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Confronting the evil within

By Saad Hafiz: A decade after Pakistan became a frontline country in the global war on terror, domestic terrorist organizations, particularly the Tehrik-i-Taliban (Pakistan) look as strong as ever.  There has been speculation that the murderous attack on Malala Yousufzai, the 14-year-old girls’ rights activist, by a Taliban hit squad which has led to an unusual outcry in Pakistan and abroad, may be the tipping point that will galvanize popular opinion to support vigorous action against terror groups. This would require that the country accept something that it has been unable to thus far, which is that all forms of terrorism are evil with no shades of grey. There has been longstanding reluctance within the government and society to stand up to Islamic groups that preach hatred and practice violence, which probably … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Prose for Malala

Prose for Malala

By Fatima Chowdhry   The world is still burning So let it burn You wonder whatever happened to all the good Where have all the angels gone? Are they to be destroyed by the fires of hell? The hell bound hunters who claim to be servers of the Faith the Truth is not cruel, GO tell them No God punishes His creation the way they do Blast bombs on innocents in congested poverty ridden streets., You claim to be Talibs.. students of what? A new language of hatred? Where … Read entire article »

Filed under: poetry

Fall out of Malala Tragedy

Fall out of Malala Tragedy

By Prof. Farah A Khan: It was a sad day when 14 years old Malala was shot at point blank range in her school van in Mingora, Swat. Two other girls were also injured. This brought out massive grief and anger in the Pakistani society. But it left me and so many others confused. The TTP admitted responsibility for the shooting claiming that she was ‘defaming’ the Taliban and fraternizing with the enemy i.e. the Western … Read entire article »

Filed under: Terrorism

Cityscapes

Cityscapes

My Kabul By Sundus Rasheed Full time wanderer, part time 9 to 5 worker. Living between destinations. Radio magician, blogger and travel addict.  Follow me on Twitter @SundusRasheed Visit me yummymummyandme.blogspot.com   The experience of any city is created by the ‘user.’ You can make any city our own. Even in a city as close as Karachi, Kabul is deemed ‘exotic’ and adventurous.  As a Pakistani, it is closer to home than most of us would imagine. However, Kabul is not … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

Communication demystified

Communication demystified

By Amena Kamaal The writer is a communications guru working with the world food program and based in Islamabad The changes in the communication landscape in the last few years distinctly reflect the changes in human behavior we’ve been observing and experiencing ourselves over the past few years – changes brought upon by new technologies. Think about how we consume information nowadays, as well as what we expect from the creators of this information in terms of … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion

Report: Meetup with Dr Ayesha Jalal

‘Young people in Pakistan need to wrest back their perspective from people like Hakimullah Mehsud’ said Dr. Ayesha Jalal in a session with bloggers at Nairang Gallery, Lahore on 22nd August. It was attended by 20 bloggers and media personnel from Lahore including Cheif Editor Pak Tea House, Raza Rumi, Saroop Ijaz, Mehmal Sarfaraz, Yasir Latif Hamdani, Aisha Sarwari, Saadia Gardezi, Zebunnisa Burki, Adnan Rasool, Awais Aftab, Rabia Mahmood, Sabahat Zakriya, Sher Ali,Aun, Samar Ataullah,Ali Sethi, Rab Nawaz and Abdul Majeed. The purpose for which this meet-up was organized as to discuss How bloggers can make a difference in the political narrative of the country and how should they work to bring back the narrative of Pakistanis. Dr. Jalal initiated the session by pointing out that Pakistan’s perspective is not the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

Taliban are Today’s Kharjites

by Amaar Ahmad The fourth Caliph of Islam and the Holy Prophet (pbuh)’s son in law Ali bin Abu Talib was martyred by a member of the Kharjite movement because Ali had “deviated” from Islam in their view. ”Obedience to Allah and mutual consultation” was their slogan for which they branded any Muslim a heretic and liable for death. Using brutal violence against women and children, they tried but ultimately failed to impose their beliefs on society. Today, the Taliban and their Takfiri supporters are following the exact same violent path to their own oblivion. Years before the first American drone took off, these Taliban were killing Hazara Shia and Iranian diplomats, blowing off Buddha statues in Bamiyan and denying women their fundamental and Islamic right to education. Contrary to politicians’ pronouncements, military operations in Swat … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, Taliban, Terrorism

An Open Letter To The Parents of Malala Yousufzai

By D. Asghar Dear Mr and Mrs. Yousufzai, To say that both of you are blessed is an understatement. To say that God Almighty has gifted you with a daughter, who is perhaps 100 times better than many men (myself included), is grossly inadequate. To say that you are loved by your Creator, as He is testing you in these times is perhaps appropriate. Undoubtedly, what your beloved daughter went through as a mere teenager should stir the conscience of many around the globe. But I am ashamed and equally embarrassed to say that, we as a nation are not worthy of your gifted daughter. We are a lost nation, enraged about our own failures, that we are unable to see any thing beyond that. Granted there was an outcry by our … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

A Battle of Ideas

by Abdul Majeed Abid “When I knew that they were burning our schools, I thought they were burning education, they were burning books. I have to be educated. I’ll be educated no matter what the odds.” Malala Yousafzai Last Week’s attack on Malala Yousafzai, a 14 year old beacon of hope from Swat, garnered all sorts of reactions. Most people were shocked by the brutality of the perpetrators. The timing of that attack, in my opinion, was an extremely unfortunate one as it co-incided with the ending of PTI’s “Peace March” towards Waziristan. Attack on Malala has been construed as a stepping stone to military operation in Waziristan, a primer that turns public opinion towards a certain tilt. Conspiracy theories have been spun at an alarming pace about involvement of various Intelligence Agencies … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, Army, Democracy, Education, FATA, Islam, Islamism, Pakistan, Religion, Society, Taliban, Terrorism, USA, violence, Women

What to do with Pakistan’s illiterate youth?

Prof Farakh A Khan (15.10.12) The UN has now presented alarming population figures about Pakistan. I have written about this many times. My claim that population figures are a sham a crutch to lean on by our scholars to explain our failure of economic development. It is not the number but what you do with it. UN now tells us that 65% of Pakistani population is under 25 years age. But what is more alarming is that 32% of our population between the age of 15 and 29 years are illiterate. Of these 6% have any technical skills and only 2.5% received any training. Majority of the illiterate youth are in our rural areas. These are depressing figures (Ticking bomb. Editorial. Dawn. October 14, 2012). The usual remedy put forward by … Read entire article »

Filed under: youth

Orientalism Today

About three weeks ago, in an interview that was part of a tour to launch his latest book, Salman Rusdhie was asked about what he thought about the protests that erupted in Muslim countries as a result of the film, “Innocence of Muslims” (or the “Life of Muhammed,” or “Muslim Innocence, depending on reports). He responded by calling the video a “disgraceful little malevolent thing ” and the violence that erupted as a consequence of the film, “the release of a much larger outrage.” Rushdie went on to comment on the topic, saying “He’s clearly set out to provoke, and he’s obviously unleashed a much bigger reaction that he hoped for. One of the problems with defending free speech is you often have to defend people that you find to be … Read entire article »

Filed under: Colonialism, culture, Media, Uncategorized

Who Question’s the Innocence of Whom?

Who Question’s the Innocence of Whom?

By Fatima Chowdhry Religions drips with blood, ironically with the blood of the innocent. And yet it is an irony that a religion which was created to promote peace has become the cause of bloodshed. Yes , in the name of freedom of speech movies like “Innocence of Muslims” which are serving to cause pain to Muslim sentiment and incite the radical elements to violence in a current political environment that does not need murder and … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion

The Balochistan quagmire

by Saad Hafiz : The Balochistan quagmire corroborates Pakistan’s historic struggle to accommodate distinct national groups within the country. The Baloch, like the Bengalis earlier, are demanding political and economic justice they rightly feel has been denied to them by the powerful Punjab-dominated ruling oligarchy. Since the creation of Pakistan, there have been incompatible tensions that could be glossed over in the somewhat rushed production of constitutional arrangements, but these problems could not be resolved in an enduring way without innovation, accommodation and change. Most importantly, the patched together constitutional ‘solutions’ for the areas dominated by other national groups like the Baloch and the Bengalis aggravated existing tensions, by delaying any serious dialogue about how to harmonise never before integrated portions of this territory into a functional nation-state. Pakistan was even less … Read entire article »

Filed under: baluchistan

Dialogue with Yasser Latif Hamdani

From the Analyst World What is your idea of Pakistan as lay man? And as a Member of the Bar and a Law Man? YLH : I have tried but I cannot distinguish between my idea of Pakistan as a layman and as a member of the bar. As I understand it the idea of Pakistan arose out and as a result of the following: The inability of British Indians to evolve a common nationality and this itself has three factors:  a. The insecurity of Muslims – having taken to modern education and British rule much later than the Hindu Majority (a gap of 80 years almost b/w Ram Mohan Roy and Sir Syed Ahmed Khan) b. The unwillingness of the Hindu majority to meet the Muslims half way and allay their fears … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

Malala: I am Pakisan

By Jehan Naseem “Live #Malala Live. Can someone pls tell me how I explain to my 11yr old daughter why anyone would try to kill 14yr old”? That was one of the first tweets that caught my eye on October 9th, 2012 by Dr. Adil Najam the Vice Chancellor of LUMS. That was exactly the anxiety and dread I was suffering from. Since my nieces, ages ranging from 9 to 12 years old, have a habit of picking up the newspaper, attempting to read it and ask random questions. Unfortunately, if there is a picture of a 14 year girl with a severe gunshot wound on the front page, it is bound to catch another child’s attention and invoke curiosity. The very next day, my 10 year-old niece did just that. The … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion