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Pakistan, Social Media, and Two Big Massacres – by Mohammad Murtaza

Related posts: #ShiaGenocide: After killing 21 paramilitary soldiers in Peshawar, Deobandi militants kill 40 Shias in Mastung

Pakistani (Fake) Civil Society’s continued denial of atrocities by Sipah Sahaba Taliban

Shia Muslim pilgrims from Punjab and KPK refute HDP’s ethnic propaganda with their blood – by Anwar Changezi

This is a sad day. The day began with the news that 21 out of 22 Levies personnel who were abducted by the Taliban from Peshawar were slaughtered. As the affected and concerned citizens mourned the news, reports started trickling in from Mastung where three buses carrying Shia pilgrims from Punjab were targeted, killing over 45 and injuring hundreds. The pilgrims were on their way to Mashhad and Karbala to commemorate the Arabaeen (40th of Prophet Mohammad’s (SAWW) grandson Imam Hussain (as), his family and companions who were slaughtered by Aal-e Sufyan, Muawiya, Yazid and his army). Mastung has seen many such slaughter of Shias in the past as well:

This massacre came a few days after Sipah-e Sahaba Taliban’s Karachi chief Aurangzeb Faruqi threatened Shias with more massacres:

Both the news involved the massacres and tragedies of highest scale. Here were Pashtoon Levies personnel who were not shot, but slaughtered by Deobandi Taliban. Their families, which include children and infants along with women, will now see chopped off heads of their beloved. In Mastung attack, which was carried out by the Taliban’s allies Deobandi Sipah-e Sahaba and Lashakr-e Jhangvi, families may not be able to recognize their loved ones who were completely burnt in the blast, and the wounded burnt and maimed forever. The dead and wounded included a number of women and children.

Only yesterday, in the neighboring India, after the unfortunate death of a rape victim brought the entire country to standstill. Millions were on the streets, and social media was abuzz with messages of shock, sorrow and condemnation.

Different was the story on this side of the border.

In any land which is armed with nukes and hosts one of the biggest armies of the world, the incidents involving the slaughter of security forces and countless Shia women and children should have prompted the law enforcement agencies to act. All the same, the incidents should have forced the civil society, human rights activists and all the people to protest. The two incidents should have brought Pakistanis on the streets.

However, there was a distracting entertainment for Pakistan as a whole today: Cricket. Social media which is dominated by the Punjabi elite and the Urdu-speaking aspirants of fame were busy tweeting the score of cricket match between Pakistan and India. Some were praising the new bowler Junaid’s bowling, others appreciated the good inning of Dhoni. A day ago, the same Punjabi and Urdu-speaking elite were tweeting on the unfortunate rape victim in India but were silent now as if nothing had happened after the massacre of over 70 innocents. Nothing indeed has happened to them, the elite. Everything has happened to the victims of the same Punjabi generals’ proxies. Victims, after all, are collateral damage here.

Nothing more to add. For a sample, see the tweets of Punjabi and Urdu-speaking elite which have Kufi Shias too.

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  • The twitter Timeline snapshot has been taken at a specific time, most probably sometime before the publishing of this post when the Mastung incident was already a few hours old. We know social media is extremely dynamic and works on an instant post-as-you-go experience. A more representative snapshot of Timeline would be the hour after the incident happened.

    Since most people were already online when the incident happened because of the match, there was a lot of Twitter activity in the first 2-3 hours as the event happened and news poured in with death toll raising. I have personally seen tweets from Ali Salman Alvi, Ailia Zehra, Yusra Askari and Shiraz Hassan. It would be unfair to see them here.

    I think it is unfair to expect people to talk ONLY about ShiaGenocide – we don’t want to lose our support base of people who talk about it and sympathize.

  • @alexpressed: someone loses their brother in the incident and ‘post-as-you-go experience’ brings a tweet on it followed by Nasir Jamshed’s six. That makes a good combination.

    The Kufi Shias will go to any extent to remain relevant for their Pakistani acquaintances on social media. Why should they stop tweeting on cricket for a day.

  • Gentlemen, whatever has happened in Mastung and to the levies and has been happening to Shias is most unfortunate, but let’s not blame these mindless elitists who in my opinion have nothing to do with the elite. They cant even get near them. Shias are really scared and that is what the ASWJ/SSP/TTP want.

    Unless the mainstream media starts calling the “Zaireen” as “Shia Zaireen” and tells that those killed in “Firqawarana dehshatgardi” are Shias, our public will not care.

    One has to ask the mainstream media that why they are afraid of telling the fiqah to which the killed belonged or to the party the target killing was affected again.

    Focusing on these good for nothing time wasters on Facebook and Twitter is of no use!