America must learn before its too late

By Engr. Mansoor A Malik

Terrorism 21st Century Style

The recent terrorism attempt by an American citizen of Pakistani origin at the New York Time Square where some of us were fortunate enough to welcome the new millennium and dream of a better world in this century, has triggered an internal debate of what went wrong and where. The advent of the year 2000 was marked by the first of its kind Cyber Terrorism in the shape of the Y2K Bug Phenomena where the developed world cynics in IT business extracted billions of dollars from half educated, ill-prepared and ignorant computer users in the developing world. The second and the fore-most world terrorism tragedy which struck us all in Sept. 2001 was the destruction of the twin towers in New York where I had the opportunity to win a Shezan New York dinner bet from my childhood friend living there only a few years before this horrifying tragedy by staying on its open roof top for more than five minutes in sub-freezing temperature and fighting mother nature.

The world would never be the same again. The reaction of the civilized world brought barbarism on the world scene just like the European Powers destroyed themselves many times over in the beginning of the 20th Century by the act of a lunatic Serb who murdered the German crown prince in the streets of Serbia to start the First World War. Have we not learnt any lessons from our recent history? Whatever be the outcome of the Knee-Jerk American Policy after the 9/11 tragedy, the thing written crystal clear on the wall of World History is the start of the Downfall of the American Empire. How could one imagine destroying countries in a planned series of actions in the 21st Century because of few lunatics unleashed on us?  Who is to answer for the daily tragedies being brought about in the streets of Afghanistan, Iraq or Pakistan? The saner elements from both the worlds have to get their acts together to address the world terrorism dilemma in order to make this beautiful world of ours more safe for all of us and our children and grand children to live in it. Any other option, if pursued any further, would take us all down on the path of doomsday scenario.

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It is said that history repeats itself. The Europeans suffered millions of deaths in the First World War which culminated in the one-sided Treaty of Versailles signed between the Victors and the Vanquished. Within fifteen years, fascism took roots amongst the vanquished and both Hitler and Mussolini unleashed themselves to annihilate the Victors of the last Great War. Lessons were only learnt after the second tragedy which ended up in dividing the heart of Europe between the East and West. It took extra ordinary visionaries like Chancellor Adenaeur and Willy Brandt of Germany and Gen. Charles Degaulle of France to come up with the concept of European Union to address the follies of thousand years of barbaric European history. Europe can expect no more tragedies after this union of the willing nations. Will America heed under Obama or they would also follow the Orwellian path? Only time and future history would tell.

Our generation has seen the tragedy of Palestine and the strong arm tactics of the Israeli government in silencing the voice of dissent, their own home-grown as well as their neighbors’. Is America going to follow the same Israeli policy on the whole world? If that be so, then like three generations of Palestians and Israelis suffering the consequences, we all have to gear up to do so. I still have some of my faith left in the largesse of the American People since I have had the opportunity of spending the best of my times amongst some of my American friends in my formative years. I also wept along with some of my good natured and sensitive American friends when we saw Jimmy Carter being defeated in the Presidential poles and not getting the second term. Will Obama follow the path of Jimmy Carter or would get the next six years to balance out the American Policy and steer it more on humane and moral grounds as he campaigned during the last Presidential elections?

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The aftermath of the tragedy of 9/11 have brought more than ten thousand deaths in the developed world of both, soldiers and civilians; whereas, millions of deaths have taken place in the streets of Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan thus far. The ratio of one is to hundred cannot be sustainable for long and a meaningful dialogue between leaders who matter and can deliver has to take place, sooner than later. The United Nation was involved in the aggression on Afghanistan and they have to revisit their past resolutions to make it more meaningful for diplomatic parleys between two equals. The one lesson which the Britishers should teach the Americans is that the proud Afghans may be without shoes or education but have a high sense of equality and know how to enforce it even in this 21st Century of Innovation and Knowledge Economy. Time has come for diplomatic efforts of well meaning leaders from all sides to come to the table before this tragedy spills over the streets of developed and developing countries and the Law of Jungle engulfs us all in the 21st Century.