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  #11  
Old Saturday, June 02, 2012
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The New Great Game and Pakistan's Foreign Policy


By Haseeb Gohar (FSP)

Outline

Introduction
• Need of oil and gas
• Concept of regionalism
• Importance for Muslim countries


Background
• Breakdown of the Soviet Union
• Caspian region


Monopoly of the OPEC

US's interests in the Region
• Oil dependency
• Countering influence of China
• Application for SCO membership


Chinese Interests
• Enormous need for oil
• Xinjiang under the threat of terrorism


Pakistan's Interests
• Need of oil and gas
• Pakistan's dire need of SCO membership
• Turkmenistan- Afghanistan- Pakistan- India gas pipeline

The interdependency of the states to meet the oil and gas needs reaches at the apogee with the industrial revolution. This provides impetus to the regionalism. Big nations combine to form big blocs in order to enhance the economic and political activities. Thus, Caspian region, fulfils the above statement..This region is enormously rich in oil and gas reserves. Its geography and Muslim ideology is distinct on its place. Let us see how this region is affecting world oil politics and future perspective for Pakistan.

In 1991, after dissolution of Soviet Union, Caspian and Caucasus region came into being. The former became the part of New Great Game. This term was coined by a journalist, Rashid Ahmad in order to emphasis on the importance of the region. Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkme-nistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan are also called central Asian republics or CARs . The region shares its boundaries with Russia, China, Afghanistan, Iran, and Caspian Sea and also with Pakistan which is a narrow strip of Wakhan away from the borders of Tajikistan.

In 1960, OPEC was established to provide the protection to the oil exporting countries. Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Kuwait, Iraq and Iran formed this organisation. Presently, they constitute 70% of the world oil export so these countries have a huge monopoly on the oil production. However, the central Asian republics are expected to have 200 billion barrels of oil and 463 trillion m3 of gas. Hence, this region has a potential to neutralise the effect of OPEC.

United States is the only country in the world which constitutes just 4% to the world population but consumes 25% of the world energy reserves. Her oil consumption is over 11 million barrels per day which is largest in the world. US energy reserves are depleting very fast. That is why, US is importing oil from the Middle East, Venezuela and Canada. It is said that Saudi Arabia would exhaust her oil reserves in next 75 years as her daily oil production is over 10 million barrels per day. US wants good relations with CARs. US established her military base in Kyrgyzstan in 2001 in order to have a check on Russia as well as on China. Afghanistan invasion also strengthen the importance of CARs for the US as Afghanistan shares boundaries with Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. This is the reason behind that US applied for the Shanghai Corporation Organization (SCO) membership in 2005 which was denied by China.

China is an emerging power in the world. China is enormously needing oil and gas to fulfil her domestic needs. In this regard, CARs are the natural allies of China. This was the rational of constituting Shanghai 5 to Shanghai Corporation Organisation. China is facing terrorism problem in her country in Xinjiang province which is one-sixth of the total country area. It is allegedly said that these terrorist activities are controlled from Turkmenistan. Therefore, SCO can provide a forum to curb these activities.

Pakistan too enjoys a considerable importance in the region. Its geo-political significance creates a remarkable prestige in the region. Wakhan in Afghanistan divides Pakistan from Tajikistan. CARs are Muslim countries, thus have common ideology. Pakistan's total oil production capacity is 349 million barrels which is very low indeed. Therefore, she has to rely on external sources. Recently, Pakistan signed a gas pipeline deal with Turkmenistan, Afghanistan and India. This means that this region is having an enormous potential to change the world politics.

Currently, Pakistan is having an observatory status in the SCO. But, the latter is in dire need of having permanent membership in SCO. The need is justified on these grounds. Firstly, Pakistan is a natural ally of the member countries. China and Tajikistan (crossing Wakhan strip) shares border with Pakistan. Secondly, Pakistan satisfies the objectives of SCO, i.e. to eradicate terrorism from the region. Thus, Pakistan fulfils the needs of the organisation.

Thirdly, Pakistan is the only country which gives a sea route to the CARs throughout the year. Thus, no one can deny the geo-strategic importance of Pakistan. Therefore, Pakistan and the member states can also enhance the bilateral trade between them.

In doing so, Pakistan should keep in mind the sensitivity of China in Xinjiang province. It is allegedly said that the wrongdoings in region is controlled from Pakistan. The terrorists have some connection from Pakistan. Therefore, Pakistan has negated such elements of involvement in the province.

In a nutshell, CARs have a great potential in the economic as well as political domain. These states must utilise their power to accomplish their goals with sagacious will. The US, China and Russia are tilting their heads with full commitment. Pakistan in this regard should come one step forward to join their hands. If Pakistan could curb the militancy in the country, it would have deep impact on the SCO members also. Pakistan's geo-strategic location, Islamic ideology, and common interests are the manifestation of their future consideration for CARs.
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  #12  
Old Monday, June 11, 2012
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Power of Media in Modern World


By Dr Quratul Ain Malik (ITG)


Outline:

Introduction:
. Power of media in 21st century
. Most powerful weapon of the contemporary world
. Media...backbone of tremendous social, political and cultural changes
. Freedom of expression...a basic human right
. Interrelationship between media and democracy
. Thesis statement leading to conclusion.

Constitutional provisions and guarantees:
. Article 19 of the constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan 1973.

Constituents of freedom of press:
. Freedom of thinking, speech, expression
. Freedom from all government pressures.

Functions of media:
. Education for the masses
. Awareness about world scenario and fundamental rights and duties
. Opinion formation related to social, political, economic & religious issues
. Ensures public participation in government's policies.

Freedom of press in Pakistan:
. Semi-independent press owing to punctuated democracy
. Role of military regimes from Ayub Khan to Zia Ul Haq

Current scenario in Pakistan over the last decade:
. PEMRA 2001...martial law regime 2001
. Mushroom growth of private TV channels
. Role of media in promulgation of emergency...3rd November 2007
PRO, under emergency

Challenges / hurdles before Pakistan's media
. Illiterate population...Lack of interest/ awareness
. Political instability
. Indifferent attitude of the masses towards the policies of the government
. Shortage of funds/ resources
. Political interference

Obligations of media/ the way forward.
. Ethics of journalism/ press to be followed.
. Strive for national integration
. Impartial / unbiased analysis
. Avoid exaggeration
. Avoid obscenity / vulgarity
. Depiction of Pakistan's true culture and history
. Promotion of social, ethical and moral values
. Projection of softer image of government's policies
. Maintenance of public confidence
. Promotion of Quaid's vision and ideology of Pakistan

Conclusion


“Freedom of conscience, of education, of speech, of assembly, is among the very fundamentals of democracy and all of them will be nullified if the freedom of press be successfully challenged.”
(US president, Roosevelt)

Media is regarded as the most powerful weapon of 21st century. It is as lethal a weapon as a nuke. It has the capability to convert day into night and night into day, a hero into a villain and a villain into hero. Media has brought revolutions in the world and has transformed the globe into a global village. It has virtually erased the geographical boundaries, removed the barriers of social, political and cultural differences and as a result this diversified world has been reduced to remote control. Media's role in education, awareness, opinion formation and entertainment is so diversified in its horizon and domain that one thing is clear and decided that the tides of media cannot be reversed, however, they may be altered in nature and composition.

The status of freedom of press in Pakistan, ever since independence, has remained semi-independent, despite adequate safeguards and provisions promised by the constitution.

“There shall be freedom of press. It shall, however, be subjected to any reasonable restrictions imposed by the law, in the interest of glory of Islam, of the integrity, security and defense of Pakistan or any part of it, friendly relations with foreign states, public order, decency and morality or in relation to contempt of court or commission or incitement to an offence.”
(Article 19 of the constitution, 1973)

Freedom of press literally means the freedom of expression i.e. speech, writing and thinking. It also ensures the liberty to think and act without any restrictions and pressures.

A free press and electronic media is an essential attribute of democratic polity as both work hand in glove with each other. If democracy is the government of the people, media is the voice of the people. But it is a matter of grave misfortune for Pakistan that due to one factor or the other, ever since independence, media could not breathe independently and one of the factor that could be held responsible for this sorry state of affairs is the obstructed and failed democratic form of government.

The fundamental ingredient making democracy possible is the flow of information. Media is the only force that can ensure the flow of information. If restricted, hindered or obstructed in any way, masses remain ignorant, ignorant of their rights, their duties to the state, their needs and the role that they can play for the betterment of the society and the country they live in.

Media's role in imparting education to the masses cannot be stressed enough. Online lectures and speeches of the professors, scholars and intellectuals are playing a significant role in imparting formal and technical education to the masses.

Media's role in creating awareness among the masses regarding the political, social and economic scenario cannot be overemphasized. Owing to the mushroom growth of TV channels and newspapers, people today are more aware and educated about the surroundings and the steps taken by the government. This is promoting public participation in the decision-making of the state machinery. The skilled and bold personalities of the anchor persons raise people's voice, analyse government's actions and get the expert opinion.

Media has also played a significant role in bringing the world at our doorstep. It produces and introduces different lifestyles in the world, changes moods and behavior, braves the bold topics through dramas and talk shows. It also suggests the new household styles, guides the youth to new opportunities and creates civic sense.

Media also helps in providing religious knowledge by the competent scholars, answering the queries of public to solve their problems. It highlights religious events and promotes sectarian harmony.

In the historical perspective, one can safely say that unfortunately democracy could not flourish here in the true sense of the word. Consequently, Pakistan has not been able to evolve a full- fledged free news media. The media in Pakistan has not received the nourishment needed for its full flowering.

However, the electronic media took new form after promulgation of Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) 2001, by the autocratic regime of president Musharraf. The authority has been made responsible for facilitating and regulating the establishment and operations of the broadcast media and distribution services in Pakistan. The mandate of the PEMRA is to ensure accountability and transparency by optimizing the free flow of information. This law is on the face to the article 19 of the constitution, which guarantees freedom of speech, expression and press.

Despite frequent martial laws, other factors that stand responsible for the poor growth of independent media could be indifferent attitude illiteracy, poverty, unawareness, attitude of indifference towards the political decisions, lack of interest in state affairs, political instability and political pressures and problems.

Illiteracy has proved to be one of the major obstacles in the improper growth of press and electronic media. Owing to lack of education, people have been rendered unaware of their rights, duties and of course responsibilities to the state. This dilemma of illiteracy gave birth to poverty and consequently, the poor masses that could not afford two meals in a day, could never realize the importance of newspapers and freedom of press. This sorry state of affairs has created an indifferent attitude on the part of the common masses. Consequently, the apathy shown by the government and the people gave birth to an orthodox and stereotyped thinking and nationalist approach.

There are certain ethics and do's and don'ts of media channels and press to shape the discipline of journalism so that they may seek truth, convey information, ideas and opinions with transparency and accuracy. These ethics advise the media personals to report and interpret honestly, striking for accuracy, fairness and disclosure of all essential facts and urge the necessary correction of errors.

21st century has turned out to be a century of media war, as it has turned out to be the most lethal weapon of the contemporary age. Drastic, cultural, political and social changes can now be seen as a result of revolutions brought about by media. Media is bursting forth like a meteor, breaking new frontiers. In this age of cosmic revolution and technology and means of communication, those archaic barriers blocking any people's access to independent source of information are being dismantled rapidly to the utter discomfort of the obscurantist still intent on keeping them intact. This is an era of satellite television, internet connectivity and mobile telephones. US constitution categorically forbids that:,
“Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech or of press.”
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  #13  
Old Tuesday, July 03, 2012
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Need for Good Governance in Pakistan


By Dr Quratul Ain Malik (ITG)


Outline:
. Introduction
. Definition and concept of good governance
. Pre requisites/ Essentials of good governance

Essentials of good governance:
. Stable democracy/ political stability
. Constitutional supremacy
. Rule of law/ effective implementation of law
. Independence of judiciary
. Efficient administrative hierarchy
. Vibrant foreign policy
. Equality/ transparency
. Equal distribution of resources
. Public participation in all decision-making processes
. Free and uniform education system
. Financial satisfaction
. Social security
. Freedom of media

Status of good governance in Pakistan:
. Poor scenario/ grim picture of governance
. Political instability
. Vacuum of leadership ever since Quaid's death
. Vulnerable national integrity, piety, solidarity and sovereignty
. Rampant corruption owing to vested interests of ruling elites
. Lack of culture of accountability
. Crippled economy
. Poor law and order situation
. Inefficient law enforcement agencies
. Social insecurity and uncertainty
. Socio economic backwardness of the masses

Suggestions for good governance:
. Ensure stable democratic system
. Supremacy of constitution
. Rule of law
. Efficient administrative system
. Investment friendly environment
. Public participation in policy-making
. Education for all

"Good governance is a precondition for meeting the challenge of reducing poverty, promoting sustainable development and building good governance.”
(Kofi Annan )

Good governance is an indeterminate term used in development literature to describe how public institutions conduct public affairs and manage public resources in order to guarantee the realization of human rights. Furthermore, Governance describes the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented or not implemented. Good governance can also be termed as the effective use of power, legislation of policies, transparent accountability, and development of human resources and supremacy of constitution with the absolute rule of law.

“Good government does not mean autocratic government. Good government does not mean despotic government. Good government means, a government that is responsible to the representative of people.”
(Jinnah, the Quaid of Pakistan)

Good governance is a continuous process that determines the fate of nation. It is a fundamental factor that is inevitable in taking the nation to the zenith of glory in the world community. Good governance is quite a wider term that encompasses within itself multiple factors that are considered inevitable for its proper implementation that includes democracy, rule of law, constitutional supremacy, accountability and public participation in decision-making.

Unfortunately, the situation of good governance in Pakistan is quite gloomy and grim due to weak leadership ever since independence, incompetent administrative hierarchy and weak accountability accompanied with poor law and order situation.

Democracy and good governance are interrelated to each other. In case there is no democracy, there can be no good governance. It is a matter of grave misfortune for the entire nation that ever since the birth of Pakistan, democracy could not flourish here due to frequent martial laws and unnecessary intervention of military dictators in the state affairs. It is a matter of serious concern that for more than three decades, the country has remained entangled in the oppressive clutches of dictatorship. In 1951, the country's first PM, Liaquat Ali Khan was assassinated and in 1958, the first military coup was invoked. In 1971, the country went through the tragic episode of debacle of East Pakistan and in 1977 again Zia's martial law was imposed. The span of 1988 to 2000 saw acute political instability through dissolution of National assembly by another martial law. In the light of the up given picture of country's political situation, good governance seems a cry for the moon.

Corruption is another crucial factor that can prove to be a serious impediment in the way of good governance. Corruption perception index 2011 by Transparency International ranks Pakistan at 134th position out of 183 countries which is alarmingly bad. India's ranking is much better (95th out of 183). Good governance is a distinct reality when the process of accountability of the corruption ridden elements is either weak or missing. National accountability Bureau was formulated in 1999 after military coup by general Musharraf, but the sad fact is that the said body suffers from corrupt practices and lack of accountability within itself, making it a laughing stock in the eyes of other national institutions. Another jerk to the governance was NRO formulated in Musharraf's era in 2007 to secure his otherwise illegal and unconstitutional reelection as the president. Pakistan today happens to be the classic example of ingenuities for bribery and exchange of favors. More than 7000 beneficiaries of this defunct law had to face reopening of their cases in 2009. This was an open violation of the principle of good governance.

Effective and in time implementation of the law is another deciding factor in the process of good governance. Pakistan unfortunately has become a classic example of worst law and order situation. Every other day a substantial number of innocent citizens, who are just silent spectators, are targeted by the law enforcement agencies.

Flourishing economy is one of the major components of good governance as both are interrelated in one way or the other. In Pakistan, economic governance is the victim of political instability. Pakistan's commission for human rights stated that 208 people committed suicide in August 2011, predominantly out of economic crisis.

Good governance is pointed out as one of the largest goals in the Millennium development goals but in Pakistan nothing is realized on the ground except paper work. It must be remembered that economic prosperity and good governance are deeply interconnected. The alarming figures of crippled economy lead us to the prompt measures for ensuring good governance in the country.

Political stability and efficient administrative hierarchy are the vibrant components of good governance. Both political leaders and beaurocracy go hand in hand for bringing about cult of good governance through effective implementation of public policies. The tradition of nepotism, lack of democratic norms and political recruitments on high government offices must be eliminated in order to promote transparency, accountability and supremacy of law at all levels.

Moreover, the government should create an investment-friendly environment in order to boost up the economy and industrial activity as raising the standard of living is the key component of good governance. Law and order situation should be made conducive and encouraging for the foreign investors so the FDI may be enhanced for the ultimate benefit of the nation and the country at large. Most importantly, the government must also try to bridge the gap between the demand and supply of energy. New dams and barrages must be built without putting national and political stability at stake. Government should have control on the hoarding mafia, particularly those involved in the hoarding of eatable commodities. Having strict check on the inflation would increase the standard of living of the general masses at larger scale. Furthermore, imparting education and awareness to the common people is necessary to have good governance as the masses have to be the part of this process.

Media's role in the advent of true democracy and good governance is not stressed enough. Media is recognized as the fourth pillar of the state. Media can prove to a vibrant factor in motivating public participation in national decision-making processes and can also create the awareness of rights and duties among the general public. Media can also bring government authorities under accountability for their violations of power and bad governance.

To put in a nut shell, it may be stated that good governance is an inevitable phenomenon for the smooth working of any state machinery. Therefore, political stability, rule of law, constitutional supremacy and public participation in policy making and implementation must be ensured. The entire nation must think and act as one nation and collectively contribute for the prosperity of the country. Time is now ripe to come out of the false and baseless concepts of provincialism, sectarianism and nepotism. With all the leadership vacuum and political instability, the nation can still step ahead to create an environment, where good governance is not merely a dream

“You will have to be alert, very alert, for the time for relaxation is not yet there. With faith, disciplined and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve.”
(Jinnah, the Quaid of Pakistan.)
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  #14  
Old Saturday, August 04, 2012
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Corruption In Pakistan Mother of all ills



By Dr Quratul Ain Malik (ITG)


Introduction:
Definition of corruption
Root cause of all ills in Pakistan
Socio-economic backwardness….an outcome of corruption
Thesis statement leading to conclusion

Causes of corruption:

Political causes:
Absence of culture of accountability
Incompetent judiciary
Highly centralized economic system
Absence of rule of law
Punctuated constitutional supremacy

Socio- economic causes:
High inflation and food prices
Meager salaries of government servants
Class conflict due to capitalism
Evasion of ethical and religious values
Nepotism and favoritism
Feudalism

Impacts of corruption:
Pakistan ranked 139th by transparency international
Increased crime rates
Tarnished image of society and state
Discouraging FDI
Nepotism…. Order of the day
NRO

Pragmatic ways to curb corruption:
Emancipating accountability
Need for ethical councelling through education
Ensuring meritocracy instead of red tapism
Enhancing transparency
Increase in salaries of govt. servants
Implementing law in its true letter and spirit.

Conclusion.
Power tends to corrupt and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely.


Corruption is a method and a technique adopted just to bypass the rule of law and engulfing the whole system into socio-economic turmoil. Furthermore, corruption, being the mother of all ills, gives birth to multifarious problems including nepotism, favouritism and negating meritocracy, transparency and accountability. It is an established fact that the cruelty shows its influence as the rule of law is abrogated. Banking scams, industrialist's monopoly to create baseless crises, bypassing the constitutional supremacy, lavish living styles of the ruling class, foreign tours under the head of national exchequer, general apathy, neglect, carelessness and an attitude of indifference towards national issues are all the outcomes of corruption which is root cause of all evils in the motherland. The poor are sidelined, the rich are bestowed, the needy are ignored and the affluent are delivered. However, the story does not end here. The socio economic situation is much more dubious and gloomy than as expected.

Lack of accountability is an outcome of nepotism and favouritism. How can a corrupt person be held accountable by a corrupt authority? All in all the entire unfortunate system is prone to the monster of corruption. In such dismal state of affairs, the question of accountability does not arise. Only lucrative and emotionally charged speeches and pledges can never come up to the expectations of the people. Rule of law is the only option that can pave way for accountability.

Moreover, the crippled and dwindling economy and ever-rising levels of inflation are the major source of corruption. The more the prosperous a country, the more the rule of law are followed. But it is quite unfortunate to mention that Pakistan is a country rated in the third world where neither the rule of law prevails nor the economic system is strengthened. The per capita income is significantly low that renders the lower strata of society more prone towards corruption.

Incompetent judiciary in terms of not bringing the culprits in to the gallows of law and absence of bringing the corrupt politicians and policy makers to the books is another decisive factor in today's sorry state of affairs. In the same manner the unnecessary delay in deciding the cases of corruption is a clear explanation of the adage: the justice delayed is justice denied.

In much the similar fashion, highly centralized economy, breeds conflict amongst the poor and the rich. The growing influence of the privileged class always uses the influential authority to snub the poor people. In such a grim situation, the victims and the upper both use their influence at their maximum extent to have maximum benefit from the opportunity. Thus the capitalism is in the forefront in bringing and paving ways for corruption.

Corruption evolves as a result of evasion of ethical and religious norms. Religion always asks the believers to have a solid strive in bringing a moderate society. It agrees in favour of decentralized economy. Regulation of wealth according to rule of law is the motto of Islam.

All the above mentioned factors have brought Pakistan at number 139th among the most corrupt countries of the world. According to CPI report, Pakistan has 2.3 score out of 10 which shows its position very weak while on contrary, New Zealand showed 9.4 out of 10 in the race and toppled the entire scenario. Pakistan on the other hand, is lagging behind in all spheres of life. This is the outcome of corruption that Pakistan has lost its identity and failed to establish its credibility in the whole world.

The discussion on corruption in Pakistan would never be complete without having a glance on National Reconciliation Ordinance, a symbol of corruption in Pakistan. It was promulgated by a military dictator to serve his own vested interests. It freed all the politicians and civil servants until 1990, who were convicted on charges of corruption. PPP and PML (N), the big political giants remained the beneficiaries of this ordinance. Under the provisions of NRO, the civil servants, politicians and major industrialists were given a safe passage to escape from all the charges of corruption and made them free of any sin. NRO, most appropriately can be termed as the law that legitimized corruption in Pakistan.

Given the dismal state of affairs, as is evident from all the above-explained short story, there is a stringent need of implementing religious and ethical values, if the nation wants to get out of the clutches of monster like corruption. The religious counseling must be given at all levels so that ethics and values have a strong hold on the characters and actions of the people. Educational reforms based on morality must be given place in the social system.

Redtapism, nepotism, favouritism must be eradicated by grooming and nurturing a culture of accountability based on trickledown effect that runs from top to bottom. Independence of judiciary and rule of law can only bring in meritocracy so that talented and high caliber people must be employed at the higher posts.

Another pragmatic solution is to increase the salaries of the government servants. Financial satisfaction to all and sundry can bring in a positive change in the society. It forces the workers to follow the principles of morality and honesty.

Moreover, the laws must be made strict and their implementation be ensured. Unfortunately, Pakistan is a land of laws which are never implemented. One thing must be given preference that it is not the severity of punishment but the certainty of punishment that matters. Such practices put the things in order and in right directions. Therefore, strict implementation of laws is the only way forward. China after the empowerment of communist party, paved this way for a cause of change.

Corruption is social curse that must be ditched. The lawmakers in the parliament must take stringent efforts and evolve practicable strategies to eradicate the mushrooming menace. Rule of law, supremacy of the constitution and independence of judiciary and off course a free and vibrant media being the fourth pillar of the state, must be implemented in true letter and spirit. The accused must be given a cold fist. Time is ripe that drastic measures be taken to get rid of this tsunami of corruption that undoubtedly has torn and destructed our very social and economic fabric. Enough of apathy and negligence, the need of the hour is to join hands on all fronts by all members and areas of society to ouster this curse. If Pakistan wants to run in the race of socio economic development, evils like corruption do not fit in the scenario.
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Default Dialogue is the Best Course to Combat Terrorism

Dialogue is the Best Course to Combat Terrorism



Terrorism today happens to be the most common globalised terminology being used in modern times. Its intensity has increased after 9/11. Pakistan has become a scapegoat in the whole terrorism scenario due to the proxy war conducted by the United States against the former Soviet Union in ‘80s to contain communism. Pakistan was the main actor then — and happens to be again in 2010 — along with the United States against a common enemy Al Qaeda and its offshoot Taliban.in the war on terror. But the question being asked today is how to contain terrorism? It has become a delimma for the world states. Force is the last option. The foremost priority is the need to focus on dialogue. And for the success of talks, patience is required. It’s a slow, painstaking solution. Art of diplomacy and sincerity is required to bring positive results. It is not literally possible to achieve victory against terrorists by force. How the Russians were defeated by the tribal militants two decades back is no secret. Now the Americans have replaced the Soviets. But the US is in close touch with Pakistan and the US is not alone as the Nato is involved. Washington has engaged dialogue with the moderates to achieve results. Avenues for talks have not been closed along with raging war being fought in Afghanistan by the United States and Pakistan troops engaged in terror war in Notrth and South Wazirstan and Swat.
The United States directly or indirectly has sway over world politics. Terrorism and its expansion had been explained through different perspectives and the solutions that had been extracted includes a wide range of strategies including diplomacy, talks, coercive methods, and the last option being war. Pakistan is engaged in strategic talks with the United States with top priority on war on terror.

Need to contain terrorism through dialogue
The prevention of terrorism and the international law framework both need greater attention from scholars and policy makers, as part of a balanced and comprehensive approach. In a clearer sense, terrorism is the fate of globe and there are no feasible ways to eliminate terrorism through the use of force. Dialogue is the only way to tame the terrorists. Among the terrorists organisation, there are moderate elements and the best way to avoid killings of innocent people is to engaage in talks with the moderates. Terrorism cannot be mitigated as the magnitude of terroristorganizations having global exposure is continuously rising throughout the globe. The defined concepts of eliminating terrorism from the world have varied and many analysists believe that no state can wipe out terrorism as a force to reckon with. Only talks is can bring desired results.

Many people perceive it as big game in which the state as well as non-state actors play a very destructive role. Many see the role of Taliban as politico-oriented Islamism movement of some sectarians present in different parts of the world that has been gathered under a platform of hate and phobic elements in the tribal region of Pakistan under al Qaeda and Taliban. Their aim is to bring Islamic revolution among the Muslim states and weaken its enemy — the United States through acts of terrorism. Terrorism in western world is usually known with reference to Islam, the ideology behind these deadly deeds is narrated under the concept of Jihad. However, modern days missionaries and Muslim moderates have played a useful role in trying to curb this menace. The terrorism today is perceived as an inheritance of Muslim extremists like Osama Bin Laden and Mulla Omer and many others.

These fanatics including Laden and Omer remained major contributors as friends of the US in the victory against the proxy war two decades ago against the Soviets.

It was the region of Afghanistan where the decline of Soviet economy begun and lead to the collapse of the politico-economic system resulting into splitting of the Soviet Union. The Afghan warriors then played a major role in defeating the Soviet troops in Afghanistan.

The terrorism and its deeproot ideologies begun from this era because
the leaders of the modern day terrorism arose from here having a large
materialistic support from the US for a long time for attaining the victory agaist communism. Organizations like al Qaeda took birth from this period, and the Taliban concept emerged from the madressahs in Pakistan, which produce Taliban in thousands.

Pakistan, US dialogue to contain terror

Pakistan and the United States have been holding talks on terror and are successfully achieving results. Though both the countries had differences at times but eventually the process of dialogue is producing desired results. The strategy to counter terrorism being pursued by the two countries has dealt a vital blow to the terrorists. At times the US was stubborn and Pakistan had to be soft and at times Pakistan was stiff and the US showed flexibility.

The latest strategic dialogue between the US and Pakistan on steps to contain terror held in the middle of July, 2010 was productive.
Important, arguably central, as the security angle may be to the Pakistan-US strategic dialogue but the American side appeared to be saying to Pakistan, tell us your needs. A sum of $7.5bn a year in non-military aid has to be spent over the next five years. The Pakistan government can influence the right choice to a great extent, if it gets its act together. Economic prosperity can help largely to eliminate terrorism.

It would not be wide off the mark to suggest that the American campaign in Afghanistan is beset by strategic confusion. While publicly the Americans vow that reconciliation will not be pursued until the Taliban insurgency is dented, there are real doubts if that is in fact achievable. A central plank of counter-insurgency strategy is the civilian government, but Afghan President Hamid Karzai seems more interested in pursuing a quick deal with the Taliban than improving governance and leading a civilian surge.

Pakistan, India dialogue
Pakistan at the same time is also engaged in talks with India. With Delhi’s top priority being terrorists attack in Mumbai and for Pakistan, Kashmir and water issues are core issues. Though nothing emerged in the brief meetings in Beijing between Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh but it was reassuring to see the Pakistani premier emphasise the importance of fighting hunger, poverty and illiteracy in the region — in addition to jointly combating terror. The latter is important to furthering the Pakistan-India dialogue as neither country, especially ours, is immune from the violence that the war against militancy has engendered.

But how well can India and Pakistan work together to battle violence considering the high level of mistrust that exists between them? Suspicions of each other’s intentions must be allayed through talks and one of the most effective ways to make talks successful would be to work jointly on improving socio-economic conditions in both countries. Not only would this create confidence in each other’s endeavours, perhaps even lead to lingering disputes being resolved, it would also strike at the roots of terror that is perpetrated largely by a class of people with serious social, political and economic grievances.

However, the more optimistic interpretation is that India and Pakistan are warily re-engaging one another, the diplomatic hiccups the result of a nascent but real process of rebuilding trust and confidence in a relationship poisoned by mutual distrust. For a dispute that is over six decades old, a few months — from the prime ministers’ meeting in Thimpu to the present — is a mere blink of an eye. The optimists suggest that the excruciatingly slow pace of re-engagement isn’t indicative of problems but a way of building a solid base for the next phase of the peace dialogue between the two countries. Rational and sensible people on both sides of the border will be hoping that it is the optimistic hypothesis which is true.

But even if it is not, the two sides must ensure that they keep talking to each other. The constituency for peace in India and Pakistan is elastic — engagement will ensure that constituency grows. No talks, though, would mean that the Mumbai attackers have won and the people of South Asia have lost.

No matter how quickly the joint anti-terrorism mechanism that the two countries installed some time ago is made fully operational, terrorist activities will continue unless there is greater concentration on the people’s welfare.


EU strategy on countering tarrorism
Gilles de Kerchove, Europe Union Counter-terrorism Coordinator, spelt out the EU strategy to counter terrorism. Kerchove revealed the work of the Council of the EU in the field of counter-terrorism: maintain an overview of all the instruments at the Union's disposal, and closely monitor the implementation of the EU counter-terrorism strategy. The importance of the role was reaffirmed by the European Council in the adoption of the Stockholm Programme (December 2009).

He emphasized on what the UN Global Strategy called “conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism” were exactly that, conditions in which terrorism could spread but not all societies faced with such conditions triggered such a violent response. Countries which cannot provide good governance of all their territory allow the development of “safe havens” in which terrorist groups can thrive. The EU has made a start in providing direct support for the counter-terrorism efforts of a number of key countries, in South Asia, the Sahel and Horn of Africa, through the “Instrument for Stability”. However, responding fully to these problems is a much broader challenge for the development community. Kerchove said, “Since 2006, the EU and the Legal Adviser of the US State Department have engaged in a dialogue about counter- terrorism and international law. Questions discussed include the use of the concept of “war” and “laws of armed conflict” in the fight against terrorism as a matter of law; the relation between and applicability of international humanitarian law and international human rights law in the fight against terrorism; the rights of detainees apprehended in the course of the fight against terrorism in particular the conditions at Guantanamo; the treatment of prisoners and interrogation methods used in detention centres where detainees are held; so-called renditions and secret detention centres.


Conclusion
Arguebly, dialogue is the best course to combat terrorism. The other option is war. But if the war is lost, what then? However, if the talks fail, there are reasons to believe that as the tempers cool down of the leading actors, dialogue can start again. And terrorism is pursued by religious fanatics. It is not easy to win wars in mountainous areas or erase the hideouts of the terrorists. There are moderate elements among the terrorists and accept talks to find out ays to achieve peace.

The Taliban are feared because of their utter defiance of the country’s laws and their evident lack of respect for the rule of law and due judicial process. Where they held sway they instituted an arbitrary justice system that featured summary executions and torture. The law they followed — and do follow in certain parts — was of their own devising, characterised by a brutality that defied every national and international covenant of fair legal process and concern for citizens’ rights.

Now, as talks with hardliners Haqqani group is being pondered by Kabul, it may bring positive results in the weeks ahead. Even if the first of talks fail, (if dialogue are held) at least, an understanding can be reached in the second round. So, dialogue is the most practical way to counter terrorism.

Terrorism is no doubt an enemy that must be defeated, but not simply through military means even if it is a joint effort. Dialogue is the only plausible answer to achieve results in fields that can help control terror. Among the most potent weapons that can crush terrorism are the elimination of poverty, hunger, illiteracy and disease that affect millions in the subcontinent.

Navid Riaz (Late)
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The UNO Has Failed to Measure up to the Demands of its Charter




Outlines:

Quotation
Introduction
Charter Preamble
Aim and purpose of charter:
Major issues remain unresolved
Poor states ignored
Root Cause Prevention Efforts
Conclusion


The picture of the United Nations in meeting the demands of its charter is bleak as the UNO has miserably failed to meet its charter demands. The world body is deeply under the influence of the United States, the chief financial donor to the United Nations. The UN’s financial dependence on major powers has contributed largely in the world body’s failure to act in a neutral and unbiased manner. A decade or so back, it was Japan, UK, France and Germany which helped substantially along with the US to bolster the fiscal kitty of the UN but slowly all these states drifted away leaving the US to remain almost the sole power to meet the finances of the world body. Such a situation is unfortunate as the United States is dominating the world body today.

It has been seen over the years that the UN has been successful in the economic cooperation only in the developed countries, while the weaker states continue to be exploited by the stronger ones. Major issues like Kashmir and Palestine remain unresolved even today. Two resolutions on Kashmir demanding plebiscite in the Indian held Kashmir are lying pending in the United Nations since 1948-49. Israel has been ruthless against the Palestinians and the helpless Palestinians have no one to support their cause except the toothless Muslim states. The Palestinians remain deprived of their homeland even today.

The US invasion of Iraq on the pretence to rid Iraq of all weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and to renounce their further use proved totally incorrect. A series of inspections by the IAEA failed to find conclusive evidence that proved allegations that Iraq was continuing to develop or harbour such weapons.
The UN has also failed to differentiate between a terrorist and a freedom-fighter. This is a million dollar question today. The freedom fighters in Kashmir and Palestine have been dumped as terrorists, though they are struggling for freedom from the Indian and the Israeli yokes. The UN has also failed in the field of disarmament and to implement its nuclear non-proliferation policy.

The killings in the ethnic war in former Yugoslavia, saw hundreds of innocent Muslims men and women being massacred by the Serbs. The UN remained helpless as the major powers were least pushed at the horrific situation. The killings continued for weeks before the UN came into action.
However, despite its failure in many fields, the UNO has made credible achievements in preserving the world from the scourge of the third world war— thus saved the humanity at large — from total destruction. Yet, saving the world from catastrophe, though a major UN aim, is not the sole purpose of what it was carved out— in 1945, after the world had witnessed two world wars.

Charter Preamble
Before discussing the role of the United Nations that how far it has measured up to the demands of its charter, it is essential to take a look at the charter.
Following in the wake of the failed League of Nations (1919–1946) (which the United States never joined) the United Nations was established in 1945 to maintain international peace and promote cooperation in solving international economic, social and humanitarian problems.The Charter of the United Nations was signed on 26 June 1945, in San Francisco, at the conclusion of the United Nations Conference on International Organization, and came into force on 24 October 1945. The Statute of the International Court of Justice is an integral part of the Charter. Amendments to Articles 23, 27 and 61 of the Charter were adopted by the General Assembly on 17 December 1963 and came into force on 31 August 1965. A further amendment to Article 61 was adopted by the General Assembly on 20 December 1971, and came into force on 24 September 1973. An amendment to Article 109, adopted by the General Assembly on 20 December 1965, came into force on 12 June 1968.

[SIZE="3"]Aim and purpose of charter:[/SIZE]
To save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind; and to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small; to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained; and to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom; to practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbours; and to unite our strength to maintain international peace and security, and to ensure, by the acceptance of principles and the institution of methods, that armed force shall not be used, save in the common interest, and to employ international machinery for the promotion of the economic and social advancement of all peoples,

UNO has failed to meet charter’s goals

So, taking a cursory look at the charter, one is forced to arrive at the conclusion that the UNO has failed to measure up to the demands of its charter. The world, since the inception of the United Nations, has witnessed wars, unresolved issues, coercive tactics and double standards employed by the powerful states, no concrete steps to maintain fundamental human rights in the states ruled by dictators, has miserably failed to promote social progress and better standards of life in poor states, failed to employ international machinery for the promotion of the economic and social advancement of all peoples, and to employ international machinery for promotion of the economic and social advancement of all peoples.

The UN has also failed to achieve the goals included in its charter— to promote peace among regional states and ensure amicable settlement of disputes. Though terrorism has not been explicitly stated in the charter, it is implicitly a major factor in creating regional wars, killings of innocent people and creating hurdles in the economic development of the states affected by terrorists. The UN has also failed in the field of disarmament and to implement its nuclear non-proliferation policy. The arms race, today, continues to threaten the world peace.

Major issues remain unresolved

Major world issues have remained unresolved since decades. Kashmir and Palestinian issues are deadlocked despite untiring efforts by the grieved parties. Two resolutions on Kashmir demanding plebiscite in the Indian held Kashmir are lying pending in the United Nations since 1948-49. Three wars have been fought on the Kashmir issue between Pakistan and India, yet no outcome by the United Nations. Both states have nuclear weapons and another war on Kashmir can be destructive. The UN has failed to resolve the lingering issue since 1948. The US role is dominating in the world body and if wants sincerely, it can help resolve the Kashmir issue by implementing the UN resolutions on Kashmir.

The Palestrina issue has yet to be resolved despite endeavors by Palestinians and the support of the Muslim states since the creation of Israel. Israel has been ruthless against the Palestinians and the helpless Palestinians have no one to support their cause except the toothless Muslim states. The Palestinians remain deprived of their homeland even today. The United Nations have failed to resolve the Palestinian issue since decades. The powerful Jewish lobby in the United States is the stumbling block is helping resolve the issue.

Iran and North Korean nuclear issues continue to remain unresolved due to UN’s double standards and pro-US policies. These issues would have resolved long before if the UN had dealt with the issues impartially.

Poor states ignored

In socio-economic affairs, the lot of the poor women and children in underdeveloped countries has not improved. What is being witnessed is a deplorable story of the poor states being ignored with social and economic conditions pitiable. Third world poor states miseries are being multiplied in sectors like economic, social, cultural, educational, health, and related matters. The Article 62 of the UN charter has been literaaly dumped. Hunger and starvation in the poor states is rampant. Huge amount is being spent on the defence by the United States and other major states but peanut share for the United Nations is being being on this count. This practice is in violation of the the UN charter which clearly states its purpose in the Article 62. Thus the United Nations have also failed in the purpose for which it wa created by its lip service in meeting the social and economic sectors. The UN functions include: to achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion; and To be a centre for harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends.

Root Cause Prevention Efforts

Though there is no universal agreement over the precise causes of deadly conflict, it is common to differentiate between underlying or “root” and precipitating or "direct" causes of armed conflict. There is a growing and widespread recognition that armed conflicts are taking place by ignoring the root causes as rights of self-determination, poverty, political repression, and uneven distribution of resources. Urgent steps are needed towards reducing poverty and achieving broad-based economic growth and implenting plebiscite in the regions like Kashmir and Palestinian rights, accordind to the UN resolutions. Preventive strategies must therefore work to promote human rights, to protect minority rights and to institute political arrangements in which all groups are represented. Ignoring these underlying factors amounts to addressing the symptoms rather the causes of deadly conflict.

Conclusion
The United Nations is a criminal enterprise in which no moral nation should ever participate, let alone perpetuate said Tom DeWeese, one of the US leading advocates of individual liberty who fought over 30 years against oppression world-wide.
Today, we find the United Nations buried under scandals. It has oil for food scandals, power-abuse scandals, smuggling scandals, theft scandals. The UN sets its own standards of conduct and it controls its own judge and jury. These, of course, are the very reasons why many have opposed US membership in the UN. And it's why many have feared the UN gaining any sort of power to gain its own ability to tax, field an army, or create a court system. Possessing these three powers drastically changes the UN from a volunteer membership organization to a global governing body.

While most agree that the UN could be improved, Noam Chomsky, a leading critic of US foreign policy, proposed that measures such as the US relinquishing its veto power in the Security Council and submitting to the rulings of the International Court of Justice could significantly improve the UN's ability to foster the growth of democracy and promote global peace and the protection of human rights.

There can be no doubt about the agenda of further steps. There is a need to continue to seek agreements on measures which prevent war by accident or miscalculation and to continue to seek agreements on safeguards against surprise attack, including observation posts at key points. The UN must exert its influence to continue to seek agreement on further measures to curb the nuclear arms race, by controlling the transfer of nuclear weapons, converting fissionable materials to peaceful purposes, and banning underground testing, with adequate inspection and enforcement. There is a need to continue to seek agreement on a freer flow of information and people from East to West and West to East. The world has not escaped from the darkness. The long shadows of conflict and crisis envelop us still. But in an atmosphere of rising hope, and at a moment of comparative calm, there is still ray of hope prevails among the member states of the United Nations.

Navid Riaz (Late)
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World Politics stands more derisive than it was before due to the specific imperialist designs


If it were necessary to give the briefest possible definition of imperialism we should have to say that imperialism is the monopoly stage of capitalism — Vladimir Ilyich Lenin.


Outlines


*Shrinking natural resources
*Imperialist designs
*Global rules of trade
*Role of Powerful Multinationals
*US Strategic Interests
*Conclusion



International politics analysts in general agree that world politics stands more derisive than it was before due to the specific imperialist designs. The globe is witnessing contemptuous dealings among the word states for their materialistic gains. It has resulted in coercive politics, hegemonic designs, strategic interests, crippling of principles and international morality. Thus the super power — United States and the emerging super power China and other leading powers including Russia, UK, France, Germany, Japan, Israel and India are pursuing their policies based on specific imperialist designs under the garb of democracy.

The states are involved in the worst form of power struggle for their survival. United Nations is spineless in curbing the hypocritical world politics. Stategic interests sway polices of the major states keeping in view their country’s interests as the ultimate driving force in framing out the policy.

These major states use differenrt subtle tools to trap the poor governments to accept aid that binds the receipient states to follow the rich states’ dictation which makes the world politics cynical and devoid of international morality. This policy practised by the developed states is to gain maxim monetary benefits as part of their broader imperialist designs.


Shrinking natural resources

The dominating power struggle among global states to hold access to shrinking natural resources in the face of global warming, astounding population growth, neo-liberal free market economy, oil politics, and strategic interests have led to the world politics more derisive today.

State policy, practice, or advocacy of extending power and dominion, especially by direct territorial acquisition, or by gaining political and economic control of other areas is what is being seen today. Because imperialism always involves the use of power, often in the form of military force, it is widely considered morally objectionable, and the term accordingly has been used by states to denounce and discredit the foreign policies of their opponents.

Imperialist designs
So what makes the world politics more contemptuous may easily be attributed to the specific imperialist designs being pursued by the governments after the Second World War. What has been seen since then, most of the British and French colonies started getting independence. It resulted in power politics among the world leading states. Another reason was the threat of communism looming large over the capitalist states. The West led by the US made inroads among the developing states in the form of allliances, so as to apply brakes to the spread of communism in Asia and Europe. After the death of communism, the strategy applied now is more subtle than the preceding years.
To put it succinctly, imperialism is the process whereby powerful groups try to extend their power and increase their wealth by bringing ever more of the world under their domination.

Imperialism, is defined as the creation and maintenance of an unequal economic, cultural and territorial relationship, usually between states and often in the form of an empire, based on domination and subordination. Imperialism is considered the control by one state of other territories. Through political or military means (direct imperialism), the imperial power may take over the government of a particular territory or through economic processes (indirect imperialism), in which the concerned region is officially self-governing but linked to the imperial power by (often unequal) trade relations. Furthermore, the notion of cultural imperialism is indicated by existing or traditional ways of life and ways of thinking that are subordinated to the culture of the imperialists.
Thus imperialism means the policy of extending a nation's authority by territorial acquisition or by the establishment of economic and political hegemony over other nations. Imperialism is one of those words that often seem to be little more than an effective way of making people stop listening to you. However, despite the frequency with which it is thrown around by left wing groups, with little or no explanation of the ideas behind it, it does have real meaning and is something that we can all recognise in the world around us - especially in this age of the US wars against third world regimes.
"As long as imperialism exists it will, by definition, exert its domination over other countries. This domination is called neocolonialism," says Che Guevara, Marxist, who played a dominating role in bringing communism in Cuba.

Global rules of trade
Today, we can see this pattern of neocolonialism in the form of domination by the major states through different channels of global trade. The world's major capitalists define the global rules of trade through such international bodies as the WTO, IMF, World Bank, and Multinational Corporations. Loans are extended on heavy interests through IMF and World Bank and even by the countries individually.
The poor countries are unable to pay back the loans, resulting in adding up of interests with the original loan intact. The recipient states then are totally dependent on the rich states for their survival. Although, these are presented as being neutral bodies, with voluntary membership, they are in fact imperialist tools. They oversee the transfer of vast quantities of resources and wealth every year from the poorer parts of the world into the bank accounts of the super rich. After centuries of exploitation, Africa apparently owes the West more than $227 billion.

Role of Powerful Multinationals
A multinational corporation (MNC) or transnational corporation (TNC), also called multinational enterprise (MNE), is a an enterprise that manages or delivers in more than one country. It can also be referred as an international corporation. The ILO has defined[ an MNC as a corporation which has its management headquarters in one country known as the home country and operates in several other countries known as host countries.
The multinationals have swept over the world economy and dictate terms to the governments as the world economy is largely depended on the multinationals for its survival. The giant companies, invest their products among the world states on terms and conditions favouring them with maximum benefit. Nowadays many corporations have offices, branches or manufacturing plants in different countries than where their original and main headquarter is located. This often results in very powerful corporations that have budgets that exceed often national budgets of the developing states. Multinational corporations can have a powerful influence in local economies as well as the government policies and play an important role in moulding the economy. The presence of such powerful players in the world economy is reason for much controversy.

It may seem strange that a corporation can decide to do business in a different country, where it doesn't know the laws, local customs or business practices. Why is it not more efficient to combine assets of value overseas with local factors of production at lower costs by renting or selling them to local investors? One reason is that the use of the market for coordinating the behaviour of agents located in different countries is less efficient than coordinating them by a multinational enterprise as an institution. The additional costs caused by the entrance in foreign markets are of less interest for the local enterprise.

According to Hymer, Kindleberger and Caves, the existence of MNEs is reasoned by structural market imperfections for final products. In Hymer's example, there are considered two firms as monopolists in their own market and isolated from competition by transportation costs and other tariff and non-tariff barriers.


US Strategic Interests
American political analyst, William J Olson, in his book, “US Strategic Interests in the Gulf Region” says: The US need to control oil in West Asia has also affected the countries in West Asia. The burning example is Iraq. Iraq, which has second largest oil reserves in world after Saudi Arabia, has suffered a brutal US invasion on the pretext of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). About 1.2 million people in Iraq have died in seven years of war and sanctions (1990-97), out of which, half million were children. In 2006, Lebanon was attacked by Israel, and now Iran is under threat. Is this a war against terrorism? Is this a face of supplied democracy? Is this freedom supposed to come from political instability and authoritarianism?

Now the United States is fighting the war on terror in Afghanistan as larger part of its global agenda. In other words, it is a war being fought by a super power to safeguard its strategic interests. It is worth noting that this volume emanating from the US Army War College gives priority to the need to relate American security policy to the realities of Middle East politics rather than to the Soviet or Chinese military threat to the region. This broad general perspective opens the way to familiar problems of force structure, basing, arms sales and diplomacy.

Conclusion
One of the important features of 21st century politics is to establish regional dominance through alliances. US imperialism through its old allies, Israel and UK has unleashed the war on third world countries. Now, China, Pakistan and India are cooperating with the US hegemony to become regional powers. India vote against Iran, the Indo-US nuclear deal, strategic defence deals with Israel and forgetting its commitment toward the cause of Palestine and Kashmir are the manifestation of the deviation of India’s foreign policy. Even China has developed excellent economic ties with the United States for financial benefits despite the unsolved issue of Taiwan. The relationship has helped China become the emerging super power.

American author Samuel P. Huntington says in his book, “America's changing strategic interests” that the US is the undisputed centre of political power. In this era, the United States is the undisputed centre of political power in the world and so it is through the US that the capitalists flex their muscles.

The contemporary world in the name of democracy, justice and liberty, continues to see the United States create havoc in the form of injustice, subjugation of freedom and massacres –– from Lebanon and Palestine to Iraq and Afghanistan. It is still seeking to recreate this in other parts, notably in Iran.

Mervyn Frost, author of Global Ethics Anarchy, Freedom and International Relations, challenges the commonplace that contemporary international interactions are best understood as struggles for power. Eschewing jargon and theoretical abstraction, Frost argues that global politics and global civil society must be understood in ethical terms. “International actors are always faced with the ethical question: So, what ought we to do in circumstances like these?” Illustrating the centrality of ethics to our understanding of global politics and global civil society with detailed case studies, Frost shows how international actors constitute one another in global social practices that are underpinned by specific ethical commitments. “Global Ethics forces readers to confront their own necessary ethical engagement as citizens and rights holders in global society. Failure to understand international relations in ethical terms will lead to misguided action.”

So, the need of the times is to forge a broad unity amongst the resisting forces and build a broad based support movement to express solidarity with the resistance. In the war against imperialism, the role of countries like China, India and Pakistan have become important as the ruling elites in these countries are getting co-opted under the pressure of the US and projecting their class interest as the interest of the country. The people of these countries must not only express their solidarity with the resistance in Palestine, Kashmir and Iraq but also defeat the designs of their elite to team up with the US. This is the challenge facing the developing world -- the challenge to mould world politics to be based on tranquillity and international morality rather than being hypocritical with specific imperialist designs.


Navid Riaz (Late)
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Default What has gone wrong with the system of education in Pakistan?

What has gone wrong with the system of
education in Pakistan?



By Dr Quratul Ain Malik (ITG)


Introduction
Quaid's view on education
Concept of education….. meaning and definition
Significance of education…..as pillar of success
Education…..an agent of socioeconomic reforms
Spinal cord of the nation
Thesis statement leading to conclusion

Pakistan's Education System as per 1973 Constitution
Educational and economic reforms in backward areas
Removing illiteracy
Promotion of technical education….. basic concern
Education…..access to all
Women participation, etc.

Factors Leading to Catastrophe
Indecisive medium of education….English? / Urdu?
Co-education….a social dilemma
Lack of uniform academic syllabus
Women education….. concept in doldrums
Lack of creative education methods…… cramming culture
Political interference in education institutions….student/ teacher unions
Political pressures/ influences
Teacher absenteeism
Ghost schools
Less than 2% GDP, for education
Crippled economy, etc.

Education Policy 2009
Budget for education….. increased by 7%
All primary schools upgraded to middle standard schools
Higher education percentage to be increased from 4.7% to 15% by 2015
Emphasis on technical education
Establishment of residential colonies for the teachers
Special incentives for teachers willing to work in remote areas, etc.

Suggestions
Decentralised system/ local government
Village
Council
Tehsil
District
At least 7% budget for education sector
Accountability and transparency in education department at all levels
Public-private partnership
Madrassa reforms
Registration of madaris
Introduction of English and technical subjects

Education Sector Reforms
Primary education for all
Making civil society vibrant
Female education…. A keystone
Promotion of technical education
Incentives for the teachers…. Increase in salaries
Revised and updated curriculum
PTC/CT replaced by Diploma in Education
Enhancing the role of Higher Education Commission
Expansion in universities
Virtual universities, etc.

Conclusion
“Come forward as servants of Islam, organise the people economically, socially, educationally and politically, and I am sure that you will be a power that will be accepted by everybody.''
(Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah)

The importance of education cannot be negated. Education paves the way for advancement. It is a primary catalyst for national development and its availability ensures accelerated growth and progress. It is a key factor that distinguishes one nation from another. It's the education which makes a person live a better life and more importantly contributes to his social well-being. However, it is unfortunate that education system of Pakistan is fundamentally flawed, thoroughly shattered and exceedingly divisive despite the fact that Quaid-e-Azam was a staunch supporter of educational reforms. He provided the basic guidelines for the future development by emphasising that education system should suit the genius of our people, consonant with our culture, history and instil the highest sense of honour, integrity and responsibility. He was also of the view that scientific and technical skills are the only way forward. Pakistan today stands at the crossroads where there is a stringent need for educational reforms based upon moral edifice. This is only possible if all creeds of mind sit together and evolve a consensus policy in the light of Islamic ideology.

Before going into the details let's have a look on the 1973 Constitution which is a much chanted slogan in Pakistan by almost all political elites. Article 25A of the 1973 Constitution says:

“The State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of five to sixteen years in such manner as may be determined by law.”

The Constitution further goes on to make the state responsible for the education of its citizens in the following way:

Special care will be taken for educational and economic reforms in the backward areas. Illiteracy will be removed and secondary education will be made free and compulsory within minimum possible period.
People from different areas will be imparted training for agricultural and industrial development. Technical and general education is made generally available and higher education accessible to all on the basis of merit.

Participation of women in all spheres of life will be encouraged. Despite all the pledges and promises made by the constitution, nothing has been done yet on the above-mentioned grounds. Indecisive system of education, outdated curriculum, medium of instruction, meagre budget allocation for education sector and many other factors have played havoc with the fate of this unfortunate nation.

It is noteworthy that Pakistan's national language is Urdu but English has become the major medium of education. English medium schools are enjoying prestigious status in society and are charging heavy fees from students as well. English language is nothing but a way of expression but why is it made necessary? Just to spoil the potentialities to learn English? Admittedly, English is an international language but the students should be imparted educationin their mother tongue also. Sir Charles Wood sent “Wood's Despatch” in 1854 regarding the medium of education in India that throws light on the importance of mother tongue in education. Despatch's fifth point was:

“The Indian natives should be given training in their mother tongue also.”
Another reason of this sorry state of affairs is the outdated curriculum which leads to the failure of education system to produce professionals in all fields of life. Outdated syllabi do not fulfil the requirements of the ongoing developed world. It is an era of science and technological development while, unfortunately, Pakistan is still entangled in the web of obsolete pedagogical methods.

Furthermore, Student wings of various political parties are also ruining the educational environment of colleges and universities. Unions like ATI, MSF and IJT have been a source of deep concern for the students. Such activities make them forget their aim of admission and they start to take part in political activities.

Public sector is also confronting the issue of teachers' absenteeism. Scanty salaries and job insecurity compels them to join private sector institutions that offer them better incentives. The grievances of the teachers are grave but real and they need to be addressed urgently. A very little amount of GDP, about 2% is being allocated for education sector which should be above 7% for a country like Pakistan.

It is noteworthy to mention the role of madaris in Pakistan here as they are a part of traditional system of imparting religious education. Present government is working to register these madaris and there are around 12,000 madaris that are yet to be registered. There is also a dire need to revise the method, syllabi and curriculum of these institutions so as to impart true spirit of religious education without creating misconceptions and confusions and also keeping them in pace with contemporary world. The conventional style of religious education should be abolished and new methodologies based on science and technology should be adopted. The role of civil society in regarding the reforms is very crucial and equally required.

In the past, there were courses like PTC, CT, etc. which were optional for the students. In the present circumstances, it is strongly recommended to replace such short courses by diploma in education so that the students after adopting teaching profession could give their best to the nation. On the other hand, the teaching staff must be provided special training in form of refresher courses to enhance their capacities and capabilities.

Education is the key to the development and advancement of any nation. Pakistan needs highly knowledgeable and skilled professionals equipped with innovative abilities to gain a respectable in the comity of nations. Pakistan is passing through the turbulent phase in terms of social, economic and political turmoil. It stands at the crossroads and the only way forward is the promotion of education. Time is ripe, effective and implementable strategies must be formulated to come out of these crises. Education must be made the top priority. More than 4-7% of GDP must be allocated for education sector, for teachers’ training, development of infrastructure, abolition of ghost schools, scholarships, etc. Chief Minister’s laptop scheme is a good omen and an encouraging initiative for bringing educational reforms in the country. Such efforts can be a source of encouragement and inspiration for the young generation. Nations rise by dint of education and education alone. If we want to realise the dream of socioeconomic development in Pakistan, we must follow the message that Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah gave us years ago. He said:

“My message to you all is of hope, courage and confidence. Let us mobilize all our resources in a systematic and organized way and tackle the grave issues that confront us with grim determination and discipline worthy of a great nation. ”
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Default Economic cost of energy crisis in Pakistan and the way forward

Economic cost of energy crisis in Pakistan
and the way forward


By Dr Quratul Ain Malik (ITG)

Energy indisputably is a primary catalyst for national development. It is termed as the backbone and lifeline of a country's economy and its availability ensure accelerated growth and development. On the other hand an acute shortage of energy can be a great bottleneck in the supply of energy resources to an economy. Continuous and accelerated supply of energy has turned out to be the biggest challenge and a matter of serious concern of the contemporary world as the global scenario is now shifting its face from geo politics to geo economics. As a matter of fact, there has been an enormous increase in the global demand for energy in recent years as a result of industrial development and population growth. Supply of energy is, therefore, far less than the actual demand.

Pakistan's energy concerns are now assuming serious and horrific proportions owing to the fact that Pakistan has been suffering from an energy crisis for about half a decade now. The power crisis is becoming unbearable with every passing day proving to be a serious threat and impediment in country's economic progress. Internal stability of any country is highly dependent on its economic well being which is directly dependent upon sufficient energy resources and their proper management. At present Pakistan is suffering from energy deficit of about 4500 MW. This dismal state of affairs has led to the closure of many industrial units hence rendering a large number of people unemployed. Moreover, large parts of Pakistan have been affected by power blackouts due to an electricity crisis.

There is a shortage of more than 7,000 megawatts which amounts to 40 per cent of the total demand. Energy crisis is threatening to become bigger in coming years. There is an expected shortfall up to 50% because of increase in demand and supply gap up to 3,000 MW. Pakistan's total energy requirement will probably increase by 48% in 2011. Power generation in Pakistan is hugely dependent on oil, whereas we have only 20% oil of the original amount needed for the production. The remaining oil has to be imported from Gulf States and other countries of world. No major oil field so far has been discovered in the last three decades. Oil demand is expected to double by 2015 and quadruple by 2025. This would lead to an alarming trade shortage, and general price hike.

Pakistan energy sector comprises major sources with share of 50.4% of gas, followed by oil 29%, hydro electricity 11%, and coal 7.6%. Consequently, Pakistan imports energy to overcome the problem and maintain standard of living of people. The major shortfall is expected in natural gas supplies. Pakistan had 28 trillion cubic feet reserves of natural gas in 2006 but due to increase in its demand it is expected to be exhausted in next two decades.

The power outages have almost crippled normal everyday life of people and particularly hit industrial and agricultural production. This energy shortfall has caused 3 to 4 per cent GDP loss in financial year 2010-2011. As recently as 2001, the country had 4,000 megawatts of excess power capacity. Today unfortunately the situation has faced threatening prospects. The Asian Development Bank (ADB), in a report has said that Pakistan's economy faces a major hurdle in the shape of its domestic energy crisis as the economy continues to be affected by structural problems, including a domestic energy crisis, a precipitous decline in investment, persistently high inflation, and security issues. Budget deficits remain high, driven by substantial subsidies and losses at state-owned enterprises, and tax revenue below target. Losses arising from power and gas shortages held down GDP growth by 3–4 per cent in FY2011 and FY2012. As a matter of consequence the state-owned enterprises, naming Pakistan Railways, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), and Pakistan Steel Mills are bearing the unprecedented losses. Nations are using renewable energy, transport policies and eco-cities to overcome poverty, create millions of jobs, expand industries, attract direct foreign investment and strengthen economies. Pakistan can solve its energy crisis and join modern world provided our leaders are willing to adopt effective laws, transparent policies, get rid of corrupt practices, and explore and invest in renewable and alternate sources of energy.

Let us delve into the issue to chalk out the reasons for this acute shortage of energy in Pakistan despite the presence of enormous natural resources. Over-reliance on dwindling hydro power, lack of research and planning, untapped energy resources, lopsided priorities, poor management and lack of accountability can be the reasons for the dearth of energy in Pakistan. It has to be kept in mind that the number of consumers of electricity has significantly increased owing to the rapid urbanization process and modern living style. The facility of electricity is now provided to the remote villages. The power loss is to tune of about 15 to 20 percent annually due to poor distribution system. Industrial, transport and domestic sectors are the three important consumers of energy. It is assumed that a misplaced use of energy is rampant in industries which need to be curtailed.

If one analyses the situation of the past few decades, it can be observed that Pakistan used to generate and meet half of its energy demands through hydel power and remaining from thermal generation. However, there is a limit to the extent of exploitation of hydel resources and thermal power plants due to environmental and other concerns. Economic situation of the country has now changed manifolds. To meet the challenges faced by today's Pakistan, there is a dire need to go for the alternate sources of energy. For that matter the process of converting coal into product gas underground can be a good alternate source of energy. Technically this process is called as underground coal gasification. Besides coal, the renewable energy as biomass can also be utilized to overcome this crisis. Similarly the wind energy is also available in Pakistan which can harness this energy in a much more effective way. Wind can be utilized to produce electricity at the coastal areas. If windmill power plants are set up along the coastline and this venture is handed over to the foreign investors, satisfactory results can be achieved. Similarly, hot climatic conditions of some areas of upper Sindh and Southern Punjab may prove to be a source of solar energy. Solar energy is the best solution for energy crisis, as the country has a potential of generating 29,000 MW electricity from sun.

Pakistan has world's seventh largest reserves of coal after discovery of THAR. These reserves are still untouched due to lack of technique in coal mining. Similarly solar and wind energy in coastal areas of Baluchistan and Sindh have a lot of potential to generate electricity but acquisition of technology at an enormous cost makes this an unbelievable source. Pakistan has only two nuclear plants providing two percent of electricity to our country. Population explosion is another cause of energy crises. At present Pakistan is pursuing a multidimensional pro-longed strategy to ensure adequate and uninterrupted oil and gas supply and other energy resources to sustain the present pattern of energy for the rapid national economic growth. Greater reliance on gas, aggressive pursuit of hydroelectric power generation, and enhancing nuclear power generation capacity are some of the key elements of this strategy.

Pakistan is also seeking to expand its primary energy supply base by encouraging oil exploration and power generation companies to undertake energy project in Pakistan. The regional gas pipe line projects in which Pakistan is actively pursuing to meet its expanding domestic energy demands.

These are the prerequisite for resolving energy crises that, unless resolved promptly, would cast a long shadow on the short and medium term objectives of economic growth and development.

To cut the long story short, Pakistan is at a critical juncture entangled with multifaceted problems. Pragmatic approach coupled with rational decision-making can show some light at the end of the tunnel.
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Default

Where Does The True Democracy Come From?


“DEMOCRACY IS A STATE WHERE THE FREE MEN AND THE POOR, BEING IN MAJORITY ARE VESTED WITH THE POWER OF THE STATE, THE MOST PURE DEMOCRACY, FOR THAT IS WHAT THE LAW IN THE STATE DIRECTS. (ARISTOTLE)

The 64 years history of Pakistan stands evident of the fact that true democracy is a word unknown to this land of the pure. It is unfortunate that the country which was created on the basis of democratic values remains deprived of the true spirit and essence and taste of democracy even after good six decades of independence. Why democracy fails to come to Pakistan or where does the true democracy come from? This is a million dollar question that has echoed throughout in the political history of Pakistan. The true democracy is the only remedy for all the miseries this nation has suffered during the 64 years. Since its inception, the most difficult challenge Pakistan had to counter was to establish a true democratic system, which could guarantee its survival, stability and development. Unfortunately, democracy could not find its place in Pakistan to make the country “a true democratic state”. Pakistan was conceived on the basis of Islam, which is democratic both in letter and spirit. It is indeed very unfortunate that the plant planted by Quaid-e-Azam and watered by the blood of millions of Muslim men, women and children has not thrived in the country. In other words, we have not proved worthy of the freedom achieved after immense sacrifices. After the sad demise of Quaid-e-Azam and Shaheed-e-Millat Liaquat Ali Khan, the spirit of freedom movement died down and selfish interests and political intrigues dominated the national scene.

Democracy has its origin in ancient Greece. However, other cultures have contributed significantly to the evolution of democracy such as ancient Rome, Europe and North and South America. The concept of representative democracy arose largely from ideas and institutions that developed during the European middle ages and the age of enlightenment and in the American and French revolutions. Democracy has been called the last form of government and has spread considerably across the globe.

Democracy ensures balance among all the organs of the state. It comes from rule of law, supremacy of the constitution, independence of judiciary, public participation in decision making, accountability and transparency. Its advent is ensured when decision making and policy formulation are done keeping in view the aspirations of the common man. It is the power to govern as per the consent of those being governed, that is why it is called as the government of the people, by the people and for the people.

One of the factors which can be held responsible for the failure of democracy has been the weak and fragile political fabric that has led to repeated interventions and punctuations in democratic governments through military coups. Out of a total six decade history, this country has remained entrapped in the oppressive clutches of dictatorship for more than three decades. Unfortunately, whosoever assumed the government, strived for the satisfaction of his own politically, materially and financially charged vested interests at the cost of country's progress and economic development? There ill-designed ruling techniques brought in the culture of extremism, religious and ethnic prejudices and violation of the constitution. Whether it was Zia's slogan of islamisation or Musharraf's propaganda of being non NATO ally of the US in war on terror — all contributed negatively and adversely to the cause of national development.

Democracy is regarded as the most fabulous principle of modern governing system but unfortunately, the need of establishing a true democracy has been a dream ever since Pakistan came into being. Democracy is the culmination of freedom and development in advanced countries. In Pakistan however, the already difficult situation has been aggravated by constant failures which never let democracy survive. The development of democracy has been hampered by the troublesome legacies of the military regimes, including ethnic fragmentation, provincialism, sectarianism, concentration of wealth and privileges in the hands of a selected few.

Democracy in its simplest basic form is about giving people the right to elect their government. The aim is to create stability and certainty in the society by establishing a system under which a government can be created and changed peacefully. While thinking in Pakistani perspective, the question about democracy points towards what it could and must have done instead of inherent weakness in the system. It is debatable whether military dictators have outperformed civilian governments or vice versa. But realistically, except for the government that came in 2002, no civilian government after 1985 was allowed to complete its tenure. The issues of economic growth and investments were highlighted more during democratic periods than during dictatorships.

Democracy ensures balance among all the organs of the state. It comes from rule of law, supremacy of the constitution, independence of judiciary, public participation in decision making, accountability and transparency.

Historians and analysts are also of the view that democracy is an evolutionary system that does not come as a template. There may have popular principles like sovereignty, or representative governments but these have to be rooted in the socio-economic culture of the country.

The quality of democracy and its stability has thus depended generally on the growth of the middle class which has expended and continues to rise. But the fact of the matter is that middle class is neither organic nor ideologically homogeneous. The Pakistani middle class may not be seen as yet in the elected assemblies but it occupies alternative spaces of influence in the robust civil society movements.

Pakistan may remain a transitional democracy until it has at least the peaceful transfer of power through elections. Our elected representatives have a heavy burden to disprove the sceptics inside and outside the country by forming coalitions.

The dire need is to utilise the democratic system for the betterment of a common man. It is a collective social enterprise that cannot be left for the powerful elites. To make the country vibrant, viable and prosper, drastic measures need to be applied. The education should be circulated from the top to the bottom. The opportunity to get education should be on equal basis for the rich and poor. Education is the only tool through which we can attain our cherished goal by making our country prosperous developed and progressive. As the literacy rate is increased in the country, the true democracy and effective democratic political process would begin.

Good governance makes stabilised institutions and fix roots of democracy deep in the corners of the countries. Bereft of good governance in Pakistan, our nation cannot establish its supremacy in the world comity. It is the good governance that can make democracy viable in the successive futures.

Moreover, feudal system should be abolished to make fair and square elections so that rural and urban inhabitants would choose the capable candidates for them.
The remedy lies in the words of Lord Beveridge,

“Power as a means of getting things done appeals to that men share with brutes; to fear and greed; power leads those who wield it to desire it for its own sake, not for service it render, and to seek its continuance on their own hands. Influence as a means of getting things done appeals to that which distinguishes men from brutes. The way out of world’s troubles today is to treat men as men, to enthrone influence over power and to make power revocable”.

If we want to make Pakistan a really lasting democracy, we must act on the above advice. Then only, we shall enter in the reign of true democracy and the people will manage their own affairs instead of being dupes and pawns in the hands of dishonest men.

Democracy is a way of life. It is not just about documents or governments. It is about the things we do everyday that contribute to society and make it a better place to live.

Dr Quratul Ain Malik (CSP)
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