Stories about war on terror

How serious is the ISIS threat to South Asia?

Recent weeks have brought a bevy of news headlines attesting to the rising profile of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in South Asia. The group’s literature has circulated in Pakistan, and its flags have been spotted in Kashmir. Several Pakistani militant commanders expressed their allegiance to ISIS leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Alleged ISIS recruiters were arrested in Pakistani and Indian cities. Officials in Afghanistan declared that ISIS is “active” in the country’s south. Most significantly, last month, ISIS’s spokesman officially announced the group’s expansion into what he identified as “Khorasan” — a region encompassing present-day Afghanistan and Pakistan. Despite all this, some observers, including those writing for the South Asia Channel, argue that ISIS ...

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Is #UreinGe the right way to pay tribute to the Peshawar attack?

Since the day it was rumoured that Ali Zafar was set out to pay a tribute to the Peshawar victims, there was a murmur on social networking sites on whether this tribute was needed. I saw people mixing religion into this discussion and saying that it isn’t the right way to express our condolences. For some time, I agreed with those comments, praying was after all the only way to help them. While I agree that saying a little prayer for the victims would have been good, the unity and enthusiasm that I witnessed online, a week before the launch of Ali’s song, Urein ...

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Applauding American Sniper is like celebrating murderers

Chris Kyle’s story, as depicted in American Sniper, is nothing but an absurd folly of sorts. It is more like an attempt by director Clint Eastwood to unnecessarily spruce up the image of a ruthless killer and stir up unnecessary public emotions at a time when the world needs a calm and calculated approach to end the global upsurge of violence. Eastwood’s persona as a Hollywood icon has won him plenty of recognition and fame. American Sniper would not, by any account, stand tall amongst the list of his achievements from the conscientious humanitarian angle. In the artistic sense, the movie lacks flair and is full ...

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Relax Pakistan! Obama’s trip to India will not jeopardise Pak-US relations

Obama is finally in India for his second official visit since he commenced his second term in the office. The visit is important for various reasons. First and foremost, due to its powerful symbolism: Obama is the first US president visiting India, twice. Secondly, an American president’s presence at the Republic Day of the world’s largest democracy also sends a very powerful message. But there are some serious questions occupying the minds of those in India and Pakistan. Will the visit prove to be just a theatrical trip of smiles and handshakes or can India really get something out of the guest who is left with just two years ...

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I am a Muslim and I apologise

After the tragic Charlie Hebdo shootings, there has been a call by some people to make Muslims all over the world apologise for the incident. I completely agree with the sentiment. It is the only way to root out terrorism for once and for all. Nothing could make all the victims of terrorist attacks all over the world happier than watching every single Muslim in the world say ‘sorry’. To really drive the point home, we can even send them greeting cards with our heartfelt apologies. I am sure the world would reciprocate in kind. We can start an apology trend. Once every single Muslim in ...

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Black should not be our colour

Black is for grief, Black is for mourning.   Black is for the little men, Who returned in little coffins.   Black is for the gloomy night, That lost its stars, Young and bright.   Black is for the lost children, And the parents’ miserable plight.   Black is for the darkness, In rooms with empty beds   Black is for the ink, Before it went all red.   Black is for the shoes, Before they drenched in blood.   Black is for the corridors, Where the kids once shouted Recess! Now they echo with the bell of bullets, Heralding the dance of death.   Black is for the ashes, Of teachers burnt alive.   Black is for the fear, In the eyes that watched it live.   Black is for the ...

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Security measures that every parent wants to see installed in Pakistani schools

The massacre at Army Public School (APS) in Peshawar changed our way of life, our approach towards educational institutes and our concern for the safety of our kids. The events of December 16, 2014 left some really ugly scars on the minds of our youth which will probably take decades to heal. Such incidents provide a new dimension in terms of planning for personal safety and providing a safe future for the newer generation. By giving the duty of ‘chaperone’ to a sizable number of law enforcement officers to placate the rich, elite and VIPs of our country, our government has ...

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The cyclical nature of the War on Terror

Acts of ‘terror’ have been permeating through our televisions screens and newspapers in the West to the extent that we now seem to be surrounded by them. The ‘war on terror’ makes ‘us’ in the West feel safe, but what is almost never considered is how ‘our’ safety affects the lives of the ‘others’ we aim to destroy. In the wake of the horrific Peshawar school attack that killed 141 people, many of whom were children, the international community rallied against the attackers. What remained unexplored were the factors that led to the attack to begin with. What were the motivations ...

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This was not revenge, this was murder without mercy

From today, we can no longer be divided into groups and raise slogans for politicians. Today, we need to join hands and stand together as Pakistanis for the future of this nation. The ‪‎Peshawar attack is another brutal example of the heinous criminals that infest our nation. As the death count rises, we are counting the bodies of dead children. Dead children, for God’s sake. There is no excuse for this brutality. There is no excuse for this infamy. There is no excuse for anyone to even consider fighting for anything other than the Pakistan that 132 families sacrificed their future generations for ...

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What if heaven was unprepared for the little souls of Peshawar?

I don’t know what happens to souls when people die, it is believed that they go to a place called heaven, paradise. But what if heaven is unprepared, what if heaven says, “Oh beautiful souls of Peshawar, your time is not yet, you need to live some more, you are young, you are innocent, you are angels in human form, you embody goodness, you are the ambassadors of heaven, your fieldwork on man’s earth is not done yet. God sent you down for a reason, because you are perfect, you have the capacity to do wonders, you are so beautiful, ...

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