Ibrahim Sajid Malick

Ibrahim Sajid Malick

A Pakistani-American writer, technologist, and social entrepreneur. Malick graduated from New School for Social Research with a masters degree in anthropology. He holds several technology and management certifications.

Don’t let mullahs take over Pakistan

I had goosebumps reading the recent news that several criminals gathered in Lahore under the banner of the Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) and aligned themselves with the Pakistan Army. Was it a conspiracy to malign the army, I wondered. Who could be behind this? You see, I have no sympathy for characters like Hafiz Saeed who have eroded Pakistani society and have pushed it in a state of profound crisis. Our health, livelihood, the quality of our environment, our social relationships, our ideology, economy, and politics have all been affected. It is a crisis of intellectual, moral, and spiritual dimensions; a crisis ...

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Stop bashing, copy a model that works

From observing conversations on Facebook and Twitter, I am sure that all my Pakistan-watching friends genuinely want ‘change’. There are many ideas – everyone is passionate and wants to throw in their two cents, and that’s how it should be. However, when I comment on these threads my friends often remind me that I should not have an opinion. This is because either: 1) I live in the West 2) I do not propose an alternative Both streams of criticism are fair. I do live in the fairly developed state of New York – in a city (NYC) that I love and in ...

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Solution is internal: Stop blaming the US

Pakistan, it seems, is divided between those who glorify and those who demonise America. Some will construct elaborate theories to prove how America is hell bent upon destroying Pakistan while others would be willing to ignore the most strategic blunders of American administrations. Truth, I believe, lies somewhere in the middle. I don’t know how Brigadier (retired) Shaukat Qadir can state with mathematical certitude that “the US establishment (Pentagon/CIA) is compelled to destabilise Pakistan,” but reading similar analyses from Islamabad, I get a feeling that some within Pakistan’s ruling elite want to shift their servile alignment from the USA to China. Qadir ...

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Profiling Muslim men is unjust, unworkable

It is commonly understood that mainstream media creates, processes and disseminates information which determine our beliefs and attitudes and, ultimately, our behaviour.  Consistently displayed messages create a false sense of reality and produce a consciousness that cannot comprehend or even worst, willfully rejects the actual conditions of everyday life. Many have argued that these manipulative messages become the ‘instrument of conquest’, by which the ruling elite tries to make the masses conform to their objectives. By using ‘talking heads’ that explain, justify, and sometimes even glamorise the prevailing conditions of existence, mainstream media secures popular support for a social order that ...

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Nicaragua to Pakistan: A model for revolution

A BBC anchor asked two wise Pakistani women this week if the dire situation of their country could lead to revolution. One conceded that she couldn’t tell and the other responded by reminding us that it will not bode well for the world if something drastic was to happen to Pakistan. I am not surprised that neither could see revolution on the horizon. Another notable revolutionary posted on his Facebook wall today: “The balance of forces in our society call for a protracted struggle to achieve the rule of law. Adventurism will be counter productive.” I agree with ‘protracted struggle’ part of his assertion ...

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Mind games in DC: Give and take for Kashmir

Several Pakistani intellectuals who had descended on Washington DC to attend the 11th International Kashmir Peace Conference (July 28-29, 2010) were neither intellectuals nor interested in peace. Wasting time and resources, Pakistani representatives (with a few exceptions) read from a script crafted decades ago at the GHQ – only changing the words slightly. I bet if you took the text of their speeches and ran it through sophisticated software to check intellectual integrity you would find an abundance of plagiarism. Negativity of approach was so overwhelming that ‘Kashmir issue’ lost more currency, instead of gaining ground. With WikiLeaks dominating the mind share, American ...

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What Chinese model, President Zardari?

Speaking at the China Pavilion of the Shanghai Expo President Zardari said what has pretty much become a cliché: “Pakistan can learn a lot from the Chinese model of economic development.” I assume President Zardari is aware of an ideologically circumscribed, intellectually coherent set of policies or strategic decisions which together make up a ‘China model.’ The Chinese think tanks, scholars, diplomats, entrepreneurs, and journalists that I frequently meet seem to have divergent and pragmatic view of what constitutes this Chinese model, and how it differs from the previously worshiped ‘Asian model’ or ‘Japanese model.’ Does President Zardari want to learn from Chinese ...

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American discourse on Pakistan: a double headed-monster

When it comes to Pakistan, there are at least two narratives in the American media; one constructed on the basis of quasi-positive direct quotes of the administration, the other, an acrimonious narrative created by ‘unnamed’ official sources. From stories that raised concerns on the safety of its nuclear assets to exposés that have alleged Pakistan reverse engineered legacy Harpoon missiles; from allegations that ISI engineered attacks on the Indian embassy in Kabul to claims that ISI officials participated in high level Taliban meetings in Quetta; an image of a Pakistan gone wild is well established in the American imagination. After a ...

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Pakistan’s unhealthy focus on US, UK, India

Pop quiz: do you know Pakistan’s Ambassador to Chile, Malaysia, Venezuela, Brazil, or Russia? It is very likely that you don’t and, there is a reason – these countries don’t get adequate visibility in Pakistan. Hussain Haqqani (USA), Wajid Shamsul Hassan (UK) and, Shahid Malik (India) are the few ambassadors that Pakistani media finds relevant, relegating all others to secondary and tertiary positions. Every country has their list of top 10, top 25, top 50, and “rest of the world” often referred to in international parlance as “ROW” but Pakistan’s foreign policy lacks depth and width. At the United Nations in New York, ...

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Drone attacks may stop, but is that good news?

A 29 page report submitted today to the UN Human Rights Council, by special representative Philip Alston demanding an immediate suspension of drone attacks will not persuade Obama’s war cabinet to change course; but an ever growing domestic opposition appears promising. In categorical terms Philip Alston told journalists at the UN media stakeout today that those dropping bombs in Pakistan are so distant from the combat zone that they are “desensitised” – as though they were playing video games. Alston said: “because operators are based thousands of miles away from the battlefield, and undertake operations entirely through computer screens and remote ...

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