April 22, 2010
by Archen Baloch
Iran has now started building a concrete fence along the arbitrary border between Iran and Pakistan, from Taftan to Mand, which is more than 700 miles long. This arbitrary border divides the Baloch homeland. The Iranian excuse is that it wants to stop the movement of so-called terrorists from Pakistani-occupied Balochistan into Iranian-controlled Balochistan. This concrete fence is 10 feet high and 3 feet thick . . . The Baloch economy is entirely dependent on border trades on both sides of the Occupied Balochistan. If Iran succeeds in building this fence and the Baloch’s only source of income is straggled, then the world has to prepare itself for another hunger stricken Africa in the form of Balochistan . . . The GCC countries’ intellectual and human rights campaigners never say a single word against the blatant violation of human rights and the genocide of the Baloch nation at the hands of theocratic regime of Iran and the security state of Pakistan, let alone their rulers. Instead, they are showering Pakistan with their free oil.
Photo by Karlos Zurutuza: Zahedan, Iran
Iran is feeling the heat of possible repercussions for its misdeeds towards the Baloch nation. Only within the last week, Iran has taken several preventative measures designed to contain any potential Baloch insurgency. The reasons are obvious: The first thing that comes to mind while thinking about Iran’s new measures is that Iran has caused a lot of trouble for Middle Eastern nations, particularly the GCC countries. It is conceivable that these Middle Eastern countries could use the Baloch nation’s anger against it.
Persian regimes and rulers have never provided the Baloch people, in known history, with any chances to utilize and develop their own cultural and natural resources. Rather, Persian rulers have ruthlessly persecuted the Baloch nation by characterizing them as Ashrar, smugglers, atheists and traitors, whenever the Baloch have tried to establish themselves as a nation in their own homeland!
To detract world attention from the internal contradictions caused by its different nationalities, Iran has spread its tentacles of religious terrorism throughout peaceful Middle Eastern Arab countries. The GCC countries are its prime targets.
On Thursday last week Iranian president, Ahmadi Nejad, during his visit to Zahidan, the Capitol of Western Balochistan, accused Middle Eastern nations and Western Powers of ignorance and arrogance. During his meeting with some of the provincial officials in its occupied southeastern Balochistan, he said that “the enemies of the Islamic Iran want to change Seistan and Balochistan Province into an insecure place. People of this province played a key role in protecting Iran’s identity, independence, dignity and territorial integrity”.
Prior to Nejadi’s statement, the Iranian ambassador to Pakistan, Mashalla Shakeri, told the Pakistani press that Iran was willing to share copper and gold refinery technology with Pakistani-Occupied Balochistan. Iran also offered Pakistan a 1000 megawatt electricity line to Balochistan to overcome its shortfall. According to Shakari, Iran would help the Baloch people develop themselves.
But contrary to the above mentioned efforts to woo and appease the disgruntled Baloch, Iran has now started building a concrete fence along the arbitrary border between Iran and Pakistan, from Taftan to Mand, which is more than 700 miles long. This arbitrary border divides the Baloch homeland. The Iranian excuse is that it wants to stop the movement of so-called terrorists from Pakistani-occupied Balochistan into Iranian-controlled Balochistan. This concrete fence is 10 feet high and 3 feet thick. It is worth mentioning here that a few weeks ago it was reported that Iran was vigorously establishing military cantonments and garrisons across Balochistan. Iranian defense minister Brig. Gen Ahmad Wahidi has said that “the fence is to prevent villains from crossing into the Islamic republic”.
The Baloch economy is entirely dependent on border trades on both sides of the Occupied Balochistan. If Iran succeeds in building this fence and the Baloch’s only source of income is straggled, then the world has to prepare itself for another hunger stricken Africa in the form of Balochistan.
Thousands of political and non political Baloch people have been arrested without any reason. A large number of them have been hanged in public, and more of them are waiting to be hanged!
What harm have the Baloch done to the Persian people? No one can explain it! Hafeez Hassanabadi, the renowned Baloch writer, has rightly questioned “What is the relationship between Iran and the Baloch nation? One has to explain it!”
Now, coming to the relationship between the Arab and Baloch people: as a neighboring nation, the Baloch have contributed tremendously to the peace of almost all countries in the GCC, except Saudi Arabia. Without the presence of Baloch manpower in the security forces in these Gulf countries, current prosperity would not have been achieved, given the 60s, 70s and 80s political structure of the GCC countries. The British Empire relied heavily on the Baloch from ancient Baloch communities living in the Gulf countries as a neutral force to man the Gulf’s security forces.
What Iran and Pakistan are doing against the Baloch nation is understandable, but why have our Arab brothers become a silent spectator to the blatant massacre of the Baloch people at the hands of Iran and Pakistan? It is beyond our comprehension. The GCC countries’ intellectual and human rights campaigners never say a single word against the blatant violation of human rights and the genocide of the Baloch nation at the hands of theocratic regime of Iran and the security state of Pakistan, let alone their rulers. Instead, they are showering Pakistan with their free oil. This apathy of their natural allies, however, did not deter the Baloch nation from struggling for the freedom of their homeland. Fighting in solitude, the Baloch are paying a heavy price for the freedom of their homeland in terms of human lives.
The enemies of the Baloch, both Pakistan and Iran, are collaborating with each other on security issues, sharing information and carrying out joint operations against Baloch freedom fighters, the Sarmachars, on a daily basis. Pakistan has transferred centrifuges to Iran using Baloch air, land and sea. And Baloch political forces time and again informed the world community that Iran and Pakistan are engaged in a sinister kind of business. But no one listened to the warnings. Pakistan’s interior minister Rahman Malik is highly active in coordinating Iranian and Pakistani security forces to crush the Baloch insurgency on both sides. He constantly shuttles between Tehran and Islamabad!
Now the stark question is this: Why, despite knowing that Iran has an antagonistic history with the GCC countries, is Pakistan proliferating nuclear technology to Iran?
The predicament of the Baloch nation is that the majority of diaspora Baloch living in the Gulf countries are unable to voice their anger against Iranian and Pakistani atrocities because of the host countries’ political systems. The diaspora Baloch are extremely respectful of Arab hospitality. Even under immense pressure, they refrain from voicing their anger against Iranian and Pakistani atrocities.
The large number of Baloch people living in Gulf countries are sufficient to turn the earth against Pakistani and Iranian persecutors and draw the attention of the world community to the plight of their Baloch nation.
If the volatility of Middle Eastern nations had any positive impact on any nation other than the Arabs in the region it would be none other than the Baloch! In the neighborhood of GCC countries, Balochistan, occupied by both Iran and Pakistan, is becoming increasingly volatile. The Baloch nation is already engaged in guerrilla warfare with both Iran and Pakistan. They are not, however, receiving as much Arab media and public attention as deserved.
A last word! To successfully deter Iranian extremism and terrorism in the Middle East, reducing it to only to Qum, and to allow peace and prosperity to flourish in the region, the Baloch are a determining factor. It is high time for Middle Eastern media to allow a space for Baloch journalists to voice their anger against Iranian and Pakistani atrocities. The Arab intellectual’s interaction with pro-freedom Baloch intellectuals and writers would bring a better understanding to the Baloch national question.