Amina Jilani

  • TFatima Bhuttos book Songs of Blood and Sword has generated some controversy. I am loath to adding anything to the controversy for the simple reason that Fatima seems totally impervious to the reverence and love which the vast majority of Pakistanis, including people like myself, have for Zulfikar ...

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  • TThe nation is soon to hear good news, at least that is what we are threatened with by both president and prime minister - and it is to come by the end of the month - within a scant 10 days. And the good news is the doing away with the 17th Amendment to the constitution - an impossibility if this ...

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  • TOccasionally, very occasionally, our press does provide a little light relief amidst the daily doom and gloom with which we are beset. This light relief is seldom intended - as it was not last week when a column appeared advising our venerated head of state as to how he should preserve his ...

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  • TPakistans two major so-called political parties that have sporadically played yo-yo with the country are not political parties in the strict sense of the word. They are private organisations, bereft of internal democracy, conducted as fiefdoms under a self-appointed liege-lord to whom total ...

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  • TThere we were again - haggling over that old issue, the pesky interpretation of a pesky uninterpretable constitution. Old also was the spectacle of the executive, in the form of president and prime minister, and the judiciary at each others' throats over the interpretation of the constitution. This ...

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  • TThis endless discussion, both verbal and written, on whether the President of the Republic, in the person of Asif Ali Zardari, sho-uld remain where he is or go has become self-defeating. He is where he is, voted in by the representatives of the people, all of whom were more than aware of his ...

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  • TSince that day in October 2007 when the National Reconciliation Ordinance was unleashed upon this country it has been a rotten bone of contention with a ste-nch to it that reaches up into the high heavens. Its very title is misleading, as it never had anything to do with 'reconciliation, a fact ...

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  • TOver the long downward path since 1947 this nation has evolved into a somewhat schizophrenic state when it comes to admitting the reality of its true place globally, and in particular with its relationship to the USA. Shortly after the countrys birth, we began tapping the US exchequer seeking ...

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  • TThe wishful thinkers should put themselves to bed. They must become acclimatised to the fact that this government of Asif Ali Zardari (not of Yousuf Raza Gilani) is going nowhere for the coming three years, and the same goes for its supreme leader. Having been installed by the mighty USA, Zardari ...

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  • TIt is now being stated by many who have made their ways into seats of power, including the head of state, that democracy is under threat. The question to be asked of all is, does this country have a democracy in the true sense of the word and has it ever had a pure democratic system? This is a ...

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  • TKarachi has never been tranquil. The city is no stranger to violence which haunts it on a daily basis, and has done for years, with the varied political targeted killings and other violent acts that take place. But, strangely, for the past two years of democratic dispensation it has not been ...

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  • TOh, what a tangled web has been woven - and by those that scheme and practise to deceive. The 17 members of the country's Supreme Court have in unison acted to attempt somehow to untangle the contentious web. The disentanglement as it stands has proved joyous to many, a headache to others (though ...

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  • TThe 'civil society', the strange body that arose, acted, and relapsed into a dormant state awoke last week with the dramatic Supreme Court hearing that had it riveted. It was a long wait last Wednesday evening, but 'civil society' stuck to its guns, either outside the Supreme Court building or in ...

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  • TAs the murder and mayhem spreads with virility - the drone attacks in the far north which kill, the regular demolition of schools in the various agencies of the NWFP, the on-going murder of underprivileged men, women and children in the bazaars of Peshawar, the killings in the military mosque in ...

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  • TThe Republic of Pakistan houses a strange nation, inconsistent in the extreme when it comes to matters of government and governance. From the 1950s onwards, we have witnessed the comings and goings of a string of mainly lacklustre leaders and governments who and which have all been 'hailed' (as is ...

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  • TThis nation, completely adrift in its bearings in all and every way, is once again awash with anti-American polemics, as it has been sporadically since the early 1990s when the Iraq-Iran war was being waged, and we are once again being fed, via our media, a daily diet of often crude ...

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  • TThe age old adage about a house divided amongst itself applies - the Islamic Republic is in dire need of gluing itself together into some sort of a cohesive shape. There are far too many diverse forces pulling against each other in multiple directions. The hope was when Pakistan was created that ...

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  • TThe countrys media thrives on conspiracy theories, as do the millions who follow it whether by print or the mass of television channels with their handful of semi-professional talk show pundits who regale us with their drips and drabs of what is supposed to be wisdom. Of late, we are in ...

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  • TIt is difficult, verging on the impossible, to believe that the PPP and the PML-N under their respective leaderships can ever again come to a meeting of the minds. Prior to this last non-event, an invitation to a presidential banquet accepted by Mian Nawaz Sharif, the press and many 'democrats were ...

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  • TThis is a deeply unhappy troubled country and it is virtually impossible to apportion blame to anyone or anything but itself and its unfortunate predilection - its inability to produce a leadership of any acceptable calibre or standing. This present government (in name only) should be treated as a ...

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  • TThis topsy-turvy nation, the Republic of Pakistan, has been bludgeoned by mediocrity in its leadership and governance since 1948 - far too long a time. In the large, it is now immune to the use of reason or logic when approaching any matter or issue relating to statecraft, or for that matter to ...

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  • TThe media entanglement in the Kerry-Lugar Bill dispute continues unabated - it is either black or white, there is no mid-ground, no grey. The division is clear - The Government of Asif Ali Zardari versus The Rest. To give it its official title, the Enhancement Partnership with Pakistan Act of 2009, ...

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  • TPakistan has had its perennial begging bowl fully extended in the US this week, with the government led by the countrys Head of State, Asif Ali Zardari, on its knees seeking the proverbial crumbs. Crumbs there are on offer, but far fewer than asked for and needed. Pledges aplenty are made, but ...

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  • TCompromise is very much a part of the democratic process. But are 'deals' a part of this system? In our case they obviously are since in these days of startling revelations coming at us from all sides, it has been admitted by no less than Head of State Asif Ali Zardari (notwithstanding subsequent ...

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  • TAs a whole, those few amongst the majority illiterate who speak up or write tend to go overboard on contentious subjects, now particularly when in support of conspiracy theories or in knee-jerk anti-American mode. The approach is rarely realistic, or pragmatic, as Pakistan and Pakistanis perceive ...

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  • TBy far the most sensible news to come our way last week was the September 2 report that the NWFP Chief Minister, young Amir Haidar Khan Hoti, has suggested that Ramazan and Eid-ul-Fitr timings be brought in line with those of Saudi Arabia, the custodian country of all that is held sacred by Muslims ...

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  • TTucked away in a lengthy August 25 press report on the fourth visit paid by the president to China is the most cheerful news to come to us for a while. Exactly why Asif Ali Zardari has found it convenient to pay four visits to outlying areas of China in less than a year spent in the presidency is ...

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  • TOne must fear for a nation when its people openly and viciously exhibit their contempt for it by word and by deed. This has always been a worry, and it was brought home decisively of late. A friend, who had just returned from a trip to London, described how the passengers on a PIA flight queued up ...

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  • TWhat the 'historic' judgement of July 31 has done is to frenzied cry, both verbal and written, against General Pervez Musharraf. The case was all about sorting out judges who were accused of taking an oath they should not have taken, so obviously dragged in had to be Musharraf. Now widely vilified ...

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  • TAre we now, in the era of the government of the liberal, democratic and people-oriented PPP-Z, witnessing the true face of 21st century Pakistan? Is this true face illuminated in the events that took place in Gojra at the start of the month, the recent antics of a faction of the black-coated ...

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