Thursday 1 March 2012

Deconstructing Zaid Hamid part 9

Ladies and Gentlemen, the process of debunking Zaid Hamid is back.!! Enjoy reading.

Deconstructing Zaid Hamid
Zaid Hamid is a TV-phenomenon popularized by his programmes like Brass Tacks and Iqbal ka Pakistan. Sixteen episodes of Iqbal ka Pakistan have been examined by this author in last eight issues. Episodes 17 and 18 of Iqbal ka Pakistan are reviewed below.
Recently Ali Azmat, in a show on Dunya TV, presented the theory that after 1945 the musical instruments have been tuned to a specific frequency that is destructive for cellular structure, leading to Mass Hypnotism and Crowd Control. He also indicted “News Corp” as one of the factors behind that. He should have known that News Corp. was founded in 1979.!!
He claimed that the Libyan upsurge recently was due to Oil. He probably does not know that Italy was already getting majority of Oil from Libya. He also opined that Occupy movement is being supported by Capitalists.

Episode 17

At the start of the show, Ali Azmat exclaimed that Pakistan recently became world t20 champions but we actually are the eternal champions, we don't need any trophies to prove that.
Zaid Hamid:- Ham jis khel main jate hain, champion ban jate hain.(Translation:- Whichever sport we play, we end up becoming World Champion in that sport).

Comment:- This is a typical exaggeration by Mr. Zaid. We just need to look at our Olympic Gold Medals Tally to know the truth. For the record, from 1948 till date, Pakistan has won only THREE gold medals in Olympics that too in Field Hockey. 

Zaid Hamid:- We built nuclear centrifuges totally on our own.
Comment:- This is a bold and unsubstantiated claim by Zaid Hamid. Shahid-ur-Rehman, author of the books Long Road to Chagai, wrote on page 51, ‘During 1975, A. Q. Khan plundered the Almelo[where he was working at that time] facility to provide Pakistan with ‘blueprints of the enrichment plant, design and literature relating to centrifuge technology and lists of suppliers, equipment and materials’. In 1983 a Dutch court sentenced him, in absentia, to four years’ imprisonment for attempting to obtain classified information.

Zaid Hamid:- We need role models for progress.
Comment:- This is a prevalent idea among the youth of Pakistan. While this remains partially true, students of Political Sciences know that the search for role models leads to dictatorships. Every dictator of today was a hero(a role model) of yesterday. Saddam Hussain, Qaddafi, Ben Ali, Stalin, Marcos, Ayub Khan and dozens of South American dictators came to power with a promise of change and we all know what happened. We certainly need role models but more than role models, we need our “systems”(political systems) to work. When systems start working irrespective of who is the President or Prime Minister, that is the true change we should aspire towards.
Zaid Hamid:- The man on the street in Pakistan is very honest and a good human being.

Comment: - This statement is an over-simplification of the actual state of affairs. This is a view espoused by people visiting from abroad, people who are not ingrained in the realpoitik of Pakistan. Emma Duncan, in her book about Pakistan “Breaking the Curfew” wrote, ‘Pakistan is a land of contradictions, confusions and hypocrisies. After staying here for some time, the visitor feels duped: Why do they pretend to be in 20th century Europe when they are in 7th century Asia? How can educated people justify benefitting from superstition and ignorance? Why do they complain about the state of their government and their laws when they’re profiting from the anarchy? Why do they criticize the Army’s power when they’re working with the soldiers?’  Indeed the “man on the street” is by nature a good person but that is true for almost every other country in the world, or is it not?
Zaid Hamid: - Change in country cannot be brought about by long marches and democracy.

Comment:- This comment is an indirect insult of the process of democracy and peaceful protests. In the last 50 or so years, “change” has been brought about either by Military takeovers or protests. When Mr. Zaid Hamid refutes the power of one of them, he is suggesting that perhaps the other option is the best option.

Zaid Hamid
: - He blamed separation of East Pakistan and fall of Dhaka exclusively to will of God.
Comment: - This is another blunder by so-called Intellectual Mr. Zaid Hamid. By transferring the blame for Separation of East Pakistan to the will of the Almighty, Zaid Hamid wants us to ignore how we usurped the rights of our Bengali Brothers. To be brutally honest, If it was not for the Bengalis, Pakistan Movement would never have been started. Muslim League was formed in Bengal, the division of Bengal in 1906 was the moment that changed everything in the realm of Indian Muslim Politics, most of middle class leadership of Muslim League was from Bengal, the Lahore Resolution was presented by a Bengali Leader and still Bengalis were kept away from key political decisions in the Muslim League Hierarchy before and after the Partition. All of this had to end badly, because of our own mistakes. For further Reading on this issue, I suggest reading Murder of History by Mr. K.K Aziz.
Zaid Hamid: - We have produced leaders in every field except political one.
Comment: - Zaid Hamid is quite right in saying this. Although he did not suggest any reasons for this. Maybe the lack of political leadership is due to frequent incursions by a certain Army into the political arena for the last 65 years? But that’s just a guess.

Episode 18

Zaid Hamid:-‘Ramooz e bekhudi’ is a template for revolution for all nations in the world.

: - If this claim is true, why has anyone not given any credit to “Ramooz-e-Bekhudi” in the revolutions since the publication of the book?
Zaid Hamid: - We are doing this program because we do not want our nation to indulge in terrorist activities.

Comment: - By appearing on a youth channel playing non-stop music and promoting jingoism, hyper-nationalism and false sense of gusto, no-one is stopping anyone from anything. It is simply absurd.

The rest of the show was spent unduly praising Iqbal and Zaid Hamid reading from his notes. According to Nadeem Farooq Paracha, writer and blogger, “ I sometimes feel, a non-critical stance towards Iqbal’s work in this country has actually damaged his standing. He was a product of his time and well suited to compliment what was going in the minds of Indian Muslim men in the first half of the 20th century. But was he a visionary? I don’t think so. I don’t think his work is as relevant today as it is made out to be. Certainly not in a post-modern world where the notions of universalism based on certain singular concepts of faith and progress have long crumbled and given way to a healthy respect and need for democracy, pluralism and diversity.”  

(also published at

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