Monday, April 19, 2010

Pakistan's Jamaat-ud-Dawa

Last night I watched an Australian SBS Dateline program on Jamaat-ud-Dawa and its links to Lashkar-e-Taiba. You can find the transcript here, as well as a link to the video.

The world of Jamaat-ud-Dawa is a self contained world with its own realities.

I looked at the program from several different levels. In particular, I tried to look below the reporting to see what I could see in terms of culture and structure.

In watching, I tried to understand how those involved in Jamaat-ud-Dawa thought.  As I watched, I thought just how difficult it all was. I also came to a greater understanding of the practical problems faced by the Pakistan Government.

One of the reasons why the study of history is so dangerous is that, properly done, it gives people an understanding of different viewpoints.

This doesn't mean that you come to agree with those viewpoints. Far from it. However, it does force changes in your own perspectives.

This is why so many Governments attempt to control the teaching of history. In totalitarian regimes, they effectively specify what won't be taught. In democratic regimes, they specify what will be taught, linking this to learning objectives.

In practice, the effects can be the same. Sad, really.   


Rummuser said...

Jim, I strongly believe that all thinking persons all over the world must read this book.

Jim Belshaw said...

Thanks, Ramana. I read the review and will try to find the book.