Tag Archive | "Talibanization"

POINT BLANK With Mubasher Lucman: Dec 8

Moon Market attack; MQM rallies against suicide bombings; Mohalla Comittees and Neighborhood Watch system as proposed by MQM. Guests: Uzma Bukhari (PPP), Khush Bakht Shujaat (MQM), Maiza Hameed Gujjar (PML-N)

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Twin Blasts in Lahore Moon Market: 37 Killed, 150 Injured

PKonweb Monitor

DEC 7: A third explosion since morning in Lahore city today killed more than thirty-seven people and wounded at least 150.

Punjab police chief said the twin blasts were timed and remotely operated - one using a motorcycle and the other involved using a vendor stall, reported a private TV channel.

No one has claimed responsibility nor any suspects have been caught as yet but intense investigations have been launched

A suicide bomber was trying to enter into the main police station, said police sources. They told KUNA (Kuwait News Agency) that when the policemen tried to stop him, the bomber blew himself up.

There were reports of two blasts. Some reports suggested that there was only one explosion that put on fire several nearby buildings, vehicles and electricity pylons. The fire triggered gas cylinder explosions, giving the impression of more than one blasts. However, some reports citing police said that there were two explosions. Firstexplosion targeted the police station and the second, only a minute apart, targeted a departmental store, located opposite to the police station.

The explosion took place amid a large number of people including women and children who were busy shopping and eating in nearby restaurants. According to latest reports, more than 37 people were killed and scores were wounded in the blast. Authorities feared rise in the death toll.

Earlier in the day, a suicide bomber struck outside a court in Peshawar killing 10 people and wounding 49 others. It was the latest blast in the city which is beset by Taliban violence.

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We Are Architects of Our Own Fate

by Zafar Hilaly

It has become almost a fad to decry the absence of good governance and lay the blame at the doorstep of civil servants, politicians, “key stakeholders,” a euphemism for generals, and others. However what few shed light on is why they have failed so often and so regularly.

The failure is one of society as a whole. In other words, failure taints the rich and the poor alike, the educated and the illiterate, the political activist as much as the silent majority. It is a comprehensive failure of a life credo and a value system; of a work ethic and mores that we, as a society, rather than merely individuals, have crafted and by default adopted. This credo/value system to which most subscribe is threatening to convert Pakistan to a failed state.

Some deny this and say that it is more in the nature of a systemic failure. The dysfuctionality of the system itself is the fault of the credo and values that society has adopted. A good or a bad Constitution or even the existence of a Constitution; a good or bad service structure or a military more focused on its duties is not the reason nor the answer. It is our collective approach to life and living in society that is to blame.

What, for example, can one make of a venerable Haji returning from having performed Haj and trying to smuggle in a VCR without paying duty (when duties were required). Who, when asked: “Babaji, why did you, of all people, have to lie and say that you had nothing to declare?” responded: “Duties and taxes are manmade laws and have nothing to do with God’s commandments. There is no sin in breaking them.” He, and the millions of our fellow citizens who agree with him, choose to live by such a code thereby making in this case the financial viability of any regulated society impossible. In other words whatever may be wrong with the system, much more is wrong with us.

Similarly, when asked what the justification was for the Taliban blowing up schools, a leading cleric on a recent TV panel discussion remarked that it was because “the Army used school buildings as fortifications to fire on the Taliban.” When told that the area in which the school was situated had never been visited by the Army he remarked that nevertheless it was “potentially” an Army fortification. When further informed that actually the blowing up of the school had everything to do with the Taliban’s belief that girls should not attend schools and not the Army’s presence, finding himself cornered he conceded disarmingly that he did not agree with that aspect of the Taliban’s credo.

He and his co-panellists, who were lay citizens, thought nothing of the kind of intellectual dishonesty in which he had indulged. Anyone shameless enough to indulge in such rascality and expect to get away with it with his reputation intact, which this cleric did, can only flourish in a milieu that is base and value-free.

No system can function, let alone deliver, when such mindsets prevail. Hence bureaucrats, politicians and generals cannot exclusively be blamed for reducing society to the present pass. Singling them out is itself a reflection of the proclivity of societies in denial to pass the buck and blame others for their shortcomings.

It is said that leadership counts because it sets an example to which people can aspire and that our problems stem mostly from the fact that our leaders are corrupt. There was no more honest a man intellectually, or one of greater rectitude financially, than Mr Jinnah. And he was betrayed by some of his chosen disciples – and so that they could acquire another house from the Evacuee Trust Board. And yet their names continue to be listed in the pantheon of our public heroes. Admittedly many of them were politicians but the countless others who benefited in an identical fashion and who actually set the trend with false property claims were not. They came from all walks of life.

Similarly, among our judges were men of great virtue, principle and integrity, but also others for whom ambition, wealth and office became a necessity, which they proceeded to frame as a legal doctrine to be followed, regardless of the law and statutes or the requirements of justice and fair play. Noticeably the public preferred to follow the lead of the latter, rather than the former, which presumably was why there was not a squeak from civil society when a mockery of the law occurred in several decisions of seminal importance which resulted in the demise of democracy and put paid to hopes of good governance. Even when judges stooped to judicial murder of a popular politician barely a leaf stirred. The failure to rise and confront such a blatant legal atrocity was that of society as a whole and not exclusively that of the bureaucrats, etc. If, as a people, we are scared to go to the brink and confront a wrong, even at the risk of our lives, then we are lost.

It is instructive that the British ruled India for 200 years and faced but one serious revolt, that of 1857, notwithstanding being outnumbered several hundred million times at any given moment. Similarly the Sikhs, who constituted a miniscule minority of Punjab’s population, ruled Punjab and beyond comprising millions for decades; and even banned the Azaan without so much as a murmur of protest from the millions of their Muslim subjects.

We are the heirs of those who passively accepted foreign subjugation and it is not surprising that we are following in their footsteps while casting aspersions and laying the blame on segments of our own society for failing to stand up to injustice and repression. It was not the Maharajas and their fellow travellers who are exclusively to blame for not opposing the colonialists but rather our direct ancestors. Had there been then, or now, a resolute desire for revolt such a desire would have found its natural leaders.

Another and more recent example of collective failure is how initially the nation was in denial over the threat of the Taliban, who were not only openly using our territory, in alliance with foreigners, to take over the country and impose a foreign ideology, but also to help those foreigners with their ambitions in Afghanistan. Only when all seemed lost did the military finally act and even then the public was and remains somewhat double-minded. Any society that expects to be rescued from themselves cannot prosper.

When, therefore, it comes to apportioning blame those doing so must recognise wherein lies the true responsibility. Each society, not a mere couple of professions, is the architect of its own fate. They stand or fall by what they do to themselves not what others do to them and certainly not a select few living in their midst. The buck for Pakistan’s success or failure falls on civil society as a whole hence arguments that this or that profession is solely to blame, or that the system is responsible, are by now tiresome sermons and, what is more, dangerously misleading.

(The writer is a former ambassador. Email: [email protected])

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Nation’s Form and Style of Protesting Against Load Shedding

July 23, Kal Tak with Javed Choudhry. Topic: Nation’s form and style of protesting against load shedding which included burning of train in Jhang, Faisalabad. Guests: Haji Ghulam Ahmed Bilour (ANP), Sardar Nageel Ahmed Gobol (PPP), Javed Hashmi (PML-N)

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$2B Being Spent on Rental Power Plants

Jul 23, Aaj Kamran Khan Kay Saath on Geo: Discussion with power and electricity crisis with Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Javed Ahmed, Ahmed Parekh and Muhammad Sohail. Why $2 Billion are being spent on rental power plant to temporarily obtain electricity for the country. After 5 years these power plants will be returned. Then what?

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Stock Taking of PPP Government

July 23: Hameed Ullah Jan Afridi, Senator Maulana Gull Nasib, Aqil Yousaf Zai and Senator Zahid Khan (ANP) in fresh episode of Capital Talk with Hamid Mir on Geo and discuss PPP governance, crisis in country, etc.

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Musharraf’s Future in Judiciary’s Hands

Jul 23 episode of Islamabad Tonight with Nadeem Malik: Haroon Rasheed (Columnist), Orya Maqbool Jan (Columnist) and Raja Pervaiz Ashraf (Minister for power, PPP) discuss pathetic state of electric power system in the country and its political implications, present and future.

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Will It Be Treason or Murder Charge Against Musharraf?

July 22: Islamabad Tonight with Nadeem Malik: Ikram Chaudhary, Wasi Zafar Shah and Irfan Siddiqui discuss potential treason and or murder case against Gen (R) Pervez Musharraf in the light of the Supreme Court’s summon of the ex-president in Tikka Iqbal case.

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Yes I Did Something Un-Constitutional - Musharraf

July 22: Kamran Khan presents fresh episode of A”aj Kamran Khan Kay Saath” in Geo TV and talk with Hamid Khan (Petitioner), Justice (R) Tariq Mehmood, Justice (R) Nasir Aslam Zahid, Khawaja M. Asif (PML-N), Senator Jhangir Badar (PPP), Shafqat Memood (Analyst) and Ahsan Iqbal (PML-N) on Supreme Court’s summon notice to ex-President Gen (R) Pervez Mushaaraf in Tikka Iqbal case.

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Discussion on Musharraf’s Summon by SC

July 22: Ch. Aitzaz Ahsan, Riaz Khokar, Hasan Abbas and Javed Hashmi discuss Supreme Court’s summon notice to Gen (R) Pervez Musharraf on Capital Talk with Hamid Mir.

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Brewing Civil Disobedience in Country?

July 21 Capital Talk- Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed (Pres AML), Khush Bakhat Shujaat (MQM), Syed Khurshid Ahmed Shah (PPP) and Irfan Siddiqui (Columnist) discuss with Hamid Mir on Geo on load shedding, brewing civil disobedience, water shortage, etc.

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Tariq Ali: I’ve Never Been So Depressed About Pakistan

July 21 Islamabad Tonight with Nadeem Malik: Tariq Ali, Hafiz Hussain Ahmed JUI-F, Sen Mir Hasil Baloch NP, Sen Abdul Rahim ANP participate in hot topics: Swat Ops, Balochistan insurgency, Pashtun insurgency.

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Top Talk Shows Today


    Nelson Mandela and Pakistani politicians. Discussion on NA-55 Rawalpindi bye-elections as ordered by the Supreme Court. Guests: Sheikh Rashid Ahmed (AML), Makhdoom Javaid Hashmi (PML-N), Nabeel Ahmad Gabol (PPP)..


    Year 2009 in Pakistan: Restoration of Judiciary; Return of IDPs in Swat & Malakand; Suicide Bombings; Guests: Ahsan Iqbal (PML-N), Dr Farrukh Saleem (Analyst), Irfan Siddiqui (Columnist)..


    Year 2009: Restoration of Judges, Swat & Malakand Ops; Suicide bombings on Police, ISI, FIA centers, Presence of Blackwater & similar US private armies in Pakistan; War on Terror Casualties inside Pakistan: 25000 since 2001 and 11529 just in 2009. Guests: Dr Ejaz Shafi Gilani (Gallup Pak), Dr Safdar Abbasi (PPP), A S Chaudhry (Astrologist)

  • CAPITAL TALK With HAMID MIR on Geo: Dec 31

    Year 2009: Suicide bombings a major event in Pakistan; Mufti Sarfraz Naeemi’s Fatwa against suicide bombings; Rental power plants; Foreign media talks against Pakistan’s nuclear assets; Talks about Balkanization of Pakistan..


    Taking stock of year 2009 vis-a-vis President Asif Zardari’s and PPP’s performance in government. Guests: Khawaja Saad Rafique (PML-N), Nabeel Gabol (PPP), Kamil Ali Agha (PML-Q)

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