A sad episode: The Nation on Dr. Aafia's Trial (PAK Press)
With U.S. officials failing to produce evidence implicating Dr. Aafia in a shooting incident in Afghanistan, it is now certain that the whole case was basically intended to cast her in the role of the villain. This is how the U.S. can demonise Muslim men and women. Forensic tests have confirmed that the gun allegedly used by her did not carry her fingerprints. Besides, there is the report by a ballistic expert, which also goes in her favour. Now, it doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to see that the charges from day one were totally trumped up since it is totally inconceivable and impossible for a frail woman to carry out such a daredevil stunt of snatching a heavy M-4 rifle single-handedly from a bunch of U.S. commandoes, overpowering them by sheer physical strength, and take aim at them. Nothing could be more ridiculous.
During her trial she also revealed that while in custody she has been brutally tortured and coerced into confessing herself as a terrorist. The U.S. army thugs who abducted the innocent doctor on these false charges must now be brought to book. General Musharraf for his complicity in giving the Americans a virtual carte blanche to commit such atrocities to Pakistanis in broad daylight should also be held accountable. All this provides a peep into the world of our ally Uncle Sam who takes great pride and joy in setting up facilities like Guantanamo Bay detention camp, Abu Gharaib Jail, Camp X-Ray, Bagram Air Base facility, where countless Muslim men and women have been tortured and abused. Likewise, the appalling treatment meted out to the Muslim Diaspora in the US made more intense by draconian measures seriously compromising civil liberties including airport screening procedures and tough immigration laws, shows the degree of Islamophobia prevailing there.
Under the circumstances, it is mandatory for Islamabad to make it clear to the US that it won't tolerate humiliation of Pakistanis anymore. It would be unfortunate if the state dithers at a time when its citizens are in a dire need of help and protection. As an opening gambit, it should use its muscle and clout in securing Dr. Aafia's freedom.
Article orginally published here.