We all look for legends around us; after the 1965 war there were no more heroes to remember. As a teacher I would always ask my class to talk about real life heroes but they found it hard to think of any heroic dead done by a real person around them. Aitzaz Hussain a true martyr of Pakistan’s war on terror has set a high precedent of heroism in Pakistan. Malala Yousafzai has been used to promote anti-Pakistan feelings in the west but Aitzaz Hussain has shown true courage and an extraordinary resolve for one so young.

Nations survive on the tales of bravery exhibited by their heroes in the time of need. Aitzaz has reminded everyone in the country what is their sacred duty to safeguard the country against the ominous threat of terrorism. Without going into the debate about who started this war and whether it’s genuinely a Pakistani cause it seems the new generation owns it more than the older people. The incident also manifests that it’s a war now effectively sucking another generation of Pakistanis into it. I would like to salute the younger generation who are trying to stop this aimless war.

People like Malala and Aitzaz certainly connect with new generation of Pakistanis and are their heroes. The great sacrifice rendered by the young man has once again exposed the elements of right wing politics who in the garb of justice and faith based politics are trying to confuse and divide young Pakistanis on the issue of terrorism. State sponsored orthodoxy has taken a heavy toll on the unity of Pakistani society. The country already had serious ideological issues in shape of faith based state narrative conflicting with cultural based regional narrative of Nationalism. In these times of dismay and hopelessness people like Aitzaz are keeping the spirits alive. It is about time that the confused older generations must respond to the call of motherland like Aitzaz did.

MALIK ATIF MAHMOOD MAJOKA,

Australia, January 12.