Columns

The gathering clouds

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

Uncertainty about the future of constitutional system is growing as the current civilian setup appears to be losing control over both the external and internal dimensions of the governance in Pakistan. Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, the newly installed Prime Minister who seemed to be quite serious in doing not only the basics in institutional functioning but was also quick in reaching ...

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Life in London

London (Photo: Ind.)

I was asked what a visitor might expect to find in London and write about it. The following is a purely subjective, and as such limited, view in which I will probably (almost certainly) upset particular groups/sections/parties by mentioning them and equally upset others by not mentioning them. Their measure of anger/distress/affront is of no concern to me. It is ...

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Failure on NFC front

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

The 7th National Finance Commission (NFC) Award announced in 2009 came to an end after its five years term in 2014 and the new Award was due in 2015 but so far the government has failed to create consensus on resource distribution formula between the federation and the provinces. It doesn’t seem to be high on the priority list of ...

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New tidings For AfPak

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

The new US Afghan policy declared in a speech by President Donald Trump on August 22 is impressive for its clarity, comprehensiveness and nuance. US seems to have learnt from its past mistakes and the deep, rigorous and long process of consultation involving all stakeholders in the US state system must have also contributed in producing a substantial policy. Surge ...

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Trump fires up US war machine condemning Afghanistan to endless war

Aimal Faizi

A strategy solely focused on “killing terrorists” without including plans for peace building and nation building is going to fail terribly, and deplorably. President Trump’s long-awaited strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia has finally been announced. But it has grave implications for Afghanistan. While there is some clarity on the US stance vis-a-vis Pakistan and its safe havens for the ...

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Why Trump is right to get tough with Pakistan

Zalmay-Khalilzad

President Trump deserves high marks for his new Afghanistan strategy. It is bold, reasoned and offers the prospect of success against the violent Islamist groups of the region. But it will also face opposition in the region. The president will have to show an unflagging commitment to the cause and be prepared to respond to moves by adversaries to disrupt ...

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The militancy front

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

The biggest beneficiary of internal political and institutional polarisation and confrontation leading to chaos over the last few years in Pakistan has been extremist militancy. It is rather ironic that in a country where violent extremism is generally regarded a threat to the very existence of the state and society, it hasn’t been able to focus on this threat. Actually, ...

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De facto as de jure

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

People in the heartland of Punjab aren’t convinced by the verdict, the loud noises made by the cheerleaders of the creeping coup notwithstanding. The clash between de jure (the constitutional system) and de facto (the deep state epitomised by the JIT) predicted and feared by many has taken place in the form of the judicial coup. The de facto has ...

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The Witch-Hunt of Ayesha Gulalai: A Reply to Aimen Hayat Khan

Angelina Merisi

The Express Tribune Blogs published an article written by Aimen Hayat Khan on August 4th 2017. The headline read: “Dear Ayesha Gulalai, instead of honouring our roots and culture, you have disgraced every single Pakhtun woman of Pakistan.” Firstly, it is noteworthy that you, Aimen Hayat Khan, felt the need to defend yourself in your opening statement, arguing that you ...

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New war in FATA

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

15 million plus FATA Pashtuns have been cheated once again by the rulers of the country. It has already happened more than a dozen times during the last 70 years. The government has once more failed to implement the publicly promised reforms for bringing out Pashtuns of the area from colonial bondage. But the betrayal is bound to elicit a ...

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