Muslims are being oppressed all around the globe. They are called extremists and Islam has now become a ‘terrorist religion.’ Westerns don’t admit it, but the cartoons were clear indications of their prejudice, their racism, their political supremacy. The media has always been an extensive influence, but freedom of media doesn’t mean one should slander another’s religion. Religion is faith, religion is a mentor that teaches us the way of life and no religion can or should be insulted, humiliated or disgraced. Drawing cartoons about someone’s belief shows hate and disrespect.

Moreover, we are creating extremists by the bucket load and have done so since we declared this endless war on terror. Our policies are hardening views on all sides. To justify its continuation, politicians have to keep lying to the public, saying Muslim violence is due to ‘Islamists, Extremists, Hate Preachers’ — the evil Muslim Fairy, or any other word that makes people think the problem is faith and not the real driver:  war. Thus we have created two sides. The two sides are set to clash unless we stop them. By the time the dust settles, there will be more attacks against Muslims in streets, mosques burned down, politicians introducing draconian laws against Muslims, media wall-to-wall demonization and France, along with the rest of Europe, will lurch right ,  proving  that the West hates Muslims.

Someone powerful in the political elite has to have the sense to change the music of war and hate, re-look at our policies and have the courage to say: ‘Everyone put the guns down and let’s talk.’ Even if I am wrong, one thing is for sure :  to bring an end to this,  we have to do something different, because what we are doing now  isn’t working. However as a Muslim, I totally chastise the attack in France, as Islam is a religion of peace, not war or revenge.

SYED OMER NADEEM,

Karachi, January 8.