“When a new flu infects one human being, all are at risk. When one nation pursues a nuclear weapon, the risk of nuclear attack rises for all nations. When violent extremists operate in one stretch of mountains, people are endangered across an ocean. And when innocents in Bosnia and Darfur are slaughtered, that is a stain on our collective conscience. That is what it means to share this world in the 21st century. That is the responsibility we have to one another as human beings,” these words were spoken by Barack Obama in Cairo, Egypt, in a speech titled “A New Beginning”.
The outpouring of violence and bloodshed around the globe left all individuals at the mercy of threat. Terrorism is a serious challenge in the modern world. The extremist groups target civilians and soldiers alike on the grounds of their accidental backgrounds and spread fear and hatred. The widespread violation of human rights and dignity springs from radical ideology. The systematic and unmitigated militancy changed the world into dystopia. Peace remains a dream for some nations.
No wonder, the lack of spirit of brotherhood and religious tolerance is the main reason behind the deadly practices of the fundamental groups. That is to say, racial superiority and parochial mindset have put a yawning gap between the radical ideologue and the world. On the one hand, the ideologues discriminate people on the basis of their race, color and creed, curtail their freedom and shed their blood. On the other hand, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) declares that men and women are born free with equal rights and dignity and must be able to exercise their rights without fear and anxiety. It adds that “disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts” throughout the history and the men’s natural and inalienable rights and dignity will have to be held in high esteem.
The world is considered to be a single entity and all nations are affected with a change happening in a corner of the world. For instance, the proclamation of a “caliphate” in June 2014 in Iraq, has challenged the entire globe and no nation is immune to the venom spew forth by the self-proclaimed Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). Similarly, the Taliban, that emerged from seminaries situated across the Afghan border, and Al-Qaeda created political turmoil around the region. The tragic story of Aylan Kurdi – a three-year-old Syrian boy whose image made global headlines after he drowned on September 02, 2015 in the Mediterranean Sea – is a second example. This incident outraged the human conscience and it was an inerasable “stain on our collective conscience”. It reveals the fact that a single tragedy, in any corners of the world, will shake the public conscience.
To decrease violence and carnage and alleviate the sufferings of mankind, the people of the United Nations affirmed the UDHR. The philosophy behind affirming this Declaration was to promote respect for these rights and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance, both among the people of Member States themselves and among the people of territories under their jurisdiction. Perhaps, thousands of national and international conferences are held annually to strengthen peace and prosperity. The democratic discourses aim to uphold human rights and reduce violence. Despite this fact, terrorism and insurgency continue unabated and violate human rights globally. The dream for utopia and society void of carnage and brutality has not come true.
No wonder, all nations, are susceptible to terrorism. Muslims are believed to bear the brunt of insurgency. In other words, people of all faiths and backgrounds are unacceptable in the radical ideology of warring factions and deserve to be killed without in iota of mercy – this is currently practiced by militant fighters. The indiscriminate killing of men, women and children is a great cause for concern for the world.
In short, when a Syrian boy is drowned in the Mediterranean Sea, when a woman is lynched by an angry mob in Afghanistan, when individuals fall victim to terrorism in Orlando and Beirut, Paris and Nice and St. Etienne-du-Rouvray, France, Germany, Japan, Egypt, etc., the feelings of the public will hurt and such incidents will be regretted regardless of the victims’ race and religion.
The human societies are embroiled in war and bloodshed/ cold war. Besides terrorism, there are many threats to human societies, mainly nuclear and chemical weapons. As far as I am concerned, writing a list of human rights and approving it publically will not lessen violence and the anguish of mankind unless it is supported by a strong international sanction. The global threats must be eliminated by the international community. The first panacea for the bleeding wounds of human society is combating terrorism – since it is believed to be the greatest menace to the human rights and humanitarian law – and eradicating all its sanctuaries, the hotbed of radical mentality and its supporting factors. We live in “the Global Village” and have to respect the rights and liberty of all nations and nurture religious tolerance. After all, we have the responsibility to reduce the sufferings of our fellows.