Saturday, September 15, 2012

Fires of hatred damaging


(This is a comment piece I wrote for The Gulf Today)
If we cannot end now our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity,” famously spoke late US president John F. Kennedy once. He should have reserved the speech for present-day America. It is from this land that an irresponsible and senseless film denigrating the Holy Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) has emerged. 
The Obama administration has clearly been stunned by the ferocity of the Sept.11 attack against the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that killed its ambassador and three other Americans. Washington has put all its diplomatic missions overseas on high alert and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has delivered an explicit condemnation of the video. “The US government has absolutely nothing to do with this video. We absolutely reject its content and message. To us, to me personally, this video is disgusting and reprehensible,” she has said. 
But playing with people’s sentiments on matters of faith tantamounts to playing with fire. It takes one candle to set an entire forest on fire. It took one video to ignite anger and fury among the 1.5 billion followers of Islam, the second-largest and one of the fastest-growing religions in the world, and also among the tolerant people from other sections of society. The violence is the latest manifestation of deep-rooted anger in the Muslim world.
Anti-US protests have already spread across the Middle East and further, including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Iraq, Gaza Strip, Kuwait, Sudan and Tunisia. Protesters have smashed into the German Embassy in the Sudanese capital and security forces in Egypt and Yemen have fired teargas and clashed with protesters to keep them away from US embassies.
The Arabian Peninsula during the time of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) was a region in which various faiths existed. There were Christians, Jews, Zoroastrians, polytheists, and others not affiliated with any religion. There were plenty of examples to portray the high level of tolerance shown to people of other faiths during those times. 
“To you be your religion, to me be mine,” says a verse in the Holy Quran. In other words, live and let live is a message that suits entire humanity. America’s anti-terror talk should begin with issues at home. One cannot ignore the fact that the film-maker is from California. The US cannot disclaim the responsibilities of its own citizens, while it preaches the values of democracy and tolerance across the globe on a daily basis.

http://gulftoday.ae/portal/d564aa57-367f-485e-b92d-2f4c78ac3b7b.aspx

17 comments:

  1. This ugly film should be seen as a deliberate effort to provoke another war of religions by fundamentalists. Now that US Presidential race nears you can expect more such right-wing crap trying to polarize people.

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  2. Good piece of work Ramesh! very crisp. About the fil, less said the better. Here as well there was a protest-march in the embassy district, and the protestors tried to reach the uS embassy but the road was barricaded and heavily guarded. The match was peaceful.

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  3. Interesting article and certainly food for thought. Tolerance is certainly the way to go.

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  4. Very Well said! I am ur article was loved by all :)

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  6. Well said, RameshJi. These issues are flaring up all the time and triggering widespread violence everywhere. States and countries need to demonstrate more sensitivity in matters like this.

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  7. All this is so difficult to understand. People ought to be more careful I guess.

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  8. Indeed well said, If its not cleared at the rooots, you may not know how fast the rage can spread

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  9. Is the world getting just too intolerant?
    I haven't seen the movie,but,why must a creative peron do something o hurt religious feelings of otheres?

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  10. Couldn't agree more with your views!! Well said bro!!

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  11. Well, one and only question, if obava government strictly rejects the content then why it doesnot arrest the criminal? When there is a movie on Jesus christ, christian are hurt and protest, then why are they being so ugly when there is a movie on Muhammad P.B.U.H?

    When Afia siddiqui is charged with a crime, US govt kidnaps her saying that we will run a trial as she is our criminal despite the fact that she is a pakistani national, then why doesnot America simply handle over the film maker to muslim world? He is our criminal and we will punish him according to our rules!!

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  12. btw this is an EXCELLENT piece from you!! thumbs up:)

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