Stories about revolution

The amazing messages of Ali Azmat

I once saw a sign in an ice cream parlor: NO SUGAR FREE, NO FAT FREE—ONLY REAL ICE CREAM. IF YOU WANT NUTRITION, EAT CARROTS. This pretty much sums up how I feel about music videos/movies/poetry/novels/et cetera meant to convey messages. They are useless in terms of providing pleasure, which is what they are meant to do, and utterly rubbish for nutrition, which is what they are purporting to do. When I first heard that Ali Azmat has released a video called Bum Phatta, and knowing what we all know about him, I laughed for about a week. Then I took the risk ...

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Revolution, Bhagat Singh style

A man admitted today to being taken entirely by surprise two days ago. He had bought the ticket for a theatre performance at Alhamra but on entering the darkened hall, found it resonating with chants for revolution. He says he paused and then reluctantly exited the hall, only to be assured by a bystander that the activity at the hall was not political and that it was indeed a theatre performance. The play is about Bhagat Singh and the slogan now belongs to history though contemporary politics may have no use for it. The times we are talking about were ...

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Palestine, behind the Osama smokescreen

The Bin Laden killing has gripped the global media and has been a source of relief, as well as misery, for many people around the world. Nevertheless, the practical impact of his killing on international terrorist activities and the war against terror is yet to be seen. This event, however, has inadvertently served as a smoke screen for more substantive events in the Middle East, specifically Palestine. Recently, Fatah and Hamas, the two groups representing the Palestinians, came together in an agreement to end the tensions between them and to formulate a plan for government formation. The history of these two ...

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Pakistan: A state in denial

Rather unsurprisingly, conspiracy theories have proliferated across the globe after the announcement of Osama bin Laden’s death and are fast gaining traction, especially in Pakistan where such mindless gossip is bound to press buttons for the wrong people. Some of these rather unoriginal speculations are: Osama is not dead. Osama was taken alive by the US. Osama died years ago and his body had been kept on ice for almost a decade. Osama was killed as a pretext to war on Pakistan Osama was given up by Pakistan. Osama was killed to secure another term for Obama. Osama was killed to trump Trump and so on. Truth ...

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The defence of a “burger baby revolutionary”

I do a fair share of reading on the internet, and it both humours and angers me in equal proportions to read what the so called intellectuals have to say about the ‘urban youth’ as they like to call us. Authors seem to have used supernatural knowledge to conclude that due to our appearance and way of life, our opinions can be overlooked and that we are simply not in the same intelligence bracket as them. Stop stereotyping Our lifestyles, upbringing and appearances are ludicrously stereotyped, and our abilities to understand the world and the philosophy underlying politics in regard to the ...

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Qaddafi 1, Libyan opposition 0

While the US, the UK, France, Germany and other western allies have done all they could to oust Libyan strongman Muammar Qaddafi, they have failed. In fact, if anything, the dictator, who has been in charge of the North African country for close to four decades is nowhere close to relinquishing his position. In this, he has shown himself to be far more resilient than Hosni Mubarak and this may be slightly ironic given that the protesters off Libya got their inspiration in large part from their counterparts in Egypt. However, unlike in the case of Egypt, the US saw in Libya ...

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Inqilaab-e-Pakistan: Revolt if you are confused

The orchestrators of Inqilaab-e-Pakistan on Facebook and Twitter are urging Pakistanis to “retake their land” on March 23. They demand the resignation of the “US puppet regime in Pakistan”, protection of our sovereignty, end of the feudal system, and the implementation of Islamic law according to the constitution of Pakistan. Currently, the social network groups have over 10,000 confirmed attendees. They plan on protesting in Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and other cities. What these ardent followers don’t realise is that they are being exposed to ideological confusion and propagandist material. Pakistan doesn’t need a revolution. Here’s why: 1) Democracy is not the enemy The Egyptian ...

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In the worst of times, Pakistan swings lotas

Last week as tickers of an earthquake in Japan started running on television, a PML-Q parliamentarian sat with four, different coloured lotas, screaming for her opinion to be heard in a discussion between two people. Other channels too had nothing but mudslinging, noise pollution and tickers on the earthquake. Pakistani television seemed oblivious to the disaster. It was not before turning to BBC that the extent of what had happened hit, as footage of seismic waves razing homes, sweeping away ships and cars appeared in the most devastating videos I have seen. Unfortunately it wasn’t only the infamous electronic media that had ...

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Take a lesson from Bahrain

Imagine a lonely man without a job. His community barred from political representation, having no rights and no future to look forward to. With extreme frustration and deep-rooted anger, he one day gets off the wrong side of bed, thinking it’s time to bring about a change. That was the situation with the people of Bahrain. People with no real rights to speak of. Pushed over the edge, this man, along with a few others, decided to make himself heard, albeit peacefully. They take to the streets just so they get noticed. Understandable so far, but the plot thickens. The ...

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Can we please rename Gaddafi Stadium now?

It is difficult for a Karachiite to admit, but there is no more iconic a cricket ground in Pakistan than a certain large, red-brick stadium in Lahore. Gaddafi Stadium is the home of the Pakistan Cricket Board and the site of the final of the 1996 World Cup for a reason: it is simply the best that Pakistan cricket has to offer. So why is it named after a brutal Arab dictator? It was not always so. When the stadium first opened its doors in 1959, it was simply known as Lahore Stadium, which makes sense since it is a ...

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