AfPak

Viewing the country’s sufferings from an academic point of view, the writer has pointed out some of major Soicial Causes eating Pakistan. She has mentioned the triangular factors of failures: Bad Governance subsiding the public interest, disunity and fragmentation of public opinoin to different primitive intellegencies and last, but not the least, the external factors injecting Pakistan’s sovereignity for own mean interests by the so called “War on Terror”.

    “AFTER years of living dangerously we seem to be finally losing control of ourselves and risking a veritable failure. The causes are both external and internal but the remedy has to be internal.”

But the remedy is available though:

    “Given the resourcefulness of our people and multiple underlying strengths this is achievable; only if we try to understand and resolve the complexity of our challenges.”

However, the fact that these complexities has grown so complex during the last half a century period that almost needs re-cultivating new thoughts for the next coming hundred years. At it’s quickest, the next two generations should wait to catch some glance of them solved.

She Defines Democracy:

    “Most importantly we need to understand our system we call democracy. A democratic society organises itself in a way that it is anchored in a strong rule of law and provides to its citizens a level playing field and equal opportunity, promises a measure of economic and social justice, and tries to protect the weak and the vulnerable, and minorities — religious, sectarian, ethnic and regional. And its social structure, power balances, quality of leadership, people’s habits of mind and political culture are adapted to serve these ends.

    Democracy’s core idea is power — where it should reside and how it should be used and to what purpose. A democratic system believes power resides in those who delegate it to their representatives as a trust so that it can be exercised to look after them and respond to their aspirations for justice, human security and quality of life, individual and collective. Democracy thus is focused on people, their well-being, happiness and self-fulfilment. It is all about substance. And it takes time to be a fully functional and mature democracy.”

Outcomes of a False Democracy:

    “If society is not organised along these lines you can have as good an appearance as possible and as many elections as you want but it will not be a democracy and may never become so. It will remain something else, an imposter perhaps, in which case political power will keep empowering the dominant social groups who have a vested interest in a deformed political process that allows them to sideline the people and take turns in ruling the country for their personal, class and institutional interests.

    They monopolise the state resources which are denied to the people.”

So, the “monopoly crisis” has a long attachment with Pakistani politics, we’ve always witnessed.

Pakistan’s Case:

    “Sadly, this has been the story of Pakistan. Democracy or army rule, power has been taken away from the people but not transferred back to them. The system is built to recycle power back into the hands of the already empowered alternating between civilians and the army, and within the civilians, from one set of politicians to another.”

Some Discussions On media:

    “Is Media a factor of Democracy?
    Yes we have something now that looks like democracy but in fact does not work like it. This mirage of democracy sabotages our understanding causing a confused debate, as some would say democracy in Pakistan has failed while others applaud free media, emerging civil society and flashes of judicial activism as signs that democracy is alive and well.

    Both are wrong as are those arguing that it is the governance that has failed not democracy, not realising that in a modern democracy governance must reflect, to varying degrees, democratic values and principles.”

She Concludes So:

    “What has failed in Pakistan is essentially a system whose form and rhetoric is democratic but whose substance is reactionary.”

Where from comes the change?

    “It needs to be changed. Media and civil society can help but they are merely facilitators or stimuli, not drivers of change. That can only come from political action. The good news is we have great strengths that could enable us to succeed; but the bad news is we also have great weaknesses that are increasing and causing us to fail, like the unresolved issues of identity, religion, security and widening fault lines, not to mention the existential threats we have come to face since 9/11. Pakistan is literally under siege, at its own hands and at the hands of others.”

Double Troubles:

    “If just the ruling elite had failed and Pakistan only faced external dangers, its problems would not be so daunting. Thanks to the abysmal failure of the elite, people also have become part of the problem. Unfortunately, such is the power of their despair that anything other than the current system has come to have a fatal attraction. People are caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. On one hand are demagogues exploiting a great religion, who in a political vacuum are the only mediators available to the people. And on the other is the intelligentsia, much of it confused and conflicted, part fed by xenophobia and negativity, and part by twin illusions, that with a free media and the army in the barracks democracy has arrived and will solve all our problems.”

Democracy Deformed:

    “So we have two overlapping slogans — one so-called Islamic and ultra nationalistic, and the other, supposedly secular/liberal, ‘give democracy a chance’. To say ‘let democracy however imperfect continue’ is naïve. If democracy in Pakistan was just imperfect there would be hope. It is deformed. And they require dismantling and rebuilding. Can it be done? Yes but not the way we are going about it. We do not realise that the system has weakened our strengths and exaggerated our weaknesses.

    And we stand at the crossroads. At issue is not just democracy’s future but our own.”

Paradoxes:

    “The system has failed and its repetition will not salvage us. Democracy that we want to persist with is not the democracy that can save us. We must not confuse democracy as practised by us and democracy as the concept. The first is failing us and the second can save us. ‘Democracy is dead; long live democracy’.”

From Opinion Section of Dawn.com

The writer, a former ambassador, teaches at Georgetown and Johns Hopkins University.

What Kind of Democracy?

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Massacres

By Khaled Ahmed

In 20 September 2011, at least 26 Hazaras were shot dead execution style in a Baloch-dominated area of Mastung/Luk-Pass near Quetta. Armed terrorists intercepted a bus en route to Taftan, border town near the Iran border, singled out all Hazara men, and shot them dead. Terrorists stayed at the scene for 10 minutes firing with AK-47’s to ensure no one survived. Terrorists ambushed and killed several Hazaras rushing to the scene to ferry their loved ones to the hospital. The Hazara travel far and wide looking for employment and that includes Mashad and Tehran.

A few weeks before the massacre, a sectarian organisation had circulated an open letter addressed to Hazaras in Quetta. Written in the Urdu language, the letter stated:

    “All Shi’ites are worthy of killing. We will rid Pakistan of unclean people. Pakistan means land of the pure and the Shi’ites have no right to live in this country. We have the edict and signatures of revered scholars, declaring Shi’ites infidels. Just as our fighters have waged a successful jihad against the Shi’ite Hazaras in Afghanistan, our mission in Pakistan is the abolition of this impure sect and its followers from every city, every village and every nook and corner of Pakistan.

    Like in the past, our successful jihad against the Hazaras in Pakistan and, in particular, in Quetta, is ongoing and will continue in the future. We will make Pakistan the graveyard of the Shi’ite Hazaras and their houses will be destroyed by bombs and suicide bombers. We will only rest when we will be able to fly the flag of true Islam on this land of the pure. Jihad against the Shi’ite Hazaras has now become our duty.”

If there ever was a sign of the demise of the Pakistani state it is the killing of the Hazara community of Quetta. The Hazaras, after getting killed like flies, are asking a question that no one busy rebuking the world for finding fault with Pakistan can answer. The extremism of blasphemy law and the killing of Ahmadis is a national death-wish, but what is the killing of the Hazaras? In Punjab, the government is scared of losing vote, and its leaders fear personal attack from the erstwhile non state actors killing Christians and Ahmadis. In Quetta everyone including the executive is scared of protecting this luckless community numbering nearly 600,000.

Their fault is that they are Shia and their historical origin is Central Afghanistan known as Bamyan, but they have lived in Quetta for centuries. Their other fault is that that they are businessmen and shopkeepers which makes them more elevated in intellect than their Pashtun tormentors. In Kurram they are known as Turis and have been there for centuries. They have some capacity to fight back there but the state of Pakistan has abandoned them to the Taliban and local Sunni rivals, turning a blind eye to the fact that their road connection with Pakistan is no longer free of hazard.

The Turis of Pakistan’s Kurram Agency also took no part in the Pak-sponsored jihad and were attacked in 1983, marking the starting-point of the sectarian conflict in Pakistan. Today Turis of Parachinar in Kurram Agency and the Hazaras of Quetta are bearing the brunt of Sunni-Pashtun reprisal.

And if Pakistan succeeds once again in controlling Afghanistan, the Hazara of Central Afghanistan should expect genocide. What Pakistan is doing to the Hazara of Quetta is nothing short of ethnic-cleansing. The killers announce loudly that they are killing them because they want to exterminate them to earn Paradise.

This is the underside of Pakistan’s military vision. It sees Afghanistan through the Pashtun goggle and that means letting the Shia be put to the sword. This is how Pakistan has survived in the past and this is how it is going to survive with the doctrine of strategic depth. The Hazaras are the burnt offering Pakistan’s military thinkers are offering to the holy investors of jihad sitting in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf. This is the small print in the contract under which Pak Army and Saudi Army have been exercising in Jhelum. The Saudi aid that will rescue the state of Pakistan from collapsing is running parallel to the private Arab funds that flow into the coffers of the Taliban and their master Al Qaeda so that they can hurt Iran by killing the Hazaras of Pakistan.

Pakistan is in denial about there being an Afghan Shura under Mullah Umar in Quetta and it doesn’t matter if this denial is proved false on a daily basis. The Hazara have to pay for the acts of omission and commission of their co-ethnics in Central Afghanistan in the recent past. Organised under their militia Hezb-e-Wahdat, the Hazaras allied with the Jumbish militia of Dostam and Hezb-e-Islami militia of Hekmatyar. In 1995, the Taliban conquered Kabul and captured and murdered the great Hazara leader, Mazari. The Hazaras then fought on the side of the Northern Alliance against the Taliban who visited on them the cruelty to forget the scourge of Mongol hordes.

Because of persecution, the Hazaras of Quetta allowed themselves to be ghettoised, which is a step in the direction of easy killing. All of them moved to Hazara Town which is divided into nine blocks, and almost all the houses are made of concrete. They can speak Urdu but they are originally Persian-speaking. They have, in contrast to other Afghan groups, actively invested in education. The Hazara community is the most educated community in Balochistan. Some 50 percent of the position holders in the matriculation and FA/BA exams are from among them. Hence the visible presence of Hazaras in the civil services, police, the IT market, small businesses and other professional sectors in Balochistan.

In 2003, in one of the worst sectarian assaults in the history of Pakistan, some 58 people, most of them Hazara Shias, were killed while around 200 were injured when suicide bombers attacked Imambargah-e-Kalan in Quetta. Another 38 persons, mostly Hazara Shias, were killed in a sectarian assault on March 2, 2004 on the day of the Ashura. The incident left 200 people injured. Just before the 2003 attack, Quetta city was flooded with leaflets containing fatwas from the country’s top-most ulema, declaring the Shia an apostate community. The 2003 massacre was preceded by widespread circulation of anti-Shia fatwas in Quetta, branding them murtad or apostate, a designation normally deserving death in the eyes of the pious Sunni Muslims.

GEO TV (12 September 2003) had TV host Hamid Mir interviewing the imam of the Hazara Imambargah at Quetta where the Shia community had been blown up by suicide bombers. The imam said the attack was carried out by sectarian terrorist groups and this information had been given to the administration in Quetta.

The All Parties Conference (APC) which recently handed over a rapidly Islamising Pakistan to the Army did not have a clue what it was doing except purging itself of its rage against the United States, India and the West. The politician had no idea that the Army was India-centric and was incapable of tackling the problem of extremism started by it under General Zia. General Kayani should have stood up and refused to take the responsibility to tackle a problem he has no inclination to confront. Indeed, he is disinterested in taking power and toppling governments but he should have stated clearly that problems such as Hazara-killing would continue as a part of anti-Americanism and the doctrine of strategic depth.

The Hazara leaders of Quetta claim that nearly 600 members of their community have been killed since 1999.

The News of 7 October 2011, reported that over 13,000 members of the community lived in Karachi, 600 in Hussain Hazara Goth, where the imambargah is located. Rickety roads and mud-plastered houses surrounded the slum while increasingly the inhabitants feared for their lives. One said, ‘We are being targeted because extremists want to eliminate Shias. Also, our community, especially in Balochistan, is among the most literate and educated. They envy us. Our people are in the police, government and everywhere. Out of the four female pilots, one is from our community’.
 

    Comments (9)

    “It is pathetic! Branding themselves clean and pure while eliminating their fellow country men. I see no example that our nabi ever raised is sword on fellow citizens of Madinah, irrespective if they were Christians an Jews. But then, these are the people who claim to be pure can not read or write. Example mulla umar, never studied beyond grade 4.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by Chaigram from toronto Canada

    “Anybody, who is in touch with the history of Afghanistan, and Pak-Afghan border, will certainly disagree that Pak- Army is not the only force holding on to Pashtun card in Afghanistan. There are many stake holders who see KPK, parts of Baluchistan and Afghanistan, through “pashtun goggle” for dividing the ideological state of Pakistan. Similarly, futuristic dimensions of Pakistan’s foreign Policy need settlement of Hazara people in Pakistan for leverage in the area: hence, protection of such people should be the top priority of Pakistan. Their “ethnic cleansing”, on the soil of Pakistan, is yet another aspect of the war on terror and should be seen in proper persepective.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by khan from London

    “The establishment wants to empower the religious fanatics in Balochistan to counter the secular Baloch secessionist forces. The Baloch are by and large very liveral and secular – Hindus and Zikri Baloch have been living in harmony side-by-side for centuries. The Establishment has promoted radicalism in Balochistan after 1979 (Iran revolution) with Saudi funding – thus an army of brain washed maadrassah students who have graduated are now on a killing spree. The objective of the establishment in supporting these Islamist radicals is two fold: – Keep Iranian influence in check (which is a fallacy as Iran and Hazaras have a rough history – look up how Hazaras of Afghanistan are disillusionised by Tehran – as Iran supported the Tajiks in the Afghan jihad) – Subdue the secular Baloch and control the province through religion. P.S – Hazaras and Turis are two seperate ethnic groups (Turis being Pushtuns) – sharing religion. Although Hazaras also have Sunnis in them (most Hazara Sunnis are in Afghanistan). Also, there are some Hazara population in the Kurram agency as well.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by Haider Changezi from Dubai

    “Yeah .. Hazara’s are NOT Turi’s .. But their are Hazara’s living in Parachinar and overall the Kurram Agency … That’s the reason Turi’s/Bangashi’s come and reside in Hazara inhibited areas of Quetta … And Also Turi/Bangash Students Come and Find Hostel in Hazara Goth and Hazara Colony In Karachi …”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by Hazheer Hazara from Lahore

    “I totally agree with Mr. Khalid Ahmed. This article might have been written after a lot of research about Hazaras. Nothing is hidden from the eyes of public, in response to Hazaras killing in Mastung Balochistan CM says I will send truck-full of tissue papers to families of those who are killed in Mastung. Governor Magsi and former Police IG says, he knows the killers but can’t do anything because the higher authority interrupt whenever they take any action against them. In future Hazaras will also hold weapons to save their lives and then government will soon see a mini Rwanda in Quetta as well as in other parts where Shia killings are in full swing. Choice is easy: stop accepting aid from Saudi government and other gulf countries, stop preaching of ban groups like LeJ, SSP and others, arrest all Ulemas whose Fatwas have created these killings OR wait until Pakistan is divided into 100 pieces by these terrorists.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by Liaqat Ali from New York

    “Moreover,the conflict in Kurram agency against turis is not simply that of shia and sunny.The real reason for the massacre of my tribe is the intention of the pakistani state to interfere in Kabul.If you see a map of pakistan and Afghanistan,you can clearly see that the nearest part of FATA to kabul is Kurram agency.Now the fact is that the the routes through which one gets from Kurram agency into Afghanistan are inhabited by the Turi shias and they are increasingly hostile to the terrorist Haqqani network so it is a nightmare for the haqqani network to pass through these areas to attack Kabul.The real reason for the massacre of the Turis is that the taliban and the pakistan army wants the turi tribe to provide safe passageway to the taliban but the Turis are reluctant,hence the massacre of Turis.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by mirwais hussain turi from peshawar

    “Sorry, i meant ‘they don’t want a pashtun govt in AFGHANISTAN”.i wrote pakistan instead.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by mirwais hussain turi from peshawar

    ”It(pak army) sees Afghanistan through the Pashtun goggle and that means letting the Shia be put to the sword”.That is just plain wrong.Pak army sees afghanistan through punjabi goggles.They want a govt in Afghanistan that is subservient to the punjabi empire that pakistan is.Because lets face it,who needs strategic depth against india in afghanistan?clearly punjab,because the pashtuns and the baloch have no direct conflict with india because we were never indians.punjabis on the other hand are in constant danger of being swallowed by the indians because the punjabis actually ARE indians and have a history of massacres with them in 1947.That is why the pak army sees Afghanistan through terrorist goggles.They don’t want a Pashtun govt.in pakistan(as the writer has suggested).They want a Fundamentalist govt so that they can manipulate their religious sentiments when the time for conflict with india comes. As for my tribe ‘Turi’,ofcourse we had skirmishes with the Sunni pashtuns before but it was never in huge proportions before 1980’s.It was the Pakistani state’s policy to fund and promote extremism in Pashtun area otherwise us Turis had very good relations with the Mangal and Bangash tribes of our beautiful Kurram agency.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by Mirwais hussain turi from peshawar

    ”In Kurram they are known are Turis”The Turi Pashtun tribe has nothing in common with the Hazara except their shia faith.Turis are ethnically pashtuns. ”their Pashtun tormentors”,”Hazaras of Quetta are bearing the brunt of Sunni-Pashtun reprisal”.That is a sweeping statement.Perhaps the writer conveniently forgot to mention that organisations that took the responsibility of killing the Hazaras are punjab based (Sepah-e-sahaba and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi).and he forgot to mention that these organisations have no mass base in the pashtun belt of Khyber pakhtunkhwa and balochistan.These terrorist organisations derive their strength from their Punjab strongholds.”
    Posted: Friday, October 21, 2011 by Mirwais hussain turi from peshawar

Original Article

Hazara: another ‘abandoned’ community

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Uncategorized

Urban Legend

Ustad (L) Salim (R)

Ustad (L) Salim (R)

After seven dying days into the Indian Ocean heading towards Australia, our leaking boat broke up just hours to Hoshmore’, the northern Australian Island, and we were, then, arrested and brought to Immigration Detention Center, Manado City, North of Sulawesi Island, Indonesia in April of 2011. We (137- men, women, children) were lucky having survived the tragedy with some minor injuries when the boat hit a shore and broke into pieces.

Out of twelve Afghans who had been here since 2010, eight were already issued refugee status by the UNHCR and were transferred to Jakarta — Indo’s capital– soon after we arrived here. Currently, they are waiting for their cases be processed further for the grant of Australian Visa. The remained four fellows have been so nice to us, particularly, Ustad Taj Muhammad Hazara. This morning they’re, too, leaving for Jakarta.

Ustad, as we call him, is a very humble and kind man. One can only expect good affairs and intentions from him. In order to stay fit, we’ve been regularly attending his Martial Arts Class organized three days a week during last few months. With so much patience, he has trained all of us that we’ve grown addicted to him and his exercise classes along with his good humored nature, loud, strong tone and his sweet pieces of English phrases he chewed up loudly every now and then as officers visit detenees here.

Back there, in his home town, almost every other person knows him by face or name. He’d been promoting Martial Arts Kung-Fu Toa for more than thirty years in Quetta, Pakistan, with attending several national and international tournaments with the tag of Maisam Tammar Kung-Fu Toa Association and winning almost all the Golds in most tournaments. He has trained uncountable number of students into strong and healthy social participants. Many of his students are now out side the native land. What’s special about him is that he has never been just a Kung-Fu master, he’s rather more popular for the influence he has into students’ moral values and correcting their character flaws. As has been already proved to us, he’s a loveable guardian plus a honorable teacher.

Also, an article on wikipedia by the tag Taj Muhammad Hazara provides a comprehensive account of his life.

Though his notable students are many, Ali Ahmedi is the one popular in Australia. He’s an Australian Sports icon, Actor and a symbolic Afghan immigrant.

Ustad is leaving us this morning, heading towards his future, desperate about his destination but, as always, passing warm smiles to anyone he happens to meet.

Some of Men are just more than a single physical machine, only by their absence you reckon how empty your surrounding is with many still around. We will miss him and all the stuffs related to him.

His famous Say:
“Nisfi na’an Bukhar, Takra bash”(Take half a bread and be Active).
” Wa da jigari Taj Muhammad.”
“Qissa to da Kalla paziya.”

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personal

Wirtting’s Death

Fear and meekness are of the qualities, sometimes, hampering our attempt to start doing what we have been desiring for long – in my case, Writing. The two are mostly born out of lack of skill and inability. In a monologue, I badly start ruminating my lack of competence in writing just as each time I set myself up to write a word. From weak spellings to misuse of functional words; from irrelevant use of synonyms to lack of proper terms needed for description and lack of knowledge in syntax, punctuation and as much as the list goes on, all just make me feel like I am the wrong person with the wrong desire of writing anything– I’d better do anything else than writing.

However, I have been trying hard to overcome all the weakness since very long. For that, I have been voraciously reading articles, news, books, journals and even blogs with much of attention and care for new words I encounter anywhere. Recently, internet — Facebook, Tweeter, Grammar Sites — has been my main sources. Many Online Books, Tips on Grammar, guides to Writing and English Dictionary Sites has helped much in escalating my naive Art of Writing. At least, now, I know better about what I don’t know than I did before. Put simply, I’ve realized my weaknesses better than past.

Nevertheless, I believe I’ll never be able to develop my skills unless I start writing. It’s only when I’m writing that I can find out how I am writing. Thus, only when I write I’ll be able to correct it. Also, the need to describe situations and characters, will force one to boost memory of words and acknowledge Grammar functions. It’s only in written form where one can read his skills and analyze them against the Standards.

So, if you want to rectify your writing, let your writing rectify itself.

Therefore the posts inside this blog are merely meant to put my thoughts on the screen and polish them as much as I can. Thus, anyone reading them may criticize as much they like. I’ll be all ears.

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