by Sid H Arthur - Bangladesh & Censorship 25 Sep 2007 05:12 pm

No Ray of Sunshine

It is never difficult to distinguish between a Khilafist with a grievance and a ray of sunshine.

That’s my reworking of P.G. Wodehouse’s memorable line. Of course, he wasn’t referring to Hizbut Tahrir, but the sentiment remains the same.

Photo: Amirul Rajiv

Yesterday thousands of “activists” from Hizbut Tahrir in Bangladesh marched the streets of Dhaka to protest the publication of a cartoon which was not in the slightest offensive to Muslims, no matter what the Khatib of Baitul Muqarram would like us to believe.

Most of these HuTs are young men who have been recruited from private universities and this means that they are the products of relatively privileged backgrounds. There are many life and death issues which you would think would offend the sensibilities of Khilafa-glorifying students that would compel them to hit the streets in protest. A cursory glance at their literature would suggest that they would be protesting the parlous state of the schooling system, the lack of wealth distribution, the lack of jobs for graduates, secularism, usury in the banking system and so on. All of which, I would have thought, would rate highly in the ‘Offensive Charts’ if you were a Khilafist.

But no. Instead, they’re protesting a minor cartoonist’s affectionate parody of Muslim naming customs. This was the offence to the Prophet Muhammed and Muslim-majority Bangladesh to some and an example of “evil forces out to destabilise the country” to others high up in Authority.

And who are at fault behind these offences according to the HuT? The Jews of course, if the banner pictured above (which reads “Close down Prothom Alo - Friend to the Jews”) is anything to go by. The Jooooos are behind it!

Fine Young Cannibals
Photo: Amirul Rajiv

Compare and contrast these fine young cannibals with the nobility and courage of the Burmese monks. There on the streets of Yangon are the penniless sons of peasants who are putting their lives on the line for their countrymen, peacefully facing the guns of a military government who have killed dissenters indiscriminately in the past and will no doubt kill again.

Whereas our private-university-educated firebrands solemnly carry out the pretence that they are religious elites. See how they strut in their Khilafa-chic, all fists, t-shirts and black Shahaada bandanas.

They would like us to think that it takes bravery to be Khilafa-poseurs in Muslim-majority Bangladesh and agitate for the installation of the Blasphemy Law, censorship and for the jailing without trial of journalists. Yes, brave as cockroaches in the dead of night.

One Response to “No Ray of Sunshine”

  1. on 26 Sep 2007 at 4:36 am 1.Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying » Bigotry On Display In Bangladesh said …

    […]  Sid at Serious Golmal adds some perspective. For more background, here’s my post on Hizb ut-Tahrir from last year. […]

Trackback This Post | Subscribe to the comments through RSS Feed

Leave a Reply