Will OIC not confront France: answer to M. Pervez Hoodboy’s “ambassadors letter”

M. Pervez Hoodbhoy’s pictures is from his Dawn’s profile

A fictional letter from OIC ambassadors

For weeks I have been searching a paper like the one of M. Pervez Hoodbhoy for testifying that, at least, some Pakistani people could understand their country was in a nihilist spiral. I am positively surprised this author dares to write such statements, very shocking for Pakistan, though they belong to common sense for most of the external observers.

Without challenging this great contribution, I would like to add some remarks. In this paper, explaining why the OIC (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation) instrumentation by PM Imran Khan will fail, M. Pervez Hoodbhoy uses a rhetoric method. He presents a fictional letter supposed to be written by the ambassadors of OIC countries. Though it is a pleasant way of doing, it might not work properly. It seems M. Hoodbhoy’s words are emblematic of a Pakistani way of thinking which does not pertain to any other country. Let’s see why.

Pakistan is ignorant about France. This is not the case for most of the Arabian countries.

France totally ignores Pakistan. Pakistan is also ignorant about France. This is not the case for most of the Arabian countries. Many of them, talking French, are able to follow our news. Many of them have close relations with our country. Many of them share the same concern about the same Islamist terrorism. They also understand that protecting a country from murderous terrorist attacks is not “Islamophobia” but an actual part of a state duty. Not surprisingly they have a much more enlighten and complete vision of France than the large majority of Pakistani people may reach. Moreover, they don’t “analyse” France complex political sphere using a limited and failed ideological Pakistani model. They perfectly know that Pakistan and France belong to two different, if not incompatible, worlds.

(From L-R) Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, Moroccan King Mohammed VI, French President Emmanuel Macron (L), his wife Brigitte, Bahrain’s King Hamed bin Isa Al-Khalifa and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani pose for a photo as they visit the Louvre Abu Dhabi Museum during its inauguration on November 8, 2017 on Saadiyat island in the Emirati capital. (AFP Photo)

The diagnostic about France could be the disturbing part of the “IOC ambassadors letter”.

M. Pervez Hoodbhoy opposes PM Imran Khan strategy to answer the French situation. But, he — apparently — does not consider PMIK’s “diagnostic” could be wrong and not shared, by any OIC ambassador. That is the disturbing part of his “letter”.

Let’s have some examples:

“blasphemy against the Prophet (PBUH) was hurting sentiments of the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims”.

This is an unsupported common Pakistani assumption. Numerous Muslims are not offended by what they consider as a non-blasphemy case. It is also undiplomatic from Imran Khan, a former western jetsetter, to present himself as the champion and the spokesperson of the Ummah while defending the terrorists and not the victims. Moreover, his quest for Muslim leadership is not favorably received by OIC member, as evidenced by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) visa ban for Pakistan.

Imran Khan, ex criket player, fromer jetsetter and more…
Imran Khan, Prime minister of Pakistan, ex-criket player, former jetsetter and more…

Read: “Turkish President Recep Erdogan and Pakistani PM Imran Khan have no right to talk about French secularism, as they have no regard for the sentiments of religious minorities in their own countries, says DW’s Shamil Shams.” — Opinion: Erdogan and Khan are hypocritical about Macron’s France

Read also: “Pakistan and Turkey: When governments become the godfathers of the terrorist threat!”

“Of course we despise Emmanuel Macron”.

This is a wrong assumption, too. Numerous Muslim countries don’t despise Emmanuel Macron. Because they know that France is not Pakistan and that the French President has no options for dictating French press content. Nor the French president is deciding the law in France.

Laws are voted by members of parliament. Application of the law is controlled by the judicial system, which is independent. Moreover, unlike in Pakistan, our judges are not under death threats if they don’t render the decisions expected by domestic or foreign fanatics.

UAE Foreign Minister, Anwar Gargash:
‘You should listen to what Macron really said in his speech: he doesn’t want the ghettoisation of Muslims in the west, and he is absolutely right’…‘with his attacks on France, Erdogan is manipulating a religious issue for political purposes’, Muslims ‘are in need to be integrated in a better way; the French state has the right to search for ways to achieve this in parallel with combating extremism and societal closure.’ (see article below)

“We agree with you that the French are a bad, blasphemous, laïcité-afflicted people”.

This is an unaccurate allegation. It is of importance to read the publications produced by Muslim religious leaders in France or in other countries.

Mr. Moussaoui, president of the French Council of Muslim Worship (CFCM) at Agence France Presse (AFP):
“France is a great country, Muslim citizens are not persecuted, they freely build their mosques and freely practice their worship”, “We know that the promoters of these campaigns say they defend Islam, and the Muslims of France, we call them to wisdom (…), all the campaigns of denigration of France are counterproductive and create division” (see below,in French)

Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa, the Muslim World League (MWL) secretary-general:
“There are people who are falsely considered Muslims,” “These have harmed Islam’s reputation with their radicalism and extremism — and sometimes, their violence, including their terrorism. ..These do not represent Islam at all, and if we defend them — whether directly or indirectly, (that would mean) we are exactly like them.” When asked about Macron’s references to separatism and isolationism, Al-Issa said extremists and terrorists “were the first to isolate themselves from Islamic society.” (see article below)

It is not conceivable for our fellow citizens to surrender to any Islamic threat and blackmail.

Pakistani intellectuals should understand that the terrorist wave faced by France since the beginning of autumn 2020 is, for a large part, due to Pakistan government speech against France, which fuels TLP (Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan) violence promotion. The first terrorist attack, even before Samuel Paty’s murder, was done by a Pakistani citizen, Zaheer Hassan Mehmood, on September 25, 2020. That’s why it is not conceivable for our fellow citizens to surrender to any Islamic threat and blackmail. Macron or not Macron, France will not tolerate such a capitulation from any of its presidents. This is understandable even for a Nationalist Pakistan, as evidenced by Pakistani reactions to EU parliamentary resolution seeking possible revocation of Pakistan’s GSP-Plus status.

Only M. Pervez Hoodboy knows if he believes in Imran Khan’s doxa about France or if he decided to present it without moderation for making his critics about his Prime minister’s anti-France strategy more acceptable. In a country where there is actually no freedom of speech and where telling the truth can put an author at risk for his life, it is difficult to decrypt the untold. Nevertheless, whatever is M. Hoodboy’s opinion about such a bunch of despicable lies, he should not have repeated them. They are dishonest. They lead to hatred and violence in France and in Pakistan. This is the reason why such a discourse has to be debunked instead of being encouraged.

French MFA’s answer to Shireen Mazari, “human rights” minister in Imran Khan’s government: “deeply shocking and insulting”… “despicable words”… “blattant lies”… “ideology of hatred and violence”… “condemnation”… “return to path of dialogue based on respect”.

PM Imran Khan is wrong. He doesn’t understand what is going on in our country. He doesn’t realise that he will be forced to acknowledge it is none of his business. He doesn’t see there is not even a single good strategy to interfere in our internal affairs. Any foreseeable different options will produce no results as far as France is concerned. Though, they might have devastating impact for its blackmailer.


Pervez Amirali Hoodbhoy, is a Pakistani nuclear physicist and activist who serves as Zohra and ZZ Ahmed Foundation distinguished professor at the Forman Christian College and previously taught physics at the Quaid-e-Azam University. He is also a prominent activist in particular concerned with promotion of freedom of speech, secularism, scientific temper and education in Pakistan

Read more from Bernard Grua about the Pakistan/France case:




Photographer, writer, contributor to French & foreign media: culture, history, heritage, geopolitics — https://bernardgrua.net — https://pamirinstitute.org

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Bernard Grua

Photographer, writer, contributor to French & foreign media: culture, history, heritage, geopolitics — https://bernardgrua.nethttps://pamirinstitute.org

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