A revolution?

By Marvi Memon

These days there is a lot of talk about revolution and a change of system. I see it as a control-alt-delete button on the keyboard. A clean up action of sorts where a new benchmark of what is acceptable in politics needs to be set up. The constitution is fine. So is parliamentary democracy. The problem is that no one sticks to the system. How does one ensure zero tolerance for wavering from the system? Simple — by ensuring that when there is a wavering from set rules, people are punished according to rules.

There is a common joke going around Islamabad these days: hang a few hundred politicians and this country will be fine. What this seems to suggest is that the politicians are the core problem. I feel that the responsibility lies on the politicians to govern since they are responsible for the fate of millions.

What should one expect from politicians? That they will make good laws and implement them. That they will create an Islamic, social welfare state. That they will rule in an egalitarian way. That if they have clean water to drink themselves, they won’t sleep until they have found a way to provide each Pakistani with clean drinking water too. That if they have access to education and basic health units, they will ensure that each Pakistani has the right to education and health facilities too. And until we don’t give the basic amenities to the poor, we have no business wasting each other’s time politicking.

There is a long list of revolts, rebellions, and revolutions in world history. They happen when people reach the peak of the minimum acceptable level of humiliation and are ready to turn out those responsible for their misery. Read more of this post

Today’s Cartoon:- 4 pillars of democracy!

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Only in Pakistan 😉

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Pakistan today finds itself at the crossroads

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The dream lives on

Mohammad Jamil:

Today is, indeed, the day to rejoice as Pakistan Resolution was passed on 23rd March 1940, which was implemented on 14th August 1947. But it is also the day for introspection, self-accountability and evaluation as to how far we have been able to live up to the ideals set by the founding fathers. Quaid-e-Azam had envisaged a free, progressive, humane, and modern Pakistan, ruled by just laws, where everybody irrespective of religion, colour, creed or cast would be equal before law. Unfortunately, efforts were made to distort his speeches even when he was alive, and vested interest had tried to remove his 11th August 1947 speech before the Constituent Assembly from the record with a view to keep the nation in the dark, as it was the first official version of the Quaid.

In Pakistan, different schools of thought interpret Quaid-i-Azam’s speeches to serve their ends, but Quaid-i-Azam had envisioned Pakistan to be a modern progressive state, rooted in the eternal values of Islam, and at the same time responsive to the imperatives of constant change. President Pervez Musharraf, with the concept of enlightened moderation and by persuading the assemblies to pass laws for the empowerment of women and bringing the minorities into mainstream is emulating the Quaid, which his distracters do not like. In his Presidential address at the All India Muslim League session at Delhi on 24th April 1943 he outlined his vision about Pakistan: “I have visited villages; there are millions and millions of our people who hardly get one meal a day. Is this civilization? If that is the idea of Pakistan I would not have it”.

In the same speech he said: “A lot of mischief is being created. Is it going to be Islamic Government? The constitution and the government will be what the people will decide”. By going through the full text of speeches of the Quaid delivered on 24th April 1943 and 11th August 1947, one could find the guidelines and the parameters within which constitution of Pakistan was to be framed by the representatives of the people. The Quaid while giving reference of Islam and the Holy Book had wished to convey that he stood for an economic system based on true Islamic concept of equality, social justice and categorically stated: “Pakistan is not going to be a theocratic state”. Those religious parties that had opposed Pakistan wanted to implement their version of Islam which was at variance with the great majority of the Muslims.

Pakistan has all the ingredients to make it a modern progressive state. But where did we go wrong? Unfortunately, Pakistan lost its Quaid and other founding fathers too soon, and conglomerate of privileged few, feudals, bureaucracy and new-rich industrial robber barons devoid of political acumen and vision took over the state. The only redeeming feature is that Pakistan is now an atomic power, and its people and armed forces have the ability and guts to meet any challenge posed by internal and external enemies of Pakistan, and have the capability and the will to defend the integrity of Pakistan. But the problem is that many an element is out to create confusion. Though Pakistan has completed 63 years of its existence, we still are obliged to listen to the debate as to the purpose for which it was created.

In fact, the issue was debated for decades during the struggle for independence, and founding fathers were absolutely clear in their minds about the objectives for attaining an independent state for Muslims of the sub-continent. Quaid-i-Azam was a democrat, and he did not even think of imposing his will on people. When asked about the type of constitution Pakistan would have, he replied that the people’s representative would frame the constitution on the basis of guiding principles of Islam. Unfortunately, leaders of the religious parties that had opposed Pakistan were now exploiting masses in the name of religion, and insisted that everybody should accept their interpretation of Islam. In the words of President General Pervez Musharraf, the minority has taken the majority as hostage.

On 14th August 1947, we got rid of the colonialism but became fell a prey to neo-colonialism due to flawed policies of the various governments in the past, and had to depend on the West for our development and defence. The dependency syndrome was evident after 11th September 2001 events when Pakistan was coerced into altering its foreign policy. The internecine conflicts amongst political parties and lust of power of the politicians had resulted in three martial laws in 1958, 1968 and 1977, and another military dispensation in 1999. Unfortunately, the people were not treated any better during the tenures of democratic governments, and it was because of their conflicts that army had moved in. The reason being, degeneration had crept in every stratum of society, but the redeeming feature is that people of Pakistan have not lost hope; their spirit is alive and kicking, and their dream lives on. The question arises as to what should be done to rid the society of inertia and corruption? Can Plato’s managerial meritocracy help? It may hold good in services but political exigencies demand far greater than what is provided in that discipline. Leading the people in their pursuit of political freedom, self-governance, economic independence, evolution of a vibrant society and progress in the fields of science and art requires different category of leaders. Pakistan needs a type of leader that first believes in certain principles; he practices what he believes; he upholds those principles and is accepted as an exemplar for others. Such leadership reaches the hearts of the people and brings about psychological changes in their outlook towards life. It inspires them to unite with a view to transforming the society and changing the system for their social, material and spiritual well-being.

In Pakistan, barring a few honourable exceptions, most of the leaders lacked political acumen, leadership qualities and sense of direction that brought the country to the present pass. Pakistan today finds itself at the crossroads. To meet the internal and external challenges to its security, it is imperative that the nation is united. All and sundry should work to convert moribund society plagued by corruption, immorality, inertia, factionalism into a progressive, vibrant and dynamic organism brimming with vitality and creativity.

Allama Iqbal had given the clue as to how to go about it, and underscored the need to reinterpret Islamic thought and assimilate its eternal principles to overcome centuries-old stagnation with a view to launching the nation on the path to revival and build a future worthy of its glorious past. He had dreamt of Pakistan, and his dream became a reality when the nation found a leader like Quaid-i-Azam.

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Lahore Bombings: Indians Are Suspects, So Are Americans

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US Ambassador complains to Pakistani Government that media reports have exposed the location of American residences inside Lahore’s military zone, but fails to mention why US personnel with diplomatic cover have been found at wrong places, sometimes carrying weapons that diplomats are not supposed to

Lahore’s military zone is not only exposed to covert Indian operatives but also to undercover US agents with their suspicious heavy-duty equipment placed in several houses inside a gated community right in the heart of the city’s military area. This has been going on since 2007.

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan—The eastern city of Lahore is exposed not only to the Indians who have been sending terrorists to plant bombs in public places for the past quarter of a century, but also to the Americans who expanded their covert presence inside Pakistan in the last three years of President Musharraf’s rule.  After the return to democracy in 2008, the US presence [beyond diplomatic requirements or disguised under diplomatic cover] is reported to have increased manifold.

Last year, Pakistanis were stunned to watch several incidents where US citizens were caught by the Military Police at checkpoints leading up to the city’s military zone known as Cantt.  Most of the time, these US individuals refused to say what business took them to the military area. The US Consulate in Lahore is located far away from this zone, which compounded the mystery. These US nationals also refused to allow the police to check their vehicles, which is a standard procedure that all Pakistanis undergo considering the terrorist attacks. On a couple of occasions, US vehicles whose drivers refused to cooperate with MP caused long queues at checkpoints. Military Police officers impounded these vehicles. This led to US officials complaining to their media that Pakistan was ‘harassing’ US diplomats.

But the truth is that the Americans have covertly maintained an outpost of several houses in a gated community right in the heart of the city’s military zone. This zone is so sensitive that a half-constructed Sheraton Hotel lies abandoned on one of Cantt’s main streets because the Pakistani military complained that the new hotel’s upper floors provided an easy view of the residence of the commander of the Pakistan Army Corp that guards Pakistan’s northeastern border with India.

This makes the covert US presence in this area intriguing to say the least. The exact location of these houses, in the elite Sarwar Colony, is shown in the pictures that accompany this report. Most of the residents of this colony are senior retired Pakistani military officers. A handful of them have apparently leased out their homes to the Americans at exorbitant rates that far exceed the normal level of leased property rates in the Colony, according to a fascinating expose published by TheNation and is reproduced below in full.

Why are we talking about a few houses rented out by Americans linked to US government in a sensitive part of the eastern city?

The reason is a wave of terror targeting Lahore over the past two years. This is not to suggest that the US government has something to do with this.  The suspicion centers on local terrorists indirectly or directly aided by intelligence operatives from multiple countries based in Afghanistan.  The point here is that the city of Lahore is exposed not only to local terrorists working with foreign handlers, but also to Indians and possibly to private American security contractors. These contractors expanded their presence in Pakistan in the past two years, mostly using diplomatic cover. The US Embassy in Islamabad under the incumbent Ambassador has been instrumental in pushing for an expanded role for private US defense contractors in Pakistan over the past two years.

Many Pakistanis feel that such penetration of Pakistan by foreign countries is detrimental to our national security and has unnecessarily exposed us to outsiders pursuing interests that may not overlap with our own.

Today, the US Embassy in Islamabad leaked key points of a letter that US Ambassador Anne W. Patterson has sent to Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi. In the letter, Ambassador Patterson complained about TheNation report on the American presence in Cantt, Lahore. More interestingly, she made a veiled threat that Pak-US relations would suffer if those Americans became targets for a terror attack. The letter was leaked to the Dawn newspaper.

The most interesting part of her letter was an acknowledgement on her part that the security of US diplomats in Pakistan is the responsibility of the Government of Pakistan. This is important because it was Ms Patterson who only a year ago was lobbying the Pakistani government to allow US private defense contractors into Pakistan and was running from one government office to another to ensure that these private US contractors are allowed to carry banned weapons anywhere in the country.

When Ms. Patterson was asked why she needed these private security contractors, she said it was to protect US diplomats. Critics said that was the responsibility of the Government of Pakistan and that the Ambassador should not cross a line. Her acknowledgement of this indicates a shift. Probably it has to do with recent understandings between Army Chief Gen. Kayani and US military officials where the army chief reportedly asked US to stop indirect methods of coercion, including media leaks, the role of private contractors in Pakistan and Afghanistan and the role of CIA in the region.

So how did the Pakistani military allow such a breach to occur in a sensitive area of Lahore?
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United we stand, divided we fall!

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Nosheen Saeed:

On 14th August 1947, Pakistanis achieved their cherished goal of freedom and established Pakistan as an independent sovereign State, where they could live freely with honour, dignity and self-respect. God blessed Pakistan with enormous wealth, resources, potentialities and possibilities. To utilize these gifts, God provided talented, committed and enterprising people, possessing a vision, ability and devotion. Every Pakistani had the opportunity to contribute towards his homeland by serving it honestly, sincerely and selflessly thus leading his homeland towards progress, prosperity and development.

The early departure of Quaid-e-Azam left Pakistan in a state of quandary. Every successive government was worse than the other; each blamed the other for its deceptive and destructive policies. The previous being the devil and the current pristine. This tug of war weakened institutions and law and order. Intolerance grew giving birth to sectarianism and discrimination between caste, creed and communities. Government after government shelved national wellbeing and worked towards personal and vested interests. Those who were against the creation of Pakistan became the ruling class. To perpetuate their rule, they trampled fundamental law, morals, values, principles, traditions, discipline and code of conduct.

The issues held dear by the Quaid, national integrity, social justice, faith and supremacy of law were shrouded. The Quaid’s image was modified to suit the dubious ends of our time tested, tried and failed politicians. This cliché took over the State and ruled over it like a colony imposing its rule on the slaves – hapless people. Lacking originality, vision, sincerity and having no notion of governance, leave alone good governance, unleashed a reign of confusion. Our social and religious ideology succumbed to pressures and quick fixes. Consequently, it was misconstrued and adjusted according to circumstances. Democracy suffered at the hands of civil and military oligarchs. A reign of corruption, favouritism and personal aggrandizement was unleashed, killing merit, competence and professionalism. Infringement and contravention sowed the seeds of provincialism and sectarianism. Instead of galvanizing the people towards national integrity and following the Quaid’s motto of unity, faith and discipline, dissension and diversion, set in. Loot and plunder of the State’s riches continued by mercenaries, the rich became richer and the poor became poorer thus with the passage of time an unbridgeable gulf between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’ widened.

The Quaid found it painful to see the curse of provincialism holding sway over Pakistan. It was imperative to get rid of this evil which he considered a relic of the old administration when people clung to provincial autonomy and local liberty of action to avoid British control. After the creation of Pakistan, having one’s own central government, it was a folly to continue to think in the same terms. This is truth easily forgotten by people who begin to prize local, sectional or provincial interest above national interests. In the words of the Quaid, “Local attachments have their value but what is the value and strength of a part, except within a whole.” He further emphasized, “Our duty to the State comes first; our duty to our province, to our district, to our town and to our village and ourselves comes next.” On another occasion he stated, “You must learn to distinguish between your love for your province and your love and duty to the State as a whole, our duty to the State takes us a stage beyond provincialism. It demands a broader sense of vision and greater sense of patriotism.” He asked to pause and consider before taking any step whether it would be conditioned by ones personal or local likes or would be determined by consideration of the good of the State: “Representative governments and representative institutions are no doubt good and desirable, but when people want to reduce them merely to channels of personal aggrandizement, they not only lose their value but earn a bad name.” A bright future lay ahead if individuals, both officials and non-officials, play their part and work in this spirit. Pakistan would emerge as one of the greatest nations of the world.

While talking on the subject of sectarianism, the Quaid declared, “If you want to build up yourself into a Nation, for god’s sake give up this provincialism. Provincialism has been one of the curses; and so is sectionalism – Shia, Sunni etc.” He warned the Nation not to fall into the trap of the enemies of Pakistan who were unfortunately Muslims financed by outsiders.
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|Salam-Pakistan| A Message to Pakistani Youth

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This video is dedicated to Pakistani Youth. They have to come forward now to protect their Liberty, their everything, that is Their Pakistan. Their elders had sacrificed for them and now they have to sacrifice for their children. No one from outside will come to make Pakistan stronger and Prosper. Outsiders will only come to destroy Pakistan. It’s time now to wake up, come forward n take the challenge of making Pakistan as one of the Greatest countries of the World-as Quid e Aazam dreamed for it.

Pakistanis should not sit relaxed in their homes and enjoy the looting being done with their beloved country by the corrupt dacoits (Politicians). They have to admit that this country was created after a very hard and a very long struggle and since its creation, it has been protected by giving enormous sacrifices.

Pakistan belongs to Pakistanis, and Pakistanis have right to live and govern Pakistan. Nobody should be allowed to come from outside and hijack Pakistan, because it was made only for PAKISTANIS. Rest of everyone should pack their luggage and go back from where they have come.

We Pakistanis need true and sincere FRIENDS not evil MASTERS !!!!

Long Live Pakistan
Death to its Enemies, whoever they are.

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Muslims Are Their Own Worst Enemy

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Muslim disunity has made it possible for Israel to dispossess the Palestinians, for the U.S. to invade Iraq

by Paul Craig Roberts:

Muslims are numerous but powerless. Divisions among Muslims, especially between Sunni and Shi’ites, have consigned the Muslim Middle East to almost a century of Western control. Muslims cannot even play together. The Islamic Solidarity Games, a regional version of the Olympics, which were to be held in April in Iran, have been cancelled, because the Iranians and the Arabs cannot agree on whether to call the body of water that separates Iran from the Arabian Peninsula the Persian Gulf or the Arabian Gulf.

Muslim disunity has made it possible for Israel to dispossess the Palestinians, for the U.S. to invade Iraq, and for the U.S. to rule much of the region through puppets. For example, in exchange for faithful service, Egypt receives $1.5 billion a year from Washington, which enables President Mubarak to buy off opposition. The opposition had rather have the money than support the Palestinians. Therefore, Egypt cooperates with Israel and the U.S. in the blockade of Gaza.

Another factor is the willingness of some Muslims to betray their own kind for U.S. dollars. Don’t take my word for it. Listen to neoconservative Kenneth Timmerman, head of the Foundation for Democracy, which describes itself as “a private, non-profit organization established in 1995 with grants from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) to promote democracy and internationally-recognized standards of human rights in Iran.”

By now we all know what that means. It means that the U.S. finances a “velvet” or some “color revolution” in order to install a U.S. puppet.  Just prior to the sudden appearance of a “green revolution” in Tehran primed to protest an election, Timmerman wrote that “the National Endowment for Democracy has spent millions of dollars during the past decade promoting ‘color’ revolutions in places such as Ukraine and Serbia, training political workers in modern communications and organizational techniques. Some of that money appears to have made it into the hands of pro-Mousavi groups, who have ties to non-governmental organizations outside Iran that the National Endowment for Democracy funds.”  So, according to the neocon Timmerman, funded by the National Endowment for Democracy, it was U.S. money that funded Mousavi’s claims that Armadinejad stole the last Iranian election.

During President George W. Bush’s regime it became public knowledge that American money is used to purchase Iranians to work against their own country. The Washington Post, a newspaper sympathetic to the neocon’s goal of American hegemony and war with Iran, reported in 2007 that Bush authorized spending more than $400 million for activities that included “supporting rebel groups opposed to the country’s ruling clerics.”

This makes the U.S. government a “state sponsor of terrorism.” For confirmation, one of the U.S. paid operatives, who conducted terror operations in Iran, has ratted on his terrorist supporters in Washington. Abdulmalek Rigi, leader of the Baloch separatist group responsible for several attacks, was recently arrested by the Iranians. Rigi admitted that the Americans in Washington assured him of unlimited military aid and funding for waging an insurgency against the Islamic Republic of Iran. (Read his confession here: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24868.htm )

Possibly he was tortured into confession. It is the American way. If the “light of the world,” the “indispensable people,” and the “shining city on the hill” tortures people, perhaps the Iranians do as well. Rigi’s younger brother, himself on death row in Iran, has said that the U.S. provided direct funding to the separatist group and even ordered specific terrorist attacks inside Iran (see Antiwar.com, Feb. 23, 2010 and also http://news.antiwar.com/2009/08/25/top-jundallah-figure-says-us-ordered-attacks/ and http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24868.htm ).

The U.S. and its NATO puppets have been killing Afghan women, children, and village elders since October 7, 2001, when the U.S. military invasion “Operation Enduring Freedom,” a proper Orwellian title for a self-serving war of aggression, was launched. The U.S. installed puppet president of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, is bought and paid for with U.S. dollars.

The money that Washington gives Karzai finances the corruption that supports him. Karzai’s corruption and his treason against the Afghan people encourage the Taliban to keep fighting in order to achieve a government that serves Afghans instead of Washington, D.C.  http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/24/AR2010022404914.html?wprss=rss_world

Without the puppet Karzai selling out Afghans to Washington, the U.S. would have already been driven out of the country. With Karzai paying Afghans with American money to fight Afghans for the Americans, the war drones on into its ninth year.

Feminists, liberals, and naive American flag-wavers will say that what is written here is utter rot, that Americans are in Afghanistan to bring women’s rights and birth control to Afghan women and to bring freedom, democracy and progress to Afghanistan, even if it means leveling every village, town, and house in the country. We, “the indispensable people,” are only there to do good, because we care so much for the Afghan people who live in a country that most Americans can’t find on a map.
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What a way to grab all for the family, Mr Ambassador!

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Usman Manzoor | The News

New Pakistani Envoy to Syria “Invades” School With Family!
The new Pakistani ambassador to Syria, appointed by President Zardari, has summarily sacked the entire staff and faculty of the Pakistan International School in Damascus and appointed almost all his immediate family members for a collective monthly salary of $38,000 (Rs3.2 million).

The sacked teachers and staff members of the school run by the embassy, who were removed for no reasons and without any prior notice, have been compelled to go into litigation against the Pakistan Embassy, The News has learnt.

The Pakistan International School in Damascus (PISOD) is run by the embassy of Pakistan but within five months after the arrival of new ambassador, Aminullah Raisani, in September 2009, the management and faculty of the school was changed altogether without giving any reason and the school was stuffed with the relatives of the ambassador.

According to the list of newly inducted teachers Saeeda Yasmeen Raeesani has been appointed as Principal. She is sisterof the ambassador and is drawing $6,500 per month as salary while the previous principal Syed Tauseef Bokhari was getting $2,500. Another sister, Ms Abbas, has been appointed as Urdu teacher for $3,500 per month.

Two daughters, Amna Aminullah Raeesani and Quratulein Aminullah Raeesani, have been appointed as teachers. These two are getting $3,000 per month as salary while the school was paying only $1,700 for the same job to previous teachers.

Mohammad Ishaque, brother-in-law of the ambassador, has been appointed as accountant for $3,500 per month while the same job was previously with one Imran for just $900 a month. Attique-ur-Rehman and Syed Muhammad Ali, ambassador’s nephews, have been appointed as business teachers for $3,000 a month while the same job was done for $1,500 only before September 2009.

Nayla Atiq, granddaughter of ambassador’s sister, is working as Maths teacher for $3,000 a month while her predecessor was drawing $1,700 a month as salary. Ali Abdullah, the son-in-law of ambassador’s sister, and Muhammad Ahsan Shafique, ambassador’s cousin, have been appointed as teachers for $3,000 a month while their predecessors were drawing $1,500 a month.Another cousin of the ambassador, Rasheed Chattha, has been appointed as biology teacher for$3,500 a month while previously Ms Manal Sileman was doing the same job for $1,500 a month.

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