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All Terrorists are Muslim, therefore all Muslims are Terrorists

A Ballad in Plain D-monic Logic by Ginkminos Our world is changing. Fast. And in ways that even the more visionary of our ancestors could not have imagined. Believe it or not, many of these changes actually do benefit mankind as a whole, or at the very least a significant part of it. The dreaded curse of consumerism, for instance, has led to an unprecedented rise in the living standards of millions across the globe who would otherwise still be floundering in the murky waters of abject poverty. Man has been to the moon, can order pizza delivery without speaking to another person, and is able to replace the human heart. These are just some of the marvels of our age. The imminent end of religion as the preeminent guiding principle in our … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islam, Society, violence

There are countless nuts on the loose on the Internet

Read this excellent piece “All that floats on the Internet” by Khalid Hasan published today in the Daily Times  There is far less political commotion in Pakistan than there is on the Internet, and it makes you wonder. Have some people nothing better to do than to unload their thoughts on whatever is going on or not going on in Pakistan? Rarely if ever are these postings funny. When they try to be funny, they are droll, often … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Recovering Iqbal

By Dr Syed Nomanul Haq The year 2008 marks the centenary of Iqbal’s return from his three-year European sojourn, an intellectual and social experience that embodied a turning point in his life. In England, he studied at Trinity College of Cambridge University where a conference was recently held to celebrate the event. Iqbal’s disclaimers that he is not a poet, or at least not a good one, are well known. ‘This voice of mine arises in discord with its own elements,’ he says, ‘do not receive it as poetry!’ Or again: ‘What of my ghazal? It has no tongue! What of myself? Ignorant of language!’ Such disclaimers are strewn all over the Iqbalian literary corpus. When the Lucknow magazine Awadh Punch cast the microscope of its linguistic bigotry on him and picked … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

The proponents of Justice assume guilt without proof or process

Shaheryar Azhar, moderator, The Forum Since everyone (or mostly everyone) assumes that Asif Ali Zardari and other politicians are corrupt no matter if they have not been convicted after 8 to 16 years of trials, scores of suits from stealing a pin to selling one’s mother, from a simple abuse of power to murder of one’s brother-in-law, no also one’s wife, millions of dollars of expenditure for collecting proof by the most ‘powerful’ and ‘honest’ government in Pakistan in trying its hardest to prove their guilt, eleven years of jail without conviction and since none of this matters to such people, a simple refutation from Asif Ali Zardari is worth posting. These people, in addition as it must now be clear, also believe that such politicians should somehow be punished … Read entire article »

Filed under: Justice, Pakistan, Politics

The unreasonable – a poem

by Aadil Omer “A reasonable man adapts himself to the world while an unreasonable man tries to adapt the world to himself, so all the the progress depends on the unreasonable men” (George Bernard Shaw) Its not just today, That I’ve been scorned, For venturing into, A land; unseen. That I’ve been shunned, For flouting the norms, Set by those who call themselves ‘normal’. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Literature, Pakistan, poetry

Pakistani Art has a global appeal now

Some paintings sold this year at the Bonhams auction in Dubai. Tassuduque Sohail (1930) A prince entertaining a large company in a pavilion … Read entire article »

Filed under: Arts and Crafts

History is different from farce: Dr Mubarak

By Farman Ali (DAWN) ISLAMABAD, July 8: Eminent historian and thinker Dr Mubarak Ali says the history written in Pakistan had been “dictated” by the ruling Establishment and represents its wilful perversion of facts “to accord with a fabricated ideology”. “No authentic history has yet been written about Pakistan and its independence. There is a lot of confusion among the so-called pro-Establishment historians and educationists. Whatever has been written so far is distortion of history and entirely unbalanced,” Dr Ali told Dawn in an interview. Unless the distortions were removed and facts told as they existed, the nation could not hope to make any real progress, he said, adding: “This is the lesson history has taught us”. Dr Ali, who was interviewed over the weekend after he gave a lecture on the subject … Read entire article »

Filed under: History

'Passing'

Soniah Kamal “Everyone has some point at which they think that, all things considered, it’s not that in those circumstances lying isn’t wrong, it’s just that telling the truth would be so much worse. I am the SS. Do you have any Jews in your cellar? Does anyone think the right answer is yes, if it’s true?” Appiah went , “But I do think there is a separate issue with identity questions. If you are asked directly to reveal your deepest sense of who you are, it’s particularly difficult not to tell the truth. This is especially true in the free world, in the modern world, because we have this idea that you have the right to express your identity in the social world. And that one of the things that’s … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, Society

Obama: What does he mean for the Tech Industry?

One thing I have been wondering about Obama and what he said yesterday is what he means for Silicon Valley and Industry/Tech generally. Specifically, what does it mean to eliminate capital gains for start-ups, and stopping tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas and giving them to companies that create jobs in the US of A? To keep the discussion in one place, I’d like–with the indulgence of PTH adminstoration, to invite folks to discuss this on our Wadi Blog in Silicon Valley: http://www.wadiwallah.com/blog/2008/08/29/obama-what-does-he-mean-for-us-in-silicon-valley/ Though for issues specifically related to tech and industry in Pakistan, let’s talk here. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Politics, public policy

Bhutto Protegee Tackles Sex Harassment in Pakistan

By Shahzada Irfan Ahmed WeNews correspondent A second-term member of the Sindh provincial assembly is pushing Pakistan’s first effort to outlaw sexual harassment in the workplace. Two years ago her draft bill fizzled, but this time she thinks it could become law within a month.  LAHORE, Pakistan (WOMENSENEWS)–Humera Alwani drafted a workplace sexual harassment bill in 2006 when she was a first-term member of the Sindh provincial assembly. But as a member of the opposition Pakistan People’s Party she didn’t get very far. This year, after taking her oath of office for a second term on April 5 and with her party now in control, she’s confident the bill has a better future. Sindh’s chief minister has approved the draft law for presentation to the provincial cabinet, Alwani says. Within a month she expects it … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Ahmad Faraz – Romance of resistance

by Harris Khalique As if the recent loss of Prof. Khatir Ghaznavi, a fine poet and scholar, and of Adam Nayyar, an authority on Pakistani cultures and civilisations, was not enough, the hard-up intellectual and literary life in the country became more impoverished with the passing of Ahmed Faraz. His diction, metaphor and similes evenly kneaded in conventional Persian and Urdu ghazal make him one of the most prominent poets in the classical tradition of Urdu … Read entire article »

Filed under: Literature, Pakistan, Writers

Prisoner 650(Grey Ghost of Bagram)

Kashkin’s  poem is dedicated to Dr Aafia Siddiqi and all those innocent people betrayed by their own country. My name is Prisoner 650, Known I am as the “Grey Ghost” Of Bagram, my home, remember me In years of silence, in moments Of indifference, created by you Familiar are those walls and rooms Of torture, of questions and of abuse Familiar are those old echoes, As all ideologies fall away in shame Of protection of rights and freedom Familiar I am to these accusations As I am dragged, naked and blue As I carry your foul breath, in eternity Familiar I am to you and your ways In labyrinth of twisted torture and routines As my face begins to fade, in its forms As this life becomes the burden in its disguise … Read entire article »

Filed under: Citizens, Democracy, Pakistan, Politics, Society, Writers

A profile of the ISI (Pakistan's best known secret)

We are publishing this excellent academic piece by Dr Ishtiaq, a renowned scholar who does not castigate the ISI the way mainstream Western media does. It is a cool, level-headed analysis with some pertinent conclusions. The Pakistan Inter-Services Intelligence: A Profile Ishtiaq Ahmed[1]  In the past few weeks, Pakistan has come under intense pressure from the United States, Afghanistan and India to curb alleged involvement of its Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in terrorist activities. Such pressure has built rapidly in the aftermath of bomb blasts, some carried out by suicide bombers, in July 2008 in many parts of South Asia. Those outrages caused well over a hundred deaths. Much before the recent attacks, the ISI’s power and influence in politics had gained it the reputation of “a state within a state”, suggesting that Pakistani … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

"Proud to be an American," they exult!

I don't mean to be negative–I was born in West Africa and my brother and I often feel like African Americans in our sensitivities–and my son insists he's dad is one. I am just glad America is coming around. As Al Sharpton put it in the last cycle "We're just asking America, Live up what you say on paper." … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Reform or perish -Police and Human Rights

“Police reform in South Asia is too important to neglect and too urgent to delay”, concludes a recently published report By Asad Jamal “Feudal Forces: Democratic Nations — Police Accountability in Commonwealth South Asia”, is a study by Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), an international non-governmental organisation dedicated to ‘the practical realisation of human rights in the countries of the Commonwealth’. The study mainly focuses on the mechanism of accountability of police in legal frameworks in five South Asian countries of Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Maldives (Commonwealth South Asia). Transparency, accountability and democratic participation are the three major strands that make the present day society work in an efficient and just manner. Among these three fundamental requisites, reliable processes of accountability make the police a public service in the real sense. The … Read entire article »

Filed under: human rights, Pakistan, state