Sweet and sour happenings
But the sourest thing was the most undemocratic most authoritarian attempt to paint the yeoman of journalism as foreign agents, namely Kamran Khan, Ansar Abbasi of Geo and Hamid Mir and the Geo and the News themselves . It is well know that who ever takes up the cause of truth is choosing to walk the path littered with gravest dangers. That is why there is that Tradition that the greatest good is to speak the truth before an oppressive ruler. History is full of examples of such great pioneers of truth new era of liberty and new values who made human progress possible. Not every Tom Dick and Harry can have the courage to walk this path. It was a sorry spectacle when the big wigs of the ruling party in Punjab started the mud slinging (abortive) attempt to call them Indian and foreign agents, and attributed to them the money making motive through journalism when they talked of the houses and cars they own. It seemed they were talking not of these investigating journalists but of some stalwarts of their own party. But Kamran Khan came out with a knock out statement against these allegations. He cited specific- and a long list – of specific revelations the investigating journalism of Geo and the News had made none of which were refuted with convincing facts. Abusive charges are no contradiction. The people, who are supposed to matter in any true democracy, think this new style of investigative journalism to be a gift to democracy. Gentlemanly PM Gilani did well to disassociate himself from this campaign against Geo and these stalwarts of freedom of speech.
But this is a sun shine in the dark totalitarian thinking of a power group who continued their tirade against freedom of information by canceling Sherry Rehman’s membership of PPP and cancelled Safdar Abbasi’s membership of the PPP’s Central Executive Committee. Both these personalities are held in esteem for their rectitude. They are among the few persons who enjoy respect and considerable credibility in the country across the board. Worst still a nasty demonstration was stage-managed against Sherry Rehman in Karachi. What does it indicate – a totalitarian politics. It is not known why in the most educated city Karachi such anti-diluvium manifestations take place against Geo from time to time. Karachi deserves better performance than all kinds of despicable outburst of target killings, massacres and hatred against freedom of press.
Let it be reminded that democracy is not just getting into power by votes, but adhering to certain values of freedom thereafter and good governance. Hitler, Massolini an Stalin came into power through total support of their peoples and through elections only were these to be the only criterion of democracy They were mostly real votes but it was only the way they governed that was fascist. That litany of “sacrifices” the ruling party made for democracy is played too much not only with exaggeration of facts and the magnitude of so-called sacrifices but this will be examined some other time. This is not to be counted as an excuse to misgovern and deny basic rights in democracy.
Another sour happening is the continuation of the farce of verification of “degrees” of the so called members of the Assemblies. Obviously, those who have no proof of their claim to be even modestly educated- a B.A or equivalent degree is the least title to be counted modestly educated- absent themselves repeatedly from appearance before the Commission. One should not wait for their appearance till hell will freeze. Sufficient opportunity has been given to them to prove their claim. Now their absence from the hearing at the Commission should be taken as their silent acknowledgment of lack of proof to substantiate their claim and declared as having fake degrees. Every one knows that a person with weak claim wants to avoid appearance before trails and asks for postponements ad infinitum. Accepting his pleas for another date is an act of denial of justice or to sabotage justice. Or misuse of the previlige to be given a hearing at a date of his choice which is a chase of the phantom. Chasing phantoms should be stopped in proceedings.
It was for once a pleasant statement Hillary Clinton made asking the rich in Pakistan to be brought in the tax net- or compelled to pay income tax. Glad to know that the world takes notice of the fatties of this country fleecing the country and not sharing the burden of the taxes. The only persons who pay honest taxes are the salaried people and white color workers. The richer the more he knows how to evade payment of taxes. They have the income tax practioners who tell the rich assesses how to doge payment of taxes. What a pity.
Thank God she did not demand that the written off loans of billions to these vary fatty rich be recovered and American loans be returned. These super rich are all American cronies. Then they would have heeded the public demand that the so-called loan defaulterts who got their billions written off return the billions lost to the public exchequer. We the middle class are the milch cows for all sorts of government taxes.
One should not omit to assess the results of the Second US-Pak Strategic Dialogue Meeting almost just concluded. What was the purpose? Here I may recall a lesson I learnt during my Foreign Service Training In 1950 I was attached to Pak Mission to the UN in New York when Patras Bokhari was our Representative to the UN and then worked as an internee with Ralph Bunch Nobel prize winner then Under Secretary UN Trusteeship. Both wanted just in a few words the main idea of a proposition instead of a long bla bla thesis. Patras Bukhari told me that when the idea of opening the second front in WW II was under construction, Churchill ruled out all proposition where the Second Front should be opened. He put on the map a pencil and chose Normandy in France as ideal for landing of the Allied Forces. This is the straight line to open the Second Front he said.
Let me say that the real purpose of the Dialogue was to pressurize Pakistan to launch military operations in North Waziristan and for that purpose $ 2 billion “Military Aid” was offered . The talks on civil items were mere additives like a chocolate, to sweeten the mood. How far Americans succeeded cannot be said but possibly not much because General Kiyani was alive to the game. As was Shah Mahmood Qureshi . Nonetheless Pakistan’s standing has gone down so low that it must have been a difficult position for Pakistan not to submit to some extent to US terms. Two points need be made: What were the terms of the “$ 2 billion Aid” It should be. US contribution to the Pak Army to remain in War on Terror” and not “ Aid” but its contribution in that war. Another point why such a large delegation was sent? Was it necessary ?.