Archive | July, 2012

Media Damage – From a soldier’s eyes

25 Jul

Let me tell you right in the beginning that I am a soldier; that too serving and that too in one of the Agencies, fighting our war on terror, with a small ‘w’ and a small ‘t’ because many of us are still confused as to whose war is it anyway.

In the morning, my post was hammered by Taliban’s rockets. And in the evening, while watching various news channels on our “free media” over a 4 inches black and white TV, powered by an AGS battery, sitting in a bunker made of stones, housing more wild life than many of you would have ever seen; I received another barrage. This time however, these were missiles but of a very different kind. They did not affect me physically but rocked me psychologically. They were so much more lethal than anything Taliban’s could ever produce.

Guess what? These were the salvos of words, fired by my own people, better known as “anchor persons and intellectuals”. The very people whom I am supposed to protect with my life and because of whom I am here in this bewilderness. I am referring to the likes of Asma Jehangir, Hamid Mir, Mazhar Zahidi, Nusrat Javed and Najam Sethi.

Mr. Mazhar Zaidi, sitting in his relatively secure and definitely extremely comfortable environment, had the guts to say that despite the venom he and his cronies were spewing in print and electronic media against the military, the morale of Majors, Captains and JCOs/NCOs remained unaffected.

That is untrue my dear Zaidi Sahib. Our morale does get affected. And probably, it is only our morale that gets affected because the higher echelon either doesn’t bother or doesn’t have time to watch your programs. And it is probably only our morale that matters, because the more seniors do not have to fight hand to hand anymore.

It gets so much affected that with each passing day, as a soldier, I tend to think that I am serving an ungrateful nation through an unscrupulous institution. No soldier can rightly be proud of serving an institution which is termed as corrupt, inept, incompetent and disgraceful by our “Free” media on daily basis.

Your talk shows containing poison about my institution forces me to think, “Why should I be blown up to pieces, trying to defend my motherland, in most hostile of circumstances, in a murky war?” Well done intellectuals! You have done what India, Taliban and the USA combined could not do in last so many years.

Had i had a choice of leaving this profession right away to join that elite group of anchors, making incredible amounts of money while driving the nation crazy, I would have done so. But I know that I do not have a choice. I know that in our unjust system, only me, my family and my children would suffer while these anchors would continue to enjoy their lives because they have the power and wherewithal to do it while sapping the National morale.

Alas, I continue to serve, ready to sacrifice my life for my beloved nation, though with a heavy heart; burdened by the words of those who make as much money in a month as I would probably make in a life time. Those who do not have the courage to do something about those due to whom they harm innocent soldiers like me. This is new type of collateral damage in which soldiers are on the receiving end. It should be called as Media-teral damage.

Long live Pakistan, long live my Nation and long live Pakistan Army.

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ALLAH – The Kind & Merciful LORD

25 Jul

.:: A Kind, Merciful Lord ::..

 

What a Kind King!

What a Great Lord!

Such Wisdom! Such Power! Such Glory!

The Maker and the Sustainer!

Such Power! Such Glory!

But the concern and love of a thousand mothers,

So widely embracing!

Who answers His petitioners,

With such Grace and Benevolence,

What a Merciful, Forgiving Ruler!

The Owner of such a huge Kingdom,

Yet so Patient,

To listen to the woes of even the most wretched,

one of the most blameworthy,

one of the most unthankful.

So Merciful and Forgiving is He!

To listen to those who sin then repent,

Of His courtiers.

What a Great Ruler!

Of a Kingdom so vast!

Monsoon: The Indian Ocean and the Future of American Power – (Review on the book)

25 Jul

There can be no doubt that the power of the western industrialized nations in general and that of the United States in particular is declining relative to Asia. China and India both have over a billion people with rapidly growing economies and can also boast of having extremely successful overseas communities. People of Chinese extraction have long been a large part of the merchant class in other Asian nations and many of the major information technology companies in the United States have been created or expanded by expatriates of Indian extraction.

The consumption of crude oil and other fossil fuels in both China and India is also rapidly increasing, making their economies just as reliant on Middle Eastern oil as those of the west and Japan. Most of this oil will have to travel through the northern sections of the Indian Ocean, making it a vital sea-lane for both nations. If a path is necessary for your survival, it must be protected and both India and China are ramping up their navies in order to do so. At the same time, the U. S. Navy is downsizing in the number of ships, so its longtime dominant naval power in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific is declining.

This situation is leading to a new great power rivalry between the major players of India, Indonesia, China and the United States in the area of the Indian Ocean. Less powerful but still extremely significant nations that will be critical to what happens in the future are Iran, Pakistan, Burma, Thailand, Afghanistan, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Vietnam. The new reality has reformed old ties, re-ignited old conflicts and led to the development of unusual alliances. For example, the centuries old hostility between Vietnam and China has risen once again, the Vietnamese now welcome an American naval presence on their coast.

The seeds of the complexity of this situation were planted centuries ago, almost literally at the dawn of modern history. Kaplan goes back and explains these roots in detail and there were many facts and situations that I was unaware of. For example, I did not know that Farsi, the language of the Persians, was the lingua franca of India until the British colonial masters decreed that it would be English. While there have been conflicts between the different ethnic and religious groups in the area, with the exception of the enslavement of black Africans, those groups have been surprisingly tolerant of each other.

A very strong case can be made that the history of the twenty first century is going to be concentrated in east and south Asia and a great deal of that case is made in this book. Geopolitical and economic forces are pushing all the nations into positions of possible conflict over power, position and resources. Kaplan does an excellent job in describing most of the potential conflicts and many of the possible outcomes. If the solutions are to be largely non-violent, then there must be the application of a great deal of wise and intelligent thinking by all of the major players. In Kaplan’s terms, it is the application of soft or economic and intellectual power. As Kaplan also explains, real or potential insurgencies are active in nearly all of the nations of the region, so some of the countries may be damaged or destroyed by internal factors.

This is a fascinating book about the region of the Indian Ocean, there is an enormous amount of information in this book and it could easily become the basis of a very large number of “What if?” type novels. Pick almost any location in the area and a good writer of fiction could use the local history and potential conflicts to create an entertaining and engaging story that just might come true.

Was PNS Mehran Operation of 2011,  linked to above thinking? It is also being said that world’s greatest oil reserves are few miles south of Karachi in the Arabian sea. Is it for this reason that Pakistan Navy is being punished?

The Resources for sustainability (Rozi) are promised by Allah, why do we spent more than half of our time for it?

25 Jul

Why do we struggle for ‘Rozi’ soo hard, once it is already promised by Allah!

We spent so much time & effort for obtaining this & in the process we harm so many others.

۞ وَمَا مِن دَآبَّةٍ۬ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ إِلَّا عَلَى ٱللَّهِ رِزۡقُهَا وَيَعۡلَمُ مُسۡتَقَرَّهَا وَمُسۡتَوۡدَعَهَا‌ۚ كُلٌّ۬ فِى ڪِتَـٰبٍ۬ مُّبِينٍ۬ (٦)

And there is not a beast in the earth but the sustenance thereof dependeth on Allah. He knoweth its habitation and its repository. All is in a clear Record. (6)

زمین پر چلنے پھرنے والے جتنے جاندار ہیں سب کی روزیاں اللہ تعالیٰ پر ہیں وہی ان کے رہنے سہنے کی جگہ کو جانتا ہےاور ان کے سونپے جانے کی جگہ کو بھی، سب کچھ واضح کتاب میں موجود ہے (٦) – (Surah Hud; Ayat:6)
Whereas we were sent for a test regarding how we respond in good and bad times, whether it is according to the way we were instructed in Quran, and we don’t even bother to open the Quran for understanding or guidance.

It is a record that Quran is the most read book in the world, but without any understanding.

And that shows the reason of fall of Muslims.

Un-Matched Rights of Muslim Women

25 Jul

In Prophet Muhammad’s PBUH time, the Jews used to live side by side with the Muslims in Madinah.

They hated the fact that Allah had revealed the order of hijab and that thereafter the Muslim women were covered. They

tried to plant the seeds of corruption, and attempted to unveil the Muslim women, but failed.

One day, a Muslim woman went to a marketplace owned by the Jews of Banu Qaynuqa’. She was a chaste and modest woman.

She visited a jeweller amongst them. The Jews saw her and disliked the fact that she was chaste and covered. They wanted to have a glimpse at her, molest her or flirt with her, as they would do before Islam honoured women. They wanted her to uncover her face and take off her hijaab, but she refused.

The jeweller therefore took an end of her garment and attached it to the end of her khimar, while she was unaware. When she stood up, her garment was raised, revealing her body parts. The Jews began to laugh. The Muslim woman cried out, wishing they had killed her rather than uncovering her body.

A Muslim man saw this happen, so he brandished his sword and attacked the jeweller, killing him. In turn, the Jews attacked  the Muslim and killed him. When the Prophet came to know about this, and the fact that the Jews had violated their pledge with him, and molested a woman, he surrounded the Jews until they all surrendered and conceded to his judgement.

When the Prophet decided to punish them in revenge for the honour of a chaste Muslim woman being violated, one of the devil’s helpers stood up those who have no concern for the honour of Muslim women and only care about satisfying

their stomachs and private parts. This leader of the hypocrites, ‘Abdullah bin Ubay bin Salul, stood up and said, “O Muhammad!

Please, treat my allies with kindness!” He said this because they had been allied to him during the days of pre-Islamic ignorance.

The Prophet turned away from him and refused to concede, for how could he forgive a people who wished to spread corruption amongst the Believers? The hypocrite said again, “O Muhammad, treat them with kindness!” But the Prophet turned away from him, again, in favour of defending the honour of the chaste Muslim woman.

The hypocrite then became angry. He placed his hand in the pocket of the Prophet’s shirt and pulled him saying, “Be kind to my allies! Be kind to my allies!” The Prophet became angry.

He turned around and shouted at him, “Let go of me!” But the hypocrite refused and began to beg the Prophet to prevent their execution.

The Prophet turned to him and said, “They are yours, then”, and decided not to execute them. However, he did expel them from their dwellings in Madinah.

Yes, a chaste Muslim woman deserves no less!

PROPHET MUHAMMAD’S (PBUH) FAREWELL SERMON AND HUMAN DIGNITY

25 Jul

For last 1400 years, Islam grants the greatest importance to Human dignity & rights. The individuals & organizations blaming Islam for any evils around the world need to take a serious account & not molest the truth.

 

Below is an account of Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) Hajj sermon & comments regarding its applicability to human dignity.

 

I thought this need to be highlighted to all societies.

[This sermon was delivered by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) on the Ninth Day of Dhul Hijjah 10 A.H. in the ‘Uranah valley of Mount Arafat’ (in Mecca)]

 

After praising, and thanking Allah he said:

 

 “O People, lend me an attentive ear, for I know not whether after this year, I shall ever be amongst you again. Therefore, listen to what I am saying to you very carefully and TAKE THESE WORDS TO THOSE WHO COULD NOT BE PRESENT HERE TODAY.

 

 

Here, the Prophet PBUH declared an obligation upon anybody who comes across this sermon, to ensure its transmission to other people who could not have knowledge of it. He didn’t want people to be running after others to get it, and asked to pass this on in a more dignified manner to those who were not present.

 

O People, just as you regard this month, this day, and this city as Sacred, so regard the life (dignity) and property of every Muslim as a sacred trust.

 

Here, He regarded the greatest value ever to a human being & his property in the history of mankind. He regarded them to be more sacred than the holiest month of Zil-Haj, day of Arafah & Makkah city.

Students of religion are well aware of the sanctity of 1st ten days of Zil-Haj, the day of Arafah / Hajj and sacredness of City of Makkah. Declaring a human being & his property more sacred than above indicates the esteem of Human Dignity beyond any virtually comprehendible limits. Can anybody give more sanctity or respect to a human?

Return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful owners.

So that the lenders don’t have to feel embarrassed by running after to get their righteous assets back.

Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you.

There’s no question of hurting others by anyone who claims to be from Islam, rather we should focus on prevention of harm to others, which eventually will ensure our own security.

Remember that you will indeed meet your Lord, and that He will indeed reckon your deeds. ALLAH has forbidden you to take usury (interest), therefore all interest obligation shall henceforth be waived. Your capital, however, is yours to keep. You will neither inflict nor suffer any inequity. Allah has Judged that there shall be no interest and that all the interest due to Abbas ibn ‘Abd’al Muttalib (Prophet’s uncle) shall henceforth be waived…

The capitalism based on the interest system accumulates the money with few individuals, thereby denying the rightly admissible share of prosperity to the majority of hard-working labour class. The Prophet PBUH categorically shunned away this practice, surrendering his family’s benefit first of all, thereby setting an example to wave off interest.

Beware of Satan, for the safety of your religion. He has lost all hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so beware of following him in small things.

 

 

Satan leads us astray and creates frustration amongst us; as a reaction to which, we feel insecure & try to grab share of others to address our unknown fears. The Prophet PBUH advised us to remain aware of Satan’s tactics, as he will mis-guide us in minor issues, thus corroding the very roots of a welfare society, which will address the rights of selected ones only. If we understandably get guidance for all issues of our life from Quran & Authentic Hadith, Dignity of a common person will be automatically ensured.

O People, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to your women, but they also have rights over you. Remember that you have taken them as your wives only under Allah’s trust and with His permission. If they abide by your right then to them belongs the right to be fed and clothed in kindness. Do treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers. And it is your right that they do not make friends with any one of whom you do not approve, as well as never to be unchaste.

Islam is the first authentic source that granted more rights to women than even men. Before this women were treated like animals or consumable household things. The Prophet PBUH declared that provision of dignified rights, clothing & feeding be catered seriously by caretaker men.

O People, listen to me in earnest, worship Allah, say your five daily prayers (Salah), fast during the month of Ramadan, and give your wealth in Zakat. Perform Hajj if you can afford to.

 

Here, He guides us to worship Allah alone, thereby denying any chance of human worship of any kind. As per authentic Hadith, “Agreeing to declaration of right or wrong laws by any human, including the scholars (without proper Islamic reference) tantamount to worshipping them”, thus required to be abstained from. It encompasses protection of human dignity by bowing before Allah alone. In a way, this discourages us to ignore following man-made laws that are in contradiction to the divine laws.

All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety and good action. Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly. Do not, therefore, do injustice to yourselves.

The dignity of human can’t be better emphasized than by declaring everybody to be equally related as a brother to other, except the one who does more good deeds. It has further been emphasized by declaring injustice to oneself, if one takes anything of other person illegitimately.

 

 

Remember, one day you will appear before Allah and answer your deeds. So beware, do not stray from the path of righteousness after I am gone.

O People, no prophet or apostle will come after me and no new faith will be born.

Declaring Himself to be last of all Prophets has sealed any opportunity for us to take any other person superior than others, thus even not inferior, unless it is due to piety.

Reason well, therefore, O People, and understand words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two things, the QURAN and my example, the SUNNAH and if you follow these you will never go astray.

 

 

According to few scholars, the decline of Muslims started when they stopped pondering upon Allah’s instructions. We need to reason about things that are in practice and trace their roots.

The Prophet instructed us to reason well for understanding the Divine instructions. Having Quran & Sunnah reference, everybody is equal to seek guidance & practice it.

All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to others and those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness, O Allah, that I have conveyed your message to your people”.

Its not just the Scholars, but everybody has the responsibility to convey this message to others.

Men vs Women in the East – A different Perspective

25 Jul

Men & Women in their relationships, both have a role to play and should try to be patient & absorbing in dealing with things.

Not undermining the sacrifices by the women, who leave their families to settle down in a new environment, I criticise the NGOs & media that instead of helping them settle down, rather motivate them to keep complaining & asking for more & more, which eventually in many cases results in up-rooting / increased number of divorces & split families.

 

As per my exposure to western lifestyle, I understand that the west has already lost their key social norms due to breakup of family structures, NOW they’re bent upon spoiling eastern as well.

 

Now that the plight of women is being hyped, lets see some of things from a different dimension.

Before enumerating few points, I accept & recommend that Men as heads of families should be taking wives’ grievances as well, so as to let them feel good, and at some other time try making them understand the facts of life.

 

Men in east also have a challenging life; challenges start with the morning waking up alarm everyday;

1. ensuring availability of stuff for breakfast,

2. kids school needs,

3. deal with wife/mother’s demands vis-a-vis resources,

4. stuff for the entire day,

5. dropping the kids off to schools,

6. dealing with traffic hazards/interacting with casual drivers, pillion riders, Rickshaw wallas, pedestrians, etc,

7. dealing with office co-workers, seniors & juniors,

8. various types of customers (who may expect your response just the way they feel like, not catering for anybody having personal issues),

9. dealing with friends & relatives of all sorts, and

10. the list goes on & on…..

 

Whereas western media has tried to depict the eastern women as oppressed community, they’re rather the prized ones, as they’ve to deal with their husbands as one-window operation for all their physical & emotional needs as well as complaints.

The husbands normally act as shock absorbers for their families.

 

I hope some day somebody creates a men’s rights NGO, just to make sure facts are seen in proper perspective by all members of society.