Jacobabad, February 13, 2013 — U.S. Ambassador Richard Olson, United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Director Jock Conly, and the U.S. Consul General in Karachi Michael Dodman, joined by Sindh Minister for Health Dr. Sagheer Ahmed and Sindh Minister for Rehabilitation Muzaffar Shujra, attended a groundbreaking ceremony to officially initiate construction of the Jacobabad Institute of Medical Sciences, a state-of-the-art hospital. USAID is investing $10 million to build the Jacobabad Institute of Medical Sciences and expand access to quality health care services for the residents of Jacobabad, Sindh, and Balochistan.
Economics Professor Richard Wolff details the problems of capitalism and urges our recognizing its obsolescence and replacing it with institutions that truly serve the people.
Talk at Church of All Souls in New York City, January 24, 2012. Camera, audio: Joe Friendly.
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CJ receives Holbrooke, calls on Zardari
By Matiullah Jan
ISLAMABAD, June 5 Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry met visiting US envoy Richard Holbrooke in the Supreme Court building on Friday.
“The meeting was held at the request of the visiting US envoy Mr Holbrooke who came to meet the chief justice in his chambers,” said Dr Faqir Hussain, Registrar of the Supreme Court. He said that officials of the Foreign Office were present at the meeting.
We do not appreciate meeting of Chief Justice with Richard Holbrooke: Dr. Arif Alvi
By Ahsan Mansoor
The Secretary General of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has issued a statement that the people of Pakistan, do not appreciate the meeting of the Chief Justice of Pakistan with Mr Richard Holbrooke in his chambers on Friday.
We struggled long and hard for his restoration and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf does respect the Supreme Court, but for matters of dignity and norms the Chief Justice should not have met a political official of the US Government,
Continue reading Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has issued a statement that the people of Pakistan, do not appreciate the meeting of the CJ Iftikhar Chaudhry of Pakistan with Mr Richard Holbrooke in his chambers!
Memogate is certain to open can of worms in Pakistan. The legal battle is going to be stinky & very dirty. It has been pointed out that in case such memo was actually written to US officials, it had been done so in the response to a real threat of a coup by the military establishment. The whistle-blower, Mansoor Ijaz has pointed out in his black berry messages that a certain Mr. P (generally recognized as general Pasha, chief of Pakistani intelligence agency, ISI) had toured certain Arab countries, Saudi Arabia included, to pave the way for the overthrow of Zardari government.
It has also been said that the United States was approached even on the behalf of ex-prime minister Mian Nawaz Sharif, who is the petitioner in the case in the Supreme Court of Pakistan.
Several other political leaders and even generals are said to have approached the US officials for help in the past. The present Chief Justice of Pakistan, Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Choudhry is not an exception. It is said that leader of the lawyers’ movement, Choudhry Aitzaz Ahsan had visited United States in 2007 to garner support for the deposed Chief Justice, Iftikhar Mohammad Choudhry. Hence it is demanded that the Chief Justice should recuse himself in the case & answer questions in this regards. So should do barrister Aitzaz Ahsan.
Courtesy: Indus Herald
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More details » Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry’s Meeting with Richard Holbrooke
– US senators see Afghan hope, Pakistan fears
by Shaun Tandon
WASHINGTON (AFP) – Leading US senators on Tuesday saw momentum for political reconciliation in Afghanistan in the wake of Osama bin Laden’s death and urged a greater shift in focus to fighting extremism in Pakistan. …
…. Senator Richard Lugar, the top Republican on the same committee, questioned why the United States was spending some $120 billion a year in Afghanistan, where some 100,000 US troops are deployed.
“The question before us is whether Afghanistan is strategically important enough to justify the lives and massive resources that we are spending there, especially given that few terrorists in Afghanistan have global designs or reach,” the Indiana lawmaker said.
“To the extent that our purpose is to confront the global terrorist threat, we should be refocusing resources on Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, parts of North Africa and other locations,” Lugar said.
Senators voiced concern about what they saw as support from Pakistan for the Afghan Taliban and Lashkar-e-Taiba, ….
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By Aziz Akhmad
I sat among the audience in the courtroom of federal judge Richard Berman, in Lower Manhattan, watching the sentencing proceedings of Aafia Siddiqui, on September 23.
Before Aafia Siddiqui spoke, her lawyer made what sounded, at least to me, a compassionate plea for a minimum sentence. She argued that Aafia Siddiqui was not mentally stable, or words to that effect, because of the impossible circumstances she had been through. That she needed professional care and compassion rather than a long term in prison. The lawyer concluded her plea by asking for a sentence not more than 12 years.
All this time, Afia Sidddiqui sat quietly, clad in a beige niqab, only her eyes visible. At times she would place her head on the table in front of her, as if not interested in what her lawyer was saying, or would stretch back into the chair clasping her head in both hands, as if exasperated. Soon after her lawyer finished, she stood up and asked the judge if she could say something. The judge said yes.
Then Aafia spoke. It was as if a dam had been breached; the words came gushing out of her mouth like a torrent. She spoke in a sharp voice and flawless English. Every once in a while she would pause and ask the audience, like a teacher in a classroom: “Do you understand what I am saying?” At one point the judge had to say, yes, we all understand you very clearly. Sometimes during the course of her speech she would break into a short, agitated laughter. Once, she even made a humorous comment about her trial referring to the court as Manhattan Institute of Theatrics, a pun on MIT, her alma mater.
She declared at the outset that she was not tortured or mistreated in jail (in Texas). She said if you hear people saying otherwise don’t believe them. She then quoted a verse from the Quran to the effect that when you hear something, verify it before you believe it. She said she was not mentally unbalanced, as her defence lawyers had tried to make out and that she did not trust them.
Several times she said she loved America and had no hostility against Americans or anyone. She also thanked the soldiers who, she said, did not harm or mistreated her daughter in captivity (in Afghanistan?).
The word victory has never featured in Mr Obama’s speeches in the Afghan context and is unlikely to pop up now. We will hear a lot from him about the build-hold-clear-stabilise-handover process and the long term US ‘commitment’, but there will be hardly any reference to nation-building or even sustained counterinsurgency
US president Barack Obama will announce his annual review of the Afghan war today (December 16, 2010). A successful legal challenge to Mr Obama’s healthcare plan and hectic congressional activity to extend the Bush-era income tax cuts had pushed this review off the US media radar, but the death of the Special Representative Richard Holbrooke has managed to put it back in the news-cycle, at least for the time being. What was expected to be a low key affair will still remain a whimper but more questions are being asked about the shape of the things to come as a larger-than-life member of Mr Obama’s Pak-Afghan team made his exit from the diplomatic and world stage.
The Washington Post has reported that Mr Holbrooke’s last words, spoken to his surgeon, were: “You have got to stop this war in Afghanistan.” Incidentally, Mr Holbrooke’s surgeon happened to be a King Edward Medical College-educated Pakistani. Of course, neither the surgeon nor the common Pakistanis have much to do with the war in Afghanistan but given the Pakistani establishment’s massive involvement in favour of the Taliban, Mr Holbrooke’s last words seem almost surreal.
Mr Holbrooke, however, was not the only one calling for ending the war in Afghanistan. On the eve of the Afghan war review, a 25-member group of experts on Afghanistan, which includes respected names like Ahmed Rashid and Professor Antonio Giustozzi, has published an open letter to Mr Obama, calling on him to authorise a formal negotiation with the Afghan Taliban and seek a political settlement. However, buried in the text of the 1,030-word long plea to talk to the Taliban is the key sentence: “With Pakistan’s active support for the Taliban, it is not realistic to bet on a military solution.” …
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Afghanistan envoy Richard Holbrooke dies
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Richard Holbrooke, who was President Barack Obama’s special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan, died on Monday, an administration official confirmed. He was 69.
The veteran diplomat, who brokered the 1995 peace agreement that ended the Balkans war, had been a key player in Obama’s efforts to turn around the faltering 9-year-old war in Afghanistan.
Holbrooke, who also served as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and to Germany and twice was assistant secretary of state, died after surgery on Saturday to repair a tear in his aorta. He fell ill at the State Department on Friday.
Holbrooke was once called “Washington’s favorite last-ditch diplomat” and “America’s toughest diplomatic tactician” by Time magazine. His portfolio included serving as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and Germany and he was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize seven times. ,,,
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Imagine there’s no heaven.
It’s easy if you try.
No hell below us, Above us only sky.
Imagine all the people Living for today.
Imagine there’s no countries. It isn’t hard to do. Nothing to kill or die for, And no religion too.
Imagine all the people Living life in peace.
– John Lennon
John Lennon was a musician and singer-songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Lennon disengaged himself from the music business in 1975 to devote time to his family, but re-emerged in 1980 with a new album, Double Fantasy. He was murdered three weeks after its release.
Lennon revealed a rebellious nature and acerbic wit in his music, his writing, his drawings, on film, and in interviews, and he became controversial through his political activism. He moved to New York City in 1971, where his criticism of the Vietnam War resulted in a lengthy attempt by Richard Nixon’s administration to deport him, while his songs were adopted as anthems by the anti-war movement. It’s 30 years ago, shockingly and unexpectedly on 8 Dec. 1980, John Lennon was murdered in Imagine there’s no heaven.
By Dr Mohammad Taqi
“I count myself in nothing else so happy, As in a soul remembering my good friends” — Shakespeare in Richard II
Reminiscing about some of the stars of the secular galaxy of Pakistan and especially Pakhtunkhwa is needed not just due to a family association or personal, feel-good nostalgia. It is a must because the current generations – being fed a steady diet of Wahabiism – ought to get acquainted with the history of this land.
Where first the state-controlled, and now the state-indoctrinated media persons have systematically relegated both our saints and secularists to oblivion while projecting larger-than-life images of the obscurantist characters from Pakistan Studies and Islamic Studies textbooks, such recollections become an obligation. One such distinguished progressive was the leader of the Mazdoor Kissan Party (MKP), Muhammad Afzal Bangash who died on this day (October 28) in 1986. ….
Read more : Daily Times