Egypt Absolves 5 Pakistanis in Bombings - New York Times: "It is not that a Muslim life is valued more highly than a non-Muslim life - according to religious leaders and experts in political Islam - but that the attack may represent the growing appeal to some of an ideology that allows self-selected individuals to effectively excommunicate anyone they deem impious, and then kill them. "
Wednesday, July 27, 2005
Monday, July 25, 2005
DEAR readers, it will be educative to find out who created the monster of terrorism that Tony Blair and others calls the "evil ideology", in the aftermath of the July 7 incidents in London.So Tonay Blair did not say Islam is an Evil Ideology rather he talked about terrorism and bombings and linked it to misinterpretations of Islam. But if we look at another article which is on a research website Global Research by Ghali Hassan The 'Evil Ideology'. It gives an impression that Blair explicitly call Islam an Evil Ideology.
Let's be very clear: Islam is not an "evil Ideology", as Tony Blair asserted. The teachings of Islam are peace and equality; it is outrageous for Mr. Blair to suggest otherwise. It is Mr. Blair who is riding on an imperialist ideology of violence and domination against the wishes of the majority of the British people.I am not sure if Ghali Hassan is right or if he is complicating things in his passion to declare Islam and its followers as good Samaritans. As far as I know this is what Blair Said.
he said. “It is an extreme and evil ideology whose roots lie in a perverted and poisonous misinterpretation of the religion of Islam.I think we should keep the facts straight. So which explanationation you would like to go with. I vote Terrorism and Suicide Bombing as the Evil Ideology.
Who created it? Well! This question may have more than one answer and we should be introspective while giving an explanation.
Sunday, July 24, 2005
Argh! …. Police Brutality? …. Innocent Victim? … War on terror! ...OR ... Asian Muslim Watch hysteria?2 comments
London Police Kill Suspect in Subway: "'They came flying onto the platform and these guys just threw this man into the open doors of the train,' Martin said, according to the Guardian website. 'Then I heard the shots". It sounded like a silencer gun going off, and then there was blind panic, with people shouting and screaming and just running away.'"
Plainclothes police engaged in the frenetic hunt for fugitives involved in London's transit bombings pursued a suspect into an Underground train Friday and shot him to death in front of screaming and cowering passengers.
In the moments before he was shot, the suspect "looked like a cornered fox," Whitby said. "He looked petrified."
If they had him down why they had to shot five bullets in his head and torso. If he was linked to terrorist attacks he could have been a good source of information. However the way he was killed it appeared like a trigger-happy culture. Finally today British police’s anonymous sources are indicating that he was Jean Charles de Menezes, 27 a Brazilian and was not linked to terrorism attacks in any way.
After four successful blasts and four failed attempts London’s hysteria for Asian-Muslim-watch and hyped frenzy for the terror suspects is understandable but what is not understandable is that if he was almost caught why they riddled his body with five bullets.
Civilized socities cannot blame a single person or group or event for such a lopsided police performance. There is a need for some decent explanation.
Hours after the shooting, Police Commissioner Ian Blair said the victim was "directly linked" to the investigations into attacks Thursday and July 7. In the latter, suicide bombings on trains and a bus killed 56 people, including four attackers.
Police initially said the victim attracted police attention because he left a house that was under surveillance after Thursday's bungled bombings, in which devices planted on three subway trains and a double-decker bus failed to detonate properly. Stockwell is near Oval station, one of those targeted.
"He was then followed by surveillance officers to the station. His clothing and his behavior at the station added to their suspicions," police said Friday.
But Saturday, a police official said on condition of anonymity that Menezes was "not believed to be connected in any way to any of the London bombings."
"For somebody to lose their life in such circumstances is a tragedy and one that the Metropolitan Police Service regrets," a spokesman said on condition of anonymity, which is police policy.
However, police did not explain what went wrong or say whether Menezes had done anything illegal.
In Brazil, the Foreign Ministry said it was "shocked and perplexed" by the death of Menezes, whom it did not name but described as "apparently the victim of a lamentable mistake."
The ministry said it expected British authorities to explain the circumstances of the shooting, and Foreign Minister Celso Amorim would try to arrange a meeting with British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw during a visit to London.
"The police acted to do what they believed necessary to protect the lives of the public," he said. "This tragedy has added another victim to the toll of deaths for which the terrorists bear responsibility."
Livingstone drew a hard line before the mistake became clear, declaring that anyone believed to be a suicide bomber faced a "shoot-to-kill policy."The question is whether he was "believed" or "appeared" to be a suicide bomber. Everyone knows about police brutality in my country Pakistan. However, when it comes to war on terror they do their best to catch them alive so that they can solve the riddles and uncover hidden paths. They do however kill when they have to cover up something. Being an ex-colonial state Pakistan police has a huge pandora box of inhereted brutaility culture. It may be possible to draw some perallels between Pakistani and British Police.
By the way! Britian is a very well known police state. So this definitely needs lot of explanation.
Update: (July 25, 2005 5:35 pm) Recent news indicate 8 bullets instead of five. It seems like purpose was to kill in rage not to disable or catch the suspect. So far, no news on what he was hiding under his coat.
Earlier, Prime Minister Tony Blair apologized for the killing of a Brazilian electrician mistaken for a terrorist as officials confirmed that undercover police shot him eight times — one in the shoulder, seven in the head. Blair also urged Britons to come forth with information on the fugitive bombers.
Update: July 27, 2005
In Britain, a Divide Over Racial Profiling: "Beyond the killing itself, what shocked many Londoners was the discovery that Menezes had been killed under instructions that had never been publicly articulated, which allow officers to shoot in the head someone they believe is about to commit a suicide bombing. Code-named Operation Kratos, the policy was put in place after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States.
'Shoot first and ask questions later is what we've heard happening in Iraq,' Masroor said. 'It's not what we expected to happen here.'
Former police commissioner John Stevens stunned many over the weekend when he wrote in a newspaper column that the policy had been imported from Israel, where the authorities had drawn a stark conclusion: 'There is only one sure way to stop a suicide bomber determined to fulfill his mission: destroy his brain instantly, utterly.'
Ian Blair, Stevens's successor as police commissioner, further fueled the debate when he told a Sky television interviewer that, despite his deep regrets over Menezes's death, the same thing could happen again.
The ensuing debate has not followed the usual political divide here. London Mayor Ken Livingstone, who usually is far to the left of Prime Minister Tony Blair's government, has urged understanding for the police. 'Consider the choice that faced police officers at Stockwell last Friday -- and be glad you did not have to take it,' he wrote in Monday's Evening Standard.
But Tim Hames, a conservative columnist for the Times newspaper, urged a reexamination. 'There is a world of difference between a plainclothes policeman finding himself riding on the Tube and spotting a man with a large bag behaving in a manner that makes him a potential suicide bomber and shooting him, and chasing a person onto a train carriage and firing at him," Hames wrote."
Friday, July 22, 2005
45 Dead and 200 Hurt in Egyptian Blasts : "CAIRO, Egypt - A series of explosions, including at least four car bombs, struck the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik early Saturday, hitting several hotels packed with European and Egyptian tourists. Security officials said at least 45 people died in the deadliest attack in Egypt in nearly a decade."Update to: Comments on The violence that lies in every ideology by Jason Burke
Off course we cannot ignore the fact that London Bombers were Muslims and they followed the wrong path but we cannot blame Quran for that. It is the interpretation that we need to look into. People take verses of Quran out of context and use them for their own purpose.
Is Islam to blame?: "Secular society doesn't compete well on this score. Who gets deathly passionate over tuition subsidies and a summer job?"
Which is why I don't understand how moderate Muslim leaders can reject, flat-out, the notion that religion may also play a part in these bombings. What makes them so sure that Islam is an innocent bystander?
There would have been no violence if bombs or guns and knives had not existed. There would have been no bombs or guns or knives if technology had not existed. There would have been no technology if human brain would have not existed. I dont think this kind of logic will lead us to anywhere other than losing focus from the main problem. It is better that we stop blaming Allah or Quran rather focus on the matter of misinterpretation of Quran and Shriah otherwise these kind of debates would be futile.
Yet that's exactly what British Muslim leaders are doing. To be sure, I stand with those who insist that certain Koranic passages are being politically exploited. Damn right, they are. The point is, however, that they couldn't be exploited if they didn't exist.
In fact, Irshad you have pointed out in your own article that Muslims use verses of Quran out of context.
This verse is more than enough to debate with the hardliners. However, if we start rambling in another direction then our purpose to engage them in a dialogue will be lost.
A high-profile gathering of 22 clerics and scholars at the London Cultural Center produced a statement, later echoed by a meeting of 500 Muslim leaders. It contained this line: "The Koran clearly declares that killing an innocent person [is] tantamount to killing all mankind." I wish. In fact, the full verse reads, "Whoever kills a human being, except as punishment for murder or other villainy in the land, shall be regarded as having killed all humankind."
Militant Muslims easily deploy the clause beginning with "except" to justify their rampages.By the way how do we know that Jihaddist Narrative exploits the last part of this verse. And we don't know exactly what Jihaddist narrative is, and why they (Jihaddis) are doing this. Probably there is more than one narrative. For example, let's take the Jihaddist narrative that pitches Sunni against Shiite. It is more are less political and we do not find it in Quran. I wish I knew more about this terrorism and stuff. As a Muslim it is our responsibility to know more about this so that as we can debate the virtues of Moderation with the hardliners.
Changes I0 comments
Thursday, July 21, 2005
Seeking Moderate Support, Blair Meets Muslim Leaders - New York Times: "The idea of
Muslims acting as the eyes and ears of the authorities to police their co-religionists has left many people uneasy and illustrated the gulf between those Prime Minister Blair talked to and those who listen to people like Mr. Bakri."
Update: Jul 21, 2005 2:40 pm
Panic as London is hit again: "Two small blasts occurred on tube trains: one near Warren Street station in central London, and the other on a tube train near Oval station in south London. A third small explosion was reported on a No 26 bus in Shoreditch, east London."
Wednesday, July 20, 2005
Dear Jason In order to have ears among Muslims you need to define things properly. A more knowledgeable person would say
"Islam is a religion of peace that has to accept that it's misled followers can breed terror."
But how does Islam accept this; Islam is not a person. Muslims should accept this that wrong interpretations of Islamic injection can bread terror. Probably that would be a better statement. Islam is a religion of Peace and there is no doubt about it. However we must remember that violence is committed by the followers not the religion.
Guardian Unlimited: The violence that lies in every ideology: "Like most beliefs, Islam is a religion of peace that has to accept that it can also breed terror "
In the end Jason Burke concludes . . .
"Islam is a religion of peace - and sometimes of violence."
"Jesus Christ" correctly named "Essa" Peace Be Upon Him (PBUH) in the Islamic Ideology is the most reverend prophet of Islam. He is respected in the same way as Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). As we learn from bible about Jesus he taught his disciples to be non violent. The religion itself teaches non violence however its followers can commit crimes. The crimes which were committed in Europe during Dark Ages. And Muslims today are almost committing same crimes for which once Europe lived under the dark ages.
The Muslims become very defensive when the words like Evil Ideology are ascribed to the subsets of Muslim faith. However, before being on the defensive side we must remember that Islamic Ideology is not an evil ideology but different ideologies with in Muslim thought are based on wrong principles and are breeding evil. It would be very untrue to say that Quran is silent about the evil ideology breeding among Muslims. In fact, the concept of "Fitnah" (sometimes spelled as “Fitna”) can be clearly ascribed to the concept of Evil Ideology.
I must say the sub sets of Muslim Faith that pitch Muslims (Sunni) against Muslim (Shiite); the fatawas that promote suicide bombing; the fatwas that promote the killing of innocent in return for annihilation of innocent lives in war are the concepts creating Fitnah (Evil Ideology).
These days I don’t have much time to write but as a note I add here that Islam does not permit Suicide (it is ascribed as a great sin). Under any circumstances suicide is not consistent with Islamic belief. The act of suicide it self comes out of desperation which probably teaches the committer that there is no hope and only way out is suicide. Remember pessimism is considered as another sin in Islamic Ideology. Islam in now way purports “Evil Ideologies” however its followers do.
Udate 9:26 pm:
A word of caution for Muslims: It has become common practice among Muslims to call Jews and Christians "Kafir" Infidels. The practice of labeling some one "Kafir" is not only breading hate among Muslims (e.g. Shiites and Sunnis) but also among believers of different faiths. Quran has rather used this word for Idol worshipers. For other believers it uses the word "Mushirk" means those who associate partners in deity.
Regarding Christians and Jews Quran warn us to that we (Muslims) argue not with them about religion. If we have to discuss religion with them then we do it in best manner (the best manner refers to a civilized, intellectual, educated, and learned way of discussion rather than fighting).
If I am wrong then let me know.
I will definitely write more on this.
Saturday, July 16, 2005
Prophet only said
NO! They don't know what they are doing.
What can I say about this young man who killed Van Gogh. His action has not done any good to our Prophet nor to Muslims or Islam. It has not furthered the mission of Prophet which was based on peace and tolerance. I wish today's generation of Muslims understand this. You cannot accuse someone of Blasphemy who does not understand Islam or teaching of the Prophet. There is no use in calling people Blasphemous and punishing them. Only thing these misled Muslims end up doing is they create trouble for Islam and Muslims.
Tolerating a Time Bomb - New York Times: "Last Nov. 2 a young Islamic fundamentalist, born in Amsterdam to Moroccan parents, shot Mr. Van Gogh in the street and then tried to cut off his head. In a final statement at his trial last week, the murderer declared that he had killed Mr. Van Gogh for insulting the Prophet."
British Muslims enlisted to battle extremism - Attacks on London - MSNBC.com: "But Prime Minister Tony Blair pledged Wednesday to open dialogue with Britain’s Muslims to tackle a “perverted and poisonous misinterpretation” of Islam.“This is not an isolated criminal act we are dealing with,” he said. “It is an extreme and evil ideology whose roots lie in a perverted and poisonous misinterpretation of the religion of Islam. ... We will seek to debate the right way forward in combatting this evil within the Muslim community with Muslim leaders and it is our intention to begin this process immediately.
In AFP news release:
Blair targets 'evil ideology' as police release image of London bombers: "'But it is a global struggle, and it is a battle of ideas, hearts and minds, both within Islam and outside it,' Blair said in his most forceful speech since the July 7 attacks.".
Friday, July 15, 2005
American Globalism, Political Gains, War on Terror and behind the scene story of British Bombing0 comments
Time to Pull Out. And Not Just From Iraq. - New York Times: "America embarks on an specially perilous course, however, when it actively attempts to establish a government based on our values in another part of the world. It is one matter to adopt a foreign policy that encourages democratic values; it is quite another to believe it just or practical to achieve such results on the ground with military forces. This is true whether we are acting alone, as is largely the case in Iraq, or as part of an international coalition.
It seems that many in the Bush administration believed that an invasion to topple Saddam Hussein would result in a near spontaneous conversion of Iraq, and with luck much of the Middle East, to democracy. But the notion of intervening in foreign countries to build a society of our preference is not just a Republican or conservative failing. The corresponding democratic or liberal failing is the view that America has a duty to intervene in foreign countries that egregiously violate human rights and a responsibility to oppose and, where possible, remove totalitarian heads of state. This Democratic rhetoric quickly moves from 'peacekeeping' in a country torn by strife to 'peacemaking' and to 'nation-building.'
The Clinton administration's intervention in Bosnia in the mid-1990's is an example of just such a failing: moving from an initial, laudable objective of stopping the Serbian 'ethnic cleansing' of Bosnians to a fantastical goal of creating a 'multiethnic' society with peaceful coexistence among three groups - Bosnian Muslims, Croats and Serbs - that have a history of enmity."
Further he writes ....
"THIS conventional view, however, ignores two important questions. The first is, how much are American interests in the Arab world being harmed by our continued presence in Iraq? Second, how much does the United States' presence in Iraq reduce our ability to deal with other important security challenges, notably those posed by North Korea, Iran and international
terrorism? Those who argue that we should 'stay the course' because an early withdrawal from Iraq would hurt America's global credibility must consider the possibility that we will fail in our objectives in Iraq and suffer an even worse loss of credibility down the road."
And Infact John Deutch is not the only one, here is Robert A. Pape contending in his controversial new book ("Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism") that U.S. policymakers misread why suicide terrorists do what they do.
A Scholarly Look at Terror Sees Bootprints In the Sand: "suicide terrorism is not so much committed by religious fanatics looking for a quick trip to paradise as it is by a variety of secular and religious individuals who fear that their societies will be unalterably transformed by a religiously motivated occupier,' says Pape, who was sought out last week by CNN and Fox in the wake of the London terrorist attacks."
And here is a good article by chapati mystery pointing out to troubled teen syndrome similarities in Columbine kids and young Leed's kid in the wake of London attacks that I discussed somewhere earlier. Actually his story reminds me of the movie "Fight Club" that may explain the weird behavior that turns good lads into monsters. Apart from movies and stuff alienation in their own country is actually the reason they are falling prey to Al-Qaeda or becoming a self proclaimed Al-Aqaeda.
Woodland Daily Democrat - Associated Press: "Begg described racism that he encountered when he was growing up in the 1980s. Some of his Pakistani friends were beaten up by skinheads, he says. 'Almost everyone back then was harassed at some point for being dark-skinned, for being Pakistani,' he said. But the divide between Muslims and non-Muslims was more acute in regions such as West Yorkshire, which includes Leeds, the northern city where at least three of the four suicide bombers in last week's attacks are believed to have grown up. The fourth is believed to have been Jamaican-born."
And the latest is the news break that Bush Administrations tactics to win election caused high value targets to escape. Naeem Noor Khan pointed out the name of Siddique Khan (the 32 year old Bomber) who managed to elude the MI5 investigations. And all this happened just because Bush Administration pressured pakistani authorities to announce some gains on war on terror. Mr. Musharraf bent to his "Aaqa's" (Master) request and the war on terror actually got the back seat.
Missoula, Mont. - New York Times: "The literary community in Missoula flows well beyond Norman Maclean and 'A River Runs Through It.' Today, writers like James Crumley and William Kittredge have homes here, as do many more of the hundred or so other authors whose faces adorn the entryway of Fact & Fiction (220 North Higgins Avenue, 406-721-2881). Stop by the bookstore for a copy of the shop's newsletter, Folio, which lists coming readings, or check out www.factandfictionbooks.com. "
A poem0 comments
Another bomb exploded
Another head went down
O Beheader! you think
You are fulfilling
The 'Sunnah' (legacy) of prophet
Behold and listen!
Prophet forgave women
Children and innocent
Old and peaceful citizen
He built alliances for peace
With Jews and Christians
If Allah allowed slaughtering
Your beloved children
He would let Abraham
Take Ishmael down*
They say that you spared
Torrita and Lori for ransom
Hah! You still maintain,
You are fulfilling
The allegiance to prophet
And pledge to your religion
I always wonder why?
You are not ashamed
For making such foolish claims
* Here I do not mean any disrespect or contempt. It is just a poetic expression. I truly understand the concept of sacrifice (qurbani) offered by Prophet Ibraham to his lord. In my poetic expression, I am making a reference to an incident in which a car bomb killed and injured many Iraqi children in a school bus. I am a muslim and understand the concept of Qurbani (sacrifice) very well and I will appreciate that my muslim fellows dont take it as a blasphemy. I am against war. However, I believe that terrorism is not a solution to the problems faced by Muslim world. I believe that suicide is not permitted in Islam. (2005)
The Women of Gitmo - New York Times: "There were several instances when female soldiers rubbed up against prisoners and touched them inappropriately. In April 2003, a soldier did that in a T-shirt after removing her uniform blouse. Following up on an F.B.I. officer's allegation that a female soldier had done a 'lap dance' on a prisoner, the report described this scene from the interrogation of the so-called 20th hijacker from the 9/11 attacks: A female soldier straddled his lap, massaged his neck and shoulders, 'began to enter the personal space of the subject,' touched him and whispered in his ear."
To us, that sounds a lot like what Mayor Rudolph Giuliani tried to ban from Times Square. But the Pentagon seemed utterly unconcerned with the fact that women in uniform had been turned into sex workers at Guantánamo.
Thursday, July 14, 2005
Pew Global Attitudes Project: Summary of Findings: Islamic Extremism: Common Concern for Muslim and Western Publics: "In Pakistan, however, a narrow majority (51%) places some measure of confidence in bin Laden, a slight increase from 45% in 2003. And in Jordan,
support for the Al Qaeda leader has risen over the last two years from 55% to a current 60%, including 25% who say they have a lot of confidence in him. Unsurprisingly, support for bin Laden in non-Muslim countries is measured in the small single digits."
However, the report does not tell us exactly in which provinces and cities the survey was conducted. A contrast exists however because support for sucide bombings (25% only against 41% march 2004) have declined in Pakistan and almost 52% believe that Islamic extremism is a threat to their country. I must say that we need an explaination of this trend against rise in support for OBL. How is that possible that people believe in peace but support OBL.
The victim: Cashier at bank had all to live for: "She was 20 years old, from Plaistow, east London. He was 18, from Holbeck, Leeds. Both were from close-knit families - one Bengali, the other Pakistani. Both were Muslims. Hasib Hussain became a suicide bomber. Shahara Islam became his victim "
An Insecure Nation: Security Loses; Pork Wins - New York Times: "But Congress likes inflexible formulas because they allow members to grab homeland security dollars for their own districts and constituents, whether they need them or not. Rather than dole out homeland security money according to a system based entirely on risk, Congress builds in guaranteed state minimums - money that goes to a state regardless of the risks and threats it faces. This way, money that the Homeland Security Department may want to use to protect New York's subways or Texas' chemical plants ends up in Nebraska."
Convicted, Executed, Not Guilty - New York Times: "Mr. Conners, who knew Larry Griffin, saw the men who drove up and opened fire. He said Mr. Griffin was not one of the men. But he was never called, either by the prosecution or the defense, to testify at Mr. Griffin's trial. The key testimony was given by Robert Fitzgerald, a professional criminal who said he had witnessed the murder and identified Mr. Griffin as one of the shooters. Mr. Fitzgerald was in the federal witness protection program at the time. He had a number of felony charges pending and was an admitted user of heroin and speed.
A Missouri Supreme Court justice said of Mr. Fitzgerald: 'The only eyewitness to the murder had a seriously flawed background, and his ability to observe and identify the gunman was also subject to question.'
This has been an horrendous crime, and these Pakistanis have humiliated and disgraced our nation. I feel ashamed to be a Pakistani. Alas our leaders have not learned any lesson. After 2001, it was expected that musharaf will control things in Pakistan and elsewhere within
Pakistani descent but nothing has changed. Asghar Khan rightly said that we never learn from our history. Sorry state of affairs and now ray of hope. A disgraced Pakistani.
I must say to you my friend, it is not your fault. You should remember that they were born in Britain and they were British Citizen. There is more than Al-Qaida that is responsible for that. There is an anguished/troubled teen syndrome (TTS) as well which we have seen every where else. When I wrote that earlier I thought I am just trying to solace my discomfort over the news because of the fear that my faith (Islam) will be under attack but there is some truth to TTS. Time's recent issue has rightly pointed out in this direction.
TIME.com: 3 Lessons from London -- July. 18, 2005:And you should also read After the bombs How four suicide attacks by British citizens have changed Britain in recent The Economist.
" The children of those immigrants--many of them jobless and ghettoized in insular suburban tracts or city centers--often feel alienated from the ambient permissiveness of London or Paris. Alienated and bored: Peter Bergen, author of Holy War, Inc., wrote in the New York Times last week that the unemployment rate among 16- to 24-year-old Muslim men in Britain is 22%. He
cited a British government report leaked to the Sunday Times in London last year that estimates between 10,000 and 15,000 British Muslims support al-Qaeda and similar groups."
This is a fact that
- they were Muslims
- they were of Pakistani descent
- they were inspired by Al-Qaeda
- they did a dirty job which can stereotype our faith
- they did wrong
- at least on of them visited Pakistan to learn Al-Qaeda's evil
But after all they were born "British Citizens" who were alienated in their own society which made them an easy prey for Al-Qaeda.
As a Muslim, yes! We do have a responsibility to educate our people but we do not have to take all the crap for the wrong doings of those who are misled just because we share a common religion (Islam); there are other factors as well.
And we don't necessarily have to follow the enlightened moderation but moderation. I would say: follow Nicholas Kristoff's advice
"I've heard from Pakistanis who, while horrified by honor killings and rapes, are embarrassed that it is the barbarism in Pakistan that gets headlines abroad. A word to those people: I understand your defensiveness, for we Americans feel the same about Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib. But rooting out brutality is a better strategy than covering it up, and any nation should be proud to produce someone like Ms. Mukhtaran.
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Sacking of Famous Poet Ahmed Faraz Slurs Pakistan's Image:
"Faraz, the 73-year old rebel, who has been variously described as the most important Urdu poet of the subcontinent, a political activist and a romanticist, was working for many years
as the Chairman of the Pakistan National Book Foundation with its headquarters in Islamabad."
The most important thing is that Imrana reported an attempt of rape but not a complete act of rape.
However, the Deoband Madrassa issued an irresponsible "Fatawa" What a shame!
At least three Britons of Pakistani descent are suspected of carrying out the July 7 attacks that killed 52 and injured 700. Surveillance cameras captured the men as they arrived in the capital 20 minutes before the explosions began.MSN-NBC
With the age of the suspects (Hasib 19) involved I would say that it is not only a case of misleading faith or riligious teaching he followed, it is also a case of troubled teen syndrome seen in shootings on school campuses in Minnesota and Columbine, Colorado. In contrast this Muslim teen has gone a step further by finding refuge in riligious extremisim and using it as a vehicle for his rampage (probably by giving this explaination I am trying to solace my discomfort because I follow the same religion: Islam. However it teaches me peace).
Another 22 year old man (Shahzad Tanweer, a 22-year-old cricket-loving sports science graduate) just got from off his teen years but not from his troubles and seeked refuge in riligious extremism.
Tanweer’s uncle, Bashir Ahmed, said his nephew had gone to Pakistan earlier this year to study religion, and that the family believed he was attending “some religious function” on the day of the bombings.
If someone says that he was a good lad then I will wonder why a sports loving good lad lost his sportsman spirit and rather choose to go on rampage killing innocent people.
One warehouse worker, who would only give his first name, Saj, said Tanweer was a “good lad” and athlete. “He was quiet,” he said. “He was religious. He went to every mosque here. There are loads of mosques here.”
Now Tanweer's family thinks that they cannot continue in Britian
“It was total shock, I mean, it’s unbelievable,” Ahmed told reporters. “Our lives have been shattered. It’s impossible to describe it. We have had a very pleasant time here. I don’t think we can continue here.”
but I am sure earlier they would have been very happy when their son was taking refuge in religion that he is being protected from the ills of Western life. That was the time to check on him and find out what kind of religious ethics he was following. Or that was the time, his family should have left Britain and raised their son in Pakistan in a Muslim environment under their own supervision. It is the parents who make their children confused and disoriented by making wrong decisions for their children. And I must say that even Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said that we are responsible for our children and a child becomes what his parents nurture him to be.
"104 Killed in Pakistan Train Collision :It is a time to grieve and remember the deceased however I cannot ignore the factors which have contributed to today's rail accident incident in Pakistan. I have already pointed out in my earlier post "Who is the real culprit in railway accidents in Pakistan?” towards inefficiency and mismanagement in Pakistan Railways which is taking heavy toll on existing rail infrastructure. Rather than realizing the need for reforming the white elephant of Pakistan's transportation system; and taking some solid steps towards modernizing and restructuring I expect the same usual apathy which is reflected in finding scapegoats. Apart from drivers negligence the fact remains that pastime Railway's system has been antiquated and need drastic restructuring and modernization.
KARACHI, Pakistan - Three passenger trains crashed in a chain-reaction pileup in a southern Pakistan station early Wednesday, killing at least 104 people and injuring hundreds of others, officials said."
Pakistani railways are antiquated, and dozens of people have been killed in train accidents in recent years. Ghotki has been a particularly dangerous point in the network and the site of repeated accidents over the years. A train carrying 800 passengers from Karachi to Lahore slammed into a parked freight train at Ghotki on June 8, 1991, killing more than 100 people.
Authorities blamed staff negligence for that accident. In December 1989, a train crash near Sangi, a town 35 miles from Ghotki, killed 400 people.
Following are the excerpts from Avari and Juane Cole.
Avari Nameh writes "Professor Juan Cole -- whom I contacted, by
the way, regarding the statement on Jenin and the timings of the September 11th
attacks -- wonders why Tom Friedman continues to say things that are just
'wrong' about the Middle East and Islam. "
Professor Cole provides a list of links, for example to Ayatollah Fadlallah of Hezbollah, who had this to say:
He preaches that [the September 11th attacks] were "not compatible with Shariah law," the Koranic legal code, nor with the Islamic concept of jihad, and that the perpetrators were not martyrs as Mr. bin Laden has claimed, but "merely suicides," because they killed innocent civilians... In an interview with a Beirut newspaper, Al Safir, Sheik Fadlallah again accused Mr. bin Laden of having ignored Koranic texts.
Well I must say that Hezbollah itself is controversial for many westreners. However, one may qoute CAIR in good sense.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations: "We, the undersigned Muslims, wish to
state clearly that those who commit acts of terror, murder and cruelty in the
name of Islam are not only destroying innocent lives, but are also betraying the
values of the faith they claim to represent. No injustice done to Muslims can
ever justify the massacre of innocent people, and no act of terror will ever
serve the cause of Islam. We repudiate and dissociate ourselves from any Muslim
group or individual who commits such brutal and un-Islamic acts."
Sunday, July 10, 2005
Al Qaeda answers CIA's hiring call: "As many as 40 possible terrorists may have attempted to infiltrate U.S. intelligence agencies in recent months, CIA expert Barry Royden reported at a national counterintelligence conference in March. If that news isn't sufficiently terrifying, consider this chilling paradox: Though the agencies caught the potential spies at the job application stage, post-Sept. 11 pressures to quickly boost staffing make it increasingly likely that a terrorist could sneak into the intelligence community's ranks."
I must say that Muslim scholars are not doing enough to get rid of Black Sheep. And I still expect less cauterizing from them because they are busy in declaring their own kind (Other Muslims) infidels so why they would care about stopping the massacre at the hands of radicals in rest of the world.
If It's a Muslim Problem, It Needs a Muslim Solution - New York Times:
By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN Published: July 8, 2005
"The Muslim village has been derelict in condemning the madness of jihadist attacks. When Salman Rushdie wrote a controversial novel involving the prophet Muhammad, he was sentenced to death by the leader of Iran. To this day - to this day - no major Muslim cleric or religious body has ever issued a fatwa condemning Osama bin Laden.
Some Muslim leaders have taken up this challenge. This past week in Jordan, King Abdullah II hosted an impressive conference in Amman for moderate Muslim thinkers and clerics who want to take back their faith from those who have tried to hijack it. But this has to go further and wider."
Chapati Mystery wrote :
"Mukhtar Mai's bravest act is to break this lynchpin of silence. She refused to play her assigned part. It was the imam of the local mosque who first urged the family of Mukhtar Mai to break their silence and go to the police. It was Mukhtar Mai who pressed charges against the men and pursued them in court. "
Thursday, July 07, 2005
A resolution to condemn terrorism3 comments
- All the countries of the world should fly their flags at half mast whenever an act of terrorism is committed anywhere in the world to show support for the innocent victims.
- Have one minute silence in news networks, in stock exchanges, in schools, in government offices, in businesses to show the world is united against such coward and barbaric acts.
This will help to educate masses that such acts are not supported at all. The unity the world will show is important to shake or break self-confidence of terrorists.
I urge all who read this to leave a comment or sign their name in comment area to support this resolution. I know many of you think that this will not solve the problem but this is just one step to show we care and we are ready to work to bring peace to this world so that we can make it a safer place for our children. Direct your friends to this URL to do the same. If we can get at least thousand signatures we will send it to UN and every head of state of the world.
Update: EU Observed two minutes silence on London Bombing and I think my proposal is not way off in suggesting that all countires espically Muslim countries also do the same so that they can educate their citizens.
EU to hold two minutes of silence for London victimsBRATISLAVA: The European Union is to call for two minutes’ silence throughout its 25 member states on Thursday as a mark of respect for the victims of the London bombings, a Slovak government spokesman said Tuesday, adding that his country proposed the initiative. "The EU member states agreed to this move, on the initiative of Slovak PM Mikulas Dzurinda, to hold a two-minute silence at 1:00 pm in memory of the victims of the terrorist attacks in London last week," Dzurinda’s spokesman Mirko Hroch said.
Four London Blasts Kill 40, Injure 700 "A clearly shaken Prime Minister Tony Blair called the coordinated attacks 'barbaric' and said they were designed to coincide with the G-8 summit opening in Gleneagles, Scotland. They also came a day after London won the bid to host the 2012 Olympics. A group calling itself the Secret Organization of al-Qaida in Europe claimed responsibility."Why?
Why? in the name of Allah!
Why? in the name of Prophet!
Why? in the name of Islam!
I just wish that no Pakistani is involved in the dirty attacks. Britain has been so helpful to Pakistani immigrants that one cannot even imagine. Just a few days ago UK has become the largest visa issuer to Pakistanis. I hope no Pakistani would have been involved in this barbaric crime.
Accordingly, a substantially increased number of visas were being issued in all categories, which had made the UK visa section in Islamabad their biggest visa issuing post in the world.
I appeal to Pakistanis in Britain to report all suspicious activity without any hesitation and feeling of guilt that they will cause trouble for another Muslim. Those who are involved in terrorism activities are not true Muslims. Just keep our prophet's Mohammad's example in mind who honored his commitments to infidels as well. He reached a peace accord with infidels of Mecca and at that very moment when the accord was being signed "Abu Jandal" came to him. He had escaped from the tyrants and was still shackled in iron chains. Prophet knew that the man is suffering but he returned him back to Meccans because he had signed a peace deal with Meccans. This was the way of our prophet. This was the way of our prophet --- peace This was the way of our prophet --- honoring commitments even to infidels Why in his name --- you commit crime against innocent All Muslims scholars must denounce the bombing of innocent people and call for World Ijtehad Conference to bring Muslims together to endorse laws against suicide bombings, killing of innocent, terrorism, and sectarianism.
"AMMAN: The Muslim world's top scholars agreed on Wednesday that Fatwas should only be issued by clerics with religious authority -a move meant to weaken statements by militants. The three-day meeting in Amman which ended on Wednesday has for the first time gathered representatives of eight Sunni and Shia schools of thought. They all also agreed that followers cannot label other Muslims as 'apostates,' something extremists in Iraq have done to justify attacks against
Iraqi police and civilians.
A conference statement said the clerics agreed that an adherent of each of the eight schools of thought 'is a Muslim'. 'Declaring that person an apostate is impossible, verily his or her blood, honour and property are sacrosanct,' according to the statement read by Jordanian Religious Affairs Minister Abdul-Salam al-Abadi.
The meeting, which brought together some 180 scholars and clergymen from 40 countries including the US, ruled that Fatwas must only be in the hands of qualified clerics recognised by Islam's eight schools of thought."
Sunday, July 03, 2005
Inside the mind of a Dad0 comments
Time Special Issue July 4, 2005 is in my hand with a picture of young Abe Lincoln never seen before. The cover story is Uncovering the Real Abe Lincoln while hidden inside is the real chill factor: Inside the mind of an Iraqi Suicide Bomber. In fact this is the very first article in this issue. I guess they have toned down the enormity of the article by not putting it on the front cover just because of the Independence Day. Otherwise, it could have been the cover story. I have just started reading the article. In the back of my mind I am thinking
- Is it a real interview or they have just come up with a name and a story to sell?(Usual skepticism off course that it may turn out to be like Quran desecration story).
- Would they be willing to disclose the source of their information (the case of two journalist Matthew Cooper of Time magazine and Judith Miller of The New York Times is in my mind) .
- What is good ethics? Presenting reality show type interviews or helping law enforcement to later on catch those muzzle heads, who are planning to destroy few more lives in next few hours?
My 3.5 and 2 year old sons have barged into my study room without any warning. I failed to notice their presence because I am already numb, devastated and probably thinking about virtues of becoming apathetic.
Papa! “Ye kis ka ghar too-ta hai” (Papa! Whose home is destroyed?) Omar has inquired in his plain innocent language (He has not learned English yet).
My train of thoughts is derailed … I looked at him. He is anxiously looking at picture on page 25 (the picture reads: June 19-12 Dead US soldiers walk through bombing debris at a café frequented by policemen in Baghdad. Two US soldiers and two Iraqi policemen are walking over blood and debris left after the blast, shattered water coolers and torn thatched roof shingles can also be seen in the backdrop).
Oh my God! . . . What he is looking at? . . Impossible for me to answer or hide the picture. I fear if I try to abruptly detract him his innocent mind would be confused . . . why his dad is acting like that. I have always encouraged questions from him as I believed that there is answer for every question. Even for those questions which my parents failed to answer; I don’t want to do that same thing to him.
Papa whose home is destroyed . . . (Silence)
My silence is deafening. Silence --- that lurks between life and death.
Papa!. . .
Umm! …. (Silence)
Papa whose home is destroyed. . .
Umm! … Son! …. Arr! …. Omar!
Papa whose home is this? (pointing to picture)
What should I tell him?
OMAR!!! …. Ummm! (I closed the magazine and rolled it. I am holding it like a golf club. . .)
Omar! Why did you come in here? . . . You were supposed to have your noon nap.
(Gosh! . . . I have no answer)
Saturday, July 02, 2005
Ahmad Bilal: "ESCAPE ROUTE (2004)
'Would you like an extra large serving of pain with life? He asked. That comes free with membership of the 21st century intellect club. Thanks, but no thanks. I am on a diet.'"
Here are downloads of some pieces of music I have been working on:"
Pakistan Times Top Story: President Musharraf rejects early polls in Pakistan: "President Musharraf rejects early polls in Pakistan: Pakistan Times Staff Report
PASNI: Ruling out early elections, President Gen Pervez Musharraf has once again made it clear that these will be held in 2007 and that the meetings between Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto will not affect the government as well as political process.
Talking to reporters in Pasni, Gen Musharraf said he has been given the authority to simultaneously keep the offices of the President and Chief of Army Staff under the bill passed by both National Assembly and Senate."
'Get Out, You Damned One' - New York Times: "The critics have not been kind to the prose and the plot, but they miss Saddam's strength. He's a marketer. He is said to have finished the novel just as the war was beginning, when American leaders were fantasizing about their troops' being welcomed as liberators. But Saddam knew enough to give his novel a surefire title for the post-invasion era: 'Get Out, You Damned One.'
It's a naked appeal to xenophobia, an impulse that's far more ancient and widespread than the yearning for democracy that President Bush talked about this week. Yet it's been curiously underestimated by conservatives who used to pay close attention to just this sort of instinct."
. . .
During the Civil War, Union soldiers were amazed to see poor Southerners without any stake in the slavery system defending it in suicidal charges. But there was a simple explanation, as a barefoot, emaciated Confederate captive famously put it when a Union soldier asked him why he kept fighting: "Because you're here."
Schröder Loses Confidence Vote; Early Election Is Likely - New York Times: "Mr. Schröder , gambling that a quick election is the only way to break Germany's political stalemate and rescue his own faded fortunes, watched somberly from his seat as lawmakers heeded his call to vote against the coalition that has governed Germany since 1998. The carefully orchestrated defeat allowed him to petition the German president to dissolve Parliament, which would set the stage for elections in September, a year earlier than scheduled. 'Without a new mandate, it is impossible to continue with my policies,' he said before the vote. 'If we want to continue with the reforms, and we must, we need to seek a new mandate through elections.'"
. . .
Germany's Constitution makes it difficult to dissolve Parliament, largely to avoid the kind of instability that plagued the Weimar Republic from 1919 to 1933. There has been one prior confidence vote - called by Helmut Kohl in 1982 - in which the chancellor conspired to lose.
A brave girl.
Friday, July 01, 2005
I can tell by reading your article that you have suffered because you felt stuck and that is off course very normal (I mean felt stuck) for a person who leads a very active, dynamic and fun filled life. Therefore you found refuge in the explanation of hormonal imbalance. There are many women who on the other hand do not suffer from such depressions or are rescued from depressions in other ways (By the way! I am not supporting Tom or his church but looking into other people’s life). For women in my part of the world (South Asia), their life goes on as they get help from family members. So they do not feel any repulsion to their kids. With a career and life like yours I can imagine how much stuck you could have felt.
When my second kid was born I went into a much greater depression as compared to my wife. My doctor evaluated and diagnosed me with depression and suggested medication, which I refused to take. I did overcome my depression by exercise which I actually started to lower my cholesterol. The years of depression brought me a life in which I was just easting, sleeping and doing everything but in a listless manner. The depression increased and took a new turn with medication and when I realised that medicines would rather worsen my depression that very moment I decided to stop the medicine. Things went on for a while and my cholesterol started going up which I never realized. Only after my father's death from heart failure I became little bit concerned about myself and decided to check with the doctor. The doctor laughed at me and said you are too young to be monitored. Just reminded me of the funny story "A man who was a Hospital". I however insisted and when the results came in I had 255. The Dr. was surprised too. However, the level was confirmed in retesting. That very moment I decided to change my life and started going out for exercise and stopped worrying about everything else but myself. I lowered my cholesterol back to 157 in six months by playing squash regularly. After six months or so I realized that I am winning battle against depression as well. Definitely playing squash not only helped me with my cholesterol but with my depression as well.
It is off course possible that some women and men cannot overcome depression without medication however at the same time there are people who would go for the other route: exercise and meditation. Anyway, Tom should not have acted like an authority but people believe that it may be scientology politics or zeal that have led him to do his wierd act.
War of Words - New York Times: "I WAS hoping it wouldn't come to this, but after Tom Cruise's interview with Matt Lauer on the NBC show 'Today' last week, I feel compelled to speak not just for myself but also for the hundreds of thousands of women who have suffered from postpartum depression. While Mr. Cruise says that Mr. Lauer and I do not 'understand the history of
psychiatry,' I'm going to take a wild guess and say that Mr. Cruise has never suffered from postpartum depression."
Internet restoration may take a week -DAWN - Top Stories; July 1, 2005: "ISLAMABAD, June 30: Restoration of the internet system in the country could take at least another week as the ship arranged by the SEA-ME-WE-3 consortium had not yet reached the fault site, official sources told Dawn here on Thursday.
They said it was impossible to put the Internet system on a normal track within two or three days as the ship, which had sailed from Dubai, would take another two to three days to reach the site. It could take more than a week for any apparent improvement in Pakistan's Internet system, which has been down since Friday.
Meanwhile, the management of the Pakistan Telecommunication Company Ltd (PTCL) claimed in an official statement that it was providing enhanced satellite-based Internet provider (IP) connectivity to corporate customers, including banks, airline ticketing system, call centres and other financial services."
Abstract: Political economy models of growth and public service provision stress the incentives of the elite under high inequality to under-invest in the human capital of the majority. Other political economy models stress that ethnic divisions will lead to low public goods provision. This paper examines Pakistan as a case study of these two propositions. Pakistan has had respectable per capita growth over 1950-99, intensive involvement by donors and international agencies ($58 billion in foreign aid), and has a well-educated and high-achieving elite and Diaspora. Yet Pakistan systematically underperforms on most social and political indicators -- education, health, sanitation, fertility, gender equality, corruption, political instability and violence, and democracy -- for its level of income. It systematically under-performs on improvements in these indicators for its rate of GDP per capita growth over time. I call this pattern "growth without development." Large inequalities exist between men and women, between urban and rural areas, and between regions. The donor- and government-supported Social Action Program that sought to address these lags in the last 8 years has failed. This follows a long history of failed government and aid programs to address social lags. While foreign aid and government programs may have contributed to overall economic growth, they were an egregious failure at promoting social and institutional development under the circumstances of elite domination and ethnic division.
"The Political Economy of Growth Without Development: A Case Study of Pakistan"
Here is the email excerpt:
‘India Approves GDN’s IO Status
The Union Cabinet of the Government of India on June 23, 2005 approved theestablishment of GDN as an international organization with itsheadquarters in New Delhi. Welcoming GDN to India, the government alsoapproved the signing of the ‘Agreement Establishing the Global DevelopmentNetwork’ by India as a ‘State Party’. By the establishment of GDN'sheadquarters in New Delhi, the government said the country would benefitby becoming the hub of global research on development issues.With the Cabinet's announcement, India joins a growing list of nationscommitted to supporting GDNs future as an international organizationincluding Colombia, Egypt, Italy, Sri Lanka and Senegal. These countriesare already signatories to the international organization charter.You may read moreabout the Indian government’s decision on the links below:
PIB Press Release