February 11, 2006Foreign AffairsSecurity

More moderateness from the Mirwaiz

No moderation when it comes to cynical political opportunism

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn.

Notwithstanding the Moderate Mirwaiz’s being the West’s favourite Kashmiri separatist leader, he found it apt to incite the people of Kashmir, who have no shortage of problems of their own, to protest against the publication of cartoons not in tjheir local newspapers, but in those of faraway Europe. The Moderate Mirwaiz even forgot that it was Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, whose effigies they burnt in Srinagar, was the very man who pressed the Indian government to negotiate with the Hurriyat (via Cynical Nerd).

(Mirwaiz Umar Farooq) had asked the Muslims of Kashmir through paid advertisements in local newspapers to register their strong protest” against the Danish publication besides powers bent upon attacking Islam and Prophet Mohammad”. Immediately after the Friday afternoon prayers concluded at Jamia Masjid in this capital city, Mirwaiz led a massive demonstration of over 10,000 Muslims to the old Mirwaiz Manzil in Rajouri Kadal. Even as most of the demonstrators restricted their ire to the Danish and the American governments, hundreds of angry youth stole the show with their high-pitch slogans in favour of Pakistan, Iran, Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad. Shouting that Kashmir had the relation of faith with Pakistan and Iran, the demonstrators were full of venom against the European states and even more against the US government. They burnt the US national flags as also the effigies of the Danish Prime Minister. [Daily Excelsior]

For leaders to rouse passions that can easily get violent is irresponsible and dangerous in the quietest of places. To do so in Kashmir is inexcusable. The Mirwaiz and the Hurriyat will have to bear the entire responsibility for the consequences of their actions. Jammu & Kashmir’s Ladakh district with its largely Buddhist population managed to avoid bloodshed in spite of lying next door to the violence-struck Kashmir valley. Yet this week, the Indian government sent in troops to contain the communal violence that broke out there, again, according to oversimplified media reports, over the desecretion of the Quran. The Mirwaiz saw it fit to funnel the outrage over European cartoons into anger over the incidents in Ladakh. The jihadis would like nothing better than to expand the conflict and open up a new front in Ladakh, now that the moderation of the Mirwaiz has set the pace for them.

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