Monday, September 26, 2011

Islam and Politics
26 Sep 2011, NewAgeIslam.Com
Pakistan Politics: That Same Old Pitch

By Nadeem F Paracha

Ah, London. Say Khan’s name and three things come to mind: the World Cup, drones and London. Do check him out when he visits this city, which is often. Always dressed in the most expensive suits or the most stylish denims, Khan looks and sounds like a completely different proposition compared to what we see of him in Pakistan. From being an anti-West/anti-US firebrand and anti-corruption crusader in Pakistan, he turns into an introspective and “balanced” liberal patriot in London, trying to convince the very forces he blames for turning Pakistan into a hell, that he is Pakistan’s best bet. Nowhere in London will you find him righteously wagging his fingers and lashing his tongue like a charismatic media-savvy demigod who matter-of-factly mixes his Marx and Mao with Maududi and Qutb. The elite that he belongs to also has a history of welcoming military interventionism and of continuing to mistake Sunni Islamic hegemony and Punjabi chauvinism as proud political and cultural planks to build a nationwide ideology. These days it is called “ghairat” (honour). Imran should be learning from the positives and negatives of mainstream politicians, no matter how corrupt, incompetent or cynical they may look. Otherwise he is bound to get more hearts than votes. -- Nadeem F Paracha

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