Tag Archives: Protest

A Deadly Silence

By: Agha Haider Raza

When Salmaan Taseer was assassinated eight weeks ago, I quoted Max Weber in my article: “If the power of violence shifts from the state to the people, we also see a shift from a state to anarchy”.  Weber’s paradigm of anarchy is becoming more evident in Pakistan as time progresses.  The brutal murder of Shahbaz Bhatti in Islamabad has solidified the notion that the PPP led government is ignoring extremism.  This perturbed ideology is challenging the writ of the State and if not handled with the delicacy and precision required, we will surely dissolve into a state of oblivion. Continue reading

Why not a civilian head of ISI?

By: Kamran Shafi

In view of the fact that the cardinal sin of the federal government to try and put the ISI under civilian control is cited as a reason behind all the obituaries presently being written about the imminent fall of a) just the president; b) all the major politicians; and c) the whole shoot, I’ve been trolling through the Internet to see how just many of the world’s top intelligence services are headed by serving military (in Pakistan’s case, read ‘army’) officers.

And how many are appointed by the army chief. Consider what I’ve come up with.

Except for two retired army officers in the early days, one a lieutenant colonel the other a major general, all the DGs of MI5, the “United Kingdom’s internal counter-intelligence and security agency were civil servants. The director-general reports to the home secretary, although the Security Service is not formally part of the home office”, and through him to the prime minister. Continue reading

Pakistan Rock Rails Against the West, Not the Taliban

By: Adam B. Ellick

While Pakistani journalists, playwrights and even moderate Islamic clerics have boldly condemned the Taliban, the nation’s pop music stars have yet to sing out against the group, which continues to claim responsibility for daily bombings.

The violence has no shortage of victims in addition to the dead: more than three million people have become refugees, and more than 200 schools for girls have been destroyed. And the musicians I spoke to have suffered as well, which makes it all the more surprising that they are reluctant to criticize the militants. Continue reading

A Nation of Sleepwalkers

By: Nadeem F. Paracha

PakistanThe day after the terrible terrorist attack at Islamabad’s Islamic University that took the lives of eight innocent students, certain TV news channels ran a footage of a dozen or so angered students of the university pelting stones. The first question that popped up in my mind after watching the spectacle was, what on earth were these understandably enraged young men throwing their stones at?

So I waited for the TV cameras to pan towards the direction where the stones were landing. But that did not happen. It seemed as if the students were pelting stones just for the heck of it.

So I called a fellow journalist friend who was covering the story for a local TV channel and asked him about the protest. He told me the students were pelting stones at a handful of cops. Now, why in God’s good name would one throw stones at cops after being attacked by demented men who call themselves the Taliban?

The very next day another protest took place outside the attacked University in which the students, both male and female, were holding banners that said: ‘Kerry-Lugar Bill namanzoor!’ (Kerry-Lugar Bill Not Acceptable).

I could barely stop myself from bursting into a short sharp fit of manic laughter. It was unbelievable. Or was it, really? Continue reading

Defending the Arsenal

By: Seymour Hersh

Pak NukesIn the tumultuous days leading up to the Pakistan Army’s ground offensive in the tribal area of South Waziristan, which began on October 17th, the Pakistani Taliban attacked what should have been some of the country’s best-guarded targets. In the most brazen strike, ten gunmen penetrated the Army’s main headquarters, in Rawalpindi, instigating a twenty-two-hour standoff that left twenty-three dead and the military thoroughly embarrassed. The terrorists had been dressed in Army uniforms. There were also attacks on police installations in Peshawar and Lahore, and, once the offensive began, an Army general was shot dead by gunmen on motorcycles on the streets of Islamabad, the capital. The assassins clearly had advance knowledge of the general’s route, indicating that they had contacts and allies inside the security forces. Continue reading

Have some decency!

By: Sibtain Naqvi

The article Want to meet Hillary? Don’t Criticize United States is a wonderful example of the prevalent thought process in Pakistan that this blog seeks to change.  From my understanding of the article, it seems that the author has a deep resentment towards the government and the United States.  I am sure he has his reasons as many others do.  The author has done a superb job in using obnoxious and rude terms throughout the article, but what is the writer achieving by using such filthy language which is only being highlighted by various websites? Continue reading

We must declare ‘state of war’

By: Mohammad Malick
peshawar-pak-blast-313Let’s face it, we are at war.  The ridiculous arguments about the terrorists only targeting government establishments, or it is the West’s war, it’s a Jihad against infidels, etc, were blown to smithereens last Wednesday afternoon in Peshawar’s Meena Bazaar.  The powerful car bomb, which ripped through the thickly-congested market place — a favourite shopping area of lower and middle class families in particular — showed that it is a war with terrorists standing on one side of the blood line, and we the people on the other.   The dead count had a heart wrenching abnormally high share of women and children. The message has come loud and clear: every Pakistani is a target, even the women and children are no longer off the hit list of the terrorists. Continue reading

What about the common citizen?

By: Murtaza Razvi

common citizenIt is a daunting debate at this time of terror visiting and revisiting our cities, day after day, as to where one should draw the line between fending for oneself and creating a sense of panic while doing so.   The debate basically revolves around fear and prudence. For instance, anxiety has gripped the parents of many school-going children today. Authorities in Lahore keep closing down private schools that are not found to be ‘prepared’ enough to face a terrorist attack, while their counterparts in Karachi are less circumspect. A state of apathy prevails in officialdom in Sindh at a time when intelligence agencies have warned that high-end schools may come under attack. Continue reading

University students in Lahore confront Hillary

students-608 Agencies – US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s charm offensive rolled into a wall of suspicion at one of Pakistan’s top universities on Thursday as students grilled her on whether America was truly ready to be a steadfast partner in a time of crisis. Continue reading

Leaving Sanity

By Nadeem Piracha

Kerry-Lugar ProtestAs the country’s electronic media and drawing-rooms buzz with the ins and outs of the Kerry-Lugar Bill, yet another suicide terrorist attack ripped through the already devastated and blood-soaked streets of Peshawar.

Continue reading