“May I point out to Great Britain that this question of Palestine, if not fairly and squarely met, boldly and courageously decided, is going to be the turning point in the history of the British Empire. I am sure I am speaking not only of the Mussalmans of India but of the world, and all sections of right thinking and fair-minded people will agree when I say that Great Britain will be digging its grave if she fails to honour her original proclamation, promises and intentions-pre-war.”
MA Jinnah’s Presidential Address at the Lucknow Session of the All-India Muslim League (15 to 18 October, 1937).
“The way in which the British Government have hitherto dealt with the Arabs is the greatest blot on their national honour.”
M A Jinnah on British Government’s Policy (New Times, November 27, 1938).
“But no nation, no people who are worth living as a nation, can achieve anything great without making great sacrifices, such as the Arabs of Palestine are making. All our sympathies are with those valiant martyrs who are fighting the battle of freedom against usurpers.”
MA Jinnah’s Presidential Address at the Annual Session
of the All India Muslim League held at Patna (26-29 December, 1938).
“If President Roosevelt, under the pressure of the powerful world Jewry, commits the blunder of forcing the British Government to do injustice to the Arabs in Palestine, it will set the whole Muslim world ablaze from one end to another. Grave wrongs had already been done to the Arabs. If the Jewish immigration is allowed to continue, I have no doubt that not only the Muslim League will revolt but the whole Muslim world will revolt.”
Speech of M A Jinnah at Strachey Hall Aligarh (10 March, 1944).
“We cannot remain silent and we must assure the Arabs that Indian Muslims will stand by them.”
M A Jinnah’s Speech at the Council of the All-India Muslim League (10 April, 1946).
These are some of the statements of Pakistans founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah regarding Palestine. Keep in mind, these are not just statements, these are policy statements. From these statements you can judge the conviction Jinnah had and the responsibility he felt being the founding leader of an independent Islamic state.
Jinnah`s statements show that he wanted to establish an Islamic bloc, he longed for the Muslim leaders to unite and safeguard their interests and their ideology. Tutored by Iqbal, Jinnah understood the need of Muslims to educate themselves and bring their political and religious thought up to date with the new world which was then entering into a post-modern era.
Jinnah created a benchmark for the future leaders of Pakistan to formulate their internal and foreign policy. During the 60`s and 70`s we saw some attempts to unite the Islamic states, many people who live in Karachi still testify that till the 90`s large numbers of Palestinian students used to study in Karachi University and various other universities. Even today Pakistani military trains units of the Palestinian army at the Pakistan Military Staff College. But this isn`t enough, Pakistan needs to adopt a firm and proactive strategy for Palestine,however this seems almost impossible with our current breed of politicians.
We can hope that in the coming days, Pakistan will go through a phase of revolution which will hopefully transform it into a country which can play an active role to bring stability in the region. All the Muslim world needs right now is leadership, the people are ready, they are out on the roads protesting, but there is no credible leader. If we can get a leader like Jinnah, who can stand with conviction and belief and a resolution as firm as the mountain, I believe that the Palestinian cause can be addressed in a much better way.
by Danial Ahmed
Team Operation Pakistan