Original Articles

Why do we publish on LUBP what we do? – by Abdul Nishapuri

Nugget 1

Sheen Alif recently asked:

The progressive blog should come clear on how they view the Baloch insurgency, as publishing a piece on Lala Hameed Baloch and another condemning BLA just on assumptions in one breath is not fair.

She was referring to the following two articles posted on LUBP on the same day:

The death of Lala Hameed Baloch: a case study of a state sponsored murder – 21 Nov 2010

BLA terrorists kill four Punjabis in Balochistan’s border town – 22 Nov 2010

Thus, the question is: where do we stand? Does the LUBP support the Baloch nationalist movement for their freedom / rights or not?

Are the above two pieces posted at the LUBP necessarily irreconcilable? Or do they represent two interconnected dimensions of the same problem?

Nugget 2

Another friend recently commented that a post critical of Ali K Chishti:

is not right since we have published many of his articles on LUBP in the past and have always appreciated his well-researched articles on jihadi groups in Pakistan.

It was in reference to the following article:

Onward march of the MQM propagandists – 23 Nov 2010

Here is a recent example of an article (out of many articles) by Ali Chishti published at the LUBP.

The ISI moves Siraj Haqqani to ‘secure safe house’ outside FATA – by Ali K Chishti

Thus, the question is: are we showing some kind of duplicity in publishing Ali Chishti’s well researched articles on the one hand and questioning his objectivity on the other?

Nugget 3

Kashif Naseer, a valued LUBP reader and contributor, wrote:

امریکہ میں مقیم امریکی سفیر معاف کیجئے گا پاکستان سفیر اور سابق جماعتی جناب محمد حسین حقانی کی مالی معاونت سے چلنے والی اس ویب سائٹ بلاگ کی حامد میر سے پرانی دوستی ہے اور دونوں نے ایک دوسرے کی تشہیر کا ٹھیکہ لے رکھا ہے۔ شاید آپ کو یاد ہو کہ ایک دفعہ حامد میر اسی حق دوستی کو نبھانے میں اتنے آگے نکل گئے تھے کہ انہوں نے کیپیٹل ٹاک کا ایک ہورا شو اس ویب سائٹ کے نام کردیا تھا۔ اس دن کے بعد سے اس ویب سائٹ کے ویزیٹرز کی تعداد لاکھوں میں پہنچ گئی ہے۔ پھر تو ویب سائٹ کے سب ہی بلاگرز نے حامد میر کے اس احسان کا پورا پورا حق ادا کیا اور اپنی تحریروں میں حامد میر کو اتنا یاد کرنے لگے جتنا شاید انکے اپنے بچے بھی نہیں کرتے ہیں۔ کچھ بلاگرز تو ایسے بھی تھے جنکی ہر صبح حامد میر سے شروع ہوتی اور پورادن وہ حامد میر پر تحقیق کے سوا کچھ نہیں کرتے۔

پی پی پی کے ان “حامی نقادوں” نے اپنی ویب سائٹ پر حامد میر کو اتنی دفعہ طالبان کا حامی صحافی کہا کہ خود حامد میر کو بھی اپنے بارے میں شک ہونے لگا تھا۔ وہ اکثر خود کو ملا عمر کا پرسنل سیکڑری سمجھنے لگے تھے۔ میں نے سنا ہے کہ جب ان بلاگز کی کہانیاں وزیرستان پہنچی تو وہاں کے طالبانوں نے حامد میر کا نام اپنی ہتیلیوں پر لکھ لکھ کر چوما تھا۔

لیکن اب شاید اس ویب سائٹ کے بلاگرز کی حامد میر سے کوئی ان بن ہوگئی ہے جب ہی تو انہوں نے حامد میر کی اس طرح ستائش کی ہے۔ کیا انہیں پتا ہے کہ حامد میر کو اسکی کتنی بھاری قیمت اٹھانی پڑ سکتی ہے۔ مجھے تو بہت سے اندیشے ستارہے ہیں اور رہ رہ ہول اٹھ رہا ہے، اللہ رحم کرے کہ جس طرح عاصمہ جہانگیر ، علی احمد کرد اور اعتزاز احسن غائب ہوئے ہیں کہیں حامد میر بھی منظر عام سے غائب ہوکر کسی سرکاری ٹیبل کے پیچھے نہ چلے جائیں۔

Post-mortem of LUBP and Hamid Mir – by Kashif Naseer – 18 June 2010

Kashif was referring to various articles which we posted at LUBP both in appreciation and criticism of Hamid Mir. For example:

His masters’ voice: Hamid Mir, Taliban and the ISI – by Shiraz Paracha – 3 June 2010

Hamid Mir in support of Asma Jahangir – 17 June 2010

Thus, the question is: Are we supporter or critics of Hamid Mir? Is it all black and white, with no shades of grey in between?

Nugget 4

This is with reference to a post by Yasser Latif Hamdani on Bacha Khan, when amidst a heated debate between a supporter of Jinnah and a supporter of Bacha Khan, Humza Ikram commented:

Why do we have to prove either Jinnah or Bacha khan was regressive to prove other was a liberal. I’m not getting it?

Whither “Progressive” Bacha Khan’s Wife? – by Yasser Latif Hamdani

The followers of Bacha Khan described the above referred article as below the belt. This is despite the fact that we also published numerous articles at the LUBP in appreciation of Bacha Khan. Here is just one example:

Badshah Khan: The unsung champion of federalism and democracy – by Nadir Ali Dirojay Pukhtunyar

Thus, the question is: Is LUBP for Jinnah or Bacha Khan? Who do we respect and who we don’t?

Nugget 5

Are we a website funded and sponsored by Hussain Haqqani? This and similar charges have been hurled at us from various quarters in the last two years. Yet, we have posted articles critical of and in support of Hussain Haqqani.

For example, the following post was published in January 2010.

Deconstructing Hussain Haqqani – by Aamir Mughal and Sarah Khan

There was an immediate enormous reaction from within the PPP and the LUBP to remove this post which can be read at the above referred post. For example, a friend wrote:

Very poor post. Very disappointing. This entire post is only a smear campaign with no actual evidence. Where is the evidence that the forged letter was made by Haqqani? Where is the evidence that he serves two masters?

Whereas another friend, Ali Arqam, wrote:

Excellent Post…..This is what which make LUBP the critical supporters…..Supporting Israr Shah, Condemning R. Malik statement abt UN Comission access denied to Army Officials and now deconstructing Haqqani….Media has always got their share by supporting the non political forces….Haqqani is a part of this….As always he is with the president

Yet, we also posted a number of articles in appreciation of Hussain Haqqani. For example:

Hussain Haqqani, Mere Mutabiq – by Ahsan Abbas Shah

Thus, the question is: Do we support Hussain Haqqani or do we criticize him?

The untouchables

Recently there has been an extensive internal discussion at the LUBP regarding our articles critical of ‘fellow bloggers’,  some friends suggested that we should refrain from personal attacks, should discuss ideas.

Here was my response. (I will publish the counter arguments after seeking permission from my fellow team members):

” we should refrain from personal attacks, should discuss ideas.”

I agree. However, when we attack Ansar Abbasi, Hamid Mir, Hussain Haqqani, Imran Khan etc, do we attack their person or their ideology and manoeuvring?

Is it not a fact that LUBP has played a key and pioneering role in bringing disrepute to yellow journalists such as Ansar Abbasi, Hamid Mir, Irfan Siddiqi, Orya Maqbool Jan etc?

Why do we need to treat the urban civil society types of our blogging community as holy cows?

When AKC inquires into the “real agenda of LUBP fascists”, when he writes misrepresenting and maligning posts, containing personal attacks on the PPP’s leaders, we should not dig into his personal agenda and affiliation?

Yes, some of the bloggers may happen to be our personal friends and acquaintances. But, is our public face (e.g. on PTH, facebook) different to what we are discussing in our internal threads? If yes, some reflection will be in order and timely…..

Let us reflect: Are we randomly picking on other bloggers? Why is it ok to criticize everyone on this planet (right from Mubashir Hasan to Hamid Mir, from Earthman to Mir Shakilur-Rehman, from Farhat Hashmi to Sherry Rehman) but our civil society urban types, who don’t miss an opportunity to spit their venom against the PPP and also against the LUBP because of our crime by association.

Did we not in the past face huge pressures from within to remove the posts against Hussain Haqqani and other PPP leaders? Did time prove us wrong?

One solution comes to mind. Any one who disagrees with Sarah Khan’s post may wish to write a comprehensive critique and post it on LUBP. This will then be an evidence of our democratic, pluralistic approach and also transparency of views.

Moral of the story

LUBP is a blog-zine. It comprises authors, contributors and visitors of diverse political and ideological affiliations who have a firm commitment to values of democracy, diversity, social justice, tolerance and religious freedom.

However, within this commitment, there is a heterogeneity of ideas and approaches, which is frequently reflected in various articles we write and publish at LUBP.

We are multiple voices not one voice, nor do we intend to enforce a ‘one voice policy’ at this blog.

About the author

Abdul Nishapuri

8 Comments

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  • @Abdul, I second your words” We are multiple voices not one voice, nor do we intend to enforce a ‘one voice policy’ at this blog.”
    We are same same but different, we have different backgrounds, educational history, experiences, personalities etc…

    I think and too some extent believe that our liberal, democratic and human understanding provides a reasonable basis for our concerned opinion and position on various issues.

  • LUBP is the voice of human rights to surface the oppressed people’s basic, fundamental and democratic rights.. moreover this is unbiased platform.

  • LUBP should be voice of the oppressed. I am sure it will focus on Balochistan. The state terrorism must be exposed and condemned and those who kill poor punjabi workers in Balochistan and deal with PML-Q and PML-N the mainstream punjabi chauvinists should also be condemned

  • Sherry, thanks for the reassurance; it was much needed in times like these.

    Rest assured that the day LUBP ceased to be a voice of the oppressed, it will cease to exist.

  • The so called jouirnalist Ansar Abbasi got his job in The News using
    influence of Gen. Zia through Khaqan Abbasi. This ansar Abbasi guy
    used to come to my office often and we used to have long discussions.
    I know for sure that he is a big Safarshi himself but now he is making
    -ve stories just to further his Ziaist agenda.We can clearly see
    through his ‘investigative reports’ history that he along with Hamid
    Mir, Irfan Siddiqui and Dr Safdar is on a payroll, fully biased and
    working for the interests of Nawaz Shair. I wonder why the management
    of Jang Group is not taking notice of the activities of these yellow
    journalists? Perhaps this whole group is on pay role of establishment
    and Nawaz Sharif.