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Pakistan New Thoughts
Should India trust Islamic Pakistan?
Should Pakistan first become a secular state before trusting?

Dawn (Pakistan) reporter, Mobarak Haider , renowned Pakistani Intellectual

Coexistence with India

[The final lines in this article are these. (The words added by Skanda987 are in parenthesis):


There is no country in the world even today where Islamist country gives equal rights to non-Muslims, and naturally there is growing (Muslim) concern for their future in India among (the Hindu) majority.    The problem is Islam itself.   Christianity grew out of their backward looking thinking in their own practice of religion (but it uses political and economic power to conver teh world,) but Islam followers are unable to grow out of archaic thinking of hatred and conquest that shaped the birth of its religion. (This is because Koran, Mohammed, and Hadith teaches them so.)    Unless and until we (the Muslims) grow to be all humanity as one religion, we feel oneness with the whole universe, as professed by Hinduism in its core, there is no future for this planet.  (This is only possible when the Muslims of India, pakistan, and Bangla Desh give up Islam. Why give up, because Islam is anti-Vedic, and has invaded in India by force, and the ancestors of all these Muslims a few centuries ago were Hindus who were forced to become Muslims, and teh history shows that where there is Islam, there cannto be peace.) As the world renowned Spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle says, “Consciousness will find other avenues to express itself if humanity (specifically Islam) does not evolve.”]


Mobarak Haider | 5th February, 2013


-Illustration by Khuda Bux Abro.

This blog is part 1 of a four-part series that attempts to understand the enemy within; and why and how our establishment has fed this monster for decades.

See Part 2: Coexistence with the world

See Part 3: Coexistence with India – II


Pakistan’s new army doctrine comes as good news for all who wish us well as a nation. For the first time in 65 years the army has shifted its focus from the eastern border to our internal enemy in the northwest. Let us hope it does not mean hands free for a crackdown on the Baloch, an issue that needs a political solution while harder military measures may result in deeper tragedies. Although, the army spokesman assured our lions and eagles that we shall keep India as our enemy no.1, yet the admission that the enemy within is more dangerous at the moment, may well prove to be a turning point in our history.

But we have to realize that the enemy within is not simply the non-state actors who have declared holy war on Pakistan; it is a special mindset that has created them and will continue to breed them in the future. It is this mindset which was discussed in detail in my book Tahzeebi Nargasiat and in subsequent writings, including my last blog. Facts and events of our history have shown that this mindset of pathological narcissism, of self-righteous self-love breeds a hundred tragedies till the society falls into paranoia and starts hurting itself and everything around it. What our army and government have now decided to fight is a threat not only to Pakistan but to the entire region’s peace. We have to combat that mindset and the forces that promote it, if we wish to survive as a state and society, whatever the amount of effort it may need, however painful the sacrifices it may demand. We cannot afford to fail, because such failure can empower nations of the region to intervene, exposing our land of anarchy to immense bloodshed and misery.

Unfortunately, the enemy within is the product of our obscure ambitions since 1947. It is of critical importance for us to understand why and how our establishment fed this monster for decades. We, the people, must know the truth if we wish to survive and grow.

The dominant classes of Pakistan that demanded separation from the rest of India in 1947 were mainly the same who had ruled India under different Muslim dynasties. They were the landed aristocracy, “pirs” and ulema of different levels. They lost power to the British, but never gave up their claim over India. Some Muslims who served the British as civil servants and the army men also joined to share the ambition for power. Being small in number these groups, even with the support of the entire Muslim population of India could not hope to dominate a huge Indian population in a democratic system. Therefore, they aroused the Muslim masses to support their demand for a separate homeland, appealing to their religious pride and fear of persecution. Congress leaders and a large number of Muslims who chose to live as Indian citizens all exerted each nerve to show our Muslim league leadership that a religious approach to politics in a world of diverse religions and people will initiate disaster but the highly aroused fears of persecution decided our course; our self-image as a special community prevailed.

Faith is one thing while a profession of faith is quite another. Like all ruling elite of medieval ages, our Muslim rulers of India were down-to-earth, worldly men; but they professed Islam only to win the devout support of religious leadership. Religious leaders have also been equally great self-seekers. These two groups of dominant professionals colluded throughout history to rule simpler people with the tool of faith, not only in the Muslim kingdoms of India but everywhere else too. They were magicians and pharaohs in Egypt, Khashtris (kshatriyas) and Brahmins in India, kings and priests in Christian Europe and Caliph Kings and ulema of fiqh in the Arab Empire. This pattern of power-sharing by the Muslim kings and ulema worked well in India. Shah Waliullah invited Abdali in that same capacity of a down-to-earth, power sharing priest. This same formula created the present day kingdom of Saud where a tribal chief and a holy man struck a deal. Almost a similar deal created Pakistan where Quaid-e-Azam seems to have been just a brilliant lawyer whose job ended soon after the partition.

Independence comes as jubilation to a nation. But in 1947 it came with tragedies of separation and bloodshed to the subcontinent. India overcame many of her problems because its leaders depended not on a religious class but on democracy, where the army accepted its subordinate and supporting role, while politics and diplomacy made the main defense. In Pakistan, medieval concepts dominated instead. We had been perpetually indoctrinated to love the “mujahid” and the maulana. The ulema and religious parties immediately demanded a decisive role. Landed gentry found the ulema and the army as their best protectors. That perhaps explains why no land reform has damaged them to this day.

These two stake holders decided to promote each other as the champions of Islam, fighting the heretics of India as their core duty. The Kashmir problem existed only as a permanent excuse for arousing sentiment; it was never handled with the modern tools of effective diplomacy because a liberal, democratic India always found more friends against our ever deepened religious identity. Only one education was allowed and available to the nation: Fight India with the power of Islam. This brought absolute power to our GHQ and finally served American plans; the soldiers of Islam faithfully fought for America’s global supremacy, opening Pakistan’s doors to international holy warriors.

An army that assumes political power cannot remain a professional fighting force; our army gradually outsourced its fighting jobs in Kashmir and Afghanistan to civilian opportunists who were made dearer to us than our own kith and kin through Islamic sentiment. General Zia encouraged these violent hordes to make money through crime and drugs. That might have exposed them to international buyers with greater rewards than Pakistan could offer. Ambition to rule Pak-Afghania may have motivated them and, unfortunately, these non-state actors are not just a few rebels out there; they have a vast popular backing among our affluent middle classes.

With absolute lack of vision, our political and military leadership created a mindset which has no respect for systems of a modern state. The only authority that appeals to this mindset is the maulana and themujahid. A very heartbreaking struggle awaits our lines of defense

All medieval conquerors were basically predators; they lived at the cost of the people they conquered, appropriating their resources, which naturally antagonized the subject people.  Muslim rulers, after the first four caliphs, used the Islamic doctrine of Zimmitude generally to their worldly benefit.

Rulers can win their subjects’ respect, even their affection, with their wisdom and justice. After many atrocities and crimes against their Indian subjects the British were able to leave India as almost friends, and no hostility exists today between them and their former subjects because their leaders and people confessed their crimes; they agreed to leave; and they left many gifts of value like modern learning, religious tolerance, systems of governance, constitutional democracy, science and technology.

Unfortunately, unlike the colonial capitalists of Europe, our ancestors had very few benefits to offer to their Zimmis in India which could endear them to their subjects. Added to it was the religious pride of our ulema that believed in the supremacy of Islam and flaunted it without a semblance of courtesy or hesitation. This only antagonized the subject people ever more deeply and necessitated perpetual use of force to maintain Muslim rule. In order to nourish the fighting spirit of the soldiers and common Muslims, ever more pride of faith and ever deeper contempt for reason was injected into their psyche through the ulema and clergy. The principle of equal human treatment of the Muslims and non-Muslims remained alien to their rule.

The absence of positive performance was compensated with boastful pride of the ability to destroy. That is perhaps an inherited attitude when our orators in Pakistan proudly talk of what we destroyed: our ancestors destroyed Indian idols and kings followed by the recent smashing of the peaceful Buddha; recently we destroyed the Soviet Union, we have pushed America to disaster, we shall destroy India, Europe and every system of “Jahiliah”, including our own systems and people in Pakistan and Afghanistan. This mindset hardly ever asks: what did we create or build?

We, as a nation, have gradually lost all respect for science and scientists; we have substituted research with conspiracy theories; we boast of our nuclear build-up, which is again an ability to destroy, not defend, an ability stolen from heretics without learning the science that creates it. This shortcut mentality, to escape science and invention, is an expression of our lazy, self-righteous pretensions. To bury the guilt, our power hungry ulema expects us to admire a scientist, a nuclear opportunist who admires the Taliban, and hate the real scientists of the world as heretics.

It is, therefore, natural for our people with this mindset to support the monster when it destroys Pakistan and the world with the banner of Islam in its hand. Self-righteousness is the dismissal of humility; it jams our ability to objectively appreciate merit, so that the virtue and merit of others never attracts our attention. Bragging of our own virtue and merit grows louder as our record of performance dips. This dichotomy of practice and pretension paralyses judgment and kills the resolve to make amends.

Ever since Independence, our governments and army leaders propagated the easy excuse that India aspires to annex Pakistan to realize an ancient Hindu dream of “Greater India”. But was this view realistic? Is it an exclusively Hindu dream? The fact is: Muslim rulers and the ulema also desired Greater India. They had endeavored hard for centuries to rule the whole of India; many times in these seven centuries they tried to hold Afghanistan with one hand while holding Bengal with the other. Ever since 1947, our generals and leaders have tried to grab Afghanistan and hold Bengal by force. Our lions and eagles still dream to destroy Bharat and make it a Muslim colony again.

Thus, it was natural for the ancient people of the subcontinent to dream of a united India even if it was no more possible. Long before the Muslim conquerors, India had Ashoka, Kanishka and Harshwardhana who ruled large parts of India with no less glory than the Muslims did. It was hardly anything abnormal if some nostalgic sons of the soil wished to restore their past glory in their own land, while the majority did not share the dream. Hindus have lived in this land for more than 4000 years with a deep sense of belonging. On the contrary, our Muslim ancestors came 1000 years ago and did not develop a sense of belonging. They did not assimilate or integrate with the people they ruled, keeping their identity as foreigners, with loyalty to the holy lands of Arabia. The British also ruled as foreigners but they did not demand a part of India like we did; they agreed to leave India while we did not, although we declared that we were not Indians. Our self-righteousness so limits our sense of justice that what we practice with great pomp and show, seems hateful to us if others desire it.

Justice and honesty demand that facts be examined before we accept or reject a claim. The facts did not verify the claim that India aspired to annex Pakistan or a part of it. Although a limited right wing of Indian politics threatened to avenge the wrongs of history, yet that mood never dominated India. On the contrary our opinion makers and the ulema on this side of the border kept pushing up on mass level the hype to conquer Kashmir and hoist our flag over the “Red Fort”.

It is difficult in Pakistan to state the fact that India did not annex Bhutan, Nepal, Sri Lanka or another dependent country. It did not annex Bangladesh which achieved its separation from Pakistan purely with Indian Army action. The wars which we claimed as Indian aggression on our eastern border were later exposed as our own initiation. These are facts that embarrass our claims of persecution.

To be continued…


Coexistence with the world

Mobarak Haider | 12th February, 2013




This blog is part 2 of a four-part series that attempts to understand the enemy within; and why and how our establishment has fed this monster for decades. 

See Part 1: Coexistence with India

See Part 3: Coexistence with India – II


Unfortunately it is not yet clear whether our army and leaders really believe that “the enemy within” actually means those who use Islam for their power and support in their mission to destroy this state and society. So far neither the state nor the society seems to realize that these forces will destroy both of them as they exist today. In fact, the killer is a darling, a hero, a holy destroyer because he is fighting to implement in practice what the state and society profess as their ideal but do not implement.

While the state and society pretend to love Arabian Mullah’s Islam as a theory, they lack the readiness to live it. This society was told for generations that the state and all its resources must serve only Islam and fight the enemies of Islam. The “westernized” men in power believed this slogan would serve them well, without demanding any change in their Officer’s Mess culture. But political Ulema like Maudoodi, Mufti and Usmani were not their slaves; they had great ambitions with the Holy Arab Empire behind them. As generals and bureaucrats plunged in their prosperity drive and property deals, organized Islam steadily entered lower ranks in all centers of power and lashed at the semi liberal patterns of society, calling it depravity, perversion and shameless rebellion against Allah.

Dichotomy of conviction and conduct creates a crushing sense of guilt. The entire society and its rulers stood like truant boys before the godly maulana. Pakistan’s teeming millions of working masses had no sense of guilt, but Bhutto, their dearly loved leader, found his own iron melting and went to Maudoodi’s den to seek forgiveness. His later decision to lay down his life, however, brought him back to the simple-hearted masses, perhaps because they love simple and liberal Islam and do not feel the guilt of dichotomy which so molests our affluent middle class.

Everybody of importance soon realized that externalization of guilt in public and repentance in private were good ways to wash dirty hands, while keeping what they had grabbed. The emergence of Zia was natural while that of Musharraf was so unnatural that an armed invasion of the Islamic Republic became possible to cleanse it of un-Islamic “filth”. When holy warriors today attack our troops or explode our people, resentment is not directed towards the warrior, it simply turns to the “hypocrite” in power. The holy warrior’s destructiveness, therefore, is not so hateful as to deserve the treatment that India or America deserves. This perhaps explains why the “enemy within” is so single-minded and so organized while our leaders, generals and middle classes vacillate like overgrown stalks in wind.

Our first Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan panicked when he received an invitation from the Soviets and requested the Americans to save him by sending an invitation. Thus, we assumed our interesting role that spelled gradual disaster: Islam for America to fight the Soviets + Islam for our army to fight India. Much later when the East wing was gone and the two nation theory almost done, Z A Bhutto added another enemy to the list of our eternal enemies. Now we had Hindus and Jews in addition to atheists, a thousand years to fight for a thousand miles on the East and a thousand miles across the Holy Lands. We injected our nation’s blood in the nukes till the intoxicated nation lost its consciousness due to anemia. How rewarding was it to have the Islamic bomb? We lost Bhutto as a punishment from our Western mentor who knew our nuclear prowess was meaningless against the Soviets while dangerous in the hands of an emotionally charged religious state against India and Israel. We fought India each time to lose, because the US did not support us but we won against the Soviets because the Free World stood behind. We consistently refused to see that not only America but the whole world valued India and Israel. Only China supported us for a while against India till we showed her our holy teeth in Sinkiang, and Saudi Arabia encouraged us against Israel only by occasionally permitting us to kiss the holy royal hands.

The enemy within is a breed of crude, unreasoning tyrants who have no respect for life and law, not even their own. The mindset which created this self-righteous specie is strongly negative. It negates and excludes all that is “the others”, so that what remains to be admired is “we” and “ours”. Everything we do is right and just. Unfortunately, for more than a millennium, we, the Muslims of the world, served our ruling elite as their power base, as their soldiers, their police and agricultural work force. Perpetual conflict with the subject people, excessive emphasis on faith and dominance of the dogmatic Ulema dried up the positive human creativity of Muslims, as well as their subjects.

The Holy Prophet of Islam (SAAW) desired to know the essence of things, but Muslim societies for ever produced only Imam, Hafiz and Mujahid. The tradition of reason and critical thinking grew for just a century but dried up as an illegal activity after Imam Hambal, to be finally strangulated by Imam Ghazali. Freedom to think and disagree was strongly crushed with the final defeat of Mu’tazilla. Since creativity needs freedom to think and disagree, therefore, the Muslim civilization lost all creativity. Although the pride of righteousness and spirituality was pumped into the Muslim psyche, our world remained deeply soaked in myopic selfishness and parrot learning. Trade excelled in the Arab empire more than it had in any earlier periods of history, but innovation and improvement in other fields became alien to the Muslim Ummah; agriculture, handicrafts, transport, navigation, political system, health, education and administration stagnated for centuries because the conquerors and traders don’t need innovation. Even weaponry which was the source of our power remained pathetically conventional till the Mongols came to show us that we were not the fastest horsemen or the most efficient killers.

Our leaders and generals must see these facts of history and life. We have to open a national seminar that aims at reforming our middle class concepts of guilt and virtue and competence. Disastrous ambitions of political Islam to rule this region and the world must be exposed as merit-less and suicidal. Islam must be redeemed as a soft and kind path to ethical goodness and humility. Its role must end as a weapon in the hands of an aggressively pretentious but totally uncreative mullah. But that will start only when our leaders realize the threat and discard their strategic assets. It is disturbing to hear that ambitions of strategic depth and parasitic blackmail persist; no redemption is possible if that is true.

To be continued…



The author is a renowned Pakistani intellectual. His Urdu books Tehzeebi Nargisyat and Mubaalghe, Mughaalte are widely regarded as the revival of critical thinking and free inquiry in Urdu non-fiction.





Thank you for your honest and frank article.   I pray that no harm comes to you from wrongheaded extremists in your country where speaking ones mind is crime.   What happened after Independence in Pakistan and Bangla Desh also need introspection.   In 1947, Pakistan had 25% Hindus and Sikhs, today less than 1% and in Bangla Desh 30% and today less than 10%.   I understand most of this happened within few months after partition and later by conversions, forcible marriages by kidnapping girls, this is the life of minorities in Pakistan.   In spite of perceived shortcomings for minorities in India, Muslim population increased from 7% to 15+% and added to illegal immigration; it is now believed to be 20%.    There is no country in the world even today where Islamist country gives equal rights to non-Muslims, and naturally there is growing concern for their future in India among (the Hindu) majority.    The problem is Islam itself.   Christianity grew out of their backward looking thinking in their own practice of religion, but Islam followers are unable to grow out of archaic thinking of hatred and conquest that shaped the birth of its religion.    Unless and until we grow to be all humanity as one religion, we feel oneness with the whole universe, as professed by Hinduism in its core, there is no future for this planet.  As the world renowned Spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle says, “consciousness will find other avenues to express itself if humanity does not evolve.”



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