There’s no way to put a good spin on the lynching of the undercover cop in Srinagar. It was reprehensible. Most Kashmiris are horrified by the act & condemn it. It is not who they are & it is not the character of their freedom struggle.

Two men have been arrested but we don’t know enough about them to judge whether they were a criminal element or just young men who snapped under the constant pressure of the occupation.

The deceased was on surveillance duty at the main mosque which the occupying army has made a center of conflict, taking pictures of people as they left after midnight during a speech by an independence leader. When they confronted him to stop him from taking pictures, he pulled out his service revolver & started shooting into the crowd, injuring three people. Media reports are vague but he was reportedly beaten to death & then hung. Details here would be useful. Was he dead when they hung him? Did they actually hang him?

This is a condemnable act but no time to join the chorus of denunciations by the Indian army & Indian media. If we can’t understand how young people could snap from being beleaguered by an occupying army, facing at least one murder a day by those forces, subject to constant surveillance, harassment, violence, rape, torture, disappearance, incarceration, then we don’t understand much.

Spinoza once said “We study the past neither to weep nor to laugh but to understand.” We study this crime not to condemn the Kashmiri freedom struggle but to understand & to condemn the occupation that has twisted & destroyed the lives of so many.

End the occupation. Self-determination for Kashmir. May the officer Rest In Peace.