Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Pakistan: Mission Impossible? ...

And (remember) when your Lord said to the angels:
"Verily, I am going to place on earth generations after generations [of humans]."

They said:
"Will You place therein those who will make mischief and shed blood, - while we glorify You with praises and thanks and sanctify You?"

He said:
"I know that which you do not know".

(Qur'an, 2:30)

Pakistan turns 59 and Avari asks whether Pakistan was a mistake. Avari’s question is essentially the same question that the angels posed to the Lord. The angels were shown only one side of the coin, namely the ugly, base side of the coin. The flip side of the coin was a reality that the Lord kept for Himself to be unfolded when the opportune time came, so He mitigated the angels’ concerns with the timeless words, “I know that which you do not know”.

Pakistan’s history is indeed one of mischief and bloodshed. I will not go into the sordid details here, since you all know about the mischief and bloodshed that has taken place (and is still taking place) in the Pure Land. All I want to point out here is that Pakistan as a project is a continuation - and a reflection - of the Divine project that is called Man. The divine project, which sought for Almighty God’s vicegerent on Earth, started off on an apparently dissonant note, when one of the sons of Prophet Adam (peace be upon him) murdered his own brother in cold blood (Qur’an, 5:27-30). At that time, this did not mean that Project Man was a failure in any way. All it meant was that the project had yet to achieve completion.

The same is the case with Pakistan. Our bleak past in no way precludes our bright future. Impossible as it may seem to some people, the day is not far away when Pakistan will be a modern, welfare Islamic state that will serve as a modern-day role model for the other Muslim countries. We are a project held in abeyance, not a failed one. We are a homework placed on the desk that has yet to be completed.

Pakistan Zindabad!
(Long live Pakistan!)

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