Saturday, July 13, 2013

Empowering all is less power for privileged

Do you feel annoyed with this poster children, men, women trend? Creating cults around personalities? I think its a manifestation of consumerist culture, where everything is to be commodified to sell.

Someone at work asked me if Malala made her speech in English. I said yes... and they said, "Phir to pakki agent hai (It means she's definitely a foreign agent)." Followed by, "Khud salay kitnay maartay hein, isko kyon charha rahai hein? (The assholes murder so many every day, why are they turning her into a star)"


Why are things so complicated? I don't see right in most of the things, and the whole idea of being 'used' is fucked. But does Malala send drones? Does she kill or threaten innocent children or adults? Is she blowing up girls or boys schools? The answer to all of these questions is... NO, she did not do any of those, the Taliban did. Was she attacked? Yes. Would she have survived if not taken outside Pakistan? No, at least probably not.

You can have a problem with the politics of the situation. The involvement of Pakistan Army, that is responsible for a lot of problems we currently face due to their farce of 'strategic depth'. But saying that a minor, aged 16 is part of some huge global conspiracy, plot and is an agent is doing it a bit too brown sire.

On the other hand, the basic premise that these Brits or Americans or NATO give two hoots about all this except creating more drama in our lives is what gets to me too. We already have enough shit to deal with. I dislike, actually hate the postcolonial sense of selective tribal morality. None of which is a comment on the kid herself. But people who use her, who have dismissed deaths of non-whites, those who actually fostered extremism for their bloody imperialist agendas. And idiots who bought, buy and will continue to buy these bullshit cries of Western humanitarianism conducted in the name of a Mafioso like agency, United Nations.
Which is perhaps what makes me crazy. I cannot find it in me to be loyal to a lesser evil. And neither can I find it in me to not condemn people who condone this loyalty to the lesser evil. If you want to support lesser evils, better to cherry pick the 'goods' from 'everyone'. Difficult, but less twisted morally. And 'non-tribal' as well.

The same happened during Mukhtaran Mai's case. In the absence of important statistics, and the biggest human rights organisational scam in Pakistan, Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), there is no authentic data to give us an idea of what actually happens on the ground. HRCP makes stats using news clippings, and being associated with the media, I know how much of the news is censored and/or unreported/under-reported even. In reality, we do not know what creating poster personalities actually does on the ground. Except that some rich 'aunty' in some DHA is able to generate a lot of funds for her NGO. Oh, and one must remember, there are above 30,000 registered NGOs in Sindh. Remember terms like 'agenda', 'aid', 'donors'. It is all linked, and agendas keep changing, depending what the political requirements are of those who change the geography of the world every few decades.

Grassroots are not empowered, and it is systemic, since we have a hierarchical system, where empowerment for any segment of the society means less power for the privileged. 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Ye Dokhtar - Ebi & Shadmehr

یــــه دختــــر تو تــراس روبـرویی
Ye dokhtar too teraase ruberui
A girl in the opposite terrace
یــه شال سبــــــز و هـر روز میتکونه
Ye shaale sabzo har rooz mitekoone
Waves a green shawl every day

یـــه شال سبــــــز و ساده که غروبا
Ye shaale sabz o saade ke ghorubaa
A green and simple shawl that at sunset
پــــر از خــاکســــتر آتــش فشونــه
Por az khaakestare aatash feshoone
Is full of volcanic ashes
پـــــــر از خاکســــــتر آرزوهایــــی
Por az khaakestare aarezoohaayi
Full of ashes of the wishes
که هر روز روی قلبش گَر میگیرن
Ke har rooz ruye ghalbesh gor migiran
That burn on her heart daily
پر از خاکســـتر خوابــای خوبــــی
Por az khaakestare khaabaaye khoobi
Full of ashes of the sweet dreams
که هرشب تو نگاه اون میمیــــرن
Ke har shab too negaahe oon mimiran
That die in her eyes every night 
همین چند وقته پیش رویاشـــو توی
Hamin chand vaghte peesh royaasho tuye
Not long ago her dreams
خیــابون بـــی بهونه سر بریـــدن
Khiaaboon bi bahoone sar boridan
Were beheaded on streets unduly
همیــشــــه راه پــــروازشو بسـتن
Hamishe raahe parvaazesho bastan
Her flying route was always blocked 
همیشـــه رو خیالش خـــط کشیـــدن
Hamishe roo khiaalesh khat keshidan
Her imagination has always been crossed off
بـــراش مـــرده و زنــده فرق نداره
Baraash morde o zende fargh nadaare
Alive or dead is the same for her
سیاست بازا پــیـــرا و جــــوونــــا
Siaasat baazaa piraa javoonaa
Politicians, the elderly, or the youth 
همش دنبــــال قهرمـــــان مـیگرده
Hamash donbaale ghahramaan migarde
Repeatedly she’s in search of a hero
میونـه شاعــــــرا آوازخــــونـــــا
Miyoone shaaeraa aavaazekhunaa
Among the poets or the singers 
رو دیــــوار اتـــاقـش چنتــا عکـسه
Ru divaare otaaghesh chandtaa akse
On her room’s wall are some pictures of
هدایـت ، کاف کــا ، فرخــزاد ، مایـکل
Hedaayat, Kafka, Farokhzad, Michael
Hedayat(1), Kafka, Farrokhzad (2), Michael (Jackson)
یــــه عکـــــس خاتــــمی چنتــا مدونا
Ye akse Khatami chand taa Madonna
One picture of Khatami (3), some of Madonna’s 
یه عکس تام کروز یـه عـــکس فیدل
Ye akse Tom Cruise, Ye akse Fidel
A picture of Tom Cruise, one from Fidel (4)!
براش مـــــرده و زنــــده فــرق نداره
Baraash morde o zende fargh nadaare
Alive or dead is the same for her
همش دنبـــــال قهرمــــان میـــگرده
Hamash donbaale ghahramaan migarde
Repeatedly she’s in search of a hero
نــمیدونه کــه تنـــها تـوی آیــــنه
Nemidune ke tanhaa tuye aayene
She doesn’t know that in the mirror alone
بایـــد دنبــــال قــهرمــان بــــگرده
Baayad donbaale ghahramaan beggared
She should quest a hero
هنـــوز بـــاور نـــداره که با دستاش
Hanuz baavar nadaare ke baa dastaash
She still does not believe that by her hands
جهانی میشه ســاخت ، بی ظلم و برده
Jahaani mishe saakht bi zolm o barde
A world can be built without tyranny and slaves
یــــه دختــــر تو تــراس روبرویـی
Ye dokhtar tu teraase ruberuyi
A girl in the opposite terrace
شبـــا کنسرت فریـــادش بــه راهــه
Shabaa konserte faryaadesh be raahe
Has a concert of cries nightly
صداش میگیره از بـس غصـــه داره
Sedaash migire az bas ghosse dare
Her voice gets lowered due to many sorrows
نمیشه دیدش از بـس شــــب سیاهه
Nemishe didesh az bas shab siyaahe
The night’s darkness hides her to be seen
ولی زنگ صـداش میـپـچـیـه هــرشب
Vali zange sedaash mipiche har shab
But the timbre of her voice is resonated 
تو شـهری که چـراغاش رنگه خــــونن
Tu shahri ke cheraaghaash range khunan
In a city with lights the same color as the houses
دیــگه چـــند وقــتـــه که حتـــی چراغِ
Dige chand vaghte ke hatta cheraaghe
Some time later even the traffic lights 
چـهـارراه ها میترســن "سبــــــز" بمونن
Chaar raahaa mitarsan sabz bemunan
At junctions are scared to turn green
میـــخواد یـاد تــموم شـــهر بــمونــه
Mikhaad yaade tamume shahr bemune
She wants to remember the city
بــهـاری کـه یــکی بــرگـاشـو دزدیــد
Bahaari ke yeki bargaasho dozdid
She spring whose leaves were stolen
درخـتــی کــه قـرنـتـیـنـه شــد آخـــــر
Derakhti ke gharantine shod aakhar
And a tree that finally got quarantined
تو فصــلی که زمین بـرعکس میچرخید
Tu fasli ke zamin bar’aks micharkhid
In a season in which the earth was rotating conversely
صــداش لـــبریز حـــرفـای نـگفتس
Sedaash labrize harfaaye nagoftas
Her heart full of unsaid words 
سرش لبــریــز صد آتــش فشونــه
Saresh labrize sad aatash feshune
Her head full of hundreds of volcanoes
یـــه دختــــر تو تــراس روبرویــی
Ye dokhtar too teraase ruberui
A girl in the opposite terrace 
یـه شال سبــــــز و هر روز میتکونه
یـه شال سبــــــز و هر روز میتکونه
یـه شال سبــــــز و هر روز میتکونه
Ye shaale sabzo har rooz mitekoone
Waves a green shawl every day

Download MP3 here