An Open Letter to Terrorists Who Claim to be Islamic

You’re definitely not dear or respected so I’m going to get right into this. I get that the entire purpose of your existence is to spread terror. But you see, your atrocities have not caused this nation to be consumed by fear. When you attacked a school, we didn’t stop going to ours. When you attacked a university, we didn’t drop out. You attacked a park, but that won’t stop us from going to parks. Terrified? We’re angry and absolutely appalled. We are sickened that you targeted a school in Peshawar, that you targeted children. And then Bacha Khan happened. And now a park in Lahore. Yes. We are at war. But children aren’t even supposed to be collateral damage, let alone the actual targets of armed attacks. Schools and parks were never meant to be battle fields. And nations weren’t supposed to be so used to loss that they only mourn like this when the worst happens; when children are killed. You’ve caused our mourning to have degrees. We, as a nation, seem to be subconsciously controlling the amount of pain we let ourselves feel, based on the nature and degreeĀ of the transgression against humanity.

People were never meant to be maps or places. But I am Peshawar (though we didn’t quite say it like that then), I am Paris, I am Ankara, I am Lahore. Am. Not Was.

And the pain reduces to a dull ache. Until the next attack. It consumes us, but we get more and more desensitized to the pain. I grew up in this war. I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t being told to pray for my country.

You know, I’ve been told to pray for Pakistan all my life. And I did and do with all my heart. But in a different way than I’ve prayed for Palestine all these years. Palestine is wrongfully occupied. Pakistan has been free. Terrorists like you, well, you’re diseases and pests. Something we need to get rid of. You’re leeching off of us but it’s not the same kind of war as in Palestine. But a couple of years ago, I read with horror that Israeli bombs or missiles or something had been dropped on a park on Eid. Children died for being outside playing, and celebrating. That was so terrible. I’d never thought that would ever happen here. You murdered kids and families who were out celebrating their religious festival. How dare you? Just because they followed a different religion than the one you claim to?

You give Muslims a violent image. You are the reason that Muslims have to be apologetic for murders and massacres they did not cause. They aren’t allowed to mourn the loss of human lives because they need to be defensive first.

I don’t know why you call yourselves Muslim. Islam condemns murder and suicide and harming people. The orders for war were to fight BACK. Muslim armies weren’t allowed to attack first, even if two armies stood face to face in a battle field. And children. The Prophet (PBUH) loved them. How could you harm beings so innocent?

We have vowed to bring you down. And we win against you every day. We win with every smile. We win with every child who goes to school. We win with every person who lives. We win every time a Muslim and a Non-Muslim share a kind word. We win whenever a doctor, with the help of Allah, saves a life. With every life you take, you kill all of mankind. It’s in the Quran. And with every life we save, we save them all. We’re winning all the battles, so how can you even begin to think you’ll win the war?