Saturday, September 19, 2009

Let's Write OUR History *Ourselves*

What Pashtuns just went through needs to be heard by the world -- from *our* perspective. It's a part of our history, and it should therefore be told from our view, not from the view of those who only read and heard about it. So I strongly urge every victim, every survivor of war -- whether from Swat or any other war-torn zone, female or male -- to tell her/his story. History is recorded by the victorious and is then interpreted and re-interpreted by those who were never there to witness any of what has been recorded. Let's stop letting outsiders (invaders, spectators) write our history; let's write OUR history ourselves. I don't worry that our recent genocide will get lost in history, but I worry that the facts will be twisted (mostly by the Pakistani government) because we are not speaking up as openly as we should be. Let's then keep this very important part of our history alive. If we don't do it, no one else will... no, wait, others WILL do it (heck, they always do!), but no one will tell it the way we will. No one will tell it from a Pashtun mind.
Let's reveal what we are going through for the sake of our children. Maybe they will learn something from us. Let's not be ashamed of who we are (yes, we made mistakes, but which group of people is faultless?), but let's tell the truth -- about what both the Pakistani army AND the Taliban have done to us and continue doing to us. Let's tell the world what they did to our grandmothers and our fathers; let's tell of how BOTH of these forces have beheaded and butchered and kidnapped our loved ones and made our children orphans and our mothers widows! Do not be afraid of speaking the truth, be it against the army or the Taliban. The ONE thing that can further destroy our promise of a stable future is our SILENCE today, people! Silence.

Tell your story (or stories) as you'd want them told eight hundred years from now. Remember: Our silence today will speak against us tomorrow. Writing just might prove our only weapon of justice (I hope?).

So, get to writing :) If you don't want to write it or don't know how to, then tell your story to a trusted friend who you KNOW will write what you dictate to him/her. Don't use real names and certainly don't use your own name, if you're afraid (I would be, too), but be SURE to pen the reality.

Good luck! And you have our support and our ears!

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