Thursday, April 23, 2009

Yet Another Imran Khan Post

Regular readers will be aware (probably because we have told them so many times) that none of the contributers hold Imran Khan - to put it mildly - in very high regard. Doing another post on Imran Khan may be a bit pointless but no matter how many times you beat this horse it never seems to die. My reaction to this article he wrote dispelling 'myths' about terrorism, militancy and Pakistan was similar to Imran's reaction whenever he was hit for a boundary: a red mist descended and I felt nothing but pure rage.

Lets take it point by point.

Since no Pakistani was involved in 9/11 and the CIA-trained Al Qaeda was based in Afghanistan, how does it concern us?

Imran means this as a rhetorical question as it is obvious to him that Pakistan was in no way involved in 9/11. To believe that you have to ignore that:

1) Ammar-ul-Baluchi, who was born in Pakistan, is Khalid Sheikh Muhammed's nephew and was his chief operative in Pakistan did not send $12,000 to the 9/11 hijackers.

2) Omar Sheikh, who was released from an Indian prison after terrorists hijacked a plane and was living in Islamabad at the time, did not send $100,000 to Mohammed Atta.

3) Pakistan was, after Afghanistan, the most important training ground for Islamic militants.

It is only when General Musharraf buckled under US pressure and sent our troops into Waziristan in late 2003-early 2004 that Pakistan became a war zone.

Why wasn't Pakistan a war zone before then? Might it be because before 9/11 the Pakistani government had to incentive to try and stop the same terrorists from jumping across the border and making Kashmir a war zone?

To fully understand Musharraf’s treachery against Pakistan, it is important to know that almost a 100,000 troops were sent into the tribal areas to target around 1000 suspected Al-Qaeda members

This is so disingenous that I refuse to believe that Imran Khan is not willingly lying here. While it might be true that there were only 1000 Al-Qaeda members in the tribal areas surely he knows that the troops were also fighting thousands of Taliban members. When it comes to dealing with those that are responsible for challenging the writ of the state and carrying out attacks throughout the country, the distinction between the two groups is entirely meaningless.

The most shameful aspect of the lie that this is our war is that the government keeps begging the US for more dollars stating that the war is costing the country more than the money it is receiving from the US. If it is our war, then fighting it should not be dependent on funds and material flowing from the US.

This is another bit of stupidity. Both the Pakistan and US governments want to defeat Islamic militants, just as both the Allies and the US wanted to defeat the Axis powers in the Second World War. Did taking money from the US mean that Britian was not at war with Germany?

In fact, the reason the Taliban succeeded where the Mujahideen warlords failed, was because they established the rule of law - the Afghans had had enough of the power struggle between the warlord factions that had destroyed what remained of the country’s infrastructure and killed over 100,000 people.

This is where I think Imran Khan skips stupidity and ignorance and moves straight through to evil. Even previously he has made clear his admiration for the way the Taliban were able to establish the rule of law in Afghanistan. When that rule of law includes massacres of Uzbek villagers, rape of women and execution of boys, there really isn't much to applaud.

The reason was that while there was rule of law (based on the traditional jirga system) in the tribal areas, the people of Swat had been deprived of easy access to justice ever since the traditional legal system premised on Qazi courts was replaced by Pakistani laws and judicial system, first introduced in 1974. The murder rate shot up from 10 per year in 1974 to almost 700 per year by 1977, when there was an uprising against the Pakistani justice system.

Later in the article, Imran Khan comes out in favour of the jirga system, who certainly provide speedy justice - at least to those who want to marry minor girls and bury women alive. He might want to explain why he thought it was so important that the rest of Pakistan have the "Pakistani laws and judicial sytem" that are guarantueed by our constitution that he boycotted the last elections because we weren't getting them. Yet he doesn't believe that the tribal areas and Swat should come under this system.

Myth No. 4: That the next terrorist attack on the US will come from the tribal areas.

First, there is an assumption, based purely on conjecture, that the Al Qaeda leadership is in the tribal areas. In fact, this leadership could well be in the 70 % of Afghan territory that the Taliban control. More importantly, given the growing radicalisation of the educated Muslim youth - in major part because of the continuing US partiality towards Israeli occupation of Palestinian land - why can it not follow that the next terrorist attack on the US could come either from the Middle East or from the marginalised and radicalised Muslims of Europe, motivated by perceived injustices to Islam and the Muslim World.

Imran is arguing with a straw man here. No one is saying that it is 100% certain that the next attack on the US will come from the tribal areas. What they are saying is that is by far the most likely to originate from here given the sheer number of militants in this area, the relative free hand they have in operating there and the sanctuary it affords them. And even if the next attack is carried out by Muslims from Europe there is an excellent chance that they will have recieved training in Pakistan, as many of the 7/7 attackers did.

If Talibanisation is growing in Pakistan because of the covert support of ISI in the tribal areas, then surely the growing Taliban control over Afghanistan (70 % of the territory) must be with NATO’s complicity?

This again is dishonesty masked as stupidity. The ISI has a long relationship with these groups, going back to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and continuing through the 1990s when they were used as an instrument of the government's Kashmir policy. Now, before you feel the need to point out that the US supported militants in the 1980s, keep in mind that the US no longer has any reason, both ideological and political, to support Islamic militants while the ISI still has both.

Ideas should be fought with counter ideas and dialogue, not guns.

This may be the most ridiculous statement ever uttered by Imran Khan. Advice that should be given to the militants is instead proferred to the government. The chutzpah of it is too much to bear. Couldn't he tell his Taliban pals that they should go about promoting their idelogy by convincing us of its merits rather than advertising it through suicide bombings, beheadings and floggings?


somethingrichandstrange said...

on the subject of the taliban:

Yawar said...

I'm not an IK sympathizer but to me, the article made a lot of sense (Okay, I really am).

Here's why!

Apart from his so-called sympathies towards the Taliban and the use of dialogue to bullets, he does bring a very valid point to the forefront.

Quick justice. Isn't that what everyone wants? The fact that the people of Swat had to go all the way to Peshawar to get their court cases resolved did create a vacuum in the system which allowed the Taliban's quick justice to creep in.

Of course jirgas are not the answers. But establishing a court system which actually does work and does reach a logical conclusion and is controlled by a legitimate judiciary is a need of the day.

Jadev said...

It would have been better if Imran Khan takes his family to SWAT for couple of months to live there among the people (without room service or servant to pick up groceries) and tell the tale.Oh no, they are all living outside the in infidel-corrupt western countries and he is preaching bullshit to poor people about quick justice benefit of Taliban. I am sure Jemima(pardon my obsession with his ex) would love the speed with which Taliban resolves her 'speeding ticket'.

Anonymous said...

I'm willing to start a fund to sponsor Imran Khan's trip to Swat. I'd like to see him exiled there but I think Swatis have it pretty rough already; why torture them with this ass*'s permanent presence?

Asfandyar said...

Yawar: quick justice, especially under the taliban, is an oxymoron.

They don't offer 'justice' by any stretch of the imagination. Resolving issues isn't 'justice'. A Qazi with wank knowledge of the Sunnah and the Quran (not to mention NO knowledge of law or jurisprudence) cannot impart 'justice.'

Besides, how is this a broader issue at the moment? The people of Swat don't seem so happy. They seem to not be in love with the taliban's quick justice.

Anonymous said...

Oh great analogy about Imran getting hit for a boundary. Real clever Bubs.

karachi khatmal said...

as someone who invented reverse swing to counter the dead pitches of our homeland, you can tell that immy has quite the active mind. so it's almost despairing that he has such a simple understanding of the matter - i mean it's ok if this is what he thought in 2001, but in eight years surely the argument would have gotten a little nuanced. it's really cookie cutter stuff - designed to get all the acolytes behind him in line.

the problem with imran though is how hypocritical he is. he's perpetually in his kurtas in pakistan, yet all decked up when he shows up at dubai for the matches. in fact, i remember this snippet from a woman journalist who was doing a story on him in the 80s which went something like "imran was sprawled across his apartment wearning nothing but tiny black briefs and he told me with a straight face that he was not a play boy..." the guy has no pespective

bubs said...

Yawar: In the discussion about speedy justice no one ever mentions fair justice. The reason justice is so slow all around the world is because it takes time to arrive at the facts of a case and both parties are afforded the right to appeal. Justice that forsakes accuracy for speed is not desirable.

Karachi Khatmal: Imran may have perfected reverse swing but Sarfaraz Nawaz invented it, which if anything, should prove that insanity and the ability to reverse swing a cricket ball are complementary.

XYZ said...

Funny, here's my full deconstruction of the article, posted yesterday...

AKS said...

One system for us and one for them where in the 'one for us' he'll be untouchable and in the 'one for them' he'll be the one sitting on top of the system.

Imran Khan should just come out and admit that he wants to be an anglicized Pakistani feudal lord - someone like Akbar Bugti.

All this crap about justice et al is, well, crap.

P.S. Nice post bubs.

Yawar said...

Very true...cases are supposed to be lengthy. As you stated, to gather all the facts together.

But when you get none for a prolonged period, then whatever justice you get, you lap it up.

True, Taliban's sense of justice is warped...very screwed...and I don't welcome them one bit. But there has to be another way. The Army's been there, done that. Going in with guns blazing is obviously not the answer.

Imran talks a lot of **** many times. But the reason I like him is because he's better than what you have out there. And no, Musharraf was never better than what you have out there.

It's because of the General know golfing in Islamabad that we're in this predicament.

Junaid said...

Awesome analysis...keep it up fellas!

Tazeen said...

Imran Khan apologists have to come up with something better than "he is better than what we have out there,"

i mean seriously.

Rabia said...

great post! I love this line:

"This is where I think Imran Khan skips stupidity and ignorance and moves straight through to evil."

Anonymous said...


I know who you are....

bubs said...

Anon834: I know who you are too. I'll see you tomorrow.

Yawar said...

Oh...I'm not an apologist. That is not the correct word. IK is definitely not an institution, so I don't have to be an apologist.

What I will reiterate to those who take up bashing IK for the sheer fact that he's a hypocrite, is that they need to wake up and smell the sh*t. Politics is hypocritical; rarely promises made are ever kept. Take what you have, the best of what you have and run with it...

paki said...

Imran Khan is a Pakistani and only Pakistanis are allowed to talk about him when it comes to Pakistan.those whe are ethno nationalists need to be pakistani first.

Injustice Vs Injustice
Taliban Vs MQM
it would be agood battle.
Taliban would win as they are more brave

Ed Hall said...


IK is a Pakistani...

that is the most ludicrous and childish comment I have heard in a long time.

karachi khatmal said...

Imran Khan is a dickhead. Therefore only dickheads are allowed to talk about him when it comes to their dicks and their heads. those who are not dickheads need to grow some dicks first.

injustice vs injustice
taliban vs mqm

flogging young girls is far more braver than torturing young men. pouring glue in passerbys' orifices is braver than selling heroin to finance God's war. the dickheads should win, as they have dicks for heads.

Yawar said...

The comments on this post have just gotten wittier and more intelligent with the number of comments being posted.

And now the KK has come out with his analogy using dicks and heads. Dude, let me just inform you that those who don't really have anything concrete to say try to use filler words like "dick" to complete their sentences. Sad to say that your comment leaves much to be desired. Try again, but this time try to make complete sentences and not use words that would make moms all over the world scream.

Also, pray tell me where you came up with brave name? Because there are a hundred things I can think of associating with that name...could I use "dick"?

karachi khatmal said...


the word dick would make "moms all over the world scream"