News & Views

Pakistan had no solid right on Kashmir

Pakistan had no solid right on Kashmir

Mobarik Haider PM Imran Ahmad Khan said he will now be the global ambassador for Kashmir. Since ambassadors of India and Pakistan are gone and borders between the two countries securely sealed, Mr. Khan seems to think that the world arena of diplomatic conquest is free for him. So he will be on a world tour to talk about an […]

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A bad Afghan deal won’t help

A bad Afghan deal won’t help

HUSAIN HAQQANI The Donald Trump administration flattered Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan and army chief General Qamar Bajwa, hoping that Pakistan will use its influence over the Taliban to advance the Afghan peace process. The recent spate of terrorist attacks in Afghanistan, including the one targeting vice-presidential candidate Amrullah Saleh over the weekend, makes it obvious that the Taliban see […]

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Crackdown on the press is getting worse by the day

Crackdown on the press is getting worse by the day

By Steven Butler July 16 was just another night for Najam Sethi on his show at Pakistan’s 24 News BD, where the sometimes jocular veteran journalist sits and analyzes the day’s news, answering questions interspersed with video clips. Yet as he got to the last item on the show — nationwide demonstrations by journalists against censorship and layoffs — management suddenly pulled the […]

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Imran Khan’s US visit

Imran Khan’s US visit

AYESHA SIDDIQA Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, who once accused the US of ‘destroying Pakistan’ and blamed his country’s politicians for fighting American wars for money, will soon be in Washington DC. His objective will be to rekindle the warmth in the bilateral relationship that seems to have died since Donald Trump took oath as President of the US in 2016. While opening channels of American money […]

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Is Pakistan’s General Bajwa the new Musharraf?

Is Pakistan’s General Bajwa the new Musharraf?

AYESHA SIDDIQA Pakistan’s army chief, General Qamar Bajwa was recently in London to meet his counterpart and many other bigwigs of the security establishment of the UK ostensibly to discuss issues of strategic cooperation. However, the visit – his second in nine months – was more than the usual tête-à-tête. If anything, there were four objectives of the tour: find a via-media to improve relations with the US that […]

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Why Pakistan’s economy is sinking

Why Pakistan’s economy is sinking

Pakistan’s new budget will not fix the country’s economic woes. Here is why. by Taha Siddiqui The Pakistani government unveiled its first annual budget for the fiscal year 2019-2020 on June 11 and was only able to pass it on June 28. The considerable delay was due to strong resistance from the opposition in parliament which threatened with protests over […]

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New ISI chief Faiz Hameed a manipulator

New ISI chief Faiz Hameed a manipulator

Pakistan Army replaced its ISI head within 8 months with an ‘average’ officer close to chief Bajwa, whose hold in country’s politics grows by day. AYESHA SIDDIQA The Pakistan Army’s strategic intelligence agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence, got a new chief this week, Lt General Faiz Hameed, making the world wonder what has he done to deserve the position. Or what will now be […]

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Espionage case shatters Pakistan army’s myths

Espionage case shatters Pakistan army’s myths

  Husain Haqqani Espionage case shatters Pakistan army’s myths – and the belief its nuke secrets are secure The court-martial of three individuals, including a recently retired three-star general, on charges of espionage and revealing classified information to foreign intelligence agencies seriously, dents the charisma that helps keep Pakistan’s army in charge of the country. The fact that senior military officers […]

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In search of the truth at Miramshah

In search of the truth at Miramshah

Farhatullah Babar By official account three – but by unofficial account, many more – were killed and injured in firing after Pakhtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) marchers were stopped at a military check post in North Waziristan on Sunday. MNA Ali Wazir, arrested on charges of terrorism, has since been remanded in the custody of the Counter-Terrorism Department by an anti-terrorism […]

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Indian thymos

Indian thymos

Khaled Ahmed Prime Minister Narendra Modi has won his election and now India will have to adjust to his worldview in the coming five years more completely, judiciary a little more and the minorities quite a lot. Prime Minister Imran Khan his neighbor wanted him to win so that he could readjust to India, change policy from the ground up, […]

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An open letter to Prime Minister, Imran Khan

An open letter to Prime Minister, Imran Khan

Dear Mr. Khan, On May 5, 2019, you laid the foundation stone of Al-Qadir University in Sohawa near Jhelum in the Punjab province. You emphatically, albeit with some difficulty, announced that “we will convert Spirituality into a Super Science”. The government of Pakistan’s Twitter account wrote “Al-Qadir University would provide both Islamic and scientific education to the students and help […]

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Ali Haider Gilani, son of former Pakistani Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani, who is contesting in the upcoming general election, speaks during a campaign meeting at a house on the outskirts of Multan May 9, 2013, before his abduction by unidentified gunmen.  REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo

No one tames Taliban

by Khaled Ahmed American commentator Michael Kugelman recently wrote: “The US government appears to be acknowledging that Pakistan, given its influence over the Taliban, is an important and potentially helpful player in the peace process in Afghanistan.” A Pakistani will ask: What influence? Pakistan’s main unacknowledged threat comes from the Taliban and their patron, al-Qaeda. Mehr Tarar, in her wonderfully […]

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Kabul: Taliban fighters and their supporters carry a representation of the Afghan national flag and a Taliban flag while riding in a motorized vehicle, in Kabul, Afghanistan, Sunday, June 17, 2018. A suicide bomber struck Sunday in Afghanistan's eastern city of Jalalabad, killing at least 18 people in the second attack in as many days targeting Taliban fighters, security forces and civilians celebrating a holiday cease-fire. AP/PTI(AP6_17_2018_000142B)

After US leaves Kabul

  By Khaled Ahmed America is thinking of quitting Afghanistan because its soldiers are too expensive to send abroad. It stands to save $43 billion annually if it leaves. Pakistan is scared of what will happen if America really quits and Afghanistan returns to its heroin-sustained warlordism. The Afghan Taliban are winning on a daily basis and control half of […]

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Pakistan’s army is to blame for the poverty

Pakistan’s army is to blame for the poverty

Pakistan’s army is to blame for the poverty of the country’s 208 m citizens Economist Report IT HAS FOR so long been a country of such unmet potential that the scale of Pakistan’s dereliction towards its people is easily forgotten. Yet on every measure of progress, Pakistanis fare atrociously. More than 20m children are deprived of school. Less than 30% of […]

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For Pakistan, 2018 was just another year of the generals

For Pakistan, 2018 was just another year of the generals

by Husain Haqqani Pakistan ends 2018 with a sharply devalued rupee, greater dependence on foreign largesse, lower credit rating, and even less democracy than before. The year witnessed the imprisonment of a former prime minister and the selection of a new one – Imran Khan – hailed as the country’s saviour by some and seen as an inexperienced and dimwitted demagogue by […]

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India-Pakistan relationship

India-Pakistan relationship

Former Ambassador of Pakistan to the U.S. Husain Haqqani left that position six years ago amidst controversy over a memo he was accused of orchestrating, urging U.S. help in preventing a military coup in Pakistan following the Abbottabad operation that killed Osama bin Laden. An advocate of civilian government in the country, he’s become a sharp critic of the Pakistani […]

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Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan prepares to speak at the opening of the Future Investment Initiative conference, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018. The high-profile economic forum in Saudi Arabia is the kingdom's first major event on the world stage since the killing of writer Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul earlier this month. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Turning their back on modernity

by Khaled Ahmed Turkey’s education system was once an inspiration for Pakistan. Today, both countries promote religious education. In the last column he wrote before he was murdered, Arab journalist Jamal Khashoggi wanted “freedom of expression” and “modern education” in the Muslim world. In Pakistan, however, the government is worried about the concurrently functioning Urdu and English-medium schools “because they […]

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Donald Trump & Imran Khan

Donald Trump & Imran Khan

Money, honour, hope – Why Donald Trump’s US & Imran Khan’s Pakistan are having an open spat By Husain Haqqani The exchange of tough messages over the last few days on Twitter between American president Donald Trump and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan created news but was nothing new. Trump accused Pakistan of not doing “a damn thing for us” […]

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Feisty fighter, Pakistan’s conscience

Feisty fighter, Pakistan’s conscience

Asma Jahangir opposed military dictators, alienated religious parties, did not mince words against the country’s highest court. By Khaled Ahmed Pakistan’s leading human rights lawyer, Asma Jahangir, died of a heart attack in Lahore on February 11, aged 66. There was a spontaneous outpouring of grief in Pakistan, even from those who didn’t like her challenge to an increasingly fundamentalist […]

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Blasphemy and a violent response

Blasphemy and a violent response

  By Kamran Siddiqui The topic of blasphemy in Pakistan has become a contentious issue in recent years. The existing Blasphemy law is being exploited by public to punish their opponents and settle personal vendettas, outside the judicial jurisdiction in the name of blasphemy. Due to the sensitive nature of the topic, it is not difficult for flare up emotions […]

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