Tricks of the Dirty Tricks Brigade

Belatedly updating my blog with the article I wrote for The News on Sunday, June 15, 2014, as part of a Special Report on conspiracy theories. Other reports in that issue were Dr M. Taqi’s The truth behind conspiracy theories in Pakistan, an interview of Nadeem Farooq Paracha and more.  Lots has happened since then, but this […]

Dirty Tricks Brigade grinds on: “Salary for a Member of NATIONAL ASSEMBLY (MNA) (No wonder we are in this mess)”

These below about Pakistani parliamentarians’ salaries and perks have been emailed around since at least 2006. I thought the figures were inflated but didn’t bother checking until a well-known journalist and women’s rights activist forwarded it from Shaheen Attiq-ur-Rahman (daughter of General Atiq-ur-Rehman, former parliamentarian and a member of the PML-Q)…

Ongoing worldwide protests against “missing” bloggers

January 15, 2017 marks just over two weeks since the professor, poet and activist Salman Haider was abducted from Islamabad, followed soon after by more such “disappearances”. Human rights activists around the world are demanding that Pakistan produce the missing bloggers and end the climate of fear being created. Disappearing activists is not a new tactic, as Pervez Hoodbhoy […]

Pakistan Must Discard its ‘Good Taliban, Bad Taliban’ Narrative

Thanks to The Huffington Post for inviting me to write this opinion piece, published on Dec. 17, 2014. By Beena Sarwar The world looks on with horror at the Pakistani Taliban’s barbaric murder of 145 children and teachers at a school in Peshawar. Although Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has termed the Peshawar attack a national tragedy, […]

Hamid Ansari: Mumbai man missing in Pakistan (we treat each other’s citizens differently)

My article on the case of the Indian national Hamid Ansari who has ‘disappeared’ in Pakistan, published in The News, July 11, 2014; an abbreviated version in Hardnews, India. See Hamid’s mother’s online petition appealing to the governments of India and Pakistan to find her son and my friend Indian journalist Shivam Vij’s earlier articles on this case, in The Friday Times, and […]

Pakistan’s media wars – my article for Himal Southasian

Himal Southasian, a publication I’m proud to have been associated with since its inception in 1996, has a new issue on the media. My piece Pakistan’s media wars (below) and Mass media and the Modi ‘wave’ by Paranjoy Guha Thakurta are web exclusives. Two additional points to my article:  1. Corporate media owners in Pakistan have always been part of reactionary and […]

Hamid Mir and Pakistan’s ideological security establishment

Geo TV journalist and host of Capital Talk @HamidMirGEO joined #VBMPLongMarch at Jehlum. #ReleaseAbductedBaloch pic.twitter.com/xLVBavoTGn — #VBMPLongMarch (@IVBMP) February 22, 2014 Below, text of my interview with Viewpoint Online about the Hamid Mir saga, that began with the murderous attack on one of Pakistan’s top journalists and television talk show hosts, who has angered Pakistan’s […]

‘We are sorry,” say Pakistanis; clean up for peace, fundraise for burnt church

This blog post is not about the violence and mayhem let loose in Pakistan to protest the anti-Islam film made by some fanatics. The destruction caused by the protestors in the name of love for the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) last Friday was televised for the world to see. This post is about what some people, […]

Projecting Quaid-e-Azam as ‘secular’ is treason?

UPDATE: May 8, 2014 – The Supreme Court of Pakistan admitted Zaid Hamid’s petition filed two years ago, seeking a treason trial against Asma Jahangir and several journalists for allegedly undermining the Two Nation Theory and glory of Islam. Coming just days after the April 19 attack on Hamid Mir  (one of the ‘treason’ case respondents) and subsequently […]

Articles

Note: Partial listing (very out-of-date, trying to update slowly, slowly – anyone have a better suggestion?) India-Pakistan Relations: What the Kafkaesque Case of a Repatriated Cattle-Herder Tells Us, The Wire, 29 Jan. 2021 Why Restoring Press Freedom Globally Should Take Precedence on Biden’s Priority List, with James McManus, The Wire, 27 Jan. 2021  The outrage […]