Mansoor Ijaz, instigator behind Pakistan’s ‘Memogate’

The Washington Post

Behind the “Memogate” affair that has embroiled Pakistan’s former ambassador to the United States. and the civilian government he represents, there is a quixotic accuser named Mansoor Ijaz who seems like a character in a fanciful spy novel of his own design.

Ijaz is an American businessman of Pakistani descent who lives in high style on the French Riviera. He made money as an investor, but his fame has come as a writer of op-ed pieces and a sometime intermediary with Pakistani and American officials. He has alleged that Husain Haqqani, the former ambassador, encouraged him to write a memo to Adm. Mike Mullen last May urging tighter controls on the Pakistani military.

That charge has snared Haqqani and triggered a crisis pitting Pakistan’s civilian government against its military. But even if Ijaz’s allegation is true, it’s reasonable to ask: So what? Haqqani doesn’t appear, even from Ijaz’s evidence, to have done anything illegal — or even outside his job as diplomatic representative of the government.

Pakistan’s supreme court is scheduled to begin hearing the case on Tuesday. But before it gets too deep into the blizzard of alleged electronic messages between Ijaz and Haqqani, the court should ask whether the fundamentals of the case make sense — and whether it will prove an embarrassment to both the military and the civilian leadership.

A review of the evidence suggests there may be less to the case than all the noise would suggest. That’s the view of Shuja Nawaz, director of the South Asia Center at the Atlantic Council and an authority on the Pakistani military, with which he has close contacts.

“This is now a sideshow that is taking on importance beyond the needs of the country,” Nawaz told me Sunday. “There is no evidence that the security of the state has been compromised. Husain Haqqani has already been removed from his post. Perhaps it would be best to close this matter and move on to more serious things.”

Let’s start with the memo itself. Ijaz outed the story in an Oct. 10, 2011, opinion piece in the Financial Times in which he said that on May 9, a “senior Pakistani diplomat” had had contacted him with an “urgent request” that he convey a message to Mullen urging the U.S. to back tighter controls on Pakistan’s military and intelligence. Ijaz later identified that diplomat as Haqqani, who denies that he was the instigator.

In any event, Ijaz wrote a memo making the argument — including a statement that a new “national security team” in Islamabad would abolish the notorious “S” wing of Pakistani intelligence, which maintains liaison with the Taliban and other jihadist groups. He then arranged for Jim Jones, the former national security adviser, to send the memo to Mullen.

Ijaz’s memo was a stronger statement of arguments he had made publicly back in May, in the Financial Times and a Washington Post blog, after the death of Osama bin Laden. “Taken advantage of properly by U.S. policymakers, exposed treachery [in bin Laden’s long residence in Pakistan] could usher in a new era of transparency in Pakistan’s internal affairs,” he wrote in the Post item.

Haqqani, as a representative of the civilian government, probably shared a similar feeling that Pakistani military and intelligence had been embarrassed by the fact that bin Laden had been living for years in Abbotabad. But he hardly needed Ijaz’s help in conveying his views to people like Mullen. He was in daily contact with top U.S. officials, trying to represent President Asif Ali Zardari. The Pakistani military had a representative of its own, a respected military attaché who could speak on the generals’ behalf.

Ijaz seems to have relished his role as a freelance adviser. His relationship with Jones, who passed the memo, is a case in point: They had met in 2006, and Jones, who was then NATO commander, had asked Ijaz to join a strategic advisers group and travel with him to Afghanistan. Later, Ijaz was asked to join the board of the Atlantic Council, where Jones is a former chairman. But his stint as a board member didn’t last long, nor did he make major donations to the group.

When a government official asked several years ago for a CIA check on Ijaz’s background in international matters, he is said to have received an “orange flag” — nothing that would rule out dealing with him, but a caution that he had a taste for publicity and sometimes talked more than he delivered.

One of the intriguing aspects of Ijaz’s role is whether, in his contacts with Mullen, he was in effect acting as a representative of Zardari. Jones said in an affidavit for the Pakistani court that Ijaz “mentioned that he has a message from the ‘highest authority’ in the Pakistan government.” And in his cover letter to Jones, accompanying the infamous memo, Ijaz wrote: “This document has the support of the President of Pakistan.” (The cover note, along with all the other documentation, has been submitted to the court in Pakistan.)

Which leads some critics of Ijaz to raise the question: If Ijaz was acting on Zardari’s behalf (or Haqqani’s, for that matter) should he have registered as an agent of a foreign government? That’s just one of the wrinkles in a story so colorful and unlikely that it would have been branded unrealistic if written as fiction.

Ancient Jewish scrolls found in north Afghanistan

A cache of ancient Jewish scrolls from northern Afghanistan that has only recently come to light is creating a storm among scholars who say the landmark find could reveal an undiscovered side of medieval Jewry.

The 150 or so documents, dated from the 11th century, were found in Afghanistan's Samangan province and most likely smuggled out -- a sorry but common fate for the impoverished and war-torn country's antiquities.

Israeli emeritus professor Shaul Shaked, who has examined some of the poems, commercial records and judicial agreements that make up the treasure, said while the existence of ancient Afghan Jewry is known, their culture was still a mystery.

"Here, for the first time, we see evidence and we can actually study the writings of this Jewish community. It's very exciting," Shaked told Reuters by telephone from Israel, where he teaches at the Comparative Religion and Iranian Studies department at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The hoard is currently being kept by private antique dealers in London, who have been producing a trickle of new documents over the past two years, which is when Shaked believes they were found and pirated out of Afghanistan in a clandestine operation.

It is likely they belonged to Jewish merchants on the Silk Road running across Central Asia, said T. Michael Law, a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at Oxford University's Center for Hebrew and Jewish Studies.

"They might have been left there by merchants travelling along the way, but they could also come from another nearby area and deposited for a reason we do not yet understand," Law said.


Cultural authorities in Kabul had mixed reactions to the find, which scholars say is without a doubt from Afghanistan, arguing that the Judeo-Persian language used on the scrolls is similar to other Afghan Jewish manuscripts.

National Archives director Sakhi Muneer outright denied the find was Afghan, arguing that he would have seen it, but an advisor in the Culture Ministry said it "cannot be confirmed but it is entirely possible."

"A lot of old documents and sculptures are not brought to us but are sold elsewhere for ten times the price," said advisor Jalal Norani, explaining that excavators and ordinary people who stumble across finds sell them to middlemen who then auction them off in Iran, Pakistan and Europe.

"Unfortunately, we cannot stop this," Norani said. The Culture Ministry, he said, pays on average $1,500 for a recovered antique item. The Hebrew University's Shaked estimated the Jewish documents' worth at several million dollars.

Thirty years of war and conflict have severely hindered both the collecting and preserving of Afghanistan's antiquities, and the Culture Ministry said endemic corruption and poverty meant many new discoveries do not even reach them.

Interpol and U.S. officials have also traced looted Afghan antiquities to funding insurgent activities.

In today's climate of uncertainty, the National Archives in Kabul keep the bulk of its enormous collection of documents -- some dating to the fifth century -- under lock and key to prevent stealing.

Instead reproductions of gold-framed Pashto poems and early Korans scribed on deer skin, or vellum, are displayed for the public under the ornate ceilings of the Archives, which were the nineteenth century offices of Afghan King Habibullah Khan.

"I am sure Afghanistan, like any country, would like to control their antiquities... But on the other hand, with this kind of interest and importance, as a scholar I can't say that I would avoid studying them," said Shaked of the Jewish find.

Pakistan Court Widens Role, Stirring Fears for Stability


Once they were heroes, cloaked justices at the vanguard of a powerful revolt against military rule in Pakistan, buoyed by pugnacious lawyers and an adoring public. But now Pakistan’s Supreme Court is waging a campaign of judicial activism that has pitted it against an elected civilian government, in a legal fight that many Pakistanis fear could damage their fragile democracy and open the door to a fresh military intervention.

From an imposing, marble-clad court on a hill over Islamabad, and led by an iron-willed chief justice, Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, the judges have since 2009 issued numerous rulings that have propelled them into areas traditionally dominated by government here. The court has dictated the price of sugar and fuel, championed the rights of transsexuals, and, quite literally, directed the traffic in the coastal megalopolis of Karachi.

But in recent weeks the court has taken interventionism to a new level, inserting itself as the third player in a bruising confrontation between military and civilian leaders at a time when Pakistan — and the United States — urgently needs stability in Islamabad to face a dizzying array of threats.

Judges say their expanded mandate comes from the people, dating back to the struggle against the military rule of Gen. Pervez Musharraf that began in 2007, eventually helping to pry him from power. Memories linger of those heady days, when bloodied lawyers clashed with riot police officers, and judges were garlanded and paraded as virtual saints.

In recent months, however, the Supreme Court has ventured deep into political peril in two different cases. Last week, as part of a high-stakes corruption case, it summoned Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani to testify in court under threat of contempt charges that, if carried to conviction, could leave him jailed and ejected from office.

The court has also begun an inquiry into a scandal known here as Memogate, a shadowy affair with touches of soap-opera drama that has engulfed the political system since November. It has claimed the job of Pakistan’s ambassador to the United States and now threatens other senior figures in the civilian government, under accusations that officials sought American help to head off a potential military coup.

Propelled by accounts of secret letters, text messages and military plots, the scandal has in recent days focused on a music video featuring bikini-clad female wrestlers that is likely to be entered as evidence of immorality on the part of the central protagonist, Mansoor Ijaz, an American businessman of Pakistani origin.

Hearings resume Tuesday when Mr. Ijaz is due to give evidence. The fact that the courts have become the arena for such lurid political theater has reignited criticism, some from once-staunch allies, that the Supreme Court is worryingly overstepping its mark.

“In the long run this is a very dangerous trend,” said Muneer A. Malik, a former president of the Supreme Court Bar Association who campaigned for Justice Chaudhry in 2007. “The judges are not elected representatives of the people and they are arrogating power to themselves as if they are the only sanctimonious institution in the country. All dictators fall prey to this psyche — that only we are clean, and capable of doing the right thing.”

The court’s supporters counter that it is reinforcing democracy in the face of President Asif Ali Zardari’s corrupt and inept government. On Saturday, Justice Chaudhry pushed back against the critics.

The court’s goal was to “buttress democratic and parliamentary norms,” he told a gathering of lawyers in Karachi. Deep-rooted corruption was curtailing justice in Pakistan, he added.

“Destiny of our institution is in our own hands,” he said.

Mr. Chaudhry was appointed to the Supreme Court under General Musharraf in 2000. Two years later he wrote a judgment that absolved the military ruler for his 1999 coup. But Mr. Chaudhry shocked his patron and his country seven years later with decrees that challenged General Musharraf’s pre-eminence. Senior security officials were ordered to track down individuals being illegally held by the military intelligence agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate, or ISI, in some cases working with the F.B.I. and C.I.A. The privatization of state companies came under sharp scrutiny.

Then, on March 9, 2007, General Musharraf tried to fire Justice Chaudhry and placed him under house arrest. Protesting lawyers rushed into the streets in support of the chief justice. New cable television channels broadcast images of the tumult across the country. Power drained from General Musharraf, who resigned 18 months later.

The euphoria was soon tempered, however, by growing tensions with the new government. Mr. Zardari hesitated to reinstate Mr. Chaudhry, believing that he was too close to his political rivals and the military.

The standoff led to fresh street protests in 2009, led by the opposition leader Nawaz Sharif. That March, amid dramatic scenes that included a threatened march on the capital, Mr. Zardari relented and Justice Chaudhry returned to the bench.

Within months, the Supreme Court had cleared the way for the possible prosecution of Mr. Zardari in a Swiss corruption case dating to the 1990s. The government cited Mr. Zardari’s presidential immunity, and argued, along with some international analyst groups, that the court was specifically targeting the president.

But among the wider public, the court was winning broad support. It engaged in a series of muscular interventions to champion the cause of ordinary Pakistanis, some of which broke new ground. Judges expanded the civil rights of hijras, transgendered people who traditionally suffered discrimination, called senior bureaucrats and police officials to account, halted business ventures that contravened planning laws, including a McDonald’s restaurant in Islamabad and a German supermarket in Karachi, and issued a decree against the destruction of trees along a major road in Lahore.

The court’s populist bent has infuriated the government but won cheers from urban, middle-class Pakistanis — the same people who had supported the lawyers’ drive against General Musharraf. Largely young, frustrated by traditional politics and angered by official graft, they constitute a political class that has in recent months flocked to Imran Khan, the cricket star turned politician who is enjoying a sudden surge in popularity, and is a strong defender of the judiciary.

But the court’s activism has also taken many erratic turns. Justice Chaudhry has fought trenchant battles to win control of judicial appointments, a process traditionally in the government’s purview. While the judiciary has vigorously pursued Mr. Zardari, it absolved Mr. Sharif of his alleged crimes. And critics accuse Mr. Chaudhry of failing to reform the chaotic lower courts, which remain plagued by long backlogs. “Three years after the restitution of the chief justice, the delivery of justice remains as poor as it has ever been,” said Ali Dayan Hasan, of Human Rights Watch.

The gravest charges, though, swirl around the memo scandal. Mr. Ijaz claims to hold an unsigned memorandum showing that Mr. Zardari’s government sought covert United States government help to avert a military coup in the poisonous aftermath of the American raid that killed Osama bin Laden in May.

But the memo’s provenance is unclear and Mr. Ijaz’s credibility has come under assault in the news media. Last week a music video that went viral on the Internet showed Mr. Ijaz acting as the ringside commentator in a wrestling contest between two bikini-clad women and that, in one version, featured full nudity — a shocking sight in conservative Pakistan.

The furor, which made front-page news, injected a fresh sense of absurdity into proceedings that already were under question, and that many here insist would never have started without military intervention: the Supreme Court ordered the inquiry on Dec. 30 at the direct request of the army chief, Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, and the ISI director general, Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, who harbor little love for Mr. Zardari. Also, the court ignored other claims by Mr. Ijaz that the army secretly sheltered Bin Laden, and sought outside support to mount a coup — acts that, if proven, could be equally treasonous.

Suspicions about the court’s impartiality were renewed last Friday, when Mr. Chaudhry ordered the government to disclose whether it intended to fire General Kayani or General Pasha — even though such decisions are normally the government’s prerogative.

The titanic three-way struggle among generals, judges and politicians comes at a time when Pakistan has become increasingly chaotic. Taliban insurgents continue to roam the northwest, the economy is in dire straits and urgently needed reforms in education, health and other social sectors have been largely ignored.

From the standpoint of the United States, the deadlock has diverted the spotlight from military airstrikes that killed 26 Pakistani soldiers in November and brought the two countries’ troubled relationship to a new low. But it has also drawn attention away from a pressing priority of the United States in Pakistan: engaging cooperation here to help negotiate a peace settlement with the Afghan Taliban as a major troop withdrawal slated for 2014 draws near.

“In the midst of this institutional wrangling, nobody has a clear plan as to how politics or foreign policy are going to move forward, said Dr. Paula Newberg of Georgetown University, who has written a book about Pakistani constitutional politics. “Pakistan could easily have a much brighter future. But it gets itself worn down by these incessant disputes about where power lies.”

West’s Afghanistan ‘romance’

gulftoday.aeBY:Praveen Swami

In the spring of 1839, the Indian adventurer and spy, Mohan Lal Kashmiri, engineered one of the greatest intelligence coups of the 19th century: using nothing more lethal than cash and intrigue, he brought about the fall of Kandahar and secured the Afghan throne for Imperial Britain’s chosen client, Shah Shuja-ul-Mulk.

Less than three years later, in the winter of 1842, Kashmiri found himself working undercover in insurgent-held Kabul, seeking to ransom the remnants of his masters’ once-magnificent army — children, women and men at threat of being sold as slaves in Central Asia.

For decades after, imperial historians agonised over the Afghan debacle of 1842, using tropes that still colour discourse on the country: religious fanaticism; treachery of native rulers; savagery of the tribal culture; primitiveness of its civilisation.

In a June 1842 paper, authored for the attention of the Governor-General in New Delhi, Kashmiri offered a simpler explanation. Britain’s easy victory in Kandahar and Kabul, he recorded, persuaded commanders that “there was no necessity for wearing longer the airy garb of political civilities and promises.” He concluded: “there are, in fact, such numerous instances of violating our commitments and deceiving the people in our political proceedings, within what I am acquainted with, that it would be hard to assemble them in one place.”

Eleven years ago, the United States went to war in Afghanistan, promising to free its people. President George Bush never delivered on his promises of reconstruction. Now even the political promise is vanishing: the US is spearheading an effort to make peace with the Taliban it promised to free Afghanistan from.

The part of the story that is strangely absent from history-telling today is this: until the events of 9/11, the US was engaged in precisely the same process of reconciliation that is being marketed today.

Beginning: Muhammad Najibullah Ahmadzai’s last minutes were the first of the Taliban’s short-lived state. Early on Sept.27, 1996, Afghanistan’s former President was dragged out of the United Nations compound. His bloodied body was dragged behind a truck and hung on a traffic light for public display.

The President’s last visitors included Ahmad Shah Massoud. Massoud, a bitter adversary of Najibullah, offered to help him escape, an offer that demonstrated courage and decency. Glyn Davies, the US State Department’s spokesperson, demonstrated neither when he was asked about Najbullah’s murder a few hours later. The barbaric killing, he said, was merely “regrettable.” Davies proceed to explain that he found “nothing objectionable” in the laws of the new state. He hoped the Taliban would “form a representative interim government that can begin the process of reconciliation nationwide.”

From 1994, Bill Clinton’s administration had sought just this outcome. The story had something to do with oil., Ahmad Rashid, journalist, has shown the US threw its weight behind oil giant Unocal’s efforts to build an ambitious pipeline linking Central Asia’s vast energy fields with the Indian Ocean. Mullah Muhammad Ghaus, Afghanistan’s foreign minister, led an expenses-paid delegation to Unocal’s headquarters in Sugarland, Texas, at the end of 1997. The clerics, housed at a five-star hotel, were taken to see the NASA museum, several supermarkets and, somewhat peculiarly, the local zoo.

In April 1996, Robin Raphel — then Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia, now Barack Obama’s ambassador for non-military aid to Pakistan, visited Kabul to lobby for the project. Later that year, she was again in Kabul, this time calling on the international community to “engage the Taliban.”

Ishtiaq Ahmad, Pakistani commentator and scholar, has pointed out that oil wasn’t the only driver of these sentiments. It suited the US, he argued in a perceptive 2002 essay, to back the “emergence of an inherently anti-Iran Sunni force in Afghanistan”. The US was well aware that the Taliban’s dramatic rise had something to do with forces other than its purported popularity among Afghans: “my boys and I are riding into Mazhar-i-Sharif,” Rafiq Tarar, the head of the Pakistani intelligence’s Afghan operations, was recorded saying in an intercepted 1998 conversation.

Exceptionally savage: It was also evident that the regime the US was endorsing was exceptionally savage. In a 1998 report, Physicians for Human Rights documented the war against women: the closing down of schools, the denial of medical care facilities, public floggings and institutionalised child-rape.

From at least January 1998, evidence also emerged of systematic war crimes. Larry Goodson, in his 2002 scholarly work, Afghanistan’s Endless War, documented the use of scorched-earth tactics, the denial of United Nations food-aid to ethnic minorities, and the demolition of their homes. Raphael had these words for the critics: “The Taliban do not seek to export Islam, only to liberate Afghanistan”.

In 1996, a State department report described Osama Bin Laden as one of the “most significant sponsors of terrorism today.” Even though Afghanistan sheltered Bin Laden, it was never declared a state sponsor of terrorism. “Madeline Albright, [her] undersecretary Tom Pickering and regional specialists in state’s South Asia bureau,” records Steve Coll in his magisterial work Ghost Wars, “all recommended that the administration continue its policy of diplomatic engagement with the Taliban. They would use pressure and promises of future aid to persuade [Taliban chief Mullah Muhammad] Omar to break with Bin Laden.”

Taliban thus met with State Department representatives as late as March and July 2001. From the memoirs of Mullah Abdul Salam Zaeef, Afghanistan’s envoy to Islamabad, we know that they also passed on information that Bin Laden was planning an attack on the US — to no effect.

“The truth”, Albright would later argue, “was that those [attacks before 9/11] were happening overseas and while there were Americans who died, there were not thousands and it did not happen on US soil”. It isn’t: Libya, Iraq, South Yemen, and Syria, all secular states, hadn’t killed “thousands” or “on US soil” in 1979, when the State Department first began designating sponsors of terrorism. There was something about Afghanistan that was different.

Deeper than oil rigs: For a sensible understanding of the intellectual underpinnings of western romancing of the Taliban, therefore, one must excavate deeper than oil rigs: the West’s relationship with Islamism has to do with ideas about the world, not just cash. In search of reliable collaborators, colonial states threw their weight behind reactionary tendencies in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Islam was used to legitimise this project.

Led by the enigmatic scholar, Gerhard von Mende, Nazi Germany’s Ostminsterium recruited Muslims from Central Asia to aid its fight against the Soviet Union. Ian Johnson’s remarkable history, A Mosque in Munich, shows the Central Intelligence Agency recruited many of these ex-Nazis.

The West’s Afghanistan policy marks a return to these geostrategic roots—this time founded on the hope that religious-authoritarian regimes will provide a volatile region stability. Its growing engagement with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, its tactical embrace of jihadists in Libya and Syria, its use of the right-wing cleric, Yusuf Al Qaradawi, as a mediator with the Taliban form other parts of this mosaic. Afghanistan’s political parties and political representatives aren’t the ones, notably, who will be doing the deal. The Taliban isn’t being asked to agree to terms acceptable to other Afghans. Last month, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sought to reassure secular Afghans, promising that her country “intends to stay the course with our friends.” “We will not leave you on your own”, said Germany’s Foreign Minister, Guido Westwelle, echoing her words.

Mohan Lal Kashmiri might have had some thoughts on these promises. Those they are directed at in Afghanistan almost certainly do.

Less than a week after massacre of 20 Shias in Khanpur, Punjabi judges release Malik Ishaq Malik Ishaq »

Pakistan’s ISI-backed Punjabi judiciary once again demonstrated its institutional hatred of Shia Muslims today by releasing the notorious leader of Jihadi-sectarian organization, the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (also known as the Punjabi Taliban or Sipah-e-Sahaba). Punjabi judges, backed by Punjabi generals, released a Punjabi terrorist to enable further massacres of Shias, Ahmadis, Christians and other target killed communities.

Malik Ishaq is released less than a week after his followers killed at least 20 Shia Muslims in his home town Rahim Yar Khan. According to a news report (Tribune, 20 Jan 2012): A review board of the Lahore High Court (LHC), on Friday 20 Jan 2012, denied an extension for the detention of Malik Ishaq, former leader of the banned Lashkar-i-Jhangvi, for one more month and issued orders for his release. The Punjab government had requested that the detention, which is ending on January 25, be extended for 30 more days saying that his release would be a threat to peace.

Ishaq’s detention had earlier been extended by the review board on December 16 after the DPOs of Rahim Yar Khan and Bahawalnagar had said his release could result in a law and order ‘situation’.

The review board asked the government if they had filed any cases against Ishaq if he was a threat to peace, to which they had nothing to show to the court.

Ishaq had prayed that he had the right to be free according to the constitution if there were no more cases against him as he had been awarded bail in the previous ones.

Ishaq, accused in 44 cases involving 70 killings, has been acquitted in 34 cases and granted bail in 10.

He was released from Kot Lakhpat jail on July 14, 2011 after 14 years of imprisonment when the Supreme Court (SC) granted him bail in the case involving a terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team.

Ishaq was then detained in Rahim Yar Khan jail for 10 days under the Maintenance of Public Order Act. The detention was extended for 60 days on October 25.

While right-wing proxies of Pakistan’s military establishment are legitimately celebrating Malik Ishaq’s release, ISI’s liberal proxies in the English speaking class are busy in blaming the prosecution, ignoring the important links between ISI and LeJ and ISI and judiciary. For example, Pakistan’s English media routinely presents Malik Ishaq as “Sri Lankan team attack suspect”. Murder of 70 Shias doesn’t mean much to this class.

Last time when Malik Ishaq was released from jail, he killed many Shia Muslims in various parts of the country, and the news items were either ignored or misrepresented in Pakistan’s mainstream media. He is now on next bloody mission.

Mansoor Ijaz in bizarre NUDE video

Ijaz is obviously on the Pakistani Army's payroll. From the beginning, the whole memo-gate was a Army-drama written & directed by the crooked & corrupt Army Generals at the Army HQ in Rawalpindi to get rid of the 'inconvenient' president and to continue Army General's behind-the scene dictatorship.

"Ijaz will fly into a military air base and then be escorted by the army to the court to testify"

A scandal over a secret memo to Washington took a strange turn on Wednesday when a music video surfaced featuring the chief accuser acting as commentator for a women’s wrestling bout that ended with a 30-second clip featuring full nudity.

Opponents of Mansoor Ijaz, an American of Pakistan origin, said the clip damaged his credibility ahead of his scheduled appearance before a Supreme Court-appointed commission.

The Florida-born businessman has pledged to provide damning evidence that the Pakistani government sent the note seeking US help to prevent a military coup in the aftermath of the American raid that killed Osama bin Laden on May 2, 2011.

Others were simply amused at the latest twist in an affair that has transfixed the media and raised tensions between the government and the powerful military to dangerous levels.

It was unclear why the wrestling video, which was made in 2004 and has been viewed for years on the Internet, came to light only now. Ijaz’s role was apparently spotted by a blogger on Tuesday night and spread quickly through social media.

Ijaz told The Associated Press he thought the video’s emergence was part of an effort by former ambassador Husain Haqqani to discredit him ahead of his testimony, but conceded he had no evidence of this. He confirmed that the video was not a hoax.

Ijaz appears in two versions of the same video for “Stupidisco”, a house music track by Italian producer Junior Jack that was a club hit in 2004. One clip features bikini-clad women wrestlers, who end up grappling on a mat. The other is the same until the final 30 seconds, when the women remove each other’s clothes.

Ijaz’s scenes and dialogue feature in both versions. He said he had not known he would appear in the version containing full nudity.

“I did this as a favour for my wife’s best friend, whose planned actor for the part did not show up for the shoot that day,” he said in a telephone interview from an undisclosed location.

He said the shoot took place in Brussels, and that there was no other person available with an American accent. “I was never present for any part of the video where those naked girls were shown. My wife was present at all times.”

Ijaz provided the AP with 2004 email correspondence between him and the producer of the video in which he threatens legal action unless the producer removes him from the clip that contains nudity.

“Given my political and public profile in the United States and around the world, it is impossible for me to appear in any part of any video clip with nudity of any type,” he wrote.

He included a reply from the producer, who assured Ijaz he would cut his role from the X-rated version and remove it from the Internet.

Haqqani’s lawyer, Zahid Bokhari, said the “Stupidisco” video shows that Ijaz “can break all norms of decency”.

“I think a man of that stature, one who can go to that extent for fame, he can make up all kinds of false stories. I am really stunned by this,” said Bokhari.

He dismissed Ijaz’s claim that the video was part of a campaign to question his credibility, noting that it was made and put on the Internet years ago.

The bikini video was uploaded onto YouTube in 2009, with 376,000 views since then, according to that website. The version in which the women appear naked was uploaded to a site called Dailymotion in 2007.

REAL FACE OF Mansoor Ijaz:Naked wrestling.

A scandal over a secret memo to Washington that could bring down the Pakistani president took a strange turn Wednesday when a music video surfaced featuring the chief accuser acting as a commentator for a naked female wrestling bout.

Opponents of Mansoor Ijaz, an American of Pakistani origin, said the clip damaged his credibility ahead of his scheduled appearance at a Supreme Court commission in this conservative Muslim country. The Florida-born businessman has pledged to provide damning evidence that the Pakistani government sent the note seeking U.S. help preventing a military coup in the aftermath of the American raid that killed Osama bin Laden on May 2, 2011.

Others were simply amused at the latest twist in an affair that has transfixed the media and raised tensions between the government and the powerful military to dangerous levels. Dubbed "memogate" in the Pakistani media, one Twitter user suggested it should now be renamed "booty-gate."It was unclear why the wrestling video, which was made in 2004 and has been viewed for years on the Internet, came to light only now. Ijaz's role was apparently spotted by a blogger late Tuesday and spread quickly through social media.

Ijaz told The Associated Press he thought the video's emergence was part of an effort by Haqqani to discredit him ahead of his testimony but conceded he had no evidence of this. He confirmed that the video was not a hoax.

Ijaz appears in two versions of the same video for "Stupidisco," a house music track by Italian producer Junior Jack that was a club hit in 2004.

One clip features bikini-clad women wrestlers 'Double D' and 'Nasty Nancy,' who end up grappling on a mat in a sexually provocative fashion. The other is the same until the final 30 seconds, when the women remove each other's clothes.

Ijaz's scenes and dialogue feature in both versions.

"She's giving it to her good now! You've got some real tumbling going on here. Nancy's got that mean look," he says, as the two women wrestle in front of him. At one point, Ijaz's eyes widen and his mouth gapes as the video cuts to the women ripping each other's bikinis off.

Ijaz said he had not known he would appear in the version containing full nudity.

"I did this as a favor for my wife's best friend, whose planned actor for the part did not show up for the shoot that day," he said in a telephone interview from an undisclosed location, citing alleged threats to his life as a result of his role in the memo scandal. He said the shoot took place in Brussels, and that there was no other person available with an American accent.

"I was never present for any part of the video where those naked girls were shown. My wife was present at all times."

Ijaz provided the AP with 2004 email correspondence between him and the producer of the video in which he threatens legal action unless the producer removes him from the clip that contains nudity.

"Given my political and public profile in the United States and around the world, it is impossible for me to appear in any part of any video clip with nudity of any type," he wrote. He included a reply from the producer, who assured Ijaz he would cut his role from the X-rated version and remove it from the Internet.

Haqqani's lawyer, Zahid Bokhari, said the "Stupidisco" video shows that Ijaz "can break all the norms of decency."

"I think a man of that stature, one who can go to that extent for fame, he can make up all kinds of false stories. I am really stunned by this," said Bokhari. He dismissed Ijaz's claim that the video was part of campaign to question his credibility, noting that it was made and put on the Internet years ago.

The bikini video was uploaded onto YouTube in 2009, with 376,000 views since then, according to that website. The version in which the women appear naked was uploaded to a site called Dailymotion in 2007.

For Ijaz, the videos cast an unwelcome spotlight on his plans to come to Pakistan and testify to the Supreme Court commission next Tuesday. Ijaz has said he will present Blackberry smart phones with records of conversations between him and Haqqani that prove the former envoy authored the memo.

Interior Minister Rehman Malik, a Zardari loyalist, has hinted Ijaz could face legal troubles himself if he comes to Pakistan, alleging he once claimed to have brought down an earlier government.

Local media have speculated that Ijaz will fly into a military air base and then be escorted by the army to the court to testify, such is his importance to the case.

Akram Sheikh, Ijaz's lawyer, claimed the government was trying to stop his client from traveling to Pakistan.

"So what if my client has been dancing on the Internet," said Sheikh. "What difference does that make? He has never claimed to be perfect, or running an orphanage. Would Mr. Haqqani like his personal life exposed?"

Haqqani, who returned to Pakistan to cooperate with the probe, is now living as a guest at the prime minister's residence, claiming his life is in danger. He has been banned by the commission from leaving the country. His wife has lobbied in Washington in his defense, and several U.S. lawmakers have spoken up for him.

The memo scandal is not the only threat to the Pakistani government, which has struggled since Zardari's election in 2008. Like previous governments, his administration has had difficult relations with the army, which has never trusted Zardari.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani is to appear before the Supreme Court to explain why his government has not asked Swiss authorities to reopen an old corruption case against Zardari. The court has initiated contempt proceedings against Gilani for failing to do this.

The government has long refused to write the letter, arguing that Zardari enjoys immunity from prosecution while in office. But Gilani's lawyer, Aitzaz Ahsan, said Wednesday that "there was no harm" in writing the Swiss because Zardari enjoys immunity from prosecution.

Balochistan: the Gwadar aspect

BY: Dr Qaisar Rashid


Clearly, the past of Balochistan is haunting the present and swaying the future, as Balochistan’s is a story of broken promises and frustrated expectations

The known history of Balochistan is laden with persistent insurgency of variable intensity. The latest spike in insurgency is an artefact of the post-2000 events. The counter-insurgency launched by the state has also proved counter-productive, as the strategy has bolstered the resolve of the Baloch insurgents to rely on militancy for protection of the Baloch rights.

In fact, violence is an endemic problem Balochistan is faced with. The Balochistan version of violence has two actors: the insurgents and the security forces. The former uses the weapon of violence to instigate disorder and show its discontent while the latter uses the instrument of violence to restore peace and demonstrate its awe. The question is: can both the actors achieve their ends by resorting to violence?

Caught in the crossfire are the political forces. Matters are decided by either the insurgents or the security forces. That is how violence overrules the rest. In this militant equation, the political forces have lost their say. Neither can they persuade the insurgents to renounce militancy nor can they rein in the security forces to exercise restraint.

One of the reasons for the incapacity of the political forces is that they cannot offer any guarantee to the insurgents that the promises made with them by anyone, including the state, will be respected. That was one of the reasons that veteran Baloch politician Sardar Ataullah Mengal advised Nawaz Sharif on the latter’s recent visit to Karachi to speak instead to the Baloch insurgents hiding in the mountains. His statement alone reflects the enormity and gravity of the crisis buffeting Balochistan. Secondly, his statement indicates the scale of the cost — in terms of political and economic concessions — of neglecting and depriving Balochistan for years; the state must now be ready to pay. Third, his statement points out that hardly any broker is available in Balochistan. Clearly, the past of Balochistan is haunting the present and swaying the future, as Balochistan’s is a story of broken promises and frustrated expectations. Eventually, the political forces are waiting on the sidelines for the victor to surface to side with.

Within the political sphere, there is another quandary. The provincial government of Balochistan is not considered a true representative of the Baloch. The electoral result of the 2008 elections is considered a doctored one and the provincial government is considered a puppet one — which is always ready to dance to the tunes of the Centre. Consequently, the provincial government is failing to raise the concerns of the Baloch with the Centre. For instance, one of the concerns is the future of the Gwadar port.

The Baloch harbour an apprehension that after completion of the work on Gwadar port, people (non-Baloch) from other parts of the country would crowd it. The ensuing demographic shift would turn the locals into a minority. Secondly, the non-Baloch would buy land and property and do business while the locals would be unable to compete with them, as the locals are neither wealthy nor skilled to find their rightful socio-economic place in the Gwadar-originated economy. Third, the non-Baloch, after buying land and property would lay claim to the right to vote. Consequently, the locals would not be able to elect their own representatives while the non-Baloch would be able to hold sway over them.

There is another angle to look at the issues surrounding Gwadar port. As Gwadar is anticipated to become a mega city like Karachi in the future, the Baloch draw parallels with the Sindhis who have virtually lost representation and say in the coastline and resources of Karachi. The Baloch apprehend that in a developed Gwadar city, they would be marginalised by the non-Baloch. Secondly, the Baloch are apprehensive of the future of Gwadar city. The Baloch think that Karachi, which is a historical part of Sindh, may be declared a separate province if the demand of division of existing provinces along ethnic lines meets success. Hence, the non-Baloch populating Gwadar may follow in the same footsteps and may declare it a separate province.

In order to address their apprehensions, the Baloch nationalists are demanding a special status for Gwadar. That is, the non-Baloch migrating to Gwadar should be not only disenfranchised but also disallowed to purchase land or property in Gwadar. Secondly, there should be vocational institutes constructed to equip the Baloch with the necessary skills to secure technical jobs and earn their living. Third, the locals should be preferred in the jobs arising locally; however, only for a job against which a local is not available a non-Baloch should be employed. Fourth, the future city of Gwadar should not be carved out as a separate province. Late Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti couched these demands in a term called ‘Saahil-o-Wasail’ (coastline and resources). That is, the Baloch should be made the proprietors of their coastline and resources. Nevertheless, the word ‘resources’ used in the term also has implications for the natural resources of the whole of Balochistan.

The situation indicates that there exists a trust deficit between the Baloch and the state. Further, the Baloch want to protect their economic interests but on their own terms. Against this background, it is heartening to hear that the PML-N, one of the largest mainstream political parties, has showed its concern for the Baloch. Its call to hold an All Parties Conference (APC) on Balochistan is a good omen and the invitation should be accepted by other political parties.

Generally speaking the insurgents and the security forces are two visible actors — some analysts call them the real stakeholders in Balochistan. Finding a middle ground and making both the actors agree to it will be a great challenge for the proposed APC. Secondly, the APC will have to devise a strategy to address the apprehensions of the Baloch on Gwadar. Third, the APC should be ready to offer a guarantee to the Baloch nationalists and insurgents of fulfilment of the vows made on the APC platform.

Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani :Facing contempt charge


A seven-member bench of the Supreme Court (SC), obviously irritated by the lack of response from the government regarding its December 16, 2009 and January 10, 2012 orders in the National Reconciliation Ordinance case, has issued a show cause notice to Prime Minister (PM) Yousaf Raza Gilani to explain why contempt of court proceedings should not be instituted against him for failing to implement the SC’s orders. The PM was ordered to appear in person before the bench on January 19. During the proceedings, Justice Asif Saeed Khosa clarified that media reporting of the January 10 order was misplaced and that he had not dubbed the PM dishonest or corrupt. He went on to iterate the court’s respect for the office of the PM while pointing out that the order stated that prima facie the PM may not be honest to the oath of his office. While the clarification spares the PM further personal blushes, it nevertheless can be read as an indictment of the behaviour of the PM in the instant case. The context of this exchange of course lies in the insistence of the SC that the government write to the Swiss authorities to reopen the case against President Asif Ali Zardari, something the government has been reluctant to do on the grounds that the president enjoys immunity while in office. That has been countered by the SC’s insistence that immunity has to be applied for from the court. The PM has said he will appear on the 19th as a mark of respect for the SC, but the question of the Swiss letter still hangs fire. This despite the perception of even PPP legal luminaries that no harm will come from writing the letter since it is unlikely the Swiss judicial authorities will accept the request to reopen the case on two grounds: that Swiss law does not allow reopening a case without new substantive evidence and that a sitting president enjoys immunity under international law. It is now to be seen what position the PM adopts before the bench on the 19th regarding this ticklish matter.

The contempt notice also found resonance in the National Assembly (NA) during the session called to pass a pro-democracy resolution. The resolution did go through, but by a majority rather than consensus after the opposition’s two out of three amendments were rejected despite two hours of negotiations between the treasury and the PML-N, triggering an opposition walkout. True to character, the JUI-F voted for the resolution at the last minute despite being in talks with the PML-N for an opposition grand alliance. The coalition allies and FATA parliamentarians voted for the resolution unanimously. Leader of the Opposition Chaudhry Nisar’s parting remark that they would definitely bring a no-confidence motion as soon as they had the required strength did not sound very convincing to objective observers, given the arithmetic of the NA.

With the backing of the core committee of the PPP, the PM’s speech in the NA oozed both defiance and confidence. He argued that neither the judiciary nor the army were interested in derailing the system. In this context, the reported efforts at the presidency to mend fences with the military appear to be making headway. At the present conjuncture, when the government is under pressure from various directions and on the two burning issues before the SC (the NRO and Memo cases), this is to be welcomed. However, it cannot be denied that the PPP may be suffering from some heartburn that its going out of its way to support the military on the Osama bin Laden raid and the Mehran base attack has not been reciprocated in the same spirit. In fact, it is arguable that the ‘reconciliation’ policy of the PPP has often strayed into ‘appeasement’ instead, without any return on such investment. Of late the government’s tone, particularly that of the PM, has taken on a harder edge, but this could well be a case of too little too late. Given the deeply entrenched civil-military imbalance in Pakistan, the tactics of keeping the military on board may have backfired in the shape of the perceived weakness (amidst increasing public criticism of performance in office) of the PPP-led government. What its critics should take note of are the cautionary words of the PM in the NA when he argued that those keen on seeing the back of this government at the earliest by any means possible should not ignore the possibility that such a departure may well envelop the political class as a whole.

Martin Luther King Jr. '' King of All Nations ''


AMERICA remembers the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as a national champion of civil rights. But he was an international icon, too — and like many icons, his legacy was used for a range of purposes that moved far beyond, and even ran counter to, his famous dream.

Indeed, it was King’s “I have a dream” speech that sealed his global fame. We’ve all seen photos of the hundreds of thousands marching in 1963 Washington. But thousands also marched that day in London, Tel Aviv and Accra, Ghana.

In my home country, Britain, support for the march was overwhelming. Many watched King’s speech live via the newly launched Telstar satellite. In London, demonstrators marched to the American Embassy carrying a banner that read, “Your fight is our fight.”

This was more than just an expression of empathy: that summer, Paul Stephenson, a black community organizer in Bristol, led a boycott of the city’s buses. A charismatic and gifted orator, Mr. Stephenson had been to the Deep South to learn tactics and spoke reverently of King’s Montgomery Bus Boycott.

King visited Britain the following year. He accepted invitations abroad, his speechwriter Clarence Jones told me recently, “to get his message out.” It seemed to work. King’s sermon at St. Paul’s Cathedral was front-page news in the United States, while his meeting with activists led to the formation of the Campaign Against Racial Discrimination, the pre-eminent anti-discrimination group in Britain, fashioned on King’s nonviolent, pro-integration model.

Meanwhile, British liberals looked to the American movement as a template for resolving Britain’s immigrant problems. Politicians seeking to introduce civil rights legislation met with King in Britain and traveled to the United States on fact-finding visits. (King wasn’t alone: in 1967 the archbishop of Canterbury even invited the Temptations, in London on tour, to drop into Lambeth Palace so he could get some advice on race relations.)

But even as King sought to get his message out, the watching world repackaged that message for other purposes. Mr. Stephenson’s bus boycott was actually a strike by drivers seeking better working conditions rather than a copy of Montgomery’s passenger boycott, and the timing had more to do with the visit of the touring West Indies cricket team than with King’s efforts in Alabama eight years previously.

Meanwhile, Communist governments in Eastern Europe celebrated King as the champion of the “other America,” the America that had been subjugated by capitalist tyranny. In Italy, the Catholic left portrayed him as a political activist and ignored the fact that he was also a Protestant preacher.

And in white-majority countries with racial minorities, from New Zealand to Western Europe, commentators lauded King’s role in the turmoil “over there,” while taking comfort that any problems at home, by comparison, could not be too bad. Conservative politicians in Britain hailed King as a nonviolent role model for immigrants who were threatening to fight for their rights (and much better than another popular black American icon and visitor to Britain, Malcolm X).

Today, King’s legacy abroad remains profound, and as contested as ever. In Britain, his statue stands above the west entrance to Westminster Abbey, while the American civil rights movement is among the top five most popular history subjects in high schools.

But absent from Westminster is a statue of a black British figure, and black British history remains on the sidelines at schools and universities. Looking to King helps us think about racial justice, but he can be used to forget about it, too.

Using and abusing King is perhaps inevitable abroad, where he was so well publicized but little understood. Yet it has echoes here in the United States, where he should be known best. Since moving to America this past summer, I have heard the man who marched for jobs and freedom invoked by all sides of the political spectrum. African-American activists seek to honor his legacy by calling for race-based remedies to combat stubborn racial inequality. Conservatives invoke his color-blind ideology to remove those same race-based remedies.

At the dedication of the King memorial on the National Mall last fall, President Obama even used King’s teachings to challenge the current polarization of politics: “He calls on us to stand in the other person’s shoes, to see through their eyes, to understand their pain.”

As King calls on us today, everyone, it seems, can call on him.

Zulfikar Ali Bhutto!!!! (January 5, 1928-April 4, 1979)

BY:M Waqar

January 5, we celebrate birthday of Z A Bhutto, a leader, politician, revolutionary, who after his execution in Pakistan on April 4, 1979, still lives on in the hearts and minds of millions of Pakistanis, and the party that he founded still possesses the largest permanent voting bank in Pakistan. The possibility of the secular, democratic Pakistan that he had in mind, like Pakistan 's founder, Jinnah has earned ZAB the title of Quaid-i-Awam . Z. A. Bhutto has still more charisma than any politician in Pakistan. Mr Bhutto was inducted into office as the President of Pakistan in 1971 and was removed in 1977, both events took place around midnight; one in the wake of a war and the other in the shadow of a civil war. In between he gave the country what even his sympathizers and admirers would concede was a 'strong' government, he mobilized his country's first mass-based political party around a socialist ideology and highly independent foreign policy. Pakistan's modernizer Zulfikar Ali Bhutto left deep footprints in the sands of history. To his lasting credit remains the 1973 Constitution of the country, the
Shimla Accord of 1972 which brought the longest peace between India and Pakistan, the social reforms to build an egalitarian society, the non-aligned foreign policy, the nuclear programme and the building of the social, economic and military infrastructure of the country. He was a thinker, author and orator. He was deliberate, discreet, and competent; honest, upright and keeper of his covenants. He was a friend of the poor, downtrodden and oppressed. Fearless in his beliefs he refused to bow before any man or power other than the Almighty. His courage was such that he preferred to face death for his beliefs and embraced martyrdom. He had profound faith in freedom and the liberation of humanity. Under his government, Pakistan gave overt and covert support to the African nations than under apartheid and minority rule. He rejected fanaticism. He gave pride to the poor.
He gave voice to the voiceless and power to the powerless of the country. He helped them shape their own destiny and the destiny of their country. He was a man of honour who gave honour and raised the honour of his country and his people. He was able to do this because the people of the country from Khyber to the shores of the Arabian sea in Karachi loved him and supported him. Bhutto brought back 90,000 prisoners of war, prevented their war crime trials and also restored the territory lost on the battlefield. As leader of the Third World he spoke boldly against racism, colonialism and imperialism. He fearlessly defended the right of nations to independence. When the 1973 Ramazan war broke out, he sent Pakistan's military to defend the borders of the Muslim countries, including the Golan Heights of Syria. ZAB's short life of 50 years was spent in the service of many international, regional and national causes. The most important and the most enduring legacy of the Quaid-i-Awam was raising the consciousness of the people for democracy. He awakened the masses, making them realise they were the legitimate fountainhead of political power. He enlightened the farmer, the industrial worker, the student, the woman and the rest of the common people of their importance and of their right of franchise, which is the definite means of bringing changes for the betterment of the lives of the common people. Z. A. Bhutto's rule brought a transformation of Pakistan's rules of the game, a new populist style of governance, a new governmentality, he favoured a much more active role of the state in relation to society, he reshaped the economic and political landscape of Pakistan. He reached out to masses, aroused their feelings and disciplined their minds. The role of Bhutto family in the uplifting of the poor is unforgettable. Z A Bhutto is the first person in Pakistan who has given voice to the common people. Z. A. Bhutto remains alive in hearts of millions of Pakistanis. It was a miracle that in less than half a decade a defeated nation had become a significant entity in the comity of nations. Pakistan had friends all around the globe from Africa to the far corner of Asia and from Europe to South America. We were regarded as a nation which had proved itself. Pakistani manpower was exported in the Middle East and the statesmanship of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had started bearing fruit. Under Z A Bhutto's rule, a new vision of Pakistan was born. Within a few years of the defeat in 1971, Pakistan began to see itself not as some beleaguered non-entity in South Asia, as the Indian establishment was prone to see it, but as a strategically located middle-sized power straddling the two worlds of South and West Asia, uniquely poised to take advantage of a host of geopolitical possibilities and enjoying widespread support among the Islamic states. He is one of the few Pakistani leaders that energized the nation and gave it a sense of optimism. Z A Bhutto, saw the future of Pakistan.
Like Jinnah he outwitted Indira Gandhi at Shimla and formed alliances with various world leaders, from Sadaat, to Boumediene to Qaddafi to Faisal. Pakistan survives today because of those alliances that enabled him to build the Nuclear bomb. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto understood the geo-political realities of the region. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto has earned a place in the pantheon of leaders from the Third World who earned everlasting fame in the struggle against colonialism and imperialism. He had the privilege of interacting with many of those leaders who played a great role in the epic struggle for national independence in the 20th century, including Mao Tse Tung, Ahmed Soekarno, Chou-en Lai, Gamal Abdel Nasser and Salvador Allende. During the period between the end of the Second World War and the end of the Cold War, the world was divided into two blocs: The Capitalist West and the Socialist East. All these leaders aspired to aspects of a socialist pattern of economy. Bhutto shared their faith in a leading role for the public sector as an instrument of self-reliance. Bhutto's foundation of the PPP was a setback for the reactionary forces in a country long dominated by the Right. The slogan of "Food, Shelter and Clothing" shifted the focus of Pakistan politics from theological to economic issues. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had the courage of his conviction to decide to lay down his life rather than compromise or seek appeasement. The last chapter of his life is a glorious example of martyrdom for the cause of resurrection of democracy. At the time of his overthrow, Bhutto was emerging as a spokesman of the World of Islam and the leader of the Third World. The age of Bhutto was an Age of Revolution, he was the architect of the China Policy, Pakistan Steel Mill, Agriculture Reforms. Although his life and career were cruelly terminated, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto will forever shine in history as one of the Great leaders who took part in the liberation of the Third World from the yoke of Imperialism and Neo Colonialism during the Twentieth Century. He could have easily entered into a deal, as others did, at the cost of principles, to save his life and move out. How cruel it strikes to bring down such a sincere leader like Bhutto with rare caliber, competence and integrity, Bhutto never colluded with generals, he confronted them. Mr. Bhutto remains a memorable figure . He commanded the allegiance of millions of people inside Pakistan, across the Muslim world and in the Third World as a hero of the people. His leadership gave pride to his followers, to his Nation and to oppressed people everywhere. He conquered the hearts of a Nation through supreme qualities of leadership, vision, intellectual breadth, charisma, dauntlessness, bravery, boldness and a programme for political redemption of an exploited people, he built the foundations of education and industrialization in the country. He liberated the small farmers and peasants from the repression and cruelty of big landlords and banished the jagirdari and sardari system declaring that all citizens are born equal and must live with equal rights. The Taliban, the terrorist groups and the new war against terror are the direct result of the overthrow of the modernizing government of Z. A. Bhutto and its replacement by a clique of military officers that cynically used the name of religion to promote their own illegal stay in power. Quaid e Awam was murdered but his memory lives on in the monuments he built. It lives on in his ideas. And it lives on in the hearts of all men and women who believe that humanity can only progress when there is tolerance, freedom, dignity and equal opportunity for all. Pakistan survived due to the leadership of a bold and courageous leader, a people's leader, who had the vision to break the shackles of poverty to emancipate his people and lead them into a new decade of glory, strength and achievement. Quaid e Awam built the most modern schools, colleges, universities, professional colleges, vocational training institutes, including Quaid-e-Azam University, Allama Iqbal Open University, Chandka Medical College and many others. He built hospitals to take care of the sick and poor. He opened the way for the middle classes to develop and prosper in the fields of medicine, engineering , law and other specialist studies. He introduced peaceful nuclear energy to help treat cancer setting up the first cancer treating institutes in the four provinces of Pakistan. He built roads in the tribal areas and the Northern areas knowing how poor and oppressed people in the distant areas of Pakistan were. Internationally, using his experience as Foreign Minister, he hosted the Islamic Summit Conference in Lahore. It was at this conference that the Palestinian Liberation Organization was recognized as the authentic voice of the Muslims. He advocated closer relations with the Muslim countries arguing for a common economic bloc with banking and other financial institutions long before regional blocs became identified as the economic way forward. Bhutto pushed politics out of the posh drawing rooms into real Pakistan - into the muddy lanes and villages of the poor. Bhutto's inspiring leadership filled Pakistanis with hope, energy and strength. There was a sense of purpose and direction in the country in pursuit of peace and prosperity. The economic growth rate increased and money poured in from expatriates who got the universal right to passport. The Muslim countries donated roughly $500 million annually to Pakistan, freeing it of international financial institutions. The people got jobs and opportunities. Women of the country were emancipated entering the police force, Foreign, Civil Service and subordinate judiciary for the first time in the country's history. There is a story that the American President John F. Kennedy was much impressed with the then Foreign Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. When they met, Kennedy walked with him in the Rose Garden and said, "Bhutto, if you were an American, you would be in my Cabinet". To which Zulfikar Ali Bhutto smilingly replied, "No, Mr. President. If I were an American, you would be in my cabinet". Z A Bhutto, was highly skilled negotiator and an international statesman, he secured the agreement between USSR and Pakistan, he signed an agreement with China on demarcation of the Sino-Pak boundary. When he became President, Pakistan had innumerable problems, but he was not a man to be cowed down by knotty problems, he was in fact, a dynamo of inexhaustible and boundless creative energy, he was born to solve problems , he had to tackle the problems of shattered country by a methodical system of fixing priorities. Bhutto the adroit politician and statesman tackled the difficult problems of his country one by one with devotion, determination and patriotic zeal and solved them successfully. Since his assumption of power this great man of vision and destiny, equipped with resolute will, extraordinary intelligence and seething patriotic zeal fought successfully against the landlords, capitalists, industrialists, religious fanatics, corrupt bureaucrats, saboteurs, foreign intriguers and spies, he stood like a rock against all odds and achieved national unity, he worked hard for the emancipation of the exploited working class and illiterate masses. His cruel and barbaric murder by military despots caused revulsion across the globe, Z A Bhutto dedicated his life to remove the sorrows from the hearts of the poor and the oppressed, to remove the tears from the children of his poor nation. He lived consciously to make history and to leave a legacy in the form of the development of his nation, his fight was a fight against the policies of IMF, which serve to perpetuate the backwardness of the developing nations. Bhutto is rightfully credited with saving Pakistan at this dark moment in its history, as French President Giscard d'Estaing said, "he was the man who incarnated Pakistan at a dramatic hour of its history. Tolstoy in the last volume of his War and Peace expressed that history is a movement of ideas in which political leaders play a minor role. Sometimes the movement of ideas is indeed rapid. Yet, at times, the movement of ideas is slower than the melting of the glaciers. The movement of ideas is facilitated in a vibrant political and democratic culture, which gives room for dissent and disagreement. In dictatorial societies, history remains static in a cold freeze. And so it was in Pakistan before Quaid-i-Awam. He was the one who converted that static and decayed dictatorial polity into a vibrant and dynamic democratic society; the cost of which he paid with his own life. He who gave his blood, and the blood of his sons and daughter,

Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, knew that there can be no sacrifice greater than the sacrifice for the people whose respect, honour and dignity is the respect and dignity of the Nation. Quaid e Awam made the people proud of themselves and of their Nation. The 20th century has seen many great leaders, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto is one of them. Due to his glorious achievements, Mr. Bhutto rules the hearts of the Pakistani people from his grave. He was not only the leader of Pakistan, he was the leader of an Islamic world, the leader of Third World. He will forever be remembered by his countrymen as Quaid-e-Awam. As his followers say, "Zinda Hai Bhutto, Zinda Hai"--Bhutto lives, he lives. Indeed he does, in the hearts of all those who dream of a better tomorrow. Long Live Bhuttoism….