Landmark Court Ruling For Democracy In Pakistan

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** this article is available in the January-February 2013 issue of Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. Subscription to the digital copy is only $10 a year; print is $44 a year. I… Continue reading

The Kidnapping of Malala’s Story by Nicholas Kristof

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** this article was published by CounterPunch on October 26th, 2012 —— The inhuman and criminal attack by the Taliban on 14-year old Pakistani education activist, Malala Yousafzai, has been hijacked here in… Continue reading

Muslims Creating Muslims: Imperialism and False Analyses of Islam and Feminism by Muslims

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An edited version of the article can be found at AltMuslimah. — Maya Migdashi began her recent, excellent 10-point reminder on studying gender in the Middle East with, “Gender is not the study… Continue reading

Situating PTI’s Islamism

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An shorter version of this article can be found at Muftah. — Exemplified by influential articles such as The Mehran Man, charting Pakistan’s rightward drift has become a favorite preoccupation since the country… Continue reading

How Well Do We Know Balochistan?

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This BBC Urdu video, “Punjab Balochistan ko kitna janta hai?” [How well does Punjab know Balochistan?] reveals the lack of information and knowledge that “mainstream” (here Punjabi) Pakistanis have w.r.t one of the… Continue reading

Support for Militancy: Bangladesh and Pakistan

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Dear readers, I am in the process of writing a paper on the predictors of support for Islamist militancy (whatever that means) in Bangladesh. Without giving the paper’s findings away, here are some… Continue reading

The Prospects of Kenyan Democracy

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Dear wonderful readers, Haniya and I apologize for our prolonged absence.  Grad school has been much more work than she and I expected. I hope that as we get used to this lifestyle,… Continue reading

Lashkars: Not The Answer

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Highlighting tribal loyalties over state ones, allowing tribal organizations space within the state apparatus, empowers parallel systems of control within the borders. The central government has long suffered a lack of legitimacy and acceptance in these areas; ceding state functions to organized non-state forces does not bode well for the future of state writ in the regions. Without a plan to transition legitimacy from the lashkars to civilian institutions, this short-term solution can be expected to engender disastrous future consequences.

Gorja Violence & Human Rights

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With little public discussion, the conversation of human rights in Pakistan is left to the few who engage in it. The state’s rhetoric dominates dissenting voices and finds resonance with religious groups, easily shaping the public viewpoint. Until issues of human rights begin to be understood to exist outside the scope of a particular religion, sectarian violence will remain hard to stem.

Pakistan’s Hydra-Headed Problem: Feudalism and Talibanization

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As refugees begin to slowly return to Mingora, the main city in Swat, the New York Times reported that wealthy landowners remain reluctant to return to the Swat Valley. The Times here follows… Continue reading

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