Posts Tagged ‘Politics’

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Afghan Crunch Time: Obama Must Decide Whether To Talk To The Taliban

April 27, 2010

Ahmed Rashid

Before President Hamid Karzai arrives in Washington next month, President Obama has to make clear key decisions on the course of war and peacemaking in Afghanistan.

Neighboring countries and most Afghans believe that the endgame has begun for a post-U.S. Afghanistan. There are just 14 months for the U.S. military surge to show results while Washington simultaneously prepares to begin its July 2011 troop withdrawal and handover to the Afghan government. Already, efforts to jockey for future control of Afghanistan have been seen among Pakistan, India, Iran and even Russia. Several NATO countries eager to withdraw forces are frustrated. It is clear in the region that someone will have to mediate with the Taliban, but in the absence of U.S. leadership, a tug of war is taking place over who will do it, when, how and where.

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What Kayani Can Learn From Putin

April 27, 2010

Ahmed Quraishi

By allowing foreign militaries a free reign in our tribal belt to kill hundreds of innocent Pakistanis, Pakistan is committing the same mistake as Putin’s, who initially did well a decade ago by crushing the rebellion in Chechnya but now is creating more rebels because of highhandedness. Also, Pakistan has no business eliminating the Afghan Taliban, who survived the 2001 war thanks to US mismanagement. The problem should be solved inside Afghanistan, not Waziristan.

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan—It was brave on the part of Pakistan army chief to publicly apologize for mistakenly bombing and killing tens of innocent Pakistanis in a Khyber Agency village. In a similar incident in 2006 during the reign of his predecessor, where a US missile killed up to 80 children in a school, the action was not only defended but the Pakistani military was forced to own it, giving the first signal to everyone that innocent Pakistanis can be killed with impunity as part of the war on terror. Since then, more than a thousand innocent Pakistanis have lost their lives as collateral damage in these ‘successful’ drone attacks. This would remain one of the darkest spots in our history where our rulers shirked their responsibility for the protection of every Pakistani citizen on our soil.

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What Was Rehman Malik Doing At Regent Plaza Hotel Karachi Late Night On 27th December After Benazir’s Murder?

April 24, 2010

Farrukh Siddiqui

Benazir non-investigation: the cover-up continues even after the UN report:

One fact that the UN investigators did not know or could not get to is what was Rehman Malik doing around the mid night of the evening Benazir was assassinated. The mystery has deepened after an eyewitness has revealed that Rehman Malik was seen in the Regent’s Hotel Karachi (at Shahra-e-Faisal) around mid-night. While there is no doubt about that, it is speculated that he had brought Khalid Shahenshah with him. Would Rehman Malik explain his conduct and whereabouts on the 27th and 28th of December?

This report by the News is an indication that the present government’s top leadership including Zardari, Gilani, and Rehman Malik are part of the cover-up of the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. Rehman Malik still has to answer the questions raised in the report about leaving Benazir without a back-up car. Until and unless, the government moves against the big wigs, the people will be justified in believing that they all were involved, one way or the other.

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How Military Nurseries Produced Pakistan’s ‘Democratic Warriors’

April 20, 2010

Ahmed Quraishi

Read how a veteran of a military government in Pakistan [1977-1988] explains the democratic credentials of Pakistan’s democratic warriors.

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan—Military-led governments in Pakistan have failed in creating long term stability and fostering national identity, like the ruling party did in China.  This failure is well known. But Pakistan’s destructive politics can’t end without understanding another major failure: How Pakistan’s democratic elite is really not democratic at all.

Forget about building a great country and a healthy and prosperous people, Pakistan’s political elite divides Pakistanis by language, sect and violent politics because it has nothing else to offer in exchange for getting elected.  And with the new amendments to the Pakistani constitution, which strengthen family-run dictatorships within parties, there is hardly any chance that the able and the willing among 170 million Pakistanis will ever get a chance to lead their homeland.

In 2008, these politicians got themselves elected in the name of democracy. But even that credential is questionable.

Retired Lieutenant General Faiz Ali Chishti, who played a major role during the military-led government of former President Gen. Zia-ul-Haq between 1977 and 1988, gave an interesting insight earlier this week in Lahore into the relationship between failed politicians and military coups.

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Scapegoats Wanted, After $1.5m A Page Report

April 18, 2010

Shaheen Sehbai, The News

WASHINGTON: Costing Pakistan almost 1.5 million dollars a page, the UN report on Benazir’s murder has not moved the case even an inch in any direction but it has well served the purpose of PPP rulers, and killers of BB alike, for the moment.

The UN probe gave Zardari two years, some months and a half to keep the sensitive issue in a limbo so that he might focus on consolidating power. It also indirectly gave him a clean chit and some face saving excuse to act against his top cronies, Rehman Malik, Babar Awan, Brig Cheema, Saud Aziz and company being on top of that list. The UN has also served another purpose. It has given official currency to all the wild and not-so-wild rumours, which were afloat in the country. Yet all the conspiracy theories and all the unexplained mysteries, which, even after the report, still remain in the market. But these have now been endorsed by the world body.

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Karachi’s New ‘Able’ Administrator

April 14, 2010

In present time when more and more righteous people like Dr. Israr Ahmed are departing this Earth, the worst and most corrupt people under the Sun are being given the privileges of power and authority. These unworthy people are naturally making the most of these opportunities to fill their pockets, fulfill their interests by employing all means even if the nation would severely suffer as a consequence.

Part of the problem lies within us as a nation as well. We have now “learned” to suffer. We don’t stand up, we never ask the rulers, we never hold them accountable for what they are doing. We must question the ruling elite on their suspicious, unjustified and unfair actions. We must speak up against decisions and actions which are exploitative and damaging for the people.

Is this the kind of Administrator people deserve? Does he even know what his responsibilities and obligations are? Does he even bear the load of being a civil servant? Is this kind of a person really deserve to be on such a position?

The ruling elite must mend their ways before a time comes when they would be thrown out on the streets by the people!

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Militants Attacks Indian Camp In Afghanistan

April 10, 2010

KABUL: Militants launched a pre-dawn attack on an Indian road construction camp in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, burning vehicles and equipment and sending the crew fleeing, authorities said.

No deaths or injuries were reported in the attack in Khost province’s Domanda district, the Interior Ministry said in a statement. Suspected Taliban, who are active in the mountainous eastern region bordering Pakistan, descended on the camp around 2 a.m.

Such raids seek to discourage foreign involvement in Afghanistan and destabilize the central government, which is struggling to bring development to the impoverished countryside and extend its mandate outside the capital, Kabul.

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