Monday, October 1, 2007

Resituating the context of Death-10

Understanding the mind of a Suicide Bomber

Dying remained confined within the selfish realms of survivorship but it also took certain shapes which were more of political strategies and less of any remarkable creative break from any mainstream survivalist thinking.
In 20th century, Satyagraha was the most important strategy and philosophy evolved to beat the fear of death or to destroy the fetish built around life. The gandhian force behind its active pursuit in the freedom struggle made it into a viable political method to extract the maximum from the rival without inflicting any violence upon him/her. There was a strong element of mutual goodwill and benevolence built into it but in the post-independence India, this force has been appropriated in such a manner that the sheer creativity of Satyagraha has been replaced with a sense of fatal fastidiousness, mutual destruction and use of dying as an instrument of vengeance. Revenge-killings, compulsory bandhs, self-immolation and suicide bombing are some of the political strategies that have gained widespread acceptance as the tools of resistance. Though all of them are negative in spirit but the phenomenon of suicide bombing is the most confusing one. A society that promotes survivorship as the core value also generates suicide bombing as a gory reaction? This area is perhaps the most difficult to handle. It is like revisiting a mix of Ashwathama and Ghatotkach. At one level, suicide-bombing is a highly effective political strategy but at another level, it is a highly ineffective living proposition. Suicide-terrorism is not just an anti-thesis of globalizing nation-state, it is more than that. It is like taking the right to life to the apocalyptic level in an unprecedented collusion of killing of both self and the other. It is not just nullifying resistance; it is nullifying even life.

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