Monday, February 18, 2013

Killing of Shi’ites in Pakistan: Who cares?

A latest bomb attack has killed nearly 90 people, mostly Shi’ites, in Pakistan. And if you add up about 100 deaths last month that were a result of a similar bomb explosion and a few targeted killings here and there, the body count has crossed 200 this year. And it’s only been two months. According to one report, about 400 Shi’ites were killed in Pakistan in 2012.
Who killed them? No mystery. A Sunni extremist group (Lashkar-e-Jhangvi) has claimed responsibility like it did for similar attacks in the past.
Why were they killed? No mystery. Sunni extremists hate Shi’ites in general, just like Shi’ite extremists hate Sunnis in general.
Unfortunately, Pakistan has a perfect environment for these extremists groups to kill innocent men, women and children. Many religious schools teach their students nothing but hatred against minorities. What next? You need a gun or a bomb. There is no shortage of that. What next? A soft target: markets, schools, places of worship. What next? No fear of the good guys (police - the good ones) coming after you. I don’t remember a single case where someone has been convicted of sectarian killings in Pakistan.
Just after the recent killings of Shi’ites, I spoke with someone in Pakistan who was more concerned about Sunni mosques not allowed to be built in Iran (a Shi’ite state) and some religious scholars (Sunni scholars) being killed in Karachi.
The fact is, as long as the majority of Pakistanis keep worrying only about their petty interests, there will be no end to the sufferings of the minorities, and eventually the majority as well.

1 comment:

  1. This hatred between Sunni and Shi'a has been going on for a long time. There are some ulema who are proposing that Shi'a be counted as the fifth legal school in Islam. And obviously in the past there was more tolerance either for economic or other reasons than is currently being shown. For the most part Catholics and Protestants have learned to live beside each other here in the West, and the west is more accepting of Muslims, so Muslims should also learn to live with each other.