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Showing posts from September, 2011

VIEW: There is no endgame in Afghanistan, yet- Daily Times

Afghanistan still needs to prove that it is capable enough to choose its strategic partners and at the same time not be harmful to its neighbours. Just as Pakistan is free to choose its friends and enemies, Afghanistan too should have the right and opportunity to do so
Recently, the Jinnah Institute and the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) launched their joint research called ‘Pakistan, the United States and the End Game in Afghanistan: Perceptions of Pakistan’s Foreign Policy Elite’, which discusses the viewpoints of Pakistani foreign policy shapers around Afghan matters. One should appreciate the initiative because unless and until Afghanistan and Pakistan resolve their challenges in non-military and non-ISI ways, the people of both countries will continue suffering at the hands of extremism and insurgency bred by the flawed political and military structures.
Undoubtedly, the report and the process that it has entailed in gathering the viewpoints and perspectives from a handpi…

9/11 Decade in Afghanistan- Aljazeera English

At the time, I was working with an international humanitarian aid organisation in Peshawar, Pakistan, that was supporting Afghan refugees. The organisation also carried out emergency support projects for Afghans inside the country. Occasionally, I came to Kabul and visited some provinces, but of course I had to show it as a completely private visit and I had to be accompanied by male family members.

On September 11, 2001 which was a work day, I was at the Zakhail camp in Peshawar. I had a focus-group discussion with women and girls on some of hygiene issues and they were asking for literacy courses, though some of the Jihadi commanders at the camp prevented it.

Myself and another colleague decided to speak with one of those former commanders and try to convince him to allow classes. As we were debating the issue with him, his son came running in and said there was a messenger for him from Jalalabad.Later on, from the others in the camp, we learned attacks had happened in New York and th…