Dear President Rouhani and President Obama

2013-09-09 13:35

Dear President Hassan Rouhani and President Barack Hussein Obama

As Salaamu Alaikum warakmatulahi wa barkatahu. Peace and greetings to you as leaders of great nations,from Durban,South Africa. I was listening to a song by Jim Reeves entitled " Distant drums" where he begs his love to marry him before he answers the call of drums of war beating far away and which he must answer.

Well presently the drums of war are beating over Syria, reverberating throughout the entire world. I verily believe as I must confess reading somewhere that there are enough of us, decent,caring and sharing people who have the power and the capacity to make sure that the main actors pulling the strings , namely you Presidents Rouhani of Iran and and you President Obama now know that the world wants bold diplomacy.And, oh yes we, you both together can end the nightmare for thousands of terrified Syrian men,women and innocent waif like children cowering under threat of new gas attacks.

Do we feel and experience what they are going through right now as you read this letter?

I know you do. You both are not cold calculating ogres driven by greed and blood lust for power and hegemony. In your hands rest the power and the will to end the massacres and the coming genocide. War is not the answer. Not even limited strikes. For there are madmen driven by an insane hate for the other who would ramp up the pressure through hundreds of thousands of deaths of innocent human beings.

I believe that none of us has time to lose. By doing nothing or watching from the sidelines we become passive condoners ,if not pardoners validating one evil with another. So……….here’s my leap of faith. Lets break the wall of obduracy. Lets become faith founded activists.

The idea or the content in this letter may not be original but the message that tugs at your heart strings and rouses your soul, certainly is, especially when the camera purposefully zooms in and pauses , what seems a million nanoseconds, over writhing bodies of dying children and women gasping their last breath, dancing the dance of death.


If you do nothing, extremists champing at the bits, would most certainly reduce Syria to a lawless hades just like Libya after the NATO led invasion despatched Mu’ammar Gadaffi to an unmarked grave in the trackless deserts in Libya. Syria is next in line.

We can as we must silence the drums of war hovering like kines over Syria. I remember Khalil Gibran’s timeless words “you may loosen the strings of the lyre and you may muffle the sounds of (beating) drums, but tell me who can ask (this) skylark not to sing.”?

Syria is most likely, as someone wrote elsewhere, one of the most enduring, let alone the most brutal war of the twenty first century our generation has witnessed and this chemical attack on innocent civilians is the worst our world has seen in the last 30 years. Hitler almost got away with Xyklon B. We know what sarin gas can do.

The world has a shared responsibility to protect Syrians and other victims elsewhere where uranium laced cluster bombs rain down from the skies, but for these past decade, or at least since 2009, the international community has been shamelessly silent. Do you know that a new ABC TV poll shows that nearly two-thirds of Americans are still opposed to strikes? No? You should. That same world has failed the innocent victims.Somewhere the ghost of Paster Niemoller echoes from the past….

And did you watch the latest CBS interview with Assad? You must have.He denies using chemical weapons.

You cannot index human lives according to merit.

Unless somewhere someone has propagated that the lives of Syrians makes collateral damage if, like Iraq, Syria’s natural resources are firmly in western hands. Surely there is no index to who deserves to be alive and who doesn't?

At the G20 meeting in St Petersberg, Russia, I listened to leaders talking in the sidelines. They talked and the message was clear. The combatants need to talk under the auspices of the UN.

These talks are a promising chance to stop the impending bloodshed.

Someone wrote elsewhere that it’s always been propagated that the US would never talk to Iran and that Iran would never help the US solve the Syrian crisis.

But guess what? There’s so much chatter evidencing a change and , yes, hope. You President Obama may launch strikes, but if anyone has been following debates in the senate and House of Representatives it becomes clear, to me for one, that public support for a longer war in the US and Iran is waning, and if you, as well as President Rouhani are looking for a way out of a sustained conflict, engage in open dialogue.

With well over 130 members of the US Congress calling on you, President Obama to talk with Iran matched with reams upon reams of emails a massive global public push for diplomacy right now . So wisdom decrees that Mr Obama and Rouhani should listen and meet sooner for talks.

Who ever perpetrated these chemical attacks is fast eroding public support in Iran as well,President Rouhani, I am certain, for Assad, since they recall painful memories of Iraq’s gas attacks on Iran, and no doubt I sense that pressure is building to reconsider Iran’s and,believe it,Russian support for the Assad regime.

Fact is Assad must go. Its not about guilt, for that is the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court. Regime change, history has testified, is not the answer.Democracy is and presently with madmen driven by proxy power are ploughing the fertile ground of Syria with the blood of innocent civilians. They too must be held accoutable.

You and I agree that talks unsupported with willingness and intention of course, won’t stop the horror and the carnage overnight, but there is no quick and easy solution. We urgently need to get started on a path that can stop the killing of innocent men, women and vulnerable children and launch an initiative that bring the world closer together rather than tear it asunder.

The pen is mightier than the sword. And the ink of a scholar and holier than the blood of a martyr, is a saying attributed to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

So I use my pen to voice my protest to urge and urge the US and Iran to start talks now.

Salaams and sincerest wishes, I remain

your's faithfully

Saber Ahmed Jazbhay

Follow me@jazlaw24


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