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Archive for August, 2022

Imran Khan’s Revolution – By Azeem Ibrahim, a columnist at Foreign Policy and a director at the Newlines Institute for Strategy and Policy.

An expert’s point of view on a current event.

Imran Khan’s Revolution

The ousted prime minister is challenging the taboos of Pakistani politics.

By Azeem Ibrahim,

a columnist at Foreign Policy and a Director at the Newlines Institute for Strategy and Policy.

August 24, 2022, 12:50 PM

On Sunday, Pakistani police charged Imran Khan, the country’s former prime minister, with terrorism offenses for threatening police officers and a judge. Khan was removed from office in a close no-confidence vote in April, and he has not been silent since. He has held rallies broaching many subjects that are taboo in Pakistan, including criticism of the country’s military and judicial system.






imran-khan lockdown


The charges stem from comments Khan made after one of his staff, Shahbaz Gill, a former member of Khan’s cabinet, was arrested on Aug. 9 on charges of sedition. Khan and other members of his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party allege that Gill was tortured by the Islamabad police after his arrest, though Pakistani Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah has denied this.

Gill’s alleged mistreatment outraged Khan’s supporters, and in a speech on Saturday, Khan pledged to “take action” against the police chief and a judge. The former prime minister, when referring to a judge and the police chief, said, “You should also get ready, as we will take action against you.” He did not specify what form that action would take.

To some, this was a statement of legal intent, the bread and butter of politics. But to the authorities, such comments border on treason. Now, Khan has been charged under anti-terrorism laws, and the situation has grown more febrile.

Ali Amin Khan Gandapur, a former minister in Khan’s government, said on Twitter that if Khan is arrested, “[W]e will take over Islamabad.” Meanwhile, hundreds of Khan’s supporters have gathered outside the politician’s home, vowing to defend him from the authorities.

Amid all this activity, it is possible to miss something else: Khan’s campaign following his ouster. What many dismiss as sour grapes may actually mark the beginning of something new: the creation of a popular mass democratic movement in Pakistan, the first one in the 75 years since the Partition of India and founding of the state.

None of this was meant to happen. Pakistan’s politics is engineered to produce other outcomes. The military is powerful not only within the state but also in the wider economy. No one can rise to power without military support or keep power without the armed forces’ say so. In his own rise, Khan had made these accommodations—and no doubt the military, when planning for his removal, assumed that he, a former sportsman, would continue to play the game.

The ongoing inflation and economic crises caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and made worse by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine seem to have doomed Khan. The Pakistani economy is dependent on international aid: loans from countries, such as China, and bailouts from unpopular global institutions, such as the International Monetary Fund, that are unpopular with ordinary Pakistanis.

Khan was able to manage these lines of credit with some skill, parlaying more cash from Beijing with regularity and navigating the increasingly troubled relationship with China, including the relative economic difficulties experienced by the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a flagship project, and the unpopularity of Chinese workers with Pakistani locals in the Gwadar harbor.

Now, Khan’s allies say his party was overthrown by the military because the party was insufficiently deferential to China, including implementing audits of the much-vaunted CPEC project, angering Chinese officials and Pakistan’s military-aligned business elite.

As inflation proved anything but transitory and Pakistan, like many of its neighbors, faced energy and food crises in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the military began to worry.

It occupies a role in Pakistan akin to that of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps: that of a powerful economic actor and a political constituency that goes beyond merely serving as the country’s armed forces—the military owns cement plants, cereal factories, and is involved in every major infrastructure project, for instance—and its leaders’ prosperity is tied to the state of the Pakistani economy.

As global supply shocks proved increasingly destabilizing, the military assumed that Khan was to blame, and it decided that he must be replaced.

The military also assumed that Khan, once out of power, would follow the unspoken rules of politics and know when he was beaten. Khan is a rich man who had an infamous international lifestyle before he entered politics. Some experts in the military believed that Khan would leave Pakistan if defeated and go out into the world to enjoy himself.

But that is not what has happened. Instead, Khan, a celebrity politician with an extensive social media following, has begun a campaign against the unspoken foundations of the Pakistani state: unswerving loyalty to the military and acquiescence to compromised politics.

Khan blamed the military for what he considered a concerted campaign against his party, including the intimidation of its officials and supporters. In a series of barnstorming speeches across the country, Khan called for new elections. These speeches clearly worried those in power because Pakistan’s media regulator banned them from being broadcast on Aug. 21.

In a by-election in Punjab’s provincial assembly in July, the PTI won power in the region in a result that surprised all commentators, as it implied that Khan could survive as an electoral figure without being in office or having overt support from the military. Punjab is Pakistan’s most populous province. Khan’s party now controls the Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Gilgit-Baltistan regions.

On Sunday, it won a landslide victory in NA-245, a seat in Karachi—a stronghold of the Pakistan Peoples Party and the Muttahida Qaumi Movement: two major allied political parties. Khan’s supporters said this shows the PTI is the only party that is competitive in all provinces.

In his speeches, Khan calls for unfettered democracy and true parliamentary government—revolutionary enough in a country as stratified and military-dominated as Pakistan. He suggests that a country that tortures his political staff cannot be a democracy and demands new, free elections without vote-rigging—while his allies claim that his opponents received large bribes to oust him.

But the means by which he is delivering his message is possibly as dramatic, posing a challenge to the centralized status quo. Making heavy use of social media and livestreaming, Khan is intent on getting his message out, even if banned from mainstream broadcasters and underreported in print media.

If he succeeds in defying these bans and is not arrested for terrorism offenses, his movement could presage a sea change in Pakistani politics. The government is made up of parties of all stripes. If Khan is capable of outperforming them all, the old means of politics may never recover.

Not only is Khan criticizing the military and the corruption at the heart of Pakistan’s Army-led economy, but he is also doing so in a 21st-century fashion, using tools the generals may well not understand. Pakistan is a young country, with more than 64 percent of its population under age 30. Khan appeals to them with the media of this generation. His appeal to female voters and the young is a political novelty and an asset.

Khan claims that his removal from power was akin to a coup, carried out with the help of military-led corruption of Pakistan’s economy, courts, and political process. If the world grants Khan this analogy, another comparison becomes possible.

In Turkey in 2016, a faction within the military sought to take power through traditional means. They took control of government buildings while Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was out of the capital. They seized the radio stations and most of the broadcast television stations. They put tanks on the streets.

All of this was overturned, however, when Erdogan used FaceTime to call into CNN Turkey and, live, instructed the people to take to the streets. It was enough to save his government and defeat the coup.

The Pakistani military does not have tanks blocking the streets, but its police have set up a cordon around Khan’s home, against which hundreds of his supporters have mobilized. It does not need to seize radio stations and newspapers because it already knows how to play the game.

But for Khan, new means of politics are possible—and he is using them to spread his message to millions of supporters who still believe in him as a champion of anti-corruption and true democracy.

His critics claim that his removal was done legitimately through the parliamentary process of a no-confidence vote and that Khan is turning on a system that benefited him in the past. In a last throw of the dice before he was dismissed, Khan attempted to dissolve Pakistan’s National Assembly before this was overturned by the courts.

But as Khan’s rhetoric in opposition grows loftier—taking aim at the corruption of elections, parliamentary politics, the economy, and state institutions as well as the nature of military rule—the generals clearly see something new and worrisome on the horizon.

Khan has broken the taboos of Pakistani politics. In doing so, he may have kicked off the beginnings of a digital democratic revolution. Seventy-five years after Pakistan was formed by partition, it has never experienced true democracy. Khan believes that in opposition, his best chance is promising something like it.

Azeem Ibrahim is a columnist at Foreign Policy, a research professor at the Strategic Studies Institute at the U.S. Army War College, and a director at the Newlines Institute for Strategy and Policy in Washington, D.C. He is the author of Radical Origins: Why We Are Losing the Battle Against Islamic Extremism and The Rohingyas: Inside Myanmar’s Hidden Genocide.

Twitter: @azeemibrahim 


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Twitter – Foreign Intelligence Agents Youtube Report



Twitter has much bigger problems than bots, according to its former head of security, who just dropped a bomb in claims to the federal government that the site’s security is so lax it’s a risk to national security, and the company allegedly has foreign intelligence agents on the payroll.

Well, Elon Musk may have his good reason to back out of the Twitter deal after all! A bombshell set of allegations from Twitter’s former head of security dropped Tuesday morning, a now-whistleblower who has apparently already been working with the Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, and Securities and Exchange Commission.

That former head of security submitted disclosures to those agencies, as well as Congress, detailing what CNN calls “reckless and negligent cybersecurity policies,” including that thousands of Twitter employees have access to central controls with no oversight, that executives have been knowingly lying to investors and regulators for years, and that that company likely has foreign spies on the payroll. (The story was simultaneously given to the Washington Post.)


What Is Wrong With The Muslim World?


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European Imperialism and How India and Pakistan Won and Lost August 14-15, 1947 National Freedom by Mahboob A. Khawaja, PhD.

European Imperialism and How India and Pakistan Won and Lost August 14-15, 1947 National Freedom

Mahboob A. Khawaja, PhD.

Freedom Colonized or European Systematic Terrorism

Europeans went to West Asia pretending to be businessmen and fostered political intrigues and treachery to become the ruler of the Sub-Continent. The conquest and looting of Moghul India in 1857 transformed Britain into “Great Britain.” British and French for a while competed for military and political influence to pave the way for ultimate hegemonic control. Portuguese and Dutch also engaged in trade and wider scheme of colonization. The European colonization schemes originated from its socio- economic-political and ethno supremacy over all other things. They shared a common military strategy to subdue most of the Islamic people from Asia, the Middle East, and Africa to North Africa to erect new empires. They subjugated

masses to “divide and rule” policies and practices of the European mental microscope which never viewed the besieged subjects as equal human beings to stand beside the colonial Masters. The masses across these continents were not conquered at the doors but first betrayed and then systematically divided and degenerated by the Master European race. They institutionalized the colonization scheme by establishing institutions of armed forces, police and civil service to govern the nations of Muslim Pakistan and Hindu dominated India for a long time to come. Consequently, freedom gained by political movements was lost by the institutionalized scheme of imperialism. Any prospects for change and new beginning were opposed by the institutionalized colonization. H.G. Wells (Outline of History, Book 5) said it right:  “So began the first of the most wasteful and disastrous series of wars that has ever darkened the history of mankind.”

Terrorism originates from the Western colonial powers but none would dare to concede it for the FEAR of unknown intellectual, moral and political consequences in contemporary history – this author elaborated the dictum of imperialism (“Western Imperialism and the Unspoken Tyranny of Colonization.” Global Research: 1/11/2012 https://www.globalresearch.ca/ western-imperialism-and-the-unspoken-tyranny-of-colonization/28604):

 When the European businessmen explored  new world markets for diminishing resources and their armed forces invaded and occupied the vast Islamic world, there were no television, internet, video cameras and stone throwing public and voices of reason to call them foreign mercenaries, aggressors and terrorists. The colonization scheme of things was not outcome of the Western democratic values to spread freedom, liberty and justice but ferocity of violence and killings of millions and millions of human lives for the Empires to be built on colored bloodbaths. The European crusaders crossed the channels and unknown time zones to subjugate the much divided Muslim people as part of their superior nationalism perception and values that Muslims were inferior to the European race and could be used as subjects without human identity and as raw material to build the new Empires.

The national freedom looks more a hypothetical phenomenon rather than a political reality. India and Pakistan continued to be at war and political enemies as if national freedom had no practical meanings. The engagement with dubious past remained active and alive in politics. British colonialists had historic animosity towards Muslims as the they occupied Moghul India in 1857 by forcibly removing its last Emperor Bahdur Shah Zafar and imprisoned him and family in a garage in Rangoon, Burma where he died. British had small wisdom of seeing beyond the obvious but to Muslims, the loss of Moghul Empire was the loss of an enriched progressive civilization.

British Educated Political Leaders Sought Freedom from the British Empire


Leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Jawahlal Nehru, Dr. Mohammad Iqbal, Mohammad Ali Jinnah and Liaquat Khan though educated in British intellectual traditions but articulated new mission and visions for national freedom as a revulsion against the British colonial political traditions and continuity of British Raj in India. Was this violent and ruthless indoctrination part of the British heritage or history-making efforts to besiege India forever?  Lord Mountbatten, the last Viceroy made sure that Indians will remain loyal and committed subservient to the futuristic blending of  so called celebrated national freedom after the 1947 partition into India and Pakistan. British by design failed to deliver the truth of national freedom to both nations in a universal spirit of political responsibility and political accountability. Hindu mythology believes in “Mahabharata” (Greater India) and teaches school children that ‘Pakistan and Afghanistan’ are part of “Mahabharata” plan.  Abu Rihan Al Buruni, a 10th century Muslim scholar wrote the first ever book: “Kitab ul-Hind” (Book on India), after living a decade with Hindu priests at various temples; he describes Hindu being extreme nationalist believing to be superior than other human races (caste system) and highly proud and prejudiced against other people.

History could not have confined the tyranny and oppression of British imperialism policies and practices – “divide and rule” against the will of the Indian masses. Was it a disguised democracy inflicted on the Indian subjects?  Canons of rationality clarify that national freedom granted to both new nations on August 14-15, 1947, was a fake chronology of time and history. Does it not signal a naïve and void imagination of national freedom professed by both nations since 1947?  They continue to interact with one another as the most hated enemy of time and history, wars, threat of nuclear arsenals, Kashmir dispute and worst of all lacking direct people to people contacts or business relationships all seem to be part of a highly ruptured and purging pursuit of national freedom.

Entrapped Political Freedom and Colonized Elite doing the Wrong Things

 Since the partition of 1947, India was overwhelmingly led by religious phenomenon of Hinduism under the pretext of secularism. Pakistan fell victim to military coups indoctrinated by British trained military Generals making Islamic ideology a fake imagery of the nation state. Under PM Modi, Hinduism is the top most priority to divide and rule India by social and political discards and infested hatred against the minority communities of Muslim, Sikh, Christian and so many others. India’ geography is enlarged every day by such religious-political conflicts. Gandhi was assassinated by a Hindu extremism, Nehru died a natural death. Mohammad Ali Jinnah died on a Karachi roadside in a broken ambulance and Liaquat Ali Khan, the first highly acclaimed PM was murdered by Punjabi political enemies.  After 75 years of lost time and opportunities, Pakistan under the dictatorship of various army Generals, dismantled public institutions, devastated social and economic affairs, corrupt and indicted criminals turned politicians; most recently, Imran Khan – a new age visionary elected leader was abruptly dismissed by military intervention to drag the nation into havoc socio-political chaos and degenerating future.

British changed the sub-continent in 90 years, but Pakistan after 75 years has no viable system of political governance.  Its home-grown enemies and traitors like ZA Bhutto, General Yahya Khan, Zardari, Sharifs and General Musharraf were more harmful than foreign enemies. The Five individualistic military coups and its by-product leaders flunked the originality of ideological Pakistan. They all escaped legal accountability for stolen wealth and heinous crimes against the people. Along with few military Generals, they were complacent in robbing the nation of its freedom, integrity, security and sustainable future. Pakistan lives in limbo with missing legitimate system of political governance, public institutions and legal system of justice.

History will see the Leaders by their Actions, Not by their Claims     

Contrary to Gandhi’s peace and non-violent political movement, shortly after the 1947 freedom, India invaded militarily and occupied some of the regional states wanting to join Pakistan as was Jammu and Kashmir, Hyderabad and Juna Gahar. Despite the UNO assurances of democratic plebiscite in Kashmir, none of these issues were resolved to this day. A panoramic view of New Delhi’s Grand Mosque and famous Taj Mahal at Agra enlightens the foreign visitors with ever lasting image of Islamic culture and civilization, not of obsessed Hindu mythology of political domination under PM Modi.

India under the Congress Party of Mahatma Gandhi and Nehru evolved some of its political institutions and systems of people-oriented governance. They shared vision for political change and secularism. At times, power was transferred peacefully to opposition groups. It did not happen in Pakistan as it fell victim to political conspiracies and military interventions losing its ideological originality and intellectual capacity for planned thinking, system of governance and nation-building. In 1971, with the help of then Indian PM Indira Gandhi, ZA Bhutto and Sheikh Mujib Ur Rehman were installed as the new rulers of defeated Pakistan. Please see: “British Colonialism and How India and Pakistan Lost Freedom” https://www.globalresearch.ca/british-colonialism-how-india-pakistan-lost-freedom/5765810 and https://ms-my.facebook.com/Uncommon-Thought-Journal-161860380533165/photos/4916004181785404/ Uncommon Thought Journal: 1/01/2022.

How to imagine a New Future and Peaceful Co-existence?

Unless concerned intellectuals and politicians RETHINK for a Navigational Change, the Indian and Pakistani political horizon overshadows dark imagery of catastrophic nuclear and conventional conflicts. They desperately NEED new generation of educated, proactive and honest leaders to make a different future to happen. PM Modi is committed to Hindu extremism; he could be replaced in the next election as more Indian intellectuals are getting worried about national politics, human equality and future-making. If Imran Khan returns to power during the next election, it could be seen as a positive move for peaceful political change and stability away from the corrupt governance by military dictators.  But the current chaotic political culture carries a lingering suspicion of naïve and egoistic Generals involvement in political configuration process.  The evidence supports the alliance of indicted Bhuttos, Sharif’s, and some military Generals to remove Khan in a defunct National Assembly. If there is a fair system of justice, the current Chief of Staff General should be held accountable for his alleged intervention to oust Khan. Likewise, Sharif brothers should face the accountability for money laundering, stolen wealth and political mismanagement.  Imran Khan needs intelligent advisors to plan political change with concerted actions. He lost four years of precious time but he was not corrupt and he did not kill or robbed any national treasury. (Please see more by this author, “Pakistan: Leaders or Criminals” 2014; “Pakistan where Politics and Corruption are the Same” 2014; “Pakistan-reflections on the Turbulent 69th Independence Day”: 2015; “Pakistan Imperatives of political Change for a progressive Nation”2019; “Pakistan and India’s leaders Mark Freedom from British Raj but Masses look for a Navigational Change.” 8/16/2020.

At the edge of REASON, a rational thinker and peacemaker would view extremism and violent assumptions of racial superiority as inhuman and immoral, be it the Hinduism, Muslims or Europeanism could plague the sense of mystery and endanger the futuristic movement for change, security and normalization of human relationships. Progressive nations produce the best, most educated and intelligent people to assume leadership roles.  Both Indian and Pakistani failed the demands of masses and of formative history for change. PM Modi‘s Hindu nationalism will not move India to nation-building and peaceful future-making; and military Generals and affiliated corrupt and indicted criminals in Pakistan will be of no use to the security and future of Pakistan. The unchallengeable truth arising from the facts of history states that leaders either lead or they are imposters and stage puppets. Proactive vision and truth live in spatial, pure and simple narrative.  Pakistan and India need desperately new, educated and intelligent proactive leadership to facilitate friendship, resolution of major political problems and a sustainable future to exist in peace.

Dr. Mahboob A. Khawaja specializes in international affairs-global security, peace and conflict resolution with keen interests in Islamic-Western comparative cultures and civilizations, and author of several publications including the latest: One Humanity and the Remaking of Global Peace, Security and Conflict Resolution. Germany, 12/2019.



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75th Independence Day of Pakistan

Following are the top 10 achievements of Pakistan:

1. World’s First Muslim Nuclear State.

2. World’s No. 1 Intelligence Agency.

3. World’s Largest Irrigation Network.

4. World’s Biggest Deep Sea Port.

5. World’s Largest Ambulance Network.

6. World’s Highest Paved International Road.

7. World’s Largest Earth Filled Dam.

8. World’s Youngest Microsoft Certified Professional.

9. World’s Largest Man-Made Forest.

10. World’s First Computer Virus.


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