Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Three episodes of shoots and siege, three different reactions

Dr Javed Jamil
Within a period of about 24 hours, three different episodes of shootings and siege were reported in the world media. But the reactions to each one of them by the police and the reporting in the media were in sharp contrast to each other.
There was the takeover of a Café in Sydney, there was a hostage episode in Belgium and there was a shooting at Pennsylvania in America. The media coverage of the Sydney episode continued in the international media throughout the whole period of the drama and its deadly end leaving 3 people dead, and has continued since then with live reports on various aspects of the incident – the responses of the family members and Australians, the possible fallout and the memorials. Belgium incident received international coverage for several hours till there was a suspicion of the hostage takers being “Islamists” but as soon as it became clear that the crisis had nothing to do with Muslims, the coverage abruptly stopped. When this writer tried to find out the latest position through Internet, he could not find the latest situation, with one website giving the last report as follows:
Live coverage finished
Our live coverage of the Belgium hostage incident has now concluded.
Four gunmen took a man hostage in an apartment in the Belgian city of Ghent earlier today.
Officials said there was no initial evidence linking the assault to a jihadist organisation.”
The Pennsylvania incident leading to the killing of the six was hardly reported in the world media with a brief coverage. Mass shootings in America have become far common than the terrorist attacks, but American media does never scrutinise what is turning so many Americans into serial killers. BBC reported about the identity of the culprit:
“Montgomery County police are seeking the suspected gunman, whom they named as Bradley William Stone, 35. They say he may be armed and dangerous and told residents to remain indoors. The suspect killed his ex-wife Nicole Stone, her mother, her grandmother, her sister, her sister's husband and 14-year old daughter.”
There was also a news item about GM Switch deaths which have consumed the lives of 48 people. The news of course attracted the least attention.
The end of the three episodes has also been entirely different. The lone gunman who killed six in Pennsylvania is still absconding and the police have not been able to catch hold of him. The fate of the Belgium hostage takers is still not known, but it is clear that no extraordinary efforts have been made by the police to take hold of them, and the most likely course of action will be a few years’ imprisonment for them. GM switch victims would of course receive some compensation in dollars, and there is no likelihood of the persons responsible facing any criminal charges of murder. The Sydney episode has ended in a brutal assault on the lonely gunman which did not leave him dead alone but also resulted in two other deaths.
This sums up how the world powers and the international media is bent upon turning the Muslim community all over the world as suspects in the eyes of the authorities as well as the fellow countrymen. If Sydney lone culprit had not been a Muslim, the most likely course of event would have been a silent and peaceful end to the drama. As the reports have suggested, the “terrorist” was no member of any terrorist organization, and had a long history of criminal tendencies. He was like the many shooters in America. It is also not yet clear if the two other persons were shot by him or by the Police. In case, they were killed not by him but by the shots fired by the police, it would also prove the inaptness of the authorities in dealing with a situation where a solitary gunner with a solitary gun, kept the hostages under his control for more than 18 hours.
But the Sydney drama provided an opportunity to the “International Community” of the nations to spread hatred against the Muslims in general, and the organizations they think dangerous. This overreaction every time there is suspicion of “Islamists” involved, helps their political game, which helps their global game plan to perpetuate their hegemony in the world. They always need a villain, and the latest villain is ISIS. They forget to tell the world that ISIS is their own creation, and its members were considered “freedom fighters” till they were fighting the Syrian regime. Their “brutalities” were never highlighted then, and their killings were never counted as “terrorist” deaths. They were the recipients of the Western money and weapons, and their threats were downplayed. As soon as Assad regime succeeded in finishing the Wes-supported revolt, and ISIS moved in Iraq, they became the most dangerous terrorist organization of the world.
While debating the events, Australian government would also better reconsider its strategy of going along with America -- come what may, as if it is not an independent nation capable of taking its own decisions. It should realize that by becoming part of America’s war on terror, it has in fact aggravated the chances of greater violence, and if it sends its planes to bomb other nations, more likely than not it would have to face its ugly repercussions. It should convince its Boss and its allies that if peace has to prevail in the world, they will have to reassess their own role in the genesis of violence, and they will have to give up their attitude of ruthless domination.
How long will the sordid categorization on the basis of political motives continue? How long will the killings of the millions of the innocent human beings go without any attention, and a few deaths reported day and night, just because the former are committed by the “International Guardians of Peace” and the latter by their enemies? How long will the people of the world take in recognizing the truth that every single act of violence against an innocent is condemnable, irrespective of the identity of the victim, the identity of the killers, the place of the crime and the motive and the method of the crime? How long will the denizens of the world know that the Islamic World is more the wronged than the wrong-doer? How long will West take to realize that if it wants peace to prevail, the best policy would be non-interference in the affairs of other countries?
·          Dr Javed Jamil is India based thinker and writer with over a dozen books including his latest, “Quranic Paradigms of Sciences & Society” (First Vol: Health), “Muslims Most Civilised, Yet Not Enough” and “Muslim Vision of Secular India: Destination & Road-map”. Other works include “The Devil of Economic Fundamentalism”, “The Essence of the Divine Verses”, “The Killer Sex”, “Islam means Peace” and “Rediscovering the Universe”. He can be contacted or 91-8130340339. For his shayri visit


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