Tag Archives: Nawaz Sharif

Imran Khan’s tsunami is flooding Pakistan!

By: Agha Haider Raza

Pakistan’s media airwaves have gone haywire over the spectacle that has emerged since renowned journalist, Hamid Mir, was shot at multiple times in Karachi a few weeks ago. In response to the audacious attack, Mir’s employer, GEO News openly hinted that the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) was responsible for the attempt on Mir’s life.  As expected, the ISI sprung into action; flexing their muscles through the “independent” media and “civil society” by protesting against the allegations leveled by GEO News.  Rather than using the unfortunate attack on Hamid Mir as an opportunity to engage in a frank discussion on the safety of journalists in Pakistan (deemed one of the world’s least safe place for journalists), this incident has opened a debate on the credibility of Pakistan’s first democratic transition and reignited long-standing tensions between the incumbent government and the country’s most powerful institution, the Pakistan Army.  Using the bold attack on Hamid Mir as a springboard, Imran Khan is boycotting GEO News and has resorted to street protests to declare the sham of a democracy we have at present. Khan and his party claim that the general elections of 2013 were stolen from them via alleged rigging committed by the PML-N and GEO News and after exhausting all appropriate avenues have decided to utilize there street power.  This is not the time. What the country really needs are its politicians to embolden and strengthen Pakistan’s fragile Parliament by passing electoral reform and acting on the discrepancies in the last election to avoid repeating similar mistakes in the future.

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To Use or Not to Use Religion

By: Agha Haider Raza

With the first ever democratically elected Parliament nearly passing the baton to another parliament via general elections in the midst of our reach, we may just be witnessing history.  History is in the making because over the 66-year roller coaster ride, Pakistan has never observed such a transition.  Numerous military interventions, lack of assertive civilian leadership along with the involvement of non-state and foreign actors has made Pakistan suffer deeply.

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Sick and Tired!

By: Agha Haider Raza

Over the past week Pakistan has read many different news items. From the passing of the 18th amendment to the bomb blast at the US Consulate, much is happening. Some may say the stories are for the betterment of our country while others may disagree. In my mind the successful visit of the Foreign Minister and his entourage to the United States gave Pakistan some much needed positive press. However, the current witch-hunt carried out by the Chief Justice and the ugly battle over the reopening of Zardari’s corruption cases has embarrassed many of those who fought for the independence of the judiciary. Now do not get me wrong, as much as I enjoyed protesting on the streets of Lahore for the reinstatement of the nation’s top judge, I can’t fathom Mr. Iftikhar’s current agenda of picking and choosing his enemies. When will we be able to see actual results from the “democratically” elected officials and the “independent” judiciary we as a nation have struggled to achieve for 62 years? When will stop pointing fingers and vilifying those whom we disagree with? Or have we gotten used to being stuck in this whirlpool of revengeful politics. Honestly, we Pakistanis have gotten sick and tired of the lies and broken promises. Continue reading

Obsession with Zardari; Not in the New Year!

By: Agha Haider Raza

It has of late become frustrating to read the newspapers in Pakistan.  If the once a week suicide bombings are not bad enough, there is a constant Zardari bashing in the news.   I understand the resentment towards him, and to some extent even comprehend why so many individuals constantly write against President Zardari.  However, the question that I have is what good comes out of it?  If you can tell me that by having Zardari removed, we will see peace in Pakistan, the bombings will cease, inflation will come down, the poor will be looked after and all other social problems will be quelled, than I will jump on the anti-Zardari bandwagon.   But until then, zip it! Continue reading

Watching Pakistan Teeter

By: Daniel Markey

The Zardari government is hanging by a thread. Daniel Markey on what happens if it falls—and the perils of the U.S. stepping in.

Judging from the breathless reporting out of Pakistan, President Asif Ali Zardari is only hanging onto power by the skin of his teeth. Zardari and many of his closest allies face serious political troubles because Pakistan’s supreme court recently overturned a Musharraf-era amnesty deal that had allowed him, his then-wife Benazir Bhutto, and a raft of other politicians to brush off unsettled cases of graft and corruption and return to government office.
Whatever the legal merits of Zardari’s case, this judicial action poured lighter fluid onto an anti-Zardari flame that had already been burning for many months. If left untended, this flame could again consume Pakistan in the sort of destabilizing political protests experienced at the end of the Musharraf regime. Continue reading