DURING past few days the most potent images and videos of blood rivers, beheaded children, dead bodies lying on streets and burning people alive have brought a new debate onto the issue of Rohingya Muslims. This is not the first time that Rohingyas have to face violence and brutality, until now thousands of Muslims have become the victim of this ‘slow-burning genocide’ in Myanmar.
Myanmar otherwise known as Burma was one among 48 states that voted for the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948, states that “Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status”. Even, Article 5 of the UDHR states that “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”
Unsurprisingly, Human Right Organizations, Amnesty International, Western Powers and international media groups like the BBC and CNN are quite upon the violation of Universal Declaration of Human Rights over this genocide that has no parallel in the world today. Even the response of Aung San Suu Kyi, one of prominent leader in Myanmar and a champion of Nobel Peace prize was “I don’t think there is ethnic cleaning going on against the ethnic minority. I think ethnic cleansing is too strong an expression to use for what is happening”, which clearly indicates her biases and future plans. On same notes, Human Rights Watch stated that the Government of Myanmar has to “stop the offensive” and they should allow ‘humanitarian assistance’ to Rohingya Muslims. Now the question is why these IOs and ROs are only resisted to statements and they are waiting for permission from Government of Myanmar to help Rohingya. History is full of incidents where Western powers never waited for permission if they have interest in certain region.
Back in 2001, on September 26, 2001, just after fifteen days of 9/11 attack, the U.S. covertly inserted members of the CIA’s Special Activities Division led by Gary Schroen as part of team Jawbreaker into Afghanistan, forming the Northern Afghanistan Liaison Team. Although, history never wrote that US took the approval for any kind of ‘assistance’ in Afghanistan. Instead, the rest of world were left to choose between being seen as either for or against the US lead war against terrorism and being after years of sacrifice states like Pakistan are still asked to ‘Do, More, Do More.
Then again on March 20, 2003, The United States with his several coalition allies invaded Iraq to save the world from weapons of mass destruction that were never discovered from Iraq, but in case of Rohingyan Muslims they have been denied basic rights by the Myanmar state, which does not recognise them as citizens instead of voting for the adoption of UDHR. Hundreds of women folk in Myanmer were gang raped after ratifying the ‘Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)’ and young boys are burned alive instead of educating them after been ratifying the ‘Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC)’ on July 15, 1991, but not a single peace keeping mission was send to safeguarded the violation of ratified treaties or human rights.
This whole episode of Rohingya genocide and the silence of so called global peace protectors reminds the very well theory of International Relation known as ‘Clash of civilizations’. Samuel P. Huntington argued that World politics is entering a new phase, where the divisions among humankind and the dominating source of conflict will be cultural. Nation states will remain the most powerful actors in world affairs, but the principal conflicts of global politics will occur between nations and groups of different civilizations. The clash of civilizations will dominate global politics. The fault lines between civilizations will be the battle lines of the future.
The case ethnic killings in Myanmar is the exact example of what Huntington wrote back in 1993. The western agenda based peace builders are keeping their mouth shut because instead of perpetrators the victims for this unending cycles of violence are Muslims or because the Victims are not citizen from Paris or Britain, or maybe just because they are not Christians, Hindus or Jews. So, the ‘Buddhist nationalists’ will wipe out the Rohingya and not a single light will light up to save them. The Rohingyian will suffer and their will be very hard to get international attention and the west that is shouting for ‘DO MORE’ to continue their so called war against terrorism will ‘DO NOTHING’ to save innocent lives in Myanmer because this is war of civilizations and the victims are Muslims.
— The Researcher is associated with Strategic Vision Institute, a think tank based in Islamabad, Pakistan.