PADF Urges Pak-Americans to Support Rule of Law
Washington, DC: The Pakistan American Democratic Forum (PADF), a grassroots organization founded in 1982 in support of Movement for Restoration of Democracy (MRD), has called on fellow Pakistani-Americans to actively support the Supreme Court in establishing rule of law and facilitating rule-based institution-building.
“We are asking community for its informed involvement in four areas,” PADF National Chair, Dr. Muhammad Ashraf Toor, said: 1) Rule of law, 2) capacity formation and institution building, 3) improving Pak-US relations with focus on ending drone attacks, restoring Pakistani sovereignty, and seeking Dr. Aafia’s release, and 4) help eradicate the roots of violence.
The PADF statement, in part, reads:
“Like millions of Pakistanis, we too are appalled to read the uncontested record of President Zardari’s utter disregard for Pakistani lives and its sovereignty. On page 26 of his book Obama’s Wars, Bob Woodward chronicles:
“Zardari wanted to clear the air about the controversy over civilian deaths from drones. He had only been president since September and could afford a drop in his approval ratings. Innocent civilian deaths were the cost of doing business against senior al-Qaeda leaders.
“Kill the seniors,” Zardari said. “Collateral damage [Translations: thousands of innocent men, women and children] worries you Americans. It does not worry me.”
This depraved statement may not need any further comment, but for sure it demands organized action by all segments of Pakistani society. To that end, we recommend the following action plan:
1. Demand full compliance with the Supreme Court’s decision in the NRO case.
2. Learn about the civil society’s demands for the establishment of an independent Election Commission and an independent National Accountability Bureau, familiarize yourself with the Supreme Court decisions regarding these two institutions, apprise yourself about the Zardari-Gilani administration’s defiant disregard for the court ordered steps, and invent creative ways to expose, isolate and pressurize the Zardari-Gillani Government.
3. As a “bridge community” work with the US government, our government, to impress upon the Obama Administration the short and long term – devastating - consequences of killing innocent civilians.
4. Help Dr Aafia’s family raise enough funds for an appeal. She has only five months left to file an appeal against her 86 years sentence. (For more info visit: www.freeaafia.org)
5. Help PADF in its efforts to build an International Coalition of American Pakistanis and Pakistani Minorities to ensure full protection of the Christian, Hindu and Sikh minorities in Pakistan and the Muslim, Sikh, Hindu and other South Asian minorities in the United States.
To quote Faiz Ahmed Faiz: “Chalay Chaloo keh voh munzil aabhi nahin aa’yee”