Pakistanis Are a Nation of Moderates: Professor Stanley Wolpert
A Pakistan Link Report
Pictures by Faiz Ahmed
Pictures above: Glimpses of the dinner hosted by Consul General and Mrs Ibne Abbas at their Beverly Hills residence in honor of Professor Stanley Wolpert
Los Angeles , CA : Consul General and Mrs Ibne Abbas hosted a dinner party at their Beverly Hills residence on May 15, 2009 to honor Professor Stanley Wolpert, eminent historian and author of several well-known books on South Asia, especially, Pakistan.
The Consul General honored Prof. Wolpert by presenting an award of recognition for his scholarly contribution towards Pakistan . His wife Dorothy Wolpert was presented a carpet by Mrs. Abbas.
In a talk delivered on the occasion, Professor Wolpert acknowledged that Pakistan is a society on the march, one that believes in moderation and provides manifest evidence of being the home of forward-looking, progressive people. Pakistanis, he ungrudgingly conceded, are the followers of Sufi Islam which is more liberal in outlook and condemns violence in all forms.
Regretting the recent unfortunate developments in FATA and some areas of the NWFP, Dr. Wolpert drew the attention of the audience to the fact that the present conditions are a fallout of the US campaign to fight Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in which Pakistan served as a frontline state and a reliable US ally. He exhoted the audience to support the Government of Pakistan in its efforts to overcome the menace of extremism and terrorism in all possible ways.
Referring to the Kashmir dispute, Prof. Wolpert lamented India's continued obduracy to deny the Kashmiri peoples their right to self-determination. He mentioned the various UN resolutions and efforts at other fora to resolve the dispute but its resolution remains elusive and a far cry owing to India's persistent intransigence. Prof. Wolpert stressed that for peace and stability in South Asia it was absolutely imperative that this long-standing dispute is speedily resolved in accordance with the aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
He was highly appreciative of Consul General Syed Ibne Abbas' initiatives and personal efforts in the Foreign Office to seek a resolution of the festering dispute and was optimistic that such efforts would bear fruit.
Salman Ahmad, UN Goodwill Ambassador for HIV/AIDS, also attended the event. He gave his perspective on Pakistan’s culture and society and later performed as well. Salman told the audience he had read Professor Wolpert's book on the country's founder Mohmmad Ali Jinnah seven times and had found its contents refreshingly instructive and inspiring each time.
Salman Ahmad was also presented an award of recognition by the Consul General. Mrs. Samina Ahmad was also presented a rug by Mrs. Abbas.
The dinner table was exquitively laid out and the food served by the Shahnawaz Restaurant was savory and delectable.