Sin Chew Jit Poh
18 November 2015
The killings in Paris are vile. All efforts should be taken to punish the offenders.
But I hope that it is remembered that this is not a Muslim issue. Why do I say that when it looks quite clear that the killers had an Islamist agenda.
Well, most deaths caused by ISIS are Muslim. ISIS suicide bombers killed 43 people and injured I00 in Beirut. In Turkey they killed 128 and injured 500. And this was in October and November of this year. Just before Paris.
There are other examples of course but I only raised these two because of their proximity to the Paris killings. My point is, the evil acts done by groups like Isis is a humanitarian issue and not a religious one because these creatures make no distinction about whom they kill.
The temptation of making this a Muslim vs Non-Muslim issue is dangerous for two reasons. Firstly, this is exactly what Isis, Boko Haram and likeminded terrorist groups want. They want the world to be divided into two. Black and white. Muslim and non-Muslim. In this way they clearly draw the lines of the conflict that they wish for.
Also by making this a Muslim versus Non-Muslim issue what one will be doing is to ignore the fact that the thousands of people fleeing into Europe now are running from the very cruelties of Isis. Therefore by lumping these refugees (who are mostly Muslim) into the same pot as Isis, what one is doing is victimising the victims even more.
Fury is a natural reaction to incidences like this. But it would be unwise in the extreme to allow our anger to cloud our good sense. Because when we do that, not only will be unable to see what the real issues are, we will also be making things a whole lot worse.