KARACHI, Pakistan — Wildlife authorities say they have found the carcasses of six endangered river dolphins in Pakistan over the last month.
Sindh Wildlife Department deputy head Ghulam Mohammad accused on Monday local fisherman, saying their poison and nets were to blame for the deaths of the Indus River Dolphin.
The blind mammal is found only in the Indus River. A 2006 survey put the numbers left in the river at 1,300.
Increasingly low water levels and the spilling of pesticides into the river have reduced the dolphins’ habitat.
Courtesy: The Canadian Press
…. When we look at the political dynamic of Egypt, and try to imagine its connection to the international system, we can see that there are several scenarios under which certain political outcomes would have profound effects on the way the world works. That should not be surprising. When Egypt was a pro-Soviet Nasserite state, the world was a very different place than it had been before Nasser. When Sadat changed his foreign policy the world changed with it. If the Sadat foreign policy changes, the world changes again. Egypt is one of those countries whose internal politics matter to more than its own citizens.
To read full report : Stratfor
by Ibrahim Saleh Mohammad
The life we are enjoying is a gift of a continuous Evolution of The Mother Nature and our ancestors (physically as well as Mentally) and this is our prime duty to transmit these fruits of life to our coming Generations, we as the sons of Sindhu have dual Responsibility, First towards our Mother land, and Secondly towards the entire Humanity of the Globe, as we are the inheritors of the Sindhu Philosophy which Teach, Equality of Human beings, Peace for the entire Globe, communal harmony and tolerance amongst different Thinking.
Source – Adopted from Facebook.
by Nadir Hassan
There are few things as drearily predictable as Pakistani hacks watching revolutions in progress in other countries and wistfully wishing we could have one ourselves. The overthrow of the Tunisian government swiftly followed by the likely removal of Hosni Mubarak in Egypt has provided lovers of facile arguments a bonanza.
Beyond puerile platitudes extolling the virtues of spirited street power and pleading with the masses to storm the capital, no one seems interested in explaining exactly who the revolt should be directed against or even who will be directing it. Unenlightening tirades against the ‘establishment’ do not count as an explanation since they are about as specific as a stoned teenager railing against The Man.
Pakistan right now has a flawed, nascent democratic system in place, one that is incrementally becoming less imperfect and more secure. From the holding of elections that were as free as any have been in the country to the passage of the 18th amendment, we have made undoubted progress after the Musharraf blight. Sure, we are all unhappy at the rapid rise of religious extremism and the government’s cowardice in tackling the blasphemy issue. Endemic corruption and a growing economic crisis please no one. But using that as bait in calling for mass upheaval is extremely childish. Democratisation is better achieved through a slow process of elections, bitter political debates and give-and-take between transient governments and the permanent military.
Read more : DAWN
Ripe for revolution? – By Mahreen Khan
…. Despite a wave of public protests, Egypt is unlikely to emulate Tunisia, due to factors also present in Pakistan. Egypt has a sharp religious divide between Coptics and Muslims as well as numerous Islamic groups pitted against each other. Arab analysts cite low levels of literacy and a general feeling of apathy and defeatism in the population as further reasons that Egypt will continue to fester rather than revolt. Pakistan has these and additional factors which militate against a revolution: deep and multiple ethnic, linguistic, tribal and sectarian fault lines; a paucity of alternative intellectual narratives, radical leaders or strong unions; and an elected government and freedom of speech. Ironically, democratic elections and free speech help perpetuate the corrupt, unjust stranglehold of the feudal-industrial power elite. Revolutionary forces require a moral impetus that illegitimate dictatorship provides but elected government does not. Secondly, frustration needs to simmer under a repressive regime until it reaches the temperature for mass revolt. Pakistan’s free media allows an outlet for public dissatisfaction. The often harsh treatment of politicians and police officials at the hands of journalists and judges ameliorates public anger. Vocal opposition parties, unhindered street protests and strikes allow a regular release of fury, draining the momentum necessary for the emotional surge that revolutionary zeal requires. …
Read more : The Express Tribune
Jesters and destinies —Mir Mohammad Ali Talpur
– Whenever armies become unanswerable to the state and become a ‘deep state’, the irreversible rot sets in and results in the disintegration of the state they are supposedly safeguarding and protecting.
In his book, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Edward Gibbon (1737-1794) tells about a Roman emperor who, angered by the actions of his favourite jester, orders that he be put to death. The jester, hearing this, mournfully shakes his head and says that a wish of his would remain unfulfilled. Inquisitive, the emperor inquires and after some persuasion the jester tells that he has the knowledge and the ability to teach the emperor’s favourite black stallion to speak.
The emperor asks how long would it take and is told a year is enough. The death sentence is temporarily waived and the condemned jester allowed to fulfil his promise. The jester’s well-wishers tell him that he has committed a great folly as there was no way that he could make the stallion speak. He replies, “There is a possibility that in the intervening time I may die a natural death or maybe even the emperor could die and I would be free. Moreover, a year is long enough a period; who knows, the black stallion may learn to speak.”
Sixty-three years are a long enough period to change destinies but it seems the jesters here who took up the task were incompetent, corrupt and dishonest to the core, whose concept of a tryst with destiny remained limited to accumulating power and pelf for their dynasties. They neither had compassion for the people nor the wisdom to understand that they were establishing the groundwork for the eventual catastrophe. They felt if they could muster the support of their various masters and mentors for undisputed authority and power to rule, then for all intents and purposes the masses and their problems were irrelevant. They simply ensured by deceit and fraud that loans would continue to pour in to make their lives luxurious even if that meant burdening the people with irredeemable debts. These jesters have brought this place to this pass and the only route open is the way down. …
Read more : Daily Times
Jokes about Hosni Mubarak circulating on Facebook
A SPEECH WRITER OF PRESIDENT MUBARAK RUSHED INTO HIS OFFICE AND SAID “MR. PRESIDENT,THIS IS YOUR FAREWELL SPEECH TO THE NATION.”
PRESIDENT MUBARAK REMARKED, “WHY? ARE THE EGYPTIANS LEAVING THE COUNTRY?”
Winston Churchill on India
Winston Churchill … & his argument against granting India / Pakistan independence …
“Power will go to rascals, rogues, freebooters … All leaders will be of low caliber & men of straw … They’ll have sweet tongues & silly hearts …
They will fight amongst themselves for power & the two countries will be lost in political squabbles … A day would come when even air & water will be taxed.” He wrote this 64 years ago. . .
Incredibly the leaders of India & Pakistan worked hard to prove him right …
Courtesy: Pakistani e-lists/ e-groups.
Suicide blast kills eight near Kohat Tunnel
KOHAT: Eight people were killed and at least 10 others were injured in a suicide blast near the Kohat Tunnel late on Friday night, reports said.
The blast damaged the tunnel on the main road between the northwestern city of Peshawar and the region. The tunnel was closed after the incident, television reports said. …
Read more : DAWN
by Fawzia Afzal-Khan
Samaa TV program anchor Meher Bokhari, whose aggressive interview of Taseer a few weeks prior to his assassination has raised troubling questions about media responsibility. Did her insistence, that Governor Taseer had somehow engaged in defamation of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) by simply calling the blasphemy law a man-made law and as such, amendable, seem an appropriate line of questioning? …
Read more : View Point
by Peter Skerry and Gary Schmitt
AMID THE uproar earlier this month over the assassination of Salmaan Taseer, the secularist governor of the Pakistani province of Punjab, Muslim-American organizations have been largely silent. At a time when mainstream Muslim leaders have been trying to demonstrate their embrace of religious tolerance and pluralism to their fellow Americans, few have had a word to say about this People’s Party leader whose denunciation of Pakistan’s draconian blasphemy law led to his death at the hands of a Muslim zealot — a zealot who has since been celebrated by fundamentalists around the globe. …
Read more : The Boston Globe
by Razib Khan
I have a post up at Secular Right which expresses some cynical skepticism about the popular revolutions in North Africa. I’m especially skeptical of Egypt, though I would be happy to be proven wrong by history. Democratic governance is better than the alternatives, all things equal, but all things are not equal. Tunisia is in many ways a more “Western” society than Egypt, so I have more hope that a conventional Western form of governance in liberal democratic form will emerge there. Additionally, unlike Egypt Tunisia has no minorities to oppress.
Because of the power of democratically in the American mind we often can’t conceive of the possibility that populism abroad may not shake out in a direction conducive to our own “national interests.” Or, further other values which we putatively cherish, such as individual liberty and tolerance of dissent and diversity. But it is no coincidence that we were founded a republic, and not a democracy.
About the book – This book is reproduced by Sani Hussain Panhwar. A thesis for a separate homeland for the people of Sindh. This book was first published in 1974. It laid the foundations for the Sindhi Nationalist Movement. A complete social, political, economical and philosophical argument supporting Sindh. …
Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Egypt’s major cities on Friday, prompting the government to deploy the army to keep the peace for the first time since unrest began Tuesday. Protesters are demanding an end to President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year-rule. Here are the latest developments as confirmed by CNN. …
Read more : CNN
The New Great Game
The New Great Game is a term used to describe the conceptualization of modern geopolitics in Central Eurasia as a competition between the United States, the United Kingdom and other NATO countries against Russia, the People’s Republic of China and other Shanghai Cooperation Organisation countries for “influence, power, hegemony and profits in Central Asia and the Transcaucasus“. It is a reference to “The Great Game“, the political rivalry between the British and Russian Empires in Central Asia during the 19th century.
Many authors and analysts view this new “game” as centering around regional petroleum politics. Now, instead of competing for actual control over a geographic area, “pipelines, tanker routes, petroleum consortiums, and contracts are the prizes of the new Great Game”.The term has become prevalent throughout the literature about the region, appearing in book titles, academic journals, news articles, and government reports. Pakistani author Ahmed Rashid claims he coined the term in a self-described “seminal” magazine article published in 1997, however uses of the term can be found prior to the publication of his article.
Addressing the Ambassador directly, Prince Andrew then turned to regional politics. He stated baldly that “the United Kingdom, Western Europe (and by extension you Americans too”) were now back in the thick of playing the Great Game. More animated than ever, he stated cockily: “And this time we aim to win!
Islamabad : MQM’s representatives in the Senate refused to say Fateha (prayer) for Salmaan Taseer Shaheed. Also, interestingly, Waseem Sajjad of the PML-Q refused to condemn the assassin Mumtaz Qadri. Since senator Waseem Sajjad is a pillar of the establishment, this speaks volumes about where the “deep state” stands on this issue. …
Read more : BBC urdu
A song which manages to stir all your senses, sung by Zafer Ali Khan who excels with his raw, stroking and sensitive voice, lyrics by Baba Bhulle Shah and composed by Shahzad Hasan (Vital Signs) for drama serial “RANI” of PTV.
To: UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and US Ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter
crisisbalochistan.com in cooperation with Baloch human rights groups, International Voice for Baloch Missing Persons and Baloch Human Rights Council
Photo: Qambar Chakar Baloch, extrajudically killed January 5, 2011
TO: US Ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and others*
WE THE UNDERSIGNED wish to bring to the attention of the World Community the continuing plight of Baloch Citizens living within Pakistan. …
Not only did Ghaffar Khan not seek political high office for himself, he also remained highly critical of his party and family members when they either did not live up to his high standards when in power or had sought such power through compromising on core principles …
Read more : Daily Times
Written by: VOA
Demonstrators in Jordan say they are preparing for more protests. Massive demonstrations inspired by unrest in Tunisia have shaken what historically has been one of the most stable nations in the Middle East and raised questions about the future role of the country’s popular monarch. Some protesters in last Friday’s demonstration waved pieces of bread.
It is rising food prices, unemployment, and anger over corruption that prompted thousands to take to the streets of Amman last week. …
Read more : EurasiaReview
By Manbir Singh Chowdhary
G.M. Syed was as an enigmatic leader who spent his entire life advocating the rights of peasants in a feudal society, and fighting the adverse effects of centralized power and authority in Pakistan. As a result, he became renowned as a champion of his native Sindh.
In 1971, disillusioned with national politics and the stronghold of Pakistan’s federal government over smaller provinces, Syed formed the ‘Jiye Sindh‘ movement that called for the recognition and right to self-determination of the Sindhi people.
Unafraid to speak out against the ethnically Punjabi-dominated government’s marginalization of his Sindhi brethren, he died in 1995 under house arrest, after a lifelong career in politics. Amnesty International declared him, “A Prisoner of Conscience”.
A 2002 editorial in Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper claimed Syed was the longest serving political prisoner in recent history, beating Nelson Mandela by six months.
At a February 2001 gathering to commemorate G.M. Syed’s 97th birth anniversary, the Dawn reported various leaders of nationalist parties paying tribute to him as “a man of principle who never compromised with feudals and dictators for the sake of power.”
The article reflected the common sentiment of those who view Syed as a political icon: “The late Syed believed in the salvation of all oppressed people of Sindh who had been subjugated by feudals and forces of exploitation.”
Despite remaining firm in his convictions and standing up against political oppression, it was G.M. Syed’s views on religion and philosophy that truly formed the basis of his legacy to the world. A man of great learning, he was a staunch proponent of humanity and love – a man who respected and drew from the teachings of all faiths.
In the words of author and historian, Khadim Hussain Soomro, “History will remember him as an eminent ambassador of peace, goodwill, and tolerance.”
Pakistan flood crisis as bad as African famines, UN says
Survey shows almost a quarter of children under five are malnourished in Sindh province, six months after floods
– Declan Walsh in Islamabad
A “humanitarian crisis of epic proportions” is unfolding in flood-hit areas of southern Pakistan where malnutrition rates rival those of African countries affected by famine, according to the United Nations.
In Sindh province, where some villages are still under water six months after the floods, almost one quarter of children under five are malnourished while 6% are severely underfed, a Floods Assessment Needs survey has found.
“I haven’t seen malnutrition this bad since the worst of the famine in Ethiopia, Darfur and Chad. It’s shockingly bad,” said Karen Allen, deputy head of Unicef in Pakistan. …
Read more : Guardian.co.uk