Sunday, April 5, 2009

The crackdown begins

The arrest of 9 Maldivians near Pakistan has raised lot of criticism towards the government, the so called extremists, wahhabis and fellow Muslims. Various bloggers have called for numerous action, including some people calling upon the government to just do something, while others advocate the abolishment of Ministry of Islamic Affairs. Eventually, the government has vowed to monitor the activities of the Jihadis.

But one thing we as citizens have to keep in mind is whether we want to go down that slippery slope. When the police say they are going to monitor them, do we even know how they are going to go about it? Do they start by monitoring the activities of people with long beard? Do they randomly check the suspects on the road for possession of Jihadi material? Are they suspects just because they have a long beard? This kind of monitoring is an invasion of the privacy and freedom of the public, be it beardies or not. This kind of power is something that governments love, since they get the ability to control and police the citizens. Unfortunately, lot of Maldivians will gladly agree to have the habees checked, searched and monitored. Afterall, it won't affect the majority of these moderate Muslims right? And we have nothing to hide, so why be afraid?

Yes, there are many sects such as Sufis, Salafis etc. But cracking down on them just because they believe in different school is very wrong. We need to be tolerant and respectful of other views and beliefs. A hard crackdown is exactly the kind of thing that will make things worse. If some people want to pray separately, why can't we as a society let them? How is it justified to coerce them to pray at a place that they fundamentally believe is inappropriate? Is it not the same as forcing us the so called moderate Muslims to pray at a church? Similarly, we have to accept that there will be different schools within the same religion, and people with different religions and non-believers as well. Do we really have to crack down on them in the name of protecting national unity? Everyone should be free as long as they don't violate the rights of others.

But they are extremists and terrorists, some will say. Who defines extremism and terrorism? Are the journalists who stands for free speech and press extremists because they encourage views critical of the state? Are atheists extremist because they don't believe in God? Are Muslims terrorists because some Muslims engage in suicide bombings?

It used to be Jews and Gypsies in Germany when Hitler came to power. Communists in USA during the Cold War. Terrorists and Enemy Combatants in modern day USA. All these fancy names have one common purpose. It creates a common enemy that ordinary citizens will unite against and give up essential freedoms in the hopes of getting protection. History and even current events around the world can reveal how the state manipulate the fear. It starts with gradual erosion of the rights of the minority and sadly the majority never stands up for it. To paraphrase Martin Niemoller:
First they came for the Communists, I didn't speak up, because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, I didn't speak up, because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the Catholics, I didn't speak up, because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak up for me.

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

They could intoregate those who are detained on terrorist charges and lead to the leaders. Its not that hard.
I don't see why police can not be more organized than some Osama funded Maldivian mullah groups.

f i Я a s said...

yes they could interogate, but it'll yield no results, unless they torture... but if they torture, then it'll lead to more and stronger retaliation and, of course, false intelligence... and the vicious cycle continues... "export of jihadists" from muslim world will continue for as long as the wars are fought against muslim nations, may it be for economic reasons...

meekaaku said...

investigation should be made when a crime is commited. but proactive monitoring (ie spying) and hard crackdown is somethign that will take massive resources and yield little result if any at all.

f i Я a s said...

... and by the way, i like the story at the end... i might use it sometime in the near future (of course, along with due credit)

meekaaku said...

Its a paraphrased quote from Niemoller. He used to quote that with different names and orders.

Iris said...

I'm happy you brought this up, people in our society should be more tolerant, less ccritical.

And I really do fear that the propaganda against muslims by the Western media has succeeded in creating the mindset we are seeing in our society today. Stereotyping all the sunni muslims is wrong.

It is depressing watching the islamic people dividing and pointing fingers at one another.

axee said...

Anonymous; "Osama funded Maldivian mullah groups"...kekeke...yr only news source shud be SKYNEWS...
oh oh am i being intolerant....

Anonymous said...

The level of Islamic awakening in the Maldives is probably higher than any other country. The majority of people can quote hadith and quran verses on controversial topics like qunooth and buruqaa. Most people's lifes are punctuated by the need to pray 5 times daily. With such awakening Maldives a fertile recruiting ground for terrorists. This is why compared to population, Maldives has the highest number of terrorists in the world. Sorry for using the word 'terrorist' in case you are one of those who beleive Maldivians have a religious duty to fight in Afghanistan becasue you think American policy is biased against musilims.

meekaaku said...

anon@7:22
"This is why compared to population, Maldives has the highest number of terrorists in the world."

Really? Under what definition of 'terrorist' do you say it? Is it because majority are muslims?

axee said...

anon@7:22

“Most people's lifes are punctuated by the need to pray 5 times daily” and that makes them terrorists?? I think the author of this blog is trying to tell ignorant minds that such stereotyping statements and mindsets will not help our society…

Stop repeating the line that has been sold again and again and start using your intelligence….

“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it…” Joseph Goebbels, Nazi Minister of Propaganda

Seems like this tactic is being used in “War on Terror” and from the referred comment, unfortunately working

Anonymous said...

Most people's lifes are punctuated by the need to pray 5 times daily.

Firstly, I'm just curious. How did you figure out to type after dragging your knuckles on the ground all day?

Secondly that statement is obviously false. Where the hell have you been living in the last 10 years or so. Most people's lives are punctuated by the need to commit adultery, consume alcohol, the need to have usury etc.

Now why don't you crawl back into the hole you came from.;)

Anonymous said...

"Everyone should be free as long as they don't violate the rights of others."
well, there are some of us who would like to dance,enjoy music out in the open,who would so much want to lie down on the beach in the hot sun,with our friends sipping a cold beer enjoying the mother nature as it is.will you be able to allow this for the sake of national unity?? will we be invading your space?? ur zone??what is your territory and ours??
if you can be tolerant and let us be, i wouldn't have to ask you this?? you wouldn't be talking about your or the extreme stereotype's rights.
i wonder why we are here?? if you say that "there are many sects such as Sufis, Salafis etc. But cracking down on them just because they believe in different school is very wrong. We need to be tolerant and respectful of other views and beliefs."
what is islam?? which of these sects are going to heaven?? are all Christians going to hell??who is going to win the race and enter the delusional heaven. do we really have to follow a belief?? why are we relieying on such a medieval book?? why are people interpretting the quran as each indivial wants it to be?? bending the rules as their own beliefs??
i hope u don't think of me as an extreme atheist because of my curiosity.
First they came for the Communists, I didn't speak up, because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, I didn't speak up, because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the Catholics, I didn't speak up, because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak up for me.

meekaaku said...

"well, there are some of us who would like to dance,enjoy music out in the open,who would so much want to lie down on the beach in the hot sun,with our friends sipping a cold beer"

I fully agree you have the right to do those, and the state should not punish you for that. I dont support the censoring of internet and other activities by MoIA. Unfortunately majority opinion is inline with their activities, which is the sad part. My blog post was about general public not standing up for the minority's right, including different sects of islam, different religions and non-believers. You may or may not be in the minority group. I dont know how you came to the conclusion that I support what the state does to suppress liberty. You can see this from my other posts as well as my comments on other blogs.

Anonymous said...

"Most people's lifes are punctuated by the need to pray 5 times daily. With such awakening Maldives a fertile recruiting ground for terrorists. This is why compared to population, Maldives has the highest number of terrorists in the world. Sorry for using the word 'terrorist' in case you are one of those who beleive Maldivians have a religious duty to fight in Afghanistan becasue you think American policy is biased against musilims'
i agree with you.maldives has teh tendencies of becomming a terrorist recruiting haven.
people are living in so much fear day and night. believing and reminded of the monstrous,cruel god watching over us catching every glimpse of us every move,hear every word we utter.everyday we are asked to pray five times as repentance for the sins we engage daily, as human beings are considered so imperfect.
the consequences of living a life in fear of something is tremendous.as Islam advocates living in fear,people of this nation who practice the religion, they have an inclination becoming religious savage hunters. its a pity though.
As an individual emotional state, fear can affect the unconscious mind, where it can become manifested in the form of nightmares. Fear may also be experienced within a larger group or social network. In this way, personal fears are compounded by social influence to become mass hysteria.
and as azee quoted Joseph Goebbels, Nazi Minister of Propaganda i would like to too.“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it…”

Anonymous said...

meekaaku: I dont know how you came to the conclusion that I support what the state does to suppress liberty.
you were talking about tolerance. religious tolerance and most of the comments posted here come to a conclusion that Islam is not tolerant and liberal. this is not a matter of the state but of the people in this country. do you think the people of a 100%mulim community be tolerant of the free thinker??an infidel??

meekaaku said...

Firstly, Maldives is NOT a 100% muslim country, no matter how much politicians repeat it. I think we both agree on that.

Second, it is a matter of the state (legislative body passing laws that does not protect liberty, judiciary enforcing them, executive having a ministry enforcing its powers over other ministries). It is only thru coercion by the state that the intolerant majority is able to have their way, is it not? If the state did protect individual liberty, then the majority cannot enforce their way upon the minority, be it religious, cultural or political. Hence it is a matter of the state.

axee said...

hehehe....jus for the record anon, no body here is talking about taking away your right of having a cold beer in the beach but I can understand your tendency to brag about it as all people with minority complex do. I respect your right to have that lovely beer so calm down….kekeke...

Anonymous said...

dear azee. a cold beer under the hot sun.tempting huh??? im sorry if your belief and your devotion to the higher authority prohibits you of engaging in such acts.
oh oh..even though i'm the minority complex sorry if i'm being intolerant.

Anonymous said...

The jihadists are the equivalent of the local parteys owned by the selfish politicians.


One question about this ideology: The weapons manufacturing industry is strictly owned by governments.You cant buy weapons from Ebay.com,can you? So how do these jihadists get their weapons? Simple common sense.The big powers provide them and use the jihadists as tools for their own political agendas

meekaaku said...

You have no idea what you are talking about. Not to mention the famous names we hear everyday.

And besides owning a gun is not illegal everywhere in the world, and owning a gun is a fundamental right given in the constitution of guess where? the US of A! You need to read a bit more, especially gun-control in USA, then you will better understand what civil liberty means.

meekaaku said...

I am not saying governments don't supply them with weapons, they sure do. But your assertion that "The weapons manufacturing industry is strictly owned by governments"
is not true on so many levels.

Maybe u cannot buy guns on ebay, but sure u can buy one online.

f i Я a s said...

it's getting hot in here....

meekaaku said...

firass:
welcome back.

axee said...

"The weapons manufacturing industry is strictly owned by governments." OMG how twisted can ones facts be...hehe...not worth of a constructive argument...

f i Я a s said...

i made another comment... who deleted it?

f i Я a s said...

"the weapons manufacturing industry is strictly owned by governments."

Anon: this statement alone undermines the credibility of your entire argument... it reflects the level of basic knowledge and/or understanding you possess on this subject matter, let alone current world affairs...

Anonymous said...

fear Anon: these jihadists have overcome the terror of B2's, F-16's, unmanned drones, phosphorus bombs, carpet bombs and even a potential nuclear attack to fight against the USA, which is using these weapons daily on civilians and clay hutted villages...

that is how the fear of God, and fear of God alone helps the jihadists to continue their fight against the terrorist state of America...

there wasn't a single Afghani involved in september 11 attacks for which the Americans began the current murderous rampage of innocent Afghans...

and yes, Muslims do have an obligation to go and fight against the American terrorist invaders in Afghanistan, and quite a few willing and able Muslims from all over the world have full-filled this obligation.... and this is what forced the Majority of Western countries to withdraw their troops from Afghanistan and deterred even the mighty NATO countries from sending more troops to kill yet more innocent Afghans...

meekaaku said...

anon@7:29

I don't agree that Muslims have an _obligation_ to go and fight in Afghan. But as an individual, if someone feels it is his duty to fight in that war, so be it. You, me or the state should have no say on that.

f i Я a s said...

hey that last Anon was me... it really is obligatory on all muslims to fight when you are attacked... it comes down to the question of who YOU are defined as in this case? does 'YOU' refer to all Muslims? Sunni Muslims? Shia muslims? Arab muslims? Saudi Arabian Muslims? Afghanistan Muslims? or Maldivian Muslims?

according to government backed fatwas and hukuru khutubahs i'm increasingly getting the feeling that we are obliged to fight back only when Saudi Arabia is attacked.

meekaaku said...

Exactly my point. Whatever the reason or justification there is or not, it will be politicised. Hence it is best left to the individual to decide that.

As far as I know the matter is divided among the 'scholars'.

The fact that current govnmt's preachings are more toward not going to Jihad, while you believe it is your duty, illustrates the point that the matter should be left to the individual, not the state.

f i Я a s said...

yes, that is my exact point as well... to "let the individuals decide", practically speaking, is to let these individuals go out there, open up the borders... right now, these indivuals are being hunted down more in their home countries than anywhere else...

and by it being obligatory, i don't mean that you be taken out into the battle field at gun-point... you obviously have a choice, just like you have a choice whether or not to pray 5 times a day or indulge in other forbidden activities...

meekaaku said...

seems fair enough