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AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! @ReallyVirtual, The Man Who Unwittingly Live-Tweeted The Raid On Osama bin Laden
Meet Sohaib Athar–@ReallyVirtual on Twitter–a Pakistani IT consultant from Lahore who, up until a day ago, was “taking a break from the rat-race by hiding in the mountains with his laptops.” And the name of the mountain town where Mr. Athar had taken refuge?
Turns out Athar wasn’t the only man who found the Sarban hills surrounding the city to be the perfect hideaway. But Athar is, however, the only man who live-blogged the raid on that other guy’s mountain retreat. And unwittingly, at that!
Though now “the rat race” Athar had been trying to escape in Lahore has come to him–with journalists the world over scrambling to land an interview with Athar–the Pakistani man just trying to get away from it all hasn’t lost sight of his core values–or, for that matter, his appealingly wry sense of humor:
Filed under: @ReallyVirtual, Abbottabad Pakistan, Al-Qaeda, al-Qaida, Bin Laden Dead, Bin Laden Killed, Citizen Journalism, Neighborhood Noise Complaints, Noise Complaints, Obama Kills Osama, Osama Bin Laden, Pakistan, President Obama, Raid On Osama Bin Laden, Terrorism, Twitter, War on Terror
Say what you will about Tareq and Michaele Salahi; they know how to make an appearance.
There’s a variety of opinions on the Salahis’ icky-tacky appearance at the Obama Administration’s first state dinner at the White House. Some people are jealous. Some people are furious. Some people are horrified.
And some people–those whose names were dragged into the mess (like the Salahis’ White House contact, Michelle S. Jones or, worse, Tareq Salahi’s mortified society mother), and those Secret Service Officers that were placed on administrative leave (and may face firing) for the security breach–likely rue the day the Salahis were ever born.
The real shame, though, is that for one couple’s night of Presidential hobnobbing, the American attention turned to dissecting the party crash–instead of noting that the administration hosting India for its very first state dinner was a huge statement and a wise diplomatic move. As we continue to build dialogue with Pakistan, it’s increasingly important for the United States to maintain India’s confidence–and this was a clear acknowledgement of that by our White House. But instead, real political brain cache has been spent dealing with the party crash debacle, and few Americans even remember what the dinner was intended for.
Filed under: Diplomacy, India, Michaele Salahi, Missing the Point, Pakistan, Party Crashers, Secret Service, Secret Service Agents Administrative Leave, State Dinner, Tareq Salahi, White House, White House Party Crashers
Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice arrived for an emergency condolence visit in India this week, an effort to smooth over relations between India and Pakistan during the shaky after-effects of the recent Mumbai terrorist attacks.
Indian and Afghan officials have accused Pakistan of being accountable for the incursions, after the perpetrator in custody was confirmed by India’s officials as being Pakistani (and sang that his compatriots, are too).
Pakistani President Zardari has stated that Pakistan is “in no way responsible” for the aggression, instead offering that the terrorists are likely “stateless actors who have been operating all throughout the region.” This, of course, is unsatisfying to Indian officials that are still grappling for an answer to the violence.
Rice [says] Pakistan bears a “special responsibility” to help get to the bottom of the attacks while awkwardly declining to finger Pakistani militants outright.
Rice continued to offer solutions during her talks with Pakistan, whispering*, “Hey, we got this. Just work with me here, and we’ll get some intel that proves Iraq did this in no time.”
*Not true. So not true. Totally fictional. Right?
Hey, here’s a first: Pakistan President Zardari has accomplished what no other person has ever done in the history of all mankind–he’s united Muslim clerics AND Pakistani feminists, together in condemnation of his icky behavior during a recent meeting with VP wannabe Sarah Palin, which demonstrated that the days of Pervezes ruling Pakistan are not yet over. Despite his unprecedented achievement, Zardari still incurred a fatwa. Poor guy!
It has yet to be confirmed whether a second fatwa has been issued against THAT GRODY MUSTACHE. And while no violence has been called for in the fatwa, Zardari, his face pubes, and his easily excitable weiner are reportedly laying low while all this, ah, blows over.
Occupation: Writer and poet
Hails from: Pakistan
Why She’s a Babe: Because the 25 year-old, Columbia University grad was born into one of Pakistan’s most powerful and conflicted political dynasties (father Murtaza and aunt Benazir–the former Prime Minister–were both assassinated) but has managed to make her own way in the world as a journalist and author of two books. And while Bhutto wants to stay out of politics for now, she remains outspoken about her country, saying in a recent interview, “It has to stop being this autocratic, dynastic environment… When that day comes and this happens…if there’s a way for me to serve this country, then I would be proud to.”