A world full of deja vu’s

A day after facebook was back in my side of the world, I had put up my status saying

Lets see how many of the hypocrites out there actually leave facebook?

A teacher of mine had a wonderful thought to add to that. He commented

not only they arent going to leave, they’ve already started marketing all these pages because of which fb was banned in the first place. talk about deja vu…

I have come to conclude since then that this world is based on the very principle of deja vu, or maybe a better word for this explanation for this would be that we live in a world where everything repeats itself.

After this comment, I started thinking about how every year in Pakistan, we all feel a sense of deja vu when the same electricity shortages and load shedding happens, when the prices hike up during every Ramadan, the same situation on the streets of Karachi every time it rains, this entire country is based on this very experience.

What happened to Freedom Flotilla a few days back is also nothing short of a deja vu. Everytime something like this happens memories of all that had happened before rushes back. Even after this event, the deja vu happened of lastyear, when the Israeli forces killed hundreds of people in a 22 day war. Continue reading

What would it take to be bombed?

On Sunday night, while reading the newspaper and going through the headlines that were already a few hours too late, I came across the statement by American Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. The statement was clear, and there wasn’t any doubt about what it can mean to us. It read,

Hillary warns Pakistan of ‘severe

consequences’

I turned to my dad and asked ” Can America really bomb us?”

He looked at me with a look (that I have yet to decipher) and then laughed (again which has to be decoded) and said “Ofcourse they can ”

Could this happen to Karachi Yesterday?

Now please don’t go on assuming that this question reveals the skeptic, naive, or politically unaware person inside of me. I am well aware of the fact that there is a war going on in half of the country, a matter of a couple of miles from our capital, but the fear (yes I am not scared to say that I was worried) that this “severe consequences” can mean the same fate for cities like Karachi as for Waziristan was a bit too much for me. Continue reading

Today’s Episode of Fareed Zakaria GPS: Interview with Mathew Hoh

Today’s Episode at this show was definitely worth watching. It shows that how the views of the American people are changing, which is the need of the hour, drastically regarding the issue of Afghanistan.

In the episode, the interview was conducted with Mathew Hoh, the first to resign from Afghanistan and is now of the opinion that the government too should realize that the war in Afghanistan would yield no results.

According to his opinion, the USA is in the middle of a civil war in Afghanistan, which has no end, and can only be seen with regret, lets say 4 years from now, when we would come to realize that there is no future to this war.

The statement that really stuck was the line that went something like this we now have to realize that the Soviet Union came in to stabilize the situation in a country which had been devastated by the constant civil war.

Mathew Hoh

The man of the hour - Mathew Hoh

It was interesting to note his observation regrading the difference in the situation in Afghanistan and Iraq. In Afghanistan according to him, there are two type of people, mostly those that are Pakhtun and living in the rural area, having a strong hold with their traditions, who just want to be left alone to their ownlifestlye. In Iraq, however, you had people that were feeling insecure and welcomed the allied forces. The people of Afghanistan are poor people, and thus the way and the new policies of the centeral government have only helped in increasing their negative perception about how the situation is being handled in this region.

His point of view about how in a population of 3 million, you can hardly stop a 100 or so people from joining a fringe group like the Al-Qaeda is also valid, to a point where the presence of the American forces or the increase of their numbers only help to justify the point of AL-Qaeda and their acts towards these troops.

A definite must watch episode.

The consequences of the War Technology

In my philosophy course, there was once a discussion about how the recent developments in the War technologies has made war more easy and horrendous.. not only from a technology point of view but also from a Psychological point of view.My teacher argued that now since we don’t get to see the impact of our action, the impact of killing a person is dramatically less than it might have been, lets say in the Crusades.

Last night during watching Vantage point there was a scene when the terrorist Mastermind is able to shoot at the President, make a bomb go away all while simply sitting somewhere and it makes one realize that war and attacks simply have become too easy now to make happen. They don’t require a guilt factor and they don’t make you suffer over killing someone since you are so far away that you are able to disassociate yourself with the reality of the ground.

The argument against this can always be that the media is now there to provide us with the visual link to what is happening far away and that we can see the impact literally unfolding before our eyes. That is true. It was much clear during the recent Palestine Conflict and it was therefore that there was such a huge support for the Palestine Cause and such a pressure to stop the attacks and they did work in making the conflict stop.

Btu then it is also the choice of the media what it chooses to show or not. Such a case in point is the drone attacks that have been happening in the North of our country, Pakistan for almost an year now. The drone attacks have killed more innocent people then thy have the terrorist and thus now brewing the new threat of a new wave of terrorist as a reaction to this.

The media however has not given much attention to this and thus although the headlines with a Google map showing the area of attack is visible to us but not the actual scene of the disaster is ever transmitted to us. Maybe that is why the cause “STOP THE DRONE ATTACKS” hasn’t been able to catch much dynamics. Continue reading

Islam, Taliban, Karachi and Me

As the threat of Islam grows increasingly in the backdrop of this country, it is becoming more and more a tool for many to use. It is shocking how groups and individuals within this group have been able to comprehend how they can use it for themselves.

No doubt about it that the events of Swat and the girl being flogged publicly is a great reason for my concern. With the amount of purdah clad increasing fanatically without any reason or know how of religion – thanks to the brain washing propaganda of Maulvi and the much supported project “Wahabism” of Saudi- the insanity has double-folded in the recent years.

In the Karachi University you would find it common for young people associated with Jamiat (student wing of Jamat-i-Islami) to take the responsibiltyof being moral police and deal in their own manner with the students that they think are indulging in “unislamic” activities. There is no one to ask them or check on their definitions of “islamic” and “unislamic”

Dance shows -reference to the recent cancellation of girls dance show at a cultural program in Larkana- are forcibly closed down in the name of Islam. Private Jirgas are being set up in universities in Sindh… But how much of this is happening with the Islamic Spirit or personnal interest in minds or as a result of some other social factors????

Then there is the threat of land mafia disgused cleaverly as Talibinization by MQM… according to their definition all Pathans and Afghans- settled on government lands without any proper documentations since the refugee influx during the afghan war- are now synonymous with Taliban and the MQM too like- any morally upright group of citizens – have taken it upon themselves to clear the “land(s)” of such a threat.

All said and done, Talibanization is a genuine threat – maybe a man-made (read USA) created threat – but it exists and is now too large to be controlled. Its ugly head is popping up ever so often from different places (currently Pakistan). But the threat needs to be seperated from these factors of self propogating righteous men.

Media has also turned out to be a threat in itself.. with the slogans of free media still fresh it is about time that they find out the truth behind these things instead of entertaining people by converting such events into a circus performance.

Freedom is not having the choice of whatever you want.. Freedom also means responisbility.