Here it is. The tattoos on the dead bodies of militants in Peshawar finally proved the world was wrong and a few Mullahs in Pakistan were right. They all responded with one voice--'See! we were telling you Muslims can't carry terror attacks against their Muslim brothers. The tattoos proved the terrorists are not Muslims but agents of '--' open to their guesses.
Tattoos & Circumcission: The Weight in Argument
The apologists of Taliban have now bagged two proofs for their narrative of terrorism. The old one said that many militants killed in fightings were found uncircmcised. The latest evidence is the clear picture of the demonic tattoos on the back of a militant killed in a police operation near Peshawar airport on Dec 16, 2012. The Taliban sympathizers are putting their utmost efforts to exploit the minor events, favoring their version of the narrative, in the over 10 year long war on schools, markets, mosques and fellow citizens.
The pro-Taliban lobbyists' arguments lack knowledge about local cultures and historical facts while linking circumcission so close to Islam and tattoos as a heretic act. The culture of circumcission is more or less the same in Waziristan and parts of Central Asian states. People in Waziristan would tell you that circumcission was not that in among the locals till lately.
So is the Central Asia. The Muslims' conquests of the Central Asia took place in 705-715 A.D. The then newly appointed governors there doubted the religious allegiance of the converts to Islam as they were evading taxes. The governor of Khurasan, for example, tested their faith by ordering circumcission of the newly converts. The then caliph of the Ummayyads era Umar 2nd forbade it. The history has recorded his order as saying: "Mohammad was sent to spread the message of Islam among the people, not to circumcise them."
The practice of circumcission is still not existing in several Muslim population pockets of the Central Asia. The long rule of the former communist Soviet Union in Central Asia also distanced Muslim communities from several religious rites and culture. Unlike the male Muslims in the mainstream Pakistan, the chances are that many militants hailing from the Central Asia and Waziristan might not have gone through the ordeal of circumcission.
So is the culture of tattoos. A Muslim in Madina or Lahore might not go for tattooing on his/her body but if our Mullahs look beyond those two cities they would see a variety of cultures, influences, cults and behaviors in the diverse Muslim communities. For example, female circumcission is almost common in some African countries, including Muslim states. If it happens in Pakistan, people would come out on roads. The PAF base attacker in Peshawar is from Daghestan (Russia). Tattoos are considered common among the youth in that part of the world and should not be a surprise. Nor should be treated as a game changer in the narrative of militancy.
A Muslim Can't Fight Against Muslims:
Soon after the tattoos were found on the dead body of the militant/s, clerics and scholars of the rank of Jama'at-e-Islami's (JI) Prof. Khurshed Ahmad said tattoos were haram in Islam and it showed a Muslim can't fight against the Muslim, declaring the dead militant as non-Muslim. (Prof Khurshed's hypocritic comment on Dec 16 ignores the deadly past of his party's involvement in the genocide of the Bengali Muslims.) To their surprise, a note found with the tattooed militant body said his name was Masa'ab and his goal was to fight against the heretics. That is neither the first nor the last evidence proving the fact that Muslims do fight against Muslims.
Mullahs and their extensions in media have always defied history when it comes to the bloody civil wars within the Muslim Ummah. The history of Muslims shows groups of Muslim dissidents fought against the mainstream Muslims in days when CIA, ISI, Mossad or RAW didn't even exist. Those small groups have been referred to as 'Khawarij', (Kharijis) or heretics and sometime 'apostates'.
The first known FORMAL fight, for example, against the Khawarij in history is known as Battle of Nahrawan (March 22nd, 658). It was the fight between the forces led by the 4th caliph of Islam Hazrat Ali and hundreds of the rebels (Mostly Koran readers) who committed atrocities against the Muslims in eastern Iraq . The rebels mercilessly cut the throat of Abdullah bin Khabbab, the son of a Companion of the Prophet of Islam and speared his pregnant wife to death, providing an immediate cause for the war. The Muslim historians have a unanimous version on the murder of Abdullah bin Khabab and his pregnant wife. They say the couple came across the Kharijis in eastern Iraq who questioned them about the 3rd caliph of Islam-Hazrat Uthman. The husband replied he was a just caliph. It infuriated the Kharijis and ordered their murder. Hazrat Ali marched towards them, though he was on way to Syria, and asked them to return allegiance and surrender those who committed murders. They said they were equally responsible for the murders. Though some withdrew, 1800 die-hard opted for a fight at Nahrawan. The forces of Hazrat Ali won it while all but seven Kharijis escaped live. A read to the History of Islam tells that Kharijis and orthodox Muslims have always been treated as enemies of the mainstream Muslim Umma.
Living in the Land of Confusion
The latest and early history of Islam authenticate the fact that Muslims fought among themselves in their very 1st century and they do kill one another in the current 21st century. There were bad guys in its history. There will be forces of darkness fighting with those bearing torches in the Muslim Ummah in its future too. By their very existence, they give a choice to the beholders to go for the good or bad. TTP claimed their men attacked the PAF base in Peshawar. Their apologists said the tattoos on the militants bodies showed Muslims can't carry out such attacks. The winners are the killers in the prevailing state of confusion.