Saturday, 16 March 2019


                                                          The pursuit of humanity.
                                                       (An article by Sabine Kayani)

The devastating, cruel and calculated terrorist attack on defenceless Muslims at the Al Noor and Linwood Masajids in Christchurch, although horrifying, were not completely unexpected. In the last few decades many similar incidents have been faced and confronted on a global scale. Despite this the largely peaceful country of New Zealand was met with unprecedented violence of this scale; for the first time New Zealand was facing the horror that almost every country around the world has had to witness. 

on a deeper level, it wasn't just an assault on one religion, it was an attack on humanity and peace;

Superficially, this particular act of terrorism, was a direct and indirect Islamophobic onslaught on Muslims. However on a deeper level, it wasn't just an assault on one religion, it was an attack on humanity and peace; it was synonymous to an offensive on a person's freedom to peacefully and freely practice any religion or follow any school of thought that they wish to, without the fear of endangering their lives or being hated or ridiculed. 

It was a signal to anyone with even a basic intellect, that we can, at any time be unjustly punished for our choice of the place or country we call home and our religious beliefs.

It was a signal to anyone with even a basic intellect, that we can, at any time be unjustly punished for our choice of the place or country we call home and our religious beliefs. On the parallel scale, fascists that do not uphold the right to these freedoms are further incited by the irresponsible supportive actions of people, such as the Australian senator, Fraser Anning, who have given the signal to white supremacists and other radicals of different faiths and races, that this breed of violence is acceptable. In a nutshell, the idea that we are secure is an illusion. We are not safe. Anywhere. 

The irony that the scene of this brutal massacre was held in a place named Christchurch can't be ignored. Jesus Christ (pbuh) whose message, of love and peace for all mankind was audaciously disrespected in a city named after him, by a man who cited historic Christian battles against Muslims as a justification for his ideology. This man's  actions and views couldn't be further from the teachings of Jesus Christ (pbuh) and have sinister parallels with the ideologies of extremist pseudo Muslims who take the teachings of the Quran and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) out of context to justify their violence. 

One of the most haunting and prominent facts of this incident in Christchurch, was the brutal, callousness of the actions of Brenton Tarrant: the white supremacist terrorist initiating the mass murder. His lack of remorse at ruthlessly killing innocent children, women and men was not only apparent, but the heartless killing of his first victim who greeted him in peace, with his first and last words to him being, "Hello brother" serves to epitomize the fact that only the good and vulnerable are attacked by the malicious extremist mentality. A mentality fueled by motivated ignorance, hatred, irrationality, and intolerance. 

Peace is the only logical way forward

There is a profound hope that nothing even resembling this will be repeated but realistically it seems unlikely that it will be the last of similar ideologically propelled attacks and subsequent revenge attacks.

The majority of us are people living in civilized countries that give us freedom of speech and the power to freely put across our opinions and this often deceptively makes us think that we are powerless to stop anyone inciting and celebrating acts of terror and violence. We need to understand that there are exceptions to this rule. An example of this is in Europe and the UK in which the law tries to strike a balance between freedom of speech and the exceptions to the right of free speech. 

Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Right itself recognizes the need for some limits on free speech. Included in the limits are:

* Publishing material or making comments that are specifically designed to incite racial hatred.

* Restrictions to prevent crime and disorder;

Under the racial and religious hatred act of 2006:

* Using threatening words or behaviour intended to stir up religious hatred;

Under the terrorism act 2006:

* Encourage or glorify terrorist acts

The latter two crimes carry the maximum punishment of 7 years imprisonment.

In light of this we all have the authority to legally silence the bigots; fascists; Nazis and racists rampant nowadays, especially on social media. 

The relatively recent wave of Islamophobia is eerily reminiscent of the antisemitism that the Jews have faced on a large scale

The relatively recent wave of Islamophobia is eerily reminiscent of the antisemitism that the Jews have faced on a large scale. Similarly Muslims are being hated worldwide and are being blamed for the actions of a tiny minority; many are using this hatred to unjustifiably revel in celebrating and supporting the actions of the murderer of forty nine innocent lives, not to mention the harm he caused to dozens more, injured and scarred for life. These despicable creatures that commemorate acts of violence committed against innocent civilians, which include women and children, succeed in consolidating and planting seeds of hatred in others. 

The majority of these cowards are hiding behind their computer screens and posting hateful, evil comments on social media that are gathering more hate and support for their cause. There is a very real threat of these presently insignificant bigots being recruited in light of their views by like minded individuals, similar to the recruitment of Muslim extremists pre and post 9/11.

This malevolent frame of mind is being displayed even by some ignorant, educated professionals. It can be seen that destructive rhetoric, based on motivated ignorance is being spewed to justify these innocent deaths and other innocent deaths caused in the same manner in the past.

Our first course of action in any law abiding civilized country should be to report inflammatory statements we come across online and in our surroundings, to the police. 

Our first course of action in any law abiding civilized country should be to report inflammatory statements we come across online and in our surroundings, to the police. The naming and shaming of those that glorify, celebrate and encourage acts of violence, is the most powerful but peaceful weapon and protest against barbarism we have. These people are individuals at the moment; nipping their actions in the bud is the best chance we have of stopping them and retaining peace, harmony and safety. The accused may not go to jail and may not even be severely punished for their actions but they will definitely know that there is a consequence to their actions. The chances are that they will be forced to remove the hateful prejudiced remarks that leave a profound influence on impressionable minds. 

We have a duty of care to call out those that we know or even don't know on social media and those people in positions of power and influence that we genuinely feel are spewing hatred or prejudices against any community including all races and religions. We need to take a stand for others and subsequently protect our-self from the menace of terrorism that we have globally been facing for the past few decades. Many lives have been needlessly lost and only the innocent suffer.

As sane, rational people, a no tolerance policy needs to be adopted universally, towards anything and anyone that promotes; glorifies; condones or celebrates, violence, murder and hatred towards and against anyone. This also means educating those that are close to us such as family, friend's and neighbours. 

We also collectively need to stand against all religious extremists and racist bigots, not to be confused and bullied into supporting them by the fact that they are a similar race or religion to us. These people don't belong to or represent anyone or any religion and have harmed everyone in the most despicable way possible. 

My message to all those this reaches is, stand united with all that is good and weed out the violence and hatred that is growing among us like a malignant tumor. Social media is a powerful tool in the present climate and it's influence resonates. A simple gesture of peace in the shape of a condolence to those that have lost a priceless soul or a kind remark in support of anyone who stands up to bigotry; rebuking anyone who promotes hatred or violence are all steps that we are capable of undertaking. 

We are all one; bleed the same colour; we all grieve for the loss of our loved ones with the same pain and sense of hopelessness; we are all here on earth for only a limited time and we can all only try our best to leave a positive mark. Make a difference, no matter how small, for the sake of our present and future generations. 

Be human, stand for humanity and let it prevail. 

"NO RELIGION IS HIGHER THAN HUMANITY." Abdul Sattar Edhi. (Pakistani philanthropist and humanitarian.) 

The writer is a London based Rights Activist who holds a Masters degree in Law with Human Rights as a major from the London School of Economics and Political Sciences. She has special interest in politics and human rights developments in particular in South Asia and South Asians living around the globe.

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Will India-Pakistan Go For A Nuclear War?

"No" is the simple answer to the subject question. Even with the ultra nationalism and right wing war jingoism currently prevailing in India and Pakistani militant groups ready to draw blood over Kashmir in Pakistan while both countries nuclear arsenals are targeted at each others, the answer is no.

Although the Pakistani PM Mr Imran Khan, warned that a slight miscalculation can bring about a nuclear catastrophe in South Asia while PM Modi in India is using military jingoism to garner much  needed political support for his party in the upcoming elections, the fact remains that both the countries basically comprises of people who are pragmatic in nature by race and belong to the same descent. Indians intelligentsia follow the philosophies of Chankiya in state dealing and international relations. While Chankiya himself taught violence as an instrument of statecraft, but he too advocated and taught his disciples to back off before the existence of own state becomes at peril. So essentially, what India is doing and continue to do so is its typical bullying in the region in order for Pakistan to back off from supporting the Kashmir insurgency. If history is of any value, we all know that Pakistan wont be impressed by this Indian stance and will continue to remain defiant against such Indian posturing, while striking back as they did, all the while keeping up their nuclear guard.

With the modern research, we all know, that an India Pakistan nuclear war will affect the entire world. The global ramifications of a nuclear showdown in South Asia coupled with the Capitalist world investments in India and the Chinese investments in Pakistan, It is in the intrest of all the world powers as they stand not to allow the situation to escalate towards a nuclear war in South Asia. 

Having said that, the question arises: keeping the Modi style chest beating and Pakistani Mullahcracy influences in view, what if the local leadership falters?.  
Such an eventuality where the local leadership may falter can only come forth if global world order melts down, which will in any case bring about a much bigger and graver global catastrophe, having an impact on the entire world security otherwise. Till such time an eventuality like that happens(God forbid) , the World powers wont let the local leaderships to falter for their own sake, hence, maintaining the delicate peace in place at South Asia, refraining the hostilities in the region to escalate into a Nuclear Armageddon.

Kashmir remains an unfinished agenda of the partition of the the sub-continent since 1947. It is the major bone of contention between India and Pakistan thorny relationship. Both countries have fought no less than three wars over Kashmir Valley. 

 Kashmir is no Palestine. Kashmir is having a nuclear power standing in its direct support that is  Pakistan. Ultimately, Kashmir issue will have to be resolved between India and Pakistan. By opening up Indian administered Kashmir to the world like Pakistani administered Kashmir, even under its current status, would work to dissolve the Kashmir insurgency as it stands. It will further pave way for a more permanent solution for Kashmir. The efforts of Modi Govt to change the demography of Kashmir under the Israeli model in Palestine wont materialize. Such an ignominious venture will only provide fuel to the insurgency in Kashmir. This realization also exists among the world powers now, that a solution of the Kashmir issue is paramount for the sake of global peace and security.

There is no better way to conclude this article but by sharing the following crude caricature, identifying the mighty in size India compared to smaller Pakistan, but both having a nuclear arsenal directed at each other creating a catch 22 situation for both parties,stopping them short of pulling the trigger...


Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Pakistan See America as Friend Not Master

Using Pakistan as a scapegoat for their failure in Afghanistan has become a habit for the American administration. Their trillion dollar defeat is a reason for great embarrassment for them and Donald Trump is no different from his predecessors where the blame game is concerned. Trump in his anti-media stance, repeatedly tries to find excuses when faced with questions about his erratic behaviour and the countries repeated failures in their Middle East and Asia policies. 

America has lost the war in Afghanistan and it is no secret. The once rag-tag militia, the Taliban which the Americans themselves created with Pakistan, have made the mighty US look weak in Afghanistan in the same way they did to the USSR between 1979 and 1989. The tables have been turned on the Americans.

The Russians are now in negotiations with the Taliban, who were once their sworn enemies, to stabilize the region by accepting their legitimate share in power in Afghanistan. Americans are seemingly not on board, but there is little they can do to avoid the inevitable. The Taliban are there in Afghanistan to stay. And the only way the Taliban will accept peace in Afghanistan is if the US will withdraw from Afghanistan completely and vacate the military bases that they are occupying. US/NATO has no problem with that but want to retain at least a single US/NATO troops base in Afghanistan.

It is a fact that the USA with all its military and financial might is unable to win the war they had started in Afghanistan. For all the financial losses of a trillion dollars, the American casualties of the Afghan war are only casually mentioned. 

The American people are rightly fed up. Americans may blame Pakistan for providing logistical support to the Taliban, but the fact remains that, Pakistan acted in her national interest in a world where the USA is no more the sole super-power. 

The country is fast loosing clout in the Asia pacific in particular. The oil wars in Iraq on the false narrative of WMD have only benefited the western mega corporations, but they came at the cost of political instability in the Middle East and Asia, creating gaps in the American influence in the region. This scenario has brought forth regional alliances, led by Russia and China to fill the gaps left behind due to the US led failure in the Middle East.  

Pakistan's prefererence of their neighborhood alliances of China and Russia over Trumps bullying tactics of subservience. Any intelligent American should be able to realize that up until their country has significant dealings and comradeship with India, a sworn enemy of Pakistan, the Pakistani's would only logically find it in their national interest to side with China and Russia.

Pakistan once helped America and the west to defeat the spread of USSR in Afghanistan. It was jointly in the national interest of Pakistan and combined Western bloc to not allow the USSR to reach the warm waters of the Arabian sea, directly connecting the USSR with the oil rich Middle East. Due to those events andPakistan's participation, Pakistan became the last frontier of the war between Capitalism and Communism also known as the Cold War.

Pakistan fought and won that war for the entire free world as the last line of defense against Communism taking over the world. It was made possible with the American support (which made America the sole super-power of the world) and due to the fighting prowess of the militia they created to fight USSR in Afghanistan, now known as the Taliban. The same Taliban refused to accept the American narrative post 9/11 and choose to fight a prolonged gorilla war with the American led invasion of Afghanistan.

Pakistan sided with the Americans again in this war under pressure from its traditional allies in Washington, however stopped short of targeting those Afghan Taliban who in turn had decided not to attack the state of Pakistan for reasons closer to home, including their own families that were residing in Pakistan. 

Pakistan had enough of their own problems without the Pakistani Taliban taking on the country for siding with the Americans in the global war on terror (GWOT) Pakistan lost billions of dollars and thousands of its people including military and civilian citizens in this bloody war within, fought as part of the US led GWOT. 

Pakistan only felt it pragmatic not to take upon their enemies like the Afghan Taliban, firstly because they already had their hands full, and secondly because they did not want to lose strategic influence in Afghanistan which now had a hostile government in Kabul, influenced by the US led Western alliance after overthrowing the Taliban government there. Pakistan was again proven right for taking this stance, since the American backed government in Kabul is now visibly more inclined towards New Delhi than Islamabad.  

The situation is now playing out in a way that the Taliban are in negotiations with Russia and China, facilitated by Pakistan to bring an end to the war in Afghanistan, which is critical for the regional stability. However, the only pre-condition of such peace to take place is for the US/NATO forces to unilaterally withdraw for Afghanistan. 

The USA/EU is obviously not in favour of such a peace accord in which they will have to lose not only face but also influence, to Russia and China. Having said that, what the US/Western camp fails to appreciate is that they are meddling in the very backyard of Russia and China. There is but only a limit to which the US/West can sustain their already dwindling presence and influence in Afghanistan. 

Traditionally the geo-strategic position of Pakistan combined with a strong nuclear armed military which has already defeated the insurgency within Pakistan, holds the key to facilitate the end game in Afghanistan.

Once again Afghanistan is at the forefront and is witnessing the fall of another great empire on its tough terrain and again it is up to Pakistan to show a mirror to the USA, like it once did to the USSR. 

The world has finally moved from the sole superpower world order to yet again a multi-polar world order.

Peace is the only Logical Way forward.             

Thursday, 13 September 2018

Renegotiating of CPEC by Pakistan Govt

There is a wind of positive change and optimistic horizons being projected these days in Pakistan by the educated and patriotic class who supports Imran Khan, who is successful in making his government in the country. One of the very first actions he took as the Prime Minister of the country having the unprecedented, unconditional support of the powerful Armed Forces of the country which has ruled Pakistan for the majority of its creation, is to revisit all the mega contracts made by the previous government, shrouded in the clout of secrecy. Prime Minister Imran Khan or #PMIK as he is affectionately called, announced that not only they will renegotiate the mega international agreements like CPEC(China Pakistan Economic Corridor), but also make the details of these agreements public. It might have caused quite a stir among the investors in particular the Chinese Government, who is the principal investor in the project as such, but, Mr Khans Govt made it clear to everyone that all such contracts will have to be renegotiated keeping the interest of Pakistani public foremost, which has not been the case previously. The existing agreements were made by the Sharif brothers keeping in view their personal business interests and those of their supporters before Pakistani national interests. Because of the said conflict of interests the Nawaz League Govt signed the CPEC contracts on weak footings. It must be mentioned that the Pakistani economic isolation also played its part in subjugating the previous Govt under Beijing. However, rampant corruption at the highest levels in the previous Govt is the essential cause of the said renegotiation.

Before proceeding further, let us clarify the ambiguity about the renegotiation being illegal as such. It may be noted that, all such mega contracts spread over decades, can be renegotiated any time, by any side/party, as and when ground conditions clash with the paper clauses of the agreement. Having said that, in this case the terms of the CPEC agreements are reportedly highly unfair to Pakistan, which the previous Govt accepted firstly because of their own individual vested interests and secondly because they felt, they were under international economic isolation, with the Chinese offering the only way out, so they took the deal on their terms.

So what changed in Pakistan, which warrants such a renegotiation?. Honest leadership serving the national interests of the country is that change which require such an appraisal. Beside, the secret deal made by the previous govt under said circumstances will lead Pakistan into a debt trap where the country will be eventually forced to surrender strategic assets like ports and communication infrastructure to the Chinese side eventually.

Pakistan must not sell for any less, as our Chinese friends are also all about keeping business as business and cup of tea as cup of tea.

The Chinese partners may well be investing the major portion of the CPEC investments, but the entire model has to be workable and favourable for the host country that is Pakistan. It must be understood that the Pakistanis need the CPEC infrastructure projects as much as the Chinese, who want to control the entire regional trade with CPEC as its pivot. Pakistan must not sell for any less, as our Chinese friends are also all about keeping business as business and cup of tea as cup of tea.

The success of CPEC will most certainly decide the status of the Chinese Peoples Republic as the global number ONE power house as against the United States of America. The failure of CPEC God forbid, will not only devastate the Pakistani economy but would also mean the death of the Chinese "1 trillion US dollar" dream of the One Belt One Road(OBOR) project of global economic dominance.

The USA has launched an all out effort in partnership with India to somehow jeopardize the CPEC project. However, this unholy effort is most likely to fail due to Geo-strategical position of Pakistan viz a viz a strong nuclear armed military and the economic and military clout of the Chinese. It does however, provides Pakistan with an option to look the other way if the Chinese partners in CPEC do not make an honest deal with Pakistan regards CPEC which benefits Pakistan in the long run as well as China.

The end state in the near future looks like a settlement of terms and continued fast pace development of CPEC. This would leave the USA no other choice but to compromise and become partners in the mega economic venture called CPEC and OBOR. This would bring India into her senses forcing them to plead Pakistan and China in order to join the CPEC-OBOR project. It would only bring peace and stability through economic integration and poverty alleviation in the most populated region of the world.

 It is finally the time for the Chinese to prove their age old slogan of Sino-Pak friendship which is supposed to be deeper than the oceans and sweeter than honey

It is finally the time for the Chinese to prove their age old slogan of Sino-Pak friendship which is supposed to be deeper than the oceans and sweeter than honey. Its time to prove that China is a friend to Pakistan before being a business partner.         

Monday, 30 July 2018

Why Did The Military Establishment Help Imran Khan?

Imran Khan is widely seen as a messiah by the burgeoning youth of Pakistan who holds the miracle to take them out of poverty and provide them with jobs

Idealism aside, let us ascertain some ground facts which are well established in Pakistan, before answering the subject question :-

1- Nawaz Sharif made billions of USD acquired through systematic white collar crimes commissioned while he held power in Pakistan as the Chief Minister of Punjab and Prime Minister of Pakistan. Through this ill gotten wealth his sons acquired multi million pounds properties in the UK. He was kicked out of power by General Musharraf and pardoned off his crimes because the military dictator wanted to legitimize his rule. More than a decade later, Nawaz Sharif ultimately came back and regained power, but this time around decided to show the all powerful military as to who is the BOSS. However, with the kinds of skeletons the BOSS had hidden in his cabinet, the military establishment refused to take him seriously. Upon this, the advisors of Nawaz led by his wannabe next Benazir, daughter Maryam, initiated a campaign on social and mainstream media to malign the reputation of the military in Pakistan. The military got further estranged and decided to show Nawaz Sharif the mirror hung on the wall made by the bricks of gold acquired through decades of corruption and plunder in Pakistan. Nawaz would not have budged even then, but the global exposure through PANAMA PAPERS after WIKILEAKS brought his tall claims of honesty to ground. Imran Khan, as a result got the opportunity of his life time and took Nawaz Sharif to court over the charges of corruption as levelled in the PANAMA PAPERS. The military which was already infuriated by the funny behavior of Nawaz Sharif and his daughter, just had to tell the Judges, that their security will be ensured if they decided to judge Nawaz Sharif on merit. The rest is on historic record.

2- Irrespective of Nawaz and his daughter becoming convicted criminals and put behind bars, his brother Shahbaz held power in the biggest and richest province of Pakistan, that's Punjab. Nawaz Sharif still held the ace cards in his hands with his party ruling both Punjab and the central government in Pakistan. They choose the key appointments who had to conduct the elections 2018 themselves leaving little to no room for election rigging on the polling day in Pakistan.

3- Pakistan is essentially a tribal society where majority of power is held by the feudal lords specially in the rural areas. These feudal lords always side with the governing party in Pakistan to stay relevant. They follow the advise of the military establishment who are the strongest power broker in Pakistan holding the dominant share in the power dynamics of the country having ruled Pakistan for majority of its independent history.

4- Imran Khan due to his celebrity status is the hope and source of aspiration for the desperate for change, burgeoning youth of Pakistan who forms 60% of the vote bank in country. However, what these dominant youth cult following don't know or wish to acknowledge is that Imran Khan failed to reign in corruption of his party members who are chip from the same old block in Pakistan. Besides the fact that he is reportedly a drugs addict and can not operate without the cocaine he is used to since decades.

5- Military establishment of Pakistan is not ruled by dynasties or a permanent chair, but those in charge come up, through a strictly merit based system which is open for all Pakistanis without any prejudice unlike the case in politics. Also the bosses in the military establishment has to retire permanently after a prescribed time period unlike politics. They are a collation of patriotic Pakistanis who have pledged their lives for the country and supreme national interest. Having said that, the same system is at times misused by those at the top and exploited to attain personal benefits.

6- Like all powerful countries in the world, in particular the USA, military establishment of Pakistan possesses an intricate system to collect and analyze information regards domestic and foreign matters having an impact on the national interest. Owing to the international non acceptance of military dictatorships and its economic ramifications, after the Musharraf era, the Pakistani military bosses decided in principal not to carry out another coup, until and unless forced by actual circumstances as per the constitution of Pakistan. There is a consensus among all ranks of the Pakistani military establishment that the continuation of the democratic process is the only way forward for Pakistan for the sake of her people and their prosperity. In the absence of strong institutions but the military establishment still holds the role of the power broker in the country for the sake of her stability upon which the economies of modern nation states are based upon.

7- With Nawaz Sharif loosing his credibility and hell bent to destroy the repute of the military which is sacrificing their lives on daily basis in a terrorism infested country, the military establishment was apparently left with no other choice but forced to tell the feudal lords in their established role as the power brokers in the country to either join the opposition party of Imran khan who is definitely seen as a messiah by the youth of the country waiting for a miracle to happen and change their lives or contest the elections as independent candidates leaving Nawaz Sharif and his party to themselves. Without the support of traditional winning horses Nawaz was bound to loose the race.

    That's what exactly transpired on the election day, which resulted in a win for Imran Khan.

    For the sake of stability and economic prosperity of Pakistan, Imran Khan is thus likely to be supported and obeyed by the military establishment till such time he delivers upon his promises and is able to reign in his team, making them perform and keep a check on his own addictions.          

Sunday, 15 April 2018

Pashtun Problem In Pakistan-Collateral Damage Defined

Pakistan Army, being the most powerful State institution is angry and confused to say the least, beside feeling betrayed by the group of Pashtun youth in particular who are currently leading a public protest against their Army and the State. The Pakistani Army see itself as the saviours of the Pashtun tribal belt in the country bordering Afghanistan, which was infested with terrorism. It took sacrifices of thousands of Pakistani military men, for them to have achieved a relative state of normalcy in these areas. Pakistani Army fought this "war within", sponsored by its external enemies, and won it at the heaviest cost essentially paid in blood of their martyrs. The villages and cities of Pakistan burying their soldiers and civilians in this war saw an unpreceded numbers of graves, far surpassing any war Pakistan has ever faced in its history. Resultantly, Pakistani Military and State is standing tall and claiming victory, in the first ever counter insurgency won by any Military in the modern history of the world. However, the process continues being in its culminating stages. Efforts are in hand to rehabilitate the disenfranchised and displaced Pashtun population, which got effected in this process and to reintegrate them in the social fiber of the Pakistani State. However, just like this unprecedented "war within", the problems arising out of this conflict are also unprecedented for the Pakistani Military and the State. 

The Pashtun youth, believe that they have been wronged by the State and Military in number of ways. An entire generation of Pashtun youth feel disenfranchised from the Pakistani society, having faced internal displacement resulting in harsh socioeconomic situation for them, in which they were forced to grow up. The collateral damage in this "war within", has made them question their rights, which they feel are being ignored by their State. Some of the questions, which are being raised by these Pashtun rights activists are bitter realities arising out of the past policies of the Pakistani state, formulated by her Military rulers.

Gen Zia ul Haq, at the peak of the cold war, headed the formulation of the Mujahedeen to fight the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. The policy won the "Cold War" for the West, but created three generations of International Ideological Mercenaries, essentially stationed in the tribal belt on the borders of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Now, these people, knew nothing else to do, but to fight for the highest bidderwhich is what they did. The anti state Pakistani Taliban group the TTP, is a consequence of the same phenomenon. Once the Pakistani Military launched a mass scale operation to handle their Frankenstein's monster in these tribal areas, it was natural for the civilian population to have been displaced and suffer the consequences, which they did.

Under those circumstances, about a decade earlier, at the launch of Pakistani Military full scale counter insurgency operations, as things stood, you would often find, that if a family had three sons, one would be fighting for the Pakistani Military, second working for the State's Paramilitary and third would be in the ranks of the anti state insurgent militants. It was all about finding a job for them, being third generation fighters who were essentially illiterate but indoctrinated by the Jihad philosophy in the local education system run by the Mullahs, who became filthy rich and powerful through Saudi funding and American weapons during the Afghan Jihad, all thanks to the Zia legacy. 

Pakistani Military, which was initially reluctant to launch a full scale offensive against the insurgents due to the aforesaid environments, was but forced to tackle the issue head on after losing precious lives in huge numbers at the hand of these mercenaries. Due to the same environments, the Military found it extremely hard to differentiate friends from foes and civilians from insurgents who wore no uniform or clear identity. Due to the family ties of the mercenaries with the local population, they were aided and abetted by them. The Military faced many attacks from within its ranks due to the same reasons. In an extremely difficult situation faced by the Pakistani Military, where they could not trust some of their own ranks informing their plans to their relatives fighting against them, it took a mammoth effort for them to quell this insurgency and bring back peace to the restive regions of Pakistan. However, in the process, not only the Pakistani Military faced an unprecedented loss to life and limbs in its ranks, but the Pakistani Pashtun population living in these restive regions immensely suffered as part of the 'collateral damage' in this "war within".

The Pashtun youth are suffering from an identity crisis, which occurred due to the collateral damage arising out of policies and actions of the Pakistani State. These policies were adopted, under the leadership of the Pakistani Military rulers.

Although, the Pakistani State led by the Pakistan Army took mega rehabilitation measures in these effected tribal regions of the country, it would take much more than this to address the insecurities which arose out of this crisis within the young Pashtun population. In an era of free speech, the tolerance and the tact of the Pakistani State and its Army would be tested by these young Pashtun lads. They feel alienated and oppressed comparing themselves with the settled parts of the country. They are certainly being manipulated by anti establishment forces within Pakistan and anti Pakistani State foreign forces, but this is the nature of any social discord in the internet age, which is exploited by one's enemies in the 'info war era'.

The Pashtun youth are suffering from an identity crisis, which occurred due to the collateral damage arising out of policies and actions of the Pakistani State. These policies were adopted, under the leadership of the Pakistani Military rulers. The Pakistani Military, thus needs to raise their patience and positively engage with these disenfranchised youth of the Pashtun ethnicity. Standing behind the constitutional amendment to bring these tribal agencies under the jurisdiction of the Pakistani mainstream judicial system is such step in the rite direction by the Pakistan Army. Having said that, the Pakistani establishment still needs to do much more in this sphere. Labelling and dismissing these angry Pashtun lads as instigators making trouble won't work. All their legitimate demands must be met, may it be at the cost of giving up pawns like Rao Anwaar and others like him. The policies and narratives have to be evaluated by the Pakistani Establishment, and revised towards "post war era" tenure from "war era doctrines".

If the Pakistani State needs to avoid further damage to the federation from these rebels who are protesting out on the streets, they must be given their rightful political space. Mistakes made by the State must be acknowledged and compensated for. Rule of law, irrespective of the complex procedures must be accepted, enforced and respected by all the State institutions. Only civilized conduct by all parties will bring about a modern model civil society in Pakistan.           



Saturday, 17 March 2018

How India Is Loosing War In Kashmir

Srinagar, Indian Held Kashmir, 16 March 2018, A Pakistani flag being wrapped and waved during the funereal prayers of two suspected Kashmiri militant martyred by the Indian forces

Once Pervez Musharraf was made to take a U-turn on the Pakistani decades old policy of sponsoring insurgency in Kashmir under the intense US pressure chartered by India as a pre condition to join the US camp in 2004, everyone around the globe thought, the Kashmir freedom struggle is over for good.  All the odds back then, favoured India, which diverted its funds and energies free from a bloody conflict towards economic progress, while allocating a meagre portion of these funds, which were still substantial, towards hiring the Taliban ideological mercenaries, who got unemployed as a result of the Pakistani policy U-turn, and employed them to wreck havoc in Pakistan using the friendly Afghan soil post 9/11, giving Pakistan, a taste of its own medicine.

13 years on, irrespective of the immense punishment Pakistan withstood by its Frankenstein monster, not only the Pakistani Armed Forces have marginalised the threat to its homeland, but also kept open the channels with the Afghan Taliban who are fighting the US occupation, all the while forging new alliances with old foes Russia with the help of the Chinese partners, blunting all efforts by the US/Allies to bring India forward in the regional theatre in order to do the dirty work for their US partners. The US led western alliance failed to bring order to Afghanistan on their terms, even after pouring trillions of dollars in the Afghan war effort, and loosing thousands of lives. The USA, but have none else to blame but their own people, whose corporate greed took them to the 'Oil Wars' in Iraq on fabricated perspectives and false narratives, shifting focus from the Afghan war effort and its original idea, which was to defeat Al-Qaeda.

13 years on, on the other hand, the Pakistani flag is fluttering high on every nook and corner of the Indian occupied Kashmir. The Kashmiri resistance is now a full blown, indigenous freedom struggle having the UN resolutions to back it up and an international diaspora supporting the cause. India made the mistake of resolving the Kashmir dispute on the model of Israeli occupation of Palestine. However, the Indians forgot, that the Kashmiris at their side of the border looks across ta the Pakistani side of their divided land. The Pakistani side has the Kashmiris, in it living a privileged life, marked with freedom, autonomy, tax free status and many perks including the right to reserved government jobs, university admissions and buying land all across Pakistan while no Pakistani can buy land in Kashmir or be employed on their state jobs. The list goes on, and this example coupled with the high handed role of the Indian security forces deployed in Kashmir under the notorious armed forces special powers act allowing them to to prosecute and kill the Kashmiris, 'disenfranchised' the Kashmiri youth, who eventually took up arms against the Indian occupation of their lands, marred by rape, torture and murder of the Kashmiris.

The modern day heroes in the Indian occupied Kashmir are the likes of Burhan Wani and his followers. The indigenous freedom struggle is here to stay and grow, which will be augmented by the Indian trouble on their borders with China. All what this freedom struggle requires is an influx of some cheap unmarked Chinese SMGs, which are already held by the new breed of militant youth in Kashmir eager to seek revenge from the Indians, for decades of unabated prosecution.

 The meteoric rise of Modi with an ultra nationalist Hindu agenda in India, only proved as a catalyst for the Kashmiri freedom struggle. Modi and his advisers like Ajit Doval wish to follow Israel, and settle Hindus in Kashmir on the Israeli occupation and land grab model of Palestine. However, the Hindus may be financially compatible with the Jews, but they are no comparison to them when the fight hits the dogs. Beside, no respectable Hindu family would wish to migrate to Kashmir, as its not their 'promised land'.

The Indian security forces are back in action at Kashmir, with a vengeance, killing and blinding the Kashmiri youth who took up rocks and arms against the Indian occupation. The Indian security forces moves as such are only backfiring with a visible mass uprising against the Indian high handedness. The disenfranchised Kashmiri youth have got a death wish. The fidayeen suicide attacks in Indian occupied Kashmir is a new trend in that region fuelled by decades of Indian apartheid which provided motivation for such attacks.

All the while the Pakistan Army is not backing down on the line of control, where Indian tried to bully it by a fabricated 'surgical strike drama', only to be backfired bringing humiliation to India. The Pakistan Army is firing back at the Indian forces with equal audacity and more. The Indians are finding no place safe to walk with their heads high, all across Kashmir. The Indian Army is visibly desperate, as proved most recently when in addition to killing the innocent civilians on the Pakistani line of control they fired directly at the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan, who were monitoring the situation after alerting the Indian Army of their activity.

The indigenous Kashmiri freedom struggle will only grow in its nature and intensity on both political and military front under the established circumstances. India has already begun to loose the war it is waging in Kashmir. Its only a matter of time, before India will be brought to its senses.