We need to open our eyes
Our Youth Must Stop Self-Destructing Themselves To Serve Pakistan
We need to think of our lives, our good, our interests, our welfare, our future
J N Ahmad
Ever since Pakistan launched a proxy war in Kashmir, it has continuously been on a propaganda roll. It has somehow managed to convince a large number of Kashmiris that everything pertaining to India – whether it is a democracy, pluralism or development –is wrong. It has also managed to embed the notion among a section of Kashmiris that Pakistan is the best country on earth despite its political, social, and economic failures known to everyone in the world. This is such a bizarre irony. But Kashmiris have fallen into the trap. This way, we have brought death, destruction and misery upon ourselves to serve the interests of some men enjoying power and privilege in Rawalpindi. This has been the story for many decades now.
Kashmiri youth need to be told in blunt terms that they need to stop self-destructing themselves for the rich upper-class Punjabi establishment of Pakistan. We need to open our eyes and demystify all the “myths” constructed about Pakistan by the ISI-backed local propaganda machinery. We need to think about our lives, our own good, our own interests, our own welfare, our own future, rather than the upper-class Punjabi establishment of Pakistan which has a long history of oppressing lower class Punjabis and all non-Punjabi ethnicities and nationalities in Pakistan besides non-Sunnis. In fact, on this count, Pakistan is a horrible, almost unlivable nation. It is not simply something worth dying for. The Pakistani flag cannot hide the mass atrocities being committed by the Punjabi establishment in Pakistan on a daily basis.
Pakistan beset with rigid inequality, feudalism
What do the misled and misguided Kashmiri youth know of Pakistan? Do they know that Pakistan is a country which is beset with the most rigid form of inequality and feudalism even in this modern age? In the rural areas of Punjab, Sindh, KPK, and Baluchistan where Jagirdari is still prevalent, ancient age type slavery still exists. Pakistan is essentially ruled by an exploitative nexus of feudal-military clergy. This is the real experience of all those who have known Pakistan at close quarters. Numerous scholarly studies have shown this. Pakistan was created in the name of Islam but it broke down into two parts within 24 years. This was because of the Punjabi and Urdu-speaking establishment’s brutal political, cultural, and economic oppression of Bengalis in Pakistan.
Within Pakistan, no dissent is tolerated. Journalists and intellectuals are frequently targeted and forced into migration or submission. In recent times, intellectuals who dared to critique were brutally murdered. These include Sabeen Mahmud, Salman Taseer, Mashal Khan, and many others. Their killers enjoy patronage and protection by ISI.
Pakistan Army Is The Power Center
Pakistan is controlled and dictated by the Punjabi-dominated military establishment. Any politician who doesn’t toe the line is shunted out like Nawaz Sharif. The real power centre in Pakistan is not Islamabad, but the Army General Headquarters in Rawalpindi.
Pakistani military also has acquired immense wealth, land, and corporate ownerships at the cost of poor Pakistani people. The military establishment manufactures constant delusions and untruths to keeps the gullible Pakistani masses in ignorance. Husain Haqqani, former Pakistan Ambassador to the US and a popular author writes: “About 95 percent of Pakistanis were born after partition, but the Pakistani education system reinforces a national narrative that airbrushes a lot of history out and photoshops a lot of non-history into people’s minds. So Pakistan generally has a national discourse that has not always been completely open. Pakistani nationalism has been built around two ideas: antipathy to India, and Islam as a political slogan. So those two mixed together do confuse the people. Don’t forget that half of Pakistanis are illiterate and that 42 percent of school-age children don’t go to the school of any sort. Also, there are very well-organized Islamic political parties that use violence to make sure that facts and history are not openly discussed and debated.”
Imagine if a country does this distortion in the minds of its own people by feeding lies and propaganda, how would it think of us? Isn’t it our responsibility to reject such propaganda which is meant to harm us?
The continuing proxy war in Kashmir helps the Pakistani military establishment to carry on with their unaccountable power and prestige. They derive national and political capital out of the flames of burning Kashmir. Unfortunately, we have just become pawns in this game owing to the nefarious project of religious radicalization of our minds and society. We need to stop this self-destructive spree initiated by the establishment of our neighboring country for its dirty purposes.
Pakistani establishment encourages extremism, fundamentalism to dilute struggles for justice
Balochs, Sindhis, Mohajirs, and Pashtuns from time to time have resisted against the Punjabi domination. We have witnessed movements like Independent Baluchistan, Sindhu Desh, Jinnah Pur, and Pakhtunistan. Shias, Ahmadiyas, Hazaras, and Gilgitis also suffer from repression of all kinds.
Pakistan’s existence is fractured. Through the decades, Pakistan has diligently suppressed various ethnic struggles. To achieve this, the Pakistani establishment has a deliberate policy of encouraging extremism and fundamentalism to dilute the struggles for justice. There is no unifying factor in Pakistan except the promotion of religious extremism and fundamentalism. But this comes at a cost of ultimate self-destruction as these groups ultimately acquire much power and ideology. However, the Pakistani establishment continues to use them against internal dissenters and also outside the country in Kashmir and Afghanistan.