On Feb 14th, an Indian army convoy came under a suicide attack in Pulwama, IOK, leading to the death of more than 40 Indian soldiers. The attack received extensive coverage in the mass media throughout the world. Many global leaders fiercely condemned it within hours.

India is being regarded as a state which wrongfully confronts dangers at the hands of Kashmiri fighters who rarely use bombs and bullets, and usually fight with stones, fists, and slogans like Pakistan Zindabad in the restive region.

Right of “self-determination of peoples” is one of the primary purposes mentioned in Article 1 of the UN Charter which is exactly the Kashmiris are demanding. Is demanding one’s fundamental right acknowledged by the world’s top body unfair? On one hand the war of independence fought by the Americans against the British is glorified by the international intelligentsia while on the other hand the Kashmiri youth who have been compelled to take up arms against the brutal regime for the same purpose are vilified. That’s completely contrary to reason.

The people in IOK have been experiencing enforced disappearance, abductions, rape, butchery, and a plethora of other human rights violations. The UN has called for establishment of an International Enquiry Commission in this regard. Almost 100,000 people have been killed since 1989. About 2000 of the Kashmiris, including children, have gone blind lately due to the ruthless use of pellet guns by the Indian security forces. Mass graves have been found and access to justice is severely restricted. The Indian army that has been deployed in such numbers which has made Kashmir one of the most militarized zones in the world have been given carte blanche with Armed Forces Special Powers Act in place. They use the Kashmiris as human shields, infringe their rights and privacy, and make no secret of subjecting them to torture and abuse. The UN acknowledges that there has been not a single prosecution of Indian soldiers in IOK in the last 28 years which speaks of the impunity they have been granted.

Likewise, the activities and attacks carried out by Hamas on Israel are widely condemned. The UK is intending to ban Hezbollah entirely because, having links with Hamas, it is considered as a cause of instability in the Middle East. While Palestinians are generally labelled as terrorists especially by the US and its allies who while predominantly unarmed take to streets in a bid to gain independence.

These Palestinians have been rendered homeless owing to Zionist occupation and their ever expanding settlements. Only in 1948 750,000 people were ousted from their homes. Israel denies taking their descendants back and considering them as a potential threat to the Jewish state. Last year Palestinians were treated abominably when they tried to lodge peaceful protests. They had to confront unprovoked firing from Israeli snipers that led to the killing of 35 children and wounding of 13,313 people according to the figures provided by the United Nations. Only on May 14, 2018, 60 demonstrators were put to death by Zionist forces which coincided with the controversial inauguration of the US embassy in Jerusalem. All this has been happening under the watch of the world. But who cares? Except for the hard-hitting reports by some international organization, no one takes it upon themselves to raise voice against this oppression.

In the early 2000s when we came to know that Iran was working on a clandestine nuclear program, the US, UN, and EU slapped Iran with harsh sanctions isolating Tehran financially. Nuclear weapons anywhere in the world poses significant threat to peace and no one should be permitted its development. For this reason one is dumbfounded why the world community have turned a blind eye to the Israeli nuclear program who themselves don’t repudiate it.

Recently when Ilhan Omar, a member of the US congress, criticized AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) implying that the US-Israel relations are forged by Jewish money, her comments were greeted with widespread outrage in America — America which stands for freedom of expression around the world. Later, she had to apologize for saying something which she and many more people believed was a political reality. Even M.J. Rosenberg, an ex-worker of AIPAC, endorsed the former position of Ilhan Omar. Though AIPAC spends almost $3.5 million annually on lobbing, yet one has no freedom to comment on it. Similarly, in Europe one can openly commit blasphemy against the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) but would end up in prison if charged with denial of holocaust.

Most of the grievance mentioned above are related to those who have little political significance, thus they have been left to the mercy of God by the rest of the Muslim world because of considerable political and economic incentives. The Palestinians have almost been disowned by their Arab brethren. But it should be borne in mind that for lasting world peace, resolving of Kashmir and Palestine disputes is inevitable.

Moreover, everyone has the right to self-determination and this is recognized by the UN charter, many international treaties, and several national constitutions of the world. Therefore, it is a terrible injustice to brand the indigenous freedom fighters of Palestine and Kashmir as terrorists. The world needs to at least soften its tone if it cannot bring the oppressors to justice.