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Generation Axe

Published Aug 08, 2010 02:01pm


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It does pain me to see a lot of ground-level PPP workers being pushed into a corner by their party leader’s nonchalant ways. They seem and sound helpless and exhausted in trying to defend their leader who has become the target of an obsessive-compulsive punching campaign of the media.

However, though the president does not seem to be bothered by the campaign, he must realize that there are many of his party workers who are being seriously affected. More than this, he should also realize that the media is targeting these very workers because it knows how vulnerable they are at the moment and also how defenceless they are feeling in the wake of both the media’s rather pathological hatred for Zaradri as well as Zardari’s own obvious and not very endearing eccentricities.

Let’s just forget what I think about Zardari’s tour of France and the UK in the wake of the devastating floods that have hit millions of unfortunate Pakistanis. All I’ll say is that my view on the issue is not compatible with those members of the PPP who are defending the President’s trip, but nor are my views in tune with those heaping scorn over him for being such a heartless president. Instead I will share with you an observation.

In 2005 when a horrifying earthquake hit Kashmir and many areas of the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, we saw an immediate response from thousands of young men and women who just rolled up their sleeves and plunged into relief work, sometimes facing great dangers.

I am proud to note that this is one thing this generation is very good at. So I was expecting the same this time around as well. So, off I went with a friend to take a tour of some offices and colleges where we knew a few people.

I won’t go into details about this, but will share with you an episode I witnessed at an office full of young folks. This episode neatly covers the ground realities I experienced elsewhere as well.

At this office I saw three donation boxes put there to collect funds for the flood victims. Since they were one of those transparent plastic ones, one could see through and in them. They’d been lying there for three days and none of them were even half full.

A number of young people approached me and they just seemed to have Zaradri’s trip on their minds. Seeing me retreat, my friend intervened: “Zaradri was wrong to go. But what have YOU done to help the victims? Do you think all this obsessive whining about Zaradri would help you help the hungry, broken and shelterless victims?”

He was right. Because whereas one saw a number of young Pakistanis gathering to actually do something practical and tangible to help the earthquake victims, this time around however, the same young guns and, of course, the electronic media were spending more time spouting accusations and curses at Zaradri and navel-gazing about morality in this context than actually doing something a lot more noble.

There is no nobility I’m afraid in attacking an incompetent (democratically elected) government when every Junaid, Seema and John in the media is doing so – especially a wobbly government of a country ravaged by the demonic specter of religious extremism and violence, a dwindling economy, unchecked corruption and sudden natural calamities . Turning such loud whining into an obsession is even worse.

In a democracy people get the chance and the right to throw such a government out through the power of the vote. But, of course, those who make the most noise in this respect, hardly ever go out to vote.

What’s even shoddier is the way the many western media correspondents based in Pakistan report the happenings here. I have met some really good ones, who are open to learn about the complexities of the many social and political issues that this country faces. But unfortunately, since many of them have connections with the so-called intelligentsia and media of Pakistan, they too end up describing a lot of events through the paranoid shades of the somewhat despotic, self-righteous middle-class morality.

While reporting a political event involving, for example, Nawaz Sharif or Asif Zaradri, most western reporters (like the Pakistani middle-classes) are bound to digress towards commenting on the dynastical soap opera of the Sharif family and the Bhuttos with, of course, Fatima Bhutto, always making some kind of an entry, despite the fact that the talented writer that she is, the lady quite clearly has no clue what politics is.

And when it comes to Altaf Hussain, many western correspondents again take the minority, non-voting Pakistani middle-class view. They (like a bulk of the middle-class in the Punjab), are still measuring Hussain and his party as if this was not the 2000s, but 1992!

Nevertheless, after concluding our ‘fact finding’ mission in which we saw young, middle-class Pakistanis filling donation boxes with anti-Zaradri curses (instead of actual money), my friend and I drove down to a café in Karachi where I was invited to meet a large group of young high school and college students.

They wanted to talk to me about terrorism. I’m not much of a speaker, so I just asked them to start a conversation on the subject. They were a lively bunch. But such is the state of confusion, denial and mistrust in the country’s urban middle-classes, that I wasn’t surprised at all to be bombarded by one conspiracy theory after another that these young people had obviously picked up from the electronic media and a number of (the rather unintentionally) hilarious websites out there who deal in peddling the most outlandish claptrap this side of Erich von Däniken and Zecharia Sitchin!

I let the young group’s members do most of the talking, until I decided to ask a few questions: “How would you like to be part of a generation that may go down as the one during which Pakistan was finally turned into hellhole of religious extremism? How would you all feel when history describes your generation to be the one that in spite of having unprecedented access to some stunning technology, democracy and superior education, still allowed its country to become the breeding ground for audacious, obscene and insane mad men who use the good name of God to spread hatred?”

“That won’t happen!” A young man announced.

My friend intervened: “Oh, but it’s already happening. It happens almost every single day. Can’t you see it?”

“That’s what the West wants us to believe,” a young lady replied.

“Okay then,” I said. “Let’s say for a while most of you are right to suggest that that ubiquitous foreign Indian, Western, Israeli or Martian hand is involved, it’s still Pakistan’s survival on the line, isn’t it? What have you done about what your country’s going through, apart from, of course, forwarding Zaradri jokes and nice little religious couplets through SMS …”

I was interrupted by an enthusiastic young man announcing the ‘news’ about Zaradri facing a ‘barrage of shoes in Britain!’

I nodded my head: “Right, so you think the answer lies in throwing shoes at Zaradri?”

“Hell, yes!” came the reply from a couple of young guys sitting in the front row.

“So if you see Zaradri, you too will be willing to throw a shoe at him?” I asked.

“Yes, I definitely would!” A young man announced.

“Would you throw a shoe at a religious extremist? I asked.

“Are you crazy!” he shot back. “He’ll blow me up to bits!”

A ripple of laughter and high-fives ran across the gathered group.

“That, I’m afraid, makes you a coward.” I said.

The laughter faded away.

“Anything that scares you or retaliates, you deny its existence. As if it’ll just go away. But all that which does not hit back or retaliate is fair game for shoes and boos? That, lad, is the dilemma of your generation. Now, if you all don’t mind, this creaking 42-year-old cynic would like to have that coffee this café is famous for. Thank you.”

Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and

The views expressed by this blogger and in the following reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.


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Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and He is also the author of two books on the social history of Pakistan, End of the Past and The Pakistan Anti-Hero.

He tweets @NadeemfParacha

The views expressed by this writer and commenters below do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.

Comments (252) Closed

gp65 Aug 16, 2010 03:40am
This wasn't voluntary. When the 18th amendment came up, it was the same time that NRO was thrown out. So Zardari made a show of giving up his powers to dodge the NRO bullet. Incidentally he did not voluntarily ring back Chief Justice either. It was due to the Long March by the opposition.
gp65 Aug 16, 2010 03:45am
People are just copying the Iraqi incident. You can be sure that many more Pakistani politicians will meet this fate n the times to come. The fact that shoe was thrown at Zardari and no-one else does not prove anything. Zardari maybe incompetent but the country did not get partitioned under him like it did under Bhutto, It did not initiate an unnecessary war with India in 1965 like Ayub Khan did. It did not kidnap and make 1000s of Balochis disappear - as they did under Musharraf. It did not change the textbooks for ordinary school children to poison their minds by glorifying jihad, as it happened under Zia.
gp65 Aug 16, 2010 03:55am
ayesha khan Aug 16, 2010 03:57am
Asking people to stop criticizing Zadari is not valid because criticizing those in power is an essential of a robust democracy. It is however valid to ask these same people to also criticize the terrorists.
gp65 Aug 16, 2010 03:29am
H, You said "We are all Muslims". In another place you said "we are all accountable to Allah". In doing so, you have made it very clear that the only people you care about are Muslims. So it is not surprising that Haris caled you out on your discriminatory stance.
gp65 Aug 16, 2010 03:03am
I usually agree with NFP but only partially agree this time. He is right when he encourages the middle class to speak up against terror groups. Silence against oppressors makes people indirectly complicit in what is going on. But when he castigates them from criticizing PPP and Zardari - I disagree. Like you said, these debates are valuable in a democracy and without this information, people will not vote differently the next time.
gp65 Aug 16, 2010 03:11am
Altaf runs a major political party in Pakistan. You may not find it odd - but it really is extremely unusual for a major political leader of a country to be a citizen of another country and live there. On the other hand it is not at all unusual for ordinary people to migrate for better prospects for their families. So comparing Altaf to those other Birmingham people is not a valid comparison,
gp65 Aug 16, 2010 03:19am
Pakistan needs many more thoughtful, concerned and patriotic citizens like you.
Sakeel Aug 13, 2010 03:14am
Duaa is the biggest Ibaadat and it is a biggest weapon for humankind,do not under estimate power of dua and blessing,We have to pray and donate generously in a month of ramadhan that make it easier their suffering.
Runaas Aug 12, 2010 01:19pm
An excellent analysis based on data of one instance! I have seen more extreme measures of help by people in these floods than in earthquake times.
Runaas Aug 12, 2010 01:17pm
So say the NFP supporters. What has he ever done other than criticise?
mahwish Aug 12, 2010 07:27am
As a member of this nation i feel very sorry for all the flood victims who are having a really tough time we cant even imagine. We just watch news, spread comments that this disaster is bigger than the combine disaster tsunami in indonesia, earthquake in northern areas and disaster in haiti and our most favourite full time job to criticize zardari on his UK trip when country is facing such a difficult situation. iam a true PPP. iam big fan of bhutto and BB. No doubt they were our real assets.But iam more than ready to criticize Zardari at my full peak when i feel that he is not playing his role properly, the role for which we voted for PPP. But guys its not the solution. Zardari presence in country will not do good anything for these flood victims. Our presence and our help counts more and more. In a situation when we are also not having any aid from other countries as they are also just fedup of our problems. New day.. New problem. And sorry to say our media have also not played a good role for us. They are degrading our image. Like people abroad feels that Pakistan is on fire. You all must have known this saying.......God helps those who help themselves.. so firstly commit your role properly..then criticize other... if Zardari is corrupt then as a nation we all are also very corrupt..
Yasser Aug 12, 2010 07:29am
The crux of the matter is public do what their leaders do, Zardari was enjoying a joy ride and was not taking the flood seriously hence public considered why should we care when even the govt is not serious about it Here is my 2 cent, if Zardari would have cut-short his tour the situation among the individuals would have been completely different, even now Mr.Zardari has accepted that he didn't imagine that devastation is of that big scale, so who is to blame, his ministers his opinion makers or still the public who selected them.
M. Akram Aug 12, 2010 08:00am
Sweeping statements, Amjad. Zero proof. This kind of blame game is not the answer. NFP has been very brave to stick his neck out as a writer whenever Pakistan has faced disasters like terrorism and violence. He has stood firm in condemning violence, bigotry and hatred when people like us have decided to remain quiet. If you calmly read this piece, you will realize that he is as concerned about the victims of this flood as much as you or me are. Who are we to judge.
Muhammad Akram Aug 12, 2010 08:02am
Well said, Shehzad. This smug self-rightousness in many Pakistanis is most unfortunate.
brokenhearted Aug 12, 2010 08:56am
well said Haris :)
Sheherzad Aug 12, 2010 09:09am
The last I remembered, this was a democratically elected govt. If people are criticizing the govt then they are exercising their basic freedom under democracy. The only way they'll vote different next time or make an effort to vote (if at all) is if they have these dialogues and debates now. I am surprised that someone like NFP is not able to understand the importance of these criticisms against the incumbent govt. Also, attacking the president will not help the flood victims, but neither will staying silent help them. So it is almost better to be loud and critical in the hopes of shaming the govt into action. And lastly, i don't see why criticizing the govt and helping the flood victims have to be mutually exclusive, as NFP seems to think. From what I have seen, people are donating in abundance and also criticizing in abundance. Word of advice NFP- as someone else said, roll up your pants and get into the water to help the victims. Stop proselytizing through your articles. Just look at the total amount of aid money that has been generated. That should say enough about what the people are doing despite their opinion of the govt.
Nahyan Mirza Aug 12, 2010 05:41am
I have been following NFP since the early 90's and while his columns have always been hard hitting I have not always agreed with him. However this piece reflects the exact words which I have been preaching ever since this shoe episode erupted. I am not a supporter of Zardari but throwing shoes at an elected leader and holder of Pakistan's highest political office in a foreign land is a criminal act and a disgrace to the whole country. The shoes man (Shamim Khan) should not be made a national hero. And all of you here who are throwing verbal shoes at Zardari, should have had the sense during elections to either vote against the PPP or at least go out to vote. Be practical, if throwing shoes at the president will help in anyway, upturn the whole Light House Market on him, if not than stop whining and do something constructive.
Omar Amjad Aug 12, 2010 02:23am
Ranvir, Thanks for the concern and kind remarks. May God bring peace and prosperity in the entire world. Omar (Islamabad)
Omar Amjad Aug 12, 2010 02:18am
Nadeem, Very eloquently written article Sir. While living abroad, I noticed that whenever there is an event that causes a potential social unrest (terrorist acts, issues related to healthcare, government's incapability to deal with something, law and order situation etc), the entire society jointly acknowledges the severity of situation and takes a joint stand to get rid of the issue (not just condemn). We (Pakistanis) have some what compromised over certain things and we are happy if our home is safe. If there is a law and order situation, we can get ourselves private security guards. If there is an energy crisis going on, we can manage generators and other alternates. If there is a matter of a government official found lavishly spending, we condemn by appearing in talk shows and other opinion polls. How much are we moving towards finding a permanent resolve? It's good that at least the realization has started but our problems can not be resolved just by calling a spade, a spade! We have to make sure that we take a rather holistic approach and instead of making silos, we move ahead as a nation. Pakistan Zindabad!
Ali Aug 12, 2010 01:52am
FINALLY NFP admits that the current government is incompetent. with that out of the way, I have to admit that as much as NFP is right about people not taking any relevant action to better their situation, NFP himself comes off as cluelessly idealistic. This is Pakistan, not Canada.
Shehzad Khan Aug 11, 2010 08:24pm
Its easy Rajesh, when you are just a stooge sitting for the sole purpose of looting and plundering, then believe me you dont feel the pain. The pain is long gone, so now its just easy picking... Kudos to this nation for bearing this burden, but they should know, as a muslim we believe that GOD has stopped performing miracles. So no help coming from skies. We will be what we want us to be and thats it!
Shehzad Khan Aug 11, 2010 08:19pm
Muslim, And you sir/lady, what do you exactly do, other than criticize others? remember that is the easiest thing you can do, so dont be too proud of your accomplishments.
Shehzad Khan Aug 11, 2010 05:50pm
Waqas, and that simple and perfect reply does what exactly? you know removing Zardari is not easy or it would have been done by now... so what now? how do we actually move forward? Or is it just another open ended reply that serves nothing but exactly what the author says we do? We criticize and folks thats about all we do. Because after all who would disagree that Zardari need to be removed?
Amjad Wyne Aug 11, 2010 04:15pm
Very well said .... that is the point. Unfortunately, however, when Zardari was questioned about his trip and was told that his presence in the country, even if symbolic, was the right thing for him to do, he replied, "he believes in substance and not the symbolism". This is coming from the mouth of a man who gives the "sadqa" of a balck goat every week. I do not have any problem with Zardari, I do not know him nor I have any desire to know him - All I know is that he is drowning the country and the PPP is providing full support in that act...including Mr. NFP
Sadiya Aug 11, 2010 03:57pm
Recipe for help: Each household, make (1 - all you want), worked great during earthquake relief work. 1. Take a carton 2. Put in a bag of dried milk 3. Put in a bag of dried rosted chick-peas (bhunai huai chanai) 4. Put in a bag of biscuits 5. Put in a a few bottles of water 6. Put in a canvas/cotton sheet/blanket 7. A small first aid kit (disinfectant, bandages) 8. Optional: A letter offering hope and prayers and goodwill Deliver to local politician/masjid/district manager/person in authority/army base/civil authority/policestation to be delivered tp the people in need.
H Aug 11, 2010 12:55pm
Dear Not needed Allah means justice adal Insaf how can you even think like this your approach is not right May Allah Grant you guidance Ameen
Amjad Wyne Aug 11, 2010 12:28pm
A. the same can be said about your comments - how do you know? There is nothing in the entire PPP, forget tNFP, that shows anything the party has done for this flood victims. It is not a blame game. Zardari disappeared from the scene - and he says he is proud of his trip. That is not acceptable.
Ranvir Singh Aug 11, 2010 10:21am
I am deeply sadddened by the magnitude of flood disater pakistan has experienced. The suffering of people is unparallel and i wish god will have mercy on them. We in india are also experiencing the same pain in Leh, laddakh, albiet of small magnitude. Hope fully things will improve soon.Let there be peace for everyone...
Dr. Khan Aug 11, 2010 10:11am
Yeah we should stop whining and complaining and do nothing to change the top as well! If he could have been no different while being at home as well then he shouldnt exist at all as well! Zardari is to be removed!
quest Aug 11, 2010 09:30am
What was brilliant in it, as usual NFP as a known PPP activist, tried hard with no success to save the face of Mr. Zardari.
A. Aug 11, 2010 09:26am
how do you know he didn't do anything about it?! Instead of playing the blame-game, why don't we actually TRY to do something constructive. That's the whole point of this article, which you most-conveniently blasted away in a single statement. Kudos to you.
Muhammad Akram Aug 11, 2010 07:18am
Brilliant article, in case you forgot to read it. Very knee-jerk of you, dear quest.
quest Aug 11, 2010 06:29am
I second Shakeel.
quest Aug 11, 2010 06:28am
Brilliant what ?
shermalick Aug 11, 2010 06:08am
Pray all you want but those flood victims, they need food and shelter. They don't give a toss if the aid comes from a Muslim or an atheist.
Sameer Aug 11, 2010 05:27am
"If you think you are right and brave enough to attack the President so openly, what stops you doing the same to religious extremists?" What if question is other way arounds: if you think you are right in attacking religious, why don't u attack our President who go on holiday when there is a flood. After all religious extremist are not head of state "Also, how would attacking the President help those affected by the floods?" We are hoping instead of wasting money on foreign trip and his own political part, he should try to help those in need
Aasma Qamer Aug 11, 2010 04:42am
I am not a pessimist but i find myself greatly disappointed from this generation.
N.A. Aug 11, 2010 04:27am
NFP: Let me throw the same question at you... what did you do to help the flood victims than just writing an article criticizing people who criticized zardari... :) From my point of you, u (and I) are no different from those you are criticizing!!! Food for thought, aint it?
BOBBY NEW YORK Aug 11, 2010 03:39am
Hi Amer What is so wrong for a small kid to ask these questions I think he is asking the right question and in case you think he needs medical help I sorry to say that it looks like you need medical help. Instead of asking the same type of question around you you seem to criticize very simple and straight questions.
Muslim Aug 11, 2010 02:34am
NFP lover copy and paste words like awesome,brilliant and tremendous without reading his article.
haris Aug 10, 2010 11:37pm
all i can say that if in the article you are trying to divert the attention of ppl by saying that it was ok if zardari was out of the country....then i disagree...... the president is suppose to be in the country at least for moral support.....and thats final
malik Aug 09, 2010 12:16pm
The problem is not that what others--media--are doing, the problem is that Zardari failed to realize the magnitude of floods. He wouldn't have done anything, but showing empathy by staying in the country, by visiting people, by making sure that all resources are used to help the people who have lost everything, by campaigning hard for donations. He did none of it, and preferred to visit his home in France, a very big home. Politicians fail to grab the moment and then bemoan that everybody is after them.
Yasir Aug 09, 2010 11:43am
yes they did visit charsadda and ajk
Imran Aug 09, 2010 11:38am
Nadeem, I must admit that it is an absolute true which our young lads are into. And ironically they are in a state of denial and don't want to go through to the ballot box justice rather the other way around. Yet again you hit at the right point, Nadeem !!! Brilliant work
Iftikhar Husain Aug 09, 2010 11:36am
The money spent on this president visit would come handy to help tha poor badly displaced people in Pakistan. Pakistan is a poor country because lot of its wealth has taken away by the dishonest politicians over the years.
BadPatriot Aug 09, 2010 11:31am
Agreed with the point mentioned by NFP, the nation should focus their effort towards helping the affected rather then rejoicing the shoe-cide.
SJ Ahmed Aug 09, 2010 11:16am
What is the point of the State, if not to protect the citizens? What is the point of the leadership of a country, if not to guide the citizens in their hour of need? How does the State and leadership do this? By setting the tone at the top, of course. If the leadership, whether in name or in reality, abandons its people at their hour of need, then surely they have abandoned their duty. There is no point in condemning the youth, they are inexperienced and need guidance. The real question is, who is providing the leadership in this hour of need? By pointing at the most inexperienced group of citizens (the youth), the leadership and others (the columnist included) are abandoning their responsibility to set the example for that youth to follow. We should be nurturing them as the future leadership of the country not expecting them to carry the entire responsibility on their inexperienced shoulders.
xingular Aug 09, 2010 11:06am
i think its a useless article. Zardari is the boss of civilian government. He is NOT ceremonial. Are you guys kidding here! what powers has he delegated to others?!? Besides why is it that the poor are always asked to help poor? did in 2005 so do that again!! what!!?!? in 2005 circumstances were different and people were positive about life, unlike now all wishing for death in PK. Also voice of public is never wrong. Thats public opinion and you are going sky high to be devil's advocate!! thanks but no thanks! And the last comment to cement your point about your friends about hurling a shoe at zardari and not at any religious leader is out of context and in bad taste let alone an article that is intended to bind civil society. If the people are to survive all the odds and watch these bufoons take us for ride times and again what is the purpose of government then!?!? better have war lords and overlords and help each other too. Worst part is why the opposition is quiet? Why all high and mighty go numb in Pakistan whenever hit by calamity and distress!? Yes I did understand you article well Mr NFP.
Pragmatist Aug 09, 2010 10:40am
People like atif are more happy with abuse of Zardari rather than being concerned about the flooding.It seems that this whole situation is being exploited just to target Zardari.We now have a parliamentary form of govt,president is just a symbolic figure head.Even the head of pakistan's disaster agency has confessed that this problem is beyond the capability of govt,so why we don't galvanize ourselves and as a nation united try to solve this problem.
sogul Aug 09, 2010 10:14am
Good one Wazi
naveed Aug 09, 2010 10:08am
sakeel, true voice of hippocracy! Mian jee, if only people like you would have bothered to go out to vote, we could have had a better government. Secondly, if the oh-so-galant zardari haters like you would have spend more time condemning the Taliban, this could have been a more bearable country to live. Think about it.
Abbas Khan Aug 09, 2010 12:43pm
Mr. Zardari should visit flood hit areas.
Som Aug 09, 2010 09:51am
You missed the point. The author has pointed out why there is no protest against the religious extremists, similar to the one against the president?
Asad Aug 10, 2010 09:22pm
Well-done for your self sustained efforts in this present time. It indeed feels good to hear that people are doing whatever they can....About 2005 earthquake, times were very different at that time. The leadership ruled with example and created a sense of ownership amongst everyone. Syed Mustafa Kamal is a prime example of the previous government...... Insha Allah soon good times will come back. The power of PEN is amazing, keep supporting everyone who you think is right and highlighting the flaws in writings as the above by NFP.... Pakistan Paindabad
ramesh Aug 09, 2010 09:41am
NFP is rightly pointing out the hypocrasy are ready to throw a shoe at the top democratic leader but not a harsh word at the begots.the youth have to be brave and speak their mind before it is to late to speak up
Neeraj K. Rajan Aug 09, 2010 09:40am
I am shocked to see comment after comment lambasting Mr.Zardari. It is difficult to believe that such a vast majority of pakistanis have so much of hatred for their own president! Agreed that politician are object of ridicule and even hatred all over the world, but do you really believe that Mr. Zardari deserves what he is getting from his own countrymen right now? How much power he really enjoy? Or how much power prime minister Mr. Gilani do possess ? Can both the gentlemen cut the defense budget and allocate the funds to flood victims? As the writer of this article Mr. Paracha has pointed out instead of blaming individuals or government we the ordinary people should come forward and help the needy.
Asad Aug 10, 2010 09:17pm
Eraj, this government + leadership was imposed over Pakistan. It wasnt a decision made by the nation with thought or consideration. If you rewind back , when the previous government was about to go into elections the whole judge's situation was given a lot of wind, the whole disappearance of aata and finally the assassination of BiBi. Otherwise, the story today would have been different - very different....
Urooj Aug 09, 2010 09:32am
Actually, mehreen he is being criticized for the amount of money that is being spent on his visit, which, people feel could have been put to better use helping the flood-affected.
hina Aug 09, 2010 09:21am
Bravo! There, indeed are very few people who have the courage to say what is right. P.S. a very good article as usual from NFP. If Zardari is so disliked by every one then why is he still the president. After all it is a coalition government. Besides, Zardari has given all his powers under 18th ammendment and he is not the head of the government, so if the PM is there in the country why should the people bother about the president not being in the country (we do not follow American system).
Asad Aug 10, 2010 09:10pm
Thank you Ahmed
yawar Aug 09, 2010 09:14am
LOL! Well put, Hadaimba. The confusions and contradictions this generation of young Pakistanis is made of is the crux of this article.
yawar Aug 09, 2010 09:11am
Err ... am I missing something here? NFP articles are usually wrapped up in layers of double-meanings, but this one is very simply put. So I am struggling to understand why those of you who are accusing him of defending Zardari are doing so? The bottom-line of this piece is pretty clear. It's a question Nadeem is asking: i.e. If you think you are right and brave enough to attack the President so openly, what stops you doing the same to religious extremists? Also, how would attacking the President help those affected by the floods?
sakeel Aug 09, 2010 09:07am
True voice of Zardari
Nawar Aug 09, 2010 08:58am
Well said Haris. Knee-jerk is the right word indeed.
manulegend Aug 09, 2010 09:00am
When your leader doesnt do the job he is supposed or expected to do, there is every right to criticize or pull them down. But what NFP says is that, too much of it is being done and the effect is lost. After hours and hours of yapping and punching Zardari is anything acheived other than you being tired? But if you give alms or atleast assist someone who is helping the victims, that will give you a good night's sleep and a place in heaven. So Mr. Sakeel. Hate zardari all you want, but do some of the physical tasks as well. That was NFP's message.
khadija Aug 09, 2010 08:52am
such criticism from the scions of intelligence agencies is but expected.
Nawar Aug 09, 2010 08:47am
Well, Altaf is doing in England what all those concerned Pakistanis in Birmingam are doing. If they are so outraged by zaradri, why don't THEY come back??
Nawar Aug 09, 2010 08:43am
Let's start with you.
H Aug 09, 2010 08:38am
I did the least i could i would really appreciate if you could tell us more ways of helping the affected one's i don't want to divulge what i did
sakeel Aug 09, 2010 08:33am
NFP lover.
Hidaimba Aug 09, 2010 08:25am
Pakistan is a strange country. First you take away all the powers from the President - then you expect the President to exercise his powers in times of crisis.
Arapak Aug 09, 2010 08:26am
Yup. This is now the norm. Most people who end up attacking NFP's articles actually end up proving his point. It's surreal.
Arapak Aug 09, 2010 08:23am
Your hat maybe off buddy, but so is JN's thinking.
Pragmatist Aug 09, 2010 08:19am
BBC has a published an interesting article on its website regarding zardari's visit.Read "Criticism of zardari in Pakistan hides a political game".
H Aug 09, 2010 08:18am
I really appreciates what you said Haris i would request you to kindly read again what i said and read between lines i didnt bring islam in this debate my core aim is to help the affected ones what we as a nation are doing are we our duties toward ALlah and our fellow brothers and what made u think that im discriminating between hindus and Muslims??????
satish Aug 09, 2010 08:11am
@chak, nice one!!!
Mushtaq Ahmed Aug 09, 2010 08:09am
A very good article. It is a sleeping nation and the so- called leaders know it. So , they are totally insensitive to the catastrophy the poor people are facing. The people are suffering because no govt. in the past 20-25 years has done anything meaningful, be it education, energy , health, dam building , law & order etc. We tasted democracy and dictatorships ; both failed the nation time and again. Except to restore the Shahbaz govt. in Punjab , PML N as Opposition has done nothing to safeguard the interest of people. They are hand in glove with the ruling elite and enjoying the goodies alongwith the rulers. Majority of people are hostage to the tyrrany of such leaders. But when time for voting will come in the next Election / bye election , the sleeping people will again vote for the same very so- called leaders. As a nation we have been living from one crisis to another and accustomed to it. We seem to enjoy the agony. Zardari + Nawaz + Altaf will continue the " afham - tafheem " democracy till the sleeping nation wakes up.
TAK Aug 09, 2010 08:08am
Thass, you have touched my heart, my friend. The only thing that can bring real change is to start changing our thinking. Just shouting at Zaradri would not help the country in any way. So lets just appreciate what Government is already trying to help our nation at large and lets just think how we can contribute to it. And rest should be left to God. Good deeds never go wasted.
H Aug 09, 2010 08:04am
Miss Mehreeen the presence of Zardari will not lessen the pain and suffering but he could have stayed here and motivated the people he could have stayed and motivated those we are invlove in relief efforts its a firm duty of the presdent
H Aug 09, 2010 07:59am
MR E i want mean to say that if one has a fear in his heart the he or she will be accountable infront of Allah he or she will do a good deed in every manner he can its is our firm duty to help our fellow brothers in time of their need i did my job i did what was possible for me.We all need to rise to the occasion and stop criticising zardari he will be answerable to Allah what we are doing????
Atif Aug 09, 2010 07:55am
Hats off to you.
Nadeem Aug 09, 2010 07:55am
Tell us what efforts you have taken to help out flood affected people?
chak Aug 09, 2010 07:10am
Years back I read this story somewhere, the gist i write down here: As this man approached God, he asked "God you are the most powerful and you control everything, how come you don't do something about the poverty and misery in this world?", and God replied "I did, I sent you to the world to change it". Rather than whining about feudal setups, corrupt and inefficient politicians and dynastic politics, let each one do something about the problems and try to solve it in their own (small or major) way.
Atif Aug 09, 2010 06:55am
No shoe was ever thrown to any other political leader since the existence of Pakistan. I am sure, that, there is something very wrong with Uncle Zardari that he is being criticised by every single person except aunti Fauzia Wahab, who herself doesn't know a bit about anything but loves to appear on camera. I agree with a sense that, instead of blame game in this catastrophic condition we should concentrate more on to help all those who are suffering, but you cant afford a thief as a head of state, so throwing him out of Presidency is again a national & democratic need. Nation has no problem with PPP at all, but with President.
chak Aug 09, 2010 06:49am
Apparently a few years ago, a large part of the Pakistani population DID like him and voted him to and his party to power. NFP is just one of the many people around in Pakistan. Its the many crores of people and their votes that he got, that made him get the post that he got.
mehreen Aug 09, 2010 06:46am
Has everyone forgotten that our Prime Minister is still here!???!!!!! So who cares about Zardari? Besides I think this Zardari hate has more to do with ethnicity than anything else. There are lots of people as corrput as him but for some reason people turn a blind eye to that.
Shahid Aug 10, 2010 12:35pm
Hi From this article it is very clear that how easy people like you sell. I am surprised you call Zardari a leader. I am surprised you said just forget his tour to UK and France. Do you have any idea every single step he took abroad how much it cost a single Pakistani. You should not just think about JIalasa...think for a Pakistani and be a Pakistan.. Pakistan is not for PPP Royal family it is for me and you (unfortunately) and many people like me. Shahid
Thass Aug 09, 2010 06:33am
Zardari is not god and his presence or absence in Pakistan is not going to help in any way. Maybe he can do more abroad by getting aid and assistance for the displaced. Meantime the govt is doing all it can to help the displaced. This is not a normal situation. It is quite unusual and extreme and has to be interpreted as divine retribution. So look inwards and see what hs gone wrong and try to do what is right for a change. Shouting at the Govt will not help. We get the govt we deserve. We also have to face the results of our own actions. Presently the reputation of Pakistan has hit rock bottom. Being a hot bed of religous extremism, violence, terror and narcotics does not help. Please open your eyes wide and try to correct yourselves.
Wazi Aug 09, 2010 06:31am
"And when it comes to Altaf Hussain, many western correspondents again take the minority, non-voting Pakistani middle-class view. They (like a bulk of the middle-class in the Punjab), are still measuring Hussain and his party as if this was not the 2000s, but 1992!" Wow Mr Paracha you dont sound biased at all.Its not only Punjabis who hate MQM. Every individual that has a brain and guts to stand against MQM hates it. Whats happening in Karachi right now or what happened in May couple of years ago? However MQM of 2000's is bit different from 1992. Building couple of bridges and doing a telephone conference is pretty 2000 of them
JN Aug 09, 2010 06:30am
Something went missing in this article for me. I thought you were going out to rally the youth and help with the mammoth effort of helping the poor needy people of KP, Punjab and Sindh. then somehow we ended up on the Zardari and conspiracy theme that NFP so loves (yawn). So, what I want to know is what are the urban elite doing to help their less fortunate brothers and sisters. The floods are of course very difficult to handle and require a lot of logisitical help but doing simple things like taking clean water and blankets to some kind of army depot for onward distribution could help? Time for the oh so vocal civil society that got rid of Musharraf to stand up and be counted. At least Musharraf clenched his fist and always said 'Pakistan First'. Zardari and his PPP cronies are thick skinned, self-serving and so 'yesterday'. The 'not-so' Sharif brothers are useless windbags that should just stick to looking after their imported tigers. There are no other leaders. Where is Imran Khan? Time the educated (no fake degrees please), intelligent, hard working, patriots took over. As an expat I don't know from where or how but I wish there was a popular (non religious) revolution to restore honesty, dignity and respect in our once great nation. Pakistan Zindabad.
Zohra Sarwar Khan Aug 09, 2010 06:24am
It not about mere deeds of ordinary people, its about a president of a country. Ironic it may be but president of country is face of a country, be it inside or outside country. Dependence on the face does effect the way things are precieved and hence its not a surprise if people are not responding to the call when the administrators themselves show no sympathy or commitment for betterment in any manner. Mingling two three scenerios to conclude or symphatize with a president isn't such a fair enough deed. Besides, talking of ground realities, we hate or love it but check out who are the ones most visible and grounded when it comes to raising donations, yes the jamat-e-islami linked organisations who have thousands of volunteer at traffic lights collecting funds and thier plastic boxes are more than full contrary to white collar american funding awaitees. One more thing is that despite being admirer of most of your writings, you have always failed in highligting even the most evident and efficient working of army in times of peace and calamity.
sakeel Aug 09, 2010 07:11am
When I saw the news in my living room tv and those flood victims running for food and water my heart goes out to them,These is not the time for calling any one terrorist or fundamentalist but just help those who are suffering in this calamity.Pakistan president should be out there coordinating effort on the ground to help those grief striken people who lost everything,this is not time to collect foreign aids NFP and staying in palace in europe spending time with someone like David Cameroon who calls you terrorist country.
Rahil Aug 09, 2010 05:55am
Even with all its ill wills, democracy is the only system which will pave path to progress in an country like Pakistan. Btw, NFP...hats off on pointing out Fatima Bhutto's inability to understand politics. She would have never gotten this much media attention if she wasn't attractive.
Al Bundy Aug 09, 2010 05:34am
Your title does not make any sense. You are under-estimating the power your youth. The day shall come when they will get rid of the curse of corrupt and incompetent people within the government.
Al Bundy Aug 09, 2010 05:29am
Even the title of your article does'nt make any sense. You have totally underestimated the younger generation of Pakistan. They have the power to bring about a positive change and get rid of the curse of corrupt and incompetent leaders. That day shall come soon ... An Optimistic Paki
Shoaib Aug 09, 2010 05:27am
Not a very well thought out article. Ok, media is really pushing to its limits especially when they accused or scaffle Zardari.. but the truth is that Zardari has already crossed all the sane limits... so why just Blame Media. Many of the writers - remain more symptomatic to PPP and its government than to any National Cause. Zardari must be the worst leader - ever to rule a nation. atleast in this century(and last century).
basharat Aug 09, 2010 05:17am
The people have every right to criticese the President or any other leader, at the same time biased opinions are always misleading. Some anchors are well known for their enmity against the President and they are seen going much beyond the limits of decency. A considerable segment of Pakistani society wanted the president in pakistan,it was better, if he had respected people
Ali Abbas Petiwala Aug 09, 2010 04:55am
Great article by Nadeem Paracha, but favoring Zadari as person and president not a good example to follow as leader. He don't deserve presidency, these are not my words only its words of all young generation like me.... who feels there is not future in Pakistan for us, if these kind of so called leader govern Pakistan. Pakistan Zindabad!
Amir Iqbal Aug 09, 2010 04:44am
I agree with NFP. Zardari bashing is not going to help. He already had enough of it.
Farhan Aug 09, 2010 04:32am
Isn't it real mature on part of majority of the readers who are taking this piece as a defense of zardari rather than taking it as a mirror image of themselves. By pointing fingures at those who are not doing their job, we are only becoming part of the problem ourselves. We should rather try to be part of the solution and do our part. That's all that matters. Totally agree with you NFP. Keep it up!
Dan Aug 09, 2010 04:14am
so what exactly is our plan after we shout go zardari go ?? who do u wanna bring in next?? bilawal?? sheikh rashid??? musharraf??? guess what ... you dont know... and still you shout go zardari go ?? so why dont u figure out a plan rather then shooting a target in the dark and talk all the big words of revolution and rising of the nation and then talk about ousting the governement !!! your father might be the meanest person alive , but still hes your father and you would protect him and respect him. Zardari no matter how notorious he might be,, he holds the office of the president of our nation show some respect not to the person but atleast to the office he holds.... and who elected him... we shouted democracy and we have it.. lets not play the blame game which we are champions at.. P.S i have no affiliations with Zardari or the PPP, i only have one affiliation which is to my country!
Maddy Aug 09, 2010 03:34am
I would like to add one thing, people don't think every one here is just cursing zardari and forwarding jokes, people are really into the thing and are helping out their country men. Since the media is indulged in giving a hype to zardari stories as it being the hotest issue on earth these days, our brave and humane brothers and sisters are busy in taking care of those devastated by the floods. Now there are even places where the relief trucks are being mugged and nobody can do anything. This needs a serious straightening.
Amjad Wyne Aug 09, 2010 03:25am
mairaj has not read it yet. He will respond to your question once he has read the article.
shaukat ali chughtai Aug 09, 2010 03:18am
Since the brotheri or tribal system compels people in rural Pakistan to caste votes in favor of their chieftains, sardars or feudals, so there is no true democracy in Pakistan. The younger generations and especially middle class will have to work hard during the next decade so that the prevalent socio-culture fabric fades away and democratic norms are established, rule of law established. Respect for minorities is guarnateed etc. Lot of things to do. You throw 101 shoes on zardari or others, it won't make any difference. If the younger people, students and think tanks don't sit and have brain storming sessions, then Balawal Zarari will be your head of states, Hamza Sharif will be Prime Minister and Fatima Bhutto willbe Foreign Minister, and multiple chaudhrys and Khans will rule you for another five decade. Wake up youngsters and CHARAG JALAO.....CHARAGH sey CHARAGH JALEY GA. Yeh Lazim Hai K Hum Bhee Deykhen g......
Jawad Aug 09, 2010 03:12am
Criticizing Zardari (and other political leaders) does not stop one from helping fellow Pakistanis. I am sure the Pakistanis who protested in UK have also participated in the relief efforts in whatever capacity they could.
Zafar Aug 10, 2010 11:14am
A better use of shoes is to donate them to those who don't have.
manish mishra Aug 09, 2010 03:03am
hope...time brings in remedy...of this cyclic madness...but to my best medical requires shock therapy or surgery... as much you deny it... it requires a political general who doesnt fears for his/her life...u require another enter next phase of world time...
pakistani Aug 09, 2010 02:39am
media is become one sided, specially g o, i am fan of Hamid Mir. But i have seen him running campaign for pml n in recent by-election. In capital talk he gave coverage to shehbaz and nawaz sharif doing relief work in flood area, so pml can win by election. flood in punjab was least then khyber PK. khyber pukhtonkhwa is a hilly area and difficult area, roads are vanish but in punjab road are in shape that one can travel, in Khyber PK there is terrorism and ANP leadership can be hit. Did sharif brothers visited khyber PK or sindh for relief work.
Muhammad Akram Aug 10, 2010 11:11am
Tremedous effort once again by NFP. As more and more of us get swept by a wave of misfortunates and our own weird concepts of morality, this man has stood firm like a rock; and that too in the face of the most reactionary opposition. Hat's off to you, sir.
arshy Aug 09, 2010 02:05am
Nadeem this is wonderful : please keep writing because i love that you aspire to help Pakistan and its people understand through a logical point of view. i admire your writings a lot and if Allah permits maybe one day i will visit Pakistan again since my father was in the armed forces in Pakistan and died for his country Pakistan. I love Pakistan and always will and thank you for your civilized approach to the young generation of Pakistan: i will pray that Allah helps produce more like minded people such as your self in Pakistan so i can see it succeed and be proud of my heritage. KH.
Shahzaib Aug 09, 2010 01:57am
Yes cool cuz he is talking sense, and that's what he is saying Pakistan is drowning- so get off your lazy bums and save the drowning Pakistan- Zardari in London or in Islamabad can't do that- and also criticize with the same venom the mindset that is massacring us daily in markets, in schools, hell now in our own homes. So for God's sake use your brain and grow a pair.
aam shehri Aug 09, 2010 01:43am
What would zardari have done if he was here? And tell us honestly - will you have stopped hating zardari if he had cancelled the trip? or will you then simply find another reason to blame him for every fault?
E Mohammed Aug 09, 2010 01:33am
Mr H, before being accountable to anyone in the Other world you should be accoutable to your fellow citizens and most of all to yourself. That is the way to a clear conscience and salvation. And can you not forget, at least in this time of tragedy, that you are Muslim and realise that you are part of humanity? regards
Haris Chaudhry Aug 09, 2010 01:22am
Wrong my friend on quite a few fronts: This is infact the 'essence' of true democracy that dynasty or no-dynasty, whoever gets the more votes gets elected. Remember we have dynasties in India, Nepal and Bangladesh too - Nehru and Gandhi dynasties come to mind. The only difference is that regardless of the dynasties, the military stayed on the side in those countries for large part and hence those democracies have matured with solid institutions. In our case, no one has allowed any government to complete its tenure. Moreover the head of state chooses cabinet / ministries by himself/ herself. This happens in US, UK , India, throughout Europe and beyond. Every man/ woman has the 'right' who has Pakistani nationality to contest the elections under Pak constitution. Benazir stayed away from pak for most of his life so that didnt make her eneligible to rule. NFP is NOT defending PPP - Read his article again. Infact he is criticising Zardari for being away but he is more critical of those do-gooders and armchair-whiners who love blaming all ills on one single person but yet fail to take any concrete action of their own. Why dont we all take the article based on its content rather than digressing from the message and criticising for the sake of it ?
AgentX Aug 09, 2010 01:17am
Saeed you missed the point that Britons gave 4million Pound ... they can probably do more if there is proper leadership at home. As things stand the 4m will only compensate the price hikes created by disaster and will not go for real help at all. With a real leadership they can actually count for something.
Taimoor Iqbal Aug 09, 2010 01:04am
Thank You Dr. Junaid. I don't know how people agree with this guy.
Taimoor Iqbal Aug 09, 2010 01:01am
Altaf Hussain is the real voice of the PEOPLE, that is just hilarious. Why is he hiding in England himself, what is he doing there when Pakistan is going through these tumultuous times.
AgentX Aug 09, 2010 12:58am
I did not opt to run Pakistan and nor am I responsible for it! Now this does not mean that I don't want to help but I will not like to step on the toes of someone running the show and start my own parallel show. This effort needs to be organized and the office of President gives Zardari enough leverage to play the leadership role. So I am unable to comprehend why will you ever compare a concerned citizen with the leader?
Anam Aug 09, 2010 12:51am
I understand what you are trying to say, but i honestly dont see in any way or form that he is defending Zardari !! thats just absurd outlook. What he really meant was that abusing him or anyone in the government in that sense wont and never solves the problems. We need to wake up from this long hibernation and start looking around to make our society a better place to live in. We as nation are losing the moral code ourselves - jaise kaoum, waise hokmaran. We seriously Mr Imran need to wake up. Just by protesting and burning shops wont do. We always burn our own houses and the government just sits and enjoys the show.
Haris Chaudhry Aug 09, 2010 12:07am
simple and perfect what..? Did you really read NFP's article and the 'essence' of it or are you also one of those that write 3 words to announce their presence in the cyber world...?
Haris Chaudhry Aug 09, 2010 12:06am
Shafi, casting the stone is easier than doing - criticising is tons easier than rolling your sleeves up and helping some of those millions of victim. How on earth is NFP biased on his views about middle class when Pakistan is globally looked upon as a terrorists' sanctuary and breeding ground and you find wide support for the murderous taliban throughout this nation. He is right in pointing out that as a nation we sit atop the list of having double standards - talking and not doing. Whining and not acting. And NFP is not glorifying Zardari... He is also criticising his ill-timed visit - Read it again. All he is saying is that we must stop whining and complaining and try to help those in need. I fully agree with his view point.
Haris Chaudhry Aug 08, 2010 11:58pm
What a typical knee jerk response from Dr Junaid and 'H'. Do you even remotely get what NFP is trying to highlight..? What he says is simply this..."Irrespective of Zardari's trip (which by the way he is condemning and not condoning) what have the masses done within Pakistan to help their brethren besides whinging and whining their head off blaming Zardari. He is not defending Zardari, he is not taking the side of PPP, he is not even suggesting that Zardari should cop criticism - all he is saying (and you must all read the article again very s-l-o-w-l-y) is that we a nation have become hypocrites at almost everything and whilst we are jumping up and down cursing Zardari, we are not doing anything practical in helping the victims. Blaming Zardari wont make the suffering go away so enough with the blame game and get started on some real action. And 'H', who on earth do you need to bring in Islam and Muslims and accountability debate whilst we are discussing floods (that dont distinguish between Hindus and Mislims) and Zardari...
hassan javed warraich Aug 08, 2010 11:55pm
the slogan go zardari go. should be seen in the broader perspective, Mr. NFP.. It is not just because he went to UK at this strange time. It is to protest many other things Zardari in collaboration with PPP, and other coalition parties have done. They have lost their own self respect , along with selling Pakistan's (and its people) respect. This is to protest the heavy corruption incorporated and and protected by the Zardaris and PPPs and Nawaz Sharifs. If u NFP, being at such a senior position , do not see that what have Zardari and and Co. done to Pakistan in the broader perspective, then the future am afraid scares me. Corruption, Fake Degrees, and every wrong thing has not been accepted by Zardari and PPP, instead they have given justifications to prove if their is nothing wrong in it. Why? We all ask why are we told to believe whats wrong. Why is the public kept in a shadow of ignorance? We all know whats right and whats not. Zardari said nothing new in his speech at Birmingham. It was the same old "Bhutto was good, Bhutto was that-We have died . We have sacrificed "
ayesha khan Aug 08, 2010 11:30pm
A very thoughtful comment.
ayesha khan Aug 08, 2010 11:14pm
It is legitimate for you to protest in Birmingham. Nadeem himself says that he disagrees with Zardari's decision to go on a foreign tour at such a time. Bur he encourages you to also take some constructive steps to turn back the tide of hatred and intolerance that is engulfing your homeland Pakistan. Frankly, this indoctrination has a negative impact not just on image of Pakistanis but image of all Muslims and as an Indian Muslim, I am very concerned about this.
Rajesh Aug 08, 2010 11:09pm
It was sad to see flood victims crying for food in my living room tv,my heart goes out to those who has nothing to eat or drink,how can you stay in your palace when your people out their need help.I could not eat my dinner on that night how could the president of pakistan face his own people.
ayesha khan Aug 08, 2010 11:08pm
Really? Calling someone incompetent amounts to being a fan? Your dictionary is different from mine clearly. From what I can tell, Nadeem is simply asking the youth to be more constructively involved in turning back the tide of hatred and intolerance that is engulfing Pakistan and not limit their participation to a cynical criticism of Zardari.
Omar Aug 08, 2010 10:44pm
Nice climax! Pakistani are mostly lazy an corrupt. Even their youth are picky about which cause to fight for and as long as it suits their needs. I don't see any change comming to this nation all they are good for is burning busses and asking for handouts. Then they call it a conspiracy by everyone else, it's slipping away Pakistan, and it's on YOUR shift.
Atif Aug 08, 2010 10:36pm
@ Dr Junaid For all the time that you spend bashing Zardari in Birmingham Sir, Did it occur to you even once to help your poor brethren stuck in the Northern Areas. For all the pompous self-righteous venom that you spew, what are you doing to be part of the solution instead of the problem. I must mention here that i probably hate Zardari more than anyone else but what i've come to realize over the years is that the solution to all our problems goes far beyond sitting comfortable in our couches or in your case, running away to western nations, and criticizing our leaders.
Rafaay Hamdani Aug 08, 2010 10:15pm
Nadeem makes some keen observations about the incessant Zardari-bashing in the media. That Zardari voluntarily gave up the presidential powers is hardly ever acknowledged much less appreciated. Indeed all the spite for a person holding a largely ceremonial role in the country is perplexing. I suspect that if Freud were alive he would have speculated that there is so much angst and confusion amongst the Pakistani nation that many just need a scapegoat to diminish the agonizing emotions bubbling inside them all the time. The problem is blaming Zardari ad nauseam is not going to solve Pakistan's problems. There was a similar campaign, whipped up by sensationalism from a certain segment of the Urdu media, to oust Musharaff as well but Musharaff's exit did not purge the country of its myriad problems, did it?
Fazool_1 Aug 08, 2010 10:13pm
valid point raised by Hasan. PPP & zardari defenders completely miss this simple point. Is zardari led PPP providing good governance to the country? Leave aside "good", do they even realize that they have some job to do? PPP government, please show some performance. Do some real work. & then if you have time left you can whine about media bashing.
I A Kalhoro Aug 08, 2010 10:13pm
why one can't defend Zardari sab......come on, overcome this ZARDARI-PHOBIA.
Amer Aug 10, 2010 09:28am
Your child really asked these questions? Or are you trying to ask these questions through you child and hence some kind of random point? If your child asked ALL these questions then they have issues....may need medical help!?
sana Aug 10, 2010 09:24am
The (P cube) people are burning newspapers and attacking cable op offices and they still deserve to be loved? wow
Dr Tayyab Aug 08, 2010 10:02pm
Certainly, NFP has made some thoughtful points. However, the crux of the situation is that it is"Pakistan" which is on losing side no matter which way we look at it. Whether it is calamity striken masses, poor response to the flood victims, humiliation of an elected president (No matter how much we detest it), media's tunnel vision approach etc. As an expatriot, this is what hurts me the most that we, as a nation, always make headlines for wrong reasons. There is no doubt that Zardari's visit was uncalled for and rather irresponsible in view of current geo-political situation.
S. Nasir Mehdi Aug 08, 2010 09:38pm
I hesitate to disagree. Dr. Babar Awan is the number one fan.
Amjad Wyne Aug 08, 2010 09:31pm
Two wrongs do not make a right. And questioning a nation's resolve when it is stunned, paralyzed and its leaders - all of them - not just the PPP - took off is a silly idea. Your second point that PPP has somehow become the punching bag of the media. My assumption is that you consider yourself a part of the media but I have never read anything where you chose to punch the PPP.
Anam Aug 08, 2010 08:55pm
Here we go again. Why do we read news when we dont have the ability to understand it properly? Do we close our brains and read things and then start useless debates. He never defended Zardari - nor is he taking his side in any way, but he raises a very logical point. What are WE DOING for Pakistan??? throwing shoes at him wont do much, it never does anything. When a person shreds his self respect - then no matter what you do, that individual wont get bothererd. Anyways back to the point - We need to do something ourselves, how about we start with some good donation - how about we go around doing something decent. Giving up our wrong ways. You have to be the change, before changing the world. Everything starts from within - " My young friends, I look forward to you as the real makers of Pakistan, do not be exploited and do not be misled. Create amongst yourselves complete unity and solidarity. Set an example of what youth can do. Your main occupation should be in fairness to yourself, to your parents, in fairness to the State, to devote your attention to your studies. If you fritter away your energies now, you will always regret " ... Mohammad Ali Jinnah - WE NEED TO UNDERSTAND THIS . BEFORE ITS TOO LATE.
rz Aug 08, 2010 08:40pm
Great analysis NFP. The problem though remains "Stubbornness" on the part of young generation particularly and middle class at large. They will not accept the points you made in the piece as evident from the response of the young lad that he will not do the same thing to extremists what he wants to do to Zardari. In general when confronted with counter-arguments or questions, the tendency of these kind of people is always throw counter questions which used to include key terms like "what about Palestine, Chechnya, Kashmir, France, plight of the muslims in west etc." and is currently being added with terms like "Zardari, Corruption, It is not our war, Fake degrees, independent judiciary and Dogar's daughter exam marks, to name a few). It is disgusting to see the media and the middle class extremists falling over each other to exploit the natural disasters as political opportunities.
faraz ahmad Aug 08, 2010 08:20pm
Punjabi media has some irrational hatred agains Zardari. This media should be equal in doing its job with army, judiciary, media, and other and same politicians. It is not just fair that one person every time. Shame on you.
Not needed Aug 09, 2010 12:53pm
why cant you do these good deeds without the fear for Allah ......If Allah says that its ok you did only did 1 good (instead of 100) go to heaven, then it means you will do only 1 good deed..If he says I dont care whether you did not do a single good deed..I forgive go to heaven..Does that mean that we dont have to do any good deed then? How do you know after how many good deeds you will be in his good books.. And it also means that the only reason you will do a good deed is so that you can be in his good book... Why do we have to fear Allah? Why cant we love him and do good deeds as he has suggested for all man kind instaed of worrying how to be in his good book..
Mujeeb Nizamani Aug 08, 2010 07:56pm
Hi, I hope someone would read my comment. I have read few comments after the article, i don't understand how people could make an opinion from this article about NFP that he is supporting Zardari's trip. I guess we have completely forgotten the polite way to disagree about someones decisions. NFP has simply turn down the decision of Zardari's trip in sober way. Then there are some other comments where hidden political agenda is being sought (CONSPIRACY THEORY). I really appreciate the NFP's style of writing, which is almost always to the point and explicit. But it does not mean the i am obliged to agree with all what he has written like in this article too. Thanks Mr. Pracha for a discerning article. Mujeeb Nizamani
SAKEEL Aug 10, 2010 08:45am
Why dont we think for those who are suffering and they need our help in their hour of neeed instEAD WORRING ABOUT extrimism which is always topic of the day,leave it out for this moment and concentrate of savings lives.
talal Aug 08, 2010 07:43pm
nadeem beta what have you done so far for the flood victims? i am sure you wouldnt want to announce your donations publicly as you dont seem to be of the type who boast about themselves. similarly, you do not know what these young urban middle class pakistanis have done or doing for the flood victims. They are not going to call you up before/after sending in their donation. So, do not generalize the whole young urban middle class on behalf of your meeting with few 'i dont know whoever they were'. They are not going to write a blog on dawn about their donations. so please just do your own bit IF you care. also, throwing a shoe on zardari is not an answer to our problems but sometimes such activities have to be done to register a voice (and this is the voice of MILLIONSSS). if you are understanding enough than you would realize that it does a better job of showing how much people want to get rid of him, than some of your articles or quarrelsome talk shows where people are just pulling each others leg. dude, you have got some serious problem with this young generation. wake up dude! i wonder what would you do if you were 20 years old instead of 42 in 2010? stop writing your views about others. worry about yourself my friend!
Ilham Attique Aug 08, 2010 07:15pm
Nadeem Farooque Paracha is the true voice of his generation!
Pragmatist Aug 10, 2010 08:24am
@ ramzan lakhani since when blogs were supposed to bring about revolution. Media seems more interested in talk and shoe stuff rather than do something constructive and there are people who support media's antics.
Earthworm Aug 08, 2010 07:07pm
I would add this line to the end of this exchange that the blogger left out: "Sure I'm young, but I'm not stupid." He answered.
Zulfiqar Haider Aug 10, 2010 08:07am
It is very true that if this generation is not willing to denounce religious extremism then this country would certainly become the hub of extremists and terrorists.
imran Aug 08, 2010 06:58pm
i totally agree with you Junaid. its about time we stop the blame game & do something positive. NFP if you think you are a better person than those you write against. then no need of bring yourself to their level, rise above them. Let people make up their own mind. Take a new direction & approach to devaite people's minds from all the wrong thats been said & shown on media , lets see more action & less talk & even lesser non productive discussions. I am sure people had enough of these TV discussions which dont get any outcome rather than more hatred. Need some innovative ideas here to bring people especially young to come forward & make a stance against terrorism, Mullahs , bad politics & politicians etc
Pari Aug 08, 2010 06:49pm
I believe yo have summed it pretty nicely though its sad to see such a pessimitic view..The only thing on ecan think nowadays is oneself - my job, my house, my family..nobody else matters..Religious or modertae or non-religious..does not matter..Its a sorry state everywhere..If one is trying to get out of man made travesty's ..nature adds few more..
yasser Aug 08, 2010 06:46pm
The people did elect him, but it is moralizing middle-class people like YOU who dont bother to vote. Like your messiah Imran, all you guys are good at is preach, preach, preach. Zaradri DID NOT come through the back door like so many of your uniformed saviours did. He is an elected President. But I doubt if you even know how democracy works. Sheesh.
Mohammed Aug 08, 2010 06:33pm
Well said. As I pointed out in my earlier response, Mr. Paracha appears to be taking the line (over the course of his numerous columns) that all the faults of the PPP and zardari should be overlooked because 'others have done it, are doing it, and are perhaps worse'. That is a ludicrous position to take. Pakistanis demanded change from Musharraf, despite his once large popularity and got it. With Zardari and the PPP in charge, we demand change once more. We need an independent and autonomous FIA, NAB and FBR, with DG's appointed by a committee similar to the Judicial nomination committee. No more should Rehman Malik or a nawaz lackey be able to ignore SC orders and manipulate the system to protect their 'blue eyed boys'. Independent investigations, prosecutions and judiciary, and let those who are corrupt rot out of office for their sins. Enough is enough, and Mr. Paracha needs to stop being an apologist for corruption, and take the side of those demanding change and an end to the manipulation of LEA's by politicians.
saleem b Aug 08, 2010 06:30pm
Your article articulates well the way we don't want to tackle difficult things and hide behind easy ones or blame someone else! hats off to people who are helping the unfortunate ones in the worst floods in Pakistan's history.
Pragmatist Aug 08, 2010 06:22pm
@dr. Junaid you say karachi is burning,Pakistan dying,flooding,killings etc. and you were there to protest Zardari's visit.So did your protest solve any of these problems.Has your protest stopped the floodings or killings.Zardari should have cancelled the tour but how come these protests or shoes will solve the problem.
concerned Aug 10, 2010 07:54am
I think you should train your child not to ask questions. Otherwise, he might land into trouble someday...
Paki Aug 08, 2010 05:59pm
i can't believe on earth you can possibly be DEFENDING HIM ? okay we are not doing as we were doing back in 2005, and Khud Insari Fund, and Qarz utaro Mulk Sanwaaro..and don
imran Aug 08, 2010 05:52pm
well agreed with the comments passed by Junaid Aamir Tipu
Paki Aug 08, 2010 05:51pm
Kamran Aug 08, 2010 05:26pm
Rightly said; leaders are suppose to lead from the front in this kind of situation.
Ch Allah Daad Aug 08, 2010 05:16pm
Pervez Musharaf was Army Chief and President, even then he took three days to moblize troops. It was one of the slowest reponse from any army chief or president, who had all powers to govern, whereas Mr. Zardari is just a figure head. Mr. Gillani is chief executive, and should be comapred with Pervez Musharaf, not Mr. Zardari. Some people still live in the past and are not aware that Mr. Zardari has surrendered all Pervezi Powers to his prime minister. Yes, as a leader of the party, he should have done something better, that I agree..
sharif Aug 08, 2010 05:08pm
the writer has draw this generation attention into today.the previous all generation has been quite and its now or never stage.
OMAR Aug 08, 2010 05:06pm
I completely endorse Dr.Tipu's views.It seem as if neutral and transparent journalists are getting harder to find in Pakistan.Very well said Dr.Sahib.
R S JOHAR Aug 08, 2010 04:56pm
NFP has written a thought provoking article and two important messages are conveyed to his countrymen. Firstly, the need of the hour is to save precious lives and give necessary help to the marooned people and not personality bashing which is of little or no consequence. Secondly, the mindset of the young Pakistanis which has been polluted by the media with hilarious conspiracy theories and religious extremism must undergo a sea change for country's progress and vibrant democracy. I fully agree with his analysis.
gp65 Aug 08, 2010 04:55pm
He is not defending Zardari. In fact, he has described Zardari as incompetent and also seems to describe his visit as inappropriate. The question he is asking is what are the people - who may have legitimate grievances against Zardari - doing to improve the situation in their own country? DO they not have any duty in this regard?
usman Aug 08, 2010 04:48pm
stunning article...right on the spot.
MM Aug 08, 2010 04:28pm
Nadeem Paracha, as usual you are brilliant!
Javed Qamer Aug 08, 2010 04:17pm
Your article is right on the money. Young people have to come forward and be the torchbearers again. My son who is an American citizen would like to help the flood affected people of Pakistan. Maybe a group of young Pakistanis can band together and get involved in helping the flood affected citizens of Pakistan. Nadeem you can be the facilitator.
Lubi Aug 08, 2010 03:54pm
"This piece is about the kind of scared hippocracy our generation is exhibiting." And why may I ask is 'our generation' exhibiting this 'scared hipocrisy'? Is it really the media that has caused it? Or might it be our Illustrious leadership (past and present) who have failed miserably in their job to give the people direction that is at the root of it all? You see my friend the media and the extremists are only symptoms of a bigger problem. There is a big vacuum at the top, and in the absence of sincere leadership all sorts of opportunists are succeeding in creating confusion in peoples' minds so It is very naive of NFP to constantly blame the media and the conservatives who are only a by product of the mess our leaders have made!
SAKEEL Aug 10, 2010 07:25am
This is the time for everyone to pray,donate whatever they can and if you can go out there to help those who do not have anything left in the flood,let Zardari have his good holiday and NFP have his protection a muslim and human being our duty is to help those needy but keep your new shoes ready for Zardai and NFP for later on.
Kamran Aug 08, 2010 03:47pm
Saeed Aug 08, 2010 03:32pm
There you go again! Looks like you have completely missed Nadeem's point. Spending all your time blaming Zardari for country's ill will not solve our problems
Ch Allah Daad Aug 08, 2010 03:11pm
Very impressive article. In my view people of Pakistan in general and Karachites in particular are exhausted after so much violance, disasters, economic and social problems. I am not from Karachi, but I must admit that during my brief stay at 05 earthquake hit areas, the donations and other help provided by Karachi alone outnumbered everyone else. Unfortunately now situation is totally different. Karachi is itself in turmoil, therefore people are looking for different reasons and excuses, and President of Pakistan has consciously provided them. The people of Karachi should be excused for having some fun.
Truthmonger Aug 08, 2010 02:32pm
NFP Thanks for showing mirror to the youth of Pkaistan and all you needed was the following: "Would you throw a shoe at a religious extremist? I asked."
sakeel Aug 08, 2010 02:25pm
Coolest writer when Pakistan is drwoning and leader are in europe palace.
sakeel Aug 08, 2010 02:24pm
What is so great about it!
sakeel Aug 08, 2010 02:24pm
How can you defend someone like Zardari!
sakeel Aug 08, 2010 02:20pm
Zardaris biggest fan is NFP.
Ayzaa Aug 08, 2010 02:19pm
Great reply. Totally agree
Anonymous Aug 08, 2010 01:49pm
Good going Dr. Junaid! I commend you on your commitment. If only there were more of us on the streets in pakistan protesting for the right reasons...
H Aug 08, 2010 01:41pm
Hats off to MR junaid i really appreciate what u said we need to condemn what is wrong how can one forget we are all Muslims and it is our firm beleive that we all will be accountable infront of Allah
Tariq Aug 08, 2010 01:36pm
Nadeem, your article has a biased political stench. How can you even try to defend our president?
A.Bajwa Aug 08, 2010 01:23pm
Instead of looking to Zardari as Messiah Pakistan should organise local governments to address such problems. Community development can lead to greater confidence to take on our social and economic problems.
SharifunNisa Aug 08, 2010 01:19pm
Very bold of you Dr. Junaid and those of us stuck here are so thankful to all of you who are there for performing this remarkable feat.
Alam N. (usa) Aug 09, 2010 12:33pm
Mr. Paracha : Roll up your pants, wade into surging flood & rescue drowning, lead by example, practice what you preach.
Abbas Aug 09, 2010 12:35pm
Pakistan is a poor country because you haven't educated you people enough, they have no skills to bring work and money into the country. It's not all about the politicians.
SharifunNisa Aug 08, 2010 01:16pm
Calling a spade and spade does hurt, doesn't it? :) Btw I belong to middle-class punjab and am in total agreement with NFP. So kindly stop dodging the truth by giving his observation an ethnic colour. That's what the Sharifs do.
Waqas Aug 08, 2010 12:55pm
simple and perfect reply!
mairaj Aug 08, 2010 01:04pm
great article...
dr junaid amir tipu Aug 08, 2010 12:38pm
Nadeem, you should start analysing situations with an open heart and mind, not the approach that you always have. Knowing you have a past of being a PPP activist, I need to tell you off for trying to deviate from the truth. your present co chariman is a man who leads this royal party, that is built on politics of dynasty. His home (i mean, home number four, after UK, Dubai, France) is burning, Pakistan is dying, floods, extremism and Karachi killings are a daily thing now. I was there at Birmingham to protest, families were there, kids were there. What we did was resister our vote, to symbolise against leaders like zardari ...........and am glad we did, because it was for the nation, we live here, thats why we did it, he was supposed to be in Pak, he shouldnt have been here in the first place.................... If only journalists loved Pakistan and not their own political interests................
imran Aug 08, 2010 12:34pm
Yeah right, what r u talking about Ahmed? the poeple didnt elect zardari, its a family dynasty & fuedal system & all the politicians are same, there is no true democracy in this country anyway. Everyone just votes for the party, they never look at the MPA or MNA they are voting for , his her character & if he is educated or competent to do his job, then comes the minitries choosen by PM. Zardari has shown he doesnt care about the people. These leaders & their siblings who spend all their life overseas have no right to just drop in when they are ready to lead our country. They are so disconnected from the poeple they rule over. I feel sick reading NFP defending PPP. two wrongs dont make a right mate!! Lets all get together to do our bit to help flood victims by raising funds or any other way. But never forget what our leaders did in our time of need... I do agree with NFP regarding his comments on extremsim, we need to make a stand against that without fear or our way of life in Pakistan will not be a moderate one. We had a good balance of religion & culture before which we need to fight for. I miss how Pakistan used to be before.
Rakesh Aug 08, 2010 12:17pm
Great post. You are indeed one of the coolest writers Pakistan has ever had! Your fan from Karachi, Pakistan! :-)
Umer Bashir Bajwa Aug 09, 2010 05:38pm
What is most saddening part is that still in responding NFP we again miss the topic and instead of talking about solutions ...needs & the role we can play either collectively or individually we again fell into the same time wasting debates about our leaders who is doing good or who is doing bad . He talked about our duty at this national disaster not only this he even tried to shake us by quoting examples how young bloods see events in todays world but still we r on a wrong side n criticizing either 1 politician or a particular event . We must put all our efforts to unite our nation against all the disasters and even the ills prevailing in our society because the one thing we cannot afford is to divide . I may b the last man to loose hope about this country but still it hurts when i see the people like us who r educated n who do want to share their experiences, share their arguments , share what they feel and their opinion about how they see things developing around us loose direction and instead of putting a collective effort there starts a polarized competition. ........ WE are the GENERATION AXE n what ever excuse we may have we will be responsible if any thing goes wrong with our society or our country ....
Amjad Wyne Aug 09, 2010 12:54pm
The article was written by "Ilyas Khan" and we all know where he comes from. The article makes two claims - One, that the media has strong ties with the army and two, army is using media and is behind all the hoopla against Zardari". Not sure which media Ilyas Khan is referring to. What I know is that it is the same media that has spoken against the Army for a number of years and it is the same media that helped bring down Musharraf. It may be of interest to the readers that of all the outlets, Ilyas Khan cites media outlets that have never said anything good about the military in the last several years and have benefited most from the PPP government.
Saeed Aug 09, 2010 01:03pm
How come no one ever threw a shoe at the assorted Generals who got us where we are? And why is it that the educated middle class goes on intellectual and moral leave whenever we elect a democratic government? NFP is right, the response to the earthquake was much more huge. It's as if ever since a political government came into being, the educated middle class has abdicated all civic responsibility toexcept bashing them. Blaming others is easier than actually doing something ourselves, I guess.
ayesha khan Aug 09, 2010 01:07pm
You are asking a question that Nadeem has already answered. He has said he disagrees with the timing of the trip and cannot defend it.
Khan Haris Aug 08, 2010 11:54am
Well, what impression I get from the writer is that Pakistan's young generation has lost its direction and they do not have any clear vision for country's future. I do agree on that point. However, let me add a point here. These are the leaders whom young generation gets inspiration and guideline. Cultures and values are set by leaders. Unfortunately, previous and current leaders are not leaving any remarkable foot print for young generation to follow. Millions of dollars were donated to earthquake victims. No idea where this huge amount has gone. Similarly, current leadership prefers to visit their French palace rather than staying in the country. However, in my opinion, these incompetent class of politician should be given chance to expose their real faces before the public. If they are thrown out before their term, they will repeat the same rhetoric again that politician never got full term.
Junaid Aug 08, 2010 11:54am
Media is just private money making mahine which has to make profit out of investement they do; sad part is that we have considered them as our massiah. Sad thing is that our leader are not doing anything which can very well see ranging from fake degree, corruption to expensive lifestyle. But definelty saddest part is our youth is caught in all this game and is not doing or not able to do anything. I being 25 years old (according to common-wealth def I am considered as youth but by UN, I am not young anymore). Whatever it may be, I do thing what I am doing and what I can do and how can I do. May be I got the answer what I have to do, but how to do; I still don't know. but this time when we are facing joblessness, frustration and lack security; we tend to get angry and hyper very soon and prefer to burn tires then to practical do something positive. Let see whether we can find our answers or not
sonia Aug 08, 2010 11:53am
really awesome reply.i couldn't agree more wid u
Mohnis Aug 08, 2010 11:47am
The incident was reported first by ARY at 9 pm, darling. Geo was way too late.
Mohnis Aug 08, 2010 11:46am
Is it, really? NFP has the nerve to do things what people like us don't have the gutts to. I'm sure you wouldn't have said this had he been denfending extremists. You are the kind of person that comes to mind when NFP writes: "Turning such loud 9anti-Zardari) whining into an obsession is even worse." Btw, as NFP asked that kid who was ready to throw a shoes at Zaradri, would you do the same at an extremist? You wont. This piece is about the kind of scared hippocracy our generation is exhibiting. This has nothing to do with the defense of Zardari. grow up, already.
S. A. M. Aug 08, 2010 11:42am
In your subtle way you have said it is not a good thig to throw shoes at Zardari and that you should shift your focus from his busy schedule and to just think of the worries that we are facing. You could have drawn a comparison between the ruler (pervez musharraf) at the time of earthquake and the one that we are so lucky to have these days (who else than zardari). Whenever trouble strikes the masses look for guidance from the leader. They want to see that the leader is doing his bit to resolve the matter. In our case the president did not even bother to make any positive statement let alone solving the matter. If the PPP's workers are having problems in defending their leader they should abandon such attempts because all such efforts are bound to meet failure. their leader is least bothered about pakistan, its people alongwith the political party.
Anonymous Aug 08, 2010 11:34am
Just curious about a very mundane aspect; the show throwing incident just happened late last night. did you meet up with these students this morning then?
mawali Aug 08, 2010 11:29am
Zafar Aug 08, 2010 11:17am
Your point about the nation's inability to confront militant mind we face is true. But to attribute obsessive Zardari bashing by media as primary factor behind lack of relief efforts for flood victims is only partially correct. In 2005 earthquake we were several hundred suicide blasts younger, target killing in Baluchistan had not materialized into mass migration of settlers, Karachi was not at stand still at that particular moment, Our economy was much less weaker. Therefore the news of thousands perishing in a span of few minutes was really the biggest shock we had in some time. In present times shocks after shocks has somehow numbed our sensitivities. Our collective conscious is too exhausted to react to floods as it did to earthquake back then. Such is the gravity of out situation that we see darkness looming all around. Waiting for our turn to be consumed by it.
Objective Aug 08, 2010 11:14am
Top piece again NFP. I'm no fan of Zaradri, but the way the media goes after him is becoming quite sickening - especially when you hear about the kind of people and their not very objective and clean deeds. I agree that the following statement by you says it all about the confusion this generation of young pakistani middleclasses is going through: "Anything that scares you or retaliates, you deny its existence. As if it
Hassan Aug 08, 2010 11:01am
I have a question for Mr.Piracha too... I get paid to be an efficient worker at my company, any laziness or unprofessional attitude on my part and my employer will gladly show me the door. The government's job is running the government efficiently and here in lies the problem. By appointing hand picked incompetent, unelected in some cases and unprofessional people as the head of various ministries he has earn t the wrath of the nation. He is not dismissing any one who is not doing their job properly the honorable minister for Power as an example who has us believe that all our electricity misery would be over by Dec 2009. The problem is NOT India, America or Israel the problem is good governance and Mr.President being the head of the federation will come under more fire as the what ever good governance we have erodes!
RamRahim@India Aug 08, 2010 10:55am
Sajjad Aug 09, 2010 01:18pm
Has everyone forgotten that our Prime Minister is still here!???!!!!! every one knows who is running the government.
manulegend Aug 10, 2010 06:30am
Hope is still there sir. Your 4 year old and his generation should give a lesson is preparedness. What the child asked are common sense questions. Look at the adults who faced so many crises but still haven't learnt a wee bit about preparedness. Bless you child. We need you and your generation to be the questioners. We have done a pathetic job of nation building. Hope your generation forgives us. By the way honey, God is not mischievous. These are tests for human intelligence and preparedness. Looks like we have failed God and we failed our own generation as well.
omair Aug 08, 2010 10:24am
good reply
brock Aug 08, 2010 10:25am
i will have to admit that your one of the coolest writers that Pakistan has ever had! Your fan from India
Shafi Aug 08, 2010 09:58am
Dear Mr Piracha, You are quite write that most Pakistanis are a herd of sheep with no clear sense about their destination. Unfortunately you are no different. Your biased views of middle classes and Punjabi's puts you in the same category. There would be very few leaders of anyother country who would abandon their country durind a catastrophe. There is no doubt we have shameless leaders who are being glorified by the people who should be put Pakistan first and not its terrible leaders.
Ahmed Saeed Aug 08, 2010 09:54am
A fine peace of analysis, Nadeem everyone agrees with what you say. The problem does not lie else where. A country where major chunk of the population comprises of young people, its quite easy for anyone may be any media to intimidate. Pakistan has always been through difficult times, but leaders cannot be blamed for everything. We are the one electing them and ultimately cursing them as well or we always welcome dictators and do nothing when they sit at the helm of the affairs. I think the best way to get out of this quagmire is to address the mindset and it is only possible if young people participate actively. As far as Altaf's MQM is concerned, I think that is the real voice of the educated people. What ever they have been doing is past but what ever they are doing I feel is the right way to pull Pakistan out of troubles.
Rahmatullah Aug 08, 2010 09:34am
As you sow so shall you reap.
masooma javaid Aug 10, 2010 06:19am
my comment will probably be lost here but even so true focusing on zardari wont help anyone still cant blame people for doing it....leadership matters but its really not the time....what have i done for my people nothing nothing at all was it really the media coverage that made us Pakistani help our brothers and sisters during 2008 earthquake somehow it feels that its true sad as it may be but if it stands true then the media NEEDS to move its attention to the devastation in Pakistan at the current moment we have a population that feeds on emotion we all feed on emotion ....if the media makes this generation see the nature of the destruction caused by the floods many youth will stand up for work and actually roll up their sleeves and do something about it this is media too no? Spread this around make sure everyone in Pakistan and abroad remembers the true essence of being a Pakistani as for me i am going to spread word ....he is right you know we have everything at our disposal so to all those who know the right way why not LEAD others why wait for ZARDARI ?!?
AHmed Aug 10, 2010 06:05am
Asad, brilliant reply
Ahson Aug 10, 2010 05:43am
May be your are right but Its politicans who brought education and justice and we have lack of that kind of politicans.....I wish we will see French revolution and Pray to ALLAH that will happen in Pakistan ASAP...
Momina Aug 10, 2010 05:39am
Nice post, you've taken up a valid stance. I disagree with one thing though; "....paranoid shades of the somewhat despotic, self-righteous middle-class morality." I'm middle-class, very middle-class. So are almost all my friends and most of the people I work with. We're not that bad....and sure, there's a lot of paranoia going around and I'm sure you need to vent as much as the next guy, but please do understand that the cursed middle-class still puts its money where its mouth is, despite being hit very hard with inflation. Also, not all middle-class people celebrated our President's "Joota Pilae", a good number of them were indignant that we Pakistanis don't give a 2nd thought to how we carry ourselves on the international stage. Criticize the Parliamentarians and other public office bearers all you will, but throwing stuff at no less ... disgraceful.
Eraj Aug 10, 2010 05:04am
Asad, I wonder if you have ever heard the truism that goes, leaders are a reflection of the nation. So, I guess being as apathetic as we have proven ourselves to be in this calamity, we deserve the equally apathetic leader that we have.
Ghalib Aug 10, 2010 05:05am
So we have a wrong president, whose fault it is anyway, Democracy is new to Pakistan people need time to understand the system, I believe it is going to take at least 5 to 6 elections if not interrupted by hostile take overs for people to vote on issues and not on families, and there is no guarantee after that also that if people who understand democracy vote for the right people after all Bush was also elected.
Majaz Amin Aug 10, 2010 04:58am
well said!!!!!
Adeel Aug 10, 2010 04:55am
Surely that's a little disingenuous. If the president is so powerless now, what was he doing visiting France and Britain, meeting their policitical and executive heads and negotiating on behalf of Pakistan? Clearly, as head of the country's largest political party and the political force behind its government, there is much in terms of mobilizing resources- both human and humanitarian- that he could have accomplished by staying here instead of taking off on a farely meaningless jaunt. In any case, it's the heartlessness that so appalled people. No one really expected Zardari to wade into flood waters and carry little screaming children on his back to rescue boats. After all, has he been to visit our soldiers even once in the war zones where they have been fighting and dying? Sadly, no!
Kashif Aug 10, 2010 04:30am
The problem with our nation is they are very prompt to criticize others, but oblivion to their own faults, we should first of all correct ourself before preach others, for God sake at this difficult hour we should sacrifice for those who suffered alot, rather than putting fingers on leaders, I'm sick of it. Our nation didn't regard the true leaders like Liaquat Ali Khan and Bhutto. When u don't respect blessings you will have curses,
ramzan lakhani Aug 10, 2010 04:18am
Blog seems to have fun by persons have nothing else to do And create an issue to debate!!! So useless to talk sense.... Shoe was hurled against Bhutto (late) at Lyari gathering...........He laughed and said I know shoes are getting expensive....laughed at and whole meeting went well...... Media started to spotlight issue and Cronies tried to suppress(to burst further?)
maria k Aug 10, 2010 04:04am
dear hadaimba and the rest , pak is a country which is still surviving alhamdullahah even after such strong time like terrorism plane crash flood and what not , you bear one of this and youll see still local people are stepping forward well about we taking power from the president since day 1 he has them and using it in appropriately and if someone raise voices he is closed and army is chilling out god knows why dont know weather i shall say this abt pak or not m country yet people are in worst situations if you people cannot help then please dont make false accusations.
Ghulam Hussain Soomro Aug 10, 2010 03:48am
if you have such a problem with the current democratic government, wait for the next elections and just vote them out!! simple as that.
Mohammed Aug 09, 2010 07:46pm
I wouldn't care if Zardari was simply a titular head of State, but as the PPP Chairperson as well, he wields enormous power over the PPP and therefore the government and cabinet. HE remains PPP Chairperson because he took advantage of BB's death to remove her loyalists and appoint cronies in key positions, and by sidelining the old stalwarts, he has attempted to ensure there is no challenge to his complete control of the party. That the PPP stalwarts have so far just succumbed to Zardari is also a poor reflection on them.
Em Aug 22, 2010 08:22pm
NFP - Arent you or were PPP worker too.. change your leader if he is so messed up that workers re ashamed of him .. he is announced corrupted internationally.. what other reason you want?
ConspiracyTehreek Aug 10, 2010 12:39am
Excellent piece NFP. But i feel we are fighting a losing battle...atleast you are one of the very few who can expose this hypocrisy in our society....keep it up.
Sawliha Aug 09, 2010 11:38pm
@ Abbas: But if there is no money left to educate the poor and lower middle class as it is usurped by the politicians, pray tell how you are going to teach them skills without resources?
Saadiq Aug 09, 2010 11:16pm
WOW what a dramatization dude..your 4 year old could ask questions like this..gimme a break
ali Aug 09, 2010 10:41pm
Very good questions, unfortunately the answer lies in the article, I was wondering about my country as well, now I know, the youth is just busy in partying and texting and enjoying themselves, thus the sad situation there.
Em Aug 22, 2010 08:19pm
Shermalick! so true.. just need to think outside the box.. after all these prayers and hard core followers of the religion we have been struck twice the calamity. Get our acts straigthen up help the way you can. We are very good in praying, fasting.. along with corruption, lying, stealing, racism, killing.. (long list). The moto of the this article is .. let NFP provide protection to Zardari .. just do merely good deeds on our part not what the religion or any firqa of the religion says... we had enough of this.
Hassan Aug 09, 2010 07:39am
I agree Zardari if present in Pakistan would not be knee deep in water helping people, but would you rather have your president in UK and France or in Pakistan at this time? Should the President the symbol of unity of Pakistan to be in his office, rallying the government machinery to help the needy at this time or out of country??
Munsif Ali Aug 09, 2010 09:03pm
Very well written blog.The part of EMedia and Televangelists are pumping nothing but sheer hate and conspiracy theories.The Anti PPP or Anti Zardari campaign is favorite chorus of today's self righteous media and urban generation.As you well pointed out that our society is turning deaf ears to critical issues being faced by our country and they find only peace in hitting President Zardari.The one sided hate campaign is of no use and self righteous rhetorics cant feed nation,nor bring any better change in long run.
neutre mon cul Aug 09, 2010 08:15pm
NFP.. you are creative in finding one way or another to defend the leadership. You should take a clear stance in your opinions. no hiding behind neutral grounds .... You my friend always tread on thin ice..never critical enough!!!!!!! Societal changes don't just happen on voluntary basis by ordinary citizens, it requires examples multiples of them, not by ordinary citizens like us as they go unnoticed but by the people of influence. until the folks sitting at the positions of influence carry on their indifferent behavior to the masses below them..those masses will always be critical..You should be thankful that are people still carry the ability to criticize..or else they have been experiencing far worst than what's happening to them ...
Saad Aug 09, 2010 06:56pm
Perhaps you should also compare the global economy in similar manner. By the way your unemployment rate is down, stock markets stable, balance of payments in surplus for the first time and almost all economic indicators in the green. Obviously this was right before the floods and since the media was never interested in highlighting these you never got to know it. Here are some links regarding the economy,$-3.060-bn-jd-02 Should media be not biased, your perception would have been different
asad khan,karachi,pakistan Aug 10, 2010 04:07am
situation is frightening indeed.there was a time when recommendation got one a job,now i am told public offices are being sold for money.karachi is sai to better than rest of the country but even here one comes accross an army of beggers who would'nt let you go unnless you paid them something.some say they are professional but they are so imaciated,weak that it evokes sympathy all this makes one gloomy about the countrys future.may God help us.Floods are a natural curse.
Shoaib Aug 09, 2010 05:57pm
Shakeel.. u are cent percent right ... i cannot agree with u more on this!
Umer Bashir Bajwa Aug 09, 2010 05:44pm
I totally agree with u A. BAjwa
desihungama Aug 09, 2010 04:50pm
Yes, he is indeed visiting fake make shift camps. You are not one of the doctors at that camp are ya? Sorry dear the status quo will not remain forever and you are just afraid of the change but it's coming.
desihungama Aug 09, 2010 04:35pm
My son who is 4 years old has a couple of questions which I was not able to provide an answer: Are these the first Monsoon rains to ever hit the Indian Sub continent? Does Pakistan have any Mosques where worshipers can congregate and discuss these type of situations? Do these Mosques employ caretakers (Mullahs) who could have used the loud speakers from where they could have warned people to evacuate? Are Pakistani people as good as dead? Did God cry for Pakistan and tears are now washing our sins off?
fazlia khan Aug 09, 2010 04:28pm
Brilliant work Nadeem.
Salma Aug 09, 2010 04:24pm
Even though I don't usually agree with Mr Nadeem Paracha's views, yet this article is very true about our nation. This crisis is being called a bigger crises than the 2004 earthquake yet people do not seem very eager to help the infected ones this time. I liked the last part about hitting an extremist with a shoe, yes I think he deserves it more than Zardari.
Bilal Aug 09, 2010 04:07pm
perhaps Mr.Paracha you should also have weighed in the economic situation in 2006 to what we are witnessing right now. The affluent ones may not realise, but people are in a state of depression with ever increasing inflation and unemployment.
techunar Aug 09, 2010 03:54pm
Very well put Mr. Hidaimba!
Asad Aug 09, 2010 01:55pm
NFP has anyone ever educated you in the concept of leadership ? It events of disaster it is the leader who leads from the front and shows the right path to his followers - it is responsibility of a leader to be the front runner in every disaster etc. But Zardari and yourself are oblivious of this reality. The point is not what every tom dick and harry has done for this country - the point is how a leader has lead his countrymen in such a way that they own it and deliver results responsibly. When a leader runs away from the problem then for obvious reason the people of his nation wont be able to conclude realistically on what to do and how to approach a certain situation. Was there an address for President or Prime Minister asking common people to help in this natural disaster ? Did the President explain in an engaging way why he was making his trip and during his absence from the country what he expected of his countrymen ? NO!! right ? So now educate yourself a little bit on this and instead of passing the book get up and go to the flood hi area's and practice what you preach. Its cozy to sit in air con room and write about how we should respond blah blah -----
Mohammed Aug 09, 2010 07:42pm
Absolutely. I argued that the response during the 2005 earthquake was better because we had a leadership in Musharraf that was extremely popular with the youth at the time, a President that was not considered corrupt, despite his other obvious faults, and therefore a President whose 'Pakistan First' slogan rang true. The youth are precisely the segment that needs leadership and motivation, and whether or not Zardari has powers under the constitution to do anything, it is fact that he runs the PPP, which runs the government, and therefore his presence and that of his ministers leading the relief effort, donating volunteering and getting their 'hands dirty' would have truly been a moment to inspire all Pakistanis. And before people jump on me with the canard of 'what did you do'. As member of an online forum, I and a few other people have already organized two trips so far with financial support from forum members, to supply KP affectees with a total of 6 vehicles worth of supplies. There are at least two other such 'relief missions' planned by other members in different cities on the forum - and this is just the example of one online forum.
Iqbal Qasim Aug 09, 2010 02:36pm
Great point as always NFP.
vidhyarthi Aug 09, 2010 01:57pm
Wow. The best liner I have ever read.
shaz Aug 09, 2010 01:27pm
Pakistan is a country which will never learn.... its not the politicians but the people of pakistan who bring these politicians "democratically." :=)