Sabeen Mahmud and State Terrorism

Sabeen MahmudOn 24th April, Pakistan lost another brave daughter. Sabeen Mahmud was shot dead in the street while leaving T2F in Karachi where she had just finished leading a discussion on Balochistan. Sabeen’s mother was walking with her and she too was caught in the hail of bullets and now struggles for her life. This latest killing has shocked the nation’s conscience…or has it? Many liberals on social media have condemned the attack and placed the blame on state agencies. This was responded by others who protested that these are unfair accusations being cast with complete lack of evidence. While it is too soon to know for certain who was behind Sabeen’s murder, this cowardly act is the perfect time to talk about the role of state terrorism.

One of the most common responses to accusations against ISI responsibility is why would ISI kill Sabeen Mahmud when they could have killed Mama Qadeer? The answer to this is obvious: Killing Mama Qadeer would make a martyr for Baloch separatists. Killing Sabeen Mahmud sends a message to the rest of us not to ask questions about Balochistan. And why not? Why should we not ask questions?

The answer lies in the very subject of the talk that got Sabeen killed. Human rights organisations across the world have reported on kidnapping, torture, and murder of Baloch by Pakistan armed forces and intelligence agencies. Our own Supreme Court has been forced to threaten contempt proceedings against the government for failing to comply with orders on missing persons. When agencies think it will be good to kill Mama Qadeer, they will kill Mama Qadeer.

Of course, that does not mean that ISI killed Sabeen. Others have asked why so many are pointing fingers at ISI and not at militant groups like ASWJ, the same ones that have been involved in other recent attacks like the attempted assassination of Raza Rumi. This raises some other uncomfortable questions, though, like whether there are links between militant groups and ISI, and whether ISI uses ASWJ and other jihadi groups as proxies against Baloch activists and others, as was reported last year.

The attack against Sabeen is nothing new. We have seen it all before. Politicians will condemn the attack, but carefully. In a few days police will arrest some low-level militant or two and register a FIR. They will relax in jail for some time while the case winds its way through the system, then they will be quietly released due to lack of evidence. By this time, public opinion will be carefully molded by TV anchors and newspaper editors who remind us of the sensitivity of the topic, our obligations to national security, Sabeen’s irresponsibility in inviting ‘anti-Pakistan elements’, and the possibility of whether she was being funded by some meddlesome foreign agency. We will listen to sermons that tell us how unIslamic Sabeen was. How she had transgressed all boundaries and was using her cafe to turn people away from Islam with Western books and ideas. Some of it we will internalise, some of it we will dismiss…but we will do it silently. We won’t interrupt the sermons, and we won’t ask uncomfortable questions. And that was the point, wasn’t it? Sabeen Mahmud was killed not only to silence her, but to silence all of us.

There is no proof that ISI or any state agency is behind Sabeen’s killing. Probably there never will be any evidence. Even if some video proof was leaked, would we ever be sure that it was not faked by foreign powers out to defame our national institutions? So maybe we shouldn’t be asking who killed Sabeen to silence us. Maybe we should be asking ourselves whether they have succeeded in doing so…

6 thoughts on “Sabeen Mahmud and State Terrorism

  1. http://electronicwarfares.blogspot.co.uk/2015/04/who-killed-sabeen-mahmood.html

    my foto with Ms Sabeen Mahmood ,her mother Ms Kidwai and US Assistant Consul General in Karachi in 2010 at T 2F
    Who killed her -our assessment :–
    1- Extremist Group – 25 %
    2- State linked Extremist Group -25 %
    3- Random Act-25 %
    4- Political Party – 5 %
    5- Overzealous state intel local boss- 75 %

    LOOKS LIKE A CLEAR STATE SPONSORED ASSASINATION

    IT WILL BE FILED LIKE THE DEATH OF A STRAY DOG

    PAKISTANI STATE GETS 1.5 BILLION USD FOR DOING SWEET F____ ALL FROM USA

    BUT IF SABEEN GETS 10,000 USD GRANT SHE IS US AGENT !

    QUESTION THAT PAKISTANS STUPID AGENCIES NEED TO PONDER IS THAT IF SABEEN MAHMUD WAS ALLOWING A FORUM TO BALOCH MISSING PERSONS –WOULD THIS HAVE OBSTRUCTED THE PUNJABI CORRIDOR TO GWADAR !

    WHAT WE CAN ASSESS IS THAT PAKISTANS SECURITY AGENCIES ARE BADLY MANAGED- RESORT TO OVERKILLS AND THIS IN NO WAY WILL STABILISE PAKISTAN

    ITS A TWISTED AND BULL S____T LOGIC

  2. very sad incident for Pakistan I don’t when and why Pakistan will be free from these inside terrorist who defame the real face of Pakistan and its people

  3. We all know who killed her, and the hundreds like her. It’s one group of chillingly selfish people on top using all the state machinery to perpetuate their life of kings. Of course this group is no other than that of the Army generals and all those around them — the formally declared agencies such as the ISI and the undeclared ones such as ASWJ. All they want is for all common Pakistanis to shut their bloody mouths up and keep suffering so that these generals and their sidekicks can rule as they are, perpetually. Any and every Pakistani who asks for their basic human rights and a life that they deserve is, well, killed. If we Pakistanis want peace, then we must accept slavery and suffering in our hearts and minds; we must submit to this order of things and serve our neo-masters. Just ask for your rights and be determined about getting them in any way and you will find yourself surrounded, warned, tortured and, if you still do not learn, then killed. That is our beloved Pakistan. And we so sincerely pray: Long live (this) Pakistan. I would say: Go to hell (this) Pakistan, and come into being (another, real) Pakistan – a New Pakistan!

  4. The 20-30 odd people who attended and listened could hardly make any difference to the state. But the killing of Sabeen Mahmud did. A miniscule of persons knew what went on at the T2F. Now with her death the whole world knows. Does her death serves the purposes of the State?
    Nay! The agenda of the anti state elements have been fulfilled. RIP Sabeen.

  5. PAKISTANS INCHARGE ARE TWO MEN WITH ACUTE ISSUES OF PERSONAL INADEQUACIES AND A BURNING NEED FOR SELF REALISATION.

    A MILITARY CHIEF WITH LIMITED INTELLECT AND EVEN LESS RESOLUTION. AND A PRIME MINISTER WITH A LOW LEVEL IQ CAUGHT IN AN EXTREMELY COMPLEX INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL SITUATION.

    IT IS JUST A QUESTION WHEN STATE ACTORS DECIDE TO SUPPORT THE SECESSIONISTS.
    80 % OF BALOCH AREA IS UNSTABLE-PAKISTANI STATES PRIORITY IS JUST TO ENSURE ORDER IN MAIN CITIES AND OIL AND GAS AND MINERAL INSTALLATIONS.
    WHILE IN MUSHARRAF ERA NO ONE WAS EXTRA JUDICIALLY KILLED , PRESENT PAKISTANI REGIME AND MILITARY ARE CONTINUING A STRATEGY OF DUMP AND KILL.
    REGARDLESS OF WHO WILL WIN , IT IS A GREAT HUMAN TRAGEDY.

    THERE IS A VERY CLEAR PATTERN IN HOW THINGS ARE HAPPENING.

    MY GUT FEELING IS THAT RAHEEL SHARIF AND HIS TEAM ARE ON THE WRONG COURSE AND WILL BRING PAKISTAN TO CERTAIN GRIEF.

    THINGS WILL COMPLICATE BY LEAPS AND BOUNDS AND RAHEEL SHARIF WILL TAKE PAKISTAN INTO A SUPER MONSTER CATCH 22 OF STRATEGIC SHIT.

    AS FIRST STEP TO A POSSIBLE MILITARY TAKE OVER GENERAL RAHEEL SHARIF IS TRYING TO PROVE THAT HE IS GREATER THAN NAPOLEON OR KHALID BIN WALEED .IN REALITY HE IS NOT EVEN A MILLIONTH OF THESE GREAT PERSONALITIES.

    SO FIRST CAME FATA OPERATION AGAINST AN ALREADY DESTROYED TALIBAN PRESENTED AS A BATTLE OF WATERLOO.

    THEN CAME EXECUTIONS OF SMALL TIME CRIMINALS.

    THEN CAME HARSH MESSAGES TO MEDIA ABOUT BALOCHISTAN.

    MM TAPURS ARTICLES WERE BANNED.

    LUMS WAS WARNED AND COERCED.

    AND NOW SABEENS TRAGIC MURDER IS ACTUALLY A GODFATHER MAFIA STYLE WARNING TO ALL MEDIA NOT TO DO ANYTHING AGAINST SO CALLED HAIDARY STRATEGY.

    AT ONE STAGE NAWAZ SHARIF WILL ALSO BE KICKED OUT . BUT THAT MAY TAKE SOME TIME.

    IF MIR TALPUR SAIN IS ATTACKED AND KILLED GOD FORBID , MURDER BLAMED ON RAW AND CIA AS HAIDARY STRATEGY I WILL NOT BE SURPRISED

    PAKISTANI AGENCIES ARE WORKING VERY HARD TO BE MORE LOYAL THAN THE KING AND SABEEN WAS REGARDED AS EXPENDABLE AND A COCKROACH AS SHE WAS NOT A PUNJABI EVEN !

    PAKISTANS MILITARY AND POLITICAL LEADER PLACE BELIEF IN THEIR POWERS TO PHYSICALLY ELIMINATE PEOPLE AND HAVE A MISTAKEN BELIEF THAT THEY CAN OVERCOME PAKISTANS MAJOR ISSUES BY EXTRA JUDICIAL OR KANGAROO COURT JUDICIAL EXECUTIONS.

    THE SCENE IS READY FOR LONG TERM DIASASTER AND INSTABILITY IN PAKISTAN.

  6. For your all information killer has been arrested and he belongs to mqm and supported by RAW….shame on u all accusing one of the best agency of the world….akkkh thoo on all ur face….Pakistan Zindabad ISI paendabad

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