies SSP, Taliban and Lashkar e Jhangvi.

The major support for PMLN comes from the business class which is most effected by the terrorism
I do hope Mr. Shareef, as a shroud politician, you would reconsider your party policy and adopt a rightful and democratic path instead of joining the terrorists and indulging into terrorism.
Fire is fire; it kills EVERY ONE

Yours sincerely




In 1995, a former ISI official told reporters that he had arranged meetings between Nawaz Sharif and Osama bin Laden. Nawaz Sharif was allegedly looking to bin Laden to help fund his 1988 campaign for Prime Minister, and was willing to say anything to get it.

“Nawaz Sharif insisted that I arrange a direct meeting with the Osama, which I did in Saudi Arabia. Nawaz met thrice with Osama in Saudi Arabia. The most historic was the meeting in the Green Palace Hotel in Medina between Nawaz Sharif, Osama and myself. Osama asked Nawaz to devote himself to “jihad in Kashmir”. Nawaz immediately said, ‘I love jihad.’ Osama smiled, and then stood up from his chair and went to a nearby pillar and said, ‘Yes, you may love jihad, but your love for jihad is this much.’ He then pointed to a small portion of the pillar. ‘Your love for children is this much,’ he said, pointing to a larger portion of the pillar. ‘And your love for your parents is this much,’ he continued, pointing towards the largest portion. ‘I agree that you love jihad, but this love is the smallest in proportion to your other affections in life.’”

This wasn’t the last we heard of Nawaz Sharif’s friendship with Osama bin Laden. In 2007, ABC News reported that Sharif took bribes from bin Laden to look the other way as militants carried out their plans in Pakistan.

Cloonan says that back in 1999 Mohamed told the FBI he arranged for a meeting between bin Laden and Sharif’s representatives. Following that meeting, Mohamed told Cloonan he delivered $1 million to Sharif’s representatives. Mohamed said the payoff was a tribute to Sharif for not cracking down on the Taliban as it flourished in Afghanistan and influenced the Northwest Frontier Province in Pakistan, according to Cloonan.

New evidence has surfaced, though, that suggests those meetings were merely the beginning of a long relationship between Nawaz Sharif and Osama bin Laden.

Nawaz Sharif, a two-time former prime minister of Pakistan and current head of one of the country’s major political parties, has met with Osama bin Laden on numerous occasions, and it was in fact the al Qaeda leader who developed the relationship between Sharif and the Saudi royal family, says a former Pakistani intelligence official.




“We in Saudi Arabia are not observers in Pakistan, we are participants.”

Saudi Arabia is the third largest state in Middle East, biggest oil supplier in the world, extremely close and loyal ally of USA, staunch rival of Iran and finally supposedly time tested friend of Pakistan.
Saudis have been playing very active role in Pakistan from the day they recognized her as an independent Islamic state in 1947. From acquiring of nuclear technology in Bhutto era (funding) to the testing of nuclear warheads in Nawaz Sharif era (they promised to support Pakistan’s economy after the tests) Saudis proved their loyalty. On the other hand Pakistan also tried her level best in strengthening the bilateral relations of the two states. From flying of Saudi aircraft in 1969 to the episode of seizure of Holy Kaba, Pakistan also showed their metal.
After USA, undoubtedly Saudi Arabia is the major socially, religiously and politically contributing factor in Pakistan either positively or negatively. Though nowadays her negative factors are more clearly showing their effects on Pakistani society. Even Wiki leaks gave evidence of this symbiotic relationship, when Saudi Ambassador, Adel al-Jubeir, was showing off in front of USA Ambassador,

“We in Saudi Arabia are not observers in Pakistan, we are participants.”

Pakistan is paying a very heavy price for this relationship in the form of ongoing sectarianism, extremism, Talibanization of Pakistan and constant political chaos as they keep on supporting corrupt politicians of the state.
Throughout history Saudi Arabia’s main focus in their foreign policy was on the spread of Wahabism and containing of influence of Iran in Muslim world. They make huge donations from USA to developing states around the globe with one condition that they will be allowed to send their preachers and scholars to preach their Wahabist ideology. They provide funds for building mosques and research centers. Wahabis are devoted believers of force or extremism in Islam.
Madrassa system of Pakistan based on Wahabist ideology was completely funded by the Saudis. Young boys were taught glorified image of jihad and even were physically trained for the future purpose of jihad. Taliban were the direct outcome of this Madrassa system. They support and propagate Terrorism which is against the teachings of Holy Prophet (PBUH) who actually taught, peace and harmony.
Saudi Arabia funds extremist activities all around the globe especially Taliban in Pakistan. The former Director of CIA James Woolsey described Saudi Arabian Wahabism as “the soil in which Al-Qaeda and its sister terrorist organizations are flourishing.” Until recently they themselves had to suffer extremist activities in their own state, they pulled back a bit but still all the global Saudi charities, which are headed by the Saudi cabinet ministers, are still actively fanning radicalism.
Pakistan is a victim of proxy war of two Middle Eastern states. As Iran supporting the Shiite Muslims of Pakistan and Extremist groups of Sunnis, being supported by Saudis, gave rise to the sectarianism in Pakistan, resulting in total wipe out of the highly skilled and educated lot of Pakistan, like doctors, scholars and even high profile political figures. This proxy war especially accelerated after the Iranian revolution, Saudis wanted to contain their influence in Middle East. During 80s and 90s they funded many extremist organizations for instance Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) which started propagating against the shiites in Pakistan. In response Iran funded Tehreek-e-Fiq-e-Jafariya.
This interference not only paved the way for many more coming future extremist cells and groups but also gave rise to the Taliban regime (current disastrous turmoil of the state). That ongoing war between both states neither affected Iran nor Saudi Arabia but it destroyed the peace and social infrastructure of Pakistan. Saudis are even not satisfied with President Zardari as he wants to maintain good relations with Iran. Saudis are scared of Pakistan, Iran and Iraq (under Shia authority) triangle. Saudis also called him “rotten head.” Shows the state of mind of the Saudi regime.
Saudi Arabia is playing active role in Pakistani politics as well.One of its main examples was bailing out of Nawaz Sharif from the hands of Musharaf. He and his family was not even given political asylum but also provided with business license, main reason behind the Sharif family’s complete allegiance to Saudi Arabia, they not only saved his neck but his economic interests are also tied to the Saudis. Now Sharif brothers keep their eyes closed over the jihadi activities and invisibly support them.
Saudi Arabia, constantly supports the corrupt and dishonest politicians of Pakistan. Whenever there is a deadlock, case is referred to Saudis, as ultimate authority. Saudis are enjoying the status of puppet masters causing worst political turmoil resulting Pakistan to lose its prestige and honor in international platforms. Ironically, they themselves also do not trust these politicians, during flood crisis, they gave aid to the flood victims in the form of food and other daily use articles instead of liquid money, even this was made possible when General Kiyani himself went to Saudi Arabia and gave his guarantee.
Recently, it’s being speculated that being a close ally of USA Saudi Arabia played the role of mediator in deal between USA and the families of the victims of Raymond Davis case, though Saudia denied it but PM Gilani gave the hint of Saudis’ involvement. Again this was a direct hit on the sovereignty of the state. Though this was the case of Punjab government, Shabaz Sharif referred it to the federal authority and they to Supreme Court and one day before his release Nawaz Sharif suddenly left for UK in pretext of bad health conditions. Ironic still Saudis deny their involvement.
This over all analysis of the current relation shows that now Saudis are interfering way too much, first it was only being run by USA now Saudis are also deeply involved. Saudis’ positive contribution cannot be neglected or forgotten but we need some space. We need some air to breath. This constant involvement is causing Saudi Arabia to lose her good reputation in Pakistan. People know how deep USA and Saudi relations go and most of the time it is speaking the language of USA on Pakistan’s part.



A Symbolic Depiction of Continual Struggle

The Generations Striving for a Prosperous & Progressive Pakistan




Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari left Pakistan suddenly on Tuesday, complaining of heart pains, and is now in Dubai. His planned testimony before a joint session of Pakistan’s parliament on theMemogate scandal is now postponed indefinitely.
On Dec. 4, Zardari announced that he would address Pakistan’s parliament about the Memogate issue, in which his former ambassador to Washington Husain Haqqani stands accused of orchestrating a scheme to take power away from Pakistan’s senior military and intelligence leadership and asking for U.S. help in preventing a military coup. Haqqani has denied that he wrote the memo at the heart of the scheme, which also asked for U.S. support for the Zardari government and promised to realign Pakistani foreign policy to match U.S. interests.
The memo was passed from Pakistani-American businessman Mansoor Ijaz to former National Security Advisor Jim Jones, to then Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen on May 10, only nine days after U.S. forces killed Osama bin Laden in the Pakistani military town of Abbottabad.
Ijaz has repeatedly accused Haqqani of being behind the memo, and Ijaz claims that Haqqani was working with Zardari’s implicit support.
Early on Tuesday morning, Zardari’s spokesman revealed that the president had traveled to Dubai to see his children and undergo medical tests linked to a previously diagnosed “cardiovascular condition.”
A former U.S. government official told The Cable today that when President Barack Obama spoke with Zardari over the weekend regarding NATO’s killing of the 24 Pakistani soldiers, Zardari was “incoherent.” The Pakistani president had been feeling increased pressure over the Memogate scandal. “The noose was getting tighter — it was only a matter of time,” the former official said, expressing the growing expectation inside the U.S. government that Zardari may be on the way out.
The former U.S. official said that parts of the U.S. government were informed that Zardari had a “minor heart attack” on Monday night and flew to Dubai via air ambulance today. He may have angioplasty on Wednesday and may also resign on account of “ill health.”
“This is the ‘in-house change option’ that has been talked about,” said Shuja Nawaz, director of the South Asia Center at the Atlantic Council, in a Tuesday interview with The Cable. Nawaz said that this plan would see Zardari step aside and be replaced by his own party, preserving the veneer of civilian rule but ultimately acceding to the military’s wishes to get rid of Zardari.
“Unfortunately, it means that the military may have had to use its muscle to effect change yet again,” said Nawaz. “Now if they stay at arm’s length and let the party take care of its business, then things may improve. If not, then this is a silent coup with [Pakistani prime minister Yousaf Raza] Gilani as the front man.”
In Islamabad, some papers have reported that before Zardari left Pakistan, the Pakistani Army insisted that Zardari be examined by their own physicians, and that the Army doctors determined that Zardari was fine and did not need to leave the country for medical reasons. Zardari’s spokesman has denied that he met with the Army doctors.
One Pakistani source told The Cable that Zardari was informed on Monday that none of the opposition party members nor any of the service chiefs would attend his remarks to the parliament as a protest against his continued tenure. This source also said that over a dozen of Zardari’s ambassadors in foreign countries were in the process of being recalled in what might be a precursor to Zardari stepping down as president, taking many of his cronies with him.
Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper reported that before leaving, Zardari met separately with Gilani, Chairman of the Senate Farooq H Naik, and Interior Minister Rehman Malik.
This past weekend, the Memogate scandal worsened for Zardari when Ijaz alleged in a Newsweekopinion piece that Zardari and Haqqani had prior knowledge of the U.S. raid to kill bin Laden, and may have given permission for the United States to violate Pakistan’s airspace to conduct the raid.
On May 2, the day after bin Laden was killed, Wajid Hasan, Pakistan’s high commissioner to the United Kingdom, said in an interview with CNN that Pakistan, “did know that this was going to happen because we have been keeping — we were monitoring him and America was monitoring him. But Americans got to where he was first.”
In a statement given to the Associated Press of Pakistan Monday, White House spokespersonCaitlin Hayden said that information on the actual operation to kill bin Laden was not given to anyone in Pakistan.
“As we’ve said repeatedly, given the sensitivity of the operation, to protect our operators we did not inform the Pakistani government, or any other government, in advance,” she said.
Zardari lived in self-imposed exile in Dubai from 2004 through 2007 after being released from prison, where he had been held for eight years on corruption charges. His three children live there, but his 23-year son Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the chairman of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), is in Pakistan now.


{November 28, 2011}   Safar-e-Karbala

- اے چاند کربلا کے ، تونے تو دیکھے ہوںگے - اترے تھے اسی زمیں پر عرش بریں کے تارے

HIGHLIGHTS OF KARBALA:

The events of Karbala reflect the collision of the good versus the evil, the virtuous versus the wicked, the collision of Imam Husain (the head of virtue) versus Yazid (the head of impiety). Al-Husain was a revolutionary person, a righteous man, the religious authority, the Imam of Muslim Ummah. As the representative of his grandfather Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), Imam Husain’s main concern was to safeguard and protect Islam and guide fellow Muslims. On the other hand, the staying power of the rulers (Mu’awiya and his son Yazid) depended solely on the might of the sword. They used brute force to rule over the Muslim empire even by all possible illicit means.

Imam Husain as head of Ahlul Bayt (a.s.) never recognized Mu’awiya nor his followers. Before him Imam Ali (a.s.) had fought battles against Mu’awiya because Mu’awiya continuously violated the Islamic principles. Imam Al-Hasan (a.s.) had to swallow the bitter pill of making a peace agreement with Mu’awiya, in order to safeguard the security of the Ummah which was at stake. When Yazid son of Mu’awiya declared himself as a ruler over the Ummah, he demanded Imam Al-Husain’s (a.s.) allegiance of loyalty. Imam Husain on his part flatly rejected Yazid’s rule and behavior, for there was no way Yazid could represent Islam, it would be blasphemy. But Yazid, the tyrant ruler over the Ummah, was adamant in his demand, and tension between the two parties increased day by day.

Imam Husain was quick to realize that giving allegiance of loyalty to Yazid would serve no purpose but to jeopardize the survival of Islam. To safeguard and protect Islam, therefore, the Imam had no choice but to confront and collide with Yazid’s rulership irrespective of consequences. Since Yazid had ordered his commanders to seize the Imam’s allegiance of loyalty at any cost, even by brutal force, the commanders had to assemble a relatively large army, surrounding Imam Husain’s camp in a desert called Karbala. Then they cut off the basic necessities to the camp, including access to water. The camp consisted of Imam Husain, his family, friends, and companions, all of whom stood fast and firmly with him. These braves would rather face death for the noble cause of Islam, than submit to the outrageous tyranny and the un-Islamic ways of Yazid.

Thus, Karbala proved to be a clash involving Islamic truths versus falsehood, right versus wrong, belief versus disbelief, the oppressed versus the oppressor, faith against brute force. Karbala was about standing in the face of oppression, regardless no matter the cost. Thus, in Karbala, Al-Husain the 57 year old grandson of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), sacrificed his totality and all he had, for one goal. This goal was to let the truth triumph over falsehood eventually, and he did that brilliantly. His goal was to foil the plan that Mu’awiya had expertly developed for his son, Yazid, which was to establish a permanent Benu Umayya rulership over the Muslim Ummah (even by sacrificing the Islamic principles), but doing it in the name of Islam. Brilliantly, Imam Husain succeeded in foiling this plan and he exposed the disreputable nature of Benu Umayya though this was at the expense of his life.

WHO WAS MU’AWIYA?

Mu’awiya was son of Abu Sufyan, a leader of Benu Umayya clan which was one of the clans of Quraish tribes. Mu’awiya grew up in a family known to be cunning, worldly, materialistic, and power hungry. Mu’awiya became Muslim only when Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) triumphed over Mecca. Those who became Muslim in this manner were called Tulaqaa, (a term scornfully used for the disbelievers who became Muslims to save their lives). Mu’awiya, his father Abu Sufyan, his mother Hind, and his brother Yazid son of Abu Sufyan were all Tulaqaa’; Mu’awiya never forgot this stigma for the rest of his life; he could never shake it from his mind, thus a feeling of malicious vengeance always existed in his heart. Mu’awiya’s character and aspirations were entirely opposite to that of his sister, Umm Habiba, who was one of the wives of the Holy Prophet (pbuh). Unlike Mu’awiya, Umm Habiba was a sincere believer and a pious person.

Omar, the second Khalifa, appointed Mu’awiya’s brother, Yazid son of Abu Sufyan, as the Governor of Syria when the Muslims captured that territory from the Byzantines. Within a few years, Yazid son of Abu Sufyan died of a disease, and Omar appointed Mu’awiya in his brother’s place as the Governor. Upon coming to power, Mu’awiya took advantage of the rich public treasury of Syria using it personally to buy favors and influence people. Thus he built a large base of support among some tribes, almost to the fanatic level. He used this to his advantage in later years to form a network of informants (spies) against Ahlul Bayt (a.s.) and their devotees.

JAMAL CONFRONTATION:

When Imam Ali (a.s.) became Khalifa, he decided to remove Mu’awiya immediately, notwithstanding Mu’awiya’s strong base of support. At that time, Mu’awiya had been the governor of Syria, Palestine, and Jordan for 17 years. Mu’awiya became defiant, he refused to obey Ali’s orders. Brazen and unabashed, he even declined to recognize Ali or give allegiance of loyalty to him. Also in defiance, Mu’awiya established a parallel government in Greater Syria, and started a campaign of treacherous accusations and malicious rumors against Imam Ali (a.s.). He falsely blamed Imam Ali for the killing of Uthman, the third Khalifa, and urged people to take up arms against the Imam. He spread these notorious accusations constantly to incite an uprising against Ali (a.s.).

At the same time A’isha, the Prophet’s widow, became highly vocal against Imam Ali (a.s.). She called for taking revenge for the blood of Uthman. As a result, a party of 3,000 insurgents supported by Sahaaba (Companions) such as Talha and Zubair, along with A’isha headed toward Basrah. The insurgents upon reaching Basrah clashed with the local authorities and finally occupied a portion of Basrah. Soon after the occupation these insurgents spread a reign of terror among the people, killing no less than 600 local Muslims, pilfering the treasury and stealing the arms supplies of the armory.

As a Khalifa in charge, Imam Ali (a.s.) could not ignore the situation, he had to act and restore peace and order. He ordered his forces to proceed to Basrah. As the Imam’s forces reached near Basrah, Imam Ali (a.s.) tried to persuade the insurgents led by A’isha, Zubair and Talha to change their minds and avoid confrontation, but he did not succeed. A battle broke out though Zubair elected not to fight. Talha was wounded then bled to death. Thousands of people lost their lives. A’isha fell down from the camel after it was disabled; but luckily she was not hurt. Imam Ali asked Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr, (A’isha’s brother), to take A’isha to Basrah for a few days, and from there to escort her to Medina with full honor and dignity. Upon leaving Basrah Al-Hasan (a.s.) and Al-Husain (a.s.) accompanied the Prophet’s widow for some distance before bidding her farewell. Imam Ali (a.s.) stayed in Basrah for a few weeks to restore law and order. He compensated for the dead, and decided to forgive and absolve all who fought against him, exactly as the Prophet (pbuh) had done when he triumphed over Mecca 40 years earlier.

BATTLE OF SIFFIN:

Upon returning to Kufa, Imam Ali (a.s.) immediately prepared for the anticipated clash with Mu’awiya. The defying Mu’awiya continued to violate the Islamic principles by personally using the public treasury for espionage and buying peoples’ loyalty. The people of Syria fully believed him and the in false picture he presented. Ultimately this resulted in a confrontation called Battle of Siffin when the troops of the two sides met at Siffin. The battle saw ferocious fighting for nine days when Mu’awiya’s forces were near collapse. His troops were fleeing and in disarray, and their retreat was in massive disorder, running helter skelter. Mu’awiya, alarmed, tense, and frightened, preparing to run away, when he learned of a clever trick. The trick was indecent and unbecoming, it was to make the Holy Quran as an instrument and exploit it, to use it as a tool to his advantage. Mu’awiya seized on this immediately and commanded his fighters to raise 500 Holy Qurans on tips of spears, in order to stun the troops of Imam Ali. As jolting as it was, this maneuver did break the onslaught and the momentum of Ali’s fighters, for they were very pious men. But Imam Ali was quick to recognize this deceit, he knew how deceptive Mu’awiya was, and now that being near collapse, Mu’awiya wanted to save his neck at the expense of the Quran itself.

With that in mind, Ali (a.s.) urged his generals not to halt, but to keep fighting since victory was almost at hand. Alas, Ali’s generals and fighters were in shock, for the sight of the Holy Quran high on spear heads was startling to say the least. They could not take it. Not willing to fight, they wanted to accept Mu’awiya’s offer to halt the fighting and negotiate instead. The termination of the battle in this manner and the consequences thereof proved to be disastrous to say the least, especially for Ahlul Bayt and Islam.

It is said that there was a conspiracy between Amr Ibnil Aas of Mu’awiya’s side, and Ash’ath Ibn Qais, a General in Imam Ali’s camp, who was working as a spy against Ali, secretly working as an agent for Mu’awiya. In this battle 45,000 men lost their lives in Mu’awiya’s camp, and about 25,000 in Ali’s (a.s.) camp. Many men of high caliber from both sides died, especially Ammar Ibn Yasir, the great Companion of the Prophet (pbuh), who was 90 years old and fought on Imam Ali’s side against Mu’awiya.

AFTER SIFFIN:

Imam Ali’s (a.s.) generals, who stopped the battle to negotiate with Mu’awiya, did not pick the right person for the negotiation. They unyieldingly refused to accept Imam Ali’s choice, instead they picked Kufa’s Governor, Abu-Musa Ash’ari, an incompetent Governor who had been previously dismissed from office by Imam Ali. Mu’awiya appointed Amr Ibnil Aas, a shrewd and cunning man, to be his representative in the negotiation. Negotiation between the two sides did not take place for about one year.

When the two negotiators came face to face, it was clear that Ash’ari’s capability was no match for his opponent Ibnil Aas. In the negotiations, Ash’ari proposed that, both Mu’awiya and Imam Ali (a.s.) were to abdicate and to let the people hold election for the Khilaafah. Amr Ibnil Aas, a deceptive man at best, quickly agreed to Ash’ari’s proposal and asked Ash’ari to first announce the agreement. Ash’ari stood up and announced, “O people, we have agreed not to consider Ali or Mu’awiya for Khilaafah. You may choose or elect whomever you think is fit.” The cunning Amr Ibnil Aas stood up next to say, “O people! I won’t consider Ali for the Khilaafah. But Mu’awiya, in my opinion, is the person for that office!” Upon hearing this (and feeling deceived), the people screamed disapprovingly, an uproar was the result. Imam Ali’s (a.s.) camp was in shock, they were double-crossed, deceived and lied to, they felt deeply cut. Amr’s double crossing and deception was simply beyond their imagination. They left the place bewildered and utterly disappointed. Because of this a large group of Imam Ali’s supporters defected to form a separate group called Kharijies, meaning the Outsiders.

The Khariji became fanatically opposed to Imam Ali and Mu’awiya. Some of their members met secretly in Mecca and drew a plan to assassinate Ali (a.s.) in Kufa, Mu’awiya in Syria, and Amr Ibnil Aas in Egypt. Three fanatics took the responsibility, they were to attack their victims in the morning, the same day, as the would-be victims were going to the mosque to lead the morning salat. Ibn Muljim attacked and fatally wounded Imam Ali (a.s.), whereas Mu’awiya escaped with a light wound of his buttock. Amr Ibnil Aas was ill that day and his replacement was killed by the Khariji. Imam Ali (a.s.), in wounded condition, conferred the Imamah and the reign of the Islamic nation to his 37 years old son Al-Hasan.

PEACE AGREEMENT BETWEEN IMAM AL-HASAN AND MU’AWIYA:

Imam Hasan (a.s.) faced extremely difficult conditions from the start. He observed that fear, anxiety and much distress were ever present in Kufa, Basrah, Medina and other towns. The anxiety, uncertainty and insecurity were caused by Mu’awiya’s ill dealing of sincere Muslims. Mu’awiya had spread secret agents all over to defame Ahlul Bayt. Imam Hasan knew that his father Imam Ali (a.s.) had stood like a lion in all difficulties and fought battles against Mu’awiya, but these confrontations had resulted in heavy casualties on both sides. A mass scale family devastation was visible everywhere. Considering all circumstances, Imam Hasan (a.s.) discussed the matter with his brother Husain (a.s.) and other relatives. He revealed to them that in order to end the bloodshed and to provide a reasonable safety and security to the Ummah, he would make a peace agreement with Mu’awiya and abdicate until after Mu’awiya’s death. After a few days of careful consideration, Imam Hasan (a.s.) accepted an agreement as per the terms dictated by the Imam and agreed to by Mu’awiya. Four noteworthy terms of this agreement were:

  • People of Syria, Iraq, Hijaz, Yemen and other places shall enjoy amnesty against persecution,
  • Friends and companions of Imam Ali (a.s.) and all their women and children shall be protected from all dangers,
  • Mu’awiya is to immediately stop the use of abusive language with reference to Ahlul Bayt (cursing Imam Ali) after Salat of Jumu’a), and
  • Mu’awiya shall not appoint anyone as his successor.

Once the treaty was signed, Imam Hasan (a.s.) and brother Husain (a.s.) moved out of Kufa and settled in Medina. Over there both Imams lost no time in holding nightly meetings for Islamic discussions. The nightly meetings proved very successful and gained tremendous popularity. More people started to attend, to hear the Imams give of their fountain of knowledge on Islam and humanity. The reputation of these meetings began to fly to far away places. People from as far away as Egypt, Iraq, Yemen, and other distant areas travelled to Medina to learn about the Islamic values. As years passed, the knowledge thus given started to bear fruits. The number of Islamic scholars multiplied and increased considerably.

In the meantime Mu’awiya, unabashedly elected to disregard the terms of his treaty with Imam Al-Hasan. a) He sent secret agents to terrorize, kidnap, or even kill innocent people specially those who were loyal to Ahlul Bayt (a.s.). b) Instead of helping the needy with the public treasury, Mu’awiya’s governors and their surrogates used the public treasury for personal use, freely and excessively as they wished. c) Freedom suddenly died, and dictatorship took its place. d) Mu’awiya gathered a very large number of collaborators who unabashedly would do any thing for money.

MU’AWIYA’S PLOT TO POISON IMAM HASAN (a.s.):

It was Mu’awiya’s ardent desire to impose his son Yazid (who had been named after his uncle) upon the Muslims by making him the succeeding Khalifa, despite the fact that Yazid was the playboy of the time, with many evil habits including gambling, heavy drinking, and indulgence in the pleasures of the flesh. But the peace agreement would not permit Mu’awiya to appoint Yazid as his successor, (According to the agreement Imam Hasan would immediately become Khalifa upon Mu’awiya’s death). Therefore, it was obvious to Mu’awiya that, if Al-Hasan did not outlive him, Mu’awiya could do as he pleased. Thus Mu’awiya planned to kill Imam Al-Hasan in order to pave the way for his son Yazid to be his successor.

Mu’awiya sent one of his agents to contact Imam Al-Hasan’s wife Joda who was the daughter of Al-Ash’ath (once a secret agent for Mu’awiya against Imam Ali in the Battle of Siffin). Joda was asked a small favor, i.e., to put a little poison in Al-Hasan’s food, and in return Mu’awiya would give her a large sum of money and also make her wife of his son Yazid. She found the offer too attractive to ignore, and foolishly agreed to accept it. A few days later, she mixed poison in honey and gave it to the Imam. As soon as the Imam took the poisoned honey he became seriously ill. Sensing that his death was imminent, the Imam designated his brother Al-Husain (a.s.) to be the third Imam. Although Imam Al-Hasan knew he was poisoned, he did not reveal that to anyone but to his brother Al-Husain.

One thing Al-Hasan had wished was to have his burial by the side of his grandfather, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Imam Husain made all the arrangements to fulfill that wish but Mu’awiya’s governor over Medina did not let that happen and used military force to stop it. Imam Al-Hasan was 47 year old when he died of poisoning.

Medina was never the same without Imam Hasan (a.s.). Everyone missed him dearly. People at first did not believe Mu’awiya poisoned Imam Al-Hasan, but soon found out the truth.

When Husain (a.s.) was designated as the 3rd Imam he was 46 years old. Imam Husain (a.s.) carried on with his mission of teaching Islam as before. A large number of people kept coming to see him and to learn from him. This process continued for several years when people began to hear an ugly rumor that Mu’awiya wanted his son, Yazid, to succeed him.

MU’AWIYA DESIGNATES YAZID AS SUCCESSOR:

Mu’awiya began a campaign to introduce Monarchy into the structure of Islam. To have Monarchy, by force or otherwise is alien to Islam, an innovation in religion, simply not acceptable. Everyone knew that, for Islam does not subscribe to any form of Royalty through inheritance or Monarchy. In Islam it is supposed to be Shura.

Nevertheless, Mu’awiya sent his agents to the prominent members of the communities to obtain allegiance of loyalty to his son Yazid. But Yazid was evil, of the drinking type, incompetent, contemptible, and a pleasure-seeking person. People knew that. So the people protested vigorously. There was anger everywhere. Emotions went sky high. To calm people down, at least temporarily, Mu’awiya decided to send his son Yazid to Mecca for the pilgrimage. Yes, Yazid did go to Mecca but only after taking alcohol with him as well as a chorus of girls for his entertainment.

MU’AWIYA DIES

Mu’awiya was getting older day by day. At the age of 75, he became seriously ill. He was nearing death. He lay weak and lifeless as if something was choking and strangling him. He felt tortured and tormented, and continuously cried for mercy. He was in terrible pain. He wanted to die but death would not come close to him. His conscience tormented him for the calamities that he brought upon the Islamic Ummah specially Ahlul Bayt. Mu’awiya suffered in agony for many many days. His suffering continued until he breathed his last. At the time of his death, the 30 year old Yazid was nowhere near him, he had gone for fun on a hunting trip.

(Please note that Mu’awiya’s brother was by the name of Yazid, and he had named his son after his brother.)

YAZID BECOMES RULER:

Upon Mu’awiya’s death, Yazid, 30 years old, managed to impose himself on the people and become the Khalifa. At first people refused to accept him as a representative of the Prophet (pbuh) and Islamic Ummah, but Yazid approached people in mosques for their favors. Like his father Mu’awiya, Yazid used all possible means like bribery, coercion, pressure, threats, and force to receive the people’s acceptance of him as the legitimate ruler. Many people were worried, threats to their lives and livelihood was too menacing, so they grudgingly and reluctantly gave in. But, Imam Husain (a.s.) and his family (who practiced Islam in its true sense), did not give in. As the true representative of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), Al-Husain flatly refused accepting Yazid either as a Khalifa or a leader of Islam. Despite Yazid’s intimidating military power the Imam stood firm in his resolve and chose to challenge Benu Umayya’s authorities.

Yazid commissioned Waleed Ibn Ut’ba, his Governor over Medina, to ask for Imam Husain’s allegiance of loyalty or else upon refusal, his head. Waleed invited Al-Husain to a meeting for the purpose. Imam Husain did not give his word at the meeting and decided to leave Medina along with his family to proceed to Mecca. When Al-Husain reached Mecca he received 12,000 letters from Kufa urging him to go to Kufa to be their leader, and be the Khalifa. Imam sent an emissary, his cousin Muslim Ibn Aqeel, to Kufa to ascertain first-hand information about the situation in Iraq. In the mean time Yazid spread a network of informants and secret agents in Mecca to assassinate the Imam during pilgrimage. Imam learned about the spies, and carefully evaluated the situation in Mecca. Imam Husain knew that Yazid son of Mu’awiya had no regard for Islamic values and teachings, that he would do anything to enforce his tyrannical rule. Imam Husain also knew that giving allegiance of loyalty to an imposter like Yazid would certainly place Islam at great jeopardy. Therefore he decided to leave Mecca for Kufa to prepare for a confrontation with Yazid and his forces.

Many friends and relatives urged Imam Husain not to go to Kufa, but he insisted on going. Imam Husain, along with family, friends, and companions began the journey toward Kufa (1,100 miles) in a long caravan in the blistering heat of summer.

ON THE WAY TO KARBALA:

During the early phase of the journey the caravan met Al-Farazdaq (a famous poet) at a place called al-Sifah. Al-Farazdaq advised the Imam not to go to Kufa because though people’s hearts were with him (Imam), their swords would be against him. But the Imam continued with the journey, and he received the first letter from his emissary Muslim Ibn Aqeel with good news. The letter indicated that the people were more than ready to welcome the Imam in Kufa and were looking forward to his leadership. Imam Husain decided to send another emissary to Kufa with a message. The caravan kept proceeding toward Kufa. Many days passed but the Imam did not receive any more responses from Muslim Ibn Aqeel.

In Kufa Muslim Bin Aqeel with the help of Mukhtar Al-Thaqafi and Hani Ibn Urwah continued to hold secret meetings with the supporters of the Imam. Within a short time the gatherings started to gain momentum. Yazid through his spies and informants learned about Muslim’s successes in Kufa. He appointed the tyrant Ubaidullah Ibn Ziyad to replace al-Nu’man Ibn al-Basheer as Governor of Kufa.

Meanwhile, as Al-Husain’s caravan got closer to its destination (Kufa), coming to a place called Zubalah, Imam Husain unexpectedly received shocking news. The shocking news was about Muslim Ibn Aqeel and the person who provided him shelter, Hani’s Ibn Urwah, both of whom were arrested and beheaded by the Governor Ibn Ziyad. Mukhtar was also arrested and imprisoned and tortured by Ibn Ziyad.

Imam Husain gathered his companions and disclosed to them about the bad news, and said, “Our Shi’a have deserted us, those of you who prefer to leave us may do so freely and without guilt.” Becoming scared, some companions left the caravan. Imam Husain continued with the journey along with close companions and family members until he was face to face with 1,000 horsemen led by Hur al-Riyahi representing the enemy. The enemy army blocked the camps of Imam Husain (a.s.) from advancing. Tension started to rise between the two. The Imam addressed the enemy explaining to them his motives for going to Kufa, that it was in response to the invitation of the people. He even showed them a bagful of letters he received from Kufa. Hur said that he and his men were not the writers of those letters. Imam told them that if they did not like him to advance with the journey, he was prepared to return to Hijaz. Hur replied, “We are commissioned to follow you until we take you to Governor Ibn Ziyad, and suggested to the Imam to go towards a station which is neither Kufa nor Medina.” Imam Husain found the proposal fair and turned the caravan away from Kufa. Hur and his army marched parallel to the Imam. The two sides reached a village called Nainawa where Ibn Ziyad’s messenger (Yazid’s governor over Kufa) delivered a message to Hur. The message read, ” …force Husain to a halt. But let him stop in an open space, without vegetation or water.” Hur conveyed the contents of the letter to Imam Husain. The Imam, his family and companions defiantly resumed their journey and reached a place where another enemy force blocked their move and forced them to stop. When Imam Husain learned that the place was called Karbala, he felt he reached the destination and ordered his camp to be setup. That day was 2nd of Muharram, Hijri 61.

KARBALA:

Upon learning that his army had succeeded to lay a siege around the Imam’s camp, Governor Ibn Ziyad sent additional military units to Karbala and appointed Umar Ibn Sa’ad in charge. Imam Husain (a.s.) opened a dialogue with Umar Ibn Sa’ad and convinced him to lift the siege so that the Imam with his family and companions could leave Iraq. Umar Ibn Sa’ad liked the Imam’s proposal and sent a message to Governor Ibn Ziyad notifying him about the results of the talks with Imam Husain (a.s.). Ibn Ziyad also found the Imam’s proposal acceptable. However before agreeing to it officially, Shimr Bin Dhil-Jawshan, opposed it strongly. As a result Ziyad wrote a letter to Umar Ibn Sa’ad commanding him to either go to war with Imam Husain (a.s.) or be relieved of his duties as commander of the army and Shimr would not only replace him but despatch Ibn Sa’ad’s head to Kufa.

Umar Ibn bin Sa’ad got the letter. After pondering over the consequences he decided to fight Imam Husain (a.s.). On the 7th day of Muharram he moved his troops closer to the camp and began to surround the Husaini camp. Ibn Sa’ad laid a blockade around the camp to cut it off from access to the river Euphrates, to deprive it of water in a move to force them to surrender.

Two days later, (on the 9th of Muharram), the enemy’s military forces closed in on the camp of Imam Husain (a.s.). Imam asked his brother, Abbas, to talk to Ibn Sa’ad and request a delay of the aggression by one night. Umar Ibn Sa’ad agreed to the demand. He ordered his troops to delay the aggression till next morning. Imam Husain and his pious companions spent that night in prayers. During the night the Imam told the companions, ” ….the enemy is interested in none but me, me alone. I’ll be most delighted to permit each and every one of you to go back, and I urge you to do so….” All companions screamed in response, “By Allah, never, never! We will either live with you or die together with you.”

ASHURAA:

Finally, the day of Ashuraa dawned upon the soil of Karbala. It was the day when Jihad would be in full bloom, blood would be shed, 72 innocent lives would be sacrificed, and a decisive battle would be won to save Islam and the Ummah.

It had been a few days since the water supply was cut off by the enemy. Children were crying for water, the women were desperate for water, Zainul-Abideen, the son of Imam Husain (a.s.) was sick with fever. The suffering from the thirst was too painful to bear. And despite this, not a single person in the camp made any complaints or even questioned the mission of Imam Husain. Each member supported the Imam wholeheartedly and enthusiastically.

Next morning Imam Husain (a.s.) went out of the camp and saw Umar Ibn Sa’ad mobilizing his troops to start the hostility. He stared at the intimidating army, and as large as it was Imam Husain showed no signs of compromise. Imam Husain raised his hands in prayer:

“O Allah! It is Thee in whom I trust amid all grief. You are my hope amid all violence. Thou are my refuge and provision in everything that happens to me. How many grievances weaken the heart, leaving me with no means to handle them, during which friend deserts me, and enemy rejoices in it. I lay it before Thee and complain of it to Thee, because of my desire in Thee, Thee alone. You relieve me of it and remove it from me. Thou are the Master of all Grace, the Essence of Goodness, and the Ultimate Resort of all Desire.”

Before the actual engagement was to take place, Hur, the previous commander of the enemy force, felt his conscience violently stirring, he was in turmoil. Upon realizing the gravity of the situation, he suddenly broke away from Umar Ibn Sa’ad’s camp (along with two others). They rushed toward Imam Husain (a.s.) to join his camp. Hur’s heart was jumping with joy, his mind relieved of an agonizing tension. Hur’s defection worried Umar Ibn Sa’ad very much, lest others do the same and defect. So Umar Ibn Sa’ad threw an arrow in the air to indicate the start of the battle. This was the outset of a catastrophe and a tragic event that Mu’awiya had once conceived to happen.

THE BATTLE:

Imam Husain’s supporters insisted on being the first to fight. Therefore, they took the brunt of the enemy attack. The battle was ferocious. Within a short time the Imam’s supporters slay a large number of the enemy fighters, they were on the offensive and the enemy on the defensive. This caused apprehension and confusion in the enemy military, the 72 of Husain’s against the 5,000 of the enemy (some say 30,000) being on the defensive. So worried and nervous, the enemy commander-in-chief ordered his army not only to set fire to the Imam’s tents (which were occupied mostly by frightened females and children), but at the same time reinforced his fighters with more troops.

The heroes began to fall, they were men of valor welcoming martyrdom, they fell one after another, for the enemy was overwhelming in number. By noon time the Imam stopped the fight to perform the Salat. By this time those left were mainly his family and a few supporters. They performed the Salat together. Two supporters were guarding the performers of Salat. The enemy was standing still, watching!! When Salat was finished one of the guards fell dead; there were 17 arrows in his back.

Ali Akbar, Husain’s son obtained permission to fight and dashed toward the enemy. He engaged them in fierce fighting, falling on them like thunder, slaying numerous fighters. He continued to move forward, deep inside the enemy. The enemy was overpowering in number, it overwhelmed him cutting him with swords and spears, and his body became nothing but wounds gushing blood, until he died. Imam Husain (a.s.) rushed to the area and picked up the wounded limp body and brought it to the appalled camp. His sister and others in the camp were horrified and shocked at the scene.

Abbas and five other brothers of Imam Husain went to fight. They also engaged the enemy in a fierce fighting, almost doing the impossible. Abbas went toward the river to bring some water for the thirsty children. While he was returning on his horse with the water, he was attacked by a large horde of the enemy, overwhelming and severely wounding him. As much as he tried Abbas could not save the water, he fell from his horse to breath his last.

Next to the battle field went the sons of Imam Al-Hasan and Zainab and their cousins (about 17 of them). They were all in their teens but each stood bravely, believing in the mission, facing a formidable enemy, and showed no less enthusiasm in their quest to embrace the martyrdom.

AL-HUSAIN AND HIS BABY:

By the afternoon 70 brave persons had sacrificed their lives in Karbala to save Islam. All had fought under nerve racking conditions, severe thirst, dehydration, exhaustion, and agonizing feeling of what would happen to the family of the Prophet (pbuh) afterwards. Husain endured all that and more, for he saw all his beloved ones brutally cut to pieces, including children. Remaining the only one, Imam Husain was to face the enemy head on. Precisely at that moment Imam Husain heard his baby crying incessantly, agonizing because of the thirst. Imam Husain’s love for his family was unbound, especially for a suffering baby. He held the six months old baby, his youngest son (Ali Asghar) in his arms, and appealed to the enemy fighters for some water for the baby. Imam wanted to awaken their conscience and stir their human feelings but the stone-hearted enemy, instead of giving water, zoomed an arrow toward the agonizing baby and killed him instantly. Imam Husain was shocked. He felt an unbearable wave of pain. The sight of the limp baby in his arms was agonizingly painful. He filled his palm with the blood of the baby, and threw it upwards toward the sky, complaining to Allah (swt),

“O’ Allah, O’ my Lord! My consolation is the fact that Thou in Thine Majesty are witnessing what I am going through.”

AL-HUSAIN BY HIMSELF:

Imam Husain (a.s.) was alone, one man against thousands. He took them on, fighting them bravely, and kept fighting, receiving many wounds in the process. Thousands of enemy fighters were surrounding him but none dared to move toward him. The silence was broken when Shimr screamed for an attack, then screamed again, threatening, and in response they attacked collectively, and one sword fell on Imam Husain’s left wrist and deeply cut his left hand. The blood gushed like a fountain. Another sword was soon to follow and it hit his upper back. Imam Husain (a.s.) felt numb as he fell to the ground, bleeding profusely. He was near the point of shock, even though staggering he tried to stand by leaning on his sword. Then he received the fatal blow.

It was at this point, that Shimr whose mother was a disbeliever, came forward and severed Imam Husain’s noble head from the body, the noble head kissed often by the Prophet (pbuh)! Shimr and others had the audacity to carry it on the tip of a spear to Yazid, 600 miles away!

Umar Ibn Sa’ad ordered the horsemen to trample upon the supine bodies of Imam Husain and all others killed, to disfigure them even further, as if the wounds, the bloodied bodies, and the headless forms were not enough.

For three days the exposed bodies of the martyrs were left lying in the desert of Karbala. Afterwards, the people of the tribe of Bani-Asad, who were not far away from the battle field, helped bury them.

Umar Ibn Sa’ad and his forces (representing Benu Umayya) took the women and children as prisoners in shackles, put them on camels, and proceeded in a caravan from Karbala to Kufa. At the forefront of the procession were the heads of Imam Husain (a.s.) and his followers on the tip of spears. The scene was both grotesque and pathetic. This was the leftover of the beloved family of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), in such a deplorable unimaginable condition, all caused by people who called themselves Muslims!

LESSONS FROM THE TRAGEDY Of KARBALA:

Karbala is the cruelest tragedy humanity has ever seen. Yet, the startling (though appalling) events in Karbala proved like a powerful volcano that shook the very foundation of Muslims, it stirred their consciousness, ignorant or learned alike. For sincere Muslims, Karbala turned into a triumph. The tragic event became the very beacon of light to always remind Muslims to practice Islam honestly and sincerely, to do what is right irrespective of consequences, and fear no one except Allah (swt).

On the other hand, Yazid never achieved what he and his father had planned to achieve, for within three years, Allah’s wrath fell upon him, causing him to die at the age of 33 years. And within a few decades the rule of Benu Umayya crumbled and came to an end. The tragedy of Karbala taught humanity a lesson that standing for the truth and fighting unto death for it is more honorable and valuable than submitting to the wrongful, especially when the survival of Islam is at stake.

Distance between Medina and Karbala about 1,100 miles.

Distance between Ibn Ziyad in Kufa and Yazid in Damascus about 750 miles.

Average travel by camel per day: 30-45 miles.

SOURCES

1. Mowlana Rafiq H. Naqvi, Khutbas at Salat of Jumu’a, Idara

2. Mowlana Amir M. Faizi, Muharram Majlis, Idara

3. Dr A.S. Hashim’s Books: Ahlul Bayt and Al-Khulafaa Al-Rashidoon
4. Al-Balagh Foundation: Ahlul Bait #5, 1993 (Iran)

GLOSSARY

A’isha: Widow of the Prophet (pbuh) and a leader during Jamal Confrontation.

Abbas: Brother of Imam Husain, flag-bearer during Karbala.

Abu Sufyan: Leader of Benu Umayya, Mu’awiya’s father, was inveterate enemy of Islam.

AbuMusa Ash’ari: Governor fired by Imam Ali, was selected to arbitrate after Siffin.

Ahlul Bayt: The household of the Prophet (s), consisting of Ali, Fatima, al-Hasan, al-Husayn and the 9 Imams descending from al-Husayn (peace be upon them all).

AlFarazdaq: A famous poet.

AlNu’man Ibn alBasheer: Governor over Kufa replaced by Ibn Ziyad through Yazid’s order.

Ali Akbar: Son of Imam Al-Husain, martyred in Karbala.

Ali Asghar: Baby of Imam Al-Husain, martyred in Karbala.

Ammar Ibn Yasir: A famous highly revered Companion, on Ali’s side, killed in Siffin.

Amr Ibnil Aas: A cunning deceptive person, in Mu’awiya’s camp, arbitrator after Siffin.

Ash’ath Ibn Qais: A spy General in Ali’s armed forces, also the father of Joda (wife of Al-Hasan).

BaniAsad: The tribe that buried Al-Husain and the other martyrs of Karbala.

Basrah: An important town in south of Iraq.

Benu Umayya: A clan known to be power hungry, greedy, and materialistic, of Mu’awiya.

Byzantines: The Christian superpower ruling over Syria and Egypt that lost to Islam.

Hani Ibn Urwah: The man who helped Muslim Ibn Aqeel in Kufa and lost his life for the cause.

Hur Ibn Yazid alRiyahi: The Commander of the enemy force who defected to the side of Imam Husain.

Ibn Muljim: The killer of Imam Ali while Ali was performing Salat Al-Subh.

Ibn Ziyad: The Governor over Kufa responsible for the atrocities of Karbala.

Imam: The 12 Divinely Commissioned leaders of the Ummah after the Prophet (pbuh).

Imam AlHasan (a.s.): The second Divinely Commissioned Imam, and the brother of Imam Husain.

Imam Ali (a.s.): The first Divinely Commissioned Imam, and the father of Imam Hasan and Husain.

Imam Husain (a.s.): The third Divinely Commissioned Imam, hero of Karbala, brother of Imam Hasan.

Iraq: Country in which Imam Husain suffered at the hands of its military.

Jamal: Battle imposed on Ali by A’isha, Talha, and Zubair.

Joda: Wife of Imam Al-Hasan, who poisoned him when enticed by Mu’awiya.

Karbala: The site of the ugliest atrocities committed against Al-Husain, his family and devotees, but Karbala saved Islam from disintegration in an indirect way.

Khalifa: Head of state after the Prophet (pbuh).

Kharijies: The outsiders who turned against Ali, then killed him while he was praying.

Medina: Famous town of the Prophet (pbuh) in Arabia.

Mu’awiya: Of Benu Umayya clan, brother of Yazid, also father of the infamous Yazid of Karbala.

Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr: Brother of A’isha who fought on Ali’s side during Battle of Jamal.

Mukhtar AlThaqafi: Loyalist of Ahlul Bayt.

Muslim Ibn Aqeel: Cousin of Al-Husain and his emissary to Kufa, killed by Ibn Ziyad.

Omar: The second Khalifa who appointed Mu’awiya as the Governor over Syria.

Quraish: The clan of the Prophet (pbuh).

Shimr Bin DhilJawshan: The killer of Imam Husain, his name will remain in infamy.

Siffin: Battle imposed on Ali by Mu’awiya.

Syria: Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine nowadays used to be called Syria.

Talha: Sahaabi, leader during Jamal Confrontation, killed during that battle.

Tulaqaa’: Denigrating term used by Muhammad (pbuh) for the disbelievers who had to become Muslims after Mecca was triumphed over.

Umar Ibn Sa’ad: Commander-in-chief of the military forces against Imam Husain in Karbala.

Umm Habiba: Sister of Mu’awiya, daughter of Abu Sufyan, wife of the Prophet (pbuh).

Uthman: The third Khalifa killed by the protesting Muslims.

Waleed Ibn Ut’ba: Governor over Medina when Yazid son of Mu’awiya declared his rulership.

Yazid son of Abu Sufyan: Brother of Mu’awiya, governor of Syria for a few years until he died.

Yazid son of Mu’awiya: Son of Mu’awiya, the infamous despicable ruler, cause of Karbala tragedy.

Zainab: Sister of Al-Husain, heroin of Karbala, losing her children for the cause.

Zubair: Sahaabi, leader during Jamal Confrontation, refused to fight during that battle.



Facebook
Create your like badge


et cetera
%d bloggers like this: