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Pakistan Court Releases Raymond Davis

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Pakistan Court Releases Raymond Davis

Posted on 16 March 2011 by PakBee - Total hits: 3,514

ISLAMABAD: An Additional Sessions judge Wednesday set free CIA contractor Raymond Davis, who killed two Pakistanis on a busy road in Lahore, after payment of blood money (Diyat) in accordance with Sharia law of Pakistan, sources said.

Talking to Geo News, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah said the court released Raymond Davis after the family members of the murdered men appeared in the court and pardoned the US National after an agreement was reached between the two sides. “He has been released from jail and now it is up to him to leave the country whenever he wants,” the Minister added.

The killings by Raymond Davis in Lahore in January strained relations between Pakistan and US, who repeatedly insisted Davis was an embassy employee and enjoyed diplomatic immunity, particularly after it emerged he was working for the CIA.

A spokesman for the US embassy in Islamabad said he could not immediately confirm the report. Lawyers for the families of the two men shot dead in a busy Lahore street on January 27 said they had been held for four hours at the jail court where Davis was being tried on Wednesday, but had not been allowed to witness proceedings.

Blood money, or ‘Diyat’ is a provision under Islamic sharia law in which compensation can be paid to relatives of those killed to secure a pardon, and is commonly used to resolve such cases in Pakistan.

The Davis case had sparked protests in Pakistan, with religious groups angrily denouncing the American who claimed he acted in self-defence to fend off an armed robbery when he shot dead the two men.

US authorities insisted Davis was protected by full diplomatic immunity, but the Pakistan government refused to back that claim and a decision on his status was on Monday deferred by the Lahore high court for criminal judges to decide.

Revelations that Davis was a CIA contractor heaped pressure on Pakistan’s embattled government and further ramped up burning public mistrust of Washington, damaging fragile relations between the two wary allies.

A third Pakistani was struck down and killed by a US diplomatic vehicle that came to Davis’ assistance in the January incident. US officials denied Pakistan access to the vehicle, and the occupants are widely believed to have left the country.

Police have said they recovered a Glock pistol, four loaded magazines, a GPS navigation system and a small telescope from Davis’ car after the January 27 shooting. The United States postponed a round of high-level talks with Afghanistan and Pakistan following failed attempts to free Davis, and US lawmakers threatened to cut payments to Pakistan unless he is released. (Geo/AFP)

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George ka Khuda Hafiz – 1

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George ka Khuda Hafiz – 1

Posted on 06 March 2011 by PakBee - Total hits: 3,628

For the past nine years, I have been in a dysfunctional relationship. My liaison started somewhat unexpectedly, quickly becoming an all-consuming passionate love affair. My partner reciprocated strongly, bestowing deep affection and adoration upon me. Blinded by love, I was naive to her failings. Yes, at times she was self-destructive, irrational and grossly irresponsible, but I hoped by appealing to her nature’s better angles she could change. Instead, as the years progressed, and, supported by her ‘friends’ in the media, she corroded, simultaneously displaying signs of megalomania and paranoia. Once the relationship turned abusive and I feared for my life, I decide to call it quits. Today, the divorce comes through. Her name is Pakistan. And today, I am leaving her for good.

This was not a difficult decision to make. In fact, I didn’t make the decision. It was made for me. You do not chart your own destiny in Pakistan; Pakistan charts it for you. It’s emigration by a thousand news stories. I am aware that bemoaning the state of Pakistan as a final shot appears churlish and arrogant. After all, I have the luxury to leave — many others do not. Nor do I want to discredit the tireless work of the thousands who remain to improve the lives of millions of Pakistanis. They are better men and women than I. Pakistan has also given me so much over the years. It was Pakistan who introduced me to the love of my life. And it was upon her manicured lawns that we married, and upon her reclaimed soil that we set up our first home. She brought the love of a new family and new friends into my life. And it was Pakistan that witnessed the birth of my son, Faiz — named after one of her greatest sons.

She embraced me like no other gora post-9/11. I appeared in a documentary/reality series titled “George Ka Pakistan”. It allowed me to explore the country. I ploughed fields in the Punjab, built Kalashnikovs in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (probably couldn’t do that now), and mended fishing boats in Balochistan. The culmination of the series saw the then prime minister, Shaukat Aziz, confer Pakistani citizenship upon me, after the viewing public voted overwhelmingly to make me one of them. I was their George. Fame and affection followed.

But that love was conditional. Conditional upon me playing the role cast — the naïve gora. The moment I abandoned the Uncle Tom persona and questioned the defined establishment narratives — whether through my television work or columns — excommunication began. No longer a Pakistani in the eyes of others, my citizenship evidently was not equitable to others.

So, as I depart, I could go with my reputation tarnished, but still largely intact. Or I could leave you with some final words of honesty. Well, true love values honesty far more than a feel-good legacy. So here goes.

Pakistan, you are on a precipice. A wafer-thin sliver is all that stands between you and becoming a failed state. A state that was the culmination of a search for a ‘Muslim space’ by the wealthy Muslims of Northern India has ended up, as MJ Akbar recently pointed out, becoming “one of the most violent nations on earth, not because Hindus were killing Muslims but because Muslims were killings Muslims”.

The assassination of Salmaan Taseer saw not only the death of a man but also represented for me the death of hope in Pakistan. I did not mourn Taseer’s death. I did not know the man. But I mourned what he represented — the death of liberal Pakistan. The governor’s murder reminded us how far the extremist cancer has spread in our society. A cancer in which I saw colleagues and friends on Facebook celebrate his murder. A man murdered for standing up for the most vulnerable in our society — a Christian woman accused of blasphemy. He committed no crime. Instead, he questioned the validity of a man-made law — a law created by the British — that was being used as a tool of repression.

In death, the governor was shunned, unlike his killer, who was praised, garlanded and lionised for shooting Taseer in the back. Mumtaz Qadri became a hero overnight. But Qadri is not just a man — he’s a mindset, as eloquently put by Fifi Haroon. Fascism with an Islamic face is no longer a political or an economic problem in Pakistan, it’s now become a cultural issue. Extremism permeates all strata and socio-economic groups within society. Violent extremists may still make up a minority but extremism now enjoys popular support. As for the dwindling moderates and liberals, they are scared.

Pakistan does not require a secret police, we are in the process of turning upon ourselves. But then what do you expect when your military/intelligence nexus — and their jihadi proxies — have used religious bigotry as a tool of both foreign and domestic policy. It is ironic that the one institution that was designed to protect the idea of Pakistan is the catalyst for its cannibalisation. Christians, Ahmadis, Shias and Barelvis have all been attacked in the past year. Who will be next? Groups once funded and supported by the state have carried out many of these attacks. And many jihadi groups still remain in cahoots with the agencies.

So as I leave Pakistan, I leave her with a sense of melancholy. Personally, for all my early wide-eyed excitement and love for the country and its people, Pakistan has made me cynical, disillusioned and bitter over time. I came here with high hopes, adopting the country, its people and the language. I did find redemption here — but no longer.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 2nd, 2011.

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Emails Retrieved From Benazir Bhutto’s BlackBerry Phones Unveil Shocking Evidences

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Emails Retrieved From Benazir Bhutto’s BlackBerry Phones Unveil Shocking Evidences

Posted on 13 February 2011 by PakBee - Total hits: 4,634

We have seen cell phones being produced as evidences in very crucial historical cases, this time, it’s the Blackberry phones possessed by assassinated former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

Recently, 2 Blackberry phones, belonging to Benazir Bhutto were handed over to the joint investigation team conducting an inquiry into her murder on Thursday, reported Express Tribune.

Today, the newspaper broke another news which claims that data from the blackberry has been retrieved by the investigation team which reveals that Benazir Bhutto was promised Prime Minister’s slot from highest authorities in both Pakistan and the United States that.

Paper claims that close to 60 e-mails, dozens of text messages and close to four hundred contact numbers have been retrieved from both the BlackBerry phones.

Express Tribune has produced few emails of Benazir Bhutto as following:

“Respected Prime Minister (Benazir Bhutto), the United States confirmed that a crucial message had been sent to intelligence agencies of Pakistan, specifically not to interfere in party affairs and stay away from the electoral process.  Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice and director-general Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) have done a secret deal for your (Benazir Bhutto) premiership.

Congratulations Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and warm regards,” read an e-mail sent by a leading PPP leader on October 23, 2007, to Benazir Bhutto calling her “Respected Prime Minister”.

An email was sent by Benazir to Ron Suskind, an American journalist, some days prior to her assassination. The former prime minister, while referring to the then president of Pakistan Pervez Musharraf said that he wrote to his friend that he (Musharraf) gave her an alarming message:

“You (Benazir) should understand that your security is based on the state of relations between you and me (Benazir and Musharraf).”

In another e-mail, dated October 26, 2007, the slain PPP leader wrote a letter to her advisor in Washington DC, Mark Siegel, in which she expressed dissatisfaction over her security.

She wrote:

“Nothing will happen, just wanted you to know. If it does, in addition to the names in my letter to President Musharraf, I would hold Musharraf responsible.

I have been made to feel insecure by his minions and there is no way what is happening in terms of stopping me from taking private security or using tinted windows of four police mobiles to cover all sides could happen without him (Musharraf).”

Bhutto also sent an SMS message to Daphne Barak, a famous interviewer who often writes for Mail Online. In reply to an SMS message, Barak wrote:

“Bibi, you are going to Pakistan. It’s a trap for you now. But you are insisting to go back.”

via ‘ProPakistani.PK

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Person of the Year 2010 – Mark Zuckerberg

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Person of the Year 2010 – Mark Zuckerberg

Posted on 16 December 2010 by PakBee - Total hits: 24,434

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On the afternoon of Nov. 16, 2010, Mark Zuckerberg was leading a meeting in the Aquarium, one of Facebook’s conference rooms, so named because it’s in the middle of a huge work space and has glass walls on three sides so everybody can see in. Conference rooms are a big deal at Facebook because they’re the only places anybody has any privacy at all, even the bare minimum of privacy the Aquarium gets you. Otherwise the space is open plan: no cubicles, no offices, no walls, just a rolling tundra of office furniture. Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s COO, who used to be Lawrence Summers’ chief of staff at the Treasury Department, doesn’t have an office. Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO and co-founder and presiding visionary, doesn’t have an office.

The team was going over the launch of Facebook’s revamped Messages service, which had happened the day before and gone off without a hitch or rather without more than the usual number of hitches. Zuckerberg kept the meeting on track, pushing briskly through his points — no notes or whiteboard, just talking with his hands — but the tone was relaxed. Much has been made of Zuckerberg’s legendarily awkward social manner, but in a room like this, he’s the Silicon Valley equivalent of George Plimpton. He bantered with Andrew “Boz” Bosworth, a director of engineering who ran the project. (Boz was Zuckerberg’s instructor in a course on artificial intelligence when they were at Harvard. He says his future boss didn’t do very well. Though, in fairness, Zuckerberg did invent Facebook that semester.) Apart from a journalist sitting in the corner, no one in the room looked over 30, and apart from the journalist’s public relations escort, it was boys only.
(See pictures inside Mark Zuckerberg’s inner circle.)

The door opened, and a distinguished-looking gray-haired man burst in — it’s the only way to describe his entrance — trailed by a couple of deputies. He was both the oldest person in the room by 20 years and the only one wearing a suit. He was in the building, he explained with the delighted air of a man about to secure ironclad bragging rights forever, and he just had to stop in and introduce himself to Zuckerberg: Robert Mueller, director of the FBI, pleased to meet you.

They shook hands and chatted about nothing for a couple of minutes, and then Mueller left. There was a giddy silence while everybody just looked at one another as if to say, What the hell just happened?

It’s a fair question. Almost seven years ago, in February 2004, when Zuckerberg was a 19-year-old sophomore at Harvard, he started a Web service from his dorm. It was called Thefacebook.com, and it was billed as “an online directory that connects people through social networks at colleges.” This year, Facebook — now minus the the — added its 550 millionth member. One out of every dozen people on the planet has a Facebook account. They speak 75 languages and collectively lavish more than 700 billion minutes on Facebook every month. Last month the site accounted for 1 out of 4 American page views. Its membership is currently growing at a rate of about 700,000 people a day.
(See a Zuckerberg family photo album.)

What just happened? In less than seven years, Zuckerberg wired together a twelfth of humanity into a single network, thereby creating a social entity almost twice as large as the U.S. If Facebook were a country it would be the third largest, behind only China and India. It started out as a lark, a diversion, but it has turned into something real, something that has changed the way human beings relate to one another on a species-wide scale. We are now running our social lives through a for-profit network that, on paper at least, has made Zuckerberg a billionaire six times over.

Facebook has merged with the social fabric of American life, and not just American but human life: nearly half of all Americans have a Facebook account, but 70% of Facebook users live outside the U.S. It’s a permanent fact of our global social reality. We have entered the Facebook age, and Mark Zuckerberg is the man who brought us here.
(See pictures of Facebook’s overseas offices.)

Zuckerberg is part of the last generation of human beings who will remember life before the Internet, though only just. He was born in 1984 and grew up in Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., the son of a dentist — Painless Dr. Z’s slogan was, and is, “We cater to cowards.” Mark has three sisters, the eldest of whom, Randi, is now Facebook’s head of consumer marketing and social-good initiatives. It was a supportive household that produced confident children. The young Mark was “strong-willed and relentless,” according to his father Ed. “For some kids, their questions could be answered with a simple yes or no,” he says. “For Mark, if he asked for something, yes by itself would work, but no required much more. If you were going to say no to him, you had better be prepared with a strong argument backed by facts, experiences, logic, reasons. We envisioned him becoming a lawyer one day, with a near 100% success rate of convincing juries.”

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Allama Mohammed Iqbal Day

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Allama Mohammed Iqbal Day

Posted on 09 November 2010 by PakBee - Total hits: 8,527

ISLAMABAD: The 133rd birthday anniversary of the Poet of the East, Doctor Allama Mohammed Iqbal would be observed today (Tuesday) with traditional zeal and fervour.

The day has been declared as a public holiday throughout the country. Special programmers chalked out to observe this day.

On the day, the speakers would pay glowing homage to Allama Iqbal and newspapers would publish special editions and TV channels would telecast special program relating to the life and achievements of Allama Iqbal.

National flag will be hoisted on all principal government buildings. There will be special exhibition of books and relics at Iqbal Museum Lahore, National Museum Karachi and Iqbal Manzil Sialkot.

Cinema Houses will make special arrangements to screen documentary films on Iqbal’s life. The academy of Lahore will arrange a book exhibition on this day. The traditional ceremony of change of guards will also take place on the mazaar.

Allama Iqbal, a poet, great legislature of subcontinent and important personality of Pakistan movement who gave the awareness message of “ Lab pe aati hai dua’a ban ke tamanna meri. “ to the nation, was born on November 9, 1877 in Sialkot.

He was Sufi poet of the modern age. He aroused revolutionary spirit in the nation through his poetry. Sophism and Islamic touch are prominent of his poetry.

His poetry has been translated in Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, English and several other languages and he is considered a great philosopher all over the world.

As a great politician, his great achievement was to think of the ideology of Pakistan, which later became the base of independence of Pakistan.

Unfortunately, he could not see the independence of Pakistan and died on April 21, 1938.

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