Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Saleem Shehzad You Idiot - With Friends Like the J-I, Who Needs Enemies?

Now I know why I stopped reading the Asia Times. They're a bunch of well informed bastards, who are completely ineffective at making any sort of policy change, due to an inability to change their strange unblinking paradigms. Anyway, I stopped reading the A-Times in December 2009, and I have to say that its been an excellent 2010 ever since. But then some Huff-Po article refered me to it and I started following the hyperlinks until I came to this shining turd of wisdom by the ever borderline schizophrenic Syed Saleem Shahzad, in an article from July 2010 about how JTI members from Karachi were defecting to the Taliban in Waziristan (about a month after Herald covered the same point) saying:

"the country's most influential Islamic party - always considered a major strategic asset for the military establishment - have joined forces with al-Qaeda."

Good. So maybe we can get down to the business of killing of the JI? After I segued into the written "statement" by Al Qaeda in Shehzad's piece, I disgustedly thought, this is the same group that sponsored Al-Badr and Al-Shams, and you want us to be what, friends, with them? Fuck The JI. And if Al Qaeda increases its chances for electability by merging with the JI, even better. Al Qaeda won't get elected, and Pakistanis will have an excuse to hunt down and kill members of the JI like dogs. You know the JI has it coming. Any Pakistani over the age of 9 instinctively knows the Jamat-e-Islami is trouble.

The ending of the piece is appropriately speculative and fear inducing:

"This new development of IJT students joining al-Qaeda is more dangerous for Pakistan than any other previous al-Qaeda alliances. Most colleges and universities are the stronghold of the IJT, while the IJT's parent body, the JI, is the richest political party in the country and runs schools, madrassas (seminaries) and a vast network of social services and charities. Karachi contributes about 65% of the JI’s revenues."

Yes, as if Pakistani public university campuses up until 2010 were renowned as centres of peace and tranquility in a country beset with violence. Oh no, wait, our campuses have been renowned for their volatility since the 1950's. Anyway, we can't let the fearfest end without the possibility of Al Qaeda picking up a few parliament seats:

"When the Kashmiri fighters joined forces with al-Qaeda, it improved the group's guerrilla techniques in the battlefield, while the IJT cadre will greatly boast al-Qaeda's recruitment drive and enhance its political influence."

Yes Syed sahab, Al Qaeda's "political influence". Al Qaeda's communiques telegraph deep worries that they may not pick up a few ministerships in Pakistan this time around, maybe because of all the head lopping and suicide bombings associated with them.

But hey, Syed bhai and readers of Asia Times, don't stop pretending it's still 1997, the Asian bust isn't about to happen and an electronic media revolution hasn't happened in Pakistan that would throw up about a million other voices who could influence Pepe Escobar's point of view on Pakistan, or could allow the Asia Times to find a new Pakistani besides Syed Shehzad. Oh wait they can! Fatima Bhutto, who only after the entire world, learnt trhough Wikileaks about how far the US has its finger up Pakistan's backside, is now a writer for the Asia Times. Wow. I guess you need a misinformed demi-orientalist audience to keep the job going. But to get a real flair for Miss Bhutto's article, you have to use the Ctrl+F function on your browser. Type in Asia Times spelling for "Kiani", Musharraf's successor as Chief of Army Staff, and click the "highlight" option. Three hits. OK. Now type in "Zardari" and highlight. Obsession revealed? Sorry Ms Bhutto, we know you hold him responsible for the murder of your father, but ma'am, one man does not make a difference over the clash of institutions, and the further clash of that collective of institutions with a network of dedicated techno holy warriors, and an expansive empire that wishes to weaken both at the same time. Plus, is there some agency that can be granted to the Pakistani people or voters, to not be total puppets of the military, the empire or the militants? No? Well then I have a writing position at the Asia Times open for You!