Opinion and Editorial

Talks and terror cannot go together

Filed on February 10, 2021

Proxies and militias have been propped in the Middle East to stoke sectarian tensions and conflicts.

Terrorists who will believe sovereign countries will succumb to attacks and threats are wasting their resources and ammunition. Terror has, for decades, been used by some countries as an instrument of state policy. Proxies and militias have been propped in the Middle East to stoke sectarian tensions and conflicts.

The result has been instability, strife and violence that is unceasing. The wanton bloodshed must end for the sake of the majority of people who seek peace and desire tolerance. The Middle East, the hub of civilisation needs better governance, healthcare, schools and institutions of research and technology. This is the new age of global cooperation, more so during a pandemic, but some regimes continue to read from the textbook of hatred that serves no purpose.

Violence as an industry has lost its sting and attraction, except among terror groups like the Houthis and Hezbollah who have attempted to make it a tool of governance in countries like Yemen, Iran and Lebanon. There is no rule of law in their book, only rule by fear.

These groups have held people hostage at the behest of their masters in Iran. When will they realise that their time is up? History is not on their side, nor are the people.

These instigators and funders of terrorism have failed in they efforts in the past and they will fail miserably now and in their future. The war economy they have built over the ruins in these countries have harmed millions of young people. Their reign of terror has run its course. The end is nigh.

Yet they fire rockets and drones into the territories of their neighbors from their havens in Yemen in their bid to cause destruction and unsettle the civilian population, like the one on an airport in Abha, Saudi Arabia. A plane was hit and non-combatants were put in harm’s way. This is a war crime, as the kingdom rightly pointed out. The attacks continue unabated despite UN efforts to broker peace and find a diplomatic solution to the crisis in Yemen with the regime in Tehran, the fount of terrorism.

This regime exports terror and has paid the price through Western-led sanctions that are hurting its own people who want freedom from want. When will the leaders in Tehran ever learn that peace cannot be won through bombs and bullets?

Saudi Arabia has been the target again for fighting on the side of the impoverished Yemenis, millions of whom have lost their lives in the sectarian conflict. For peace efforts to make headway, Iran has a responsibility to end the violence. The UN mission will be futile unless terror proxies are reined in.

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