‘Make no mistake. This is the Third World War’

BHAMY V. SHENOY writes from Houston, Texas: The terror attack on Bombay last week is one of those unfortunate, historic events which will have far-reaching impact on India.

As we mourn the deaths of more than 200 citizens from India and from around the world, and several officers and the bravery of Indian commandos, we should reflect upon what we as a nation and also as a world community can do to end such carnage in the future.

11/26 will go down in Indian History as 9/11 for the United States.  11/26 is nothing but the continuation of the Third World War by Jihadis. This may be one of the reasons why the US media has given unprecedented exposure to this catastrophe.

A well-known Bombay-based website has been getting thousands of comments from Indians from different parts of India since the crisis. While everyone has expressed their shock and anger at this senseless carnage, many have suggested what India should do.

Almost everybody is very critical of the current political leadership. Some blame them for the present crisis just like a recent editorial by Wall Street Journal. Some have suggested that it is the intelligentsia, by not taking part in elections, that has indirectly been supporting the election of corrupt elements in the society and it is their incompetence which has resulted in this attack.

Surprisingly none has commented that the Bombay attack is a continuation of the world war waged by Jihadis.

It is high time that the world starts viewing this kind of terrorism unleashed by Jihadis as the world war. This Third World War commenced with 9/11 against the United States and has spread to Bali, Indonesia,  then to Spain, and then to UK.

In between Jihadis have been fighting these terror wars in India, Russian Chechnya and Chinese Xinjiang and continuously in Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan. While the whole world condemns such attacks as crimes against humanity, there has been no concerted action to isolate these Jihadi elements. In fact, in some countries, there is public support to these Jihadis as a result.

Unfortunately, unlike the first two world wars where we knew who started them, in this case we do not know the identity of the main actors who are funding these attacks but for notorious men like Osama bin Laden.

The only thing we know about them is that they do not belong to any country, they do not have any ideology or religion. We also know that they form a tiny minuscule part of the world and very difficult to identify. But we know that if we as a world community decide to isolate them, it should be possible to eliminate them.

It is high time every religious group joins hands and isolates this tiny minuscule terrorist Jihadi group. We should stop rationalizing their actions by pointing out some ridiculous excuses.

After 9/11 some “progressives” tried to justify their action by putting the blame on the US for their Israel policy. But when the carnage followed in Bali, the excuse given was less convincing. It was even less in the case of the London subway bombs or the train blast in Spain.

It is a no-brainer that Islam should take the lead in this World War III supported by other religious heads.

UN should call an urgent meeting and give a call to isolate these Jihadi elements. UN should consider adapting a set of policies to condemn those countries that knowingly harbour the known terrorists.

We may even need a special world court to decide those world terrorists. A terrorist in one country could well be a hero in another country. But a world court should be able to rule on such controversial cases.

For example in the case of the Bombay attack, some have started to question the role played by Dawood Ibrahim, a known terrorist in India, but a guest in Pakistan.  If only he had been punished as a world terrorist, many past attacks in India could have been avoided.

The world community should work on promoting constructive policies which bring people together than divisive policies by pointing to some wrong acts of some political leaders in the past. Whether what George W. Bush did in Iraq was right or not, whether Narendra Modi did in Godhra was right or wrong should not matter in fighting this third world war.

Irrespective of these acts, these Jihadi elements would have carried on with their heinous acts. Let us keep aside the vote bank politics. Let us keep aside our religious superiorities. Let us forget our national identities to fight this third world war. This is one way to disprove the theory based on “Clash of civilizations”.