The news stories on FaceBook, the many individual voices of support and the tears in our eyes after we watch the various graphic videos out there about the situation in Bahrain. It’s business as usual for us here in the West. The difference: this time it’s Bahrain.
I write this with a heavy heart as we always do when an oppression of this grand scale occurs with our people. The feeling of helplessness surrounds me at this time as I can not think of anything else to do at this moment but write. They say the pen is mightier than the sword, so be it.
The people of Bahrain have endured oppression for quite some time now. So, why now? Well, as they say revolutions don’t happen over night. It takes time to accumulate enough anger in people that they come out onto the streets knowing that their very lives could be in severe danger. This can only happen when liberty becomes more valuable than life it self in the eyes of the people.
However, in this case what amazes me is not the endurance of the people or their will to combat their oppressor. What are amazing to me are these dictators. If we take the example of the current dictator in Bahrain, the Al-Khalifa family has been in power in Bahrain since at least the year 1820 which means for 190 years they have been ruling Bahrain. The current king Hamad ibn Isa Al Khalifa came to power in 1999, after his father. He has been in power for the past 12 years. My question is; how much money is enough money and how much power is enough power for these people to finally have had their full share of it? There is no limit would be the obvious answer. These people were not put in place to surrender power at any point in time. They were installed in this position to be there forever until the people kick them out literally. These dictators have never done anything in the interest of their people. Some people might comment and say “but he gave women the right to vote in Bahrain.” Well, that may be true however it was not done out of the goodness of his heart. These things are done to keep the people off the streets. These temporary changes are made to look good on paper but here is the real point to think about. In a country where the same family has been ruling for 190+ years and where the cabinet is made of members of that same family, who exactly will these women who have been suddenly blessed with the right vote, vote for? So giving women the right to vote in a country where there is no opposition to choose from is like me giving a child a choice in picking which vegetable to eat while only having carrots on the table. It’s pathetic.
It’s not like the people of Bahrain have been silent all this time. Uprisings occurred in Bahrain in the 1990s as well. Forty people were killed and the uprisings were silenced as Hamad ibn Isa Al Khalifa, the current king came to power at that time. The Bahraini government wants to do the same now. As we all know by now, Saudi troops and troops from the UAE have entered Bahrain in order to help the Bahraini government crush the people literally. It’s good to know that the Middle Eastern countries have elected their unanimous leader / helper to be Saudi Arabia. A country that can not even help it self, with a dictatorship that would perish without the undying support of the U.S. Its incredible to even read that headline in an article “Saudi sends troops”; what troops? Aren’t Saudis dependent on the American army to protect them?
Saudi has troops? No, they don’t. The real meaning behind the headline is: Saudi has sent men of Pakistani origin to help the Bahraini government crush its people as they always do. As we all know, Pakistan does have one of the strongest armies in the world. The Pakistani army is so great that they not only help / fight when Pakistan is in trouble; they even offer their services to other oppressive governments because that’s just how generous they are as a people. Who cares if the Bahraini people hate their sight because this is not the first time they have gone out of their way to help the Bahraini government behind the scenes. They are just doing their job because apparently all these corrupt, inhuman; Shia-hating dictators are the only role models they could find of what a true Muslim is. May Allah (swt) guide the world and Pakistani leaders to the right path. Clearly, as a Pakistani I condemn this and all other acts of oppression carried out in the name of Muslim brotherly love by the Pakistani army (or Muslim armies elsewhere). It is indeed shameful and the only thing we can do is voice our disapproval.
Aside from writing a long article on this, what else can we do?
- Spread the word about the massacre that is currently underway in Bahrain. The media is not really doing its part (surprise surprise) so we must do our part in spreading the word. All the media attention has been on Libya & Japan for various legitimate and not so legitimate reasons.
- Call the offices of the Saudi & Bahraini embassies and protest their actions.
- Most Importantly: Pray for the people of Bahrain & Libya.
Alhamdulillah, our Imams (as). have taught us many duas for situations like this. We should be reading Jaushan Kabeer and the dua for the people of the frontiers from Sahifa Sajjadiya for our brothers & sisters. May Allah (swt) give them more strength to combat this oppression. May Allah (swt) hasten the return of the Imam of our time so that he (as) can come and fill this world with justice as it is filled with injustice right now.