Winston Churchill once said,
‘’You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.’’
A slightly simplified or altered version of this quote goes:
“A person who has no enemies never stood up for anything or anyone.”
It may be universally true but for Pakistan, I ‘reshape’ the quote to; If you’ve never been called a Kafir, traitor, RAW or MOSSAD Agent, it means you’ve never stood up for anything.
And today I’ll confess what makes me liable to be labelled any of the aforementioned terms on the virtual world.
I am a traitor for I chose to speak.
I am part of the ‘Fifth column of the enemy’ for I question the military establishment, its adventurism, ploys and doctrines that have become our strategic death. I am a RAW Agent for it agonizes me to see the oppression being carried out in Balochistan by no one else but this country’s own security apparatus and agencies and so I clamor against it.
I am a liberal fascist for I refuse to bear the hypocrisy that compels me to vociferate against brutal killings of innocents in Iraq, of Palestinians and other places; but remain in deliberate oblivion and silence about the persecution and killings of Shias, Hindus, Ahmedis and Christians in Pakistan.
I am a traitor for I question the silence on murders of the Baloch, Hazara, Tooris & other oppressed groups.
I am a traitor for I challenge questionable customs, traditions, myths and practices that have made this society and many lives rot away for too long.
I am a Kafir for I dare to reclaim my religion from the Mullahs. I am a disbeliever for I admire Abdus Salam and Sir Zafarullah Khan and have the audacity to express my rightful desire for them to be honored by all. I am worthy of being consigned to hell because I do not judge and determine who is a Muslim, to what extent and who isn’t. I am a disbeliever and a damned-to-hell liberal because somewhere in my confabulations there may be secularist undertones.
I am on a payroll for I do not ascribe every happening in my country to external forces or hidden hands and yet vociferate against the greatest of dangers and threats this country faces from within.
I am a traitor for I gladly rip away the locks imposed on my lips by orchestrated ‘patriotism’ that shuns the voice of my thoughts from translating into words of concern for what happens in this country of mine.
I am a RAW Agent trying to constantly ruin the country’s image for I draw attention to the misery of minorities in Pakistan in hope of the people realizing the importance of the well-being and freedoms of those to whom the white of our flag is dedicated.
I am a traitor for I chose to speak up. I am a traitor for I am a Pakistani with an awakened conscience.
‘Lack of success does not justify the crime of silence in the face of criminal, arbitrary power.’ ~ Eqbal Ahmad
~ Hafsa Khawaja