Between a Rock and a Hard Place


Sura 4-89 Foolish Infidels

Shamim Masih writes about the perils he faces as a Christian Human Rights activist in Radical Muslim dominated Pakistan. The perils presented are not a pretty picture. Such unjust imagery should not only infuriate Christians in the West, but the very circumstance it exists should spur Western nations into international activism against the Islam that uses Supremacist Sharia Law to persecute non-Muslims within Islamic dominated nations. These days the Christians are the primary target of Islamic Supremacist persecution. Shamim looks to the USA as the most known Christian nation to act. I fear the combination of the Leftist war on Christianity and a growing weariness of foreign wars in the USA will not spark the American government toward any succor for Pakistan Christians.

 

JRH 10/26/13

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Between a Rock and a Hard Place

 

By Shamim Masih

Sent: 10/25/2013 10:57 PM

 

ISLAMABAD: Doing journalism in a country like Pakistan, which is dominated by Muslim religious extremist, is not easy, especially when you write about religious minorities. Pakistan is perhaps ranked the third most dangerous country for reporting. The country also has one of the highest numbers of journalists threatened, kidnapped and killed.

 

Before partition, the vision of the Muhammad Ali Jinnah [Interesting bio on Jinnah] was of a nation that would adopt secularism to accommodate its historically multi-religious and culturally diverse population. The Christians [that] chose to stay back were assured of security and basic equal rights. Sadly, what is happening is at total variance to the vision. Today, the very existence of these communities are under threats. It seems that Pakistan exists as an Islamic state, comprising only of Sunni-State [similar to] Saudi Arabia. Pakistan has been carrying out the most insidious ethnic cleaning over the last four decades right under the eyes of the world.

 

My aim is to create a peaceful environment in the society and to help eliminate human rights violation/persecution through my writing as I bring the plight of those brave people under spotlight of the whole world.

 

Pakistan, where those working to change an incredibly hostile climate for free speech have found themselves under fierce attack. So in this situation journalists do not dare to write about these activities.

 

Being a Christian journalist, it is indeed become more dangerous to write on minorities’ issues. Many newsrooms forbid their journalists from reporting these kinds of incidents. So it happens with me as well. Apart from my routine work, I usually write on minorities issues. So during my working with different papers in the country (knowingly I [am] not mentioning the names), my editor told me to keep it a low profile or stop it for a while, and if I had to, it [i.e. articles] would go without a byline.

 

Threat is routine matter; I even don’t mention these kind of phone calls or anything like this. People know me and know that even if it is without a byline, that I am writing it. Sometimes, they ask me, to whom you are working for? My answer is simple, for Christ Jesus. No one can stop me until it is God’s will. I work as a diplomatic correspondent, also covering the foreign office and Parliament House additionally [to the work] I do for my paper. Apart from my office responsibilities, I raise the voice of the most deprived portion of the society. They are usually called “chooras” (derogatory term used for Christians in Pakistan, also among the poorest sections of society and consigned to menial janitorial jobs). Sometimes they use this word – chooras – for me as well, even if it is not in my presence but I know the mentality of the stiff mind-set.

 

It is quite distressing to see a region that has for millenniums been the hub of civilization and religious integration, with an abiding heritage of multi-ethnicity and linguistic/cultural diversity, degenerate into a fanatical society in such a short span of time. It is astounding to see how some fanatical groups have converted rich diversity into a liability. But it will make no difference; threats are the hazards of this job [while] living in an increasingly intolerant society. The most painful is the attitude of Christian religious leadership [and their] behavior towards [their] congregation. Missionary schools have expelled the Christian students from their school. Christian institutions have hired a squad of Muslims while Christian skilled and deserving youngsters are jobless. Those who are responsible are not the visionary intellectuals and thinkers of the society; [there] are fringe elements seeking to further their business, economic and political interests by playing politics of sectarian hatred.

 

The world needs to take cognizance of the genocide that is slowly taking place in Pakistan. The responsibility on the United State of America is all the more acute; while being concerned about all the groups that are suffering, special attention has to be given to the Christian communities and to the people who are really deserving.    

 

Be Blessed,

Shamim Masih

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Edited by John R. Houk

Brackets indicate Editor Additions

 

© Shamim Masih

Snapshot of Human Rights Activism from 2011

Christian Rights Activist
Freelance Journalist
 

Secretary General 

REAP

Shamim Masih’s Donate/Support info:

 

FOR USD TRANSFER.
Intermediary Bank:
                        MASHREQ BANK, NEW YORK
Intermediary Bank SWIFT BIC:
        MSHQUS33
Beneficiary Bank:
                        JS BANK LIMITED
Beneficiary Bank SWIFT BIC:
                JSBLPKKA
Bank A/c # at Intermediary bank:
        70008227
Title Of a/c
                               Shamim Masih
Beneficiary Account Number:
                405527

Top of Form

IBAN #                                        pk80jsbl9530000000405227

FOR GBP TRANSFER.
Intermediary Bank:
                        MASHREQ BANK, LONDON
Intermediary Bank SWIFT BIC:
        MSHQGB2L
Beneficiary Bank:
                        JS BANK LIMITED
Beneficiary Bank SWIFT BIC:
                JSBLPKKA
Bank A/c # at Intermediary bank:
        00010855
Title Of a/c
                               Shamim Masih
Beneficiary Account Number:
                405527
IBAN #
                                       pk80jsbl9530000000405227

FOR EURO TRANSFER.
Intermediary Bank:
                        MASHREQ BANK, LONDON
Intermediary Bank SWIFT BIC:
        MSHQGB2L
Beneficiary Bank:
                        JS BANK LIMITED
Beneficiary Bank SWIFT BIC:
                JSBLPKKA
Bank A/c # at Intermediary bank:
        10847
Title Of a/c
                               Shamim Masih
Beneficiary Account Number:
                405527
IBAN #
                                       pk80jsbl9530000000405227 Bottom of Form