Tag Archives: New York Times

Water Dispute Increases India-Pakistan Tension

The article from today’s New York Times highlights the water problem that will increasingly take center stage as populations in Pakistan and India grow in the coming years. For the first sixty years, we have lived under the shadow of the Kashmir dispute which to this day is unresolved. Hopefully water problem will not grow into another problem between the two nations over the next few decades.

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Filed under India, Islamabad, Pakistan, strategy

One Myth, Many Pakistans

Cross Post from The New York Times

 By ALI SETHI

Published: June 11, 2010

 http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/13/opinion/13sethi.html?pagewanted=all

 

FOR many Pakistanis, the deaths of more than 80 members of the Ahmadi religious sect in mosque attacks two weeks ago raised questions of the nation’s future. For me, it recalled a command from my schoolboy past: “Write a Note on the Two-Nation Theory.”

It was a way of scoring easy points on the history exam, and of using new emotions and impressive-sounding words. I began my answer like this:

The Two-Nation Theory is the Theory that holds that the Hindus and Muslims of the Indian Subcontinent are Two Distinct and Separate Nations. It is a Theory that is supported by Numerous Facts and Figures. During the War of Independence of 1857 the Muslim rulers of India were defeated by the British. Suddenly the Hindus, who had always held a grudge against the Muslims for conquering them, began to collaborate with the new British rulers. They joined British schools, worked in British offices and began to make large amounts of money, while the Muslims, who were Discriminated Against, became poorer and poorer. It was now Undisputable that the Hindus and the Muslims were Two Distinct and Separate Nations, and it was becoming necessary for the Muslims to demand a Distinct and Separate Homeland for themselves in the Indian Subcontinent.

To that point, my “note” had only built up the atmosphere of mistrust and hostility between Hindus and Muslims. It had yet to give examples of the Distinctness and Separateness of the two communities (such as that Hindus worshipped the cow but Muslims ate it), of Hindu betrayals and conspiracies (they wanted Hindi, not Urdu, to be the national language). And it had still to name and praise the saddened Muslim clerics, reformers and poets who had first noted these “undisputable” differences.

I got points for every mini-note that I stretched into a full page, which was valid if it gave one important date and one important name, each highlighted for the benefit of the teacher. This was because the teacher couldn’t really read English, and could award points only to answers that carefully showcased their Facts and Figures.

After the exam I would go home. Here the Two-Nation Theory fell apart. I was part-Shiite (my mother’s family), part-Sunni (my father’s family) and part-nothing (neither of my parents was sectarian). There were other things: the dark-skinned man who swabbed the floors of the house was a Christian; the jovial, foul-mouthed, red-haired old woman who visited my grandmother every few months was rumored to be an Ahmadi. (It was a small group, I had been told, that considered itself Muslim but had been outlawed by the government.)

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Filed under Army, Democracy, FATA, Identity, India, Islam, Islamabad, Jinnah, minorities, Pakistan, Religion, The New York Times, Writers

India’s Young and Poor Rally to Another Gandhi

Reproduced from The New York Times

 By JIM YARDLEY

Published: June 4, 2010

 AHRAURA, India — Rahul Gandhi’s helicopter descends out of the boiling afternoon sky and a restless, sweat-soaked crowd of 100,000 people suddenly surges to life. Men rush forward in the staggering heat. Teenage boys wave a white bedsheet bearing a faintly cheeky request: We Want to Meet the Prince of India.

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Filed under dynasties, History, India, Pakistan, Politics

For Times Square Suspect, Long Roots of Discontent

 Reproduced from The New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/16/nyregion/16suspect.html?pagewanted=1

Published: May 15, 2010

This article was reported by Andrea Elliott, Sabrina Tavernise and Anne Barnard, and written by Ms. Elliott.

Just after midnight on Feb. 25, 2006, Faisal Shahzad sent a lengthy e-mail message to a group of friends. The trials of his fellow Muslims weighed on him — the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the plight of Palestinians, the publication in Denmark of cartoons lampooning the Prophet Muhammad.

Mr. Shahzad was wrestling with how to respond. He understood the notion that Islam forbids the killing of innocents, he wrote. But to those who insist only on “peaceful protest,” he posed a question: “Can you tell me a way to save the oppressed? And a way to fight back when rockets are fired at us and Muslim blood flows?

“Everyone knows how the Muslim country bows down to pressure from west. Everyone knows the kind of humiliation we are faced with around the globe.”

Yet by some measures, Mr. Shahzad — a Pakistani immigrant who was then 26 years old — seemed to be thriving in the West. He worked as a financial analyst at Elizabeth Arden, the global cosmetics firm. He had just received his green card, making him a legal resident in the United States. He owned a gleaming new house in Shelton, Conn. His Pakistani-American wife would soon become pregnant with their first child, whom they named Alisheba, or “beautiful sunshine.”

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Filed under Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, FATA, Identity, Iraq, Islam, Islamabad, Islamism, Pakistan, Religion, Taliban, USA, violence, War On Terror

Let Pakistan Make Its Own Progress

From The New York Times:

By Nadia Naviwala

CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts — What do we do about Pakistan? Because I am a Pakistani-American who recently spent several months there, people here are constantly trying to get me to answer that question. One of the most important things I can offer them is a reality check. Continue reading

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Filed under liberal Pakistan

Desperation Time?

By HOSS

Two speeches by President Obama within a span of one week have shown how incredibly superficial arguments are being made by the US administration to continue the war in Afghanistan. The Obama administration does not even appear to be convinced of the necessity of the Afghan war. In his next speech in Oslo, Norway he presented the Obama’s doctrine of “just wars”. After more than eight years in Afghanistan, does the “Just war” doctrine really apply? Continue reading

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Filed under Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, Obama, Pakistan, Taliban, Terrorism, USA, War On Terror

The ‘It-is-not-us’ syndrome

By Hajrah Mumtaz  Dawn Online

A couple of months ago, I wrote a column in praise of certain Pakistani pop stars and bands, arguing that there are a fair number of songs that display political consciousness and a related sense of responsibility. I referred to such songs as Junoon’s ‘Talaash’, Shahzad Roy’s ‘Lagay Raho’ and ‘Kismet Apnay Haath Main’, Noori’s ‘Merey Log’ and Laal’s rendition of Habib Jalib’s ‘Main Nay Uss Say Yeh Kaha.’ Continue reading

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Filed under culture, Identity, Music, Pakistan, Religion, Taliban, USA, War On Terror