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New York, London, Mumbai and K’gollewa

The dastardly terror attacks that rocked Mumbai on Tuesday are shocking. Over 160 civilians are reported killed and several hundreds more seriously injured in a string of blasts that ripped through Mumbai’s train network during the evening rush hour. It was only the other day that the world remembered the victims of London blasts in July, 2005 and the cowardly acts of barbarism in Mumbai are suggestive of the fact that the perpetrators, who are yet to be named, drew inspiration from the despicable 7/7 attacks, as evident from their modus operandi.

In this country, which is still reeling from a recent spate of terror attacks, the worst being the claymore mine attack on a crowded bus at Kebithigollewa (68 killed), there is hardly a pair of eyes, where tears don’t well up for the innocent men, women and children whose lives were snuffed out in Mumbai. Warm tears must also be rolling down many a cheek the world over on seeing the piles of mangled bodies, and the bloodied survivors gasping for breath.

Tuesday’s attacks have demonstrated yet another time the increasing vulnerability of the world to terrorism. Terrorism has the growth of an amoeba, the intractability of a pestilence and the adaptability of a virus. A nation may strengthen its air defences and go for the state-of-the-art nukes but will still be without defence against terrorism, especially its micro version. The day a terror outfit lays its hands on the much dreaded dirty bomb there will be no need for laboratory-made ‘Little Boys’ or Men’ to destroy big cities like Hiroshima or Nagasaki shrouded in mushroom clouds. Should that day dawn-absit omen!-the terror attacks that we have already witnessed in New York, Washington, London, Mumbai and K’gollewa will pale into insignificance.

Some have sought to give terrorism a human face by claiming it to be the war of the weak. What they stop short of admitting is that it is also war against the weak and the innocent. Those whom terrorists targeted on Tuesday were civilians and on no grounds could such violence be condoned, be it part of the war of the weak or the strong.

True, the effectiveness of war on terror hinges on the elimination of the factors that sustain terrorism and provide the blood thirsty monsters with casus belli. Any solution to terrorism should therefore have a political settlement as an integral part of it. But no such solution should be pursued on the terms of terrorists, contrary to the policy of the so-called crusaders against global terror and their caddies like India towards the terrorism of ‘others.’

This is no occasion to open old wounds but it cannot but be stressed that India has made its contribution to promoting terrorism in no small measure. It must take the full responsibility for all acts of terrorism this country is plagued with. Fingers are being pointed at Pakistan over the Mumbai blasts but Pakistan has vehemently condemned the incidents as despicable acts of terrorism. The blasts are yet to be blamed on someone officially, and the question is what moral right India has to complain about cross border terrorism, having created terrorism across the Palk Straits as an extension of its foreign policy to coerce the JRJ government into falling in line. That it banned the LTTE as a terrorist organisation subsequently is of little consolation to Sri Lanka, which has had to battle it single-handed.

When Sri Lanka sent out distress signals, on its troops being trapped in Jaffna under the Chandrika government, instead of the big guns that were desperately needed, India thought it fit to offer ships to ferry the troops to Colombo! Had that offer been accepted, it would have been the biggest ever victory for the LTTE!

There is speculation that the LTTE is experimenting with chemical weapons to be used on the troops stationed in Jaffna. The world, especially India, must sit up and take note of the situation.

The charming knights in shining armour on a crusade to slay the dragon of global terrorism must slough off their double standards and adopt a single agenda to remove the scourge. There can’t be two kinds of terrorists-‘their terrorists’ and ‘our terrorists’. Terrorism in all its manifestations-economic, religious or ethnic-must be eliminated, root and branch, while the legitimate grievances of the communities, among whom terrorists have a following are redressed effectively. Until the world resolves to make a concerted effort free from duplicity to counter the threat of terrorism, the pestilence will continue its march and we will be doomed to have our ears pierced, day in and day out, by the agonising cries of victims in New York, London, Mumbai and K’gollewa. -Island Editorial

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July 13, 2006 - Posted by | Media Journalism, News and politics, South Asia, World News

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