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Books and Documents

Islam and Sectarianism

Pakistan: No Respite from Sectarian Islamist Terrorism
Zeeshan Salahuddin

The Shia community was the largest victim, accounting for nearly 60% of the casualties for the first quarter, followed by the Christian and Hindu communities. TTP-Jundullah claimed 184 of the sectarian casualties, thus accounting for 48% of the violence committed. By all accounts, sectarian violence has decreased in all regions of Pakistan except Balochistan....

 

Are We Not ‘Pakistani’ Enough for Them or are We Not ‘Muslim’ Enough?
Sana Lokhandwala

Every time there has been a tragic attack, people change their Facebook display pictures to black or to pictures condemning the attack. They call it a ‘Black Day’. But the reality is, we have observed so many ‘black days’ and have changed our display pictures so many times that we have lost count....

 

The men boarded the bus and shot dead more than 40 men and women one by one. Many of them were shot in the head. “The terrorists walked down the aisle shooting and killing them. All of it was done very calmly. Not a single windowpane has been shattered....

 

Silence Of The Lambs: What Do You Do When Courage Bleeds To Death?
Fahd Husain

There is something sickeningly wrong when slaughter is revenged by the deafening sounds of, ‘bleat, bleat’, while armchair warriors beat their chests and retire for the night. There is something nauseatingly wrong when 45 executed bodies cannot make the leader do the right thing. For make no mistake: we are living in the midst of genocide. ....

‘In Pakistan, Anyone and Everyone Can Be a Target’
Fatima Bhutto

Ismailis, a peaceful community of Muslims, share a closeness with the country’s Shia minority and are thus victimised. Seventy per cent of Pakistan’s Muslims are Sunni. And in this predominantly Muslim country, it is no longer Hindus or Christians who face the largest threat of violence from orthodox and radicalised groups but Shias....

Why Shiite Expansion Will Be Short-Lived
Kamran Bokhari

Iran and the Shiites appear to be in better shape than Saudi Arabia and the Sunnis. Hezbollah and other militias have helped al Assad remain in power. The fight against extremist groups such as Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State have given Iran time to regroup, as have the nuclear negotiations with the United States. Moreover, the Saudis have been preoccupied with the Houthi rebellion in Yemen....

Worthy of Being Murdered (Wajib-ul-Qatl)
Kunwar Khuldune Shahid

The Shia and Ahmadis are dubbed heretics for differing from the Deobandi, Wahabbi or Salafi interpretation of Islamic theology and history. Narrowing down said interpretation would not only ensure that the likes of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) have no reason to kill us, it would ascertain the unity of Muslims, by apostatising plurality of interpretations. Incorporating secularism and pluralism would have meant the state having to go through the trouble of fighting the war against the Taliban, and the more daunting prospect of taking on ISIS that has penetrated the Af-Pak region.

When You are in the Majority, It Is Easy to Be Blind
Hufsa Chaudhry

Zehra's experience of religious discrimination as a child hit me particularly hard, because while she was being bullied and labeled a ‘non-believer’, I remember kids in my class raising the Shia-Sunni debate as well. I remember being asked which of the two I was. I did not even know what Shia or Sunni was at the time....

 

Forget Free Speech, Where is Our Right to Life?
Sabeet Raza

Today, the results of this ‘survey’ are now null and void – 43 people from the Ismaili community were killed in a bus attack today. Pakistan has completely failed in protecting one of the most peaceful and sacrificing religious minorities of the country. There is no longer any room for error. No Ismaili has ever been involved in politics or crimes in Karachi yet they are being targeted for a war they are not even a part of....

The world should hold out the hope that a catastrophic sectarian war can be prevented but knowing the past behaviours of US and Israel of fomenting crisis after crisis in the region over the past four decades, it is difficult that such a hope can materialize now or in the near future, more so now since the Gulf monarchies are willing partners due to their imbibed fear of Iran....

 

Keep Hajj Out of Politics: Notes on the ‘Are You Shia?’ Form Debacle
Narjis Fatema

The Hajj form cannot simply ask a woman if she wishes to abide by law or not. Pakistan is a Sunni-majority country and Sunni Fiqh has it mandatory for women to have a Mehram accompanying them on Hajj. For the minority Shia, there is allowance for going without a Mehram, but only because their own religious law....

 

Fragmentation and disorder in Balochistan has adversely affected the political and social process. Disunity among both tribal chiefs and moderate political elements has encouraged the authorities to increase the ferocity of the promotion of their agenda with support garnered by military and the intelligence agencies....

 

Pakistan One of the Least Racist Countries? Tell That to the Pakhtuns
Faraz Talat

Overt racism against the Pakhtuns has melded so seamlessly into the Pakistani culture, it hardly elicits a glare. Pashto words are often thrown sarcastically at one another to insult one’s intelligence, implying that it’s the language of people with poor comprehension skills....

 

The foundation stone of this decades’ long rivalry is laid upon sectarian differences, with Saudi Arabia presenting itself as the leader of Sunni Muslims and Iran acting as a messiah for the Shias. The Middle East serves as a game of monopoly for both these Islamic giants as they reassess their moves....

 
Man-Made Wars Agains Humanity
Dr Mahboob A Khwaja

The Arab Middle East is the theatre of absurdity – petty ideological rivalries, enforcing daily sectarian warfare and unending brutality for the innocent people trying to escape the prevalent insanity. No carefully reasoned and politically verifiable analysis can predict how and where the entire Arab-Muslim region will escape from the amassed misfortunes....

 
Balochistan and the Yemen War
Muhammad Akbar Notezai

Balochistan and the Yemen War
Muhammad Akbar Notezai

Sectarian violence broke out in Balochistan in the mid-1980s, engulfing the Shia Hazara community of Balochistan. The Shia Hazaras are densely populated in Quetta, the capital city of Balochistan province, in its western and eastern areas: Mariabad and Hazara Town. Assaults against them have increased. “In the mid-1980s there were religious tensions between Shia Hazaras and Sunni Pashtun groups in Quetta in which dozens were killed....

 
The Ghost of Sectarianism
Syeda Ammara Fatima

According to a report, hundreds of Muslims are killed on sectarian basis every year. If Muslims had their priorities focused on education and well-being of their respective communities instead of fighting with each other, they could have been the ruling Empire of other nations....

 

Breeding Hate against the Ahmedis
Zeeba T Hashmi

A local Urdu newspaper in Lahore has been printing an advertisement for the Khatam-e-Nabuwat Conference that was to be held on March 22. The sponsors of the advertisement and the organisers of the event are all revealed in it yet no one from the authorities is willing to take note of the conference....

 

Politicisation of Sectarianism
Nawar Fakhry Ezzi

Aside from extremists, the differences in religious teachings and interpretations between Sunni and Shia were similar to the differences between any Sunni schools of Islam. Most of the Shia religious leaders and imams did not even label themselves as Shia because they were the descendants of the Prophet (pbuh) and were scholars on their own merit and their teachings were rightfully acknowledged and valued by all Muslims not only Shia....

 
The Deep Divide Within
Diana Moukalled

The Deep Divide Within
Diana Moukalled

Arab vs. Kurd, Sunni vs. Shiite, Christian vs. Muslim, Lebanese vs. Syrian, Arab vs. Persian — take your pick. But what is truly making this already unbearable situation worse is the involvement of a not inconsiderable portion of those who are in the public eye. It is not just politicians and militants, but journalists, writers, and so-called intellectuals who have now taken up this divisive baton....

 

Sectarian rhetoric is on display most explicitly in the language used by militant groups. The Islamic State jihadist group, for example, regularly denounces Shias and others as heretics....

 

Radicalism, Not Sectarianism, is the Threat in Yemen
Manuel Almeida

The message that the Yemeni conflict has little to do with the kind of sectarian violence that plagues Iraq and Syria has been circulating with increasing intensity in mainstream and social media. In many ways, the message is correct. Instead, it is radicalism that threatens to disintegrate Yemen....

 
A Violent Endgame
Irfan Husain

A Violent Endgame
Irfan Husain

Mohajirs responded to the young Altaf Hussain in large numbers as he affirmed Mohajir pride and dignity. Gen Zia spotted an opportunity to use this new group to cut the PPP down to size, and allegedly helped the party establish itself. The Zia period also saw Pakhtuns, Punjabis and Sindhis form ‘ethnic’ parties, while established parties acquired militant wings….

 

Most Houthis follow Zaidism, a sect that traces its roots to 8th century Arabia and the campaign of a great-great grandson of the Prophet (PBUH) who rebelled against the Umayyad caliphs of the time....

 

Tired Canards about Yemen and Sectarianism
Dr Mohammad Taqi

Whether the request for troops comes from a Wahhabist monarchy or an Alawite regime, the answer should be a resounding no. Maintaining a non-aligned posture is prudent diplomacy and should not have to be justified on the basis of a flimsy Shia-Sunni binary....

 


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  • Hats Off's frenzied rant is very much a part of his relentless hate war against Islam. His thoughtless ....
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  • Mr Kabir has very beautifully discussed the subject of sufism and spiritualism. Sufism has been the way of God loving people across religious affiliations because ...
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  • generally it takes a lot more words when you have nothing to say. this article is a good example. typical case....
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  • Mr. John, would you please say good bye to the idea demonstrated in your comment. Your idea is not yours but has been borrowed from ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • The stages are: 1. Realization that Islam (or any other religion) is a good religion and feeling attracted. 2. Acceptance of the new religion and practicing ....
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  • "How did it fracture like brittle bone then if it wasn’t melted" - mr. naseer ahmed. that sentence is a jem...
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  • Islam does not want its followers to go the extremes of hardship. Allah Almighty says in the Quran, "Allah intends ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • Hidayat, the Arabic word, literally means guidance, instruction, righteousness or the true path. The word hidayat is comprehensively....
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  • Mr Qazi has very correctly pointed out the message of moderation in the Quran, an aspect which the Muslims...
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