Only Pakistanis Can Stop the Violence: Friedman

Friedman: Where is the outrage over Mumbai?
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 3, 2008 7:59 AM CST
Pakistani protesters condemn the reproduction of cartoons depicting Muhammad in Danish newspapers, Monday, June 2, 2008. The front banner reads: "Cut diplomatic relations with Denmark."    (AP Photo/Khalid Tanveer)
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(Newser) – In 2006, thousands of Pakistanis took to the streets in weeks of protests against Danish cartoons that satirized the Prophet Muhammad. Yet after 173 people were shot dead in Mumbai, apparently by Pakistani killers, the response in the streets was silence. If Pakistan is to become a viable state, writes Tom Friedman in the New York Times, then its citizens must collectively "isolate, condemn, and denounce publicly and repeatedly the murderers."

The admittedly weak Pakistani government has done its best to take the Mumbai attacks seriously, and writers have flooded the country's press with expressions of sympathy. But that's not enough, Friedman says; if terrorism is to be prevented, then "all the good people in Pakistan" need to declare that murdering innocents is unacceptable and contra Islam. Otherwise, the violence will continue both abroad and at home, and Pakistanis will "destroy their own society in the process."