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Major Jahanzeb Shaheed: Nation’s Real Hero!

Major Jahanzeb Shaheed: Nation’s Real Hero!

Syed Foaad Hussain Any martyred soldier leaves behind an aggrieved family and number of relatives. However, what apparently seems a sorrowful demise indeed carries along a substantial message for us. Responsible nations do not forget their heroes. However, for Pakistani people, perhaps, there is a need to define who the heroes are and who are not. Would you call them heroes who shoot polio workers, blow up mosques and shrines, and attack religious processions? Or, those brave soldiers … Read entire article »

Filed under: Terrorism

When will the insanity stop?

Ahmer Muzammil I wasn’t close to him. Hardly shared couple of sentences in last 2 decades, but his mother and mine shared a womb. I did; however, met him every weekend till I was 16 at my nani’ house but there were 20 other cousins so I cant say he was my best friend. So my perspective is not tainted with lopsided partisanship, which might be the case with his wife, children, brothers and sisters and nephews and nieces, people that he adored and they adored him back. He was not the smartest, most good-looking or most successful in our family; but there was something about him, which is usually not screaming at you, seeking attention in a self-glorifying manner but you know its there. Its sophisticated and its polite and … Read entire article »

Filed under: obituary

Karachi Literature Festival: Bigger & Better!

Karachi Literature Festival: Bigger & Better!

By Abdullah Zaidi One thing which was clear from the onset as KLF approached was that it was going to be bigger and better than before. There were new exciting writers to look forward to: Omar Shahid Hamid and Bilal Tanweer. Then scholar Ashish Nandy was making an appearance at a Literature Festival in Pakistan for the first time. Lastly, the presence of regulars such as Mohammad Hanif offered nothing but good. Geo-Political Value of Pakistan – … Read entire article »

Filed under: culture, Literature

A Drive through Happiness

By Rehman Faris I sit behind the wheel, dipped from head to toe in greyish gloom. The music in my Silver Santro is mellow but melancholic. The tune, however, fails to amuse me.It’s one of those twining twilights when emptiness fills my existence, ringing around me chimes from the church of silent sorrows. The Firdous Market traffic light is as red as a ripe strawberry. I apply brakes as my Santro screeches to an agitating stop. Centuries of evolution pass before the ripe strawberry turns into an apple – green in color. As a reflex action to the green light, I hit the accelerator and take a right turn, though it doesn’t feel much right to me. But suddenly, I sense a strange feeling of elation. An unknown euphoria, to be more … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pak Tea House, Writers

The new face of fascism

Saad Hafiz Benito Mussolini’s infamous quote on fascism, adapted to Pakistan, reads, “Everything for the Taliban, nothing outside the Taliban, nothing above the Taliban.” The quote accurately captures the remarkable hubris of fascism, its frightening, xenophobic and coercive impulses. Fascism brings with it a thick set of assumptions about the world’s past, present and future. It represents a complete vision of life that crosses class divisions and carries no pluralist opposition. The objective, unchanged through time, is to establish control over the people, its main thrust to remake society and rule over every dimension of life. Like their predecessors in history, the new fascists draw their allure from their anathema towards half measures and compromises, their simplicity, their appeal to the imagination and their zest for action but also their intolerance … Read entire article »

Filed under: culture

A conversation with a constitutional Kaafir

Balal Haider Ahmadis are constitutional Kaafirs in Pakistan. The best part is Pakistan is the only country in the world which proudly presents us with such a Politico-Religious categorization of its people. Below is a conversation from a daily life of a constitutional Kaafir (CK) and Radicalized Constitutional Muslim (RCM)… CK: “Asalam o Alikum my dear friend” RCM: ” Yala Harama, you go to jail, how dare you speak the words which sends peace to me, you!!, let me call the police station.” CK: “I am so sorry my friend I am just used to spreading peace and teachings of love. I am sorry to have offended you, Let me do some Astagfar.” RCM: ” Toba Toba, you are using an Arabic word, how dare you act like a muslim” CK: ” I am sorry, I … Read entire article »

Filed under: Activism, Short Story

Valentine’s Day at Centaurus Mall

Valentine’s Day at Centaurus Mall

By Waqas Rafique It was Friday and the colours of the Valentine’s Day were in full bloom. I tossed my vehicle into an annoyingly long queue of cars outside the Centaurus Mall, Islamabad, with a friend. All we wanted was a late afternoon snack. However, when we reached at the main gate, the security guard informed that we couldn’t go inside the mall since it was a “family day”. Awkwardly surprised, I told him that my … Read entire article »

Filed under: culture

Talibanistan – Land of the Taliban

Saniya Ahmad “Welcome to Talibanistan. Yes, that’s what the name Pakistan has changed to. The country is run by a little bit differently now, but please don’t be afraid. You’ll get used to it soon enough. Just wanted to give you a little heads up on how things are running here so that you can get accustomed quickly. Talibanistan is a Muslim country. Any citizen of any other religion is deported or found dead somewhere. The Muslim minority sects i.e Shias and Ahmadis are by all means Wajib-ul-Qatal, since their beliefs are a tad bit different than those of the Talibans, and of course the Taliban do not like anyone to have a difference of opinion with them. Ahmadis and Shias are running for their lives, they barely make it to the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Taliban, Terrorism

Poles Apart

Haider Rifaat After witnessing the current situation in Pakistan, I have come across many individuals who assess other nations based on stereotypical beliefs. There are numerous factors which make Pakistan and the U.S. entirely different. However, one of the most vital factors which has created a rift between the two countries is the cultural difference. Pakistan and the U.S. have not been able to get along well on account of the distinct cultures. Several conservatives who mainly dwell in the rural regions of Pakistan do not approve of western clothing. In contrast, the U.S. supports diverse cultures and people from different religious affiliations. Moreover, modernization has become a trend in Pakistan, yet people who belong from traditional backgrounds oppose western customs, particularly the openness in the society. Keeping the culture aspect aside, there … Read entire article »

Filed under: culture

Winning the ideological war

Winning the ideological war

Balal Haider “This is a war of ideologies, and idea can’t be defeated by force and bombs. The truth will be the winner” Omar Khorasani, the spokesman of the TTP Mohmand Agency tweeted early today on his official twitter account. This statement in isolation is correct but when put into context spells the disaster for TTP and all allied terrorists. TTP are known to have spreading their ideology throughout the region trough sword. They force people to … Read entire article »

Filed under: Terrorism

AAP & Not PTI:The power of democracy!

Ahmer Muzammil I am not fascinated or infatuated with India, like some of our Indian readers and mostly for the wrong reasons I might add. I do however acknowledge that it is the land of my forefathers and at a macro level, I am impressed with their dedication to and insistence on democracy. I am under no illusion that indian society is without ills or that democracy has solved all of their issues But compared to Pakistan, they look like rock stars. Compared to Pakistan however, young men and women -some who were wronged and mostly those who are uneducated, impressionable and indoctrinated – aren’t blowing themselves up in cinemas, bazars and places of worship, killing their fellow innocent citizens in cold blood, and to me that alone is a winner every … Read entire article »

Filed under: Politics

How to Commit Suicide: Lesson from an Intellectually Bankrupt Society

Raza Habib Raja For a person who likes to write, I am really at a loss of words. May be what I am witnessing around me has made be numb and too shocked to even articulate myself properly. I am pasting some links pertaining to news about some recent events. Mohmand Taliban claim killing 23 FC men Taliban threaten to Kill Kalash tribe and Ismailis TTP has 500 suicide bombers Nine Killed in Peshawar attack The list expands as Ismailis attack 13 killed in Karachi blast These are the headline news of just last few days and these incidences have occurred during the so called negotiations which in my opinion are nothing but acknowledgement of our collective cowardice and shameless intellectual bankruptcy. Pakistan’s constant struggle with extremism is not a new phenomenon. It even predates TTP,9/11 and for that … Read entire article »

Filed under: Drones, Pakistan, Taliban

Our Terrorism Policy: Treating Cancer with Palliatives.

Balal Haider Finally our government has got a road map to solve all problems and that is to talk to the people who are killing so many Pakistanis and if the talks fail the army has planned to take a full scale war to Waziristan. Brilliant. That means either way the problem will be solved forever? The fact remains both options leave minimal chance of victory. Either you fight them or you talk to them nothing is being done to cure the cancer of terrorism. To tackle any problem the root causes have to be addressed. How are terrorists produced? How can blow oneself up in pieces? How can be such a dangerous ideology be engraved into such young children. Waziristan or Karachi, pulling up a barrell and passing a 9 mm … Read entire article »

Filed under: Terrorism

Insanity continues…

By Yasser Latif Hamdani This is just a quick comment on a vile, sectarian blog’s latest attack on me, PTH and colleagues here. I recently met Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and tweeted my picture with him.  It apparently has caused massive heartburn to the nameless faceless folk over there at LUBP.   Everything nasty I have ever said about the PPP is now being paraded out, as if I have joined the PPP or said that I support it.  I have not. I support Bilawal Bhutto here and now. Bilawal Bhutto’s speech in Thatta was an extraordinary moment in the fight against the Taliban. He showed immense courage in taking on the Taliban.  My constant is Pakistan.  I will support anyone who supports the cause of a modern, democratic Pakistan.  At the moment only … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

PTH interviews Nadeem Farooq Paracha

PTH interviews Nadeem Farooq Paracha

The editorial team of PTH is highly grateful to the prominent liberal journalist and cultural critic, Nadeem Farooq Paracha, for giving this interview to PTH. In this interview, NFP gives his candid views on Pakistani establishment, religious extremism and negotiations with TTP,  Pakistani urban middle class and its intellectual orientation, Imran Khan and PTI,  and liberalism and liberal parties in Pakistan.   Raza Rumi and Raza Habib Raja 1.     Do you agree with this assertion made … Read entire article »

Filed under: FATA, liberal Pakistan, minorities, movements, Pakistan, Taliban