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Twirp : Terrorist Wahabi Islamic Republic Pakistan 3
Earthquake in 60 km (35 miles) NNE of Quetta, Pakistan.
<b>Strong quake hits southwest Pakistan injuring 15 </b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->ISLAMABAD: A strong earthquake struck southwest Pakistan on Wednesday causing some damage and injuring about 15 people, a hospital official said.
The US Geological Survey said a 6.2 magnitude quake hit 70 km northeast of Quetta before dawn.
The Pakistan Meteorological Department put the magnitude at 6.1 and said the quake struck at 05:10 a.m.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

<b>Nine Killed as Magnitude 6.4 Earthquake Strikes Near Quetta in Pakistan.</b>
US delays reimbursement of $800mn to Pakistan
US to provide $339.10 million development aid
<b>At Least 80 Killed as Magnitude 6.4 Quake Strikes Near Quetta in Pakistan </b>

[center]<b><span style='font-size:21pt;line-height:100%'>The enemy is not India</span></b>[/center]

<i>Maharaja Krishna Rasgotra and Stanley A. Weiss</i>

NEW DELHI : The road to stability in Afghanistan, it is now clear, runs through Pakistan - specifically the tribal areas that Taliban and al Qaeda fighters use as a sanctuary. Less understood is that the road to stability in the tribal areas, and across the region, also runs through India.

Old fears of India, with which Pakistan has fought three wars since their 1947 partition, are at the root of much of today's dangerous Pakistani behavior. Islamabad's long-running goal of achieving "strategic depth" with a compliant Afghanistan lingers in elements of its army and powerful spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), and their support to anti-Afghan Islamic militants.

Even now, with those militants turning their guns on the Pakistani government and with Pakistani forces engaged in long-overdue offensive in the tribal areas, most of Pakistan's military remains deployed in the east - toward India and disputed Kashmir.

The result? When American officials recently pressed Pakistan's army chief Ashfaq Kayani to be more aggressive in the tribal areas, he claimed, according to Newsweek, that he lacked the military capability to confront several sizable insurgent strongholds at once.

Islamabad's fears of India are surpassed only by its fears of ethnic disintegration. Many of its ethnic parts, cobbled together like so many other post-colonial states, have never accepted Punjabi domination of the government and military, which - unlike in India - has prevented the emergence of stable federal structure of more or less equal, autonomous units.

Indeed, among Islamabad's greatest worries is that the tens of millions of Pashtuns on either side of the border with Afghanistan could realize their ancient dreams of an independent Pashtunistan.

Islamabad therefore misreads Indian efforts to promote security and economic development in Afghanistan, including New Delhi's massive $1 billion reconstruction program, as attempts to isolate or encircle Pakistan. The answer from Pakistani-backed militants? This summer's deadly suicide bombing of the Indian embassy in Kabul.

If old Pakistani fears of India are key to understanding Pakistani behavior toward Afghanistan, then removing those fears is key to changing that behavior.

As the dominant political and economic power in the region, India should take the lead. New Delhi should continue to assure Islamabad that India's only objective is a truly independent, united, stable and drug-free Afghanistan.

Specifically, India could offer credible assurances of the security of Pakistan's eastern frontier, explore mutual force reductions on that frontier and unilaterally open its borders - including the Line of Control that divides Kashmir - to tariff-free trade.

For its part, Islamabad must recognize that a stable Afghanistan to its west and a friendly India to the east will help prevent a catastrophic implosion in Pakistan. Finally assured of a secured eastern frontier with India, Pakistan should build on its recent offensive and deploy enough troops in the west to secure the border with Afghanistan, followed by extensive investments in education and development in the tribal regions.

Islamabad should put an end to financing, arming, training and infiltrating terrorists into Kashmir and other parts of India. This would pave the way for other confidence-building steps - visits of senior military leaders, free trade and joint economic ventures.

The United States could help allay any lingering fears in Islamabad by endorsing Indian assurances of the integrity of Pakistan's eastern frontier. More broadly, Washington should support Pakistan's fragile democracy by focusing aid on economic and social development rather than the military.

With Pakistan finally assured that India no longer poses a threat, India could then consider a truly historic step worthy of a great and growing power - contributing military forces to stabilizing Afghanistan.

Such a deployment would require a joint request from Kabul, Washington and the United Nations. Indian training teams could play a critical role in strengthening the Afghan military and police.

Reconciliation between Pakistan and India and the presence of Indian forces in Afghanistan may seem illusory. But the return of civilian government in Islamabad gives new hope. If attention can be focused on the real and growing terrorist threat to the region - not those imagined in Islamabad - then fear and loathing in Pakistan could finally give way to trust and cooperation in Afghanistan.

<i>Maharaja Krishna Rasgotra, a former foreign secretary of India, is president of the Observer Research Foundation, a think tank in New Delhi. Stanley A. Weiss is founding chairman of Business Executives for National Security, a non-partisan organization based in Washington.</i>

[center]<b><i><span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>Caution :</i> You can take Pakistan out of Terrorism but you can’t take Terrorism out of Pakistan</span></b>[/center]

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<b>Pakistani rescuers pull 160 bodies out of quake rubble</b>

May their Souls Rest in Peace.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->
God is watching this wold, first God destroyed POK now Quetta. Next Islamabad HQ <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Oct 29 2008, 08:46 PM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Oct 29 2008, 08:46 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->God is watching this wold, first God destroyed POK now Quetta. Next Islamabad HQ  <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<b>Mudy Ji :</b>

During the last Earthquake in Pakistan the “Begging Leaders” begged for say US Dollars Six Billion and the World gave them US Dollars Twelve Billion. Only a small percentage of this money was used for giving Relief to the Victims

Thus the previous Earthquake was a “Gift from God” for the Satanic Pakistani Leadership.

As such the latest Earthquake is again a “Gift from God” for the Satanic Pakistani Leadership.

They will all be Laughing their Way to the Bank with the Billions of US Dollars that Pakistan will receive form the "Stupid" Nincompoops of this World.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Whatever money world gave them, that is over, spent at Mushy Mansions and other great soul houses. But we should not forget it was greatest setback for Islamic terrorism and support for Kashmir. It will take atleast 10-15 years to reach again to that level. That earthquake not only eliminated current terrorist, infrastucture but also future.
Quetta was not a big one.

<b>Suspected US missile strikes kill 27 in Pakistan</b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Pakistan – Suspected U.S. missiles slammed into two villages Friday, killing 27 people including foreign fighters in the latest strikes inside Pakistan, intelligence officials said.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<b>Are we underlings?</b>
By INAYATULAH submitted 6 hours 55 minutes ago

The fault, dear Brutus lies not in our stars but in ourselves that we are underlings. -Julius Ceaser - Shakespeare
Are we undergoing a process to become underlings? We are desperately running around all over the world carrying a big begging bowl in our grubby hands. Suddenly we have invented a group named The Friends of Pakistan. A notice has been issued to them to respond generously to our call. We are in the grip of a bizarre situation. Shaukat Aziz gave us a beautiful bubble. The bubble has burst. Shaukat Tarin another banker has been hired to rescue us from a dreadful disaster. Shaukat had boasted of breaking the begging bowl. His namesake successor is struggling to clear the mess. Never again shall we go to IMF, said the imported prime minister. IMF alone can rescue us from the jaws of default, says the new trouble-shooter. Night after night, we hear earth-shaking statements on the TV talk shows about the poor state of our economy. Tongues wag and sparks fly. No authoritative explanation has however come from the government about the worsening situation. What indeed was the new administration doing during the last 7 months? How serious and concerned was the prime minister and the Cabinet about the looming catastrophe? How come for most of the time, there was no full time finance minister? Sabotaging the world-acclaimed Lawyers Movement, reneging on solemn pledges, visits to Dubai and London and naming airports and educational institutions after the assassinated leader was much more important.
The gnawing worry today is, how to get dollars to overcome the deficits. To have enough to pay back the debt obligations and fund the unrealistic imports. There is no clear-cut overall policy. No vision. No holistic solution. Adhoc remedies are all that we are after. There is a school of thought which considers that all our internal troubles are because of "Mutrifeen" - a Quranic term denoting the elitists classes, the prosperous and the extravagant who lead a life of pleasure and plenty and who are not bothered about moral constraints. Our rulers in Islamabad fit this description. They dress like the tycoons, live in palatial houses, flaunt fleets of expensive cars and carry large entourages while travelling abroad. They indulge in high falutin rhetoric and make promises which they have no intentions to fulfil. They have stacked abroad tens of millions of foreign currency and high-priced property. Why don't they bring their dollars, pounds and euros back to Pakistan to help tide over the present financial crisis, asks Imran Khan. When questioned about this suggestion the other day, Mr Zardari smiled and moved on to another subject. Why don't our multimillionaires set an example by bringing their money home and encourage overseas affluent Pakistanis to tread the same path? Surely such a gesture would save the country from walking into the clutches of the International Monetary Fund?
A truly national leadership, worth its salt, particularly those in power have to show the way. Why is there no austerity drive to cut down consumption and achieve savings? In UK if one recalls correctly even eight years after the end of the second world war the citizens had to queue up to buy sweets and eggs. We are facing, as Zardari says, a war-like situation. We are severely short of funds, electricity and food. Not only is there no voluntary reduction in the use of these commodities, no serious effort has been made to cut out extravagance. We may rightly blame the dictator's regime for failing to add to electricity supply slowing down the wheels of industry and disrupting life in homes, offices, hospitals and schools. But can the present government be forgiven for its reprehensible acts of omission. Now, for instance taking up the issue of the flow of the Chenab waters earlier this year, when it was known that India would be resorting to storing it at the Baghliar Dam. Only after the water was stopped, did the government wake up and send a functionary to talk to his counterpart in India.
India has refused even to provide compensation for the default. All that Mr Zardari intends doing is to write a letter to Mr Manmohan Singh reminding him of an assurance orally given to him. One can well imagine how New Delhi will treat Pakistani protests on this account. (I recall prime minister Suhrawardy's warning to India in the late 50s that a stoppage of flow of waters would be taken as "an act of aggression." This warning was later put to an effective use by Suhrawardy's successor Mr Feroz Khan Noon). Should one expect much from the present government, in this behalf when President Zardari can go out of the way to please India by calling the peaceful protests of the brave Kashmiris as an act of terrorism. This indeed was sweet music for Indian ears. No wonder that there was a demonstration of widespread resentment by Kashmiris against these gratuitous remarks.
The exchange of a few truckloads of fruit and other goods between the two parts of Kashmir has been hailed as a great confidence-building measure. There is however no condemnation of the blatant violation of human rights in the valley where half a million Indian troops have let loose merciless state terrorism. Nor is there any indication of a serious effort to resolve the core issue of the Kashmir dispute, itself. Off and on reports hit our newspapers about active Indian (RAW's) involvement in acts of sabotage and terrorism in Balochistan and the North-West. Little action is taken to hold New Delhi responsible for such acts (while India immediately points a finger at Pakistan whenever there is a bomb blast anywhere in Bharat). More than even the economic crisis which we can manage if we have the will and the wisdom to use our resources and contacts sagaciously, it is the looming American intrusion into our country that needs to be addressed with courage and circumspection. Merely to say that we condemn such an act and tell the ambassador not to repeat it will not yield the desired results. It is a time a delegation of top senators visit Washington and meet Congressmen and senior State and Pentagon officials to convey the thinking and feelings of the government and people of Pakistan. The foreign minister too should impress upon his counterpart in USA to heed our reaction.
In my last column I proposed that the PPP should be pressed to implement the parliamentary resolution without delay. More than a week has elapsed and even the committee to ensure the expeditious implementation of the resolution has not been appointed. PML-N and specifically its leader Nawaz Sharif knows well from his experience of dealing with Zardari that PPP would only act if pressed hard. To expect a NRO-oriented government to take up the matter effectively with the US administration, to say the least, is quite unrealistic. Nawaz Sharif would be well-advised to take the lead and call an immediate meeting of the heads of all the major political parties and vigorously pursue the decisions contained in the Resolution. November 3 when the lawyers will be taking out rallies against the unconstitutional acts of an unrepentant military commander would be a good day to hold such a meeting. Too much is at stake for the matter to be treated in a routine manner. Let me end this column by referring to two pieces of good news, namely the resounding victory of Ali Ahmad Kurd despite government's massive support for the rival candidate and General Kayani's most welcome decision to defer the building of the new GHQ in Islamabad.
The writer is ex-federal secretary and ambassador.
E-mail: pacade@brain.net.pk

<b>Government advised commission to soften stance over water, says Jamaat</b> <!--emo&:flush--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/Flush.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='Flush.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<b>LAHORE : Pakistan’s Indus Water Commissioner Jamaat Ali Shah has said the government advised the commission to soften its stand on the water issue with India, saying a hard stance could damage efforts to promote trade with India,</b> Dawn News reported on Friday. Speaking at the University of Gujrat, Shah said <b>the government’s stance had weakened Pakistan’s position in talks with India.</b> He said India wanted to scrap the Indus Water Treaty and had always desired a stalemate in negotiations with Pakistan over water. <b>He said Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had assured President Asif Zardari of compensating losses because of decreased water flow in the Chenab River, but that commitment had not yet materialised.</b> <!--emo&:liar liar--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/liar.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='liar.gif' /><!--endemo-->

He called for digging a link-canal from Mangla Dam to the Marala headworks to minimise water wastage.

<b>My Comments :</b> Having realized that the Lotastaani Terroristaanis have "No Case" Jamaat Ali Shah - the Lying Git - makes the "Classic Statement of a Defeated Whimp"! <!--emo&Confusedtupid--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/pakee.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='pakee.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<b>Pakistan can raise $5bn in 30 days</b>

Given the current ‘political realities’, Pakistan seems to have little option but to go to the IMF. But the truth is Pakistan can raise $5 billion in the next 30 days if it wants to; even if Saudi Arabia does not extend oil credit facility.

The United States wants Pakistan to work with the IMF and the government does not want to upset Washington. Otherwise why would it sit on proposals (like the exchangeable bonds and the securitisation of remittances) for months that could have raised a few billion dollars? The proposal from the Chinese to buy minority stake in the National Bank of Pakistan, likewise, was put in cold storage.

Raising $5 billion will take Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves to about $12 billion. This would represent a comfortable level of four months worth of next 12 months of imports as Pakistan’s annual import bill is likely to drop sharply to $33 billion from $40 billion in FY 2007-08 due to the collapse of the price of oil and these of other commodities such as edible oil. Four months of import cover is considered a reasonable level and the country can use this time to take steps, such as privatisation or joint ventures in strategic areas, to mobilise funds for its medium- term needs.

Just consider the following four of the many ways the government can use to raise $5 billion for meeting the current crunch. These are not necessarily the most desirable options but are far better than carrying a begging bowl around the world.

— Pakistan has about $1.8 billion in gold reserves. Borrowing or leasing against gold is a standard international practice. Pakistan can borrow for six months at the rate of around 2.1 per cent from the central bank of a friendly country such as the United Arab Emirates. India did this in 1991 for a short period.

— Pakistan can borrow (not beg) at least US$1.5 billion from China on commercial terms by putting its shares in large government-owned corporations as collateral. China has, in the past year, extended loans to other countries (e.g. Congo) on the basis of proper collateral. The cost of loans secured against collateral can be significantly cheaper compared with other options.

— Pakistan can get another $800 million in a few days if the US reimburses the remaining amount for 2008 it should pay under the Coalition Support Fund relating to expenditure incurred on combating terrorism. Pakistan has received only one instalment ($364.7 million in September 2008) for this year’s expenses. A senior military source told Internews that the amount for reimbursement was calculated on the basis of six-monthly reports. He said all bills related to the expenditure had been audited jointly by a team of Pakistani military officers and the US embassy.

— Mr Shaukat Tareen, the Finance Adviser, said on Oct 20 that the government would move ahead on remittances securitisation without any delay. Countries like Brazil and Turkey have used this to raise billions of dollars in foreign currency funding over the years. Pakistan can probably raise $500 million but the question is: has the government moved?

And here is something the US can arrange to do in the next 48 hours if it is really serious about helping Pakistan.

On Oct 29, the US Federal Reserve agreed to provide $30 billion each to the central banks of Brazil, Mexico, South Korea and Singapore, expanding its effort to unfreeze money markets to emerging nations for the first time. The Fed set up “liquidity swap facilities with the central banks of these four large systemically important economies” effective until April 30, the Fed said in a statement. The arrangements aim “to mitigate the spread of difficulties in obtaining US dollar funding”.

Earlier on Sept 24, the Fed had extended similar facilities of $10 billion each to the central banks of Australia, Denmark, Norway and Sweden in exchange for their currencies.

These swap facilities — granted against another currency or a government bond — are meant to ease short-term liquidity needs (from a week to a few months) and do not require approval of the US Congress.

Pakistan does not need $30 billion. If the US Fed can extend a facility of even just a billion dollar against Pakistan government bonds, it will go a long way in stabilising the Rupee and the market sentiment. But only if the US wants to help – not through ‘aid’ but just through market means.

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<b>Pakistani Humour</b>

<b>The end of the Great Pisser : Masood Hasan</b>

Honestly what can you say about this country that does not border on the macabre? I mean look at the spate of events unfolding at the speed of light as we are rocked, buffeted and thrown about by forces over which we have absolutely no control. Pakistan’s woes, largely self-inflicted by one lot of hardened criminals passing off as the country’s saviours are then repeated word for word and deed for deed by their successors. Everyone in power wastes no time at all to announce in ringing tones their mission in life, i.e., to lay down their lives for the greater glory of this country and the uplift of its huge swathes of deprived and disconsolate people, but after the gases have evaporated and the looters have fled happily into the sunset, a huge mess is uncovered piece by grimy piece. It baffles the mind of those who still have some gray matter left, what is it in our genes that makes us this way? There are no answers but the speculations are unending.

While we limp after just about every country of the world for alms except perhaps Chad and have no longer a head to hold up and look any of our creditors in the eye, we are nevertheless living it up in old Islamabad and wherever else in the country where officialdom rules with great pomp and even greater show. The bullet-proof limos hiss about as before, the junkets abroad and here carry on as before – news has it that the PM took time out in Dubai to be at the Shahrukh show that went on till 7am. He was as is usual accompanied by a huge entourage of friends, well-wishers and a gaggle of usual suspects who make it a point never to miss out on the goodies.

If things weren’t bad enough, there has been this heartbreaking earthquake that’s hit poor impoverished Balochistan, a land whose troubles seem to be boundless. While the devastation of 2005 in the north still reverberates at a fairly high notch on the Richter Scale, its victims are far from settled and stories continue to flow that make you want to weep at how we treat our country folk, the ordinary people who want nothing more than two square meals a day and a roof over their heads. How can God possibly bless this nation which treats its majority in such callous ways? The victims of Margalla Towers who died are gone but the rogues who built this sand castle remain at large and a long and bitter battle continues to wage without much hope for those who lost everything. Yet we have in the same city managed to build 7th Avenue from CDA funds which run into staggering amounts. We also have found time to build this classic retreat on the hill where you watch the lights of Islamabad – those zones which are not experiencing load shedding and have a costly dinner while music plays in the air.

Among the many gifts that the former president granted this country is that utterly useless, devoid of any aesthetics or purpose, folly on the hill – that monument celebrating the joyous union of the four provinces. That a sum of Rs70-80 million was squandered on this monstrosity which has no value whatsoever is already part of our history replete with gross misuse of public funds. When the president inaugurated this modern-day wonder, he was lustily cheered by the cockroaches of Islamabad who applauded and beamed till their hands and their jaws ached. Today it sits there like a giant toad. In a few years it will fall into neglect and be consigned to the dustbin of follies in which area this country finds few competitors.

While we can all fret about this, there is news from the ‘City of Lights’ Karachi which of course has no lights at all, just perpetual darkness, that the city’s pride and joy, the Rs320 million 500-feet tall Port water Jet Fountain built by a shameless KPT out of public funds, has been stolen – all of it. Halleluiah. Dubbed as the highest fountain in Asia, it reportedly never hit more than 100 feet on its good days. It cost a staggering Rs130,000 a day to run this monster, located at Oyster Rocks, Clifton and only accessible by boat, provided naval and dock security goons let you that far. No photography was involved because – yes you guessed it, of security reasons. Originally estimated to cost Rs224 million, a ‘visionary’ brain child (some brain) of now gone, Vice Admiral Ahmad Hayat, chief then of KPT, it was bulldozed through, approvals and funds obtained in double quick time. Foreign consultants arrived and this shame of Karachi went skywards. Announced by no less a person than the president – his idea of solving Karachi’s long festering problems it was inaugurated amidst great fanfare by the gent himself on January 15, 2006. Much better had he inaugurated it on April Fool’s Day. The cockroaches and other vermin turned up dutifully and lustily cheered another great achievement.

And now the pisser, as some called it, has vaporized. Its missing components run into 22 and more items. No one is saying what happened. How can a place where no one can get to without being dragged off by the scruff of the neck and accessible only by boat, be hacked into by a bunch of thieves who dismantle it all and cart away the goodies? Bond? The KPT, not the most luminous example of fine values, immediately covered up the embarrassment. The usual lies, denials, red herrings were thrown in. Now an FIR is registered. Maybe the pisser has been bumped off in a ‘puls muqabla?’ Some murmur that no one really wants this horror to exist. It’s too costly, it’s pointless and it’s ugly. Some say, having made the blunder, the KPT will hang on to the pisser and apparently foreign pisser-fixers are arriving to restore it to a hissing life again. Where is the truth is anybody’s guess. It’s a crying shame and a sad testimony to the calibre of the people who think nothing of stealing public funds for such demented schemes. But who can ever stop them?

Personally I hope the pisser has run off and vowed never to return. I wouldn’t cry my eyes out looking at Oyster Rocks and finding it empty. I think those who have removed it, stolen it, kidnapped it – whatever, are talented people. Perhaps the KPT can hire them and ask them to steal the Minar-e-Pakistan, the various rockets, tanks, submarines and such like that pop up like sores every where, the folly on the hill and various other ‘uglies’ built by large scale plunder of money that never belonged to the contractors. And by the way, the PCB coffers are rattling like a tin can with a couple of pennies in it.

The writer is a Lahore-based columnist. Email: masoodhasan66@gmail.com

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

[center]<img src='http://www.nation.com.pk/uploads/news_image/original/Maxim_Cartoon_2035.jpg' border='0' alt='user posted image' />[/center]

[center]<b><span style='color:green'>U. S. Ambassador called to Foreign Office
for lodging strong protest for bombing
Pakistani territory</span></b>[/center]

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->U. S. Ambassador called to Foreign Office for lodging strong protest for bombing Pakistani territory<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

First pay and then bomb. These Gora. <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->

From another forum - so no URL

[center]<b><span style='font-size:21pt;line-height:100%'>The Bollywoodisation of Pakistan</span></b>[/center]

Ayesha Nasir

India-Pak relations have once again soured but Pakistan's infatuation with all things Indian continues full throttle, says Ayesha Nasir

Sana Khan, 26, is engrossed in preparing for her upcoming wedding, planned for mid-December. She’s made the rounds of most designer shops in Lahore, checked out the collections of all prominent jewellers in the city and has begun putting herself through soothing facials and body massages, guaranteed to make her glow on the big day.

But Khan, who works as an advertising executive and earns about $650 per month, has yet to venture into the most important part of her bridal shopping – a trip to India. “I am planning to buy at least 50 per cent of my dowry from Delhi and Jaipur,” she said, giggling with joy at the prospect of a shopping spree in India. “I may even order my bridal there.”

Humaira Khawaja, 27, whose brother recently got married in Lahore, has a word of advice for Khan: one trip may not be enough. She herself made three trips to India during the run-down to her brother’s event. The first to choose clothes and jewels for the engagement; the second to pick up the stuff and place orders for the wedding; and the third to pick up stuff for the wedding. “All our clothes came from India,” Khawaja, who works with her father at his carpet factory, declared proudly. “All the clothes we gave the bride were Indian, her jewellery came from India and all of our clothes - meaning my sister, nieces, mother – also came from India.”

<b>Her reason for preferring stuff from across the border is simple : “Their workmanship and design elements are so much better than ours. We are nowhere close to them.”</b>

At a time when relations between India and Pakistan have once again soured – with both sides blaming each other for recent terrorist attacks - the Bollywood-isation of Pakistan is continuing at full throttle. <b>“The effect of Indian culture on our culture is undeniable and it’s constantly increasing,” said Amjad Islam Amjad, a cultural commentator based in Lahore. “We’re so much in awe of them that in every aspect of our culture we bow down to them, whether it’s imitating their clothes or dances.”</b>

While Indian culture is peacefully taking over Pakistani culture, the two countries have shared a hostile past. Since the Partition of 1947, when the British Raj dismantled its empire, the neighbours have shared a troubled history. For many years they’ve remained arch rivals and have fought two wars – in 1961 and 1975. In May 1999, the Kargil offensive surfaced when India launched air strikes against Pakistan-supported troops present in Indian-controlled Kashmir, north of Kargil. During the stand-off, thousands of shells were fired every day and about 50,000 people became homeless on either side of the border.

<b>“The Kargil offensive completely ruptured relationships between Pakistan and India,” said Rasool Baksh Raees, a political analysts and professor at the Lahore University of Management Sciences. “It has taken us years to mend the situation and the wounds are still fresh.”

Since 1999, numerous people-to-people initiatives have taken place, including bus-travels, cricket matches, joint-productions in movies and fashion shows of designers from both countries. All these moves led to an acceleration of the Bollywoodisation of Pakistan.

“Their culture is more developed, stronger and more powerful than ours,” said Amjad. “Also, they’ve marketed themselves so well that it’s easy for us to believe they are better.”</b>

In Pakistani cinemas, Indian films draw huge audiences while the majority of local productions play to empty or half-filled houses. The popularity of Bollywood celebrities in Pakistan is such that event managers prefer booking Indian actresses and models to Pakistani celebrities – even though it means paying them ten times the price of a local entertainer. At street stalls, vendors market glass bangles by naming them after popular Indian television shows.

Hajra Hayat, a couture fashion designer who is renowned for her heavily embellished bridal outfits, recently became convinced of the Bollywood-isation of Pakistan when she attended a holi function during a friend’s wedding. Holi, a festival where attendees throw coloured powder at each other, is a prominent feature of Indian culture. Recently, the Pakistani elite have begun celebrating holis as part of their wedding extravaganzas.

<b>“To some extent, we’re awestruck by the Indians, more so now than before, which is a testament to the great job their media is doing in marketing their culture,” said Hayat. “I sometimes get brides asking for an outfit to be made in the same colours as the ones that Ashwariya Rai or Kareena Kapoor wore in a certain Indian film. I never get requests from a bride inspired by a Pakistani actress.”

Cultural expert and short story writer Afra Bukhari says Pakistanis are eager to imitate the Indians because they are progressing at a faster rate than we are. “Their economy is doing better than ours, their political situation is more stable than ours and they are held in greater esteem by the rest of the world,” said Bukhari. “We believe imitating them would help us do better too.”</b>

But event manager Ayesha Meezan says sometimes the urge to imitate goes too far. “We often get couples eager to get the Devdas look for their weddings,” she said. (Devdas is a popular Indian film based on an epic tale of love.) “They’re not even willing to consider a theme more indigenous to Pakistan.”

Ever since the new Pakistani government took over after the February 18 elections, relations between the two nations have been strained. Pakistan blames India for supporting the insurgency in Baluchistan, while India blames Pakistan for terrorist attacks on its soil. Worsening the situation are skirmishes over water which are becoming a regular feature in talks between the two countries.

But while the two countries are playing the blame-game, Khan has turned a blind eye to politics. “These two nations have always been at each other’s throats,” she said. “But the people have always been interacting with each other easily. Whatever is going on between the two countries won’t affect my decision to go to India to shop, and neither should it."

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<b>At least 40 killed in Bajaur suicide attack, military operation</b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->KHAR : At least 23 people including a head of national Lashkr were killed when a suicide bomber blew himself up during an ongoing jirga here in Tehsil Salarzai on Thursday.

Meanwhile, security forces killed 17 militants in an action in Tehsils Mamond and Nawagai.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

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<b>South Korea holds Pakistanis accused of handling Taliban cash</b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->SEOUL (November 07 2008): South  Korean police said Thursday <b>they have arrested five Pakistanis over illegal cash transfers worth millions of dollars, including payments from Afghanistan's Taliban for materials for heroin production.</b> The five are accused of operating two "hawala" money transfer networks in South Korea since 2005, police said, adding that 53 other hawala brokers including Koreans have been charged but not detained.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

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<b>India cancels junior hockey team's visit to Pakistan</b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->KARACHI - President of Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) Qasim Zia announced here Monday that India has canceled the forthcoming five match junior (under-21) hockey series due to start on Tuesday here at the Hockey Club of Pakistan citing security concerns.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

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