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Archive for June, 2017

London: Finsburry Park Mosque Attack, Dividing the World on Religious Lines by Sajjad Shaukat, International Author & Thought Leader

 

A man died and at least 11 people were injured in the early hours of Monday (June 19, 2017) morning after a van was rammed into a crowd of Muslims worshipers in Finsbury Park near a mosque in north London.

 

Eyewitnesses reported chaotic scenes, as the incident unfolded just after midnight when worshipers had just finished evening Ramadan prayers. They said that the driver shouted, “I want to kill all Muslims” before onlookers pinned him to the ground. He was protected from a crowd by an Imam and other Muslims who have been credited with saving his life.

The British Terrorist Darren Osborne

Next day, British police and media that a white man-47-year-old man, namely, Darren Osborne who has previously expressed hatred of Muslims was arrested by police on suspicion of attempted murder and of the terror offense. He was not known to the security services.

 

Earlier, the British police stated, the man who died was already being treated for an unrelated ailment and they are still investigating whether or not his death was related to the attack.

 

British Prime Minister Theresa May has vowed that that “hatred and evil of the kind seen in the terror attack on a London mosque will never succeed—every bit as insidious and destructive to our values and our way of life”, as recent terror attacks motivated by Islamist extremism.”

 

While warning the rise of Islamophobia, leader of the Labour party Jeremy Corbyn said, “I see it this is a terror on the streets…in the communities…We have to all reach out and feel their pain and their stress.”

 

The Guardian reported on June 20, this year, White supremacists celebrated the attack [On Muslim worshippers], according to the US extremist monitoring group Site. It also said pro-Islamic State channels were using reports of the incident to incite Muslims.”

 

According to the latest news, ISIS extremists operating online have used the terror attack outside a mosque in London to call for more violent assaults on the West in response.

 

Much has been written and said by writers and analysts of print and electronic media about the terror attacks in Finsbury Park near a mosque. On the social media, the opinion of some Christians, Jews, and Muslims are divided, while elaborating the tragedy in accordance with their own particular religious background. Prejudice is ruining so high against one another that by reading the name, some people of the opposite side ignore his views.

Zionist Controlled Western Media

Despite it, fact remains that we are living in a world of Zionist-controlled media which is very strong and whatever it releases by concealing the truth and propagating Israeli interests as part of the disinformation, impress the politicians and general masses in the whole world.

 

In this regard, scholars of international affairs agree that “foreign affairs are too foreign” to the citizens of a country. Renowned scholar Prof. Hoslti opines that “issues and situations” have “influence on public opinion” which in turn “influences the objectives and actions.”

In fact, the fault cannot be laid on the general masses, a majority of whom does not have much time to go in-depth. Hence, they are swayed by emotions, stereotypes, and prejudices created by the political leaders who keep on manipulating any crisis for their own self-interests with the sole aim of getting their sympathies to increase their vote bank. There are equally strong pressures from religious and nationalist forces in wake of fake global war on terror which is dividing the world into religious lines.

 

Therefore, terror attack on the Muslim worshippers in Finsbury Park cannot be seen in isolation. We need to analyze various related developments of the recent past and the present ones in the world and inside the UK to reach the conclusion.

 

It is notable that no party gain a clear majority in the general elections of the UK, which were held on June 8, 2017.

 

Jeremy Corbyn has declared his party the victors after addressing staff at Labour Party’s headquarter. Corbyn also repeated his call for the prime minister to resign.

 

On the other side, Conservative Party of Prime Minister May lost its majority and was eight seats short of a majority. Brushing aside the call of resignation, May has sought permission from the Queen to form a new government.

 

British analysts opined that there would not be a stable government, as the election results have shown. Instead, there would be hung Parliament in the UK.

Mossad’s Manchurian Candidates Arise

It was the right hour for the Israeli secret agency Mossad to arrange another terror assault in the UK, which targeted the Muslim worshippers in Finsbury Park near a mosque.

 

It is mentionable that at least 22 people were killed in a terror attack at Ariana Grande concert in Manchester on May 22, 2017.

 

British police said that the attack was carried out by a single suicide bomber, who also died. Afterward, the man who targeted the Ariana Grande gig has been named as 22-year-old Salman Abedi who was a British national and the child of Libyan refugees.

 

Ian Hopkins, the Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police stated, “Abedi was said to have been known to police and the intelligence agencies. British Prime Minister Theresa May said, “Salman Abadi may have been part of a bigger network.”

 

After the Manchester terror assault, British police had arrested several people in connection with the investigation, and some were released without charge. A Libyan pilot was also arrested as part of the investigation into the terror network behind Manchester bomber.

 

But, a German intelligence official stated that Abedi-the real culprit of the Manchester rampage flew from Istanbul to the UK via Dusseldorf’s international airport. A senior Turkish official disclosed that the Turkish government had already sent a file on Abedi to British authorities, but declined to discuss the details of the communication.

Following the Manchester carnage, Prime Minister May, the leader of the Conservative Party and Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labour Party, including Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron had suspended the campaigning for the general election.

 

On the social media, the ISIS claimed responsibility for the terror assault at Ariana Grande concert. Other ISIS supporters said online that the attack was revenge for the UK’s involvement in the bombing campaign against ISIL in Iraq and Syria. 

 

Similarly, seven people were killed and 48 persons injured in the terror attack on London Bridge and at the adjacent Borough Market on June 3, 2017.

 

According to the British police and media, a van driving at high speed mowed down pedestrians on London Bridge before the occupants got out and began stabbing patrons at nearby bars and restaurants at the adjacent Borough Market.

 

The terror attacks came days before the general election and two weeks after the Manchester tragedy. It was the third terrorist attack to strike the Great Britain, this year after a man drove a car into a pedestrian on Westminister Bridge in March. 

 

About the London terror assaults of June 3, the CNN disclosed on June 4, 2017, “The ISIS-linked Amaq Agency claimed a “detachment of Islamic State fighters” carried out the attack, but CNN terrorism analyst Paul Cruickshank cautions ISIS has provided no evidence to back up its claim. Amaq also claimed ISIS was behind the attack at a resort in Manila last week, despite Filipino authorities asserting it was not terror-related. A US counterterrorism source tells CNN that US intelligence is aware of the London claim. Mark Rowley, the assistant commissioner for specialist operations in the Metropolitan Police Service, says that authorities will “release the identities of the three men directly responsible for the attacks…as soon as operationally possible.” Police are searching four properties. As for the 12 arrests made during the Barking raids, one man, 55, has been released without charge.”

 

The Telegraph said on June 5, 2017, that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility for the London attacks on June 7. However, it was quite opposite to the report of CNN.

 

Earlier, British Prime Minister Theresa May warned that Britain is in the grip of a spate of copycat terror attacks in the wake of the London Bridge atrocity. She elaborated that for the second time, this election campaign, Mrs May who had just chaired a meeting of the Government’s Cobra emergency committee, stated that while the Manchester Ariana attack which killed 22 people, the Westminster attack in March which left four people dead and the London Bridge attack were not directly connected, there was now a “new trend” in the threat the UK faces.

 

She further remarked, “Terrorism breeds terrorism and perpetrators are inspired to attack, not only on the basis of carefully constructed plots after years of planning and training, and not even as lone attackers radicalized online, but by copying one another and often using the crudest of means of attack…We cannot and must not pretend that things can continue as they are. Things need to change…the recent attacks were all connected by “the single evil ideology of Islamist extremism that preaches hatred, sows division and promotes sectarianism”. Analysts and sources pointed out that her reference to the public sector meant that schools and other public bodies had to adopt a much stricter approach to extremism, while councils had to make sure they did not create ghettos by housing Muslims in areas where they become concentrated together.

 

Mrs May also added that the internet provided a “safe space” for extremists to spread their creed and plan attacks, and said it was time to “regulate cyberspace” through the sort of agreements she reached at the G7 summit in Italy recently, when leaders agreed to pile pressure on social media companies to block extremist material.

 

After the terror attacks on London Bridge and at Borough Market London, again, major parties of the Britain, temporarily, suspended the national election campaigning for the general elections which were held on June 8, this year.

 

Regarding London attacks, Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labour Party had said that Prime Minister May should resign—three days “before polling day may not seem particularly realistic. Corbyn also said, “The election might be a better way of removing her.”

 

It is notable that three days before the first round of France’s presidential elections, held on April 23, 2017, a French policeman was shot dead and two others were wounded in central Paris on April 20, 2017, when a gunman wielding a machine gun leapt out of a car and opened fire on the Champs-Elysees, Paris’s most famous boulevard. ISIS claimed that the attack was carried out by “Abu Yousuf al-Baljiki (the Belgian) and he is one of the Islamic State’s fighters.”

French Racism Promotion of Anti-Muslim Rhetoric and the Rise of Terrorism among French Isolated Minorities

In the aftermath of the shooting, the three main candidates canceled campaign events and instead made televised statements in which they competed to talk tough on security and vowed a crackdown on ISIS. The incident brought issues of terrorism, the French Muslims, security, and immigration back to the forefront of the campaign. Marine Le Pen demanded the closure of all Islamist mosques, repeating her call for Europe’s partly open borders to be closed. The centrist Emmanuel Macron was elected French president by defeating the ultra-nationalist and far-right candidate Marine Le Pen in the second round of the French presidential election.

 

Karim Cheurfi, a 39-year-old French national who was shot dead by the police was identified as the attacker.

 

In fact, terror attack at Champs-Elysees-Paris’s Boulevard was arranged by the Israeli Mossad with the assistance of the ISIS to ensure the victory of Macron in the French presidential elections. The pro-Israeli, the then French president-elect Emmanuel Macron who was having connections with Tel Aviv in the past will maintain the US-led status quo in the world and will further advance the Israeli agenda against Russia, China, Syria, Pakistan etc, and the Muslims, while further advancing the international forces of globalization, controlled by the wealthy Jews and the elite class at the cost of small countries and the poor class.

 

Recall that three days before the general elections in Spain, the train bombings in Madrid on March 11, 2004, which killed more than 200 people turned the election results in favour of Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero whose Socialist Party won the elections, as he had said that Spain where the “US war has been deeply unpopular”, would withdraw its troops from Iraq. While government led by the Prime Minister Jose Maria who staunchly supported the American-led war in Iraq lost the election. The victory of the Socialist Party in Spain was being called by some in Europe and America as a victory for terrorism, a precedent that offers Al-Qaeda or groups like it the notion that they can alter the democratic process with bombs and murder. A former member of the Spanish Parliament, Pedro Schwartz remarked, “Al-Qaeda won the election”.

 

As a matter of fact, the agents of Mossad who are in collaboration with the CIA sympathizers, Syrian rebel groups and the ISIL militants arranged terror attacks in Paris, Brussels, Orlando, San Bernardino, Nice, Munich, London (March 22, 2017), St. Petersburg (Metro train)  in Stockholm, in Manchester and again in London, and now at the London mosque. While, a gunman who went by the nickname Black Jesus was identied—39-year-old Kori Ali Muhammad, making militant comments on social media killed three white men in downtown Fresno, California, on April 18, 2017, and fired at another before he was taken into custody, while shouting “Allahu Akhbar,” as the Fresno police stated.

 

There is an interrelationship of the terror attacks in the US, Europe, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Philippines etc., and elsewhere in the world, which were false flag terror attacks, conducted by Mossad in connivance with the agents of Indian secret agency RAW and those of the vulnerable CIA operatives.

 

Through all these false flag terror operations, the US and Israel wanted to obtain their covert aims against Russia and the Muslims. Mossad had also provided the US President Donald Trump with an opportunity to manipulate various terror assaults of Europe and America to win the US presidential election and to reunite America and Europe, as a rift was created between America and its Western allies, especially Europe on a number of issues, including NATO. And, President Donald Trump had left no stone unturned in implementing anti-Muslim policies, while speaking openly against the Muslims and Syrian immigrants. 

 

It is noteworthy that since September 2015, Russian-led coalition of Iran, Iraq, the Syrian army the National Defense Forces (NDF) and Lebanon-based Hezbollah in support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has been achieving successes in Syria and Iraq by retaking several regions from the occupation of the CIA-Mossad led rebel groups and ISIS militants after their failure to topple the Assad government—proving links of Al-Qaeda’s Al-Nusra Front and ISIS with America and Israel, Mossad with the cooperation of some CIA agents started terrorism-related attacks in the US and Europe. Meanwhile, the CIA-Plan B for partition of Syria also failed. Moscow also exposed smuggling of oil supply by the ISIL-controlled areas to Europe and silence of their governments in this connection. In this regard, Russian Presidents Vladimir Putin’s successful diplomacy surprised the Israel-led America and some European countries who still want to oust the Assad regime to obtain the greater interests of Israel.

 

In response, taking note of various developments and some other ones such as reluctance of NATO countries to support America’s fake global war on terror,  acceptance of Syrian refugees by the European countries, especially Germany, criticism of the controversial Turkish-EU refugee deal by a number of human rights groups, the EU rule to boycott goods produced in Israeli settlements on the West Bank, Britain’s decision to leave the European Union (EU), after the referendum (Brexit) on June 24, 2016, prospects of Scotland and some other countries for separation from the EU, and the divide between the elite class which run multinational companies with the direct or indirect control of the Jews and the general masses who are suffering from multiple problems in wake of differences on the refugee crisis, Syrian war, Greece’s weak economy, violent protests against the labour laws in France etc.—the chances of European Union’s disintegration and a rift among the NATO countries, as noted in the recent past by the “Stop NATO protests in Europe were quite opposite to the Israeli secret interests. Hence, Israeli Mossad which was in collaboration with the vulnerable CIA operatives organized terror assaults in the US and Europe. As part of the double game, these terror attacks were conducted by these secret agencies, particularly Mossad with the assistance of the ISIS terrorists who used the home-grown terrorists of these countries.

 

Owing to the irresponsible approach of the Western leaders and their media, far right-wing parties and “Stop Islam” movement in the West, especially in Europe has been becoming popular by largely attracting their people. Right-wing parties in a growing number of European countries have made electoral gains. The right-wing parties range across a wide policy spectrum, from populist and nationalist to far-right neofascist.

 

Other aims of Tel Aviv was to muster the support of America’s Western allies against Russia in relation to the Syrian war, as US-led countries like France, UK also started airstrikes in Syria and Iraq, under the cover of targeting ISIL.

 

Trump’s Extremist Anti-Muslim Islamophobia

 

When American President Trump’s extremist policies were strongly criticized inside America and around the world, including particularly her Western allies, his advisers, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, neoconservatives and Israeli-backed officials directed him to implement dual strategy of Bush and Obama, with the aim to keep America and Western allies, particularly Europe united against Syria, Russia, China, Pakistan etc., while covertly continuing anti-Muslim rhetoric so as to safeguard the interests of Tel Aviv.

 

Nonetheless, Israel succeeded in its sinister designs. Notably, backing out from his earlier statements, American President Trump has changed his policy regarding Europe and NATO. In this context, he stated on April 13, 2017, that US relations with Russia may be at “an all-time low” and declared a new-found faith in NATO, suggesting the alliance was “no longer obsolete”. Besides, US President Donald Trump attended a summit of NATO nations, held on May 25, 2017, in Brussels. He also met leaders of NATO and those of EU. His trip to the European countries came in wake of the deadly attack in Manchester. Talking to the Belgium prime minister, Trump said that countries would work together to defeat various problems and “new one is terrorism.”

 

Here, it is mentionable that Machiavelli advises the rulers to have a lion-like image outwardly, and act upon the traits of goat inwardly. He also suggests them foreign adventures and the use of terror to obtain their goals. In his sense, a good ruler should be a good opportunist and hypocrite. While echoing Machiavelli, Morgenthau points out that sometimes, rulers act upon immoral activities like deceit, fraud, falsehood and even murder to fulfill their selfish aims.

Trump Lies and Duplicity

Now, Trump has begun acting upon the discarded theory of the past in the modern era. It could be judged from the recent trip of Trump to the Middle East. Backing out from his earlier statements—banning the Muslims from entering the United States, vetting of the Muslims—blocking visas being issued to anyone from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen—strict conditions for the citizens from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Lebanon, in Saudi Arabia, in his address at a regional summit in Riyadh, on May 22, 2017, President Donald Trump called for “Muslim unity in the fight against terrorism…a battle between good and evil…U.S. wants a coalition of nations who share the aim of stamping out extremism…This is a battle between barbaric criminals who seek to obliterate human life, and decent people of all religions who seek to protect it,” as he elaborated.

 

Like Bush and Obama, Trump described Islam as “a religion of peace” and did not use the contentious phrase “radical Islamic terrorism,” as he frequently has in US speeches. Instead, he called on the Muslim leaders to honestly confront “the crisis of Islamist extremism and the Islamist terror groups.”

 

Setting aside the Israeli-led US state terrorism and CIA-backed terror in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Yemen and other vulnerable Islamic countries, Trump singled out Iran, accusing Tehran of contributing to instability in the region. He supposedly said, “From Lebanon to Iraq to Yemen, Iran funds, arms and trains terrorists, militias and other extremist groups that spread destruction and chaos across the region.” Keeping Israeli hidden agenda in his mind, Trump also stated that all the Muslim nations should boycott Iran, and also pledged to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for peace of the region.

 

Trump’s address was a mixture of calls for Israeli-Arab peace and a defense of Israel from threats in the region, including from the groups allied with the Palestinian cause.

 

On May 21, 2017, Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Trump signed a defense deal of nearly $110 billion agreement to bolster the military capabilities of Saudi Arabia. The defense deal, effective immediately, was one of the series agreements the two countries signed to enhance their military and economic partnerships, including a second defense pact with options valued up to $350 billion over the next 10 years. In fact, by keeping the Iranian phobia, the major purpose of Trump’s visit was to sell America arms to Saudi Arabia.

 

President Trump also encouraged NATO-like alliance of Saudi Arabia, which includes the Sunni countries against Shia states, especially Iran and Yemen. It was formed on the instructions of Washington. As after the US-led invasion of the Afghanistan, Iraq, airstrikes on Libya and promotion of war in Syria have been clearly exposed, therefore, America revived the old phony global war on terror to secure the illegitimate interests of Tel Aviv, whose major aim was to deceive the Muslims.

 

President Donald Trump pledged on May 23, 2017, at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem that he would work for an Israeli-Palestinian peace, while, protecting the region from Iran and other threats. He stated, “Israelis have experienced firsthand the hatred and terror of radical violence…Hamas and Hezbollah launch rockets into Israeli communities…The United States is firmly committed to keeping Iran from developing a nuclear weapon…America’s security partnership with Israel is stronger than ever.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Trump and his wife, daughter, and son-in-law for visiting the Western Wall before saying Israel must always be able to defend itself against any threat.

 

Trump met earlier in the day with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Bethlehem and came back to Jerusalem insisting that a peace deal is possible.

 

All this reminds that before attacking Iraq in 2013, British Prime Minister Tony Blair and the US President Bush had announced the Road Map to the Middle East so as to please the Islamic World that Palestinian-Israeli issue would be settled. But no progress took place in that respect.

 

It is also of particular attention that on June 5, this year, six Arab countries including Saudi Arabia and Egypt cut diplomatic ties with Qatar for allegedly supporting terrorism. Trump also raised similar false allegations in connection with Qatar. While Saudi Arabian king who wants to save the kingdom of the country has been creating division and divide between the Muslim countries on the basis of Shia and Sunni. In fact, America and Israel are diverting the attention of the international community from their own state terrorism and terrorism-related attacks in the world. 

Despite the revival of the fake global war on terror, some developments disappointed the Israelis. In this regard, Russia-Turkey alliance to fight the ISIS, and US decision to dispatch more troops in Afghanistan where America and its NATO allies have entangled in the prolonged war of history, which has, rapidly, increased the cost of war, bringing about multiple internal crises, affecting the ordinary Americans and Western citizens, particularly those of Europe might be cited as example. Besides, differences between the Britain and the US about Manchester terror attack—probe of Trump that the US intelligence agencies already knew it, Trump’s criticism of Germany regarding trade, conduction of missile test by North Korea, failure of Thump’s war-like diplomacy against the latter and waning of Russia and China to America in this regard also depressed the Israelis.

Israel’s Set-Backs

Notably, on June 8, 2017, the Russian Defense Ministry said that it is checking on information, indicating that the Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was reportedly killed in a Russia-led airstrike in Syria. However, this incident further disappointed the Israelis.

The Russian Meddling in US Election in Support of Donald Trump

Moreover, US intelligence agencies, especially FBI has continued the so-called investigation that Russia and President Putin authorized the hacking in the November 8 US presidential election aimed to help Donald Trump to win it. Both Putin and Trump have denied the charges. In this connection, differences between CIA and FBI also frustrated Tel Aviv.

 

Especially, Tel Aviv wants to intensify the new Cold War between the US-led West and Russia so as to avoid the two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute, as some European countries have been emphasizing on Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to stop the expansion of West Bank settlements and restart a negotiation process for the two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute in wake of the debate between the Zionists and non-Zionist Jews in relation to the two-state solution of the issue.

 

Earlier, on January 15, 2016, France who is a staunch supporter of the two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian issue conducted a summit in Paris which was attended by 70 nations. In a statement, delegates at the summit also restated their commitment to the two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and emphasized on them to restart negotiations. Palestinians welcomed the conference, but Israel called it “rigged”.

 

As regards the new Cold War, ABC News (Wire Service News) pointed out on June 14, 2017, “The U.S. has deployed a truck-mounted missile system into Syria, an official said Wednesday, to a forward operating group of rebels and U.S. military advisers that have repeatedly clashed with government forces. The deployment raises the stakes in eastern Syria, where Iranian-sponsored pro-government forces have outflanked U.S. advisers and rebels holding the Tanf border crossing to establish their own link to Iraq for the first time in years.”

 

Taking note of America’s ineffective diplomacy in Syria, by violating the international law, an American fighter jet shot down a Syrian warplane on June 18, this year. In reaction, Russia has shut down a communication line with its US counterparts in Syria, threatening to target any aircraft including US aircraft operating, above Russian and Syrian regime-controlled territory in the country. Under the guise of combating terrorism, on June 20, 2017, a US fighter jet also shot down an armed Iranian drone in southern Syria.

 

The Hindu Fundamentalism of PM Narendra Modi and BJP

 

It is also of particular attention that by pursuing the double standards of America in its worst form, Trump also intends to favor India, while opposing the nuclear weapons of Pakistan. However, like Obama, Trump has brushed aside the ground realities that Indian Prime Minister Modi-led by the ruling fundamentalist party BJP has been implementing anti-Muslim and anti-Pakistan agenda while encouraging Hindutva (Hindu nationalism).

CIA-MOSSAD-RAW -The Axis of Evil in Covert & BlackOPS

As part of the double game, based in Afghanistan, operatives of CIA, RAW and  Mossad which have well-established their collective secret network there, and are well-penetrated in the terrorist outfits like ISIS, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and their affiliated Taliban groups are using their terrorists to destabilize Tibetan regions of China, Iranian Sistan-Baluchistan and Pakistan by arranging the subversive activities. In this context, China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is their special target. Recent acts of terrorism in Afghanistan and Pakistan’s Balochistan are part of the same scheme.

 

Although Mossad was behind terror attacks in Madrid and at Champs-Elysees, Boulevard to affect the election results, as already mentioned, yet the case of the latest terror assaults in Britain is a little bit different, though having similar purposes of Tel Aviv.

 

 

 

 

According to a report of Telegraph, “Landmark study shows the number of children under five being brought up as Muslim rose 80 per cent in a decade while three-quarters of Muslims in the UK identify themselves solely as British…The number of children…in what experts have described as an “unprecedented” shift in Britain’s social make-up. One in 12 schoolchildren in England and Wales are now officially classed as Muslim after a decade which saw the number of followers of Islam surge by just over 1.1 million, according to the most detailed study of its kind ever published. The report, presented to Parliament, concludes that Muslims could play a decisive role in the coming general election…making up a significant share of voters in some of the most marginal seats in the country. Significantly, Muslims make up more than a fifth of the population in 26 parliamentary constituencies and around 50 per cent in some areas. There are also 70 council wards with a Muslim population of 40 percent or more…This statistic highlights the diversity in modern Britain and the need that this is reflected in all spheres of life, from top management opportunities to political representation.”

 

In the meantime, last year, the success of first Muslim Pakistan’s origin Sadiq Khan as mayor of London by defeating the Conservative rival Zac Goldsmith-a wealthy Jew who was supported by the former British Prime Minister David Cameron also depressed the Israelis. In the May 2015, the number of Muslim MPs in Britain increased from eight to 13.

 

Now, a total of 16 Muslims, including a dozen British Pakistanis, have won UK Parliamentary elections of 2017 to become members of the House of Commons on mainly Labour and Conservative tickets.

 

Unlike the other European countries, Britain has strongly favored American policies. By bypassing the UN Security Council, Anglo-American invasion of Iraq might be cited as an instance. As regards the anti-Muslim policy of the UK, on January 18, 2015, while singling out only Muslim women British Prime Minister David Cameron had announced that Muslim women who fail to learn English to a high enough standard could face deportation from Britain. He also suggested that poor English skills can leave people “more susceptible to the messages of groups like Islamic State (IS).”  His biased statement was firmly criticized by the Muslim MPs and some members of his own party.

 

Therefore, either it is Conservative Party or Labour Party, which, usually, wins the election; it does not matter, as both the parties are pro-American. Interestingly, both were trying to win the support of the Muslim voters for the recent election.

 

It is noteworthy that, taking cognizance of the growing threat of global terrorism which has been dividing the Western and Islamic nations into cultural and religious lines since 9/11, American and European governments had already started an inter-faith dialogue, especially between the Christian and Muslim nations. The main aim of such a dialogue was to create interfaith harmony among various religious communities. In the recent years, many conferences were held in various countries in which scholars from Islamic states also participated with a view to creating cultural understanding and interfaith cooperation among major religious communities. But, all these measures proved fruitless due to a deliberate anti-Muslim campaign, launched by the Indo-Israeli lobbies, resulting in obstacles in global interfaith harmony. America and its allies continued to kill many innocent civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir, and Palestine through heavy aerial bombardment and ground shelling in the name of the war on terror. The occupying forces have been using every possible technique of state terrorism in these territories which have become the breeding grounds of a prolonged interaction between freedom fighters and state terrorists, thwarting global interfaith harmony.

Indo-Israeli Lobby

It is because of these developments that a greater resentment is being found among the Muslims who think that the US in connivance with the Indo-Israeli lobbies is sponsoring state terrorism, directly or indirectly from Kashmir to Palestine.

‘Working for India or against Islam? Islamophobia in Indian American Lobbies’

In this context, on October 19, 2007, the special issue of South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal, under the caption-‘Working for India or against Islam? Islamophobia in Indian American Lobbies’ had written, “In the past few years, Indian American community has gained an unprecedented visibility in the international arena and now constitutes influential ethnic lobbies in Washington. Among other factors, Hindu aligned with Jewish pressure groups in relation to the war against terrorism and to further the India-Israel-US strategic partnership play a major role in exaggerating Islamophobic overtones in the Indian American lobbies”.

 

Another regrettable point is that irresponsible attitude of Indian, Israeli and some Western politicians have introduced dangerous socio-religious dimension in their societies by equating the “war on terror” with “war on Islam” and acts of Al Qaeda with all the Muslims. Their media have also been contributing to heighten the currents of world politics on cultural and religious lines with the negative projection of Islam.

 

Anyhow, through the terror attacks in the UK before the general election, the major aim of Mossad was to affect the election campaign. And, through the terror assault by a white man at Muslims worshipers in Finsbury Park near the mosque, Mossad’s real purpose is to create a division of the world on religious lines, particularly between the Christians of the Western World and the Muslim World. For these sinister designs, Mossad, RAW, and CIA operatives have also been assisting ISIS and Al Qaeda and similar terror outfits which have accepted responsibility in relation to various terrorism-related attacks on Christians in Egypt and some African countries, including Pakistan.

 

While, like other European countries, especially France, Mossad wanted to accelerate persecution of Muslims, hate-crime against them and also to compel the Britain to make discriminatory laws against them. So, besides other terror attacks in the UK, the latest one is part of the same policy of Israel, implemented by Mossad.  

 

However, like Trump, Israeli rulers have also been confused due to the above-mentioned developments which do not favor Israel like the past, while, still some CIA agents, Indian RAW and particularly Mossad want to divide the world into religious lines. Like Tel Aviv, India also wants to keep its control on the Occupied Kashmir through state terrorism and to avoid its solution.

 

Although overtly President Trump has softened his external policy regarding Muslims and Islamic countries, yet covertly, he is acting upon the conspiracy of Mossad and RAW, which is, intentionally or intentionally, being followed by America’s Western partners against the Muslims. If not checked in time by the peace-loving Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Jews and Buddhists, these policies of the President Donald Trump who is particularly completing the extremist agenda of Israel are likely to result in more recruitment in the militant outfits, especially in the ISIS group, inspiring the extremist Muslims for more terrorism-related attacks. Israel, who will never accept the two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian issue, will prefer to seek the final revenge by bringing about a major war between the Muslim and the Christian worlds or to cause a major war between Russia and the US-led some Western countries, which will convert the entire world into a holocaust.

We may conclude that although agents of RAW and CIA are in a collaboration which managed terrorism-related assaults in the US and Europe and elsewhere in the world, yet Mossad is, particularly behind terror attacks in America and Europe. So, undoubtedly, Mossad is, again and again, targeting the UK through ISIS. The latest terror attack which was conducted by a white man on the Muslims worshipers in Finsbury Park near a mosque in north London clearly proves that especially Mossad seems determined to divide the world into religious lines.

 

Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: The US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations

 

Email: sajjad_logic­_pak@hotmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

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NADRAGate: The terrifying cable that should not be ignored by Waqas Ahmed in https://en.dailypakistan.com.pk/

NADRAGate: The terrifying cable that should not be ignored

In 2010-11, Wikileaks released a trove of classified US govt data which consisted of communications between Washington and her embassies worldwide – this was called Cablegate.Cablegate consisted of more than 250,000 US diplomatic cables – an overwhelming amount of data. In the same year (2011) Pakistani journalists published a story about one cable of particular interest: #09ISLAMABAD1642_a, classified ‘secret’ by US govt.

There was some noise about this cable back then, but the public quickly forgot it and it remained forgotten till a few days ago when Wikileaks tweeted about it and reminded us.

 

 

This particular cable details a series of meetings held in 2009 between the then Interior Minister of Pakistan, Rehman Malik, the President of Pakistan, Asif Zardari, and the Prime Minister of Pakistan Yousaf Raza Gilani with US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano. The purpose of these meetings, from the US side at least, was to “Offer DHS assistance to enhance Pakistan’s border security and [seek] GOP views on an arrangement under which DHS would provide the Government of Pakistan (GOP) with technology to access and analyze Advance Passenger Information (API) and Passenger Name Record (PNR) data on passengers flying to and from Pakistan, in return for DHS getting access to the data.

What is API and PNR?

Advance Passenger Information is, in simple terms, information about the passenger who is traveling overseas. Suppose you are traveling to UAE, a country that requires API from Pakistani passengers, you will need to provide the following data about yourself prior to boarding your flight:

  • Full name
  • Passport number, issuing country, and expiration date
  • Gender
  • Date of birth
  • Nationality

This information will be connected to your PNR, which is a unique ID identifying you as a passenger on a flight. This information will be received by your destination country so they could investigate your past criminal history (if any) before they allow you in that country. To do that, they will use yourAPIinformation to search their own country’s database and check if you are clean or not. Without connecting API to the database of a host country, API is useless.

United States DHS, in the cable under discussion, wanted to provide us with such a tool which would connect API to NADRA database for the purpose of analysis, and in theory, give us a heads-up if a terrorist was traveling to or from our country. The United States, it seems benevolently, wanted to give us this technology for free – with only one catch: they would be able to access the data from our side. And not just the data of passengers traveling from the US to Pakistan or vice versa, they would be able to access data of passengers from all countries going to and from Pakistan. To make it all useful, the API technology would have to be connected to NADRA database, therefore, in a way US would also get an interface to NADRA database.

Why was US pushing for API technology?

The US was pushing Pakistan to install this technology for the obvious reason that they wanted the data. It is a good rule-of-thumb to remember that if something supposedly valuable is being given to you for free, you must be doubly suspicious.

But there was something else that was going on at that time.

At that time Pakistan was in the process of phasing out an old system provided to NADRA by an American company for a similar purpose. That system was called‘Personal Identification Secure Comparison and Evaluation System (PISCES). NADRA aimed to phase out that system by 2011 and instead install a new indigenously made one: Integrated Border Management System (IBMS).

PISCES was installed in 1999-2002 when Lt Gen (r) Moinuddin Haider was the Interior Minister under Musharraf’s govt. But listen to this: While IBMS cost us around Rs421 million to implement, PISCES was free. Why?

Here is a clue: PISCES was made by US firm Booz Allen Hamilton. Booz Allen Hamilton was Snowden’s employer for those of you who can’t recall where you heard that name. Booz Allen Hamilton was an NSA contractor and that is enough to reach the conclusion that PISCES had a backdoor that allowed US to access all Pakistani data connected to it. Moinuddin Haider rubbished, at that time, any claims that PISCES had a backdoor – but in hindsight after Snowden leaks, it is highly improbable that PISCES was clean. Another clue is that US State dept wanted to give us $42 million (free) to upgrade and maintain PISCES and abandon all attempts to make something similar on our own. Here is an Express Tribune article (which was affiliated with New York Times at that time) telling us why IBMS sucks in comparison to PISCES.

The shady dealings with PPP govt of Asif 

When US was pushing API on us, we were getting rid of PISCES, and I suspect, it was because of this exact reason API was being pushed on us.

How did the PPP-led govt react to that? While the behavior of PPP govt remains highly suspect, we can see in the same cable that Rehman Malik was being very slippery in his dealings with Ms. Napolitano.

According to the cable: On API/PNR, Interior Minister Malik assured the Secretary privately that the GOP wanted to be helpful, but in the meeting with his subordinates asked for information on model agreements, legal frameworks and precedents the Ministry could use to persuade those in the GOP worried about privacy rights and possible legal challenges in the courts to API/PNR data sharing. The GOP agreed to host future DHS visitors to continue discussions on API/PNR and border security. It is obvious that while Rehman Malik was being cooperative in front of US govt, he also wanted to protect his own behind and was trying to be extremely careful.

Not only that, the PPP govt at every turn tried to get something out of the US in return and in a way put a price on the private data of Pakistani citizens. In every meeting they tried to couple PNR/API issue with: Pakistani textile exports to US, non-stop PIA flights to US, and a few hundred Pakistani students receiving scholarships in the US. Rehman Malik also tried to make excuses by saying that overreaching Pakistani judiciary would never allow such a thing.

On the other hand, Napolitano was even more stubborn:
Secretary Napolitano responded that the United States now wishes to deal with non-stop flights separately from the issue of API/PNR data exchange, and explained that enhanced access to API/PNR data is of direct benefit to Pakistan as well as to the United States. Prime Minister Gilani echoed Zardari’s comments on PNR, stating that, although the Interior Ministry is considering the U.S. request, to “do the whole world” will be difficult. To Gilani’s statement that Pakistan had been promised non-stop flights in return for buying Boeing aircraft in 2004, Secretary Napolitano was clear that flights will be dealt with as a separate issue, not as an exchange.

While in all these discussions the pretext is Pakistani border security, it is obvious that both parties know exactly what is going on: That the US wants Pakistani data, and Pakistan, while not unwilling to provide access to that data, wants a ‘consideration’, i.e something in return. And without any potential political blowback.

Make no mistake, at no point did Rehman Malik or Gilani or Zardari say an outright “NO”. They wanted to put some sort of price on this invaluable data, something that would protect them from political repercussions. However, it seems that these discussions did not bear any fruits at that time. We don’t know the reason – there is no cable that follows up on this one.

Enter another shadowy company: International Identity Services (IIS)

On September 6, 2011, The News published a report that NADRA was out sourcing its UK operations to a private company. This news in itself would’ve been outrageous but the details were even more so: IIS was headed by an unnamed person with a criminal history. Not only that, but NADRA officials maintained that NADRA was working with the company since 2009, when in fact IIS was created the very same year, and maybe for the very same purpose.

IIS was formed in 2009, and closed its operations in just 5 years.
IIS was formed in 2009 and closed its operations in just 5 years.

There could be two reasons for such a discrepancy: Either some officials at NADRA or Interior Ministry were planning to receive kickbacks from that company made by someone close to them, or this company was a front for NSA/CIA/GCHQ. IIS, even more suspiciously, stopped its operations in 2014 – in just 5 years and disappeared off the face of this earth.

Is NADRA data safe?

In short: NO, NADRA data is not safe. Even one outsourced company or country that can access NADRA database through any interface can potentially steal the whole database. They might not even have to steal because we have people in our government, supposedly custodians of our national interests, willing to sell such invaluable national asset such as the database of the whole populace in exchange for pennies then all bets are off. We do not know, and we may never know, how much of our data has been compromised. But one thing we know for sure is that we cannot trust our government, elected or otherwise.

One thing we see in the cable is that Rehman Malik and Co were afraid of public outrage. When this cable first surfaced, there was little to no great public backlash. If there is no adverse reaction, future governments may get bold. Let’s make sure that there is no such misunderstanding between public representatives and the public. Wikileaks has given us another chance to consider our reactions against those who claim to represent us but actually do not. Let’s give it to them.

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Waqas Ahmed

Waqas Ahmed

Waqas Ahmed is Editor, Digital Media, at Daily Pakistan Global. You can reach him at waqas@dailypakistan.com.pk

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The siege of Qatar isn’t working

 

 

The siege of Qatar isn’t working

The tiny emirate is well placed to hold out for a good while yet
 WHAT is it like to be under siege in Qatar? For a sense of the hardship, consider the tongue-in-cheek Twitter feed @DohaUnderSiege. It reports that at the Four Seasons hotel in Doha, the capital, the chocolate fountain has “slowed to a drizzle”; some guests are hoarding caviar; and “escape yachts” are being prepared.
The actual privation is about as trifling. In terms of GDP per head, Qatar is one of the world’s richest countries. After it was cut off by its neighbours in the Gulf on June 5th, there was a brief shortage of milk and poultry, as some locals squirrelled away food. But the supermarkets are again fully stocked. Shoppers may look twice at the new Turkish labels on their dairy products, but there is no urgent need for the 4,000 cows that a patriotic businessman plans to airlift in.
Several Arab countries, led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), hoped to isolate Qatar over allegations that it foments regional unrest, funds terrorism and is too close to Iran—all charges it denies. But their two-week-old blockade has so far had the opposite effect. Turkey has stepped in to supply most of the food that used to come overland from Saudi Arabia. Iran and Morocco are sending more. The government has also reached a deal with Oman that will give incoming ships an alternative to using Emirati ports.
Qatar did not trade all that much with its neighbours even before they closed their borders. Most of its lucrative oil and gas exports go to Asia and are flowing out as normal—so the economy, boosted by public spending on infrastructure, should continue growing. Qatar is “extremely comfortable” with its financial position, says Ali Sherif al-Emadi, the finance minister. Its foreign-currency savings equal 250% of its GDP (twice the level of Saudi Arabia), so it can withstand any pressure on its currency. After taking an early hit, Qatar’s financial markets have stabilised.
There is still some cause for worry in Doha. New trade routes may take longer and cost more. Fitch, a credit-rating agency, has put Qatar on a negative watch and foreign investors remain spooked. Banks may find it harder to get financing, which could dampen the credit growth that fuelled the economy in recent years. Qatar Airways, which just announced record profits, has been bruised by the decision of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the UAE to ban it from their airspace. Doha’s stature as an air hub is now in question.
But if Saudi Arabia and the UAE hoped to cause so much pain that Qatar gave in to their demands, their ploy has so far failed. The Qataris insist that they do not even know what their accusers want. They deny supporting extremists or Islamists (though they harbour quite a few of them and recently asked some to leave). They claim that other Gulf states, such as the UAE, also have close ties to Iran. And they have questioned a list drawn up by Saudi Arabia and the UAE of 59 people and 12 groups with links to both Qatar and terrorism. Some are based elsewhere and have links to Saudi Arabia as well.
What most upsets Saudi Arabia and the UAE is Qatar’s refusal, over two decades, to toe the line laid down by the bigger powers. Al Jazeera, its satellite-TV channel, promotes dissident, often Islamist, viewpoints. It cheered on Arab revolutionaries in 2011, as the rest of the Gulf watched in fear. Saudi Arabia and the UAE, meanwhile, fund old-fashioned strongmen, such as Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi in Egypt. The current dispute “is one more battle of the Arab spring”, says Ibrahim Fraihat of the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies.
Efforts by Kuwait and others to mediate have gone nowhere. As a next step, the Saudis and Emiratis have threatened to cut off firms that do business with Qatar. But destabilising the Gulf in this way will also hurt their own economies. “I think if we’re going to lose a dollar they will lose a dollar also,” says Mr Emadi.
So far Qatar has remained calm, while trying to rally international support. It has not responded in kind to the expulsion of Qatari citizens by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the UAE. The Qatari media have been told not to stir the pot. The government has even hired the law firm of John Ashcroft, a former American attorney-general, to audit its efforts at cutting off terrorists’ funds.
The roots of the conflict run deep and neither side is feeling much pressure, so a stalemate has set in. No one expects it to be resolved soon; but in the end it is still the Qataris who have the most to lose.
This article appeared in the Middle East and Africa section of the print edition under the headline “With a little help from its friends”

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Inspired political instability in Pakistan by Brig.(Retd)Asif Haroon Raja

Inspired political instability in Pakistan

Asif Haroon Raja

 

 

 

 

On October 11, 1999, a democratically elected government of PML-N was toppled by the military under Gen Pervez Musharraf. Nawaz Sharif (NS) was jailed and awarded life sentence on charges of hijacking and terrorism. Saudi Arabia came to his rescue and he was exiled for ten years. Benazir Bhutto (BB) was already in self-imposed exile. The Supreme Court legitimized military rule and authorized Musharraf to amend the constitution to his liking. With two mainstream leaders in exile, it became easy for Musharraf to carve out a King’s Party comprising turncoats from PML-N and PPP by applying coercive and blackmailing tactics.

Pakistan came under the black star after 9/11 when Musharraf agreed to become a coalition partner of US-NATO, render assistance to topple friendly Taliban regime in Afghanistan, and to help in installing the US selected Northern Alliance regime led by Hamid Karzai, which became anti-Pakistan and pro-India. Pakistan also agreed to become a frontline State to fight US imposed war on terror. Musharraf and his team didn’t realize that Afghanistan had been occupied by the USA under a preplanned strategy to destabilize the region and achieve its geostrategic and geo-economic objectives and that Pakistan was not an ally but a target.

Since then, Afghanistan is being bled by the occupying forces and the collaborators and Pakistan bled through proxies and drones. Pakistan has been striving hard to combat the existential threat of terrorism, achieve political stability, and improve its economy and to sail towards the shores of safety, security, progress, and prosperity. Terrorism couldn’t be eliminated since the ones demanding the elimination of terrorism secretly support terror groups in Pakistan and seek destabilization of Pakistan to achieve their hidden objectives.  

The socio-politico-economic situation became abysmal during the five years rule of the PPP under Zardari. The coalition of PPP-MQM-ANP installed by USA-UK in March 2008 with an ulterior motive reduced the country to a carcass. The rot was stymied when NS led PML-N government took over power in June 2013.

Improvement of internal security and the economy as a result of dedicated operations in Karachi, FATA and Baluchistan, better financial management and forthcoming CPEC couldn’t be digested by adversaries of Pakistan since it hampered their agenda of disabling Pakistan’s nuclear program. Likewise, development driven agenda didn’t suit the politicians in opposition.

A well-orchestrated hate campaign was unleashed by politicians, lobbies, media and social media against NS within one year of his rule to discredit him. Vilification campaign and demand for accountability should have been logically directed against massive wrongdoings of Zardari and company and anti-Pakistan MQM under Altaf working on RAW-MI-6 agenda, the effects of which are still being borne by the people of Pakistan.

Instead, the tirade has remained focused on ruling PML-N regime which has lifted all economic indicators from negative to positive, stabilized macro economy and restored the health of the sick economy to some degree. It has pulled out the country from the worst energy crisis and hopefully by March 2018 it would overcome power shortages. The lawless regions of FATA, parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Baluchistan and Karachi have been made stable and peaceful and the genie of terrorism controlled to quite an extent. Large numbers of mega development projects are in progress and foreign investment that had dried up is flowing in. Socio-economic deprivations of smaller provinces are likely to be addressed by the game-changing CPEC. Pakistan’s image that had sunk low has risen among the world comity and it has again become relevant.

While the ruling government has made substantial progress in the last 4 years, however, a lot is still to be done. Pakistan is still not out of the woods since internal and external security situation is tense, debt burden and trade deficit have increased and exports have dwindled. One reason that Pakistan has not overcome its multiple difficulties is the negative role of detractors within Pakistan that have constantly been creating hurdles in the way of progress and development. Secondly, PPP-led Sindh government is not serious in carrying out reforms and controlling corruption which is bleeding Karachi, the economic lifeline of Pakistan. Thirdly, RAW, NDS, CIA, Mossad, MI-6 nexus based in Afghanistan continues to abet terrorism in Pakistan and induce political instability.

Turning a deaf ear to the impressive progress made, power hungry and disgruntled politicians assisted by media downplay the positives by finding faults in development projects and drum beat the weak areas. They are leaving no stone unturned to disparage the image of NS and block the progress through negative tactics. This phenomenon of vilification campaign and impeding growth and development is not new.

Awami League led by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and PPP under ZA Bhutto disturbed law and order situation by resorting to street agitation to overturn the stupendous all-round developments made by Ayub Khan during his 10-years rule. Economically and militarily strong Pakistan was unacceptable to the adversaries of Pakistan. After forcing Ayub Khan to resign, the duo deliberately created a political logjam for politically naïve Gen Yahya Khan. By tearing up Polish resolution at the UN, Bhutto made sure that the armed forces suffered immense humiliation at the hands of archrival India. Mujib and Bhutto were instrumental in the breakup of Pakistan into two in 1971. All this was done at the behest of foreign powers to cut Pakistan and its armed forces to size.

While Sheikh Mujib had galvanized Bengali nationalism by blaming West Pakistan for the backwardness of East Pakistan and had promised the moon to the Bengalis, Bhutto cast a spell of magic on the downtrodden people of West Pakistan by chanting the slogan of Roti, Kapra, Makan. Both brought people on the streets to paralyze and derail the system. Both lacked sincerity of purpose and their sole ambition was to gain power. While Mujib wanted the whole cake, Bhutto wanted half of it. Lust for power overrode national interests.

ZA Bhutto during his 7 years rule became a dictator. To curb political dissent, he created FSF and opened Dalai camp to torture his opponents. He washed away the gains made by Ayub Khan through his highly anomalous policy of nationalization which gave a deathly blow to the burgeoning industry of Pakistan, banking, and education. Indiscipline was inculcated by Bhutto by inciting the labor and working class to rebel against their employers. He misled the masses by blaming 22 rich families for keeping Pakistan backward. He ignored the hard fact that Indian leaders had predicted that Pakistan would collapse within six months under the weight of economics. Pakistan developed its economic legs to stand on because of the financial assets brought by these very industrialists who had opted to shift to Pakistan. Ironically, since the early 1990s, successive governments in Pakistan have been begging foreign investors and offering lucrative terms to induce them to invest in Pakistan, build industries, buy lands and install thermal power projects.   

Bhutto intensified New-Sindhi and Old-Sindhi antagonism in Sindh by introducing quota system and making the Sindhi language a compulsory subject in Sindh. He incensed Baloch and Pashtuns after he sacked provincial governments in Baluchistan and Frontier provinces and mounted an operation against the Baloch rebels. He supported Islamists in Afghanistan to counter the belligerence of Sardar Daud thereby stoking religious extremism and Jihadism in Pakistan which later on accelerated during the 10-year Afghan war and uprising in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK). Bhutto promoted secularism which triggered religious extremism, deepened Islamic-secular divide and gave birth to PNA movement and led to his ouster.

While Bhutto started the Kahuta project to develop a nuclear bomb, uranium enriched nuclear program could not have seen the light of the day had Afghan war not taken place. Gen Ziaul Haq took full advantage of it and pursued it relentlessly and carried out cold tests in 1984. Fear of bomb in the basement kept India at bay. Zia crushed the PPP-led MRD movement in 1983 with dangerous connotations, since it had the full support of India. He had to deal with foreign supported Al-Zulfiqar movement together with KGB-RAW-KHAD nexus involved in terrorism.

Pakistan under Zia single-handedly managed the Afghan war and emerged victoriously. Zia had made up his mind to make Pakistan a truly Islamic State in the light of Quran and Sunnah and had envisioned a clear strategy how to go about playing up the Khalistan movement and Kashmiri freedom movement and taking the two movements to their logical ends. Had Zia lived longer, Afghanistan could have saved itself from the bloody civil war and would have remained ever obliged to Pakistan. Prejudiced PPP and seculars, however, portray him as the worst dictator and blame him for loading Pakistan with all the misfortunes.

The PPP under Benazir Bhutto (BB) symbolized poor governance, immorality, and corruption, thanks to her husband Zardari who became Mr. 10% in her first tenure and Mr. 20% in 2nd tenure. Both the civil and military establishments viewed BB as a security risk owing to her extraordinary softness towards her Oxford buddy Rajiv Gandhi and her commitment given to the USA that she would roll back the nuclear program. But for the provision of the list of Sikh leaders to India, Khalistan could have become a reality and IOK might have achieved independence since the Khalistan and Kashmir movements had almost linked up and Afghan Mujahideen under Gulbadin Hikmatyar had promised physical help. Thermal power has driven IPP agreement signed by BB in her second tenure amounted to giving control of electricity to foreign powers. It paved the way for the energy crisis.

As opposed to two shortened PPP regimes led by BB, two short-lived PML-N regimes under NS were comparatively better which saw some development works including motorway and above all Pakistan becoming the 7th nuclear power.

PPP under Zardari scaled new heights of corruption, nepotism, and ineptness. An abortive attempt was made to civilianize the ISI. The ill-omened Kerry-Lugar Bill opened the doors for NGOs, Blackwater and CIA agents which triggered urban terrorism. Helicopters assault in Abbottabad to get Osama bin Laden was aimed at tarnishing the image of Army and ISI. Hussain Haqqani at the behest of Zardari signed the Memo to virtually give Pakistan on contract to the USA. Gen Ashfaq Kayani and Lt Gen Shuja Pasha blocked the ominous effort and regained 17 administrative units in the northwest under the influence of RAW-NDS-CIA controlled TTP.

PPP and MQM looted and plundered national wealth with both hands and sucked the blood of Karachi which generates over 60% of Pakistan’s revenue. Corruption-ridden ANP derailed the railway and did nothing for KP. While Karachi became lawless, a separatist movement in Baluchistan gained considerable strength. All State Corporations were systematically destroyed and Pakistan’s external debt doubled. Pakistan got caught up in worst energy crisis because of which industries began to close down and many industrialists shifted to other countries. The country was brought to the brink of economic collapse and yet the PPP government was allowed to complete five years.

PTI under Imran Khan (IK) gained political space in 2011 as a result of misdoings of PPP and MQM, but instead of training its guns on the PPP and MQM, it locked horns with PML-N in Punjab since it knew that power resided in Punjab and nowhere else. The only silver lining in those dark days was the Shahbaz Sharif-led government in Punjab which kept things going despite highly unfavorable environments. Indefatigable Shahbaz’s outstanding performance paved the way for PML-N’s impressive victory in May 2013 elections.      

IK never reconciled with 2013 election results and for reasons best known to him imagined that he deserved to win. He married up with dubious Tahirul Qadri led PAT and single seater Sheikh Rashid to drumbeat the issue of rigging. They discounted the fact that PPP and not PML-N was in power that had made the transitional government to hold elections and that PTI had no roots in rural Pakistan. IK chose to emulate politics of agitation and defiance of Mujib and Bhutto to achieve his political ends. Following in their footsteps, he chanted the catchy slogan of ‘change’ and ‘Naya (new) Pakistan’. Like Bhutto, he too promotes liberalism and is germinating seeds of indiscipline among the youth. Previously his slogan was ‘justice’ and now his slogan is ‘corruption’.

IK has all along pursued politics of defiance and agitation to undermine the State and its institutions and freely indulges in mudslinging and unsubstantiated accusations to defame NS and his family. After failing to oust NS by staging a 126-day sit-in in Islamabad in 2014, and then trying to lock down Islamabad in October 2016, IK is now pinning hopes on Panama Papers case handled by Supreme Court Bench. He refuses to admit that name of NS is not included in the list of account holders in Fonseca Mossack Offshore Company, and that PML-N government will remain in power until next elections even if NS is sacked or he resigns. 

While giving long sermons on the ills of corruption, IK completely skips the fact that cupboards of most of his party leaders are filled with skeletons. He is oblivious of the enormous moral degeneration of the society as a whole. Moral turpitude of the nation has hit rock bottom and corruption is one small part of it which has permeated into the blood of all segments of the society. The ones accepting graft and the others doling out graft are equally guilty. IK has no plan for moral refurbishment of the society or how to eliminate corruption.

 

 

 

 

 

How will the corrupt be taken to task in the absence of effective accountability bill which is lying pending since 2010? If IK is so concerned about the eradication of corruption, why has he not agitated inside and outside the parliament to pass the accountability bill and make National Accountability Bureau (NAB) more effective and independent?

If he strongly feels that all elections including the 2013 elections were rigged, has he made any effort to reform electoral laws to prevent rigging in future? Without comprehensive electoral reforms, same lot of immoral politicians will get elected and keep shifting from one green pasture to the other to derive maximum material benefits.

Likewise, he has not pressurized the government to reform the criminal justice system and functioning of lower courts. Unless the judicial system is reformed, justice will remain confined to the elite class only and the ones involved in white collar crimes and mega corruption will never be netted. Similarly, crime and corruption cannot be tackled unless the police are depoliticized and investigative/prosecution systems streamlined.

PTI is a collection of turncoats from other parties. Each and every defector in his party has a blemished track record. How IK expects to make New Pakistan with such opportunists who have brought him under their sway? When he couldn’t convert KP into a role model province, how can he change the destiny of whole of Pakistan with a King’s Party, particularly when he has no political standing in Baluchistan and Sindh?

PTI, PPP and other political parties in opposition are ganging up to derail the political system by creating chaos and hampering growth and development. This is being done at a time when Pakistan is at an economic takeoff stage as a result of better governance and financial management and commissioning of CPEC. At the same time, it is up against external enemies and local detractors that are trying to sabotage progress. CPEC is an eyesore for India, USA, Iran, and Dubai.

Upset by the achievements made by Pakistan, the adversaries that had been collectively trying to destabilize, de-Islamize, denuclearize and balkanize Pakistan since 2002 have intensified their efforts to block the development programs. The only option they are left with is to topple the ruling regime and foment political bedlam. This task has been undertaken by PTI and PPP.  

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) led the Gulf States have still not forgotten and forgiven the slight inflicted by Pakistan when its request for military support to tackle the threat posed by the Huthis in Yemen last year was impolitely turned down. The government had whittled under pressure of PTI and PPP. The fissures that were contracted with a lot of efforts are once again being widened by Iran inspired lobbies in Pakistan. Led by PTI, these lobbies in concert with media are applying pressure on the government to detach Pakistan from the 41-Member Islamic Military Alliance (IMA) sponsored by KSA to fight terrorism and to call back Gen Raheel Sharif, selected as head of the Alliance. The Same old logic of Iran’s sensibilities and misplaced danger of Shia-Sunni rift in Pakistan is being put forward.

Recently concluded Arab-Islamic-US Summit in Riyadh gave strength to these lobbies to state that their fears that the IMA was Iran-specific have come true after the vitriolic speeches made by Trump and King Salman. They upped the ante by painting a very dark picture with ominous ramifications for Pakistan. Pressure has been intensified to force the government to opt out of the Alliance, not realizing that such a step would fulfill the dream of India to isolate Pakistan. We have seen how KSA and its close allies have offensively reacted against Qatar, and it can treat Pakistan in a similar manner.

It must not be forgotten that KSA has always come to the rescue of Pakistan in its testing times, and has always been sympathetic towards Pakistan regardless of which political party or military ruler has been in power. It has taken pride in Pakistan’s armed forces and nuclear capability and has never threatened Pakistan. Same is not true for Iran. Gone are the days of Reza Shah Pahlavi. Attitudes in Iran have changed since the arrival of Ayatollahs and their officials have adopted an arrogant posture.

Under what pretext and logic the Iranian lobbies in Pakistan lobbied to stop Pakistan from dispatching troops to KSA when it was threatened by Iran supported Huthis? What moral right Iran has to militarily support Huthis in Yemen? In what way we were pitching ourselves against Iran? Pakistani troops would not have jumped into the cauldron of Yemen war but at best would have deployed a division size force along the Saudi-Yemeni border to defend the integrity of KSA. Has Pakistan not been sending troops in the past to KSA for training purposes and for the defense of Khana Kaaba, and when KSA was threatened by Iraq in 1991?

Once our myopic leaders opted to annoy KSA and the other Gulf States to please Iran, how did Iran reciprocate our gesture of staying out of Yemen war? Soon after, Iran stood with India and Afghanistan and signed Chahbahar agreement. Iran will never annoy India to please Pakistan but will annoy Pakistan to please India as was evident from Iran Army chief’s threat to Pakistan last May. It is closer to India and Northern Alliance ruled Afghanistan than with Pakistan.

This very lobby which is in a small minority but has also influenced many veterans has been consistently tarnishing the image of former COAS Gen Raheel Sharif with the sole purpose of forcing him to resign or compelling Pak government to call him back from Riyadh. It has been repeatedly stressed by the government that the IMA headed by Gen Raheel is directed against terrorism and is not against Iran or any other country and that whenever it transgresses its mandate, Pakistan will detach itself. But the lobbies are unprepared to buy it since they are solely worried about Iran’s interest and not of Pakistan and its armed forces and keep playing sectarian card. One may ask as to why they drum up proxy wars of KSA and not of Iran. Why do they want the IMA to fight Al-Qaeda, Daesh, and Taliban and to spare Iran’s proxies? KSA and not Iran is vulnerable to threats from proxies as well as from Iran-Iraq-Syria-Yemen-Hezbollah nexus.

Pakistan is faced with foreign funded proxies and Hybrid War. India wants to teach Pakistan a lesson. Afghanistan has become a hostile country. Indo-US-Afghan nexus has not changed its dangerous agenda against Pakistan. Iran is not friendly. Another storm stimulated by USA and Israel is building up in the already turbulent the Middle East as a result of heightened Iran-Saudi hostility and KSA-Qatar confrontation, which is giving shape to new alignments. Pakistan cannot remain unconcerned by these hazardous developments and its diplomacy is under test. Pakistan cannot afford to take sides and it will be its diplomatic success if it manages to stay neutral and act as a moderator to defuse KSA-Qatar tension and scale down KSA-Iran animosity.

It is, however, most unfortunate that our power hungry politicians backed by paid media are oblivious of the precarious geopolitical environments and are wholly interested in snatching power by hook or crook. Devoid of political power, they first provoked the Army to boot out NS and are now expectantly looking towards the Supreme Court to disqualify him whether he is an offender or not. Like PTI, PPP has also begun to flex its political muscles and is somehow very hopeful that it will regain power in the Centre and in all provinces.

The Author & Pakistan Think Tank Thought Leader

Asif Haroon Raja is a retired Brigadier, took part in the epic battle of Hilli in 1971 war, served as Defence Attache Egypt & Sudan, a defense analyst, columnist, author of five books, Vice Chairman Thinkers Forum Pakistan, Director Measac Research Centre. asifharoonraj@gmail.com     

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Fakhar Zaman: From the Navy to cricket stardom By Geo.tv

Fakhar Zaman: From the Navy to cricket stardom

By

Geo.tv

 
 

The men were glued to the television screen at Faqir Gul’s house in the Katlang area of Mardan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Soon it was clear. Pakistan’s victory over England was quickly becoming a reality. The crowd broke out in jubilation. After the cricket match was over, families in the neighborhood emerged from their homes to distribute sweets. Mardan was celebrating the win. But more than that they were celebrating the performance of one of their own, Fakhar Zaman.

Fakhar Zaman during his youth 

“He was once only the fakhar, the pride, of Katlang,” Faqir Gul, his father, told Geo.tv, “Now he is the fakhar of Pakistan.”

Back when Zaman was still a child his family discouraged him from playing cricket in school. They complained that he spent too much time out on the fields, and not much studying. There rarely was a day when he did not get into trouble for coming home late, covered in dirt.

In those days, Gul was working as an official with the wildlife and animal protection agency in the province. On his days off he would write poetry and recite it to Zaman to get his mind off cricket. His father feared that if he did not abandon his love for the sport he would not be able to finish his education and get a proper job. But nothing, it seemed, could dissuade the young boy.

After completing his matriculation from the Government High Secondary School Mardan, Zaman joined the Pakistan Navy as a sailor in 2007. During his time with the Navy, he would occasionally play inter-departmental cricket matches.

Azam Khan, the coach at the Navy’s cricket academy, noticed his talent. He then advised Zaman to apply for the position of a physical training instructor with the force, which he did.

In 2013, Zaman left the Navy. Thereafter he met Pakistan’s cricket star, Younis Khan, who advised him to play from his own region. Zaman then moved back to Mardan and represented Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the Abbottabad Falcons, and Balochistan in inter-region cricket tournaments. In 2016, he was selected to play in the second edition of the Pakistan Super League.

To this day, Zaman remains indebted to his coach Khan. He has even named his cricket academy in Mardan after his coach.

“I hope he will continue to excel,” says his father, “Especially in the final match against India.”

Reference

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