New Trend Magazine (Phone: 410-435-5000)

Analysis by But Shikan ('Idol Breaker')
Pakistani 'President' Teaches American Version of "Islam"
Condemns Jihad in Kashmir: Denies Will of Pakistani Masses
Jihad Groups Banned, 600 arrested in Futile Bid to blunt Islamic thrust

Important snippets:
1. Earlier this month Musharref arrested Afghan ambassador Abdus Salam Zaeef and handed him over to the U.S. This violation of international law threatens to disrupt relations between nations. Islam forbids such behavior and only scum can carry out such violation of trust.
2. NEW TREND was the first to indicate that human rights of Al-Qaeda prisoners being transported to Guantanamo Bay are being violated. Now Amnesty International has expressed the same concern.
TERRORIST WATCH: The U.S. seems to have failed to destroy Islamic leadership. Mullah Omar, Osama Bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri who are folk heroes in Pakistan, Indonesia and many other countries have eluded U.S.attacks. Please keep us informed of U.S. success in this situation so that we will be sure that the U.S. has won in reality and not just on CNN.
DOCUMENTATION OF VICTIMS OF BOMBING IN AFGHANISTAN: Pakistani sources say 60,000 Afghan civilians have been killed in the bombing. Of these 4,076 have been documented by U.S. sources but the figure is rising every day. Keep us informed of new documentation as bodies are recovered from mud huts puverized by B-52s and B-1s.
Pakistan's self-appointed 'President' Musharref made his keynote speech on January 12, 2002. It's not known if he read Jessica Stern's article "Pakistan's Jihad Culture" which was published in Foreign Affairs November/December 2000 issue and which was 'must reading' for U.S. policy makers. Might be a coincidence, but some of Musharref's remarks seemed to be direct copying from that Jewish woman's writings.

We present an analysis of the speech's main points:
1. Musharref claimed that "we joined the international coalition" against terrorism "in our national interest." Till now he has not been able to explain what was that "national interest" and how was it threatened by the U.S. There is no indication that Musharref carried out any study of the "national interest" which would show that what he thought was the national interest was in fact so.
He simply dumped the Taliban and opened Pakistan to U.S. intervention and control.
2. Musharref claimed that "Pakistan's majority was in favor of my decision. I am proud of it." In fact Musharref has carefully avoided any attempt to ask the Pakistani people for their position on the "international coalition" (which simply means USA). He dared not carry out a referendum or any kind of vote on such a crucial decision which will affect Pakistan for many years to come.
"I am proud of it" is an absurdity. Musharref's pride does not mean anything. He came to power by coup, is totally unrepresentative of the Pakistani people and has no legitimacy other than that of the gun and American support.
3. Musharref goes on to claim that "a few extremist groups were against the decision." Why? Because "they put their interests over the national interests." How? "They tried to lead the nation astray through demonstrations."
Now here Musharref is being downright silly. If only a "few extremist groups" were against his decision, he could have held a snap vote to prove them wrong. After all, the government supporters always point to the failure of Islamic parties in elections, so why not hold a vote on such an important matter?
Our observers on the ground say that the massive Pakistani demonstrations against the U.S. bombing and in support of the Taliban and Osama were a genuine expression of the people's will. In December 2001, the BBC admitted that 83% of Pakistanis oppose the U.S. action against Afghanistan.
4. Musharref then goes on to condemn the Pakistan-Afghan Defense Council which he claims never did anything good for Afghanistan. In fact he makes the grotesque claim that: "because of their negative thinking Afghanistan had to face destruction." Even President Bush would have a problem with this statement. The PADC was formed to help the people of Afghanistan and to express the will of the Pakistani people. It had nothing to do with the events of 9/11 or with the Taliban's refusal to surrender Osama and al-Qaeda.
In fact PADC showed that Islamic organizations as diverse as Jamaate Islami and Jamiatul-ulema-e-Islam (JUI) can unite. If Musharref were interested in national unity, he would have welcomed the PADC.
5. Then Musharref goes on to blame the Islamists for sectarian violence. He specifically refers to an imam in Karachi who had personally killed people (!). (Why was the imam not arrested?) Now here Musharraf is pretending to be naive and ignorant. It's very easy to rebut him :
i. There has been no sectarian violence since 9/11. (In Jessica Stern's article, sectarian violence is an important item against the Islamists.)
ii. In previous sectarian violence, the government took no steps to go to the root of the problem. For instance, there is no serious study of the violence and is causes.
iii. Pakistani observers say, much of this violence was instigated by Indian intelligence (RAW) agents who would first attack a Sh'ite place of worship and then a Sunni one. Some government reports and arrests of RAW agents support this theory.
iv. Iran has played a role in some of this sectarian instigation. It armed Shi'ite groups and distributed literature on a vast scale attacking the blessed companions of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
v. The government was not concerned about the attacks and abuse heaped on the people's faith. No stern measures were taken against Iranian or Indian moves.
vi. Even basic defense for the decencies of Islamic life was not provided. For instance, in Iraq, President Saddam Hussain has stopped attacks on the Companions of the Prophet (pbuh) by making such attack a felony punishable by law. Shi'ites form a much larger segment of Iraqi population than they do in Pakistan, yet in Iraq there is no tabarah (abuse of hazrat 'Ayesha and the sahaba) coming from the Shi'ites. Law should protect the majority's rights too.
6. Musharraf ruled out the right of the Pakistani and Kashmiri people to free occupied Kashmir through Jihad. (Such Jihad has already made India's rule there quite precarious .) Musharref limited himself to "moral, dilpmatic support" for the Kashmiri people. He claimed that the "solution lies in peaceful means and dialogue." In effect, it means a cop out. Pakistan has been talking about Kashmir for decades with no effect.
7. He equated the Kashmir Jihad with "terrorism." In words which could have been spoken by Bush, he declared: "No organization will be allowed to perpetuate terrorism behind the garb of Kashmir issue."
8. Almost like Arafat in Palestine, then he turned to the U.S. and begged for intervention: "Pakistan rejects terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. Now you (U.S.) must play an active role in Kashmir for the sake of lasting peace in the region." In other words, Pakistan can't do anything about Kashmir and has to beg the U.S. to do something.
9. Then he launched his program against the Islamists:
i. Banned the Sipahe Sahaba and the TJP (two sectarian groups)
ii. Banned Sunni Tehrik (mainly responsible for helping Afghans.)
iii. Mosques will be registered
iv. Loudspeakers can only be used for Adhan and juma' prayers.
v. No political activities in mosques
vi. No new medressas to be opened without government's certificate.
vii. Medressas indulging in "militancy" will be shut down.
viii. Teachers in medressas will require government's certificate.
ix. Foreign students must have certificate of being good boys from their governments.
10. Most interesting, the coup leader has his own version of Jihad. He brought up the idea prevalent in American mosques that
i. The greater jihad is against one's self, while jihad on the battlefield is the minor jihad.
ii. The real jihad is to "end illiteracy" and to "curb social evils."
Ending illiteracy and curbing social evils are definitely part of the Islamic agenda, but critics ask, why doesn't the Musharraf government spend more money in these sectors? Why does Pakistan have such a fat and comfortable military establishment?
iii. Islam does teach self-purification and self-restraint but that effort does not negate or become superior to the struggle on the battlefield against oppressors and occupiers.
{The story about the "greater (Akbar) jihad" and the "lesser (asghar) jihad" is a fabrication which was infiltrated into Muslim communities to divert the spirit of self-sacrifice and martyrdom. As Ibn Taymiyyah, Hasan al-Banna and Shaikh Omar Abdel Rahman have pointed out, the story is a fabrication. The Prophet (pbuh) never said any such thing and it is not accepted by the authentic collectors of Hadith.}
iv. By contrast, the Qur'an and the Hadith, in detail, make it very clear that there is no struggle greater than that on the battlefield and in support of the battlefield against the oppressors, the aggressors and the occupiers. Be it Iqbal or Maudoodi, Sayyid Qutb or Mullah Omar, Hafiz Saeed or Omar Abdel Rahman, there is no Islamist in the field who does not put Jihad on the battlefield where the Prophet (pbuh) had put it: Above all other endeavors
Musharref's speech was preceded and accompanied by police raids across the country in which 600 Islamic activists were arrested. Earlier, the coup leader had clamped down on Lashkare Tayba and Jaish Muhammad and arrested their leaders, Hafiz Saeed and Maulana Azhar.
Pakistani observers say that Musharref has underestimated the power of jihadist Islam in Pakistan. His moves could drive the Islamists underground but will be almost impossible to implement.
U.S. observers are quite happy with the new wave of repression against Islam. Unfortunately for Musharref, India is being emboldened by his divisive moves. In fact India might decide to move forward precisely because Musharref seems to be effectively dividing the country.
The U.S. will try to restrain India but India will be tempted not to pass over such an opportunity. However, if India attacks, all of Musharref's hard work to divide the country will be washed out.

2002-01-14 Mon 16:43ct