Police Not Called in to Put Down Mild and Ruly Crowds Across Middle East

Karachi, Pakistan ( – Alarmed almost to the point of action, millions of radical moderates across the Middle East and Asia today didn’t take to the streets in what wasn’t a massive show of force that might have convinced the world that not everyone here is a violent, fanatical nutcase.

Riot police said no demonstrators were killed, and as many as all of them weren’t injured.

moderate man

Warned one Karachi shopkeeper, his eyes blazing with moderation as he didn’t join throngs of militant midliners who weren’t throwing stones or blocking intersections: “We may not agree with the U.S., but like most people in our region, the majority of Pakistanis do not support these violent extremists who think only of jihad, and we will stay put in our homes and our businesses in overwhelming numbers to make this known. It is time that we stand down to proclaim that we will not be moved one way or the other!

“I am sorry, I did not mean to shout,” he added.

In other parts of the region, majorities chose to lash out in similarly unprovocative ways. Moderate zealots in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – brimming with pent-up dispassion and chanting slogans such as “Both sides have a point” and “What’s for lunch?” – quietly called for an unofficial nationwide Day of Hoping Everything Kind of Gets Better on Its Own. In Indonesia, where the bulk of the population is said to want peace and harmony, temperate elements expressed their fervent moderation by avoiding the enraged minority.

“The angry, maniacal ones get all the attention. and then influence, and eventually, most probably, control of the government. But kids today, what can you do?” said one postal worker from Jakarta.

According to some moderates in the area, however, much of the blame for disregarding the peaceful majority should fall on the Western news media, which they say is only interested in filming chaotic protests.

“The reporters want to see blood in the streets, they want to see the crazy people,” said an Egyptian college student. “Why don’t they come into our homes and film us just watching television, not doing or saying anything contentious? Yes, there are a few thousand people out there chanting and burning flags and shooting guns, but there are millions of us not doing anything.”

Asked why the moderates are not out there doing anything, the man frowned.

“Perhaps you didn’t hear the part where I said they’re shooting guns,” he answered.

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