Amer­i­cans get­ting it wrong

The Pak Banker - - Front Page -

com­ing out of this, but it’s go­ing to take a cou­ple of years.” Clearly, Amer­i­can sci­en­tists are wor­ry­ing them­selves un­nec­es­sar­ily. If only they could take time out to read some Pak­istani news­pa­pers they would save them­selves a lot of trou­ble and have their doubts re­moved in an in­stant.

A jour­nal­ist with whom I of­ten find my­self in talk-shows, to my great joy I need hardly add, has ex­pressed the de­fin­i­tive opin­ion that Hur­ri­cane Sandy is God’s pu­n­ish­ment vis­ited upon the Amer­i­can peo­ple for the Cal­i­for­nian film blas­phem­ing the Holy Prophet.

Ex­cerpts from his col­umn: “How could the Lord of the Worlds re­main silent over (this blas­phemy)? Of what ac­count a su­per­power against the might of my Lord? ...Only a few weeks af­ter (the blas­phe­mous film) pow­er­ful Amer­ica has been hit by such a calamity that un­til yes­ter­day in­tox­i­cated by pharaonic power it to­day presents a pic­ture of the ut­most help­less­ness.”

In be­tween he says that Mus­lims across the world were ex­pect­ing noth­ing from their rulers, all Amer­i­can toad­ies, or from the Or­gan­i­sa­tion of Is­lamic Coun­tries. And they were dis­mayed. But how could my Lord re­main silent? He doesn’t say it but the im­pli­ca­tion is clear that the US de­serves ev­ery bit of what it has got, al­though what con­nec­tion there might be be­tween the be­nighted film­maker and the mil­lions hit by the hur­ri­cane comes out less clearly.

We can there­fore rest easy. The Almighty took notice of a film that any or­di­nary film­goer would have found un­wor­thy of notice and, moved to un­con­trol­lable wrath, sent down the thun­der­bolts of His vengeance on the mod­ern-day Philistines, the Amer­i­can peo­ple. This in a widely-read news­pa­per, on the liv­ing page. And there would be any num­ber of Pak­ista­nis, rest as­sured, who would say how very true…and be in rap­tures over the no­tion of divine retri­bu­tion.

The same day an­other ar­ti­cle shed light on the re­ac­tion among In­dian Mus­lims to the hang­ing of Ghazi Ilm Din in 1929, con­victed of the killing of Ram Gopal, a Hindu who had pub­lished a book dis­re­spect­ful of the Holy Prophet. It said the event had a pro­found im­pact on the Mus­lim mind and may have been re­spon­si­ble for mov­ing Iqbal to sound the de­mand for a sep­a­rate Mus­lim home­land in In­dia. There would be few more sin­gu­lar takes on the Pak­istan move­ment, this ex­pla­na­tion open­ing up a whole new field of his­to­ri­og­ra­phy.

None of this should be sur­pris­ing. His­tory has not been among our strong points. We are more at home with fanta-

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