January 16, 2009

A double standard -By Cyril Almeida

WHEN the Americans or the British do it, it is interference; when the Arabs do it, it is friendly intervention. Get involved in domestic politics, that is.

As political instability stalks this unfortunate land once again, every prince, sheikh and Arab tycoon who fancies himself to be a political dilettante is racking up frequent-flier miles, working the phones or receiving as his guest one or the other Pakistani politician hoping the chips will fall in his favour.No effort is made to hide the double standard.Read More »A double standard -By Cyril Almeida

The weave of India-By Kuldip Nayar

IT is time that we looked at ourselves. India is entering the 60th year of its constitution’s initiation whereby the country became a sovereign democratic republic.

All citizens were promised justice, liberty and fraternity. It is a long story of failure in many ways.

True, India is a democracy in the sense that elections are held on time, freely and independently. But money and muscle power have reduced poll fairness. Castes and sub-castes are factors increasingly swinging the voters. The current crop of political leaders is stuck in narrow caste, language and religion loyalties. Democracy faces danger from sectional and sectarian identities.Read More »The weave of India-By Kuldip Nayar

Definition of terrorism-By Ayesha Siddiqa

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THESE days terrorism is a fashionable topic. The entire world seems to be involved in the war on terror, whether it is those who claim to be fighting terrorism or those who are perpetrating it.

Moreover, there are opposing claims about terrorism. As the popular, albeit somewhat modified, adage goes, one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter, indicating that we can distinguish between one set of violent activities and another. So, where do these opposing interpretations leave us?Read More »Definition of terrorism-By Ayesha Siddiqa

State of the Pakistan economy: SBP’s 1Q REPORT

The recently released First Quarterly Report of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) presents an analytical and objective assessment of the performance of the economy during July-September 2008 and recommends continuance of policies focused on macro-economic discipline and good governance.

According to the report the sense of crisis gripping Pakistan’s economy in the early months of FY 2008-09 has eased by November 2008, primarily on account of government policies designed to address the risks confronting it, and entry into a macro-economic stabilisation programme to support medium term reforms under the aegis of the IMF. Read More »State of the Pakistan economy: SBP’s 1Q REPORT

Tuna fish oil helps premature babies develop normally

Tuna fish oil in high doses helps premature babies develop normally, according to a new study. A six-year study led by Maria Makrides of Women’s & Children’s Health Research Institute and Bob Gibson of University of Adelaide has shown how high doses of fatty acids found in tuna fish oil administered to premature babies can help their mental development.

Researchers found that a major lipid in the brain – the omega-3 fatty acid known as Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) – is not developed sufficiently in babies born before 33 weeks’ gestation, leading to possible impaired mental development. Read More »Tuna fish oil helps premature babies develop normally

Islamabad diary: Punjab and the study of Ranjit Singh

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By Ayaz Amir

At this juncture, when the seven tribal agencies along the Afghan frontier are lost to any form of government control, and Swat–once paradise on earth, now very much a picture of hell–is returning to the Middle Ages, and most of Balochistan is stricken with discontent, and the army no longer commands the moral authority it once did, does Punjab, elder brother in Pakistan’s besieged federation, understand its historic responsibility? Read More »Islamabad diary: Punjab and the study of Ranjit Singh

Depression is good for health

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depressionDon’t worry, be happy? Nonsense. Always look on the bright side of life? Dangerous twaddle.

The preachers of positive thought have, it seems, got it all the wrong way round.

According to scientists, depression is good for us. They suggest that medicating depression as if it is a disease stops us embracing our miserable side and removes the motivation to change our lives for the better.Read More »Depression is good for health