“Scream of silence” by Lt Gen Tariq Khan (Retd)

16 December goes by again. My unqualified attempt at prose.

When we yearn for high office yet lack the capacity to hold it, when we willingly embrace responsibility knowing we are not worthy of it, when our success is measured by surviving the tenure we must survive, when our achievements are weighed by invented fables and clashing cymbals of artificial celebrations, when the government is more important than the State, when institutions are sacrificed for self and family, when constitutions hold nations hostage, when democracy is just an end by any means, when justice is trampled under fear of reprisal or the glitter of gold, where mediocrity is subsidised, where there is no difference between sin and crime, where one is respected more for breaking the law rather than following it, where religion is an obsession but God summarily forgotten, where ideology remains the refuge of a rascal and belief excludes all others, then my friend you have discovered my country, the land of the pure, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

Here substance is conspicuous in its absence while slogans rule the roost, love is professed with passion but hatred practiced with venom, where peace is promised to all but intolerance and extremism remain what is left of any social contract, where corruption is the form and merit defeated at the alter of nepotism and jobbery, where who you are matters more than what you do, where people hear you yet no one listens, where all can see yet no one looks and when you find yourself so surrounded in a sea of people but yet you stand anonymous, then you, my friend, have found my people, the Muslims of Pakistan.

Lt Gen Tariq Khan (Retd)


2 thoughts on ““Scream of silence” by Lt Gen Tariq Khan (Retd)

  1. On mass mind comparison, shaping of social attitudes and govt. ethical standards we are not alone. There are tens of such democracies on this sacred earth of God where living conditions are similar to what the have in Pakistan. In a U.S. court room you are given 20 min. to explain.Our Supreme Court is giving 04 months to Panama case. University education is not free in U.S. but we have it in Pakistan with minimal fee. In U.S. your health care is on the mercy of insurance and so is your driving previledge. In homeland Pakistan we are blessed with carefree driving, and rights to sit ins and strikes . No country and society allows doctors and lawyers to protest this violent as ours. Our media is yelling against govt. for not lowering the oil prices.The whole world is swimming in cheap oil, they are claiming, while the reality is, I myself have never enjoyed filling the 65 litres tank of my car any cheaper than a dollar/litre. Prices and fares for internet and cellular phone services are even lower than Middle Eastern states.These are a few of a thousand reasons we should sit aside and ponder ” why it is so that in dictionary the word R for responsibility comes before R for Rights “. Standing up and resolving to fix is always better than lip service, General Saheb.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. As the popular saying goes, you nailed it….. 🙂


    ……the General’s perspectives are relevant only as much as his role as being one of the top decision-makers and executives of his time. A three-star officer, who had been IGFC KPK and Commander 1 Corps, and whose son-in-law is a serving NCO of US Armed Forces, can only whine proportionate to what he (could not) got to earn during a lifetime of career. That whatever turmoil we are in today, is the outcome of decades of policies and decisions of his likes – who were ordained authority by God, with no responsibility….


    The relevant and stated Panama hearings necessitated that our states-men would come forward with a truth…. That the hard-earned tax-money would have a trail… That the institutions would be namesake, to say the least… That our “marhoom” investigative set-up might stand up; “qum be-izn-nillah”…!

    Nothing of that sort happens here..

    For the “civi”-lized, everything happens for a reason which is khaki in colour.
    For the baa-wardee, the devil is a politician by profession.
    For the bearded, every ill is a conspiracy…….and yahood o hanood were created only to vilify us..
    For all other kittens, doves, hawks and butterflies of media, bureaucracy, judiciary and civil society, its only about the stakes…….their stakes (and supply is ALWAYS less than demand, per se….)

    A common man cares ****.
    All he deserves is a peaceful life and a contented death.
    All he needs is a handful of respect, ease and comfort.
    All he requires is not truckload of rights, but belly-ful of food, shelter, employment, medical care, education, clean drinking water……

    He doesn’t care about democracy (and such other demons), khilaafat / shariyyat (and such other fairy tales). With paltry income that is not even enough to pay the ‘subsidized bills’, he doesn’t care if the courts work or not, or if the fuel costs are upside down. He doesn’t want to stage sit-ins or dharnaaz (no sane person in the world does)…

    “These are a few of a thousand reasons we should sit aside and ponder ” why it is so that in dictionary the word R for responsibility comes before R for Rights “. Standing up and resolving to fix is always better than lip service, General Saheb…”

    Yes and very right….


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