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Letters: Excellent analysis

Business Standard  |  New Delhi 

“Soft targets” (Dec 26) is an excellent analysis of the factors that motivate people to join radical groups. In countries like Pakistan, radical elements are systematically closing down educational institutions which offer education to women, the latest example being the closing down of most schools which teach English and which were established by Irish nuns about 100 years ago in Swat and other areas in tribal Pakistan. This leaves no choice for girls but to discontinue their education and for boys to go to madrasas where they are indoctrinated in fundamentalist and radical theory. Such students are brainwashed into believing that God has ordained that they carry out certain tasks even at the cost of their lives. In Islam, it is not how one lives one’s life that guarantees spiritual salvation, but how one dies, according to the briefings given to these students. There are great advantages to becoming a martyr. Dying while fighting the infidels in the cause of Allah reserves a special place and honour in Paradise, and it earns special favour with Allah. Embittered youth who have neither the education nor the prospects for any job fall prey to this type of radical teaching.

M M Gurbaxani, Bangalore

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First Published: Tue, December 30 2008. 00:00 IST