01 October 2006
Karim's reply to Rohan Gunaratne - an
Hameed Abdul Karim
Every empire has had its hurrah boys singing for their supper. Dr. Rohan Gunaratne is one of those who fall into that category, as was made evident in his interview in the Sunday Observer of September 17, 2006 where he expressed his subjective views on terrorism with an unsympathetic twist to the ‘Muslim’ variety - toeing the line already laid down by the shamelessly embedded western media.
There was nothing new in what Dr. Gunaratne said. All what he did was to rehash what the western media has been circulating for quite a while now. But repetition is essential for propagandist purposes if the cock and bull stories are to be drilled into the minds of ‘media consumers’ and passed off as ‘true’.
The interview claims Dr. Gunaratne served as ‘principal investigator’ for the UN Terrorism Prevention Branch from 2000 to 2001. But there is a glitch here.
The UN has no position as ‘principal investigator’ at its terrorism prevention branch. His much acclaimed book ‘Inside Al-Quiaeda’ suggests our hero risked his life and limb by somehow creeping into the outfit and then escaping to write the book. The fact of the matter is he wrote the book ‘Inside Al-Quiaeda’ from outside. And the irony is that it is this very book that exposes our hero’s pseudo-intellectualism. In it he claims one Hannibal the head of Jemah Islamiyah’s intelligence unit made many reconnaissance trips to Australia before the Bali bombing. Sadly for him his facts were all concocted according to Australia’s Attorney-General Daryl Williams who shot down his claim as sheer nonsense. So much for Dr. Gunaratne’s expertise!
In the lengthy interview Dr. Gunaratne talks like as if becoming a ‘terrorist’ is every Muslims’ ambition and all that Muslim parents want their children to do is to become ‘Islamic Terrorists’.
Dr. Gunaratne’s pro-Imperialist views become abundantly clear when he rushes patronisingly to the defense of the American and British saying, they never target civilians and such deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan are only ‘collateral damage’. There is a limit to cruelty. But I don’t suppose Dr. Gunaratne knows the pain of parents and loved ones who have lost their little children in American and British bombing of civilian targets.
Collateral damage, Sir? Like in Haditha? Or like over a hundred thousand civilian deaths in Iraq alone? And I suppose those Iraqi’s who fight American-British occupation are terrorists? Of course they are. Like the French Resistance Movement or the Italian variety that fought Hitler? Seems like sauce for the goose is not sauce for the gander. And then there’s the Viet Cong. were they terrorists also when they fought American occupation of their country? And when you are finished answering those questions tell us what you think of Nelson Mandela.
Rohan Gunaratne’s claim that terrorism will never perish is about as absurd as it can get. Of course ‘terrorism’ can be ended. And all you need to do that is bring about justice. The American empire cannot oppress people or kill hundreds of thousands of them and then get their mouthpieces to call it ‘collateral damage’. And when those poor people decide to take to arms to defend themselves it shouldn’t label them ‘terrorists’.
That is their inherent right. Check the Geneva Convention, please. But the fact of the matter is the Pax Americana - with its sidekick the former ‘Great Britain’ - wants the ‘Green Menace’ just as much as it wanted the ‘Red Peril’ to advance its world hegemony. I have this sneaky suspicion that when Dr. Gunaratne said terrorism will not end he was more concerned about his job security as an ‘expert’ on terrorism.