We should know this more than others. The Pakistan of 1947 is not the Pakistan which exists today, one half of it having broken away to form another country. I served in Moscow in the seventies and nothing seemed more solid or permanent than the Soviet Union, a mighty power which cast a shadow far and wide. Who could have thought that in a few years’ time it would fracture, leaving a trail of small, independent republics behind?
Germany before the fall of the Berlin Wall was two countries. Now it is back to being one. Czechoslovakia was one country then. Now it is two. In the UK, of all places, the Scots, or a goodly part of them, are demanding independence. A referendum is set to decide this question in 2014.
After the fall of the Soviet Union it seemed as if American pre-eminence was an assured thing, lasting for the next hundred years. Bright-eyed scholars announced not just the closing of an era but the end of history. As hubris goes, this had few equals. There were other Americans who said that reality would be what America wanted it to be. Yet American power has declined before our eyes, nothing more contributing to this than the wars President Bush ventured upon in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Clash of civilisations was another phrase current just ten years. Something of the sort has happened but not in a way that the US could have intended. Wouldn’t the Taliban, wouldn’t Al-Qaeda, define their struggle as a clash of civilisations?
Ten years ago in a Jamaat-ud-Dawaah mosque in Chakwal (not far from my house) I heard one of their leaders talking of America’s eventual but sure defeat in Afghanistan. I thought his rhetoric too fanciful then. It sounds much closer to home now.
I have just read a longish review of Norman Davies’ ‘Vanished Kingdoms: The Rise and Fall of States and Nations’. This book should be required reading for anyone concerned about the future of Pakistan. For the lesson it emphasises is that history does not promise progress. All it promises is change. Nothing is fixed, all is movement, nations rising and falling, the old disappearing to make way for the new, the new in turn becoming the old and morphing into something else – the philosophy of Heraclitus and Hegel, even of Marx.
By Anwar Iqbal
Drown, O people, drown. Do not try to escape. You cannot. Feel the burden of your sins. It will not let you swim. You never lived peacefully. So at least die peacefully. Let the water rise above your head and pull you down,” said the monster.
“I am no Noah. I have no boat. I cannot save any, man or animal. You followed me. Now pay the price,” the monster roared.
“But before you disappear, let me tell you a story. It is your story. Your indictment. You must hear it so that you know why you are dying.”
Once upon a time, there was a town with four neighbourhoods. Each had its own chief. They also had a chief protector to fight their real and perceived enemies.
All five knew magic. They could walk on water, eat fire and charm beasts. They could take a rabbit out of a hat and a hat out of a rabbit.
They could do many tricks, nothing useful though. I mean nothing that was useful for their people although whatever they did always benefitted them.
Everything they touched became theirs. They also seized what they did not touch. When they owned all there was to own in their town, they ventured out to seek more. They looted and plundered wherever they went.
They were smart, some would say cunning. Yet they had one drawback: they had no common sense. Common sense is for the common people, not for their chiefs.
So one day, while they were crossing a dense forest, they saw a heap of bones lying under a tree. They had never seen such bones. Some of the bones were larger than those of an elephant. Others were smaller than that of a rabbit. Some resembled a dragon’s teeth, others the backbone of a snake.
Some were sharp and pointed. Others were dull and heavy.
“Never saw such bones,” they said to one another. They inspected all the bones. Tested them with whatever tools they had in their magic bags. Argued over them for hours but could not decide what recent or prehistoric beast it was that died under the tree.
So they decided to try their magic.
“Let us bring it to life using our magic,” one of them said.
“Good, I will use my skills to assemble the bones into a skeleton,” said the other.
Then he chanted some incantation and charmed the bones into a skeleton.
All five inspected the skeleton but could not decide what it was.
So the second chief came forward and recited his mantra. When he snapped his fingers, flesh and skin grew on the skeleton.
The four chiefs and their protector inspected the skeleton again but failed to determine what it was.
The third chief tried his magic and caused the unknown beast’s heart to beat and pump blood. It was half alive.
This time they inspected the beast from every angle but could not solve the mystery.
So the fourth chief offered to try his charm. But before he could proceed, the chief protector said: “Let’s take some precautionary measure. How do we know it will not eat us when it comes to life?”
He climbed a large tree and hid behind its dense foliage. Aiming his weapon at the beast, he said: “I am ready.”
So the fourth chief took out a little box from his magic bag and put some powder into the beast’s nostrils.
First it moved its head, wagged its tail and then with a roar, it sprang to life. They had expected it to stand on its four feet, like most beasts do. But it was standing on its hind legs while his front legs stretched out like two huge and ugly hands.
Who determines and manipulate Pakistan’s foreign policy narrative? The answer is quite simple: the religious right led by Jamaat-i-Islami (JI), and in some aspects by Jamait-e-Ulama-Islam (JUI). There are numerous religious formations, following politically-oriented Salafi Islam, and the media is overwhelmed by religious crusaders that popularizes foreign policy parameters determined by JI and JUI Ultimately, the right wing is validated by the military and its fearsome intelligence agencies. Most of the times the state is forced to go along with religious right’s Pan-Islamist foreign policy narrative, even though it is forced to oppose it when the nation’s vital interests are threatened.
The process of evolving such a policy narrative unfolded in the case of alleged massacre of Burmese Muslims. While scores of Shia Muslims were being butchered on regular basis in Pakistan, JI head, Syed Munawwar Hussain, started highlighting the case of Burmese Muslims, demanding that state of Pakistan should try to stop the killings. Although there is nothing wrong with raising awareness for the violations of human rights for oppressed communities, but such advocacy from the likes of JI felt strange to say the least. It seemed awkward because the JI leader was demanding something from a state that cannot save scores of Muslims being slaughtered everyday by Taliban, sectarian extremists or Karachi-like gangs. Since JI leaders are not supposed to be so naïve his statements has to be looked from another angle.
According to news reports, Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Abdul Qadir Gilani has won the NA-151 Multan by-elections with 64,628 votes (19 July 2012). Independent candidate Shaukat Hayat Bosan, who was supported by all right wing parties including PML-N, PTI, Jamaat-e-Islami, Sipah-e-Sahaba etc lost the elections with 60,532 votes, according to unofficial results.
This is a big set back, not only to Nawaz Sharif-led PML-N and Imran Khan-led PTI but to the almighty military establishment in the grand scheme of things.
Despite every effort of Shahbaz Sharif and Punjab Police, Abdul Qadir Gilani defeated the candidate supported by every political party of right wing, media, army and judiciary. That’s the power of PPP. It can take on all thugs together and defeat them!
The judges should “pity the nation” and resign if there is any thing called “morality” left in them.
Wounded by the loss of bye-election in Multan (NA-151), it won’t be wrong to assumed that Pakistan’s military establishment is now looking forward to reincarnate the anti-PPP alliance PNA of 1977 or IJI of 1990s!
I am sure we will soon see the revolutionary PTI joining hands with PML-N. There is no other way they (Pakistan army) will let the election take place. Five years of constant, uninterrupted, unilateral media trial of PPP plus its governance failures fail to shake its mass support to the extent that candidate enjoying support of Punjab government, all right wing, militant sectarian organizations, and also Election Commission of Pakistan, which by banning cadidate sponsered transport tried to inflict the fatal blow to PPP whose base lies in rural areas and in poor people, failed to win.
This makes the establishment very uncomfortable. They will now try to repeat the 1977 scenerio. Pan right alliance and then a movement against alleged election rigging (under evil Zardari), today Rana Sanaullah of PMLN-ASWJ already started laying the ground work by saying “huge responsibility lies on Justice Fakhruddin G. Ibhahim, only “words” are not enough for “fair” elections”, no one should think that “we will accept “any results” given to us”. It is interesting to note that Justice Ibrahim is PML-N’s nomination not PPP’s.
Courtesy: Let Us Build Pakistan (LUBP)
Abdul Qadir Gilani wins by-poll from father’s constituency
MULTAN: The by-poll for the National Assmebly’s seat NA-151 (Multan-IV), vacated by former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani after being disqualified by the Supreme Court, has been won by his son Abdul Qadir Gilani, DawnNews reported on Thursday.
The main candidate, beside Gilani, who was contesting on Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) ticket, was independent candidate Shaukat Hayat Khan Bosan, who had informal support of both Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf (PTI), [-- & Jamaat-e-Islami--].
Read more » DAWN.COM
Pakistan’s chief justice considering broad Internet/ media censorship at request of Jamaat-e-Islami & PTI
CJ takes suo moto notice of obscene TV shows, internet sites
By: Ansar Abbasi
ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has taken notice of the applications filed by former Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) amir Qazi Hussain Ahmad and retired judge and PTI leader Justice Wajiuddin against growing vulgarity and obscenity in the society through electronic media, illegal Indian channels, cable network and internet.
Following the complaints from the two respected public figures, the Human Rights Cell of the apex court, following CJ’s direction, sought views from Chairman Pemra and Chairman PTA, both of whom, however, had given routine bureaucratic responses without any concrete assurance that the menace would effectively be checked and controlled. …
Read more » The News
By: Sarah Khan
The Gujrat attack on Pakistan army, in which at least seven poor soldiers and a policeman lost their lives, is a reminder to Pakistan army generals to refrain from breaking their “understanding” and “undeclared truce” with the Jihadi-sectarian militants of the banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ, currently operating as Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat ASWJ).
Read more » Let Us Build Pakistan (LUBP)
Via – Twitter
ISLAMABAD: Chairman Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf, Imran Khan, who had a good day in Karachi on Sunday, says that under his rule no law will be made against Quran and Sunnah. He also hints that the likes of Veena Malik, the actress who remained centre of controversy for a nude photo shoot for an international magazine, would not be allowed to do so in Imran’s Pakistan.
While replying to questions asked by The News regarding his Islamic view and vision of Islamic socialism, Imran Khan said that under his rule ‘no law can be made against the Quran and Sunnah.’ ….
Read more » The News
Imran Khan’s endorsement of Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed has been a PR disaster for him even within Pakistan,
By: Kunal Majumder reports
IN APRIL 2012, the United States announced a bounty of $10 million for information leading to the prosecution of Hafiz Saeed, head of the Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and believed to be the mastermind of the 26 November 2008 Mumbai terror strike. Saeed, a hero of the fundamentalist right in Pakistan, claimed he was being victimised due to his anti-American politics. Soon enough, he was adopted by Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) party. The PTI president, Javed Hashmi, called Saeed “a preacher of peace in the world!”.
Hashmi didn’t stop there. Participating in a rally organised in Multan by the Difae-Pakistan Council — an umbrella body of quasi-political religious parties opposing the opening of NATO supply lines to Afghanistan and the Most-Favoured Nation trade status to India — Hashmi vouched for the “piousness” of Saeed. “A social worker,” he said, “can never be a terrorist but all those declaring him a terrorist are the real threat to the peace of the world.”
By Nayyer Khan
Both Jamat-e-Islami and Pakistan’s deep state were looking for a charismatic character, who had a glitz of the Western culture and a mindset of an Islamist. One senior memeber of Jamat-e-Islami, namely Hafizullah Niazi effectively solved this problem by finding the right person for this job. He happened to be the brother-in-law of Cricket’s super star, male sex symbol and Casanova of International repute, Imran Khan.
The Jamaat Islami (JI) won Pakistan state’s patronage to be given a role in home politics for the first time during the brief, yet eventful tenure of military ruler Yahya Khan, when designing of state’s vital policy matters was assigned to then minister for Information and National Affairs, Major General Sher Ali Khan. Yahya Khan was no different from his predecessors – starting from Jinnah to Ayub Khan – who were hardly observant of Islamic practices in their personal lives; but had used political Islam as a major tool for defining national identity and nation-building. They wished to keep militant Islamism under control to prevent it from destabilizing domestic politics; yet direct it against India and also to use it to counter the leftist and nationalist dominant trends that were at the time working against what they deemed the Islamic ideology underpinning the state. In Sher Ali’s scheme of things the “ideology of Pakistan and glory of Islam” became pet words of our military leadership, which projected the army itself as ultimate defender of the ‘ideology of Pakistan’. Learning the lesson from public agitation against Ayub Khan, Sher Ali convinced Yahya that army should maintain its mythical image before the people as a final savior of the nation whenever national interests so demanded and, therefore, control the national politics from behind the scene; to avoid any situation in which people of Pakistan would ever confront the army directly. For this purpose a weak political government was needed to arise from the first general elections in Pakistan, scheduled to take place by the end of 1970, to be used as a fig leaf to army’s oligarchy.
As per Sher Ali plans the results of the polls were not to be manipulated during; but before the polls by providing the state’s assistance to religio-political parties – especially JI – in shape of financial and propaganda support. The substantial funds of Ayub Khan’s faction of the Muslim League confiscated by the Yahya’s Martial law regime were diverted to JI, in addition to money raised by IB from the industrialists and business class to fund the election campaign of Islamic parties (Hasan Zaheer ‘The Separation of East Pakistan’ Oxford University Press. pp 124-125). Funds were also poured in JI’s pouch by the Saudi government as well as Saudi sponsored Rabita al-Alam al-Islami.
Imran, Allama and Pakistan ka matlab kiya
By Yasser Latif Hamdani
Speaking at one of his rallies, Imran Khan asked “What slogan did Quaid-e-Azam use to make Pakistan?” and then answered his own question with “Pakistan ka matlab kiya? La illah ilallah”. The only problem is that this is a slogan that Quaid-e-Azam never used. In fact, in what could have been Jinnah addressing Imran Khan through space time continuum, we find that the founder of this state as having very clearly stated that Pakistan ka matlab kiya was not a slogan he ascribed to. Saad Khairi in his book “Jinnah Reinterpreted” recounts that a local leader of the Muslim League at the final meeting of the All India Muslim League said “Quaid-e-Azam, we have been promising our followers Pakistan Ka Matlab Kiya La illah ilallah” to which Jinnah angrily responded “Sit down. Neither I nor the working committee of the Muslim League have passed any resolution to the effect Pakistan ka matlab kiya. You might have done so to catch a few votes.”
Khaled Ahmed: Pakistan has sought to appease terrorism by becoming anti-American and pro-Taliban. [The coming blowback]
Pakistan after the American withdrawal
By Khaled Ahmed
Most observers are worried about Afghanistan after the withdrawal of US-Nato forces from there in 2013-2014. It should be interesting to see what would happen to Pakistan once the Americans are gone.
Islamabad’s Jinnah Institute in its briefing (July 25, 2011) spelled out Pakistan’s ‘objectives’ in relation to post-withdrawal Afghanistan. The most outstanding point made in the report pertained to India: “Pakistani foreign policy elite accept that India has a role to play in Afghanistan’s economic reconstruction … but Pakistani security establishment [thinks] a reluctance to address Pakistani misgivings increases the likelihood of a growing Indian footprint, and in turn, New Delhi’s greater ability to manipulate the endgame negotiations and the post-settlement dispensation in Kabul”.
Will India get out of Afghanistan after the American withdrawal? From a statement by the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (“we will support the Afghan people”), it appears that it plans to retain its presence in Afghanistan.
The most likely post-withdrawal scenario is that there will be a civil war in Afghanistan. A parallel war will take place between the Afghan National Army and the non-state actors from Pakistan. The US commander in Afghanistan, General John Allen, has told Congress he thought a future 230,000-strong Afghan force, scaled down from a planned 352,000, was enough after 2017. That will historically be the largest army Afghanistan will ever have.
Matters are coming to a head in Pakistan. The deadlock in US-Pak relations over resumption of NATO supplies is veering towards confrontation. And the confrontation between parliament-government and supreme court-opposition is edging towards a clash. The net losers are fated to be Pakistan’s fledgling democracy and stumbling economy.
Pakistan’s Parliamentary Committee for National Security has failed to forge a consensus on terms and conditions for dealing with America. The PMLN-JUI opposition is in no mood to allow the Zardari government any significant space for negotiation. COAS General Ashfaq Kayani is also reluctant to weigh in unambiguously with his stance. As such, no one wants to take responsibility for any new dishonourable “deal” with the US in an election year overflowing with angry anti-Americanism. The danger is that in any lengthy default mode, the US might get desperate and take unilateral action regardless of Pakistan’ s concern. That would compel Pakistan to resist, plunging the two into certain diplomatic and possible military conflict. This would hurt Pakistan more than the US because Islamabad is friendless, dependent on the West for trade and aid, and already bleeding internally from multiple cuts inflicted by terrorism, sectarianism, separatism, inflation, devaluation, unemployment, etc. Indeed, the worst-case scenario for the US is a disorderly and swift retreat from Afghanistan while the worst-case scenario for Pakistan is an agonizing implosion as a sanctioned and failing state.
Javed Hashmi backs ‘most wanted’ Hafiz Saeed, Hafiz Abdur Rehman Makki
By Owais Jafri
MULTAN: Javed Hashmi, the Paistan Tehreek-i-Insaf President, on Friday extended his support to Jamaatud Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed on whom the US recently placed $10 million bounty for his alleged role in the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
Calling him a preacher of peace in the world, Hashmi said, that if something should happen to Hafiz Saeed, then the entire nation will be responsible.
He was addressing a public demonstration organised by the Difa-e-Pakistan Council in Ghanta Ghar Square in Multan on Friday. The gathering was also addressed by leaders of Jamaat-e-Islami, Lawyers community, Jamat-e-ahl-e-hadees, Ahle-SunnatWal-Jamaat, Jamiat ulema-e-Pakistan, and members of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz. …
Read more » The Express Tribune
Hekmatyar as an engineering student in Kabul University, he became known for throwing acid at women dressed in Western clothes
In Afghanistan: Embracing Gulbuddin Hekmatyar Is No Method at All
By Paul Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Gould
…. By the early 1970s Hekmatyar had become radicalized by extremist Islam and joined the Nahzat-e-Jawanane Musalman (Muslim Youth Movement). As an engineering student at Kabul University he became known for throwing acid at women dressed in Western clothes and for murdering a fellow student from a Maoist faction of the PDPA. Imprisoned by King Zahir Shah’s police for the murder, Hekmatyar was freed following a 1973 coup by the King’s cousin Mohammed Daoud and communist PDPA leader Babrak Karmal and fled to Pakistan.
Hekmatyar joined with Ahmad Shah Massoud’s Jamaat-e-Islami (Islamic Party) in a Pakistani plan designed by their Directorate of Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) to destabilize Afghanistan with cross border raids. Dissatisfied with the radical Jamaat’s political approach after failing to stir an uprising in Afghanistan, Hekmatyar formed his own more radical party, the Hesb-i-Islami (Islamic Party) and came to the attention of the CIA. In 1979, Hekmatyar helped to precipitate the Soviet invasion by engaging Afghanistan’s desperate Marxist President Hafizullah Amin in a power sharing arrangement. According to the April 1981, (No. 282) edition of British publication The Round Table the Soviets panicked when they realized Amin had set December 29th as the date for dissidents of the regime and their tribal supporters to march on Kabul.
Hekmatyar would go on to become the darling of the agency and receive the bulk of the U.S. and Saudi aid coming in for the war against the Soviet Union, including a monopoly on Stinger missiles. Although an ISI and CIA favorite, Hekmatyar’s legitimacy as a fighter, his effectiveness, his loyalties and even his goals raised doubts in the Peshawar-based American press corps. According to CBS News stringer Kurt Lohbeck in his book, Holy War, Unholy Victory, Hekmatyar’s reputation was an elaborate ruse concocted by the CIA and Pakistan’s ISI to elicit Congressional support for the Mujahideen, and little else.
Gulbuddin had no effective fighting organization. He had not a single commander with any military reputation for fighting the Soviets or the Afghan regime. He had made alliances with top regime military figures. And he had killed numerous other Mujahiddin commanders. Yet the United States government and the covert agencies were doing their best to convert that lie into reality.
Via – Twitter
LAHORE – Jamaat-e-Islami chief Munawar Hasan has described Osama bin Laden as the greatest martyr and President Asif Ali Zardari as the biggest traitor.
Addressing a public meeting at a Chakwal village on Sunday, Hasan said bin Laden had refused to obey the Satan upon which the US was so much upset and ashamed that it could not release any photograph or video of his after his “martyrdom”.
Hasan said Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, who had challenged the Supreme Court’s dignity should have been handcuffed and chained because not only had he violated his oath but had also committed contempt by refusing to write to the Swiss Banks only to save Zardari.
He impressed upon the chief justice to not be impressed by the holders of the highest offices and treat all equally. “Whosoever challenged the dignity of the court should be handed down deterrent punishment,” he said, adding that had people like Babar Awan and Rehman Malik been jailed for contempt, the prime minister could not have the courage to disobey the court orders.
Hasan said the nation was in the grip of “beasts” as a gang of exploiters was ruling the country under the garb of democracy while the common man was unable to make both ends meet. He said the nation should realise that the corrupt could not control corruption and the masses would have to rise against the oppressive political system.
The JI chief said Zardari had showered praises on Gilani whose only achievement was to hide Zardari’s corruption.
He said parliament that was keen to restore NATO supplies to facilitate the enemy in the killing of innocent Pakistanis was not the representative of this nation.
Despite parliament’s decision, the rulers had continued NATO supplies by lying to the nation.
Hasan accused the rulers of following US policy on Balochistan, and said if Balochistan was to be retained as a part of the country, the Baloch should not be pushed to the wall.
He said the PPP leadership would also have to account for the MQM’s crimes.
Courtesy: Pakistan Today
By Khaled Ahmed
In the process of supporting a revisionist Army trying to survive, Pakistan as a state was damaged beyond repair
The Asghar Khan case was and is against ex-Army Chief General (Retd) Aslam Beg, not against late President Ghulam Ishaq Khan, even though the affidavits from Beg and General (Retd) Asad Durrani might imply that President Ghulam Ishaq, as the supreme commander, was at the root of the matter. As Younus Habib, the banker who carried out the ‘operation’ has made clear, it was Aslam Beg who was the mastermind; and the president was brought in later when a meeting was arranged at Balochistan House.
Jamaat-e-Islami and Jamaat-ud-Dawa reject ban on murderers of Shias, Sunnis, Ahmadis and Christians
According to news reports, Pakistan government has banned extremist Deobandi Jihadi-sectarian organization Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ: Previous names: Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan SSP and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi LeJ). According to Interior Ministry’s notification, the ASWJ was suspected to have been involved in terrorism related activities involving massacres and target killings of Shias, Sunni Barelvis, Ahmadis, Christians and other groups in various parts of Pakistan.
ASWJ is a main member organization of the (ISI-sponsored) Difa-e-Pakistan Council (DPC), which has been organising Jihadi-sectarian rallies across the country. The Multan DPC rally was hosted by the ASWJ and was also attended by Malik Ishaq, the co-founder of banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi.
Jamaat-e-Islami’s Information Secretary Anwar Niazi says they will condemn any attempt by the authorities to ban ASWJ. ….
Read more » Pakistan Blogzine
by Nadeem F. Paracha
In March 2010 animated conspiracy theorist, TV personality and poster-boy for stylised sofa-warming-jihad, Zaid Hamid finally met his nemesis at the Peshawar University.
Hamid, who till then, had been enjoying a virtual free run on certain TV channels and on privately-owned campuses, was chased away by large sections of the audience that turned up to listen to him speak at the state-owned Peshawar University.
As Hamid’s speech began being booed at, Hamid made a quick exit from the premises only to face another crowd of students outside who shouted slogans against him, and pelted his car with stones.
Suddenly a man who was lovingly being courted by TV channels and student bodies and administration of private educational institutions, was angrily courted out by the students of a state-owned university.
By Durdana Najam
Why should the Pakistan Army borrow the mullah alliance to restore its image? Perhaps the language of Islam is the easiest to use as an exploitive tool for an emotionally charged Muslim community
The religious-politico parties have become active owing to the US’s increasing intrusion into Pakistan’s territorial precincts, the latest being the Salala checkpost attack that killed 24 soldiers in November 2011. The investigative report prepared by NATO, which revealed the determinants of the attack, termed the incident to be a joint sin committed by NATO and the Pakistan Army, suggesting that on a border as volatile as the one between Afghanistan and Pakistan’s tribal region, the rage of wrath can unleash itself at any time in any mode. Pakistan rejected the findings of the report, alleging it to be biased and obsessive. The attack irked even the government and, for a change, the NATO supply route was completely shut down — to this day. A parliamentary committee on national security is working to define new contours for Pak-America relations. In the meantime, Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar is sending strong massages to the American government about the so-called sovereignty that we guard so close to our bosoms (depending largely on our whims and wishes).
The recent collaboration of 40 religious parties going by the name of Difa-i-Pakistan Council, comprising the likes of General (retd) Hamid Gul, Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, President Awami Muslim League Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, JUI-S chief Maulana Samiul Haq and the Amir of Jamaat-e-Islami, Munawar Hasan, geared towards defending Pakistan against foreign aggression, has raised national and international concerns, especially since the definition of foreign aggression from the point of view of Difa-i-Pakistan relates to none other than the US and India. ….
Read more » Daily Times
By Huma Yusuf
THERE has already been adequate kerfuffle around the appearance of PTI senior vice-president Ejaz Chaudhry at the Difaa-i-Pakistan Council’s rally in Karachi.
This is the latest demonstration of PTI’s tendency to cavort with the religious right and extremist groups. Imran Khan himself delivered a message via his envoy at the DPC’s Lahore rally in December. Previously, Chaudhry has attended rallies with Jamaatud Dawa’s Hafiz Saeed. And flags of the banned SSP have been raised at many a PTI rally. The further right the Great Khan and his party stray, the more defensive his supporters become. It is high time that defence was analysed. ….
Read more » DAWN.COM
Neither penance nor expiation can cleanse those responsible for the radicalisation of Pakistan. The cancer has spread far and wide across the fabric of the society for which the educated intelligentsia is as much to blame as the semi-literate clerics.
A vivid illustration of this was last week’s imposition of a ban by the Lahore High Court Bar Association on the sale of soft drinks manufactured by Shehzan from the cafeterias of all the subordinate courts because the company is Ahmadi-owned.
The anchor (Wajahat Khan) who interviewed Hamed Gul facing death threats after exposing Hamid Gul’s lies about Malik Ishaq
Pakistan’s right-wing is questioned, and questioned hard, as former ISI Chief Lt. Gen (retd) Hameed Gul faces off against Wajahat S. Khan on the role of the controversial Difa-e-Pakistan Council. 32 minutes of a no-holds-barred debate on Aaj TV’s Ikhtilaf. The language of the interview is urdu (Hindi).
By Huma Imtiaz / Web Desk
WASHINGTON: The US State Department has raised concerns about Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed’s public appearances, including at the Difa-e-Pakistan Council (DPC) rally held in Karachi earlier this week.
The State Department issued a brief press release on Thursday, In response to a question submitted earlier in the week, which said that, “Lashkar-e-Taiba and its front group Jamaatud Dawa, is internationally sanctioned because of its associations with al Qaeda. We have and continue to urge the Government of Pakistan to uphold its obligations in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 1267/1989.”
The release further stated that the UN resolution “calls for all countries to freeze assets of sanctioned groups, prevent the transfer of arms to them, and prevent sanctioned individuals from entering or transiting their territories.”
JuD has been functioning in the country as a religious and charity organisation. Post Mumbai attacks in 2008, the organisation was declared a terrorist organisation by the West, UN and India. ….
Read more » The Express Tribune
Bound by hatred of the US, Pakistan extremists and politicians join hands to shake government – Chicago Tribune
By: ASHRAF KHAN
Associated Press – KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) — Bound together by hatred of the United States and support for insurgents fighting in Afghanistan, a revived coalition of supposedly banned Islamist extremists and rightwing political parties is drawing large crowds across Pakistan.
The emergence of the “Defend Pakistan Council” movement has raised suspicions that the group has approval from elements in the powerful military and security establishment, aiming to bolster public support for a hardline position. The group’s rise comes as the military is trying to assert its position in renegotiating its troubled relationship with the United States and as Pakistan prepares for elections likely to take place later this year.
Some of the leading lights in the Defend Pakistan Council have traditionally been seen as close to the security establishment, which has a long history of propping up radicals to defend its domestic interests or fight in India and Afghanistan.
On Sunday, the group’s bandwagon rolled into Karachi, the country’s commercial heart.
Between 20,000 and 30,000 men gathered close to a monument to Pakistan’s founder, Mohammed Ali Jinnah, whose vision of a liberal, secular Pakistan is often contrasted to the rise of hardline, often violent groups in the country.
The star of the gathering was Hafiz Saeed, the head of Jamaat-ud-Dawa, a front group for Lashkar-e-Taiba, the militant group accused by India and the West of sending Pakistani militants by boat to Mumbai in 2008 where they killed 166 people in attacks on a hotel and other sites.
“We demand Pakistani rulers quit the alliance with America,” said Saeed, who was placed under house arrest after the Mumbai attacks but has slowly re-emerged in public, without a response from authorities. “There can be no compromise on the freedom and sovereignty of the country.”
Members of Dawa patrolled the rally, some armed with automatic weapons, others on horseback.
Also represented on stage and in the crowd were Sipah-e-Sahaba, a feared Sunni extremist group that has carried out scores of attacks on minority Shiites in recent years. Its members have reportedly formed alliances with al-Qaida operatives in Pakistan.
A large banner that hung over the stage read “Wake up, countrymen, break the shackles of American slavery.”
That anti-American message has been amplified by the Pakistani army since U.S. airstrikes along the Afghan border in late November killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. The Pakistani army accused the U.S. of deliberately targeting the outposts, rejecting American assertions it was mistake.
Pakistan retaliated by closing its western border to NATO and U.S military supplies into Afghanistan, a key supply line for the war. Saeed and other speakers threatened civil disobedience if Pakistan reopens it. Their stance could hamper American hopes that Islamabad will quietly reopen the route in the coming weeks.
“We vow that the NATO supply will never be restored,” he said.
The alliance groups many of the same parties and clerics that banded together after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, capitalizing on anti-American sentiment. It formed a political alliance that won 50 seats in elections that took place in 2002.
The current government, which is broadly pro-American and doesn’t espouse political Islam, is under pressure from the courts and opposition parties. Elections are now seen as likely later this year, and the revival of the “Defend Pakistan” group appears to be a push by politicians grouped within it to win votes among the legions of Pakistanis who subscribe to Islamist views.
It could also be attempt by the army to put pressure on the ruling Pakistan People’s Party, which has repeatedly clashed with the generals since taking power in 2008 and has tried to get closer ties with India. The group has organized large rallies in several Pakistan cities; next week it plans a gathering in the capital, Islamabad.
Many of the speakers in Karachi rallied the crowds with warnings that Pakistan was under threat, and Islam its only defense.
“Do you swear to fight back with Islamic spirit, honor and dignity if anyone, whether American, NATO, Israel or India attack Pakistan?” asked Maulana Sami-ul-Haq, head of a hardline school that has sent thousands of people to fight in Afghanistan over the last 10 years.
“Jihad! Jihad!” the crowd roared.
Speaker after speaker also touted the army line on India, saying the neighboring country represents an existential threat to Pakistan. This stance justifies the security state that has been established since the two nations broke apart from the British-ruled subcontinent in 1947.
Liberals, democrats and peace activists have been trying for years to bring India and Pakistan closer together. But in the past, the army has funded and trained Islamic militant groups and their umbrella organizations to battle Indian forces in Kashmir, the disputed territory at the heart of the rivalry between the two countries.
“The security establishment of this country desires that ultra-radical parties should be brought into politics so that their doctrine against India, America or Israel could be infused to the masses,” said Tauseef Ahmed, the head of the Mass Communication department at the Federal Urdu University.
Also at the Karachi rally was Hamid Gul, a former general who headed the country’s spy agency in the late 1980s when Pakistan and the U.S. were supporting militants in their fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan. He has since become a leading voice in the media against America and in support of the Taliban. Documents released by the whistleblower site Wikileaks alleged he retained ties to the insurgency there, a charge he has denied.
Ejaz Haider, a security analyst, said the security establishment should be “checked for serious dementia“ if it was using the council for its own purposes, given that many of its members have been linked to terrorism that is taking a deadly toll inside Pakistan.
By Saroop Ijaz
….. there were calls by the Jamaat-ud-Dawa and the Jamaat-i-Islami and others for the shutting down of an Ahmadi place of worship (I will be in breach of law if I say ‘mosque’) in Rawalpindi. I do not want to create a false binary here and I am glad that the snooping dame is unemployed now, and commend the people who played their part in bringing that about. Nevertheless, I find it astounding that the happenings in Rawalpindi escaped the notice of our liberal ‘intelligentsia’ almost completely, at least in mainstream public discourse; hence furnishing a near identical example of partially what the television anchor was guilty of. The alternate explanation is grimmer, that being that it was not for failure to notice, but rather fear. ….
Read more » The Express Tribune
The language of the video clip is urdu (Hindi).
Courtesy: ARY News Tv » YouTube
The Muslims in al-Qaeda are our brethren, says the top Jamaat-i-Islami ideologue Prof. Khurshid Ahmad
By Shakil Chaudhary and Mohammad Shehzad
Islamabad, December 15: Prof. Khurshid Ahmad is the top ideologue and vice-president of Jamaat-i-Islami. He is the chairman of the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), Islamabad and the founder of the Islamic Foundation, Liester, England. He was born on March 23, 1932, in Delhi. He holds a bachelor’s in law and jurisprudence, master’s in economics and Islamic studies, and an honorary doctorate in Islamic economics conferred by the International Islamic University, Malaysia.
In an exclusive with Shakil Chaudhary and Mohammad Shehzad for http://www.pol-dev.com, Prof. Ahmad answered a number of questions concerning the JI’s politics and its credentials as a moderate Islamist party. For example, after the 9/11, the former JI Amir Qazi Hussain Ahmad stated that al-Qaeda was a figment of the Americans’ imagination. On the contrary, the then JI Secretary General Syed Munawar Hassan, the current chief of the party, said that al-Qaeda leaders were our brethren (Nawa-i-Waqt, October 13, 2002).
Commenting on these statements, Prof. Ahmad said: ‘There is no contradiction between the two. The Muslims in al-Qaeda are our brethren. ….
Read more » The Politics & Development Magazine
Pakistan’s top Islamist politician tells nation to be prepare for revolution in country before next election
JI chief tells nation to be prepared for revolution in country
KARACHI: Ameer of Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan Syed Munawar Hassan called up on the nation on Sunday to be prepared for bringing a revolution in the country and viewed that elections held after the revolution will bear better results. ….
Read more » DAWN.COM
You have ruled us enough
You have ruined us enough
You have raped our beloved country enough
You have destroyed our future and shattered our dreams
Enough is enough.
Your concepts are weird, your plans are insane
You are devious and deceitful
You are cowards and timid
You are cruel and ruthless
You are cunning and conniving
You are criminals and corrupt
Enough is enough
We are no longer afraid of long boots
We have no fear of big guns
You can’t bully us any more
Enough is enough
You have found new shoulders to take away our freedoms
Bigwigs are on your side and fake journalists speak your lies
But you all should know it is enough, it is enough
No more insults, no more intrigues enough is enough
No more blackmail, no more intimidation enough is enough
We will not let the Justice spread injustice enough is enough
Go away, go away it is enough, it is enough
Stay away, stay away it is enough, it is enough
We will fight you till the end
Enough is enough