Note to Readers: This is Part 5 of 6 (and then some appendices) in the series. FYI only.

Revival of Islam
Partition of India on the basis of religion between truncated Hindu India and Muslim India and formation of Pakistan as a new Islamic state within the natural boundaries of Hindustan i.e. India was a challenge and an opportunity for the nationalist India. Had its leadership learnt its lesson and accepted its logical corollary of exchange of Hindu and Muslim population which was left behind in Pakistan and truncated Hindustan and given a realistic and nationalistic orientation to the polity and policies of truncated India, the Muslim problem might have ended for good. But that was not to be.

The Congress government led by Nehru at New Delhi which succeeded the British government not only failed to learn the lesson of partition but what is worse it . . . continued the policies which had created the Muslim problem and also began to take steps to revive it.

The new rulers of Pakistan projected partition [of India] as a victory of Islam and Pakistan as successor of the Mughul Empire in India. The slogan that began to ring all over Pakistan " Hans Ke Liya Pakistan, Lad Ke Leyenge Hindustan" (we have got Pakistan without much effort, we would get the rest of Hindustan by war), was a clear reflection of their mind and thinking.

Pakistan invasion of India in October 1948 was the first step in that direction. [large cut]

The USA which had emerged as the dominat leader of the western world in World War II, was guided in regard to its policies about India and Asia mainly by Britain. The Muslim problem had ceased to have any meaning for them after the fall of Turkish Empire.

They wanted to make use of Islam and Islamic countries including Pakistan as a bulwark against the advance of Soviet Union towards Indian ocean. Therefore, the ideological leanings of Nehru towards Communism and Soviet Union also became a factor in [the USA's] tilt towards Pakistan. As a result they failed to make a realistic and objective assessment of the impact of creation of Pakistan on Muslims all over the world.

But things began to change soon after. Emergence of Israel which came into existence as a sovereign Jewish state in a part of Palestine from which they were driven out centuries ago and opposition of the Arab Islamic countries to it, created a new situation. Due to strong Jewish lobby in the USA and the sufferings of the Jews in the Second World War the USA had developed a soft corner for Israel which the Islamic world considered to be its enemy whose destruction was a religious duty for it. The crushing defeat of the Arab Islamic countries at the hands of Israel in the six day war which they imposed on Israel in1966 for its total destruction had a tremendous demoralising effect on the Muslim world.

Its reaction came out in different ways. General Gadaffi who usurped the throne of Tripoli, an oil rich state of North Africa, then decided to raise the prices of crude oil from less than a dollar for a barrel to about ten dollars. He was followed by other oil producing Arab countries. As a result money began to flow into the Arab Islamic coffers in billions of dollars. The-Arab rulers particularly the rulers of Saudi Arabia, a fundamentalist Wahabi state, began to use this money to boost fundamentalist Islamic revival all over the world in different ways. The Islamic revolution in Iran a few years later which led to replacement of liberal and nationalist Pahalvi government by a fundamentalist Islamic government led by Mullahs, had a tremendous impact on the entire Islamic world.

These developments helped by inflow of petro dollars created a new situation which was described by a leading Muslim scholar, AIi-e-Mazurai as "pertrolisation, politicisation and plutonisation of Islam". Petrolisation refers to the use of petro dollars for revival of fundamentalist Islam all over the world through direct and indirect support to Islamic insurgency in non-Islamic countries- the Philippines in the East to Cyprus, Bosnia in the Balkans, Central Africa and India, particularly its state of Jammu and Kashmir, have been their special targets. It generated a new confidence and aggressiveness in not only Islamic states like Pakistan but also in Muslim minorities in non-Islamic states all over the world.

Politicisation of Islam refers to new political awakening in Islamic states which have formed an Islamic group of about 50 states which take united stand on the issues concerning Muslims and Islamic states at the UN and other international forums. Plutonisation refers to pooling of resources to develop atomic power popularly known as Islamic bomb. The two countries which took the initiative in the matter to begin with were Iraq and Pakistan.

The rulers and people of Israel were conscious of the fact that the main target of the Islamic bomb whenever and wherever it is made, would be Israel. Therefore, they were keen to destroy the atomic facilities being developed by Iraq and Pakistan. They succeeded in destroying the Iraqi facilities.

They planned to destroy the atomic facilities being developed at Kahuta in Pakistan also. But the bombers from Israel needed refuelling in the way before they could reach their target in Pakistan. The Israeli leaders approached the governments led by Morarji Bhai and Indira Gandhi for such re-fuelling facility in India but they failed to rise to the occasion. As things are, Pakistan has already become an atomic power for which not only China but USA also cannot escape blame.

Proliferation of nuclear technology by Pakistan and its top atomic scientist, Abdul Qadir, is now an open secret. But in spite of these developments the mind of America and its NATO allies remained riveted to the USSR. They not only considered Islamic revival as a lesser evil but also actively encouraged it in various ways to make use of it against the USSR.

The Soviet bid to control Afghanistan in pursuit of the plan to reach Indian ocean via Pakistan came as a jolt to the USA. It then decided to back Islamic Jehadis of Afghanistan to counter the Soviet offensive. Pakistan became the major conduit for the American support to Jehadis fighting in Afghanistan. As a result, Pakistan became the major centre for training and equipment to these Jehadis.

The Jehadi fervour of the Islamic terrorists began to affect Muslim soldiers of the Soviet army also. About 10000 of them deserted and joined hands with the Islamic Jehadis backed by the USA around 1988. That turned the tide against the Soviet army. It had to make a humiliating retreat from Afghanistan.

It proved to be a decisive factor for the debacle of Soviet economy and political system which led to disintegration of the Soviet Union, rise of a number of independent Islamic states in Central Asia and the new Russian Federation wedded to liberal economy and democratic system of government. These developments gave a big boost to Islamic fundamentalism and terrorism all over the world with its epicentre in Afghanistan which had virtually became a satellite of Pakistan.

The attention of some of the trained Jehadis was then turned from Afghanistan to India, particularly Kashmir. At the same time Pakistan succeeded in setting up the puppet Taliban government in Afghanistan which had the backing of AI Qaeda of Osama bin Laden also. All these developments created new confidence among Muslims all over the world and Islamic terrorism as an integral part of Islamic Jehad began to threaten the Christian West also. The developments in Bosnia carried this Jehadi fervour of Islamic fundamentalism right into Europe. But the USA which had become the single superpower and policeman of the world did not pay due heed to these developments. It continued to be more concerned about keeping the Islamic world particularly the oil rich Arab Islamic countries on its side.

This situation began to change after the circulation of widely published article by Prof. Huntington of Harvard University in USA under the title" The Civilisational Conflict" in 1993. After dilating upon the past conflicts between Arab Islamic civilisation and the Western Christian civilisation and the revival of Islamic fundamentalism, he pointed to the growing threat of Islamic terrorism to the democratic values and peace of the world. But the American leadership went on backing Pakistan and its oil rich Arab allies.

The moment of truth for the USA came on September 11, 2001 when Islamic terrorists made their air attack on twin trade towers of New York and Pentagon building in Washington. The USA has since then become the leader of war against Islamic terrorism for which the word 'crusade' has begun to be used. This development has created a new awareness about Islam and the Muslim problem all over the world and serious thinking has begun about the ultimate solution of the problem and the threat it has been posing for a long time.