Thursday, August 13, 2015

Music Video - Shik Shak Shok -Mezdeke رقص شرقى Isabella Belly Dance

ISIS Terrorist - According to Islam/Quran, he is allowed to rape an unbeliever

In the moments before he raped the 12-year-old girl, the Notorious Islamic State (IS) fighter took the time to explain that what he was about to do was not a sin. Because the preteen girl practiced a religion other than Islam, the Quran not only gave him the right to rape her — it condoned and encouraged it, he insisted.
He bound her hands and gagged her. Then he knelt beside the bed and prostrated himself in prayer before getting on top of her.When it was over, he knelt to pray again, bookending the rape with acts of religious devotion.
“I kept telling him it hurts — please stop,” said the girl, whose body is so small an adult could circle her waist with two hands. “He told me that according to Islam he is allowed to rape an unbeliever. He said that by raping me, he is drawing closer to God,” she said in an interview alongside her family in a refugee camp here, to which she escaped after 11 months of captivity.
The systematic rape of women and girls from the Yazidi religious minority has become deeply enmeshed in the organization and the radical theology of the Islamic State in the year since the group announced it was reviving slavery as an institution. Interviews with 21 women and girls who recently escaped the Islamic State, as well as an examination of the group’s official communications, illuminate how the practice has been enshrined in the group’s core tenets.

Fascist Saudi regime announces more restrictions on online media

The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns new restrictions that Saudi authorities said on Tuesday they would be imposing on news websites.

Saud Kateb, the spokesman for the Saudi Ministry of Culture and Information, said that the new requirements include having a commercial registration, an office space, and a municipal license, according to news reports. He also said that editors-in-chief should have college degrees and Saudi citizenship, among other conditions.

"With these restrictions, the Saudi government is sending a clear message that it will be almost impossible for online media to operate with any autonomy," said Sherif Mansour, CPJ's Middle East and North Africa program coordinator, from Washington. "We are deeply concerned by these measures and call on the Saudi government to stop interfering with the flow of news and information."

The requirements will be enforced in October, at the beginning of the new year in the Islamic calendar, according to news reports. News websites have been warned that if they do not comply, they will be shut down and/or lose their license, according to news reports.

According to news reports, Kateb said the new measures were in response to complaints about reports that he said infringed on people's personal rights and "rumors" that led to incitement. Kateb did not name the individuals who filed the complaints.

Last month, a YouTube video circulated on social media and news websites that depicted a girl being sexually harassed by men in the city of Taif. The video incited anger among Saudi citizens. Police later arrested two individuals accused in the case. In June, WikiLeaks published purported documents from the foreign ministry, which alleged the government bought media outlets and influenced other governments to end an investigation into alleged smuggling by Saudi public figures, according to news reports. The Saudi government later warned Saudi citizens against sharing the documents, according to news reports.

In 2011, Saudi Arabia issued new regulations that contained several vaguely worded provisions that could be used to restrict coverage and granted the Ministry of Culture and Information blanket powers without providing protection to online media against abuse.

Separately, Saudi writer Zuhair Kutbi was arrested at his home in the city of Mecca on July 15, according to news reports. Mohamed Jameel, Kutbi's father, told CPJ that Kutbi was accused of inciting public opinion and offending symbols of the state, among other allegations. Kutbi's father told CPJ the writer was being held in a prison in Mecca. He has not been officially charged.

Kutbi writes regularly for the news website Makkah Online, and has often criticized the government in Saudi Arabia. He has also published several books on topics ranging from politics, geography, history, and social and philosophical issues.

According to news reports and a regional human rights group that cited Kutbi's Twitter account, he was detained to prevent him from writing or appearing on any media shows in connection with remarks he made as a guest on a June 22 show, called Fi Al-Sameem (In Depth). The show airs on the privately owned channel Rotana Khaleejia.

In the show, Kutbi criticized the country's National Dialogue as a waste of time and money and said his own remarks had been edited out of the broadcast of the most recent meeting. Participants of the National Dialogue gather once a year to discuss issues, including reform, extremism, and national unity, in the country.

"The Saudi government is proving Kutbi's comments about the futility of dialogue by censoring him for his critical views," said CPJ's Mansour. "We call on authorities to immediately release Zuhair Kutbi."

Saudi Arabia is one of the 10 Most Censored Countries, following only North Korea and Eritrea, according to a list compiled by CPJ in 2014.

Music Video - Rihanna - No Love Allowed

Here’s What President Obama Is Reading This Summer


From Pulitzer-winning fiction to a biography of George Washington

Even the leader of the free world gets a break to do some summer reading.
According to ABC News, these are the books President Obama packed for his family vacation to Martha’s Vineyard:
All That Is – James Salter
This 2013 novel by one of the most critically acclaimed modern American authors follows the life of a young man, beginning with his work as a naval officer in World War II through his later work as a book editor in New York, detailing his friendships and romances along the way.
All The Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr
This novel won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and it intertwines the stories of a young blind girl in Paris and an orphan boy in Germany as they grow up around the time of World War II.
The Sixth Extinction – Elizabeth Kolbert
This 2014 nonfiction book explores previous mass extinctions on Earth and makes the case that humans and other organisms are in the midst of the sixth extinction.
The Lowland – Jhumpa Lahiri
This 2013 novel follows two brothers growing up in Calcutta in the 1950s and 1960s, tracing each of their lives as one moves to the U.S. and the other stays behind.
Between The World and Me – Ta-Nehisi Coates
This 2015 book is written as a letter to the author’s son, exploring race and what it means to be black in the U.S. Coates often draws comparisons to James Baldwin.
Washington: A Life – Ron Chernow
This book from 2010 is a biography of George Washington and won a Pulitzer Prize in 2011.

Video Report - Hidden damage revealed in veterans' brains

Video Report - Analyzing the results of the CNN/ORC poll in Iowa

The High Price of Rejecting the Iran Deal


THE Iran nuclear deal offers a long-term solution to one of the most urgent threats of our time. Without this deal, Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, would be less than 90 days away from having enough fissile material to make a nuclear bomb. This deal greatly reduces the threat of Iran’s nuclear program, making Iran’s breakout time four times as long, securing unprecedented access to ensure that we will know if Iran cheats and giving us the leverage to hold it to its commitments.
Those calling on Congress to scrap the deal argue that the United States could have gotten a better deal, and still could, if we unilaterally ramped up existing sanctions, enough to force Iran to dismantle its entire nuclear program or even alter the character of its regime wholesale. This assumption is a dangerous fantasy, flying in the face of economic and diplomatic reality.
To be sure, the United States does have tremendous economic influence. But it was not this influence alone that persuaded countries across Europe and Asia to join the current sanction policy, one that required them to make costly sacrifices, curtail their purchases of Iran’s oil, and put Iran’s foreign reserves in escrow. They joined us because we made the case that Iran’s nuclear program was an uncontained threat to global stability and, most important, because we offered a concrete path to address it diplomatically — which we did.
In the eyes of the world, the nuclear agreement — endorsed by the United Nations Security Council and more than 90 other countries — addresses the threat of Iran’s nuclear program by constraining it for the long term and ensuring that it will be exclusively peaceful. If Congress now rejects this deal, the elements that were fundamental in establishing that international consensus will be gone.
The simple fact is that, after two years of testing Iran in negotiations, the international community does not believe that ramping up sanctions will persuade Iran to eradicate all traces of its hard-won civil nuclear program or sever its ties to its armed proxies in the region. Foreign governments will not continue to make costly sacrifices at our demand.
Indeed, they would more likely blame us for walking away from a credible solution to one of the world’s greatest security threats, and would continue to re-engage with Iran. Instead of toughening the sanctions, a decision by Congress to unilaterally reject the deal would end a decade of isolation of Iran and put the United States at odds with the rest of the world.
Some critics nevertheless argue that we can force the hands of these countries by imposing powerful secondary sanctions against those that refuse to follow our lead.
But that would be a disaster. The countries whose cooperation we need — including those in the European Union, China, Japan, India and South Korea, as well as the companies and banks that handle their oil purchases and hold foreign reserves — are among the largest economies in the world. If we were to cut them off from the American dollar and our financial system, we would set off extensive financial hemorrhaging, not just in our partner countries but in the United States as well.
Our strong, open economic relations with these countries constitute a foundation of the global economy. Nearly 40 percent of American exports go to the European Union, China, Japan, India and Korea — trade that cannot continue without banking connections.
The major importers of Iranian oil — China, India, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Turkey — together account for nearly a fifth of our goods exports and own 47 percent of foreign-held American treasuries. They will not agree to indefinite economic sacrifices in the name of an illusory better deal. We should think very seriously before threatening to cripple the largest banks and companies in these countries.
Consider the Bank of Japan, a key institutional holder of Iran’s foreign reserves. Cutting off Japan from the American banking system through sanctions would mean that we could not honor our sovereign responsibility to service and repay the more than $1 trillion in American treasuries held by Japan’s central bank. And those would be a direct consequences of our sanctions, not to mention the economic aftershocks and the inevitable retaliation.
We must remember recent history. In 1996, in the absence of any other international support for imposing sanctions on Iran, Congress tried to force the hands of foreign companies, creating secondary sanctions that threatened to penalize them for investing in Iran’s energy sector. The idea was to force international oil companies to choose between doing business with Iran or the United States, with the expectation that all would choose us.
This outraged our foreign partners, particularly the European Union, which threatened retaliatory action and referral to the World Trade Organization and passed its own law prohibiting companies from complying. The largest oil companies of Europe and Asia stayed in Iran until, more than a decade later, we built a global consensus around the threat posed by Iran and put forward a realistic diplomatic means of addressing it.
The deal we reached last month is strong, unprecedented and good for America, with all the key elements the international community demanded to stop Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. Congress should approve this deal and ignore critics who offer no alternative.

Dianne Feinstein defends Hillary Clinton’s email practices


The top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee defended Hillary Clinton’s email practices on Thursday, saying media reports about classified information on the former secretary of state’s server did not make clear that Clinton hadn’t written any of the “top secret” emails.
Two days after an inspector general said it found “top secret” information on Clinton’s unsecured email server, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California accused news reports of “missing key points.” For example: “none of the emails alleged to contain classified information were written by Secretary Clinton,” she said — nor were they marked as “top secret” at the time they were sent.
Story Continued Below
“The questions are whether she received emails with classified information in them, and if so, whether information in those emails should have been classified in the first place,” Feinstein said. “Those questions have yet to be answered. However, it is clear that Secretary Clinton did not write emails containing classified information.”
An inspector general from the intelligence community several weeks ago told Congress it found four classified emails when examining a random sampling of 40 out of 35,000 messages Clinton handed over to the State Department for record-keeping.
On Tuesday, the IG clarified that two of those were “top secret” and off limits to foreigners, one of the highest classifications for sensitive information.

That same day, Clinton, who had previously said she did not have classified information on her server, turned over her computer hardware to the Justice Department. The FBI opened a probe of her email set up and how classified documents were handled by Clinton’s account just over a week ago.
Republicans, including Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and House Select Committee on Benghazi Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), had called for Clinton to turn over her server for several months, ever since The New York Times broke the news that Clinton exclusively used personal email instead of a account like she was supposed to do.
But Feinstein’s statement on Thursday aimed to rebut any accusations of wrongdoing. As the top Democrat on the panel with jurisdiction over top secret matters, Feinstein — who noted in the release that she reads classified documents all the time — has some authority on the issue and and her opinion should carry some weight.
The press still does not have access to the four emails the inspector general initially flagged to Congress, making it difficult to determine who, in fact, sent the messages.
But according to Feinstein’s statement, none was from Clinton, meaning she would not likely be at fault.
Feinstein also stressed how important it is that the emails with classified information did not have markings that signaled they were indeed classified.

As someone who regularly reviews classified material, I can say that those documents are always clearly marked as containing classified information,” she said. “Every official who writes classified material, whether in email or on paper, must mark the information as classified. They would also be required to use a separate classified email system to transmit the information. The emails identified did not contain these markings.”
There’s also an ongoing dispute between the intelligence community inspector general and the state inspector general as to whether some of the items were, are or should have been classified.
Feinstein also dropped another small news nugget, noting that the State Department inspector general is conducting a “broader review of the email practices of the past five Secretaries of State and their senior staff.”
That means Clinton’s and her top brass’s email practices aren’t the only ones under the microscope.

Read more:


Pakistan - Chairman PPP Bilawal Bhutto Zardari congratulates the entire nation on the 69th Independence Day

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party has congratulated the entire nation on the 69th Independence Day and emphasized on unity to develop an integrated society free of any exploitation and discrimination.
“This is the day to rejoice the independence and freedom as a nation in line with the philosophy of Founder of Pakistan Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah,” he said in his message on the eve of Independence Day.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said Pakistan Peoples Party, being the true inheritor of the ideology of Pakistan as defined by Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, had pledged right from the day of its inception to struggle for the establishment of an egalitarian and democratic society in the country freed through a democratic movement.
He said Muslims of South Asia won freedom from the imperial yoke to live an independent nation practicing their own social and religious ways of life freely and without any restrictions. Likewise, every citizen of the new country was promised equality in the eyes of state.
PPP Chairman said that almost half of the Independence Days in the country’s chequered history were observed during dictatorial and despotic rules, which hindered the development of the country into a country as dreamt by its founding fathers.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that monsters of extremism and terrorism were the real threats followed by poverty, injustice and exploitation which need to be fought against by the entire nation.
The PPP Chairman stressed that this day should be marked to pay tribute to Founder Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah and all those who fought for independence and offered great sacrifices for the future generations of the new nation.

US General Says Islamic State Gaining in Afghanistan

The Islamic State is making small inroads in Afghanistan and could grow into a more worrisome threat, a U.S. Army general said Thursday.
Speaking to reporters at the Pentagon from his offices in Kabul, Brig. Gen. Wilson Shoffner said the Islamic State, which rose to prominence by capturing large swaths of Syria and Iraq, is not yet capable of coordinating military operations in more than one part of Afghanistan at a time.
"We see their capabilities increasing somewhat but not to the point where they can conduct operations that you're seeing in Iraq and Syria, although we do note the potential for them to evolve into something more serious, more dangerous," he said.
Shoffner said the Islamic State's fighters are clashing with the Taliban in areas of Afghanistan where the Islamic State is encroaching on Taliban territory. He called this a destabilizing development, with Afghan civilians caught in the middle.
"That's a security issue that we are committed to helping the Afghan government resolve," he said.
Shoffner declined to say whether U.S. aircraft have attacked Islamic State targets in Afghanistan.

U.S. Paid $335 Million for a Power Plant in Afghanistan No One Is Using


A power plant in Afghanistan funded by the U.S. to the tune of $335 million is being “severely underutilized” and risks becoming a “catastrophic failure,” according to a U.S. government watchdog.
The Tarakhil Power Plant is running far below its full capacity, the office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) said on Thursday. As recently as last year, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) said that it is a “vital component” of the electricity grid that serves Kabul.
Constructed by the Black & Veatch engineering firm, which was awarded a contract by USAID in 2007, Tarakhil is nicknamed “the white elephant of Kabul,” McClatchy reports.

According to data on the plant analyzed by SIGAR, Tarakhil has produced a miniscule amount of power for Kabul: Between February 2014 and April 2015, it exported 8,846 megawatt hours of power to the Kabul grid, less than 1 percent of the plant’s production capacity. Tarakhil contributed just 0.34 percent of the total power on the Kabul power grid during the same time period, according to SIGAR.
“Affordable and reliable electricity is critical to the economic growth and stability of Afghanistan. However, the construction of a $335 million diesel-fueled power plant outside of Kabul does not seem to have contributed significantly to this important goal since it was handed over to the Afghan government more than five years ago,” said John F. Sopko, the inspector general for Afghanistan Reconstruction, in a letter dated August 7 to Donald Sampler, the assistant to the administrator for Afghanistan and Pakistan affairs at USAID.
“This underutilization has apparently resulted in the premature failure of equipment, which was expected to raise already high operation and maintenance costs, and could result in ‘catastrophic failure,’” according to SIGAR.
The plant’s reliance on diesel as a fuel has contributed to its inefficiency. Diesel is both expensive and dangerous to transport in Afghanistan, McClatchy reports. SIGAR reviewed of alternative fuels for the plant, but “failed to identify a more economic fuel supply” other diesel, according to Sopko’s letter.
Tarakhil was intended to provide power to Kabul on a continuous basis, but SIGAR found the plant is being used only on an intermittent basis, which has caused damage to the plant due to “frequent starts and stops, which place greater wear and tear on the engines and electrical components,” said SIGAR.
This is not the first time SIGAR has looked at the power plant. In July 2014, Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill wrote a letter to USAID demanding answers about the power plant’s inefficiency.

Christians are fleeing from Pakistan where Gul Sher will flee?

Today in a meeting with a friend, when I told him that Dr. Paul Bhatti, former Religious Harmony Minister and brother of Martyr Shahbaz Bhatti has fled from Pakistan after life threats from Punjabi Talban on pursuing case of Shahbaz Bhatti murder in anti-terrorist court. 

My friend was not surprised on Dr. Paul Bhatti’s re-settlement in Italy but he raised very important question: Where Gul Sher will flee, who was driver of Shahbaz Bhatti and eye witness of killing incident of his boss Shahbaz Bhatti? 

It was morning of March 2, 2011, in capital city of Pakistan; Gul Sher was waiting alongside car on door of house of mother of Martyr Shahbaz Bhatti which was not his official residence as Federal Minister for Minorities Affair; It is 11: 15 AM, Shahbaz Bhatti, Federal Minister of government of Pakistan, appears from house of his mother and directs his driver Gul Sher to head for Prime Minister House where he had to participate in Cabinet meeting; but before reaching PM House, he have to go to his official residence where Police was waiting for him to escort on daily schedule. It is 11:20 AM, before reaching to official residence where police escort was waiting, the vehicle of Federal Minister Shahbaz Bhatti slows down on a road speed breaker, then suddenly, gunmen stop car of Shahbaz Bhatti and order Gul Sher to get out of car and run to save his life. The gunmen spray bullet on Shahbaz Bhatti and wait to ensure that he is dead; the killers, then, put pamphlets written by Punjabi Talban on dead body of Shahbaz Bhatti which warn others to not speak against blasphemy law. It is on record that Gul Sher, driver of Shahbaz Bhatti, saw faces of killers and became a credible witness of the killing incident.

After murder of Shahbaz Bhatti, a joint investigating team of Islamabad police was constituted by government of Pakistan which instead of arresting terrorists of Punjabi Talban started harassing activists of All Pakistan Minorities Alliance APMA which was led by Martyr Shahbaz Bhatti; the police picked up Gul Sher also and tortured him for weeks to record a statement or confession that killers were Christians; later, Gul Sher was released from police torture cell on instructions to keep silent.

The government of Pakistan and Joint Investigation Team of Shahbaz Bhatti murder case was fully aware that Punjabi Talban are involved in killing of Shahbaz Bhatti and knew their hide outs in Punjab but stretched their investigation towards Christian activists of APML and Gul Sher who was driver of slain Christian leader.

The mother of Shahbaz Bhatti and family servant were awarded asylum by Canadian government who migrated to Canada but Gul Sher who was eye witness of killing incident and next target of Punjabi Talban was ignored.

When I talked last with khalid Gill who was Chief Organizer of All Pakistan Minorities Alliance APMA led by Shahbaz Bhatti and harassed by joint investigation team of Islamabad in murder inquiry of Shahbaz Bhatti. Mr. khalid Gill is one who invested millions of his family funds to organize APMA to strength leadership of Martyr Shahbaz Bhatti reached Canada in year 2013 and applied for asylum to save his life but he is facing difficulties which is causing depression on him when Mr. Gill is patient of high blood pressure and feeling unsafe in Canada even where some elements are propagating against him that he may not get asylum.

The very important question still stands very big; where Gul Sher will go to save his life who is eyewitness of killing spree of Shahbaz Bhatti but in hiding in Pakistan? While Paul Bhatti settles back in Italy and family of Shahbaz Bhatti along with family servants is settled in Canada.

There are thousands of Christians who are fleeing from Pakistan after persecution and life threats who are waiting for their case approvals from UNO offices in Sri-Lanka, Thailand, Hong Kong and Malaysia in very desperate situation which require attention of UNHRC but what’s future of Pakistani Christians: its big question mark like question of Gul Sher? - See more at:


Armed terrorists of banned notorious outfit AhleSunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ) has gunned down a shia young man Naveed Abbas at Organi Town Karachi on Wednesday evening.
According to the Shiite News Correspondent, Shaeed Naveed Abbas , 20, was gunned down by the terrorists of ASWJ formerly Known as Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) at his pushcart situated at Chishti Nagar Oragni Town-11 District West Karachi, Where he along with his father sold the Nimco's to earn money for their family.
The funeral prayer of martyrs Naveed Abbas was offered at Salman Farsi Mosque today at Organi Town in the presence of hundreds of faithful. Armed terrorists of ASWJ aka SSP shot martyred hundreds of Shiite Muslims to fullfill the agenda of their Saudi and Indian masters of Shia Genocide. More than 20,000 Shiite Muslims were shot martyred by these Takfiri terrorists in last 3 decades including 200 Doctors, 400 Shiite Businessmen, GOvernment Officials, Armed Forces personnel , academics , lawmakers and others because of their Shiite sects.

Its pertaining to mention here that District West Organi Town is the safe-haven of Armed terrorists of Taliban, AlQaeda, Outlawed ASWJ and LeJ . These groups recruit the notorious terrorists from District West Karachi and gave them training in the Karachi district West neighboring areas of Balochistan.

Balochistan: The Curse of Natural Resources

By Naila Tasneem
What comes to our minds when we think of Balochistan; killings, kidnappings, torture, missing persons, separatist movement, proxy wars involving sectarian roots, backwardness etc. But is that all there is to it or are we missing out on something more important. The largest province of Pakistan in terms of its physical size, constituting approximately 44% of the total area of Pakistan, is so disconnected from the other parts of the country.
There has to be much more to this part of the country than just problems. There must be a life besides all the bad news. A life of ordinary people who work hard to survive, make a living and dream for a better life. It’s really rare when we hear about ordinary life or the rich culture and traditions. We only have news and not a perspective from common people. Hence the problems are also objectified to news items, figures and cover stories. If we look at the turmoil in Balochistan in a national context we would attribute the problems to human rights violation, lack of development and violent conflict. However, if we try to see it from a broader global perspective we might get a different view of ground realities.
Some studies by leading economists suggest that post world war two resource-rich countries have shown poor growth performance. Many countries in Africa like Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, and Liberia are facing civil strife like diamond wars. In other, less extreme instances, the struggle for control of huge resource may lead to a concentration of economic and political power in the hands of dominant elites that, once in power, use it to garner political support and thus secure their hold on power, with stunted or weakened democracy and slower growth. It is also believed that abundant natural resources may crowd out social capital. This refers to the infrastructure and institutions of a society in a broad sense like; its culture, cohesion, law, system of justice, rules, customs and even trust.
The attack on Ziarat residency was tantamount to destruction of social capital. Although the Ziarat residnecy has been restored the incidence has severely fractured the social fabric. There is also evidence that, across countries, various indicators of education and literacy are all inversely related to natural resource abundance.
According to Pakistan Social and Living Standards Measurement Survey (PSLM) conducted by Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), current literacy rate in the province stands at an abysmal 43%. Survey further stated that Male literacy rate in Balochistan is 55% and Female literacy rate is just 25%. Looking at the health indicators 11 million kids die before reaching the age of five. Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) is alarming with 785/100,000 live births whereas the Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) is 97/1000 live births. So in context of Balochistan it might be the case that abundant natural capital appears to crowd out human capital. Hence more and better education can be good for economic growth. However, when institutional quality is sufficiently high, the natural resource effect becomes positive as shown by several studies.
Therefore while working on the China Pakistan Economic Corridor the government both on federal and provincial level must try to integrate the people of Balochistan in the process of economic development. This must be ensured by simultaneously providing them with better health, education and employment opportunities. On the other hand the civil society and media must press for more transparency. Economic development must lead to national integration, harmony and peaceful coexistence. Infrastructure development in rural areas particularly in Balochistan which is known to have a difficult terrain can be the most powerful poverty-reducing investment, and it could involve more local labor. Economic policies must be designed to alleviate problems of common people such as investments in transport and logistics infrastructure, expanded investment in education and skills training to foster faster absorption of foreign technology and innovation, and creating special economic zones and promoting regional trade.
However, most importantly we need to address the grievances of Baloch people regarding human right abuses, violence and give them rights as equal citizens.  We must provide them with every opportunity to contribute to their own lives and lives of their fellow citizens. Our leaders must realize that we need to rise above regional, ethnic, linguistic barriers while promoting and preserving our rich heritage of languages, culture, arts and history.

Pakistan - 380,000 people affected in Chitral

Apart from claiming 36 lives and injuring a dozen, the recent floods in Chitral have also affected a population of around 380,000 people, the four per cent of which comprises pregnant women.
According to a report compiled by the National Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Network (NHEPRN), the post-flood situation in Chitral is worsening due to the scarcity of resources and closure of roads due to massive landslides.
Sharing the details of the report, the NHEPRN’s Deputy Director Operation Dr Sabina Durrani told The Express Tribune that the local administration is facing acute shortage of medicines and does not have vaccines for snake or dog bite.
“Their entire year’s stock of medicine is almost finished and currently the local administration urgently needs it as there are chances of an outbreak of various diseases,” she said.
Contaminated drinking water
Dr Durrani said the people of Chitral are also forced to drink contaminated water and are at risk of suffering from water-borne diseases such as Hepatitis A, E, thyroid, diarrhoea, and gastroenteritis.
“To deal with the situation, the NHEPRN in collaboration with the World Health Organisation (WHO) has distributed a few water purification pills among the residents of the area.  However, it is not a permanent solution,” she said.
Relief activities
She said it is estimated that 80 per cent of the areas have been cut off from the main city of Chitral which is creating difficulty in relief activities for the people living in far-flung areas.
“Currently army is carrying out major relief activities by using helicopters, however, the local administration is facing acute shortage of logistics to access the population living in the remote areas,” she said.
She said it has become a big challenge for the medical teams to access population living in narrow valleys, adding that majority of the patients are being shifted to the local hospitals through helicopters.
Carcasses of animals
She said a large number of animals have died in the floods and their decaying bodies are lying everywhere.



Is Pakistan undergoing a “shocking strategic shift” away from its long-standing India-centric policies and preference for supporting non-state proxies? That is just what Sameer Lalwani provocatively argues in a recent article. He claims that the prevailing characterization of Pakistan as a “belligerent, unyielding, and destabilizing force in international affairs” has obscured an important “reorientation of Pakistan’s national security policies.” He describes three inter-locking shifts that warrant examination: that Pakistan is reducing its bellicosity toward its long-time foe India, turning inward to address domestic security threats instead of continuing its competition with India, and re-examining its very strategic culture in the process. I wish it were so, but unfortunately Lalwani’s arguments are far more shocking than Pakistan’s putative strategic shifts. The latter have yet to occur and, indeed are unlikely to occur in any policy-relevant time frame. Rather than seeing in Pakistan what they wish to see, the United States and its partners must see Pakistan for what it is and plan accordingly.
Faux Shift 1: “Aggressive” or “belligerent” Pakistani behavior toward India has been significantly reduced.
Lalwani asserts a significant diminution of Pakistan’s aggression towards India. To buttress his claim, he contends that “Overall violence on the Indo-Pakistan border has declined due to substantial reductions in militant activity and cross-border firings, based on open-source data, including that of the government of India.” Lalwani’s data must be put in context, and once we do that the argument that Pakistan’s belligerence has significantly reduced begins to fall apart.
First, it is true that Pakistan made an effort to rein in its proxies, thereby contributing to a reduction of hostilities in Kashmir. But this restraint was under severe U.S. pressure. The United States was focused upon fighting its war in Afghanistan and wanted to minimize any possibility of a conflict between India and Pakistan, which would justify Pakistan swinging its troops from the west to the east. Such a maneuver has precedents. It happened after Jaish-e-Mohammad’s December 2001 attack on the Indian parliament and the May 2002 attack on army families by Lashkar-e-Taiba in Kaluchak, Kashmir and the ensuing Indian military buildup upon the border. Second, this reduction was never supposed to be permanent. Pakistan was forced to put Kashmir on the “backburner” while it sought to develop new strategies in South Asia while keeping the India-focused jihadi movements in cold storage.
It is worth noting that Pakistan’s military has actually escalated its rhetoric on Kashmir in recent years, in opposition to Lalwanis’s claims to the contrary. General and President Pervez Musharraf famously dropped Pakistan’s long-standing (and unfounded) demand for a plebiscite in Kashmir, according to which Kashmiris were to decide whether they want to join India or Pakistan. Pakistan—despite its support for this option—violated the first, necessary but insufficient condition for the plebiscite by refusing to de-militarize Kashmir. It was Musharraf who also agreed to the 2003 ceasefire and offered India anumber of options to resolve the Kashmir dispute, all of which legitimized Pakistan’s varied equities in some measure. There was never any chance of India accepting these offers because India remains committed to ratifying the status quo and is loath to validate any of Pakistan’s claims. Thus there were never any real costs imposed upon Musharraf in offering these putative “concessions.” Moreover,   doing so made Musharraf appear more statesman-like in the eyes of the international community, which was convinced Musharraf was a man of peace in the region and beyond.
Many of these policies disquieted the army’s other senior generals. As soon as Musharraf left the scene, under pressure from those same generals, his successor General Ashfaq Kayani reversed Musharraf’s policies. Under Kayani’s tenure as army chief (November 2007-November 2013), Pakistan reverted to the outrageous plebiscite demand and resumed hostilities in Kashmir, as evidenced by Figure 1. The current army chief, Raheel Sharif, has persisted with Kayani’s rhetoric and has repeatedly emphasized that Kashmir is the “jugular vein” of Pakistan and remains the unfinished business of partition.
This brings me to my second point. In 2003, both sides agreed to a ceasefire inNovember 2003. In both 2004 and 2005, there were no “ceasefire violations.” As the below chart attests, Pakistani cease fire violations have grown steadily since 2009. Lalwani concedes this uptick but dismisses it as largely irrelevant because the violations have not hit the historic highs of 2002, which numbered well over 5000. Lalwani says that this diminution in hostility is due to a major “strategic shift” in Pakistani calculus, arguing that while “Pakistan still supports Kashmiri separatists … infiltration attempts, violent incidents, and fatalities have all steadily decreased by over 90 percent since 2001.”
What Lalwani does not explain explicitly is why Pakistan engages in such shelling. Historically, under the cover of shelling, Pakistani militant groups infiltrated into India either across the line of control or the international border. Shelling served the purpose of infiltrating militants through a particular sector. What then accounts for this increase since 2009? Does it matter that this remains about one tenth the level of shelling in 2002? Maybe not. As I describe below, Pakistan has long developed new routes of infiltration that are less dependent upon the old standard of “shelling” to provide cover to the militants who squirt into India.
Sources: Data from 2006 to 2014 are from “<a href="" target="_blank">J&amp;K: 2014 records 562 ceasefire violations; highest in 11 years</a>,” <em>India Times</em>, Dec. 28, 2014. Data for January 1 through June 30, 2014 are from “<a href="" target="_blank">Violation of Ceasefire Agreement by Pakistan</a>,” Press Information Bureau, Government of India, Ministry of Defence, July 30, 2015. Data for July 2015 are from “<a href="" target="_blank">Pak. rangers violate ceasefire</a>,” <em>The Hindu</em>, Aug. 1, 2015. Data up to August 7 are from “<a href="" target="_blank">15 LoC ceasefire violations by Pakistan in 6 days</a>,” <em>Rediff News</em>, Aug. 7, 2015.
Third, and related to the second point, Lalwani is correct: there has been a shift in Pakistan’s calculus, but it is not necessarily the shift he had in mind. As the Line of Control (LOC) became more difficult to penetrate and subject to considerable international scrutiny, Pakistan developed alternatives routes to cause mayhem in India. Pakistan, and its proxies such as Lashkar-e-Taiba(operating under the guise of Jamaat ud Dawa and Filah Insaniat Foundation), have cultivated the territories and citizens of BangladeshSri LankaNepal,Thailand, European and Arab Gulf States to recruit militants, raise funds, organize documents, secure weapons. Pakistan has used Bangladesh and Nepal as infiltration routes as well. .This is in addition to infiltration by sea. More importantly, for Pakistan’s security managers and the militants they support, Kashmir is but a gateway to the ultimate prize of spreading communal discord in India. To this end, Pakistan has cultivated the Indian Mujahideen (IM), an indigenous jihadist movement that Pakistan has supported with safe haven, money, and training, among other things.
Faux Shift 2: Pakistan is gradually pivoting away from competing conventionally with India to turn inward and seriously tackle domestic threats.
Lalwani next claims that a “strategic reorientation” away from conventionally fighting India towards its myriad domestic threats. While Pakistan’s military has been engaged in military operations in the tribal areas with mixed results and dubious resolve, there is no reason to believe this represents a strategic shift as he intimates.
Lalwani asserts that such a shift “is evident in Pakistani defense resourcing, procurement, deployment, and operational choices since 2001. Based on open-source  data, defense allocations declined substantially over three decades.” There are several problems with this claim. First, he cites data from the Stockhom International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) and the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) to buttress these claims. Both SIPRI and IISS maintain data on military force structures and expenditures; however, SIPRI and IISS data are only as good as Pakistani reporting on these issues. Alas, Pakistan’s defense budgeting is notoriously opaque as is information about its force structure. (Readers should compare multiple years of IISS data to learn how slowly their reported figures change, likely reflecting poor information in the first instance.) Pakistan’s military does not submit detailed budgets to the parliament, obscures defense spending by locating them in other parts of the budget, has considerable off-budget activities, and does not account for its nuclear program in its budget. Thus there is virtually no way to sensibly comment comprehensively upon Pakistan’s defense budget. In recent years, the military has submitted more details about its requirements. While this is an improvement it is a far cry from the transparency observed in democracies with civilian control over the military. Equally important, it is impossible to garner insights into Pakistan’s crucial financial relationship with Saudi Arabia.
Second, he contends that Pakistan’s procurements of weapons systems are consistent with this assessment. He notes that the “rate of major weapons procurement and replacement has slowed considerably. From the 1950s through the 1990s, Pakistan’s offensive arsenal (tanks and combat aircraft) grew roughly 50 percent per decade, but in the 2000s, this growth slowed to roughly 7 percent.”
There are historical reasons for this, as Lalwani surely knows or should know. After partition, Pakistan’s army was in a shambolic state. The British Indian Army had an end-strength of 400,000 personnel, of which less than 150,000 would go to Pakistan. Pakistan inherited no complete units and suffered an acute officer shortage. (For this reason, Pakistan retained British officers well into the 1950s.) All of the major ordinance and production plants were in India. Pakistan was desperate to capitalize—not recapitalize—its armed forces. After wooing the United States from 1947 onward, the United States finally agreed to bring Pakistan into its alliance structure in 1954. Pakistan’s main goal in that partnership was grow its military and the capabilities of its armed forces. Despite turbulence in U.S.-Pakistan relations from 1965 to 1982, the defense relationship again resumed. Pakistan took advantage of being a front-line state in the anti-Soviet jihad to massively expand its army. By 1989 the army had reached an end-strength of 450,000.
Consistent with this tripling in size between 1947 and 1989, Pakistan had to restructure the organization. At independence, all of the army’s divisions were commanded from the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi. Pakistan added I Corps (now located in Mangla) in 1957. The IV Corps (Lahore) was formed in 1965. Several Corps headquarters (II, V,X, and XI) were added in the 1970s, and several others (XII, XXX, XXXI) were added during the 1989s. The current army is comprised of nine corps and the Strategic Forces Command, which was created in 1999 to exercise command and control over Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal. The current Pakistan army has an active strength of about 550,000. Clearly, the rate of expenditures should have declined because the bulk of the growth occurred during the periods described above. Moreover, the vast majority of the weapons systems that Pakistan has acquired from China and from the United States are designed to combat conventional enemies—not domestic ones.
How is this a “strategic shift”? Lalwani notes that Pakistan has not attained “conventional parity” with India. He implies that because Pakistan does not seek to attain such parity with India, that Pakistan is more concerned with domestic threats. First, Pakistan does not seek to attain conventional parity with India because it cannot. Second, it does not seek overall conventional parity because it need not do so. Pakistan need only have parity along the international border with India and the LOC. Indeed, along these terrains, both states are relatively evenly matched. Pakistan’s military doctrine assumes that India’s massive conventional advantages begin to kick in only over the course of a long war when India can move its assets from the east to the west. Pakistan believes that the nuclear arsenals of India and Pakistan will force the international community to intervene early in the conflict, if the arsenal fails to prevent a conflict in the first place. Indeed, this is how Pakistan gets away with using terror as a tool of foreign policy: nuclear weapons raise the cost of Indian retaliation and force the international community into the crisis cycle before a full-blown war can erupt.
Turning to Lalwani’s assertion that the Pakistan’s military now understands the magnitude of its domestic militant threat, here too the evidence is thinner than Lalwani concedes. First, if Pakistan were truly of the view that domestic Islamist militants are the threat Lalwani claims, we should see evidence of Pakistan shutting down the myriad Deobandi militant groups that give manpower to the Pakistani Taliban. Here, we see no evidence. (Since Lashkar-e-Taiba does not attack Pakistanis and operates under ISI’s command and control in India and Afghanistan, the army’s continued fostering of that group is not inconsistent with the kind of shift Lalwani posits.) So what does account for Pakistan’s military operations in South Waziristan and elsewhere?
To understand what Pakistan is doing, it is important to understand what Pakistan is not doing. First, Pakistan is not abandoning the strategic utility of Islamist militancy simply because it is experiencing blowback from this policy. While Pakistanis are wont to blame a variety of external actors for its domestic insecurity, it is a simple fact that there would be no Pakistani Taliban had there been no Afghan Taliban, Jaish-e-Mohammad, Sipah-e-Sahaba-e-Pakistan and the like. All of these groups were and, to varying degrees remain, assets of the state. The state has at best waged a selective war against those elements that cannot be coerced or cajoled back into the fold of the ISI.
What Pakistan is trying to do is regain control over these varied assets gone wild. Many in the Afghan Taliban reject Pakistan’s efforts to manipulate the movement and are as hostile to Pakistan as they are to the Americans. Pakistan needs to divide and conquer the emerging Taliban factions as soon as possible if it hopes to have any reasonable ability to dictate the future of Afghanistan. Turning to the Pakistani Taliban, Pakistan has been trying to persuade some commanders to rejoin the fight in Afghanistan while trying to persuade others to rejoin the fight in India. This is why Pakistan has resuscitated Jaish-e-Mohammad, a Deobandi militant groups raised to kill Indians. Those militants who cannot be rehabilitated to support state goals can only be eliminated.
Finally, if Pakistan were serious about the nature of its domestic threat, we should expect Pakistan’s military to be more forthright in describing the terrorists who are savaging Pakistanis. Here too, we see considerable evidence of Pakistani perfidy. Pakistan’s intelligence agencies go to considerable effort to orchestrate a media message that these militants are not Muslim. Pakistan’s media is rife with reports that these terrorists are not circumcised, indicating that they are “Hindu” or “Indian agents.” As is well known, Mehsuds (a tribal from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas) do not circumcise and they swell the ranks of Pakistan’s domestic terrorists. Even the notorious attack on a Peshawar school was immediately described by Pakistan’s media (as well as former President Musharraf) as an Indian conspiracy.
As I argue in my own book, Fighting to the End: The Pakistan Army’s Way of War,Pakistan uses this strategy to intrinsically link its internal strive to its conventional foe: India. This is how Pakistan’s army continues to legitimize the need for a large conventional army even though the numbers of Pakistanis killed by domestic terrorists since 1988 outnumber, by an order of magnitude, the 9,000 battlefield deaths from all Indo-Pakistan wars in 1947, 1965, 1971 and 1999 combined. If Pakistan’s army is genuinely serious about the nature of its domestic militants, it would discontinue this canard of blaming India for these attacks, thus fostering the perception that Pakistan’s conventional nemesis is the cause of Pakistan’s internal insecurity.
Critically, Pakistan gains materially from these internal operations. Pakistan argues that as long as it is “killing terrorists,” it should continue receiving American subsidies for doing so. This argument has some merit: unfortunately, the United States has not insisted that Pakistan cease its efforts to create terrorists elsewhere. Essentially, Pakistan has turned its war on terrorism into an endless revenue stream.
Faux Shift 3: A fundamental evolution in Pakistani strategic culture appears to be underway.
Lalwani claims that “Pakistan’s officer corps and national security experts have engaged in significant self-examination in their strategic literature over the past 15 years.” His evidence for this is thin and based upon a highly selective reading of Pakistan’s defense publications which I have treated in my own book Fighting to the End: The Pakistan Army’s Way of War. Having read through all of the publications he cites and hundreds more, I find it difficult to agree with him. In fact, heaving perused six decades of the army’s publications, I find considerable evidence that the army seeks to construct its conflict with India in ideological, rather than strategic or military, terms. This lays the foundation for a civilizational war with India that has no end. This buttresses the army’s ideological, organizational and material objectives of remaining the single most important organization within Pakistan and protects the rights it arrogates to itself to run and ruin the country when it feels compelled to do so.
It is possible that Pakistan’s military is undergoing a strategic shift although Lalwani does not provide genuine evidence for this claim. After all the Pakistan army has been fighting its own people since 2002. While Pakistanis may believe they are killing Indian agents with their foreskins intact, the men in uniform know full well whom they are killing and who are trying to kill them. Whereas before 2002, most Pakistani army unit losses occurred in some context or another that involves fighting the Indian enemy. Since then, increasingly unit losses are coming at the hands of Pakistanis. Such a situation would discomfit any military as no military embraces the concept of killing its own citizens over prolonged periods of time.
Another important driver of potential change in the Pakistan army is its base of recruitment, which now stretches well beyond the Punjab. As I have shown elsewhere, the districts from which they are recruiting have very different beliefs and values from the traditional bastions of recruitment. These officer recruits come from districts that do not share the “jihadi” commitments of those in the Punjab and they do not see India as the most important threat to the nation.
Taken together, these combat deaths in the tribal areas and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the shifting geographical bases of recruitment could auger important ideological shifts over time. However, armies are very good at managing social change. Individuals are incentivized to toe the organization line for purposes of promotion and postings. The Pakistan army offers serious enticements to those who stay in line, including lucrative land grants and an entire system of amenities including schools, hospitals and housing areas that civilians cannot access. Thus it is far from obvious that these recent pressures exposited above will produce the much-anticipated organizational changes that optimists, like Lalwani, hope for.
Much Ado About Nothing?
Unfortunately, Americans are constantly looking for signs that Pakistan has turned a new leaf. Every new army chief produces the same chorus of notables who argue that “This army chief is a straight shooter. We can work with him.” Alas, at the end of each army chief’s tenure, we learn that he was not substantively different than those he proceeded. Acknowledging the durability of the dangers that Pakistan presents seems to be too overwhelming for Americans. However, our efforts to see positive change where they do not exist come at a great cost. The United States must get over this idea that Pakistan can be a force for good in the region when the preponderance of evidence speaks to the contrary. Once the United States rids itself of this preposterous notion, perhaps it can get to the real business of crafting policies that will contain the multifarious threats that Pakistan pose to U.S. interests in South Asia and beyond.