Peshawar Attack: The Way Forward

After we have buried our dead children and taken care of the wounded, we as a nation must come together to decide our future. The massacre of our children by the terrorists who call themselves mujahideen is a great tragedy and we should remember this day as a day of great loss but also as the day when Pakistanis came together with a resolve to eliminate these murderers of our children.

Yes, no more proxy wars. No more good or bad Taliban! No secret agendas! No more creation of monsters within our nation, for the monsters have a strange tendency of turning on their handlers. No, we must fight these savages on all fronts symbolic and material. We all, in our own humble ways, stand in solidarity and declare that we want peace and a nation of equals and NO ONE has the right to intimidate us in the name of any creed, religion, or ideology.

Many of my friends and I, feeling helpless, have wondered since yesterday “What can we do?” Against a monstrosity such as the Taliban, it is natural to feel powerless and helpless. But the question itself is our salvation, for it means that deep down, even in this moment of despair and helplessness, we are all thinking of doing something. And if we are thinking of doing something at the moment when our wills should have been broken–as the Taliban might have hoped–then we are already on the right track, for the will to do something is the beginning of all things great and beautiful!

So, what can we do? Let us strengthen a symbolics of solidarity. Let us get together in our streets, markets, places of work and hold prayer meetings for the victims. Let us light some candles, bring some flowers, and join each other in acts of collective mourning. This does not sound like much, but sharing our grief together as a symbolic act will go a long way in healing this deep wound and in forging a national resolve to face these murderers.

Watch your mullahs. Yes, if anyone of them offers a bizarre justification for these murders challenge them publicly. There is no justification for such murders and anyone who attempts to put a religious spin on it is not a friend of Pakistan. Yes, watch the mullahs and hold them accountable for their statements especially if they try to pour the venom of sectarian hatred in your ears. Tell them we have had enough of their hateful poison! We will no longer tolerate religious justifications for murders and other atrocities!

Do  not externalize! Yes, we have a tendency to blame the others. This was not RAW, MOSSAD, or the CIA. The Pakistan Army has undeniable proof that the terrorists in school were in contact with  Fazlullah’s people while they were murdering our children. Hold him and his followers accountable.

Support the troops: The Pakistan army is in a fight for the future of Pakistan. Let us lend them our material and symbolic support.

We have suffered a great loss; we are weary of grief over the murder of our children. Our enemies, the Taliban, did this to break our will, to terrify us, to humble us. We have already proven them wrong by coming together. Let us rise from this blow to our hearts. Let us rise together and take a stand! Let us send a message to these murderers:

We are a resilient and proud nation. We shall not bow down. We shall defeat you and the likes of you and when we are done, Taliban will be remembered as an extinct species of savages that the Pakistani nation wiped out from the face of the earth!