We are outraged at yet another inhuman act of killing and carnage aimed at the rapidly dwindling Christian community of Pakistan. We most strongly condemn the two suicide bombing attacks against a Sunday morning prayer congregation at the All Saints’ Church in Kohati Gate, Peshawar. We stand steadfastly and in total solidarity with our bereaved sisters, brothers and families to mourn the almost 80 Shaheed Pakistani Christians, and we pray for the recovery of the over 150 critically injured in hospitals
We are in immense shock and grief at the horrific sights, sounds and news emanating from the Church, the absolute inadequacy, chaos and disorder at the Peshawar hospitals, and, not least, the cemetery, where there are insufficient coffins to bury the dead, lack of night-time illumination and grave-diggers, and utter helplessness.
We condemn the provincial Government/LEAs’ clear security lapse at the Church, in view of many previous targeted attacks by TTP/jihadis/sectarian extremists all over Pakistan and repeated assurances of provision of “foolproof security in future for minorities” (sic) by successive federal/provincial Governments. We ask: WHEN will this “future” arrive? And HOW?
We believe mere announcements of 3 days’ official mourning and monetary compensation for the dead/injured are a huge insult to the bereaved families, and the grieving and suffering Pakistanis, who have lost dear ones – mostly civilian children, women and men, along with members of the police, paramilitary and armed forces, nearing 50,000 and counting.
We are disgusted by the words selected in reaction to the Peshawar Church bombings today by the “Naya Pakistan”, by both the ruling PTI/Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and PML-N/federal Governments, where they both carefully refrained from naming the terrorist/extremist group/s (all of whom have consistently and proudly claimed responsibility for similar bombings since 2001). They both termed the bombings “acts of those who are not human beings”, and “those who have lost their humanity”, and “those who want to sabotage peace [sic] talks”.
We ask: so if the attackers are “not human beings”, then did the APC endorse “peace talks” with terrible beasts/animals/aliens from outer space? Or, if they have “lost their humanity”, then HOW will Pakistan make peace with such inhuman species? And do such species have “Good” and “Bad” specimens? And if so, by WHOM and HOW will they be differentiated? Is there an iota of difference between Afghan and Pakistani terrorists’/extremists’ ideology, or political aims and objectives?
We question: HOW MANY MORE INNOCENT PAKISTANIS WILL NEED TO BE KILLED TO ARRIVE AT A CRITICAL MASS THAT WILL BECOME THE TIPPING POINT AGAINST CONDEMNABLE APPEASEMENT POLICIES? Have we learned no lessons from Malakand (2009)? Or from Europe (1939)? Or from Afghanistan (1995-2001)? Are we condemned to repeat history because we deliberately choose to become ostriches? Have we totally lost our backbone and our resolve?
The TTP kills a serving General and 2 others in Dir, yet we unconditionally release Mullah Birader. Subsequently, we receive the Peshawar Kohati Gate Church bombings. Is this the Pakistani definition of “peace”? “Peace talks”? What kind of peace do our ruling civil and military elites want? The absolute “peace” that is found in graveyards? Or the “peace” that comes from abject surrender (a la 1971)? Is this Jinnah’s Pakistan?
We are absolutely sickened and we say loud and clear: “ENOUGH”. We demand: Enough of politicians’ fear, arising from corruption, political expediency and survival. Enough of hypocrisy. Enough of doublespeak and forked tongues. Enough of ill-intentioned APPEASEMENT policies towards blatantly unappeasable groups. Enough killing and bloodshed of helpless Pakistani citizens. Habib Jalib said it all for us: “Zulm rahay aur aman bhee ho, kiya mumkin hai, tum hee kaho?”