Thursday, May 4, 2017

Music Video - Justin Bieber - This Is Love

Video - Chomsky on North Korea & Iran

Video Report - S.Arabia appointed to women’s rights commission in secret UN vote, Wikileaks offers €10K for details

Video - Russia, Iran, Turkey adopt memorandum on creation of 4 de-escalation zones in Syria

#PPP Video - kitne maqbool hain Bhutto

Video - PPP Jalsa in Lahore Aitzaz Ahsan addressing 4th May 2017

Video - PPP protest against load shedding in Nasir Bagh Lahore | 4 May 2017

Video - President PPP Punjab Qamar Zaman Kaira addressing PPP's sit-in against loadshedding in lahore,

Video - #PPP - Khursheed Shah Speech

Kal bi bhutto Zinda tha Ajj bi Bhutto Zinda hai

Pakistan - LUBP comment on ISPR’s slap to Saudi-backed PM Nawaz Sharif

There are occasions when the establishment in Pakistan gets frayed and fractured. The current slap by ISPR to the Saudi-backed coward, PM Nawaz Sharif is a case in point. From sitting in General Zia’s lap to collaborating with General Kiyani in derailing the democratically elected PPP, government, Nawaz Sharif has remained a loyal poodle of the establishment and its Takfiri “assets” for the past 4 decades.
Some months back, an opportunist hack and PML N sycophant published a dubiously sourced story about how Nawaz Sharif and his brother are serious about taking on their support base of ISIS-affiliated Deobandi Salafi terrorists. Not only did Nawaz Sharif deny his own sycophant multiple times after this story was published; he has now thrown him and other PML N staffers and cabinet members under the bus.
Tariq Fatimi was removed by NS from his post through a notification issued today from PM office. Hours after the Prime Minister’s Office issued the directives, however, Inter-Services Public Relations said the Army had rejected the report, calling it ‘incomplete’.
Director General ISPR Major Asif Ghafoor said in his tweet:
“Notification on Dawn Leak is incomplete and not in line with recommendations by the Inquiry Board. Notification is rejected.”
In standing up to the establishment, Former Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gillani did the opposite and stood by Hussain Haqqani in the aftermath of the #Memogate Crisis.
In that instance, it was opportunists with dubious (PML N and JI) pasts like Haqqani who threw his leader under the bus while enjoying the comforts of the safety awarded to him by the US. YRG had to pay heavily for his stance. Nawaz Sharif, on the other hand, will figure out another compromise that will cost Pakistan.
Nawaz Sharif is great at making deals. When the military dictator General Musharaf deposed him, Nawaz Sharif cut a deal with him and ran off to Saudi Arabia for nearly a decade. Even after purchasing the loyalty of much of the judiciary, Nawaz refused to initiate prosecution proceedings against Musharaf for his 1999 coup. He will figure out something this time as well.

Pakistan's DawnGate - ''Tweeting defiance''

WHAT had been simmering for a long while erupted into the open last week when the military, through the DG ISPR’s tweet, publicly rejected a ‘notification’ issued by the Prime Minister’s Office. The letter, which was in fact meant for various ministries to take action and dubbed by the media as a ‘notification’, brought the conflict brewing between the civil and military leadership over the ‘Dawn leaks’ to a head.
Such a blatant gesture of defiance towards the civilian authority has set a new and highly dangerous precedent. The latest confrontation with the generals could not have come at a worse time for a beleaguered prime minister fighting a desperate battle for political survival. The situation has become more serious with the major opposition political parties putting their weight behind the military.
While the controversy over the Dawn report may have triggered the latest crisis, there are a number of other factors that have contributed to the current civil-military stand-off. There is an almost complete breakdown of trust between the two branches of state. The latest round of confrontation has also removed any illusions about improving civil-military relations with the change of army guard. This goes to show once again that it is the institution and not just the individual that matters in this tricky relationship.
The latest confrontation with the generals could not have come at a worse time for the beleaguered PM. It has been a long and eventful fortnight for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif where nothing seems to have gone right for him. First it was the damning Supreme Court ruling in the Panama case, then came the controversy over the mysterious visit of Indian business tycoon Sajjan Jindal, and finally the defiant ISPR tweet throwing down the gauntlet.
It was not just the issue of an Indian family friend calling on the prime minister, but the timing and circumstances of Jindal’s visit that provoked criticism. What added to the controversy was the security establishment’s lingering suspicion regarding Sharif’s ‘soft-pedaling’ on India. Jindal’s tweets censuring the Pakistani military and intelligence agencies came in handy for the opposition to question the patriotism of the prime minister. A section of the media also went full-throttle fuelling the fire.
In the midst of all this, the Prime Minister’s Office notified the termination of the services of the prime minister’s special assistant on foreign affairs Tariq Fatemi and a senior information ministry official as per the recommendation of the investigation commission probing the Dawn report. The order was instantly rejected by the military for being incomplete. However, no substantial reason was given for the rebuttal. What is worse is that it triggered a media war with the commentators and TV anchors fighting it out on behalf of either side. The free-for-all turned the fracas into something uglier.
Interestingly, the opposition political parties jumped into the fray aligning themselves with the army’s position for purely opportunistic political reasons — they wanted to further weaken the Sharif government without realising the long-term ramifications of this for the system. However, this kind of political expediency is not new to our political culture. The PML-N too has played the same game in the past.
Surely, the government must share the blame for these heightened tensions. The confusion within the administration was apparent from the statement of the interior minister questioning the authority of the Prime Minister’s Office to issue such an order. He contended that this was the responsibility of his ministry. This speaks volumes for Sharif’s style of governance.
But the main issue is not who was authorised to issue the ‘notification’; the entire approach to the case was problematic. The serious divide between the civilians and the military members of the
commission was known. This was the main reason for the long delay in finalising the report, even though it still appears inconclusive. The military leadership seems to have had strong reservations over the findings of the commission and its recommendations.
For the past few months, backchannel efforts were on to resolve the differences. Some compromise was apparently reached whereby Fatemi was to be removed, even though there was no substantive evidence of his being directly or indirectly involved in the so-called leak. But the military seemed to be unhappy with the wording of the ‘notification’ that implied it was just a change of portfolio. Was that such a big deal for the army that it had to issue a public rejection? It surely would have been better had the entire report been made public. There is certainly some credence to the argument that the entire issue of the ‘leak’ was blown out of proportion. It could have easily been dealt with through some administrative action rather than forming a joint investigation committee. It was apparent from the outset that such a motley team of investigators would not be able to reach a conclusion to the satisfaction of all sides. For sure, this build-up of the narrative about national security having been breached incensed the army rank and file, bringing the leadership under huge pressure. Not surprisingly, the issue was raised during the visit of the new army chief to various garrisons.
It had become an emotional issue and thus needed more prudent handling. Moreover, it had become the main obstacle in the way of making any effort to improve civil-military relations. The role of the opposition in whipping up differences has also contributed to the heightened tensions. The present political crisis has given space to the military to assert itself more strongly.
This deepening civil-military conflict is dangerous not only for the country that is facing grave external and internal security challenges, but also for the democratic political process. The confrontation will not only harm the present political set-up; it will also have a negative impact on the institution of the armed forces. The responsibility lies with both the civilian and military leaderships to resolve this stand-off before it is too late. This open defiance of constitutional authority must stop.

Pakistan - Dealing with Dawngate


After a brief respite of a few months, troubled civil-military relations take center stage in Pakistan once again. On Saturday, a scene was created when the DG ISPR strongly reacted to a notification issued by the Prime Minister’s Office in connection with the recently-concluded Dawngate inquiry report. Calling it ‘incomplete and not in line with recommendations by the Inquiry Board’, he out-rightly ‘rejected’ this notification through a tweet. Shortly after this, in rather a tit-for-tat response, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar severely criticised the ‘Twitter-happy’ DG ISPR, after declaring his tweets poisonous for the democratic institutions in the country. He also criticised the way the military presented the recently captured TTP’s spokesperson Ehsanullah Ehsan before the media.
In fact, Saturday’s episode has badly exposed the miserable state of civil-military relations in the country. Obviously these relations are not as ideal and harmonious as they are generally portrayed. There is a considerable communication gap between the civilian and military leadership in Pakistan. So in the absence of some effective and operational modes of communication between the two, the DG ISPR has chosen to communicate its institutional viewpoint through Twitter while the Interior Minister considered it appropriate to pay in the same coin by instantly holding a press conference. We have long been observing key PML-N leaders like CM Punjab Shahbaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali actively playing a role to diffuse civil-military tension by interacting with the senior military leadership. However, disadvantageously, this time the Interior Minister has himself become an instant source of civil-military confrontation.
The controversial notification signed by the Secretary to the Prime Minister Fawad Hassan Fawad was issued apparently in the light of recommendations by the Dawn Leaks Inquiry Committee. Through this notification, Syed Tariq Fatemi, the Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Foreign Affair was to be removed while the Principle Information Officer Rao Tahseen Ali was to be proceeded against E&D Rules 1973. On the other hand, the matter of daily Dawn was referred to the All Pakistan News Paper Society (APAS) for ‘necessary disciplinary action’. Reportedly, Tariq Fatemi has already refused to tender his resignations over Dawngate allegations. Now Rao Tahseen Ali is also likely to challenge his removal in the court of law. Certainly, after its rejection by the military, this notification has lost its significance and effectiveness. So now the federal government has hinted at issuing another fresh notification to this effect.
Considering it a ‘breach of national security’, the military has been hyper-sensitive to the Dawngate issue since the publishing of this controversial news story in October last year. Soon after this controversial publication, the top military commanders expressed their serious concerns over “the feeding of this false and fabricated story” during a Corps Commander’s Conference. A few months ago, some junior garrison officers asked COAS General Qamar Bajwa many inquisitorial questions about the Dawn Leak probe during his visit to Lahore Corps Headquarters. The recent tweet by the DG ISPR reflects the military’s strong resolve to logically conclude the Dawngate question.
Federal Government’s Dawngate handling has been anything but satisfactory. It first tried to ignore this issue. Later, in the face of strong pressure from the military, it reluctantly formed an Inquiry Committee. There were raised many questions about the impartiality of the head of this committee who was also dubbed as a PML-N loyalist. This Inquiry Committee took much time to reach a ‘consensus conclusion’. Now as this committee has submitted its report, the government is dilly-dallying over implementing its recommendations in letter and spirit. It is wildly believed that the PML-N government is trying to save the skin of an important member of the ruling family by scapegoating other state functionaries and ministers. Therefore, it first removed the Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid even without any formal inquiry. Now it has scapegoated Tariq Fatemi and Rao Tehseen Ali. The ruling political party also looks reluctant to take serious action against the Dawn newspaper.
We can determine the exact nature and magnitude of Dawngate scandal only if the federal government makes the inquiry report public. The concern is that the controversial news story was more a fabricated story than mere a leaked one. Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali has repeatedly been pledging to make the Dawngate inquiry report public. However, now if the federal government does not want this report to be public owing to its obvious skeletons in the cupboard, then it should at least try to adequately address the genuine concerns of the military over this issue.
It is quite an inappropriate or rather a laughable decision made by the federal government to refer the case of Dawn newspaper and its responsible journalists to the APNS for a disciplinary action. In fact, the APNS is the representative body of newspapers’ owners and publishers, to protect their rights and interests. Obviously it has nothing to do with the enforcement of media ethics for working journalists. Therefore, instead of the APNS, the Press Council of Pakistan (PCP) is the appropriate regulatory forum to take necessary disciplinary measures against any print media journalist. However, the Dawngate scandal is beyond the ambit of PCP too as it is essentially a probed case involving the breach of national security.
The Dawn newspaper never formally apologised over the publication of this news story. The version of this newspaper’s journalists was that they tried to authenticate or confirm the contents of this news story before publication from the relevant officials and politicians but none of them confirmed it anyway. So one wonders why this newspaper preferred to rely on an un-disclosable source, ignoring altogether the fact of rejection of this story by the concerned responsible individuals.
The civilian leadership is always supposed to protect its security agencies against all sorts of hostile foreign propaganda. It is really regrettable that the people at the helm in Pakistan mostly look towards international power brokers to come into the corridors of power and stay there indefinitely. While doing so, they hardly feel any hesitation in maligning and undermining the armed forces of the country. The 2011 Memogate controversy and the current Dawngate issue essentially indicate the same tendency among our politicos. Observably the federal government is by all means trying to brush the Dawngate issue under the carpet. Now let’s see whether something substantial comes out of the Dawngate or it simply goes the way of the Memogate.

Bilawal Bhutto condemns putting off-air two Bol Network Channels by Federal government

Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party Bilawal Bhutto has condemned putting off-air two Bol Network Channels by Federal government through PEMRA and warned Sharif brothers to desist threatening free media.
“World is celebrating Press Freedom Day and the Nawaz Sharif government is attacking media on the day” the PPP Chairman said in a statement.
He pointed out that history has record that Sharifs have never tolerated free media and free judiciary and applied dirty tools to rope in them through carrot and stick policy.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said the Party’s Parliamentary leaders in the Senate, National and Provincial Assemblies have been asked to submit resolutions against the highhanded action by Nawaz Sharif government against the electronic media and condemn the same in unequivocal terms.
He demanded immediate restoration of the channels whose licenses have been revoked.