The Price of Fundamentalism

In a Theocracy, the Fundamentalist is King. And the usual lamb that is sacrificed on the altar of faith is the rights of women.

On Saturday afternoon at Sardar Bahadur Khan Women’s University in Quetta, a bomb was detonated on a bus killing 14 students and injuring 19. These students were taken to Bolan where a second bomb was detonated in the Emergency Department.

Militants who were able to get inside the building then opened fire, killing Quetta Deputy Commissioner Mansoor Kakar, who had rushed to the hospital after hearing about the bus bombing.

The attackers dispersed into several sections of the building, taking hostage medical staff and relatives of victims of the bus bombing. Some of the gunmen fired at police from the rooftop. It’s estimated that caused the deaths of 4 policemen and 3 medical staff.

Naturally the response was to call the attacks cowardly. I don’t think that’s productive. The attackers are clearly “not” cowards. They are brave enough to kill and die for their beliefs. To call them cowards is an argument of exasperation that your enemy refuses to play by the rules.

No. These attacks were a cold calculated attack against the weakest and most vulnerable members of Pakistani Society. In a society where women are second class citizens any act of empowerment threatens the status quo. These women died to send a message to other women and girls. Stay Home. Do As You Are Told. Be Invisible. We Can Kill You For Wanting to Learn.

The greatest damage Islam does is to it’s own followers. The biggest victims of Islam are the moderate and liberal Muslims at the hands of the ignorant and violent fundamentalist. If the Muslim world is to cut the head of the spectre of Islam it must secularise and create society ruled by secular thought rather than blindly following fundamentalists and people who believe that a 1500 year old book is relevant to the modern world and that any thought against that is anathema.

It is the price Pakistan pays due to it’s theocratic rules and due to it’s leaders utilising the ignorance of it’s people to foster extremism with which to fight proxy wars in India. The attack dog has gone rabid and it’s now biting the hands that fed it. How long must we point to this before people realise that perhaps a society run on human law rather than that of Middle Eastern tribesmen is superior lest people behave like Middle Eastern tribesmen.

The people of Pakistan deserve better than these wankers and the way to do that is by destroying the mechanisms that arm, fund and abet these fundies. Not by trying to fight them while still following a system that creates them. Fundamentalism is cut at the source not at the surface.


  1. kevinalexander says

    IANAL but isn’t counselling murder a crime in many, if not most states?
    When so called religious leaders get up in public and call for someones death, shouldn’t they be arrested?That would be getting at the root of fundamentalism.

  2. S Mukherjee says

    What a horrifying event. Setting off a bomb in the university campus, then another one in the emergency ward (!!) and THEN a shoot-out. It is just too horrible for words.


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