Peace Talks. Islamic Sub-State. And the Muslim Youths of Today.

By Ahmad Musahari
Published in www.anakiluh.blogspot.com, August 27, 2011

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. All praise is due to Him, the Lord of all beings, both seen and unseen. I bear witness that there is no God worthy of worship except Allah. And I bear witness that Muhammad (PBUH) is his last Messenger. Peace and Blessings be upon the Prophet and all his companions, and to all the Muslims in the world.

In recent days, the news about the approaching Peace Agreement between the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Government of the Philippines (GRP) had never skipped the news headlines. From the secret meeting in Tokyo, Japan, the submission of MILF’s Proposal for the peace talks, up until the reply of counter-proposal of the government last August 24, the ears of the people were sticking to updates. And of course, the presence of mixed and different reactions from the people will always be inevitable.

There are those who are hopeful; seeing this event as a ‘great step’ from both parties to finally have a ‘real’ peace deal to attain a better tomorrow for Mindanao. There are others who are still weary and unsure of the development of these meetings. They feel that things like this would not always go the easy way. And then, we have the strongly doubtful ones: Those who believe that this latest plan for a peace deal is nothing but a waste of time. Another possibility of repeating history, just like the 2008 MOA-AD issue, was their main concern. In which team you might be in, there are just too many things at stake now. Too much time had been gone. Too many opportunities had been missed. Too many tries that failed.  Too many lands devastated. Too many dreams destroyed. Too many lives sacrificed. Too much blood had been shed. This is just enough! And something somehow must be done!



The proposal of the MILF of an “Islamic Sub-state” is the main ‘itch’ that made most of the people react. It is a condition wherein a government under another government will exist, so thus the name suggests: a state under another state; a higher form of autonomy more close, if not the same, to a federation. This will eventually give the Provinces under this sub-state (the present and those to be added) to have control on almost all of the resources and power of a self-government. On how each one of us react to this proposal is entirely connected to the way we see it happening in the future.

For the Muslims and other minorities who knew Islam, and felt its real Justice, THIS is a great news; a chance to move freely under the Islamic bounds. For those who had felt the injustices and endless oppressions under a tyrant leader, THIS might be a new hope for change. For those who believe on the capabilities of Muslims in Mindanao, THIS is a great chance to see it become a reality, a chance to govern themselves with order and real justice; to find out if Muslims can really stand on their own. For those who had enough of the pain and the indescribable hardship during wars, losing your homes and love ones, THIS is just another piece of Hope they can hold on to. What else do they have?  For those who had thought that the Muslims in Mindanao are all nothing but barbaric and uncivilized people—believe me, there are still people out there—they see THIS as another waste of time and effort. For those who see that having a new sub-state would mean losing his grip in the popular politic, THIS is indeed a nuisance, a hindrance for their strongholds. For those who had never felt the pain, and never witnessed the terrors these wars bring, they never mind it happening at all. What do they have to lose? For those who make a living in making mock-wars, spreading lies to the people, and convicting innocent ones of crimes they had never commit, THIS is a great Threat to them. And they are willing to do everything to oppose. For those who knew nothing; THIS is also nothing for them. The little thing do they care. And for those who knew how big this thing is; how much it will affect our future; THIS is something they know they have to talk about.

And what would our youths of today say about this issue? How many of us—especially those in Mindanao, Muslims and non-Muslims—cared about this? How many do know the real roots of these issues? How many still have even the slightest idea how it all started? How many of us knew even our own Local History? How many of us had thought of taking a minute and read the news? How many of us decided to stay out of his or her FB Page and talked with a friend, discussed things out? How many stopped for a moment and think, “Who will I be in the future?” “How would this Peace Deal affect my life tomorrow?” “How can I possibly help myself, and those around me, understand how important this issue is?”

The youth of today are the people of tomorrow. But WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Whether we like it or not, we will certainly inherit our father’s remains: be it the knowledge; the wealth; material and immaterial ones; the success and the problems of this society. Sooner or later we will be in the feet of our leaders. Doing what they did. Saying what they said. Believing what they believed in. And fighting for what they fought for. This is us: THE FUTURE. When are we going to start reflecting and do our part? Stop wasting your time and be at service to your community! Learn the things that would be of benefit or us! Do the things that can help build our community! Start making those dreams a reality! Start doing your part now!
And lastly, the Muslim Youths of today should always be...
Be aware. Be involved. And be the Solution!







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