Ahson Saeed Hasan

Ahson Saeed Hasan

The writer is a proud American, a peacenik who has traveled well over 80 countries and lived in four continents. He likes to share his experiences and reflect on the worldly surroundings. He tweets @tweetingacho (twitter.com/tweetingacho)

The Orlando shooting may prove to be a turning point in US elections

As I got around to pen down my thoughts about Hillary Clinton’s nomination for this November’s election, I found myself conflicted, shrouded in profound sadness and agony. Just about a couple of days before, I was rejoicing Hillary’s victory in the primaries process. More than anything else, what really got me excited was the Democrats coming together and pledging to work hand-in-hand to keep their sick-in-the-head opponent, Donald Trump, out of the White House. Come Sunday morning, June 12th, things changed abruptly. As the news flashed on the screen about yet another ISIS-influenced man running rampage on an Orlando night club killing scores of innocent souls, I at once thought ...

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With Vietnam’s astonishing human rights record, is lifting the arms embargo a smart call?

President Barack Obama’s historic visit to Vietnam and his monumental full removal of the arms embargo was a clear signal that the leader of the free world will not be content with adopting a laid-back approach in his final year in office. He’s alive and kicking and means business! While the race for the White House gets nastier by the day, the president carries on strongly spreading goodwill and doing damage control as much as he possibly can both at home and abroad. Every nation has its own foreign policy goals and the US is no exception. Those goals may not necessarily fundamentally agree with the aspirations of other ...

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The Dilma affair will push Brazil further into ruinous chaos

It’s been an incredibly interesting month of April. First, the Panama Papers brought to the fore the wrongdoings of the high and mighty among us and caused an instant downfall in the fortunes of the Iceland prime minister at the hands of his own countrymen who flocked to the streets to protest and did not give up until Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson’s ouster was a done deal – a grand display of how a true democracy works. Not too long after, thousands of miles away, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, on account of some unholy business engagements and amidst mounting criticism and public outrage, ended up ...

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If US and Cuba can do it, can Pakistan and India make peace with history?

“I know the history, but refuse to be trapped by it,” so said President Obama on his epically momentous trip to Cuba – the first by a sitting US president since 1928. Leaving behind Republican rhetoric, hate speech and fear-mongering, for two and a half days Obama managed to block the noise, break protocol and made an overarching effort to mend fences with the old enemy by walking the streets of Havana, addressing the people of Cuba and indulging in baseball diplomacy. This journey was long overdue, one that was destined to wash away bitter memories and intense rivalry between the two nations. It proved that if there is a will, there ...

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Trump’s hate-mongering will not have the last laugh

Hate, war and fear-mongering are the words that aptly describe the 2016 Republican presidential campaign with Donald Trump being the star of the show. Yes, Trump, the same individual who has pushed the electoral process to disastrous limits and pulled the very concept of democracy to deepest of bizarrely disruptive depths never witnessed in modern US history. Growing up we were told not to run our mouths. It appears Trump’s elders never taught him basic etiquettes of life. Loose lips sink ships and through his verbal dysentery, Trump has created a volcanically toxic environment unleashing spirits that make people wonder if this is what American democracy has ...

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America must decide between its people and guns

US politics has taken a nose dive. In the run up to the November 2016 presidential election, public opinion is going crazy. At a time when Donald Trump, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz and are hell bent on safeguarding the dreadfully outdated Second Amendment to the US Constitution, we, as a society, are seemingly settled and resigned to our fate. Beyond the 400 or so mass-shootings and over 2000 deaths and injuries just in 2015, the guns are still blazing and there’s no stopping the lunacy. Proponents of the dastardly arms trade say that guns only kill innocent people when ...

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Will Benjamin Netanyahu’s drama over Iran ever end?

Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu is a drama queen like no other. His song and dance reminds one of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s histrionics or Muammar Qaddafi’s menopausal approach to digress into the mundane – never addressing what matters the most. There is no right way to explain Bibi’s behaviour, but he is a typical opportunist, an attention seeker, a sensationalist – one who excels in the art of tomfoolery and throwing tantrums. His popularity, even amongst the greatest of his supporters, is on the decline because he is a power-hungry predator trying to gain political mileage from situations that normally wouldn’t be termed ‘momentous’ enough be blown out of proportion. Bibi skilfully ...

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Can all Muslims act like the Muslim heroes of Mandera?

There was an incident in Kenya whereby a group of Muslims thwarted a potential attack by al-Shabaab (the fire spitting Somali al Qaeda) when they tried to kill a group of Christians who were traveling by bus to Mandera, Kenya. “Finally”, I said to myself, “Here’s something that shows that the Muslims still have some compassion left to do good and care about fellow humans!” In this day and age of doom and gloom, instances of turmoil and destruction loom large on our heads and overwhelm our thought process. Life, as we know it, is a tough nut to crack. ISIS and ...

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Is George Bush responsible for creating ISIS? Not really

The bloody Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) onslaught has left us bewildered, slammed into a corner with little hope of return to peaceful times. Humanity has been blatantly pushed into an unprecedented, smouldering pit of fire that refuses to die down, butchering innocent masses simply trying to get through their days. While bringing to justice this portentous enemy may be an impossible adventure, clearly an axis of evil has descended upon us. All bets are off. Rules have been summarily dispatched out of the window. To every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction – doesn’t take a ...

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Why can’t liberal Muslims get together to discuss issues that plague the Islamic world?

These are trying times we live in, gruesomely exhausting if one thinks deep enough to comprehend that things are changing in a dastardly manner. Humanity is beset with a challenging situation like no other time in modern world history whereby the colossal monster of Islamic extremism is impacting each one of us regardless of our beliefs or otherwise.  Europe, beyond the recent Paris attacks, will never be the same. While the French carried on with their lives after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, the most recent carnage, many argue, may turn out to be Europe’s 9/11 type of wakeup call. The repercussions of this episode ...

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