As we were discussing the atrocities perpetrated by the American, Afghan and Pakistani intelligence on our sister Aafia Siddiqui, my students asked me, “Why her, Mu’allimah”? I paused for a moment and said “Allah knows best”. But reflecting on all of this, I thought, “How did her name end up on the FBI list”?
Aafia was not just a very intelligent girl-next-door- type. She and her family were widely traveled and rubbed shoulders with prime ministers. As General Hamid Gul, the former head of Pakistan’s intelligence agency, put it, “These are not riffraff—these are the cream of society.”
Very religious and active in da’wah and in a position of leadership, Dr. Aafia Siddiqui is described as very polite and correct, but driven. Everybody liked her. She once wrote in a letter to her family, “…that our humble effort continues, and expands . . . and more and more people come to the [religion] of Allah until America becomes a Muslim land”.
She was committed to helping orphans by raising money for them in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Kosovo. What caught America’s eye was that the donations were sent via “al-Kifah”. Al Kifah Refugee Center was based in the Faruq Mosque in Brooklyn, America. They initially raised funds for the Mujaahideen in Afghanistan against the Soviet occupiers during the 1980’s. America didn’t have a problem with al Kifah or the Mujaahideen back then as they were doing America a favour by defeating the Soviets.
Then there’s her ex-husband, Dr. Amjad Khan, wealthy son of Aga Abdul Khan, and heir to a pharmaceutical company.
The above reasons were all I could think of why Aafia Siidiqui could be mistaken as a terrorist to the ignorant and a scape-goat by those higher up.
As we mentioned earlier, Dr. Aafia was married to Amjad Khan. In 1999 while living in Boston, Dr. Aafia Siddiqui and her husband founded the non-profit Institute of Islamic Research and Teaching. They moved again in July 2001, this time to Malden. Aafia’s family claim that Khan was an abusive husband, and her colleagues at university reported that she often came in with bruises on her face. Khan admits that on one occasion, he threw a baby bottle at her face, splitting her lip, requiring stitches in the hospital, although he says that Aafia was violent and abusive.
Siddiqui moved back to Pakistan but Khan returned to the United States with his family on January 5, 2002, claiming he had been unable to find suitable employment in Pakistan.
In May 2002, the FBI questioned the couple regarding their purchase over the internet of $10,000 worth of night vision goggles, body armour, and military manuals including The Anarchist’s Arsenal, Fugitive, Advanced Fugitive, and How to Make C-4. Khan claimed that these were for hunting and camping expeditions.
Aafia’s mother, Ismet, claims that he was responsible for the investigation into Siddiqui, purchasing the suspicious items using her e-mail account, to be shipped to Pakistan shortly before they moved there.
In addition, the couple had transferred $8,000 to their Pakistani account with Habib Bank on December 21. Khan agreed to return the items he had purchased. On June 26, 2002, the couple returned to Pakistan. As mentioned previously, her father was ill and passed away after an argument with Khan. She gave birth to the youngest child shortly after this. Aafia and Amjad Khan’s talaaq (divorce) was finalised on October 21, 2002.
Amjad Khan claims he helped the ISI identify his ex-wife, whom they arrested as she returned to Jinnah International Airport from an overseas trip. She was questioned by the FBI, and American intelligence sources confirmed that she was “essentially in the hands of the FBI now.” Khan was eventually removed from the FBI list. As of 2005, he practiced medicine in Karachi, but poor Aafia was a lamb for slaughter.
I would like you to read “Dr Aafia Siddiqui’s husband breaks his silence after six years. (Wednesday, February 18, 2009)”. Follow this link for Dr. Amjad Khan’s side of the story… http://www.paklinks.com/gs/pakistan-affairs/312382-dr-aafia-siddiqui-s-husband-breaks-his-silence-after-six-years.html
Basically Khan believes that his ex wife is infact a terrorist and that she went into hiding to plan her next move as an Al-Qaeda operative. He claims that Aafia’s family secretly hid the children from him. As he says “I am sure they are around Karachi and in contact with their maternal family as both Aafia and the children were seen around their house here and in Islamabad on multiple occasions since their alleged disappearance in 2003. They may be living under an assumed identity for five years before they got arrested”. He said Dr Fowzia’s claim that the children are missing after being removed from the Bagram prison in Afghanistan ‘may be an attempt to attract sympathy of the government and the people and distract its attention from the real location.’
Come on! Why would a father keep quiet for six years living with a restless heart, not knowing where his children are? Which parent would patiently wait?? I am a parent and I would certainly not wait six years to talk if I knew for sure that my kids were with a “terrorist” spouse. And if they were on the run as he claims, why did his own son scream ad run away from his father saying in Urdu “This person used to hurt me in Afghanistan”.
Would an 11 year old boy make it up after 5 years? Would he not run to his father if he was kept by Aafia against his will? During Dr. Aafia’s trial, under cross examination, FBI Special Agent Angela Sercer admitted that while at the hospital in Bagram, Aafia expressed fear of “being tortured”. Sercer also admitted that Aafia expressed concern about the “welfare of the boy” and asked about him “every day”. Moreover, that Aafia only agreed to talk to her upon promises that the boy would be safe. According to the testimony Aafia said that the Afghans had “beaten her”; that her “husband had beaten her and her children”; and that she was “afraid of coming into physical harm”. (JFAC)
Things just don’t add up. Sell-outs… that’s what made it so easy to get Aafia where she is today. The driver of the car, who was to later become the chief informant in the UN-led investigation gave false evidence about Aafia, claiming that she was indeed in Monrovia to oversee a $19 million diamond deal on behalf of Al-Qaeda. The Afghan taxi driver now lives with his family in America and has been issued a green card. What about Parwez Musharraf, ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence or better known as Pakistani intelligence)? According to Amina Masood Janjua at Defence for Human Rights, there are currently about 500 people who have disappeared in Pakistan as part of the “War on Terror” — this does not include Sindhi and Balochi separatists. They doctor and manufacture documents, create false identities, use body doubles, with reference to various terrorist attacks, including Mumbai.
For lay people out there, it is astonishing to what lengths Intelligence agencies go to cover their tracks, to make their stories coincide with America’s, to keep pulling the wool over our eyes so that we may believe everything we are told like blind sheep!
What could possibly be more valuable than a human life? Yaa Rabb! What times do we find ourselves in? I pray that Allah Almighty will free sister Aafia and that those responsible, each and everyone who had a hand in this be exposed and brought to justice. Whose justice? Only Allah is al ‘Adl (All Just) and only His justice counts for something in this life and the next! Do not despair, Allah is with the righteous and truthful!