Sunday, November 26, 2017

Video - The Bipartisan Pastime Of Harassing Women

Video Report - Young #Alabama #Republicans Are Rejecting #RoyMoore

Video Report - Graham: Republicans can't win with Roy Moore in Senate

Video Report - Ex-Trump strategist: Roy Moore would be a disaster for GOP

Promise Me, Dad is Joe Biden’s poignant account of the most challenging year of his vice-presidency and the second-most difficult year of his life.

Promise Me, Dad is Joe Biden’s poignant account of the most challenging year of his vice-presidency and the second-most difficult year of his life.
The first time he had been knocked down by what he calls “the Irishness of life” was immediately after he was first elected senator from Delaware, in 1972. Less than six weeks later his wife and his daughter were killed and his two sons were injured in a car accident. The second time came four decades later, when his son Beau, by then attorney general and likely next governor of Delaware, was found to have brain cancer.
Biden’s book describes a year of almost unbelievable sensory overload, when the vice-president was juggling frequent visits to the hospital to comfort his son with regular phone calls to the prime minister of Iraq and the president of the Ukraine, and a big initiative to stabilize Central America after thousands of children started to stream across the southern US border.
Folded into all of this activity was Biden’s struggle to decide whether he would try to succeed Barack Obama, or leave the contest for the Democratic presidential nomination to Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.
We get a handful of surprising vignettes. There is Biden looking into Vladimir Putin’s eyes and saying “I don’t think you have a soul”, and the Russian president replying: “We understand each other.”
There is Obama telling Biden he doesn’t think he can beat Hillary, but also offering to loan him money when the vice-president says he may need to mortgage his house to raise funds to help his son.
And there is the vice-president making sure that each of his children and grandchildren visits a Nazi concentration camp, to give them a “visceral jolt” and to remind them that “this can happen again” and that “silence is complicity.”
More than anything else, the book is a reminder of the importance of politics: how much elections can change the trajectory of a country, and how different America has become one year after Donald Trump was elected president.
Here we have a portrait of two politicians, Obama and Biden, devoted to each other and to doing whatever they can to improve America and encourage democracy around the world. Instead of a president like Trump, in thrall to Putin, we watch these two lobbying European allies to engage in the sanctions they think are necessary to punish Russia for stealing Crimea.
And rather than tweets and press conferences giving aid and comfort to white supremacists, we see a vice-president visiting the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina twice in three days after nine of its parishioners were shot dead by a crazed racist – partly because Biden had known one of the victims, the Rev Clementa Pinckney.
Biden gives himself some well-deserved credit for the supreme court decision to make marriage equality the law of the land in 2015, partly because he came out in favor of that position before Obama did and partly because he played an important role in the effort to stop Robert Bork joining the court in 1987, when Biden was chairman of the Senate judiciary committee.
When Bork’s nomination failed, he was replaced by Anthony Kennedy, who was supported by Biden and who has written all of the important pro-gay decisions the court has rendered. The difference between Bork and Kennedy is perhaps the strongest evidence of all of the power of politics. Biden repeatedly asserts that he would have been successful if he had run for president in 2016. But first his decision was delayed by his son’s cancer, and then it was made for him by his son’s death. Although Beau Biden had repeatedly urged his father to run, in the end he was just too drained by the tragedy to run for president. The author explains that the grieving process “doesn’t respect or much care about things like filing deadlines or debates and primaries and caucuses. And I was still grieving.”
If his son hadn’t died, and if he had prevailed over Clinton in the primary, Biden would have campaigned for a $15-an-hour minimum wage, free tuition at public colleges, real job training, onsite affordable child care, equal pay for women, strengthening the Affordable Care Act and modernizing the country’s roads and bridges and water and sewer systems.
Would all that and his stronger connection to working-class Americans have combined to derail the Trump juggernaut?
That will always be one of the unanswerable mysteries of American politics.

Music Video - Noor Jehan -- Sanu Nahar Wale Pul Te Bula Ke ....


Renowned human rights activist Syed Rashid Rizvi has announced he will file a petition in the court of law if proscribed terrorist outfit ASWJ’s ringleader Aurangzeb Farooqi is allowed to contest elections to legislature.

In his post on social media, Rizvi said, Aurangzeb Farooqi is notorious terrorist of banned terrorist outfit ASWJ, the mother of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi hence the mother of all terrorism. He said that Farooqi was prime culprit involved in the targeted murders of eminent human rights activist Khurram Zaki and Shia leader Syed Askari Raza.
Rizvi said that Farooqi was involved in killings of thousands of innocent Pakistani citizens therefore he would challenge him in the court of law if he files nomination papers as the latter announce contesting election to Sindh Assembly from PS-128.

Crisis in Pakistan Engineered by #PMLN government to Deflect Attention from its graft and Failures

Since the last few weeks, PML N has used a dubious hate cleric to divert attention away from its increasingly exposed governance failures. It has held the entire country hostage to the whims of the billionaire Nawaz Sharif dynasty that calls the shots within the ruling party. In its power games, the PML N has had used the despicable underhand tactic of attacking the army chief’s private religious beliefs.
After getting exposed for their massive graft and corruption, the Sharif family responded in the only way it knew how. It used the gutter tactics of endangering the Ahmadi minority. First, the former disqualified Prime Minister’s kept son-in-law attacked the Ahmadiyya with hate speech from the floor of the parliament. Then the ruling party attempted a temporary amendment which they were never serious for following through.
The PML N coordinated this political theatric with a controversial Barelvi cleric aligned with extremist Deobandi elements and tactics.
The PML N government has engaged in massive censure ship tactics and blocked Facebook and Twitter in Pakistan. This crackdown on civil liberties has been done as reports had already emerged of PML N’s complicity with Khadim Rizvi.
Inspire of a judicial order to address and end the growing calls of intolerance, the PML N government did nothing for weeks and allowed the extremist Khadim Rizvi to cause civic disturbance in the capital city of Islamabad.
This underhand tactic by the government was to deliberately divide the Pakistani State and pit institutions against one another. But the gamble looks to have failed.
Both the Judiciary and the Army have refused to follow the PML N and step outside the Constitution. However the damage has been done and the climate of hatred against minorities has been fanned by the irresponsible acts of the PML N government and its deliberate failure to enforce the writ of the State. Let no one forget that the current bout of bigotry was initiated by none other than Captain Safdar – Nawaz Sharif’s kept son in law.

Pakistan's army 'favors dialogue' with Islamists over blasphemy row

Despite orders from the government to help disperse Islamist protesters, Pakistan's military has reportedly chosen not to intervene. Hardliners are demanding the resignation of the law minister over a blasphemy row.
On Sunday, Islamist activists clashed with police for a second day outside the capital, Islamabad.
Pakistan's government on Saturday called on the country's powerful military to be deployed in Islamabad after deadly clashes broke out between police and religious hardliners. But Pakistani media reported Sunday that after a meeting with the civil administration, military officials decided not to "use force" against the protesters and instead engage in political negotiations with them. Local media said the civilian administration was in agreement with top military officials on that.
There has been no official confirmation of the development, although Major General Asif Ghafoor, head of the military's public relations department, tweeted Saturday that the country's army chief, General Qamar Bajwa, advised PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to resolve the issue peacefully.
Violent clashes
At least seven people were killed and more than 200 people were injured — around 137 of whom were security personnel during clashes on Saturday and Sunday — when violence broke out as police moved to break up an Islamist blockade, which had paralyzed the capital for weeks.
Security forces fired rubber bullets and tear gas while protesters burned police vehicles and reportedly hurled stones at security forces.
Some 8,500 police and paramilitary troops in riot gear launched an operation Saturday to clear at least 2,000 protesters who have blocked a main junction between Islamabad and Rawalpindi for almost three weeks.
Police have arrested at least 150 protesters, according to local media.
Hardliners belonging to the Barelvi sect of Islam have reportedly demonstrated against police operation in other cities, including Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar.
On Saturday, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) ordered private TV channels to go off air, citing security concerns. Pakistani media is not allowed to broadcast live coverage of a security operation. Coverage was restored Sunday.
Michael Kugelman, an analyst at the Washington-based Wilson Center, told the Agence France-Presse news agency the success of the protest was "highly disturbing."
"It speaks to the clout and impunity enjoyed by religious hardliners in Pakistan," he said.
The 'finality' of Prophet Muhammad
The controversy erupted in October, when the government amended electoral laws, including the wording for the swearing-in of lawmakers, who must recognize the Prophet Muhammad as God's final prophet. After protests from religious groups, the government restored the oath in its original form, which was seen as slightly more legally binding.
"Our sole demand is the authorities act against those members of parliament who amended the constitutional clause related to the 'finality' of Prophet Muhammad," Hafiz Ullah Alvi of the hardline Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah Pakistan party told DW.
"The government said it was a clerical error. We don't think it was the case. It was done deliberately by the West's agents, who are also members of our parliament," Alvi said.
"We will not leave. We will fight until end," Ejaz Ashrafi, the spokesman for the Tehreek-e-Labaik party, told Reuters on Saturday.
Many Islamic groups in Pakistan are against parliamentary democracy and want it replaced by the Islamic Shariah model.
Since November 8, the Tehreek-i-Labaik party's followers have blocked a main motorway interchange that connects Islamabad to Rawalpindi, causing severe traffic jams and inconvenience to the capital's residents. Fearing the hardliners could storm government offices in Islamabad, the authorities, too, sealed off several roads, which worsened the traffic situation.
Usman Azam, an Islamabad resident, told DW the blockade was causing problems for citizens.
"Protest is the fundamental right of every citizen, but these protesters should not put the city under siege," Azam told DW.
The main demand of the protesters is that Law Minister Zahid Hamid resign from his post, as by tampering with the oath, they claim, he has committed blasphemy.
"We will not unblock the roads and keep Islamabad under siege until our demands are met," Alvi said.
Blasphemy 'politics'
Blasphemy is a highly sensitive topic in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, where around 97 percent of its 180 million inhabitants are Muslim. Rights advocates have long been demanding a reform of the controversial blasphemy laws, which were introduced by the Islamic military dictator General Zia-ul-Haq in the 1980s.
Rights groups say the laws have little to do with blasphemy and are often used to settle petty disputes and personal vendettas. Religious groups oppose any change to blasphemy law and consider it necessary for Pakistan's Islamic identity. Blasphemy allegations have often led to violent riots and vigilante justice in the country.
The ruling Muslim League of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is already under pressure from the judiciary after Sharif was ousted on corruption charges in July. While opposition politician Imran Khan is demanding early elections, Khadim Hussain Rizvi, the leader of the Tehreek-i-Labaik Pakistan party, has also seen his popularity rise in the past few months.
In September, Rizvi entered mainstream politics and, to the surprise of political observers, won more than 7,000 votes in a Lahore by-election for the seat vacated by Sharif.
Experts say that the protection of blasphemy law is central to the Tehreek-i-Labaik Pakistan party's political agenda. The outfit vows to continue the legacy of Mumtaz Qadri, who was hanged in February 2016 for murdering Salman Taseer, a governor of Pakistan's eastern Punjab province. Qadri shot Taseer 28 times in broad daylight in Islamabad on January 4, 2011, and was sentenced to death in October the same year. Qadri said he had murdered the former governor for his efforts to amend the country's blasphemy laws.
"We will not return [from Islamabad] until certain members of parliament tender their resignations," Qari Sarfraz Ahmed Rizvi, a protester, told DW earlier this month.
Bowing to pressure
The government initially did not want to use force against the protesters. Senator Raja Muhammad Zafar Ul Haq, the leader of the ruling party in the upper house of parliament, told DW he hoped the standoff would be resolved through negotiations.
But Haq said the law minister and other members of parliament were unlikely to step down.
"We can't punish the entire parliament that worked on the reforms bill," he added.
Fatima Atif, an Islamabad-based activist and liberal analyst, says the government is powerless when it comes to confronting Islamic groups.
"The ruling party is already in hot water because of its conflict with the military establishment. Even if the government wants to confront the protesters, it lacks the political power to do that," she told DW.
Pakistan's credibility
Pakistan's liberal analysts and activists say the government shouldn't concede more political space to Islamists than they already have.
Tauseef Ahmed, a former professor at an Islamabad-based university, believes the "mainstreaming of jihadi outfits" in Pakistan could harm the country's international reputation further.
"The military establishment is dividing Pakistani society along religious and sectarian lines. This policy has harmed the country. The generals do not realize that the international community is observing the situation," Ahmed told DW.
"By mainstreaming such groups, Pakistan has put all its credibility at stake. Why should the international community accept our claims that we are fighting extremists?" Ahmed said.
But Islamic groups say the country's constitution allows them to take part in politics, contest elections and oppose laws that they deem "un-Islamic."

Pakistan - Eruptions after Faizabad

Ghazi Salahuddin
An operation to remove protesters from the Faizabad Interchange was finally launched on Saturday morning. But this will be just one phase in an encounter that has a bearing on our national sense of direction. And we are not sure if our rulers have the will and intellectual capacity to contend with the dark passions that have led to a virtual disequilibrium in Pakistan’s society and politics.
While our attention at this time is largely restricted to conducting the Faizabad operation, the nation-wide repercussions of this confrontation must gradually take shape and test the government’s resolve to remain in control of a situation that has other ominous dimensions.
It is difficult to grasp the entire situation in the forenoon on Saturday, when I am writing these lines. But reports are coming in of a series of protests taking shape in many places across the country. A sympathetic sit-in was already underway in Karachi, where traffic is easily dislocated and its affects are felt far and wide. When the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Ya Rasool Allah (TLY) received an impressive degree of support in the NA-20 by-election, observers had noted that mosques were used as centres of political campaign. In a sense, this is how we may now anticipate a million mutinies. There is no doubt that the TLY, inspired by the executed assassin of Salmaan Taseer, has a large, passionate following. But this also bears testimony to our failure in the nation-building enterprise.
There is no doubt that the authorities are aware of the challenge of dealing with the expected backlash of the Faizabad operation. In fact, their hesitation to take on the protesters – who were never quite large in number – would show that they were afraid of them and not willing to pay the cost of a direct attack. Inaction for such a long time actually looked like an act of surrender.
Now that the Faizabad sit-in has been attacked, they should have the courage to deal with the consequences in a resolute manner. Otherwise, this enemy within can overwhelm us and lead us into uncharted waters. However, one lesson of history is that a grave challenge is also a great opportunity. This, then, is a moment of truth for our rulers and, among other things, they have to be mindful of the price that we pay when a problem is not attended to in its inception.
Thankfully, some fearful apprehensions about how bloody the assault on the hot-blooded protesters could be were not justified in the initial hours of the action taken by the police, the FC and the Rangers. Firearms were not in evidence. The numerical strength of the agitators was not formidable. In the midst of massive tear-gassing, the battle was fought with stones, causing injuries to numerous law-enforcement personnel.
But we have to wait for the next moves that are made on either side. The ISI report submitted to the Supreme Court – the one which the two-judge bench was not satisfied with – stated that the TLY, which led the protest, had a political agenda. This means that the political landscape may change in some significant ways. According to the report, the TLY was “determined to exploit the situation and gain political mileage for the next general elections”. This is rather a simplistic and obvious observation and, hence, the Supreme Court, in its suo motu hearing on Thursday, gave the ISI a week to submit another report. The protest paralysed the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi – representing the two poles of authority – for almost 20 days. This is a longer period than the 1965 war had lasted. During this time, the government allowed the proliferation of very sinister thoughts in the minds of the citizens. They kept wondering about the ability of the ruling establishment to enforce the writ of the state.
There is bound to be a contentious debate on how this surge in bigotry and fanaticism should be engaged in an atmosphere of heightened emotions. It is possible that social disruption will deepen in the coming days and there is the coincidence of Eid-e-Miladun Nabi being celebrated in a few days. All this time, we have been struggling with terrorists and mobilising all our security resources. And now, we have a separate manifestation of religious extremism.
Irrespective of how grim and bloody this campaign is likely to be, it cannot now be avoided. It is not possible to overstate the urgency of defeating this onslaught of fanaticism. The task now is to save Pakistan from a severe threat to its democratic character and identity as a modern state. A realisation of this fundamental contradiction in the context of Pakistan’s destiny is vital.
It would be instructive to understand the challenge that was posed by the Faizabad sit-in and the government’s inaction for so many days. What it really meant was judiciously explained by the Supreme Court on Thursday. “The protesters are undermining the state and its institutions,” Justice Qazi Faez Isa said, adding that the biggest crime in any society was fitna and fasad-fil-arz.
He also said that: “this is not the Pakistan of unity, faith and discipline or constitutionalism”. Ah, but the sequence of the motto that the Quaid had prescribed for the nation has already been violated by our rulers who seem to have some confusion in their minds about the meaning of ‘faith’ that the Quaid had intended. Indeed, the motto was officially translated as “ittehad, yaqeen-e-muhkum, and tanzeem”. Now, in defiance of a fact of history, it is ‘faith, unity and discipline’. While it appears to be a minor aberration, correcting this credo in our commitment to the Quaid’s vision would serve as an indication that our leaders are willing to correct their course of action.
A pertinent reason for not tolerating the sit-in was the pain and distress that it caused to the citizens of the two cities. It was a violation of the constitutional right of the freedom of movement. In any case, it became a crisis of the government’s survival. This crisis is continuing.
So, the nation is breathless with apprehension about the unfolding events. A lot will depend on how the forces that are in the arena are lined up. But some questions do not have easy answers. Will the political leaders unite to protect the democratic dispensation? Will the establishment understand the imperative of backing liberal and progressive values?

Will not allow anyone to derail democracy: Bilawal Bhutto

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has said the party would not allow democracy to be derailed.
The announcement is related to sit-in in Islamabad and an operation had started against the protesters erupting across the Pakistan.
At Bilawal House a high-level meeting was chaired and was attended by Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Asif Ali Zardari, Khursheed Shah and Murad Ali Shah.
In the meeting, Bilawal stressed that PPP would stand with democratic institutions of Pakistan. The government should fulfill its constitutional requirements. The government did not evaluate the situation in Islamabad correctly.

Pakistan - False Equivalencies

What was meant to be a good business weekend for business has instead turned out to be security nightmare, with cities blocked by protesters, and a media ban to further the air of danger. In such moments, when the government is facing great difficulty with the lawless protesters, we look to our great institutions, such as the army, to provide support and morale to the government, which is, on the face of it, trying its best to control an explosive situation. Sadly, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) statement has been confusing to say the least.
Diplomatic, measured responses are all well and good, but some instances call for direct and unequivocal support to a side in a conflict – not vague statements appeasing both. Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa advised Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and the protestors on Saturday to “handle the Islamabad dharna peacefully” as violent clashes erupted between security forces and protesters in the capital city during a clearance operation at the Faizabad Interchange.
In the context of an escalating situation which is threatening the security of citizens, with protests now propping up nationwide — one that the Army has now been requested to step in to control — this is an impossible ask from the COAS. Equating the two by asking both to behave peacefully runs the risk of leaving no distinction between the protesters chanting death threats, and destroying property; and Law Enforcement Agencies backed by the Courts and writ of the state. This response, reminiscent of Trump’s “there was violence on both sides” comment after the Charlottesville protests, does no favours to anyone; it undermines the government and encourages the protesters to flout the law with impunity.
It is true that the origin of these protests, the amendment in the Election Bill, was due to inefficiency and mishandling on the part of the government. However, after days of trying to appease the protesters, and being criticized by courts and media alike, the authorities are attempting to follow the law – in pursuance of the orders of the Islamabad High Court and Supreme Court – by clearing up the protests and taking on a fearsome group for whom death is an honour. The army has been requested to provide support to the government — and at this stage peaceful negotiations and gentle convincing has failed. God willing the army will be able to step in to steady the hand of the civilian government trying to reinforce order.

Pakistan will be isolated - World is united against the country that supports terrorism

Launching a scathing attack on Pakistan for the release of 26/11 terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said here on Sunday that a nation that supported terror would not find a place on the world stage.
“Today, the situation is such that those people who had attacked Mumbai on 26/11 nine years ago, they continue to be isolated even now. If they have released the criminal responsible for that attack two days ago, then the entire world is speaking in one voice that a country that supports terror has no place in the global arena,” Mr. Jaitley said.
Rahul’s jibe
His comments came on the ninth anniversary of the attacks and a day after Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi questioned the success of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s efforts to corner Pakistan. “Narendrabhai, baat nehi bani [did not work out the way expected]. Terror mastermind is free. President Trump just delinked Pak military funding from LeT. Hugplomacy fail. More hugs urgently needed,” he tweeted on Saturday.
Mr. Jaitley was speaking at an election meeting organised by BJP workers to celebrate Mr. Modi’s radio broadcast Mann Ki Baat.
Attacking the Congress and the UPA’s record on security issues, especially the Kashmir problem, Mr. Jaitley said that when Mr. Modi entered office, an atmosphere of “civil disobedience” prevailed and stone-throwers were calling the shots. But demonetisation cut off the money supply to the stone-throwers, and the security forces achieved a major success against militants, he said.
“In the past eight to 10 months, the situation is such that whoever become the Lashkar commander knows that he will not survive beyond two or three months because of the operation by security forces, including the Jammu and Kashmir police,” he said.
“The Gujarat model of development of stability and inclusiveness has put the State on the world map.” He said there was an attempt to stop development and divide the State on caste lines. In what seemed to be a clear reference to the Congress’s attempts to tie up with Patidar leader Hardik Patel, OBC leader Alpesh Thakore and Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani, Mr. Jaitley said the people of the State still remembered the “anarchy of the 1980s and once again there is an attempt to bring anarchist forces together.”

White House condemns Pakistan's release of accused mastermind of 2008 Mumbai attacks

The White House on Saturday called Pakistan’s release of a militant wanted by the US as the alleged mastermind of the Mumbai massacre of 2008 a “step in the wrong direction” and said a refusal to re-arrest him would damage bilateral ties and Pakistan’s international reputation around the world.
In a statement, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the US “strongly condemns” the release of Hafiz Saeed from house arrest and urged his “immediate re-arrest and prosecution”.
“Saeed’s release, after Pakistan’s failure to prosecute or charge him, sends a deeply troubling message about Pakistan’s commitment to combating international terrorism and belies Pakistani claims that it will not provide sanctuary for terrorists on its soil,” she said.
“If Pakistan does not take action to lawfully detain Saeed and charge him for his crimes, its inaction will have repercussions for bilateral relations and for Pakistan’s global reputation.”
Saeed is allegedly the founder of Jamaat-ud-Dawa, a banned group linked to the 2008 attack in India in which 166 people were killed. He has been designated a terrorist by the US justice department and the US has a $10m reward for information leading to his arrest and conviction.
He was released before dawn on Friday after a three-judge panel in Pakistan ended his detention in the eastern city of Lahore. The move also outraged Indian authorities. Saeed’s spokesman, Yahya Mujahid,called it a “victory of truth”.
“Hafiz Saeed was under house arrest on baseless allegations and jail officials came to his home last night and told him that he is now free,” he said.
Jamaat-ud-Dawa is widely believed to be a front for the Lashkar-e-Taiba militant group, which India says was behind the Mumbai attack, since which Pakistan has been detaining and freeing Saeed off and on.
The Trump administration has been intensifying pressure on Pakistan to fight extremists and drive them from hideouts in Pakistani territory. The campaign appeared to produce some success this year when Pakistani security forces assisted with the release of a Taliban-held US-Canadian family after five years in captivity.
However, US officials cautioned that move needed to be followed by additional measures to prove the country’s commitment. Pakistan foreign minister Khawaja Asif said in a visit to Washington in October his country was willing to cooperate fully with the Trump administration. He said Pakistan had wiped out militant hideouts with little help from the US, which has restricted military assistance in recent years.
The US in August said it would hold up $255m in military assistance for Pakistan until it cracked down on extremist groups that threaten neighboring Afghanistan. Donald Trump’s tough words about Pakistan infuriated Islamabad and triggered anti-US protests that Pakistani police used teargas to disperse.

Sardar Ali Takkar ZA NARMA KHATA - زه نرمه خټه یم -عبدالغني خان