By Pervez Hoodbhoy Dawn, 28 Nov, 2009
FOREIGN Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi says that Pakistan is “compiling hard evidence of India’s involvement” in terrorist attacks on Pakistan’s public and its armed forces.
If he and the interior minister are correct then we must conclude that the Indians are psychotics possessed with a death wish, or are perhaps plain stupid. While India’s assistance for Baloch insurgents could conceivably make strategic sense, helping the jihadists simply does not. Continue reading
The Swiss have voted not against towers, but Muslims. Across Europe, we must stand up to the flame-fanning populists
By Tariq Ramadan guardian.co.uk, Sunday 29 November 2009
It wasn’t meant to go this way. For months we had been told that the efforts to ban the construction of minarets in Switzerland were doomed. The last surveys suggested around 34% of the Swiss population would vote for this shocking initiative. Last Friday, in a meeting organised in Lausanne, more than 800 students, professors and citizens were in no doubt that the referendum would see the motion rejected, and instead were focused on how to turn this silly initiative into a more positive future. Continue reading
By Brigadier (ret) Simon Samson Sharaf
In an emotional and controversial address to his constituency, the President of Pakistan, Mr. Asif Ali Zardari referred to the country as Sindhu Desh. In his fiery and reactive speech, this was perhaps the only silver lining. Deliberately or otherwise, he had touched a very sensitive issue of nationhood.
The politicians of Sindh unlike the Unionists of Punjab have been more Pakistani in many ways than they are accredited. Jinnah, the Syeds, Qazis, Soomros and Bhuttos are but to name a few. Reviewing the annals of history, we are pleasantly reminded that Pakistan was never the realization of one ethnicity, sect or mindset. It was a struggle based on the aspirations of diverse groups and still remains so. Continue reading
President gives up some powers, faces pressure to relinquish more
By Pamela Constable Washington Post Foreign Service Tuesday, December 1, 2009
ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN — President Asif Ali Zardari, fighting to keep his job amid pressure from opponents in the media, the courts, the Parliament and the military, appears to have reasserted his grip on the presidency for the time being, according to analysts here.
But Zardari’s government remains caught between pressure to support Washington in the war against Islamist insurgents in Afghanistan and the need to improve its tenuous relations with the army, which is focused on fighting domestic Taliban extremists and mistrusts the Obama administration’s friendship with India, Pakistan’s neighbor and arch rival. Continue reading
Kamran Shafi is a senior journalist of fierce independence. He has reported a rather disturbing incident in his column in Dawn. We at PTH stand by him and condemn such incidents of intimidation and harrassment against journalists and writers and wish him best of luck. Here is his article:
So then, December is upon us, another year has gone by in the Fatherland’s struggle to keep its head above water, to be accepted as another half-civilised country in the comity of nations.
The very same terrorists who were running amok during the Commando’s time in the sun while he and his collaborators ran with the hares and hunted with the dogs, are somewhat under control due to the political will of the major political parties of the country which has forced the security establishment to become pro-active.
I say ‘somewhat’ because almost all of the Swat/Fata Yahoo leadership is either not yet apprehended or killed, the chief murderers Fazlullah and Mehsud either escaping into Afghanistan, Fazlullah purportedly on one leg, the other melting into the countryside. The ones apprehended, such as Muslim Khan the Terrible are being kept under wraps, i.e., have appeared in no court of law. He is charged, may we remind ourselves, with cold-hearted murder, rebellion against the state, robbery and dacoity, and petty theft. Continue reading