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Archive for January 2009

Buh Bye, Karzai!

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Barack Obama’s arrival in the White House and the wind of change sweeping through Washington could lead to the ousting from power of Hamid Karzai, President of Afghanistan, The Independent has learnt.

International support for Mr Karzai, who was once the darling of the West, has waned spectacularly, amid worsening violence, endemic corruption and weak leadership. But until very recently, diplomats insisted there were no viable alternatives even as fighting has intensified and the Taliban insurgency in the south has grown. But four key figures believed to be challenging Mr Karzai have arrived in Washington for meetings with Obama administration officials this week. There is now talk of a “dream ticket” that would see the main challengers run together to unite the country’s various ethnic groups and wrest control away from Mr Karzai. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Wajahat Ali

January 23, 2009 at 7:03 pm

RAMADAN BLUES: A Short Story by Wajahat Ali

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POW-WOW: American Short Fiction from Then to Now

Edited by Ishmael Reed and Carla Blank

Notice of Copyright Protection Under the Laws of the United States

© 2009 by Wajahat Ali

Wajahat Ali


RAMADAN BLUES featured in POW-WOW, available January 26th, 2009

“I promise.”

The young boy – ashamed, dishonored, and fearing the wrath of a vengeful, omnipotent Allah – promised his Pakistani immigrant father with conviction and resolve.

“I promise not to eat during my fast. I will only eat at maghrib, after the sun sets, with every other fasting Muslim.”

This previous promise fell victim to a delectable and treacherous “M & M.” Like Eve and her apple, the young boy discovered his “fall from grace” stuck to the inner linings of his Husky pants’ pocket covered with a still edible chocolate-y goodness. His first attempt at fasting was hijacked by a stale, melted candy. Read the rest of this entry »

Arabs hope for Obama change, Israelis expect more of same

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CAIRO (AFP) — Arabs were hopeful on Wednesday that President Barack Obama will amend US policy on the Middle East, while Israel expects little change in the wake of its deadly assault on Gaza.

Egypt, a close Washington ally with ties both to Israel and Palestinians, urged Obama to place the Palestinian cause at the top of his agenda as the Islamist Hamas faction said it will judge Obama by his acts. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Wajahat Ali

January 22, 2009 at 1:52 am

Dutch politician faces charges over anti-Islam film

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  • Story Highlights
  • Wilders’ film features caricature of Prophet Mohammed
  • Movie drew complaints from EU and Organization of the Islamic Conference
  • Wilders not expected to face arrest before trial
  • An outspoken critic of Islam, Wilders has called it a threat to the world


AMSTERDAM, Netherlands (CNN) — Dutch authorities will file charges against a lawmaker for inciting religious hatred in speeches and a film he made about Islam last year, an Amsterdam district prosecutor told CNN Wednesday.

Prosecutors had originally decided not to press charges against Geert Wilders, 43, a member of parliament for the right-wing Party for Freedom.

“We thought a conviction would not be possible,” prosecutor Otto Van Der Bijl told CNN. But nine people filed complaints with the Court of Appeal, he said. The court found there was a “reasonable suspicion that Mr. Wilders is guilty of the charges and the prosecution should in fact proceed.” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Wajahat Ali

January 22, 2009 at 1:50 am

Obama’s Muslim outreach: Ingrid Mattson

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Tuesday, he became the first president in history to use the word “Muslim” in his inaugural address. From the steps of the U.S. Capitol, President Obama said:

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society’s ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.

Then today, in an appearance at the National Cathedral that marks the official end of four days of inaugural celebration, the new president and first lady attended the National Prayer Service, where Ingrid Mattson, president of the Islamic Society of North America, joined ministers and rabbis in offering prayers for the new administration. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Wajahat Ali

January 22, 2009 at 1:39 am

The myth of Israel’s strategic genius

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Many supporters of Israel will not criticize its behavior, even when it is engaged in brutal and misguided operations like the recent onslaught on Gaza. In addition to their understandable reluctance to say anything that might aid Israel’s enemies, this tendency is based in part on the belief that Israel’s political and military leaders are exceptionally smart and thoughtful strategists who understand their threat environment and have a history of success against their adversaries. If so, then it makes little sense for outsiders to second-guess them. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Wajahat Ali

January 21, 2009 at 8:35 pm

Posted in palestine/israel

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Obama ‘is no Martin Luther King’

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Many African-Americans have drawn parallels between Obama and Martin Luther King [EPA]

Glen Ford, the executive editor of Black Agenda Report, explains why he rejects ties between the US president-elect and the iconic civil rights leader.

The two days touch: Dr Martin Luther King’s Birthday observance and Barack Obama’s presidential inauguration, January 19 and 20, respectively.

To many, the juxtaposition is self-evident confirmation of the intersection of the two men’s missions.

Dr King’s journey, which ended with his murder in 1968, and Obama’s ascent to the presidency, are seen to merge as the dates approach to form a perfect, tragic-glorious symmetry – a 48-hour revelation.

The coincidence of the calendar makes for good copy and grand sermons, but in fact reveals a great moral and political dissonance. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Wajahat Ali

January 21, 2009 at 8:30 pm

Posted in obama

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