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Imran Khan’s USA Conundrum

Gohar Qureshi Having read Mr. Imran Khan’s recent statement about TTP, that they do not seek to enforce Shariah in Pakistan rather liberate it from the US war. I might be the only one who supports PTI manifesto for what it is and NOT because Imran Khan leads the party. Being a law abiding Pakistani American it is offensive to come across anti American narrative that Mr. Khan leads his followers with. Has he ever attempted to educate his followers on what led the US war on terror. The youth of today who must have been very young when 9/11 happened have no awareness whatsoever on how tolerant US was and still is. That we could travel domestically in the US without body scans which we were always subjected to flying … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, Politics, secular Pakistan, Society, Taliban, Terrorism, USA

The Islamization of Pakistan

The Islamization of Pakistan

by Syed Foaad Hassan Quaid-e-Azam in his March 1940 presidential address said “It is extremely difficult to appreciate why our Hindu friends fail to understand the real nature of Islam and Hinduism. They are not religious in the strict sense of the word, but are, in fact, different and distinct social orders; and it is only a dream that the Hindus and Muslims can ever evolve a common nationality. This misconception of one Indian Nation has … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islamism, Jinnah

The Wizards of Langley: Inside CIA’s Directorate of Science and Technology

Ahmad Khan Jeffery T. Richelson is an American author, who has extensively produced literature on the process of intelligence gathering, historical technological up-gradation of intelligence agencies and its impacts on national security in America. He came up with The Wizards of Langley: Inside CIA’s directorate of Science and Technology in which he highlighted a brief history of CIA directorate of Science and Technology (DS &T) under the administration of different individual and CIA’s different aerial and space reconnaissance programs. He gives brief historical accounts of technological genies that resided inside CIA (DS &T). Richelson calls them the wizards of the Langley—the place where CIA headquarters is located— because of their technological and scientific achievements, which enabled CIA to architect an empire of international intelligence gathering. The primary objective of DS &T was to excavate … Read entire article »

Filed under: Al Qaeda, USA

I am Proud to be a Warmonger

Raza Habib Raja Merely two days ago, Hakimullah Mehsud, the head of Tehreek-i-Taliban was killed by a drone. The slain chief was the individual who had repeatedly claimed responsibility for a number of suicide attacks. Moreover, his organization recently also killed a Major General and then proudly posted the video of the assignation on the web. TTP and its various offshoots are also responsible for suicide bombings in shrines whereby the target have been the “infidel” Barelvis. Number of times, their outlawed sister organizations such as Lashkar-e-Janghavi, have killed Shiites and proudly claimed responsibility. And yet when Mr. Mehsud was killed, our media and leading politicians erupted in protests and have constantly labeled it as a deep conspiracy to derail the “peace” process. In social media also, I can see a flurry of … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, Taliban

Our Irrational Hatred

Raza Habib Raja I was in Karachi when 9/11 happened. As I watched TV coverage with my cousin, he was ecstatic and visibly showed his excitement that finally USA was being meted out the treatment it deserved. I objected that targeting civilians like this was not the right approach but was countered by the ever famous answer: “these people have killed Palestinians in the same way” and also that in the 2nd world war USA had used even nuclear bomb against Japan.    “Those who target other’s civilians should be punished in the same way”, he remarked. A few days later as the situation changed and gradually it became clear that USA was pointing fingers at Osama Bin laden and hence this region would be the focus of some kind of military action, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, Terrorism, USA

The Defenders

By Tamoor Zafar We are so used to listening to and believing in these politicians, they show their faces and defend their political parties and their fused leaders on TV, no matter how serious the issue is they will come up with some kind of defence but no shame and we still listen to them, let’s call these representatives the Defenders. These Defenders love to use precedents from the West. I always feel that If I could be there I could present a better defence, as I cannot be at two places at once therefore I came up with this idea to write some Western precedents which can provide defence to the Defenders on different issues. Nowadays a very common question the Defenders are facing is the question of the violation of sovereignty … Read entire article »

Filed under: Drones, Pakistan, Politics, USA

Future of Pakistan’s Western Frontier

By Prof Farakh A Khan (This is continuation of my last article.. It was felt that this subject requires greater depth since people in Pakistan have distorted view of our Fata issue. The origin and evolution of Jihadi Wahhabi movement has to be put in proper perspective) Conflict in society is the oldest human response inherited from our evolutionary animal past. As human society graduated from sticks and stones as weapons of aggression to high explosives and air war the level of carnage increased dramatically. We are now entering phase of robotic war lased with nuclear technology where power of destruction has escalated to a new level. The level of misery caused by modern wars is not acceptable anymore. War in Afghanistan either by foreign forces intervention or internal conflict for the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Politics

Understanding Pakistani Mistrust of the United States

By Raza Habib Raja This was orginally published at Huffington Post Over the years, U.S. bashing has become a national pastime in Pakistan. This trend is dominant almost everywhere, ranging from drawing room discussions to media talk shows, and in recent months has assumed alarming proportions due to host of events such as Afia Siddique verdict, Raymond Davis’s capture and subsequent release, incessant drone attacks and above all, the recent killing of Osama bin Laden. Although it would be an exaggeration to say that everyone in Pakistan mistrusts and hates the U.S., a substantial majority does. Several surveys have revealed that majority of Pakistanis consider USA as an enemy rather than a friend. In fact Al-Jazeera-Gallup Pakistan Survey 2009 revealed that 59% identified the U.S. as the greatest threat to Pakistan. Even India, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, USA

Five Myths About Pakistan

  We are cross posting this short but insightful post by Anatol Lieven where he discusses the five popular myths about Pakistan. In our view, these myths as much of a must-read for non-Pakistanis as they are for the Pakistani nation. (Editors, PTH) … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islam, Islamism, Pakistan, Religion, state, Taliban

Complicity or Incompetence: Which way the Wind is Blowing Now

By Raza Habib Raja .Ever since killing of Osama Bin Laden, the subsequent analysis has largely been dominated by the following question: Was Pakistani Intelligence apparatus guilty of complicity or incompetence? Now this question has so far been intensely debated in the Media, Western and Local, and various journalists, anchors and analysts have come up with their theories and “verdicts”. However much more interesting are policy and “informal” statements given by the US officials.  Immediately after the death of Osama Bin Laden and till the time these sentences are being written, the “art” of diplomacy characterized by giving seemingly conflicting and confusing statements has been in full swing. It is hardly surprising as diplomacy has seldom been an art of “clarity” as it is a tool for ensuring realpolitik concerns … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, USA

The Davis Release: Are We Jealous or Angry?

By Ali Usman Qasmi General Zia-ul-Haq must be grinning in his grave (literally) for coming to the rescue of the Americans even after his death. It was during the Zia regime that the ‘Islamic provision’ of Diyat was added to the Pakistan Penal Code. Ever since its promulgation, numerous men accused of murdering female members of their household have escaped punishment simply because other male members of the family – who happen to be the legal heirs of the ‘shameless’ female victim bringing dishonour to the family – pardon their male kin for performing the heroic act. In a recently published research article, renowned expert of Pakistan’s Shariat Laws Tahir Wasti has argued that despite there being specific provisions in the Islamic jurisprudence for the prosecution of criminals by State even if the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Justice, Pakistan, USA

Pakistani Intelligentsia’s ‘Cowardly’ Silence

By Iftikhar Nasim We, Pakistanis as a nation, have a problem. We claim to be very brave but is it more bravado and less bravery? As Muslims we claim that we are not scared of death but can we say the same about the “Angel of death”. I will explain later. The bitter  truth is we (Pakistani Diaspora) emigrated to England, America and Europe in 1960s and 1970s and the young men of my generation really enjoyed themselves, having fun in night clubs and drowning their  “loneliness” in drink, dozens of “girlfriends” and three/four wives here and back home as well. Those old enough to remember know that it was same in the “liberal” era of Ayub Khan and Bhutto’s Pakistan. Now when even Viagra cannot do any miracles (excuse me!), we have suddenly remembered … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

The Misplaced Hatred and Our Rational Self Interests

Raza Habib Raja In the current era of media fueled URBAN politics, the issues most discussed on the media have tendency to take all the limelight. Once an issue assumes the status of a “rallying” point then political parties try to show adherence to the same in order to remain politically popular. Right now and increasingly after 9/11, US bashing supplemented by notions like national sovereignty and nuclear arsenal paranoia, have taken the centre stage. Historically the anti US sentiments had always been present but these were given a new vigor after 9/11. From that point onwards, the scale has increased to such an extent that it has become the sole paradigm through which we view the world. I would have casually dismissed this hatred as comic absurdity had it been a … Read entire article »

Filed under: Terrorism, USA

Deciding the Raymond Davis Case—By Principles or Realpolitik Stakes?

By Dr. Niaz Murtaza In an earlier piece (Raymond Davis-Further thoughts) on the PTH, I looked mainly at the legal side of this case and argued that RD’s immunity depends on whether he is a consulate or embassy employee. In the first case, he does not have immunity. In the second case, he would still be liable for civil and admin jurisdiction in Pakistan though it is not clear what rights it will then give Pakistan over him. His actual status is complicated by the poor written communication between Pak and US prior to this incident. I also argued that both countries should form a committee of renowned international jurists (from both western countries and some Muslim countries like Turkey and Malaysia). Pak courts lack jurisdiction, knowledge and international credibility over immunity … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, USA

The Pak US conundrum

Saad Hafiz Charles de Gaulle once said “You may be sure that the Americans will commit all the stupidities they can think of, plus some that are beyond imagination”. Well, the “stupid” Americans spearheaded the liberation of France, allowed the Free French Army to lead the march into Paris contributing to De Gaulle being declared a national hero eventually becoming President of France. Similarly, the Americans have pumped over $ 45 billion in direct military and economic aid to Pakistan since Independence, $ 21 billion since 9/11 alone in effect making a huge contribution to stabilizing an impoverished nation. In return almost daily, Pakistani leaders like Imran Khan and Syed Munawar Hasan among others, accuse the United States at minimum of murder, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, public policy, USA