The recent article, ‘The Taste with Vir’ on Hindustan Times dealt with quite a sensitive topic – the relationship between terrorism and religion. Sanghvi says-
“There is a problem with the old liberal/secular maxim that terror has no religion. The problem is that it is a lie. All too often, exactly the opposite is true. The terror is committed in the name of religion.”
And he isn’t completely wrong. After all, most acts of terrorism are committed in the name of religion. And added to the very list recently was the attack on Nice on last Thursday itself.
What Happened In France Yesterday?
A knife attack took place in Nice, leaving three people killed. While two were stabbed, the other was beheaded.
The man suspected behind the same was shot and detained. While being taken into custody he shouted out – “Allah-u-Akbar”. This confirmed the Islamist involvement in the situation.
And this was just one amongst the many terrorist activities that have been confirmed to be motivated by religious ideals. Despite that, the liberals and secular enthusiasts are hell-bent on popularizing the notion of religion and terrorism to be exclusive of one another.
And how this causes harm in the long-term is that people get blindfolded by such humanistic ideals and hence there comes in slack in protecting their own people against such atrocities.
“Only a buffoon could take the line that a country should not take steps to protect its people and to fight terror. To see this as anti-Muslim prejudice is just silly or willfully blind.”
After this recent act of terrorism, the French President quite rightly announced a crackdown on Islamist extremism.
Also Read: When Terrorists In Sri Lanka Blasts Had Clearly Visible Faces, Then Why The Face Veil Ban?
Why Should You Look Beyond The Liberal Ideology Of Secular Terrorism
There have been enough arguments and discussions regarding terrorism being a product of extreme psychological disturbances within an individual. However, Sanghvi shares, there are just too many examples of instances wherein an absolutely non-violent individual has been motivated by religion to turn to terror and murder.
Now, one has to understand that Sanghvi isn’t just pin-pointing at a particular religious faith here when he says so. It includes all faiths. It’s the same as labelling a particular riot as communal when there is a clash of religious faiths involved. If that categorization can be accepted so easily, why can’t this?
“I still don’t understand why some liberals think that accepting this is so difficult. We accept it with other kinds of violence. When a communal riot takes place, do we deny that the mayhem is undertaken in the name of religion? When a man is lynched on bogus charges of slaughtering a cow, do we deny that the victim was Muslim or that the attackers were motivated by their Hindu beliefs?”
Sanghvi mentions that he does understand the sentiment that goes behind liberals overlooking the relationship between religion and terrorism. There is this constant fear that the whole world would be divided into two halves based on the pattern of terrorist activities then– the Islamists and the anti-Islamists.
However, that isn’t how it works. The majority is logical enough to make the distinctions between those who are Islam fundamentalists and those who just identify themselves with a given religious belief.
He cites the assassination of Gandhiji as an example here. He was assassinated by a Hindu. But that didn’t turn the Hindus against each other because of the assassin’s religious orientation, did it?
What this ignorance leads to instead is the fact that we end up linking that one fundamentalist who commits the act of terror with the rest of the Muslims who are equally terrified of him. And ultimately they are all left to face the charge of the “pseudo-secularism and appeasement”.
Religion and terrorism are linked as per the journalist. And this isn’t a brand new concept that is being flagged out in the open. It has always been visible to the naked eyes. People just choose to turn a blind eye to the same.
Examples include those of the Crusades or the battles between the Catholics and the Protestants in the Middle East. All were committed in the name of religion.
It’s probably time that we stopped fearing the bigots who link one member of the Muslim community who has committed an act of terror in the name of religion to the rest of the community. The rest of that community is as scared of that one man as much as we are.
It’s time we accept that “Terror does have a religion.”
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