Counterfeit Islam Stalking with Terror and Fourth World nations are in the Crossfire
Officials of States’ governments, particularly those that are rushing to engage the New World War declared by US President George Bush should stop for a minute and think. States must recognize that they are entering a battle against a globalized movement that is reactionary in character. They must recognize that this movement seeks to use Fourth World nations against the state system. The violence being visited on innocents and combatants alike is intensifying the fear; the anger and the resolve for revenge and Fourth World nations are in the crossfire.
States must offer Fourth World nations an acceptable alternative to the manipulative and reactionary movement led by Usama bin Laden, and an alternative to state exploitation of Fourth World nations. States must now formulate a constructive approach to nation and state relations in their foreign and domestic policies. Failure to develop a sound Fourth World policy in foreign affairs as well as in domestic affairs will surely cause the present confrontation in Afghanistan to widen. The conflict now involves a few states in rocket and heavy armor attacks against political and religious organizations that use terror as a tactic of politics. The conflict is now located inside one of the poorest states in the world. In the heat of violent threats there are those on both sides who urge spreading the violence to other states. Such widening of violence and retribution will only be answered with greater violence and retribution and Fourth World nations will suffer in the bombings and firefights.
Only one state in the world, the Netherlands, has undertaken to introduce policies toward the Fourth World into foreign policy and domestic policy considerations. One explanation for the increasingly ferocious attacks on civilians, commercial buildings, and government buildings as well as ships by commandos is the failure of states’ governments to develop a sophisticated Fourth World policy that serves their interests as well as the interests of the Fourth World.
Where are Fourth World nations and who are the people included in them? The nations that occupied the lands before the formation of empires and modern states, who did not consent to the formation of the modern state and do not control a state make up the Fourth World. The more than 7000 Fourth World nations are the ancient seed of the world’s immigrant populations and the original peoples that populated the world before the formation of modern states over the last 450 years. Fourth World nations are the native populations on top of which were formed many new states since 1948—nations that did not agree to the formation of the state and were not integrated into the political power structure of the state. Fourth World nations include the Pashtun and Balukis in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Palestinians in the Middle East, Chechens in the Caucasus, as well as the Catalans of Spain, the Ogoni of Nigeria and the Ainu of Japan. The Pashtun along with the Hasara, Balukis, Tadjiks, Uzbeks and Uygurs in Central Asia are now at the center of a mean battle that concerns the whole world. What the people in these Fourth World nations think, decide and do on their own behalf will decide much of the world’s international policies for generations to come.
The terrified United States of America that suffered the debilitating attacks of September 11 has in the last twenty years almost single handedly worked in the international arena to deny self-determination to Fourth World nations. A new foreign policy in the United States must now reconsider that approach. The United States government must now look to recognizing the significance of Fourth World geopolitics on the present and future of international stability.
When Usama bin Laden said publicly on 12 October 1996 in a declaration of jihad, “It is the duty now on every tribe in the Arabian Peninsula to fight jihad and cleanse the land from these Crusader occupiers” he spoke to the very peoples the states’ governments have disdained and then ignored. He urges the tribes in the Arabian Peninsula to defend themselves against the Saudis and other governments who would sell the wealth of the land and their souls for money and recognition from the United States of America.
Clearly bin Laden is seeking the over-throw of the Saudi government and wishes to spill the blood of tribes in the Arabian Peninsula to achieve this goal. Bin Laden may, indeed, succeed in creating an uprising. He is hopeful that the more than 75 Fourth World nations of the Arabian Peninsula will rise up in opposition to the Saudi’s against whom allegations are made about their corruption and their failure to keep western European influences outside of this Moslem dominated country. He calls on the Tiyaha, the Ruwallah, Gasim, Bani Shahr, and Rashid among the many nations of the peninsula to turn against the Saudi’s and bring them down. These nations have so long been under the shroud of the Saudi’s any attempts by them to challenge Saudi legitimacy have been systematically and forcefully suppressed. The Palestinians, the Balukistanis, Kurds, Uzbeks, Pashtuns, Hasara, Tadjiks, Sindh, Punjabs and Kashmiris in the Middle East have long pleaded for constructive and cooperative relations with the various states’ governments including the government of the United States. They have, for the most part seen only a deaf ear turned their way. The cynical call to “tribes” by Usama bin Laden was made even though he would subsume these same tribes in a shroud of counterfeit Islam denying to them their distinctive cultures.
Bin Laden’s deception is only a call to subsume Fourth World nations and deny their distinct cultural rights under a hegemonic and counterfeit Islam. But bin Laden’s call rings true in the ears of many because it sounds like the loudest of the many thousands of calls from Fourth World nations for open constructive relations based on mutual respect and cooperation. Fourth World nations have been issuing such calls to states’ governments for a hundred years.
States’ governments in many parts of the world threaten the peace and security of Fourth World nations through their economic, military, political, environmental, and social policies causing cultural disorientation, dislocation, disease, and death. Representatives of states’ governments have been too concerned only with the relations between states and with corporations and with the business of generating wealth that they fail to notice the burning and desperate frustrations building in the Fourth World—the very frustrations that bin Laden hopes to capture and ignite for his own foul goals.
The United States government and many other states have long been blatant offenders of Fourth World peoples. Take for example the actions of the United States government toward the Hmong, a people in Laos and Vietnam. Serving what it considered its own interests, the United States government initiated a policy during the war in Vietnam to arm and train the Hmong to fight against the Vietnamese on behalf of the United States. Throughout the war the Hmong fought valiantly and often successfully taking many casualties and suffering considerable violence against their families and lands. When the US government no longer had a use for the Hmong and the war had come to an end they were simply left in the mountains to suffer retribution from the Vietnamese who were in no mood to embrace neighbors who had helped their enemy. The Hmong suffered terribly after the Americans abandoned them.
In 1992, immediately after the collapse of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the Center for World Indigenous Studies was invited by then president of the Supreme Soviet, Ruslan Kasbulatov, to consult with the withered Russian government on appropriate approaches to dealing with the 150 non-Russian peoples remaining with the Russians in what was left of the USSR. We suggested that Russia, Germany, Japan and the United States of America join ten Fourth World nations including the San Blas Kuna of Central America, Tibet, Sami of Scandinavia, Massai of southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania, Lummi of the United States of America, the Crimean Tartar and others in a planning body to organize an international Congress of Nations and States in Moscow.
The Russian government and the government of Germany were open to working with the ten indigenous nations to plan, organize and convene this unprecedented Congress of States and Nations at a venue in Moscow. Japan’s foreign ministry advised that it would only participate if the United States government participated. A meeting hosted by the Russians at the Russian Federation’s Embassy in Washington, D.C. was called to brief all state’s parties. Representatives of Russia, Germany, Japan and the United States sat and received a briefing from representatives of the Center for World Indigenous Studies in September of 1992. The United States, under the leadership of President George Bush, held back and finally opposed this hopeful effort at establishing dialogue between Fourth World nations and the world’s states’ governments on a peaceful approach to long and festering conflicts. With the US withdrawal from active consideration of a Congress of Nations and States it dissuaded the government of Japan from participating and left the Russians and the Germans, not to mention the ten Fourth World nations hanging.
The US Department of State Legal Affairs Department, at the last moment before final agreement of all parties, in the Fall of 1992 objected to this important effort and fired off a memorandum to the US embassy in Moscow directing that the talks be broken off with the Russian government on this subject. The US government withdrew from discussions. The US government embarrassed the Russian Government that had extended itself as a venue host and the German government that had worked hard to bring parties to this Congress together. At considerable political risk the Russian government and Germans worked to facilitate the participation of the Dahli Lama representing Tibet even though the Chinese government vigorously objected. The US Department of State made a serious mistake in 1992.
The opportunity for a constructive process of talks and mutual policy development between Fourth World nations and states’ governments had been lost. The US government subsequently took a harsh stance in opposition to applying the internationally recognized principle of self-determination to indigenous nations at the UN meeting on Human Rights in Austria two years later. The US government vigorously opposed inserting language on the right of self-determination in the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Objections during the Clinton Administration effectively halted UN consideration of a carefully developed international declaration by objecting to the self-determination language in the Commission on Human Rights.
The United States government, and indeed no state government can afford to ignore the geopolitical importance of Fourth World nations. Certainly, no government should attempt to further forestall recognition of the right of self-determination for Fourth World nations. If ever there was a time for states’ governments and their international organizations to open a rapprochement with the nations of the world that time is now.