Archive for February, 2010

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Sham el-Sheikh in New Delhi.

February 28, 2010

Chandan Mitra

The dialogue of the deaf last Thursday had one clear winner, Pakistan, and one comprehensive loser, India. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh capitulated again and will live to regret it

Last week India talked to ‘Pakistan’ amid much fanfare and media hype. I say Pakistan within quotes because that country cannot be described as a composite nation-state in the conventional sense. And, on issues relating to India, Pakistan is divided into many segments, at least five. First there is the Army, which controls Pakistan’s political, economic and military destiny whether formally in power or nominally in the barracks. Next is the ISI, the all-encompassing superpower in the Pakistani establishment, which functions as a state within the state. Read the rest of this entry ?

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What a way to grab all for the family, Mr Ambassador!

February 28, 2010

By 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.

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Jobbery!

February 28, 2010

By Anjum Niaz | The News

The yellow sticky ‘post-it’ became Benazir’s Achilles Heel. It’s alleged that she would use them whenever she didn’t want to leave a permanent record on the files. As prime minister, she often appointed people based not on merit. President Farooq Leghari knew what was going on. He was from her party. But when he had had enough of jobbery, he dug out all the yellow ‘stickies’ and prepared a dossier based on them to dismiss her government.

Prime Minister Gilani and President Zardari are today following the same unethical practice of a spoils system. The ambassador to Syria is the latest howler. He’s Zardari’s appointee. A mere graduate, we’re told. Ambassador Aminullah Raisani has carted his whole extended family to Damascus and provided them with jobs at the Pakistan International School. How smart is that! During his two-year term, the man will rake in close to a million dollars as salaries paid to his sister Saeeda (who has been made the principal); another sister Ms Abbas (Urdu teacher); daughters Amna and Quratulein (teachers-at-large) brother-in-law Ishaque (accountant); nephews Atiq and Ali (business teachers); granddaughter Nayla (math teacher); son-in-law of sister Abdullah and cousin Ahsan (teachers without portfolio); and cousin Rasheed (biology teacher).

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Kabul Bombs deliver clear message to India: Pack Your bags!

February 28, 2010

Rupee News

  • Pulling off the attack in central Kabul — in one of the most secure neighborhoods in Afghanistan’s most secure city — was designed to send a message that the Taliban is not intimidated by the stepped-up military offensive
  • “They’re trying to up the pressure and send a message that you guys aren’t defeating us,”
  • “No matter what the coalition does, it can’t win, “It’s a very smart strategy.

Reporting from Kabul, Afghanistan, and New Delhi – A coordinated attack early Friday, which killed at least 16 people and targeted a hotel and guesthouse in central Kabul, underscored the shifting tactics of Taliban insurgents and their keen understanding of geopolitical implications.

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Born John Burke, Died Muhammad Omar

February 27, 2010
Above, clockwise from left: John Burke’s Irish passport, which was returned to his father after his death; a photograph that appeared with the obituary of Muhammad Omar in Al Jihad magazine, following his death in April 1989; the site in Afghanistan that is believed to be John Burke’s grave; an excerpt from one of his letters to his father, describing his time on the front in Afghanistan. Photographs courtesy of the Burke family

For The Irish Times , this story began with a note in a book, about an Irishman who had died fighting in 1980s Afghanistan. Foreign Correspondent MARY FITZGERALD traced his origins to a terraced house in Clonmel, where a father still grieves for John Burke, Tipperary man and Ireland’s only known jihadi ‘martyr’

On a Sun-Bleached plain some 30km from the city of Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan lies what is believed to be the final resting place of the only Irish person known to have died in the cause of jihad. As is the custom in that part of the world, his is a simple grave, its boundaries marked by a circle of stones. It is also anonymous; there is no headstone or plaque to tell what few travellers may pass by this remote spot that here lies Muhammad Omar, born John Gerard Burke in Clonmel, Co Tipperary, in October 1962; died April 1989.

There are several accounts of the circumstances surrounding his death.

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US wants hassle-free visa for its nationals

February 27, 2010

 

ISLAMABAD: Washington wants Islamabad to put in place a restriction free and uniform visa regime for its diplomats and embassy staff posted here allowing them to carry out ‘full range of activities’. 

“We look forward to creation of a visa mechanism that will enable US officials do their jobs without interference,” US Ambassador Anne Patterson said in a statement issued by the embassy’s Office of Public Affairs. 

Delays in issuing and extension of visas of American diplomats and other embassy staff posted here remained a major irritant in relations between the two countries. 

The government recently issued most of the requested visas in an effort to placate an angry Washington, which had linked it to the release of the deferred Coalition Support Fund reimbursements. 

Although, the backlog is yet to be fully cleared and some of the visas are still being processed, Ambassador Patterson acknowledged progress was being made. “Prime Minister Gilani’s offer to work with the United States to establish a transparent process on visas that will enable us to undertake full range of activities … is a positive development.” 

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Wake Up Pakistan (FULL Islamabad Episode)

February 27, 2010

Watch The ARY NEWS Version | Watch The UNCUT Version