Fear in Pakistan: Hitchcock, the Taliban and us

Terrorists in Pakistan are like Hitchcock's The Birds. They continue to attack - and we fail to understand the logic.

Anushka Jatoi January 13, 2011
Sometimes I feel like I am Melanie Daniels from Alfred Hitchcock’s "The Birds."

A 1963 suspense horror film,The Birds is depicts Bodega Bay, California, which is suddenly and for unexplained reasons, the subject of a series of widespread and violent bird attacks over the course of a few days.

If you think about Pakistan, you can’t help but compare the birds in the film with the Taliban and militant groups .

If only we could study what motivates them to carry out such acts. Of course, getting a terrorist to sit through a psychology experiment as a volunteer would be pretty close to impossible. But surely, there has to be some way out.

It is heartbreaking to see that the perpetual state of terror we live in, has actually, and quite sadly affected us in a not-so-positive way.

The youth seems to be getting numb to all the senseless bird attacks going on around them. Most people just shrug their shoulders with a “birds will be birds” response. This is exactly why we are all like Melanies of today.

We live in a society where politicians don’t know how to fulfill their promises and believe the only way to be involved is to arrive at the blast site after an attack has been successfully carried out. Authority figures are fast rising to their own personal levels of incompetence while justice systems aren’t anywhere close to being just. Education systems fail to educate in a country where the healthcare system is a luxury and where wannabe political activists use intolerance and protest to demand tolerance and peace.

We need to find ways to change all this.

Terrorists approach their tasks with the standpoint that human life is less important than their political goals. The leader of Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hassan Nasrallah, was quoted in 2006:
“We have discovered how to hit the Jews where they are the most vulnerable. The Jews love life, so that is what we shall take away from them. We are going to win, because they love life and we love death.”

This is what we are up against and till that attitude changes, nothing will. Absolutely nothing.
Anushka Jatoi A psychology graduate who is interested in literature and current affairs.
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


rk singh | 11 years ago | Reply Dear Ms.Jatoi no need to compare Taliban with birds or animals. They are normal humans. They have been treated badly and they are taking revenge on Pakistan for the injustice rendered on them by pak army. Pak army created Taliban to make war with India and regain Kashmir by proxy. Supposed to be Zia-ul-haq's master strategy (proving to be pakistan's funeral now), when he was playing god. Pakistan deceived them in 2001 when musharaff sold them out to USA for aid (read loot for pak army). If I was a talibani, i would have reacted likewise. So revenge can be expected, unless they are taken care socially and uplifted. More violence against them means more death and destruction. Nothing filmi/romantic here. Just plain social upliftment. And yes, closing the tap on pakistani army.
Sana Saleem | 11 years ago | Reply I think we can sense the same fear watching the movie or going out in Pakistan. Whenever we go outside our homes, we are not sure that we would be able to come back or not.
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