Though World War I was the war to end all wars, it took only 21 years for the world to reunite on the battlefields of Europe to fight yet another war. World War II lasted 6 years and gave birth to Adolf Hitler’s ‘Final Solution’.
The Final Solution was Nazi Germany’s systematic genocide of European Jews during World War II, resulting in the execution and barbaric murder of more than 6 million Jews.
So if WWI was the war to end all wars, was Hitler’s holocaust the holocaust to end all future acts of genocide?
Sadly, the answer to that question is no. There have been dozens of other world leaders who have dabbled in genocide. Just ask certain Sudanese Muslims. Not to mention the Rwandan Genocide, Cambodian genocide or the ongoing persecution of Falun Gong in China.
The Holocaust wasn’t the world’s first genocide, and certainly wasn’t the last.
Genocide is presently unfolding in Pakistan on the people of Balochistan. The Balochistan conflict is an ongoing conflict between Baloch nationalists and the Government of Pakistan.
Balochistan is the largest of Pakistan’s four provinces, constituting approximately 44% of the nation’s total land mass. It is bordered by Iran to the west, Afghanistan to the northwest, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA to the north, Punjab to the northeast and Sindh to the southeast.
Pakistan’s military recently has escalated a brutal campaign of abduction and extra-judicial targeting of nationalist rebels in the Balochistan province.
In a new report on “enforced disappearances” by military and intelligence officials, Human Rights Watch (HRW) criticized the failure of Pakistan’s civilian leaders to halt what it termed a human rights “free-for-all”.
“The bodies surface quietly, like corks bobbing up in the dark. They come in twos and threes, a few times a week, dumped on desolate mountains or empty city roads, bearing the scars of great cruelty. Arms and legs are snapped; faces are bruised and swollen. Flesh is sliced with knives or punctured with drills; genitals are singed with electric prods. In some cases the bodies are unrecognizable, sprinkled with lime or chewed by wild animals. All have a gunshot wounds to the head,” reported Journalist Declan Walsh of The Guardian.
With the suffering of the Baloch people going on for years, there haven’t been any flotillas or Pakistani Apartheid Week(s) on university campuses. Most people reading this probably have never heard of Balochistan. The suffering is real.
Someday, I hope that all human suffering will be equally important to both protesters and journalists. I know the Baloch people won’t get the same flood of attention as a death on the border of Israel and Palestine, but life is equal.