Monday, 26 October 2009

From Arabia With Love

Read other ARTICLES by the author to find out why he is banned on Chowq's front page

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The press has reported—for this is all what it is good at—that a Pakistani former nobody has arrived in a certain Arabian city where he met with his royal host: the king himself.

The same nobody received royal protocol, meaning, he was neither kept waiting at the immigration counter, nor dogs sniffed him. He reached his destination using a special airplane sent by the king and he stayed in the kingdom as a royal guest. The king also hosted an Iftar dinner for the former nobody.

On behalf of the Pakistani people, may I ask Your Majesty—my neck be spared—why are you associating with such a loser? A king is supposed to know better. Brotherly relations between Muslim countries—joined at the hips of a hippopotamus called Ummah—must not mean that we be insulted in this manner by having an ex-commando, who played the Bush-Blair game so well, be invited as a royal guest.

Why is it fashionable these days that every lunatic who brings ruin to this beautiful country obtains unconditional royal asylum? And Your Majesty, what was the need to feed him with royal Iftar when the ex-commando could have flown, on subject-to-load basis, by a regular PIA flight, and received one of those Iftar boxes they hand out to the fasting passengers. Had you done the needful, the act would have pleased us all immensely at our Iftar tables.

Then there are those who want to see the ex-commando tried for treason in a Pakistani court. A certain un-informed ex-minister has said that ‘one phone call from the kingdom will silence those who seek this person’s public trial because he left Pakistan after striking a deal with the present government’.

How true. I can pray to Almighty Allah that Your Majesty never be influenced by satanic whisperings that prompt one to do unimaginable things using an apparatus as simple as a telephone.

Nobody here has been able to take our armed bull by the horns. Had they done it in 1971 after Dacca’s fall, we certainly would have fared better. The same un-informed ex-minister also said on television that he ‘was against the impossible trial’. Politics is indeed the art of the impossible.

He went on to assure the wise people of Pakistan that ‘the security forces were not involved in the present crisis and the system faced no problem from them or the Intelligent ones. He said ‘the leadership should have the courage to decide on its own and not wait for calls from the British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs David Miliband or from the US Special Representative Richard Holbrooke.’

Now which man in this land, sired by his real father, will refuse to take calls from either our colonial masters at 10 Downing Street or the neo-colonists up in the White Elephant House?

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On another front, the same kingdom is talking to those who wish to sell pieces of Pakistan at throwaway prices. Pakistan will lease an area of farmland nearly twice the size of Hong Kong in a bid to ensure that our brothers in the kingdom eat well.

The Gulf Arab states, traditionally reliant on imported food, are now seen camel-racing to buy farmland in developing countries to guarantee supplies. Over the last few weeks, the kingdom has had talks with Pakistan to lease 500,000 acres of farmland, and our side is currently attempting to carve out such pieces of land. After all, what are brothers for, if not this?

In April, Pakistan said it would offer foreign investors 1 million acres of farmland for lease or sale. Note the word SALE! Needless to say, special security forces will protect such prime property where our sons will toil once they receive higher education after bankrupting us. Retired security personnel will get paid in Riyals for keeping farmers away from land that they will be made to sell just like the Palestinians did to the rich Jewish settlers. The public will finally end up buying flour bags from those who return home after performing Umrah or Haj.

And our side claims that ‘the land we will provide will be divided among the four provinces to grow wheat, fruits and vegetables. A delegation is expected to arrive after Ramadan to further discuss the deal and see the land, but there is no set date when the deal will be signed.’

Our brothers in the happy kingdom, shockingly wasteful in matters of food, consume 2.6 million tonnes of wheat a year. And how lucky can we get?—they have just abandoned a project to produce the grain domestically due to water shortage. Of course, when they buy our land, they will require neither water nor electricity; a regiment of angels will do the needful.

While the provinces wrangle over water dams and damned fools, expect to see clashes over who will first sell pieces of Mother Earth to the lowest foreign bidder.

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