The two Pakistanis, Raja Azad and Sajid Naeem, reportedly executed in Iraq never had a chance. For they belonged to a country whose government just could not bring itself to say the one thing that could have saved their lives: that no Pakistani troops would be sent to Iraq.
Far from making this unequivocal declaration, which is what the Iraqi hostage-takers wanted, Pakistani spokesmen, from the prime minister downwards, kept peddling the absurd line that on sending troops to Iraq no decision had been taken. Which of course left open the possibility that a decision to send troops could be taken.
Why has it been so difficult for military-ruled Pakistan to say that it will not send potential human targets to Iraq? Why can't it afford to tell the US that such a move will harm not serve Pakistani interests?
The answer is pretty obvious: Pakistan's military-led government just can't say no to the US. Two hostages beheaded? There could have been a dozen under threat and Pakistan's policy would still be the same.
The US wants the Pakistan army in Iraq and because they are so obliging, people in the decision-making level are desperately looking for ways to go there. In fact, after Trojan Horse Ashraf Jahangir Qazi's appointment as US puppet masquerading as United Nations envoy in Baghdad, there seems to be no stopping the eagerness of General Headquarters (the nerve-center of army decision-making) on this score. The more Pakistani spokesmen say that no decision has been taken, the more they seem to protest too much.
And you know what? Trojan Qazi himself has said that if and when Pakistani troops are sent to Iraq, they won't come under any mythical UN command but under the overall command of US forces.
Is there something wrong with Pakistan? There is certainly something terribly wrong with the great brotherhood of Muslim countries, the ummah, the large majority of them desperate despotisms at home and first-rate American puppets abroad.
How far removed all this is from the Philippines! The Philippines, mind you, was/is the quintessential American satellite, its elites, across the political spectrum, pro-American to a fault.
Yet when the crunch came and the life of just one Filipino hostage - a poor truck driver, Angelo de la Cruz - was on the line, the dainty, petite, charming, attractive president of the Philippines, Gloria Arroyo, not much more than five feet tall, showed she was taller and tougher than many strongmen who act and sound tough but who, feeling the slightest heat or pressure, turn out to be men of straw.
To save the life of that one truck driver, President Arroyo didn't waste any time in announcing a quick pullback of the tiny Filipino contingent - 53 military personnel - serving in Iraq. She angered the United States, no doubt about it, but at the same time sent a wave of pride and jubilation across her country.
The whole of the Philippines rallied to Angelo de la Cruz's cause, prayed for him and wept with joy when he was released. Gloria Arroyo showed that her finger was on the nation's pulse. The Philippines looked a whole foot, or several feet, taller as a result.
In contrast, Pakistan stands diminished by the killing of Azad and Sajid Naeem. They could have been saved, easily, but were not. More than the brutality of the Iraqi situation - a situation created, let us remember, by the United States - it was Pakistani indecision that did them in.
How do you explain this to the two families, especially with the Filipino example so fresh in their minds? Are we to suppose that they would be so foolish as not to understand the ramifications of Pakistan's Iraq policy?
After all, the choice before Pakistan was far simpler than the one facing the Philippines. The Philippines had troops in Iraq. It was required to pull them out. Pakistan has no troops in Iraq. All the government was required to do was to declare that no troops would be sent. Yet even this verbal declaration was beyond the capacity of the government of Pakistan.
But there's a key point people forget. Gloria Arroyo is an elected leader who can't afford to be too far out of step with public sentiment. Pakistani leaders, stronger and certainly taller than Gloria Arroyo, are under no such obligation.
Beheading or killing innocent people is a crime against humanity. No question about it. The Iraqis should observe the rules of war. But when the Americans observe none and their invasion flouts all rules of international behavior, let alone the tenets of international law, it is too much to expect the victims of this war to observe all the niceties that they should, especially when they have their backs to the wall and are all alone, the great brotherhood of Muslim nations, the ummah, lifting not a finger to help them.
The Philippines made a clear choice: that protecting Filipino interests was more important than pleasing the United States. Faced with the same test Pakistan flunked it, choosing American pleasure over the lives of Raja Azad and Sajid Naeem.
When Angelo de la Cruz was taken hostage, a sense of urgency gripped the Philippines, a high-level delegation flying to Baghdad to secure his release. No remotely similar sense of urgency gripped Pakistan.
A day before the execution of the two Pakistanis, the National Assembly asked the Iraqi captors to free them unconditionally. It forgot to ask the government of Pakistan to make a firm commitment not to send troops to Iraq.
The same day Pakistan's apology of a prime minister, Shujaat Hussain, was telling a group of parliamentarians that any decision on sending troops to Iraq would be made only after taking people and parliament into confidence. Ye gods, as if this statement by itself was not enough to drive the Iraqi hostage-takers up the wall.
And it's not as if there wasn't a warning shot from the heavens. Just a month ago another Pakistani driver was taken hostage in Iraq and released as a gesture of goodwill on the part of his Iraqi captors. Far from taking any heed from this warning, and desisting from playing the American game, Trojan Horse Qazi's appointment as UN puppet for Iraq came soon thereafter.
This was accompanied by more talk of sending Pakistani troops to Iraq. What must the Iraqis have thought? One conclusion they could have drawn is that there was no point in being lenient to anyone carrying a Pakistani passport.
Guilty of inaction when it could have done something, the government should not insult the memory of the two Pakistanis killed by shedding crocodile tears now and making a show of its grief.
But learning something from this fiasco, and it is one, it can still do the right thing by rescinding Ashraf Jahangir Qazi's appointment as United Nations puppet for Iraq and telling the Americans once and for all that we are doing enough duty for them in Afghanistan but will send no cannon fodder to Iraq.
Is it too far-fetched to suppose that in their dying moments - I still hope the news of their beheading is not true - the two Pakistanis wished that they were Filipinos rather than Pakistanis?
Peace to All
Children are like a sponge, they absorb all what they see, hear, and feel
Adults are like a mirror, they react to what they see, hear, and feel.
I pray for Peace for all. Amen.
With respect don't be so impatient, however I've read, thought, asked questions, listened, counselled opinion, studied, contemplated and pondered.
But no one can justify "Slaughter in the name of religion" nor slaughter in any form.
In the name of humanity, can you?
Peace to all.
Rest In Peace, Raja Azad and Sajid Naeem (Innocents killed by murderers).
P.S. Starting from 2002, What was the Iraq solution?
P.P.S. You seem to assume that I am not a Muslim. Madmax, why is that?
Question - how can I (we) justify slaughter in the name of religion,
Answer- we absolutely cannot, because there is no religious justification to such an act, nor are we religiously instructed or required to carry such acts or any killing for that matter, except fighting when war is imposed on us, you will find and learn, granted you are a serious and a sincere learner, that Islam permits us to fight back under certain very important conditions, since as human being we cannot and we MUST not accept aggression and injustice without fighting back and wihout driving the aggressors out of our homes. With the undeniable necessity of fighting back, you will learn that Muslims have been given a noble code of war many centuries before the Geneva Convention saw the light. You are welcome to let me know if this answer is not satisfactory.
I hope you will be providing as well, a direct answer to my direct question; where did you read, watch and heard about such statement? Take your time while doing research before you answer, for that you will need to find and provide unassailable sources where there are statements about religious justification in slaughtering human beings. You posted your question here, so I assume that you learned that these captors did this in the name of the religion.
How can you justify slaughter in the name of religion?
Peace for all.
Every drop of muslim blood was because of bush's personal (disturbed) issues.
I hold the American .., Bush jr., responsible for the deaths of American and non-American citizens in Iraq. He has been misusing his power and he is the only who should be held resposbile; ..
Fatuma - So a couple of sickos hack two guys heads off, and it's the American's fault?
Did the Americans put a gun to the Iraqi's heads? Did they wrap their fingers around the unwilling Iraqi's fingers and force him to saw through bone and sinew? Of course not.
Don't get me wrong - Americans *have* caused a lot of pain in Iraq. They shouldn't be there now, and should never have been there in the first place, but don't become an apologist for terrorists. Two wrongs still don't make a right. The Iraqi terrorists made the choice to cut the throats of innocents. And Raja Azad and Sajid Naeem are Muslims at that.
Don't take the easy way out and blame this on Americans.
The Philipino government did what was right for one man and his family, but it was wrong for the rest of the country. Now, every terrorist knows they can kidnap a Philipino national anywhere in the world, and get that 'dainty, petite, charming, attractive president of the Philippines' to do their bidding. Does this really seem like a good and brave thing to do to your country? Of course not.
May Allah rest Azad and Sajid's souls in peace - Ameen.
I hope India will or should not sent its troops to Iraq to clean up the mess created by US and its tailwaving royal puppy British government run by,Blair.
Busharraf is licking Bush.., Pakistanis shedding their blood.
Personally, I think the last thing Iraq needs right now is an influx of foreign troops. Admittedly, some of my suggestions might seem rather unusual but perhaps a "good-will performance" by the U.S. Air Force could accomplish more than might otherwise be accomplished by bloodshed. Call it a military exercise - subject to public review - if you like. It could be sort of an air show but perhaps from fifteen kilometers up. I would much rather see needy contractors put to work entertaining the Iraqi people than inciting them to rebel. The author of this article briefly touches upon the virtues of genuine democracy. Perhaps members of the resistance might decide to become more involved in national politics if the alternatives were made clear. I hope I have not caused offense or alarm.