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It is the anniversay of Muhammad Iqbal, Poet of the East, the visionary who taught the concept of Pakistan as the homeland of Islam. He taught about how the West tries to destroy Muslim fighting spirit. Some of his verses, in which Satan addresses his political "children.":
"woh faqa kush keh maut say darta nahin zara
roohe Muhammad iskay badan say nikal do
fikr-e-Arab ko day kay farangi takhaiyyulat
Islam ko Hijaz-o-Yemen say nikal do
Afghaniyon ki ghairate deen ka hay yeh illaj
mullah ko in kay koh-o-dumun say nikal do"
[Trans: The starving (Muslim) who is not afraid of death at all/
take the spirit of Muhammad out of his being/
Give western concepts to the thought patterns of the Arabs/
So that Islam may be driven out of Arabia and Yemen!/
The solution to the problem of the Afghans' self-respect and honor is/
to drive the mullah out of their mountains and plains.]

Tuesday, April 22, 2003
Children held at Camp Xray, US admits
ABC News

The US military has revealed it is holding juveniles at its high-security prison for terrorists at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, known as Camp Xray.

The commander of the joint task force at Guantanamo, Major General Geoffrey Miller, says more than one child under the age of 16 is at the detention centre.

However, Maj Gen Miller has revealed little more about their welfare.

Maj Gen Miller says the US is holding "juvenile enemy combatants" at the centre, confirming rumours of children being held.

He has refused to reveal how many there are, their exact ages or their countries of origin.

He says they are being well cared for and are kept in facilities separate to adult prisoners.

The children are still being interrogated and will continue to be held at Guantanamo.

About 660 prisoners are in the camp.

They have not been tried or convicted of any offence but are being held as part of what the US calls its war on terror.
CNN and Saddam's Palaces

Dear CNN: You have spent considerable energy on photographing Saddam Hussain's luxurious palaces. Does this mean that you favor simplicity in the lifestyle of America's enemies? Should we think that if Saddam had lived simply, there would have been no invasion?

The Taliban leader, Mullah Omar, according to Pakistani sources, lived in great simplicity, somewhat like the frugal early Caliphs of Islam. Somehow CNN never visited Mullah Omar's living quarters even after these had been captured by the U.S.

I don't want to disillusion you about all the effort you spent on photographing Saddam's palaces but I'll have to because you are much too naive for the good of your viewers. Note this carefully:

IRAQ IS NOT AFGHANISTAN. Iraq is one of the richest countries in the world. Those palaces DO NOT REPRESENT MORE THAN ONE MONTH of Iraq's oil income.

Owing to the SANCTIONS (remember?) Iraq could not carry out any activity which involved imports. Hence the widespread scarcity and joblessness. The only work possible with internal resources was CONSTRUCTION. Hence the work on the PALACES. Saddam gave jobs to tens of thousands of people by getting these palaces reconstructed which had been damaged in "coalition bombing."
[Many of these palaces are from Iraq's past.]

Saddam also got ALL of Iraq's highways, bridges and damaged buildings reconstructed. Before the first Gulf War, Saddam used the oil resources to develop Iraq as a modern, industrial country which could stand up to Israel.

So don't make yourself ridiculous by focusing on his palaces.
Sampling the Pakistani Ruling Class: Why Americans Can't Touch Base with Real Pakistanis
The Case of Husain Haqqani, Carnegie Institute for International Peace

Pakistan's coup leader General Musharref used to say that the people protesting in the streets against the bombing of Afghanistan represent only the 5% "extremists." Musaharref himself never goes into the streets to find out if these people are "extremists" or ordinary Pakistanis. He is advised in these matters by a vocal but small minority of upper middle class people who do not share the values and aspirations of the Pakistani people. This minority is well-placed, itself about 5% of the population, in the armed forces, the police, the bureaucracy, the media and in business. Some of these are extremists who are openly hostile to Islam and see no reason for any differences with India or Israel. Some are advocates for provincial and linguistic separation from Pakistan (they call it 'autonomy').

We'll take an example of a westernized intermediary between America and Pakistan, Husain Haqqani, who is certainly not extreme in his views. In his mildness, the alienation of the Pakistani elites can be seen without possibility of it being dismissed as an aberration.

Haqqani appeared live for a full hour on C-Span, April 21, 2003 and the tape of his program was repeated the same night. The time span allowed us to take a fair sample of his views.

What Haqqani did NOT indicate is as important as what he said.
1. He did NOT dress as a Pakistani nationalist or an Islamist. He was well-groomed, with coat and tie, in good taste. [Seemed to have worked hard on his hair and arched eye brows.]
2. He never gave the impression that as a Muslim, he might have values to share, or as Pakistani he might have some national aspirations to emphasize.
3. He never quoted from the Qur'an or the Hadith. By strange reversal, some callers asked him about Islam and he could not answer. One caller actually quoted the Qur'an to him and he was non-plussed.

1. "I feel elated" about Iraq.
2. "Democracy" is most important and he wants a conquering power, USA, to establish "democracy in Iraq." This American effort will "restore confidence" in America.
3. RECOGNITION OF ISRAEL IS TO BE TAKEN FOR GRANTED, but he wants "a broad settlement with Israel" so that Palestinian rights are not ignored.
People whom Haqqani detests the most:
i. Osama bin Laden. 2. Taliban. 3. Saddam (in that order)


Haqqani divides Islamic movements into three groups, all three of whom he despises because they do not give center place to "democracy."
i. Political Islam. These include the Pakistani political parties which work peacefully but use Israel, Kashmir, etc to stir up the people.
ii. Radical Islam. These include Muslim Brotherhood in the Middle East and Jamaate Islami in Pakistan. These are not to be recommended because they do not prefer (western style) democracy.
iii. Militant Islam. This includes movements which are "not legitimate." These include Hamas, Hizbullah and Al-Qaida. They have "no support at all."

The most terrible in this entire spectrum of Islam is Osama bin Laden and many more such could arise if the U.S. does not implement "democracy" in the Muslim world, says Haqqani. [The idea that Islam might have its own worldview and program is foreign to Haqqani.]

HAQQANI was often non-factual. For instance, he claimed that the CHRISTIAN MINORITY IS not WELL TREATED in PAKISTAN.

If Haqqani is the best Pakistan's westernized ruling elite can offer, it's not too difficult to imagine the thinking of run-of-the-mill westernized Pakistanis. Owing to this buffer between Pakistan and the U.S., it's almost impossible for Americans to know what Pakistan and Pakistanis are really all about.
NOTE: To be a fellow of the Carnegie Institute for International Peace, one has to be loyal to the American power structure's view of the world. The Institute is a vehicle for propaganda and disinformation, sophisticated in its methodology and process.

When American media want to get an "expert's" view of Pakistan and other Muslim countries, they look for the Carnegie "fellows" and others like them.

2003-04-25 Fri 19:57ct