There are a number of factors that can contribute to rising global inflation, including increases in the cost of raw materials and energy, changes in monetary policy, and increases in demand for goods and services. Inflation is a measure of how much prices for goods and services are increasing over time, and it is typically measured by looking at the rate of change in a basket of commonly-purchased goods and services. When the overall level of prices in an economy is rising, it means that the purchasing power of money is declining, and people need more money to buy the same goods and services. Rising inflation can be a concern for governments and central banks, as it can lead to increased uncertainty and volatility in financial markets.
Tag Archives: money
U.S. names two Af-Pak money traders for helping Taliban
WASHINGTON: The United States named two Afghanistan-Pakistan money changers as helping the Taliban manage and move funds, setting sanctions against both that aim to hinder their business.
The US Treasury said the two hawalas, or money exchange businesses – the Haji Khairullah Haji Sattar Money Exchange (HKHS) and the Roshan Money Exchange – “have been used by the Taliban to facilitate money transfers in support of the Taliban’s narcotics trade and terrorist operations.” Up through last year, HKHS services were “a preferred method for Taliban leadership to transfer money to Taliban commanders in Afghanistan,” the Treasury said.
Roshan was used for money transfers by the Taliban, particularly in Helmand province, including allegedly moving hundreds of thousands of dollars last year “for the purchase of narcotics on behalf of Taliban officials.” The Treasury listed Haji Abdul Sattar Barakzai and Haji Khairullah Barakzai, HKHS co-owners, under the sanctions for donating funds to the Taliban.
HKHS has 16 branches in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran and Dubai, according to the Treasury.
Roshan operates 11 branches in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
What happens when organized crime takes office? The rise of the mafia states
Mafia States – Organized Crime Takes Office
By Moisés Naím
The Rise of the Mezzanine Rulers
Michael Crawford and Jami Miscik
Governments across the Middle East and South Asia are increasingly losing power to substate actors that are inserting themselves at a mezzanine level of rule between the government and the people. Western policymakers must address the problem systematically, at both a political and a legal level, rather than continue to pursue reactive and disjointed measures on a case-by-case basis.
Continue reading What happens when organized crime takes office? The rise of the mafia states
The Taliban mercenary movement is the major cause of Pakistan’s isolation in the community of nations
Comment by: Manzoor Chandio
The Taliban mercenary movement is the major cause of Pakistan’s isolation in the community of nations … they work like rent-a-car business… rent-a-training camp is Waziristan’s buzzword… their true mercenary face came to fore when they started attacks on the Pakistan military… these Taliban might have been rented in Afghanistan… those carrying out attacks in Afghanistan, like the Haqqani network, are said to be helped by Pakistan… Taliban have nothing to do with Umah… they are based in a barren mountainous area… first time people of this area saw rains of dollars in the 1980s thanks to Dictator General Zia … the people of Waziristan rented out their lands for setting up jihad training camps… many more rented out houses as barracks for Jihadis… one rough estimate is that some 40,000 people from across Muslim countries landed in Fata for jihad… rent-a-training camp business flourished as high as rent-a-commercial suite in Dubai… Jihadis came from across the Umah to get training… again this was not without money… Muslim separatists from Philippines, Chinese and other countries paid money for training their fighters in Fata… Waziristan is like Sandhurst and Fort Hood of Jihadis across Umah… local Mehsuds allowed the training camps in their areas for money… & this is called business by them… they know how to protect their interests… then there was drug business & it flourished along with the killing Jihad business… there is a saying in Pushto ‘Awal Zaar, resto Jahan’… this mean business… the only way to close this jihad & drug industry is to industrialized Fata that provide jobs to the people.
Courtesy: Manzoor Chando’s facebook wall.
What a lier! Gen. Beg blames IsI for poll rigging
Asghar Khan petition: Gen Beg blames ISI for poll rigging
By Azam Khan
ISLAMABAD: Former army chief Gen Mirza Aslam Beg has blamed the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) for distributing money among various politicians to rig the 1990 elections as alleged in air marshal Asghar Khan’s petition.
Maintaining his innocence, Beg submitted another statement before the Supreme Court, in which he claimed that the ISI was a separate entity from the army and was not under the command of the army chief.
Beg insisted he was not directly involved in maintaining accounts and distributing funds during 1990 elections. “…In fact, the accounts were maintained by the ISI and (Beg) only instructed then DG ISI Gen (retd) Asad Durrani to maintain accounts ….
Read more » The Express Tribune
Pakistan is defaulting on sovereign debt
Power sector dues: Govt defaults on sovereign guarantees
By Shahbaz Rana
ISLAMABAD: Failure to honour its financial commitments to Independent Power Producers (IPP) has led to the first-ever sovereign default by the government in Pakistan’s history.
The default on sovereign guarantees – assurances the government provides to foreign investors – may not only unnerve the financial markets, but also downgrade the government’s creditworthiness, making it more expensive to borrow money.
“Today, the government of Pakistan has committed a sovereign default for the first time in the history of the country”, announced the IPPs Advisory Committee here on Tuesday.
“The government has defaulted on payments of roughly Rs45 billion to nine IPPs that generate 1,700 megawatts of electricity”, said Abdullah Yusuf, Chairman IPP Advisory Committee while talking to The Express Tribune. These nine IPPs started operations in 2004 and their total receivables amount to almost Rs232 billion.
Taking legal course
The IPPs gave a 30-day payment notice to the power purchaser, the Central Power Purchasing Agency (CPPA), followed by a 10-day notice to the government. Neither the CPPA nor the government cleared the overdue amounts, said the advisory committee.
The IPPs have exhausted all avenues available and the notice served to the government expired on Tuesday, the committee said.
After the default, the IPPs have issued a legal notice to the government for recovery by Thursday, May 10th, 2012 failing which the IPPs will follow a legal course.
Yusuf said the IPPs will go to the Pakistani courts.
“The default is a very serious matter and carries negative implications for the country”, Yusuf added. ….
Read more » The Express Tribune
Rehman Malik provided proves against PMLn Chief Nawaz Sharif was involved in money laundering
Mehran Bank Scandal: Rehman malik provided proves to media
Interior Minister Rehman Malik proved that PML-N Chief Nawaz Sharif was involved in money laundering.
He gave evidence against Nawaz Sharif would be placed before the Supreme Court and National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for alleged corruption of $32 million.
Federal Rehman Malik said a commission may be formed to investigate alleged involvement of Nawaz Sharif in money laundering.
He appealed to the Supreme Court to call him and he would present all evidence. He further alleged that Nawaz Sharif made an NRO with former President Farooq Ahmed Leghari and as a result, Benazir Bhutto’s elected government was unconstitutionally dismissed in November 1996.
Federal Rehman Malik said that Nawaz Sharif made a second NRO with dictator Pervez Musharraf and went abroad after signing an agreement and violated the Charter of Democracy (COD) he signed with Benazir Bhutto in 2006. …
Courtesy: Duniya Tv News » Read more » LUBP
The bloody civilians and the almighty generals
Baaghi: Caviar to the general – By Marvi Sirmed
Even if the agencies in other countries play this ‘august’ role of interrupting the democratic process in their countries, does it justify ISI’s doling out money to keep a certain political party of the people’s choice out of government?
“Tacitly registering his concern over the debate in the media on the role of the army and the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Ashfaq Kayani on Wednesday said, ‘The national institutions should not be undermined’”, said a news item in an English language daily newspaper on March 15. What merited this royal annoyance was open to discussion in the media about the re-eruption of a long simmering ‘Mehrangate’ that should be best described as ISI-gate. According to this case, some Rs 140 million had been doled out to politicians to rig the elections in 1990. The rest of the money out of Rs 350 million, as claimed by one Younas Habib, Zonal Manager of Habib Bank at that time, who was allegedly asked by the ISI to generate these funds, eventually went to the coffers of ISI and its officials and General Aslam Beg, the then army chief.
Continue reading The bloody civilians and the almighty generals
Watch Top anchor person of Pakistani media, Mubashir Lucman on Chief Justice of Pakistan, Iftikhar Chaudhry
Mubashir Luqman is one of the top Pakistani anchor persons on TV. As is evident from the name of his program “Khari Baat” (Straight Talk) Luqman is known and revered for bringing out the truth in all its forms with the right amount of audacity and courage. He also writes regularly for the newspapers. Viewers of Mubashir Luqman’s programs are captivated by his hard-hitting questions and dauntless opinion. The language of the talk show is urdu.
Geo News – ISI distributes money to political parties: Imran Khan
KARACHI: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran khan said the case about ISI’s alleged role in distributing money among political parties is already in the Supreme Court, and as the proceedings will move ahead, things will become clear, Geo News reported Saturday.
While talking to the media at Karachi Airport, Imran Khan said that corruption is Pakistan’s biggest problem and urged the nation to stand united on the issue. ….
Read more » http://www.geo.tv/GeoDetail.aspx?ID=34900
Court Revives Investigation on ISI Money for Politicians
By Nafisa Hoodbhoy
(Includes ATDT Excerpt on Backdrop for Asghar Khan’s Petition)
ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Monday fixed February 29 to hear the petition filed by Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Asghar Khan 16 years ago pertaining to Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) distributing money among politicians.
Meanwhile, the former ISI chief Gen. (Retd) Durrani submitted an affidavit confirming the accusation.
The petition has called upon the apex court to punish the politicians and political groups who have been receiving pots of money from the agency.
Various politicians had demanded the petition to be heard.
Air Marshal (retd) Asghar Khan, in 1996, wrote a letter to then chief justice Nasim Hasan Shah against former army chief Mirza Aslam Baig, former ISI chief Lt-General (retd) Asad Durrani and Younis Habib of Habib and Mehran Banks, relating to the disbursement of public money and its misuse for political purposes.
Aboard the Democracy Train Excerpt (P. 27)
Elections Were the Tip of the Iceberg
As a guest of the interim Prime Minister Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi, I had witnessed how state funds and propaganda were used to defeat Benazir. But I was still an onlooker, without inside knowledge of what had transpired in the inner circles. Then still an inexperienced reporter, I couldn’t guess how the establishment defeated the PPP, which, right or wrong, had the support of the masses.
In 1996, some clues emerged. Retired Air Marshal Asghar Khan filed a case in the Supreme Court, alleging that the powerful secret service wing of the army – the ISI – had rigged the 1990 election. Based on Asghar Khan’s petition, former ISI chief, Lt. Gen. Asad Durrani took the stand in the Supreme Court and provided an affidavit that the army had indeed distributed Pkr 140 million (USD 1.6 million) to anti-PPP candidates, only a few months before the October 1990 election.
The anti-PPP candidates banded in the IJI comprised feudal, Islamic and ethnic parties that resolutely opposed Benazir’s populist rule. Subsequently, we learnt that the care-taker President Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi, who had stayed mum while Chip probed him – had actually taken PKR 5 million (USD 59,000) from the ISI. Meanwhile, Nawaz Sharif – who was ushered in by the military to succeed Benazir as prime minister – was revealed to have received PKR 3.5 million (USD 41,000) from the spy agencies.
Apparently, the army was so scared that Benazir would be elected back into power that their IJI coalition distributed state funds among various interest groups to prevent her return.
As I covered national politics, Asghar Khan talked to me in earnest, as though I was a player rather than a reporter. Then in coalition with the PPP, he told me that Benazir and Nawaz ought to unite to repeal Article 58-2(b). This was the constitutional clause introduced by Gen. Zia ul Haq that allowed presidents like Ghulam Ishaq Khan to dissolve the assembly.
Although, I shared Asghar Khan’s desire for principled politics, it surprised me that he seemed clueless about Benazir’s approach of doing whatever it took to return to power.
Courtesy: Aboard The Democracy Train
Fai pleads guilty to working for ISI
By Anwar Iqbal
WASHINGTON: A US-based Kashmiri leader Syed Ghulam Nabi Fai pleaded guilty on Wednesday to federal charges of lobbying for Kashmir without registration and spying for the ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence).
Mr Fai also acknowledged receiving money from the Pakistani spy agency through clandestine routes and causing revenue losses.
Pleading before the US District Court in Alexandria, Virginia, Mr Fai conceded that he received at least $3.5 million from the ISI between 1990 and 2011. This resulted in a revenue loss of between $200,000 and $400,000 to the US government. …
Read more » DAWN.COM
Silence of the lambs
by Waseem Altaf
Rs 25 b would be spent this year alone in Pakistan on this primitive ritual. Can we not spend this huge sum of money in a more rational and productive way? Millions have lost so much during the recent floods. Can’t this money be spent on their rehabilitation? ….
Read more » ViewPoint
Spectacular bloodshed – By Nayyer Khan
In agricultural society, live stock represents wealth and hence sacrifices. In an urban society wealth is represented by money. If one contributed the equivalent of the price of a goat or a cow to charity — i.e. feeding the poor, donating to hospitals etc, it should have the same effect
Every year, on Eid-ul-Azha (3 days long annual Muslim Festival, starting in a few days, during which animals are sacrificed to please Allah), I feel as if I am living in one of the ancient civilizations ….
Read more » ViewPoint
Sharif’s letter to Brother Abdullah
With Saudi money, American weapons, suicidal youths, and the fauji IQ, Pakistan will prevail and lead the Ummah. We will have a friendly government in Kabul, the Dhimmis in Orakzai will pay Jizya and the infidels in New Delhi will pay tribute. I would appeal to Taliban again, not to attack us, because as the Chief Minister has said, we stand for the same things …
Read more » ViewPoint
The judge, who had handed down two death sentences to Mumtaz Qadri for killing Punjab governor Salman Taseer, has left Pakistan along with his family after receiving death threats from jihadis
Qadri case judge sent abroad
by Zulqernain Tahir
LAHORE: The district and sessions judge, who had handed down two death sentences to Mumtaz Qadri for killing Punjab governor Salman Taseer, has left for Saudi Arabia along with his family after receiving death threats from extremists.
“The death threats have forced Judge Pervez Ali Shah to leave the country along with his family for Saudi Arabia,” Advocate Saiful Malook, the special prosecutor in the Qadri case, told Dawn on Monday.
He said sensing the gravity of the situation the government had arranged the lodging of Mr Shah and members of his family abroad. “Although security was provided to the judge and his family members, the government on the reports of law-enforcement agencies opted for sending him abroad,” he said.
There were also unconfirmed reports that extremist elements in religious parties had fixed the head money for the judge. “There were such reports but there was a potential threat to the life of Mr Shah and his family members,” he said.
Mr Malook said he also had been receiving threats to his life and urged the government to arrange adequate security. “The government has deployed only two policemen for my security which is not adequate,” he said.
Judge Pervez Ali Shah had said in his verdict: “No-one can be given the licence to kill anyone in any condition, therefore, the killer cannot be pardoned as he has committed a heinous crime.”
Assassin Qadri, a constable in the Punjab Police Elite Force, tried to justify the murder by stating that he had killed Mr Taseer for supporting Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman who the slain governor had projected as having been wrongly convicted of blasphemy. Qadri, who was on duty to guard Taseer, gunned him down outside a restaurant in Islamabad on Jan 4 this year. ….
Read more » DAWN.COM
– – – – – – – –
Courtesy » Aaj News Tv (Bolta Pakistan with Nusrat Javed and Mushtaq Minhas – 25th October 2011)
Pakistan: We have money to spend on missiles, tanks and submarines, and other things, little to invest in public needs.
– The Republic: a con artist’s dream by Ayaz Amir
… We have money to spend on missiles, tanks and submarines, and other things, little to invest in public needs. But this is empty moaning. In the fortress of Islam other priorities reign. We can cry until the cows come home but there won’t be much interest in public education or public transport, or in the need to get rid of that devil’s invention which is the plastic shopping bag. (I am sorry for referring to this time and again but why can’t we do something about it?) ….
Read more : http://www.columnspk.com/the-republic-a-con-artist%e2%80%99s-dream-by-ayaz-amir/
Rs30m demanded for Taseer’s son release
– By: Jam Sajjad Hussain
LAHORE – Commander Arif of Tehrik Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is holding the fate of Shahbaz Taseer, son of slain Governor Punjab Salman Taseer, demanding Rs 30 million as ransom money for his safe return, The Nation has learnt reliably.
Shahbaz Taseer, has been hidden somewhere in the provincial capital since his abduction, whereas his cell phone is being used by his abductors from Razmak, which is one of the three sub-divisions of North Waziristan Agency. ….
Read more → The Nation
MQM-A collecting forced bhatta (demanding money illegally) in the name of Zakat & Fitrana in the holy month of Ramadan – A caller in Talat’s Program
The language of the program is urdu (Hindi).
Courtesy: Dawn Tv News (Tonight with Talat, 12 August 2011)
Veena Malik: India is where I make money
Interestingly (or perhaps not so interestingly), she is likely to be attacked by right wing nuts in India as well. Irreligious and non-conformist Pakistanis who become too comfortable in India have not always been welcomed by the Hindu right (Adnan Sami, Fehmida Riaz, etc).
Poet Fehmida Riaz was hounded out of Pakistan in the 1980s and found shelter in India for 7 years, but was sometimes attacked by right wing Hindus there as a Pakistani agent (in Pakistan she was subsequently fired for being an “Indian agent”, though of course it was actually because she was a Benazir appointee and Benazir had been dismissed from office by the deep state). She wrote a nice little poem about finding an almost mirror image fatwa-happy nationalism in India:
Naya Bharat (New India)
Tum bilkul hum jaisey nikley
ab tak Kahan chupay thay bhai
Voh moorkhta, voh ghaamarpan
jis mai hum nay sadi gawaee
Aakhir pahunchi duar tumhaarey
Aray badhai bahut badhai
You turned out to be just like us; Similarly stupid, wallowing in the past, You’ve reached the same doorstep at last. Congratulations, many congratulations.
“Afreyt dharm ka naach rahaa hai
Qaim Hindu raj karo gay
Saarey ultey kaj karogay
apna chaman taraj karogay
Tum bhee baithey karogey sochaa
Kaun hai Hindu, kaun naheen hai
Tum Bhi Karo gay Fatway Jari
Ek jaap saa kartey jao
Barham Bar Yehi Dohrao
Kitna veer mahaan tha Bharat
Kitna Alishaan tha Bharat”
You will establish “Hindu raj”, you too will ruin your own garden. You too will sit deep in thought and ponder, Who is Hindu, who is not. You too will issue Fatwas Keep repeating the mantra like a parrot, India was the land of the brave”, India was so magnificent
(translated by Khushwant Singh, with some correction by me in the second part)
Courtesy: → BrownPundits
Pakistani intelligence secretly funneled at least $4 million to a Washington lobby group whose leaders improperly lobbied U.S. officials over Kashmir
Pakistan funded Washington lobby group, U.S. says
Washington (CNN) — Pakistani intelligence secretly funneled at least $4 million to a Washington front group whose leaders improperly lobbied U.S. officials over the disputed territory of Kashmir, federal agents alleged Tuesday.
A Pakistani-American man who served as director of the Kashmiri American Council is in federal custody, while a second man accused of steering money to the organization is believed to be in Pakistan, the Justice Department said. The KAC director, Syed Ghulam Nabi Fai, “acted at the direction and with the financial support of the government of Pakistan for more than 20 years,” an FBI arrest affidavit states.
One U.S. congressman quickly gave $4,000 donated by the two men charged in the case to charity, while another said he would consider a similar move if the source of the money was in question.
Fai and his co-defendant, Zaheer Ahmad, have been charged with conspiring to violate the Foreign Agents Registration Act, which requires lobbyists acting on behalf of another nation to register with the U.S. government. The charge carries a possible prison term of up to five years. ….
Read more → CNN
Pakistan could “pull troops Afghan from border” if U.S. cuts aid
By Zeeshan Haider
Islamabad : (Reuters) – Pakistan could pull back troops fighting Islamist militants near the Afghan border if the United States cuts off aid, the defense minister said on Tuesday in an interview with Pakistani media.
The United States Monday said it would hold back $800 million — a third of nearly $2 billion in security aid to Pakistan — in a show of displeasure over Pakistan’s removal of U.S. military trainers, limits on visas for U.S. personnel and other bilateral irritants.
“If at all things become difficult, we will just get all our forces back,” Defense Minister Ahmed Mukhtar said in an interview with the Express 24/7 television to be aired later on Tuesday.
The television aired excerpts of the interview Tuesday.
“If Americans refuse to give us money, then okay,” he said. “I think the next step is that the government or the armed forces will be moving from the border areas. We cannot afford to keep military out in the mountains for such a long period.”
In Pakistan, the defense minister is relatively powerless. Real defense and military policy is made by the powerful Chief of Army Staff, General Ashfaq Kayani, and the head of the Directorate of Inter-Services Intelligence, Lieutenant-General Ahmed Shuja Pasha.
Monday, the military said it could do without U.S. assistance by depending on its own resources or turning to “all-weather friend” China.
Mukhtar later told Reuters Pakistan wanted the money spent on the maintenance of the army in the tribal areas. “This is what we are demanding,” he said. “It is our own money.” ….
Read more → REUTERS
US Suspends $800 Million in Military Aid to Pakistan
– U.S. Suspends $800 Million in Pakistan Aid
WASHINGTON— (Associated Press) – President Barack Obama’s chief of staff confirmed that the U.S. is suspending $800 million in military aid to Pakistan.
William Daley said the U.S. relationship with Pakistan is “difficult” and must be made “to work over time.” But he told ABC television’s “This Week” that until “we get through that difficulty, we’ll hold back some of the money that the American taxpayers are committed to give” the U.S. ally.
Mr. Daley says the countries are trying to work through issues that have strained ties.
The New York Times reported that the U.S. is upset with Pakistan for expelling American military trainers and wants tougher action against the Taliban and others fighting American soldiers in Afghanistan.
Tensions between the countries have surged since U.S. forces killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan in May.
Courtesy: → THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
Must watch – Sindh Coal Authority!?
The language of the program is urdu (Hindi).
Courtesy: → Geo TV News (Aaj Kamran Khan Ke Saath – 5th july 2011)
Myths Monsters and Jihad
– Myths and monsters – by Nadeem F. Paracha
In spite of the gradual infiltration of ubiquitous religious symbolism and mentality in the social spheres of everyday life, Pakistan has managed to remain afloat as a pluralistic society comprising various ethnicities, religions and Muslim sects.
However, starting in the late 1970s, an anti-pluralistic process was initiated by the Ziaul Haq dictatorship that soon spiralled beyond mere posturing and sloganeering.
With the ‘Afghan jihad’ raging against the former Soviet Union, Zia, his intelligence agencies and parties like the Jamat-i-Islami and Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam started embracing a narrow and highly politicised version of Islam. This was done to radicalise large sections of Pakistani Muslims who had historically been part of a more apolitical and tolerant strains of the faith.
Most Pakistanis related to the shrine culture and the sufi traditions of the subcontinent, and thus, were least suitable to fight a ‘jihad’ that Zia was planning to peddle in Afghanistan at the behest of the CIA. Pakistanis’ beliefs were not compatible at all with this new strain of a political Islam. To compensate this ideological ‘deficiency’, the Zia regime (with American and Arab money) helped start indoctrination centres in the shape of thousands of jihadist madrassas.
Almost all of them were run by radical puritans. These were preachers and ‘scholars’ who had become critical of the strains of the faith that most Pakistanis adhered to. Accusing these strains of being ‘adulterated’, they advocated the more assertive charms of ‘political Islam’, of the likes recommended by Abul Ala Maududi, Sayyid Qutb and Khurram Murad. …
Read more : DAWN
The Double Game
– The unintended consequences of American funding in Pakistan.
by Lawrence Wright
It’s the end of the Second World War, and the United States is deciding what to do about two immense, poor, densely populated countries in Asia. America chooses one of the countries, becoming its benefactor. Over the decades, it pours billions of dollars into that country’s economy, training and equipping its military and its intelligence services. The stated goal is to create a reliable ally with strong institutions and a modern, vigorous democracy. The other country, meanwhile, is spurned because it forges alliances with America’s enemies.
The country not chosen was India, which “tilted” toward the Soviet Union during the Cold War. Pakistan became America’s protégé, firmly supporting its fight to contain Communism. The benefits that Pakistan accrued from this relationship were quickly apparent: in the nineteen-sixties, its economy was an exemplar. India, by contrast, was a byword for basket case. Fifty years then went by. What was the result of this social experiment?
India has become the state that we tried to create in Pakistan. It is a rising economic star, militarily powerful and democratic, and it shares American interests. Pakistan, however, is one of the most anti-American countries in the world, and a covert sponsor of terrorism. Politically and economically, it verges on being a failed state. And, despite Pakistani avowals to the contrary, America’s worst enemy, Osama bin Laden, had been hiding there for years—in strikingly comfortable circumstances—before U.S. commandos finally tracked him down and killed him, on May 2nd.
American aid is hardly the only factor that led these two countries to such disparate outcomes. But, at this pivotal moment, it would be a mistake not to examine the degree to which U.S. dollars have undermined our strategic relationship with Pakistan—and created monstrous contradictions within Pakistan itself.
American money began flowing into Pakistan in 1954, when a mutual defense agreement was signed. During the next decade, nearly two and a half billion dollars in economic assistance, and seven hundred million in military aid, went to Pakistan ….
Read more : The New Yorker
Britain: Royal wedding exposes deep class divisions
by Alan Woods
On Friday 29 April the people of Britain will be invited to participate in the joyful celebration of the marriage of Mr. William Windsor and Ms. Katherine Middleton. At the same time that the government is cutting billions from unnecessary extravagances such as hospitals, schools, teachers, nurses, the old and the sick, the unemployed and single parents, the Coalition has had the good sense to spend a lot of money on something as essential to the Public Good as the nuptials of Willy and Kate.
One can see many advantages in this. At a time of falling living standards for everyone who is not either a member of the royal family or a banker, it can take the minds of the British public off unpleasant thoughts of unpaid debts and unemployment. It might even make them forget the recent mass demonstration that brought half a million of them onto the streets of London to protest the vicious cuts being implemented by the ruling Conservative-Lib-Dem Coalition. …
Read more : Marxist.com
Kayani & Pasha with Haroon Rashid & Imran Khan can draw whatever they want in drawing room but …?
– Enter the Midwife: Haroon Rasheed
by By Col. (r) Ikramullah Khan
Anyone who has tuned into a talk show or read an opinion piece in the last few weeks knows that the ghosts of the old IJI are dyeing their hair, whistling into the mirror and preparing to come out of retirement. The parade of news stories involving ISI plans to cobble together an alliance of different political parties to rout both PMLN and PPP in the coming elections is unending. The usual suspects that have frequently been mentioned are PTI, MQM, JI, PMLQ, PML-F and JUI-F.
Great political leaders of the Pakistani people such as Altaf Hussain and Imran Khan have decided to bury the hatchet (along with the Scotland Yard investigations) and have vowed to work together from now on. Weather vanes like Maulana Fazlur Rehman and Peer Pagara have been active, and pointing towards the direction of the wind.
Pakistanis are used to the quick leaps, somersaults and pole vaults which are a characteristic feature of the lucky Irani circus which is our politics. But even hardcore supporters were left babbling by the strange noises that come screeching out whenever Imran Khan has tried to speak recently. There had been rumors of Imran Khan meeting with the American ambassador, General Pasha and General Kiyani for weeks. PTI has been denying these rumors suspiciously noisily with understandably counterproductive results.
As new details are coming to light, few will believe the depths being plumbed by some in our media and politics. Asia Times Online writes:
“In the second week of March, Khan held a long meeting with the US ambassador in Islamabad, Cameron Munter. A few days later a major shift in his politics surprised many. Khan produced a statement supportive of MQM policies despite formerly filing a money laundering case against MQM leader Altaf Hussain in a British court.
A prominent Urdu media commentator of right-wing leanings, who is close to both Khan and army chief Kiani, arranged a series of meetings between the two which eventually led to a consensus around Khan becoming the next leader of the country.”
According to the information in the article, the conspiracy has Imran Khan in the starring role and involves:
- ISI is working towards mid-term elections before the scheduled date of February 2013
- A new political alliance of MQM, PTI, JI and JUI etc. is being planned resulting in a simple majority under prime minister Imran Khan.
- Haroon Rasheed arranged a series of meetings between Imran Khan and Gen Kiyani
- If plans for a political alliance fail, Imran Khan will become the interim prime minister.
This brings us to the role of Haroon Rasheed, the one-man propaganda machine of the army and a suitable alternative to ISPR in case of downsizing. Balancing his gushing and embarrassing adulation of the military boot, Haroon Rasheed has made promoting Imran Khan a personal cottage industry, often in the same breath.
Just to illustrate the point, here is a recent display of pro-army douchebaggery (Jang, April 16th, 2011). Haroon Rasheed takes the politicians to task for everything wrong under the sun and salutes the army for smacking the Kerry Lugar Bill away, shooting down drones, interrupting the NATO supply lines, kicking out CIA agents and completely distancing the army from politics.
Well. Not exactly, but you have to read it to believe it.: ….
Read more : PkPolitics
:: :: :: :: :: ::
Read more details on above issue in urdu : Daily Jang