Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Death not in vain, inshallah...
Well, another one bites the dust.
And I'm not just talking about how the GOP took over the House this morning, a chronically smiling Nancy Pelosi at hand, grinning as if she had no central nervous system.
No, I'm referring to the murder of Salman Taseer, one of Pakistan's most outspoken, liberal and popular governors, of the Punjab region. He was shot by one of his security guards, 26 times, while leaving an outdoor market place in Islamabad on Tuesday.
The reason behind this atrocious crime? God...or Allah, or whatever the hell you wanna call him. You know the guy, the one who sits up on a cloud and through his omniscient wisdom, has become the leading cause of death on this planet.
In his name, the blasphemy law: a law that makes it illegal to insult Islam, punishable by death. A law that recently inched more into the spotlight after a 45 year old Christian woman was sentenced to death in November, after having a discussion on the Muslim faith with some co-workers.
According to the late Taseer, this law was "not a God made law." He publicly spoke out against the law, condemning it as a "law which gives an excuse to extremists and reactionaries to target weak people and minorities."
The law's founder, military dictator, Gen. Mohammad Zia ul-Haq had imprisoned Taseer in the 1980s and up until his death, Taseer remained the secular, progressive politician extremely loved and hated by the split factions of Pakistan.
His bodyguard, an elite force security guard, Malik Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, was interviewed shortly after a news crew arrived at the scene of the crime. In a calm, cultish tone (aka brainwashed) he explained, “I am a slave of the Prophet, and the punishment for one who commits blasphemy is death."
Well, that's fair and simple then. Case closed. I mean, look at his face in that picture - he looks more like a guy walking back from a successful day at the races than someone who just brutally murdered someone. Damn God, you sure do put a smile on people's faces!
Not to sound a conspiracy alarm or anything, but who the fuck is this guy? How does he get assigned to the western worlds equivalent of Eric Hoffer?
Oh, the plot thickens...as per usual...
Just five months ago, a provincial police official banned Qadri from working as security for VIP personnel.
The director inspector general of Punjab Police said that due to his extremist views, it was dangerous for him to be in charge of guarding important officials.
But wait, it gets better.
Pakistani intelligence officials had warned officials about Qadri back in 2004 when they discovered his connection with the Sunni extremist group, Dawat-e-Islam.
Four years later, in 2008, having joined the police force in 2002, Qadri was selected to be a part of the elite force course, despite these warnings from intelligence. There are 468 elite force guards who are apparently chosen at random to guard various high ranking officials.
Qadri was assigned to Taseer on Tuesday. He certainly didn't waste any time did he?
In such a tumultuous country as Pakistan, should you do anything "randomly?"
Particularly when it concerns the security of high ranking officials.
In this aftermath, the government is in an understandable state of mayhem. With the US constantly up its ass about fighting extremists, one of their most popular secular warriors murdered, and losing their majority in the coalition government, it's safe to say the shit has hit the fan.
So, how will this play out? Will this cause supporters of Taseer to back down, or fight back with vengeful fervor?
As a country with thousands of our own lives on the line, we have a lot to lose and gain in the coming months. For now, it'd be best if we could focus on some legitimate, honest diplomacy. But since I don't think we know how to do that, I'll have to settle with empty sentiments and bullshit condolences thinly veiling our immediate motives.