Defeating the Manifesto of hate and crime!

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By: Parvaiz Ahmad Mir

The attack on Muslims in New Zealand has shaken the conscience of the whole world. The white supremacist attacker who barged in the Mosques in Christchurch and massacred several people had uploaded a manifesto on internet besides going live when he was executed the planned killing of innocent Muslims. The manifesto reveals the mindset that prompted him to attack the hapless and unarmed Muslims who had gathered to offer Friday prayers in Al Noor and Linwood Mosques. The man’s vision, as revealed by the manifesto, speaks volumes about the xenophobia and Islamophobia that the far right elements are spreading across Europe, America and Australia. Islamophobia has crossed all barriers and the attack on Muslims in one of the most peaceful countries of the world shows that the hate against Muslims is rising across the globe.

The attacker writes, in the manifesto, that the Immigrant Muslims are a threat to European culture and they are going to Islamise the whole Europe by the middle of the current century. He says that the Muslims living in Europe on average keep eight children when a native European couple will have just one- the factually wrong information fed to the readers as an attempt to create a scare regarding the demographics.

People like him are not ready to accept the fact that Muslims whose ancestors had settled in these lands during the times when their native lands were subjugated by the colonial rule, can be part of them. Moreover whosoever migrated to these western nations after the end of colonial era and then settled there did not settle their illegally, one has to remember and remind people more often than not. Muslims obtained citizenship in these lands as per the rules and regulations laid down by the countries they migrated to. Thus the Muslim immigrants are not foreigners in their lands as these hate mongers and xenophobic people believe and try to portray. On the contrary they are the legal dwellers in the lands where they are sadly killed and harassed today.

The his claim that Muslim immigrants are actually foreigners and hence have no right to live and stay in Europe, Australia and America is an attestation to the fact that the white supremacists like him do not have any right to live there if we go according to the standards laid down by him and his masters. Perhaps he does not know that the Australians, Kiwis and Americans who are currently in majority in their countries are not natives but immigrants from various lands. Their ancestors had migrated to these lands and they had forcibly occupied the lands and did not settle their legally like today’s Muslim immigrants do. My American friend James Havener told me once that the natives of America are called first people and the immigrants who control the political and economic scenario of today’s USA are called as settlers. Besides, the aborigines of Australia and New Zealand were also conquered and displaced by settlers whose ancestors were foreigners.

So the manifesto that he has written speaks against him and his white supremacist masters in the very first instance and according to the criteria laid down, he should be banished from the land he dwells in. But this is not the way people are dealt with. A person who settles at some place for some time becomes a legal citizen of that place.

Moreover, his open praise for US president, Donald Trump, shows that he is influenced by him and is fulfilling the agenda that was brought to fore by the president during his presidential campaign and after becoming president of the most powerful country which claims to be the torchbearer of democracy. The terrorist’s manifesto states in clear cut terms the white supremacist ideology and hate for non-westerners which stands propounded by the President of the United States- Trump signed an executive order to bar Muslims of some countries from entering USA. This order forms the basis of the terrorist’s manifesto and he projects Trump as the saviour of white people living across the globe.

In this hour of hopelessness and fear, the world has found a great leader in Jacinda Ardern (the New Zealand Prime Minister) who proved her statesmanship by identifying with the victims and upholding the plural as well as democratic ethos of the country. She, immediately after the attack, began taking measures to ensure that justice was done and those who had faced the tragedy are shown empathy and concern.

When she ordered that Muslim call to prayer (Adhaan) be aired live on all New Zealand channels and began a parliamentary session by recitation of Quran, she had made it clear to all white supremacists and racists that New Zealand had no place for them. The people of New Zealand also supported their Prime Minister and stood by her side and with their Muslim brethren in the hours of grief. They showed that hate against minorities was foreign to Kiwis and they cannot allow their country to be hijacked by hate preachers. Besides they donned Muslim style dresses to show solidarity with them and express empathy.

All this maturity and wisdom that we saw post attacks was definitely led by PM of New Zealand who greeted her entire nation with the Islamic greeting and quoted a hadith of the beloved Prophet (PBUH) of Islam to show that all the people of New Zealand share the pain that Muslims had gone through.

Parvaiz Ahmad Mir is a lecturer at Government Girls Higher Secondary School Tral

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