We Pakistanis love to react, and do so rather emotionally. The Aafia siddiqui case in a prime example of this. I was among the bloggers who reacted in the most knee jerk way possible here when news of this person broke out. Nobody can deny that the way she was treated in Bagram was despicable but whether the Pakistan government can actually secure the release of an individual who has been tried and convicted by a U.S court is the stuff of hilarity. Specially if the person concerned, is a U.S national.
So before we set ourselves on fire over the gross travesty of justice this “qaum ki beti” has received at the hands of a Firangi/zionist backed/antimuslim country let us consider the following facts about this saga
- It is till yet unclear whether Aafia is a us national, if she is then she is subject to us law meaning that she might not have been kidnapped but extradited to face terrorism charges like others in gitmo, which does not make it any saner but does make it right by law in the U.S which they can even change to suit the investigation.
- Her first husband was not present as a witness, as this case was on her attempt to murder a us army officer and her husbands testimony carried no weight. He could only be a character witness at best. What he says about her is not exactly uplifting anyways.
- Aafia was pointed out by none other than Khalid sheikh muhammad, as an operative of Al-Qaeda, there has to be a reason for this. Known terrorist masterminds do not point out random ppl when under interrogation and that too when they crack after being water boarded over 180 times.
- Aafia’s second marriage was to the nephew of Khalid Sheikh Muhammad Al-Qaeda member Ammar al-Baluchi and even before this in the last days of her first marriage her and her first husband Khan were questioned by the FBI In May 2002 regarding their purchase over the internet of $10,000 worth of night vision equipment, body armor, and military manuals including The Anarchist’s Arsenal, Fugitive, Advanced Fugitive, and How to Make C-4. Khan claimed that these were for hunting and camping expeditions. Soon after this In August 2002, Khan said Siddiqui was abusive and manipulative throughout their seven years of marriage; her violent personality and extremist views led him to suspect her of involvement in jihadi activities.
- On March 25, 2003, the FBI issued a global “wanted for questioning” alert for Siddiqui and her ex-husband, Amjad Khan. Siddiqui was accused of being a “courier of blood diamonds and a financial fixer for al-Qaida”. Khan was questioned by the FBI, and released. At this point Aafia was back in Karachi, and married to Ammar Al baluchi.
- According to her ex-husband, after the global alert for her was issued Siddiqui went into hiding, and worked for al-Qaeda. During her disappearance Khan said he saw her at Islamabad airport in April 2003, as she disembarked from a flight with their son, and said he helped Inter-Services Intelligence identify her. He said he again saw her two years later, in a Karachi traffic jam
- Aafias testimony during this trial included her saying she was attempting to make peace between the Taliban and the armed forces..no outsider can do this. Can anyone of us even think of such a possibility without having access to the organization?
- Why did her family wait for so long to raise hue and cry, which happened after Yvonne ridley’s disclosure of “the grey lady of bagram” with Imran Khan in a press conference. Yes the urdu press had reported a woman being picked up but that was it. If the government was not ready to listen to them there are several human rights groups who would have so why were they silent?
- Siddiqui has not explained clearly what happened to her two missing children. She alternated between saying that the two youngest children were dead, and that they were with her sister Fowzia, according to a psychiatric exam. She told one FBI agent that sometimes one has to take up a cause that is more important than one’s children. Khan said he believed that the missing children were in Karachi, either with or in contact with Siddiqui’s family, and not in U.S. detention.He said that they were seen in her sister’s house in Karachi and in Islamabad on several occasions since their alleged disappearance in 2003.
- We have a right to criticize the U.S government for their inability to explain why a woman detained on terrorism charges cannot be tried on them. Their are also several holes in their case & conviction including the fact that the rifle she is convicted of having snatched from the us army officer does not have her fingerprints, but what sort of hypocrisy permits us to rally for this case when so many women are daily suffering in our own prisons in Pakistan?
Why are their no rallies of thousands of people outside any of our jails??? Why do we not march on the havelis of those landlords that consider Karo Kari as tradition and a justifiable means of upholding family honor. Why do we all stop our powers of reasoning and respond with anger and violence when anyone questions popular thought or sentiment?
Therefore in light of the above points and murkiness surrounding this lady I believe the way she was held, the way she was tried and the way she was treated is abhorrent. However the fact that she is totally innocent and somehow representative of Pakistan and its women and how we have been all put to shame because of the injustice done to her is totally false as well.
I do not think Aafia Siddiqui is innocent and never will.