Popular Opinions

National question and the state

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

Europe is recognised to be the birth place of the modern national state. The processes of ethnic consolidation and socio political development triggered by industrial revolution and followed by democratic transformation between 15th and 19th centuries were supposed to have shaped the phenomenon. In some cases there were relatively more united national entities such as Dutch and Portuguese nations that gave birth to states ...

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The merger question

Dr. Khadim Hussain

Any delay in Fata reforms prolongs its people’s misery IT is heartening to note that the National Implementation Committee on Fata Reforms has directed the finance minister to pursue the allocation of Fata’s share from the divisible pool with the National Finance Commission over the next 10 years. The committee has outlined four interdependent aspects of mainstreaming: political, legal, economic ...

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Contours of the endgame

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

The creeping coup has taken quite a long time to reach the endgame. It all started soon after the newly elected government of Muslim League led by Nawaz Sharif assumed power after winning the general election in 2013. The fault lines between the elected civilian government and the so-called permanent state (security establishment) appeared quite soon. The first issue that ...

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Rules of the game

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

The events taking place in Islamabad over the last few days leave no doubt about the aggravation of the crises in the state system of the country. The said crisis has reached a stage where it is too big to be swept under the carpet. Refusing ministers including the Minister Interior during a hearing of a case against Nawaz Sharif, ...

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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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Who rules Pakistan?

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

The gloves are coming off as the creeping coup is entering its final stage and is going for the kill. We have been told that the JIT is an extension of the Supreme Court. We already know that it’s also an extension of the premier intelligence agencies of the country that are part and parcel of the security establishment. These ...

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The rise of clerics as the new class in Pashtun society

Asmat Shahjahan

In the contemporary era of War on Terror, one often hears the words Mullah/Taliban and Pashtun carelessly associated with each other in Pakistan, as if there is some synonymity between the two. More often than not, such associations are intended to place the entire burden of the rise of religious extremism on Pakhtun society while absolving more powerful actors of ...

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The myth of accountability

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

Although the Supreme Court is expected to take up the inquiry report of the JIT against the Sharif family on Monday, but it seems to be a mere  formality as the cheerleaders of the creeping coup are determined to force the Apex Court to sack the elected Prime Minister of the country. By now it’s pretty clear that in actual ...

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Baloch in the eye of storm

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

It has become almost a norm for Balochistan to make it to the headlines during every regional crises situation in the last so many decades. Afghanistan was accused by Pakistan for supporting Baloch nationalist uprisings that started in 1973 after the unconstitutional dissolution of the elected provincial government of Baloch nationalists by the Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto led federal government of ...

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