Swat is a good example to see how extremism develops. In 2006 I went to the area with my friends. We offered prayers in mosque (belonging to Jud or Fazlullah). We had people from different sects like Shia, Sunni or non-taqleedis but no one in the mosque bothered to question our different ways of praying and everyone was normal about it.
Similarly there were tourists with different social-class backgrounds and dressed up like the way they do in Karachi, Islamabad etc and no one bothered to question their dresses. There were girls school in the area and no one bothered to blow them up. Things started to go bad in the area when Army demolished the local structure which created vacuum for these groups to take over and especially when Lal-Masjid operation was conducted (The operation itself was sectarian and social-class fascism backed) , it gave a message to the people that there ways are in danger now and so they went on to the path of extremism. Its very easy for us to consider others as evil aliens and point fingers at them but to resolve a problem, an honest analysis is required to see where it all started and where the root cause lies.
Swat, Tribal areas etc were promised that their autonomy will remain in tact if they join Pakistan but Army on various occasions from 60s violated these agreements and started to meddle in there affairs especially in Musharraf’s time they deliberately targeted their religious schools and institutions. It seems that army used this war not only to bag dollars from Americans but also to pursue their old goal of invading these tribal areas because they seem to love only that Pakistan which is under their boots otherwise they will do another Bangladesh with that part of the country like they are also doing with Baluchistan.
People are again chanting slogans for more War in North Waziristan especially after Malala Yousafzai attack. They should ask their self about the goals they have achieved after decades of military operations in FATA, Baluchistan and Swat. These operations have resulted in more extremism and more terrorism, and they are not going to give different results in the future except things will go worse.
PTI has scheduled a peace march to Waziristan. Waziristan has been a target of unjust and illegal drone attacks from USA (supported by Pakistani government and army) and military operations.
People of the area are living in misery for last decade due to this unwanted and imported war which only serves the purpose of greedy ruling elite and their foreign masters. It is good to see that media and human rights organizations have shown their interest in joining this cause for peace and justice.
Pakistani military establishment and government are trying their best to sabotage the peace march and so the peace process in order to ensure that the interests of their foreign masters remain in tact. Denying visas and issuing threat warnings are attempts to demoralize people who want to serve this cause for justice. It is a high time for all peace and justice loving people to come forward and help this peace initiative in whatever way they can.
We support PTI’s Waziristan Peace March on 7th October 2012 and pray for their success and safety.
Recently in Iran, while attending a conference on Syria, Pakistani foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar has said that Pakistan will not support any kind of foreign government intervention in Syria.
I agree with the decision of not involving Pakistani state but at the same time I will disagree with the govt. if they stop people to help Syrians on their own in terms of money, weapons or any other way they can.
Foreign involvement will turn the focus of movement and will likely to hijack the issue from local Syrian opposition like Iran hijacked the Bahrain movement resulting the failure of the movement. But we can see in Egypt, things are changing in positive direction.
At the same time governments should now stop supporting Assad’s brutal regime by cutting diplomatic and defense ties which is essential to remain neutral as Assad is using these things to strengthen his position in killing innocent people. At the same time I cannot oppose Syrian opposition to accept help from where ever it comes from as they are victim side and prime responsibility lies on the shoulders of Assad who initiated the brutal actions against civilian populations which includes merciless aerial bombings.
In a remarkable judgment yesterday, Supreme Court of Pakistan has disqualified Yusuf Reza Gillani from holding the office of PM and seat in the parliament. We fully support this judgment and hope that SC under the Chief Justice of Pakistan, Iftikhar Muhammad Chauhdhry will keep up its good work.
We know the limitations they have due the lack or absence of cooperation from executives, military, some corrupt segments of media and civil society. But we want to assure them that justice and freedom loving people of Pakistan support them.
And for Gillani, we can only say (In response to his interview with CNN),”Why don’t you go? Who is stopping you?”.
Malik Riaz issue is a big test for the people of Pakistan especially those who are justice loving to prove their existence as human beings not as insects or blind sheep. Pakistan military and feudal-corporatist-extortionist political ruling elite thinks that we all are insects and blind sheep who can be easily crushed or can be taken any where.
There are reports that government wants to send a reference against Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry like Musharraf did in 2007. The move will give enough space for the government to waste time till the next elections and CJ’s 2013 retirement.
We need to decide now that what sort of life we want to give to our future generations. Are we ready to give a life of slaves to our future generations? Are we ready to surrender the rights of our future generations?
As John F. Kennedy said, “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. “
It seems government, military and allies want people who wan a system based on justice to go for the violent option. I think establishment and government want people to go for a French type revolution in Pakistan.
It was a great feeling to see that people in a country, who’s government in the madness of being a so called super power is killing women and children all over the world, are fighting for the cause of freedom and justice in Chicago. We salute the protestors from America and all other nations who are taking part in these historic protests. May Allah help you in the noble cause of peace and justice.
As expected, American establishment and government have started to use Nazi-like tactics against the protestors and doing whatever they can to push these protestors back. On one hand American government claims to be the champion of democracy and human rights and on the other hand they are not following these norms when it comes to dealing with these peaceful protestors.
In the video above it was nice to see a Palestinian flag in the protest. humanity is not dead. These Americans and other nationalities with whatever religious,racial or linguistic backgrounds are much better than those fake liberals (scum of Pakistan) who support drones, bombings on civilian population and illegal abduction of people. Great job justice loving people.
These protests are against NATO, war on terror, imperialism, drone attacks in Pakistan/Afghanistan and other terrorist (financial and military) activities by these so called first world countries and their puppet allies. It seems that American administration is again using terrorism fear to control these protests as well. Hopefully this will not work.
First that feudal bitch insulted the APO and now she has forced her to defend her. We need the toppling of this feudal/military/corporatist hold on our country to move ahead with prosperity and dignity.
We need to get rid of these feudal scum bags and their strangle hold on our country. These feudals along with military junta have damaged our country and they are holding our freedom as their captive. We need to take all back from them and kick them out of the corridors of powers. If we don’t do it then our future generations will be right to curse us for our lack of interest in defending our future.
Also I would like to ask those so called liberal NGOs who advocate women rights only when it suits their agenda to come forward and take the lead on the issue.
I would also like to appeal Election Commission of Pakistan and Supreme Court of Pakistan to cancel the registration of Waheeda Shah.
Slapped APO defends Waheeda Shah at press conference
TANDO MUHAMMAD KHAN: Waheeda Shah, the Pakistan People’s Party’s candidate who slapped an Assistant Presiding Officer (APO) in a polling station Saturday, held a press conference and got the humiliated officer to speak in her favor, Geo News reported.
Waheeda Shah had the APO accompany her to the press conference held today and got the latter to give a statement in the former’s support.
However, the people from Waheeda Shah’s own constituency said the woman in Burqa was not the one who was slapped and humiliated yesterday.
Nothing could be said with certainty whether the woman at press conference was the same woman who was subjected to the ill treatment on Saturday. Even if it is believed the woman was the same, her defending the wrongdoer may lay bare the helplessness of the officer but it cannot give Waheeda Shah a clean chit.
It clearly appears to be a case of the powerful Waheeda Shah, a big landlord of the area, getting the poor teacher named Shagufta to give a statement against the herself (Shagufta) and in the former’s defence.
Perhaps Shagufta would have thought that if Waheeda Shah could beat her in front of cameras what worse she must be capable of doing in their absence.
Our political dynamics are changing drastically with new players emerging and old players losing their positions. We are also seeing a power struggle between so called Rightists vs Leftists or Seculars vs Theocrats and somewhere there are parties which place themselves in-between. People are even talking about Judicial Martial Law.
But over all out look shows that the focus is on putting together a centralized system with some aspects of democracy. Our feudal culture, history of martial laws and domination of state institutions have restricted our minds to run things from centre with iron fist or authoritarian ways.
What is lacking in this approach is the realization of our diversity in the society. We are a country with diversified ethnic, sectarian and other social classes. Many of us cite China as an example and consider their Democratic Centralization as an ideal concept for Pakistan. We need to know that China has a dominant socialist ideology and their culture is pretty much same throughout China. They have a civilization which can be called as a Chinese Civilization. On the other hand Pakistan doesn’t have a single Pakistani Civilization. Pakistan is on the meeting point of several civilizations on both sides of Indus and which show different cultural and demographic colors if we move from Karachi to K2.
We cannot have a same system for Karachi and FATA or Islamabad and Dera Bugti. Attempts were made by Military dictators like Zia, Musharraf and Ayub who tried to implement their personal ideologies on the whole country and ending up creating a mess. Similarly civilian feudal-corporatists also tried to implement their vision on the whole country and again added to the mess. Even those who talk about liberalism have their own sectarian, ethnic and social class prejudices backing their ideals.
We need a decentralized system where federal government has minimum authority to run defense, dispute resolution and few other things. Even with them a concept of voluntary involvement and local considerations need to be taken into account. We need a system where decision making is brought to the local level which will also ensure merit among different localities selecting their leaders. It is unfair for those who don’t elect a corrupt government but they also have to face the bad consequences of its actions. To keep things in tact we can have a constitutional setup where rules of engagements should be mentioned between different constituents of the country. In short we need a “Rule of Law based Decentralization”.
This decentralization should be in Governance, Legislation and Economics. This is not something impractical; we can see some colors of it in countries like United States or Australia. Obviously for that we need to consider the ideology which dominated at the time of the creation of the country which is also reflected in the Objective Resolution. If we talk about Islam then “Meesaq e Madina” can show us how Muslims and Jews made an agreement by accepting each other as a reality. Even in a centralized country like China, they had to make adjustments in Xinjiang and Hong Kong. Even Russia has different Republics with some autonomy. In Pakistan’s case Quaid e Azam made agreements with our tribes which resulted in the tribes becoming part of Pakistan. These agreements allowed the tribal people to maintain their autonomy and also accept few fundamental laws of Pakistan. We also need a loose central structure to avoid the class clashes.
At the moment power is concentrated to center and everyone wants to control it either through the power of masses or power of gun. We even cannot afford a democratic system where 90% decides to suppress the remaining 10%. It will create the sense of alienation and hopelessness in the parties not in power and so can result in an undesirable retaliation which can be damaging for all.
We need to come out of the copycat mentality and be genuine in our approach as our problems are genuine and bit different from where we are trying to import the solutions.Mutual existence can only prevail through mutual acceptance of each other as a reality.
Note : A bit edited version is also available on http://blogs.thenewstribe.com/blog/66276/decentralization-a-solution/