There is a necessary preliminary to the great Eid break, and that is the Great Trek away from the Big City. Even those who celebrate the Eid in the City are those who have a Village out there somewhere, but cannot go back. Perhaps the real reason is that they prefer to have their stomachs upset where there is modern plumbing, though with the decline of plumbing here, and the innovations and progress being made in Villages, that distinction is fading. Perhaps people do not want to have their stomach upset in their Villages, which is one advantage that the Big City definitely gives. However, it is perhaps this Eid that I realize why Eidul Azha is called Barhi Eid, or Big Eid, and Eidul Fitr Chhoti, or Little, Eid. Its the element of forewarning. For this Eid, we knew about well in advance. That means that the preparation could be made with certainty well in advance. Also, have you noticed that theres no dispute about the date with this one. In principle, if Mufti Muneeb and the Masjid Mahabat Khan people feud at the end of every Ramazan, they should feud now, but there never is any dispute that Eidul Azha must be marked not on the day after Haj, but two days after, because Mufti Muneeb doesnt accept any sightings of the moon except those in Pakistan. This year, the preparations have probably been easier than before, for there has been a distinct lack of enthusiasm about buying animals, mainly because they have simply priced themselves out of range for most people. Ive noticed that the over-riding concern is to take care of the meat, whether it comes from an animal slaughtered there, or the inflation taking place. Putting it simply, I dont think goats are affordable, and the hottest question is whether chickens can be sacrificed. Another notion we need to disabuse ourselves of is that every house has to sacrifice. But one of the things we need to find out is whether people are willing to make sure that everyone joins in the feast. We must not forget that we are commemorating something the Jews do not, the Sacrifice of Abraham. Its funny, that the Jews are so nationalistic in all their celebrations, but dont have any celebration of this event. Are they trying to avoid the fact that it wasnt Isaac who was offered, but Ishmael, not their ancestor, but that of the Arabs? Be that as it may, this is the Eid when we celebrate something one Jewish Prophet did to one who would be another. Well, we should remember that we follow the same religion as the Jews, the religion of Abraham and Moses. So not only is it right for us to commemorate a quintessentially Jewish occasion, but we must ascribe it to the Divine Purpose the Jews themselves leaving this particular event off their calendar. While we celebrate Eid, I wonder if we should spare a thought for the spot fixers. On the one hand, they have been convicted by an English jury, according to English laws. The superiority of the jury system and of English laws is what the War on Terror is all about. And the young men convicted were victims of their own dreams. Asiatics, who really have no right being so good at the white mans game, were caught out taking bribes from other Asiatic betting syndicates. And as we know, Asiatics (particularly the Chinese) are inveterate gamblers. This of course leaves out where those uppity Asiatics learnt about sports, or where they learnt to gamble on them. More to the point, it leaves out all those Australians, South Africans and Englishmen addicted to gambling, or with the right contacts with bookies. Who were as deserving of conviction as any. This trial, it should be noted, was carried out on the basis of evidence provided by a newspaper which has itself shut down because its recording tactics were considered too extreme, and exposed both media and politicians and the sort of things they got up to together. It seems that there is another spot fixer out there, not just unconvicted but unnamed. Though his suffering this Eid is probably nothing compared to the ordeal suffered by Dr Afia Siqddiqui, or the heirs of a drone attack victim, he too is a victim of the War on Terror. Of course, were all supposed to throw up our arms in horror at the young men who were supposed not to follow the dream of easy money they saw, and which they thought their athletic prowess commanded, but isnt this the Great American Dream for which so many of our people have died in the War on Terror? If theres no easy money involved, why are we in the War? Perhaps that should be asked of the President, whose main claim to political fame has been the fact that he has not been convicted by any court. And in the only English case against him, he submitted a medical certificate from a psychiatrist (which is a fancy word for 'loony doctor). Of course, being elected President means being qualified as an MNA, which means being sane. Of course, the love of money, and the addiction to 10 percent, is not found in the Western world. There will be those who will claim that being in a British jail for Eid is better than being in Lahore. Well, lets hope that our boys dont disgrace themselves there, because theyve taken a lot of flak for bringing disgrace upon the country by their conviction, as if that isnt what the jury was meant to do. Not by gambling, though theres a lot of that in British jails, but by not knowing how to use the facilities. Anyhow, lets leave the sacrificial animals of the War on Terror to a British jail, and return to our own Eid. Happy Eid, everyone