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Media, Morality And Us

By YLH This is a short blog to condemn Aaj TV and other such media outlets which play on our middle class’ confused morality for viewership. Switching channels, I came across a sick new TV show called “Target” by Aaj Tv. It targets mini-cinemas, internet cafes and other places that lower middle class and piss poor pay 20 rupees for cheap entertainment. The anchor- a typical buffoon- is found running with no less than 2 dozen armed policemen chasing poor and hapless laborers and what not escaping some of these mini-cinemas. I wonder why the poor always get targetted by such TV station. Well because these people can’t fight back. One can count half a dozen different fundamental rights that the anchor and the policemen who aid him violate in … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

The Enemy Within

Terrorism and the denial problem By Dr Hasan-Askari Rizvi              crosspost from Daily Times, 28 March, 2010 The most serious threat to Pakistan’s political stability and economic development is the growing terrorist attacks by the various Taliban groups and other militant Islamic groups that use violence to pursue their narrow-based religious and political agendas.         Gen. Zia ul Haque     Pakistan army soldiers carry a coffin of a colleague who lost his life during a fight against al-Qaida and Taliban Pakistan’s … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, Army, Democracy, Education, Islamism, Pakistan, Religion, state, Taliban, Terrorism, USA

Rahul Gandhi or Narendra Modi?

In four years, standby to greet Prime Minister Narendra Modi By Jawed Naqvi | Crosspost from Dawn, 29 Mar, 2010   A big race, probably the biggest that India is mandated to hold, was kicked off last week. It could usher Narendra Modi or Rahul Gandhi as prime minister in 2014 when elections are due, if not before. And since Modi has the unqualified support of major industrialists who know the art, shall we say, of financing parties, lobbying for MPs, and influencing key policies, there is little reason to doubt who the corporate media would be backing when push comes to shove.   Gandhi, with his limited experience of NGOs in Amethi and Rae Bareli might find himself as the back-up. He is untested. Modi, on the other hand, has shown his worth to those … Read entire article »

Filed under: Democracy, India, Politics, secularism

Basic structure Theory And Our Constitutional Crisis

By Yasser Latif Hamdani H M Seervai’s basic structure theory has come alive once again in Pakistan with the new deadlock on the judicial commission. Lawyers opposing the move are of the view that the proposed commission is violative of the basic structure of Pakistan. Supreme Court in its infinite wisdom laid down that Pakistani constitution has a basic structure comprising the following: … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Pakistan’s War of Choice

NYT, March 24, 2010   By MICHAEL E. O’HANLON   Peshawar, Pakistan: WHAT are Americans to make of all the good news coming out of Pakistan in recent weeks?   First, the Afghan Taliban’s military chief, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, was arrested in a raid in February. Around the same time, several of the Taliban’s “shadow governors” who operate out of Pakistan were captured by Pakistani forces. Last week, the C.I.A. director, Leon Panetta, announced that thanks in large part to increased cooperation from Pakistan, drone strikes along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border are “seriously disrupting Al Qaeda,” and one killed the terrorist suspected of planning an attack on an American base in December that caused the deaths of seven Americans. Meanwhile, Pakistan has mounted major operations against its own extremists in places ranging from the Swat Valley … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, Pakistan, Taliban

Jinnah Was The Most Secular Statesman Produced By The Muslim World

Jinnah Was The Most Secular Statesman Produced By The Muslim World

By Yasser Latif Hamdani It is amazing that given the confusion created about the word “secular” in Pakistan by both the right and the left has so thoroughly disoriented the thought process of our intelligentisia, especially that which is christened by the state,  that it has failed to capitalize on the fact that Pakistan’s founding father was not just unambiguously secular but was the most secular statesman in the history of the greater Muslim world,  even … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, secular Pakistan

Engaging Pakistan

Cross-post from Frontline, Feb 27 – Mar 12, 2010 By Praful Bidwai   India must open a broad-horizon dialogue with Pakistan on all issues including Afghanistan to achieve real progress in bilateral relations.   As New Delhi and Islamabad prepare to resume their bilateral dialogue, India’s policy towards its western neighbourhood faces an unprecedented challenge. How India crafts its response to the complex and rapidly changing situation in Pakistan and Afghanistan will influence to a major extent the fate of one of the most volatile regions of the world, indeed a part of the crucible in which global history is being made. Rising to the challenge demands a radical reorientat ion of some of the fundamental premises and priorities of India’s foreign policy. Consider Afghanistan first.   A major shift is taking place in the balance of … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, India, Pakistan

Zaid Hamid Deflated

Zaid Hamid Deflated

For those people both here and across the border making a big deal out of Zaid Hamid,  well here is a reality check.   The picture shows Al Hamra on 23rd March, 2010 for his “Takmeel” event.    Zaid Hamid had promised to mass 100, 000 people first to Minar-e-Pakistan but later changed his venue to Al Hamra Open Air theatre.   It was a terrific failure. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan



Fazlur Rehman is the son of Mufti Mahmood – the famed “freedom fighter” in Indian Independence Struggle                 “If the purpose of Day Light Savings Time is to save energy,  why not move the clocks ahead by one year instead of one hour.  That way we can save energy for an entire year”- Maulana Fazlur Rahman. For elaboration on freedom struggle comment click here. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Who Is Qazi Anwar?

Who Is Qazi Anwar?

By YLH I write as a confirmed middle classia who has voted in two general elections for two different losing PPP candidates. Something interesting happened today. Something shocked me greatly- so much that I shot up and rubbed my eyes to see whether I was asleep. But before I come to it let me give you the context. Eversince the PPP got into an alliance with its historical foe ANP from NWFP, we have seen the emergence of a new … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan


By Muhammad Hassan Miraj     They  all stood silent as  the standards were lowered. It was 23rd Day of October in 42 BC and the battle of Philippe had just ended. Lying ahead of the impeccably  formed up legions, was the purple mantle wrapped body of one of the greatest men Rome ever produced. “He was the noblest Roman of them all”. Mark Antony said as he paid homage to Marcus Junius Brutus, commonly known in the historical world as Brutus. The fame brought to Brutus is  attributed towards his role in assassination of  his trusted friend and mentor, Julius Caesar, the Counsel of Rome. Fewer could see that he did this to save his Republic. A larger than life cause for Romans, perhaps their alternative for religion. Brutus feared that given … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

General Zia Survives Constitutional Purge Thanks To N

Nawaz Sharif has dropped a bombshell on the country’s expectations with his news conference yesterday.   It was a most thoughtless and insensitive step by Pakistan’s “most popular” politician.   His party had agreed to the method of judges’ appointment and it was said that he had agreed to the re-naming of Pakhtunkhwa as well.   So this is a major surprise.   One had hoped that as the leader from the biggest province and country’s ethnic majority, he would have … Read entire article »

Filed under: Constitution, Pakistan

General in the Hood

 (The views expressed here are not necessarily subscribed by the PTH – Editors) THE TIMES OF INDIA By Indrani Baghchi March 22, 2010 Those who know him say he is a brooder. But those who know him well will tell you that’s just one of the layers to the deeply complicated and thinking mind of Pakistan army chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. The bluster that marked Musharraf has been dumped for quiet gravitas as the man from Rawalpindi goes about turning friends like the US and Britain into closer allies and outmanoeuvering not-so-friendly neighbours like India and Afghanistan at international fora. In a country brought to its knees by terror, corruption and an inept political system, the former ISI chief is putting up a masterly show as he calls the shots. Sitting with foreign minister S … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, Army, Benazir Bhutto, FATA, India, Islamabad, Pakistan, south asia, Taliban, Terrorism, USA, Yusuf Raza Gillani, Zardari

Democracy – the only option

by Raza Rumi Much has been elaborated on the binding constraints faced by Pakistani democracy. Conventional wisdom suggests that the civil-military imbalance has left little space for democratic institutions to grow and flourish. There can hardly be any disagreement with this point of view. In fact, decades of centralised martial rule have resulted in the militarisation of the society to such an extent that one can hardly discuss anything pertaining to Pakistan without a mention of … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

The Real Capital

This article by Thomas Friedman caught my eye. This article is not about Pakistan. Pakistan is not mentioned even once in the article. This is not about South Asia, or militant Islam, or the war on terror. It is about none of the ideological war between the religious right wing ideologies and the secular ideals that we espouse at PTH.  A cursory glance and we realize why United States is the biggest economic and scientific power in the world. Let me say that I have selective admiration of the United States. I am critical of United States’ opportunistic foreign policies. I however realize that world has seen an enormous scientific and economic development under the vastly expanding global democratic capitalistic society that is led by the United States. We are living … Read entire article »

Filed under: China, Democracy, India, Science, USA