Tag Archives: Central Asia

Pakistaniat : The Crisis of Identity

Bradistan Calling

 

What can I give to Pakistan as a present on its 62nd Birthday, What else than an article on its chequered history and identity. Bertrand Russell famously said,” There are three great civilisations in East i.e. India, China and Islam”. Pakistan is blessed to be located at the crossroads of all these great civilisations. In my humble opinion this is the biggest strength of Pakistani identity. Continue reading

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This is a long war

Tuesday, June 16, 2009
By Raza Rumi

This is a critical moment in our history perhaps unmatched for its severity and its brutal reality. The experiential nightmare that our country is passing through is perhaps unparalleled for the enemy is neither foreign nor fully identifiable. At the same time, never has there been a clear backing of a military campaign against domestic agents of subversion and anarchy. Forget the doctored samples of opinion polls, often conducted by foreign agencies. That by itself should make us ashamed for our proclivity to accept what others have to analyse and determine for us. Even ignore the fringe voices of dissent led by those who neither have credibility or sagacity to comprehend the existential crisis faced by Pakistan. The army has shown vision and displayed courage in tackling a menace that alas is a home-grown cancer due to our short-sighted strategies in pursuit of phantom depths. The battle to be won is now the country itself. Continue reading

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Benazir Bhutto’s foreign policy

—Zafar Hilaly

How better to demonstrate that Benazir Bhutto truly lives in their hearts than to practice what she preached, namely, to take on and defeat the obscurantist threat facing Pakistan while forging closer and more meaningful cooperation with regional countries and, pre-eminently, India

The outcome of the battle against the Taliban, Benazir Bhutto believed, would not only determine Pakistan’s fate but her own. It would be her final battle. Hitherto, everything that had happened in her life and that of the country was in a sense a preparation for the war ahead. Continue reading

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The Advancing Enemy

—Dr Manzur Ejaz

Rulers averse to an independent judiciary and an equitable socio-economic order; an economic upper class hostile to paying its fair share in taxes; self-obsessed intellectuals and media persons; and a poverty-stricken population — this presents the perfect mix for the forces of destruction

Our ruling elites kept crying ‘Wolf!’ for decades to scare the West into supporting their tenures. And now, as the NWFP government prepares to promulgate sharia law in Swat and Malakand, the proverbial wolf has finally arrived. President Zardari’s statement regarding Taliban designs to take over Pakistan should have read: “The Taliban have already captured parts of Pakistan and they are on their way to grab the rest.” Continue reading

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The myriad voices of Pakistan

Raza Rumi at Global Voices

Pakistan’s growing blogosphere presents a kaleidoscope of the complex, contradictory developments within the country. The country is in the grip of a major movement for upholding the rule of law. Some say it is the finest moment in our history while others term it as yet another agent of instability. Thousands of lawyers and political activists have commenced a long march to Islamabad, the Pakistani capital, to pressurize the parliament and the government to restore the judges dismissed by now ubiquitous and beleaguered President Musharraf. We take our great neighbour China’s history and Chairman Mao, quite seriously.

Pak Spectator  welcomes the long march with these words:

Gallant lawyers from all over the Pakistan have started their Long March towards the Islamabad where a dictator lives who tried to demolish the country’s justice system to appease his vested interest to stick to the power forever. These lawyers are upholding the flags of supremacy of law and the upper hand of constitution with full liberty to the judges of higher and lower judiciary.

In a similar vein, cyrilalmeida.com moans the skepticism about the lawyers’ long march:

What a wretched country this is. The march should have given goose bumps to every person with an iota of romance. Instead, it has raised the hairs on the back of the neck for the many who fear what confrontation will bring. Not for decades have ugly reality and dreaminess collided so forcefully. The sceptics believe they are on the right side of history. But there is no joy in parting with the lawyers. Unfortunately, there are no Hollywood endings in Pakistan, only bitter truths.

An alternative view, again at Pak Spectator urges that legal matters cannot be brought to the streets:

Court business is conducted in Courts only. Staging of a protest or arranging a Long March on any pretext by a bunch of lawyers out side of the courts, in order to pressurise and influence the Parliament to give a favourable verdict is sure absurdity because; Munsib ka Mut-manni khaiz hota hey! If at all there is a need to do some March; that is an inward cleansing March; a March toward lower and High courts system; where Justice is a far cry and common man experience; corruption, corruption and corruption of Judges only. Long March; it is more of a Leisure Ride.

Putting the recent stage in the lawyers’ movement in a political economy context by arguing that the real agenda of the Long March appears to be frustrating the newly elected government of the slain Bhutto’s party. This is what Haq’s Musings has to say:

So why are the judges and the lawyers being elevated to such high stature by the “civil society” … and their media and politician cheerleaders? The answer probably lies in their obsessive need for vengeance against Musharraf by the PML(N), the lawyers and the journalists. Continue reading

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