Samir Chopra March 4, 2009

Terrorists don't care for cricket

Why anyone would imagine that a mere cricket team would get in the way of their fascist ideology is beyond me
92



Last night, as I watched the India-New Zealand one-day international, Simon O'Doull and Ravi Shastri broke the news of the attack on the Sri Lankan team. I checked the headlines to make sure I'd heard them correctly, looked for updates, and then, still stunned, posted a brief note on my blog, which ended, "What a tragic way to refute the stupidest argument ever made in favor of playing cricket in Pakistan: 'the terrorists won't attack cricketers'". I never found that argument convincing (an attitude implicit in my post last year on why the Australian team was justified in not touring Pakistan), and it clearly doesn't have much mileage now.

Besides attempting to read the minds of unhinged killers, that argument committed the singular fallacy of imagining the terrorists had some stake in winning the hearts and minds of the Pakistani populace. They don't. They were, and are, interested in destabilizing the Pakistani polity, damaging its economy, and showing the Pakistani state is incapable of protecting the lives of its citizens. Why anyone would imagine that a mere cricket team would get in the way of their fascist ideology is beyond me. These folks were killing hundreds of innocent Pakistani men, women and children every year. That wasn't alienating the Pakistani populace? These killers were going to somehow spare international cricketers because they thought that would affect their public relations profile? That somehow the attack on a cricket team was going to be more damaging for their public profile than the much-repeated shots of women and children grieving for their dead?

Imran Khan, who for all his cricketing genius, always struck me as a political and intellectual lightweight, was fond of making the "the militants won't attack the cricketers" claim. Imran had in mind the idea that the violence in Pakistan was part of some massive expression of post-9/11 anti-American sentiment. But far more perspicuous analysis, by Pervez Hoodbhoy the distinguished Pakistani physicist, after the Lal Masjid events of 2007, always suggested the designs of the terror groups were more straightforward and ideological: destroy the Pakistani state from within.

The idea that these killers are cricket fans who in their spare time fire off a few AK-47s was always ludicrous. Indeed, one could make a very convincing argument that given all the focus on the international cricket scene and its security hassles, the terrorists, who do not lack a certain kind of deadly single-minded nous, would step up their efforts to attack a cricket team to completely discredit the Pakistani government. That they have done. In doing so, besides killing innocents, they have set back international cricket in Pakistan by a very long way. I assure you: they do not give a damn what cricket fans think about them.

In all of this, let us not forget that somewhere in Pakistan the families of the slain policemen are grieving. That is the true tragedy of today. The Sri Lankans are safe; one should be grateful for small mercies. And the Pakistani team will find other venues to play in. But the toll in human lives in Pakistan exacted by this insane violence shows no sign of diminishing.

Samir Chopra lives in Brooklyn and teaches Philosophy at the City University of New York. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • jaggie_c on March 6, 2009, 14:29 GMT

    I am actually tired of this statement "This can happen everywhere". This happens at a quicker frequency in Pakistan than anywherelse due to many terrorist groups *given* safe haven there.

    This hypocratic denial by the public that is unable to acknowledge the root cause is what is making the world vulnerable. We do not have guts to acknowledge the facts!!!!.. I feel pity about it than anything else.

  • op on March 5, 2009, 10:05 GMT

    I am a big fan of cricket.The Lahore attack not only just on SLC but also on World of Cricket and on the feelings of millions of cricket fans. In present scenario , Terrorism become the biggest threat to Human race in World.It has no religion.Their only goal to spread terror no matter in which way. So now time come to be united to eradicate terrorism and bring peace to this beautiful world.

  • Nayanta Pandita on March 5, 2009, 7:38 GMT

    Just a few lines only: 1) Terrorism is a global menace. Stop blaming Pakistan alone - get together to uproot this menace for good. 2) This is exactly what we are doing in Sri Lanka - the fight is against "Terrorists" and not against Tamil People. 3) It is about time all those so called "Human Rights Organizations" that wears blinders and only see the rights of the terrorists shut their gap once and for all and let us get on with the job. 4)The President of Sri Lanka should invite the driver to Sri Lanka who acted bravely and honour him. 5) Thank God the cricketers did not die - but never forget the fact that 8 innocent human beings -who did these jobs because they needed to feed their children, lost their lives. Their lives are as valuable as those of the cricketers.

  • Imad on March 5, 2009, 6:22 GMT

    Mr. Chopra I salute you for your words, I salute you for your sentiments, and now in hindsight, I appreciate the kind way you say "I told you so". On behalf of a nation who has now lost all credibility, I can now only pray that those in power in Pakistan may now perhaps choose to open their eyes and actually do something to protect Pakistan's sovereignty and its people.

    My fellow Pakistanis who still are trying to find ways to shift blame and focus from this atrocity to other avenues (India), my suggestion to them is that it is now time to wake up and accept that there is a problem in Pakistan, and it needs to be fixed. We can no longer be like that woman who throws the trash she cleans out of her house in front of her neighbour's house and then be indignant at them for not keeping the street clean.

  • sanjay, Colorado on March 4, 2009, 20:58 GMT

    1. Stop throwing stones at each other. This can happen anywhere. 2. Invest millions that you get from people for their education, not just protecting cricket, but its fan and everyone who loves it. 3. Face it. Whether it is PCB or BCCI or any other cricket body, it is there responsibility to make sure Govt has provided enough security. If not, buy private security using the money you earn from Cricket Match. Don't just say it is govt who has the power (reference to PCB). 4. CRICKET cannot stop terrorism (source is primarily uneducated people, poverty and extreme ideology) but Terrorism can stop CRICKET. 5. Life is worth living for people than dying for cricket

  • Naveen on March 4, 2009, 16:16 GMT

    This is really shocking news for me. Even though, I am an Indian. Iam very sorry to Srilankan's and Pakistanies too. Thinking of Pakistani people living their lives in terror. How do get their normal life back? Is there any end to this. One incident in Mumbai shocked the whole India. If these things are happening every day, what do the government say. What do the people have about their future. Hope the piece comes in their lives.

  • cheel on March 4, 2009, 15:57 GMT

    It is a dastardly act comitted by some cowards and me being an Indian can understand the plight of Pakistan cricket supporters since I had to go through the same albeit for a brief period before the English team decided to return back, I hope and pray that things will heal and head back to being normal. Its not just Pakistan's loss the cricketting fraternity will be robbed of some geniunely entertaining and hard fought cricket. I would expect my fellow Indian's to stand by our neighbours in such an hour of crisis. Hoping cricket in Pak is revived so that we can continue our love for hating there guts. Afterall I don't want my kid to grow up thinking India Pakistan cricketting rivalry is folklore.

  • Abul Shamsuddin on March 4, 2009, 15:54 GMT

    The blame game will take us no where. The terrorists not only hate cricket, they hate anything that is civil and decent. They have to be confronted in unison not in isolation. What happened in Lahore, Mumbai or even in Mangalore may have different dimensions, but they have one commonality that is to instill fear in the minds of common people and establish a reign of terror.

    South Asiain countries are becomming a hot bed of terrorist activities, this will excerbate if the politicians and state actors engage in a balme game instead of tackling the root causes and eradicate them.

    "The price of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil men" Plato

  • Shamintha on March 4, 2009, 15:48 GMT

    When i saw the news in the morining I could not belive what happened. As a Sri Lankan and die hard SL Cricket fan I was shocked to teh bone, hurt and sad. I too was one of those who were naive enough to believe that Pakistan was safe enough for our team to travel. After all we had a great relationship with PCB. We never forgot how tehy stood up for us in 96 when western teams refused to our us because of security concerns. It was just right that we returned teh favour (this was not a tour based on money alone like some here have suggested)- everyone in pakistan will be grateful and we could watch cricket against a good opponent. I feel sorry for our hosts and I know that 99% will be ashamed of this. Hopefully this will give them the motivation to realize what fundamentalism really means: no limits - just blind hate - even against those who were there to help.

  • Abul Shamsuddin on March 4, 2009, 15:46 GMT

    The blame game will take us no where. The terrorists not only hate cricket, they hate anything that is civil and decent. They have to be confronted in unison not in isolation. What happened in Lahore, Mumbai or even in Mangalore may have different dimensions, but they have one commonality that is to instill fear in the minds of common people and establish a reign of terror.

    South Asiain countries are becomming a hot bed of terrorist activities, this will excerbate if the politicians and state actors engage in a balme game instead of tackling the root causes and eradicate them.

    "The price of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil men" Plato

  • jaggie_c on March 6, 2009, 14:29 GMT

    I am actually tired of this statement "This can happen everywhere". This happens at a quicker frequency in Pakistan than anywherelse due to many terrorist groups *given* safe haven there.

    This hypocratic denial by the public that is unable to acknowledge the root cause is what is making the world vulnerable. We do not have guts to acknowledge the facts!!!!.. I feel pity about it than anything else.

  • op on March 5, 2009, 10:05 GMT

    I am a big fan of cricket.The Lahore attack not only just on SLC but also on World of Cricket and on the feelings of millions of cricket fans. In present scenario , Terrorism become the biggest threat to Human race in World.It has no religion.Their only goal to spread terror no matter in which way. So now time come to be united to eradicate terrorism and bring peace to this beautiful world.

  • Nayanta Pandita on March 5, 2009, 7:38 GMT

    Just a few lines only: 1) Terrorism is a global menace. Stop blaming Pakistan alone - get together to uproot this menace for good. 2) This is exactly what we are doing in Sri Lanka - the fight is against "Terrorists" and not against Tamil People. 3) It is about time all those so called "Human Rights Organizations" that wears blinders and only see the rights of the terrorists shut their gap once and for all and let us get on with the job. 4)The President of Sri Lanka should invite the driver to Sri Lanka who acted bravely and honour him. 5) Thank God the cricketers did not die - but never forget the fact that 8 innocent human beings -who did these jobs because they needed to feed their children, lost their lives. Their lives are as valuable as those of the cricketers.

  • Imad on March 5, 2009, 6:22 GMT

    Mr. Chopra I salute you for your words, I salute you for your sentiments, and now in hindsight, I appreciate the kind way you say "I told you so". On behalf of a nation who has now lost all credibility, I can now only pray that those in power in Pakistan may now perhaps choose to open their eyes and actually do something to protect Pakistan's sovereignty and its people.

    My fellow Pakistanis who still are trying to find ways to shift blame and focus from this atrocity to other avenues (India), my suggestion to them is that it is now time to wake up and accept that there is a problem in Pakistan, and it needs to be fixed. We can no longer be like that woman who throws the trash she cleans out of her house in front of her neighbour's house and then be indignant at them for not keeping the street clean.

  • sanjay, Colorado on March 4, 2009, 20:58 GMT

    1. Stop throwing stones at each other. This can happen anywhere. 2. Invest millions that you get from people for their education, not just protecting cricket, but its fan and everyone who loves it. 3. Face it. Whether it is PCB or BCCI or any other cricket body, it is there responsibility to make sure Govt has provided enough security. If not, buy private security using the money you earn from Cricket Match. Don't just say it is govt who has the power (reference to PCB). 4. CRICKET cannot stop terrorism (source is primarily uneducated people, poverty and extreme ideology) but Terrorism can stop CRICKET. 5. Life is worth living for people than dying for cricket

  • Naveen on March 4, 2009, 16:16 GMT

    This is really shocking news for me. Even though, I am an Indian. Iam very sorry to Srilankan's and Pakistanies too. Thinking of Pakistani people living their lives in terror. How do get their normal life back? Is there any end to this. One incident in Mumbai shocked the whole India. If these things are happening every day, what do the government say. What do the people have about their future. Hope the piece comes in their lives.

  • cheel on March 4, 2009, 15:57 GMT

    It is a dastardly act comitted by some cowards and me being an Indian can understand the plight of Pakistan cricket supporters since I had to go through the same albeit for a brief period before the English team decided to return back, I hope and pray that things will heal and head back to being normal. Its not just Pakistan's loss the cricketting fraternity will be robbed of some geniunely entertaining and hard fought cricket. I would expect my fellow Indian's to stand by our neighbours in such an hour of crisis. Hoping cricket in Pak is revived so that we can continue our love for hating there guts. Afterall I don't want my kid to grow up thinking India Pakistan cricketting rivalry is folklore.

  • Abul Shamsuddin on March 4, 2009, 15:54 GMT

    The blame game will take us no where. The terrorists not only hate cricket, they hate anything that is civil and decent. They have to be confronted in unison not in isolation. What happened in Lahore, Mumbai or even in Mangalore may have different dimensions, but they have one commonality that is to instill fear in the minds of common people and establish a reign of terror.

    South Asiain countries are becomming a hot bed of terrorist activities, this will excerbate if the politicians and state actors engage in a balme game instead of tackling the root causes and eradicate them.

    "The price of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil men" Plato

  • Shamintha on March 4, 2009, 15:48 GMT

    When i saw the news in the morining I could not belive what happened. As a Sri Lankan and die hard SL Cricket fan I was shocked to teh bone, hurt and sad. I too was one of those who were naive enough to believe that Pakistan was safe enough for our team to travel. After all we had a great relationship with PCB. We never forgot how tehy stood up for us in 96 when western teams refused to our us because of security concerns. It was just right that we returned teh favour (this was not a tour based on money alone like some here have suggested)- everyone in pakistan will be grateful and we could watch cricket against a good opponent. I feel sorry for our hosts and I know that 99% will be ashamed of this. Hopefully this will give them the motivation to realize what fundamentalism really means: no limits - just blind hate - even against those who were there to help.

  • Abul Shamsuddin on March 4, 2009, 15:46 GMT

    The blame game will take us no where. The terrorists not only hate cricket, they hate anything that is civil and decent. They have to be confronted in unison not in isolation. What happened in Lahore, Mumbai or even in Mangalore may have different dimensions, but they have one commonality that is to instill fear in the minds of common people and establish a reign of terror.

    South Asiain countries are becomming a hot bed of terrorist activities, this will excerbate if the politicians and state actors engage in a balme game instead of tackling the root causes and eradicate them.

    "The price of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil men" Plato

  • David Smith on March 4, 2009, 15:37 GMT

    As Murali and Broad's comments point out, there are forces within that are aiding and abetting these acts. Ignoring such facts only will lead to the downfall of not just Pakistan Cricket, but it's soverign govt. This has nothing to do with indo pak relations or anything else, but what Pakistan can and will devolve into, if strong action by the people is not taken. Denial achieves nothing other than digging your own grave.

  • mack on March 4, 2009, 14:59 GMT

    Freddie, How you can compare throwing bottles with hand granades and bullets.I think you mixed up everything in the firstplace.This is such a tragic event that didn't occur before .We must never forget that.

  • Sami Khan on March 4, 2009, 14:58 GMT

    You are absolutely right about Imran Khan's naivette on the issue. He has been a hero for many cricket lovers, especially Pakistanis. Unfortunately his incorrect assessment of the entire terrorism situation, not only in this instance, has contributed to confusing young people in Pakistan. Sanctity of cricket in Pakistan was first clearly violated when Imran, the cricket hero, was physically manhandled and locked up in the Punjab Univeristy by a group of students belonging to the fascist right wing Jamaat i Islami. How could he have expected the terrorists, a superlative stage, to have some respect for others. Overwhelming majority of Pakistanis feel absolutely devastated at this 'treatment' of our guests and relieved that they escaped without serious harm.

  • nomi on March 4, 2009, 14:57 GMT

    I am glad that Chris Broad survived the carnage. He should thank his stars, grieve for the dead if possible and stop jumping on the ever popular blame bandwagon.

  • Faisal on March 4, 2009, 14:50 GMT

    Somebody said it right, i as a Pakistani, and a die hard cricket fan, say ENOUGH!, Poor Srilankan's had nothing to do with war on terror or anything else thats going on in Pak. For everyone commenting here and saying we don't know who to blame....i will tell you who to blame...Blame the corrupt, incompetent, low-life, ill-educated, worthless, government of Pakistan. The people ruling our nation have hijacked our country and turned it into a living hell. Where once you would smell Parathas and Sweets and fresh air, now you smell gun powder. Where once people would lay lives to safeguard their guests and visitors, now are taking lives of their guests. Where once a human was deemed a human now is deemed as excess meat. I am devastated to see my beloved country in this state and i would like to tell Pakistani people, if they see anyone with a gun in a random street, gang up on him and beat the crape out of him.

  • Jeevan on March 4, 2009, 14:35 GMT

    First and foremost, my sincere gratitude to those who’ve sacrificed their life protecting my team and the thoughts for their loved once left behind. This incident, depending on what we make of it can go two ways. One: people aimlessly accuse and abuse each other, grow apart and give terrorists exactly what they feed on for survival. Violence begets violence. Period. Two; south Asia unites and tackles this issue head on; with intelligence, restraint, compassion and when really pushed to it, even violence. The choice we make may well determine the security of our own lives and our loved ones. United we will win. Divided, we’ve already lost.

    With much love from Sri Lanka.

  • mohamed ali on March 4, 2009, 14:15 GMT

    when australia refused to play in pakistan i am thought that what a cricketing nation it is? terrorist never target cricketers why these peoples get scared? but now it seems what they did it absolute wright.terrorist kill anyone,anywhere at anytime thats the truth comming out from this.Indian cricketers got escaped.

  • amir on March 4, 2009, 14:07 GMT

    A very tragic incident indeed, my well wishes to our sri lankan friends who stuck with us and toured, terrorists have no boundries. I will like to commend the brave pakistani police force who has been the prime target of these ruthless killers, over 300 police officers killed in last two years, It pains me to hear these calls of lack of security these brave police officers gave their lives and ensured not a single player or umpire was killed, BRAVO PAKISTANI POLICE!!!!

  • India_Fan on March 4, 2009, 13:43 GMT

    I would like to express my sympathies with the Sri Lankan Cricket team, and I, like everyone else, is relieved no one was seriously hurt in their team. Moreover, I feel deep sorrow for the death of the policemen and their families. At the moment, India-Pakistan relations are strained, but I, like many other Indians I know, stand hand in hand with Pakistan in their efforts to combat these people who are endeavoring to destabilize the country and the region. I am also sorry for the Pakistan Cricket team, who only want to play Cricket and our being handicapped by the terrorists. I wish India-Pakistan games will take place in the future, as these are great games and a way to bring us all together.

  • Waseem Saber on March 4, 2009, 13:43 GMT

    This is the most ghastic incident in the history, the people with such tragic motives to lay terror on the innocent crickters is shamefull and to be condemed whole heartedly, however, all the perperators should be brought to justice in all capacities we can, am sure the authorities will take care of that, our heart goes to all those injured and killed and special mention of thanks to the act of courage of the bus driver, Mohd Khalil, as rightly said by Sangakara, he was like the savioiur for the crickters life.

    once again we should take these incidents on serious notes and do all neccessary to prevent such incidents never happen again anywhere in the world.

  • Waseem Saber on March 4, 2009, 13:43 GMT

    This is the most ghastic incident in the history, the people with such tragic motives to lay terror on the innocent crickters is shamefull and to be condemed whole heartedly, however, all the perperators should be brought to justice in all capacities we can, am sure the authorities will take care of that, our heart goes to all those injured and killed and special mention of thanks to the act of courage of the bus driver, Mohd Khalil, as rightly said by Sangakara, he was like the savioiur for the crickters life.

    once again we should take these incidents on serious notes and do all neccessary to prevent such incidents never happen again anywhere in the world.

  • Owen Williams on March 4, 2009, 13:22 GMT

    The seed of terrorism is hatched in the mind; therefore difficult if not impossible to curtail. Its execution can be prevented only if all channels are secured. That too is almost impossible. The stadium would have offered a greater measure of security; so the attack was strategically launched on the public street, despite the security escort.That the visiting Sri Lankan team was targeted is also instructive. Terrorism is forminable. Strategically it could happen anywhere. All intelligence needs to be harnessed to counter terrorism. The watchman cannot sleep at his post. We mourn the lost of lives and sorrow at the curtailment of legitimate activities. We remain in solidarity with the people of Pakistan. Whatever the cause that drives the acts of terrorism cannot be noble enough to target innocent lives. May all human efforts be mobilised against terrorism.

  • amila srilanka on March 4, 2009, 13:12 GMT

    I just could not stop my tears. we can die for our cricketers dont make alone pakistan cricket

  • Oliver Chettle on March 4, 2009, 13:08 GMT

    Yet again the word "fascist" is being used incorrectly in the media. The essence of fascism is virulent nationalism. If the terrorists were fascists they would want to strengthen Pakistan and convert it into an expansionist military state. I'm not going to attempt to define their ideology, but they are not fascists, any more than they are democrats.

  • saba on March 4, 2009, 13:05 GMT

    I think this is the most vulnerable attack happend directly in the cricket team ever.This is shamefull for pakistan not to take amid security where as they have information on attacking.Pakistani government cannot ignore this matter easily. I think ICC should take more care about security purpose.This is the signal for so called world leader what the terrorist can do to a sports team.

  • Venkatesh on March 4, 2009, 13:01 GMT

    My Heartfelt condolences to the family which lost their beloved who gave up their life while protecting the Sri Lankan Team. I wish the fourth umpire a speedy recovery. With most of NZ and Aussies expressing concern about security in India ,the IPL may not see these players in action or will get cancelled altogether.

  • Anonymous on March 4, 2009, 12:53 GMT

    It is not happening only in Pakistan, this is a whole world issue, and terrorist don't care about the game. For the time being it is a sad end of Pakistan cricket for at least 3 to 4 years.

  • Dom P on March 4, 2009, 12:49 GMT

    It was important to mention the real immediate victims, the Pakistani policemen, but also the bus driver who was killed. What if the upcoming Pakistani series is played in England? Terrorist attacks might happen there too, nowhere is immune, we've seen that. No team will want to tour Pakistan now, so the terrorists have won. A sad day.

  • Jason on March 4, 2009, 12:44 GMT

    I think alot of people are missing the point about why the attack on the Sri-Lankan team happened. Figure this... Terrorists attack innocent civilians an end up killing 25 men women an children. It is an outrage, horrible, despicable and a stupid waste. However the sad truth of this is if it happened, people are outraged....For a while and the the incident fades away and is only sometimes remembered. Now Figure this, Terrorists attack and kill say 5 international sportsmen of a team....Outrage is huge and the incident will never be forgotten.. The reason for this attack is for publicity, which they are getting. I can't express how angry I am about this attack, but unfortunately we are giving the Terrorists exactly what they wanted, International Fame and notoriety. While i'am saddened about this attack on a game I love, I'am angered that these terrorist even exist. Surely this must be a huge wake up call, not just to Pakastani Officials but the whole world round. Terorist have a new T

  • mohsin on March 4, 2009, 12:42 GMT

    now australia will take all the advantage and try to host the world cup!

  • Yogesh on March 4, 2009, 12:38 GMT

    Well said article.. Finally there is someone to reflect my thoughts.. There has been a lot of talk that cricket will not be happening in Pakistan in the foreseeable future. But the truth is, what happened to the Srilankan team is beyond cricket and I condemn these activities. The most important and obvious question is "When will these terrorist activities be eradicated? When will the people really see Peace?". I feel for the citizens of Pakistan. I was really looking forward to this series and cricket resuming in Pakistan. Sad that this had to happen. About 5 or 6 hrs after the incident, I see someone saying that there is an Indian link in the incident. Was this blame game necessary? If no suspect was identified and they could doubt an Indian link, they would've probably doubted the attack itself. In that case, Why wasn't proper measures taken?. Unless these are answered and terrorism eradicated, peace will not prevail and Cricket is a just a minor chapter in this novel

  • RS on March 4, 2009, 12:28 GMT

    When human lives have been lost, why are we, as people, more concerned with cricket?

    Let us pray for the families of the dead policemen - who lost their lives in such tragic circumstances

  • Irfan Mayani on March 4, 2009, 12:26 GMT

    Its probably the worst day in Pakistan's cricketeting history. Following Cricket and specially pakistani cricket closely i can't remember when in history we ever had such a terrible decade. Since 1999's WC final , we have only seen the worst and things like Bob Woolmer's death / killing and now this terror attack bring tears in our eyes. I don't know when again we will be able to host any major sporting event. As Pakistanis we are already depleted of entertainement and recreation activities, and now the last available form of good entertainment seems to be destryoed forever or at least for a foreseeable future. We can only pray for our sports now. The bigger fear I have now is that such attacks can easily be replicated in most parts of the world , specially in places like India, UK etc where there have been terror attacks in the past. Then what ?

  • Naeem on March 4, 2009, 12:17 GMT

    We should all pray that, this should be the last incident of voilance and terrorism. No one in the world can afford this. Its not only the target or attacker who suffers, in general everybody suffers from these events. We have examples of USA 9/11, India 11/26 and now Pakistan 3/3, these even shakes the whole economy of the country. Please let us pray togather who have suffered from these tradegies, put hands togather to solve these issues from the gross roots. It is the national duty, i should say its a human duty to be vigilent and look around you to see if any suspecious actions/persons, to be reported immediately to concerned authorities. This will help to cope these situations.

    The life is precious, the one who lost their loved ones, knows betters, that these incidents mean to them.

    Peace is the message to the whole world!!!

  • VIJAY KUMAR on March 4, 2009, 12:13 GMT

    IT IS VERY TRAGIC THAT TERRORISTS ATTACKED PLAYERS,BUT A NORMAL MAN OR INTERNATIONAL PLAYERS DOES NOT MAKE ANY DIFFERENCE TO TERRORIST ON THE OTHER HAND ,THEY CAN CREATE MUCH TERROR BY SHOWING THAT IF THEY CAN TARGET INTERNATIONAL PLAYERS ,THE CAN TARGET ANYBODY,NO BODY IS OUT OF THEIR REACH.

  • Tim on March 4, 2009, 11:54 GMT

    This was unbelievable. What a bunch of desperate cowards, what is their case against a bunch of innocent cricketers. I wonder if they would have attacked the Pakistani team had they been the first to have left the hotel. It is a shame that there will be no more cricket in Pakistan for a long time but if the officials there can not protect the teams then that is what it must come to. Until the issues that procure terrorism are resolved in that country then there should be no games played there. It was a very lucky escape for the officials and the teams, unfortunate for those who died protecting the teams.

  • Anwar on March 4, 2009, 11:53 GMT

    A reading of all the comments has made atleast one thing clear...this is a tragic event and has negatively impacted this wonderful game of cricket. No amount of condemnation is enough. However, lets not debate degrees of terrorism or neutral venues, or we said so type responses. The fact is that we will all moan about this for a day or two, get desensitized and move on with our little petty selfish lives. If this really bothers us, we should do something about this and the politics/ideologies that allow this. This is not Islam, or Hinduism, Pakistan or India or any other ideology. This is a sickness! And the perpetrators, mental patients. So instead of petty and motivated responses, lets rise above it and condemn this act unanimously with no caveats. Today, we are all losers....not just Pakistan cricket or the people there or the policeman that died....!

  • Anonymous on March 4, 2009, 11:48 GMT

    Terror has quite unfortunately become a scum that threatens the engulf the entire subcontinent.We need to fight this scrouge toghter, innocent lives, be it indian or pakistani or any one should not be lots, so that these beasts can fulfill their agenda.

  • Albert on March 4, 2009, 11:47 GMT

    Daya

    Your statement "I hope Imran Khan and co. do not bring the argument that even though shots were fired, no one was killed and hence not a case of true terrorism!!!".... How can you say no one was killed.. Agreed no cricketers were killed but are the police men who gave up their lives protecting the cricketers not taken into account. Are they lesser people than the cricketers?? I doubt any one including Imran Khan will have the adaucity to make such a claim as you think!! My heartfelt condolences to all the people who lost their lives.

    For people talking about conspiracy theory, please grow up. It was the good fortune that the rockets and the grenades did not blow up and thank the driver of the bus who bravely drove the bus on to the grounds.

    Hope he is recognised for his bravery.

  • Sharath on March 4, 2009, 11:40 GMT

    history repeats again... an attempted Munich Olympics story.?

  • Wajeeh on March 4, 2009, 11:38 GMT

    Thanks God, Sri Lankan players were safe with this tragedy. Driver of the bus should be rewarded of rushing the bus into the stadium without breaking somewhere. May Allah bless Pakistan, we dont know who are these terrorists and where they come from. We cannot blame all the time to Pakistan especially Indians who were seem ready to fingerpointing Pakistan even somebody do cough in their own country. India tried to stop Sri Lanka not because of their security but because of their own interests. Guys think broader and try to understand this is the biggest conspiracy happening against Pakistan which will be uncovered very soon inshALLAH.

  • Balaji on March 4, 2009, 11:38 GMT

    I have some observations about the security in India. Firstly, the players are given special commandos protection. The traffic in the route they travel isnt interupted. There is police protection, with arms, in the entire route. Lets just say, a high profile Z-grade security(incidentally, gained more weightage after Rajiv Gandhi's murder) which has so far been good. Even in Kashmir, the epicenter of indian terrorism the Z-graded secured VVVIPs arent attacked.

    The most disturbing thing about the total incident is that the SL team escaped by luck. Imagine what if the driver didnt drive the bus to the stadium? I dont want to even imagine what would have happened!

    There were bombings in London, Strike in Mumbai when one wasnt expecting. But the security is not provided to protect them from people who hurl stones. Sad that the police personnel got killed...but the preparedness?

  • Aurangzaib on March 4, 2009, 11:32 GMT

    Pakistani government in compensation for each soldier killed has announced rs 500,000/ approx £4,300 or $6,000 award for their families.

    This is a shame. A human life in subcontinent is so cheap specially when they are armed officers. Each of them should have been offered at least 5 times the award offered. They gave their lives so sri lankan players could be saved other wise today we could have been mourning over them and then for sure the future of cricket in Pakistan would have ended.

    Pakistani government guaranteed full proof security. The security Srilankan players had was minor and next to nothing. It was kind of protocol you give to normal MP. The Punjab government should be held responsible and Mr Ijaz butt should resign ASAP accepting his management’s failure.

  • NARENDRA on March 4, 2009, 11:30 GMT

    It is not just about cricket, You may or may not be having cricket matches in Pakistan in year or two, But in attack like these where innocent people are dying without being at fault is more damaging for pak. Every now and than Pakistan Name is comming up for discussion at international foram for all the wrong reason. In my opinion Pakistan need to worry more for this, than any thing else.

  • andy on March 4, 2009, 11:27 GMT

    Hands up those who made comments deriding cricketing nations who chose not to tour obviously dangerous places. To my mind there must be quite a few million, be honest now , and where is the apology for such foolishness. From so called commentaters, politicians and bloggers etc not a word about being so horribly wrong. A professional tennis playing friend of mine said once about learning to progress and be part of the modern game, it's the 21 st century, don't bring your baggage on to the court! If conditions are not safe and or barely professional it does not respect or serve the game in the long run and diminishes all for the sake of mistaken pride. How very sad for those killed and injured and shameful for those asking others to put their lives on the line.

  • Rahul Chatterjee on March 4, 2009, 11:27 GMT

    I m Indian and i will not blame whole pakistan for this cause as terrorist wants everybody should blame pakistan for not being safe.This is the time we asian should come togther and support each other to come out from difficulty.More circkte should be played in pakistan.We need to help pakistan morally as well as physically.People who resides inside are more genrous then 12 terrorist.We should unite toghter to help and prevent any terrorist activity.Please spread love among countries

  • sudarshan on March 4, 2009, 11:27 GMT

    Well for one thing the theory of cricket being impervious to terrorism has been disproved completely.

    What it portends is even worse, this just goes to show that in countries like India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh where violence and terrorism have got integrated into regular life and where security systems are porous to say the least, are vulnerable and will continue to remain so.

    Imagine this, In Australia an abusive fan (verbally abusive) can be identified and eliminated from the stadium and the game and probably banned from attending for life. Whereas in India and the subcontinent people can pelt stones, fruits and bottles etc and yet will be immune to any punishment of any sort due to lack of technology.

    In such a scenario safety of cricket and criketers is not just a fallacy, it is ludicrous .

  • Anand Danny on March 4, 2009, 11:20 GMT

    This was about to happen as the tour was first announced by Arjuna Ranathunga, without even assessing the security situation. His personal differences with the BCCI led to this tour. Though he was curtailed by the government, they too didnt assess the situation in pakistan. Where is Arjuna now. Why is he keeping mum now.

  • Rahul on March 4, 2009, 11:09 GMT

    I think this is the high time that all forms of cricket that is the most popular (International) game in subcontinents should and MUST be played outside the subcontinent, preferably in Aus/NZL/UAE/Carribeans until and unless all the terrorists and more importantly their thoughts are completely eradicated. There are number of terrorists activities going on in these areas and the visiting or even home side may not be safe at all. Although we are not safe anywhere, at least there are chances that such cowardly acts are very unlikely to take place in the developed part of the world. And I second Freddie's comments here, as a physical harm is a physical harm. We cannot be so mean as to consider "murder" as the only phenomenal damage to the sport. We need to grow up in all respect. If you think about it, terrorists throw bullets and we throw bottles - ON THE CRICKETERS!

  • Hariharan on March 4, 2009, 11:07 GMT

    CRICKET the beauty of this sport is painted in RED by this incidence. I will not be surprised if most of the lankan cricketers refuse for any tour abroad, Leave pakistan or whcih ever the country this can happen. Security should be fool proof, and I am really surprised that knowing the terror attack and the intensity with which they surrounded and targetted srilankan team. I feel pity and pray god for speedy recovery of a finest player samaraveera....what a talent...ut ended like this with a gun shot in the leg, which is vital for a sports person....get ready that anything can happen to any one...especially in PAKISTAN

  • Ramesh on March 4, 2009, 11:02 GMT

    This attack puts the future of international cricket in Pakistan in grave doubt. While innocent people in both India and Pakistan are affected by terrorism, the double standards that some are suggesting makes little sense. All the high profile terrorist attacks in India in the recent past have originated from across the border. It is no use blaming the US or India. The Pakistani government has to eradicate terrorism from within. The terrorist elements seem to have so much power that the Pakistani government generally seems impotent.

    It would be tragic if cricket in Pakistan becomes a victim. If there is no stage to play, talented cricketers will leave the country or the sport. Losing Pakistan would diminish the sport that is played by so few nations. I hope the people and government of Pakistan will step up (with help from others) to eradicate the evil that threatens cricket and is holding back the country from progress. At best, this could take years. Cricket has lost its innocence.

  • cardiff71 on March 4, 2009, 10:57 GMT

    This is a scanario that i always thaught could happen but at the same time wished it never happned.

    Growing up in Pakistan , we were always told that there is a time and place for everything one wants to do. Pakistan is not ready to host any sporting events. We have got to many issues on our plate and risking more problems is not the best option at the moment.

    A few questions for everyone a) what if this was aother country ( Australia or India) as our goverment had assured fool proof country. b) Is it better to wait to hold cricket events once things have improved rather then killing innocent people and risking more humalition for Pakistan c) Do the last 2 years of history of Pakistan(300 bombs, 2 major assainations , countless lives , taliban , swat , etc etc allow events to take place ?

    It hurts us when we see this Pakistan , Pakistanis are so used to it that with in a few days we have forgotten about things like these, However the west will drag this for years. As much as we love cricket and want this enetertainment to take place for the masses , sadly its not the right time .

  • sunil on March 4, 2009, 10:40 GMT

    A photo in the times of india showing a man defusing a bomb with bare hands and a scissor shows the attitude of the pakistani administrators towards human life in general and its citizens in particular.What kind of security that would have been provided to its magnanimous guests is for even a layman to imagine.Cricket can take a backseat but not our value and ethos towards a peaceful atmosphere.Any further loss of human lives must be avoided and the government must take steps to root out the evil forces in the society.I am certain we cricket fans can wait for the good times to smile upon us.

  • sampath on March 4, 2009, 10:39 GMT

    I feel that the world cup might be moved away from asia anad it could be safe for the game,people and players to host it in australlia and NZ

  • Khalid on March 4, 2009, 10:38 GMT

    The question to be asked is not who did it and why? BUT how can we stop such happenings. "Live and let live" Is this the right way? or "Dirty politics around the world" is the answer here? It started with USSR, boosted by the "Superpower" and now the terrorists say they are bringing this to the END. Stop making weapons and start it with educating people. Give them their rights and air to live and breath. Stay in your boundaries and enjoy the "Globalisation". Stop destabilizing others to make your way ahead. Stop hating other folks to be loved by your own. Stop making rules for others what you don’t follow. Stop blaming others for your own doings. Don’t say “this is not possible”. Start it with yourself. The day you are satisfied with yourself will be the day when this betterment starts. May God bless us all and give us strength to understand the sense of the life.

    Best regards A "living being" who loves other living beings

  • Nadun on March 4, 2009, 10:34 GMT

    I think what is important is not to Argue Weather India is Safe or is it safe to Play in Pakistan and Sri Lanka. What is important is to come up with Plans and Actions to make these places safe for playing Crickets. After the Attack in Munich Olympic no body refuce to go there because of Security concerns. After 9/11 incident No country refuse to go to USA. Why then only Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka?

  • Abhijit Apte on March 4, 2009, 10:28 GMT

    Check out the banner in the background of that pic folks! Celebrating a century of cricket. What a way to bring up the celebration? Shame. Is this the way a guest should be treated?

  • Anu on March 4, 2009, 10:10 GMT

    I am thankful that you pointed lives of 8 policemen.

  • prakash on March 4, 2009, 10:07 GMT

    A lot of people are worried about the future of Cricket in Pakistan - but the way things are heading, I worry about the future of Pakistan... and not just in cricket!

  • Nadeem Shahzad on March 4, 2009, 10:06 GMT

    Lets not get into a point scoring excercise here, innocent lives are lost to this terror every day, we the average joes are the ones affected by this. Pakistan unfortunately has lost too much credibility in the world today, thanks to our leaders. Every tom dick and harry gets up and blames Pakistan for not doing much. The men who lost their lives protecting the Sri lankan players were Pakistanies lets not forget that. And Imran Khan has all but lost his mind for suggesting what he has,again point scoring excersice. We need change, im sick of these hypocrats. Innocent lives were lost in mumbai attacks, as a Pakistani thats something I condemned strongly, indian forces were at it for days and did their best. Appreciate the efforts of those men who laid their lives down instead of complaining about the security arrangements. Had it not been for them, the worst would have happened.

  • Sharath on March 4, 2009, 10:01 GMT

    Shafiq, you have posed a very good Q "Whether cricket finished in india after mumbai attacks?" I would add one more, whether cricket in SL itself is finished, inspite of decades of ongoing civil war? No.

    But, the problem we see in current Pakistan is not similar. Pakistan was never politically stable for a long period of time. The scene was mostly volatile. And, it more so in the current situation.

    Moreover, many parts Pakistan has become a base of terrorist activities which adds more concern on visiting the country.

    These are the feelings/concerns an outsider will have or consider when he visits any place.

    I certainly pray that peace and stability returns to Pakistan and we can have cricket there ASAP. I and many cricket lovers do enjoy the on-field rivalry the Ind-Pak cricket match brings in. And that atmosphere will be best only when the cricket is played either in India or Pakistan. Not in neutral venues.

  • Nikhil Singh on March 4, 2009, 9:53 GMT

    When Indian Team refused to play against Pakistan i was a bit sad i never thought Indian Cricketers Or Pakistani Cricketers will ever be targeted in either of the country, we have fan following in both the countries. I was so wrong, the nation that produced Imran, Wasim, Mindad and Inzamam might not be able to survive this scenario I as an Indian and a cricket fan hope against hope that extremists are routed out from our subcontinent

  • lion on March 4, 2009, 9:35 GMT

    the consequences of terrorism lets hope that india and pak don't start fighting over responsibilities and fight a common enemy

  • Abhishek Bhargava on March 4, 2009, 9:29 GMT

    I think this is the most tragic event ever to have happened to a cricket team and the sense of being specifically targetted by fundamentalist idiots would have left quite a scar on the brave Sri Lankan team. Their courage in going to Pakistan in the first place must be respected. However, what is really disturbing is that the sort of security that was provided to the players was far from satisfactory. The Pakistani board and those in charge of security have a lot of questions to answer. We cannot be casual about some of these things anymore. I hope such an incident is never repeated anywhere in the world.

  • Anamika on March 4, 2009, 9:21 GMT

    Amidst all this chaos, i want all and more importantly the concerned officials to spare a moment to meaningfully plan the future of cricket in Pakistan. In this moment of trouble, all the cricket boards, ICC and all concerned officials and above all, us the cricket lovers, should stand solid behind the Pakistani cricket establishment which finds itself in tatters and stares at an uncertain future. I am sure none of wants to be deprived of watching the ever talented Pakistani team playing against India. This is the time we should stand with them and support them because the cricketers and cricket lovers of Pakistan find themselves in a strange situation which they are not to be blamed for. They dont deserve this.

    One last thought. I wish the Pakistani administrators wakeup and do something about the terror infrastructure operating from their soil. If they choose to keep quiet, they will surely be isolated on many fronts including cricket.

  • IceMan on March 4, 2009, 9:18 GMT

    It's equally stupid to think that terrorists won't attack cricketers in India.

    IPL and cricket series in India have got to go to save cricketers' precious lives

  • Raman on March 4, 2009, 9:18 GMT

    Pakistan has to look within and eradicate terrorists and their camps. No point in colluding with the terrorists thinking that they will change. It is only R.I.P. Cricket now. If Pakistan don't act seriously, then it will be R.I.P. Pakistan. I cannot digest that a dozen terrorists escaped unhurt. Moreover, it appears the ploy is to threaten SL cricketers and not kill them. Certainly, a strong message has been sent to India and IPL.

  • P Dalvi, India on March 4, 2009, 9:05 GMT

    It's shocking. This will count for ever as Pakistan's Munich !!

    Forget the blame game, forget the "we told you so". It's time that these terrorists were brought to justice.

    Cricket can wait. The lives of 8 brave policemen were taken by terrorists. That is something that needs to be sorted out and the terrorists and their masters brought to justice.

    The real question is - IS Pakistan capable of finding the real culprits. It's been more than a year since Bhutto was killed, but nothing has happened so far. That hotel explosion - again - nothing. Either incompetence rules OR they don't want to find the terrorists.

    Either way - it's a shame for cricket in Pakistan. No more home games.... only away games

  • tilan on March 4, 2009, 9:01 GMT

    Well enough talk about what happened and why it happened. It’s the past and should be left behind lets look forward. Sri Lanka needs to re build from this attack we need to do everything possible to get the players back to the correct frame of mind. Have we forgotten that the man who has scored back to back double centuries is in hospital? .Sri Lanka cricket needs to wake up, shake up and gear up for the problems they are to face in the future with a team that's has just returned from the claws of death. As fans who live this sport lets rally around SLC and help them do, what has to be done. Lets make sure we stand by our cricketers who are our heroes , in the future. Let us stop any businessman or politician use them for their short term gains ever again. This should not be compromised by any way . As Sanga says FICA needs to have their own security assessment apparatus.

  • suresh on March 4, 2009, 9:01 GMT

    Quite unfortunate that finally the myth that cricketers could not be targeted has been blown away. Fortunately a bigger tragedy was averted through personal bravery and few strokes of luck. I see some passionate arguments about why cricket in Pakistan should not suffer. The truth is that perhaps it will suffer. MAny are comparing this with Mumbai attacks, quite often many in Pakistan have accused other teams of double standards since they toured India but refused to tour Pakistan. The basic difference is that the world views Pakistan as someone who encouraged terrorism to suit certain objectives but does not view India so. There is little point in accusing the whole world of double standards rather than introspecting and fixing the problem. It may be too late at least from Pakistan cricket's point of view.

  • Prabhat on March 4, 2009, 9:00 GMT

    Amidst all this chaos, i want all and more importantly the concerned officials to spare a moment to meaningfully plan the future of cricket in Pakistan. In this moment of trouble, all the cricket boards, ICC and all concerned officials and above all, us the cricket lovers, should stand solid behind the Pakistani cricket establishment which finds itself in tatters and stares at an uncertain future. I am sure none of wants to be deprived of watching the ever talented Pakistani team playing against India. This is the time we should stand with them and support them because the cricketers and cricket lovers of Pakistan find themselves in a strange situation which they are not to be blamed for. They dont deserve this.

    One last thought. I wish the Pakistani administrators wakeup and do something about the terror infrastructure operating from their soil. If they choose to keep quiet, they will surely be isolated on many fronts including cricket.

  • Deep on March 4, 2009, 8:53 GMT

    Mr. Freddie It is forlornly humorous how you could compare some foolhardies in the crowd for throwing plastic waterbottles to the ones with launchers & grenades. Anyways, I dont understand what these terrorists are trying to accomplish? even if they manage to achieve their goal (kill or threaten ppl), what do they want? Do they think that Pakistani Govt will go to them & say..ok u win cz u have killed so many, so now we'll agree to your demands(whatever they are). I just wish that these pepole are struck with a bolt of wisdom sooner than later & have peace in their heads. I feel for the families of the cops who couldn't make it through this attack & I wish their families all the strength.

  • tilan on March 4, 2009, 8:45 GMT

    Well enough talk about what happened and why it happened. It’s the past and should be left behind lets look forward. Sri Lanka needs to re build from this attack we need to do everything possible to get the players back to the correct frame of mind. Have we forgotten that the man who has scored back to back double centuries is in hospital? .Sri Lanka cricket needs to wake up, shake up and gear up for the problems they are to face in the future with a team that's has just returned from the claws of death. As fans who live this sport lets rally around SLC and help them do, what has to be done. Lets make sure we stand by our cricketers who are our heroes , in the future. Let us stop any businessman or politician use them for their short term gains ever again. This should not be compromised by any way . As Sanga says FICA needs to have their own security assessment apparatus.

  • Rafiq on March 4, 2009, 8:44 GMT

    It will be a grave tragedy if on account of what happened 3/3 09 in Lahore, cricket in Pakistan comes to an end. Cricket is one of the few pleasures of life left for us in Pakistan. If Pakistan stopped playing cricket, this wonderful game and its lover will suffer!No one would have though that this great game who is associated with gentlemen like Bradman and WG Grace will see this day. I think it is now upto the entire cricketing establishment to ensure that cricket in Pakistan does part become part of distint memory. Neutral grounds, Media , Government intervention and cricket lovers support can safeguard the future of this game in Pakistan

  • sarath on March 4, 2009, 8:38 GMT

    I have to disagree with you Samir.

    The fact that cricketers weren't attacked until now proves that the belief that cricketers won't be targetted had a lot of merit. But of course, now that the terrorists have crossed that line, they a far less safe esp in Pakistan. But in other places they remain safe, eg. no matter how terrible the LTTE is, they would never attack cricket in Sri Lanka.

    Also, Sri Lanka toured Pakistan because they are friendly countries. Sri Lankans in general feel safe in Pakistan. It's just that this was a very unusual attack without any motive at all. If it was a different team it would have made sense. Even terrorists must have a motive.

    Anyway, it's time for the whole world, including Western nations, to help eradicate terrorism EVERYWHERE. Don't just blame Pakistan.

    There are no 'good terrorist'.

  • Sandeep Dhindle on March 4, 2009, 8:36 GMT

    This attack on Cricketers has proven that the situation in Pakistan is more than worse to play any sport in that country. This is what exactly analysed and thought by every other cricketing nation that has denied to play in Paksitan in these recent years. Why dont the Pakistani government and PCB understand this. This attack has only worsen the Pakistan's image, what they are trying to improve. I feel sorry for those Pakistanis that are no part of this. What a waste of such a beautiful country.

  • Peter Jones on March 4, 2009, 8:32 GMT

    Freddie, comparing stone throwing Indian fans to bomb throwing Islamic terrorists is stretching it a bit. My hope is that though Imran Khan was proved wrong about terrorists never attacking cricket teams he will be proved right about such an attack losing the hearts and minds of the Pakistani public. It is time for the decent Pakistani populace to stand together and say enough. I would be delighted if some sort of "Not In My Name" campaign comes out of this latest attack. From small acorns etc.

  • irfan on March 4, 2009, 8:30 GMT

    it was the same style commando attack as happened in mumbai, and the intended targets are safe. let's not be smug here and play the blame game, it's a common threat whether you like it or not.

  • Daya on March 4, 2009, 8:27 GMT

    I hope Imran Khan and co. do not bring the argument that even though shots were fired, no one was killed and hence not a case of true terrorism!!! and 'terrorism' is all about striking terror than murdering people, and even if it does exist that no one need to be in fear of getting killed. Probably it is too early for such verbal defences, but anticipated within 3 to 6 months!

  • FZ on March 4, 2009, 8:24 GMT

    Anil,

    Unfortunately you are missing the point and making the same mistake as Pakistanis were making last year - just because cricket has never been targeted doesn't mean it never will. Yes, the Mumbai attacks didn't target cricket, but unfortunately a terrible precedent has been set. Can you honestly say what happened in Lahore can be guaranteed never to happen is Mumbai?

  • Manish on March 4, 2009, 8:20 GMT

    This attack is very dangerous for cricket

  • Longmemory on March 4, 2009, 8:11 GMT

    Perhaps the most surprising thing about this attack is that it took so long to happen. No one in his or her right mind could ever have thought that cricket or cricketers were somehow immune to such attacks. And if anyone thinks this is just Pakistan's problem, they are being naive. I really fear for cricket in the subcontinent as a whole. We simply do not have the resources or the institutions to guarantee something that is very difficult to guarantee in the first place, namely security against a determined and suicidal group of attackers. While I hate to sound like a pessimist, all the wealth of the IPL cannot bring players into the country if they feel their lives are in serious danger. Most would prefer playing for far less money in safer places like England, Australia-NZ, the Caribbean and South Africa.

  • Pradeep on March 4, 2009, 8:00 GMT

    I never thought the militants would respect anything apart from their agenda. Hopefully, the Pakistan govt. captures the militants responsible for taking innocent lives. I find it very ridiculous that a dozen militants could get away so easily after such an attack which would encourage them to conduct more of those in the future. Also, I hope they don't start playing the blame game again. Nothing could hide the fact that it was an epic failure of security.

  • Gani on March 4, 2009, 7:54 GMT

    When India cancelled their tour to Pak, Imran Khan was making a lot of noise. He was obviously moved and taken aback at Indian rejection only. Now what is he going to say now? It shows lack of vision and maturity and what these guys know is to make some sort of irresponsible statement without assuming any responsibility. If they are really caring they would have seriously viewed the 26/11 attack. India or Pak, public is targeted and these guys fuel rage only.

  • Anil on March 4, 2009, 7:49 GMT

    "Whether cricket finished in india after mumbai attacks" What is stupid comment Shafiq. There area lot of differences between Lahore Attack and Mumbai Attack. In Lahore a international visiting teams convoy was attacked. That's not what happened in Mumbai. England was in Chennai at that time. But still I don't know whome to blame. Hope Pakistan realises where the problem is and deals with it ruthlessly and dispassionatly. Really I feel for the innocent Pakistanis. They don't deserve this.

  • Anil Rao on March 4, 2009, 7:46 GMT

    Even before this attack no one is willing to visit Pakistan except srilanka(now they may not).I am no conspiracy theorist, and I get a feeling that this attack was not meant to kill the Sri Lankans, only to send a strong warning to someone (who? IPL?- Your guess is as good as mine). If 12 heavily armed, well trained terrorists attack a bus using AK 47s, RPGs and grenades, and have enough time to make a successful getaway without a single casualty of their own, they most often cause more than 'minor and non significant' injuries to their targets. Poor Imran khan made a statement in October guaranteeing that the terrorists would never attack cricketers because that will turn the public mood against them. He misjudged either the public mood or the terrorists' motives (or perhaps both).

  • Raft on March 4, 2009, 7:43 GMT

    In response to Shafiq, the common enemy lies somewhere in Pakistan, why is it that this is taken so lightly and not handled like Sri Lanka trying to rout out extremists. Meanwhile, Sri Lankan team visiting Pakistan was due to the pulling out of many countries to tour there. For reasons, It was just an ego/cash tour for the withdrawal of other countries, even Sri Lanka should have waited a little more to tour Pakistan.

    When you have as many as 4 countries denying to tour Pakistan, PCB should have thought about the situation seriously and have some patience. Now the harm down to cricket and Pakistan in general is more than a tour being denied.

    Praying peace prevails and Pakistan comes out of a dilemma soon, and the rest of the world instead of being bare standby's and should not use this episode as an excuse, instead try and bring about solidarity and love of the game. Am sure the common man in Pakistan wants peace and God willing now it time for them to work towards it seriously.

  • Freddie on March 4, 2009, 7:39 GMT

    It is with great shame that I hear of these atrocities. My thoughts are with everyone that has been injured or killed during these attacks. Unfortunately terrorist attacks occur all over the world, not just in Pakistan. This isnt the first time cricketers have been attacked, in 1987 Pakistani fielders were thrown stones at whilst fielding, during a match against India. Attacks are common in Sri Lanka, yet authorities continue to play there. Attacks occured in India and Spain not too long ago yet sporting events continue there. I am not saying that Pakistan is a safe country and that this is a one off, because we all know that is far from the truth. I just want to make people aware that attacks happen all over the world. I think it is for the best if Pakistan play their matches abroad for the next few years. Such a pity as they have a wealth of natural ability in the country that will not be nurtured well. Freddie from London

  • Ribas on March 4, 2009, 7:39 GMT

    Terrorist won't attack cricketers are proven wrong. They can attack anybody any where in the world. As long as some one directly or indirectly supporting them we cannot avoid these things. We have a common enemy the people those wants leave peacefully needs to work together to eliminate these type of barbarians. This the time countries needs to work together (those who really wants to fight against terrorism) against terrorist. We need to understand the double standards following by some developed countries. Anyone can explain to me using white phosphorous against civilians is not a terrorist attack. Each and every countries having responsibility to fight against all forms of terrorism. Otherwise in future we need to send our kids to the school with black cats protection.

  • Naeem on March 4, 2009, 7:30 GMT

    Last time I cried bitterly was on the death of my father before 11 years. As I switched on my computer today morning I just could not stop my tears. The shock was not the terrorist attack, we have enough of that in the past. The disillusion, that the sport is immune from such things, is quite painful. Our guests who were out there to help us in our desperation have been attacked. And that hurts. It is quite right, that there will be no more cricket in Pak for a reasonable time. Honestly I don't want to have this agony and fear again. It might have come worst

  • Inam on March 4, 2009, 6:00 GMT

    The argument that terrorists would never attack cricketers is fallacious to start with. Its equivalent to the long gone notion of mosques, temples, churches and hospitals being safe form conflict. The cricketers would not need all this 'presidential level' security or special handling if they did not have a clear and present threat on them. This was simply an event waiting to happen. The fact that it has happened has now makes every other place unsafe as well for cricketers and athletes - not just in Pakistan.

  • Shafiq on March 4, 2009, 5:08 GMT

    Whether cricket finished in india after mumbai attacks---when players were in Taj hotel for champions league. No! the same people who invaded india have invaded pakistan now. we have a common enemy, so plz don't play blame games. The common enemy is the people who always find ways to diminsh pakistan & India.

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  • Shafiq on March 4, 2009, 5:08 GMT

    Whether cricket finished in india after mumbai attacks---when players were in Taj hotel for champions league. No! the same people who invaded india have invaded pakistan now. we have a common enemy, so plz don't play blame games. The common enemy is the people who always find ways to diminsh pakistan & India.

  • Inam on March 4, 2009, 6:00 GMT

    The argument that terrorists would never attack cricketers is fallacious to start with. Its equivalent to the long gone notion of mosques, temples, churches and hospitals being safe form conflict. The cricketers would not need all this 'presidential level' security or special handling if they did not have a clear and present threat on them. This was simply an event waiting to happen. The fact that it has happened has now makes every other place unsafe as well for cricketers and athletes - not just in Pakistan.

  • Naeem on March 4, 2009, 7:30 GMT

    Last time I cried bitterly was on the death of my father before 11 years. As I switched on my computer today morning I just could not stop my tears. The shock was not the terrorist attack, we have enough of that in the past. The disillusion, that the sport is immune from such things, is quite painful. Our guests who were out there to help us in our desperation have been attacked. And that hurts. It is quite right, that there will be no more cricket in Pak for a reasonable time. Honestly I don't want to have this agony and fear again. It might have come worst

  • Ribas on March 4, 2009, 7:39 GMT

    Terrorist won't attack cricketers are proven wrong. They can attack anybody any where in the world. As long as some one directly or indirectly supporting them we cannot avoid these things. We have a common enemy the people those wants leave peacefully needs to work together to eliminate these type of barbarians. This the time countries needs to work together (those who really wants to fight against terrorism) against terrorist. We need to understand the double standards following by some developed countries. Anyone can explain to me using white phosphorous against civilians is not a terrorist attack. Each and every countries having responsibility to fight against all forms of terrorism. Otherwise in future we need to send our kids to the school with black cats protection.

  • Freddie on March 4, 2009, 7:39 GMT

    It is with great shame that I hear of these atrocities. My thoughts are with everyone that has been injured or killed during these attacks. Unfortunately terrorist attacks occur all over the world, not just in Pakistan. This isnt the first time cricketers have been attacked, in 1987 Pakistani fielders were thrown stones at whilst fielding, during a match against India. Attacks are common in Sri Lanka, yet authorities continue to play there. Attacks occured in India and Spain not too long ago yet sporting events continue there. I am not saying that Pakistan is a safe country and that this is a one off, because we all know that is far from the truth. I just want to make people aware that attacks happen all over the world. I think it is for the best if Pakistan play their matches abroad for the next few years. Such a pity as they have a wealth of natural ability in the country that will not be nurtured well. Freddie from London

  • Raft on March 4, 2009, 7:43 GMT

    In response to Shafiq, the common enemy lies somewhere in Pakistan, why is it that this is taken so lightly and not handled like Sri Lanka trying to rout out extremists. Meanwhile, Sri Lankan team visiting Pakistan was due to the pulling out of many countries to tour there. For reasons, It was just an ego/cash tour for the withdrawal of other countries, even Sri Lanka should have waited a little more to tour Pakistan.

    When you have as many as 4 countries denying to tour Pakistan, PCB should have thought about the situation seriously and have some patience. Now the harm down to cricket and Pakistan in general is more than a tour being denied.

    Praying peace prevails and Pakistan comes out of a dilemma soon, and the rest of the world instead of being bare standby's and should not use this episode as an excuse, instead try and bring about solidarity and love of the game. Am sure the common man in Pakistan wants peace and God willing now it time for them to work towards it seriously.

  • Anil Rao on March 4, 2009, 7:46 GMT

    Even before this attack no one is willing to visit Pakistan except srilanka(now they may not).I am no conspiracy theorist, and I get a feeling that this attack was not meant to kill the Sri Lankans, only to send a strong warning to someone (who? IPL?- Your guess is as good as mine). If 12 heavily armed, well trained terrorists attack a bus using AK 47s, RPGs and grenades, and have enough time to make a successful getaway without a single casualty of their own, they most often cause more than 'minor and non significant' injuries to their targets. Poor Imran khan made a statement in October guaranteeing that the terrorists would never attack cricketers because that will turn the public mood against them. He misjudged either the public mood or the terrorists' motives (or perhaps both).

  • Anil on March 4, 2009, 7:49 GMT

    "Whether cricket finished in india after mumbai attacks" What is stupid comment Shafiq. There area lot of differences between Lahore Attack and Mumbai Attack. In Lahore a international visiting teams convoy was attacked. That's not what happened in Mumbai. England was in Chennai at that time. But still I don't know whome to blame. Hope Pakistan realises where the problem is and deals with it ruthlessly and dispassionatly. Really I feel for the innocent Pakistanis. They don't deserve this.

  • Gani on March 4, 2009, 7:54 GMT

    When India cancelled their tour to Pak, Imran Khan was making a lot of noise. He was obviously moved and taken aback at Indian rejection only. Now what is he going to say now? It shows lack of vision and maturity and what these guys know is to make some sort of irresponsible statement without assuming any responsibility. If they are really caring they would have seriously viewed the 26/11 attack. India or Pak, public is targeted and these guys fuel rage only.

  • Pradeep on March 4, 2009, 8:00 GMT

    I never thought the militants would respect anything apart from their agenda. Hopefully, the Pakistan govt. captures the militants responsible for taking innocent lives. I find it very ridiculous that a dozen militants could get away so easily after such an attack which would encourage them to conduct more of those in the future. Also, I hope they don't start playing the blame game again. Nothing could hide the fact that it was an epic failure of security.