DAWN Umar Riaz There were human bodies strewn like dry leaves on an autumn day. For the first time in life, I saw burnt human flesh, smelled it, touched it and collected it; pieces of small children, big boys, and women. There was a severed hand with just a pink Mickey Mouse watch wrapped around and an amputated foot with the familiar Cheetah joggers. More than 130 dead bodies and an equal number of injured.
For quite some time, we see important issues and incidents taking place in our country passing through the phases of the reactionary cycle and ending up with a question mark on them. By the virtue of media proliferation and the cut throat competition in breaking the news and opinion branding, We, the awaam, often stand confused about the facts. The gust of news and various opinions typically exhaust us of the matter and soon after we become indifferent to it. But in the process what we turn our backs on is the real abuse of someone’s right hard pressed under the heap of manipulations. It is right that in present times unfortunately nothing has been left simple to understand due to the politicization and mediatization of even irrelevant issues, yet it’s our right and duty to identify the wrong and call it so. The murderous attack on Malala Yousafzai is the latest of such incidents. In relation to that here we are sharing an article written by our team member for our readers to form …
By Rasul Bakhsh Rais Published: June 26, 2011 The writer is professor of political science at LUMS email@example.com When, how and on what terms will the Afghan war end? If we go by the political rhetoric of the warring sides, the Taliban and the United States and its Nato allies, there will be no solution until each side achieves its central objectives. The problem is that both sides in any conflict cannot achieve their objectives until they reach some middle ground by recognising that the other side has some legitimate concerns, interests and can be acknowledged as a party with whom some political business can be done.
By Syed Shoaib Hasan BBC News, Karachi The deadly 15-hour siege on Pakistan’s Mehran naval airbase in Karachi on Monday was carried out by attackers with military-level training, raising suspicions they had inside help. Questions are being asked about the security of Pakistan’s vital military installations after a well-organised group of gunmen held off Pakistan’s equivalent of the US Navy Seals – the Special Services Group-Navy (SSG-N) – for 15 hours.
New America Foundation // Terror Free Tomorrow Public Opinion Survey People of Pakistan’s tribal areas strongly oppose the U.S. military pursuing al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters based in their region; American drone attacks deeply unpopular. Residents of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) back instead Pakistan military fighting against the militants. Scant support for al-Qaeda and Pakistani Taliban in FATA. The New America Foundation and Terror Free Tomorrow have conducted the first comprehensive public opinion survey covering sensitive political issues in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan. The unprecedented survey, from June 30 to July 20, 2010, consisted of face-to-face interviews of 1,000 FATA residents age 18 or older across 120 villages/sampling points in all seven tribal Agencies of FATA, with a margin of error of +/- 3 percent, and field work by the locally-based Community Appraisal & Motivation Programme. Funding for the poll was provided by the United States Institute of Peace, a congressionally funded think tank, which had no other role in the poll.
Waldman’s one-sided and highly biased report refers to several unnamed single sources. Accusations against Pakistan are mostly based on hearsay. By Shiraz Paracha The London School of Economics’ (LSE) recent report on the alleged links between the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) of Pakistan and the Afghan Taliban is yet another proof of an unholy alliance, in which Western secret services, the mainstream Western media and some Western academic institutions are partners.
The ironies we witness every day in Pakistan would have us shaking our heads were it not for the fact that they usually provoke such deep visceral dread. Take the furore over the recent shutdown of Facebook and other websites. In Pakistan the debate framed the issue mainly in terms of either the freedom of speech or the legitimacy of government censorship. Both models, as constructed here in Pakistan, were flawed and reductionist. Let that be as it may, I wish to point out something else. The websites were shut down because many people found their content ‘blasphemous’ and hurtful to their sentiments as Muslims.