On Pakistan’s Sick Choice to Expel Afghan Refugees from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

I almost feel bad for writing this because I think Pakistan’s choice to expel Afghan refugees out of the area is merely a clever tactic to divert people’s attention from the real problem facing Pakistan – militancy and what just happened in Peshawar. It thinks (and it looks like it’s right) that we are a stupid, mindless breed of people and will fall for their lie that our problems exist because of the Afghan refugees we’re not even hospitable to. And so everyone’s going to talk about this and falsely connect militancy and violence to Afghans and Afghan refugees especially and therefore not talk about the real problem facing Pakistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. So by talking about it, I feel like I’m letting them succeed.

Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa

Map of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) in relation to Afghanistan (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was formerly called “the Northwest Frontier Province,” or NWFP, since it’s in the northwest of Pakistan). It borders Afghanistan, and more than the majority of people in KPK are ethnic Pashtuns, also the majority of Afghanistan (some 60%).

So, yeah, as of recent news from Pakistan: Pakistan has decided to kick out *all Afghan refugees* from the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province (that’s Pashtun, by the way, like most of the Afghan refugees there) within the next thirty days because. Because the Peshawar school attack. If you’re missing a connection here, it’s because none exist. Let’s get this straight: Pakistan wants to get rid of Afghan refugees in response to the December 16 Peshawar Attack … because, in case it’s not already obvious, Pakistan’s problem exists because Afghan refugees. And all other things Afghanistan-related. Why are our leaders so devoid of  sense? Why do they keep making such stupid decisions? Our problems don’t exist because of Afghan refugees! These refugees have nothing to do with terrorism except that their being refugees is a a direct result of Pakistan’s creation of Taliban (and the CIA helped created the Taliban, too; we’ll talk on that some other time, though). I don’t understand how much sense this is supposed to make. You create a monster because of whom people are forced to leave their homes, and then you claim that the people who left because of the monster you accused are the actual problem. When the actual problem is actually you.

Afghan refugees 4

Because most refugees anywhere are women and children and are taken most advantage of in any society. P.S. Random google image of Afghan refugees

But! Understand that there’s no connection between militancy and the poor Afghan refugees that haven’t even been able to create a decent living in Pakistan. I mean, c’mon – Pakistan can’t even provide for its own citizens lets alone others. That’s not to say Pakistan has no room for refugees. On the contrary: because poverty is so endemic to the country, it might as well let people in if they (the refugees) feel safer there even if in reality, they’re actually not. Pakistan–and especially Khyber Pakhtunkhwa right now–is making it seem like it’s been providing for the refugees, giving them resources and love and time and opportunities. This is all BS. More than most of the money Pakistan receives to help refugees goes into the hands of our corrupt leaders, politicians, and whoever else that’s supposed to be providing for the refugees. This is a known secret all across Pakistan. Anyone doubtful can look up information on the life of the 1.5+ million Afghan refugees in Pakistan online (not always reliable, though) or talk to actual refugees to get the reality. Sure, some of them are nice people and appreciate being able to at least feel safer in Pakistan than they might in their home in Afghanistan, but they’d probably feel that way anywhere in the world, not just in Pakistan. The abuse (sexual, physical) that they face, the humiliation that comes with being a refugee or just an unwanted guest/resident somewhere new even if you think the people are your own (Pukhtuns) and should therefore be welcoming you more), harassment by corrupt police (see, also, this – a UN Refugee Agency report on Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran) and law officials, … are common stories. The Human Rights Watch also has some good information on some of the major issues that Afghan refugees deal with on a daily basis.

Afghan refugees1

Random google image of Afghan refugees

Anyway, so I haven’t been taking this news of getting rid of Afghan refugees in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) well at all. There are several reasons: refugees, already doing poorly wherever they are cursed to be, are being forced to pay for a crime they had no role in committing (Pakistan created and nurtured the Taliban, and now it’s taking it on the people whom it destroyed in the process?!); this decision is absolutely inhumane–and I don’t care if this is all “emotional” or whatever (there’s nothing wrong with being emotional anyway; what’s wrong with the world is that it is not emotional at all); KPK is Pashtun, and it’s hurting its very own … what a cowardly leadership, KPK. You fail.

But perhaps most importantly of all, for the last few months, I’ve been working with Afghan refugees in my city (there’s starting to be a strong population of them), and it’s been a wonderful experience. Hearing their terrifying stories of what they’ve endured as refugees wherever they were before they made it here has been painful. I can only imagine what those who remain in insufferable conditions wherever they are must have gone through and must continue to go through. God give them strength to bear life as hell on earth, aameen.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Random google image of Afghan refugees

Don’t get me wrong. I get politics and I get that there’s no room for empathy, sincerity, and respect for unprivileged humans in politics. The only people politics has always and will always protect are those with a whole bunch of money and networks with “important” people.

Pakistan is a hopeless country, as are many other countries around the world and especially in South Asia and the Middle East. Its problems are too grand and too deep to be solved with the expulsion of poor people from. It’s not going to magically become a safe country for everyone all of a sudden.

Yeah … this is just so, so wrong.

Afghan refugee in Islamabad

Random google image of Afghan refugees. P.S. This is how they live, and Pakistan wants to think it’s doing them a favor …

What’s saddest, too, is that Afghans, including Pukhtuns, in Afghanistan have been so incredibly sympathetic towards the Peshawar attack victims and their families (and who’d understand the pain of these families better than Afghans), and this is how we get respond to their sympathies and love. When have we–the Pukhtuns of Pakhtunkhwa–ever, ever stood up for Pukhtuns of Afghanistan for them to be standing up for us in our time of need?

Why do some governments, incompetent that they are, keep feeling the need to just *respond* to something even if it’s an unreasonable, illogical, and cruel response? The point isn’t to just do something – the point is to do the right thing, which is to stop terrorism! These refugees are not our problem. Our problem is religious extremism forced down our throats by those whose own children are enjoying an elite education in the West and living luxurious lives wherever they are!

Suck it, Pakhtunkhwa. You disappoint me, and you fail your own people.

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About Orbala

Pashtun. Interested in all things Pashtuns, feminism, and Islam/religion. And I want it to rain on my wedding day, pliss, inshaAllah.
This entry was posted in Afghans, human rights, I can't believe this needs to be said out loud, migration, Pakistan, Pashtuns, social justice, violence in this world and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to On Pakistan’s Sick Choice to Expel Afghan Refugees from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

  1. adil khattak says:

    I fully agree with you that its the pakistani establishment which is responsible for forcing afghans to take refuge in pakistan and that they have nothing to do with the peshawar carnage. however we should not blame the common people of pakhtunkhwa for this decision of expelling the afghan refugees. this was announced by CM of PTI government which exposes the PTI mindset rather than represent the sentiments of the people of pakhtunkhwa who are very comfortable having their afghan kinsmen amongst them.

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    • orbala says:

      Thanks for your comment, Adil! And pa khair!

      Na, I don’t blame common people for the decision at all; I get that it’s officials making this cowardly decision. Even though some Pukhtuns are kind to the Afghan refuges and others are not (as would be the case anywhere because kind and unkind people exist everywhere), that’s not at all related to the recent decision. I simply regret that it looks like there’s nothing we can do about it so that the refugees are not punished for the crimes of others.

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    • Khawaja says:

      PTI won the most seats in KP in elections just a year ago, so they do represent KP and a large portion of the electorate.

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    • orbala says:

      I believe Adil meant ordinary Pakhtuns, not any political parties. A people might elect a person or people to represent them, but that doesn’t mean that even most of the policies and opinions given by that party necessarily represent the people’s.

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  2. Khawaja says:

    Even though I’m not from KP and haven’t had pleasant experiences with refugees but I am opposed to them being deported en masse in such a short time cause a lot of what is wrong with Afghanistan has to do with our government/establishment, this move comes off as a knee-jerk reaction to the tragedy in Peshawar.

    That being said, you haven’t really presented the facts properly, there’s some misinformation in your blog post.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/811067/govt-committed-to-repatriating-afghan-refugees-by-end-of-2015-abdul-qadir-baloch/
    “ISLAMABAD: Minister for States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) Abdul Qadir Baloch on Tuesday said that the government was committed to sending all Afghan refugees back to Afghanistan by December 23, 2015, as per the agreement between the two countries.
    Baloch was speaking at a press conference called to address demands by political parties and civil society for the safe and swift return of Afghan refugees to their homeland.
    He noted that there was no reason for alarm or apprehension. “We are not going to push them overnight. They will be sent back respectfully, on a voluntary basis and according to the time-frame decided upon.”
    He also emphasised the need for refugees to be registered in light of the law and order situation.
    The minister said that UNHCR was cooperating with the government and that Pakistan had played host to the refugees in the best possible manner.
    International community’s indifference
    “The international community has forgotten this story,” Baloch said, referring to the refugee situation in Pakistan.
    He compared the Afghan refugee situation with the refugee situation in Syria where there were 900,000 refugees last year compared while in Pakistan there were there million refugees, while Iran had upward of 1.5 million. “The largest exodus of refugees in history has been to Pakistan.”
    Baloch said that the international community had committed $600 million to Pakistan in 2012 to alleviate the refugee situation in Pakistan, but that Pakistan had not even received $100 million of that amount, even though the programme was supposed to end in 2014.”

    It is practically impossible to deport the refugees because many of them already have legit ID cards and passports, and most don’t even live in camps anymore.

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    • orbala says:

      Khawaja, thank you for your readership and your comments!

      As for your claim that I have provided some misinformation: the fact is that this matter is specifically *in response* to the Peshawar school attack. There’s been a lot of backlash from Afghans, including Afghan refugees, in regards to it, so Pakistan can claim that it has whatever other reasons it makes up, but the reality remains – they’re kicking out Afghans from the area because of the Peshawar incident. Somehow, somehow according to Pakistan, “the time has come for Afghan refugees to leave Pakistan” … and this time has somehow come right after the attack. And we’re supposed to buy this BS. And, no, no one claimed it’s an overnight thing – they’ve been given one month to leave. That’s “obviously” not overnight.

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    • Khawaja says:

      Orbala, I read your comment -that troll was not me, I did not badmouth Afghans or Pashtuns and I don’t think you’re a bad writer, I read your blog cause I like it *facepalm*, you can check my IP address, I’ve always posted under this handle and if I were to ever have a sockpuppet, I wouldn’t name it “Enrique Hakeem Aryanzoy”, it would’ve been more desi.

      In context of what you wrote in response to me, if you read the article I shared, it stated that the government’s deadline for repatriating the refugees is the 23rd of December, 2015 -that is not 30 days and I actually agreed with you, I see this as a knee-jerk reaction to the tragedy in Peshawar.

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    • orbala says:

      A part of me was hoping you hadn’t seen that comment, hah! When I first got the email to moderate the comment, I read your name as the commenter, but then later — like 12 hours later — it occurred to me that I’d received two emails in one and I mistook them as from the same person.

      Sincerest apologies for my response to you when you didn’t deserve any of it. It was an honest mistake.

      Yeah, the Pakistani govt has one deal, and the Pakhtunkhwa govt has another, and the latter expects them to leave in one month while the former is like na, man, let ’em stay till another year. But I don’t trust Pakistan – there’s prolly something bigger going on between the federal and KPK govts that we’re not being told about. Likely.

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  4. Anonymous says:

    It’s especially embarrassing for me as a Pakistani Pakhtun, because Afghanistan accepted tons of Waziris after Zarb-e-Bakwas started, just a few months ago. I don’t think the establishment wants to talk about the serious issues that need to be discussed, and they’ve realized that refugees make an easy scapegoat. The Iranians are also doing this. Cowards.

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    • orbala says:

      I hear you! It’s embarrassing for me, too, and I feel like I need to personally apologize to every Afghan out there on behalf of the cowards ruling us, yes, especially given the fact that Afghanistan has been welcoming refugees from Waziristan! If nothing else, can we just think in terms of how, as my mother always says, daa pa har cha ratlai shi?!

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  5. orbala says:

    To the commenter Enrique Hakeem Aryanzoy:

    I have rejected your comment because, while I welcome critiques of my people, you don’t get to come here and spew evil against them or wish evil upon them because we don’t live up to your standards, because you disagree with the policies of our leaders and whatnot. So I expect you’ll either learn to speak of us with respect—because I do not entertain anyone who disrespects a people whose number exceeds 60 million—or you’ll simply keep your evil thoughts about them out of my blog. There are many Pashtun-hating blogs and websites and forums where you can shit about us all you want. This is not and never will be the place for anyone, esp non-Pukhtuns, to come bashing Pukhtuns. Or anyone else for that matter. Know that future such comments of yours, no matter what name you write them under, will be ignored completely. I’m wasting my time addressing it here simply because it was the first time you’ve done that — and it will remain the only time. Not just from you but from all other readers.

    Also, while I appreciate and welcome critique, especially of myself, I’m so glad to hear how bad you find my writing to be, but as a (bad) writer, I can’t pay attention to every comment about myself or my writing. I prefer my style as it is, and if you couldn’t figure out at all from the above post what my opinion on the matter is, that’s, frankly, not my problem. Somehow no one else had an issue with it. But how cool that you feel free enough to express your opinions about my poor writing on my blog!

    Feel free to re-post your comment about my poor writing, but anything evil you say about Pashtuns will push me to reject your comment once again.

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  6. orbala says:

    Gosh, so much hatred in this world. #onetear
    To the Commenter “Abdul” who, too, came bashing “Afghanis” (lol – dude, it’s AFGHAN; Afghani is the currency, cray-cray) – why are the most insecurest of humans also always the most ignorant? Oh, but of course!):

    I didn’t accept your comment for obvious reasons. No one gets to come here, call me and my people terrorists, blame Pakistan’s problems on “Afghanis” (lolz!), and get offended and tell Pukhtuns to get out of Pakistan and be like, “We should never have let y’all be a part of us!” lolz – because we were DYING to be Pakistani, right? Oh, silly, silly boy. Go read.

    As for my saying negative things about Pakistan that you don’t like, I’ve got news for you: Pakistan isn’t the innocent, lovely country you think it to be! See, when you take my suggestion of reading seriously, I’d also recommend reading some stuff on Pakistan’s evil against Bangladesh during the Bangladesh Liberation War – the genocides, the rapes, etc. Pakistan doesn’t tell you, just like it doesn’t tell you how it deals with Pukhtuns in Pakistan, so I can’t blame you for thinking no one should be speaking ill of Pakistan. Like Pakistan is doing Pukhtuns/Afghans a favor by keeping us there.

    While you’re at it, with your reading and all, also read up on how Pakistan created the Taliban and continues to protect and nurture them. Then we can proceed talking about how Afghans are terrorists and you Pakistanis are peaceful peace-loving peoplez.

    I’ll speak against any nation, any policies, any groups I want. I’m not gonna stop just because there’s an insecure Pakistani boy out there who’s offended that a Pukhtana girl doesn’t approve of Pakistan’s shittiness.

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  7. GRIZAR says:

    Orbala 1st of all Kpk is not “Pashtun” there are many other tribes and ethnicities living here long before Pashtuns ever arrived. Kpk is Pakistani and indic land, always have ,always will be.

    Just renaming nwfp to kpk can not and will not dilute the identity of the non Pashtuns of this province. You see this forceful Pashtun hegemony by Pashtun nationalists in Af-pak region has caused great bitterness and hostility among non-Pashtuns of kpk and Pakistan.i.e. the movement for hazara province.

    Just 30-40 years ago the majority language of Peshawar was hindko.Around half of the Peshawar school attack kids were non Pashtun with names like ,awan,abbassi ,qureshi,qazi Punjabi/Hindko non Pashtun castes etc. etc.

    3rdly; it was the “Pashtun” cm of kpk , member of Pashtun dominated PTI party who first announced the deportation of your brother afghans (Pashtuns) and not the Pakistan government. Also afghan (Pashtun) nationals were involved in the Peshawar tragedy and at least 2 have been identified.

    4rthly; This “establishment” that you are so eager to blame on, don’t forget that there are also “Pashtuns” in the Pak “establishment”. Its’ truly astonishing that there are many Niazis,Khattaks, Durranis, Chachis and not to mention kakars, Marwats, Lodhi, Yusufzai pathans in the so called “Punjabi” establishment.

    Lastly I partially agree with you, that a knee jerk reaction to deport all afghans (Pashtuns) is not the solution to this crisis for now. However illegal afghan(Pashtun) migrants should be sent back and it has been happening even before the Peshawar tragedy from all over Pakistan.

    You say that Pashtuns of kpk or Pakistan have not or do not care to help your afghan(Pashtun) brothers this is a wrong statement. it’s because of you lot (pressure) that the Pakistani state allowed the afghans (pashtuns) to set up camp everywhere in the country both during 1979 and 2001.

    Whats more curious is that its actually pakistani Pashtuns who lobbied to be the official guardians of afghans(Pashtuns) men like Hamid Gul, fazulr rehman, ehsan ul haq, ahmad shuja pasha ;’so they claimed to coexist Pakistani and Pashtun interests on same page in regards to issues like Durand line.

    The real problem is the “Pashtun Problem” , which we non Pashtun Pakistanis have been suffering from since the last 70 years. Why don’t you really strive for a Pashtun state or “Pashtunistan” which will be beneficial to all involved as a buffer state between majority non pashtun Afghanistan and majority non Pashtun Pakistan. Instead of playing these blickering games or victim mentality , set up a peaceful democratic movement for Pashtun state as you know very well that Pashtuns will continue to be looked upon suspiciously as in disloyal to the Pakistani state by non-Pashtuns. Otherwise continue to suffer and make us non Pashtuns suffer along with you in this “Game of Thrones”.

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    • orbala says:

      Grizar, thanks for your response!

      Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is majority Pukhtun (there’s a reason “Pakhtun” is in the new name, man); I’m not at all sorry that that bothers you, but that’s the reality. I’m aware of the different non-Pukhtun ethnic groups living among us. Peace and love to them all ❤

      I don't recall claiming that everything wrong in Pakistan is because of Punjabis. Everything wrong in Pakistan is because of all those in power, whether they're Punjabi or not. Some have happened to be Pukhtun, and they're part of the problem. Just because someone's Pukhtun doesn't mean they're going to bring hope to Pukhtuns. Just like having a black president for the first time in history has brought very little positive change and progress in American black people's lives. Power does that to people, sadly.

      As for Pashtunistan…. ahh, I hear you, bruh. Lots of Pukhtuns in Pakistan are working for one, and many are dreaming of one. As for me, I would support the idea if it came with no violence and further destruction for Pukhtuns. I also find the idea impractical at least for my generation. But in the long run, I wish for my people whatever is going to bring them peace and stability, whether that's joining back with Afghanistan / shifting the Durand Line, or creating a brand new Pashtunistan. Not to mention, at least at this point, the majority of Pukhtuns in PK wanna remain a part of Pakistan. I think a little better education about their history can make them see things more clearly, though. #agirlcandreamokay?

      I have every right and reason to discus the victimization of Pukhtuns, and the solution to our problem isn't a plain, "Get out of our country." Don't tell my people what to do or what's best for them. They can make the decision on their own.

      LOL @ how we make y'all suffer along with us.

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    • GRIZAR says:

      thanks for the reply.

      And no I don’t feel bitterness. but I do stand by my statement. kpk is not Pashtun. in case you are wondering I am using the same language as afghan Pashtun nationalists use.

      That is to say ; “oh you stole half of our land”. “Punjabis should get out of kpk” or “you don’t belong in our Pashtun land” so on and so on.*

      I’m like hold on a minute! which lands you are talking about, this? if its the question of who was there 1st then you fail in that argument. if its the ? of “you invaded and occupied our land” then we can see who really invaded and occupied THE land. if its the question of stealing half of afghan(Pashtun) land or given by Afghanistan to British for 100 years then that argument also fails and doesn’t even deserve a 2nd pause.

      the other argument they sometimes use is that it was occupied by afghans(Pashtuns) at 1 point before being lost, well in that case Punjab, Kashmir, Baluchistan, Sindh too were occupied and ruled by afghans(Pashtuns) at several points.

      so its alright for you (Pashtuns) to rule us but not us (non Pashtuns) to rule you. and what was the main instrument of ideology behind afghans(Pashtuns) ruling over us non Pashtuns?? “” Islamic solidarity”” ahhh yes the ample excuse that today afghans(Pashtuns) deeply reject because they perceive the Pakistanis to be Sinisterful in their attempt to control things in Afghanistan even indirectly. Strange Phenomena isn’t it?.

      Now just to clarify nwfp or kpk was carved out of Punjab in1901.Chitral,dir,swat,malakand were independent states later forming the malakand divison, were not even a part of kpk at 1st. Similarly Hazara division was separated from Punjab despite its proximity and cultural closeness to Pothohar and other nearby Punjabi speaking areas. Also the saraiki areas of Dera ismail khan, bannu ,lakki marwat were inter joined together with NWFP.
      At the time only the most western districts of NWFP were numerically Pashto speaking with the main centres in Charsadda ,Karak,Hangu, Bannu.

      The reason the British added the mainly non Pashtun areas in NWFP was because of population, at the time and still today the population was heavily concentrated in those areas.The british didn’t want to manage over a barren dispersed population that’s why they joined the non Pashtun areas together with Pashto speaking ones to form a manageable province.

      I perhaps would agree that today kpk might be majority “Pashto speaking” I didn’t say Pashtun I said “Pashto speaking”. You would be surprised at how many non Pashtuns,Hindkowans, saraikis or others are bilingual in both Pashto and their native languages in Kpk.

      e.g. the gujjars of Peshawar division who are some of the oldest inhabitants of the area speak perfect Pashto and Hindko/gojri . Similarly ones in swat are fluent in the language.

      Now if you would take away the non Pashto speaking areas from kpk and the non Pashtun but Pashto speaking areas and any others who don’t want to be a part of
      “Pashtunistan” or want anything to do with afghans(Pashtuns) then what are you left with?

      in any case I stand corrected when i say that Kpk is not Pashtun and will never be because the evidence is overwhelming in this regard. for example you would find “gujjar” mohallas (settlements) or galis(streets) in many so called pure Pashto speaking areas. And even though some may have been forced to or pressurised to speak Pashto over the years. The natives of kpk have not run away and its their 1st right to choose the future of this province and themselves. Pashtuns maybe living in kpk but does not mean they own it. you cannot erase history and they are numerous written records & sources in this regard. starting from 10th century Pashtun incursions in to present day kpk to the 14th and 15th century onwards large scale migrations and invasions. Every single Pashtun tribe in Pakistan/India has their sources either from southern Afghanistan like the Kandahar area or FATA none are native to NWFP or kpk. Even in Fata and places in southern Afghanistan you may still find non Muslims or other ethnicities who are natives to the area and have still survived through out the centuries despite living with Pashtuns.

      The other case I would bring in to this is that in 1947 out of the registered 51.9% voters who voted in the NWFP referendum .51% voted to be with Pakistan with a 99% yes ratio.The rest of the 49 percentage either did not vote, didn’t care or boycotted it due to bacha khan’s demands.
      The gujar wali of swat, mehtar of chitral and other princely rulers of kpk merged their areas in to Pakistan. Many of which comprise northern Kpk and are non Pashtun in origin but Pashto speaking.

      so no you(Pashtuns) don’t love other ethnicities or tribes in Kpk because if you did then you would have respected their sentiments and not forced down Pashto culture where many in the province are not even ethnically Pashtun.
      you know very well that there was no need to rename NWFP to Kpk, the ANP just did it because they had nothing else to show for their governance. Thanks to their stupid move parts of Kpk may fly off as indigenous ethnicities want to preserve their culture and language and you cant do this when you declare everyone in kpk to be “Pukthoon”…..

      So, with all the given reasons I can confidently say that Kpk is Pakistani, indic land(as Pashtun nationalists call us) Morally,Legally and Historically despite what some Pashtuns may do or not this is our land and no 1 can snatch it away from us unlike in the past.

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    • orbala says:

      There are a lot of points I would like to respond to, but I’ll just tackle a few.
      Despite your insistence, I wholeheartedly disagree that Khybre Pakhtunkhwa is historically and morally Pakistani; heck, even legally, it may not be (long story, but basically the Durand Line Agreement was supposed to expire 100 years from 1893, but then shit happened in the middle (e.g., Pakistan came into the picture), and so now it’s all complicated. There’s a reason Afghanistan refused to recognize Pakistan as an independent state for, what, three years was it? I, however, am one of those who believe that even legally, KPK doesn’t belong to Pakistan. Just because Pashtuns have mingled with their neighbors there and just because the majority of Pakistani Pashtuns have been brainwashed and believe Pakistan is the best doesn’t mean they rightfully belong there.

      Also, KPK didn’t really “choose” to join with Pakistan; they were forced to choose between India and Pakistan, and, being Muslim, they obviously chose to go with Pakistan. The more fair options would have included either being an independent state or re-joining with Afghanistan, which is what Bacha Khan (God be pleased with him) spent his life struggling for. So this claim that “What you talking – y’all VOTED in majority to be with Pakistan!” isn’t necessarily wrong but it’s also out of context given the history and reason of our choice.

      As for our name being changed from NWFP to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: I think Pukhtun leaders have more important problems to focus on, BUT I think the name change is significant and it did need to happen. We’re not Sarhadyaan; we’re Pukhtaana. It’s only fair that the names of all the four provinces of Pakistan say something about the majority ethnic population of the province. I only wish “Khyber” was not in the name. Pakhtunkhwa or Pashtunkhwa or Pukhtunkhwa would have been plenty fine. Now with “Khyber” in it, few make the effort to pronounce our name (our identity) properly; we’re reduced to this lame-ass KPK.

      Lastly, I’d like to just reiterate that I don’t quote support the Pukhtun nationalists’ struggle for independence or reuniting with Afghanistan. I don’t think it’s a good idea for Pukhtuns, at least at this point in history (priorities, priorities), to leave Pakistan. I hope it happens one day, and if it does, may it bring peace and stability to Pukhtuns, but it’s not a practical effort currently – and perhaps because Paksitan is doing everything in its power to make sure Pukhtuns remain there and don’t make a move against it. Destabilize Pukhtuns as much as possible so that they’ll understand that they simply cannot afford independence because they’ve got bigger problems to work on. (P.S. It’s very telling that Bacha Khan is buried in Jalalabad (Afghanistan, his fatherland) instead of in Charsadda (Pakistan) where he was born.) You see, there’s nothing like feeling broken and half because half of you is on one side of the border and half on another, and you’re all the same people. I don’t think all ethnic groups need their own nations so long as they don’t want one and so long as they’re being treated fairly under whatever nation that claims them.

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    • GRIZAR says:

      you have clearly got all your history wrong!!!

      I did not even mention the Durand line agreement. But Since you have brought it up let me tell you that no where in the agreement does it say that it will expire in 100 years. This is corroborated by international parties both at the time and today. There are original copies of the agreement and subsequent agreements in both Pakistan and Britain. There are written records and official engagements on this subject and this 100 years is a Myth!

      furthermore the British captured present day Kpk from the Sikhs not the Afghans. Kpk was the official border between Afghanistan and British India for 50 years before Durand line agreement. Kpk was already under the rule of both Sikhs and British for nearly 80 years before Durand line agreement ever came in to being.

      in the 1880s Anglo-Afghan war Britain defeated Afghanistan and captured the tribal areas also known as FATA .They also forced the afghans (Pashtuns) to hand over northern Baluchistan (Pashtun areas) to them.

      Its these areas that Afghanistan handed over to the British in the Durand line agreement of 1893 officially accepting British suzerainty over them (Fata, Northern Baluchistan) as well as recognizing the new border marked out which is known as the Durand line.

      The British already had control over present day NWFP/Kpk.. its mainly the Pashtuns from these areas (Fata) which feel a strong connection to Afghanistan As the Pashtuns are not native to nwfp/kpk which they invaded during the 14thcentury…

      on the issue of Kpk Pakistan is indic land . let me put it simple for you

      The indigenous tribes of Kpk are the Dardics; ,Kohatis,Swatis,Bannuites,Peshawaris, Chitralis Gujjars,Saraikis and other non Pashtuns.

      The indigenous language of Kpk was is Hindko not Pashto.like I mentioned before Hindko was the majority language of Peshawar 30-40 years ago. Similarly It was is the majority language in several other areas like Mardan.

      Pashtuns are not native to KPK to begin with. you came as invaders from southern Afghanistan , first settling down in FATA/ Baluchistan and then gradually moving towards KPK/Punjab.

      Now just because you are here does not mean that its your birth right. You are invaders in indic lands. Kpk, Punjab Sindh,Kashmir are all indic lands.
      Otherwise known as Indo Aryan.

      The Pashtuns have a bad habit of grabbing things which don’t belong to them e.g. most of northern, central western Afghanistan is non Pashtun with tajk ,uzbek, hazara , Turkmen populations yet the Taliban forcibly took over some of those areas with the help of Pakistan Pashtuns and isi (unfortunately). even in the past Pashtun rulers have done things like this.

      no wonder the northern alliance was pis*** off at us. (Rightly so)

      priorities, priorities, priorities/?/ This is straight forward Munaifqat as far as i see it.my motto is either “own up or shut up”. Pashtun nationalists should be honest in what they want. if Greed and land grabbing is the main theme for Pashtuns then you too can dream of incorporating Karachi in to greater Afghanistan as many Pashtuns falsely believe it to be

      as for Pashtunistan , then Pak could give back Fata and northern Baluchistan. The given areas could join up with the Pashtun areas of southern Afghanistan and make it in to a Pashtun state.In return Pakistan should demand compensation because legally even Fata and northern Baluchistan are ours and you don’t just hand over Sovereign territory for free.

      But don’t expect unreasonable demands or try it to justify Ludicrous claims like “Loy Afghanistan”, Half of Pakistan or Whole of Afghanistan because its simply not happening.

      Just look at what’s happening today, FATA which is 80% Pashtun is being run by the Pak army. Operations are being carried out to protect the “Territorial Integrity” of the Pakistani State & Defeat Terrorism. now if this can happen against Islamist Pashtuns in purely Pashtun areas then imagine the upheaval in KPK if some Pashtuns try to secede away and where much of the non pashtun population also resides .

      in Karachi the MQM is so fearful of the Taliban that they are butchering Pashtuns that come in to their areas. Imagine a scenario happening like this not in Karachi but all over Pakistan if Pashtuns try to take away KPK, which never belonged to them in 1st place.

      I think you are asking for a Bloodbath to be precise. Unjustifiable demands such as yours can only lead to Such a Situation and maybe its already heading that way.

      In the end all I will say to you IS to drop your ridiculous ideas of Separating my beloved kpk from Pakistan. I have distant relatives in Swabi and I don’t see them wanting to live in so called Pashtunistan. I assume you are from Swat? A yousafzai perhaps? well do keep it in your mind that your ancestors were invaders NOT Natives in this land now called KPK and no matter what any1 does never in a million years will we allow the separation of Indic kpk from beloved Pakistani soil…

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    • Khawaja says:

      There wasn’t a ‘100 year’ time limit on the Durrand line treaty, that is one of the biggest myths fabricated and perpetuated by the ethnic nationalists, there is no basis to that claim -even on the official document there is no mention of a timelimit nor does any world government or body endorses the claim that there was a time limit and what’s even more hillarious is that the Durrand line isn’t even the actual border between Pakistan & Afghanistan; the Durand line treaty included Helmand in Pakistan but that is in Afghanistan, so we aren’t even quite following the Durrand line treaty anyways.

      As for renaming the province, Gizar does have a point -the ethnic minorities were opposed to the province being named after the majority ethnicity, they proposed it be named ‘Abaseen’ or ‘Khyber’, the Hindkowans proposed it be named be named Hazara-Pakhtunkhwa which would give recognition to both the Pashtuns and Hazarewals but obviously there voices weren’t heard, because it didn’t matter, so as a watered down compromise the ANP finally agreed to add Khyber to Pakhtunkhwa but even then many ethnic minorities do no approve of he name KPK, so you wishing that Khyber not be added, isn’t practical at all, unless you support the creation of new provinces.

      You say that it’s only fair that it be named after the majority ethnicity because the other 3 provinces of Pakistan say something about the ethnicity that lives there?Uhhh…..No, Sindh for example isn’t named after an ethnicity, it’s named after ‘Darya-e-Sindh’ -the river Indus, and anybody living in Sindh is Sindh, similarly ‘Punjab’ means land of 5 rivers, it is not named after an ethnicity, anybody living in Punjab is Punjabi, the same applies for Kashmir and Gilgit which have historical names named after a place or a thing but not an ethnicity, the people then use these regional names as their identity, the only province named after an ethnicity is Balochistan, which historically was called ‘Godar'( a Pashto word) and many ethnic minorities there want the name ‘Godar’ back.

      Pakhtunkhwa on the other hand means quite explicit -‘home of the Pukhtuns’, so ethnic minorities in KPK who have been there as long as the Pukhtuns or even longer, feel marginalized and feel as if it isn’t their home but then again, you’re right, in this world – majorities matter,minorities don’t

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    • Khawaja says:

      Are you on crack or something?Because a lot of what you say doesn’t make sense, why would you claim to be a Pakistani if you wish for it to break up?If the Pashtuns breakaway, then it wouldn’t end there, every ethnicity would want their own country -the Sindhis,Seraikis,Kashmiris,Gilgitis,Punjabis,Memons,Chitralis,Hindkowans,Muhajirs,
      Hazaras, Baloch(we know what’s going on there) and many more, maybe I’ve forgotten any ethnicity, but you get the point and then it won’t end there, every tribe from each ethnicity might want their own country cause they’re too cool to coexist with the others.

      Breaking up countries is no longer practical, the concept of ethnic based states is a recent idea emanating from Europe in the 19th century, and that’s what led to so much war in Europe throughout the last century -they divided each other, but now look, they know it didn’t work and that’s why they created the European Union to get closer again, but even then the EU is not working because each country wants ‘power’, whereas look at the United States, it has 50 states, it’s a diverse country and that’s why America is a superpower -because they are what the EU wanted to be.

      You can tear Pakistan or any country into a thousand pieces but what good is their if there’s no law and order or strong institutions, a new country doesn’t gurantee anything, so what we need is pluralism,acceptance and celebration of our diversity.

      If you look at history in this region, there have been many empires which spanned from Afghanistan into northern India, and the center was always where present-day Pakistan is -from the times of Mehrgarh 9000 years ago, these regions are all connected and throughout history conquerors from Afghanistan/Khorasan have made conquests of the Indus plains because they always depended on the fertile soil, they also ruled many years over Balochistan & Sindh cause they needed access to the sea -so the truth is, these ethnicities have all interacted and coexisted with each other through history even before Pakistan was a country, so we’re not as alien to each other as ethnofascists make us out to be.
      http://foreignpolicy.com/2012/06/18/whats-wrong-with-pakistan/

      Also as somebody with mixed ethnic heritage, I don’t identify with any one of my many ethnic heritages, and this increasingly quite common in urban Pakistan where people have intermarried, so mutts like me are not interested in ethnic divisions/chauvinism.

      Like

  8. Khawaja says:

    That comment was for GRIZAR

    Like

  9. Shageem says:

    “These refugees are not our problem. Our problem is religious extremism forced down our throats by those whose own children are enjoying an elite education in the West and living luxurious lives wherever they are!”

    Agreed!

    Refugees were fleeing for their lives. Most of them have lost their parents, children, siblings and very near and dears, properties and belongings. They have never been respected in Pakistan. Though Gilamjam (“Dostum’s list of abuses … is well-documented with cases of killing, looting, and torturing … destroyed the Kandahar hospital and looted everything in sight. Such behavior garnered Dostum and his men the name Gilam-Jam, or “Rug-snatchers.”)

    I remember when I was studying in Peshawar in late 80s and for whole 90s, Afghan women were referred to as ‘Gilamjam’ a generic name for beautiful Afghan ladies and I can understand what went in the minds of the men when they would discuss them. They have been exploited in all spheres of their lives. Socially, economically, politically, religiously, ethnically, morally, physically, sexually….. You name it! Then our narratives of the past…adds fuel to the fire… These poor refugees were branded as equivalent to Heroine and Kalashnikov. I have heard this for more than 1000 times that refugees, heroine and Kalashnikov are the gifts we have received in aftermath of Russian invasion and Afghan war.

    The point is, they were vulnerable there and they are vulnerable here. The total population of these Afghan Refugees is less than the population of only one district (on average) in Pakistan. It’s the poor state of affairs of the Pakistani authorities who have left anything at the mercy of fate and were unable to come up with any viable refugee management policy in all these decades. It is not the refugees who are responsible for our miseries. Our enemies are the anti-state agents who have been identified as operating from bordering areas between the two countries. Our enemies are within us. Living, walking and talking!

    Let us put it this way. The IDP situations have been created after the military offensive in many areas in Pakistan, let begin from Swat and down the line to NWA presently. I support these operations as strongly as a devout. If terrorist would attack us from these areas what should we do in return? Yes, of course fight back and eliminate them. Would it be wise to tell the IDPs to pack up and leave the area as the attack are been carried out from their areas of origin? Certainly not! They are the primary victims themselves and state has to protect them. Likewise States have the responsibility to protect Refugee too.

    Let us act like a responsible state. Let us not be carried away by the emotions. Let’s think calmly and not be faked by eye wash. Let us know our enemy!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. jaggafeen says:

    the pak army and police are ripping up identity cards and passports of pakistani pashtuns and expelling them.

    Like

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