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Archive for April, 2019

Khalai makhlooq – the myth and reality

I read a very good piece on the myth of army interference in Pakistani politics. That piece was general in nature but I want to talk about specifics.
Pakistani politicians have made it a habit to invoke the propaganda of army intervention in every sphere of our lives. This propaganda has a two-fold purpose. Firstly, to propagate that politicians’ hands are tied and the army does not allow a free hand to them to put their program into practice. Secondly, to create a smoke screen to hide behind, for their failures in any field of political activities. The net effect that is meant is to create a false impression among the masses that all the ills afflicting Pakistan are because of the army and not the politicians.  The pseudo-intellectuals propagate this myth due to ignorance, greed, agenda and in some cases, conviction. 
The longest lasting myth has been that Pakistan army considers Afghanistan to be its strategic depth and therefore is against stability in that country. This notion has been given a negative tone whereas strategic depth is not a bad thing to have or aspire for.  The short Taliban government was the most peaceful for Pakistan and the destabilization caused by US invasion has been a nightmare for us on many counts. The fruits of a stable Afghanistan will be for all to see when and if US forces withdraw and Indian influence is reduced. Then the true connotations of strategic depth will dawn on our intellectuals. 
The army has not or has been unable to thwart the most damaging actions of our politicians, actions that have brought the country to the brink of disaster. 
The first and foremost among these actions has been the 18th amendment. This act of politicians turned our federation into a confederation. What has resulted is that the two main political parties divided the country into their personal fiefdoms and that of their cronies (provincial political parties). This amendment allowed the provinces to take international loans against sovereign guarantees. The centre or federation has become a pauper, literally, with the burden of paying for defence, foreign affairs and many other such liabilities. The real trouble will come when loans taken by the provinces (and frittered away or gobbled up through graft) will become due for repayment and the federation does not have resources to repay these. Provincialism has increased resulting in everyday squabbles between provinces and federation on one matter or the other.
Successive governments have taken international loans by pledging national assets as collateral. A good percentage of these loans has gone into personal accounts of politicians. Thus we may have a situation whereby our airports, motorways, radio stations, and other similar assets may be taken over by entities that gave us loans against pledge of these assets.
The entire political elite and most of the bureaucracy indulged in every misuse of their respective authority, accrued personal gains of titanic proportions and relegated the masses to subhuman beings through wilful neglect of their needs. 
Every institution of the country (except armed forces) was manipulated by the politicians for their personal benefits and purposes. No overseeing institution was left with the capability or will to perform its constitutional responsibility resulting in total loss of state authority over the politicians and their henchmen. Laws were flouted with impunity and self-proclaimed immunity.
The entire society was systematically politicised resulting in the creation of pressure groups and mafias immune to the writ of the state. The entire state machinery was rendered subservient to local politicians who indulged in every anti-social activity turning the country into a banana republic bereft of law enforcement, the dispensation of justice and even recognised human behavioural norms.
The judicial system was rendered incapable of dispensing justice to the poor and downtrodden through appointments of politically biased individuals for self-serving purposes. Glaring miscarriage of justice became a norm and the entire system turned into a rudderless ship at the mercy of the strongest of waves! the politicians and their henchmen in the bureaucracy and lawyer community.
A succession of ill planned and ill executed projects undertaken resulting in colossal losses to the state.
Solar power project worth billions is only operating at 18% efficiency. Monumental cost hikes in projects like Neelum Jehlum power project and others have happened. State enterprises accrue a yearly loss of hundreds of billions because of mismanagement attributable to political meddling and the list goes on. 
If the above be true, and there will not be one sane and sincere individual to deny it, there is a million dollar question! why did the army or “khalai makhlooq,” not interfere to stem the rot? There can be only two reasons, either the alien beings were beneficiaries of the rape of the state or they did not have the muscle and the will to stop it. As for the former, there have been one or two odd examples in the entire armed forces in the entire history of Pakistan. The latter, however, belies the fabricated and concocted assertions of the politicians.
In the absence of any logical and cogent evidence of the so-called interference, a new technique has been adopted. In blaming Ayub Khan, mention of Bhutto as his accomplice is purposefully omitted. Ayub was all evil hence the credit for establishing ties with China must go to Bhutto but the Tashkent agreement was all garnered by Ayub and his foreign minister had nothing to do with it. Yahya was responsible for the break up of the country in 1971 but Bhutto, Mujib, Indra Gandhi and other politicians had no role to play in that disaster! Zia was a no good dictator and no politician ever stood by him or benefitted from him. The army distributed money for creating IJI but no politician ever touched that money. The army men involved in that episode must be tried and punished but no politician should face the same consequence because they have denied taking the money. Musharraf must be tried for treason but no politician should be tried for working against the interest of the country.

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Model Town Massacre-The Nexus of Sharif Family & Lahore High Court Rogue Judges

This is a clip which the Chief Justice and the Prime Minister must watch, and the Chief Justice MUST take suo moto notice in this case and call MR Ahmad Awais for a hearing.
The nexus between those who bled Pakistan white and certain Judges of the Lahore High Court has become an open challenge to the state. This will certainly lead to instability in the country, and because the army may have to be called in to restore order, Gen Bajwa should also watch it.
The evolving threat from this unholy alliance between certain venal judges and the arch criminals of Pakistan must be met and ruthlessly crushed before it assumes a far more dangerous form.

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Behind the Shinning Veil

Behind the Shinning Veil
Ishaal Zehra

 

The year 2019 started off as a promising year for Pakistan who ecstatically outdid her neighbouring countries in a phenomenal way in terms of happiness and patriotism. Interestingly, Pakistan came out as the most patriotic nation in Asia in the World Index’s latest report. Also, despite being the direct affectée of GWOT and a war-stricken country for many years, Pakistan yet managed to outwit its neighbour, the self-proclaimed Shinning India, big time with a stark difference in the happiness ranking which came as a big surprise to some emerging market observers.

 

 

The ranking puzzled the observers as India’s economy has been outperforming Pakistan’s in a number of metrics, like world competitiveness, GDP size and growth, and inflation rates. So, what have Pakistanis done better than Indians in the pursuit of happiness? It’s hard to say. The World Happiness Report combines quantitative data (such as per capita GDP growth) and qualitative data (such as social support, freedom to make life choices, and perceptions of corruption) to rank 156 countries. Where most of the variables included in the calculations are qualitative, and therefore, prone to specification and measurement errors. Still, the gap between the rankings of the two countries is too big to be ignored.

The report ranks Pakistan in the 67th position, and India in the 140th position nearing her to the bottom of the list of 156 countries included in the survey. Most notably, the gap between the two countries has widened compared to two years ago, when Pakistan ranked in the 80th position, and India in the 122nd position.

Udayan Roy, Professor of Economics at LIU POST, suggests that it might be other metrics, like income inequality and poverty that matters more than per capita GDP when it comes to the well-being of the masses. While in India the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.

His take comes consistently to the World Inequality Report 2018 which asserts that India’s top 1 per cent earners’ share of the country’s income rose to 22 per cent meanwhile the income share of the bottom 50 per cent earners declined to 15 per cent over the last four decades. Similarly, as per the Standardized World Income Inequality data measured by the Gini coefficient of income inequality, India’s income inequality is much higher than that of both Pakistan and Bangladesh. Besides, poverty rates are higher in India than they are in Pakistan and Bangladesh, according to the World Bank.

Wait, there’s more.  It’s called economic freedom. Published by the Heritage Foundation, the Economic Freedom report measures such things as trade freedom, business freedom, investment freedom, and the degree of property rights protection in 186 countries.  Though the two countries have ranked closely in the last couple of years, Pakistan’s ranking has consistently beaten India’s over longer periods. In fact, a closer look at the ranking components of the two countries reveals that Pakistan has fared better than India in the area of government spending, which matter a great deal when it comes to providing on welfare programs. Simply put, Pakistan has been getting ahead of India in spreading the wealth to the masses.

These statistics are from a country commonly referred to as the worlds’ emerging market. The figures actually bust the myth of Incredible and Shining India by exposing the extremely grim situation at home. India has an estimated population of about 1.2 billion people. As per SOS statistics, More than 800 million people in India are considered poor. 68.8 per cent of the Indian population lives on less than $2 a day. More than 200 million people including 61 million children don’t have a sufficient amount of food to eat thus making India one of the world’s top countries with regard to malnutrition. Such poverty and hunger lead to severe health issues. With 2.7 million Indians being HIV positive; about 220,000 of them are children, the tendency is on the rise. Moreover, statistics from the World Health Organization claims that India accounts for more than half of the leprosy cases which are reported every year in the world.

There’s worse. Debt and drought continue to overwhelm farmers all around India. As per recent figures, Four hundred thirty farmers and farm labourers committed suicide during last year in agriculture-rich Punjab alone. As per the Guardian report, nearly 60,000 Indian farmers and farm workers committed suicide over the past three decades. In 2015 alone, about 12,602 farmers committed suicide across India. The suicides cases are on the rise in Indian Army also with the recent 2 suicides reported 4 days back when only a day after a Sub-Inspector of Indo-Tibetan Border Police committed suicide in north Kashmir, another trooper of the paramilitary force shot himself dead in Srinagar on the next morning.

With such a miserable state of affairs, no wonder the Modi led BJP government in India needed some staged shows like border escalations with Pakistan with overt and covert hate messages instilling war hysteria in masses. This was all done in order to overcome the not so supportive statistical data at the time of elections which are scheduled from 11 April to 19 May. In the same course, a new flattering but factually questionable biopic Bollywood movie on Indian Premier Narendra Modi has recently been released. The film which portrays Modi ji as some sort of superhuman with divine powers is taken as political propaganda by the critics, with the primary intent of influencing the voters. This is the 3rd consecutive movie in the run-up to elections, glorifying the BJP party rule eras, ratcheting things up to a level haven’t seen before. Though his actions in the last five years as prime minister proves otherwise still the effects of such gimmicks on a common Indian will be seen as the elections ensue.

 

 

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Pakistan and French Rafale Aircraft deal with IAF – Big Development

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Global Peace and Security: Why Wars on Humanity? By Mahboob Khawaja, PhD.

Editor’s Note
Dr. Khawaja makes a reasoned and impassioned argument for international organizations oriented towards peace, primarily the United Nations Organization (UNO), and humanity to step forward and change direction. Clearly, we live in a time of hardening lines and increasing extremism that perpetuates destruction and chaos; primarily to deliver the “rewards” to the hands of a powerful few. Organizations oriented towards peace, order, and the protection of humanity seem either incapable or unwilling to perform the roles for which they were created.

 

 

 

It is noted that most of the organizations were created to resolve the chaos of WWII and prevent such atrocity from swamping the world in the future. Herein lies the basic flaw. These organizations are not partnerships of equals where participating nations have equal voice and power. They reflect the power of the few with the United States being the “most equal” of all in a “Lord of the Flies” world. Whether we look at the UN, NATO, OECD, or IMF, we find that the power of the United States not only overrules the voices of many but silences them as well. In fact, the Security Council of the UN has had the effect (intentional or not) to enhance the power of the US in the UN’s ability (or lack thereof) to protect populations from the predation by others. When that fails, time after time the United States has acted unilaterally in direct violation of UN dictates and rulings. Further, the US has hamstrung efforts from basic UN operation to humanitarian response by withholding its dues – a critical amount in any budget.

Adding insult to injury, the United States has determined that it will not recognize, nor be bound by, the International Criminal Court – another critical component in addressing international crimes against populations and humanity.

It is clear that if there is to be an institution where the world comes together to promote peace and justice and work towards resolving conflicts and averting disasters, it needs to either be an organization of true equals with the ability to enforce decisions, or current institutions must restructure themselves so that the collective has more power than any individual nation. There is another viable option –

Mass non-cooperation by the people to participate and support our own destruction – a rolling global strike of sorts.

“The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.”  (Albert Einstein)

 

Mahboob A. Khawaja, PhD.

The global systems of political governance are dominated by the power politics of the few and are fast becoming irrelevant and unrepresentative of the primary concerns and priorities of the vast majority of global humanity. Neither the UNO  or superpowers take preventive measures to protect mankind in critical situations like Myanmar-Burma (Rohingyas), Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kashmir, Yemen and Palestine; global governance tends to be a fantasy than a reality under these challenges.  You wonder if the UNO has lived up to its role and the Charter-based responsibility to safeguard the people of the world from the ‘scourge of wars’, horrors of planned violence, and the resulting devastation to human cultures and habitats. All in all, it is humanity which is subjected to untold miseries, bloodbaths and catastrophic consequences that linger on for generations. There are a few who are the source of evil driving mankind to unrestrained tyranny. The Statute of the International Criminal Court states “planning and waging a war of aggression is a crime against humanity.”

The Global War Agenda against Reason

The author intends to share a critical analysis of some of the contemporary issues and to inspire global rethinking for a navigational change in the redundant structures and role of the international institutions, inept leadership, obsolete systems of power politics and approaches to peacemaking, security and conflict management. The perpetuation of fear and political chaos overwhelms the obsolete global political governance. The war-agenda has shifted actions from the Western industrialized societies to the oil-producing Arab world. The Middle East is in ruins by the ongoing sectarian warfare; indiscriminate bombing; terrorism; and destruction of life, habitats and the natural environment. Nobody can rebuild what has been destroyed by the war agenda that repeatedly sweeps through the same regions.

To us – the living and conscientious humanity- time and accountability make it clear that global systems are operating contrary to reason. Amongst all the creations on Planet Earth, humans are the only one equipped with thinking, language and intelligence to claim morality as an attribute of life and value. This reality emphasizes and differentiates us from the other creations of God. If we propel uncertainty in our thoughts and behaviour, nothing can stop us from surpassing the limit of immorality and insanity. With knowledge-based 21st-century human communications improving the possibility of global collaboration, we are not moving in a direction where human logic and truth spell out for our conduct in peaceful relationships. The impulse and actions for cruelty and sadistic behaviour are increasingly propelling alarming trends for present and future generations to be shaped by our implicit wickedness and resulting failure in global affairs. As humans, we are not thinking or moving for the unity of mankind to be at peace and harmony being the chief creation of God. Staying on this destructive path will make us something much less than our God-given potential for unity and peace.

We the People of the Universe and Tyranny of the Few

The 21st-century knowledge-based critical thought highlights unilateral absolutism as the cornerstone of superpower’s policies and practices.  David Armstrong(“Dick Cheney’s Songs of America”: Information Clearing House: 09/19/2011), points out how the US politicians view the world to be governed by the American strategic dictates:

It was published as Defense Strategy for the 1990’s…. The Plan is for the United States to rule the world. The overt theme is unilateralism, but it is ultimately a story of domination. It calls for the United States to maintain its overwhelming military superiority and prevent new rivals from rising up to challenge it on the world stage. It calls for dominion over friends and enemies alike. It says not that the United States must be more powerful, or most powerful, but that it must be absolutely powerful.

The Plan is disturbing in many ways, and ultimately unworkable. Yet it is being sold now as an answer to the “new realities” of the post-September 11 world, even as it was sold previously as the answer to the new realities of the post-Cold War world. For Cheney, the Plan has always been the right answer, no matter how different the questions….

Another new theme was the use of preemptive military force. The options, the DPG noted, ranged from taking preemptive military action to head off a nuclear, chemical, or biological attack to “punishing” or “threatening punishment of” aggressors “through a variety of means,” including strikes against weapons-manufacturing facilities.

Under the George W. Bush administration, America continued to pursue this approach to global affairs. Reasoned politics and safeguard of global humanity were not the purposes of such a belligerent plan. The USSR was already dismantled as a challenger and the US politicians saw the opportunity to determine the future of global mankind through militarization and occupation of the poor and vulnerable nations. Its first victim was Afghanistan, then Iraq and Libya, and onward to the whole of the Arab world. Under NATO, America continued its influential role to destabilize the USSR and former allies of Eastern Europe. There was no balancing of reason.

Where power beyond human capacity is entrusted to the few, the chances are high it will be misused against the people. The political tensions of the militarization of the globe led to oppression and miseries for the people of the world. We have not seen any tangible movement in political behaviour to lessen the unstable clash of fanaticism and evil imposed on the innocent victims of this devastating political agenda. The UNO was overwhelmed by the same scenarios of inept outcomes in situations that warranted urgent and swift humanitarian action to safeguard the civilian population in places like Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Palestine and Kashmir. Why is the prevention of man-made tyranny, oppression and conflicts fast becoming unacceptable norms in global systems of governance?  Should the contemporary leaders of the world answer this vital question, or should it be left to the impulse of history to explain it to future generations?

To Imagine Change in the Working of the Global Institutions

The global institutions were aligned and shaped by the historical at the end of the 2nd WW, not to knowledge-based proactive 21st century of technological innovation, reason and change. Global leadership and systematic working of international political affairs are managed by wrong thinking, wrong people and wrong priorities. None seem to have the capacity to further the cause of global humanity, peace, conflict resolution and security. Humanity looks for change, but there seems to be no systematic mechanism for integrated change to ensure continuity of encompassed human thoughts, hopes and ideals for tomorrow, whether near future or distant future. Despite the sketchy illusions of freedom, democracy, human rights, liberty and justice, we are encroached, stuffed and at terrible risk of annihilation more accidental and by an error of judgment than a planned scheme of things by Man against Man. The Western political mythology enflames hatred against Islam and blames Muslim as being “terrorists.” The raging wars in the Arab Middle East are a net outcome of ignorance and lack of wisdom against Islam. Western installed puppets Arab leaders do not represent the masses. Often false propaganda, deception and prejudice are combined in a trajectory of plans to sell weapons and console the egoistic leaders as allies of the Western military alliance. This political delusion is full of inherent inconsistencies. Gary Wills (What the Qur’an Meant and What It Matters. Viking, NY, 2017), a leading American scholar explains the reality in his new book:

Our enemy in this war is far less localizable than it was in the World War 2 or the Cold War. Terror is a tool, not a country. Declaring a war on it is less like normal warfare, country versus country, there is No VE Day or VJ Day in such wars… living with fear is corrosive…the less we know about the reality of Islam, the more we will fight shadows and false emanations from our apprehension. Ignorance is the natural ally of fear. It is time for us to learn about the real Islam beginning with its source book – The Qur’an.

Global Leadership and Its Moral and Intellectual Decadence and Humanity

That conscious realization is absent from global thinking and observations of the outcomes of the major international institutions is obvious. None of the global institutions seems to reflect the sacred nature of life and the role of Man (human beings) in preserving life and its encompassing standards as the pivotal role and obligations to the planet. What is the cure to the raging indifference and emboldened cruelty toward the interests of the people of Syria, Iraq, the United States and Western Europe, and for that matter to the whole of mankind?

Remember that civilizations and humanity are not developed by the political-military-industrial complexes led by economies, or IMF operative bankers, ruling elite, speculatory stock markets, legal judgments, kings and queens, morally and spiritually decadent generations and crime-riddled authoritarian ruler. Rather, thriving civilizations are the tangible progressive outcomes of proactive intellectual and moral visions of the societal thinkers, poets, philosophers, knowledge, truth, compassion and continuous movement by man to support humanity and its natural striving for new thinking, change and progress. Politics is problematic and increasingly becoming irrational and a burden on man’s conscience. Now, it is up to the focused mind of Man and Spirit of Humanity to assume the new-age responsible leadership for a navigational change.  We the People, We the Humanity, are capable of envisaging a navigational change towards reasoned dialogue for change and a sustainable future – new proactive visions and new reformed global systems; working international institutions to unite humanity and contribute to peace, harmony, security and respect amongst the diverse fabrics of mankind.

 

All material is under a Creative Common share with attribution license unless otherwise noted.

Posted April 9, 2019, by Rowan Wolf in category “Mahboob A. Khawaja, Ph.D.“, “Militarism“, “Peace

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