Friday, May 10, 2013

Pakistan's Future With or Without Taliban?


Someone somewhere is pulling the strings and pushing the nuclear armed Pakistan towards extreme right to bring in power the forces who should stand for the military-specific security goals of the state after the May 11 general elections. The threat perception is not very much visible in the West at this stage but a majority moderate Pakistanis are concerned about their country's future more than ever before. The consequences will ring alarming bells in Washington DC, western capitals, New Delhi, Kabul and even Beijing if the polls results empower the born-again post-9/11 militant Islam in Pakistan. The final month-long campaign race has already divided the political forces into two clear groups-pro-Taliban and anti-Taliban. 
Taliban and their supporters are mainly responsible for drawing a line of divide. The Pakistan-based Taliban movement (TTP) has issued threats in the very beginning of the election campaign and said the suicide attackers would bomb three parties-the nation-wide Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Pashtun secular party Awami National Party (ANP) and Urdu-speaking Muttahidda Qaumi Party (MQM). They were the coalition partners in the previous PPP-dominated government.
The TTP threats provided an upper hand to the country's major right-wing and Islamist parties-Pakistan Muslim League (N) led by conservative Punjabi leadership of Sharif brothers, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), led by cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan also known as Taliban Khan for his soft corner for Taliban, Jamiat Ulama-e-Islam-F (JUI-, led by Maulana Fazlur Rehman who is considered the spiritual father of Taliban and Jama'at-e-Islami (JI), led by Syed Munawwar Hasan, known for radical views against liberals and US.  
The right-wingers were free till last day of the campaign and crisscrossed the whole country for attracting voters. However, none of the secular parties-PPP, ANP and MQM, managed a rally nor their leaders visited their constituencies due to security regions. The secular parties leaders have said certain forces want to impose a kind of mind-set over the 180 million people and enslave the masses.   
The polls surveys so far suggest electoral successes for the right-wingers. In that case a five years rule of the Islamists would take out all the bad genes out of the bottle. 
With a military internationally known for defending the state in accordance with the religious ideology and religious fanatics-Taliban, Mujahideen and Fidaeen, a future government dominated by the religious right-wingers would be a double-edged south-Asian democratic facade in Pakistan. And at stakes are the  secured withdrawal of the US-led forces from Afghanistan in 2014, a reasonably stable and democratic Afghanistan, a somewhat capped terrorism, regional stability, nuclear arms safety and Pakistan existence as a nation.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Jama'at-e-Islami in Pakistan & Bangladesh


Bangladesh's new laws takes it miles ahead of Pakistan in combating radicalism and ideology-oriented genocide and rape. The two countries with a combined history of around 24 years (1947-1971) are going in totally different directions. Pakistan lives up with unleashing more of its monsters with more freedom, more hit targets and more space to move around. Bangladesh is in top gear towards capping the jin in bottle by amending the laws to prosecute and punish its all time vampiric Jama'at-e-Islami (JI) accused of genocide and rape while working as Pakistan's proxy in 1971 war that led to the division of the state founded mainly on religious grounds per text books.

The amended laws, approved on Feb 17, 2013, will allow the prosecution of the country’s largest Islamic party Jamaat-i-Islami and other organizations for its alleged involvement in the 1971 war crimes. The move can lead to banning JI and others groups involved in the war crimes against their own people.
Bangladesh Parliament also amended war crime laws to ensure the Jama'at leaders can be swiftly executed if convicted. It further allows petitioners to challenge the sentence if it is less than death. It set a 60-day limit for the supreme court to dispose of appeals.
In Pakistan, its the other way round. The Jama'at-e-Islami of 1947-71 has given birth to 100s of bloody proxies, clean shaved civil/military establishment, radicalized institutes,  paranoid writers and journalists. It has its anchors on Pakistan's so-called vibrant electronic media koshering day and night the murderous agenda of TTP, LeJ, al-Qaeda, Jundullah, SSP, Lashkar-e-Islam, Ghazi Brigade, Afia Siddiqi Brigade-to name a few. Its members are treated at par with Pakistan's largest political parties on media despite its zero representation in the country's parliament and provincial assemblies.
The TTP which could be better called 'Butcher of Pakistanis' consider JI, what Bengalis call JI and its leader Abdul Quader Molla the 'Butcher of Bengalis', as the godfather of all radicals. Most of al-Qaeda top leaders were arrested from the houses of JI members in Pakistan. Its top leadership in Pakistan has been fanning fratricide in the neighboring Afghanistan for the last 30 years to a level of craziness. And the TTP lately rejected the Feb 14th APC for resolving terrorism on the grounds that the JI didn't participate in it.
Pakistanis have yet to identify their enemies. Bangladeshis have identified their own. The tens of thousands of Bengali youth is seeking a secular future for themselves at Dhaka's Shahbagh square since Feb 5, 2013, rejecting the politics of the JI. The youth in Pakistan, instead, is following a former cricket star Imran Khan who is more radical than many religious leaders and hence got the title of 'Taliban Khan'.
The right wing media in Pakistan has made it hard for people to recognize the enemy  within the country's political and geographic boundaries. The enemy is wearing religious robes with a security cap on the head, taking the name of Allah when slaughtering a fellow Muslim. That is an acceptable practice to the country majority ethnic group Punjabis as long as the throat of a non-Punjabi Pakistani slits.
The coward enemy has neither the resources nor the will to fight against US or Indian  troops on the battlefield. He is existing and multiplying only to kill the unprotected civilian leaders, activists they think is a threat for their master.
Today Bangladesh deserves applaud from the world civil society for taking actions against those involved in the mass murder of over three million people and raping 1000s Muslim women in 1971. The genocide of Muslims was committed by none but the Muslim radical groups led by Jama'at-e-Islami. They were Pakistan military proxies then and they continue so now. Nothing changed.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Northwest Pakistan Abandoned to Taliban


The Pakhtunkhwa and FATA in the northwest Pakistan are bearing the full brunt of Islamabad's 'strategic depth'. Taliban are the masters of huge swaths of the countryside here. 481 bomb blasts in 2012 in KP only, killing hundreds but scaring millions. The helpless eyes turn towards the Pakistan's powerful military after each fall of a town and every act of terror. But every time the public has to hear only the creaking noise of a kind of  'strategic silence', instead, from the military's power corridors in Rawalpindi. It is more a story of the military's 'abandonment' (appeasement--not at all) of its territories and less of what the West sees as the War on Terror (WOT) through the glasses of a Pakistani general.
Today TTP has its writ in Pakistan's northwest countryside and suburbs of the cities, extending its authority to over 27000 sq kilometers area--a land equal to Belgium in area. About seven million population-considering only FATA, PATA and semi tribal regions residents, more than the Georgians and many other states, are living in the shadow of the 'Made in Taliban' horror. Its religious courts have the power to grant life or death sentence to the TTP opponents in the presence of over 80,000 troops deployed in FATA. The towns and markets are manned and patrolled by Taliban gunmen under the watch of the US-funded Pakistan military posts. The tribesmen have been rendered as the forced subjects of the Islamic Emirate of Waziristan (IEW) with headquarters in the North Waziristan. And imagine the Pakistan military kindness--the 'caliph' of the Islamic Emirate on the Pakistani soil is Afghan citizen--Siraj-ud-Din Haqqani. Just about 300 km eastward from Miram Shah in North Waziristan, a Pakistani with dual nationality can not sit in the parliament in Islamabad. Mr Haqqani's brothers and cousins move freely in convoys of motorcades between Rawalpindi and Waziristan with brief spills in UAE and Saudi Arabia
Break the rules of the IEW and death is just next door even if the violation takes place beyond the boundaries of the parallel Taliban state. They target the civil society figures at their free will whether its the defenseless six female aid workers in Sawabi on the 1st day of 2013, a teenager education activist Malala Yousafzai in Swat or an elderly politician Bashir Ahmad Bilour in Peshawar. The violent foot soldiers of the Strategic Depth named as Taliban are the unleashed wolves tearing down all the good faces of the northwest Pakistan. The victims of a Taliban-claimed suicide attacks can be anyone--an elderly mother, a newly wed couple, a bread earner for a family of nine members, a newly born daughter or a student of the 1st grade. They choose the place, timing and target for the fight without fearing the consequences.
All this goes for purifying the religion for Taliban; and securing the region for the military.  The goals are 'sacred' and so are the Jehadi tactics--everything is Kusher. Behead the opponents; blow them up in the suicide attack; abduct them; torture them; accuse them of spying; declare them infidels; call them a threat to the state and security. The terror Hollywood has its main studio in Pakhtunkhwa and FATA with branches in Baluchistan and Karachi.
There is no military operation on the cards for retaking the lost territory despite the increasing public demands. The main opponents of the operation are the military and militants. Both parties are not willing to challenge the status quo--a kind of their extra-parliamentary coalition rule in FATA where the "live and let live" policy is comforting both sides. The nexus is, however, dangerous for the civilized people of Pakistan and stakeholders in Afghanistan. Right now it can be termed as a recipe for the slow murder of everyone and everything they don't like, including Polio, in Pakistan. In the months to come, the IEW & Co. will return the favors with interest in Afghanistan by doubling the current efforts there.