Stories about ISI

Influenced by India, is Iran projecting its anti-Saudi frustrations onto Pakistan?

Hours before a plane carrying Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince and de-facto ruler Mohammad bin Salman (MBS), along with a Saudi delegation of 200 men, landed in Islamabad, Iran formally summoned Pakistan’s ambassador in Tehran. According to Iran, the summoning of Pakistan’s ambassador had nothing to do with MBS’ visit to Pakistan, during which Imran Khan’s PTI government looks to secure lucrative investment deals with the cash-rich Kingdom. Instead, Iran claims that the summoning was due to a suicide terror attack in the south-eastern Iranian hinterlands between the cities of Zahedan and Khash, which took the lives of around 30 elite Islamic ...

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How controversial is ‘The Spy Chronicles’?

The Spy Chronicles: RAW, ISI and the Illusion of Peace, co-authored by former ISI Chief Asad Durrani, former RAW Chief AS Dulat, and journalist Aditya Sinha, has rightly created a buzz around the subcontinent. After all, two former counterparts from rival agencies coming together to compile a book on sensitive issues – especially pertaining to backchannel diplomacy and events relating to security and foreign policy matters – is a unique experience on its own. The book is narrated conversationally, where Sinha initiates the conversation between Durrani and Dulat. It has seven chapters, and each and every one is detail oriented. It ...

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Is the divide within the Sharif family inevitable?

One would usually frown upon the vivisection of a family’s domestic issues on a public forum. But the sheer influence of the Sharif family’s private affairs on the national political landscape renders such an analysis as a necessary evil. In 2015, Hamza Shehbaz attended a wedding ceremony where he spent most of his time sulking in a far corner of the quaintly decorated arena, scarcely mingling with fellow attendees and keeping a low profile. At the same event, a frustrated Begum Nusrat Shehbaz was heard loudly rebuking one of the attendees, after being repeatedly asked to participate in a family portrait ...

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An open letter to Indians

Dear Indians, As someone whose recent family history is very much a consequence of partition, I am no stranger to the divisiveness of Pak-India politics. Despite a shared history and culture, we stand today as two nuclear armed nations that have fought three wars against each other. Hatred for the other is fostered in both countries – neither India nor Pakistan is innocent as far as propagating hyper-nationalist aggression is concerned, but this time around, it feels slightly different. This time around, your government, sections of your media, and sections of your civil society (in concert with the government) are behaving in an exceptionally immature and dangerous manner. They ...

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Five anti-Pakistan Arnab Goswami moments that prove he needs to visit Pakistan first!

There is no doubt that he is flamboyant and aggressive to a fault. That is indeed what draws the viewers in. It’s not his fault. It is how the world of television news operates. He is merely the personification of ‘the good, the bad, and the ugly’ of news channels or perhaps the manifestation of television news at its best. For what else is news media about if not an indulgence in hyperbole, an engagement with trifle, and the desire to project whatever that is being shown as meaningful. Many have fallen victim to the Arnab Goswami attack; a barrage of verbosity. When ...

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The honeytrap and the (gullible) Indian Air Force

I recently heard about the honeytrap that was used to extract sensitive Intel from members of the Indian military. When I was finally able to stop laughing, I began to wonder why this hadn’t been bigger news on this side of the border because all Google searches on the subject result in Indian sources. Okay so today I learnt about the 'ISI honeytrap' Been laughing for 3 hours straight — HereBeDragons (@rageandpencils) January 6, 2016 ISI Used Fake Facebook ID To Honeytrap IAF Airman & Got Confidential Information yeh toh lol hogya…. — Junaid Shah (@junaidshah492) January 2, 2016 No guns, violence, and pigeons needed ;) #ProudPakistaniMoments #ISI https://t.co/LX5iKktDPh — ...

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Can a journalist in India write against Modi or the RSS?

A few days ago, a journalist friend of mine was laconically told by his editor that he would not be allowed to write against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), apparently because “we should allow the BJP government to enjoy its honeymoon for a while”. Ironically, the very next day, I was told that the very same editor wrote a pro-Modi article, eulogising the Hindu nationalist leader to the extent that would make the bhakts (admirers) explode with delight. When he protested and entreated the powers-that-be to vent his views on critical issues plaguing the ...

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Who would win the ultimate dance-off between Shoaib and Yuvraj?

An event of momentous importance has occurred and, as is usual with the more earth shaking happenings, has been completely ignored. One might suspect a cover-up by the intelligence agencies because why, for the love of all that is holy, is no one talking about this? Shoaib Malik has challenged Yuvraj Singh to a dance-off. @YUVSTRONG12 @MirzaSania ajjao maydaan may This is how it is done! @realshoaibmalik Bhai hum tho hamesha maidan mein the @Velfieapp pic.twitter.com/uYqTVXbcWz — yuvraj singh (@YUVSTRONG12) July 25, 2015 Ladies and gentlemen, the gauntlet has been thrown. The reputation of our country is at stake. Two cricket legends (and-a-tennis-player-meh-nobody-cares) face off on ...

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No, Zaid Hamid isn’t getting Saudi lashes. Not yet

It is hard for most people to condone the lashings that Saudi Arabia gives out in the form of justice. But when it comes to Zaid Hamid, the first thing that comes to mind is not the barbarism of the image of a man getting 1,200 lashes. It is the irony of the exercise – a bit like falling into a ditch dug by oneself. Since it is Zaid Hamid, nothing will be straightforward. To begin with, the red-cap loose cannon was arrested in early June, but the news came out only on June 25th. Consequently, various Pakistani media outlets reported on July 1st that he had been ...

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India’s unhealthy obsession with China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

A mammoth $46 billion project, stretching over 3000 kilometres from Gwadar to Xinjiang, the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has the potential to make Pakistan’s economy grow by leaps and bounds. The project that consists of construction and up gradation of roads, oil and gas pipelines, railway tracks and an international airport in Gwadar, promises to make Pakistan an economic power in the world, and Gwadar a trade and economic hub of the region. But the CPEC does not promise wonders for just Pakistan; China stands to gain just as much, if not more, from this initiative. China will gain easier ...

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