I Love Being Pakistani...
By Ghazala Akbar


I love being Pakistani!

I love being the center of attention in the world media. Look at the fodder we provide. Every few months we're in the news. Not a measly column or two, in the inside pages. Not the last item before the weather. Headline News! Breaking News! Live coverage!

For all the wrong reasons we are a publicist's dream client. We don't even demand payment. 24x7 non-stop coverage, exclusive photos, interviews, all for free! This is some serious collective national talent. PR companies are studying our methods. Universities are funding research. People everywhere are asking: How do we manage to do it? How do we always hog the headlines without even trying!

Every news editor reserves space for us as he designs his final layout. Newscasters have one ear tuned to their ear pieces for the “P” word. Tweeters are up all night.  Journalists keep an open air ticket to Islamabad tucked away in their briefcases. Bags are always packed.  Everyone's ready to drop everything at the mention of the word ... PAKISTAN.

Major media events these days are being planned with us in mind. I bet you Kate and William were on tenterhooks all day hoping we wouldn't upstage their big day. When Kate entered Westminster Abbey, Harry turned, smiled and said something to William. What did he say? Relax bro, no news from Pakistan today! Phew! Luckily for Wills. Obama took a day to digest the information that the CIA had given him. Otherwise millions round the World would have missed out on her dress and the kiss. All eyes would be transfixed on A- BOT- A - BAD!

Poor 'Ole Qaddafi. He lost a son, they bombed the hell out of his villa but it hardly caused a ripple. The Arab Spring is wilting into Summer. It was and should be the big story but we've grabbed the attention again. Sorry Syria, you just have to wait your turn. Hamas and Fatah, be quiet, 'We're reporting live from Islamabad.'

Assassinations, suicide bombers, gun-battles, terrorists, drugs, crooked politicians, match- fixers, spot-fixers and bigamists too... you name it we've been through it all. Been there done that! Nature doesn't spare us either.  If it’s not a man-made disaster we are also prone to dramatic natural calamities: earthquake and floods of biblical proportions.  But nothing beats the Mother- of- all- blunders. Even by our high standards this was something spectacular. We did it, Big time!

How boring the news would be if it weren't for us Pakistanis. They would have had to have to invent us.

Just love being a Pakistani, honest. Wish it were for the right reasons though.



Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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