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E O EkeSunday, August 31, 2014
eoeke@aol.com


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ISIS AND BOKO HARAM, THE MIRROR IN OUR FACES

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any people are repulsed by the barbarity of ISIS and claim that they are not human beings. Maybe it is because they cannot Imagine that they themselves are capable of such evil, but for the grace of God and accident of history.

No, they are human beings, just like you, I and Hitler. They demonstrate what we become, when we are consumed by prejudice and allow dogmas, instead of reason to be our guide. They represent the extreme polarity of what it means to be human and why education and the values people are thought to hold dear and attitude they are encouraged to adopt towards others are most important.

What ISIS is doing starts by the dehumanisation of others by calling them, idiots. Fools, onye Awusa, Nyamiri, ajaokuta ama mo omi, onye ofe nmanu, niggers, infidels, Gentiles, unbelievers etc. By dehumanising others, we make it easy for us to treat them less than we and our loved ones would like to be treated. It enables us to justify our prejudices and discrimination against them.

This is the beginning of genocide.
When individuals are hard wired with ethnic prejudices and religious dogmas that condemn others as inferior or destined to hell fire and elevate themselves as superior, children of God or heirs of eternal kingdom, the stage is set for the creation of monsters like ISIS and Boko Haram, who will commit abominable acts in the name of God and still believe that some how, they retain what makes them true and safe human beings.

They are humans like us all. It should frighten us that under certain conditions, when exposed to certain supremacist ideologies that we can mutate into demagogs, extremists, murders and monsters, who take joy in torture, mass murder and cannibalising our fellow human beings, without any effect on our conscience. So many exist in form of nationalists who see solution to human conflicts only in the segregation of people along the premodial fault lines of ethnicity and religion. Whenever men Overvalues a narrowly defended Identity and use it as reason to exclude other human beings from what they want for themselves and their kins, injustice and extremists are not far away.

They are what we become, when we drink the water of ignorance and eat the bread of hatred and then fed on religious dogmas forged in prejudice, inequality, magical thinking and over valued ideas about our beliefs.

Religion cannot wash off its hands in the creation of Jihadists and crusaders who develop overvalued beliefs and take cosmos dichotomous dualism to to an extreme and dangerous end.

We must not stop at condemning them, selectively using them as another example that religion is evil it excuse got out nationalistic ambition. They should frighten us and make us reexamine our religious certainties and ethnic prejudices. They should force us to reconsider what we condemn and those we discriminate against for who they are and what they are.

Yes, we have no choice but to defeat them because of what they have become. A world that would contain us and them cannot exist. We will have to fight because war has been trust upon us by a people who will not be content to leave us alone as we would like to leave them.

We can start by preventing future jihadists and crusaders by making good quality education available to all to give people the enlightenment that would enable them understand the ignorance of religion and the danger of extremism and sectarianism. Then, we should prepare for war and fight as a people who would never be defeated or captured, for our world ends when these evil men win.

This is our only course, to fight for who and what we are and establish
Equal opportunity, the rule of law, justice for all, respect for individual liberty and fundamental human rights. These are the only remedies for our woes and extremism. It is not more religion or sectarianism, but less religion, pursuit of civil values, more reason, more freedom and less discrimination. All men are brothers and God made us of many nations out of one blood.

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