Amnesty International, United Nations Human Rights Commission, most of the Western Governments, Western Media and the NGOs of the west seems to be the protectors of human rights around the world. These organizations and governments have created such a huge and complex network (human and technology) around the world that a small incident in a remote part of an under developed country can easily be traced and reported. Local organizations in most of the countries work with them and in some cases get funding and support from these agencies. These international human rights organizations have recruited hundreds of people from the Muslim world as well. No one can deny the value and importance of such organizations. But, are these agencies (Amnesty International, United Nations Human Rights Commission, most of the western governments, Western Media and NGOs) truly defend the human rights of all human beings OR these agencies have a very selective criteria? OR these agencies want to achieve something else under the cover of Human Rights?
When we carefully review these agencies and their work we find that these agencies do not defend or raise their voices for all types of human rights. These agencies ONLY report, defend and work for some very specific types of human rights. These agencies search the daily affairs of the Muslim world with microscopic eyes in order to find some thing, which apparently seems to be in conflict with the western culture and policies. These agencies would even exploit small incidents, which helps them to project their image as the champions of human freedom. These agencies will stay quiet and normally go to hibernation when someone from the West abuses the human rights of the Muslims. But if a small incident occurs in anywhere in the world in which a Muslim person can be blamed, these agencies will create huge outcry against Islam and the Muslims.
Let’s review some of the examples from the recent memories. Please see whether these agencies (Amnesty International, United Nations Human Rights Commission, most of the western governments, Western Media and NGOs) do really care for the human rights in Muslim countries or their objectives are something else?
Selective Human Rights
During January 2001, Amnesty International, Amnesty International Canada and many other NGOs were very actively involved in the Nigerian woman, Bariya Ibrahim Magazu’s case. She was sentenced by the Sharia court in Zamfara State, Nigeria, to 180 lashes for illicit sexual activity. The Amnesty International Canada and several other NGOs were driving signature campaigns and almost daily media interviews in order to put pressure on the Canadian and the other western governments as well as on Nigerian government to save this poor woman’s life. Thousands of emails were sent daily to create awareness about this case.
No one is disagreeing with that campaign but what surprised some of the Muslims most that at the same time hundreds of Muslim women were getting raped, tortured and sentenced to death by Russian soldiers in Chechnya everyday. Neither Amnesty International Canada nor other NGOs drove any signature campaign against Russian atrocities in Chechnya. In fact, during January 2001 when the campaign for a woman in Nigeria was fought hard by the NGOs at the same time CBC showed a report about Chechnya. In that report some Chechan women told the reporter that they were forced to have sex with Russian soldiers in order to get the bodies of their dead family members so that they could bury them properly. Imagine many women are forced to have sex with the killers of their family members in order to get dead bodies from those killers. For Amnesty International and the western NGOs fighting to save the life of one woman was important but saving the lives of thousands of women in Chechnya was not even worth fighting for. It is obvious that the Amnesty International and the western NGOs will “strongly” support any cause which is, in their opinion, goes against Islam and the Muslims. And provide only “lip service” to those causes, which support Islam and the Muslims. These agencies are very good at converting a small issue which is in their opinion reflects negative image of Islam / Muslims into a big issue. But a big issue, which reflects a negative image of the non-Muslim culture is kept so low profiled that the most of the people do not even, know about it.
The western NGOs including Amnesty International always accuse Muslim governments for violating the human rights when these governments try to enforce the Islamic laws (Shari’a) in their own countries. For example, in Saudi Arabia Muslim women are required to wear Hijab (head covering). In western NGO’s opinion this is against the will of a women. “Muslim women in Saudi Arabia should not be required to wear Hijab”. According to the western standards, “the state has no right to interfere in a person’s life”. The person should be able to choose his / her life style. The Amnesty International and the NGOs will always standup for a women if she is forced against her will to wear Hijab. But if a women is forced not to wear Hijab against her will, neither Amnesty International nor UN Human Rights Commission nor NGOs nor western media or the governments would standup for this women. These NGOs are very quick in condemning Saudi Arabia for requiring women to wear Hijab but have these agencies ever condemned Turkey’s secular government for forcing women not to wear Hijab? Where was Amnesty International when one of the lady member of Parliament in Turkey wanted to wear Hijab in the Parliament and the secular Prime Minister of Turkey and the armed forces wanted to dismiss her from the elected position of the parliament? Why Amnesty International did not run campaign to help this Hijab wearing lady? Why there was no outcry in the western media for this elected Member of Parliament? Turkey’s secular government has banned girls wearing Hijab in schools. Is this not human right’s violation? Why there is no movement against this action of Turkey’s secular government. During early 1990s Muslim girls were banned from some of the French schools because they were wearing Hijab. No one heard Amnesty International and the UN Human Rights Commission to raise voice for these young Muslim girls.
Regarding human rights in China, all the human rights organizations in the west run their campaigns and create awareness about Tibet and recently, Falun Gong movement. During the recent visit of Canadian Prime Minister to China the media in Canada, the Amnesty International Canada and other NGOs ran a major campaign to create awareness about the human rights of Tibetans and Falun Gong movement. But no media organization or NGO ever mentioned that there are more than 36 million Muslims in China who are the most oppressed community in China. Chinese Muslims suffered tremendously under the regime of Mao Zedong and his “Cultural Revolution.” During the communist reign of terror, there was a violent campaign to eradicate all traces of Islam and of the ethnic identity of all non-Chinese. The Uygur language, which had for centuries used Arabic script, was forced to adopt the Latin alphabet. The Uygurs, as with most believing Muslims, were subjected to forced labor in the some 30,000 communes set up in the predominantly Muslim provinces. The imams and akhunds were singled out for humiliating punishments and tortures….[and were forced to]tend to pig farms, which were sometimes kept in government-closed mosques. Under the pretext of unification of national education, Islamic schools were closed and their students transferred to other schools, which taught only Marxism and Maoism. Other outrages included the closing of over 29,000 mosques, the widespread torture of imams, and executions of over 360,000 Muslims. The same abusive behaviour of Chinese authorities still continues in Muslim areas of China. During 1999 – 2000 several Muslims in Xinjiang province were sentenced to death just because they were asking for religious freedom. Have anyone ever heard Amnesty International and the NGOs organizing a media campaign and pressurizing the western governments to ask China to respect human rights for Chinese Muslims?
When the civil war in Cambodia took place during Pol Pot’s Khmer Rouge regime, millions of Cambodians were sentenced to death. Among those millions of Cambodians, thousands of Muslims were also murdered. Mosques and Islamic schools were destroyed. Many Islamic institutions were closed. Muslims were forced to step on the Holy Qur’an and eat pig which is against their religious beliefs. Media organizations in the West little mentioned the atrocities of Cambodian Muslims. Whenever media showed any reports of atrocities it reflected as all Cambodians as Buddhist or followers of some other religions but never a report was televised showing the genocide against the Cambodian Muslims. Amnesty International and other western NGOs never raised voice for Cambodian Muslims. Don’t they think that they were human too?
Democracy Vs Diplomacy
The western governments and the NGOs are very proud to consider themselves as civilized and rest of the world …..?. This civility is based upon the values and customs that west proudly follow. The most important values of the western civilization are freedom and democracy. But the meanings of “FREEDOM” and “DEMOCRACY” changes when used by the western governments for the people of the Muslim World. For example, in Canada it is an established rule that if the 51% of the Quebecois would decide to leave Canadaand become a sovereign nation the rest of the Canada will respect that decision and Canada can be divided. Similarly, when the people of Czechoslovakia decided to breakup the country and become two independent nations – Czech and Slovakia, the entire Western world took pride in it and showed the rest of the world that it is O.K. to break up a country if the majority of the people of that country would like to do so. When the people of Estonia, Lithuania and Slovenia decided to get independence from the USSR, the entire western world stood-up for the protection of their independence. This is what the democracy and respect of freedom is all about. This is called people’s choice.
When the similar situation arises in the Muslim world the meaning of freedom and democracy changes immediately. The word DEMOCRACY gets replaced by DIPLOMACY and the world FREEDOM gets replaced by MARTYRDOM. For example, when the people of Kashmir decided to get separated from India by using the democratic rules established and practiced by the west, the west changed the rules and asked the parties involved to use diplomacy instead of democratic rules. Instead of respecting the people’s choice and freedom the west encouraged the Indian armed forces to slaughter the freedom loving people of Kashmir. One may say that in the west the nations in a dispute solve their problems peacefully. In case of Kashmir, India does not want to respect the voice of the majority of Kashmiris. Therefore, there is nothing what west can do. This is not a valid reason. In the past, western governments have forced the (used military and economic power) culprit governments who tried to undermine the western values of democracy and freedom. For example, in the case of Iraq and Kuwait dispute which resulted in the Gulf War, Serbia and Kossovo dispute, Indonesia Vs East Timor and many other places, the western countries used power to enforce their defined freedom and democracy. The high standards of the west and the claims of civility were completely disappeared in Kashmir. The reasons could be many but the two reasons are obvious. The western world does not feel threatened by the Kashmir dispute and the western governments do not want to jeopardize their billions of dollars trade with India, which is a very strong market for the western economy. Therefore, these NGOs do not run campaigns for Kashmir as they did for the independence of East Timor. What these agencies can do for Kashmir? They can provide some lip service to the Kashmiris. This should be enough for them. The case of East Timor was very important for these agencies because it involved the breakup of a Muslim country.
Why the issue of Palestine has not been resolved yet? The reason is obvious. West does not want to apply their standards of democracy and freedom towards Palestinians. Why? Because the majority of the Palestinians are Muslim and they have a dispute with the Israeli government. All the western governments, agencies, NGOs know that there are three million Palestinian refugees in neighbouring countries waiting for the last 55 years to go back to their homeland. Why these champions of human freedom do not support and help Palestinians to go back to their own homes? They all know that if the Palestinians come back to their own homes it will again change the demographics of the region significantly. Therefore, West is reluctant to use its own democratic rules in Palestine and is trying to use diplomacy, which has failed for the last 55 years. Why the western governments do not force Israel to use the same principles of democracy that the West has used in Estonia, Lithuania, Czechoslovakia, Canada, USA etc.? If Amnesty International is sincere and a true human rights organization then it should run a propaganda campaign for the Palestinian cause. Lip service through few human rights reports will never be enough. At the same time, Palestinian people must isolate fanatics and extremists from their communities in order to find an honourable solution for the conflict.
Bosnia Herzegovina and KSSOVO
It is very clear that the western governments are not sympathetic and sincere towards the Muslim world. On certain occasions it seems that the western NGOs and the governments some time try to help Muslims. But not many people understand the tricks behind that help. For example, USA and Europeans worked very hard to save the Muslims of Bosnia and Kossovo. Many Muslims do believe that the USA and European Union were sincere towards Muslims of Bosnia and Kossovo but the truth is that the USA and European Union solved their own problems by helping Bosnian and Kossovar Muslims. The movement of independent Bosnia was started by Bosnian Muslims in order to have a Muslim government in Bosnia in which Serbs and Croats can live peacefully. But the European Union and the USA could not tolerate such an Islamic government. The civil war was encouraged and created by those who later tried to stop it. When the civil war broke out and the Muslims from around the world started coming to Bosnia and became part of the Jihad movement in Bosnia, the European Union and the USA realized that this will create another Palestine in the centre of Europe and hence creating a serious instability in the region. The European Union and the USA on one side could not tolerate the formation of an Islamic government but on the other side could not afford to have Muslim Mujahedeen fighting in their backyard. Therefore, they used the old colonial tactics. They created a horrible situation in which Muslims became desperate and left with no choice but to accept the decision imposed by the USA and the European Union. After scarifying everything in the Bosnian war of independence what the Muslims of Bosnia have achieved? There is no Muslim government in Bosnia. Muslims share the presidency of the country with Serbs and the Croats. Since, it is a shared government, it has to stay secular in order to have peace in the country. USA and European Union did achieve what they wanted to achieve but the Muslims did not get fully what they were fighting for.
The movement of independent Kossovo took so many lives. Is Kossovo independent now? Of course, not. USA and the Europeans used the same tactics, which they had used in Bosnia Herzegovina. Europeans and the Americans waited for the situation to become worse. Millions of Muslims became refugees; thousands of women were raped; thousands of Muslim men and young boys were slaughtered and when Muslim civilians became desperate, European Union and the USA imposed their own solution upon them. USA and European Union became the custodians of Kossovo, not because they were very sympathetic towards Kossovars. They wanted to make sure that Kossovo does not become independent country and the Muslim Mujahideen from other parts of the world should not become part of Kossovo’s movement of independence. After scarifying thousands of lives, going through torture of concentration camps and getting destroyed the entire infrastructure of Kossovo, Kossovo is still not independent. Thanks to the diplomacy of the western world. Some people think that the USA and European Union have saved Muslims from getting wiped-out from Europe. This thought is absolutely false. USA and Europe did not save the Muslims of Kossovo and Bosnia. They saved the stability of Europe and prosperity of Europe. Muslims of Kossovo and Bosnia did not get what they were fighting for. They got some thing, which was far less than what they fought for.
Saddam and Noriega Cases
When USA wanted to help Panamanian opposition parties and to save its military bases in Panama, the American armed forces went all the way to Panama City to capture the source of the problem, the President of Panama, Mr. Noriega and brought him to USA to phase charges for drug trafficking. The whole issue between USA and Panama was resolved in few days. It was in the interest of USA to resolve the Noriega issue as soon as possible. American military bases were already in Panama and the trade with Panama was normal. Panama did not have any thing further to give it to the Americans. There was not much left in Panama, which Americans could have squeezed out of them. Therefore, the crises had to end soon and the removal of Noriega brought that crisis to an end.
But when the American armed forces went to the Persian Gulf with the best technology and support from other allied forces, it was in the interest of USA to keep the crises alive as long as possible. That is why they purposely left Saddam Hussein in Baghdad. If Saddam had gone from Iraq, USA would not have any justification to stay in the region. During 80s and 90s many US bases were closed in Philippines, Japan, Europe and even at home in the United States. America was desperately looking for markets, which could feed its huge military infrastructure. USA needed military bases in order to keep its huge military in place. What could be more ideal place than Persian Gulf. The countries in the region are rich. Most of the world’s oil supply comes from there. It is very close to Israel. If help is needed in Israel, it will be a matter of minutes to reach there. The worse enemies of Americans live in the region, therefore, they can be spied upon easily. Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait provided this perfect opportunity for Americans. Let’s consider a hypothetical scenario. What if Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Iraq were poor countries? What if, they did not have any oil and they were not able to pay to Americans to fight for them. Would Americans have fought for them? The answer is obvious, NO.
In order to provide sustainable income to the economy and military of the United States, USA kept Saddam Hussein in Baghdad purposely in order to use his government as an excuse to stay in the region as long as possible. Therefore, when American forces arrived in the Gulf they came with a long term plan to establish military bases for US armed forces in the region, to get better opportunities for US economy, to control the oil flow from there. USA has been squeezing and will continually squeeze whatever it can from the GCC countries till GCC dries out OR some thing else happen which may force USA to get out from the region as it did happen in Iran during early 80s. In the history of Saudi Arabia, Saudi Arabia first time had to borrow money from IMF after the Gulf war to pay its bills. Saudi Arabia is now frequently borrows money from the IMF.
The war between USA and Saddam Hussein is like a pre-decided wrestling match in which both opponents have full understanding of each other’s move and the outcome of the wrestling. Apparently, the both wrestlers look angry and want to defeat each other but from inside they smile and admire each other. The big money, which comes from the pockets of the spectators, is used to pay the expenses and the prizes for both wrestlers. The spectators, who do not know that the outcome of the wrestling has already been decided, spend more and more money to buy expensive tickets. Both the wrestlers try to create as much sensation as possible in order to keep spectators pre-occupied with the wrestling. In the war between USA and Saddam Hussein the spectators are the poor people of Iraq,Saudi Arabia and the region whose money is being drained in the pockets of Saddam Hussein and the USA. Certainly, most money goes to USA and little to Saddam Hussein. Above all USA is the Heavy Weight Champion and Saddam Hussein is the challenger. The actual losers and victims of this fight are the Iraqi people, not Saddam and certainly not USA.
We can go on and discuss many examples of Western hypocrisy. But will this discussion solve the problems of Muslim Ummah? May be not.
- The most important thing for Muslims is to take care of themselves. Muslims must be strong (spiritually and materially) if they want respect and dignity in this world.
- The Muslim Ummah can become the strongest nation on this earth if they are UNITED.
- The unity of Muslim Ummah can only be achieved by becoming the best human beings.
- The best human beings are those who follow (in its true sense) the word of Almighty Allah, His books and His Messengers (Peace be upon them).
- When Muslims become the best human beings through practicing Islam, it will bring SALEH (pious) governments in Muslim countries.
- And when Muslims will have honest and Allah fearing rulers in Muslim countries, they will be strong as they were few centuries ago.
As Allah made promise to the Muslims, “Ultimately, You (the Muslims) will be victorious provided that you become true believers.” (Qur’an).
By blaming USA and the Europe for the miseries of Muslims around the world is not the right thing for us to do. These agencies will never ever be sincere with Islam and Muslims. We must take charge of our destiny and start the change from our own homes, in our own countries and in our own society. Muslims around the world can not be strong unless they are educated each and every citizen of the Muslim world, learn science and technology, be sincere with their families and the countries and above all be the true followers of Muhammad ibn Abdullah (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam).
Let’s try to work hard to become true believers. May Allah give us the courage to adopt the path of Success, which is practicing Islam like the Family of the Prophet, and Companions of the Prophet (peace be upon them) did. Like Albairooni, Al Ghizali, Al Khuarzmi, IbnSina, and many other Muslim scientists who practiced what they preached. Ameen.
GCC: Gulf Cooperative Council. It includes, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, UAE and Oman
NGO: Non-Governmental Organizations
IMF: International Monetary Fund