Talk about Islam and Israel

Mirza Danish Jamal – This is USA. Name a single POLITICIAN who is not asked to PLEDGE full loyalty to foreign power Israel.
    • FRIEND – I know. It’s insane. What other nation mandates that in order to be in politics you must take a pledge of loyalty to a foreign power?
    • FRIEND – Jewish lobbies and Zionist Christians are traitors.
    • Mirza Danish Jamal Muslim are dumb (uneducated) – ……..
      Jewish very clever. Wise on money saving too. Different smart culture. I say us Muslims should learn from.
      Sometimes I think I know why we Muslims are kept into this state ! Not a single country industrialsed. Malaysia or Turkey may become Industrialsed but When ? UN security council zero for Muslims. So ….. About traitors ? YES each US politician confessing half loyalty to Israel is a TRAITOR. These traitors let Israeli spies in USA go free. As you would remember Karla. USA hate in Muslim countries is because of USA foreign policies. CIA wants expansion = Like Industrial complex = A war every ten years is good for careers in CIA. More looter Govts overseas the better.
    • FRIEND – I just read that the CIA is going to offer Gitmo detainees freedom,protection and money in exchange for spying for them. Mirza,I have heard Muslims say they do not want a democratic form of government and prefer sharia in the same fashion it has always been from ancient times. It is their right,of course,but it makes for great difficulties for them,I think.
    • Mirza Danish Jamal Yes. Like China is facing exactly you are saying. Sharia is UNWORKABLE in 1800 and 2013. Like slavery and stoning allowed. Islam and Sharia gave lots of rights to women in their 700 AD period. Other religions also allow slavery and one religion in pure form does not allow divorce at all. Islam is more liberal in some way. Women are not objectified (from young age). Etc. BUT BUT BUT those were the times – those times did not had IMPRISONMENT as punishment for crimes so hand cut needed to STOP stealing. Every religion in old pure form will now go against human rights.
      Let me simply (in short blame everything on USA) say if ever SAUDI Govt improves itself = ISLAM will improve. Why Saudi Govt allow girl participation in Olympics – only in 2012 ? Not before ? DUBAI and UAE has long ago left SAUDI ISLAM far behind. Knee length skirts for Muslim Emirates Airline Cabin Crew= Every Muslim is proud of Dubai and this Airline. Uneducated only VISIT Saudia for Hajj and uneducated get deceived by oil RICH (loot) ROYAL FAMILY trying to (say) Disobey King = Disobey Koran. = Cancelling Saudi Citizenship is a kind (unislamic) Punishment from these USA friend (servant) ROYAL FAMILY that was installed on this country.
    • This mob (Saudis) are so BAD BAD that ALL country has LOST its identity !! Country has FAMILY NAME Saudia ! UK after 1st world war put this MONSTER killer of Muslims SAUD in 1919s on a country now lost its name – so call it Saudi’s.
    • See Islam in WORLD’s Biggest Muslim COUNTRY ! Indonesia ! Muslim girls DRIVE motorbikes and cycles ALONE !! Other Muslim countries are not EVEN shown MUSLIMS in Indonesia have to have real life living without oil. I am sure CIA will never like Pakistanis to be shown HOW Islam is in world’s biggest Sunni country = Indonesia.
  • FRIEND – Wow! I had no idea!
  • Mirza Danish Jamal I suffer these monsters Karla. Not you. I better go and look after my daughter. Its 12 midday and still sleeping !! Karla I TOO had NEVER seen Muslim girls life in Indonesia – Also DUBAI Ruler (real owner of Dubai) Always makes Public statements with room full of people PLUS PLUS ALWAYS ALWAYS a Knee length skirt girl holding office papers. WE are OPEN for Business Karla. Saudia is ALSO open for BUSINESS only Royals there know SAUDI OIL WILL NOT run out in 200 more years. Dubai has little oil of its own and UAE’s oil may last few decades !! So better LIFE than Saudia.

 

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Pakistan for years secretly approved of US drone attacks on its territory

2013-10-24 – Pakistan secretly endorsed drone strikes: report
http://www.dawn.com/news/1051470/pakistan-secretly-endorsed-drone-strikes-report

WASHINGTON: Pakistan for years secretly approved of US drone attacks on its territory despite public denunciations, The Washington Post reported Wednesday, citing secret documents.

The purported evidence of Islamabad’s involvement came as Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif visited the White House and urged an end to the attacks, which are widely unpopular with the Pakistani public.

Pakistani support for drone attacks has long been widely suspected, although strikes reported by the Post involved several years up to 2011 — before a slowdown in strikes and Sharif’s election in May.

The newspaper said that top-secret documents and Pakistani diplomatic memos showed that the Central Intelligence Agency had drafted documents to share information on drone attacks with Pakistan.

The report by the Washington post comes just days after a separate UN report suggested that there was  “strong evidence” that top Pakistani military and intelligence officials approved US drone strikes on Pakistani soil during 2004 and 2008.

At least 65 drone strikes were marked for discussion with Pakistan, including through briefings at its embassy in Washington and in materials sent physically to senior officials in Islamabad.

In one case in 2010, a document describes hitting a location “at the request of your government.” Another file referred to a joint effort at picking targets.

The article — co-written by Bob Woodward, one of the two journalists who broke the Watergate scandal in the 1970s — said that the documents also showed that the United States raised concerns that extremists were linked to Pakistan’s powerful intelligence service.

In one incident, then secretary of state Hillary Clinton confronted Pakistan about cell phones and written materials from dead bodies of militants that showed links to the Inter-Services Intelligence agency.

In turn, a Pakistani memo gave the names of 36 US citizens believed to be CIA agents and urged the embassy in Washington not to issue visas to them, the newspaper said.

The report came a day after Amnesty International said that the United States may have broken international law by killing civilians with drones.

It pointed to an October 2012 attack that killed a 68-year-old grandmother as she picked vegetables. For the first six months of 2011, 152 combatants were killed, according to a table cited by the Post that did not list any civilian casualties.

The Obama administration has defended drone strikes as a better way to avoid civilian casualties, saying that it carefully selects Al-Qaeda-linked extremists in lawless parts of Pakistan.

Saudi Arabia warns women against defying driving ban

Saudi Arabia warns women against defying driving ban – October 25, 2013
http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\10\25\story_25-10-2013_pg4_12

* Ministry says laws of kingdom prohibit activities disturbing public peace and opening venues to sedition
RIYADH: Saudi Arabia on Thursday warned it will take measures against activists who go ahead with a planned weekend campaign to defy a ban on women drivers in the conservative kingdom.
“It is known that women in Saudi are banned from driving and laws will be applied against violators and those who demonstrate in support” of this cause, Interior Ministry spokesman General Mansur al-Turki told AFP.
Activists have called on social networks for Saudi women, individually, to go behind the wheel on Saturday, in a campaign in the world’s only country that bans women from driving.
On Wednesday, the Interior Ministry issued a statement saying it would crack down against anyone who attempts to “disturb public peace” by congregating or marching “under the pretext of an alleged day of female driving.”
“The laws of the kingdom prohibit activities disturbing the public peace and opening venues to sedition which only serve the senseless, the ill-intentioned, intruders, and opportunity hunters,” said the statement carried by the official SPA news agency.
It added that the Interior Ministry “will fully and firmly enforce the laws against violators”.
Turki insisted that “all gatherings are prohibited” in Saudi Arabia.
Rights watchdog Amnesty International urged the Saudi authorities not to thwart the women’s right to drive, saying the ban was “demeaning”.
“It is astonishing that in the 21st century the Saudi Arabian authorities continue to deny women the right to legally drive a car,” said Amnesty’s Middle East and North Africa programme head, Philip Luther.
“The driving ban is inherently discriminatory and demeaning to women and must be overturned immediately. It is completely unacceptable for the authorities to stand in the way of activists planning to campaign against it.
“Instead of repressing the initiative, the authorities must immediately lift the ban to ensure that women are never again arrested or punished simply for being behind the wheel of a car.”
Women who defied the law in the past ran into trouble with the authorities and were harassed by compatriots.
In 1990, authorities stopped 47 women who got behind the wheel in a demonstration against the driving ban
In 2011, activist Manal al-Sharif, one of the organisers of this Saturday’s campaign, was arrested and held nine days for posting online a video of herself behind the wheel.
That year Saudi police arrested a number of women who defied the driving ban and forced them to sign a pledge not to drive again.
Activists have repeatedly insisted throughout their campaign that no demonstrations will be held.
“October 26 is a day on which women in Saudi Arabia will say they are serious about driving and that this matter must be resolved,” the Dubai-based Sharif has told AFP about the weekend protest.
She said women have begun responding to the call and over the past two weeks have posted videos online showing women already driving in Saudi Arabia.
With the exception of two women who were briefly stopped by police, authorities have so far not intervened to halt any of the female motorists.
Amnesty quoted one woman involved in the campaign as saying: “This is a natural right for us, a most simple and basic right, it relates to our freedom of movement… and give us a sense of control over our lives.”
Saudi women are forced to cover from head to toe and need permission from a male guardian to travel, work and marry. afp

POLIO – Pakistan – Fatwa

Fatwa declares polio vaccine Islamic  –
http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\10\25\story_25-10-2013_pg1_2

LAHORE: The Darul Afta (fatwa council) of Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC) has issued a fatwa, saying that the administration of polio drops to children is not forbidden in Islam. It says prominent scholars and experts of the Muslim world are convinced that polio drops do not contain anything that is harmful to health or against sharia. The fatwa issued from the PUC’s central office refers to Shaykh Al-Azhar of Jamia Al-Azhar Egypt, Maulana Samiul Haq of Darul Uloom Haqqania, Mufti Rafi Usmani, Maulana Zahid Mahmood Qasmi, Mufti Muhammad Naeem, Maulana Abdul Bari of Qabail Ulema Council, Maulana Anwarul Haq Mujahid, PUC Central Chairman Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mahmood Ashrafi and other Islamic leaders. The fatwa says that the holy Quran and Sunnah command us to provide proper medication to our children. It notes that polio is an incurable disease once infected. There are only three Islamic countries where polio still exists and one of them is Pakistan. Therefore, Islamic scholars have urged parents to administer polio drops to their children. The fatwa also demands the UN formulate laws to ensure global spies are kept away from healthcare organisations. It strongly condemns the actions of Shakil Afridi, a Pakistani physician who helped CIA track al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, and says that people in tribal regions and many areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan have refused to administer polio drops to their children to protest against the actions of Shakil Afridi. staff report

 

 

Pakistan polio outbreak puts global eradication at risk

Pakistan polio outbreak puts global eradication at risk – Dailytimes Report 19 Oct 2013

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\10\19\story_19-10-2013_pg1_6

* Taliban attacks, vaccine ban leave many children exposed

* Dozens of children paralysed in Waziristan outbreak

* Dramatic progress towards wiping out polio in jeopardy

LONDON: A Taliban ban on vaccination is exacerbating a serious polio outbreak in Pakistan, threatening to derail dramatic progress made this year towards wiping out the disease worldwide, health officials say.

Health teams in Pakistan have been attacked repeatedly since the Taliban denounced vaccines as a Western plot to sterilise Muslims and imposed bans on inoculation in June 2012.

In North Waziristan, a region near the Afghan border that has been cordoned off by the Taliban, dozens of children, many under the age of two, have been crippled by the viral disease in the past six months.

And there is evidence in tests conducted on sewage samples in some of the country’s major cities that the polio virus is starting to spread beyond these isolated pockets and could soon spark fresh polio outbreaks in more densely populated areas.

“We have entered a phase that we were all worried about and were afraid might happen,” Elias Durry, head of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in Pakistan, told Reuters in a telephone interview.

“The risk is that as long as the virus is still circulating, and as long as we have no means of reaching these children and immunising them to interrupt virus transmission, it could jeopardise everything that has been done so far – not only in Pakistan, but also in the region and around the globe.”

Polio is a highly infectious disease that invades the nervous system and can cause irreversible paralysis in a matter of hours. A $5.5 billion global eradication plan was launched in April with the aim of vaccinating 250 million children multiple times each year to stop the virus finding new footholds, and stepping up surveillance in more than 70 countries.

The virus has been cornered to just a handful of areas in Nigeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan, the three countries where polio is endemic. Global cases have dropped by more than 99.9 percent in less than three decades, from 350,000 in 1985 to just 223 last year, according to the GPEI.

But so far in 2013, there have already been 296 cases worldwide. Forty-three were in Pakistan, the vast majority in children in the semi-autonomous Pashtun lands along the Afghan border known as the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), which include North Waziristan.

Accusations that immunisation campaigns are cover for spies were given credence when it emerged that the United States had used a Pakistani vaccination team to gather intelligence about al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, who was found and killed by US special forces in Pakistan in 2011.

The Taliban ban, and associated security threats, mean the polio virus could easily escape and spread back into previously cleared areas.

Tariq Bhutta of the Pakistan Paediatric Association said there was little prospect that the militant Islamist group would change its stance. He said attacks on health teams attempting to reach children to immunise them were becoming both more frequent and more violent.

“The vaccination teams are still going out, but at risk to their lives,” he told Reuters. “People can come up on motorbikes and shoot them, and they’ve also started attacking the police put there to protect the vaccination teams.” A Taliban bomb that exploded earlier this month near a polio vaccination team in the northwestern city of Peshawar killed two people and appeared to target police assigned to protect the health workers.

“This will only be solved if the polio teams can get access to those children – either inside FATA, or when the children move out into other areas,” Bhutta said. “Without that I don’t see how things can improve. Rather I think things might get more serious when the polio virus gets out into settled areas.”

The GPEI says the FATA is the area with the largest number of children being paralysed by wild poliovirus in all of Asia.

Four polio cases in children in Pakistan were reported in the last week. Because the virus spreads from person to person, the World Health Organisation says as long as any child remains infected, children everywhere are at risk. reuters

Shahbaz expresses sorrow over KP law minister’s death

Shahbaz expresses sorrow over KP law minister’s death


* CM stresses need for forging unity to counter terrorism

LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has expressed deep sense of sorrow and grief over the death of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa law minister Israrullah Gandapur and the loss of other precious lives in a suicide attack in Kolachi area of Dera Ismail Khan.

Shahbaz Sharif telephoned Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervaiz Khatak and strongly condemned the suicide attack. He offered his sympathies over the death of Israrullah Gandapur and others in the tragic incident.

Earlier, on the Eid day, Shahbaz offered prayers at Jaati Umra, Raiwind.

Special prayers were also offered on this occasion for the solidarity, progress and prosperity of the country. Later, the chief minister exchanged Eid greetings with the people. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Member of National Assembly Hamza Shahbaz Sharif, elected representatives and other leaders of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz also offered Eid prayers at Jaati Umra.

Meanwhile, Shahbaz Sharif said that Pakistan had been facing the serious issue of terrorism for the last several years, and besides officers of the Pakistan Army and the police, common citizens had also offered sacrifices in the war against terrorism. He said that more than 50,000 Pakistanis had embraced martyrdom so far. He said under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the federal government had formulated a policy – with the consultation of all political parties – to curb terrorism, and its implementation would yield positive results, as the situation of law and order would improve in the country.

He was talking to reporters after distributing Eid gifts among under-treatment children at the Children Hospital on the second day of Eid.

Speaking on the occasion, he said that enemies of Pakistan were engaged in conspiracies to destabilise the country, and it was the need of the hour that the whole nation should unite to root out terrorism. He said that Pakistani nation would have to stand as a rock against anti-Pakistan elements, and that collective efforts were needed to check the incidents of terrorism.

The chief minister distributed Eid gifts among the under-treatment children and inquired from their attendants about the medical facilities being provided at the hospital.

He extended heartiest felicitations to the entire nation on the occasion of Eidul Azha and prayed for the development and prosperity of Pakistan.

He said that it was lamentable that the enemies of humanity, Islam, Pakistan and peace shed the blood of innocent people even on the occasion of Eid.

He said that terrorism had caused an immense loss to national economy and it was his Eid message to the nation to counter terrorism and the evil designs of anti-Pakistan forces by forging unity.

In reply to a question, Shahbaz Sharif said that the federal government led by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif furthered the process of negotiations with the Taliban with due sincerity and invited them to talks.

He said that the Taliban should also respond positively to the offer of dialogue. In response to a question about the arrest of the accused involved in molestation of a minor girl of Mughalpura, the chief minister said that he was getting information about the pace of investigation into the case and substantial progress had been made. He said the culprit would not be able to escape punishment. pr

 

 

 

BBC – Malala

Malala

Broadcast: 15/10/2013

Reporter: Mishal Husain

http://www.abc.net.au/foreign/content/2013/s3869644.htm

After Malala Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban she became even more determined to push her campaign.

NB: Due to copyright restrictions the video of this story will not be availlable online. The schoolgirls were gossiping and giggling on the little open-backed school van taking them home when it rounded a bend and was waved down by two young men brandishing guns.
‘Who is Malala Yousafzai?’ one demanded.
Anyone who’d been near a television in Pakistan in recent years would know who Malala was. Her campaign for female education had catapulted her from obscure schoolgirl to national identity. But the pair were Taliban – vehemently opposed to schooling girls – and they wanted to be certain of their target
The group of girls reacted nervously, spontaneously turning to a 15 year old girl seated toward the back of the bus. The gunman didn’t hesitate. He shot her in the head. Two other girls were wounded.
That Malala survived the attack is astonishing. That she emerged from the attempt on her life stronger and even more determined to push her campaign for education is truly inspirational.
Here she is – less than a year after the attack – addressing the United Nations to rapturous applause.
“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen … can change the world. Education first, thank you.” MALALA YOUSAFZAI
Her early outspokenness, the attack and her recovery have been well documented from a distance. But now, for the first time, Malala tells her story in her own words.
BBC Panorama reporter Mishal Husain has been granted extraordinary access to Malala’s world, filming with her family as they make their new life in Birmingham England, returning to Malala’s school, speaking with her classmates and visiting the scene of the shooting.
But above all, this enthralling story features an extended interview with Malala herself in which she details her motivations and inspirations, the harrowing experience of the attack that nearly claimed her life and her hopes and dreams that every child should and – if she has anything to do with – will receive an education.
“I need to be fully empowered… and to make myself powerful, I only need one thing, that is education, so I will get education.”

 

Pakistan – Enemy within

http://www.abc.net.au/foreign/content/2013/s3850711.htm

It’s out of bounds for most Pakistanis let alone a TV crew from Australia, but Foreign Correspondent has secured rare access to a deeply troubled corner of Pakistan – South Waziristan. The Pakistan Army is keen to show how it’s managed to kick out the Pakistan Taliban and restore a more conventional order to this neck of the so-called Tribal Agencies.
But is this a bona fide and enduring success story or just a fleeting chapter in a long history of changing rule in a heavily disputed area that presses up against Afghanistan and a hornet’s nest of Islamic extremists?
In a newly reconstructed market-place in one village, reporter Eric Campbell gets a sense of the complexities and vagaries of power.
Many villagers claim life was just fine under the Taliban, and the army’s intervention was unnecessary and destructive.
“No one was afraid because they were all locals, and all were Pakistanis. Everything was open – the markets – everyone was roaming around as normal. Everything was normal.” Villager, South Waziristan.
A shopkeeper tells Campbell, the Taliban were amenable rulers and he had no complaints. Equally, he says most have no problems with the army occupation of the area. He and others in the shop then joke about kidnapping the Foreign Correspondent crew for ransom.
Pakistan’s foremost expert on Islamists in the region, Ahmed Rashid, claims the American military focus on Afghanistan and the Pakistan Government’s duplicity there has radicalised and emboldened a local variant of the Taliban that’s now bent on destroying the Pakistan government and installing a Sharia dictatorship.
“There has been this double game that has gone on for many years, of Pakistan supporting the NATO presence in Afghanistan and at the same time allowing the Afghan Taliban to operate against the NATO forces. There is now a full-scale extremist movement in Pakistan that is trying to overthrow the State.” AHMED RASHID
For the time being – as the authority of the Army prevails – a major effort is unfolding to win back the support of the locals, including the construction of a high school for girls. That’s where we find Australian aid worker Jennifer McKay and an optimistic assessment of the future in South Waziristan.
“In the post conflict areas, education’s really critical to you know countering extremism and just generally the future prosperity and peace, so it’s a very important investment. It’s one more way of keeping the Taliban at bay” JENNIFER McKAY Aid Worker
Reporter: Eric Campbell Producer: Marianne Leitch Camera: David Martin Additional footage: Saleem Mehsud Editor: Garth Thomas __________________________________

Further Information

To support education for girls in Chagmalai, Pakistan Action on Poverty or call AFAP-Action on Poverty 02 9906 3792 __________________________________

Transcript

CAMPBELL: Islamabad looks as vibrant as ever, but even the capital is on high alert. This entire country is under attack from the inside. I’m on my way to a military hospital to see some of the victims.
These soldiers were sent to the heart of a conflict that’s been largely hidden from the world. They’ve come back profoundly damaged and disabled.
MAJOR DR MUHAMMAD ALI: “Well most of the patients we are receiving now at Armed Forces Institute of Rehabilitative Medicine are coming from the western borders of Pakistan where the war on terror is in progress. The mine blast injuries are the most common causes which they are having in those areas as they are deployed there”.
CAMPBELL: Major Dr Muhammad Ali gets new amputees to treat every week.
MAJOR DR MUHAMMAD ALI: “As you have seen, one of the patients here, he has got three limb amputations – that is one above elbow, and bilateral trans-femoral amputations – that is above knee amputation. They are pretty tough men and at every stage of life I personally learn so many things from them, at how motivated and how robust they are that even with this challenge they are living a successful life”.
CAMPBELL: In the past nine years more than 5,000 Pakistani soldiers have been killed and nearly 9,000 wounded fighting militants on the western border. Some of the enemy are Afghan and Arab fanatics who fled from Afghanistan, but most are their own people – Pakistanis inspired by the foreign militants to kill, maim and bomb their fellow countrymen.
AMPUTEE SOLDIER: “I have lost my leg, but I am ready to sacrifice for the country. I am ready to fight again. I will serve in the army and we will defeat the criminals. I am ready to sacrifice my life for the country”.
CAMPBELL: The victims aren’t just soldiers. There are nearly daily attacks on civilians, like this July bombing of a police graduation ceremony live on TV. The main culprits are the Pakistani Taliban. They’re an offshoot of the Afghan Taliban and even more ruthless. For ten years Pakistan’s foremost expert on extremism, Ahmed Rashid has warned of their rise.
AHMED RASHID: “From being a very small group controlling a small area they have expanded. They now have enlisted the support of militant groups in Karachi, in Punjab, in Sindh, Kashmiri groups who are fighting the Indians in Kashmir. There is now a full scale extremist movement in Pakistan that is trying to overthrow the State”.
CAMPBELL: The inspiration and agents of some of the worst acts of terrorism inhabit these remote landscapes – a place called Waziristan. According to US intelligence, even the Bali bombings that killed 88 Australians can be traced back to this frontier.
Pakistan’s porous border with Afghanistan is wide open to smugglers and terrorists. Since 2002 it’s been the real home of al Qaeda and the Taliban. They simply relocated here after the US-led invasion.
[travelling in car] “While the world has been focussed on Iraq and Afghanistan, Pakistan has been fighting an even costlier war in its own territory. This border region we’re heading to is normally off-limits to most Pakistanis let alone foreigners, but we’ve been given unprecedented access to go inside Pakistan’s war on the enemy within”.
We head west through Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the province British colonialists called the North-West Frontier. It’s the end of Pakistan proper. Beyond here is a kind of no-man’s land called the tribal agencies. Since colonial times, Pashtun tribesmen here were allowed to run their own affairs, but since the US invasion of Afghanistan, they’ve been taken over by militants.
AHMED RASHID: “In the tribal areas half the population have fled, not so much because of the army but because of the Taliban. They hate the Taliban, they’re scared of the Taliban and they fled and they’ve… some have fled as far as Karachi and Dubai in the Gulf, others have fled to refugee camps just outside the tribal areas”.
CAMPBELL: It’s taken months for us to get permission to travel to the tribal belt. The army has agreed to take us to a part it says it’s liberated, but we have to travel in a heavily-armed convoy with two mounted machine guns. The army will also call the shots on what we can film. Our destination is the tribal agency of South Waziristan. In 2009, under intense US pressure, Pakistan sent in the army to clear out the Taliban. Soldiers fought village by village and mountain by mountain. Many Taliban were killed but many more simply retreated just beyond the army’s reach into a forbidding wilderness.
COLONEL HUSSAIN: “There’s an operation basically in a location which is overlooking some of the approaches, which can be used by the terrorists”.
CAMPBELL: Colonel Hussain is one of the frontline commanders trying to hold on to this hard-won territory, but the terrain gives a clear advantage to insurgents.
COLONEL HUSSAIN: “Be careful. If you fall here, it’s at the cost of something, so be very, very careful”.
CAMPBELL: “So this must have been incredibly difficult terrain to fight in, when you tried to take these hills”.
COLONEL HUSSAIN: “It’s very difficult. Life is very difficult, at the post. You know, the people fetch water from downstream”.
CAMPBELL: “Yeah…. wow”.
COLONEL HUSSAIN: “It’s really very tough – but you know it’s part of a soldier’s life”. . CAMPBELL: The rugged landscape isn’t the only challenge. The enemy retains a home-ground advantage – they grew up here.
“They would have known this land very well, the Taliban… the locals.
COLONEL HUSSAIN: “Yes, obviously, the Taliban – they’re locals from this area so anyone who has been, you know, grazing his animals here for thirty years… he knows every stone of this area”.
CAMPBELL: On windswept mountaintops like this, they scan the area for Taliban and drill for attacks.
COLONEL HUSSAIN: “So I just wanted to show you the wilderness of this area, you know the mountains, the valleys and you know virtually it’s not possible to hold each and every peak, so you have to have domination at the top from where you can see different places where it is emerging and then you can observe the moment”.
CAMPBELL: “Big job!”
COLONEL HUSSAIN: “And it’s a difficult one”.
CAMPBELL: These are some of the men they’re fighting. A local journalist filmed this rare footage in winter of the Pakistani Taliban moving secretly though south Waziristan. They’re allies of the Afghan Taliban, but they have their own leaders and agenda.
Unlike the Afghans, they’re not trying to rid the country of foreigners – they want to replace their own government with a Sharia dictatorship.
HEKIMULLAH MEHSUD: “Democracy is part of the infidels, because it was created by the Jews. It was created to divide Muslims”.
CAMPBELL: Hekimullah Mehsud is one of their most powerful leaders.
HEKIMULLAH MEHSUD: “I can tell you that the Pakistan government is a slave to Americans and they worship Obama. Pakistanis obey Obama and Americans, like we obey our God”.
CAMPBELL: South Waziristan is now under complete military control. It feels like a wasteland. Most of the villages are still deserted. Civilians were ordered to leave so the army could launch its operation. The few men who’ve been given permission to return have had to surrender their traditional weapons.
The only women we see are fully veiled. Army minders order us not to film. In this culture, women can’t show their faces to strangers.
Waziristan, now divided into a north and south agency, has a long history of militancy. The British colonialists had little control here beyond the forts they built along the road to Afghanistan. They had to bribe tribal elders, called Maliks, to allow their soldiers safe passage.
“What I find really striking about this place is that even the villages are built as fortresses. There are two main tribes here, the Mahsuds and the Wazirs and historically when they haven’t been united fighting outsiders, they’ve been fighting each other. This is a land where war has traditionally been a part of life, where life is governed by an iron tribal code, and where offences of honour have to be settled in blood. It’s no wonder the British, who had the misfortune of trying to conquer Waziristan, called it Hell’s Doorknocker”.
Like the British, Pakistan has decided it can’t defeat the militants by force alone. It’s begun a second campaign for hearts and minds. The army is rebuilding much of what it destroyed in the fighting. It’s constructed a new technical college alongside new homes and cottage enterprises. The aim is to create jobs so these young people aren’t tempted to join the Taliban.
But when we visit one of the army built markets, the mood is more resentful than grateful. Some reckon the army’s operation against the Taliban did more harm than good.
SHOPKEEPER: The Taliban that were here were all Pakistanis. Even at that time the situation was good – it was not bad – but when the operation was done, the situation was worse. All our homes were destroyed during the operation”.
CAMPBELL: “Were you scared of the Taliban when they were here?”
TRIBAL MAN: “Nobody was afraid because they were all locals, and all were Pakistanis. They were locals and nobody was afraid. Everything was open… markets…everyone was roaming around as normal. Everything was normal”.
CAMPBELL: “So when you came back and saw everything was destroyed, how did you feel?”
TRIBAL MAN: “When we came back – the media doesn’t know about it – but the reality is that everything was destroyed, everything was finished. Schools are still mostly closed and teachers are absent. Three or four years have already been wasted for them. Everyone knows about this, how much time has been wasted for these children”.
CAMPBELL: Perhaps the Taliban went out of their way to keep these locals onside. Or maybe people are still scared of Taliban retaliation. Surrounded by soldiers, it’s hard to gauge what anyone really thinks. Inside this store, the merchant Abdul Ghafoor assures us all is fine.
“So are there any problems now?”
ABDUL GHAFOOR: “There is no problem. Life is good, and we are very thankful to God. We have been helped, the army also helped – and we’re having a very good life, no problems”.
CAMPBELL: “So what was it like when the Talban were here?”
ABDUL GHAFOOR: “They were also good days”.
CAMPBELL: “Really, why were they good days?”
ABDUL GHAFOOR: “Good days”.
CAMPBELL: “Why were they good days when the Taliban were here?”
[everyone’s laughing]
ABDUL GHAFOOR: “We didn’t face any problems”.
CAMPBELL: “Have there been any bad times here?”
ABDUL GHAFOOR: “Never”.
INTERPRETOR: “No never”. [laughing]
CAMBPELL: “Life is good! How is business? It’s good is it? I thought it would be”.
We leave just as onlookers start joking about kidnapping us, something the Taliban did often for money.
MAN IN SHOP: “Shall we sell them? Shall we sell them?” [crowd laughs]
SHOP KEEPER: “One of them can speak Pashto, so be quiet. They are laughing, so let’s laugh too”.
CAMPBELL: It’s not surprising that the locals are unwilling to criticise the Taliban – there are sympathisers with a keen sense of hearing and there are fears the militants could return at any time. When they were here the Taliban didn’t hesitate to kill anyone who stood in their way, from tribal elders to local soldiers and police.
[on cricket field] “It’s relatively peaceful now but this place has seen some horrors. There used to be a fort bedside this cricket field and when the Taliban stormed it in 2008 they captured 38 soldiers and cut their heads off. Then they set up their headquarters in the school on the other side of the stadium. When the army re-took the fort a year later, 1200 people died in a single week. The war destroyed most of the village. The army’s now rebuilt it to try to lure people back but it’s going to be a long, slow process”.
Only a handful of villages have been repopulated. Most people are still living in camps or with relatives around Pakistan. But there is one striking improvement here. For the first time, girls are going to high school.
The army has built a new school for girls up to the age of 18. It’s a surprising sight in an area where females are all but invisible. An independent aid consultant, Australian Jennifer McKay, one of the few daring to come to this area, has been raising money to outfit it with textbooks and uniforms.
JENNIFER MCKAY: “An exciting thing about this school is that despite what people think about girls’ education in Pakistan, particularly the tribal areas, is that the community here wants girls to go to school so they donated the land for this school, the army built the school, and so a bunch of friends we’re helping fit it out”.
CAMPBELL: Jennifer McKay first came to Pakistan in 2005 to help with earthquake relief and decided to stay on. She found hardly any outside aid was coming to Waziristan, partly because of negative perceptions that she says are wrong.
JENNIFER MCKAY: “I think what really keeps me here is the hospitality and generosity of the people. Even here in Waziristan the communities are extraordinarily welcoming, which wasn’t really what I expected”.
CAMPBELL: But it soon becomes apparent this is still a deeply conservative place. While the principal is happy to teach older girls, he doesn’t want us to film them.
JENNIFR MCKAY: [trying to convince principal] “It’s very special but it would be good to at least be able to show something of what is here because this is a very special school and so it’s a story that’s worth telling. It’s one that’s worth telling in pictures”.
CAMBPELL: “So it would be possible, we really need to have some pictures of just the young girls, the little children”.
Finally, after long appeals from Jennifer McKay he allows us to see the youngest children.
JENNIFER MCKAY: “Education’s a critical part of peace building and stability. The country needs a lot of help with education anyway, a lot of schools are quite deprived. But here in post conflict areas, education is really critical to you know countering extremism and just generally the future prosperity and peace, so it’s a very useful investment, important investment.
CAMPBELL: “So it’s one way of keeping the Taliban at bay?”
JENNIFER MCKAY: “Yes it is, it is. To educate girls is really important, because they bring up healthier children, they make sure that both their girls and boys go to school so education whether it’s for boys or girls plays an important role in keeping, yes, the Taliban at bay”.
CAMPBELL: Most of the Taliban retreated across the mountain into North Waziristan, where they roam freely. This video footage filmed by a Pakistani journalist shows militants in control of the main city of Miranshah, while the army is hunkered down in a nearby fort. The government has so far been afraid to launch another big operation.
AHMED RASHID: “The big danger is that if this continues indefinitely, the Taliban will become more powerful than the army”.
CAMPBELL: The Taliban even have a media studio in North Waziristan. It makes internet videos like this one teaching children to be suicide bombers. Pakistan’s now trying desperately to stop this insurgency. The irony is that it may have helped create it. For many years Pakistan’s military intelligence agency, the ISI, secretly supported militants in Afghanistan. The aim was to make sure Pakistan had a compliant neighbour no matter which side won the war.
AHMED RASHID: “There’s been this double game that has gone on for many, many years of Pakistan supporting the NATO presence in Afghanistan and at the same time allowing the Afghan Taliban to operate against the NATO forces”.
CAMPBELL: “So by trying to enhance Pakistan’s security by supporting the Afghan Taliban, they’ve actually undermined their own security because of the effect it’s had on the Pakistan Taliban?”
AHMED RASHID: “Exactly, exactly. I think that’s the best way of putting it. I mean the fact was you know, and people like myself were warning, in my writings, you know,I have been warning the Pakistani Government since 2003, because I visited some of these training camps and I saw what the army and ISI were doing in 2003 and I wrote about this. And of course, you know, they didn’t like it but I said the more you do this – encourage the Taliban to attack in Afghanistan – the backlash is going to come on Pakistan, because these camps and this set-up and this radicalisation is all taking place in Pakistan with the help of Pakistani tribesmen who are then going to get radicalised and of course that’s exactly what happened. You had the growth of the Pakistani Taliban”.
CAMPBELL: The US isn’t waiting for Pakistan’s permission to strike back. It’s using drones to attack Taliban bases like this Waziristan training camp. It was completely destroyed in a recent strike and this commander was killed, but each successful attack creates more enemies among the public.
There is one bright spot. Back in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, we were taken to meet some former Taliban operatives who the army captured. They’re being held in a special de-radicalisation centre outside the frontier city of Tank. We were allowed to film here on condition we don’t show their faces in case the Taliban take revenge on them.
Waseem, who’s 22, was a civil engineering student when the Taliban recruited him two years ago.
WASEEM: “They don’t come to college, they don’t do it openly, but they have places where they recruit. They tell people that Islam is facing danger and that a lot of atrocities and torture are being done against Muslims – and add more things to it. They try make people feel they should help – so they attract people to them”.
CAMPBELL: The inmates are learning new trades and getting religious re-education from anti-Taliban mullahs. Surrounded by soldiers, all tell us they now see the error of their ways.
WASEEM: “We are all Muslims, so they showed us one side of the picture and we thought it was necessary to do jihad because I did not know the other side of the picture. Then when I came here the army people told us the other side of the picture and I think this is right”.
CAMPBELL: It’s hard to know who to believe, from the lowliest foot solider to the height of government. The army at least seems determined to fight the Taliban’s rise in any way it can, but the biggest challenge may be yet to come. By the end of the year, almost all the Coalition’s combat troops will leave Afghanistan. Militants on both sides of the border are waiting.
AHMED RASHID: “They’re preparing not to make peace but rather to escalate the war which they feel that they will be able to do in a better way once the western forces have left”.
CAMPBELL: “So they see it almost as a retreat?”
AHMED RASHID: “Oh yes without a doubt. This is very similar to the circumstances in which the Soviet Union left Afghanistan”.
CAMPBELL: Australia and the US are about to end their longest-ever military engagement – but the war isn’t over. It’s just starting its next phase.

My Voice: Anti-Semitism tag used as Israeli ploy

My Voice: Anti-Semitism tag used as Israeli ploy

Alison Weir

Alison Weir
Written by
Alison S. Weir

MY VOICE

Alison Weir of Sacramento, Calif., is president of the Council for the National Interest and executive director of If Americans Knew. My Voice columns should be 500 to 700 words. Submissions should include a portrait-type photograph of the author. Authors also should include their full name, age, occupation and relevant organizational memberships. Send columns to Argus Leader, Box 5034, Sioux Falls, SD 57117-5034, fax them to 605-331-2294 or email them to letters@argusleader.com.

In his recent My voice column, “The longest hatred: Alison Weir’s speaking tour,” Steve Hunegs tries to use defamatory claims that I am “anti-Semitic” to divert attention from the facts I provide on Israel-Palestine.

This is an old and pervasive tactic. Former Israeli minister Shulamit Aloni explained in a television interview, “It’s a trick. We always use it. When from Europe someone is criticizing Israel, we bring up The Holocaust. When in this country people are criticizing Israel, then they are ‘anti-Semitic.’ And the organization is strong and has a lot of money.”

Hunegs’ organization, the Jewish Community Relations Council for Minnesota and the Dakotas, fits both: it frequently cries the “anti-Semitism” wolf, and it has an annual budget of almost $1 million with which to push its agenda.

The main purpose of such organizations is single minded — to keep American tax money flowing to Israel — $8.5 million per day, plus other, hidden gifts that Israel’s lobby has contrived to milk from the U.S. This is far more than we give any other country, even though Israel is one of the world’s smallest nations. And it is disbursed in a lump sum at the very beginning of the fiscal year.

Because our government is operating at a deficit, this means our government borrows the money then pays interest on it long after it has gone to Israel. The money is deposited into an Israeli interest-bearing account, so Israel actually makes profit from our borrowing. For specifics, see the official Congressional Research Service report, “U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel April 11, 2013.”

And to make the financial cost to U.S. taxpayers even worse, a massive amount of foreign aid also is given to Egypt in an arrangement put together in 1979 as nothing more than a bribe to prevent Egypt from opposing Israel’s ruthless expulsion of Christians and Muslims and theft of billions of dollars worth of their property.

However, Hunegs wishes none of this known to hard-pressed American taxpayers, so he tries instead to focus attention on claims that critics of our Israeli policy are bigots. I’m sorry to destroy Hunegs’ thesis, but I have a life history of opposing all bigotry, including that against Jewish Americans.

In his vitriolic rant, Hunegs attempts to buttress this despicable claim by misrepresenting a few of my articles — out of my multitude of pieces I’ve written on Israel-Palestine.

He ignores my articles describing the tragic situation for Palestinians resulting from Israeli brutality against them, and the fact that they have been killed in far greater numbers than Israelis, and almost always were killed first in each round of violence.

He ignores my facts about Israel’s attack on a U.S. Navy ship, the USS Liberty, that killed 34 Americans and injured 174, and of how the Israel lobby has worked ever since to cover this up, even calling the American sailors who survived the Israeli assault “anti-Semitic.” One of the survivors, Stan White, is a native of Burbank, S.D.

Hunegs and other Israel apologists never mention that employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, one of the Israel lobby’s main organizations, were indicted for conspiring to gather and disclose classified national security information to Israel, and that Israel repeatedly has stolen American technology and secrets, at times passing them on to enemies of the U.S.

The Israel lobby even works to support one of the most destructive spies against the U.S. in our entire history, Jonathan Pollard, whom Israel paid to steal highly secret material from the Pentagon.

Worse yet, the Israel lobby continues to beat the drum for more and more U.S. intervention in the Middle East, now against Syria and Iran, even while the large majority of Americans oppose these wars, and while our country suffers from the dreadfully costly — in both lives and money — invasion of Iraq that Israel partisans promoted.

Instead of discussing my thoroughly documented articles on these profoundly significant topics, Hunegs makes false allegations about what I have written and loathsome misrepresentations of my views.

However, Hunegs’ purpose is not to give facts. It is to keep our tax money flowing to Israel. My purpose is to inform Americans of the true situation and to work for U.S. policies that are in the best interests of Americans, that represent our national principles of fairness and justice and that will stop fueling the tragic violence in the Middle East.

 

HEC publishes book on journalists’ corruption in Pakistan

 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=20137\23\story_23-7-2013_pg13_8

 

HEC publishes book on journalists’ corruption in Pakistan

* Authored by Dr Shahzad and Dr Khalid, the book names journalists who took undue and illegal advantages
By Shabbir Sarwar

LAHORE: Corruption and misuse of power within press, acquisition of wealth and exploitation by journalists for personal gains are elucidated in detailed in the book “Press, Pressmen and the Governments in Pakistan: Mishandling of Power and Positions”, published by the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan.
Different cases of corruption of journalists such as acquiring financial gains, getting high official posts, multiple plots, and foreign trips are discussed in various chapters of the book.
The book has been published by the HEC Pakistan and authored by Dr Shahzad Ali, distinguished assistant professor of Department of Mass Communication Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan and co-author Prof Dr Muhammad Khalid, Chairman Department of Mass Communication, University of Management and Technology, Lahore. The authors have dedicated the book to Habib Jalib calling him a “zealous revolutionist”, who believed that reticence is a sin’.
The book starts with discussing perception and notions about press freedom, as well as the media boom in Pakistan over the last decade. The opening remark of the book is a quote by Surin Pitsuwan, Thai Minister of Foreign Affairs, who said, “No nation is so poor that it cannot afford a free press. In fact, the poorer you are, the more you need a free press,” highlighting the need of free press especially in developing countries such as Pakistan.
Different atrocities against press and freedom of speech in Pakistan are also discussed throughout the book, including violence against journalists, which continue to this day in different parts of Pakistan as a tool to keep the press in check and silence others who might raise their voices.
The most interesting part of the book is frank discussion and disclosure of corruption, misuse of the power by journalists. Details of many journalists’ and corruption have been discussed in the book with clear mention of their names as well their relatives who gained illegal advantages.
The book highlights the current as well as the historic situation of media in Pakistan, while focusing on the press freedom and developments and changes during different regimes in the country. Violence suffered by the press as well as cases of yellow journalism and bad practices are also discussed with details in seven chapters of the book.
Evolution of media laws in Pakistan are discussed and analysed in great details in the beginning chapters of the book, which also highlights the concerns and interests of different regimes in the country. Another aspect of the book is the chronological analysis of the media, which helps in understanding different phases of press in Pakistan.
In the preface of the book Dr Shahzad states that ‘most of the books published in Pakistan have deliberately or unconsciously overlooked the negative role of media practitioners. The primary objective of all previous books had been to highlight the severe actions of successive regimes, irrespective of democratic or autocratic in curbing the freedom of press. The ruling Junta was portrayed as a villain, oppressive, and fascist in a derogatory manner, whereas the media groups and their working journalists were depicted as custodians of constitution, of law, of human rights, and above all as comrades fighting for the rights of less privileged classes.
Several writers eulogised in hyperbolic way the meritorious services of the media practitioners as equivalence to Messiah of the country. In short, the projection of work for newspapers was exaggerated as sacred and as holy as the constituent steps of doing ablution or going on a pilgrimage.’
‘Press, Pressmen and the Governments in Pakistan: Mishandling of power and positions’ can undoubtedly be called the most in-depth look into Pakistani media, as it covers each and every historic event of press’ life in Pakistan.