I laugh, but so does the world

Published: June 3, 2011

Just as I laugh at President Karzai’s statement issuing a last warning to the US, the world laughs at my state. PHOTO: AFP

Imagine this scenario: Around a dozen bodies of children wrapped in sheets of blood cradled by helpless parents, and in some cases just lying in a pool of their parents’ blood.

On Saturday, you didn’t have to imagine.

US-led Nato forces killed 14 Afghan civilians including up to 12 children. President Hamid Karzai was quick in issuing a “last warning” to the US military telling it to avoid operations that kill civilians while commander of the Nato-led force Isaf in south-west Afghanistan apologised for the deaths and, this was it.

I do not want to rant about the cruelty and the blatant disregard by the US of this particular incident because, let’s be honest, it’s Afghanistan – a war-torn country where children’s deaths don’t matter and its president’s ceremonial statement has no status.

The incident, however, led me to draw a comparison with similar statements issued by the Pakistani leadership. After the US operation in Abbottabad, our parliament passed a resolution while representatives of the government as well as the opposition issued a “last warning” to the US, saying Pakistan will “consider” blocking Nato supplies in case there is another drone attack. And there were two drone strikes the next day. Politicians and leaders also said Pakistan will not compromise on its sovereignty but in the weeks that followed, Nato helicopters violated its airspace – twice.

So, I will not rant about the deaths of thousands of Pakistani civilians and security officials, the failure of our army, navy and air force to protect themselves, and how I feel claustrophobic every time I leave my house as every day I drive past one or the other of the places that have been attacked.

Let’s be honest, we may have a bomb but that doesn’t take away the fact that our leadership is as impotent as the leadership in Afghanistan.

Just as I laugh at President Karzai’s statement, the world laughs at my state.


Hassan Choudary

A former member of The Express Tribune national desk, an avid student of the Hindi film industry and an aspiring entrepreneur who tweets @hassanchoudary

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Fahad Raza

    I know what his last warning means, just like the last one over another “friendly” bombing some time ago. Its just empty words from a ten years old puppet president, who keeps american body guards. They will end up like Hosanni Mubarak or Moammar Qaddafi for sure.Recommend

  • G. Din

    There was a time when China used to give “last final warnings” to Taiwan to mend its ways and join the mother country forthwith. Such last final warnings properly carried the serial numbers. Thus 98th last final warning followed the 97th last final warning.
    Taiwan is even today an independent entity!
    After a while the whole comedy stopped.Recommend

  • A

    Sick of empty statements from puppet politicians. The only guy NOT under US influence is the one and only Imran Khan, in his party everyone has the guts to speak out against the US and in all the other parties they just silence the ‘awaam’ with their meaningless promises and then back the US agenda that fills their wallets. Pathetic and definitely not our Quaid’s Pakistan.Recommend

  • http://Karachi Anwar

    Soon Karzai’s statements will be taken more seriously than Zardari’s statement.Recommend

  • ALi

    Well, talking about Pakistani politicions, their impotency has no cure they are simple US puppets who can do anything as long as they are paid. Their is no credibility to their words, these people are those for whom we say paison k liay apni maa ko bhi bech dainge and as for karzai’s statement, ROFLRecommend

  • parvez

    Excellent, the pain you feel and is felt by millions in this blighted, forsaken country of ours has been nicely expressed by you.Recommend

  • Chulbul Panday

    It is bad articleRecommend

  • hedgefunder

    One really needs to ask a very simple Question, Can Pakistan really Survive without US??
    The answer should be YES! But Sadly for Pakistan , The Ruling Classes are too Corrupt! They lack Morals, Sincerity and Apptitude to Manage anything apart from their Bank Balances!!!!
    The other Ruling Class is the Army, who too have shown better Apptitude to Managing their Commercial Interests and Procuring their Toys , than actually taking care of the Nation and its People!!!!
    Show me the Nation on this Planet that has its Armed Forces Hierarchy using top of the range BMWs & MERCS???? Oh yes! They must be Bullet Proof and Air Conditioned too!!!!Recommend

  • Maria

    It’s not just Karzai but all heads of states of Muslim nations are considered a joke because their statements and policies are so flippant. Look at the President of Yemen right now or Libyan dictator Qaddafi. As for all the other rulers of Muslim states, one os more pitiful than the other.Iran is considered a rogue state, Saudi Arabia is considered a corrupt family business, etc. Only when people own up to their own needs and work for civil society can any Muslim nation stop being a laughing stock.Recommend

  • A.

    Excellent article, short simple and to the point!Recommend